Friday, September 18, 2020

RV Travel and and Job Opportunities

Blog copyright Janet Groene 2020. To donate $5 a year as a voluntary subscription to these weekly posts use your PayPal account to janetgroene at




 For 10 years as full-timers, Janet Groene  and her husband, Gordon, made a living as a travelwriter and photographer team.  Janet was already an established freelance writer when they gave up their home  and Gordon's career as a  professional pilot to pursue life on the go.

Gordon had been a photography hobbyist who now made it a business to illustrated Janet’s feature articles and books. The Groenes lived on their small sailboat in the tropics in winter and traveled in summer in their 21-foot camper.

Now widowed, Janet continues as a freelance journalist and also writes fiction based on her travels on sea and shore. See her Yacht Yenta series of “cozy” mysteries.  


Farley Halladay is a widow with a grieving heart but also a sense of duty, caring and give-em-hell crime solving. 

Laugh and cry with Farley and her menagerie of friends in  May Misfire  It's Book 5 in what will be a 12-book series. While all books in the series follow Farley’s journey of widowhood, this one is especially poignant as she returns to the boat where her husband died. Send a copy to a widow who may identify with it and to your friends who love a “cozy” mystery.


    “Work at home” jobs have long been connected with scams that prey on shut-ins but the new economy has created tens of thousands of excellent  new jobs known as remote, flextime, temp, virtual, work-at-home and online opportunities. Some are salaried, some commissioned, some piecework. Some are a self-starting business you tackle completely on your own. 

    Warning: making a living from the RV lifestyle alone has become a very crowded field. No matter what your specialty, from Podcasts to video, blogs, film, TV, books and websites, from how-to articles in every field of RV life to geographic areas,from entertainers to evangelists, others are already out there in their own RV's and struggling to stand out in the throng.  

    How To Get Started

    * Do you want to work for someone else or can you handle self-employment as lone wolf, totally without a safety net? That in itself is a tall order.

    * Does the job require you to be somewhere or can you work from anywhere, any time? Temp agencies such as Kelly Services  offer jobs everywhere for limited periods. Temping is a good way enjoy a certain area of the county, then move on.

    * If the job requires you to work on location, is an RV site provided? If not, where can you get hookups and a safe place to camp? How will you get from the campsite to the job site?  

    * Does the job require constant telephone or internet service?  Face time? Some of the best camping areas have no coverage. 

    * Can you work anytime or only during certain hours? (Many service centers operate 24/7  and you may be required to work different shifts.)

Red Flags


    * Is the employer interested in your skills and resume or more interested in signing you up for a course that you have to pay for?  Does the employer look at your existing portfolio or ask for free samples?  If your resume shows that you are already accomplished in this area, you no longer work for free, period? A trial period may be required and that’s OK if terms are reasonable. 

    * Does the agency require a monthly fee for a job search? Placement fee? Set-up fee? Cost for materials? 

    * Do they require a fee to interview you? If an agent or publisher charges a reading fee to read your work it’s likely they make their money with reading fees, not with the honest job of agenting.  Check their track record.

Steps to Take

    * Go to the company website. In fine print at the bottom, check the copyright date. The site may be an old one. That’s already a red flag. Do a Google search to see what others say about that company and its service or product.  Then go back to the company site and look for Work for Us, usually in fine print at the end of the websome. Click on that and see what you can learn about employment opportunities. 

    * Step one, before you go full-timing, is to get a professionally written master  resume. If you are employed now, get a recommendation. Then massage each copy  of your resume according to the job du jour.  Accent your  job skills as well as any background in work-from-home. Show you’re are a self-started outside of an office environment. .

Friday, September 11, 2020

RV Repairs Tips for the Fumble Fingered

Blog copyright 2020 janetgronee, all right reserved. To donate $5 a year as a voluntary subscription to these weekly posts use your Paypal account to janetgroene at

    When YOU are the RV Ms.  Fixit

    Some woman can repair anything.  Other women are specialists in one area such as electrical, but may  but need help with, say, engines or plumbing. 
Even so, you can’t carry everything in your RV that you may need to do the job.


    This week’s post is about tools to have on board, even if you don’t know what to do with them. These are tools that you may need or may needed by Good Samaritans who help you on the road or at your campsite.

    * A long clothesline and spring clothespins. Even though many campgrounds prohibit outdoor clotheslines, rope comes in handy for many things. Cut off what you need as you go.  Clothes pins do pinching tasks such as closing the potato chip bag.


