RV Tips for Arizona Camping

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Caring For Your Camping Air Mattress

camping air mattressAir mattresses have been a staple of the camping checklist for years. They are inexpensive, compact for storing, and comfortable to sleep on. They do have their faults and you might find yourself sinking into the middle of the mattress during the night after a sharp rock pokes a hole in the vinyl, but all in all, they are worth having around.

Bringing along an air mattress on your camping trip should be easy. To properly prepare your air mattress for a journey, you have to open the valves of the mattress first and roll it up to squeeze out the air inside. To make sure that there is no more excess air inside your mattress, close the valve and roll it up again. Once ¾ of the mattress is already rolled up, you can now unblock the opening. You can repeat these two easy steps until you think that there is no more air inside. Remember to pack the pad carefully to avoid your mattress from getting punctured by a sharp thing.

After arriving at your destination, your first task is to set up your camp. If you have an air mattress, it is a must to inspect the area first before setting up your pad. There might be sharp rocks or other materials that damage your mattress. And last but not the least, it is recommended to store your mattress in a cold, dry and dark place away from any sharp objects.

You should consider carrying a patch kit along with you. You never know when you might need to patch a hole or tear in order to get a good night’s sleep and can’t wait until you return home.

An air mattress is a good option for hikers and campers who cannot afford to carry heavy bags while on their adventure. Being aware of these simple care tips will let you keep away from any trouble while camping. With proper usage and storage, your air mattress can be used for years.

July 1, 2017 / by / in , , , , ,
Capture Great Photos While Camping

camping photosThe second best part of an amazing camping trip is pouring over the photos once you’ve returned home. Even years later you can enjoy the experience again as you pull out old albums and laugh over antics made by members of your group. There are a couple of things you can do to make sure you get the best photos during your trip.

Camera Settings
First and foremost, ensure that the camera is set to the highest resolution as well as quality setting. Ideally, set the white balance in regards to the available light to ensure the ISO is set to the lowest available. If you have a top of the line smartphone, these settings will be automatic, so you don’t have much to worry about. However, if you still want great photos, you may want to keep the following in mind:

Get Close to Nature
Varying elements of nature are always pleasing. Try to fill your frame with things like flowers, water, rock, sand, foliage, etc. A macro shot of a flower can give an entirely different look.
Take Advantage of Dawn and Dusk
Dawn and dusk are by far the best moments to take great photos. Take pictures of sunrise and sunset. The color of the sky changes dramatically during this time and gives an opportunity for great photos. You can even take a picture of your family or friends against the backdrop of a rising or setting sun.
Capture Every Moment
It would be a waste to reserve your camera only when you arrive your camping site. It’s always a good idea to take random photographs throughout the journey. Take shots of you leaving home, in the car, setting up the site, cooking and even when fooling around or having a good time. All this make for memorable photos that tell a story.

The generations that follow you will benefit from your efforts at capturing the family as they bond over good time at an Arizona campsite. We wish you all the best in your camping adventures this year and in taking those photos to look back on in years to come.

June 24, 2017 / by / in , , , , , ,
Light, Summer Salads You’ll Love

pasta summer saladThis is the time of year when we look for food to help us beat the heat. We want something fresh and cool, yet filling and satisfying. These delicious summer salads will do the trick.  Below, you will find two favorite light summer salads to try on your next camping trip.

Summertime Strawberry Jello Salad

Ingredients: 1 15 oz. can of crushed pineapple
1 packet of strawberry jello
1 small tub of Cool Whip
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
16 OZ cottage cheese
Drain the pineapple in a colander until the liquid is gone.
In a large bowl, place the cottage cheese, and sprinkle the jello over it.
Add the cottage cheese, cool whip and pineapple, and mix thoroughly.
Stir in the walnuts, and you’re done
Let set in the refrigerator for one hour.
Put in a covered bowl, or individual covered containers, and keep in a cooler. This salad also makes a great salad you can serve as a meal course, or a sweet dessert.
Summer Pasta Salad

Ingredients: 1 Package rainbow rotini pasta, cooked according to package instructions.
1 package drained cooked broccoli
1/4 pound of salami, cubed
1/4 pound of provolone cheese, cubed
1/4 cup sliced black olives
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 packet Zesty Italian Dressing, prepared according to package instructions.

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl, and pour the dressing over the salad. Mix everything together for a light, tangy pasta salad that goes well with anything.

These are just two of many wonderful summer salads. Try them, you and your fellow campers can relieve yourself from the heat while enjoying a delicious meal together. You will be coming back for seconds!

June 17, 2017 / by / in , , , , ,
Fun Flashlight Games To Play With Kids

There are a lot of fun flashlight games you can play with kids. These games are great to play if you are out in the wilderness while camping or even at home. You can find out more here if you want to get started on learning more.

