World’s Most Unlikely Costco Fans!

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Our tiny home on wheels (click photo to enlarge)

People are always shocked to hear how much we love Costco!

They don’t expect us to benefit much from a warehouse store membership because we live in a tiny space (and travel full-time) and we eat very few processed foods.

So, are we the “World’s Most Unlikely Costco Fans”?! Read below about the 2 reasons we think we might be…and YOU be the judge. 🙂

Reason #1 –

People are surprised we shop so much at Costco because we are passionate believers in the idea of living simply.

IMG_0811We personally own very few things. We live and travel full-time in our tiny campervan – literally everything we own fits in here and travels with us. We don’t have a storage unit full of stuff anywhere, and we sold our home and property years ago.

Because we own so few things, we only own things that we LOVE! And so many of our very favorite things were purchased at Costco because we love the savings as well as the quality of the products they sell (not to mention their awesome return policy!).

Here are a few of our favorite purchases from Costco…

christy with camera

Me and my Canon 70D

While traveling, we’ve developed a passion for nature and wildlife photography (and documenting our travels, too). All of our photos are taken with the Canon 70D camera that we purchased from Costco last year. Our nature and wildlife gallery is on display at www.ChristyP.com. These photos allows us to earn some income while traveling since we are only in our 30s and nowhere near retirement age.

My eyeglasses are a Costco purchase that I use all day, every day.

And, of course, we make use of the savings on gasoline – one of the most critical things we need for our travels! We try to run out of gas anytime we’re near Costco’s awesome gas prices!

Our GoPro video camera is great for recording our adventures, and we’d literally be lost without our Garmin GPS that we use every day (also a Costco purchase)!

We love our Bem portable speaker for listening to music during the day, but we especially rely on it for listening to white noise at night since we’re always sleeping in new places with unpredictable noises.

Thanks to the Braun cordless razor (which we got a great deal on at Costco), we’ve both switched to dry shaving since we live with limited amounts of water on board our RV; and this razor works WAY better than others we’ve tried!

We were super excited to find the Smart Works Pop-Up Organizer at Costco, which we use every week when we do laundry. For nearly a year, we wished someone would invent a collapsible laundry basket. We even scoured the internet looking for a space-saving solution. Then, one day, we spotted this amazing item while walking through Costco! YES!

Needless to say, with our adventurous lifestyle, we track a LOT of dirt into this tiny little space. So we needed a powerful vacuum that we could store conveniently. We tried out dozens of options, but there was no contest once we discovered the Dyson DC 44 stick vacuum at Costco!

And, since we’re on the road full-time, it’s great to have peace of mind knowing that we can fill our van tires to the recommended tire pressure or jump start our rig anytime if necessary without finding someone to help when we’re in the middle of nowhere. Thanks to the jump box we found at Costco, these things are never a concern for us – plus, we can air up our own bicycle tires in a snap, too.

Reason #2 –

People are surprised we shop so often at Costco because we are natural foods advocates.

kitchen

A glance at our kitchen (click photo to enlarge)

We eat a natural, additive-free diet; and we make a living teaching others how to shop for and prepare natural, additive-free foods at www.CompletelyNourished.com.

Until I tell them about it, most folks have no idea that Costco sells so many natural and organic food items…and at great prices! The savings on these foods alone literally more than pays for our membership fee!

kitchen cabinet

A peek inside our pantry (click to enlarge photo)

When we moved into our camper van, I assumed I’d be kissing my Costco shopping days good-bye.But, actually, we can squeeze a surprising amount of goodies into our van as you can see by this snapshot of the inside our our pantry.

(The fridge is packed, too, with all sorts of meats, fruits, veggies and eggs from Costco…but I had trouble standing back far enough to get a good picture. LOL!)

I like to think that if we can eat natural, additive-free foods and benefit from the savings at Costco with our lifestyle and our teeny kitchen and limited storage space in our less than 150 square feet of living space, then anyone can find ways to eat more natural foods!