    * A folding shovel to dig out of sand or mud, manage a campfire, dig a trench toilet.  Duck tape. Moisture dispersant spray, corrosion inhibitor, lubricant. Super glues, caulks and gasket maker goo can solve a lot of problems but watch expiration dates.



    * A sturdy broom is handy for sweeping the cement pad that comes with most campsites. Camping and boating supply stores sell a cleaning “system” that consists of one long handle that can be used with broom, mop and squeegee attachments.

    *  If you have room to carry a metal garden rake  (not a plastic leaf rake), it’s a nice tool for cleaning up the campsite including raking out the campfire. 

Under $10

* A tire pump or small compressor for bicycle tires and other inflatable items such as an air mattress, swim toy,  blow-up boat. 

    * A variety of flashlights large and small for getting at places where trouble occurs. Emergency roadside lighting and reflectors in case of breakdown.

    * A tire  pressure gauge, preferably with a waterproof tag attached listing pressures required in all tires in your RV life. 

    *Zip ties in a variety of sizes. They stow flat and do so much.

    * Sturdy leather work gloves that fit well plus disposable gloves for temporary work.


    * A multi meter is essential for diagnosing electrical ills from AAA batteries to appliances.

Emergencies happen. Be ready for the next power outage, evacuation or  quarantine with an ample pantry. See Survival Food Handbook, a guide to supermarket staples for your emergency shelf at home and on the go. Contains lists, tips and how-to for special situations such as no ice, water shortage, flood, no fire.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Space Stretch Your Motorhome, RV Bathroom

blog copyright janet groene, all rights reserved. To ask about rates to place your ad for one year, one low rates on all six Groene sites, email

Furnish Your RV Bathroom 

    What’s in your RV bathroom?  With luck it has a flush toilet, sink and at least a wand shower if not a tub or separate shower. If you have cupboard space to store towels and extra toilet tissue, plus a medicine cabinet with mirror, better still.

    How can you make the most of this space? 

    * As a solo woman, the storage spaces are all your own. If others travel with you it may be better for each person to have a personal toilet kit to bring into the bathroom, hang up for use, then stow it with their other personal gear. The advantage is that this kit is always ready to go the campground showers too. The new kits hold an entire drug store, yet hang up with one hook. I like the lineup of sizes and types offered by L.L. Bean.


Get better air circulation with a mesh bag

*On the first night out, you take off your socks and discover that RV designers probably left no space for a laundry hamper. If there is one, it’s probably small and poorly ventilated. In customizing an RV for your own needs, find a good system for dirty clothes, such as a laundry bag that can be stowed anywhere.

Add-on towel racks come in many sizes, types

    * RV’s never have enough towel racks you need   need plenty of space to spread out damp towels, the bath mat, wash cloths and hand laundry. Shop for all the types available from temporary over-door racks to screw-on types.

    * Add a second shower curtain rod to serve as a drying rack. A spring-loaded shower rod fits almost any available space. They come in tub/closet  size or stall size. To dry light items, use an inexpensive spring-loaded curtain rod.


Add caption

   *Your shower curtain can also be a decorator plus. Look for eye candy that makes the bathroom look brighter, more roomy. Bonus point: A shower curtain makes an affordable curtain anywhere such as closing off the cockpit from the living area.

    * News flash. Many campgrounds do not permit drying of towels, swim suits or laundry outside. Retractable clothesline reels are sold in camping supply stores. When not in use they zip back into their own small, wall-mounted reel. 

The line is flimsy but  suitable for  swim suits and lingerie.


Too heavy and it shifts with road motion

   * Wire shelf units that hang over plumbing fixtures aren’t a good idea in an RV.  The weight of shampoo bottles and body washes puts extra load on the delicate plumbing. Swaying with road motion, the unit also etches the  shower stall surface. Don’t trust suction cup storage units either, especially with heavy or breakable bottles. They can break loose on bumpy roads. 
    * A wall-mounted hair dryer is a convenience and space saver if you have juice to run it. Ideally it will run off 12 volts, 110 volts, either or both. Hair dryers made for overseas also run on 220V.

    * The shower pan or tub are probably fiberglass. Protect the tender surface with a rubber mat.   

    * Use fabrics and soft goods to soften the look and feel of a small bath and to deaden sound. Add a plush toilet lid cover, rug, bathmat,  a cotton shower curtain rather than plastic and fabric window coverings rather than clattery blinds.


