RV Budgeting: Cost and Expenses

RV living seems like a good way to save money while living in a natural setting. While saving a chunk of money on rent and bills monthly, and with the possibility of re-selling the home at an equivalent price, there are costs and expenses to be aware of before purchasing a mobile home.


-Trailer: ( $5,000) 

Our budget was on average $4,000. We knew we wanted a trailer with slide-out, 25ft+, and in a decent shape (no mold, no leaks). After several weeks of research, we realized that we had to raise up our budget a bit in order to get something closer to what we needed. We found our home on wheels on Craigslist. After driving a couple hours to see it, we realized that pictures aren’t always accurate and sometimes it is a “what-you-see-is-what-you-get” kinda deal. The trailer was listed at $5,500 and we managed to get it at $5,000.


-Insurances and Transfer Fees: ($150)

Insurances always depend what kind of vehicle you have and what you need. Insuring a trailer for a year is normally very cheap.

-Towing: ($350)

Since we are parking our trailer at the same location for a few months, we didn’t feel the urge on installing a fifth wheel itch on the truck. Instead, we hired someone from Craigslist that charged a flat rate to tow our fifth wheel to our town (200km). It was cheaper than buying and installing the hitch, and it was done professionally and safely.

-Repairs ($225 so far)

You never know what to truly expect when you purchase a used recreational vehicle. So be ready for the unexpected!

  • Floor: wood laminate on Craigslist: $75
  • Fix leaks (yeah, there were leaks!): plastic cement+ tools: $50
  • Replacing fridge: $100

-Making It Home: ($400)

  • Coffee table: $25
  • Closet and shoe organizers: $40
  • Fluffy blankets, and pillow cases: $20
  • 2 Electric heaters: $135
  • Electric fireplace: $150
  • 2×4 for deck and stairs: 30

-Propane tanks: ($16/mth)

We have 2 propane tanks. They seem to cost about $16 each to fill up where we live. We estimate that we will use one a month for cooking and water heating. As we have full hookups, we will try to solely heat with electric heaters to save on propane.


My partner works construction so he has leftover material and gets good deals. He got sheets of plywood that we put around the trailer, as well as foam panels to insulate. We still need to cover the pipes and protect the roof. To be continued…

Total: $6,000

In all, so far, we spent just over $6,000 for our new home. We are realizing that owning and living in an RV during the winter months could become an expensive lifestyle. We already spent over $1,000 just to make it ready to move in and we haven’t put a roof on it for the winter yet. That might be the next thing to be put on our list. This is all new and exciting and we are always aware of possible complication. Life in a RV will definitely be quite an adventure!

Stay tuned!

Hornby Island for a Family Vacation

Raised by a single mother and with an older brother that took on his freedom filled life as soon as I was born, I never really had the chance to understand the term “family vacation”. Of course my mom always made sure we would go on road-trips and explore the beautiful corners and cultural gems of the province of Quebec. It was always a memorable mother-daughter vacation, sometimes tagged with our furry friends.

My brother settled in British Columbia 15 years ago where he met his wife and her family. My first solo flight was when I was 15, to go and visit him on the other side of the country. I got really close to this new circle, a reconstructed family of many siblings. Now that my brother and I both live in the province, he on the island, and I in the mountains, we don’t see each other as often as we wish, but I try to commit to once a year since he now has two beautiful blooming boys. So, when my brother and his wife invited me to their annual family vacation on Hornby Island, there was no way I could miss this special reunion.

We left Whistler on Friday afternoon after work. We boarded the 5:20pm ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay. The 1:40min scenic ride through the Gulf Islands was refreshing and relaxing, soothing a long work week.


Once in Nanaimo, we drove north on Highway BC-19A. I had booked a campsite at Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park, just to make the trip less cumbersome and more enjoyable. Rathtrevor Park is located along the shoreline, in the city of Parksville. The campground is very clean and the sites are large, well-maintained and just few steps from the beach.

In the morning, Juno and I went for a stroll. We traversed the short path to the beach across an old-growth forest. The low tide left us with many treasures to find on the golden sand. I took deep breathes and soaked in the fresh air.


After everything was packed up, we head back on the Oceanside Highway and drove north towards Buckley Bay. We hopped on the ferry towards Denman. Then drove accross the island and took another 10min-ferry onto Hornby.

Hornby Island has a small community of less than 1,000 residents, mostly artists, retirees, bohemians, and any lovers of the remote rural island life. We followed the road that hugged the sandstone shorelines, making our way to the northeast of the island. We arrived at Tribune Bay Campground, where we set up camp. The clouds slowly covered the sky, predicting a heavy rain. We set up a large tarp above our site, making our cozy home for the weekend.


