Judy Kahansky
RV Tire Maintenance Could Save Your Life

RV Tire Maintenance Could Save Your Life

GETTING READY TO RV FULL TIME?

Then This Package of Six Handy Checklists You Can Fill Out and Keep Your Full Time RV Live Organized is just what you need!

We’re also including a BONUS of 21 RV Tips & Tricks

from experienced Full-timers!

Here’s a sample of what’s in your Checklist Package:

  • Pet Passports
  • Downsizing and Decluttering Checklist
  •  RV Maintenance Checklist
  • Warranty & User Guide Index
  • Important Numbers Checklist
  • Stocking the RV Shopping List

Just recently we published the Ultimate Guide to Rv Living, and 33 Reasons Why Full Time RV Living has become so popular, and everyone just loves those articles!

 

In both of these detailed and informative posts, I mention the importance of tire maintenance, and go into a bit of detail about it.

In this post I will give you more detail, and a cautionary tale about why RV Tire Maintenance is so important.

So important in fact it could save your life.

 

Here is our story.

 

In 2014, as newbie RV travellers, what we realized early on was that we didn’t know what we didn’t know. So we started to keep a log – a diary of sorts when things wouldn’t work, needed repair, heck anything at all.

Sometimes it was just going through the instruction booklets that came with the trailer – our previous owners kept it all and we are very thankful for that! Other times we searched the web and popular forums such as xxxxxxx.

But life does have its ups and downs, and sometimes, well sometimes you just have to earn your experience the hard way. You know what I mean? Well here’s what happened.

What’s the harm in buying more insurance?

When at Camping World, the sales staff told us about the special roadside assistance package that was being promoted with Good Sam, only $65.

When my husband reminded me we already had a package with a well know roadside assistance company, I said “it’s such a good deal. Besides, you can never have too much insurance.”

I would remember that statement many times over during the next few weeks.

 

Our trip had begun 10 days earlier, travelling from home in southern Ontario, in our 2008 Titantium Fifth Wheel, (pulled by a Chevrolet Silverado 1 ton Dually Diesel )to Myrtle Beach, SC. Along the way we stopped at a KOA in Fredericksburgh, while we visited family in the Washington, DC area.

Travelling on to Mebane, NC we stayed at the Jones Station RV Park, a delightful RV park, with wide open spaces and lots of room to run the dogs. We would spend several days here while visiting our good friends, Skip and Nancy in Mebane, and spending a day at the US Open Golf Tournament at Pinehurst, NC.

Our final leg was Myrtle Beach, SC and we stayed at the Ocean Lakes Resort,  a huge resort, with campsites, cottages, condominiums. It was a bit of sensory overload for us and our three pooches, Max, Millie and Barkley. But we played lots of golf, and had fun walking the beach every night.

We were heading north and east to the Maritimes – our next journey, and had been asked by my cousin Alyson to pick up some trailer accessories at Camping World. There was a huge store very close to our campsite, so on our way out of MB, we stopped in to check it out.

And of course that’s how we ended up with Good Sam Roadside Assistance package. And a bunch of other RV stuff, but I digress.

 

So with sunburns, tired pooches, and a brand new roadside assistance plan from Good Sam, we headed our Fiver (RV talk for a Fifth Wheel) north and east – destination Prince Edward Island, Canada.

The trip up through the States was an experience in itself. Following our GPS, we ended up in some pretty interesting places. We were so grateful to the officer at one of the toll booths on a turnpike – the Jersey Turnpike I think?

She told us to get off the turnpike (it was costing a small fortune) to stick to Highway XX and we would end up at the Maine/New Brunswick Border. And we did, several days later, enjoying the drive, but we were now anxious to get to our destination- Twin Shores RV Park near Kensington, Prince Edward Island, Canada.

We decided to make a run for it this day – still plenty of daylight left, but as we arrived near Fredericton, NB, we pulled off the road to have a real meal and relax for a couple of hours. Beside the dogs needed a good stretch too.

Relaxed, refreshed and with full bellies , we were now ready to finish the final push to PEI. But as we got ready to load up – all five of us, we stood beside the Fiver and stared down at one of the wheels – it was completely flat.