   * The more ventilation and soundproofing you can provide in the bathroom, the better for privacy, mildew and odor control. It's also less claustrophobic. If the bathroom isn’t wired for a fan install one that is solar powered

Farley Halladay is a widow who went to sea, lost her husband and now copes with caregiving, cooking and crime. Romp through the series of cozy, zany, poignant Kindle  mysteries starting with January Justice.
Farley now how has books through May Misfire.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Insider News for Women Who Go RV Camping

 Blog copyright janet groene, all rights reserved. To pay $5 a year as a voluntary subscription use PayPal to janetgroene at Thank you

Scroll down for 5 Reasons You 
Need Water Filter(s) for Your RV

New Campground Caveats
    As if evacuations, closures and quarantines weren’t enough, this season’s camping has new rules and rates.

    * Read the campground  rules. They may be expensive, unfair or just plain stupid. For example, this rule was buried in a sea of fine print when a couple checked into this campground. No package deliveries allowed.  Really? 

    Forget receiving spare parts, prescriptions, your online food order or any other deliveries at one campground in  Montrose, Colorado where a full-timer  family was thrown out for violating their rule against receiving mail or packages c/o the resort.  Their crime? They ordered overnight delivery for a computer via FedEx.
    The FedEx driver was turned away by the campground office, so he phoned the buyer from outside the gates, and the RV traveler went out to take delivery of his computer. Then the sheriff was called to evict these folks while their children looked on. 
    See their story on You Tube at

    It's not uncommon for campground rules to state that no refund will be given if you are evicted for breaking the rules. Their campground, their rules. Be forewarned.
    * Know before you go if you’re going to be charged an extra fee for having a pet on board, or having a third or fourth family member.  The park may be “pet friendly” but won’t accept your breed or an extra large dog. (Many campgrounds ban breeds deemed to be dangerous by their insurance company. This may also be a city or county ordinance, not the fault of the campground.)

    * Must you sign a liability waiver to swim in the pool?   Boat in the private lake? A few campgrounds even require this waiver to use the campground at all.

* Good news. More campgrounds are now adding premium  “patio” suites that have a private, fenced in dog run.  Also popular are double or triple  “family” campsites designed  for two or three RV’s.
5 Reasons Why You Need RV Water Filters 
copyright janet groene

    As a traveler  on the go you fill up  each time with different water. The next campground may have city water, well water, spring water or cistern water. It may be inspected and deemed “safe” but it  it may be saltier, harder, softer, more highly chlorinated or, in some areas, rust colored or  stinky with sulphur. 

    According to health standards it’s all safe to drink, but coffee tastes different each time. Reconstituted drinks taste funny. There are bad hair days because the same shampoo and conditioner work differently with each tank of water.

    For a small investment in time, money and handygirl skills you can have tap water that behaves the same way every day, no matter where you filled the tank.  First, understand that we are talking water filters, not water purifiers that make bad water potable, nor desalinators that turn sea water fresh. 

    Here are reasons to consider water filtration:

    1. Bottled water is expensive, bulky, weighs a lot and clogs landfills with plastic. Filters last for years before they have to be changed, so your trash impact is almost nothing.

    2. This highly effective, screw-in   filtering shower head is a snap to install without tools. It is a must for travelers with sensitive skin and it means more consistent results with your favorite gels, soaps, shampoo and conditioner. It also means less gunk builds up in your RV shower stall, making cleaning easier.

    3. This filter is easy to screw onto a hose to remove chlorine and other irritants before they go into the water tank.


    4. Designed for use in RV’s and boats, this portable water softener can be used only when and where needed. It’s easily recharged with table salt. It's ideal for, say,  water that goes to the shower or washing machine. (Yes, some large  RV’s  have laundry machines on board.

    5. Screw-on water filters at the kitchen sink are bulky and  always in the way. An under-sink water filter with its own faucet requires installation but is a lifetime investment. Filters last for months, even years. Use the faucet for drinking nd cooking water.



* Read technical specs, which vary greatly.  Also read installation requirements.

*  Measure space available in sight and behind the scenes.

* Know how often filter cartridges must be changed, what they cost and how difficult it is to change them. 