The rain arrived at the same time as my family. We greeted under the protecting trees. We built a shelter from pop-up tents and tarps where we found dry refuge for the afternoon. After dinner we sat around the fire-pit, catching up with the grown-ups while grandma told stories to the kids.

The weather cleared out the next morning and we spent the day at Tribune Bay Beach. The kids played in the waves, leftover from the stormy weather.

In the evening we headed to the Pizza Galore. We sat on blankets on the soft grass in the middle of an orchard. Under an apple tree we opened our bottle of wine and enjoyed delicious homemade pizzas. A live band paired our meals with notes of beautiful music while kids played hide and seek, and others played boardgames under the trees.


The sunbeams scattered the sky. We spent another night around the fire pit, telling stories and playing games. And when the night reached its deep darkness, we took a stroll on the beach. We watched the constellations grace the night as the shooting stars ignited one by one.


We woke up to a stunning sky. The rain evaporated from the heating ground. The kids rushed through breakfast, ready to hit the beach. We headed to Helliwell Beach, located on a headland at the southeast of the island. The sand is white, the beach endless, and the water of a crystal clear blue I have never seen in Canada.


It was a beautiful day skimboarding, kayaking and paddleboarding.

The girls even opened up a sand spa for anyone keen of a natural seaside massage.


It was time for me to head back. I kissed and hugged deeply everyone goodbye. As we drove away, I waived a last farewell to my brother still standing on the beach watching me depart.

The 3 ferries home gave me the time and the space to imprint all those beautiful memories I had made. I thought about my dear mother, who I wished could’ve made the trip from the East. I am so privileged to have the mother and the brother that I have, along with all my consanguinity family. I am also so grateful to be part of this circle of people that I have met at 15 years old, half way through my current life. I hope to many more family vacations.


Whether they are your parents, sibblings, family members, affinities, friends, or whoever with there is a sense of belonging, unconditional love, mutual respect and care, acknowledge who those people are and make time for them, as often as you can. Family is not an important thing. It’s everything. Now if you excuse me, I’m going to call my mother.


The Call To Adventure

When the adventure is calling, you need to listen. Whether it is the wanderlust kicking in, a thirst for an unusual experience, or an immediate urge to escape, adventuring is the best way to disconnect from your daily routine, and reconnect with yourself.

This week, Julie and I decided to leave the Vancouver Coast & Mountains and drive north on Highway 99 towards the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast.

We left Whistler at dusk, with a car packed with camping gear and supplies, two excited dogs and a canoe strapped atop. We drove north on the open road with no fixed plans, just a map, and a snow storm in the forecast.

As we approached the pioneer village of Pemberton, we glimpsed at the sun slowly rising from behind the impressive peaks of Mt-Currie. The road carved through the indian reserve, following the Lillooet River. We drove along the shoreline of Lillooet Lake before climbing the winding Duffey road. We could feel the cool coastal air and noticed leftover snow glittering on the pavement.

photo 4

The road stretched through the southern boundary of the Cayoosh Range, with no signs of civilization, just nature resting quietly in cold air. We felt the air warming up as we approached the dry climate of Lillooet. We kept going on the rugged road meandering through steep cliffs and towering peaks.

On our left side, we perceived a splash of bright blue nestling in between majestic mountains. Seton Lake is a freshwater fjord on Cayoosh Creek, near the confluence of the Seton and Fraser Rivers. It stretches for 27km and is known as one of the deepest lakes in British Columbia. Seton Portage Historic Provincial Park is a popular recreational destination allowing its visitors to fish, swim, boat, and hike. The lake is also part of a hydro electric project.

photo 5

We had a snack on the beach, allowing the dogs to stretch their legs. We contemplated the incredible blue hues of the glacial-fed lake and the majestic mountains framing perfect scenery.

photo 5

We pursued our drive up to Lillooet, a small community on the Fraser River, at an intersection of deep gorges. Rich in history and culture, this little town is also home to an abundance of wildlife, unspoiled mountains, lakes, and valleys.We continued through the Gold Rush Trail, driving along scenic panoramic views of wide benchlands and the mighty Fraser Canyon dropping abruptly through narrow rock gorges and flanked by high cliffs.

photo 2

We arrived in early afternoon at Marble Canyon Provincial Park. The canyon is known to be a rare geological formation in BC. It is created from a collapsed karst formation, and a microcrystalline limestone bedrock. The drive is gripping and with the dry climate it really feels like a place far away from home. We drove pass Pavilion Lake, where we admired the vibrant shades of blues and greens formed by a colony of microbialites. We kept driving and arrived at a small campground between Turquoise and Crown Lake. No one was there, perhaps still early for camping season, and bit brisk and windy. That meant that we had the lake to ourselves! Perfect! We unloaded the canoe and loaded it up with our gear. We headed for a beach on the other side of Crown Lake where we set up a waterfront camp.

photo 2

We faced west, and admired the golden light reflecting on the Chimney Rock amongst the limestone cliffs erecting steeply in front of us. The water was intensively green and clear. This was the perfect setting. We had snacks on the beach and admired our surroundings.

