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Old 08-05-2012, 08:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by CuriousGeorges View Post
I was so glad to find this post. We are in just about the same situation (my kids are 6, 5 and 3). We are all excited to get out there and adventure! These tips and advice are wonderful to have. Thank you!
There's lots of great information on this site & this tread is a good example of RVers sharing suggestions and tips. Glad you came across it and found it helpful.

Great choice for "Living within my means" and camping for one...

2011 Salem Cruise Lite 20RBXL & 2011 Toyota Tundra Dbl Cab
Camping History: 45 Trips / 133 Nights / 3736 Miles
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Old 08-05-2012, 09:55 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by CuriousGeorges
I was so glad to find this post. We are in just about the same situation (my kids are 6, 5 and 3). We are all excited to get out there and adventure! These tips and advice are wonderful to have. Thank you!
I would definitely agree on the baby monitors, don't know what we would do without them. We also have a lot of books, coloring books, crayons and markers (keep a separate set in the camper so they are always there along with a ton of colored paper, scissors and tape.). We also have a couple of small wagons we got from a dollar store somewhere that our kids (4 and 6) pull behind them to collect sticks, pine cones, etc. on every trip we go on as we go on walks or just playing around our site. We also keep a couple of bins of blocks/ toys in the camper and some large mats for the kids to play with them on. Also need plenty of sunscreen and a first aid kit with lots of extra band-aids (seems like any accident needs a band aid to make it feel better).

The last thing I would recommend is doing something to reinforce the screen door on your camper. While camping with a group of friends, one of their 3 year old did a face plant down the steps and onto the concrete slab they were parked on because he was leaning on the screen door (it was latched but they are not made to hold even the weight of a three year old). We wound up watching their daughter and dogs for several hours while they went to the ER. He is Ok now but we all put additional hook and eye latches on our screen doors until the kids were able to really work the doors (in and out) by themselves.

You will learn of something different on every trip, just be sure to write them down so you can remember it for your next trip. Have fun, it is something your kids will never forget and will always look forward to.

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2014 Sabre 36QBOK
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Old 08-10-2012, 07:56 PM   #13
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It's refreshing to read posts from people with some common sense. Unfortunately too many people go whole hog and buy brand new expensive campers to not only discover RV'ing isn't for them. Most people I've known with pop-ups say they ended up hating the things, but then have all these happy, funny stories of all the adventures they had in them with their kids. As you know from your tent days, you don't have to spend a lot to have a good time. Good luck!
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Old 08-10-2012, 09:36 PM   #14
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Welcome and congratulations. Our twins are 8 and my little one is 6. You didn't say whether you were purchasing from a private party or a dealer, but I would suggest leaving the kids at home and taking along a notebook, even a video camera and going step by step through the whole thing getting the dealer/owner to demonstrate how each and every system works and not just by explaining but by actually operating it. If the camper is not near a source of water then let him tow it to where he can fill it with water, hook it up to electricity etc to show everything works. If for example the fridge doesn't work, or the plumbing leaks it may well be a deal breaker or something that would mean a change in the amount you are willing to pay. Do you know someone who has a camper who can come along and help ask those hard questions? Check the date on the tires, if they are original to the unit they are ready to be replaced, tread wear isn't the thing to look for on a trailer - it's age - after 6 years maximum you need new ones. Look for the date on the tires themselves, many times the tires are a year or two older than the stated year of the camper (people buy a 2009 model in 2008 for example). Please search these forums for PDI - which is the walk through that a dealer does with a customer when they are picking up their camper. There are lots of examples of questions to ask as well as links to nifty check off lists. You might also want to take the camper for an inspection at an rv dealer if you aren't comfortable checking it over yourself. THings I would especially be vigilent for are any signs of any kind of water damage. ASK if they have ever had water come in and where it was. Water is the BIG BAD enemy of a camper and water getting in basically rots out the inside of the walls. Look for any kind of weird bulges on the outside or on the inside (search the forums for delamination for pictures). I would probably walk away from a camper with those kinds of issues or at least get a professional estimate of repair before making the purchase. Another biggie is the roof. Ask what kind of checking they have done, what work they have done.

A camper is a great wonderful thing to have with children. You get to get out and enjoy trips but don't have to schlep stuff in and out of motel rooms. You don't have to put up with awful restaurant food, you can stick with your own schedules and routines. The camper becomes familiar and rules are the same no matter where you travel. THe big plus? No driving back 100 miles to find a lost stuffy!
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days camped in 2010: 61
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:37 AM   #15
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Nothing can replace or get in the way of quality time spent with family & kids...your investment in a RV will provide awesome memories for life
With and 8 yr old and 4 yr old, we're having some of our best time together goin camping and I'll enjoy talking about these days with our future grandchildren!
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Old 08-12-2012, 12:52 PM   #16
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We just got home from our trial night in our Surveyor. We CAN NOT wait for our two week trip in September! Perfect space for us and the kids LOVED the triple bunks. We might just have to squeeze in a quick trip next weekend So happy to be part of the RV community.
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Old 08-12-2012, 01:35 PM   #17
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One more suggestion, as your children get older assign tasks for them during set up and tear down. We did with ours, they learned about team work and getting the work done so everyone can relax and play.
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Old 08-12-2012, 01:42 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by dennis and julie
one more suggestion, as your children get older assign tasks for them during set up and tear down. We did with ours, they learned about team work and getting the work done so everyone can relax and play.

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