The Southern Glamper: 2018


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Create a Camper Cleaning Kit

Friday, August 17, 2018

Keep your camper clean with the right products designed specifically for an RV.

Is your camper clean enough to be healthy but dirty enough to be happy?  A clean camper can seem like an oxymoron.  The revolving door of keeping a camper clean never ends.  I read a post online this week where one camper said she sweeps like "100 times a day".  That is me!  Half of the battle is having the right tools for the task.  My motto in life is work smarter, not harder.  Apply this motto to how you tackle your RV and you will not only be a happy camper, but you will be a clean camper.

6 Favorite Camping Meals

Monday, August 13, 2018

We love our camping table and the meals we share together with family and friends!

"You don't need a silver fork to eat good food."  Legendary chef, Paul Prudhomme, knew that good food can stand alone.  I do too!  With the right ingredients and cooking techniques, you can go from ordinary camp cook to campsite chef.  If you are looking to grace your finest plastic cutlery in style, this post is for you!

Summer Health and Fitness Update

Friday, August 10, 2018

Keep those walking shoes handy because you never know when an opportunity to get active may strike!
I stayed off the scales this summer.  When I stepped back on, I lost 5 pounds!  No, my separation from the scale didn't cause me to lose those pounds.  I did, however, focus on what counted - making better choices and staying active.  My daily focus were key components in seeing actual movement in the scale.  How can a break up with your scale help you make up with your own diet and fitness goals?

Happy Camper? 6 Tips to Make This Phrase a Reality

Monday, August 6, 2018

View at Palisades State Park in Alabama.
Our family has been traveling a lot together in July.  We had plenty of time to discuss our camping game last month.  Since this is a team effort, collaboration is important.  We have learned a lot from each other on this journey.  You may see the "happy camper" gear everywhere you look but are you really a happy camper?  Here are 6 tips to make this phrase a reality!

3 Things to Do in San Francisco on an Afternoon Excursion

Monday, July 30, 2018

Iconic San Francisco streets and architecture are two things I love the most!

San Francisco is what I describe as a little, big city.  While somewhat ironic, it's true.  San Francisco is well laid out and easy to navigate.  However, there is a laundry list of tourist traps that could derail your trip and be a huge time suck.  If you are looking for a simple and uncomplicated afternoon adventure, here are my top three recommendations if you are short on time and pack a big punch!

Smokin' and Grillin' with the Akorn Kamado Style Grill

Friday, July 27, 2018

Smoking a rack of ribs for Sunday dinner.
I've been planning to write a review of our Akorn grill for a year now.  Finally, I'm getting around to that task.  However, the timing of this post is just right. As Labor Day approaches, grill prices will drop to a seasonal low as stores make room for fall and winter items - most specifically Christmas.  (Don't get me started!)  But, if you are thinking about a new grill, this post is for you!  And, if you are curious about the hype with these charcoal egg-shaped grills, keep reading.

Explore Nevada City, California

Monday, July 23, 2018

Downtown Nevada City, California

I have a small obsession with Nevada City California that has lasted for nearly 20 years.  When I was first married, our friend Chris managed the law library in Placer County, California.  During those years, we would visit Chris in the spring months and explore the surrounding areas.  I can still remember the first time that we took an afternoon excursion to Nevada City for Vietnamese Coffee.  It is still one of my favorite places in California.

Glamping Tents and More at Inn Town Campground

Friday, July 20, 2018

Inn Town Campground features large safari-style glamping tents for campers to reserve.

There are two types of people in this world - those who like to camp and those who don't!  We just finished a trip that would appeal to both groups.  This summer, we camped in Northern California without our camper, Peggy Sue, or any of our gear.  Inn Town Campground located in Nevada City, California offers camping experiences for anyone.  The tranquil facilities include towering pine trees, exceptionally maintained facilities, and many upscale amenities.

How to Find RV Parts for Your Repairs

Friday, July 13, 2018

Our 2001 Jayco Qwest, Peggy Sue, has needed quite a bit of TLC since we bought her 2 years ago!

If the thought of buying an older pop-up or camper scares you, it shouldn't.  We jumped in blindfolded and feet first.  We have managed not to drown or kill each other.  In my books, mission accomplished!  So, how do I go about tracking down random RV parts?  I've written about this topic before.  Today I'm sharing more tips and retailers to help you begin treading these murky waters.

Misfit Ray Fitness Tracker Review

Monday, July 9, 2018

Misfit Ray with the sports band option.

