Reflections From The Road: Months 7-9

As I looked back through our blog to get a sense of what our life has been like in months 7-9 on the road…I am overwhelmed with emotion. I am in awe of how many places we’ve been, how many amazing people we’ve met, and the sheer joy of it all. We are so grateful for every day that God allows us to keep going on this journey.

Right now I am sitting at the dinette in the RV. We’re parked for the night in Penngrove, CA at a small park. The only sound is the soft hum of my computer fan and the tapping of my fingers on the keys. Outside…it’s completely quiet as the fog rolls in off the ocean. There is a chill in the air even though it’s almost June. Inside…Bella is sound asleep on the couch. She was determined to go to sleep there “all by herself” tonight…and she did. :) Matt is asleep in the back. Life is good. We have food. We have grease. We have faith. We have freedom. We have each other. Ahhhhhh…. :)

Here are some thoughts from these last couple of months…

Raw on the Road
We’ve been eating primarily raw foods for going on 5 months now…and we feel great! Matt just recently bought some new jeans because he has lost 40 lbs! He went from a tight 38 to a loose 34 in about 2 months. Eating is a joyful thing around here…there are no feelings of restriction or rules. A typical day for me might look like this (Matt eats the same, just more):

8:30am Green smoothie [banana/pineapple/mango/spirulina/hemp seeds/spinach]
10:30am Big bowl of strawberries
12:30pm Kale Avocado Salad
3:30pm Peaches (2 or 3)
6:30pm Walnut Meat Tacos
8:00pm Watermelon (lots!)
9:30pm Pot of hot herbal tea

I may occasionally throw in some other yummy snacks…like a handful of raisins or some Manna bread smeared with raw almond butter and creamed honey. We like to keep it simple…if I can make it in under 10 minutes, I’m happy :) The West coast is PACKED with amazing raw food restaurants and we’ve been trying them all! I’ll be posting photos and reviews at Happy Foody soon. Yum yum!

Beaches and Being Outside
We’ve been spending a lot of time outside and it’s so good for the soul. There is just something living in the RV that makes the outdoors feel so much closer. It seems much more accessible…a shorter walk to the door maybe? :) I love to make lunch and immediately walk outside to eat it…whether it be at a picnic table or just on the curb. The beaches have been so soothing. Siesta Key was beyond beautiful. San Diego…wow. Malibu…double wow. And then there was Carpinteria…probably my favorite beach so far. For someone who hadn’t really seen the ocean much before this tour…I’m getting my fair share of delicious sand and sunsets. Bella LOVES the sand. It’s safe to say that she will be a water girl…and will take after her daddy. He’ll probably have her wakeboarding by the time she’s 5. I am much more comfortable on land, however…but I enjoy watching them run around like crazy people.

We have had the opportunity to experience so many unique and vibrant churches during our trek across the south. Big churches. Small churches. House churches. It’s also encouraging to see the church as a whole start to concern themselves more with environmental issues. There is a lot of education going on in the local church…about how we can take better care of creation and in turn, take better care of God’s people as well.

Feels Like Home
We’ve enjoyed a lot of family time on this leg of the tour. My parents and my brother, Dan, flew into Scottsdale, AZ for business…but came 4 days early to hang out with us. We spent days and days just laying around the pool in gorgeous 90 degree weather…pure bliss and good tans! By that point in the tour, we were in desperate need of a break! It may seem like we are on a giant vacation…but we really do work…and the hours were getting long. Then, my parents extended their stay and rode with us in the RV to San Diego, and spent another 4 days there. What fun! Then, a few days later, we picked up my sister Laura and her fiance, Dan, at LAX (they flew in from Minneapolis) and they spent 5 days with us in Malibu/Santa Monica, CA. It’s been such a blessing being able to share our travels with people we love.