It appeared that we weren’t going anywhere anytime soon. My hubby pulled out his travel card – from the well know roadside assistance company and called the number. RV roadside assistance is a specialized service and when the person on the other end of our cell phone asked if we had a jack in our car, we knew we were in trouble.

I believe the words my husband used were “Son, you want me to jack up 15,000 lb worth of trailer by myself?” They really didn’t have a response for that and said they would call us back.

 

Looking at each other with a “what do we do now?” look, it was obviously time for Plan B. And so we called the number on the Good Sam Roadside Assistance card we had just purchased less than a week before. I even think I might have held my breath while waiting for the call to go through.

We were shocked. We immediately were connected with someone very knowledgeable about RV’s – she asked what type of unit we had, length, weight etc. and the exact location that we were sitting in.

But the very first thing she asked?

“Are you and family safe, sir?”

We assured her we were and within less than 20 minutes a Tire Repair Tow Truck arrived, jacked up the trailer and put on our spare. We were cautioned, however to get a new tire as we were now travelling without a spare and upon arrival in PEI at 4 a.m., we made arrangements to do exactly that.

 

I won’t go into details here about our time on the Island. PEI is glorious in the summer and if you haven’t been, you really need to go. Our time there was way too short, and as all good things must come to an end, we packed up and with a brand new tire firmly installed on the Fifth Wheel, and all wheels balanced, we turned westward and bid our Island vacation a tearful goodbye.

Well not really, but it sounds good doesn’t it? 🙂

Remember what I said about having to learn some experiences the hard way?

Relaxed, happy and looking forward to getting home, we made excellent time as we passed Moncton, New Brunswick, travelling the Trans Canada 2 and making our way west and north. W were getting near the capital Fredericton. The highway through here is in really good shape, and we were really motoring – probably doing about 120km/hour (xx mph). The dually is so powerful, you really don’t know you are pulling a Fifth Wheel.

When we stopped shortly after to fill up with diesel – I decided to give the dogs a stretch. This was an Irving station and there was a nice little picnic area.  While the pups were enjoying the sights and smells of fresh grass to sniff, I looked up to see Mark waving at me frantically, so headed over to the diesel pumps.

He was pointing at the wheels. Well he was pointing to where the new wheel used to be. At some point, during the past 3 hours, the new wheel had completely shorn off the axle and we had been driving with only three wheels!

 

The scary part is that we had been driving 65 mph (120 kmh) and we are convinced (and the tire company confirmed this) that if it hadn’t been for the dually truck we were pulling the trailer with, we would have been experienced a very serious accident. Or worse.

A quick call to the “RV specialist” who sold us the tire and installed it resulted in a full refund. And a confession that ‘maybe I didn’t torque the tire enough’. He also didn’t tell us to check the tire every few hundred miles to make sure the bolts were good and snug.

Good Sam to the rescue once again! They dispatched a tire repair company from Surrey – we were out in the middle of nowhere. Because the wheel was completely gone, they had to fabricate the bolts needed to fasten the new wheel to the trailer.

In fact we needed the bolts before they could even put the old spare on! Two days of boon docking at the Irving station later, we had a new wheel, a new torque wrench and were now tired, and very weary.

Again, Good Sam Roadside Assistance covered the cost of all the service calls (there were several) and we of course paid for a new wheel and tire.

Our lesson learned was the importance of having a torque wrench and checking your tires every so many miles.

Our education about the importance of RV tire care was not over however. We would experience another tire issue as we passed Quebec City – when a motorist flagged us and pointed to a right tire that now had a huge bulge!. At this point I was making lists upon lists of what we needed to do for RV tire maintenance.

Once more we went through the process of sitting stranded, while Good Sam arrived, and put on our spare tire. Exhausted beyond belief, we pulled in to the next campsite and spent a couple of days to calm down and draw breath.

So what the heck happened?

We purchased our Fifth Wheel from an RV Dealer, but it was used, about six years old. The exterior and interior were in awesome shape, but what we didn’t know was the age and wear on the RV tires that the Fiver had experienced.

