Detour of Homes 2012

7 Dec Detour of Homes

This past Wednesday, Casey and I had the opportunity to join in on one of my favorite events, the annual Detour of Homes, organized by Norma at Max’s Haus. A “celebration of soulful spaces,” most of the homes are smaller, with a focus on creative organization and decorating with antique finds, or goods that people already own. We moved our bus to a public spot for the “tour” and shared the spotlight at the after party with 2 of our best friends who parked right beside us.

The feedback we received on our home and the work we’ve (Casey has) done was so uplifting. If you came and you happen to be reading this – THANK YOU! For your good energy, your smiles, and for being in our space with love.

Here are is one picture of the bus from the Detour, and then some more of recent work we’ve done on the bus…. Check out our amazing Holiday arragements from the creative geniuses at Blumen Meisters (flower masters in German)!! These women are amazing. The bus is getting closer and closer to being “done!” Not sure if we’ll ever feel we’re there. Every little bit completed makes such a huge difference in a small space!



A shot of our neighbor, and Casey’s best friend Bryant in front of their bus.


Now we get into the “real” pictures. As usual, I didn’t clean up for you. These are pictures of what the bus looks like on a daily basis. And yes, mother, I DO now make my bed every morning.


A shot of the bus standing in the bathroom doorway looking forward. I have every square inch of the dinette taken up with my work shtuff…


Looking back from the driver’s seat toward the dinette and kitchen. The cedar trim-out is done! All we have to do now is sell the awesomely huge cooktop, get a new one (with oven maybe!?), and finish out the cabinets to take the place of those burlap curtains.


A better view of the front from the dinette area. That pile on the left is our “give-away” pile that’s constantly changing…. Feels so good to purge!


Picked up some more magnets for photo display…


Our dash/photo display/plant stand. :)


The first thing we see when we walk in our front door. 20121207_0003

Jewelry and hat storage on my side of the bedroom. Wedding and Engagment pictures by the amazingly talented Anne Marie Photography.

A view of our bedroom from the bathroom. Most people were impressed with the shoe storage Casey built me on the side of the wall. Pretty handy!


Another view of the bedroom. Casey finished trimming it out with cedar the morning of the Detour! We LOVE the way this looks.

We dropped the shelf above the fridge to allow for more storage, and moved our dishes there, so that all our food could live together in the shelf above the sink/cooktop.

Dinette Build Out

27 Oct

This past week, Casey decided to build out our dinette for the bus, getting rid of the futon that we’ve had in there for months. While incredibly comfortable when we watch movies and it’s laid down, the futon is just not practical for eating dinner, doing work, having friends over…. I’m amazed, yet again, at the work this man puts out in such a short amount of time. He’s like a worker bee, not stopping until the job is done. It’s pretty incredible. Pretty thankful to have such a handyman in my life.

We decided on this particular configuration (normal size dinette instead of making it bigger, yet also having a bench seat against the wall) for a couple reasons… It allows us room to use the space above the solar equipment as a desk area, extending the countertop out just a bit more, we have a lot more storage space in the seats of the dinette for off-season clothing, etc, the backside of one of the sides is a bookshelf (yes!), and with a space-conscious folding chair we can have dinner for 4 inside if it’s buggy, hot, cold outside. I LOVE IT! And… With a hinges extension on that left side that can be propped up, it also becomes our guest bed/lounging area if we want to chill in the “living room.” I cannot WAIT to get some cushions made for it – for now we’re using some awesome coffeesack pillows a friend made.

Here are a couple before and after pictures. I’ll post more when I get some with my “big” camera; these are from my/his phone. This first one I took before I left for work. Everything was done by the time I got home! Have a feeling that shelf on the left that we put up will have to go… *this is the view looking forward from the bathroom doorway*


Framing out the dinette….


Trimming out with cedar, framing out the backrest. Leaving a backrest off the other side so that we can watch movies and lay down if we want, and also the hinged extension attaches to that far side to make a guest bed.


This is pretty much the final product (without the cushions). We are probably going to have to move the shelf that is currently directly above the dinette so that folks taller than 5’2″ can sit on that side, so I’m excited that Casey decided to build in a bookshelf on the backside of that one pictured. The table is sitting where it would if we had all the cushions out for a guest bed/lounging area. It will soon have a table leg and be mounted to the floor. We will also probably treat all the cedar that we’re trimming the bus out in with linseed oil. Not only do we love the smell, it’s also natural. I just read this article – something to keep in mind when treating wood with linseed oil using cotton rags.


A view of the “office” area… Casey trimmed out that left side in cedar, and extended the countertop to allow for more workspace. Now to finish trimming out that backsplash, stain the top, find a stool, and possibly sell the iMac. Anyone need a computer?



