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The Waki Way - Living full-time in a motor home

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We always seem to get asked the same questions about living somewhat off grid in a motor home, to which the answers seem to spark a dozen more questions! So (to give our voices a rest!) here's the answers to our most frequently asked questions...

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The Best Insect-Repellents tested

Image courtesy of alex_ugalek at FreeDigitalPhotos.netImage courtesy of alex_ugalek at FreeDigitalPhotos.netHow is it that the smallest of creatures can have the biggest impact? The high pitched battle cry of a mosquito in the bedroom sends a shiver down the spine of the toughest of us. I totally admit to hiding under the bed covers in fear, pleading ‘Don’t eat me! Take him, he’s far tastier than I…’ sorry Ryan! ;)

They don’t go for me often, I’m one of the lucky ones with bad tasting blood I guess, but when they do... they sure make up for it! My skin tends to react strongly to the intrusion and I’ll be a mass of swelling :( Of course luckily all we really have to worry about in the UK is some serious itching and an unsightly array of bumps (which is bad enough in itself!) but in countries where Malaria or Dengue Fever is rife, or even the more recently worrying Zika virus, one bite can leave you very ill indeed.


When we used to keep horses my mum, using her knowledge as an aromatherapist, would mix up a potent brew of essential oils which we used diluted (never put essential oils on your skin undiluted) in a spray bottle on both the horses and ourselves against the big-biters we encountered in the field. If you've not encountered them personally, trust me when I say that compared to Horse and Cattle flies, mosquitoes are wimps! Folks report mixed results using citronella, some it works for and some it doesn’t, though ‘mothers brew’ contained garlic oil alongside it which drove EVERYTHING away proving the rule about garlic and vampires – though also earned us some sideways glances in the supermarket if we stopped by for something! To say we stank would be an understatement… :D


I’ve been planning a post on repellents for a while but like many things hadn’t gotten around to it until today. I can’t really take the credit since the folks at did the hard work, we just get to reap the rewards in happy bite-free skin! That’s nice of them isn’t it?

There are many arguments for and against repellents containing the chemical DEET, and of course our attitude at The Waki Way is generally that you shouldn’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat – but then I also appreciate that a zillion mosquito bites (especially in high risk areas) will feel far more damaging than what DEET might do to you, if used correctly. That being said if you’re totally against using it, then stick to your guns and don’t since they found plenty that work well without it – more power to you! Whatever you’d rather, head on over to to see the full report including their results on non-DEET and natural repellents also tested.

I’m really impressed that the natural repellent made it into the top 4, although a little pricey I’ll likely be placing an order for some of that and by the sounds of it smells much nicer than ‘mothers brew’ so we shouldn’t clear the campsite!


The best mosquito repellents tested by>


I only itched my head a few (hundred) times whilst writing this, how did you fare reading? Comments and personal horror stories below… 


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About us:

My name is Sarah and in 2011 my husband Ryan and I decided to buy and re-fit an old motor home - we named it Waki and now live in it full time in the UK!

We live neither on or off-grid, rather somewhere in between, and are not the first and I dare say not the last to choose this way of life... read more>> 

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