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November 19, 2022
Non-Members (advertising-supported) edition
Thanksgiving: What a season of gratitude and hope teaches us
By Nanci Dixon
uring the trying times of the last couple of years, I am reminded that this is the season of giving thanks. I will admit that in the past the meaning of Thanksgiving was usually lost under the anticipation and management of a turkey. Nope, not a favorite uncle – a real turkey. And, of course, the dressing and all the other sides. The true meaning was lost somewhere in the planning, buying groceries, setting the table, and baking the pies. (I won’t even mention Black Friday.)
History of Thanksgiving – the story we know and love
The core teaching of the holiday stems from value of the giving between the native peoples, the Wampanoag, and the colonists at Plymouth. When the colonists finally left the ship after a cruel and bitter winter, only half of the original people had survived. They were greeted by English-speaking Squanto, a native of the Pawtucket tribe. Squanto had been captured and taken to England, where he learned English, then later escaped to come back to his native home. He taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn, catch fish and survive. He cemented the alliance between the local Wampanoag people and the colonists.
The celebration of the autumn harvest, the first Thanksgiving, was in 1621. It was a grand feast that lasted three days. The great chief of the Wampanoag, Massasoit, attended with 90 of his men and brought five deer to share. That first Thanksgiving was a feast of friendship, despite drastic differences, as well as a celebration of survival. The alliance between the new colonists and native peoples lasted more than 50 years.
Thanksgiving becomes a national holiday
While states continued the tradition of Thanksgiving, it wasn’t until 1863 that Abraham Lincoln made it a national holiday to be celebrated every year in November. He declared it a day of Thanksgiving in the midst of the Civil War, when the nation was divided and at war with itself.
Not so happy Thanksgiving for the Wampanoag
The Smithsonian Magazine presents a different perspective of the Thanksgiving feast and the influence of the Pilgrims on the Wampanoag. While the Wampanoag native peoples did welcome or at least allowed entry to the Pilgrims, it was partially to help protect themselves against the Narragansetts. They did share an alliance with the Pilgrims that lasted 50 years, but in the end it devastated the Wampanoag. Disease spread, land was taken, resources abused, and it eventually ended in war that forever turned the power to the English. The Wampanoag sadly remember Thanksgiving as a day of mourning.
Remembering the spirit of the first Thanksgiving
Still, there is the spirit of Thanksgiving to remember. It would seem in this time – with the nation still politically divided, rising inflation, gas prices over the moon and simple groceries out of reach for many – it would behoove us to remember the good intentions of that first Thanksgiving. Then, it was the coming together of diverse people with different beliefs and lives. It was the community of people sharing the bounty of the fall harvest and giving thanks. Giving thanks for one another, for food, shelter and survival.
Attention writers and publicists
We have paid (and volunteer) freelance and staff positions available for writers, editors and PR experts. Must have experience, be creative, ethical, highly motivated, know RVs and the lifestyle inside out, and be eager to make a difference in the lives of RVers (we have an immediate need for someone to write a daily RV review). Journalism training a plus. Interested? Contact publisher Chuck Woodbury at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell him about yourself. No influencers or “content creators.” If you are not especially talented at any of these skills, please do not apply.
Here is today’s edition of our photo contest. Please vote for your favorite. Once you’ve voted, please submit your own photo for consideration. Winners receive a $50 Amazon gift card. Good luck!
Please note: We’ve changed the rules around a little bit. Please read the updated rules here. And don’t forget to submit a photo!
Psssst: Remember, you can vote through next Friday! If your photo is selected, share it with your friends and family. Everyone can vote once per day.
As RVers, we have many reasons to give thanks
By Gail Marsh
November is the month we celebrate Thanksgiving here in the United States. (Canadians celebrated in October.) As I was contemplating Thanksgiving and wondering how big a turkey I could fit into my RV’s oven, I thought about the many, many reasons RVers have to give thanks. Here are just a few. I hope they’ll spark some ideas for you. Please add to my “Thankful for …” list in the comments. Continue reading.