Geeky Stuff
Somewhere back around New York City, our original GPS bit the dust. We didn’t buy another one right away because the iPhone worked in a similar manner. However, we REALLY missed the GPS. We ended up getting a new one in Atlanta, and I cannot believe we waited that long. It’s a life saver. The difference is that with the GPS, Matt can just drive and navigate on his own. Whereas with the iPhone, I needed to be up in the front telling him where to turn, quickly typing in addresses, etc. In heavy traffic, it’s not a fun marital experiment :) Life is so much better when I can be tending to Bella…reading books, etc. while Matt navigates on his own. So glad it’s back.

We also added another gadget to our techie bag…a Verizon air card that works like magic. We were hesitant to get one in the beginning of the tour because of the cost, but after doing a lot of research…decided to bite the bullet. Costco has a special for members where you can get the card itself for around $10.00 and the service is $60 a month. It has been worth every single penny. Now we are able to have internet on our computer anywhere there is a cell signal…and we don’t have to seek out a wi-fi hotspot to get our work done. What an amazing feeling.


We have had an abundance of grease throughout these last few months…not including that one time in the middle of Texas when we ran out :) With diesel prices at about $5.15/gallon, we just smile when we drive right by the gas station! We have made back our initial investment on our veggie system several times now…it’s so great knowing that we are driving clean and driving for free. Matt is an absolute pro at finding and gathering…and after 17,000 miles (pre-tour included) on veggie oil, he should be!


We have stayed very busy with work these past couple of months…photo shoots, demos, raw food coaching…it’s been wonderful. Because of this, I am a little behind on getting photos and blogs written. I have approximately 4,000 photos waiting to be sorted/edited, etc. And that’s just California! :) Have patience with me though…I’m getting them done and the west coast has been an amazing ride! I can’t wait to show you all the beautiful sites…

We are embarking on the last leg of the tour…we’ll be headed into Oregon next week and then Washington and Vancouver. After that, we’ll be spending longer periods of time in Montana, Minnesota, and Iowa…catching up with family. It’s hard to believe we moved into the RV almost a year ago already! What a wild ride. :)

Reflections From The Road: Months 3-6

Transitioning back to our Traveling Lifestyle
In a few days, we will set out on the second leg of our tour! We’ve been “off the road” for almost 3 months now, and we are anxious to get moving again. On Feb. 18, we flew back into Raleigh, NC from Minneapolis, MN…staying overnight at Patrick and Jen’s house and then continuing on to Florence, SC (Becky and Rocky’s) where the RV has been parked.

When we arrived at Becky and Rocky’s house…we were excited to move back into our home. We had really missed having our own space and our own king sized bed! It was a pretty easy transition, although when you haven’t been living in that small of a space for awhile, it takes some re-adjusting! We discovered that that fridge door had closed inadvertently, and it was full of mold. Yuck! It took many hours of cleaning and soaking and scrubbing to get it ready to fill with food again. I had stopped at Whole Foods in Raleigh to stock up, so I had to load everything into Becky’s fridge first and then back into our own later.

Another fun thing was that our kitchen faucet was leaking water everywhere when we turned it on. Matt needed to do some work on the counter top before re-installing a new faucet, so we ended up being without running water for several days. Of course, we were able to take showers and wash dishes inside the house, but carrying them back and forth was a nuisance. I am TRULY thankful for running water. You don’t even realize how much you love it and need it until it’s gone! I am so humbled to think of all the women around the world who have to walk miles and miles to a well to carry water back to their homes every day. Isn’t God good to teach us thankfulness in such an unexpected way?

We found that we had accumulated quite a lot of “stuff” in our travels and consequently, the RV was busting at the seams. We filled several boxes with clothes, shoes, and toys and made trips to the Salvation Army so we could actually move around the RV. Bella grew so much while we were gone…she outgrew many of her clothes too! I always have to remind myself that we really don’t have much stuff…we just have a really small living space! It always feels sooooo good to make space and to give away things we aren’t using anymore.

