A resident of Attica, New York, Lauren Nelson — like many young people — was looking forward to the summer. No school, plenty of free time — and quarantine.
With the change of plans and a renewed need to find local activities, 11-year-old Lauren came up with a unique summer project that will last for years to come.
It started with her browsing through a well-known doll catalog and spotting a toy camper that was commanding a hefty sum.
“She showed us a $650 little VW bus that they sell, my husband was like, ‘That’s ridiculous, you could buy your own camper for that price,'” Aimee Nelson, Lauren’s mother, told WKBW-TV.
Shortly afterward, a neighbor listed an old camper for sale.
“And then the one day, up popped a ‘for sale’ sign and she squealed the whole way home,” her mother said.
It was a little out of Lauren’s budget, but she haggled and went home the owner of a camper.
“It wasn’t very hard,” she said of the negotiating.
“He said $500 and I said $400 because that was the money that I had in my bank account and he said sold.”
A fan of HGTV’s “Tiny House Hunters,” Lauren got to work renovating the outdated camper with the help of family and friends, and transforming it into a light, bright and airy “Camp Hygge.”
“It means very comfortable and safe,” she explained of her selected name. “It has its own kitchen and bathroom.”
“I love this, I love renovating. I was very motivated with this camper, I really wanted a place where I could hang out … like my own house,” she added.
Many readers have been impressed with the girl’s investment and hard work on her tiny home, and her parents also approve of her project.
“She has three envelopes that she puts her money in — ‘give,’ ‘save’ and ‘spend’ — and I think she made a really good choice,” her mom said.
“She now says she’s part of the tiny home nation.”
While this summer has come to a close, with so many kids being schooled at home, this kind of project is not only doable but has all kinds of practical and educational benefits as well.
For Lauren, this is just the start. Who knows what next summer will hold?
In the meantime, she has advice for others:
“If you’re looking to have some big plans in the future, you should go out and do it,” she said.
“Make it happen.”
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