Money figures for December . . . A full month with zero camp fees!

Friday, January 4

Unlike yesterday, today is warm and sunny.  So what do I do?  Stay inside and work on the December financial page (see drop-down menu in header).  It’s a good feeling to have that done.  Eventually I’ll put together the different categories which, I think, will be the most helpful figures for anyone considering “living on less and enjoying life more” . . . while galavanting around ten states!

More photos from the past today . . .


Camping with friends at Dome Rock, Quartzsite, AZ, January 2012

The crew and I visited ten states in 2012:  AZ, UT, CO, MT, SD, WY, ID, OR, NV, CA.  The tally for 2011 is seven : GA, FL, AL, MS, LA, TX, NM.

I go outside several times to soak up the sunshine and read, and I putter around the kitchen.


Elephant Butte State Park, New Mexico, Autumn 2011

I soak some leafy greens in a dishpan and then make up some plastic containers of salad.  I burn some trash on the sand at the bottom of a two-foot wide, two-foot deep wash that meanders beyond our scraggly tree.  And yes, I feed the chipmunks and watch them scurry off with their furry, little cheeks bulging.  After a while this gourmet food bar I’m providing will go the way of salad bars.

What a lovely oasis in the Arizona desert!  Spike agrees.

Spike investigates Burro Creek near Wikieup, Arizona, Spring 2012

When at Wal-Mart the other day I picked up some more storage drawers. 

I set them up so that they run the length of one side of the BLT where a twin bed would be.  This gives me one, long counter top below the side window and television.  Very handy!

It’s fun re-organizing stuff. 


An Olympian Wave-3 catalytic heater is installed in the BLT. Autumn 2011

Not only are my clothes within easy reach, but also maps, books, painting supplies, electronic stuff, small tools, kitchen implements, dishtowels and washcloths, medicine/first aid kit (mine and the crew’s), stationery supplies, and miscellaneous items.  Over the months of travel I squirreled away numerous maps and brochures into the crannies of the BLT.  Now they are stowed with my Benchmark atlases in one drawer.  Of course, I had to dream over each one I found.


Roadside scene on the way to Bozeman, Montana. August 2012 (Smoky from forest fires several miles away)

Slow news day obviously.

The crew didn’t give me any new material to work with.  They sleep, they eat, they look around and do dog stuff.  Spike didn’t do one criminal thing all day!  At least none that I’ve discovered.


Sawtooth Canyon Campground south of Barstow, California, October 2012

I’ll conclude with a link sent to me by AZ Jim.   I hope you’ll take a look and a listen.  Put your sound on first.  Warning:  If you’re a softie like me, you might shed a few tears. 



About rvsueandcrew

Fulltime nomad
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27 Responses to Money figures for December . . . A full month with zero camp fees!

  1. Cathie Laurent says:

    Would love to see a picture of your new storage. Always interested in seeing how neat and cozy a casita can be. Glad good weather is back.

  2. Cherylyn says:

    Thank you for the effort you put in to make your blog so informative and fun. My budget will be a little tighter but you have shown me how it can be done. I get more excited every day!
    Cherylyn (in very cold OR Mtns)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Cherylyn,

      You’re welcome! It is exciting to think of the possibilities, isn’t it. I hope that the combination of my financial information along with a detailed record of how I live will help people see whether this kind of life would work for them. You can see what I spend money on and, more importantly, what I don’t spend money on. There’s room for tightening . . . mostly by slower travel.

  3. libertatemamo says:

    Lovely round-up with some memorable pics!

  4. Reine says:

    You did it, You did it, You did It!!!!! You told me back in August of 2011 that you hoped to keep your monthly expenses to about $30 per day and I don’t think you were counting the “recurring costs”. That’s $900 per month. I’m guessing that September isn’t more than $1500. If that’s true, your montly AVERAGE of everything is $1086.43 which is TREMENDOUS on an income of around $1500+. Living on LESS and ENJOYING life MORE is a SUCCESS!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Gee, Reine, I think I can hear you cheering all across Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona!

      I’m pleased with these figures, too. I really went into this vagabonding with only a vague idea what it would cost… so it’s very reassuring to see how this first year went. The great thing is the crew and I did all that travel, too! (That’s the enjoying life more part.)

  5. DeAnne from TN says:

    Thanks for the memories, Sue. A good smile at the end of a hard day. We went back to school today (on a Friday???) and an extra 2% was taken out of my paycheck. I try to remember that this job is going to pay for my Parkliner, but, geesh….

