Christian and Aubrey Matney (@mnmlmillennials)
"The relationships we are building on the road and the experiences we are having is what makes us who we are."
Aubrey is a SoCal girl from L.A. and Christian is a Texan from Austin. They met while in school, quickly becoming friends due to their mutual obsession with travel. In their early efforts to transition to a more minimal and sustainable lifestyle the couple shared a small studio apartment in San Antonio and had gone vegan. Originally, while they waited for Aubrey to finish school, the couple had been saving and planning a backpacking trip through Asia but then they heard about a community and culture of people living/working/traveling in vans. Immediately, the idea appealed to them. Two weeks later they purchased their sprinter van and decided to reform their life together.
From the onset, they wanted to convert their sprinter van into a home so they hired Brett (@chewythevanagon) to help them with the build.
Now their van has ample counter space, a small pump sink, a pull-out drawer for the fridge, a fold-down table for dinner or for working, a bench seat that slides out from under the bed with storage underneath, and lots of cabinets and cubbies.
Thus far into their journey, the couple has traveled mostly in the Pacific Northwest (Washington, B.C., Idaho, Montana) but plans to next year spend time exploring the Southern and Eastern Coast of the United States.
Aubrey works in social media and marketing and Christian works in sales. Also, the couple has begun to earn a small income from their YouTube channel proving to themselves that they don't need to work traditional corporate jobs to be fulfilled.
The dynamic vanlife community has provided a welcoming, collaborative, and unique way for both Christian and Aubrey to come together with other people over a shared lifestyle and common interests, something lacking in many communities around the U.S.
"I never truly felt like myself before getting on the road," says Christian. "but now I have the space to really live and be who I am. America is so focused on the concept that what you have makes you who you are, and that is simply not true. Aubrey and I are to the point that we could lose all of our stuff and we'd be okay." Less really is more.
To learn more about how the Matneys reformed their life go to (@mnmlmillennials) or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ivJSXW7JjGg