One game you can play is telling scary stories. This is where one person has the flashlight and shines it under their chin as they tell the story. Just be careful, because some kids cannot handle scary stories. You have to make sure that you pick a story that is age appropriate for everyone because if you do not want kids to get scared and not want to camp any longer. If the kids are way too young then you may just want to do stories around the campfire that are a little lighter in subject matter.

If you have small kids you can play a game where they try to catch the light wherever you shine it. You could shine the light further into the area where you are at and get them to run after it and shut the light off right when they get to it. Then, you could shine it somewhere else so they could run and try to catch you again. This is, of course, something that would only be more fun for little kids. If you have all the kids you could let them join in on the fun and have them control the flashlight. Just make sure the children are not led to any areas that are dangerous this way.

The flashlight games to play with kids you were just taught about are fun for the whole family. Kids love to play new games, and you can make them a camping tradition. Just make sure that you bring enough batteries so the fun can go on if they run out!

May 6, 2017 / by / in , , , ,
Delicious Refreshing Iced Tea Recipes You’ll Love

iced teaThere’s nothing quite like sitting back in the summertime and sipping iced tea. These recipes are ideal for those idyllic summer days or even on camping trips.

Using either an iced tea jar or a mason jar fill your jar with fresh water. Once you have fresh water in your jar you can add in any of the following and create your own deliciously flavored teas.

 

*8 bags of your favorite herbal tea. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Chamomile
Lemon
Berry
Other herbal teas of choice
Once you’ve added in your tea bags, you’re free to mix and match any of the following and create your own unique flavors. Mix and match the following as desired.

Fruits

Strawberries
Raspberries
Thinly sliced lemons or limes
Thinly sliced oranges
Springs of mint, lemon verbena, lavender
Blueberries
Cucumber
Peaches
Pears
Apple slices (slice thinly)

Sweeteners:

Honey
Sugar
Sugar substitutes

Alcohol can add a grown up flavor to any tea. Add in a few shots of bourbon or vodka to give your tea an adult flair.

Lemonade is a natural addition to iced tea. If you are really into lemon flavors here is a great recipe to consider:

Use lemon or chamomile tea bags but use 1/2 of the water amount and use lemonade for the other half of the water.

Add in some thinly sliced lemon and garnish with lavender or mint. You could also add in some lavender syrup (or any other fruit syrup) for a unique taste treat.

Sweet tea is made using a basic recipe and adding in a bit extra sugar to taste. Consider using your favorite herbal tea and sugar with just a sprig of mint for a fresh sweet tea.

*Note: If using an iced tea jar add in 8 tea bags of your favorite herbal tea. If using Mason jars adjust accordingly for flavor.

April 27, 2017 / by / in , , , , ,
Learning Through Play: Educational Board Games For Kids

kids playing checkers at campPlay time can be learning time as well. There are educational board games that kids enjoy and parents love. This article will review some of the board games on the market that fit into this category.

1. Monopoly

Monopoly has been around for a long time and it is a frequent selection on family game nights. In Monopoly, you learn a lot about money. For kids, that involves figuring out how to spend their money wisely and even budget their finances to ensure future success. Finally, Monopoly also teaches kids about the value of investments and how they can pay off in the long term.

2. Checkers

Checkers is a familiar game to most people. Chances are, you have played a game or two before. In Checkers, you are in charge of either the red pieces or the black pieces. You want to try and capture your opponent’s pieces so that you are the only player left on the board. Checkers teaches children critical thinking skills; they have to determine the ripple effect that any given move will have on the game.

3. Worst Case Scenario

In Worst Case Scenario, players are given a variety of situations that could turn out badly if the right choice is not made. Along with each situation, players are told they can select from several actions. They are suppose to choose the action that will most effectively (and safely) resolve the situation. If they select the right action, they advance in the game. Worst Case Scenario, then, teaches children about decision making.

Board games are a lot of fun, but they can also be a learning tool for parents. If you want play time to be educational as well, pick up these games for your next family game night. Your kids will enjoy playing and so will you!

April 18, 2017 / by / in , , , , , , ,
Sunscreen For Dogs

dog sunscreenAt this point in time, most people understand the value of sunscreen and the need to protect themselves and their family members from the UV radiation the sun is always producing. A surprising fact that still needs to be spread around is that many pets can benefit from sunscreen too.

Fur provides a small measure of protection from UV rays, but it is a long way from impenetrable. Dogs, like humans, can get a skin burn from over-exposure to UV radiation, and they may also develop skin cancer as a result of chronic exposure. Your pet will thank you if you invest a little effort in picking out an appropriate sunscreen product!

