My Favorite Camper-Sized Things

I have to start off by saying that Charlie is THE BEST camper-sized puppy I could ever wish for! IMG_2807

Now, moving onto camper-sized THINGS

Living full-time in a camper takes some adjusting to but overall I love it. Before I moved in with Allen for good I went through all my clothes and got rid of half of them. Then I went through again and got rid of another half. I still probably have too much, and I TRY to live by the rule that when I get something new, I need to get rid of something, but that doesn’t always work out perfectly!

The biggest challenge for me is staying tidy. Just ask Allen! He sometimes starts twitching (slight exaggeration) coming in the door from work if I have crafty stuff on “his side” of the bench, and let’s not forget walking into the bathroom if I’ve forgotten to put my makeup and hair stuff away… (Let’s just say my tidiness is a work in progress!)

You know that saying: benjamin-franklin-quotes_10351-0Well… This is more like it:

quote-the-trouble-with-a-place-for-everything-and-everything-in-its-place-is-that-there-s-always-more-robert-brault-296235

True that!!!

But in a camper, you need to be organized and live by this rule or things can get out of hand rather quickly!

So here’s a list of some of my favorite things that work well for me in our camper. Some I have, some I just really want!

  • I have a set of nesting mixing bowls and measuring cups just like these, but I got mine from Aldi (it’s a discount grocery in Cincinnati) and I only paid around $15. This set is $30. The only thing I wish is that my green bowl had the same little pour spout-that’s kinda nifty! Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 2.46.38 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-21 at 2.46.26 PM
  • These Magma nesting pots and pans look SO nice! A dream come true! They all stack neatly inside of each other and there are two removable handles so they don’t get in the way! I am in love with them. I’m REALLY hoping my wonderful mother gets us these for Christmas! I saw them first on Shore Looks Nice.

Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 2.44.00 PM

Considering my drawer for pots and pans (and my coffee pot) looks like this currently, I can only imagine how amazing these would be!  

  • When we had the other camper, I would do dishes and set them on a dish towel on the stove, leaning against the wall to dry. But with our new camper, the sink is on the island, which means there is no wall to lean plates and things against to dry. So one of the first things I bought was this drying rack. It folds up and fits under the sink when I’m not using it. Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 2.42.41 PM
  • I’m also in DESPARATE need of a spice rack! I cook dinner almost everyday. 6 days a week, if not 7 sometimes. And I use a LOT of spices. Right now I have them all stacked/falling off of a lazy susan on a shelf in the pantry. I bought this spice rack from Kohl’s when we were in Waynesville, but when I got it home I realized how cheaply it was made so I returned it.Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 3.17.45 PMNow I’m thinking maybe this will work out better. I can stack things on top of it, and even though it’s not as fancy looking as the one above, I can use my existing spices! Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 2.51.08 PM
  • I absolutely love our washer/dryer combo, but sometimes I don’t have the patience to wait for things to dry all the way, OR they just don’t. This mostly happens with jeans and heavy sweatshirts. So I picked up this drying rack and it gets a lot of use! Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 3.25.19 PM
  • And, even though it’s not storage related, I think it’s fair to mention that I’ve found some really decent dishes at Big Lots.  I usually look in the picnic section for plastic plates and bowls. And I try to find thicker, better quality ones that will last a while. We had some black ceramic dinner plates and bowls that Allen loved, but it was just too much of a hassle to have to stack paper plates in between them every time we would travel so they wouldn’t break that I finally gave them away. He’s still a little sad about it! But it wasn’t practical (sorry babe!)
  • I don’t have this shoe holder but I want to make one. My friend recently sent me some fabric and I think some of it might work out really well for a shoe holder! I’m sure it wouldn’t be TOO hard to DIY!

  • I know they probably sell the “pop-a-bag” things that hold your plastic grocery bags, but you can just as easily make one yourself. I made mine out of an empty Clorox Wipes container. I just stuffed the bags inside and tore off the little plastic prong-y things. Super easy! I used to have them in a tissue box and that worked too! Here’s the pop-a-plate and pop-a-tissue. (I don’t have or want either one of these, I think they are kind of a waste of money, and now I don’t have anywhere to put them.)Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 3.39.16 PMScreen Shot 2015-09-21 at 3.40.03 PMThese are both at Camping World
  • Some kitchen appliances that I can’t really function without: 
    Immersion Blender (I actually found this at Goodwill for $3!!!)