When it comes to cooking Thanksgiving turkey, don’t do this… or this… or this…
By Mike Gast
What is it about Thanksgiving that makes some folks think they have to experiment when cooking up our favorite wattled fowl? It seems every year some folks find a way to mangle a family tradition. What’s wrong with a nice, oven-roasted bird sitting proudly on a platter in the middle of your campground picnic table? Let’s discuss this here, plus watch a video compilation of deep-fried turkey infernos.
We want to know…
What advice do you have for new RVers?
RVtravel.com readers have a lot of collective wisdom among them. Far more, in fact, than the glut of new RV sites popping up these days run by people who have barely ever RV’d before. So, this week we’re asking: What RV advice would you have for people who are either new to RVing or who are considering getting into the RV lifestyle? In other words, what do you wish you had known about RVing but nobody ever told you?
Today’s RV review…
Tony writes, “One of the Class B vans that’s new to the market comes from the people at Entegra Coach in the form of the Entegra Expanse Li. This line of Class B vans is based on the Ford Transit 4X4 chassis and, as the name may imply, sports a lithium battery system. As with some of the other Class B vans I’ve seen recently, this one has no propane whatsoever. Instead, there is the battery, and that’s it. ”
RVtravel.com readers speak out: Your worst RV mishaps and road woes
Last week we asked you about your RV mishaps and what was the worst mechanical or driving mishap you have ever experienced while RVing. As usual, our readers did not disappoint. Our goal with the question was to help others avoid the same experience, if possible. It turns out there is a whole lot that can possibly go wrong when RVing. Hopefully, not all days are like the ones below. But some days are beyond challenging. Continue reading about RVtravel.com readers’ worst RV mishaps here. Yep, there are some doozies (in the old sense of the word, just to be clear).
RV Service Centers and Repairs Report: Some good, some bad this week
In this column, we summarize some of your emails and comments regarding RV service centers and repairs. Well, the majority of the comments from readers this week are praise for their service centers. How refreshing! Learn where these places are here.
Did upgrading the suspension on my F-53 chassis work?
By Karel Carnohan, DVM
So, did upgrading the suspension on my F-53 chassis work? Well, the bottom line is… It didn’t make much difference. I spent about $8,000 to add KONI shocks, SumoSprings®, enhanced stabilizer and steering equipment—and I didn’t notice much difference in the ride. Here is my assessment.
Highlights from this weeks RV Daily Tips Newsletter
- What to know about driving a large vehicle through a roundabout
- 5 tips to increase (optimize) kitchen storage space
- How to make your RV warm and welcoming to guests for the holidays
- 5 tips from professional RV washers
- Never stop learning: Ways to do so while RVing
Around the Campfire: The true cost of RVing
By Gail Marsh
Newer RVers joined the campfire recently. While still enthused about their RV journey, they were also a bit disillusioned about the true cost of RVing. I’ll let them explain. … Do you have any money-saving advice to offer to new RVers?
Small RV refrigerator? These 30 foods don’t need refrigeration
Have a small RV refrigerator? Refrigeration space is at a premium in an RV. These 30 foods don’t need refrigeration. Some of them may just surprise you.
A quirky, cheerful perspective on clouds
The COVID pandemic brought panic, illness, and death to our world. The catastrophic disease also ushered in a few good things: more family time, widespread acceptance for remote working, and “A Daily Cloud.” What’s that? It’s nature-inspired art! During the pandemic, an Irish artist, Chris Judge, shared with the world his quirky perspective on clouds and “A Daily Cloud” was born. Check out these clouds.
Pick your two favorite Thanksgiving dishes
Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment.
POPULAR POLL FROM THIS PAST WEEK
We asked: Does your RV have a traditional RV absorption refrigerator or a residential fridge?
Ghost Town Trails: Silver City, Utah – Heartbreak and thanksgiving
By Dave Helgeson
This month we will travel to Silver City, Utah, located just a few miles down the road from last month’s featured ghost town of Eureka, Utah. I chose Silver City for this month’s entry not because of extensive remains or a historical event that occurred. I chose it because November is the month we celebrate Thanksgiving. Also, I chose to share my visit to Silver City to remind myself, and hopefully others, of all the things we have to be thankful for. … You will undoubtedly count your blessings after you read this.
