Sunday, November 29, 2020

Mammoth Cave & Bowling Green Corvette Museum (Kentucky Part 2)

We stayed at Diamond Caverns RV Resort & Golf, a Thousand Trails park, so 14-day full hook-ups stay for free with the membership.  This campground is just minutes to Mammoth Cave National Park and about 40 minutes to the Bowling Green Corvette Museum.



Mike and I went on the Mammoth Cave Extended Historic self-guided Tour for $18 each.  On the tour we saw the Rotunda, the Water Clock, the Giants Coffin and TB Huts.  Rangers were scattered about, so you could ask questions or they would give you history about that area of the cave.  The tour was about two hours.  It was nice.  I think a little pricey.






We decided to take a ride to Bowling Green and tour the Corvette Museum.  It was $12 per person for a self-guided tour.  We witnessed a few new owners take possession of their new corvette with fan fair, pretty exciting for them.  I can only dream that would be us some day.  If you recall, this is the museum that a sink hole swallowed some cars a few years back.  I like that they incorporated that into an exhibit in the museum.  I thought the price was good and the exhibits where well done; worth it.







Thank you and God bless.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Products We Love

Are you looking for ideas for Christmas for the RVer in your life?  Then, here are a few Mike and I use and love. 

We are not sponsored or partnered with any of these products or store affiliates.  These are just products we love and use and are listed in no particular order.

Ice Maker – We have a 3 way fridge but Mike likes ice for his Pepsi.  So we found ours at Walmart and make a batch once a month.  We store it under our sink.

Sticker Map – So far we visited 30 USA states and it is a talking point and motivator to keep exploring.  We purchased ours on Amazon.



Induction Plate, Toaster Oven & Egg Cooker – These are the kitchen appliances that I use regularly, especially on shore power, but Mike tied in our solar and inverter so we can use these appliances anytime.  Our plate we got through Amazon and the toaster oven and egg cooker we got at Walmart.

Portable Propane Fire Pit – We purchased our portable propane fire pit while staying at Lakewood in Myrtle Beach at the dealer next door.  I think we paid a $100, plus purchased a quick connect 6 foot hose.  We use this often.  Easier to get out, no smoke, start a fire and enjoy.  It does not use as much propane as you think and we don’t carry firewood, so it saves us money not having to purchase firewood at every campground.

 


Backup camera – We have the Furrion Observation Camera and like it for driving and backing up the rig.  They have them for about $500 at Amazon.  If we upgrade we would add the side cameras.

Anderson levelers – This system is easier than playing around with the blocks.  I recommend the rubber pads because they slide out on wet black top and sand.  Plus they have a lifetime warranty.  You can purchase them or similar systems at Amazon.

RVLock – We just have the door RVLock, but you can add to that and get the cubby hatch locks as well.  I like this system because we don’t have to carry a key when walking Abby and it has a remote to lock and unlock.  On Black Friday they usually have them on sale for about 20% off.

Tire Pressure Monitor (TPM) System – For safety on the road, we have the EEZTire Tire Pressure Monitor System.  And this saved us from a flat tire.  We noticed a tire getting low on the system and checked it out at the next rest stop and it was a leaky valve, so we changed out with the spare.  You can get this from Amazon for less than $400.

Abby’s monitor system – cameras and temperature wireless monitor – To keep Abby safe on days we can’t take her with us to site see or run errands, we have two cameras in the rig that we can access from our phones to check on her.  One is WYZE and the other is Cam-Hi.  But you can use any baby monitor system that you can access from your phone from anywhere.  Also we have a temperature monitor system by Govee that we purchased at Amazon for about $40. 

 


 

Blackstone – We have the 17 inch Blackstone griddle with cover.  We cook everything on it from eggs and bacon, hamburgers, steaks, and chicken.  We love it.  Clean-up is easy.  Highly recommend for the cook in your family.  You can get the griddle, the cover (hood) and quick connect hose at Amazon for under $200.

Memberships – You can check out a link on our blog about the memberships we have, what we like about each, how much they cost us per year, how much some of us have saved us and if we would renew them.

https://www.enjoyingourdevinelife.com/2020/11/memberships.html

Vacuum – We purchased a Shark Rocket with self-cleaning brushroller, since our other vacuum roller head was clogged and matted with my hair and Abby hair.  Mike tried cleaning the old $40 vacuum but no luck so we broke down and purchased the $150 vacuum from Walmart.  After 4 uses I can honestly say that there is no hair in the brushroll and our rug looks great, so I feel it works great and worth the money.

Our absolute favorite product and upgrade is our SOLAR AND BATTERY SYSTEM – Check out our blog post on our solar and battery setup.  Our estimated cost was about $5,000 to $6,000.  We are now able to boondock longer but with more amenities for cooking and watching TV.  With boondocking we are camping for FREE, so the system is already saving us money.

https://www.enjoyingourdevinelife.com/2020/08/solar-batteries.html and

https://www.enjoyingourdevinelife.com/2020/08/wiring-of-rig-for-solar-battery.html

I hope these help you find the gift you are looking for or added to your wish list. 

