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Plumbing the Tiny Washer

I did it!! I plumbed my tiny washer

It was actually so easy!

The water lines were below the base I made. I took out one dinette bench and this took its place. The other bench had water heater so that stayed and tuned it into a shelf and counter. So water lines run from bedroom in back through bathroom, under fridge , under the stand and into other bench. So I was able to tap into hot and cold water lines.

My dad helped me with this project. I had never plumbed anything, other then switching out a faucet. We found the Shark Bate connectors at the hardware store and it made the job so easy! I had pex pipes to I got some more to build the water line into the washer. I should of added a shut off for hot and cold because of the back flow of hot into cold. I forgot to grab the extra shut offs not thinking it would be a big deal and then someone pointed out my error! I’ll be fixing that after Thanksgiving!

The outside lines took a bit to figure out but I used a rubber tube to step down the built in hose to the port I got.

To my surprise there were wires running below my hole. But I was on the look out for them so I was able to hold them out of the way as we made the outside hole bigger.

Cutting through the outside wall was nerve racking!

The drain port is a standard one used in pop up campers that a garden hose can hook to. I’ll drain to a 5 gallon bucket if boondocking or run it in to sewer hose when hooked up. This way I avoid taking up my gray tank space and trying to plum that would of been a bit harder.

You can find the washer here. The spin basket does get most of the water out but I have thought about the increased humidity it can cause. I’ll be hanging the clothes in the bathroom and I have a small dehumidifier I’ll run. I can keep door closed and even open vent if I need. My other option is drying at campground laundry mat, especially if I get behind on laundry! If I’m just drying I can at least reduce my cost that way!

Pops Wood Shop

My dad taught me everything I know about being handy. When I was younger he would set me up with a board and nails to pound while he was working in his shop. I used to be able to drive a nail in one whack in Kindergarten! 

Don’t worry I am not that cool any more!

But neither are my kids! ha! They are trying, despite whacking their thumbs more then not!

The boys have been spending a lot of time in the wood shop with my dad, more Kai as he is at the perfect age for it, but both are getting some experiences which I love!

Kai’s first project was a sword! My dad showed him how to draw it out on paper and then transfer that to the wood to cut out. He learned how to use the band saw to cut it out and the sander to smooth it out. He painted it and was quite happy with his creation!

Kai’s next project was a bandsaw box and he designed a pistol that will hold a clock.

I love that my sons are learning so much from my dad. I had even started a project earlier in the day as Kai was helping me I realized he knew how to work most of the machines! Tonight my dad jumped in and helped us. Kai learned how to join & glue a board. 

New Cushions for Jack Knife Sofa

New Cushions!

I had ordered a memory foam mattress which was a great price, under $150! It was very high quality and comfortable but it was just too big. It did not fold well going up and down and was constantly slipping down into the walk way.

I knew I was going to need to cut it down but I needed the sofa to be more comfortable for me to sleep on. I sure do miss my Sleep number bed!

The two problems I had was the front of the sofa slanted down so I was sleeping at an angel. The other one was that I could feel the springs through the mattress on that side because it has less material then the top part.

It was a family affair with my dad and mom both helping me with the project.

My dad helped me figure out how to fix the downward slop of the front side of the bed, reduce the gap in between the back and front when its laid flat, and making it a tab bit bigger but still be able to open and close.

I decided to mount the mattress after it was cut down onto plywood boards. I adjust the thickness of the boards for each 1/2 to make up for the decline I was experiencing. This also solved the issues of firmness and feeling the springs.

My mom helped me pick out the fabric and upholster the cushions. I decided to use two different colors to break up the look

Before

After

There is storage underneath the sofa. The original wood door was not in good shape and I trashed it when I redid the floor. I had curtains up temporally until I decided what I wanted to do, but I really disliked them once I had the sofa done!

Since I had extra wood and fabric I recreated a similar flip down door.

After-After

Removing the 30 yr old Microwave Convection Oven

I removed the old microwave convection oven because it hardly heated up water after 2mins and it was most likely giving me cancer 🤣🤣

 I love vintage stuff but a 30 year old microwave…. nope!

I’m totally obsessed with my Cuisinart oven fryer and it fit perfectly in there with room on the side for the cutting board and induction cook plate. I still need to figure out what to put over the front so it’s secure when I’m driving, but that will come another day!

I ordered a electric kettle for less then $20! This way I can boil water quickly which is really the only thing I use a microwave for anyway. I truly don’t like to heat up leftovers in the microwave because it makes food taste like rubber! Plus with cooking smaller I am hoping for less leftovers!

Harvest Host

Thursday 10/4/18

We got on the road heading towards a winery part of Harvest Host. If your not aware of Harvest Host it’s a network of wineries, breweries, farms & museums that allow you to stay on their property for free for one night. It’s expected that you will purchase something in exchange. To me that sounds perfect! I would much rather buy wine and food for $30 then pay a camp ground! I’m fully self contained so I can use my generator, I’ve got water so I don’t need hook ups. You can save 10% off the membership fee by using this link to sign up!