Another easy and delicious camp staple: Sourdough bread
By Randall Brink
When I first began RVing full-time, one of the first things that I realized was that I no longer had my trusty gas oven. My RV, being quite small, had a cook top but no oven. What to do for baking essential biscuits and bread? I frantically started shopping for camp ovens. I found them expensive, but I seriously considered going that route until I realized I had an oven—a Dutch oven. Here is about the most straightforward recipe possible for Camp Sourdough Bread.
Cycling for RVers: What bike should I buy? Part 3, gravel bikes
This is the third in a series of articles on buying bicycles, and which ones are best suited for RVers. Part 1 focused on road bikes, and Part 2 looked at mountain bikes. This week, we look at a very interesting, and growing, segment of the bicycle market: gravel bikes. Learn more about these bikes here and find out: Are they right for RVers?
The long, long RV trip
Week 24: EUREKA! Humboldt County adventures
By Cheri Sicard
Thanks for sticking with me through the long, long RV trip. This week is our last travel entry as I am once again back in California, albeit at a different end of the state from where I started—Humboldt County in the heart of California’s “Emerald Triangle.” Learn all about arts and entertainment as well as Cheri’s adventures in Humboldt County here.
Is this your RV?
Win a $25 Amazon gift certificate if today’s RV photo shows your rig
Every day we post a photo of an RV either submitted by its owner or by our editors as they move about the country.
How would you like to win a 3-Pack of Bugs Off Pads?
Bugs Off Pads are the perfect stocking stuffer for anyone with a car, truck or RV.
How to win
We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive today (November 19, 2022) by 7 p.m. Pacific time. Remember, you can only enter once and after we notify you by email via RVcontests@gmail.com that you won, you have 24 hours to respond or we’ll give the prize to someone else.
?? MYSTERY PRODUCT OF THE DAY ??
If you’re wondering if this will come in time, the answer is yes. If you’re wondering if you should buy it, the answer is absolutely yes.
Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook”.
This past week’s questions that Dave answered:
- This will make you think twice about the Alde heating system
- “I found the cause of the cold water line trickle!”
- Quick RV Tech Tip: Will a 30-amp outlet charge my RV’s batteries this winter?
- My toilet and tank opening overlap. This is not good!
- My slide room is tearing up the floor! How can I fix it?
- Update: Correction on two recent water pressure posts – Oops! Find out why Dave says: “I’ve learned you can’t mix water with vinegar, and you shouldn’t mix Chris with Greg!”
RV Gadgets and Gizmos
High-tech portable wireless dog fence – Good for RVers?
What’s the best way to keep Buddy confined to your campsite? Don’t like the idea of tying your dog to a spike in the ground or in a fenced area while camping? SpotOn GPS Fence could be a solution. Promising advanced GPS technology, no wires and seemingly endless flexibility, an entrepreneur developed SpotOn, which promises to “Create GPS dog fences of any size, any shape and almost anywhere.” But is it good for RVers? Well, learn more.
15 camping games and puzzles that make the perfect gift!
Wondering what to give to the families on your holiday gift list? Face it, the kids already have too many toys, and gifts for teens can be tricky. Most adults buy what they want when they want it! So, what’s left? The perfect gift: the gift of time together. Check out these 15 games and puzzles that will be a blast for everyone!
with Mike Sokol
Charging a Jackery Explorer with a CarGenerator
Continuing my experiments with solar panels and portable Lithium Battery Power Stations, I had a brainstorm last week about how to power a Jackery 1000 Explorer Pro if the sun isn’t shining. While I think these portable power stations are great for adding power to your camping experience, they can also be useful for home emergency power if there’s a rolling blackout (like in California), electric grid failure (like in Texas) or hurricane (like in Florida). Continue reading.
Video of the day
RV Thanksgiving: How to cook a whole turkey over a campfire
By Cheri Sicard
Thinking of having an RV Thanksgiving? Watch the video below from Deirdre and James from Our Upcycled Life. The couple, who love to boondock off-grid, show you how to cook a whole turkey over an open campfire, as well as side dishes and dessert. It might take a little work you are unfamiliar with, but this will undoubtedly go down as your most unique Thanksgiving dinner ever!