So the smart thing we could have done before heading out on such a long trip, was to have the tires inspected professionally, and replacing your tires was a good idea when they were showing significant wear and age.

We learned that taking care of your RV Tires, and regular RV Tire maintenance was critical to road safety, and an enjoyable trip.

From our experience with the Tire Shop in New Brunswick, we were taught the importance of the torque wrench, and how it was critical to check tire condition and pressure as well as torque them regularly throughout the trip.

By that time we were so paranoid, we were checking at every stop!

I’ve included some links to RV Tire specialists – that will provide information about tire pressure etc. as well as Good Sam’s Roadside Assistance. Check your warranty with your dealer as well.

I would caution you though, that if you are buying a used unit, like we did, to put new tires into the budget.

As soon as we arrived home, we spent $1500 on four new tires and rims. Had we known to do this at the beginning of our trip, a lot of worry and angst would have been avoided.

So here is our Top 5 List for RV Tire Maintenance!

1. Tire Condition and Pressure
2. Checking your RV tires every time you stop
3. Keeping the tires clean
4. Replacing your tires when you buy used
5. Practice Tire Safety While Travelling

Resources:
Goodyear RV Tire Care Maintenance
How To Take Care of Your Trailer Tires
Full Time RV Living: The Importance of Tire Maintenance 
Good Sam Roadside Assistance

Do you have any RV travel stories to share?  Be sure to let us know in the comments below!

 

Best Homemade BBQ Sauce | The Easiest Recipe!

Best Homemade BBQ Sauce | The Easiest Recipe!

 

Best Homemade BBQ Sauce.

If you love BBQ Sauce and want flavor that is tangy, flavorful, with just a hint of smoke, then Best Homemade BBQ Sauce is perfect for you!

Okay so I usually blog about pies, pastry and desserts right?  Well, that’s true, but a gal can’t live on pie alone!  So this blog is all about BBQ sauce  – my homemade BBQ sauce, so easy to do, you must try this! Tangy woodsy smoky flavour that just can’t be beat – and will make your BBQ’s the best ticket in town!

If you love BBQ Sauce and want flavor that is tangy, flavorful, with just a hint of smoke, then Best Homemade BBQ Sauce is perfect for you!

This recipe has been in the family for many years and was always ready for ribs, hamburgers, chicken, pulled pork or anything at all.  I can remember some awesome ribs at the cottage!   First the ribs would be marinated overnight in the fridge, and the marinade was full of garlic, salt, pepper, oil, vinegar – maybe a beer or two?  We would always parboil the ribs first.  Mom had a special way of having the butcher cut them as well.

I’ve found that most folks are very passionate about their BBQ Sauce!

Then the BBQ would be lit and once it was ready – trays of delicious racks of ribs would come outside, all dressed in this amazing BBQ sauce.  The cottage was a family gathering spot, for birthdays, anniversaries but usually just a hot summer weekend and you really don’t need a reason to cook up a mess a ribs do you?

So please enjoy this Best Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe, and be surprised by how quickly it becomes your family’s favorite!

 

If you love BBQ Sauce and want flavor that is tangy, flavorful, with just a hint of smoke, then Best Homemade BBQ Sauce is perfect for you!

Ingredients**

1 cup smoke flavoured BBQ sauce ( I use Kraft Hickory )

1/4 cup ketchup (your favorite)

1/4 cup molasses

4 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. vinegar

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. dry mustard

2 tsp. worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp. hot pepper sauce (like Tabasco)

 

Preparation (about 10 minutes)

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer on med-low for 10 minutes

Let cool and pour into glass jars.

**You can double the recipe which is what I do and it will make two pints.

Enjoy!

Pin the recipe below!!

If you love BBQ Sauce and want flavor that is tangy, flavorful, with just a hint of smoke, then Best Homemade BBQ Sauce is perfect for you!

Best Homemade BBQ Sauce

 

*Republished from 2015

Homemade Ice Cream Sauce Trifecta | The Best Sundae Sauces Ever!

