*Shameface* and Road Trip Food

I am terrible, seriously its been a long time since I have updated- but I have a bit of an excuse, I’ve been writing for IndieOgdenUtah.com – a blog started by my amazing friend Mikaela and it has grown so rapidly in the past few months that its rather consumed us all, but thats a wonderful thing.

A little update: we raised $914 for the TEARS foundation at our Rummage sale. We have raised $750 in advertising dollars, as 50% of advertising sales from Amer Sports, Grounds For Coffee, and Tona Sushi went to the cause. Coming up after the rummage we have the benefit concert, on May 25th- admission is 7 dollars and we have AMAZING bands lined up to play, amazing raffle prizes, and we will have the most fun ever- you really must come if you are in Northern Utah.

So, back to the trailer. It is so so close to done. Brian is hooking up the sink tomorrow, and we are putting up a bunk above the bed to hold blankets and sleeping bags. Below the bed I’m storing my 10×10 pop up tent (for craft shows), two 6′ tables, our portable grill and propane stove, folding chairs, a large tarp, an emergency road kit, a spare tire and jack, fire extinguisher and by the time we leave likely much more.

Under the benches nothing is stored yet, I’m thinking they will be a nice place to store clothing, shoes, and so on. There will also be more room to store food in the cabinet above the benches, and the cabinet to the side of the bed will soon have shelves or hooks for hanging our clothing in as well, and a door.

Now just a little post on road trip food. Neither Mikaela or I particularly enjoy feeding our kids fast food, but its incredibly tempting isnt it? Fast, semi affordable, and widely available. Thing is, we do not have a lot of cash to spare, nor do we want to feel sick or have the kids feel sick eating nothing but fast food the whole way.

So whats the plan? Prep Package and Placate!

Prep:
Before we leave we are going to have a kitchen day where we will prep our road trip meals and snacks.
On the menu:  Muffins, PB&J’s, Breakfast/Energy Cookies, Rice crispy treats, Granola bars, Roasted Garbanzo Beans, Tortilla roll ups, Cold chicken strips, Hard Boiled Eggs, Crackers & Cheese, Hummus, Sunflower seed packs, wheat thins, goldfish crackers, jerky, single serving packages, and a few large bags of bulk candies and the like.

Package:
Children are visual. My kids could be handed a plastic baggie of skittles and be excited, but hand them their own bag and they are THRILLED. Home-made granola bars are so much less cool than granola bars in fancy wrapping. We’re going to individually package and contain small packs of treats, to give to the kids like gifts. Its so so easy to do and really fun as well. Here are some examples:
Cute as a Button Display, via Bakerella http://www.flickr.com/photos/bakerella/4319920050/
Made with love bag toppers, via Stay-at-Home Artist: http://www.stayathomeartist.com/2011/01/made-with-love-baggie-tags-printable.html
Arent those cute? My kids will respond to those with absolute joy- and it will save us from buying them a treat at every single stop. We will package small portions of candies, granola bars, rice crispy treats, sunflower seeds, crackers, and so on. I also plan on making custom wrappers for water bottles, to make them a touch more special for the kids.

Placate:
A genius idea from Mikaela was to gather up a bunch of quarters before we go! If the children insist (and we’re too tired to resist) we can give them change to get treats and toys from little .25c vending machines, they get a treat and we are happy to not overspend at each stop! Being prepared with snacks, food, drinks, and small toys will avoid the over-spending that can happen on a road trip.

I will update tomorrow with pictures, we’re just doing finishing touches now- but I’ll leave you with these, from our mini road trip to the Holi festival last month. 

A little pic in the IKEA parking lot before we headed south

Mikaela, keeping hydrated!

 

Well… darn

So, my laptop took a bit of a… to put it lightly… nosedive… and I lost alot of photos, but here are some updates:

#1. The maps have gone up the wall and around the ceiling, they end above the bed where a storage bunk will be added.

#2. The closet has been built over the wheel well, for shelving and hanging shirts.

(pic was lost with laptop crash… more coming soon….)

#3. The cushions are re-covered (sorry, another lost pic), the table installed but I will be making a new one, I dont like this one as much as I thought I would.

#4. The Bed frame is put in

(again……)

#5. The kitchen has been put in, it will have a skirt under the sink, hiding the 5 gallon “clean” and “grey” water bottles. I refinished the sink. I painted the countertop a faux marble/granite.

 

So yeah, more pics coming soon… I’ll take some tomorrow in the light. Its so so much further than this.

In fact, all thats left is curtains, buying a mattress for the bed, framing out the window, building the extra shelf above the bed, making a door for the closet, putting in new flooring, and cutting a new table- which may sound like alot but its not!