I recently bought a new activity band.  And while this isn't technically camping gear, it is active lifestyle gear.  Most campers tend to fall into this category.  If you are active or are trying to become more active, this might be a good item for you.

Re-purpose Those Kitchen Gadgets for Camping Meals

Friday, July 6, 2018

The Hamilton Beach Breakfast Sandwich Maker is perfect for making sandwhiches on the road!

What happens to that little graveyard of kitchen gadgets that are forgotten but you haven't gotten rid of yet?  Before you tag these things for a yard sale or give them to a local thrift shop, take a second look at what you have.  You may have some things at home that would be perfect for your RV.

Top 10 Pieces of Camping Gear

Monday, July 2, 2018

I have lists for overall camping gear, one for our camp kitchen and others for seasonal gear.  But, out of all of these things, what are the pieces of gear that we use over and over and are the most practical?  When looking for new gear to start camping or to update your existing stash, sometimes the options are overwhelming.  Here are my top 10 pieces of camping gear.

3 Key Pieces of Camp Clothing for Men

Friday, June 29, 2018

Columbia Wicking Tee Shirt and Hiking Pants

When you think camping, gear is usually the first thing that comes to mind.  Clothing can be an afterthought, but your apparel is as important as your thoughtfully planned gear.  The right clothing protects you from the elements and weather.  Making the right choice of flexible camp clothing can help you enjoy any outdoor activity!

Renting a Long Term or Seasonal RV Site

Monday, June 25, 2018

My friend, Christy, recently committed to a long-term RV spot on Logan Martin Lake in Alabama.  Today, she is sharing her experience from RV dream to reality!  She shares five considerations before you commit to the spot you've been dreaming of!

Oh Baby! Anything But the Basic Invite

Friday, June 22, 2018

Basic Invite offers everything you need for your baby shower including invitations and coordinating thank you notes.

One of the things I love most about hosting a shower or party is picking out the invitation.  Next month, I'm hosting a baby shower for a co-worker.  She has picked a Nojo Love Birds theme for her new baby girl.  The bright colors in this baby theme are pinks, orange, yellow, blues, and greens.  Straying from traditional pastels for baby invites can be a challenge, but I found a solution online.

Pop Up Camper Curtains - 2 Ways to Tackle This Project

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Pop up camper curtains using a combination of 3 fabrics.
Last year, I made two different sets of curtains for two different pop-up campers.  I learned quite a bit from each of these projects.  Before tackling a large project like this, think carefully about the time you want to spend and the skill level you possess for sewing.  I've been making curtains for our home since we first married twenty years ago.  Camper curtains are both similar and very different.

Be A Better Blogger - Plan Your Way to Success

Monday, June 18, 2018

Being a blogger is a lot of work.  So much of it is figuring it out as you go along.  But you don't have to go it alone.  Feedback is your friend.  Readers and friends can be a valuable source of information for improving your blogging game.  I have several friends who are very honest and tell me what they think.  This type of feedback is some of the best.  Being organized and keeping up with all of your ideas and feedback is one of the best ways to build a better blog.

Grilled Red, White and Blue Cobbler

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Summertime means fresh fruit from farmer's markets and roadside stands.  While fruit is great on its own, I can't resist a good cobbler or pie made from fruit.  I recently discovered a simple grilled cobbler and have altered it a bit for my own needs.  Make this a red, white and blue dessert for the upcoming 4th of July holiday.  But, you could just as easily make this with any fruit combination of berries or stone fruits like peaches.

Taking the Plunge Into RV Ownership!

Monday, June 11, 2018


Guest Blogger, Christy Rogers, shares her experience of taking the plunge into RV Ownership this week!

I’ve spent that last 18 months or so walking thru the process of watching friends buy 4 very different types of RVs! It all started with a tent camping trip that was super hot! We are in Alabama, after all! After these guys helped with all of that hot, sweaty tent drama, we had a serious discussion. The three of us all love camping and traveling together. We started searching for a pop-up camper. 18 months later, my friends are settled on camper #4. A high end, 31-foot, bumper pull travel trailer. It’s the kind of upscale RV that has lots of residential quality items in it. They pull it with a Ford F-150 and they love taking it all over the place.

Three Key Pieces of Summer Gear You Need Now

Friday, June 8, 2018

Summer is here.  Well maybe not officially until June 22, but we are in summer mode at our house.  School is out.  The pool is open, and summer travel has started for us!  Are you ready?  I don't know that we are ever really totally ready, but we are there and living the life!