Not for Everyone but....
Berkey Water Filters are Countertop Units


    A high-duty water filter for the back country is recommended by a reader. The company says it “almost” qualifies as a water purifier. On the plus side, it’s a handsome unit in stainless steel with what may be the most powerful filtration available. 
    On the minus side, it’s a freestanding unit that is bulky to stow and position, expensive to buy and expensive to service with replacement filters as needed. It has its own spigot and is kept on the table or countertop.
It may be best suited for a base camp or cabin.

It isn’t to be compared with  in-line filters above that work as part of your pressure water system. Additional filters for fluoride and arsenic are optional. Sizes range from 1.5 gallons to 6 gallons, priced at $250 to $690.


Friday, August 21, 2020

RV Women Go Fishing

Blog copyright janet groene 2020, all rights reserved. Thank you so much for your voluntary subscription at $5 per year sent to janetgroene at yahoo at PayPal.

RV Camping 

    Surveys say that America’s favorite outdoor sport is fishing, and that goes double for RV campers.  
     These days it’s the ultimate way to social distance, to muse and meditate, to be in touch with nature and, best of all, to haul in a great meal.
    Picture yourself as a Hemingway, cranking in a sport fish, or snoozing in the sunshine while holding a cane pole by the side of a creek,  or casting for trout in an icy mountain stream. It’s easy to get hooked, pardon the pun.
    Here are some tips on adding angling to your  RV camping skills. 

    * If you’re a seasoned and avid angler, perhaps even a tournament angler, you’ve probably amassed your own tackle over time and wouldn’t travel without it. You know your reels, line sizes, flies, lures to fit your fishing style and the waters you favor. 

    You’ll need safe, dry storage space on board the RV  for your own gear, which could run into a sizeable pile of waders, life jackets and a baitwell.  For rod storage, look into long-narrow spaces such as rooftop box or full-width basement bin. 

    * If you’re a sometime angler or just starting out, check out campgrounds that offer tackle loan or rental. In many areas, fishing guides with boats are available on or near the campground.They supply everything you need for the day half day. 

    * If you tow a boat, does the campground have dock rental? Launch facilities? Does the lake have horsepower limits?  Many small boats can be carried in or on an RV. We once spent a three-week vacation in our 21-foot RV with an 8-foot inflatable boat and 9 HP motor on board. 

     * If you prefer to fish from dry land, does the campground have a fishing pier or areas that are good for surf fishing?

    * Will you need to buy a license or permit?  Rules vary by age and residency.  Some campgrounds have stocked ponds on private property and do not require a license. Fishing may be free or fee, and may be catch-and-release only.

    * As a traveler you’ll encounter different rules by state and by season. Check ahead with local fishing reports. What is biting where? Bans and size limits may have changed since your last trip. 

    * Some fish camps will clean and cook the catch for you.


Did you know that the Yacht Yenta mysteries by Farley Halladay are filled with galley recipes, some for great seafood?. You can adventure with 50-ish widow Farley on land and sea, kitchen and crime scene.  May Misfire is Book 5 of the popular  e-book series for Kindle and Nook.

Here from Bass Pro Shop
are the basic rules of

    Do clean up after yourself. ...
       Don't crowd other boats. ...
   Do give your fellow fisherman some space. ...
    Don't cross another angler's line. ...
  Do observe regulations and catch limits. ...
    Don't get caught without a fishing license.


Friday, August 14, 2020

One Wardrobe Every RV Woman Needs

 Thank you for donating $5 once a year as a voluntary subscription to this free weekly blog. Send to janetgroene at at Paypal.

Say Hello to the Sarong
copyright janet groene 2020
    Most North Americans use the sarong (also known as a pareo, pireo  or lava-lava) only as a swim suit cover up but in many nations it's  worn as a skirt for women or men, a dress, head scarf/shawl and even pantaloons. It makes for a fun afternoon at a girls’ get-together to see how many different outfits you can create from one length of fabric. 


    Do a Google search for “sarongs” and you’ll find a huge choice of readymade pareos ranging from imported Balinese batiks to exotic African prints, washday homespuns and ruffled silks. It’s easy to make your own, though,  even if you’re not a seamstress. It’s simply a rectangle of cloth without slits, straps or buttons.

No matter your size, shape or palette, a sarong will work for you. 

