This Family of 4 Lives in a 234-Square-Foot Converted School Bus Home on Wheels

This Family of 4 Lives in a 234-Square-Foot Converted School Bus Home on Wheels

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Bedrooms
Square feet
234
Sq ft
234

Name: Chris, Tina, Elijah, Rylee, and Dub the Skoolie Dog
Location: Originally from Nixa, Missouri
Size: 234 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year, owned

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Our home is a 2005 school bus. We wanted a home on wheels that allowed us to travel and one that we could customize to meet all of our needs. This skoolie does all of that! After adventure, our goal was to create a home that minimized our bills. On top of living mortgage free, we also have the ability to live off grid. We have solar power and a composting toilet so we can avoid staying in campgrounds more often than not. 

Credit: Tina W

Most of our time indoors is spent working online so we can explore wherever we have landed for the day. We built in several work spaces throughout the bus to accommodate the online aspect of our lives. The boys are enrolled in a home school curriculum and they have two seating areas to choose from and it was important to us that their bunks be spaced so they could work comfortably in bed if they want. 

Chris teaches English to students online so our living room transforms into his classroom during the early morning hours. The bulk of my time is spent managing social media accounts for small businesses or most recently writing an ebook on how we store everything in such a small space (available on our website). When I write, I need alone time so we made sure our bedroom had a heavy wood door to create a sound barrier. Being comfortable and productive is a must when we are gathered together.

Credit: Tina W

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: I mix and match items I love, toss in treasures I find in nature, and hope that it all comes together. One of the biggest things I have to ask myself is how the items we bring in will handle traveling down the road.

Credit: Tina W

Inspiration: Our home of 10 years was small-ish, but the big open windows made it feel huge. I brought that idea into the bus and left as many windows open as I could. The rest of the space was designed around three things I fell in love with: the green ottoman, dark gray cabinetry, and plants. Once we brought in those three things, everything else started falling into place. 

Credit: Tina W

Favorite Element: The water propagation wall has allowed me to develop a green thumb in a tiny space without overwhelming my family with too many plants. When we travel, we swap cuttings with new friends or gift them plants that have outgrown the wall. It brings so much life to our home and brings so much joy.

Biggest Challenge: Old habits die hard! We have to be so careful about not bringing too much into the space. It is a never-ending battle. Keeping each other accountable helps.

Credit: Tina W

Proudest DIY: The propagation wall will always be my favorite, but our latest DIY project is our herringbone headboard made out of shims.

Biggest Indulgence: Finding storage pieces that are also beautiful. Baskets are my current obsession.

Credit: Tina W

Best Advice: Before we could move into our bus, we sold off all of the things we had collected over the years. The more we sold, the more we found ourselves falling in love with our sticks and bricks home again. We got rid of half-completed projects that we were never going to finish. We donated items we were keeping “in case we needed them.” We found ourselves with less clutter, less to clean, and more time on our hands. It was easier and faster to cook since there weren’t cluttered drawers to contend with. We remembered all of the reasons why we fell in love with the home 10 years earlier when we bought it. Let go of the things that aren’t serving you well. You may find all of it was taking up more space in your life and schedule than you even knew. You may find that those things you thought would bring you joy were actually stealing your happiness.

Credit: Tina W

What’s your best home secret? We created a split bathroom to ease the pains of going down to a one-bathroom home. The sink is on one side of our bedroom door and the shower/toilet room is across the hall behind a barn door. Being able to use the sink, mirror, and access all of your personal hygiene items in the lockers while someone else is in the shower made the transition to tiny living much easier.

Resources

Credit: Tina W

PAINT & COLORS

  • Sherwin-Williams — Snowbound
  • Sherwin-Williams — Carbonized
  • Valspar Simplicity — Maple Taffy
Credit: Tina W

LIVING ROOM

  • Rug — Ruggable
  • Pillows — World Market
  • Green Ottoman — Amazon
Credit: Tina W

DINING ROOM

Credit: Tina W

KITCHEN

Credit: Tina W

BEDROOM

  • Mattress — Jada sleep
  • Pillows — World Market
Credit: Tina W

BATHROOM

  • Nature’s Head Toilet — Amazon

Thanks Chris, Tina, and family!!

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