Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition

Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016

A couple of weeks ago my husband and I drove down to Calgary to look at a 1971 Shasta 1400 camper. I had recently been burned by a Kijiji seller and was eager to not lose out on another vintage camper.  When we got inside the camper we realized quite quickly that there was water damage in the rear of the trailer. I was able to bring the asking price down so we hitched the trailer up to make our way home - so we thought. We got a few blocks down the road before we realized we hadn't checked to make sure the trailer lights were working. They weren't. We cautiously made our way to a nearby parts store and attempted to fix the problem ourselves. Eventually we admitted defeat and found a mechanic close by that was able to fit us in. The problem ended up being with the tow light output in my mom's borrowed SUV but several hours after we had intended leave Calgary, we finally headed back to Edmonton. It was after midnight before we, exhaustedly, parked the camper and made our way home. Not a great start!

The past couple of weekends Grant and I have been working on gutting most of the interior of the Shasta. After removing the particle board in the rear of the trailer we quickly saw that we would have to replace the wood framing on that back wall. After further investigation it appears that the damage doesn't extend too far into the floor and we shouldn't have to take up the entire subfloor. The screws holding the bench seats in place were so stripped that we ended up having to use a sawzall to cut them away from the floor. We're going to keep the two seats that form a bed with a table and rebuild the bench on the opposite side. We took down two cabinets but left the kitchen mostly intact. We're going to re-insulate, put up new particle board and paint the entire interior white. We opened up the bathroom closet by taking the door and the frame off so that we can turn it into a storage area and create a more open feel to things. We're also going to replace all of the interior lights and electrical outlets.

I'm happy to say that we're going to be moving onto rebuilding next. In my eagerness to get started on the demo process I didn't take any proper "before" photos. The photos below are of the camper in its current state. In the video below I've done a tour so you see what the original interior looked like. Everything we left really just needs a coat of paint to brighten things up. I'll be sharing photos and video throughout the whole renovation process in which time I hope to improve my videography skills. Although I really don't enjoy hearing the sound of my own voice! But, I'm excited to have a project that will get me blogging again. Stay tuned for more!

Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016
Shasta Reno: Part One - Demolition// ©Allison Dragsten 2016

XO ALLISON

A Vegan Birthday Cake

Vegan Birthday Cake// Thrifted

Last weekend I was in charge of my mother-in-law's birthday dessert. I knew I wanted to make a tiered cake and decided to make this cake. I ended up doubling the recipe to make three 8 x 1 1/2 inch cakes. The only modification I made was to add a half teaspoon of almond extract to the cake batter. After the cakes cooled I layered them with frosting and sliced strawberries. I did a quick crumb coat and then a second more thorough layer of the frosting.

Vegan Birthday Cake// Thrifted
Vegan Birthday Cake// Thrifted

I followed Emma's instructions for making pineapple flowers. I used a knife to slice the pineapple but would use a mandolin next time in order to get thinner layers. It takes quite a while to dry out the slices so the thinner the better. My frosting had set by the time the flowers were ready and I had none leftover to act as an adhesive. Luckily, I have a vast collection of cupcake and cake decorating supplies and was able to use these butterfly toothpicks to attach the flowers.

Vegan Birthday Cake// Thrifted
Vegan Birthday Cake// Thrifted

Everyone loved the cake and no one suspected that it was vegan. I'll definitely keep this cake in my recipe book! 

xo Allison

Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland

The last three and a half days of our honeymoon were spent in Reykjavik. Last year, Icelandair started flying direct from Edmonton to Reykjavik. You can do a stopover to or from Europe at no charge. It was actually more affordable to fly with Icelaindair to the UK than any other airline. We rented an apartment through AirBnB that was very central in downtown Reykjavik and gave me some serious home envy. With an apartment (and kitchen) we were able to buy groceries rather than depend on restaurants while in Iceland. Even groceries are fairly expensive as so much has to be imported. Of course we had to have a drink at the Lebowski Bar since it's one of my favourite films. We also had some takeaway noodles to warm us up one night. It did not feel like summer weather!

We spent out entire first day catching up on rest and binge watching Orange is the New Black. The sun doesn't set during the summer so we were a bit thrown off when we tried to sleep. Being so central, we were able to see a lot of Reykjavik just by walking around. I didn't end up taking many photos of the city because of rain. We took one day do the Golden Circle Tour through Reykjavik Excursions. I would definitely recommend it for anyone visiting Iceland. The Geysirs reeked of sulphur but were still very impressive, but it was Gullfoss that really blew me away - I've never seen a waterfall that massive before. Witnessing the continental drift between the American and Eurasian plates in Thingvellir National Park was geologically very cool as well. I didn't take any photos in the park but at that point I was starting to get sick and was trying to keep my lunch down. Grant and I both agreed that next time we will rent a car and explore more of Iceland beyond Reykjavik.  I've also included a wee video from part of the day tour. I can't wait for our next adventure!

Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland
Our Honeymoon Part Three: Iceland

I'll be back soon with some recipes for you early in the week. Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

xo Allison