Homemade Ice Cream Sauce Trifecta | The Best Sundae Sauces Ever!

The only three homemade ice cream sauce recipes you will ever need.

Really!  Salted Caramel, Delicious Chocolate and Supreme Strawberry, as you can see make one awesome Banana Split!

homemade ice cream sauce

Or what about a Tin Roof?  That’s when you drizzle a huge slab of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce, sprinkle with spanish skinned salted peanuts and rinse and repeat.  You have to try it!

homemade ice cream sauce

We have always used ice cream sauces – the ones you buy at the grocery store, but we don’t anymore!  Besides, the flavour of fresh homemade sauces just doesn’t compare with the store bought kind.  Am I right?

The only three homemade ice cream sauce recipes you will ever need. Really! Salted Caramel, Delicious Chocolate and Supreme Strawberry, as you can see make one awesome Banana Split!

Spooning that thick delicious homemade ice cream sauce onto your ice cream, pancakes, waffles, scrambled eggs – you can put it on whatever your heart desires.

salted-caramel-sauce-2

 

These recipes make about a 1 to 1 1/2 cups of sauce, so if you are feeding a crowd you may want to double up.

homemade ice cream sauce

It’s always nice to make a fresh batch of homemade ice cream sauce and I find each of the three sauces keep about a week to 10 days in the refrigerator.

homemade ice cream sauce

  • I’ve included the salted caramel sauce recipe again here, and you can also find it an earlier blog post, Salted Caramel Sauce.
  • The chocolate sauce comes from food.com and it’s amazing, it almost hardens on the ice cream!
  • The strawberry sauce recipe I created from one of my strawberry pie fillings, I posted about it earlier in the year on Strawberry Pie | A Little Magic Filled With Joy

Salted Caramel Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dark brown sugar – well packed
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. almond flavoured liqueur

Directions (Prep time – about 30 minutes):

In a medium sized saucepan mix the brown sugar, butter, sea salt, and heavy cream and cook over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often, but not vigorously.
As the caramel begins to thicken, cook for another 2 minutes
Remove from heat and add the liqueur
Return to the stove and cook for another 2 minutes
Remove from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes
Pour into glass jars for storage
Tip: I poured the sauce into a 2 cup measuring cup and used that to pour into my little jars.
Enjoy!

Chocolate Sauce Recipe (Lee Lee’s Famous Chocolate Sauce Recipe – food.com)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2-2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup water ( more or less, as needed to make a stirable consistency)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions (prep time total – 15 minutes)

  • Combine sugar, cocoa, and salt in small saucepan.
  • Add enough water to make stirable consistency.
  • Add butter to cocoa mixture.
  • Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly.
  • Allow to boil for 1 minute, stirring.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Add vanilla.
  • Serve warm over ice cream.

 

Supreme Strawberry Ice Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of mashed strawberries
  • 3/4 cup of water
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 4 cups of sliced strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of maple syrup

Directions – total prep time about 30 minutes

  • Cook the mashed strawberries in the water, bring to a boil then strain into a measuring cup.  Add enough water to make one cup.
  • Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and juice and stir quickly, bring to a boil and then cook for about 2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the strawberries.

The first time you serve these amazing homemade ice cream sauces the Crowd Will Go Wild!

Guaranteed.

 

This is The Best Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Recipe | Easy & Delicious!

This is The Best Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Recipe | Easy & Delicious!

Gluten free pumpkin pie with sunflower, and fall harvest background

Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Recipe.  This is our Best Pumpkin Pie recipe!

Pumpkin pie season is here and while I’m not one, many folks simply can’t tolerate gluten or wheat in their diets.  My regular pumpkin pie recipe includes a heaping tablespoon of flour in it, so I wanted to create a gluten free pumpkin pie recipe that everyone could enjoy.

Not only is this amazing pie gluten free, it’s full of rich, creamy flavor.  That’s the beauty of creating homemade desserts too.  You know that you are putting real food into the recipe, not chemically laden foods.

We have several pumpkin pie recipes on the blog now so be sure to check them out!