    Buy 2 to 2 ½ yards of 36-, 45- or 48-inch-wide fabric (the width of the fabric determines the length of the sarong) and hem the raw edges.  If you don’t know how to sew, use iron-on fusing or hemming tape on raw edges. Or, if the fabric cooperates, you might fringe the raw edges.
    Choose a cotton or blend in a tropical weight that is supple for easy tying and draping. If the fabric is too heavy it gets too thick in spots where it’s folded, rolled or tied. If it’s too thin, undergarments (or body parts) show through.  See-through sarongs  make good swim suit cover-ups but we’re talking here  about sarongs as garments that require little or no other clothing.

    For instructions on half a dozen or more ways to wrap and  tie a pareo, do an internet search for “ways to tie a sarong. ”  There are dozens of such sites. Incidentally, you don’t have it right until it stays put all day without pins. (Full disclosure: I never mastered that. A safety pin here and there might avoid a wardrobe malfunction.). The idea is to wrap it around the body, then roll down the top to secure it. 

    A true sarong folds flat like a sheet, so you can have half a dozen to use as garments, beach blankets, swim suit cover-ups or a light cover when grabbing a cat nap. They wash and dry as easily as handkerchiefs and usually require no ironing. 

    Look for fabrics you adore.  While traveling in Indonesia I bought a beautiful batik sarong that now serves as a tableloth. 


Love to travel? Wish you could travel more? Dream with author Farley Halladay, a widow who once lived on a boat and now travels vicariously through her online boat booking business. She also cooks, copes with caregiving and solves cozy crimes in this quirky series. 

The latest is May Misfire. Then you’ll want to go back to read January Justice, February Felony, March Malice and April Avenger.


Friday, August 7, 2020

Campgrounds: The New Normal

Blog copyright Janet Groene 2020, all rights reserved. To pay a voluntary subscription of $5 a year use your PayPal account to janetgroene at Thank you.

Campgrounds: The New Normal

copyright janet groene 2020

    Are you feeling frustrated when the bottom keeps dropping out of your RV camping plans because of some new rule or fee? Me too. Here’s where knowledge is power.

    These days it’s important to know not just where you are going but what lies between you and that destination. Your destination may be open but your route should be changed because of flood, wildfire, rock slide  or other emergency.

    Here is this week’s latest gathering of news and cues from the changing world of RV travel. This is just a sampling but it shows the importance of checking ahead,  being flexible and always having a Plan B. Some of my best travel experiences have been caused by what seemed like disasters at the time.

Don’t let fear ruin the fun. 

    * Some luxury resort campgrounds have adopted the common hotel practice of putting a substantial Hold on your credit or debit card at the time you make reservations. In other words, you haven’t committed just the cost of the campsite but a reserve fund for charges you might make such as greens fees or restaurant meals.  If you’re getting close to your credit limit, these charges could put you over the top without knowing it.

    * It’s common for many businesses now to ask customers to sign a liability waiver before using, say, the hot tub or zip line. Now some campgrounds ask for you to sign such a waiver before entering, even for a simple overnight stay. 

    * If you are attending an event such as a concert or fair where  RV camping is available, two reservations and deposits may be required, each with different rules, fees and refund requirements.

    * More and more campgrounds now prohibit campers from bringing their own firewood because of concerns over spread of some pest or disease.  They may, however, offer firewood for sale. In addition, fire bans come and go quickly, banning all open fires. Be prepared to cook another way.

    * When a campground says they do propane refills, check ahead to make sure this applies to built-in as well as removable tanks.

    * If a quarantine is in place, you may have to wait seven to 14 days before entering or leaving.  COVID rules vary widely among states, cities, counties and countries and may change quickly.  

Campfires may be banned completely or built only with firewood purchased at the campground

    * Reservations have become easier. Thanks to the interview, you can reserve not just a campsite but THE site in THE loop that you want. However, cancellation policies differ greatly. Even deposits that are refundable may be minus a “conveniece” fee of $5 to $10. 

    * RV-ing with a pet has never been easier but new rules may apply about veterinarian records, shots or social distancing in dog parks and also in equestrian camping.

     * The campground may be open but the pool, restaurant or other feature may be closed. Know before you go. 
    We’ll keep up with these changes and welcome your input. Have you encountered a new twist on camping rules? Please leave a comment to share


An ample pantry is the ultimate travel insurance. Here's a way to handle food emergencies of all kinds. Survival Food Handbook is written specifically for campers and boaters who have limited space and must adapt to many different situations.

RV Travel and and Job Opportunities

Blog copyright Janet Groene 2020. To donate $5 a year as a voluntary subscription to these weekly posts use your PayPal account to janetgroe...