Texas Destinations – Interactive Map

Texas Destinations – Interactive Map

There are over 370 miles of coastline on the south shores of Texas, along the Gulf of Mexico.   We’ve made this interactive map for you with our Texas Destinations.  Places we have visited and documented with pictures and videos have all been listed on the map below.

Click on an icon and you’ll be able to watch the video we’ve made, or read about it here on our site.  Here’s what the icons refer to:

 

Bike Cam

A bike ride video created by mounting a camera on the bike’s handlebars and enjoying the ride.

Drone Cam

Drone videos shot using the DJI Mini 2 drone.

Regular Park visits

Places we drove to and snapped video and pictures.  

Drive Cam

A video taken as we drive along roads we think are interesting.  No narration.

Texas Destinations – Interactive Map

 

More interactive maps:
Texas Destinations – All the places we have visited in Texas

Florida Destinations – All the places we have visited in Florida

Quebec Destinations – All the places we have visited in Quebec

Scenic Drives – Dash Cam videos – all the scenic drives we’ve taken

Drone Tours – Our Drone only videos

Waterfall Chasing – All the waterfalls we have visited in Ontario

Waterfront Trail – Bike Cam videos riding along the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail

Thanks for visiting our site! Subscribe to our newsletter if you’d like to follow more of our adventures.

Yours Truly …. Yula

 

2021 Ford Transit – Van Life Insurance Ontario

2021 Ford Transit – Van Life Insurance Ontario

In the following blog post, we’ll share our van life insurance experience.  We converted our brand new van from a commercial vehicle, to a motorhome, in Ontario, Canada.  We have a 2021 Ford Transit. 2021 Ford Transit – Van Life Insurance Ontario

Step 1 – Add Van to Auto Insurance Policy

Before we picked up the new van at the dealership, we had to have insurance for it. So we called our provider (RBC Insurance) and added the van to our policy. They needed to know things like make, model, etc., the van’s VIN, and all the details of the leasing company (name, address, phone number). The only type of insurance they could add for our Ford Transit was insurance for a commercial vehicle. Personal use vehicle insurance was NOT an option even though we said we just wanted it for travelling. They gave it to us on the promise that we would not make any physical changes to the van. In other words, any modification to the van makes the insurance invalid, and any claim that we might have made would have likely been rejected. It was a risk we had to take.

Once the van has been added to the policy, the dealer wanted the name of the insurance company and policy number.

Step 2 – Pick up the Van!

This step was easy and fun. The dealership took care of obtaining the plates from Service Ontario. They were commercial plates. Again, this was the only option for the Ford Transit cargo van.

Step 3 – Build out the Van

We worked on it for 2 months. We added a bed, a sink, and an electrical system. A small fridge, a hot plate for cooking, and an emergency toilet.

Step 4 – Change vehicle CLASS at ServiceOntario

We found two channels on YouTube that helped us a lot with this step. “Road to Pitches” made a video with their experience of changing their box truck class to motorhome, and also “Bruce & Krista” shared the letter that they took with them to Service Ontario to do the paperwork.

In summary, MTO requires 4 of the following 6 for a vehicle to be classified as a “Motorhome”:
(a) cooking facilities,
(b) a refrigerator or ice box,
(c) a self-contained toilet,
(d) a heating or air-conditioning system that can function independently of the vehicle engine,
(e) a potable water supply system that includes a faucet and sink, and
(f) a separate 110- to 125-V electric power supply or an LP gas supply;

We have all 6. So we wrote our letter and took it to our Service Ontario office, along with the vehicle registration.  Here’s the letter we used:

 

I, <name>, make statement that:

In accordance with the Vehicle Registration Manual section 3.1.3, my 2021 Ford Transit cargo van has been converted to a Motorhome, as defined in the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations, section 1038, as evidenced by the presence of:
1) Cooking facilities (electric hot-plate)
2) Refrigerator
3) A self-contained toilet
4) A heating system that functions independently of the vehicle engine
5) A potable water system that includes a faucet and a sink
6) a separate 110- to 125-V electric power supply

The vehicle described meets the criteria for Motorhome Class.

Vehicle Details:
2021 Ford Transit (R2X)
250 HR AWD
148” Wheelbase
3.5L EcoBoost V6
10-Speed Transmission
VIN: 1FTBR2XG9MKAxxxxx

<name>   <date>

We explained that we wanted to change the classification of our van from Commercial to Motorhome. The lady made a call, got a little help and was able to proceed with our request. We removed the black commerical plates from the van and received the regular blue personal license plates, with a new registration certificate.

Step 5 – Update Insurance Policy

We called our insurance company, and they rejected the van. They could not insure it because the work inside the van was done by us, and not by Ford. We then called Dejardins Insurance, gave them all the information they needed, and they gave us a quote. We transferred everything over to them, and we now we’re all set. Our van is classified as a Motorhome AND we have proper insurance on the van.

2021 Ford Transit – Van Life Insurance Ontario

Yours Truly …. Yula

 

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island

Welcome to the South Padre Island Sea Turtle Art Trail Scavenger Hunt! In order to bring awareness to the protection of sea turtles, South Padre Island teamed up with Sea Turtles Inc, and created the sea turtle art trail. It’s a collection of 10 sea turtle sculptures, each painted by a local artist. We were told at the Visitor Center that if we bring back pictures of all 10, we’d get a prize!