Some of our favorite natural foods that we are still able to purchase at Costco are:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Organic eggs
  • Organic and grass-fed meats
  • Cheese
  • Organic salsa
  • Olive oil
  • Organic coconut oil
  • Organic peanut butter
  • Natural almond butter
  • Honey
  • Maple syrup
  • Coffee
  • Organic lemon juice
  • Organic quinoa
  • Wild-caught canned salmon
  • Organic raisins and other dried fruits
  • Almonds
  • Larabar snack bars
  • Organic bread
  • Organic tomato paste
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Sea salt, black pepper and other dry spices

Of course, when we had a full-sized kitchen and more storage space we were able to benefit from even more of Costco’s products…and I still encourage others to do so by sharing all sorts of recipes on our website.

We love Costco for all sorts of products that are not specific to our businesses or lifestyle, too. Even with our tiny living space, we still find room to store other bulk goods and household items from Costco like paper plates, paper bowls, parchment paper, foil, plastic wrap, feminine hygiene products, Dr Bronner’s peppermint soap, etc.

So, what do you think? Are we the “World’s Most Unlikely Costco Fans”? Do you shop at Costco? Are you intrigued? What are YOUR favorite Costco goodies? We’d love to hear from you below!

SUBSCRIBE HERE if you’d like to stay up-to-date on our tips for natural health and happiness! 

Following Our Hearts…

on way home from Apache

It was pretty surreal driving home from the dealer with our baby hitched to us for the first time!

If you ever feel that you are “supposed” to be doing something, I highly recommend following that path to see where it leads!!! It’s been my experience that the journey itself is worth it…regardless of whether or not you ever “get” to where you thought you were headed!!!

Chad and I have just barely begun with our most recent “leap of faith” – acting on the “feeling” that we should travel full-time in an RV…and work remotely! It’s only been 5 weeks since our desire to “hit the road” appeared, and I can tell you already that the journey has been SO incredibly worth it….regardless of where this series of events is ultimately headed!

Several friends and family members have reached out to us because they were concerned that something was wrong. Quite ironic, actually, because life has never felt so right as far as we’re concerned. But I suppose that’s what following your heart does for ya, huh? 😉 (In their defense… from their perspective this whole idea just “sprung up overnight.” It also seemed that way to us at first, actually, but in hindsight we can see a whole series of events in our lives that, although we didn’t understand the meaning of them at the time, have actually been leading us to right here for quite some time. That will have to be a whole future blog post of its own!) For now, here’s a bit to catch everyone up to speed on our situation…

sunset on way home with RV

First sunset “on the road” (on our way home from the RV dealer!)

About 5 weeks ago, I announced on our Facebook page that Chad and I were selling our home and our stuff and hitting the road full-time in an RV. The reasons why are too many to mention here, but I hope to blog about them all very soon. Shortly thereafter, I posted that we were not selling our house, after all, and were planning to just travel a lot, basically.

So for the past few weeks, we’ve been pursuing that plan and shopping around for a camper that would serve that “part-time” purpose. I plan to blog about that in more detail eventually, but for now suffice it to say that “Plan B” just wasn’t coming together. Ultimately, we realized it wasn’t working out because it’s not what we truly felt we were being led to do. Intuition is so incredibly persistent, huh?! You can try to deny it, but the heart wants what the heart wants! So…..we’re back to “Plan A” (well, sort of) and things feel “right” again.