Physical and Spiritual Renewal
When we left the RV on Dec. 12, we didn’t know that we would be spending 6 weeks longer than we had planned away from it. As we were flying out, we got a call from Matt’s parents…asking if we would be able to stay longer and help out while Matt’s dad had back surgery. Of course, we said yes! We had only purchased a one way ticket to get home, so God had all of this perfectly worked out and planned long ahead of our knowing it.

We had a wonderful time at Christmas and New Years’ with my family in Iowa and then headed up to Minnesota to be with Matt’s family for the next 6 weeks. The time we spent there was such a blessed time…but it was a big change from what we were used to. Every day was virtually the same…with a few variances here and there. When you are used to something new happening every day on the road, we had to adjust a bit! Once we got into the swing of things, it was clear that God intended that time to be one of physical and spiritual renewal for all of us.

We were able to make some much needed changes to our diet, and we started working out again regularly. The routine of each day made it so easy to have a consistent daily time in God’s word and in prayer. Matt was also able to play on the worship team at church and lead worship for a father/son retreat at Camp Shamineau. We had lots of hot tub time and Bella learned to ice skate. The wonderful, quality time she was able to spend with Grandpa and Grandma was so precious. By the time we were leaving, we were completely rejuvenated and refreshed…ready to hit the road again. All of the changes we made in our life have been easily continued now that we are back in the RV.

About a week before we were to fly out, we received word that my Papa (my mom’s dad) was experiencing complications from Parkinson’s Disease. He passed away a few days later. The funeral was the weekend before we had booked tickets to fly back to Raleigh…again, we saw God’s hand in the timing. We had booked that return flight quite randomly based on a “guess” of when we would want to return…but it was exactly the timing needed to attend the funeral across the state, and get back to Minneapolis to fly out.

After the funeral, my family joined us in Minneapolis and we had a great time there celebrating Matt’s 30th birthday and enjoying each other’s company. It was so hard to say goodbye, but we have plans to meet up with my parents in Phoenix, AZ in late April….and will hopefully see my 4 other siblings around the country somewhere as well.

We were definitely looking forward to leaving the cold temperatures of the Midwest and getting back to warm weather! However, we had no such luck! North and South Carlolina have been unseasonably cold while we’ve been back…it was actually the same temperature here in Florence as it was in Bozeman, MT yesterday! 50 degrees! Brrrrrrr! It was 25 degrees overnight…and our heater just died too. Luckily, we have other heaters we can use…but boy! How far south do we have to go to find some warmth!!?

I’ve added many photos to our Minnesota sets. Click here, here and here for those albums. I will be posting more of Florence soon.

We have just a few more days here…we head to Lexington, SC on Monday to “officially” re-start the tour. We have so many fun families to see and events planned…we’re really looking forward to meeting everyone. Check the Route page for updates on our locations!

Off we go!

Reflections from the Road: Month 2

If Month 1 felt like a whirlwind…Month 2 was a HURRICANE :) We saw so many cites, met so many people, walked so many miles…and loved every minute of it. Never in my life did I ever imagine I would have the opportunity to explore so many places…including Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. in ONE month! Here are a few thoughts from Maine to Tennessee…

In the Fast Lane
Weeeeeee! We’ve been going fast fast fast since we started this journey…and I’ve started to get “behind” in my blogging, as many of you have noticed :) I ask that you will be patient with me…I have soooooo many photos to edit and it takes up a huge chunk of my time. When time is pretty much a luxury, blogging gets put on the back burner. I am catching up though…so you can expect to see more entries over the next couple of weeks. If you really need to read something in the meantime, jump over to my other blog for a bit. The archives should keep you busy for awhile.