 

Let me tell you, for our first stay with Harvest Host we were so impressed! Susan who is one of the owners welcomed us at the tasing room with the biggest smile! The farm was busy with friends coming in to help harvest the grapes. We had unfortunately arrived to late as they had just finished, but Susan told us to go out to the vineyard and find some grapes and eat them right off the vine.

We got Kona out of the RV and he ran around the vineyard with their dog. It was so funny to see them playing together. Kona was so happy to not have to be on a leash too!

The grapes we ate off of the vine were the most delicious grapes I had ever had. Come to find out they were the ice wine grapes! Yummy!

I did a wine tasting and then took the boys over to see them processing the grapes. 

We got to see how the machine removes the stems and learned about the process of pressing the grapes and how some wines sit with the skins on to retain the color and some skins are removed right away.

The winery also does a rhubarb & apple wine! The Rhubarb was one of my favorites so I got a bottle of that along with one of their reds, Marquette.

All of the wines I tased were amazing. Most times I do a tasing at a winery I will like 1 or 2 but I liked all 6 wines I tasted!

I made me and the boys dinner and we took our food over to the patio under the grape vine pergola. It was a perfect 69 digress outside! The boys played for a bit in the yard with some of the yard games they had out and Kona got to run around a bit more.

I sat down to paint, I wanted to give Susan a thank you gift for hosting us. So I painted the grape leaves from the pergola.

In the morning I got up and secured everything for our drive and we said our good byes, hopefully one day we will return!

****

Norther Sun Winery

983 10th Rd

Bank River, MI 49807

906-399-9212

Mr & Mrs Anthony

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Check out our YouTube Video on Harvest Winery

Sanitizing the RV Water Tank

This should of been one of the first things I did when I got the RV, but it was one of those task that had me unsure of what to do. I know how to demo and rebuild stuff but sanitizing a water tank, that smelled like death, was out of my league. I needed time to pull my big girl panties up and tackle it! I read many post in the RV facebook groups I am in, watched a few YouTube videos and talked to the guy at the RV repair shop.

Frankly it’s not hard or complicated, not like I had psyched myself into believing it would be, but it did take time, and at the end of the day I ended up having to re sanitize the tank after I changed out some pretty nasty hoses, which were the source of the smell.

First I located the release drain for the tank. Our water tank is inside under one of the twin beds in the back bedroom. The drain is inside and a pull up plug, some tank drains are located underneath the RV, so check your manual.

I had picked up a sanitize kit at the RV store. Most blogs I had read said just to use Bleach, our tank is 64 gals so about 1.5 cups is what I would of needed but it smelled really bad so I was hesitant that would take care of the issue all alone. The kit I found had a soap to wash the tank and lines and then a sanitize solution (like bleach) that killed the bacteria.

After I put the blue soap in, I drove the RV around in the yard so I could pull it into the drive way and drain the gray tank into the yard ditch, this allowed the soap to slosh around inside the tank. I let it sit for a few hours too.

My in-laws live on 60+ acres of farm land and the soap is not harmful to environment so I had blessings from my Father in-law to dump in the ditch, but Check your local laws before you start dumping just anywhere!

I ran the soap through all the lines by turning on the water faucets. Then I had to fill the water tank again and add the sanitizing solution. I repeated the step of running the water through all the faucets again.

I filled the tank a 3rd time and rinsed the lines again, then filled the tank a 4th time so we could use it.

The next day the water not only smelled like death still but it also smelled like bleach. UGH!

I ended up draining and refilling again but still no luck. That is when I pulled up my sons bed so I could see the tank. I was hoping to find an access hole so I could get in there with a scrub brush. Unfortunately the port was melted shut. AND then that is when I noticed the clear hose, which was the over flow hose was full of black junk. YUCK!

I decided to try and remove the hoses and replace them before deciding I needed to spend the money on a new tank. That was going to be at least a $500 investment.

I had to unscrew the access port on the outside so I could disconnect the hoses. That is when I found the fresh intake hose also had some scum in it.

I made it to the RV shop before they closed and they hooked me up with the right sized hoses and the rubber putty strip gasket to replace the old one where I had to remove the access port.

After I took the boys to hockey practice I got back to work and got the new hoses installed.

 

I waited till the next day to refill and sanitize the tank since it was cold and raining the night before!

I lead a pretty natural life. I use all natural and organic products so having to use the box sanitizer was honestly unsettling. Especially all the warnings on the side of the box. One of my friends suggested I just use my Thieves Cleaner. Of course! It actually works better then bleach, I’m not sure why I didn’t think about it sooner! I ended up adding 3/4 of a bottle into the tank. I’m sure that is way too much but it was pretty gross! Plus my tank is 64 gallons. I let it sit for 2 days before I drained it, refilled to rinse and refiled to use. I am happy to say the tank is clean and the water doesn’t smell at all!

I was told not to ever use the tank water to drink with so we do have a blue water bottle I picked up at Walmart along with a auto pump (love that!)

I eventually want to get a Berkey but that will have to wait since they are an investment!

