Home Sweet New Home!

Yes! It’s true. We have a new home. When we were on our last leg of the tour in the Pacific Northwest, we had decided in our rain-induced stupor, that we were done traveling and we were going to settle down. Luckily, the sun came out the next day and we snapped out of that madness :) We happened across a Camping World in Burlington, WA that had recently taken a trade-in and it was exactly what we were looking for. We loved it as soon as we walked in. It was spacious, had a large countertop, HUGE windows, a tall full-sized shower, and more. The most important feature we were looking for…a coach chassis. When an RV is on a coach chassis, it sits up higher, drives smoother, is safer, and has tons of storage in the “basement”.

After many negotiations, we closed on the RV and drove it directly to Green Eye Auto in Eugene, Oregon to have it converted to run on veggie oil. Finding Green Eye was a huge blessing. We definitely did not want to drive the RV back across the country to have it converted at Golden Fuel Systems…simply because it would have cost us thousands of dollars in diesel!! We have nothing against GFS, just didn’t want to pay for the gas :) We talked with Clark at Green Eye on our way through to Portland to make sure he was willing and able to do larger systems, and he was. After a week in the shop (and a lovely visit in Eugene!), we were back out on the road with Matt’s custom “dream” veggie oil system. A big thanks to Clark and crew…they know their stuff and we highly recommend them to anyone looking to “go veg”!

After one last stop in Washington, we arrived in back in Bozeman (home of our first RV remodel!). While we were there, we spent a lot of time with our friends at the Refuge Sustainable Building Center talking about flooring and paint options. We finally decided and got everything painted and built a loft for Bella. A few weeks later, we traveled on to Matt’s parent’s home in Minnesota and finished the bamboo floors and other small projects. There are always little projects going on of course, just like a “real” home, but we have finished the big remodel. All in all, we LOVE our new home. It suits us perfectly and we’ve loved every minute in it. I know you have been patiently waiting for photos…so here they are!

Click here to be magically transported to the Flickr set of our new RV. Some of the photos have notes on them, so if you click on the main page for the photo, you can see the notes.

Here are the specs:

*1998 Western Alpine Coach (small company out of Yakima, WA, now out of business)
*325hp/8.2 liter Cummins Engine
*Onan Quiet Diesel/Veggie Oil Generator
*36′ long by 8′ wide (4 ft longer and same width)
*12′ tall (3 feet taller)
*Fresh Water: 100 gallons
*Grey Water: 10 gallons
*Black Water: 60 gallons
*6 gallon hot water tank
*Automatic leveling system
*Central air/heat
*Central vacuum system (possibly my favorite thing about the RV!)
*Flat panel HD television (we love our movies!)
*Combo convection oven/microwave
*Bamboo floors
*Zero-VOC paint
*King-sized bed with loft

Veggie System:
Custom 150 gallon system by Green Eye Auto
50 gallon “dirty” tank (allows for quick gathering of grease)
100 gallon filtered tank (dirty filters to clean while driving)
100 gallon factory diesel tank (for start up and shut down)
18 second “quick purge” for shut down
Averages between 5-8 mpg

And now to answer some FAQ:

Where is the big blue RV now?
We sold it to Jeff, Kim, and Parks…in Plano, TX. Jeff flew into Seattle to pick it up and drove it back to Texas. Just in case you missed that blog post, you can read more here. They have been busy making it their own and will start traveling as soon as they get everything in order.

Why did you need a new RV?
We didn’t NEED a new RV…it was not essential to our survival on the road. However, we knew that we wanted to make our life on the road more permanent and the new RV allows us to do that. It’s heavier, easier to drive, has more room to stretch out/entertain, I could go on and on, but it’s just better all around.

Are you going to continue doing demos around the country?
We are still going to be traveling around the country, but we are not planning a lot of public demos this year. We aren’t opposed to doing them, but we aren’t seeking them out as actively as last year. This year will be specifically for processing all of our thoughts from the past year…along with doing a lot of writing, catching up on blogs, and photography. We’re settling into “real life” on the road…which means more time with just us as a family (instead of being with other people 24/7) and enjoying the beauty of our country without a super strict timeline. Our loose plan right now is to travel to NYC in a few weeks, then down the East coast, hitting the south and the west in the winter after we fly back to the Midwest for the holidays…similar to last year’s route without as many stops. We love life on the road!

Movies on the Road

Last fall, when we were traveling through Maine, we made a discovery that would change our entertainment options forever. We found Redbox! Redbox allows anyone to rent movies with just the swipe of a debit/credit card (no memberships, no late fees, etc)…and each night is only $1. The kicker is that you can return your movies to ANY Redbox around the country. We’ve been enjoying movies this way for the entire year and we love it! Just today, in Ogallala, NE…we went early this morning and snagged a few new releases. We’ll watch them and return them somewhere in Colorado. They also have free rentals on Mondays and Wednesdays…and you can reserve titles from your computer too! Most communities have Redboxes now…or DVD Express, which is basically the same thing.

Happy movie watching!

P.S. We have no affiliation with Redbox, we just love them :)

Omaha TV Spots

We’ve had a GREAT time in Omaha! A big thanks to all of you who came out to welcome us at the events. We spoke with 3 TV stations…here are the two that I could locate online. They’re similar, but focus on different aspects of the tour. And for those of you who have been begging for photos of the new RV, you’ll be able to catch a few glimpses of the inside :)

Action 3 News

Channel 7

We’re heading to Lincoln, NE today and then on to Boulder/Denver early next week. Have a great weekend!

Omaha Bound!

For all of you in the Omaha/Lincoln, Nebraska area…we have two events planned for this week. We’d love to see you there! A big thanks to all of the folks in Omaha who have worked diligently to get all of this lined up!

Omaha events brought to you by:
What Cheer Creative
Brian Smith Marketing
Pizza Shoppe / PS Collective
The Slowdown
Blue Moon Brewing Company
Mid-American Music Festival

Wed. September 3
7:00 p.m.
729 North 14th Street
Omaha, NE
Benefit concert at The Slowdown
live music by lindsay donovan,
49 cents, jessica lindsay, vago,
matt cox + band, chris saub plus
artwork by Scott Blake

Thurs. September 4
7:00 p.m.
Mid-American Music Festival
PS Collective
6056 Maple Street
Benson, Omaha, NE