Welcome to MalleryMiles!

September 4, 2023

It’s official! We will soon be on the road! Our Glampervan is being custom-built right this very moment, and will be delivered to Evansville in October. John will retire at the end of this year, which will give us several weekends over the next 3 months to camp locally to test out our home on wheels, before we embark on weeks-long trips all over the US. Our intent is to boondock as much as possible, availing the solar and battery energy to enjoy living off the grid. We can plug in at any time in a conventional campground but as long as there are sunny days, we’ll have all of the power we need. The limiting consideration will be water–the van has a 20-gallon water storage capacity, and we will travel with an additional 7.5 gallons. That amount of water should cover our hydration, cooking, showering, and cleanup needs for 2 weeks. We’ll be testing that out…

We have been dreaming about and planning for this next chapter of our lives, for a couple of years now. Backpacking was a delight that we enjoyed together in our NorCal years, which was when we were younger! Now at 65 and 68 years old, we are looking for comfort, shelter, and convenience — all attainable with the van life. 

John is the master planner; he has, for our 28 years together (and counting!), always planned our travels. My standard statement is that I only need to check the weather so I know what clothes to pack! For these van life travel adventures, John has a working spreadsheet to track routes and camping opportunities; some camping, for instance in a national park, requires reservations months or a year in advance; so, when we travel to the Everglades or the Tetons, we’ll have camping reservations as an anchor to the weeks-long trip with boondocking options by the zillions along the route. 

I’ll be overseeing the shopping, kitchen, and meal prep — a responsibility I am excited about, and one that will require me to cook small-batch style as opposed to the free-for-all cooking style that I enjoy currently. We intend to stop at as many farmers markets as we can find for produce and cooperative markets to fill in the gaps. Whole Foods will become the Plan B shopping trip.

We’ve noticed during our research for van life considerations that many folks are reliant on single-use disposable items. This just won’t work for me, as I am committed to a sustainable presence on planet earth. A zero-waste lifestyle is not possible while traveling but I am dedicated to finding ways to live in a van that allow for minimal waste. I’ll wash plates and silverware and I will rinse out baggies and cloth wipes for reuse, and I will write about it so that others may be motivated to live gently as we hope to do. 

The van life blog/vlog topics I will be writing about are:

  • Earth-friendly living, including sustainable products for the road
  • Small batch, plant-based cooking and eating 
  • How and where to compost while on the road
  • Farmers Markets
  • Best birding areas
  • Best wildflower areas
  • Cool laundromats! 

Thanks for reading this inaugural post. I have a steep learning curve to understand this WordPress/Elementor website, on which I do hope to eventually share videos. Who knows where this will go?!! 

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