Preparing for Travel

Canva - Travel - Blank

Although it’s true we’ve decided it’s time to get off the road, we do have plans to travel at least one more time before settling down for good! And since we plan to travel, we need to prepare!

Over the course of the next few weeks, we will take the truck in to be serviced and check to see that everything on the RV is in working order as well!

First, we’ll pack up those things we don’t use every day, donating that which we no longer need or use anymore!

The packing part is my biggest challenge! Figuring out what to keep, and what goes is difficult – especially since I have a minimalists point of few, and I live with a mother who is a bit of a pack rat!

Todays challenge: clear out the cupboard above our sink!

I recently found a set of 4 plastic wine goblets we have yet to use in our 3 plus years on the road! Seriously?!? Out they go!

So, with that said, I’m off to clear out a cupboard!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

Taking Care of Me… Part 2

Canva - Burgers and Fries

It’s no secret, eating healthy is a challenge for me! Especially living with a mother who, in her old age, is becoming a finicky eater! But, taking care of myself is something I’ve begun to take very seriously!

However there is a down side to this new change…

Since I am no longer feeding my body all the sugary sweets or fatty fried foods, I am beginning to feel tired and lethargic. I don’t seem to have the strength to do much of anything!

My body is going through withdrawal!

Talking with my doctor, I’m told that every time we change our eating habits – good, or bad – our bodies react to these changes! He also went on to say that this tiredness will pass… it may take a few days… but it will pass… and, as my body adapts to my healthier eating habits, it will begin to work as it should, thus the fatigue will lift! That’s good to hear!

In the meantime, I will press on through this feeling of weariness, and rest when I can, knowing that this too shall pass!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

Taking Care Of Me… Part 1

Canva - Taking Care of Myself

Recently, I shared with you that I was Giving Myself Permission to Take Care Of Me! You’d think this should be an easy task! But with work obligations and familial ones as well, I find myself torn with the idea that I need to take care of others first!

For example… Mom and I share our little homestead on wheels. She doesn’t get around as well as she used to. She’s 80. That’s understandable! However, making sure she is eating properly and making meals that she likes is becoming more and more difficult! She’s set in her ways! She likes certain foods… foods that aren’t exactly healthy!

I don’t want to be one of those persons who makes one dish me for her, and another one for me! Call me crazy, but I feel that this is too much like work! Yet when I put together a meal in the slow-cooker, she comes up with the excuse that she doesn’t like all her food to be touching! And I thought kids could be picky eaters!

Therefore, instead of making something in the slow-cooker, I wait till I get home to make dinner. I am usually so hungry, that we wind up going to the closest burger joint, instead of taking the time to make a proper, healthy meal!

This has to stop!

As I plan for meals that we can both enjoy, I find myself remembering the days of my youth… when mom made a dinner for us, she did NOT make two different meals… she made one meal for everybody, and if you didn’t like it, you didn’t eat until the next meal!

You’d think with our roles reversing, I could get away with that line! Nope! She informs me that she’ll just make something herself… but then, she usually just snacks on whatever we have in the pantry – usually chips and soda! Sigh!

This too, has to stop!

So, the challenge continues in trying to eat a healthy diet!

I know deep down, that by taking care of myself, I am showing my gratitude to God, yet I continue to battle with the thought that I need to take care of her first, and me last!

Therefore, the challenge to eat healthy continues, but I will prevail! I will not give up!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

It’s All About Attitude

Canva - It's all about attitude

Attitude is an inward feeling expressed by outward behavior.

Recently, during my morning quiet times, I’ve been reading a book called Battlefield of the Mind. In a chapter called Be Positive, I came to realize that I am a very negative person…

You know, the glass is half empty… an always waiting for the other shoe to drop kind of person.

This sort of thinking is very negative! And as I just expressed, our attitude… our mindset… our feeling on the inside… it’s expressed by our outward behavior.

Sometimes, what we are thinking or feeling, if we don’t share it with others, we assume, they don’t know what’s going on in our lives.

However, what we think in our heart, we become. So, if we are negative in our thinking, we become negative… our characteristics tend toward the negative… and it shows by what we say or what we do.

Even scriptures tell us ‘as we think in our hearts, so we become.’ (See Proverbs 23:7)

Moreover, our attitudes (good or bad) can be seen without ever speaking a word!

Our attitudes color our experiences, Happiness and depression… these are issues of the heart. What we are on the inside has more impact on our emotional state than our circumstances!

However, if you are like me, it takes effort to think positively… I have to think about what I am thinking about!

There is a verse in the bible that says ‘a merry heart does good like medicine.’ Therefore wouldn’t it do me good to put in the effort it takes to think positive… to have a good attitude.