Life on the Road
During the first month of the tour, we were still transitioning into our new life as “vagabonds”. Now that we have about 4,000 miles under our belt, we feel like we’ve hit a comfortable stride. We have routines and ways of doing things. Most of the things you learn on a trip like this come out of trial and error. We are constantly revising and editing our methods. For example, it’s good to have ONE person with the job of adding the enzymes to the black tank (why don’t they just call it what it is…it’s a POOP tank…poop tank is more fun to say anyway) after dumping. We’ve had several occasions where we have both added one because we thought there wasn’t one in there. It’s an interesting thing to carry your bodily waste around with you in your car/house. Another example…we’ve learned over and over that you always open cupboards and doors very slowly after the RV has been moving/driving. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve had a waterfall of books fall on me…or every single personal bathroom item from the cupboard dump onto the counter. It makes me crazy…and yet I forget much of the time! But I’m learning… We are getting better at knowing how to keep life sane (i.e. keeping the RV clean ALL the time!). I am so, so happy to be blessed with a husband who helps me with “domestic duties”. In this past month, he has made the bed everyday, does the laundry, keeps the trash empty…and even has a hot cup of perfectly brewed coffee waiting for me when I wake up. On top of this, he excels in his role as a father…loving and teaching Bella with a heart full of grace. I love this man!!

Bella has continued to have an enormous amount of playtime with other 3-5 year olds. She has had so much fun and loves meeting new people. It’s been great to watch her change and grow as she experiences more and more of the world around her. She is speaking so clearly now…it’s fun to listen to her talk on the phone and have lengthy conversations with other people. Whenever she is referring to friends we have met on the tour, she points towards the back of the RV and calls them “our friends back there”…as in, friends we have had to leave behind…friends who we waved at as we drove away. It’s so cute :) She had a great time bonding with my family in NYC and DC…and is looking forward to seeing her other Grandpa and Grandma at Christmastime. Much of the time, she insists on being called Erica. Or Annaliese. Or Dorothy. Or any other name of a princess that she has decided on for the day. Her imagination is in full swing right now…and she and the little girls on the tour route have oodles of fun dressing up and pretending to be royalty.

Staying Healthy on the Road
Miraculously, we have managed to stay relatively healthy so far. We’ve somehow outrun strep throat, colds, and the flu. We’ve had bouts of sore throats from talking so much and from dry weather…and Bella currently has a runny nose and cough. But it’s nothing that a little homeopathy and herbal remedies can’t cure. We take our vitamins religiously and Bella is taking an echinacea/astralagus blend to strengthen her immune system. I love to drink echinacea tea as well…the Yogi brand is particularly yummy (you have to love a company who makes the INSIDE of the box pretty too).

Eating on the Road
I strongly believe that food is medicine…and eating on the road is definitely taking it’s toll on us. It’s not that we’re eating badly all the time…but generally, when you take a road trip, you give yourself “permission” to partake in food you wouldn’t normally eat (because you’ll go back home and make up for it by eating healthy). The only problem is that we do that everyday! So we are working on eating REALLY nutritiously while we are in the camper…and then enjoying the indulgence when we are eating out or with someone else. Everyone has blessed us with cookies…or bars…or other sugary goodness. We love it. Oh so tasty…but it makes learning the art of discipline and moderation harder :) I’ll be consulting Jessie about some good detox remedies to try while we’re back. Of course, avoiding sweets during the holidays will be a giant task!

Spiritual Life on the Road
When you are in a different place nearly everyday…and any sort of “routine” is a dream instead of a reality. It seems much more difficult to engage in a daily time with God. This is definitely a problem, because in this whirlwind of a trip….where everything is changing all the time, being focused on Jesus and taking strength from His words and teachings is even more important. When my physical strength is sapped, I can still be strong in mind and spririt when I have been abiding in Him. We have been focusing on making a deliberate effort to get back into the groove of worshiping Him throughout the day…whether that be reading the Bible, praying, listening to a sermon on podcast, or taking in the beauty of His creation. It is my heart’s desire to start getting up earlier again (before sunrise!) to spend time in the Word…this discipline flew out the window when we hit the road. The late hours and weariness has taken it’s toll on me…and it’s so necessary for me to have that extra time right now!