Mach 10 AC Review

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Our pop up camper set up complete with pop up gizmos on the bunk ends.

Pop up campers have so many advantages.  They are lightweight and can be towed by almost any vehicle with a tow package.  The ability to have heating and cooling may be one of the biggest advantages.  Climate control while camping makes camping enjoyable for both hot and cool weather camping.

Glamping Essentials

Monday, June 4, 2018

So by now, you've heard the words 'glamper' and 'glamping' a few thousand times.  Glamping is essentially fancy camping.  And before you stop reading, hang in there for a minute.  Fancy camping isn't all that bad.  Even my husband admits he enjoys our cozy camper at night.  How can you go from camper to glamper?  Seven steps will take your camping up a notch and much of it can be done with found items and your own creativity!

Giant City State Park

Friday, June 1, 2018

My new welcome sign from my friend Christy.

When our family first started camping, a couple of hours from home seemed like a trip around the world.  This year, we are venturing outside of our comfort zone and geographic region.  It has been exciting be more confident campers.  For Memorial Day Weekend, we camped at Giant City State Park in Southern Illinois.

Creating the Comfy Bed in Your Pop Up Camper

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Sometimes you just want to be in your own bed.  Other times, you want to be camping.  And many times, campers complain about the usually uncomfortable RV mattress.  Moving from tent camping to a camper doesn't necessarily mean great bedding.  How can you make your home on the road comfy like the bed you long for at home?

Coleman Camp Oven Review

Monday, May 21, 2018

The Coleman Camp Oven fits over a single propane burner.

Since we started camping, I've seen lots of kitchen setups.  For me, our camp kitchen comes down to space, practical products and the meals we like to cook.  Our camper came with a 2 burner propane stove.  We also use the campground grill quite a bit.  But what if we want to bake something in an oven?

Breaking Up with Your RV Dealership and What to Do Next

Friday, May 18, 2018

Peggy Sue is a 2001 Jayco Qwest Pop Up Camper.  While she is a senior lady, we love her so much!  Since our purchase 18 months ago, we had relied on a local Jayco dealer to help us with simple repairs.  Their service and parts department had been amazing!  But this spring, we had to break up.  It all started with the request for a part and went downhill fast.  How do you know it is time to part ways?  And what should do when that happens?

Put Your Best Blogging Foot Forward with Fabulous Photos

Monday, May 14, 2018

My homemade photo box with all of my equipment.  This includes a box lined with tracing paper, a tripod and clamp light.

If you follow or read any blogs out there on the interwebs, one of the first things that capture attention are the photos.  Great photos are what stop me as I scroll through Pinterest.  Want someone to take a second look at your work?  Feature a great photograph.  While a professional camera does make a difference, good lighting is also a photographer's best friend.  With a few items, you can create professional lighting for your blog and social media outlets.

Before Summer Begins - Thank Your Child's Teacher

Saturday, May 12, 2018

When I was student teaching, I still remember a Mary Kay Satin Hands Spa set that a parent gave me.  Teacher appreciation week felt like Christmas.  That week at school, the PTO handed out little treats to the teachers each day.  The teachers were happy and cheery.  Parent volunteer visited classrooms with baskets of goodies.  It felt really good to feel valued your work with children. 

Entertaining Kids on the Way to the Campground

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Growing up, I traveled out west with my family on trips every summer.  Riding in the back of our powder blue Pontiac, my sister and I played the car tag game and entertained ourselves for only so far before we were tattling about who was touching who.  There was a lot of "are we there yet?"  and "when can we stop at a hotel so we can swim in a pool?"  Let's face it, car trips can be hard.  Even with an iPad or some other electronics in hand, that only lasts so far.  Then what?

Maple Cinnamon Granola with Smoked Sea Salt

Sunday, May 6, 2018

I have been on a quest for the perfect granola. My criteria for the granola of my dreams was simple, healthy, crunchy and lots of flavor. This can be a tall order, but it can be done. Granola is comprised of a few key ingredients. Oatmeal, nuts, sweetener, fat, and spice are the basics. I have played with this combination for several weeks. Once you have a basic recipe down pat, then you can tweak it to meet your own personal taste preference. The best part of making anything homemade is that you control the ingredients. And, homemade doesn't meal difficult. Once you make this recipe, you may never buy store bought granola again!

