It is best when things are both.
We’ve been living in the Airstream for a year and a half now. Whuuuuutttt. Some days it feels as if we’ve lived there forever and other days it feels like we just moved in yesterday. But that’s what life is like, am I right? We’ve now got our routines down and our lives seem very “normal” for living in 188 square feet.
I do have to admit, old man winter is not my favorite person right now. Staying warm in an Airstream can be a challenge. (Read more about how we stay warm here.) When it’s cold outside, I just want to hibernate, but it is so important for my sanity to get out and go places and do things. The struggle is real.
We did get a blessed glimpse of spring this past weekend and I feel renewed. I’m so ready for working in my garden and long hikes in the woods and cooking on our fire pit! All that snow was pretty, but I’m ready for you, spring.
Are you seeing glimpses of spring in your neck of the woods? Let me know in the comments!
This week I’ve been fretting and worrying and losing sleep over a conference I’m planning. In the midst of Pinteresting table decorations until my eyes crossed, I stumbled across this quote. It brought me back to earth. I live simply everyday, but I still make aspects of my life more complicated than they need to be.
Here’s to keeping it simple this Tuesday and always.
I swear to you all that I’m not a narcissistic person, although it might seem that way just looking at the title of this post. I came up with the idea to do this post as a way for you all to get a glimpse into what day-to-day life is like in my Airstream. Funny story, I actually did this experiment on a Thursday and the entire day was so boring that I waited until Saturday to try it again. My regular work day mostly consists of me going to work and not spending time in the Airstream at all! (I hope to remedy that one day.) Anyway, I hope this post is at least marginally more interesting than watching paint dry. Here it goes… A day in the life of a full-time Airstreamer.
Wake up to take Bambi out. Brr! It’s cold out there. Jump back in bed for a little while longer.
I make sure the hot water is turned off. When it’s turned on, I can’t boil water or turn on the stove or it will flip the breaker. I boil the water first since I also can’t cook while the electric tea kettle is on, it’s a balancing act, but we manage.
Once the water has boiled, I pour the water over the ground beans to make coffee in our French Press (press it good!), then I get started on the eggs. I have two eggs on a tortilla with guacamole or hot sauce almost every morning. I like not having to think too much about breakfast.
I know at this point, I should just do the dishes, but they’ll have to wait because this morning we are headed to our local flea market so we can scout treasures for George to sell. George works for himself as an artist, so it helps for us to have multiple income streams.
I make sure to turn the hot water back on so it’ll be hot by the time we get home. I then throw on (probably too many) layers of clothes and put Bambi in a sweatshirt and hit the road in our (new to us) van.
We realize on the way to the flea market we have no cash. Cash is king at the flea market, so we stop at a Trader Joe’s on the way. We need coconut oil and sweetened condensed milk. George runs in while I wait in the car. Trader Joe’s has neither coconut oil nor sweetened condensed milk, so George grabs beer and chocolate. Good choices, my husband, good choices. And we’re on the road again!
Finally make it to the flea market. Bambi doesn’t like to walk at the flea market. I don’t know if she is scared of the big dogs or she’s just a princess, but I carry her the entire time. My arms ache, but I try to think of it as a workout. We find a few treasures, nothing spectacular, but a few things that we think will sell. We never buy anything for ourselves. It’s hard, but when we’re at the flea market we aren’t looking for ourselves, we’re looking to make money.
We managed to make our way around the flea market and see everything. George brought a few things with him that he sold to a friend, so we leave the flea market to drop off that stuff. I’m fully aware that it’s ironic that George makes most of his money making and selling stuff. Not everyone is a minimalist and that’s ok.
We drop off the stuff and since Trader Joe’s was so bare, we head to a different grocery store on the way home. I try to get most of my groceries from our CSA, but it’s the end of the month and our cupboards are bare!
We finally get back home. By this time, I’m getting hangry, so I fix a small snack. George says I’m stingy because I won’t share, but he can have his own! I’m on a new eating regimen and I only get so many calories a day, so each one is precious! I know it’s mean.
I start by tackling the huge mound of dishes. Doing dishes is one of my most hated chores. The dishes never end! Before I even get to the end, I’m out of hot water. I switch the hot water off, so I can boil some more. In the mean time, I start tackling the bathroom.
While I relax, George sweeps the floors. Cleaning around our house is like a dance, it requires a lot of coordination and it’s difficult for two people to be in the same space at the same time. We usually just take different tasks and try to clean and cook at different times.
My afternoon snack was minuscule and I’m getting hungry again. But after cleaning up, I want something fast and easy. I picked up some gluten-free chicken nuggets on my grocery store trip, so I heat those up in our mini convection oven. I also fix a salad. I know it’s not the most healthy meal, but it’s fast, easy and I don’t have to clean much.
We head to a friend’s house. This particular friend is fixing up an old school bus to live in. I should have taken a few pictures, but I documenting every bit of your day is sort of weird. Right? I did manage to take a picture of the fire pit?
We head home. It’s Bambi’s second dinner time! I fix another snack and a glass of wine. Of course, I forgot to turn on the hot water so I watch a bit of TV while it heats up. We don’t have a real TV and live happily without one. (Here’s how.)
I fall asleep watching Dual Survivor.
I wake up and take a shower. I realize how lame I am.
Was this enlightening for you? My life isn’t always exciting, but it’s usually a good one.
I am so pumped about this post! I love to see how families make living small work for them. Today we’ve got Nick Peterson from Livin’ Lightly. Nick, his wife, and two young children live, travel and work from an Airstream! Take it away, Nick…
Hello! We are the Peterson family! My wife and two kids (daughter 3 years and son 5 months) live, travel and work in our 1966 Airstream Overlander. We’ve been living small full-time for the past two years.
For us tiny living was never about the space. (At least not entirely.) We chose to live small so that we can live large in other areas of our life. Life’s all about trade-offs.
Pre-Airstream the daily grind consisted of work, paying bills then we tried to squeeze in some family, friends and fun. After the birth of our daughter we began to rethink our existence and intentionally plan our life.
In preparation for this transition we buckled down and cut all unnecessary spending, got on a strict budget, paid off our debt and saved. We purged and sold all our stuff, bought a vintage Airstream and a big truck to pull it. We worked to build versatile and largely passive income streams to pay the bills.
Here’s to living the small space large life dream!
Aren’t they just the cutest?! You can read more about Nick and his family on their blog, Livin’ Lightly or on IG: livinlightly. And remember, If you want to submit your own Small Life, email me asmalllifemelanie @ gmail dot com.