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Ten Ways To Live Riveted

As Published In Airstream Live Riveted
Ten Ways To Live Riveted

Full-time Airstreamer Ramona Creel travels year-round and certainly is the epitome of living riveted! One thing about the ‘Live Riveted’ lifestyle is that you don’t have to have an Airstream trailer to do it. In fact, anyone who is “Doing. Being. Seeing. Experiencing. Overcoming. Loving. Risking.” is living riveted. So today we discovered some ways Ramona has organized her life to be able to live riveted.

What does “living riveted” mean to you?

What does “living riveted” mean to me? Freedom, opportunity, exposure to new experiences. It’s about exploration, discovery, really being a part of the world around me — rather than sitting back watching on the sidelines.

Any tips to “live riveted” at the dinner table?

First of all, I shop at farmer’s markets for fresh, seasonal foods. I’m supporting small-scale agriculture and the local economy, my grocery bill is smaller because I’m not paying for veggies to be container-shipped in from Asia or South America, I eat way the heck healthier than when I patronize your run-of-the-mill junk-food-filled supermarket. Plus, I get to try regional delicacies like salmon berries in the Pacific Northwest and fiddleheads in New Brunswick that I wouldn’t otherwise have known about.

I also create my own regional recipes. When you carry your kitchen with you, there’s no excuse for not experimenting in the kitchen. I love finding some weird ingredient that only locals appreciate like dulse or stinging nettle, and inventing a new way of serving it. In fact, I’m going to be releasing a whole series of recipes later this year, all based on my favorite travel-flavored dishes while trekking from Key West to Nova Scotia — keep an eye out for my Eating Great From State To State series.

What’s your favorite way to “live riveted” while sightseeing?

I start by walking every square inch of a new city. I’m a hoofer, so I can be found pounding the pavement in any location at any hour. Whether I’m watching a town wake up or seeing how it rolls its sidewalks up at the end of a day, I can pedestriate for literally hours. (One time while RVing in the District Of Columbia, I started at the National Archives and ended up in Maryland, never once leaving the sidewalk!)

Then I take pictures, and then more pictures, and then even more pictures. I truly feel that I experience an area more completely, that I see things more clearly when looking through a viewfinder. I’m a total shutterbug, as evidenced by my photography portfolio of 5,000+ images on my website — wherever I’m wandering, you can usually find me with camera in hand.

How do you “live riveted” in a cultural sense?

Wherever I am, I love to go on an art walk. One of my greatest joys in life is landing in a new town, hitting the museums and gallery walks, and discovering a painter or sculptor or photographer that I’d never heard of before. I’m not a fan of the white canvas with a white square in one corner symbolizing the state of nothingness in which we all exist, or the pile of torn cardboard and crushed aluminum cans sitting in the middle of an otherwise empty room meant to represent the impermanence of being, but otherwise pretty much anything goes!

I’ve also discovered a passion for learning something about the place I’m visiting. I used to hate history because it seemed so dry and boring. It wasn’t until I hit the road that I discovered how fascinating the past can be, but you never get the full story until you talk to folks in that local area — and nothing makes the smarty-pants part of me happier than to educate one of my fellow citizens about some fact I picked up on my travels they were never taught in school books. For example, I had to go to Canada to learn that there were 17 and not 13 colonies at the start of the civil war, 19 if you count East and West Florida for the brief period it was British-owned. No matter what your interests, there’s a museum out there for everything, from cryptology to teeth, from the holocaust to sex, from currency-production to urinary tracts — heaven!

Any tacky-tourist “live riveted” guilty pleasures?

I smush pennies. As a full-time RVer, I don’t have a lot of space for keepsakes. That’s why I collect elongated coins, the ones where you put a piece of metal currency in a machine and turn a handle to press it with a souvenir design. Inexpensive, highly portable, and found just about everywhere — I’ve pressed pennies with bikers at the Sturgis Rally, with little kids at the zoo, and with Japanese tourists at Disney World. Folks are always stopping me as I crank to ask what the heck I’m doing. (A great ice breaker!)

I also go out of my way to find the funky roadside attractions. I’m a ginormous sucker for old-school tourist draws like an oversized reproduction of Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers” on an easel in the middle of a corn field, a magnetic hill where your car appears to roll backward uphill, or the world’s largest ball of string. The tackier the better!

What’s your favorite way to “live riveted” outside your rig?

Once I’m parked, I’ll take a scenic drive. The very last thing I want in my riveted way of doing things is to whiz through life on an interstate. (Give me the highways and by-ways and backroads, and I’m a happy camper!) I love to unhitch ye olde Excella trailer and take off on a rolling tour of my new temporary home — although I will admit that my definition of “scenic” may be a bit broader than most folks’, including beautiful natural vistas, quaint small towns, clusters of skyscrapers, abandoned ruins, inner-city ghettos, you name it.

I also love to get outside and sweat. One of the coolest things about traveling year-round is that you always find yourself in a different setting, with a variety of brand new outdoor activities at your fingertips. I’ve hiked lava tubes at Mt. St. Helens, windsurfed in Cape Cod, rollerbladed along Venice Beach, snorkeled in Key Largo, crawled through caves in Tennessee, ridden my bike from Atlanta to nearly the Alabama border, gone hang-gliding off sand dunes in Kitty Hawk. When you end up dirty, bleeding, and sweaty, it’s a good day!

Well, if this combination of adventures doesn’t illustrate living riveted, then we don’t know what does! If you need Ramona’s help figuring out a ‘Live Riveted’ itinerary for your next stop — contact her!

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Ramona Creel is an award-winning 15-year veteran organizer and member of the National Association Of Professional Organizers. As well as having birthed “The A-To-Z Of Getting Organized,” Ramona is also the author of “The Professional Organizer’s Bible: A Slightly Irreverent And Completely Unorthodox Guide For Turning Clutter Into A Career”—and the creator of more than 200 “quick-start” business tools and templates for use by productivity professionals. She writes seven different blogs, has worked with hundreds of clients, and has delivered scores of presentations on getting organized. Ramona resides on the roads of America as a full-time RVer—living and working in a 29-foot Airstream. Learn more at and

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