Thursday, July 26, 2012


Well I just couldn't let another day go by without showing off the new addition to the Wood Clan!

Remember back in June when we said Goodbye, Friend?

We were sad.

But on Tuesday we were happy as we said

Hello, Friend.

So, without further adieu - here she, he, it is!


New to us anyway - certainly not new to this earth.....

A 1990 Ford Econoline Elite Van Conversion.

It's small but it has everything we need for our trip to Central America this winter.

So - not new - but we weren't going for NEW. First, of all we could not possibly afford new - right?! They make them pretty fancy these days and then sell them for a mere $60,000 or so. 

What we were really after was a good layout with a bunk bed, well taken care of inside and out, low milage and affordable. 

We got what we asked for. 

Yes, we were originally going to wait until the fall, but then we realized the good thing about not waiting. We now have lots of time to make the changes we want - and trust me there are a few - we've already started our renovations. We can also now work on our truck and get it sold before we head out as well.

Looking in from the back. Nice that the toilet is off to the side. The ladder is just being stored there right now - it is for the HUGE bunk bed. We had promised Cassia a bunk bed and we delivered! This back area will be for Roofous on the floor and the cats overhead on a smaller bunk.

Cassia trying out her new bed. I think she'd be pretty happy about sleeping out there now!

The messy kitchen - I was sifting through the dishes, the owners were nice enough to include as well. 
I am probably going to paint out all of the wood to white. We were always going to make changes to our trailer - then we would decide to sell it so we didn't - then we would decide to keep it and make plans again. This time we know this van is a keeper for a while so we are making lots of changes to make it right for us.

Excellent that the passenger chair - which is VERY comfortable I might add - swivels. Roofous is already getting comfortable - as are the cats.

And so we made the best decision we could, we believe. We have been searching through Kijiji and Craigslist since June, looking at any van that came up. This van caught my eye as did the corresponding ad. When we listed our trailer, I made sure to give a ton of info and a fair recording of the good and not so good parts. Fair is fair. I notice some post ads with one or two pictures and a few lines of description. I knew I'd found a kindred spirit when the ad for our new van was lengthy and FULL of information. 

WHAT WE LOVE ABOUT OUR NEW VAN  and why we think we got a GREAT DEAL

- 150,000 kms
- a fairly new fridge (after two trips now with a broken one this is a VERY good thing!
- a new gas tank
- lots of new things mechanically and in very good shape
- lots of after factory dials and gauges at the front 
- a cd player and ipod/ipad plug in thing
- a top bunk with ladder
- a nice sized dinette
- a good sized kitchen and lots of storage
- a nice sized area at the back with storage area above
- a solar panel on the dash
- all the owners dishes and cutlery
- two RV books
- a large heavy duty black storage container for the back rack
- a small generator that works and isn't too loud + a great bin for it
- all the records and manuals
- high clearance - oh no! are more back roads in our future?!
- really good tires
- a new spare

So - what did we PAY for all this camping goodness you are wondering....

Well, the camper van was $6,500! I know - right?! A GREAT price. Plus here in BC we have to pay sales tax - ouch! which was just over $800! So, a total of $7,300 - not bad. 

This is how we do things here at a life made simple. We could have paid all sorts of amounts for our new camper van and boy it was tempting. But no - Derek and I know how this works. We sold our trailer for $5,500 and then this spring Derek's tax back and working income benefit came to around $1,600. Which, yes, is $7,100. 

We were only out a couple of hundred dollars. Of course there are a few more expenses such as the plates and the changes we want to make but that is ok. 

We had a BUDGET and we STUCK to it.

Maybe we'll post some of the changes we make to keep you up to date with the renovations! 

With the trip down to the BIG city, the continued heat and getting back up to speed here at the parks it has been that kind of week! 

The time is going so fast I can barely keep up!


TODAY'S INTERESTING LINK: My internet time as been hard to come by the last few days and so not much to report. I HAVE been continuing my Central America research as much as possible - boy I sure could lose a LOT of time that way! Yesterday I found this interesting website - Escape from America Magazine - guess we all should have known that something like that would exist. If you are with us on facebook you may recognize it since I posted it there as well.


  1. Good deal on the Van. We had a 1989 Ford conversion for seven years , very similar and we loved it. We traded it on a small Class C in 2002 with 225,000kms on it and still ran like a dream. We got what we paid for it (10k) after putting 100k kms on it , you will love it.

    1. We think we will love it too! Wow! Lucky to get the same amount out of your Class C!

  2. Great buy ! For sure keep posting pictures.
    I'm excited for you guys...


  3. Woo Hoo !! Congrats on your "New to You" rolling home !!

    We love it ... it sure looks like a practical layout for sure.

    That is one huge item off your to-do list .... LOL.

    Take care ... TnT

    1. A GREAT layout! Amazing that so much can fit in a small space! I've lost Cassia and Derek to it - they are always there! It's Cassia's new playhouse and Derek's new project!

      We are definitely glad we got it now and didn't wait - let the rest of the planning begin!

  4. What a great deal for a camper van! It’s good that it fits your budget perfectly. Your camper van is pretty awesome inside and out. I think it’s not really small because the inside is very spacious, and you can still add stuff that you want. I’d love to see some of the renovations you will do here.


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