Portable Camping and Hiking Snacks

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Traditional camping foods tend to be chips and sandwiches or burgers.  I see photographs of campers that swear by fluffer nutter sandwiches as a campsite staple.  I'm not chastising any of these habits or traditions.  I won't lie.  I love a s'more.  (Insert me saying "sa-more here.)  Prepackaged snacks are 'grab and go' options that seem to be a no-brainer.  But, are they really?  With a little planning, you can have both healthy and portable!

DeSoto State Park - Plan for the Active Life

Friday, April 27, 2018

Our friend Paulette decorated our Easter table Sunday morning!
Growing up, Easter weekends were a flurry of activities.  My sister and I always donned new dresses at an early sunrise service.  Today, my own family has started to participate in Easter festivities at home leading up to and during Holy Week.  However, we have started to hit the campground on Good Friday.  Our less conventional Easter festivities of these past two years have been a welcome retreat as we celebrate life, rebirth and a new season in nature.

3 Workouts I'm Loving Right Now

Monday, April 23, 2018

This is my work out view on many mornings at home.  It makes for a nice way to start the day.
Over my life, I've participated in a variety of exercise options and classes.  I've had a personal trainer.  Boot Camp Classes were once something I loved.  Gym memberships were a regular part of my life for many years.  It's not that I don't love any of these things.  But, my lifestyle has changed.  And, so has my weight.  Finding balance amidst change is so incredibly hard.  This year, I'm on that journey.

5 Environmentally Conscious Decisions You Can Make at the Campground

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Preserve this view for future generations with the decisions you make now.

I was the nerdy teenager, obsessed with the environment around my junior year of high school.  I had just gotten my hands on a copy of The Green Consumer, and I am still passionate about environmental causes.  These days I'm a little quieter about my causes.  I choose to live purposefully and by example.  Today I'm sharing 5 simple things that you can do at the campground that will pack a big punch!  These are all things that you can impress upon your children just by making these changes part of your everyday habits.

How to Sew Your Own Glamping Pajamas in an Hour!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Supplies to make cotton pajama pants with Timeless Treasures camper themed fabric.
One of my best teachers in college would begin her lessons by telling mistakes she made as a teacher.  These examples made a huge impact on my teaching career and my personal life.  Learning how to deal with mistakes is an important part of sewing.  It teaches you how to both avoid making them and what to do when it happens.  Full disclosure here.  I love this project and how it turned out.  I am going to show you how to make easy cotton pajama pants.  This tutorial also includes how to overcome and fix a mistake.  You can thank Dr. Callahane and her teaching style for this now.

A Better Way to Deal with Grey Water

Monday, April 16, 2018

Peggy Sue over Easter weekend camping.

I admire campers with the resources to boondock or dry camp!  We don't have a freshwater tank, a generator or batteries.  We need the hookup!   Water, electricity, and sewer for me, please.  I never thought that I'd see myself write the later.  But, it is true.  Even if you don't have a toilet, having a sewer hook up can really be helpful for you in a pop-up camper.

Set Up A Campsite Dish Washing Station

Friday, April 13, 2018

My collapsible drainer, dish tub and electric kettle make a nice compact dish washing station.

My husband's college pal Pete Jordan once had a goal to wash dishes in all 50 states.  Dishwasher Pete, as he is known, traveled around the US for over a decade working everywhere from a commune to kosher nursing homes.  He made it to 33 states before hanging up his apron and then wrote a book about his journey.  I'm not trying to wash dishes in all 50 states or write a book about it.  But, I do want to be able to wash my dishes with ease wherever my travels take me.

How to Stay Organized in a Pop Up Camper

Monday, April 9, 2018

Best way to start the day is with a clean camper!
I don't embrace chaos.  I wish I could be that laid back, but I just can't.  I cannot relax with a sink full of dishes or household items strewn about.  This is why I have organized my pop up with a place for everything.  I try to keep things in their place throughout the day as well at the end of the day.  This system works well and takes very little time.  If your camper is overrun with everyone's stuff, this post is for you!  Today, I'm sharing some simple tips to organize your camping space.

Wedding Gifts and Registry Ideas for Couples Who Love the Outdoors

Friday, April 6, 2018

Today as couples get ready to go down the aisle, china, silverware, and crystal are not always the coveted gifts of yesteryear.  I see the trend of millennials that are unplugging and taking a different route from their traditional parents.  Spending time exploring the great outdoors is a way to reconnect and strengthen relationships.  Why not look for gifts that will create lasting memories in nature's beauty.

Spring Camping in the Deep South - Buccaneer State Park

Monday, April 2, 2018

Campground evenings at Buccaneer State Park are magical.

