In order to experience RV living we rented a Class C RV back in 2016 and thoroughly enjoyed it. Ever since returning that RV we thought about buying one for ourselves so we could take short and long trips with our two dogs. Life was busy and the timing wasn't right, until late summer 2018.
After months and months of looking at online listings and YouTube virtual tours we decided on a floorplan that was best for our lifestyle. It is a 24' Class C front-living plan with full-wall slide.
Our must haves were: a walk-around Queen size bed, Mercedes Sprinter chassis with diesel engine, ample outside storage, window over bed, wide window at kitchen counter, comfortable dinette, attractive flooring, and brown tone real wood cabinets.
Most RVs come with dark cabinetry. As a home designer that loves white, the dark cabinets were hard to accept. In order to be able to live with dark wood cabinets I had to find an RV that had real wood cabinets (just in case I wanted to paint them in the future) and were brown. A true brown stain color would work well with grays and the yellow-green I love.
The dinette is an important area for us. It has to be multi-functional and comfortable, and for me, it has to be good looking. I removed the back cushions and added several feather filled pillows of a variety of fabrics. The table was an unattractive plastic laminate so I kept it covered with a tablecloth until I could find a replacement.
After literally months of looking, I bought a used oak table on Craigslist. I painted the top, removed the base, and then swapped it out in the RV. Having a white table top has greatly improved the style. It is a simple look and it is a nice backdrop for placements and table accessories.
We are both self-employed so having a work area is really important when we are "vacationing". We often mix business and pleasure so a comfy area that can fit both of our laptops is a must. Here is a snapshot of our mobile office when in use.
When not working laptops and paperwork are cumbersome and take up space. In order to use the dinette for work, dining, and just hanging out, we needed an easy place to store our laptops and printer when not in use. The most convenient place is the over cab area.
However, the cab was outfitted with a cushion to be used as a sleeping space. Since we never intended to use the over-cab area for accommodating guests we took down the curtain and removed the cushion and ladder. Using birch veneer plywood, we made a box and put in two wood trays. It is literally the perfect size for our "offices". It makes the over-cab area more functional.
The trays are not on a track or anything, just a couple of rubber feet to hold them from sliding when in transit. In addition to storing our office drawers, we store other useful items we want handy such as: the vacuum, cab privacy shades, extra toilet paper, skylight insulating pillows, fans, basket for dirty laundry etc. This is an invaluable space.
Cooking on the road is a big perk for us. I actually like to cook so having a real kitchen, although tiny, is important. The space needs to be work well efficiently. I have found ways to create a multi-function space.
Here a few products which I think are must haves to maximize space and functionality.
This rack is great! It is versatile. It can be a drying rack and also double as usable counter space. I will put a cutting board over this area to extend counter space. We removed the flip-up counter because it really only makes sense when the door is closed.
These mats are much more absorbent than towels. It collects run off from the washed dishes. The only downside is that it takes a bit of time for it to dry out after getting very wet. I find this more efficient than a drying rack. We don't have a ton of dishes so this works just fine.
Suction hooks are great for RVs with mirrored doors. Once you get a good seal, the suction will stay in place.
On a fun note, an outdoor rug is useful because most camp sites are dirt. Having a rug at your doorway helps keep the dirt out (or mud on rainy days). I like the recycled plastic rug because it does not absorb water. You can sweep off the dirt easily. The colors are often bold which is a great way to jazz up your campsite. Here is the link for the one I got.
Let's not forget about cooking. Cast iron skillets are perfect for over the fire cooking and using on the camper kitchen stove. We use ours daily. The Lodge brand is American made and is good quality.
The RV has exceeded our expectations. We have enjoyed it so much. It has gotten us away from home more this year than ever before. We visit family more by parking in their driveway.
Our first long trip was to Florida for an extended period March - April. We stayed in New Jersey, Virginia, Outer Banks, Hilton Head South Carolina, Tybee Island Georgia, and Florida. It was a fantastic trip.
We have done three work trips for Whiskey. All the way to very northern Maine, northern New Hampshire, and northern Vermont. We have covered a lot of ground in less than years time.
Here is are shots from our travels.
It has been a fun and busy year for our RV travels. We've put thousands of miles on our rig and we are delighted. Since the summer is busy for us since we have three vacation rentals in addition to our regular work. We also rent out our RV. We have been happy to share it to like -minded travelers. So far, so good.
We love our life. We work hard, and now are enjoying mixing work with RV travels. Once the boating season winds down we will head up to the Maine coast for another change of scenery.
Other blog posts to come will highlight individual trips, Harvest Host stays, and feedback of our wine and whiskey tastings.