My daughter has Celiac Disease and it is a very serious condition.  Thankfully there are many, many gluten-free alternatives today.  Gluten free is definitely mainstream.

 

gluten free pumpkin pie recipe gluten free pumpkin pie how to make gluten free pumpkin pie dairy free gluten free pumpkin pie easy gluten free pumpkin pie recipe homemade gluten free pumpkin pie recipe

 

 

This Simple Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Recipe is not only lovely to look at – it tastes amazing.  Very rich and creamy, and made with my gluten free pie crust recipe, it’s the bomb!

The original recipe came from a label off a can of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk, and I’ve tweaked it a bit just for you .

Ingredients

one 9″ gluten-free pie crust – unbaked

one 14 oz/398ml can pumpkin (unsweetened)

1 can  Sweetened Condensed Milk

2 eggs

1 tsp cinnamon

one-half tsp ginger

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 salt

Garnish: whipped cream and pecan halves

gluten free pumpkin pie recipe gluten free pumpkin pie how to make gluten free pumpkin pie dairy free gluten free pumpkin pie easy gluten free pumpkin pie recipe homemade gluten free pumpkin pie recipe

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425F/220C

In a large bowl combine the filling ingredients and mix well.  I use a small handheld mixer, but be careful.  Pumpkin pie filling will spray all over the place!

Next, pour the filling into the gluten free pie crust shell.  You can make your own – using gluten free flours or buy one frozen and already prepared.  There are some quality prepared pie crusts in grocery stores now!

Bake 15 minutes at 425F/220C and then reduce your oven temperature to 350F/180C and bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick or knife comes out clean.   Be sure not to overcook as the filling will ‘crack’ around the edges.

Finally, cool and garnish with whipped cream and pecan halves.

gluten free pumpkin pie recipe gluten free pumpkin pie how to make gluten free pumpkin pie dairy free gluten free pumpkin pie easy gluten free pumpkin pie recipe homemade gluten free pumpkin pie recipe

 

 

This simple gluten free pumpkin pie recipe makes a beautiful dessert, safe for those who suffer from celiac disease or just can’t tolerate gluten in their diets.  Yay!!!

Make sure you place any leftovers in the refrigerator.  I find pumpkin pie will keep about a week if kept cold.

0 from 0 votes
gluten free pumpkin pie, whole pie, overhead photo
Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
50 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 

This amazing Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie recipe is creamy, flavorful and tastes pretty amazing! It's such an easy recipe and whips up in a food processor in minutes! DONE! Perfect for Thanksgiving 

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: North American
Servings: 8 pieces of pie
Calories: 3018 kcal
Author: Judy
Ingredients
  • 1 pie crust one 9" gluten-free - unbaked
  • 1 14 oz can pumpkin unsweetened
  • 1 can  Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 salt
  • 1 cup Whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup Pecans halves
Instructions
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 425F/220C
  2. In a large bowl combine the filling ingredients and mix well.  I use a small handheld mixer, but be careful.  Pumpkin pie filling will spray all over the place!
  3. Next, pour the filling into the gluten free pie crust shell.  You can make your own - using gluten free flours or buy one frozen and already prepared.  There are some quality prepared pie crusts in grocery stores now!
  4. Bake 15 minutes at 425F/220C and then reduce your oven temperature to 350F/180C and bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick or knife comes out clean.   Be sure not to overcook as the filling will 'crack' around the edges.
  5. Finally, cool and garnish with whipped cream and pecan halves.
Recipe Notes

Finally, cool and garnish with whipped cream and pecan halves.

Nutrition Facts
Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie
Amount Per Serving (0.125 g)
Calories 3018 Calories from Fat 1584
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 176g 271%
Saturated Fat 93g 465%
Cholesterol 788mg 263%
Sodium 1449mg 60%
Potassium 1934mg 55%
Total Carbohydrates 308g 103%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 217g
Protein 58g 116%
Vitamin A 102.3%
Vitamin C 14.2%
Calcium 136.1%
Iron 37.3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

Gluten free pumpkin pie with sunflower, and fall harvest background

If you enjoyed our best gluten free pumpkin pie recipe, please be check out my other pumpkin recipes!

