Originally Posted by MamaSkirts
Leslie, Thanks very much. I appreciate the consideration.
Mitzi & Jon, believe it or not... And judge us or not... We're jumping into this full-timing thing as first-time RV owners and even ...wait for it... first-time campers.
We can hear the gasps & fully realize the anxiety that "first-time-everything" status will create in people (especially friends & family). But we've talked it over & over & over again and we just need to get outta here & refresh ourselves, our connection to nature &, ultimately, refresh our lives themselves.
So... Full-timing: we've committed to a year and will go from there. Domiciling and taxes and whatnot are definitely future concerns but not in the immediate.
I guess when I asked for first-timer advice, I was really asking what stupid RV mistakes y'all made that could've been avoided with advice from some more experienced RVers.
Thanks again to all who've contributed here.
Oh, you are going to have a BALL!
First, when dark falls, it really FALLS (assuming you're not in a suburban/urban wall to wall trailer/rv park) Try to get everything set up/put away before dusk. If you live way north like Canada dusk can last for hours. Here in south Florida it lasts about 10 minutes. Buy a cap led or a headlamp- it's hard to work one handed while hanging on to a flashlight.
Never dress in the dark without shaking out your boots/shoes, underwear and trousers. Back in Boy Scout Camp there was a certain scorpion that became acquainted with certain tender portions of my nether anatomy, due to my failure to shake out my underwear after my in-the-dark shower.
First aid for scorpion stings is benedryl and ice. Pack lots and lots of benedryl. It's good for stings, poison ivy, poison oak, ant bites, mosquito bites, insomnia, and hay fever. Oral benedryl is much less likely to cause allergies than ointments containing benedryl.
First aid for burns. 1. Ice. 2. Non steroidal anti inflammatories (such as aspirin, ibuprofen or Naprosyn) to stop the burn at a cellular level. If you start to blister get thee to an emergency room. (PS paramedics and ER staff REALLY hate to see burns coming in slathered with butter or Crisco or Neosporin or any other cream. If there is still heat in the burnt area creams just trap it and it all has to be painfully washed off so they can make an educated assessment)
My dermatologist uses Neutrogena SPF 100 sunscreen. I figure she should know and do the same.
Low temperatures outside cities are 10-20 degrees lower than in the city. How to stay warm? Nightcaps. Fuzzy socks. Keep water and a high carb midnight snack handy as your metabolism will need a little kickstart if it's not used to keeping you warm all night instead of your furnace
doing so. Also moisturize lightly to hold heat in (see the hint above about burn first aid. Also, long distance swimmers grease to avoid hypothermia)
If you are going to be cold weather camping, read your clothing labels. COTTON KILLS! The biggest lie is "warm 100% cotton flannel". Polyester, acrylic, silk, and wool are all warmer than cotton. I have slept in a 40*F 10 x 10 ft cabin atop a north Carolina mountain, comfortable in a double set of long undies/long sleeve shirts- silk next to the skin then merino/angora blend. My Boy Scouts all knew the "Cotton Kills" lecture by heart.
Camping trips are not times to experiment with unfamiliar foods ( we'll make an exception for tinfoil dinners and egg scramble in a baggie) Comfort food that you can produce with a blindfold and one hand tied behind your back is the way to go until you feel comfortable with camping cookery. Snacky sweets are very good on camping trips. You know about smores, and there are pie iron recipes...
Very important- keep one whole outfit, complete from skin out, bagged in a ziplock baggie and wear that to drive home.
Hoping that others can chime in with advice to the first timers...but you will love it, I swear. Don't wait any longer, camping is a WONDERFUL way to refresh your soul and enjoy yourself.