Consequently, if I have a great attitude about things inwardly, this will begin to show on the outside!

For example: The campground where I am currently working will be closing down for the season in just under two months. Usually, I already have the next job planned, and know where I will be going!

That’s not the case this year!

As a single workamper, I am finding it harder and harder to find jobs, simply due to the fact that more and more campgrounds would rather hire couples. The reasoning? Why not hire two workers for the price of 1 site?!? Or simply, some of those same campgrounds would rather hire locals and utilize a site for paying guests rather than a workamper.

I get it… but it does make finding a job, and a place to park my unit more difficult.

So, I could look at this situation 1 of 2 ways… My negative side could say “Whoa is me! I can’t seem to find a job! What am I ever going to do! I’ll never find a job in time!

Or, I could look at it with a positive attitude and see it as an adventure! Which, by the way, is what mom and I had originally intended!

So, no crying over spilled milk here!

It’s all about the attitude!

Let’s see where the road takes us next!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

(Thank you for using my affiliate links. I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you! Mom and I appreciate your support! ❤)

Experimenting with Freeze Dried Foods

Food Photo - Pork Chop on Bed of Lettuce

We all know when it comes to food, ‘fresh is always best!’

However, when you’re living in a 22 foot RV, with a fridge the size of a shoe box, you don’t have the freezer space to keep foods cold. So, we had to look at other options!

Canned goods seemed to be the answer until we started considering two things,

First, we found that most canned goods have additives and preservatives that our bodies were never meant to digest! And second, was the added weight of the canned goods during travel!

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Canned goods add water weight…

For example – we have a 20 gallon fresh water tank… when that tank is full, we are carrying an additional 216 pounds of added weight! That’s a lot of excess weight! So, keeping that in mind, store bought canned goods was not a good option!

We did consider dehydrating our foods, but again, we had to think about storage space! We just didn’t have the space to bring along our favorite dehydrator...

Food - Excalibur Deydrator

So, we brought along our smaller dehydrator instead.

Be that as it may, dehydrating our favorite foods can take up to 14 hours at a time, and while a good option, it just doesn’t fit our current needs!

So, we found another option – freeze-dried foods!

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Yet once again, after doing some research on freeze drying, we found that the driers were way out of our price range! Not to mention, the size and weight of said driers was daunting, considering the size of our camper and the lack of storage space!

Be that as it may, all was not lost!

We found a company that offers simple, clean, freeze dried  foods!

Our prayers were answered!

Now, we have the option to enjoy REAL food, without all the additives and preservatives, or the added weight to our travel payload!

When we got our first box of freeze dried goodness, we were amazed!

But we had to ask ourselves, would these new found treasures stand up in the kitchen?

Thrive Life

Thus began our experimenting!

We first began with the simplest of meals… a baked potato topped with ground beef and broccoli.

Pretty tasty, and very easy to make, for a healthy nutritional meal on the run! The ground beef was a nice change up from the usual bacon bits.

Food - Potato, broccoli and ground beef (2)

Our next experiment was a side dish of steamed green beans, onions, and red bell peppers! Also very tasty! You can find the recipe on our post Steamed Green Beans with Red Peppers.

Thrive Life Recipe - Steamed Green Beans

Another homestead favorite, is our Shredded Beef Sandwich Recipe. Just as enjoyable and very easy to make. You simply add together shredded beef, onion slices and red bell peppers with a few other ingredients, and viola, you have another quick, delicious meal on the table!

If you want to try it, you can find the recipe here!

Thrive Life - Shreaded Beef Sandwich

For my next experiment, I’m thinking of trying a cheesy, broccoli soup! I’ll let you know how it turns out! For now, it’s time to get back into the kitchen!

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

P.S. (Thank you for using my affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases and really appreciate your support ❤)

How to Make Homemade Mayonnaise

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Making your own homemade mayo is easier than you think!

Having to deal with digestive issues most of my life, I learned the hard way that not all things we call food are actually good for us!

Take mayo for example...

Have you ever gone to the grocery store and really checked the labels to see what goes into some of those cans or jars we call food?

Look at the ingredients on this jar… while there are items that are actually food, additives and preservatives have been added… some which are man-made and our bodies were never meant to digest!

Mayo Label (2)

In truth, real mayo only needs 3 ingredients! And if made with the right oils, it is an excellent way to add more healthy fats to your diet!

While this recipe is very easy to make, it does require patience. You want to pour the oil into the blender, very slowly...

I have used a standard mixer, but it does not seem to get up to the speed you need to create the fluffy, creamy goodness that you are used to seeing in the jarred versions at the store.

