Personal Post: Airstream Love…our new little {BIG} project

Wasn’t it just last week that I was writing about how much I loved our pop-up and how it’s my favorite thing we’ve ever purchased for our family?  About two days after that we sold the pop-up.  All that I said in that post was true.  But see, what I didn’t tell you is that Collin’s dream for the past two years has been to own a vintage Airstream trailer.  The day after I wrote that post our good friend and the Amazing pediatrician, Ben Elder, texted a picture to Collin of an Airstream that he passed on the way to the Darlington office.  It just so happened that we had a session in Hartsville that night.  After the session we stopped by the home of the people who were selling it and took a look at it.  We’ve looked at old Airstreams in the past so I thought I knew what to expect.  Honestly?  Old Airstreams typically smell like old urine {ewwww}, are filthy disgusting and have something sticky all over them.  I usually make the kids bathe in Purell after we finish looking at one.  So I was prepared to hold my breath when we walked in and had already given Clara Beth the “don’t you dare touch anything and if I see your fingers near your mouth I will chop them off” talk {Mak was away with his cousin Tal so I didn’t have to threaten the removal of his extremities}.  We opened the door and I was SHOCKED.  Blown away.  It was clean.  The walls had no sticky residue and there was no old pee smell.  There was a slightly old smell…maybe like a closet in your great grandmother’s house…but it didn’t stink.  I immediately turned to Collin and said “It’s ours”.  We looked at EVERYTHING that night.  Collin removed panels and photographed wires and pipes.  He tested for leaks and checked for floor rot.  Like I said, he’s been researching these things for years so he knew what he was looking for.  Clara Beth and I spent our time talking about fabrics and who would sleep where.  We drove away that night with a ton of pictures on Collin’s iPhone and plans to do some research and call them back in the morning.  Collin posted photos to Airstream forums {Did you even know there was a such thing?  Airstreams apparently have a cult-like following} and we learned that this looked like a pretty fantastic deal.  We went back the next night and drove away pulling the silver bullet behind our old Suburban.  The Airstream is a year older than Collin.  It needs work.  LOTS of work.  But we are up for the challenge and can’t wait to start.  And my husband looks like a little boy on Christmas morning when you ask him about his new toy.  He’s thrilled and I’m thrilled that he and Mak have this new hobby to work on.  And it’s a hobby that our whole family will love!

We took it to the beach for the first time this weekend.  We gave it a good scrubbing and covered the cushions in quilts.  Can you believe we didn’t even take the camera out of the car?  The few photos that we have are from Collin’s phone.  It was a great trip.  A learning experience, but a fun one.  There are some leaky pipes that need to be fixed and a whole slew of renovations that need to be done so it better suits the needs of our family.  We plan to document it all along the way, so I thought I’d share some “Before” photos here.  Collin and Mak are currently taking the trailer to Don-Mar (an Airstream place) to start the repairs on those leaky pipes.  Hopefully that won’t take long and we can move on to the fun part…renovating and decorating!

Here are the photos we took in the driveway this morning.  I have visions dancing in my head of a super shiny, highly polished exterior in the future, but that will definitely have to wait.  The interior is top priority right now.  It’s a 1975 25 ft Trade Wind for those of you who are curious.

The windows are my very favorite thing about it.  Especially the curved ones.  =)

And I love that they all open!

Now, the inside.  Remember, I said it needs a lot of work. =)

This couch in the front under the windows turns into the bed for Collin and me.  Couch by day, bed by night.  Will be recovered in some sort of neutral fabric.  Hitting up the $7 Fabric Store for that.  Pillows from Target.  We’re going for a VERY comfortable, lived in feel.

This is the kid area.  We’re having bunk beds built here and taking out the couch.  They will remain beds at all times, no converting back and forth from couch to bed.  Overhead storage will be taken out.

Floor will be replaced…

We want to have this whole cabinet/counter rebuilt.  I don’t cook inside when we camp (we use the grill or crockpot) so I don’t need an oven and it is taking up valuable space.  We want to remove it and replace the counter, sink, and faucet and add a cabinet.

This is Cammie.  Cammie the Camper.  She lives in the camper.  We bought her last year at Lakewood when Collin had to run out for a baby because we realized that we left Clara Beth’s at home and Clara Beth MUST. SLEEP. WITH. A. BABY.  Now we’re sure to always have one.

STORAGE!!!  Holy Cow, does this thing have storage!  I am SO EXCITED!

All of the little vintage touches make me smile.  Especially this clock.

Radio with 8 track. =)

AWESOME fabric.

The bathroom.  Hoping for a complete overhaul here.

About this time I looked out the door to see that my son had climbed to the top of the ropes that once held our tree swing.  He’s part monkey.

There you have it.  It’s old.  Needs a ton of work.  We are so excited to start, though!

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  • RebeccaMay 29, 2012 - 12:52 pm

    LOVE the new camper and super excited for your family! A little but hopeful we get to go on some fun campin adventures with y’all one day down the road!ReplyCancel

  • Tara NormanMay 29, 2012 - 1:51 pm

    You have given us the fever. Paul saw when the pop up was for sale & asked me about it. I think we need a bus for the 6 of us lol so excited to see it!ReplyCancel

  • ChrissyMay 29, 2012 - 3:19 pm

    THAT is awesome. I’m happy you guys got such a photo-worthy camper. 🙂 Can’t WAIT to see what you do with it. As an aside, Maryland has some pretty fantastic looking campgrounds(and I have a guest basement should the camping lose it’s luster at any point). 🙂ReplyCancel

  • KimJune 23, 2012 - 9:23 pm

    Love the blog…what a great project you have in store!ReplyCancel

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