Is this “Glamping”??

Jul 30, 2016 | Full time RVing | 1 comment

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Raw, muddy ground

Raw, muddy ground

Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home

How we made our outdoor space Homey!

It was just before Memorial Day and we finally settled into our campsite at the Champlain Valley campground in Swanton, VT.  This of course is the second site that we drove to and made an attempt to settle into because Anne likes to change her mind!  The campground is situated right on beautiful northern Lake Champlain and we ultimately selected this second site due to its beautiful views of the lake from the back side of it and being on the edge of the campground it gave us nice privacy on that back side. 

The site was pretty level where we parked the Minnie but it sloped a bit from the front door with a surface of crushed stone and grass that was a bit tough on the feet even with the rug out.  Most of the seasonal owners here have very nice wood decks out front of their units but we are only here so far for this season and did not wish to spend that kind of money yet on a flat surface.  We talked to the owner, Mark, and he offered to bring in some of the beach gravel which consists of a mix of sand and water sculptured shale pebbles.  Our plan was to put in some 1 X 4’s standing on edge approximately 24 feet wide by 10 feet out from the front of the Winnie to “mold” our patio.  Of course our May here was unusually warm and our site’s only complaint is that it is in the full sun all day long.  So I started laying out the “mold” in the brilliant sunshine and heat which took a day.  Mark came in the next day with several bucket loads of the beach “sand” which we spread in the box we created for a nice level patio.  But that platform that we created was now a bit soft and when we stepped on it we left divots and of course brought a lot of that sand and sculpted stone into the motorhome.  So we needed part 3 of the plan to form.  Our site had some concrete pavers laying around and it occurred to us that pavers would be the perfect solution.  As it happened a search showed that Lowes had a 1 foot square paver on sale for the upcoming holiday.  Perfect! 

IMG_0251IMG_0250So I calculated that we would need approximately 75 pavers for the area we wanted to cover and we headed to Lowes.  Now mind you we tow a vehicle behind the Winnie and it is not a truck.  We tow a very small Suzuki SX4 with has a nice hatchback and we can fit a surprisingly large amount of stuff in it.  On the way I am thinking OK 75 pavers at approximately 18 pounds each and we would be over 1,200 pounds of cargo not counting us as passengers. 

Yikes!!!!!  That would amount to almost half the weight of the whole vehicle!  To be on the safe side we decided to make the 38 mile trip two times bringing half the pavers home at a time.  We spread our load out in the car very carefully placing pavers in as many places as possible so we did not need a pillow on the seat to see out the front.  Anne had pavers on her floor as well as all the passenger floor areas.  The hatchback area was also lined with pavers.  We made it home and decided to return the next day.  Chris went back alone the next day for the remaining pavers and noted that the cost was less per paver than the day before.  So off to customer service and they agreed to reduce the previous day charges.  So if I had a truck I would have paid more than I should have.  Well Chris balanced the second load again and made it back home safe and sound.  We finished up our paver patio in the heat again and finally we were able to extend the awning for some needed shade.  The patio looks great, works as planned and we love it.  And best of all total cost just over $100!  A wood deck would have cost probably 8 times that.  Best of all if we decide to move to a different site for next season the pavers can go with us. 

It was fun installing them and they have held up very well indeed even though we did not install according to recommended paver installation methods.  We highly recommend this approach.