Click here for South Padre Island’s map.

Here are all the turtles, starting from the south end of the island, and heading north:

Lucie” is at the Sea Ranch Restaurant. The artist is Andy Hancock. Google location: 3RGP+J2 South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Isla” is at the Beach Water Park. The artists are mother and daughter, Beth and Chelsea Fedigan. Google location: 3RHQ+8F South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Liberty” is at the Beach Resort. She was hiding inside the hotel, in the pool area. The artist is Christina Salazar. Google location: 3RJQ+HH South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Indigo” is just inside the South Padre Island Visitor Center. The artist is Christina Salazar. Google location: 3RMP+44 South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Rosie” is at the South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce. The artist is Cecilia Garza. Google location: 3RQP+MF South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Miracle” is at the Art Business Incubator. The artist is Sandy Margret. Google location: 4R3M+54 South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Crush” is the South Padre Island Community Center. The artist is Chelsea Fedigan. Google location: 4501 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Tank” is at the Turtle Island souvenir shop. Google location: 4RPH+7C South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Coral” is at Sea Turtles Inc. The artist is Beth Fedigan. Google Location: 4RPH+H3 South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Luna” is at the South Padre Island Convention Center. The artist is Ariel King. Google Location: 4RRF+CW South Padre Island, Texas, USA

Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island - yula.ca

Watch on YouTube!
Sea Turtle Art Trail on South Padre Island

Once you’ve collected all your pictures, put them on social media with the hashtag #SPIturtletrail. I put them on Instagram.

Then head to the Visitor Center to collect your prize! It’s a really fun way to explore South Padre Island!

Yours Truly …. Yula

 

Florida Destinations – Interactive Map

Florida Destinations – Interactive Map

It is warm ALL year long in Florida and often referred to as The Sunshine State!  It has the longest coastline in the United States with over 800 miles of beaches.  It has 175 state parks, and 12 national parks, and we intend to visit as many as we can, during the cold Canadian winter months.    We’ve made this interactive map for you with our Florida Destinations.  Places we have visited and documented with pictures and videos have all been listed on the map below.

Click on an icon and you’ll be able to watch the video we’ve made, or read about it here on our site.  Here’s what the icons refer to:

 

Bike Cam

A bike ride video created by mounting a camera on the bike’s handlebars and enjoying the ride.

Drone Cam

Drone videos shot using the DJI Mini 2 drone.

Regular Park visits

Places we drove to and snapped video and pictures.  

Drive Cam

A video taken as we drive along roads we think are interesting.  No narration.

Florida Destinations – Interactive Map

 

More interactive maps:
Texas Destinations – All the places we have visited in Texas

Florida Destinations – All the places we have visited in Florida

Quebec Destinations – All the places we have visited in Quebec

Scenic Drives – Dash Cam videos – all the scenic drives we’ve taken

Drone Tours – Our Drone only videos

Waterfall Chasing – All the waterfalls we have visited in Ontario

Waterfront Trail – Bike Cam videos riding along the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail

Thanks for visiting our site! Subscribe to our newsletter if you’d like to follow more of our adventures.

Yours Truly …. Yula

 

2021 Ford Transit – Ceiling

2021 Ford Transit – Ceiling

The following is a brief overview of the steps we took to finish the ceiling in our van – a 2021 Ford Transit.

2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling

The first step was to add Kilmat, a sound deadening mat to dampen the noise.

Next, we went through and identified the places where the furring strips would go. We used the existing beams across the width of the van, which had plenty of pre-drilled holes for installing rivets. If the hole was a little bit bigger, a plusnut was installed.

2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling
2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling

We were hoping to get the furring strip from one end of the van to the other, but the curve was too much for the 1/2 inch plywood to bend. So we decided to cut a long piece for the center, and 2 short ones on each end.  Because of the curve, it took very many attempts to get the holes to line up with the bolts we had installed on the ceiling. This part of the build took quite a long time!

For the short furring strips on each end, we used 3/4 inch plywood.

2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling
2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling

After the furring strips were up, we cut sections of foam board insulation, and put it up between each beam and furring strip.

Then we covered it all up with Reflectix, leaving openings for our 2 fans, and the electrical wires for the lights we’ll be putting up on the ceiling. At each section of the ceiling, we had to remove the furring strip, tuck the reflectix underneath, mark where the holes were for each bolt, and attach the furring strip back over the reflectix. Some spots were quite frustrating, but we got it all done.

2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling
2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling

We were looking for something lightweight to finish the ceiling with, and found this cork flooring from Facebook Marketplace. We screwed each panel in place. Very few went in easily. We had to make adjustments for lights, fans, and mostly for all the curves of the Ford Transit.

The back end of the van, just above the back doors needed something a little different. Alex did some strategic cutting and shaving to fit this 2×4 snugly up to the top.

2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling
2021 Ford Transit - Ceiling

And here it is all done. It looks much cozier now – We love the way it turned out!

Watch our video to see how we did it:

2021 Ford Transit – Ceiling

 

Thanks for visiting our site!  Check our Van Build Journal page often as we’ll documenting the progress of the build.

Yours Truly …. Yula