 

Boys room in the RV

2 twin beds really appealed to me once I saw it while scrolling through used RV’s online. With all of my RV shopping I had done I was always looking for a bedroom for me and bunks for boys and another bed- either dinette or over head bed for my daughter to use. But then I realized once I was envisioning the realities of living in such a small space and how I like my quite morning time I realized that having the kids in the living area would pose an issue. I could tell them to suck it up but lets be honest, cranky kids are no fun to deal with!

I on Demo Day I removed the oversized valence boxes and window treatments, painted the walls and cabinets and removed the carpet. I installed new Vinyl Plank flooring through out the RV.

I was going to add a bunk above one of the beds but I wasn’t 100% happy with design and I knew that it would pose an issue with making the bottom bunk. Once we decided my daughter was going to stay with my sister & attend High School the need for a 3rd bed in back was needed right away. I would still like to add one so she has her own space when she meets us on breaks or for summer travels. I’m hoping my dad can help with that when we come down to visit! He’s got a great workshop and loves making things!

I love how bright and warm it feels even though I used a cool color pallet! I saw this bedding at Target one day as I roamed the isle alone one day. (Seriously the best mom break ever!) I knew instantly the boys would love it. When we went back to get bedding they both saw it and instantly ran over and grabbed the blankets and started jumping up and down! You can take a kid out of Hawaii but you can’t take Hawaii out of them. They love the ocean and anything ocean related! The Shark pillows were so cute too! They had other cute ocean themed stuffed animals but since we have a huge bag of stuffed animals to deal with I just gave them the mom look and the put them back on the shelf!  They totally got past my “You can only take 2 with you” rule. How does this happen. Why are we over run with stuffed animals?!

There are a few small projects that will get done soon. I left the wood shelf that was behind the wood valence box I removed. I will add a trim piece to that and the boys can keep their small toys safely stored up there. I was going to replace the countertops when I did the kitchen ones but I think I will just paint them. That is defiantly easier and cheeper in the long run! I need to look online at  Target so I can find a new lamp shade for the light too, its a bit yellowed from time!

Decorating & Finishing Touches on Living Area

Before- Looking from driving seats towards back

Looking forward from hallway

One of my must haves when trying to find an RV to live & travel in was a clothes washer. I have two active boys, and boys are boys and get dirty.

But there are two problems with that: 
1- cost
2- bad reviews/issues.

Then I found a small portable washer that is gravity drained (no pump to break) a super fast spin cycle that leaves clothes almost dry and stellar reviews… kicker was it was about $100! 👊🏼

I knew I wasn’t going to use the dinning table so I took one bench out to install the washer and I used the other bench as a shelf and added butcher block counter above.

The distressed wall is actually peal and stick wallpaper! Its so easy to apply and if you want to take it down and change things up it won’t ruin the wall! You can find it in many styles and patterns here!

Metal Basket on wall are from amazon too!

The round circles on the fridge are peel and stick too. I used Rust-Oleum chalk board paint.

The curtains are from Target and are light block, which will help keep the RV cool! I trimmed the curtains to fit the length I wanted and used the extra and made a bed skirt for the jack knife sofa in the living room area.

Raised dog bowl was a great find at Target! Even though it takes up floor space, having it raised allows feet to go under it so it feels like it doesn’t take up so much room.

 

For the Living Room

I had this vision of a space full of color and mixing patterns. I wanted the small space to pop but also flow, ya know since an RV is the ultimate open floor plan!

Before sofa

Target is hands down my favorite store for decorating my house. Each year they never disappoint with their collections!  I bought the same curtains I had in my house because I absolutely love them.  I was drawn to finding a mauve cover for the sofa bed, originally I was envisioning a darker color but I fell in love with this jersey knit blanket ❤️

I scored a few things on clearance like the round blanket and long throw pillow. *Pro tip- check the end caps for discounted items! 👊🏼

I took some of the wood panel wallpaper off of the wall because I’m in love with one of my abstract paintings I did so I just had to hang it up! It pulls all the colors together in the space perfectly.

I can not wait to relax on my sofa after long days exploring the US on our travels!

Before

On the opposite side of the sofa are the boys chairs. One of the reasons I fell in love with this RV was these chairs. I wanted the boys to have seats with seatbelts to travel in and not just a dinette booth. Traveling for 4-6 hrs a day would not be comfortable in a dinette booth! We also have 3 seat belts in the sofa too. I really like sitting in them because I can prop my feet up on the sofa! The table in between the seats I found at an antique shop. I cleaned it up and put a clear spray sealer on it. I just need to get a glass top cut and that project will be complete!

There is a pull down twin above the cab. Kai has requested they use that as their “kid cave” I’ll figure out something to make it special soon but for know I just need to get a sheet on the mattress. It was still wrapped in its original plastic when we got it, the original owners never used it!

Boys hanging out while I worked on finishing the bathroom

This week my mother in-law will help me finish up the new front window curtains we are making. They slide on a track and will give us privacy and help keep things cool. One of the old ones is still hanging but only by a few snaps! My daughter broke off most them when she took them down so we could wash them. But when the sun is beating in the front window they are still useful!