What product do you love?  Let us know in the comments below.

Have a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving.  God bless.

***Note: the items in blue are a hyperlink.  Happy shopping.***


Monday, November 16, 2020

Creation Museum & The Ark Encounter (Kentucky Part 1)

We stayed at the Big Bone Lick State Park in Kentucky, which is the birthplace of American vertebrate paleontology.  They have a small free museum, bison grazing grounds, and hiking trails.  The camp ground is clean, but the sites are very uneven (9 inches un-level) plus only have water and electric with a dump station.  We paid $213.06 for a week stay.






Mike and I purchased a combo ticket to visit the Creation Museum and The Ark Encounter for over $160 total (about $80 each + tax).

The Creation Museum educates you on God’s creation from the book of Genesis.  They did a great job to explain how dinosaurs existed in the Bible and what happened to them.  The museum explains how we are all “one blood” (Acts 17:26).  The 4D show on creation was amazing.






We went to The Ark Encounter the next day.  The walk up to the building was remarkable.  The wood work and explanation of feeding the animals, cleaning of waste, ventilation, lighting, etc. is mind and eye opening.  How we are all descendants from Noah’s family.  If you are in the Cincinnati or Lexington area, it is worth the drive.








Thank you and God bless.

Sunday, November 8, 2020

1 Year RVing Monthly Budget

This post is about our first year of full-time RVing monthly average budget, so you get a feel for how much our lifestyle cost.

 

Monthly Expense

Campsites/Memberships

$370

Propane

$21

Mail Services

$14.75

Internet

$65.00

Cell Phones

$46.40

Auto Insurance

$129.00

Food

$525

Diesel

$355

Site Seeing

$55

Maintenance / Upgrades

$185

Other

$272

TOTAL

$2,038.15


A couple notes: 1 – Our truck and RV are paid for and 2 - the Maintenance and Upgrades is for both the truck and RV.

So we can live this lifestyle for under $25,000 per year, but you have to be selective on your spending and sacrifice some luxuries to live under $25,000 per year.

Thank you and God bless.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Memberships

Our memberships have really helped us stay on budget and save money while camping.  Here is a list of the memberships we have, how much they cost and the pros and cons of having them.

Passport America – Original cost was $44 for the year and you get up to 50% discount rate on various private campgrounds.  Our 2nd year renewal cost us $39 for 17 months.  We have Passport America because we use their mailing service and help us stay at a campground for cheap.  Pros = membership is reasonably priced and stays are cheap.  Con = some campgrounds are tight and need up keep, plus read the detail of the discount before booking, because some have restrictions and added unexpected fees. You get what you pay for.

Good Sam’s Club – Cost was $29 for the year and you can save 10% off participating campgrounds.  Ten percent savings for a week stay pays for the membership in one stay.  Pro is the saving and con is owned by Camping World.

KOA – Cost is $33 for the year and you can save 10% off, plus other benefits, like a free night.  Pro is the amenities, con is the campgrounds are EXPENSIVE.  We usually stay for rallies or a last resort.

Harvest Hosts – Cost is $79 for the year.  Most host are boondocking, so it helps to have the proper setup (solar, batteries and inverter).  Harvest Hosts encourages you to spend money with your host, so it cost you something for your stay.  Pro is the location of some of the host.  Con is you pay for the membership and spend money with the host, so it cost more.

Thousand Trails – We purchased a camping Zone pass for the Midwest zone for $599 – $100 first time discount = $499 for the year and added the Southeast zone for $54 the year.  This by far was the best membership for our budget, as it saved us over $3,300 for the year.  We plan to renew and add the Trails Collection for $299 for the year, to include the Encore parks to offer us more places to stay.  Pros for us, was the savings and budget friendly.  Cons are some parks are tight and you are on top of each other, plus some parks need upgrade.

We stayed at a Thousand Trails campground 75 days.  If we had to pay for each stay it would have cost us about $52.41 per night, total of $3,931.  We paid $599 for Midwest zone minus $100 discount, but added the Southeast zone for $54 for the year, total of $553 for the year.  Total savings for the year was $3,393 for the year.

Other memberships we have are America the Beautiful ($85 for the year) for national park entrance, Coach-Net ($179 for the year) for roadside assistance and RV Trip Wizard ($49 for the year) for planning our trips and navigation.

Other places we stay to save money are Walmart parking lots, Cabela’s parking lots and Crackle Barrel parking lots.  We ask before staying and we support these businesses as a thank you for our stay.

What memberships do you have?  What do you like about them?  How much do they cost?  Would you recommend them to others?  Let us know with a comment below.

Thank you and God bless.