With our original “Plan A,” we were just days away from putting our house on the market when we realized that there was going to be a lot of work to do and a lot of time (potentially) to wait before we’d be able to hit the road…because we weren’t going to purchase an RV until after we sold our house…and that can take a while. Again, I’ll be blogging here soon about all of this and all of the reasons that we got started on this path, etc. (so register for email updates here if you’d like)….but for now…here’s where things stand…

Christy at Apache

Hitched up for the first time (at Apache Camper Center)

We purchased our very first RV – a fifth wheel that is big enough (??) for us to live in full-time but also affordable enough for us to feel comfortable purchasing it before selling our home. We picked up the RV a couple days ago and found out we have a ton to learn…but it’s waaaaay exciting!!! We’ve gotten a few of our first RV “accomplishments” under our belt now, so we’re on our way to gaining some kind of comfort level with all of this, I suppose (ahhhh…I hope!)…

  1. We (…err…Chad) drove the 25 minutes through town from the dealer to our house without harming anyone or anything (that we know of…). Not bad for the first time towing such a monstrosity, eh?!
  2. We (…err…Chad) backed it into the driveway without knocking over the garage!
  3. We (…err…Chad) unhitched it without it rolling away…and even got it all leveled nicely!
  4. Hey! Don’t think I haven’t done my part, though…someone had to shop for bath mats and throw pillows (and RV floral does not make coordination easy)!
  5. We even survived our first “tragedy”…yes, even before leaving our own driveway. LOL! Apparently if it’s really cold and snowy, you should not pull your slides in on your RV (“slides” are extra parts of the camper that slide out to make your rooms larger by the way). When it’s cold and snowing outside, ice can form on top of the slide roof. When the slide is in, the slide roof (and its accompanying ice) will be inside your RV, as well…which means water will be on your floor as soon as the ice melts. Luckily this occurred to us before we had the slide all the way in, and we aborted and stuck the slide back out. Hopefully we didn’t damage anything by trying to drag that thin layer of ice inside, though? Oops!

    chad and christy

    Home sweet home (?)

Now, we’re busy preparing our RV. It needs new tires and we have some supplies (and courage…gulp!) to gather, etc. Then, thanks to some wonderful friends who will be moving into our home to stay with our dog while we’re gone, we’ll be hitting the road very soon for a while to verify that we love the lifestyle as much as we feel that we will. If it’s a 100% “go,” then we’ll return to Nebraska and sell the house (and most of our belongings) as originally planned.

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Our current property…for sale soon??

Yes, full-time RVing will mean no longer owning our gorgeous 1-acre, country-in-the-city property that we fell madly in love with and purchased just two years ago. And, no, we have not “lost our minds”! But thanks for checking! (hee, hee!). Funny how your intuition can make decisions that are objectively pretty major not really feel all that drastic at all. Seriously, in this moment it simply feels to us like… “It’s been wonderful living here in this amazing place that we still can’t believe we ever found…Actually, it feels like we’ve always lived here (because this place was so perfect for us when we found it)…Okay, well enough of that…let’s see what’s next…”

If you were along for the ride when we found this property two years ago, and you’ve witnessed our excitement and overflowing gratitude over the blessing of living here, then you may find our current endeavor a bit shocking, I suppose. But rest assured…that level of excitement that you witnessed regarding our current life situation…Well, that’s exactly how we feel about our new endeavor now!! In fact, owning this amazing property actually contributed in its own way to our desire to own no property at all…and to not live in Nebraska.

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Stay tuned for natural recipes and “how-to” videos from our mobile kitchen!

It’s a long story (which I’ll surely blog about later), but the short of it is that living on this property and enjoying all of the nature, trees, peace and quiet, open space and wildlife made Chad and I realize just how much we enjoy (rather, how much we need) that as part of our daily lives. Snuggling on our deck and gazing at the stars on cool fall evenings, laying under our huge shade trees on summer afternoons, and chatting over breakfast on the deck on warm spring mornings made us realize just how much we do not enjoy cold Nebraska winters for one thing! Problem is, if there’s somewhere we’d rather live, we have no idea where that would be…and, of course, warmer places have their downsides, too. So why not just go live…everywhere, right!? 😉

Okay, so cold winters are definitely not the sole driving force behind our desire to hit the road – far from it, actually. But for now….I’ve got an RV to go pack! More to come soon, so stay tuned…