When camp was set, we boarded the canoe and explored the lake. Julie noticed a waterfall on our left, so we beached and hiked towards our find.

We followed a narrow trail that climbed the steep mountainside and found a small cave. We sat inside, our feet dangling off the cliff and contemplated the beauties laying ahead as the sun set.

We spent the night bundled up by the fire, telling stories of life and watching a moon crossing a starry sky. The mountains reflected perfectly on a serene lake. There was no snow nor storm on the horizon, just 2 girls, 2 dogs, and a perfect setting, embracing every moment, and collecting memories.

Adventuring gives us the opportunity to find beautiful places, wander and get lost in them. Take risks, live dangerously, adventure often, explore more, never stop wondering and wandering, create a path and leave a trail. It’s okay not knowing where we are going, as long as we keep learning along the way, and embrace every moment we meet. 

Rohr Lake – Cayoosh Range, BC

Camping has always been an important part of my life. Since I moved to the west coast in 2003, I camp almost every weekend from late spring to early autumn. In the winter, I camp in the cabins of the backcountry. I don’t mind cold temperatures and am not scared of the wild. In fact, I always put up my tent in the wilderness, places where no one goes, and probably no one’s been. Camping is for me a way of disconnecting from the hustling of my everyday life, reconnecting with myself and finding healing through nature. In fact, for me, there is nothing like the feeling of the mothering power from the earth under my bare feet, the cleansing of my lungs from the pure air, the soothing sound of nature in my ears, and the eye candy images of the natural beauty surrounding me.

I have done truck, boat, canoe, and snowmobile camping. However, I have never camped by foot. I have done a lot of day hikes. However, I have always come back at dusk thinking how great would it be to sleep here under the stars. When I called my outdoorsy friend Claudel and explained her my plan, she jumped aboard instantly.

Most of the hiking trails here in the Sea to Sky are part of Provincial Parks or are watershed areas. Both owners of active dogs, we had to find a trail that allowed our furry friends to happily run wild and free. After a long research, I found Rohr Lake.

Rohr Lake is situated in the Cayoosh Range, on an alpine bench north east of Mt Rohr. The trail is a 15km round trip, for beginner/advanced hikers. I had never heard of it, neither Claudel. There wasn’t much information on the Internet or in the trailmap book, only a few blogs from people that attempted the trail. Perfect, we thought, an unknown and uncrowded trail, exactly up our alley!

We each packed a travel backpack with warm and light clothes, hiking shoes and flip-flops. We had one tent, a chicken salad, a homemade guacamole and corn chips, 2 panini sandwiches, a bunch of grapes and a few energy bars. Claudel brought her sleeping bag and mattress. I went commando on that. I had to leave room for the wine (2 bottles of red, and a sparkling for the mimosas in the morning. Oh and a 6-pack of ciders). Water, dog food, flashlights, whistles, lighters, tissues, cups, cutlery… Our bags were probably half our weight.

It was the last day of spring, on a beautiful and sunny late morning in June. We drove north on Highway 99 to Mt Currie towards Lillooet, on the Duffy Rd. When we passed Joffre Lakes and crossed the first bridge, we turned left onto an unassigned logging road.

photo 1-5

photo 2-6

We drove as far as our car could go, and parked on the side of the trail. If you have a 4WD, you can probably access the trailhead. 

photo 1-3

We walked the rest of the road to the beginning of the trail. It wasn’t much later than 15 min of walking on an easy surface that I thought to myself: Maybe Claudel was right, we could have brought just one bottle of wine…

photo 5-3

The first few km were quite lovely. It was a very easy hike through a well marked forest trail. At times we hopped on rocks to cross streams, at other times traversed stomps over creeks.


photo 2-3

After a steep path, we arrived at the intersection of Aspen and Rohr Lake, where we stopped to catch our breath.

photo 5-1

After a confusion in directions, having to drop our bags down on the ground and search for the trail, we found our way and got back on track. The soil was muddy and slippery, wet and snowy. Yet, we were still pretty clean. We made our way to the alpine meadow, where a blanket of moss appeared under the melting snow.


