We’re Heather and Jeff and we live in Henderson, NV which is a great jumping-off point for camping in the West. We try to get out as often as possible in our 27’ Airstream named Audrey with our dog Indie. Almost all of our camping is boondocking — the more remote the better — and we’re always extra excited when there’s not any cell service so we can truly unplug. Here’s a list of some of our favorite things that we’ve accumulated over the last 6 years of camping:
This little battery-powered LED light gives off a nice glow and because the light is all focused downward it doesn’t blind you (always appreciated!). A simple touch on the top turns it on and off – no switches to break. We use it on our dinette table most of the time, but also take it outside to our picnic table when needed. Bonus: put it in the bathroom at night so you don’t have to turn on any bright lights in the middle of the night. We’ve had the same batteries in it for over 3 years now and it’s still going strong!
This is one of the best things we’ve ever purchased for our trailer. Since counter space is so limited it’s great to get the paper towels up and out of the way. It holds even the biggest rolls without a problem.
Because we’re usually boondocking we’re always conscious of how much of our battery power we’re using. This little inverter has been fantastic for charging our phones and tablets via a 12volt plug and saving us from turning on the big inverter which is usually overkill for us. This was $30 very well spent.
I know that Kerri and Tim mentioned these in their blog post as well, but we’re so enamored with them that we had to put them in ours, too! I really like the way these all nest to save space and they clean up beautifully. We started with just the large pasta bowls and then have added to our collection over the last 18 months. (Yes, there used to be 4 cups. Pro tip: they don’t withstand being dropped on rocks.)
We cannot say enough good things about these! The ice slides right out (very unlike the ice cube trays of our childhoods) and the silicone “lids” are fantastic. Even on a travel day we can fill the trays, seal them up and drive off without any leakage in the freezer.
As much as we love our bamboo cups, we still think wine tastes better out of a glass, so we purchased these with a protective sleeve. They’ve traveled well for us for almost 2 years without breaking. Bonus: we always know whose drink is whose because we use different colors.
We’re big fans of cloth napkins. Not only do they save waste but they also don’t blow away easily when you’re eating outside. We generally just re-fold them and leave them at our place at the dinette for repeated use for a few days (or until we have a particularly messy meal) so we’re not filling up the dirty laundry basket.
We have to give a shout-out to the Curren family because we first saw this trash can in their trailer. It fits perfectly under the pullout drawer and we love the hands-free step-on situation when we’re cooking. Bonus: there are small “hooks” inside that hold the handles of the plastic sacks you get at the grocery store.
This 10-inch skillet is our go-to for everything from eggs to chicken to veggies on the stovetop plus it works beautifully for baking things like coffee cake or bread in the oven. We store it in the oven on travel days. If you haven’t yet discovered the joy of cast iron cooking, you’re missing out!
We’re always on the lookout for good 2-player games and this one fits the bill! It’s easy to learn and fairly quick to play: we usually do best 2 out of 3 and it takes about 30-40 minutes.
This is another great game for 2 players but also has the benefit that you can play it with up to 6 people. Again, it’s easy to learn, but there’s some fun strategy involved in blocking your opponent. (Oh and be sure and get the cubes, not the tiles.)
So, this isn’t a camping necessity, but it sure is the icing on top of a great outing: inflatable stand-up paddleboards! These are the newest addition to our outdoor adventures and we can’t wait to camp right next to a lake to put them to daily use. They roll up into their own backpacks so they fit neatly in the back of our truck for travel. And if you’re wondering if inflatables are sturdy, the answer is: absolutely. Once they’re blown up you can’t tell the difference at all.
We travel with a dog who has a gold medal in shedding, so this little vacuum has been a lifesaver. We’ve never officially timed it but you can probably get about a half-hour of vacuuming time off of one charge. Yes, Dyson’s aren’t cheap but they’re workhorses that seem to last forever. (Our vacuum is several years old, they look a little fancier now.)
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