There is something that I just love about the woods and beaches.  When these two landscapes meet up, it creates a magical medley.  Both are relaxing and calming.  Anytime I can camp with both, I am in heaven.  Buccaneer State Park in Waveland, MS gives the best of both.

Springtime Vibes - A Camping Playlist for Your Next Adventure

Friday, March 30, 2018

When I was in college, there was lots of music at parties and in the background of dinners and hanging out.  One night, I can remember a big group of us having a pancake dinner around my grandmother's table in the small kitchen of my small apartment.  It was a dinner lit with candles and wax dripping over the wine bottles scattered over the table.  We had Sade playing in the background.  I can still see my kitchen filled with laughter, warm light and music.  Some of my favorite memories are filled with music.

February Health and Fitness Update

Monday, March 26, 2018

I love my new scale.  Works well and looks great too!

During this season of Lent, many congregants have given up sugar and sweets or soft drinks.  I've given up both in previous years.  I've even given up cheese for Lent.  I suppose that I could revisit any of those sacrifices, but I'm not.  Giving up a singular item doesn't tend to teach me anything other than frustration.  I like to view the Lenten season as a time to reflect and make permanent changes.  Temporary denial of candy or cake isn't really what this season is about anyway.  At the start of this year, I made a goal for better health and fitness the year.  I'm using Lent as a way to continue the focus and further my goals.

Spring Gear Guide

Friday, March 23, 2018

After what seemed like endless winter days and waiting for warmer weather, spring is finally here!  I am over the moon excited about the change in season.  Even more so, I am thrilled for all of the trips that we have planned ahead this year.  Are you ready?  Now is the time to take stock of what worked last camping season and what you need to add to your gear.

How to Monetize Your Blog

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

So you have a blog.  You have content that you are publishing and readers that are following along.  If you want to turn your hobby into more than an interest, how can you actually make some money while doing what you love?  You can monetize your site!

5 Things to Do in Bay St. Louis While Camping

Monday, March 19, 2018

The Bay St. Louis Beach along the scenic highway across from Christ Episcopal Church.

When you think about beaches, does your mind drift to thoughts of white sands and blue water of the Carribean or Florida?  South Mississippi offers beautiful quiet beaches along the sleepy stretch of scenic highway between Bay St. Louis and Waveland.  This well-kept secret has something to offer for any traveler.  We spent our first camping trip of 2018 at Buccaneer State Park.  And, we will definitely be going back!

Sew Cute Camping Themed Tote

Friday, March 16, 2018

I love a good, sturdy tote bag.  A practical tote should have a nice shape with a well-defined bottom and ample handles.  A pocket or two and lining take it to the next level.  The bag I made has all of these features.  Making your own tote bag isn't difficult and allows you to have all of the features and functions you need.  And, I whipped up this bag in less than 2 hours.

Easy Easter Decor with Dollar Store Finds

Monday, March 12, 2018

Easter table scape with found items from Dollar Tree, Dollar General and Target!

When you see a holiday display, do you think that it is a lot of money for a short time?  My practical upbringing tends to make me think that way.  I love to decorate.  Seasonal changes in my home are about all that happens with the exception of Christmas.  This year I decided to decorate a little more for Easter than years past.  The fact that I did this on a shoestring budget makes me even happier!  With a little creativity and few good ideas to start, you can do this too.

Replacing Your Pop Up Camper Canvas

Friday, March 2, 2018

No matter the age of your pop up, a good canvas is one of the most important pieces.  Overlooking signs of wear and tear can be a costly mistake.  A stiff and brittle canvas even without tears is an indicator of bad things to come.  Canvas care, canvas replacement, and canvas treatment are 3 key components in owning a pop-up camper.

A Beginners Guide to Pop Up Camping

Monday, February 26, 2018

Our pop up camper is packed up like a little jigsaw puzzle with everything fitting snuggly into place.  Setting up involves a series of steps that must be done in just the right sequence for everything to fit together.   Pop up camping can be a lot of work.  But, you can easily enjoy a pop-up camper if you know what you are doing and make smart work of these tasks.  So where should a beginner start?

Why a Pop Up Camper is the Right RV for Our Family

Monday, February 19, 2018

With dozens of RV brands, sizes, and types available on the market, there really is an RV for everyone.  It is easy to get sidetracked with the shiny new RV with fancy upgrades.  But, what is the right RV for you?  It is a big decision to make.  Here are the five things that helped us to decide that a pop-up camper was the right RV for our family.

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