We would like to tell you a little about ourselves. My husband is Matt and my name is Kelli. We live in Camanche, Iowa and we have been married for three and a half years. The past year has been an absolute whirlwind for us and yet, the most rewarding of our lives! Our son Acre was born in September 2015, our first born! We have been adjusting well and he has already grown so much since we first brought him home. We have been completely blessed by all the love and support of our family and friends and we couldn’t be more thankful. We definitely have learned a lot during parenthood; however, we are just getting started and there is so much more we are yet to learn.
This project got underway when we purchased our son his first Radio Flyer wagon for Christmas. We wanted our son to have the joy and experience of having a Radio Flyer wagon like both Matt and myself had while growing up. My husband always had the creative thought to customize a wagon replicating a semi theme. Both Matt and myself have grown up in the industry of trucking, which has always played an important role in our lives. Both our grandfathers, fathers, brothers as well as my husband Matt all drive a truck for a living. When my husband was 19, he purchased his first semi and operated as an Owner Operator hauling various loads including, but not limited to grain, livestock, dry freight and oversize loads. He owned his own semi for approximately six years until selling it and joining a local fleet in order to spend more time with family. Prior to selling his own semi, he took a few accessories off in which he had purchased while he owned the truck. These accessories have traveled many miles with him and he wanted to keep them for sentimental value; however, since selling the semi these pieces have been stored away in a plastic bin in the loft of our garage at home. That was until opportunity knocked. We wanted to use these items on our son’s wagon to create a customized look!
Once the wagon itself was built, we then started the "blue prints" of how we wanted the project to look. This took many hours and different drawings until we were happy with proceeding forward with the design. During the project, we created a bumper for the wagon. We also created a rear panel and added a license plate with the words "Let's Roll" on it, which reminded us of how our son is constantly on the "go". The side panels were next, followed by the fenders for all the wheels of the wagon. In order to create a taller stance and get the fenders to clear the side panels, we added a spring ride suspension kit to the wagon. Once that was done, we used a white sharpie on the letting of the wheels to allow them to stand out. In addition to helping the wagon stand out even more, we personalized the wagon by adding our sons name to the back of the wagon above the license plate. It is in the same font as the Radio Flyer lettering. Finally, we added lights underneath the wagon and on the side panels which we operate with a battery that we hide inside the wagon in a stainless steel box that we made. To complete the look, we made a red velvety cushion that sits inside the wagon which is cut out around the battery box. By creating this customized look, we are able to proudly express ourselves. We took the wagon and made it "us" and we cannot thank Radio Flyer enough!
When Acre was too young to walk, he would love to sit in the wagon, but now that he is walking he loves to pull the wagon around everywhere! We cannot seem to go anywhere without it! We truly enjoyed time we spent together on this project and being able to combine a customized look with the tradition of the Radio Flyer wagon. We look forward to watching our son grow up with this wagon for many years to come. It is our hope that he will enjoy knowing how each piece was crafted and designed using various pieces from his fathers old semi. There may be scratches on a few difference pieces; however, that is part of the history and story behind it.
Matt, Kelli & Acre