There was so much snow still that no trail was to be seen. On our right side, there was a rock facade where the stream came down. We knew there was going to be an abrupt 300m uphill, and there it had to be. We left the bags on the grass and climbed the rocks. Miraculously, I spotted a red little flag attached to a tree, flowing in the wind. We scrambled back down the rocks, and picked up our loads.

This wasn’t easy. As much as I could freely jump from rock to rock without my bag, now with 50 pounds glued to my back, I felt unbalanced with a lack of dexterity.

“So this is what it is to hike with an alcoholic!” mocked Claudel, with a winking smile, while climbing the wall with both hands and feet.

Indeed, the fermented juice we both carried made the hike most challenging. Yet, so rewarding!

photo 2-1

After climbing the steep hill, reaching for rocks through the stream and our feet sinking in mud, we made our way on top. We turned around and caught a glimpse of the alpine.

photo 5-2

We made it to Rohr Lake, pristine water surrounded by beautiful mountain. Plus, we had it all to ourselves!

photo 1-2

photo 4-1

photo 2-2

Why bring a mattress when you can find natural cushiness? I made one from cedar. Even Lady used it for a rest.

photo 3-3

The wine was definitely worth the effort and the sweat!

photo 1-6

We celebrated the summer solstice that night up at Rohr Lake. We said farewell to spring as the sun hid behind the mountains. We watched the stars shimmer the sky at night. And when the sun rose up from a short night sleep, we listened to the birds chirping to a new and beautiful morning of summer.

photo 1-1

Wine Holiday: A Road Trip Through Napa Valley

We drove north on highway 29, through scenic switchbacks of lush green grass overlooking fields of wild mustard sprouting under the trellised grapevines. At times, the route wound through open spaces sparkled with grazing livestock and where remarkable old oak trees filled the emptiness and characterized the landscape. We were on our way to Napa Valley, on the open road of Northern California’s wine country: 2 girls, 1 car, 1 tent, 2 days, 312km and a lot of wine in the forecast.

My friend Ashley moved to San Francisco a couple years ago to advance in her career of sommelier. At only 26 years old, she has an impressive and extended knowledge of wine, making her a curious oenophile with a hungry mind. She planned the itinerary, booked visits and tastings at the wineries and pleased me with a tent and sleeping bags consenting on spending the night under the stars. I couldn’t have a better host. IMG_0654   DAY 1: US 101-N/ CA-37 E/ CA-29 N 


It was a mild, breezy and sunny morning of early March. Summer dresses, tweeting birds and blooming cherry blossoms filled the streets of San Francisco as spring took over the last days of a cool winter. It was surprisingly a fogless day in the city, leaving the sky bright and clear. Freshly baked bagels wrapped in a paper bag rested in the backseat of the SUV between cheeses, wine and camping gear. We traversed the impressive Golden Gate Bridge and stopped at a secret local’s spot. After snapping some photographs of the scenic sight and snaking on delicious bagels, we jumped back in the car and embarked on our journey.

Withing an hour, we arrived to the Legendary Napa Valley, where rows of grapevines and blankets of yellow buds welcomed us under a radiant sun.

Napa Valley

Napa Valley is considered one of the premium wine growing regions in the world, ranking first along with France. The valley is located between the Mayacamas Mountain Range and the Vaca Mountains, with the floor of the main valley progressively rising from sea level to 362 feet above sea level. Its geography, Mediterannean climate, and geology blend together to grow quality wine grapes. The rich wine making industry of Napa Valley started well before the Californian gold rush. The first commercial vines planted in the valley was in 1839 by George Yount. Since then, European pioneers came to test their hands at making wine to compete and outrun the ones of their homeland. The industry boomed in the 1860’s and 1870’s as more than 140 wineries blossomed in the valley. However, the arrival of the vine disease phylloxera louse, the Prohibition and the Great Depression affected the wine industry in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After 14 years of abandon, the viticulture slowly recovered and, thanks to the great results of the Paris Wine Tasting of 1976, Napa Valley was recognized as capable of producing the best quality wines. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoS7oxxZR4Y Wine Tastings Tours Napa Valley is home to world-acclaimed wineries. A wine tasting experience is a must. Whether you choose to join a wine tour group, follow a winery cycling circuit, hire a personal chauffeur or opt for a self-guiding visit, this slice of heaven will be sure to give you the ultimate sensory experience. Our first tasting was at Joseph Phelps Vineyards, where we had a very educative private tasting on the terrace. Today, the winery is known as producing important estate-grown wines from the 80 acres of Pinot Noir and 20 acres of Chardonnay. Joseph Phelps’ flagship wine Insignia is recognized as one of the world’s great wines. IMG_0639 Our next stop was at Far Niente, where Ashley booked an early afternoon visit and tasting. We entered a tunnel of Autumn Gold ginkgo trees before arriving to the wrought-iron gate entrance.