The Best Pumpkin Pie | Share the Magic with this Family Recipe

We also love pie recipes from allrecipes.com!  

What Does It Mean To Live A Simple Life? 7 Easy Tips To Get You Started!

What Does It Mean To Live A Simple Life? 7 Easy Tips To Get You Started!

Simplify Your Life

Take our 7 Day Simple Living Challenge.

 It will change you

The Challenge includes two separate workbooks:

Your very own 10 Page fillable, printable Simple Living Workbook that outlines each daily challenge

BONUS: A Morning Pages Workbook, to show you how to start journaling!

 

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living.Includes mindfulness, journaling, #living with intention, #living simply,

What does it mean to live a simple life?

Well, what does Simple Living mean to you?

I ask this because I’ve found that it means so many different things and depends on where you are in life.

Maybe you just want to get off the 9 to 5 treadmill and live at a slower pace.

Or you find that you now have this lovely home but you really only live in about 600 square feet of it.

Simple living for you would mean more time to just be.

Yes I get all of this and more!

This is the 3rd article of a three-part series about living simply. The three posts include:

  1. Could you live in an RV Full time?
  2. A beginner’s guide to getting ready for full time RVing
  3. What Does It Mean to Live a Simple Life?

 

This article is your guide to Simple Living.  What it is and how to get there.  We will cover:

  1. What is simple living and what’s in it for me?
  2. How do I know if I need to simplify my life
  3. What does it mean to live a simple life
  4. Will living simply get rid of my stress? Make me Happier?
  5. How do I simplify my life and learn to live simply
  6. Living simply, living happily, living intentionally
  7. Benefits of living simply

Throughout the post I’ll share some of my personal experiences as well and those of others.

Just to give some clarification and to demonstrate that people are adapting simplicity into their lives everyday.  And they feel really good about it.

So let’s jump right in, ok?

  1. What is simple living and what’s in it for me?

Simple living for me means:

  • Living small

  • Reducing my stuff

  • Mindfulness

Now we definitely live small now, having sold our home in surburbia a few years back.  Now we live, for the most part in a 480 square foot RV, and since I still work full time, a 700 square foot apartment in the city where I work.

Definitely living small.

Could you do that?

Wiki says “Simple living encompasses a number of different voluntary practices to simplify one’s lifestyle. ………Simple living is distinct from those living in forced poverty, as it is a voluntary lifestyle choice.”

I was talking to a friend just last night about it, when she asked about the blog and how everything was going.  So as I was telling her about the change in focus, from just recipes to Simple Living and Food, she jumped right in.

She told me they had a lovely home, but really only lived in about 600 square feet of it.  They didn’t need all the extra space for sure, and definitely wish they had the money in their pockets, that they once had when living in a tiny apartment.

My friend Anne travels all over the world, and had just returned from Asia.

Oh yes, I know those feelings!

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney
  1. How do I know if I need to simplify my life

One of the easiest ways I know of to examine what’s really going on in our lives is to write it down.  Kind of like a what the current situation is and then another list of where you would like it to be.

We use this method in our family all the time – especially when it comes to big decisions.  What are the pros and cons of the current situation and do a comparison of what we think we would like or where we should be.

If you are truly honest with yourself, you will be able to see very easily, where your life is out of balance, and what are the things you would like to include, but can’t for a number of reasons – ie) no money, not enough time, too scared.

Does that make sense?

So let’s do this exercise together.

Make a list of the same things you do every day.  Pick about eight.  I’ll make a list with you.

  1. Get up and let the dogs out
  2. Make coffee
  3. Feed the dogs
  4. Journal – morning pages
  5. Check Facebook
  6. Make a second cup of coffee
  7. Check google analytics
  8. Check Facebook & emails some more
  9. Think about my day – what I would like to accomplish

Ok, I ended up with 9

Does your list look this?  Well maybe not the dogs part.  And my sweetie is a night owl, so he gets up much later than I do, typically.

