Building the Dream
Updated: Jul 8, 2019
We had one month to get moved into our tiny home on wheels...and time was definitely flying - we had already used up about two weeks! I told my husband that as long as we had somewhere to sleep, eat, and bathe, we were fine to move in and continue building from the inside. So, as soon as the plywood on the floor and walls was installed, we started building our bed, bathroom, and some storage for clothing.
I love the fact that my husband let me use my creative juices to design the layout for the conversion! I have so enjoyed dreaming and planning this tiny space for us! I imagine that being in this small space reminds me of all the times that we stayed at hotels/ inns together, and how special those times were...we really do not need tons of space.
If you think of how happy you feel when you stay at a hotel with your loved ones, only having your favourite clothes with you, and feeling like you have all you need right there...that is how this life is for us. I don't know why it is so important to me to have you understand this lifestyle... maybe because I don't do well with opposition... maybe because I am a people pleaser, and want everyone to like me... whatever it is, I want you to know that I am content in this...
This said, I have to laugh at my first drafts of our floor plan! I remember how excited I was to share this plan with our parents and my friend Nancy. All the women looked at me in a strange manner and questioned my placement of the bed...and two of the three did voice their opinions of why I shouldn't... Hahahaha! Since then, actually after just a few weeks, my dad, Fern, and I totally removed the bed and remade it a different way. I mean, my draft for the bed and awesome storage underneath, was a great one! But the placement of the bed in the bus, was not! My original idea for the whole floor plan was based upon our many hotel stays, and the open concept of a romantic suite. So, instead of having the typical living space divided by the bathroom, I divided the living space from the bathroom, with our bed, the partition being lace curtains. The goal I had in mind, was to have our bathtub only slightly private, so we could enjoy the open space. Open concept - as much as we can have in our 216 square feet of space.
We started with the floor in the back of the bus, so that it would be easier to do, as opposed to having to go around all kinds of corners and in many small spaces. After investigating different types of flooring, and getting more advice from my brother Ronny, Ronnys Renos, we decided on a locking luxury vinyl hardwood-look, which boasted that it was waterproof and scratch-resistant. With having two dogs, and high traffic being right through, Fern and I did not want to have to be concerned with our floor. I have to say, though, that it is not scratch-resistant. I mean, the dogs have not scratched it, but it is scratched, nonetheless, from building and moving...
I saw so many ultimately cool ideas for tiny home bathrooms on Pinterest. But the best one I found was using a horse trough as a bathtub! This tub is lightweight, and durable. I can sit in it like a soaker! It is like a little piece of heaven! We LOVE our baths - and would have missed our soaker tub immensely! I was also thrilled at how inexpensive was the tub. Fern and I did research for the best taps to use in the bus conversion, being that the water pressure is lower than in a regular household, and seeing as I had a specific style in mind, of course, we were having a difficult time finding our dream taps, (shower head included). I hadn't realized that without enough water pressure, the shower head may not work.
On one visit to the local hardware store for supplies, I spotted some taps that were gorgeous, only for the salesman to tell me that they needed stronger water pressure, BUT that he had something in the back that he believed would be perfect for us. He proceeded to bring out the exact style that I had imagined would be amazing! And, when I saw the price had been reduced to less than half of what we were expecting to pay, he then told us that he could do better than that - and he chopped the price in half again!! I literally started to cry! It was a "God-alone could do this" thing!
There are so many neat ideas online - one such concept was in using a cornstarch paste and lace to give privacy on our windows in the bathroom area. It was fairly simply to do and absolutely beautiful - that is, until the humidity of the autumn weather caused it to mold :( So, if you want privacy on your window, this could be perfect in a dry room.
The kitchen is so important to us! We have always loved opening our home to share meals with friends and family, and have full intentions of continuing in this lifestyle, albeit with smaller groups ;) Our kitchen plan began with the ordering of a full-size fridge. I have seen how much food fits into a regular RV fridge, and, well, we like food! Call me spoiled, but I came into this whole tiny home living idea with certain standards, and full-sized appliances were a part of them! We searched many appliance stores looking for a new fridge that has an older look to it, simply for the charm. I finally found "my fridge", paid for it, and went through the ordeal of actually fitting it into our RAV4! Smooshed against the steering wheel and dashboard, Fern and I brought our new treasure back to the property to be plugged into the garage until we were ready to bring it into the bus. Excitedly, we unwrapped the refrigerator, only to find the wrong appliance!! Wow... Regardless, after calling the store, they promised to deliver OUR fridge and take the other one back at that time, and allowed us the use of the one we had until we had our own. Thankfully, we only waited approximately one week. I do appreciate my appliances!
So, for the first few months, we washed our dishes in a bucket outside or in the bathtub, and cooked all our food on an inverter hotplate or on the outdoor grill. I truly missed having a countertop!! Thankfully, we had a patio table and chairs... But life is an adventure, and in having each other and our dream, we had it all!