Using a blender (here’s my personal favorite) helps make lite work of this recipe, but since mine is currently out of commission, I use my ‘stick mixer.’ The recipe turns out just as great, but I do find that a third hand is helpful to hold the mason jar still while I hold the mixer and pour the oil into the jar!

Homemade Mayonnaise

What you will need:

  • 1  whole egg
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar or lemon juice

Here’s the low down on how to make mayonnaise:

  • Put the egg and apple cider vinegar in a blender. Keep the blender on and pour the oil into the blender very slowly. The oil should thicken with the egg as you pour the oil.

Cooks Tips

  • Some find that using extra virgin olive oil is a bit too strong in its taste. However, I personally like it, plus, I find that most light tasting oils are over processed.
  • To kick things up a notch, try using avocado or macadamia oil.
  • A third hand is always necessary when using a hand or ‘stick’ blender.
  • You can store your mayo in the fridge about a week.
  • Use lemon juice instead of the apple cider vinegar to make a delicious lemon mayonnaise.
  • Change up the flavor of your mayo by adding in your favorite seasonings.
  • Use your healthy mayo to dip your veggies, make a delicious salad dressing or make deviled eggs.
  • If it didn’t thicken as you would have hoped, all is not lost! Use it as a sauce over your grilled chicken, burgers or fish!

See how easy it is to make your own mayo! You can have so much fun with this recipe AND it’s healthy!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~Sheri

Do You Have the Heart of a Homesteader?

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Not all homesteaders live on a large farm!

Nope!

For those of us who have the heart of a homesteader, we come in all shapes and sizes... and from all walks of life!

Some of us do live on large farms… but some of us also live in condos… some of us live in small apartments… and some of us even live and travel in an RV!

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So, are you wondering if you have the heart of a homesteader?

Let’s find out!

You might have the heart of a homesteader if you…

  • drive 20 miles out of your way to buy eggs from a local farmer
  • like to make your own butter or mayo
  • grow your favorite herbs on a windowsill
  • have a table-top garden in your kitchen
  • have a tower garden in your apartment or condo
  • are growing tomatoes and peppers in a container garden on your patio or balcony

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  • enjoy canning and preserving your own food
  • your cupboards are filled with your own homemade jams, jellies and pickles
  • you enjoy cooking from scratch
  • you enjoy creating your own recipes
  • you enjoy making your own soaps

If you have said ‘I do that’ to anything on the list above, than you my friend, have the heart of a homesteader!

Welcome to my life!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

Shredded Beef Sandwich Recipe

Thrive Life - Shreaded Beef Sandwich

Let’s face it! We love making sandwiches, but even more so, we enjoy eating them!

It’s nice when a recipe is tasty, and even better when it’s easy!

Once again, I am using some of my freeze dried canned goods to make this delicious and oh so easy recipe! Using our shredded beef and veggies, I can make this recipe in only 15 minutes!

Simply toss the shredded beef in a pan and get it going with the onions, red bell peppers and the ‘to die for’ sauce!

Simply stir up the soy sauce, tomato paste, garlic and beef broth.

Soak the meat and veggies in the savory sauce, toss it in a bun, and get your grub on!

It’s an excellent recipe for lunch and dinner, or even a quick throw-together meal as you’re heading out the door to work or soccer practice!

What you need:

  • 2 cups Shredded Beef
  • 1 cup Onion Slices
  • 1 cup Red Bell Peppers
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1/8 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp. minced garlic
  • Steak or Hoagie rolls, split and warmed
  • Slices of provolone cheese (or which ever cheese your prefer)

Here’s the low-down on how to make it:

  • In a medium sauce pan, combine the shredded beef, onions, red bell peppers, beef broth, tomato paste, soy sauce, and garlic. Simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid is reduced. Spoon on rolls and top with cheese.

Tips from the kitchen:

  • You can use your fresh produce in this recipe, just adapt the amount of broth – you won’t need as much! And to save time in the kitchen use pre-cooked beef!
  • If there are any leftovers, the shredded beef mixture makes a great topper for a baked potato!
  • This recipe also works well with shredded pork, chicken or turkey too!

See, quick and oh so easy-peasy!

Enjoy!

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

Top 10 Things I’ve Learned on this RV Journey

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Unlike traditional camping – staying in a tent – traveling in an RV allows you to take most, if not all, the comforts of home with you!

