What do I miss about having a house? Well, I can definitely give you a list of what I don’t miss, but there are plenty of things that I miss about having a house. We owned our home for 7 years. Prior to that, we rented and lived in apartments. So, let’s get to it – here are the top 5 things I miss about a house.
I miss having a separate space for sleeping. Currently, Tim and I sleep in the same room with Calla. We have to be super quiet and sneak in. There’s not a ton of room in there, so sneaking in becomes difficult. We have to make sure there is nothing on the floor, nothing that can be accidentally bumped. Have to get up and pee in the middle of the night? Risk waking her up. She definitely inherited her light sleeping tendencies from both of her parents! I can no longer use my laptop in bed (one of my favorite ways to relax) because the light and noise would wake her up. We have to sneak in there in the dark and we try our best not to move during the night. It sucks to roll over and think “oh no did I just wake her up?!”. All of the parents out there know that the last thing you want is to wake your child in the middle of the night for no reason.
It’s also really hard to be two feet from your child when they are crying in the night and you have to let them cry. It ups the “difficulty” factor significantly. It’s loud and upsetting, and you have to lay there, frozen. Especially in those moments, I wish we had more separation.
2. Noise Insulation from the Elements
About 3 days after we left for full-time RV life, we ran into our first thunderstorm in Virginia Beach. It was the first time it had rained and been windy while we stayed in Trudy – both of our shakedown trips were dry. If you’ve never experienced a bad storm while in an RV, you’re in for a treat! The wind howls, the RV sways back and forth, the rain sounds like hail on the roof, and you wonder if the whole thing is going to blow over. OK, I’m kinda past the whole “blowing over” fear, but it did worry me that first time! The noise from the elements is so loud in an RV. In a house, the rain on the roof is a gentle pitter-patter and puts you to sleep. In an RV, a hard rain makes it difficult to have a conversation. On many occasions, loud rain and wind has kept me awake at night. Don’t take your sturdy house for granted!
I miss having my own washer and dryer. The unexpected perk of not having one is that I only have to do laundry once every 2-3 weeks. When you’re in a house and have the washer and dryer right there, it’s easy to throw in a load every day or two. So instead of doing little bits of laundry, I do it all at once. But this means that if something I like gets dirty a day or two after I just did laundry, I will have to wait a very long time to wear it again! I wrote more in detail about our laundry situation in this post. It’s been 3 months since I wrote that, and it’s still accurate, except that I’m going to the laundromat more often now. The state parks we’ve been staying in either don’t have laundry, or it’s been broken. One of the major downsides of the laundromat is that the dryers are all such different temperatures. Some take forever to dry, and others fry my clothes. I recently had some that were so hot, I couldn’t even touch them until they cooled off for a good 5 minutes. And unfortunately my jeans were in that batch, I think they shrank about 5 sizes. Yikes.
4. Climate Control
Keeping the RV at a comfortable temperature is something that had more of a learning curve than we expected. We’ve run into some trouble with the AC units, but as long as they’re working, it’s pretty simple: set the thermostat. The AC units themselves are very loud, but it’s something we’ve gotten used to. We noticed it more early on.
But now that we aren’t using AC these days…we have had our challenges with keeping the RV warm in the cold weather. The coldest we have dealt with so far is a low of 16 degrees. This happened about 10 nights ago, while we were in Austin. Up until then, we had dealt with some temperatures right at or slightly below freezing. Our motorhome has a propane furnace. We have filled up the propane a few times so far on our journey. When it is very cold outside, the furnace runs almost constantly, and uses up the propane very quickly. An RV is just not insulated well at all! This is true of all RVs and not just ours. They are made for warmer climates, no one would tell you that an RV is built for freezing temperatures! When it’s right at or slightly above freezing, we can use electric space heaters to keep the RV warm. When it’s very cold, we need to use the furnace, as the air is cycled into the underbelly of the motorhome and keeps the lines from freezing. The space heaters don’t do that. We’ve struggled with keeping an even heat in the front of the RV and in the back, where Calla sleeps. We think we finally have it figured out, but it took a lot longer than we expected. The days where you can just set a thermostat and not worry about pipes freezing, propane running out, and circuit breakers overloading seems like a lifetime ago.
5. No Dependencies
I wasn’t sure how to summarize this in the title above, but let me explain. If I need anything out of the bedroom, I need to grab it before Calla goes to bed. This is earlier than Tim and I go to bed, so if we want to change into our PJs, that has to be thought of prior to putting Calla down. If Calla is napping, we have no access to anything in the bedroom, so I need to get my workout clothes out of there ahead of time if I’m going to work out over her nap. Of course, it’s easy to forget things during this process. I can’t even tell you how many times I remember my workout clothes, but forget socks! And there is no retrieving them while she is sleeping, so I’m stuck.
Another example: if Tim is on a conference call, this needs to be planned a lot more than it would in a traditional home. If Calla and I can’t be outside, we need to be in the living room, so Tim has to move his computer to the bedroom and take the call from there. BUT if the call is around Calla’s nap time, then she needs to use the bedroom, so we have to figure out how to make it work.
I feel like we are always having to think two steps ahead due to all of the logistics of 3 people living out of 2 rooms: 1 living room, 1 bedroom, where the bedroom is inaccessible for a good portion of the day/night.