VanLife Details

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It’s a good thing, right? Reducing excess, living simply, prioritizing experiences over things. How hard can it be? It’s not like we randomly decided to do this last week. This has been years in the works. Endless planning meetings -- Marty thinks that by calling them “sync ups” I’ll enjoy them more. Not yet. Countless decisions being made about what to keep, then revisiting those decisions, trying to understand why tools “make more sense” than throw pillows and dish towels. I’m still slow on that one. Even when it takes longer than expected and we’re doing the thing we always said we’d never do again – live in the place we are remodeling – we don’t doubt that we are on the right path for us.

We were talking with our son Isaac. He and his wife bought a house last summer. Lucky them, they found one that had a finished basement with a separate apartment ready to be rented out. They just wanted to "fix up a few things" and figured it would be ready to go by the end of the month. Fast forward eight months. Those “fixes” turned into a major remodel and only now do they have renters. We asked them if they had known then what they know now if they then would know what they didn’t. JK. Would they have done anything different? The answer was no. Hindsight is always 20/20 and they learned a lot along the way.

If you’ve read any of our recent posts you know the van is also taking longer than we planned, hoped for, dreamed of, speculated about and imagined. We’ve had some redos and realize we will never be master cabinet makers. It’s small and there is no privacy. I’m learning that about the time I break a sweat, Marty is taking off his fleece. We didn’t factor in how hard it would be to find 12v components for the electrical system he designed. That being said, I can see all my clothes at a glance and our tiny refrigerator is super easy to clean. Twenty square feet is a snap to sweep. I always know where Marty is.

Would we do it again? As the temperature approaches 100 degrees and we still have two months of summer, the verdict is out. Vanlife is a great exercise in prioritizing and minimizing, and that has been our goal all along. As of this writing, I’d say Marty is slightly ahead in enthusiasm but I’m leading in “can we just get it done this week?”


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  • Gretchen Opdahl on

    Love this Sean!


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