Let`s Move In!


We worked for 21 grueling days on our Van. Now “The Van Kongs Build Part 1” is over. We started our conversion with really bad weather conditions, but we survived, and now it looks as if we could move in, but there’s still a lot to do!

We are returning to Germany and Phil is coming back in March to continue working on our build.

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What are we missing:

  • top shelves
  • baby bunk bed
  • closet
  • storage shelf above the cockpit
  • our sunddeck on top of the van
  • our outside solar shower
  • solar, electrical system & batteries
  • lights
  • and so many small details like a rope trim for the portholes, curtains etc.

Our Hero of the Month..

..is definitely Phil`s father. He cooked for us when we totally forgot about food, he bought us workers hand cream because our hands were cracked from the cold and all the work, he gave us pretty good advice and sometimes he could read our minds. One time, Kristin and “Ba” Michael Kong were in the basement and Kristin asked if he maybe had an old paper towel holder. He already had it in his hand. Certainly a spooky moment for Kristin! Thanks for all your help Ba!!!

Here are some pictures of our creative craftwork and our storage-step into the van.

Building a frame around our kitchen window so that we could set up the wall. This part was not our favorite, but we made it. Afterwards, the rest of the walls went up and we could start working on the ceiling.



We finished the ceiling in a day and could install the fan trim! Yeah!


After the ceiling we finally started with our furniture. In one day we finished the office area. Then we needed two and a half days for the kitchen.


Here are some nice details about our kitchen. We love the tiles! It`s still missing curtains and the top shelves. 🙂 Phil will work on the shelving in March and Kristin needs to learn again how to use a sewing machine :).


Then we built the oven-cabinet area. The area has more storage room for pots and pans and the most important thing: the oven/stove (so that Phil can bake bread for Kristin all the time :-))

Our last day we built the bed. So now it looks like we are almost ready to hit the road!  The bed was obviously the largest piece of furniture we had to build, but also the easiest so we left it until last to really have a sense of accomplishment upon finishing it!

With all our building we tried to be really sustainable. So we used wood from responsible sources and we did not throw out the left over wood pieces we might be able to use in the future.

Foto 23.01.18, 12 00 25

We even tried to hold onto and use the cardboard from all the things we bought!  We used them to make templates for the walls shapes and some other things. With the leftover wood we are planning to build more of the small mountain shelves. Kristin is totally into woodworking now :).

The mountain shelves idea came while we were working, so it was not a design idea we saw on an other vanlife profiles or on Pinterest. You can plan and design a lot of things, but you should be always open for new ideas and sometimes you have to do things differently than you planned because it just doesn’t work out the way you planned it.

Of course we would love to give you all a private tour :-). But there is not enough room to squeeze you all in. So we are working on a small tour video for you.

So get excited for the next post! 🙂

2 thoughts on “Let`s Move In!

  1. AMAZING!! I’m so impressed with your work and ingenuity! I can’t wait to see it finished (and I bet you can’t either!)! I must say I’m a bit anxious about your “baby bunk bed” though… when is the baby due? Kristen: how are you feeling??

    I would love to get to see you guys before you head back to Germany… dunno if we can make that happen?

    Send much love, Annette



    1. Hi Annette, we sitting in the plane home :-(. I’m feeling great. Having an alien in my belly ;-). The bunk bed will be for later. The first year we do co-sleeping. The bed will also have every important security … you will see when Phil is building it. He is coming back in March. Ok. Plane is starting… talk later !!!


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