Our New Rig – The Before

Well we did it!  We bought a used camper this past weekend, a 1996 Winnebago Adventurer.  It’s smaller, yes.  But cute and it comes with lots of potential.  We’re gearing up to be in full renovation mode very soon.

I love DIYs and can’t wait to get started!

We have lots of great ideas swimming around in our heads, but there are several projects we’re set on on tackling quickly so we can be living full-time in the camper soon.

Here is the list of our immediate projects:

  • Paint Walls
  • Paint Cabinets (and update hardware)
  • Build Bunks in Master
  • Make Foam Mattresses for Bunks
  • Replace Carpet with Vinyl Planks
  • Replace Double Jack-Knife Couch

I also have a dream list, after the majors are complete…

  • Resurface the Exterior Paint
  • Backsplash in Kitchen
  • Install Tankless Water Heater
  • Replace Shower with Tub
  • Replace Sinks
  • Tile Counters
  • Update Light Fixtures
  • Curtains
  • Kick Plate for Central Vac System

I could add a few more to my dream.  The love of my life may just lack enthusiasm over my vision for the camper. A girl can dream though.

Here are some pictures of the RV as we bought it. I forgot to take pictures of the outside and will do so soon.

Loads of pictures because I want evidence of how it looked before we transformed it.

96-winnebago-adventurer-front-seat 96-winnebago-adventurer-view-from-master 96-winnebago-adventurer-master-2 96-winnebago-adventurer-master 96-winnebago-adventurer-nightstand 96-winnebago-adventurer-hall-closet 96-winnebago-adventurer-toilet-area 96-winnebago-adventurer-shower-head 96-winnebago-adventurer-shower 96-winnebago-adventurer-overhead-storage 96-winnebago-adventurer-dining-storage 96-winnebago-adventurer-lounge-chair 96-winnebago-adventurer-kitchen

There you have it folks. Did I miss an area we should update?

3 Super Easy No Bake Christmas Goodies

I had big plans to post a bunch of individual Christmas ideas.  But you know, life happens and it doesn’t always go as planned.

So today I’m going to jam just some of the goodies that we made this year.

Since we’re in the camper, we cut down on baking this year.  Significantly.  In fact I did a baking day at a friend’s house and that was it.

But you’ll notice that the recipes below have some things in common.

  1. no bake
  2. almond bark (I’m not obsessed with the stuff, I promise)
  3. quick and easy to make

We did make other goodies and I swear, and they didn’t even have almond bark!  These are just the quickest things we made and are perfect for last minute treats.

So here they are…

Grasshopper Mint Truffles

grasshopper-mint-truffles

Ingredients

  • 1 (10 oz pkg) Grasshopper cookies
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 8 oz almond bark
  • 1 tsp peppermint extract
  • green food coloring

Directions

In a food processor or blender (I used my Ninja), place the cookies and pulse them until they are a fine crumb consistency.  In a bowl, pour the cookie crumbs into a bowl and mix with the cream cheese, use your hands if necessary.  Refrigerate mixture for about 20 minutes.  Shape mixture into 3/4 inch ball size and place them on wax paper.  Refrigerate for about 20 minutes more.

Once cold, place the almond bark in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on high for about 1 1/2 minutes or until almond bark is almost melted. Stir well (heat in 15 second increments if its not quite melted).

To the almond bark, add the peppermint extract and food coloring.  Dip the truffles into the flavored and colored almond bark.  Tap slightly to remove excess almond bark and place them on wax paper.

Refrigerate in an air tight container.

NOTE:

  • The peppermint extract causes the almond bark to thicken slightly so these don’t end up as smooth as they would if you dipped them in melting chocolate alone.
  • We tried these with regular chocolate and white chocolate (Trust me, DON’T even try the white chocolate – peppermint makes it clumpy and nasty for whatever reason and it’s not a good coating choice).  These are far better with pepperminted almond bark or you can use the mint Ghirardelli (I couldn’t find any though).
  • Other candies and cookies absorb peppermint flavor so if you bring this with other cookies, just be sure to keep the peppermint separate.

