Editor’s Note: This Q&A appeared on the RV Industry Association website. Photos courtesy of Go RVing.
Go RVing has built relationships with RV bloggers, including the Soulful RV Family, who regularly share their stories to its The Scenic Route blog to inspire others.
The Sims family joined efforts with Go RVing in 2016. They speak of their experiences of RVing as an African American family in a community that is becoming more diverse and offer their perspective on homeschooling their three sons while living life on the road.
The Sims’ RV adventure came as a welcomed change in pace to their lives. Keith Sims spent 11 years on the field with a career in the NFL and was ready for a new chapter to unfold. Little did he know his wife, Tia, had been plotting for this moment for years, and had long ago decided that they and their three boys were going to discover new roads – in an RV.
We reached out to Keith and Tia to catch up and learn more about why they decided to explore the RV lifestyle, their experiences on the road and the impact it’s had on their family.
Q: As a homeschooling family, how has RVing impacted the education of your boys?
A: Wow! RVing has completely changed the way we educate our boys. We now structure our curriculum to be able to visit as many areas of study possible. We will allow the boys to dig as deep as they would like on a given subject. A prime example is last year’s solar eclipse. Our boys love studying the solar system. So, we allowed them to do deep research on the eclipse and then we planned an RV trip to make sure they could experience the eclipse in the path of totality! It was awesome for the whole family.
Q: What was a destination that you ended up liking far more than you expected?
A: Maine and Acadia National Park. The summer weather was great, nice and cool in the evenings. The sunsets would take your breath away each night. We loved exploring Acadia National Park and the city of Bar Harbor. And of course, we had to take the boys to the state capital building. Our tour guide was so cool he even let the boys bang the Senate gavel! Definitely want to go back.
Q: How has RVing affected your relationships with your spouse and your children?
A: The boys had their own rooms, but the more time we spend together in the RV, the less they wanted to be apart. So, we ended up moving all three boys together and now they share a ignite room. As for us, we have really enjoyed the extra closeness that tight spaces yield. We also have learned to read each other better, like when we each need some private alone time.
Q: What is one thing you wish someone told you before you started RVing?
A: We wish we would have known how impactful the experiences would be. RVing has opened our minds to exploring and learning and seeing history first hand. From visiting the site where the first shots of the revolutionary war, exploring Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, to the site where Martin Luther King was assassinated. We have taken our boys to those places to see with their own eyes where history has taken place.
Q: Where is a place on your RV bucket list that you most want to visit?
A: For Keith, it’s Alaska. I have this desire to see the glaciers and the wild untamed county. It looks so beautiful. For Tia, it’s every major city she hasn’t visited and California. Tia is more a city dweller and loves using the RV to visit cities. The one big place, and I mean that literally, would be Canada. Tia wants to explore, visit and experience the culture.
To follow the Soulful RV Family and their adventures, go to www.soulfulrvfamily.com.