Monday, May 23, 2016

Queen of Stealth

first night camping report:

crawled into car around 11:00pm

between the full moon and the outside light it
was awfully bright without curtains

even with a few clouds i enjoyed a stellar
view of the stars before drifting off to sleep

dreamed about stealth camping in a residential
neighborhood with a plethora of friends and
acquaintances showing up throughout the dream
i live in the country and don't have close
neighbors   (.....very strange dream)

woke to the sound of gentle tapping and 
was immediately reminded of finding a 
mouse in the car last summer

realized the sound was rain...  grabbed keys....
leaned over front seat to start car and roll windows

(cue the police song king of pain and insert
queen of stealth...sigh)

after much fumbling managed to get
alarm turned off

potty break

pulled blanket over head and
slept until morning

first night:   done!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Honda Fit Conversion Part 2

things are slowly moving along with my "camper" car.
i wasn't able to find a fleece blanket at any of the thrift
stores around here so i finally just bought an inexpensive
full/queen fleece blanket at wal-mart for $10. i was able
to cut two long strips and two squares out of one blanket. 
here is one of the strips that will cover the side windows:

i glued velcro strips along the top with E6000 glue.
from what i've read it should hold up to the heat. (the
white showing is some parchment paper i put under
the glued strips so the window cover doesn't become
a permanent part of my kitchen floor) i won't be able
to tell if i need to put velcro along the bottom until i
see how they are going to hang. i really didn't want to
glue the mounting strips to my car headliner so i'm
going to try securing them with horizontal straight
pins to see if that will work...seemed to work fine
with a sample but we'll have to see with the weight
of the curtain. i've made velcro curtains for the side
windows and the back hatch window but have
opted to stretch a bungee cord across the front from
overhead handle to handle and clip the curtain onto
the cord with binder clips so i can slide the curtain.
i'm also planning to use binder clips in each of the
corners where the curtains meet. i'll post pics when
everything is in place.

meanwhile.... i'm going to spend my first night in
the car in my yard tonight....sans curtains. here is
a pic from the back of my couch pillow bed:

i've got my handy dandy window screens on the back
windows so i can leave them open if it's too hot. i'm
thinking of cutting a little drop down panel in the 
curtains over the back windows for when i need
them open but i did buy the battery powered fan for
comfort. you'll notice i left the passenger side back
seat's why:

the seat part folds up leaving plenty of room for me to
stand stooped over in the car for when i need to potty. 
i purchased a freshette...
......which i totally
expected to cause tears of laughter and tears of
wee to run down my legs but was surprised to see
there was no learning like a charm.
(WHERE was this thing all those years i was on the
road in law enforcement????) i think after getting used
to sleeping in the car i won't need standing space
to wee in a jug and can leave both back seats
down for more storage space.

so....first night
wish me luck!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Honda Fit Camper Conversion part 1

i've been spending a LOT of time researching this
car camping thingy. i've even started making some
basic purchases

i already have a two burner propane camp stove but
bought this one burner butane stove to save space. since
i don't have solar i got this fatmax that plugs into my
car so i can charge my phone and laptop while i'm

i got three of these Luci lights. they are roughly about
the size of a softball and you just blow them up with
your breath. they are solar led lights and are hung in
the sun through the day to charge...with three
settings....low....bright....and blinking (whaaaaaaa...
i'm thinking disco!) they actually put out a lot of
light....enough to read by.

i spent the afternoon ( took me all afternoon!)
making two screens for my car windows. those of you
who are long time readers of my blog know that the
sewing machine is not my friend. this material is tulle
which i found extremely hard to work with. it's slippery
and my old eyes had a hard time seeing if the edges
matched up. even though i pinned the tulle between
a strip of cloth to sew the edge it still slipped and i had
to resew lots (partly because the bobbin thread ran out...
took me three tries sewing one side before i figured
out why it wasn't working!) 

here's the screen on my car window. it allows you to
crack (or roll down) the window for a breeze without
letting in the bugs. the screen just slips over the top of
the open door and when you close the door you put a
magnetic strip across the bottom (the white thing) to
block entry. the peel off backing on this magnetic strip
keeps coming off so i'm going to try sticking some metal
heat duct tape on it to see if that will stay.

again....since i don't have solar...i'm planning on buying
this battery operated fan and getting some rechargeable
batteries. i know i won't be able to sleep in the car if it's
too hot so i'm hoping the screens and fan will do the 
trick. i'm also planning to get a uv tarp to set up over
the top of the car for shade and to be able to sit/cook

originally i had planned to purchase this REI 3.5 self inflating 
camp bed but it's pretty pricey and with all the other things
i need to get i've opted to use my couch pillows...they are an
exact fit for the space where i will be sleeping and really
comfortable. i plan to get a fitted twin cotton mattress cover
to put on the cushions under the sheets so hopefully they
won't get dirty. 

this is a pan that mechanics use to catch oil drips that
i bought for under my supplies when i use encaustic
wax. it's very light...about the weight of a cookie pan.
it's the same width and length as two of my couch
pillows and i plan to use it on top of the pillows/bed as
a work station with the back hatch up to prep food or

soooo....that's where i am. my next project will be
curtains for the back of my car. i'm going junking
for a fleece blanket that i can cut up to make
 curtains....and trust me....they will NOT be
 anything that needs sewing!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Yep....I'm Cra Cra

this time every year i get all hepped up and want to 
plant flowers everywhere. i do dearly love me some
flowers! this area across my front porch always gets
too much sun during our hot southern summers for 
anything to do really well so this year i decided on
succulents and lemon balm.

another reason for the succulents...i'm hoping to take a
few road trips this summer. i really...really...really would
like to have a class b a pleasure-way:

truth is...i can't afford one...and if i had one
i couldn't afford to keep insurance on it plus my 
car. i have a honda fit:
the back seats lay down and make a nice cargo area
for hauling things around....which i'm wont to
i thought...hmmmm...maybe i can use my car to camp
with. well...i immediately got lost in you tube land are bunches of folks doing this!
it appears to be some kind of new movement to do
"stealth camping" in modified conversion vans and 
cars.....who knew? it sure looks like something that
can be done on a shoestring budget.

here is an interesting video of a woman my age that 
travels across the country in her prius... which size wise
is pretty much like my car. i know the whole "bathroom"
thing will probably freak most of you out but as someone
who spent a lot of time hauling horses around and camping
in the boondocks...i've already done my share of this kind
of thing. i think i really need to give this a honda
gets 40 miles to the gallon and i could do a lot of road
tripping with this set up!