I am a positive person, always looking on the bright side. We have been RV living for 18 months and it has been amazing. It really has, but there are some things that I HATE about it. Why am sharing these things with you? I want you to be prepared if you are researching RV living or want you to know that you are not alone if you are already on the road and hating some aspects of it. In any event, I feel it is important to be transparent about RV living and that includes sharing what I hate about it. The kids and Robert probably have their own list of things that they hate too. So, here goes…
Here’s a quick run down of the 5 things I hate about RV living:
Missing friends and family
Lack of cheap unlimited internet
Limited or Absolutely zero date nights
Not having a laundry room
Struggling to balance work and play
1 – Missing Friends and Family
RV living means leaving your friends and family behind. It means moving around. It means uprooting your life, packing into a tiny home on wheels and setting out for adventure. We had resettled in my hometown after our youngest was born. In three years we made amazing friends that we saw on nearly a daily basis. I was able able to reconnect with a childhood friend. Things were going so well. We were home. We were five minutes away from my parents. I had the support system that helped me get my 20 hours in each week. Then we left. Having said all that, we do make it home quite a bit, probably every 3 months and we tend to reconnect with our great friends and our family. We have also made many new friends on the road and there is a huge sense of community with others on the road. Still, there is no place like home and the people that you share so many beautiful moments with.
2 – Lack of Cheap Unlimited Internet
Okay, I know you are wondering why I care about internet access when this life is all about simplification and enjoying the great outdoors… It is about enjoying nature and simplicity, however, we still work and look after the kids education. I specifically work remotely from home, and also have a blog, a YouTube channel and we all love to watch YouTube and Netflix… let’s not forget gaming and homeschooling. We prefer watching PBS, but sometimes can’t get antenna reception. RV living for us means we want the best of the great outdoors AND connectivity and access to all things internet. We have a Verizon hotspot which gives us 200gb of data. It sounds like a lot and it is, but not when its raining outside and we all want to watch something on our devices or when we are sick and want to binge watch Sherlock on Netflix. Yes we can read books, play board games and build with LEGOs on these rainy days, but after we’ve done all that we still want to watch something. And let’s not forget travel days…the kids are much happier (and so are we) when they can watch YouTube and Netflix while we are driving down the interstate. Anyway, the hotspot costs $185/month. It’s not terribly expensive, but it is when you consider we paid $100/month in our home and could run all the devices and computers with unlimited access.
I love my hubby. We have been married nearly 14 years. When we were in my hometown we were able to go on dates every month, sometimes even more than that. It was fantastic. We enjoyed 3 years of that before RV living. As soon as we started on this journey, the dates ended. Twenty-six feet of living with 2 kids is great, but I miss quiet time with my husband. Whenever we go home we try to get a date night or two in, but we don’t always get to. Now that the kids are getting a tiny bit older, we can leave them in the RV with walkie talkies and take short walks. Even that 30 minute walk helps us reconnect and helps keep our marriage and relationship strong. We are learning to be creative: coffee time in the mornings, walks on a beautiful day, text messages (yes, even when we are in the RV together), etc.
4 – Not Having a Laundry Room
I never knew how much I loved my laundry room until I didn’t have one. This the first time in 30 years that I have not had a laundry room!! There is nothing like having a place where you can dump dirty laundry and walk away knowing you won’t be tripping over it every 10 minutes. RV living means getting creative with the dirty laundry. Even if you have an on-board washer and dryer, you still have a very small space to store and process laundry. We don’t have a washer or dryer. This means it is the laundromat for us. We prefer using the onsite laundry facilities since they are close to our RV and support the RV park where we are staying, especially if it is a privately owned park. On occasion we have used public laundromats, but that means driving somewhere for several hours, although it might save us a bit of a money. On rare occasions we find ourselves hand-washing a few things or only washing and not drying the clothes (saves money). We have survived so far, but I find myself searching amazon for portable washing machines at least once a month…
Balancing work and play is not anything new, but RV living definitely makes the struggle harder for me. There are days where I am inside the RV working, looking out the window at the beauty that surrounds me…and I want to be outside playing, but I have to work. I see people riding their bikes around the campground, my kids go swimming, and I’m working. I try hard to take a day off here and there or try to set up my schedule so that I’m working in the morning and night so I have my afternoons free to enjoy life. The reality is that I’m always behind on my work (30 hours a week that doesn’t include work on our personal blog, YouTube channel and other projects). Sometimes my only days off are travel days which consist mainly of driving and meeting the needs of the kids. Some days I look back on my week and realize that I haven’t done any of the fun things I thought I would. I haven’t found the solution…but I haven’t given up!
So there it is, the 5 things that I absolutely hate about RV living. They are my personal thoughts and ideas. You might never care about how you get the laundry done. Everyone one is different. Even reading this may not prepare you personally for RV living. You won’t know whether a tiny bathroom will really work for you until you are actually dealing with it day and night. It’s a little scary, but in reality the positives of RV life really outweigh the negatives. Even when I’m in the RV working, looking out the window, I see a different place all the time. I see cows, mountains, beautiful trees, people enjoying their lives, lakes and rivers. Even my worst day in the RV is better than most of my days living in my old house. I’m not saying my life was miserable before RVing. I’m saying that my current situation makes my life better, it helps me appreciate life and family, and realize the things I took for granted. RV living makes you live intentionally. You notice the little things. Every day is lived on purpose and it makes you realize how much of life is a series of choices and decisions that we make.
What do you think? Are you living this life now? Are there things you hate about it too? If you are not RV living, but want to, what decisions are you making to live intentionally and to get on the road?
I’m a blogging, YouTubing, RVing, roadschooling mama of two who is married to the fantastic Robert (the other half of Exploring the Local Life).