Products we love and why we love them, Part I


When we are traveling off-grid, we like to maintain contact with our loved ones, especially in cases of emergencies OR if someone is trying to meet up with us. The DeLorme InReach allows us to do just this. One tip, though... the company will give you an @inreach.delorme.com email address and tell you it can be used to reach you. We have not found this to work. What we have found to work is to text someone from your device first. They will get a phone number that you can then give to people to text you through. Or they can simply reply to your text to them. But use this number, rather than the email, for communications with you.

You can read our entry from October 1, 2016 to see why we love this! We experimented with it the first time at a site in Oregon where we were dry camped next to a river. We decided to try using the SteriPen to drink the water. We are now 11 days later, and no gastrointestinal disease have sprung up! Yay!

If you are camping off grid, you may not want to run your a/c constantly, so having good fans is incredibly important. These fans move the air through your RV in a variety of ways, depending on how you have them set up. We have one in our "garage" area of our toy hauler and one in the bedroom. Then we can set it up so one sucks air in and the other blows it out to create a nice cross-current through our home. It's a savior!

We don't need this speaker in our RV because we have speakers throughout it. However, when we are tent camping, or if we go on inner tubes on a river, or fishing on a lake, this is a wonderful speaker to have. The Bluetooth capability is seamless and works beautifully. We've used other ones that don't work well at a distance. This one is excellent.

If you have pets, this is a must-have. We like to say this belongs to Omar (cat) during the day and Avery (dog) at night. Omar likes it because if we are fishing or hanging out by a lake or river, we can set it up for him near us and he feels safe and shaded. Avery likes it because it is comfortable to sleep in (or so it seems). We like it because it collapses down and has a carry bag (like a camping chair), so we don't have to leave it set up all the time. We can collapse it and tuck it away in the trailer, or we can collapse it and carry it somewhere so that Omar can hang with us. We have used it in hotels. We love it so much we have 3 of them! One that we keep with our tent camping gear; one that we keep on the toy hauler; and a third as a back up.

If you have a puppy or a highly energetic dog, this is a must-have as well. It's like a cat-toy but large scale to use with a dog. If we are unable to wear Avery out with a hike, or the weather is crappy and we don't feel like being outside for a long time, or just "because", we will bring this out and play with her with it. You only need about a 4' x 4' space to use it and it really wears them out. They can grab it and tug it and pull it and it stays intact. You can spin around in circles with it or just fling it back and forth. It's a great tool for getting your pup good and tired!

Animals can get stressed while traveling, especially in the beginning. Or perhaps you just have a particularly hyper one and need a little help with their energy. ;) These treats are wonderful for mellowing them out. There is a prescription strength version too, but it's only available through your vet. There is also a version for cats (see below).

We love this leash whether we are RVing or not. But for RV/camping use, it is wonderful. It makes it really simple to tie your dog to the picnic table (without using a carabiner, rope, or looping the leash through the handle -- all of which are much less convenient). You can also wrap it around your waist for hiking, or loop it over your shoulder for when you are carrying things and managing your dog at the same time.

This food carrying container is great for camping, staying at hotels, or staying at a friend's house overnight. The top and bottom act as a food bowl and water bowl. The handle makes it easy to carry.

All the photos that you see of Omar outside is with the red version of this leash. He wears a large... but a medium will work for most kitties, I think. The reason this is such a great leash is two fold: 1) the harness is easy to get on, adjust, and tighten. 2) the leash is a bungee that allows them some spontaneous movement (which cats are known for) without hurting them. We have purchased two of these leashes: one when he was a kitten, and one he uses now. We are very happy with it! So is Omar!

These are the perfect size for our cupboards above our table. We can stack them two high and still have room on top for miscellaneous items. You can see through them to quickly reference what is in them. They are sturdy with great clasps.

We needed some way of storing our off-season clothes. Most storage bins are flimsy, though, especially when you pack them up. The lids on many bins pop off at the slightest touch. These bins are sturdy with strong handle clasps and lots of room inside.

That's all for now! I will continue to share reviews of items listed in our "store" so that you know why we love them! But this blog is plenty long for now :)