van life a go-go

We’re so close to take off and yet these next few weeks are going to be some of our busiest.

We’ve got the caravan and the Land Cruiser (tick, tick) and the house is getting emptier by the day.

I’m buzzing with nervous energy – there’s so much to do and yet so much to look forward to. And everything is falling into place; it definitely feels like we’re on the right track.

When I spoke to our real estate agent last week she mentioned that all we’ll need to do upon moving out is hand in the keys. “The house is being demolished so you won’t even have to clean it.” You can imagine how happy I was, can’t you?! That exit clean is always such a headache (and an expensive one if you outsource)…it’s such wonderful news I still can’t believe it.

So now I’m literally packing up the books, toys, linen and keepsakes while ticking off a giant list of to-dos before we leave. The mental load is huge! And Daniel and I talk in bursts about everything from tow ball weight to cleaning water tanks to installing power points with added USB chargers.

This caravan life is so romanticised online and yet the reality requires research and an enormous amount of practical thought. Travelling safely is our priority and the checklist is huge!

To be honest, it’s all new to me. I usually shy away from anything too hard or technical and yet I really don’t have a choice now. It’s quite empowering to drive a massive Land Cruiser and park it with ease. I’ve researched exactly how to clean the water tanks and flush the system so our drinking water is filtered clean. I keep assessing exactly what kitchen items I should take with me and wondering where they’ll live and how I’ll store them. And I’ve sold or donated so many of our belongings; letting go is much easier when you have a purpose.

I’ve started the enrolment process for Distance Education and on our first stop in Port Macquarie we’ll visit the school so the children can meet their teacher. Every few weeks we’ll get a big envelope sent to the local post office (wherever we are) and in it will be school work specially created for Che and Poet and inspired by our location (eg: if we’re in the Daintree they’ll do a few weeks of work on the rainforest). In the envelope will be a USB with video lessons for each of them and once a week we’ll log onto skype to chat with their teacher. It’s a wonderful system design especially for kids who live remotely or travel so the teachers are very understanding of nomadic life.

The timeline for the next few weeks is rough to say the least but it looks a little like this:

  • finish modifications on the bunk beds
  • install new powerpoints
  • clean and service aircon
  • clean water tanks and pipes
  • finish packing books + keepsakes (then move them to the Grandparents’ houses)
  • start moving things into the caravan
  • organise a council pick-up
  • donate mattresses to charity (along with unwanted kitchen gadgets etc)
  • service the car
  • sell our old car
  • maintain sanity

No doubt there are a long list of things we haven’t even thought of yet (I’ve got my notebook ready if you have any suggestions!).

I plan to be here more regularly now that we’re making big progress on the pack-up-and-hit-the-road front. We plan to head off in the last week in July. The countdown is on!