Monday, January 31, 2011

bottom step

today i worked on the bottom step. i'd been avoiding it because i wasn't exactly sure how i could fix it. it was completely rusted through.

the whole step was being held up by about 3 inches on the left side. someone put a huge heavy piece of steel over top. it spread the weight out but it was still pretty dangerous.

first i cut out the old rusty step. i had to cut it in half so i could close the door and stand on the ground to cut behind the door. once i got it off, i slathered some rust converter on the edges.

i bolted some reclaimed wood to the sides of the step on either side. then hung 2x4's across the bottom. i glopped some rubber cement on the nuts to keep them from vibrating open.

tomorrow, i'm going to cut some plywood to fit over top.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

roof/window painting

yes, that is my 4 year old wearing dress pants, an oxford shirt and sweater vest pressure washing the roof of a school bus.

we got a can of elastomeric roof coating (compliments of my sister and her $50 lowes gift card christmas present. thank you, catie!) steven painted (most of) the roof today, while i did the windows. i'm going to paint the inside of the windows too for extra heat protection. steven needs to do the second roof coat next weekend.

steven also got the heater hoses capped off. finally. :P


we finally finished something! the boys bunk beds are done and ready for sleeping! (not like they will even sleep in them anyway. haha)

we raised up the bottom bunk about 5 inches. i didn't want it too close to the wheel well because i thought it need more insulation space than what there was before.

i build a little box for around the wheel well to hold some insulation. when the bunks are in their final position, it will be screwed to the floor. for right now, it's just sitting there.

i put some foil bubble wrap style insulation in the wheel well box. then i put 3 fleece blankets that were in our yard sale pile over top. i think there were 12 layers of fleece total.

i used a mattress we already had for nicholas' top bunk. i just cut it down to fit. i made noah a new one from a foam mattress topper ($36 for a king size)and the cut off from nicholas' mattress.

i wrapped it in an old sheet and tacked it with embroidery floss (left over from 7th grade bracelet making) so the layers won't shift.

we need to reinforce the legs where they stack but other than that, done!

bonus pic of the beach the other day :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

back to business!

on tuesday, i cut down the bunk beds that julie and mike gave us. it was already unscrewed so all i had to do was cut the planks. there were 11 total so it was a quick job.

wednesday, i put the bottom bunk back t0gether and cut the bottom board.

this morning, i put together the top bunk and stacked them. i had to cut a little of the top to get it to fit against the curved ceiling.

they aren't secured to each other very well. i wouldn't let them jump around on bed like that in a house, let alone in a moving bus. yikes.

they did makes themselves at home by eating lunch on their bed. haha

the head space for the bottom bunk is way taller than the top. we might have to do some more fiddling to get them to be more even.

check out this perfection. 2 of the drawers i pulled out of the cab-over fit perfectly underneath on either side of the wheel well. who's excited? this girl.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

the drive home!

the drive home took longer.

we were going to pick up steven at the airport on sunday night but the flight from atlanta to allentown was canceled. ugh. so steven had 2 choices: 1.) wait until a flight that landed monday 5pm or 2.) fly to detroit and get to lvi at noon. he chose the noon flight.

the detroit to allentown was delayed and he ended up getting to allentown at 5pm anyway.

we wanted to leave monday morning and get to washington dc around lunchtime to have time to visit friends. we ended up not getting to their house until 10:30. jenn and family were sooo welcoming though. even with a one month old little baby, they stay up with us until 1am chatting. they even made us some pasta with chicken sausage and turkey (?) meatballs. we wanted to leave the next morning super early but ended up not leaving until 10am because they were so super nice. (i totally spaced and forgot to take any pics.)

after jenn's we headed to huntsville, al to visit brandy. it took 12 hours. it was rough. we got there pretty late. she had one asleep and one that wanted to be asleep. we didn't stay up for very long because everyone was tired. the next morning, nicholas loved playing with a boy his own age. steven napped all morning and brandy and i got some chit chatting in. it was was really nice.

we left around 1:30 and went to new orleans. we got a motel room and crashed. hard. we all slept late (late for us at least). nicholas woke up and had no idea where we were.

the halldorsons came to the motel for visit with us for the morning. they gave us the grand tour of their bus. we got some good info on what they did and the things they would have done differently.
on our way out of the city we drove down bourbon st and explored a little. it was really sad seeing the neighborhoods still so rundown. i'm definitely thankful that i haven't had to deal with anything like that in my life.


i was really excited by the fact that nicholas got to see it. (noah did too but he's too little to get it.) he would have never truly understood what happened there if we hadn't actually been in new orleans and seen the building falling down. none of us would have, really. it makes me feel that this whole bus thing is going to be good for us. we are all going to learn a lot.

we drove across the lake pontchartrain causeway. the longest bridge over water in the US. it was long. i fell asleep before we got to the end :P

roadside mac&cheese in texas

getting some energy out

noah seriously poured his drink into his shoe are drank it. gross.

we left new orleans friday afternoon and got to albuquerque on saturday afternoon. we spend the day hanging out with ella and family. we went out to eat with ella's bff. 6 kids total. 4, 4, 2, 1, 10mo, 10mo. they thought it was crazy. i didn't think it was so bad. lol nicholas and noah alone have acted crazier in a restaurant than the 6 of them did that night. haha

the next morning we went to an awesome park with tons of things to climb on. the boys had a blast. ella and i ran to a thrift shop while they were playing with the daddies. i got a 'simplicity' sign for the bus. she got a basket for shoes. :)

we left around lunchtime. we got home at 10pm sunday. exhausted. steven had off on monday too so we got to take the day to relax and just be home. it was really nice.

the visit!

went to the park in the cold

books read by aunt catie

mimi was weird

got a new cousin!

decorated the tree

parallel parked with aunt susan

climbed on uncle kenny

christmas daddy via skype

mimi got a nook

pop pop and dapple

christmas: take 2 at uncle bobby's

played in the snow with cousins

perfected snowballing

explored the outdoors

noah did too

leaf jumped

uncle bill turned 12!

went sledding!

we're home!

finally! we're back!

in the beginning of december we drove from arizona to pennsylvania in 3 days (thursday night - sunday night). it actually wasn't so bad. we set up the boys in the back seat of the van with the playstation so they could play games or watch a movie.

we stopped a few times at mcdonalds with playplaces for them to get some energy out. one of our stops was at a bounce house. awesome!

we had some roadside wienies.

noah experienced his first snow!