Operation colorful trailer – part 1

I couldn’t take the drab tan on tan on tan anymore in my coachman clipper travel trailer. I tried adding color with pictures and accessories, but it just wasn’t enough. I finally bought 4 upholstery fabrics from Joann’s with a 25% off coupon….only cost $45 including my soda ☺️


I just finished phase one – the window and door valances.


Up next are curtains – the multi colored fabric on the door windows and front window, and yellow as privacy curtains for the bunks.

Final fabric will be the dinette cushion backs and possibly the dark brown tweed strips by the top bunk and dinette back support.

Solo Camping – Self Love Time

img_0498-1June 2, 2017 – On my way home from work after a really long week, I decided I needed some “me” time to relax and rejuvenate.  I am what some call, an “out-going introvert”….I love people and socializing, but to refuel, I need alone time.  This was definitely one of those times.

I pulled in the driveway and tossed my tent, mattress pad, bedding, mini cooler and a few personal items into the Jeep.  I stopped by the BMX track to help out with the Friday night race – I injured my ankle so wasn’t quite up to riding yet.  Then I said my good-byes and jumped in the Jeep and aimed it toward Manchester State Park – about a 20 minute drive from the BMX track in Port Orchard, WA.  En route I realized I had brought my book, but not my journal, so I made a quick stop at a mini mart and bought a spiral notebook and a pen.  Can’t have a soul searching evening and nothing to write with in my world.

I pulled into the campground around 9:30 – it was basically dark, so I let the lady at the booth pick a site for me.  She reminded me I had only 30 minutes before quiet time so I needed to set-up quickly.  I found my spot – #24 – not my ideal spot I realized after wandering the campground the next day, but it suited my purpose just fine.

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I used my headlamp to pitch my dome tent and get my bed ready, and then I crawled inside for an evening of quiet reading, writing, snacking and hard root beer drinking.  I stayed up a couple hours just enjoying the solitude and then went soundly to sleep in the cool air – I love sleeping outdoors!

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The next morning I woke up to a squirrel sitting on my tent staring at me upside down through the screen in the door.  He ran off as soon as I opened my eyes.  Waking up surrounded by nature is so refreshing!

I quickly packed up my camp, grabbed some cherries and a water and set off to explore the campground and hiking trails.  It was slow going with my sore ankle, but I made it.

I wandered through the campground to the day use area, and then up a gravel path by the water.

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I found several old military buildings and saw the ferry boats passing by.  I manged to make it up the HUGE flight of stairs and back to the campground just in time to hop in the Jeep and head back to the BMX track to volunteer if needed for the Saturday morning race.

I felt so much better after spending a spontaneous evening in nature and ready to take on the rest of the weekend, which was very busy indeed.

Gypsy Rig Upgrade…but to what?

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I built a teardrop trailer on a Harbor Freight utility trailer a couple years ago.  I lived in it and towed it all over Oregon and Washington last summer.  It’s not totally finished, but it’s usable.  Here are some photos of my baby!

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I was looking at the BMX race schedule for 2017 and there are a lot of races where camping would be an option (but many times there are only outhouses and no showers), so I started thinking….maybe it’s time to upgrade my gypsy trailer to a rig with a shower and toilet.  Then the question becomes, but to what?  And what do I do with the teardrop?

Upgrade Options …

Motorhome

Travel Trailer

Tent Trailer

Van Conversion

School Bus

Since this is going to end up being quite the major purchase, I decided to first list everything I want in a new Gypsy Rig…

  • Separate shower and toilet
  • Kitchen and seating INSIDE
  • Tall enough to stand in
  • Sleeping room for 4
  • Propane fridge/freezer
  • Fully self-contained
  • Slide out if I ever plan to live in it

Choices, Choices, Choices…

Motorhome – hard to find a small one that is new enough, but not super expensive.  Wouldn’t have to buy a tow rig, but then only have one daily driver (and my kid is about to be a licensed driver).

Travel Trailer – a lot of purchase options around 17′ that have the options I want.  Would need to purchase a tow rig, but then can sell my current car to my kid since it have 211k miles and is only worth about $3300.  If I pick one with a good layout, I could also live in it after my kid graduates and moves out if I wanted to.

Tent Trailer – most can’t be towed with my car, so I’d need a new tow rig.  Also, hard to find one that is fully self-contained.

Van Conversion –  hard to find one that is fully self-contained.

School Bus – I would love this, but I am not at a place to start that huge project and I want it up and running by early April….not possible.

So, the verdict is, I will start looking for a mid-size truck and 17′ travel trailer.  More to come on what I finally pick out!!  Then I can take my time finishing the teardrop, sell it, and put the money towards the Travel Trailer loan.

 

 

Gypsy Bus In The Making

The holiday crazies have hit and I missed my weekly post Tuesday …life happens. Every year my kid and I get a new Christmas ornament to commemorate something special that year. When I started my teardrop trailer build I got a teardrop trailer Christmas ornament, so to kick off the plans for converting a school bus into a tiny mobile home, I got a school bus ornament.

I basically know what I want, but I’m not quite ready to get it yet. 12 window bus with an emergency door on the back and an engine under a hood in the front. Must be diesel and automatic. The back 5 feet will be bike storage and the rest will be my house with a queen at the back and a futon at the front.

More to come….

My Gypsy Life

July 5, 2016 I quit my job and gave up my rental and started the biggest adventure of my life.  I have been a mom pretty much my entire adult life – my kid was born the first term of my sophomore year in college.  This year my kid turned 17…one more year of childhood, and it really hit hard that I have no clue what adulthood looks like without a child to care for.  A wide variety of emotional responses ensued, but the strongest thought was, “I have raised my kid to be independent and venture off into the world, and now it’s time for me to decide what MY future looks like…”  Oh God, that is a scary wide open expanse….

And so, the summer of 2016, while my kid was visiting dad in Florida, I quit my job, gave up the rental in Portland, OR, sold most of my large belongings, packed the rest in a 5×10 storage unit, and on July 12, took to the road in my 2008 Scion xB with my home built 5×8 Teardrop trailer in tow.

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My main objective was to find some place new to settle – a fresh start that was 100% mine.  I had been racing my bike a lot in Washington the first half of the year, and had a cousin willing to house me in her backyard up there, so after a tour of Oregon to visit family, I headed to Shoreline, WA on July 17 to see how it suited me.

I had an amazing summer filled with friends and bicycle riding, but was unsure as the end of summer approached and my kid returned home if I had it in me to start over in a new state.  We spent all of September and half of October in Saginaw, OR at my sister’s house – me living in the trailer in the yard as I had done at my cousin’s all summer and my kid in the guest room.  As winter approached and the weather got colder, this was not a sustainable living situation, so I decided to take another leap and apply for jobs in the Tacoma/Seattle area of Washington.

So, fast-forward to now (December 2016) and my kid and I are settled in a duplex in Gig Harbor/Wauna, WA.  I am back to working a 9-5 job for now and my kid is finishing up high school online.  I intend to enjoy the last year that my kid is still a kid, and hopefully a little longer as high school is completed.  Once that is done, I intend to venture out yet again, this time on a year-long gypsy adventure, but in the meantime, I plan to have lots more mini adventures.  My goal is to post every Tuesday…it could be a weekend adventure, a flashback from my Gypsy Summer, or a rambling on some insight I gained when I turned my life upside down and started fresh.  I hope you enjoy the journey with me!

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