Spy Kids actress Carla Gugino always appreciates the benefits of a sturdy house - because she once lived in a tepee and a van.

The screen beauty has nothing but fond memories of the time she spent living in unconventional dwellings as a child.

She says, "My father and my mother separated when I was two With my father, I lived in Florida, where we had a swimming pool, a tennis court, the whole deal.

"My mom wanted to take me out of the hubbub. She put up a real Indian tepee in Paradise, Florida, and we lived there for six months. We also lived in a van in Big Sur for a while.

"When you're a kid, it's a dream. I bathed in the river, ran around in the forest, searched for rock quartz. It was a very bohemian upbringing, although I'm glad I don't live in a tepee now."

29/01/2004 17:28