Founded in 1885, Far Niente is a magnificent historic stone construction built against a hillside in western Oakville. We took a walk through the beautiful and serene landscaped gardens flourished by bloomed tulips. We finished at the Carriage House, home to a collection of classic automobiles.

Then, we visited the impressive 40,000 square foot wine-aging cave.

The tour followed by tastings featuring current releases of Far Niente estate wines each paired with seasonal cheeses. The best part was kept for the end: a taste of Dolce, a liquid gold, late harvest wine.

Last stop was at Nickel & Nickel where we were welcomed with a glass of their signature 2012 Truchard Chardonnay. We had a very educative visit, as we walked through the historic farmstead.

We were then invited to sit and relax on the porch of the Sullenger House, a restored 1884 Queen Anne-style home. A glass of their 2010 John C. Sullenger Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon was poured in front of us. As we enjoyed every taste and every sip, we watched the hummingbirds feeding on the Rhododendrons and, as the sun slowly made its way towards the hills, we admired its setting rays filtering through the Canary Palm trees.

Bubbles Paired With Sunset As we wanted to catch the last sunrays, we drove up to Auberge du Soleil for a glass of bubbles. Sitting on the beautiful terrace overlooking panoramic views of spectacular vistas, we watched the sunlight dim across the vineyards as it tinted the valley of a golden glow and blushed the sky of a purple light. We sat back, relaxed and enjoyed a glass of their sparkling ‘Auberge du Soleil “Reserve” North Coast’. Perfect setting, pleasant company and palate well pleased.

Fine Dining and Camping Napa Valley is North America’s food and wine premier destination. Over 125 exciting restaurants offer outstanding dining by some of the world’s best chefs. With a farm-to-table culinary scene, the region is sure to take you through a remarkable culinary adventure. We chose to go to Bouchon, a fine dining French bistro located in Yountville. Its relaxed and bold atmosphere put us at ease in our Napa-Casual clothing. We sat at the bar amongst wine connoisseurs and aspiring sommelier masters. The wine was beautiful, the food pleasant, the atmosphere vibrant.

While fellow patrons impressed me with their wine and food knowledge, I piqued their curiosity when I informed them of our camping accommodation. “You girls are in one of the wealthiest communities in all of America, drinking fine wine in a world-class restaurant, and you’re telling me you’ll be sleeping in a tent tonight?” And why not? We arrived at Bothe-Napa Valley State Park where we cracked a bottle of wine and, in our long summer dresses, set up the tent in the protected forest. Delicious wines, fine food, pristine sceneries and a night under the stars. Bliss. photo(7)   DAY 2: CA-29 S / CA-12 W/ CA-116 W/ CA-1 S photo The chilly night turned into a beautiful and sunny morning. The scent of fresh dew balancing on grass and the rays of the rising sun warming up the tent nicely awoke us. We packed the tent, rolled the sleeping bags and hit the road. Breakfast of Bubbles Founded in 1987 by Champage Taittinger, Domaine Carneros is considered a regional landmark.

We sat on the terrace overlooking views of hills covered of endless vineyards. Different tastings are available on the menu, as well as wine and food pairings. We began with the tasting of their sparkling wine trio sampler: Brut Cuvee, Brut Rose and Vermeil Demi-Sec. Other wines were served. At this point, I disconnected myself from the connoisseurs’ exchanges and started a love affair with the bubbles. All of them. Because at the end of the day, I’m not a grape nut. I’m just a wine lover. A big wine lover.

Fresh Oysters, Sparkling Wine and Delicious Cheeses: A Picnic Treat on the Coastal Beach We headed west towards the Pacific coastline. The scenic highway 116 curved through farms, vineyards and tunnels of Redwoods before making its way to the coast.We stopped at the Hog’s Oyster Farm and picked up a tray of fresh oysters and clams from the bar. Along with our bubbles, cheeses and bagels, we rented a picnic table in the beautiful surrounding of Tomales Bay and ventured into a shucking session. It took some effort, but the reward was worth the sweat.

Picturesque Big Sur Coast: The End of the Journey The exhilarating highway 1 is world-known as the best scenic drive. The road, hugging the seaside cliffs, twists and turns as mountains plunge into the Pacific ocean. I admired the astonishing views of Big Sur on my right side, as we drove South back to San Francisco. California’s Pacific Coast highway is a breathtaking drive, the kind that makes you feel alive.

