Monday, May 13, 2013

RV Living and Learning (Part One)

This notebook is barely thick enough to hold all the manuals for the RV and it's accouterments. I am glad I found the zippered model.  I am such a klutz.  This keeps my papers from falling out. It pays to actually read the manuals too. I learned a ton about my RV, engine, appliances, generator and so on. 

This is how the bedroom looked when I went to see this RV which I ultimately bought. When we finalized a price through email and phone,  I picked it up from the owner (4 hours away) but the big red pillow was gone.  It had been hiding an ugly rotten rip in the bedspread that I had never noticed.

Note to self...  pay better attention next time.

Note to self...
This is NOT how to repair a leaky roof.  Matter of fact the tarp was so old, it had a few holes of it's own. The roof continued to leak inside despite the tarp. Yes that is snow on top and around it in South Carolina. It was so cold, depressing and dark inside. It was not a great moment in RV-ing. Matter of fact, I was so sick at the time, I was sure I had made a huge mistake. 

I was planning to repair the roof, then resell the RV. At the time, the doctor didn't expect me to hold on much longer. (How wrong he was!)

It was then and there I seriously daydreamed about being a snowbird, albeit a snowbird from South Carolina. But first I had to fix the roof... and get well enough to walk, drive and cook. 

As soon as it stopped snowing, the roof was repaired. My friend took the tarp because his roof was failing at his house. 

Amazingly, I spent two days driving from South Carolina to Florida. I left with the heater running full blast. By the time I found Florida, I had the heat off and the windows rolled down.  

I was officially a snowbird 4 months after buying the RV.  Somewhere on the way to Florida, I seriously fell in love with my wheel estate. 

This is how the previous owner showed me to put up the awning. A few weeks later, after reading the manual, I found out this was all wrong. You can also tell in the picture that the awning is ripped at the top.  I thought it would be easy to find someone to repair this. 

Ha ha ha!  I was dead wrong. 

Note to self...  read the manuals and learn a few things. 

Nobody told me about Eternbound roof tape until after I had paid a bloody fortune for an RV repair center to patch and paint the roof in rubber paint. However, Eternabond repaired the rip in the awning by attaching it to the roof.  This held up for over 2 years until a sudden storm tore it off while destroying the awning. 

Dang it. Time to repair the roof yet again. More caulk,  more rubber paint, more Eternabond tape

I've now learned to quit buying caulk.  Just use the Eternabond to seal up the seams and you are seriously DONE. Love this stuff. 

The old original awning kept proving to be bad luck. I didn't know you were supposed to put the awning at a draining angle when it was raining. I wasn't home when heavy rains set in. I came home staring at this HUGE puddle of water on top of my awning. Right before my very eyes, it collapsed, buckling the frame at both ends.  I was so lucky I was not underneath the ton of water that landed below. Yes a ton or more. 240 gallons of water equal a ton of weight (2,000 pounds.)

Note to self...  you are darn lucky to have angels watching over your fool head.

I traded tables with an RV couple. Their table was for 2, mine was for 4.  They switched out the table legs because theirs was pretty and mine was ugly.  When we hefted up the table to install it, I realized their table (the one above) was hollow where as the one I gave them was solid.

Note to self... they got a GREAT deal off me!  

Eventually I tossed out the hideous rusty table leg, replacing it with a nice simple tapered wooden one. 

I was climbing the walls because my galley didn't have enough storage room. Then I started converting the wall to storage. Wheeeee!

If you can't get the Ketchup bottle opened with a rubber gripper, then use the vice grips. 

When I was looking to buy the RV...
Oh how cute!  They converted the broom closet to an extra bathroom in the RV. Oh wait. That IS THE bathroom...

I live on a super efficient budget. I am not poor, I just lack funds... 

So when I found this cute makeup case in the dumpster, I converted it to my toolbox. Not sure which needs more work... my face or the RV. It has been the butt of many jokes. A few years later, a friend gave me their old toolbox, complete with more tools. YIPPIE!  I retired the makeup case.

Yepper, I'm a girl who loves tools. 

On a hot day that was in need of a cooling breeze, I clamped my clip-on fan outdoors to aim at my table and chair (not shown).  It kept me from dripping sweat all over the keyboard while I typed outdoors. 

This is my fridge about 20% full. The plastic baskets I found heavily discounted.  Of course I spent months shopping in bargain stores with a list of measurements.  Working like drawers, they help me literally stuff in the food when I stock up.  Also, they help with the dreaded cargo shifting that can happen when bouncing down the road. It's no fun to open the fridge after a long drive and have food land on the toes. Ouch!  

My red topped containers are all identical with screw on lids (Rubbermaid Twist and Seal Leakproof.) Shown are the 2 cup size. The 4 cup size uses the exact same lid, so I have a few of those too.  Even if they do fall out, they aren't likely to spill. Thank goodness becasue I am a real klutz and drop things often.

You won't catch me buying pricey bottled water.  I bought those 12 ounce blue refillable bottles shown on the top shelf.  I utilize a Brita water filter pitcher (not shown) to filter all my drinking  and cooking water. Having a few bottles chilled in the fridge is nice when I want to grab one to go on a walk or a bike ride. Harley dog knows exactly what's in the blue bottles too. If he is thirsty, he will stare at the bottle, begging for a drink  when we are walking or at a dog park. 

Maybe his head is good for something besides petting...


  1. We sure do have to learn the hardway but we do learn. You have done a great job staying alive in spite of what they told you.

    You have a really good sized fridge there. Mine is small. Drives me crazy.

    1. I looked at your blog. Saw a pic of your fridge! You have the save size I do which they claim is 6 cubic feet, though it hardly seems like it. It's just my pic and the fact mine is nearly empty that makes mine look larger than it is. You can not fit an egg carton front to back, it has to be sideways or on the door shelf.

  2. Your post reminded me why I was so glad to sell my 5th wheel. Something was always going wrong and I'm not all that handy. I agree with JO, your fridge is a really good size for an RV, and the plastic baskets are such a good idea.

    1. I can't imagine being in a 5th wheel by my lonesome. I just think the work would be way too much for me and possibly prevent me from visiting some of the beautiful remote parks I enjoy that have tiny curvy roads and tree lined lots. Also, I am afraid a 5th wheel would stop me from making random stops en-route, something I love to do.


Life is goof!