One more thing…

The trailer will be making its first BIG trip in June. My friend Mikaela an I will be driving up to Washington to participate in the 2012 TEARS Foundation Rock & Walk. Read more about our trip here: http://silverfirsfarm.wordpress.com/2011/12/04/the-tears-foundation-project/

To prepare, we’re going to:

  1. put new bearings on the trailer, grab a spare as well, and practice changing a tire on the bad boy.
  2. teach Mikki to drive, and get her a license!! She may not pull the trailer but in case of emergencies she needs to know how.
  3. stock the trailer with safety triangles, flares, fire extinguisher, extra cans of propane, flashlights, batteries….

and probably more I havent thought of, right?

Progress….

The weather hasnt been the best for awhile, so we took a little break from the trailer- but this past weekend alot of important work was slammed out, making it possible for me to start working on the interior decor.

We built the bed frame, a piano hinge is on the back, allowing us access to precious storage space below. We are going to insulate under there as well, as soon as all the junk is cleaned off the top (one thing at a time…) and it fits a queen bed. We may build storage shelves above the bed, instead of a bunk, as well.

The kitchen area is untouched, I havent decided yet how I would like it to look- but I am close to a decision. I think.

The bench we had to knock out has been rebuilt, and I finally settled on a color scheme… inspired by the ’60s we’re going for a bright poppy orange and (aqua) blue color scheme. The bed base, cabinets, and benches are all orange- it pops so nicely against the maps! The fabric will be blue and maybe some blue an orange print if I can find one I like. I found some 1960’s green drinking glasses I’m excited to bring in, and I’ll just have pops of color everywhere!

The table hasnt been re-cut yet, I’m still pondering what kind of system I’d like to use on it… folding legs? A post? We’ll see….

The cushions for the bench/table are being re-covered today or tomorrow, it really depends on my kids – sewing with them over my shoulder is basically impossible.

We havent decided what to build next to the bed on the other side yet, but I am leaning towards a shallow closet with a door that we can store shoes, toiletries, and that type of stuff in. I have to draw a few examples so we can stare at them, bicker over them a bit, and decide which one we want to go with (aka which one hubby prefers to build)… thats pretty much how we do things around here.

One last thing: That “buddy” spaceheater? AWESOME! Its indoor safe and has safety shut offs, but they suggest leaving a window cracked just in case. Even with a window cracked the space heater warmed my whole trailer in about 20 minutes, and then set to low, kept it warm in our 25* weather! I bumped into it and it shut off, as designed, but I’m also able to move it without it going out every time- so it has just the right amount of control in that regard. I’m really pleased with it, and it will allow us to camp earlier and later in the season. I’m not sure its enough to want to camp in cold weather like this, after all this trailer doesnt have a bathroom so thats one icy trip outside to potty… but its a great comfort knowing its there!

Snow

Nothing being done currently… we’ve been busy beavers preparing for the winter, however we’ll be getting started on the interior again soon. We’re 100% wired up, 100% painted and cleaned up, and ready for some new guts!

Maps!

Well, I’m not 100% satisfied with it, but its almost done! I might go back and layer some more maps over the top, add little interesting things on… but the basics are finished! It looks like wallpaper to me which is fun, and I love the colors!

Just a tip: you dont need to buy expensive modge podge for this. Simple “school glue” or “elmers” which you can usually find for around .50c a bottle on sale, mixed 50/50 with water: decoupage medium! I swear it works just as well, it takes a bit longer to dry but its much more forgiving and has a nice sheen without being shiny. I just did a nice layer on the wood, layed down my maps being careful not to get air bubbles (but I did let it wrinkle which I kinda love!) and then do a nice thin coat over the top to seal it.

I got the maps at a local map/school supply store for $4.00 each, I used 4 total for a total project cost of under $20.

Three bottles of glue: $1.50, maps $16.00, paintbrush $1.00

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So close

OK a post is STILL coming about electrical, but its hard to get the hubby to sit down and write something this time of year, hes got work, college, fall yardwork, the trailer, a wife, two kids, two dogs, two cats…

in the meantime, some updated photos. The ceiling is done, the walls are patched and wallpapered, and I’ve just finished painting it a creamy white, not bright white but still bright enough to smooth over imperfections. A paint tip I learned long ago: imperfect walls you should always use a satin or eggshell, as semigloss or anything shiny will actually make the imperfections stand out more. So I used an eggshell finish and in just under an hour I had a nice coat of paint on the walls and ceiling. We will re-install the light fixtures later, and I’ll be working on sewing for a few days I’m sure. I need to sew covers for the cushions for the benches, a cover for the cushion that will go on the bunk (when its re-built) and sew new curtains for the windows, as well as a skirt for the sink.

To be built:
We need to rebuild the left bench, we saved the old front piece as a template
We need to build the kitchen sink area and choose a countertop
We need to build the bed platform, the entire top will lift up and have storage underneath
We need to build some kind of storage solution for the right wall, where the closet used to be
We need to install new flooring (most likely peel and stick tiles)
We need to trim out all the screw holes in the ceiling, we’ll just do lines of thin strips of trim
We need to trim out where the ceiling meets the walls
We need to install the sink and hand pump system

I’m sure there is a bit more but really, the list is getting smaller and smaller!!

Some photos!

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