Now journaling or morning pages – that’s something I’ve been doing my entire adult life – I spend about 15 to 20 minutes there and I don’t want to give it up.  However, what I have been noticing is that my  TO DO list is creeping into my morning pages.

 

The other thing that’s creeping into my morning pages?  Negative thoughts.  Negative thoughts that I didn’t exercise yesterday.  Ate too many potato chips (my kryptonite).  And stared at my imperfect body in the mirror.

You’d think at the age of 62 I would let go of all the fad diets, and just be.  Be accepting and loving of myself.

Simplicity is letting go of perfection.  Doesn’t that sound wonderful?

Simple Living expert Janet Luhrs, author of the bible of the simplicity movement says “Simplicity makes my whole life feel like mine – rather than feeling like I’m living someone else’s life.”  If that strikes a chord, keep reading.

So back to the simplicity of morning pages and journaling.  The purpose of journaling this way – a free fall of writing early in the morning is to clear my head of the junk, so that feel energized and able to get on with my day.  It is not supposed to be my daily planner.  It is in fact a writing meditation.

I think I could probably jump right into writing first thing, with that second cup of coffee.  I’m at my best early in the morning and the creative juices are flowing.    I think I could knock off a big chunk of writing every morning.

What’s does your list look like?  I imagine you have Facebook scroll time too, and checking your emails.  Is there something else you would like to start your day doing other than this?  Does your list include some morning yoga, or meditation?

What about more time with your kids, or honey before getting everyone off to school and work.  Or time to have breakfast together.    And breakfast time doesn’t mean everyone is plugged in to their phones.  It means honest conversation – or just eating breakfast and enjoying the togetherness.

What a wonderful way to start the day!  So I think you get the idea.    I’ve also created a printable checklist for you to download and print so you can do this test again.

 

In The Science of Happiness, Time Magazine says…..

Find the activity that allows you to settle your mind, emotions and desires so that you become grounded in the present.

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney
  1. What does it mean to live a simple life What is a simple lifestyle

 

How can we live a stress free and simple life?

Many of us look at simple living or the simple life as an ideal, a lifestyle that would solve all of our problems.

Well I’m here to tell you that you can downsize your home, hit the open road in an RV and change jobs, but if you aren’t really getting to the heart of the matter, those problems will travel right along with you.  Right?

Simple living is about making choices.  Choices about money, like saving money so that you can take that wonderful trip.  Simplicity is not about running up tons of debt so that you can have that new shiny thing.  Maybe your laptop is seven years old, but if it still does everything you need, why buy a new one?

Simplicity is driving your old clunker because all you really need is a method of transportation right?  Or going from two cars to one.  We did that, and never looked back.   The money we saved was substantial.

Simplicity is all about choices, habits, your daily routine.  For some of us boredom keeps us from finding simplicity since we fill boredom with food, Facebook, and mindless behaviours.

What if we took that time and really allowed ourselves to rest, exercise, have a meaningful conversation, give time to a charity, or just be?

What if you reached the end of your life, and you had the chance to look at everything you had done, what would be the one thing you would regret?

That’s easy for me – too much scrolling time, and not spending that time with loved ones.  And, worrying about my weight and not being happy with myself, inside and out.

What would your regrets be?

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney

4.  How do I simplify my life and learn to live simply

“Real luxury is not working like a maniac to take an expensive vacation–it is living a life you enjoy every day.”  Kathy Gottberg, Rightsizing * a Smart Living 365 Guide to Reinventing Retirement

Morning routines, declutter, give away stuff, mindfulness, journaling, gratitude, affirmations And you know the changes do not need to be drastic.

This isn’t about telling your boss exactly what you think and walking away from your job.  But it might me.  This isn’t a back to the land book, where you sell up your house and everything in it and go live in the woods like Thoreau.

Although you may have a yen to travel and decide to hit the open road full time in an RV.  We’ve got that covered for you too!   Simple living is about grabbing life by the throat and living every moment.

It is not about going through each day on auto pilot, doing the things you usually do, just because you have always done them.   It’s kind of like Carpe Diem meets Oprah – and her “Live Your Best Life” mantra.