  6. tinycamper says:

    Loved the photos from earlier camping trips, and really loved that video. I might not have cried, but I did get misty-eyed! 🙂

  7. Rita says:

    A college friend from Sitka, AK told me once he was mesmerized by trains – I can see why. Years later, I told him I was mesmerized by the miles and miles of mud flats on the shores of Alaska. The mud flats looked beautiful but very dangerous. These mud flats are like quick sand – people venture too far and they get stuck and sometimes can’t be rescued in remote areas. I had visited most areas you visited in 2012 except a couple NM & S.CA – specifically the campgrounds in New Mexico…I never knew they existed and I’ve done a lot of camping in my younger years. Also, I didn’t realize highway 395 had so many wonderful camp grounds and places of interests. In May, my sister and I are planning a camping trip up Highway 395 (you inspired me to travel that road) and one day would like to travel through New Mexico to camp. I wait with anticipation where we will travel in 2013 (I say we as a reader).

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Rita,

      I encourage you to go to New Mexico. It has an atmosphere unlike its neighbors. I didn’t even “scratch the surface” of what there is to discover in NM . . . the history (Spanish, Native American, silver and gold mining towns, etc.), the mix of cultures, the architecture, the landscape, and the FOOD! And much more than I can mention here.

      Enjoy your trip up Hwy 395. Again, I only blogged about a small part of all there is to discover. I’m sure you’ll do your research before you go.

      My anticipation of this year’s travels is growing, too!

  8. I Love that little railroad peace !!! I sent it to a friend of mine who drives trains !!!
    I dont know if it is actually called driving?
    Great budget Sue. That is how I want to do it when I get back on the road.

    • I realy do know how to spell. I think that little clip just brought peace to my mind !! ha Ha !!

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        That’s what I thought when I saw the word, peace. Something about the mix of music, words, and photos really gets me, and I’m not usually one for that sort of sentiment. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

        Re: my budget . . . I hope my blog shows that a campsite doesn’t have to cost $25 and up to be great! Some of the best camping is free . . .

  9. Teri says:

    When I make my coffee in the morning with my stovetop percolator it always makes me think of your blog for some reason. At least I will have making coffee mastered when I am finally able to start my own adventure. I’m curious if there is one kitchen item that you wouldn’t want to do without? Maybe something with multiple uses?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Teri,

      Is there one kitchen item I wouldn’t want to do without? Well, since I only have the simplest, most basic implements in my kitchen, that’s a tough question to answer. I certainly wouldn’t want to go without a knife or a spoon, for instance. My kitchen equipment is pretty close to what my great-grandparents had, except for the materials, like plastic. When living in a small space like mine, there’s little room for kitchen gadgets. Other than my crockpot, the most complicated kitchen items I own are my classic percolator and hand-operated can opener!

      • Teri says:

        Having a crockpot is nice in any living situation since you csn make a full meal in just one pot. I know you have to make the most of your space.

  10. cinandjules(NY) says:

    Sounds like you had a great day organizing. Zero camp fees…outstanding!

    The crew decided to give you a day off! That is blogworthy in itself! Standby…Spike’s going to make up for it today! heh heh He had 24 hours to drum something up!

    The number of states you visited increases every year! Can’t wait to see where we are headed this year! Jot down your mileage…it’s still early Jan.

    Enjoy the sunshine. Finally some sun here also and a whopping 28 degrees (heatwave)…headed to town like EVERYONE else!

    Have a wonderful day!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m debating whether I want us to return to some of our favorite places from the past year and a half or if I want to go to all new places. We’ll probably combine both. I always thought the saying “Life is a bowl of cherries” was stupid. Now I understand! And I want the whole bowl!

      Enjoy the weekend!

  11. Bev Deem says:

    Happy New Year! Your blog has been one of my favorite to follow. We stayed at a B&B in Chimayo NM for four nights over the Christmas Holiday in 2012. I agree that the Spanish influence is very interesting and wished we could have seen more but it was very COLD! Keep up the good work and safe travels…

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Bev . . . I did learn the hard way that December and January aren’t the best months to visit New Mexico, as you can see by the photo in yesterday’s post. The snow was almost belly-high on the crew!

      I’m sure it was nice to get away for those four nights. Happy New Year to you, too.

      • Timber n' me says:

        Hi Sue, would you tell Chuck n’ Geri that i receaved th’ cookies for Timber n’ Me, let them know that those cookies were good, and Timber sess thanks too,,,He had to have all but i saved some for later, n’ thanks for th’ card too,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  12. ku4ou says:

    Hi Sue, I’ve been a follower of your blog for a short time and have really enjoyed it! I’m particularly moved by the link you’ve published from AZ Jim. Would it be ok for me to copy it and share with some of my friends?

    Happy New Year!

    Donna and the menagerie at Aransas NWR

  13. Carol says:

    my Safari wouldn’t download that link, any place else to find it??
    I guess I’ll get some of those drawers to put in my oldLazy Daze,like Baird did,if I copy snuff blogs I’ll have that thing downright livable. Not the Collins, but ok.Cholula red has lots of kitchen ideas.Lots of cutesy decorating that I won’t use, but storage is clever.

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