 

Ritz Peanut Butter Cookies

*These are about as easy to make as you can get.  My aunt made these last year and I was surprised at how good they were.

Ritz-Peanut-Butter-Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 (24 oz) pkg almond bark
  • Ritz crackers
  • creamy peanut butter

Directions

Place the almond bark in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on high for about 1 1/2 minutes or until almond bark is almost melted. Stir well (heat in 15 second increments if its not quite melted).

Meanwhile, spread one Ritz cracker with peanut butter.  Place another Ritz on top to sandwich the crackers.

Dip “sandwich” in melted almond bark. Place on wax paper to cool.

NOTE:  1 pkg almond bark is enough to make about 60 cookies.

 

Peanut Almond Chewies

Peanut-Almond-Chewies

Ingredients

  • 1 (24 oz) pkg almond bark
  • 1 c. peanut butter
  • 2 c. peanuts
  • 3 c. miniature marshmallows
  • 4 c. rice krispies cereal

Directions

Place the almond bark in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on high for about 1 1/2 minutes or until almond bark is almost melted. Stir well (heat in 15 second increments if its not quite melted).

Mix in the peanut butter until smooth.  Let the mixture cool slightly, then add the peanuts and marshmallows. Gently stir in the rice krispies, you don’t want to crush them.

Using a small cookie scoop, spoon candy onto wax paper and let cool.

 

So there you have them….some great, easy last minute treats to make for Christmas.

But I have to ask, am I the only last minute cook??  I find that if I make goodies to early, we eat them all.

How about you?

Sleep Deprivation in the Camper

I could just post happy thoughts.  I could tell you all the wonderful things about living in a camper and completely ignore the hard times.  I wouldn’t technically be lying to you…I’d just be keeping it positive.  Right?

Well I’m all for keeping it real and not just painting a pretty picture for all to see.

Today, marks 2 weeks in the camper.  I have to say, there have been some great times.  But mostly it’s been a chore to adjust.

Even after we got over being sick.  It seemed like there was a day or 2 of pure joy.  I think mostly because we were so happy to not be sick anymore.  But things start to wear on you.

  • We’ve all had bad attitudes.
  • Nobody has been sleeping well.
  • The kitchen is driving me batty.
  • We’ve barely gotten school done.
  • Laundry logisitics are not so fun.
  • We ran out of propane.
  • It’s been cloudy and gloomy.
  • Mr. Z is on a sleep strike (during the day and at night).

I didn’t want to write a post while we were in the “funk” so I’ve strayed away from posting any new thoughts.

Yesterday afternoon, I dropped Z off at Alicia’s camper so I could go get the laundry.  Like a good friend she listened to me whine about our struggles to adjust and helped me come to a solution.

I think our biggest issue has been sleep, or lack of.  Z had been sleeping through the night  before we moved out here.

Many parents are adamently against letting your baby cry it out at night.  Did you know there is actually an acronym for it?  I didn’t but it is CIO.

I’ll tell you about my Z though.  IF you let him get up at night to feed him, he transforms in to a raging lunatic who refuses to go back to sleep for hours.  The next night it’s even worse and he might wake up 2 or 3 times.  It seems to be a domino effect with him.  It’s just worse and worse.  He learns that you’ll get him up and he’ll screech and scream until you do so.

Now imagine this scenario in a camper.  With 3 other kids in the same room. Uh huh.

We’ve tried all sorts of sleeping arrangements to try to cope with this.  I tried becoming a co-sleeper with him too, but he just liked to stand on our bed and bash our heads for balance.

I *think* we figured out a solution.  Z has got to CIO.  Maybe that makes us bad parents but I know one thing for sure…we love our kids and if we want them to survive into adulthood it’s pretty important we all get some sleep and soon.

I don’t want to bore you with details but for the time being, the 2 oldest sleep on the pulled out couch and little V sleeps with us.  The “dictator” get’s his own room. We may do this arrangement for a few months until Mr. Dictator sleeps like a baby.  I mean a fake baby. that sleeps well. and through the night.

All this to say that things are looking up.  It’s amazing how perspectives change when you get a little shut-eye.

Today’s just begun.  But we’re off to a GREAT start.