So… We Live in a Camper Now…

I’ve talked a bit about our adventure in moving cross country, in preparation for buying a farm and becoming sustainable farmers.  Our house in Missouri has been on the market since Thanksgiving, and we are patiently waiting for the right buyers to come along.  In the mean time, Papa began looking for a job in Ohio, since that was the other big step to moving.  And, since the universe is generally on our side, he was able to get a great new job, which he started at on May 1.

Now, the big problem became that we are not allowed to set up a permanent residence anywhere except for our home in Missouri, because of our mortgage.  So, while the house remains on the market, we had a choice to make.  Let Papa come on ahead of us to Ohio and live at my mom’s house while the kids and I remained behind with the house, or try to figure out a way for us all to stay together, without procuring another permanent residence.

Since we are kind of big on staying together, we set about figuring out how to do that.  Inspiration struck on the way home from a trip to do interviews and I said, “We could get a camper and camp until the house sells…”  Papa laughed and said, “No.”  That is Papa’s usual response.  Then, he did his Papa thing and thought about it for a while.  And then, we began to contemplate how it could work.  And then the craisglist search was on!

We were able to buy a 1991 Nomad that is 31 feet long and sleeps 8.  There is a queen bedroom in the front of the trailer, with plenty of built in cabinetry.  There is a living room area with a futon that folds down into a full size bed.  Then there is the galley kitchen and dinette.  The dinette bench folds down into a full size bed.  The kitchen has a double sink, a three burner gas range and an oven, room for our toaster oven, a small (but manageable) refrigerator and freezer, and a giant pantry.  There are tons of cabinets built into the living room, kitchen and dining area as well.  Past the dinette, there are  two built in bunks for the big kids.  And at the far back end is the bathroom with a vanity and bath tub.

We were also able to find a 99% perfect campground, as well.  We would love it if the campground were located a bit closer to the area we hope to eventually buy in, but we can’t have it all, I suppose.  As it is, we are enjoying the free range chickens who have discovered that there are children sprinkling crumbs all over our lot.  We are right across the gravel path from the play ground.  I have my clotheslines to dry my clothes on (and anyone who knows me knows how excited I get about britches on the clothesline!).  We have the place almost entirely to ourselves during the week, and all the company we could ask for on the weekend!

Really, the situation is pretty ideal.  And, our family is getting to do so many things that we never have before!  
* I’ve been washing some laundry by hand to save money at the laundromat – and the kids think it is amazing to watch and help with the process.  
* Elliott can play outside more than he would get to at home, where I would have more inside work to do.
* We have regular access to a swimming pool, which we have never had before.  
* We are going for nightly walks with the dog – the dog who still wasn’t leash trained after we had owned him for 2 years.  
* My kids are learning how to make friends, instead of having the built in group of friends that they have known as long as they can remember.  I saw my daughter walk up to a little girl at a garage sale and strike up a conversation for the first time ever, last week.
* I’m learning how to cook on a grill.  It’s a work in progress, but progress is the key word, right?
Long story short, there is a lot of good, all around us.  We are having a great time.  And the growth and change that I see in my kids is huge, in just this short time here.  So, it’s kind of funny that I feel a bit silly telling people that we live in a camper now.  All 5 of us.  And the dog.  And the cat.  And about every 3 weeks I wonder if the campground owner would let me get my own chickens to free range at the campground…  Because honestly, for right this minute, our situation is pretty perfect.  And that has made the transition so much easier.
Stay tuned for my progress redecorating my 1990’s decor camper… 
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5 thoughts on “So… We Live in a Camper Now…

  1. That is so exciting! You’re making me want to live in a camper! It still doesn’t sound like the ideal permanent situation, and I’m sure it has its challenges, but temporarily, especially while the weather is warm, it sounds like a dream! I used to feel so awful for you that your house wasn’t selling, but now I think, “What a blessing!” ~Daniél

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