Around the third week of August, after months of working on it, and what felt like days of packing it up, we headed out to try out the new Sprinter Campervan that Josh built. We bought it nearly a year earlier, but it sat unworked on for most of the winter as we were away on our NZ and Australia trip.
We already knew that the inverter (to charge batteries and give some power when not hooked up) wasn’t working properly, but we decided the impact was minimal. Most of the other systems had been tried and tested by Josh, and he slept in the van the night before we left, just to make sure the heater worked as it should.
On the day we left, the plan was to head to Revelstoke to sleep at our friends place, and to head toward Wesport, Washington the next day (stopping for a night somewhere near Hope, BC). I was leery about Zo liking her swinging crib set up that we had built for her, so she and I decided to sleep in the van to test it out, while Josh and Ry slept in the house.
It was a super hot day in Revy, and it was still in the high 20’s when it came time for Zo to head to bed. Unfortunately, we couldn’t hook up to the correct power source at our friends place, and so the AC wasn’t going to work. Being very stubborn, I proceeded with the plan anyway, and by the time I got my wired 16 month old to sleep it was 11pm. The temperature was finally falling, but I had to give up on the swinging bed, and unclipping it, I let the crib down to rest flat on our bed, then curled up beside her, exhausted. A rough first night. In case you’re wondering…no, she didn’t sleep in.
The second day was Joshs’ birthday, so we were heading down to Salmon Arm to play in the waterslides for the afternoon. It was super hot again, about 35 degrees! Our kids, and our friends kids had a blast playing on the slides, and we finished up with some rhubarb pie before heading out once more. We decided that perhaps we shouldn’t head too much farther from home without knowing if our AC would work, or knowing if our girls would be able to fall sleep all together in such close quarters. We found a great lakeside campground just outside Salmon Arm and sat down at the picnic table for a nice Timmie’s take out supper.
Unfortunately, when the time came to hook up and test the AC (after trying two different campsites) it failed to run for any length of time. Sigh. After testing a few things, making a couple calls, and discussing the issues we accepted defeat at this time. We decided to drive back toward Invermere and just let the girls fall asleep in their carseats and see how far we could get.
We made it to Golden by about midnight, parked outside the “golden arches” in preparation for a much needed future breakfast, before a quick and easy transfer of the girls into their beds (they were already sleeping). The crib was on the bed again, which meant that Josh and I got to share the L shaped piece of the bed that remained. It was very squishy, but we were again exhausted, and the sleep was not at all restful, at least for us. The girls seemed to sleep just fine.
The next morning after we enjoyed some breakfast sandwiches and large coffee’s we tucked tails between our legs and headed back to Invermere disappointed with this first failed mission. Home we went to unpack and think about getting that AC unit examined and repaired.
It’s okay. We went, we didn’t conquer, but we did learn lots from this trip and I think that in the future we will consider ditching the crib all together. There are a few swaps and fixem’s that we will be implementing in preparation for AdVANture number two, whenever that may be. With fall upon us already, we’re not quite sure when we will attempt again. But, we do know that next summer we will have a two and a 4.5 year old, which means our world is ever changing, and hopefully becoming more flexible and simpler (especially in the sleeping and packing department.Ad