“How hard is it really to do the RV-thing with a family?”
I get this question (and all sorts of variations) several times a month from blog readers and friends.
Many times, when we decide to take a path that is different than the norm, we ignore the negatives. We rarely discuss the hard parts or challenges. We’re pumped and we become our own cheerleader.
Now let me say right off the bat, I’m GLAD we moved our family of 6 into the RV. We learned so much about ourselves and were stretched. We got to enjoy the perks of living with less.
But today I’m going to share the challenges of RVing with a family. Many times, experience is the best teacher, but hopefully this will help some count the costs of full time RV living before they take the leap and move their children into an RV.
Challenges of RVing with Kids
- Limited Space. No kidding right!? This is obvious but it’s something to consider. As a full-time RVer you’ll be in a constant state of purging belongings. You’ll have to get creative with gifts (if gifts are your thing) and you’ll have to deal with not having space to retreat to when you (or your kids) need some quiet. Which leads me to…
- Homeschooling Woes. Every family has their own set of challenges as far as homeschooling goes. For us, it was the 2 littlest kids, (1 and 3 years old) and occupying their time. There is no solice during school time and it seemed for our family, the smaller quarters made for more frustration and distraction for learning. Also, I had to limit our school books and learning kits.
- No Kitchen Helpers. Before we moved in the RV my 2 oldest kids were my kitchen helpers. Once we were full-time in the RV, I had so much less space and more often than not, I refused their help. Honestly, it was difficult to cook by myself much less with little helpers that were not so skilled in the kitchen. I know some full time parents do have their kids work in the kitchen. The mess/clutter aspect is something I wish I would have gotten over. But I didn’t. *sigh*
- Nap Times are NOT so Peaceful. We have been blessed with light sleepers. <that may be slightly sarcastic> Every noise and movement of the camper affected the sleep of my kids, but nap times were especially trying for us. Any jumping at all during those times resulted rocking. If your kids sleep like logs, you may not have this concern one bit. I found myself getting onto my kid’s, (mostly my oldest son’s) case about jumping around. So my solution would be to send him outside during naps. But there was a problem with that idea….
- Nosey Neighbors. Just in case you didn’t know, some campgrounds are not so friendly. The last campground we were at had a rule that any kids under 16 had to be supervised at all times. Don’t misunderstand me, I wouldn’t send my kids to the pool by themselves. But when my kids were playing beside our camper, in an empty site, the neighbor came out and told them they couldn’t play, (even though I could see them the whole time). That’s annoying.
- Less Chores. Less space, less room for error, less work for the under 12 crowd.
Can you do it? You betcha you can! Those are just some of the things we hadn’t really thought through before we moved our family into the RV.
Hopefully this post gives you a view into some of the not so glamorous parts of RVing and children and helps you not just see the lifestyle through rose-colored glasses.