    Immersion Blender (I actually found this at Goodwill for $3!!!)


 

 

If you have any ideas that I missed or some favorite camper-sized things of your own, please share!


DIY Puppy Halloween Costume!

I love dressing up for Halloween, I love putting clothes on Charlie, and I love making things. All that adds up to…..

A Puppy Hot Dog Halloween Costume!!! 

 Last year all three of us dressed up like “Redneck and Proud”/hillbillies/white trash/Earl and Joy from My Name is Earl type characters… 

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#redneck and #proud #halloween

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 I’ve been planning Charlie’s costume for a few months now. I still don’t know what Allen and I are going to be… But at least Charlie’s all set!  

   
I took my inspiration from these pictures…  

  

 

I think I want to add a piece of yellow yarn to Charlie’s costume… But we’ll see. 

I started off by buying some yellowish/bun colored fabric and some hot dog/smoked sausage colored fabric. I already had the white jersey fabric. It has some kind of a floral pattern to it, but you can’t really tell when only a little shows. And I got a bag of stuffing for the buns. I also used scissors, needle and thread, Velcro and a sewing machine. 

After I had all my supplies, I started planning how I would do it. I started by cutting 2 ovals from a paper bag, one a little larger than the other, so the buns would poof out like buns do. I measured Charlie of course first and decided how long and tall they needed to be. For the larger oval I cut 2 pieces of the yellow and the smaller I cut 2 yellow and 2 white, for the inside of the bun.  I also cut a piece for the hot dog. I made that one almost as long as the buns then made it so it would wrap around her middle and stay there. You can see the shape in the pictures better than I can explain. 

    
    
    
 
I hemmed the red piece then double checked my measurements on my model. She hates that part. Then when I knew I had it right, I added sticky Velcro to each end. I wound up pleating the back end of the hot dog piece when I was all finished so it would fit better. Charlie has a large chest and a tiny waist. (I wish I was built like that!)

I sewed the smaller white and yellow pieces together first, then I pinned the bun pieces together like a sandwich. Yellow on each side with white in the middle. Or, right sides together, but with this fabric it didn’t matter. I started by lining up the sides and top and bottom in the middle. Then going from there, trying to evenly space the pleats.  

   
Then I sewed around the edge, removing pins as I went. Now, I probably should’ve left an opening a few inches long at the bottom so I could turn it right side out then stuff it. But, I didn’t. Total accident. But it worked out nonetheless. I had to cut a hole in the bun, I cut it on the inside, on the smaller oval so that it would be covered up by the hot dog.  

   
The. I stuffed it. Not too full, I didn’t want it to be too heavy for my little pumpkin and hurt her back. Haha but enough so it was reasonably poofy. 

I then crudely stitched that hole closed by hand then even more crudely sewed the bun to the red part. (After much measuring and trying it on Charlie and disturbing her precious nap time).  

 After I had that all finished, I tried it on her. That’s when I decided to pleat the back of the hot dog piece.  

 By this time she was super sick of me, but I managed to get one more measurement from the front of the hot dog, around her neck so that when she stood on her hind legs (we call this “sitting pretty” and she does it for treats only, never for free!) it wouldn’t fall down around her ankles and trip her. I cut a piece of the white fabric to that length, sewed a tube then attached it to either side of the hot dog.  

 
FINISHED! 

Charlie is a weiner! I mean a hot dog!  She’s actually part weiner dog. 

 
That reminded me of Pedro’s. It’s a campground/amusement park/rest stop on I-95 right on the border of North and Siuth Carolina. We stayed there once (after much pleading on my part why I NEEDED to see the wonder that is Pedro’s, simply because it is advertised on billboards on the side of the highway for hundreds of miles!). I love the billboards.  

    
 

Yesterday was a Sad Day… 

Yesterday my mom laid the plaque for my brother’s tree. I wish I could’ve been there.

