1996 Roadtrek 210 Popular Remodel - Chalk Paint


Chalk paint is the way to go! It is the paint of the future! Well I am sure people have been using it for a long time, but, we fell in love with how easy it is to use during this remodel.

The best part about it...NO SMELL! Thats right no noxious fumes from the paint, meaning we could paint in our small van without feeling sick to the stomach. Some other things we loved about it? It dries really quick, like in a half hour, so we could do two coats easily in one day. It is easy to clean up mistakes. If you mess up, just use water to wipe it off (this only works before you put the wax on.)

Granted there is the second step of putting the wax on, but for us it beat sanding and priming the surfaces of the faux wood in the van. Chalk paint works on pretty much any surface without any prep work. All we did was clean the surfaces of any dust.

Now just because you can clean mistakes easily, still use painters tape to mark off any areas you don’t want to get paint on. It doesn’t take that long and an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of clean up!

We decided to take everything off the hinges, unscrew all the knobs and paint those parts outside of the van. It a tiny space with lots of drawers, cupboards, and hinges this took a while but was totally worth it to be able to access all the nooks and crannies with paint.

Make sure you keep track of which hardware goes with which door/drawer. It just makes it so much easier to get it all back together.

I hope this post and video helps you get started on the chalk paint project of yours. Let us know what questions you have and we would love to answer in the comments!


Cascade Springs, Heber Valley UT - Post Thanksgiving Magic!

Sometimes my wife has to push me into doing things that I think are a great Idea, but honestly some days I just feel a little bit lazy. Whenever this happens I rarely regret following her lead. 

This Thanksgiving day was one of those times it was a good idea to just go with the flow. 

We spent the day at cascade springs after Thanksgiving meal. Cascade Springs is a large artesian spring, in Heber Valley UT, where mineral deposits from the flowing water have been left behind creating natural terraces and pools of water. It is magnificent! Usually after such a meal I would curl up under the covers in front of a show and enter a food comma. :D This year I was so grateful to get outside and hike around the springs. 

As I stood on the bridge looking up at the water rushing and cascading over the moss laden rocks, everything else went quite. How could something so fierce bring such calm and serenity into my life? The answer was simple for me. I spend so much of my active hours trying to control and manage everything that goes on around me. That is just something I do, and am working relentlessly to undo. Watching the water pounding the rocks, splashing randomly reminded me that I can't control nearly as much as  I am trying to. The rapids of life will rush on, carving ruts in some areas, leaving mineral deposits  behind in others. Yet there is beauty in letting go and letting life be life. My higher power has his hand in all things, and today I say it in the springs.

Get After It!

Hey guys! Mikey Here.

I have been working my butt off getting our little family ready for our van adventure. Who knew there was so much that goes into downvsizing your life. Shouldn't simplifying be simple! :) 

There is so much that goes into down sizing that you probably didn't realize. I know I didn't until I started to do it. First of all, there is the van itself. A lot of my free, well pretty much all of it is spent working on getting that guy family friendly, and comfortable!! Things like painting, flooring, seating, engine maintenance, counter tops, upholstery, sink, burner, propane, generator maintenance, plumbing... and the list goes on and on. But wait there is more, there is getting rid and selling all the stuff we have unconsciously accumulated over the last 4 years of marriage. That is not a small feat. Also, there is the need for medical coverage while traveling with a toddler and getting finances squared away. I think you are starting to get the idea. 

I have never wanted something so bad in my life, and never had to work for something so hard before. It may sound silly to some but it is my reality. My number one goal with this trip is to inspire others to get out of the office, out of the movie theaters and into nature! Nature is God's antidepressant, it has a way of reflecting what is in the soul of man. If you have big goals and big dreams, get after it! It may be the hardest thing you ever try to do, but damn it, it will be worth it I can promise you. Don't know what your goals are and feeling a lack of direction. Get outside, in nature and connect with the big picture. You won't find your passion behind a screen, you may find inspiration, but passion comes from doing! Do the thing and get the power. When it gets tough just know that there is one other crazy guy with his little family trying to make something really special happen in his life. :)

 Me and my little dude! 

Me and my little dude! 

DIY Van Butcher Block Counter Top

First step! Find wood. We built our butcher block out of cherry wood. Hard wood is best for butcher blocks (think fruit bearing trees) so they don't get marks and dings so easily. 

Next the cuts. We measured and cut the wood a bit longer than the final length. 

Glue time. Don't use too much, but not too little. We did both. Too much left us with glue pouring out the cracks when it came time to clamp and not enough left us with a broken butcher block....(fixed easily by glueing it a second time). Go for a thin line down the entire length of the wood. Go ahead and use a couple pieces of scrap wood to test it on. Put the amount you think is right then clamp it together. You will know soon enough if you put too much. 

Clamp it tight! We learned some good lessons here. Best to get the planks of wood as level as you can get them. Place the glued board on a flat surface with some weights on it, or clamp some 2X4's on either side of the butcher block perpendicular to the cuts. We did not do this and the result was ALOT of sanding to get a level flat surface. The alternative is running it through a planer, which you probably don't have if you are reading this...lol

Wait 24 hrs and give it a good sand! Use some rougher paper to get it flat if needed then switch to some finer paper to get the smooth finish. 

Apply butcher block conditioner (yet to come for us) and there you have it!

We are still waiting for our sink and stove to come to install the block into the van but this is what it looks like for now. 






Well we got a fresh new coat of paint on the dream machines interior. Wow what a difference! We knew painting the interior white would be a good decision. It gives the inside a brighter/airy feel. Not so dreary. 

We are so stoked to continue on rennovations. Next up butcher block, sink and stove!