Ashley had one more surprise. She turned left onto Panoramic Highway, and here we were driving up through a forest of Redwood groves and Oak woodlands. We arrived at a spectacular and panoramic view point, a 2,571ft peak in the Mount Tamalpais State Park. I admired the city of San Francisco bustling and hustling down below and marveled at the stunning views of the ocean with a setting sun.

There was no wine here this time, just 2 girls, breathtaking views and blissful smiles. IMG_0772 PS: Don’t drink and drive. Have a designated driver or hire a chauffeur. If you decide to drive, avoid afternoon inebriation by spitting the wine. You can still have a good taste of it, just be responsible and wise. Obviously if you are a wine lover like me, don’t drive. Then you can finish the glasses of your driver 😉

10 Easy Camping Food

If you browsed my blog recently, you might have noticed that I have been enjoying the great outdoors frequently this summer. Just like travelling, camping is for me a way of connecting with the nature and reconnecting with myself. After a long busy week at work, I find comfort in the wilderness. But camping isn’t just a nature occurrence, it could also be a culinary experience.

For those who are tired of the classic wiener on a bun, here are 10 easy camping food to prepare at home (for most of the recipes I haven’t included measures since I like to go freestyle when I cook):

1. Mexican Breakfast     ***Pair with a Ceasar***

Photo taken from http://www.cookorgreenic.com

My brother introduced me this flavouring Mexican dish at my first wild camping adventure out West when I was 15. It stayed one of my favourite since. No preparation needed, except for the guacamole.


  • Tortillas
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Refried beans
  • Sour cream
  • Salsa
  • Homemade guacamole

Prepare the guacamole in advance. Put cheese and refried beans on tortilla, then fold in 2. Place on BBQ grill until the cheese is melted and the tortilla is crispy. Garnish of a generous portion of salsa, sour cream and guacamole. You could add an egg on top as well.

2. Omelette with Pan-fried Potatoes    ***Pair with a coffee Bailey’s***

Photo taken from http://www.thedailymuse.com

This earthy meal is easy to prepare and will wake you up nicely.

Omelette ingredients:

  • Your favourite fresh vegetables
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Cheese (I use cheddar or feta)
  • Cooked bacon (could also be ham)
  • Salt and pepper

Chop the veggies, cheese and meat. In a bowl, beat the eggs and milk. In a Mason jar, combine all dry ingredients together. In a second Mason jar, put the liquid mixture. Once at your outdoor kitchen in the woods, pour the content of the 2 jars in a hot pan and cook just the way you like it.

Pan-fried potatoes ingredients:

  • Red russet potatoes
  • Onion
  • Green onion
  • seasonings

Cut potatoes in half and boil until tender, but still a bit crunchy. Place in a plastic container and toss in olive oil and seasonings. All you need to do is to pan fry until nice and crispy!

Another alternative to this recipe is to put the omelette and hashbrowns in a wrap with sour cream and salsa. It makes a delicious breakfast wrap!

3. Mini-quiches   ***Pair with a homemade Sparkling White Wine Sangria***


Either for breakfast, snack or dinner, these mini-quiches are a real treat!


  • Mini-quiches shells (I use Tenderflake)
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Bacon (or ham)
  • Frozen spinach
  • Feta
  • Cheddar
  • Salt and pepper

Cook the bacon, then chop in small pieces. Unfreeze and drain spinach. Cut feta in small cubes. Beat eggs and milk together, add salt and pepper. Mix the bacon, spinach and cheese to the egg mixture and pour the filling in defrosted shells. Shred some cheddar cheese on top. Follow to instructions for cooking.

4. Ham & Cheese Waffles   ***Pair with a Mimosa***


You need a waffle maker for this one.


  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded cheese
  • 3/4 cup cubed cooked ham or bacon

Beat eggs, milk and oil in a bowl. Combine flour, baking powder and salt, add to egg mixture and beat until smooth. Add cheese and meat. Pour in waffle maker and cook until brown and crispy. Once cooled down, you can store the waffles in aluminum paper. Place them on the BBQ grill until well toasted. Butter up and put maple syrup. Serve with a fruit salad. You’ve got yourself a delicious sweet and salty delicatessen.

5. C.H.E.L.T Croissants    ***Pair with a Cider or a Stout***

Photo taken from http://www.babyhedgehogs.wordpress.com

My boyfriend’s favourite!


