Even though my hair has never been long enough to touch my ears, I’ve always kinda considered myself to be a hippie. I always feel at peace in nature and living out of a van has always been a dream of mine…
It would be a time in my life where I was forced to wander to unknown places and soak in every unplanned adventure. I would have endless time to read, play my ukulele, and watch every sunset. I always imagined I would be roughing it- rock climbing every day and upon returning to my four-wheeled abode, I would feast on packaged tuna and club crackers… I’d be living the dirt bag dream.
I met Michelle in high school and although I didn’t know it at the time, all my plans and preconceptions would be turned upside down in all the best ways. We dated though high school, and about halfway through college I saved up for a ring so that I could ask her the scariest and best question of my life. Six months later we were married and walked though the threshold of our future together. Michelle was a photographer when I met her, and what had started as an interest for her quickly grew into a career. At first, I went along on her photo shoots to be a good boyfriend, but when she started photographing weddings I got pulled in headfirst. I loved it!
Sharing such an amazing day with a couple is a huge honor, not to mention a lot of fun! While finishing up college we traveled all around the country shooting weddings and loving it. As graduation got closer, we had no clear picture of what we wanted the future to look like…. And then it happened; my dream of living in a van came into focus. We set aside a year to live in the van and travel to and from weddings with plenty of adventures in between.
While my dream would come true, my concept of a dirt bag palace wouldn’t (and thank goodness for it). We found our van, named her Wanda, and got to work. Although Chip might be better with a saw, Michelle designed a home that would make Johanna Gains green with envy. Wanda is outfitted with a marble backsplash, a live edge wood counter, and a ridiculously comfortable bed fitted with gorgeous Two Dawson linens. We finished building her in a couple months and hit the road for our first big trip. We had a wedding in northern Washington, so we road tripped though 5 states with the only goal of making memories and being spontaneous.
We drove our little home down the beach of Cape Kiwanda and ate dinner on the bed with the back doors opened up to the ocean. We detoured our way back “home” to Colorado and moved into Yosemite Valley. We parked our house at the top of an overlook and laid there just staring at the cliffs and plotting which routes we’d climb.
We have been so blessed to live this way and I hope that we get so accustomed to life on the road that it’s hard to sleep anywhere else.