Living full time in a VW Vanagon has become a routine for Mike and Geneva. Preparing meals, storing food, checking the engine and making use of the limited space are all a part of the daily routine.
There are a few items we have which make these functions simpler. We have installed two custom cabinets for storage. The tambour door (roll top) bread box has been repurposed to function similar to a bathroom cabinet. This holds toothbrushes, toothpaste, hairbrush, deodorants, creams and typical items. These items stay in place all the time. When we take showers we use a portable bathroom bag (aka dopp kit).
The original Westfalia conversion includes a sink and stove system. Our water faucet has a pressure switch which we have located by our knees. It is the round, black item on the silverware drawer. This location allows us to turn on/off the water when our hands are dirty or when we are holding things. We found that this helps us conserve water in reaching for the handle or leaving the water running. Our water tank is a custom-made 20 gallon tank, but water is precious and conservation counts when cooking, cleaning and living in a van. Generally dishes are washed outside of the van using creek, river, ocean or RV park water.
Above the sink is a long, narrow cabinet that stores spices and junk. Yep, even in a van there is a small accumulation of junk (like the junk drawer at home!) . Below the sink is the pantry for storing food. Many dry goods are purchased in bulk and stored in the square plastic containers. Square shapes fit much better in a cabinet than round shapes!
Above the cab (because we have a hightop) there is a large cabinet area. We choose this for storage of dishes, cookware, coffee, cups, water bottles and related food prep items. We also store fresh food up there after we stop at farm stands and bake sales! Hanging off the ledge is a very handy little towel bar. This is designed to go over a cabinet door. This type of bar would fit over the ledge/shelf on any Westfalia.
Sometimes van life gets a little messy. In the midst of preparing eggs benedict, while the dog is sleeping in the way, it is time to check the engine! ( But we learn to roll with this and get by!