My husband has always been a live-for-the-moment kind of person. For as long as I’ve known him, he’s been an adventurer – he surfs, hikes, and camps out in the Outback once a month. So it was no surprise when he recently proposed we pack up our home and fit our lives into an RV and travel the country with our two boys.
My initial reaction was like, ‘Have you gone mad?‘. Going on road trips and exploring Australia – that I didn’t have a problem with. But caravanning around Australia, and with two small children – a big, fat ‘NO’. I mean nothing can prepare you for such a challenge. Yes, it would be an adventure of a lifetime, but let’s be realistic. Saying goodbye to all our friends and family, living on wheels and with constant fear of the unknown – no, thank you. We did come to an agreement though. We decided to explore Australia and spend time alone as a family when on paid vacation and long weekend holidays. And before I had the chance to process the whole thing, the caravan was purchased.
Since caravanning is nothing like living in a house, I knew staying organised is key to surviving in a small space. And having the right equipment of course. Although our caravan came with some basic gear, we did have to purchase certain things. Since our caravan didn’t come with a fixed toilet (and we’ll do need somewhere to ‘go’), it was the first thing on our to-buy list. To save us frustration later on, I did a thorough research on different brands and models of caravan toilets for sale. Out of all caravan toilets for sale, at the end we decided to go with the Thetford Porta Potti Qube 365. It has nicely shaped curves (comfy for the boys to use), and comes with a level indicator, piston flush pump and a convenient carry handle for the waste-holding tank. We also purchased natural tank deodoriser formulated to help break down waste as well as eliminate odours.
Next thing on the list – a water pump. This essential piece of caravan equipment plugs into the side of the caravan and dangles into the fresh water container to supply the caravan with fresh water to the taps. To ensure we always have safe water in our tap, I chose a hose specifically designed for drinking water use with non-toxic food grade materials. We also bought a gas bottle, mains lead, battery and wheel lock. And of course few not-so-important but certainly handy must-haves such as bedding, camping chairs, mattress topper and crockery. Yes the type of dinnerware matters. And according to passionate campers, melamine crockery is the best. Not only it can help keep the weight down in a caravan, it’s virtually unbreakable. A win-win combination!
In addition to ensuring our caravan is well equipped, my husband and I also created a plan that I hope will help us survive our first and every other caravanning adventure. The first thing I did (to help boys know which toothbrush is whose), is install colour-coordinated hooks with matching towels, toothbrush holders and toothbrushes of course. We all have our own colour and hopefully this will help boys identify their own belongings and keep them accountable for their things.
Moreover, each member of our family has a drawer assigned. These drawers will be to hold games, books, toys and everything we may collect during our trips. I believe this will make cleaning easier as I will be able to just slot items into the relevant person’s drawer. And to make sure items are not sliding off and rolling around on the caravan floor, we plan to install racks and containers to keep things fixed in place.
Hopefully this plan of ours will help us keep our caravan organized and have fun and memorable adventures.