So, about 2 weeks after evacuating, we bought and moved into an RV. At the time, we thought that insurance was slow in getting us the money for the RV, but since then we realize that we had very unrealistic expectations and that USAA moved exceptionally fast. Thank heavens for the displaced housing allowance!
And, I had thought of waiting to take pictures until we were unpacked all of the way and it was pretty and perfect but… whatever. It is what it is and if you don’t like it, look away now.
This is the RV at my friend Katie’s house. We will owe Katie and her family for the rest of our lives – they’ve proven to be really great friends. That said, for a hermit family that we are well…
We moved back to our property a month ago. Russ and his friend Chet worked so much on the property, getting the dead trees cleared, the foundation removed (it was crumbling – the fire was that hot and the county is not allowing re-construction on burned foundations anyways) and base material/gravel trucked in to allow for driving on the sand.
We added the car port to have a living area outside of the RV and that can be used later for something crazy like parking a car under. The picnic table and chairs were donated at our fire shower and we use them ALL of the time.
We discovered that our sand is at most 6 feet deep, though have heard that in other areas the sand is around 20 feet deep. It is this deep sand that allows the pine trees to survive here. It is otherwise too dry and the trees go away when you’re not on this soil type in this area.
Though, you can see here that it has finally rained a little in the past month. We’re still painfully far behind but… And, thanks to my pal Lynnette who helped us put in the sidewalk!
This is our new bird feeder and bath… the black thing on the post is a bit of metal to keep the squirrels out (it really does work, though right now, there’s not many squirrels to worry about anyways). The birds are slowly coming back and my feeding station is a popular place.
The RV is a 2 bedroom (who knew, right?) so Rosie has her own room. If you collapse the table, you can technically sleep 4 in there, but as it stands, we use the top bunk for a dresser (shelf unit thing from Target), a play area with the table and storage for books and undies in the built in cabinet.
Russ’ mom made the slip covers for her table benches. That’s her little pal Luke (son of Katie) playing with the cute doll house.
And her bed… we’ve since added a “tent” of fuzzy pink blanket that hangs down from the top bunk. Apparently, her little room wasn’t little enough. And, when I say that this is a little or tiny house, I am always corrected – this is a big house according to a 3 year old. (“Real” houses are “giant” just so you know.) Apparently, tiny houses are for dolls. How’s that for a bit of perspective?
The RV has a slide out, which for those of you who don’t have an RV, means that part of the side RV literally slides out about 4 feet, giving much more space on the inside. It is the slide that allows us to be modestly comfortable and function on a long term basis.
The TV is pretty cool. The RV came with the space but we had to add our own TV (it came with an anteanna) and the best part – it rotates! We can watch it from the couch (also came with the RV and is a hide a bed just so you can shoe horn 2 more people into the RV) OR you can rotate the TV into the master bedroom and watch from the comfort of the bed. In fact, after Rosie goes to bed at night, we usually go to bed ourselves and either watch something on Netflix or just go to sleep. Yes, we’re old.
The living area more…
The tiny bathroom – a tub just big enough for a toddler!
With a fridge maybe twice the size of a small dorm fridge, 3 burner stove and a tiny double sink. Yes, I cook in here, no I have not yet used the tiny oven. The white thing on the front of the counter (next to the little pink toy) is actually a Toddy coffee maker, cold brew, that you can buy on line. One of the little splurges and great for lowering the acid in coffee …
The key to sanity in the RV and kitchen especially is small and collapsible. As in strainers (really bulky otherwise) and measuring cups and… and a minimal amount of stuff. The big red square is a dish drying mat I found at Bed Bath and Beyond for $5. Works great and doesn’t take nearly the space as a RV dish drying rack – we put it on top of the stove while doing dishes. As far as supplies… a skillet, a sauce pan and a stock pot and that’s it. A couple of knives, set of 5 for silverware (kept in the red flower pots), 4 matching coffee cups from the grocery store…
And you know what? We’re just fine! Yes, the first month in here I ate a lot of frozen dinners but really, the small is making us eat what I cook, we’re wasting less food, eating fresher stuff (farmers market on Tuesdays) and it’s not that bad. This would be hard to do if we weren’t forced into it – but now, well, it’s not so bad. We’re very grateful to have our own space (again, a trait common of hermits) and to be this comfortable.
Speaking of – this is our bedroom looking in from the door.
And, looking from the head of the bed.
Closets are tiny, but considering that we don’t have that much, it’s OK. And, as stuff comes in, I am constantly weeding out stuff I don’t like or doesn’t fit as well or… and taking it to the donation center for fire people. I’ve only taken a couple of things from there actually.
So, not as bad as most people think – we’re actually kind of enjoying the RV. It’s forcing us to stay minimal, to realize the needs verses the wants and to appreciate what we DO have.
Next post will be more on minimalism and other fun stuff that we’re learning the hard way! Have a great week!