The first step you need to take is to look for products which are specifically formulated for use by pets. An excellent way to get started is to ask your veterinarian for advice. If you’re dealing with a limited selection, it’s generally safe to use a human sunscreen that’s designed to be used safely on infants.

Most commercial sunscreens rely on zinc oxide as one of their key active ingredients. This poses a problem because zinc oxide is toxic if your dog eats it. Check sunscreen labels thoroughly to confirm that your pet’s sunscreen does not contain it.

This is not the only potential problem ingredient to watch out for! Dogs might also experience allergic reactions to other ingredients. Even after selecting a pet-appropriate sunscreen product, you should first test it by applying a small amount to a limited area. After making a test application, monitor your dog’s behavior closely to see if there are any adverse reactions.

Once you’ve found a product that suits your dog, you’re ready for fun in the sun! Remember that dogs don’t need complete skin coverage to be safe. Apply sunscreen to the parts of your dog’s body that are going to receive maximum sun exposure when he or she plays outdoors.

We want you and your pets to enjoy the Arizona sunshine without getting burned and happy camping to all.

April 10, 2017 / by / in , , , , , ,
Going AZ Camping? What’s The Best Lantern To Take Along?

Lantern for campingIf you ever choose to go camping in the woods, then having an outdoor camping lantern is going to provide you a helpful source of power. Lanterns are obviously useful for lighting up your interior camping space. Actually, non-gas models are safe around children and can light up your camping space even when the weather is stormy. Many modern camping lanterns also sport additional benefits that your parents would never have dreamed of, including USB ports that charge smartphones, among others. There are a great number of critical factors to consider when sifting through all the lantern choices on the modern market.

The weight of any lantern is rather important when it comes time to carry camping equipment from one place to the next. Some lanterns, actually many of them in fact, weigh from a single pound to about three pounds. Alternatively, a lantern running off of D-cell batteries might have another pound of weight. Know what weight you and your group are comfortable with when picking a model for your upcoming camping trip.

Another consideration is the hours of operation the lantern gives you. Hand-crank and solar-powered lanterns have less operating time. Battery-powered models last longer in this department. Thankfully, many lanterns have a feature where you can tweak settings and make adjustments. Lowering the right settings means you can conserve the available energy. How bright the light output is, along with other available features, round out the list of your considerations when shopping for the best lantern for your next camping trip.

Camping lanterns are popular items, and the current marketplace has many models from different manufacturers. A number of considerations go into your decision, including weight, hours of operation, power source, brightness, and additional features.

April 1, 2017 / by / in , , , , ,
Three First-Time Campers’ Safety Tips

First time camper tipsWhen you are going on your very first camping trip, it is very important that you do your absolute best to focus on safety. By doing this, you will have the opportunity to prevent dangers and to keep your physical safety intact. With this in mind, follow these three tips below in order to make sure that you are keeping yourself and your family safe and sound throughout the course of the trip.

#1: Check in early and often

Any time that you were going camping, check in with the authorities and park rangers as often as possible. Before leaving, make sure that you also let loved ones know where you are going and check in throughout the course of the trail. This way, help will be better able to find you if necessary.

#2: Take emergency equipment

Make sure that you stock up on first aid kits and other emergency equipment. This will give you the opportunity to heal injuries and keep them under control before medical help arrives.

#3: Keep backup emergency devices

You also need to be sure that you have the opportunity to put the word out about where you are. Devices like flares and other components will be useful to you if you are stuck, hurt or lost. The key to this is to make sure that you have backup emergency devices so that you are not out of luck if you happen to be running low or if the equipment is defective.

If you use these three tips, you will be best able to make the most out of your camping trip. It is very critical to stay as safe as possible, and these three tips will help you out.

March 18, 2017 / by / in , , , ,
Pressure Cookers are a Must-Have for RVing

pressure cooker for the rvYesterday’s pressure cookers could be a little scary and fortunately they’ve been redesigned and are perfect for camping and RVing meals you’ll all enjoy. If you’ve never used one you should give it a try. You’ll be amazed at how delicious and fast your meals come out.

They no longer rattle and spit the way they used to. Today’s pressure cooker is quiet and efficient. You can cook a roast with potatoes and carrots in about half an hour. There are models available that will replace your saute pan, crockpot, and rice steamer, and canner too. They have been made to save energy and infuse your food with flavor. The food that is cooked in a pressure cooker is said to be more nutritious. That is because the food doesn’t need to cook as long as it does in a standard small appliance. The nutrients are maintained in your food instead of being cooked out.

They are affordable as well. You’ll appreciate the small footprint and the reduction of other kitchen appliances. Today’s pressure cookers really work well for RVers. They won’t heat up the kitchen and don’t take up much space. You’ll free up your stovetop space for other things. These are just some of the benefits you’ll enjoy when you cook this way.

March 11, 2017 / by / in , , , ,