You may live in a high-rise apartment in the middle of the biggest city, and absolutely love that lifestyle!  And that’s awesome for you!

There is still an opportunity for you to bring mindfulness to the forefront, to examine your routines, and really look at the things you do that bring you joy and fill you with energy, vs. the things you do that are mind numbing, soul sucking that need to be kicked to the curb.

Ok?

You deserve it! You deserve to be happy!

I’ve included a one-week challenge to get you started.  Totally optional of course, but I really believe that we only achieve our goals by doing.  Reading about simple living is one thing, but now you have the information it’s time to put your phone, table or laptop away. 

And just get started.  Right now.

5.  Will living simply get rid of my stress? Make me Happier?

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated, Confucius

  So let’s go back to the list you made and really think about the mindless things you do everyday, the ones on auto pilot.  You made a decision one day maybe a very long time ago, to include them in your life.

There was a reason then, but maybe that reason is gone now?  Yet you just keep doing it.

  • Watching the news every night from 6 to 7
  • Grabbing takeout on the way home every night because you are too tired to cook
  • Commuting three hours to and from work everyday so that you can afford a bigger house
  • Running up your credit card on a shopping spree after a bad day at work

One of the most powerful books I’ve read in a long time, that I think fits really well with changing our mindset, so that we can refocus on the simple things in life that are really important to us is the #5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins.  

I will be forever grateful to Mel for the creation of this book, and all that comes with it.   Like her 31 day coaching sessions!

You will this book along with some other really awesome books that focus on the Simple Life and Simple living lifestyle.

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney
  1. Living simply, living happily, living intentionally

I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures, Lao Tzu Stress is reduced, and your life fills with purpose, and meaning.   “I think we like to complicate things when it is really quite simple. Find what it is that makes you happy and who it is that makes you happy and you’re set. Promise”, Unknown

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney

7.  Benefits of living simply

Live simply so that others may live.  Mother Teresa

There are so many!  Financial benefits, health benefits, relationship benefits just to name a few.  Simplicity and living simply gives you more time.  Yep, I thought that would get your attention.

Once you start down the path of living simply, and the mindless habits fall by the wayside, you will be amazed at what you can do.   I decided I wanted more energy and more time and I definitely have that now that I no longer mindlessly:

  • Watch TV
  • Scroll through Facebook and emails
  • Stuff myself with junk food while doing those things

You see, by eliminating the boredom, and these things I was doing to alleviate my boredom, hours have opened up that I fill with writing and running this blog.  More importantly I am healthier and sleep better because I now have a 20 minute exercise routine morning and night.

But it’s hard to do this stuff on your own, I will admit.  What helps me is hearing Mel Robbins in my head.  “You have to push yourself, parent yourself to do these things, that will not only benefit you in the long run, but help you achieve your goals” Now I’m paraphrasing for sure, but I give all of the credit to Mel.

Don’t believe me?  Watch her TED talk, or better yet, get her book #5 Second Rule.  It’s a game changer.

And what does simple living have to do with full time RVing?   Well, I’m glad you asked!   Living full time in an RV and either traveling or staying put is all about simplicity.  There is no room for clutter, there is way more togetherness time, and life takes on a simple eb and flow.

Friends and neighbours drop by to say hello, or help with a task, like clearing your gutters or repairing your deck.   BBQs quickly become potlucks, and a freshly baked pie becomes and excuse to invite the neighbors over for coffee.  But you probably won’t have to invite them, because they will smell that cake baking.

At the end of the day it is all up to you.  I hope you found this guide helpful and answered your questions about how do you simplify your life.  Yes that’s right, you.

You have to want simplicity in your life.

To get rid of the anxiety and the stress.

To fill that space with joy, peacefulness and calm.

You deserve it!

You can do it.

You really can.

Resources:

What does it mean to live a simple life? These 7 tips will guide you to simplicity & show the benefits of simple living. Includes mindfulness, journaling, technology fasts, living small, and slowing down to fully live. #simpleliving #voluntarysimplicity #mindfulness #minimalism #simplelivingtips #simplelivinglifestyle #savingmoney