The Timeline
Speaking of going south…we are in South Carolina right now and will be “resting” here for a bit at a good friend’s home. We will fly back to Minneapolis on Dec. 12 and will spend time with both of our families throughout the holiday season. We have a one-way ticket…so our return date is up in the air. We will be working for my dad and Matt’s dad to make money to continue to tour while we are back in the Midwest. We’ll fly back to SC to pick up the RV and continue south when we have an adequate amount in our bank account. It may appear that we have “big corporate sponsors” :) but the cost of the tour has all been out of our own pocket…with occasional help from generous supporters. When I say out of our own pocket…I do mean out of God’s pocket…everything we have is truly His and given to us by Him. We have been amazed and delighted with how He has provided for us on this tour. When it seems that our resources have been depleted to nothing, He has provided in miraculous ways. Our product and service sponsors have been a great help as well…thank you to you all!

The Future
While we are taking a break from the day to day travel…we will still be working at making contacts at colleges in the South. If you went to a college in Florida, Georigia, Texas…or any other Southern state (and you have contacts), let us know. We are also available to do demos at private schools and businesses as well. Our best stops have been a result of a personal contact from someone who reads the blog or someone we’ve met along the way.

Friends on the Road
We have been so incredibly blessed by the families we’ve stayed with…and the new friends we’ve met. These are people that I know we will stay in touch with for a lifetime. They have opened their homes and their hearts to us and provided a resting place for three weary travelers. We are so thankful for all of you who faithfully follow our journey (those we have met in person and those who are online friends)…we’ve gained so much “family” since hitting the road. You have blessed us with your words, your hugs, your talents, your children, your food…may God bless you richly in return.

Reflections from the Road: Month 1

It’s been exactly one month since we started the tour. Wow! It seems like it’s been so much longer than that. We’ve seen so much and met so many people…and most importantly, LEARNED a lot about living on the road, about each other, and about the RV. Each month, I’ll do a “reflection” on everything that has happened and how things are going so far.

Life on the Road
Everyday is an adventure and life is constantly in flux. We are meeting amazing, inspiring people and seeing God’s stunning creation at every turn. It’s wonderful to be able to move your home wherever you want…and yet, there are still struggles. Just like in “normal life” :) There are joys and frustrations…excitement and exhaustion. When you are gone away from family and friends who have known you for a lifetime, you really start to miss the consistency and familiarity of those relationships. You wonder what is going on “back home” and you start to long for the things that felt comfortable. By comfortable, I mean…things that you could count on. A steady paycheck, scheduled playdates, familiar surroundings, favorite coffee shops. But during this transition to life on the road, we have learned to rely so much more on Jesus and in his provision than anything else. To say that WE have done any of this on our own would be foolish and untrue. We are on this incredible adventure only by HIS hand moving in our lives. He alone provides for our daily needs…and then He goes above our needs and provides little treats that surprise and delight us. When all stability is taken away (even if you still have the “comforts” of your home)…the only place to turn is to the One who holds all things together. In other words, our tour tagline could be changed to “sustainable living in an RV powered by Jesus”.

Living in Close Quarters/Family Time

Matt and I are very used to doing everything together…throughout our married life, we’ve worked for the same companies and also from home together for some of that time. We love each other’s company and when we are apart…it’s like something is missing! We are definitely best friends. These facts make it very simple to go on the road for a year in a tiny space. When you spend this much time together in close quarters…you REALLY get to know each others quirks and passions. There is really no where to go to “get away” :) It’s been so wonderful for our family to have all of this time together…especially the bonding time we get with Bella. It’s pretty special that she gets to see her mommy and daddy 24/7 for this length of time. She lets us know it too. Sometimes, if I’ve been in the back of the RV for awhile…when she sees me, she will exclaim, “Mommy…I missed you sooooo much!”. She does the same thing with Matt if he’s been outside working on the car/RV. Time is measured so differently in her eyes! We love watching her learn and grow before our eyes.