A toaster fit for an RV!
Want to keep a toaster in your RV but don’t have the space for it? This slim, compact toaster is made for RVs – it hardly takes up any space! The slots for your toast are normal width, and can even reheat and defrost foods too! It’s easy to use, and the reviews are stellar! Learn more or order one for your RV here. Happy toasting!
RV Tire Safety
Basic tire knowledge; and could you help this RVer?
I monitor a number of RV forums and when I see someone asking about tires, I will make the effort to learn about the problem and offer possible solutions.
Recently there was a question on inflation for both the tow vehicle and the travel trailer. The comments seemed to be all over the place, so I decided there was a need for some basic foundation of information. Following is my reply and attempt to provide the basic information needed by RV owners.
Ask Roger anything about RV tires on his RV Tires Forum.
Recipe of the Day
Yummy Thanksgiving recipes to try this year:
Brined & Roasted Turkey Breast: If you’re not hosting a big holiday meal or just want turkey, not at Thanksgiving or Christmas, try this turkey breast. It’s great for people who don’t need a whole turkey. Quick to make, with very few ingredients, it’s an easy roast turkey recipe. Click here for the recipe.
Deb’s Easy Corn Casserole: The crust is similar to cornbread crust, but inside the texture is like a fluffy bread pudding. Get the recipe here.
Millie’s Sweet Potato Biscuits: These are simple, old-fashioned biscuits with sweet potato bits in every bite. Using fresh sweet potatoes, the flavor is noticeable, so if you love sweet potatoes you’ll love these. Click here for the recipe.
Readers’ Pet of the Day
“This is our sweet and playful 11-week-old Fox Red Lab puppy. Her name is Ginger-(snap). We are looking forward to taking her camping and traveling with us!” —John & Judy Peters
On Thanksgiving, what’s easy to get into and hard to get out of?
(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday news newsletter. And please don’t spoil it for other readers by posting the answer in the comments.)
Four towns in the United States are named “Turkey.” They can be found in Arizona (well, in Arizona it’s “Turkey Creek”), Texas, Louisiana and North Carolina. Have you ever been to “Turkey”?
Laugh of the Week
“RVs: Who Makes What” – This is a new free directory from RVtravel.com which lists every U.S. RV manufacturer and their makes and models. Learn more and/or download a free PDF copy.
RV Show Directory: See if a show is coming soon to your area.
Stolen RVs — Help us recover these stolen RVs. The more eyes we have searching for them, the better chance of getting them back to their rightful owners, and maybe putting the crooks who stole them in the slammer! See the stolen RVs.
Great websites. Check out our favorite websites of the day! We compiled a list of (almost) all the websites we’ve ever posted, and we update it weekly.
Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.
Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by RVtravel.com.
Directory of RV parks with storm shelters
In case you’re on the road with your RV and the weather report is showing a tornado headed your way, have this list handy.
What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.
Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.
The Best RV Trip Planner Apps and Tools. Everything you need to help plan your trip is here.
Dustin Simpson RV Repair and Maintenance Articles: Incredibly helpful!
Doctor’s order: Coffee!
This coffee mug is hilarious! It’s perfect for you or the coffee-lover in your life. This high-quality mug is made from ceramic and painted to look like a prescription pill bottle – it’s just what the doctor ordered! You can’t order this from a barista, but you can order one here.
Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?
RVtravel.com All-Star Team
Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Gail Marsh, Dave Solberg. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Roger Marble, Dave Helgeson, Mike Gast, Julianne Crane, Machelle James, J.R. Montigel, Randall Brink, Karel Carnohan DVM, Cheri Sicard, Dustin and Ashley Simpson, Dale Wade, Paul Lacitinola, Jeff Clemishaw, Tony Barthel and Johnny Robot. Special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. Special Reports: Bradford Geer. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen. Mascots: Archie and Astor (the Disaster)
Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of RVtravel.com or this newsletter.
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