  • Croissants
  • Cheese (Brie is phenomenal in this)
  • Ham (for optimum pleasure, substitute for prosciutto)
  • Eggs
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Mayo

Don’t need to give you directions here. Pretty simple. But make sure you toast the whole package on the BBQ grill. Yum!

6. Antipasto Platter    ***Pair with a Pinot Grigio or Dolcetto***

Photo took from http://www.mygoalcalledlife.com

So much to say here! But I’ll link those recipes to awesome food website. Here are some ideas for when the sun is hot in the afternoon and you want a light snack, or to open your appetite before dinner. Plus in camping, we always eat.


  • Hummus
  • Artichoke dip
  • Selection of cured meat
  • Assorted of olives (don’t forget the blue cheese stuffed olives)
  • Marinated vegetables
  • Selection of cheeses
  • Bread
  • Crackers
  • Crudities

7. Marinated Thai Chicken Shish-kabob with Green Bean Salad    ***Pair with a Gewürztraminer***

My mom’s recipe, a true finger licking dish.

Photo taken from http://www.tasteofbbq.com

Thai chicken ingredients:

  • Chicken
  • Fish sauce
  • Oil
  • Garlic
  • Cumin powder
  • Coriander
  • Curry powder
  • Sambal oelek
  • Maple syrup (or brown sugar)

Cut the chicken in bite sizes. Pour all ingredients in a dish plate. Make sure the chicken is all submerged. Cover and refrigerate all night. Place on sticks (if wooden sticks make sure they soaked prior in water). Place in Ziploc bag. Cook on BBQ.

Photo and part of recipe taken from http://www.chow.com

Green bean salad ingredients:

  • Finely chopped shallot
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • Minced garlic clove
  • Haricots verts
  • Grainy Dijon mustard
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh parsley

Cook the shallot, vinegar, and garlic in a pan.  Prepare the beans by cutting the stem end off of each, then boil in salted water. When the shallot mixture is ready, add the mustard and add salt and pepper. Add the oil in a slow, steady stream. Stir in the capers. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed; set aside. When the beans are cooked, drain and add to mixture. Toss well. Put in a plastic container and refrigerate. Serve as a succulent side with the Thai chicken.

8. Grilled Prawns with Orzo Salad   ***Pair with unoaked Chardonnay***

Photo took from http://www.figandcherry.com

Marinated prawns ingredients:

  • Prawns (or shrimps if preferred)
  • Garlic
  • Lemon or lime juice
  • White wine (if you are a fan of prawns, I’m sure there’s some kicking around)
  • Salt and pepper

Marinate the crustacea in oil, garlic and salt and pepper (you can place them on sticks if you want them as skewers, make sure again to soak the wooden sticks in water prior). Ceil in Ziploc bag and refrigerate overnight. When you are ready to feast, add the citrus juice and the white wine to the bag and mix well. Wrap the prawns in foil paper and place on BBQ grill until cooked the way you like (just a few minutes). Or place directly on grill if they are on sticks.

Orzo salad:

Photo taken from http://www.maeskitchen.com

I always have this side dish during Christmas and Thanksgiving and it’s been so delicious that I modified it a bit and started to add it to our camping menu.


  • Orzo
  • Frozen spinach
  • Feta cheese
  • Walnuts
  • Bacon
  • Dried cranberries
  • Oil
  • Salt and pepper

Cook orzo. Chop bacon and cook. Toast walnuts. Once the orzo is cooked, drain and let it cool down. Then add all ingredients together in a large bowl and mix well. Add oil to the salad so it doesn’t sticks. Add salt and pepper. Place in plastic container. Yummy side dish that is as good heated or cold (I prefer it cold).

9. Pasta   ***Pair with a Shiraz***

Photo taken from http://www.bravetart.com

A lot of people don’t think about bringing pasta in camping. But it’s actually very easy to make with no preparation needed (unless you want to add extra to it).


  • Ravioli or tortellini of your choice
  • Sauce of your choice

Boil water in a pot and cook ravioli for 6-8 min. Add sauce. I even add some cured meat from my antipasto platter and add some cheese on top. Voila!

10. Papillote   ***Pair with a Malbec***


A bit of preparation at home and a bit of time to cook, but once you dig in it, I assure you that you won’t be able to stop.


  • Yams
  • Potatoes
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Brocoli
  • Mushrooms
  • Cheese (I use cheddar, my boyfriend uses Velveta cheese)
  • Sausages
  • Butter
  • Seasonings

Cut the vegetables in bite sizes. Take the sausage meat out of the skins. In a large piece of foil paper, place the vegetables, sausage meat, squared pieces of butter and cheese. Combine everything together. Season well. Foil the paper and refrigerate. Just before dinner time, place the papillote in the BBQ (you could also put it straight on the fire). Cook 30-40 min or until everything is soft and hot. This savoury and juicy meal will bring comfort and warmth after a full day playing outside.