Bella and The Road
One of the most common questions we get asked on the road is “How is Bella doing with all the changes and transition?”. This always strikes me as funny. I think people tend to think of children as these little people who need strict schedules to function properly…but that’s just not the case with Bella. She goes with the flow. She has never had a strict schedule and she follows our lead. She has everything she needs to be happy and then some. She has way more toys than she even plays with. She has a new playmate every week. She eats when we eat (and she eats the food we eat). She naps when she is tired. She runs. She laughs. She plays. She jumps. She climbs. She watches movies. She reads books. She “does school”. She is learning more about life and people then she ever would in a preschool classroom or any other traditional setting. I am so glad she is able to experience all of these things…and she is learning to be flexible in the process. She has learned how to meet a variety of different people and is quite the conversationalist as well. As long as she has mommy and daddy, all is well in her world.

The RV

We have put over 9,000 miles on the RV running veggie oil (and pumped about 1000 gallons of grease!)…and the blue beast is still going strong. The little problems that we have here and there are common for an “older” RV and older engine. Although we hate spending money on repairs…we just look at it as “house maintenance” :)

It’s hard to miss us as we travel down the road…and we frequently have people honking, waving, and staring at us. It’s fun to meet new people this way…and educate them about sustainability.

We are obviously quite large…which makes it difficult to maneuver in urban areas with ease. We also don’t have the “get up and go” of a normal car…so merging, accelerating, etc. are harder. We try to avoid busy interstates and stick to the smaller country roads. We end up getting to see some amazing scenery that way too! When we are in a city, we will find a place to park and unhook the car so we can buzz around more efficiently!

When we are in between cities or when we don’t have a “host family” in an area…we park overnight in parking lots (WalMart, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Target, churches). Some people have asked why we don’t just camp at a campground. There is really just one answer…and it’s MONEY! Campgrounds with full RV hookups are expensive (averaging $35+) a night. Parking lots are free. We like free. They aren’t as pretty (although we have found some with nice views!)…and sometimes they are loud. But we can always find one to park in…especially if we are coming in late at night. If we are the only people in the lot, it’s rare…we are almost always joined in our cement endeavors by fellow RV’ers. We’ve found that to be especially true in the Northeast, where most traditional campgrounds close on October 1.

Ahhhhh…the Internet. The coveted wi-fi connection. It’s like the holy grail. We have often contemplated buying an air card from Sprint so could have wireless whenever and wherever we wanted (well, it’s not always that easy, but in theory it works). We haven’t made the plunge, however, because we’ve gotten better at searching out connections. There have been times when I have resorted to driving around residential neighborhoods…refreshing every block or so…to see if I could find that precious wave. But we have had a much easier time in the last couple of weeks…Panera has been our best friend. Plunk down $1.35 for a cookie, bring your own teabag and mug…and you’re good to go all day :) They have a fast connection and it reaches far and wide. We have also been able to find several parking lots to park in overnight that had wireless nearby. Those are the jackpot spots. It’s a luxury to have a connection INSIDE the RV! The last three stops, we’ve had this…so we’re feeling very blessed. Of course, most of the host families have had internet for us to use as well. Libraries also work well…although I’ve been really surprised at how many DON’T have wireless. I guess I was spoiled in Des Moines and Bozeman…both had brand new libraries with state of the art amenities. Local coffee shops are good too…if you can find one with free wi-fi. Many times, they are in downtown areas that are hard to maneuver the RV through…so we opt to stay to the outskirts (hence, Panera and other chain stores).

We are very blessed to have phones that have internet access as well…thanks to a generous donation from my family, we have access to this technology and can use them to receive emails and we also use them for finding things in each city (mapping function). It’s a little hard to type a blog on a cell phone though! It does allow me to communicate with contacts at future tour stops via email without having to stop and find a connection. For this I am so grateful!