2 Oct

“I do believe in simplicity.

It is astonishing as well as sad,

how many trivial affairs even the wisest thinks he must attend to in a day;

how singular an affair he thinks he must omit.

When the mathematician would solve a difficult problem,

he first frees the equation of all incumbrances,

and reduces it to its simplest terms.

So simplify the problem of life,

distinguish the necessary and the real.

Probe the earth to see where your main roots run.”

~ Henry David Thoreau

living in simplicity. colorado summer 2012

(c) ashlee newman photography

Living in a bus. Down by the river!

16 Sep

We’ve officially moved, with another couple of bus full-timers, down to the river. Those other full-timers happen to be a couple of our best friends, so we’ve parked the buses opposite each other, with doors facing in to a couple picnic tables, hammock, great tree shade, fire pit…. It’s only been a couple days living down below, but it’s such a huge difference.

The RV park where we’re camped, during peak season, long term renters are up on the top level so the weekenders can enjoy the beautiful river spots. Not complaining, don’t get me wrong here. It is so incredibly packed during the summer season, I’d rather be up top, with other like-minded folks, even if it means we don’t have the river (ok so it’s 200m away instead of 3m) or big oak trees.

Here are a few pictures showing the latest developments in the bus. Casey has been busy finishing out the floor, which is now COMPLETE! We may put the leftover panels we have on the steps at the front door, but other than that, the floor is DONE which has made such a huge difference. He also started trimming out the “walls” with cedar, built a bathroom door, and a bench in the front of the bus (which doubles as storage over the wheel well). I picked up some gorgeous muslin curtains I’ve been eyeing for MONTHS at Max’s Haus in New Braunfels. Living in such a small space really makes you think twice, and twice again, about any purchase that will take up any room at all. Something that I’ve talked about a lot with girlfriends is that when living in a small space, it’s so easily cluttered that keeping your place clean, tidy, and simple is HUGELY important.

This place that was once a bus we happened to be living (and dreaming) in, is now feeling more and more like a home. I feel totally comfortable, and am loving, sitting in the bed, listening to the rain patter on the roof, smelling the garlic as Casey’s cooking dinner, and typing this blog post out. Life is so good.

Sometimes I feel like I share too much, or that this becomes more of a journal for my thoughts and documentation of our journey together, but I’m really ok with that. And hopefully, somewhere along the line, we can offer insight for others attempting the same thing (whether it be bus living, or just simplifying every day life)… I would love to hear from anyone who happens to read this – your thoughts, struggles, where you get your inspiration for simple living, and a blog/website if you have one! We’re always looking for inspiration from others doing the same type of thing (living debt free, simply, purposefully).

Love, love and more love to you all on this beautiful rainy day! Muah!

Finishing the floor

13 Sep

Our floor is done!! Next up: building the bed to include storage, dinette, and trim everything out with cedar. It’s amazing the transformation that’s made with putting the wood flooring down. And my goodness it’s so much easier to clean.

Our new bedroom “door?” Those are some amazing muslin curtains I found (and have been eyeing for MONTHS) at Max’s Haus in New Braunfels. They’re exactly what I want and are the perfect light diffuser. Check out the store if you’re in town- tell Norma I sent you. :)



Home stretch

15 Aug

As we’re in the final couple hours of our big trip, I’m (1) really looking forward to a shower and (2) reminiscing over all the photos on my iPhone taken the last week or so. What an amazing trek with my 2 favorite boys. Here are a few of my favorites…















First big road trip

7 Aug

The last week and a half we’ve been on the road, to Moab, Salt Lake City for the Outdoor Retailer Show, back to Moab, and currently climbing to Silverton as the bird chugs along.

The KOA in downtown Salt Lake was absolutely perfect, and allowed us to stay close to the show, riding our bikes back and forth with Koi (our dog) relatively simply. Just make sure you watch out for those damn tram tracks. Took a spill the first night and limped around OR for 3 days. ;)

Here’s an iPhone picture of Koi at an acoustic bluegrass show in the Vasque booth!

It’s been fun to drive the bus across such amazing landscapes, getting thumbs up from truckers, adventurers, full time RVers, and others just curious.

A couple of our friends are nearing the end of hiking the Colorado Trail, so we’re looking forward to visiting with them and enjoying some cooler weather in this higher altitude. Our plan after that is to slowly make our way back to Texas, taking much needed breaks to fly-fish, hike, read, journal, meditate, and just BE.

If you’re in the SW Colorado or Northern New Mexico area, let us know! I’m also curious to hear what you all are doing this summer to re-charge. Please share! 20120807-155040.jpg








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