  
We ordered it from International Bronze when I first got out here to San Francisco. It took almost 2 months. Joe, the designer I spoke with, was really nice and helpful and I recommend them to anyone looking for a plaque.

It’s in Mt. Healthy Park in my hometown. Adam always loved the park and especially the pool. We spent many, many days there when we were younger. They used to have a putt-putt golf course that cost 15 cents, or you could pick up 5 pieces of trash and play for free -that was what we always did! Adam passed his test to swim in the deep end with ease, me, not so much. But one day when the pool was crowded he pretended like he hadn’t taken his test yet, there were a bunch of kids that were going to take theirs at once. (You just had to swim back and forth across the 10-foot part.) But when we all started swimming, Adam helped me and it was too crowded that the lifeguards didn’t see. So from then on I was allowed to jump off the diving board. And that’s all I did was jump, towards the side, holding my nose. No diving for me! Then I would doggy paddle to the ladder and get back out. Thank you Adam. I love you.

So yesterday was pretty sad.

To top it off, it was National Dog Day. (I’ll explain why this was sad…) I made Charlie a new doggy bed. I was Pinteresting, yet again, and found an idea for an envelope dog bed, or a snuggly dog bed, or like a sleeping bag dog bed. I knew I had to make it for her because she is constantly wanting under the covers.

I woke up 5 minutes before Allen’s alarm went off this morning to Charlie whining in my face. I lifted up the blanket so she could crawl under. Still, whining. I laid my hand on her. No more whining. What a baby! 🙂

So I made this bed and I’m pretty sure it instantly became her favorite. (She has 3 – One that came with her from her old family, one I made last week and now this one… Allen says Charlie’s camper footprint is getting too large.)

  

So when we went to bed, I put it in the closet in the bedroom, for some reason she likes it in there, and both sides of the bed now have other dog beds. So she went in the closet and that’s where she slept, all by herself, almost all night. Without me. I had to sleep alone. Well, not alone, I mean Allen was there, but he’s not the same as my puppy. (Sorry honey, I love you!) So after Allen fell asleep, which he always tends to do a lot faster than me, I was awake and sad because Charlie wasn’t next to me and thinking about my brother, and I think I was awake half the night. Not being able to fall asleep is the worst.

 But, today is a new day, and I get to try out my new Bug-A-Salt rifle! Unfortunately it is not a semi-automatic… I have to pump it and turn the safety off every time. But hopefully I get rid of all these flies that hang around in my front dirt yard!  Good ole San Francisco


By the way, I made Beef Stew for dinner last night if you want the recipe… Yum!

And here are the instructions for the doggy bed on SuzySitcom. One thing I did realize, then I had to redo it, is the instructions say to put the pocket piece and the larger piece right side together. But this is wrong, you need to put the pocket piece and the larger piece both right side facing down… You’ll see!

Stop in Sparta

We left Frontier Campground at around 10:30am on Wednesday and headed down the road to our friends Brandi’s and Tommy’s place in Sparta, KY. It’s only about an hour and a half drive. We got there and set up in their yard (they have about 7 acres total).

  We let Charlie run around with Paisley (some kind of herd dog), and Storm (the wolf, yes, a real full blooded wolf who acts like a puppy), and Milo (the cat and Charlie’s arch nemesis).

  Once she discovered the chickens and pigs, she terrorized them for a while.

Then we grilled some hot dogs and metts followed by a nice, refreshing nap. Brandi got home from work around 4 and we went to the neighborhood bar/liquor store for a game of pool. Once Tommy got home from work we went to the Sunset Grill on the Ohio River and had dinner with them and Brandi’s two little girls. We always have a good time with them, and so does little Charlie!

Brandi got these two framed Budweiser pictures for Allen also. We will probably have to wait until we get our Texas Ranch or Florida Beach Shack to actually hang them though… I’ll post pictures when we stop..

We were back on the road this morning a little before 7am.

We just stopped at the last Missouri rest stop on I-44, which is about 100 miles from the Oklahoma state line. But it was a cute little stop. They had a “Route 66” walkway.

          

Don’t let it fool you when you pull in, it looks tiny with limited parking, but there’s a huge lot in the back.


We should be at Abe’s RV Park in Oklahoma City by around 9 tonight. Yay!