Hard work

We bought a trailer camper a couple of years ago for a good price. The interior was a little dated, but I knew that we could fix it up. I realized after a while that even though I could change the wall border and other small details, there were other things about the camper that I didn’t like, such as the “sit down bathtub” and the floor pattern.

We actually looked for another camper, and considered buying something brand new; but when we thought about how much money it would cost to finance another camper, we really couldn’t justify spending all that money for a camper we use for only a few months out of the year. So we decided to change what we didn’t like about our own camper.

The “sit down tub” took up too much space in the shower so we bought another one without the “sit down” part and had it professionally installed. Then we went to Home Depot to buy wood-looking floor tiles—they were on clearance for 25 cents a tile ($30 for the entire area of the camper).

We took the camper to a nearby campground and for four days straight, I worked on the floors (my husband helped on Friday night and Saturday morning). I think it looks really good, and a great improvement from what it was before.

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There were a few things that I learned from this experience:

  • Hard work brings personal satisfaction— there were Scripture verses that actually pertained to this: “Work brings profit” (Prov 14:23), “…hard work brings rewards” (Prov 12:14)
  • Take time and evaluate if spending a large sum of money is a good move— our camper is nearly paid off, but if we bought a new camper we would have to finance about $16,000 because we would only get about $7,000 for ours. The bathtub and flooring upgrades we did were about $550 (yes,  $550 is still a lot of money, but not as much as owing $16,000)
  • Be thankful for what you already have— I don’t think I will ever have a brand new Thor Class A Motorhome, so instead of looking at what I can’t have or going into extreme debt, I need to be satisfied with what I do have

Our society is always looking for something new, and going into debt because of it; don’t do it!

Copyright © 2016 Dr. M. Teresa Trascritti

Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground

I remember the first time we stayed in Fort Wilderness. It was May of 2012. My husband and I planned on going to Disney World with our three adult sons, my daughter-in-law, my younger son’s girlfriend (now his wife), and my 2-year-old granddaughter (8 people total).

First I searched for a three-bedroom rental at Disney, but the price was way over our budget, so then I looked into the “value” priced rooms on property, but with the number of people we had, we would have to reserve three rooms.

I wondered if it would be possible to rent a 10-person camper at Fort Wilderness, but the problem was that we would not be able to tow it there (we didn’t have a vehicle to do that plus we were flying in).

After Googling “camper rental Fort Wilderness,” I found a couple of companies that would actually bring the camper on site then set it up for us. The price per night of paying for the camper rental and the camp site was equivalent to the nightly price for a “moderate” priced room (which only sleeps up to 5 people).

The camper we rented was a 31 ft camper with two slide-outs. They supplied dishes, pots/pans, folding chairs, outdoor floor mat, and outdoor lights.

Camper rentalThere were four bunks, a queen-sized bed, a “jack knife” sofa, and convertible dinette that turned into a bed—plenty of room to sleep.

Prior to arriving at our campsite, we had a limo pick us up from the airport (it was either a limo or a van– the limo seemed more special), then we made a stop at a grocery store to pick up supplies before heading to Fort Wilderness.

DisneyLimoDisneyLimo2If you have more than 6 people in your party, then it might be more economical to rent a camper at Fort Wilderness.

Here’s what I thought were the “pros” and “cons” of renting a camper:

Cons:

  • At the time, the meal plan was not available for those staying in campsites at Fort Wilderness
  • If you fly in and don’t rent a vehicle, then you’ll have to buy food from the Trading Post (we did that midway through our trip because we ran out of milk and bread– prices were like “convenience store” pricing)
  • No concierge service (at least not the kind you would get in some of the Disney hotels)
  • The pool was very basic– just one slide.

Pros:

  • At the end of the day in the Magic Kingdom, we jumped on a boat to bring us back—it was less crowded than the bus or monorail
  • We enjoyed being “in nature”—saw deer, squirrels, and several birds in the woods
  • We could watch the water parade at night and see the Magic Kingdom fireworks from the the shore.
  • We could cook most of our meals
  • You can have up to 10 people on the campsite
  • In addition to the camper, we could have set up a tent on the campsite too
  • There are lots of other things to do in Fort Wilderness– archery, horse back riding, carriage rides, etc.
  • There’s a campfire show with Chip and Dale and a movie every night (we roasted marshmallows with our granddaughter)

DisneyCampingDisneyCamping2 I’d do it again!

Copyright © 2014 Dr. M. Teresa Trascritti

I love camping

We have had our camper for about a month now, and I realize that I really love camping.

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I think I like camping because of the fond memories I have of my grandparents when I was a kid. I remember riding in the truck camper with my grandmother, siblings, and cousins as we drove to the camping area.

When we got to our destination we would set up camp— the guys (my dad, brother, and uncles) would stay in tents while the girls and my grandparents would sleep in the camper. My cousin and I always had the bunk over the truck cab.

I remember the campfire and all of us enjoying time together. During the day my cousin and I would wander around the woods pretending to hunt for wildlife. Each camping trip was a different adventure!

My camping adventures now are not quite the same as when I was a kid, but it’s still an adventure. I love the feeling of being in the woods—seeing new sites and finding new things.

Just today, I saw a cluster of bright orange mushrooms.

ImageI also took a picture of a dragonfly.

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As I hear all the insects at night, Psalm 8:3-4 comes to mind, “When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers— the moon and the stars you set in place— what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them?”

Copyright © 2013 Dr. M. Teresa Trascritti

Just keeping it simple…

We’ve been camping a lot lately—partly because we have a camper now, but mostly because camping allows me to experience “simple living.” Everything we have with us meets our basic needs—nothing is elaborate.

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The last time we camped, we waited for the stars to come out. The sun slowly faded in the distance then the dark crept in.

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Even though we waited several hours, we did not see any stars but it was still a good experience.

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I need days like these—setting aside my hectic schedule to enjoy a little bit of nature—God’s creation.

“Praise his glorious name forever! Let the whole earth be filled with his glory. Amen and amen!” (Psalm 72:19).

Copyright © 2013 Dr. M. Teresa Trascritti

God’s Provision

My husband and I went on our third camping trip recently. We were at a conference and decided to take our camper and camp rather than stay at a hotel. I am so thankful we did.

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We stayed at Lake Shelby Camp Ground for three nights. We loved it!

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It was so peaceful and quiet at night, and we woke up to birds chirping in the morning.

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We loved bike riding on the bike path and watching ducks in the lake.

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This camp ground is not crowded– there are only 10 RV sites.

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We were thrilled to have 4G coverage on our campsite, especially since I had to meet with my class online on Saturday morning.

The whole time we were there, I thought about God’s provision. He was the One who found this place for us, and He was the One who allowed us to rest and enjoy His creation.  In Exodus 33:14, God tells Moses, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

I don’t think we rest enough, and I think a lot of people are “stressed out” because they don’t stop and enjoy the beauty around them. Even on a busy street, God’s beautiful creation can be seen.

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Time is short. Enjoy the time that you have. Ecclesiastes 7:14 says, “On a good day, enjoy yourself; On a bad day, examine your conscience. God arranges for both kinds of days so that we won’t take anything for granted” (The Message Bible).

Copyright © 2013 Dr. M. Teresa Trascritti