Bon Appetit!


Note:  I am not a food blogger and these recipes are just ideas I share with you. Also, I lost my recent pictures on my phone hence the few pictures taken from the Internet. I hope you enjoyed and I wish you a happy end of summer!

Wilderness Pleasures

It is a Monday in early May. A late peaceful afternoon. I am sitting in the boat, parked on its trailer in the driveway of my house, laptop on my thighs. My dog is laying on the bow. I watch cars pass by, kids on their bikes, cats tempting the grass. The air is warm and the smell is beautiful. My other dog attempts to chase a bird that keeps stealing her nuggets in her bowl. I sip on a local apple cider and contemplate life. I am inspired by my surroundings and I type. …Hold on, why am I sitting on the boat on a trailer in the driveway? Why not…


944889_10152816406295721_1665688489_nAs excited wild campers, we went out camping at the lake for the first time of the year 2 weeks ago. It was a cold, windy, gusty, overcast and rainy late April weekend, but who cares? Certainly not me. I am a passionate traveller always striving for new adventures and this is why I chose the Canadian West Coast as my home. British Columbia has all what it needs to satisfy my spirit when I am not on the road overseas. From the mountains to the ocean, from the forests to the lakes, there is never a dull moment for all summer outdoor enthusiasts: ski the glacier, mountain bike down the gnarliest trail, hike to the peak of a mountain, wakeboard the glacier lakes, fish on the ocean, surf on the island, go camping… It is indeed, one of the most beautiful places on Earth.


255669_10152816410760721_1776122002_nWe went out again last weekend, spending 3 days in the wilderness. The sun was hot, the water was a mirror. It was a premature summer weekend offering us a very revitalizing lake to freshen up between our sessions of Vitamin E. The weather was unusual for this time of the year, but much needed and very much enjoyed. The calm water was inviting. I strapped the wakeboard under my feet and carved my turns along the wave. I looked up high and felt the sun on my face. I looked around and admired the views of 9000′ mountain peaks reflecting perfectly on the pristine water. There is no where else I’d rather glide.


946332_10152816408080721_560272956_nAnderson Lake is a recreational paradise located 1 hour north of Whistler. As religious campers, we make it our destination weekly, rain or shine. This weekend, our 3rd camping trip, had rain in the forecast. So we brought extra tarps and rain jackets.The spot we regularly attend to is a place we found a few years ago and decided to make our home. The boys built a rock wall and a fireplace, flatted some spots to put the tents, attached anchors for the boats, even created a landscape around to make it cozy. There is an outdoor ”kitchen”, an outdoor ” living room”, and room for 10 ”bedrooms”. Oh and the outdoor ”bathroom” is definitely the best seat in the house! It is a home, far away from home, far away from televisions and cellphones, where one connects to the other, where soul meets nature. If you want to look for adventure, there are a few waterfalls to hike to and enjoy the view. If you feel more like a rural exploration, you can boat to the village nearby and walk to the only pub in town. Seton Portage is a historic rural community located at the north of Anderson Lake. A few orchards, small farms, one pub. Indulge on a homemade poutine, sip on a bevy and play a game of pool or darts. Get some supplies if needed.


Of course, like everything else, camping is not an activity that everyone enjoys, however, you need to try it before refusing the offer. Myself, I like to get dirty and wash off in a cold lake, I like to fish for dinner, I like to share stories by a bonfire, I like to fall asleep under the stars, I like to wake up to the chanting of the birds, I like to peacefully admire the mountains reflecting symmetrically on the mirror waters, I like to feel the early sun shying behind the trees, I like to sit there for minutes, for hours, for days… Camping for me is a way to splurge into the moment.


Winter surely departed, leaving behind left over snow on the top of our dear rocky mountains. The sun has arrived and is not shy to shine. Sunny bright days and a glorious forecast to stay, might be the joy for all dreaming about summer glow and a sun-kissed tan. I am looking forward to biking the trails with the dogs, cruising the highway along the mountains window down, wind in the hair, or to go canoeing down a river with friends, but most of all, I am looking forward for the next retreat in the wilderness and escape the hustle and bustle of my little town.


If you ever feel stressed, tired or simply out of energy, consider a camping getaway. Connecting with nature will re-boost yourself and revitalize your senses. It might be all you need: a cure found in our beloved nature.