However, it’s not quite the same as living in a ‘sticks and bricks’ homestead…

Here’s the top 10 things I’ve learned on this journey of ours…

  1. Travel lite – most RVs have weight restrictions, so taking everything you own is not an option! Travel lite by only taking those things you actually need! For example, instead of taking every pot and pan you own, only take the top 2-3 pieces you use on a daily basis! And clothes… clothes should be limited to the sevens rule… 7 shirts, 7 pants… you get the idea!
  2. Never rely solely on your GPS – Make sure you take an up-to-date map book with you. One of my favorites is the Rand McNally 2023 Road Atlas & National Park Guide. GPS is notorious for steering you down those ‘iffy’ roads that are not RV friendly! Using your map book will help keep you out of difficult places, and help you plan your route! Furthermore, while you formulate your plans, you may even find one or two places you didn’t think about exploring! However, if you don’t mind those major highways, I would still take along that up-to-date map book! I would suggest the Rand McNally 2022 Motor Carriers’ Road Atlas. If the big rigs can get through, so can your RV!
  3. Always expect the unexpected – It never fails! Sometimes things can and will go wrong! You might take a wrong turn and wind up in downtown traffic, wondering just how you’re going to get your RV through tight turns! Or, perhaps the campground where you had a reservation was suddenly flooded and they are having to turn you away! Always plan for the unexpected, but don’t let those unforeseen mishaps discourage you from your travels!
  4. Learn how to fix things yourself – Let’s face it, things break, and the more you learn how to fix it yourself, the more money you’ll save in the bank!
  5. Travel no more than 5 hours a day – if you’re driving more than 5 hours in a day, not only do you miss those interesting places you might otherwise enjoy, you’re also too tired after setting up camp to enjoy the evening once you’ve stopped for the night. I’ve even adopted the habit of driving no more than 2-3 hours a day. This gives me the chance to check out the campground, create a healthy meal, relax and enjoy a nice campfire before bed.
  6. Don’t let your fuel tank go under half full! So, you’ve got a day of driving ahead! Make sure you stop to fill up your fuel tank when it hits the half empty mark. You never know how far it well be till the next gas station!
  7. Whenever possible, stop at a Loves, Pilots or other truck stops for fuel. You’ll find these places are easier to get in and out of, especially if you have a bigger RV. And, if you’re too tired to get to your next destination, it’s a great place to stop for some rest! Just please be courteous! Although we may have all day to get somewhere, truckers are working and do have a schedule they need to keep!
  8. Try and stay at one place at least 3-6 months. You save yourself from the wear and tear of having to pack up, drive, and set up camp every few days. Plus, staying longer at a campground allows you to get a better price for your site! You’ll have more time to do some serious site-seeing and you won’t miss out on those great photo opportunities and breathtaking views!
  9. Camping does not mean you have to live on hamburgers and hot dogs! Although there is nothing better than a hot dog or burger over the open flame, you are not relegated to live solely on these foods! A campfire is a great way to grill up some chicken and roast some tasty veggies! Have you tried grilled fruit?!? Yum!
  10. Waste not, want not! – We have learned that life on the road isn’t always a bed or roses! Daily, we make the trek to the dumpster, taking out the trash we create! It’s even worse when we boondock, because we use paper and plastic due to water being a precious commodity! Mom and I are learning to maximize our efforts to minimize our waste! Whenever possible – recycle, recycle, recycle!

Hope the lessons we’ve learned help you enjoy the open road!

As always,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri

Steamed Green Beans with Red Peppers

Thrive Life Recipe - Steamed Green Beans

With the growing season only just beginning to get underway, I find I am having to rely on using my supply of freeze-dried canned goods. Here’s where I get mine!

If you already have fresh produce coming in from your garden, you can certainly use it in this recipe… just cut back on the amount of broth you use!!

How to make Steamed Green Beans with Red Bell Peppers

What you need:

  • 2 cups Red Bell Peppers
  • 2 cups Green Beans
  • 1/2 cup Onion Slices
  • 1 Tbsp. Garlic, pressed or minced
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 3/4 tsp salt or favorite seasoning
  • 1 1/2 cups broth (I use homemade chicken bone broth, but your favorite broth will work, or you can simply use water)

How to make:

  • In a medium sized skillet, saute the garlic with the butter until it’s lightly caramelized and has a nice golden color.
  • toss the dry ingredients in the skillet with the salt or seasoning of choice, then add the broth or water..
  • Stir together thoroughly.
  • place the lid on top and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Once the veggies are fully cooked, you’re ready to go!

Tips from the kitchen:

  • Freeze dried foods crisp up fast, so make sure you measure out all your ingredients first.
  • You can use your fresh from the garden produce, you’ll just need to cut back on the amount of broth you use.
  • Pairs nicely as a side for grilled chicken, or add cooked chicken to the recipe for a great stir-fry!

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

Until next time,

Peace, love and safe travels!

~ Sheri