Our Home Before Our Van Home

We were initially inspired to do the whole “Van life” when my friend from high school Joe and Mo’s friend from growing up, Dylan both separately, without knowing each other, came to Fayetteville to visit us in their vans. We all took a road trip down to Big Bend, TX with the Dylans moving home, and after spending a few weeks with our dreaming and drifting friends, we noticed their joy of the simple life was contagious and the thought of having everything you need in one place was more than ideal.
Above Photos by Sam J. Matthews

Ever since that trip, Mo couldnt get the  idea out of his head, he started talking about us living in a van and something to know about Mo, once he’s onto something, he doesn’t stop. He’s one of the only people I’ve ever met that actually does everything he says he’s going to do. ( one of the many reasons I love him) .


We researched for months, and finally pulled the trigger in July of 2015. The next step was figuring out a way we could start saving money for a build out and where we were going to live while everything was getting in order for us to leave.

Mo has built a relationship with one of Fayetteville’s Greats throughout the years, Frank Sharp. Frank and his wife, Sarah offered to let us stay in their little attic of a  guest house so we could save money. We ended up moving out of our 1500 square foot home in the historic district of Fayetteville ,  to the little attic in the woods on Mt. Kessler.


Photo by Rush Urschel

Going from 1500 square feet to less than 150 was a challenge at first but, I’m convinced that’s what prepared us for life in a van. out little attic in the woods was a dreamy, wabi-sabi mixed with a Free People looking magazine ad–Our shower was outside, surrounded with rocks and vines, lit only by candle light or the sun. we were surrounded by the woods on Mt Kessler, every time you’d go up the drive way it felt like time slowed down, each month new flowers were blooming, I’d notice the different bugs from each season that I never noticed before. Our new home felt like going to a camp resort, it was so peaceful.

Photos by Rush Urschel

Some days if we were lucky, Frank and Sarah would be sitting outside drinking wine and we got to sit and talk about all the things that happened on that property and around Fayetteville, like when Frank’s dad burnt down a barn on accident, Frank saving the beautiful old post office (the historic building in the middle of the Fayetteville Square), to the Clintons coming over for a dinner party.

Photo by Rush Urschel

Photo by Rush Urschel


We ended up living at Sharperidge for 1 year, in that time, we watched a dog get old and pass away, new life in baby goats being born, and we got closer in our relationship from living in a smaller space, Being able to live on a property with so much history and beauty was an amazing experience, definitely one we’ll cherish forever.

  • Kellie Yeck April 22, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    Gracie this is so great! Such a unique experience. Thank you for sharing! Excited to hear more about the van life! 👏🏼

  • Chris jessee May 2, 2017 at 8:16 pm

    What a great story! can’t wait for more. Hope we get a paddle in this spring! Miss you guys drive safe.