Eating and Cooking
Due to the pace of our tour…it’s definitely been harder than I thought to eat healthy on the road. I have made some concessions and given myself some slack lately. We’ve been buying more packaged items like organic mac and cheese or organic canned goods instead of making them from scratch. But now that the weather is colder, I have been making homemade soups…which has made me VERY happy. There is nothing I love better than that. It made me realize how much I miss real cooking in a big kitchen! Our kitchen is totally suitable…but it’s hard to make a big meal. Our oven works, but it’s not perfect. There is only one heating element…which makes it harder to cook evenly. Our staple meals are sandwiches, noodles with sauce, soup, eggs, wraps (burritos/tacos). I try to mix it up a bit so we don’t get bored. Because when we’re bored with eating in the RV…it’s easy to overspend at a restaurant! That is one of the hardest things on the trip…we don’t have the budget to be eating out a lot…but the temptation is there because we are always around amazing local restaurants! After a long day doing a demo…it’s hard to pump myself up for cooking a big meal. When we do eat out…we have become masters at the cheap meal. College towns are especially great for cheap eats. Pizza for $2 a slice is a great deal. We can all eat at Subway for about $6 total. You have to be creative on the road! I would love to hear your favorite “cheap” spots for eating on a budget while traveling.

Green Living on the Road
Many of you have asked if I’ve stopped doing some of the “green” things I used to do when we had a house without wheels. I have changed some things and modified others…but I am always still focused on doing the best I can for the environment with the resources I have. We are no longer using cloth toilet paper…for obvious reasons. Sometimes we don’t have a chance to do laundry for a LONG time. And I’m not going to spin cloth TP in the Wonder Clean. Just can’t do it :) I miss it though…paper TP is just not as effective as cloth.

We still recycle diligently. We have 2 bins in the shower that hold everything, and when we see recycling centers we drop them off. Or, we leave them with our host family and have them put it in their curbside recycling. Our trash can is super small on purpose…it forces us to take the garbage out once a day (otherwise it attracts fruit flies, stinks, etc). We did consider vermicomposting (worms that eat your food scraps), but found that our temperatures were too extreme to create a good environment for it (inside or out).

We have started to use more bottled water because we’ve had some concerns with the water quality in our fresh tank. We buy gallons of water and refill them at water stations in the grocery stores or at the tap. I used to get upset over so many RV’ers using bottled water…but until we get a system-wide filter ($$)…I don’t feel comfortable using the water sitting in that tank. Ish. Towards the bottom of the tank, it comes out black. Not really something I want to be drinking. We do still use our reusable stainless steel water bottles as well.

We still use our cloth grocery bags…and they come in handy for tons of other things as well…like hauling water. I think string bags are the greatest thing ever invented. It’s been interesting to see the reaction across the country to cloth grocery bags. It was funny…at the Ann Arbor coop, I think I might have been stoned to death if I didn’t bring my own bags. I don’t think I saw ONE person walk in without their bags while we were there. It was a wonderful sight!

Now that we are selling Shaklee, I’ve started using their Basic H organic concentrate for all of my natural cleaning needs in the RV. I’ve also loved the laundry soap and laundry booster for getting out stains. It seems like Bella gets 10 times dirtier now than before we were on the road!

One of the easiest green things we do on the road is just to not buy stuff. It’s a really great feeling to walk through a store and have a great excuse not to buy anything! It won’t fit in the RV! The items that I have purchased have been thrifted clothes for Bella and myself..and as soon as I bring them in, I give away an equal amount of clothes to make room in the closet. We have also bought RV related items…but those don’t count in my mind because they were necessities and not frivolous.

The Next Steps
We are working on planning our next leg of the tour right now. We will head south out of Maine early next week…to Boston, New York City, Philly, and beyond. It will be a whirlwind from now until Christmas as we race to beat the weather. We are looking forward to learning more about the history of our nation, teaching about green living, and meeting more new friends!