Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Few Changes For The Good

Okay so the 12 week plan of travel has been downsized to 6...but we are still moving about! A few weeks ago I had a beautiful conversation with my older sister, who is planning her wedding for July. This is not just any wedding...this has been a very long engagement and we couldn't be more happier that her Steve got a Visa and is headed for the states to marry my this time, we have all said the words, "finally!" So at first I wanted to say, NO!!!! We have planned this trip for so long and I want to travel, however, I believe this beautiful plan for her July wedding is meant to be for them, as well as us. So we are in Temecula this weekend, picking up our van (which needs a few costly repairs & will be done sometime next week), our tent, and heading out to Ohio.....we really couldn't afford to take our RV for a 6 week trip out to the midwest, so we are selling it, cause we need something larger for our family anyways...and our beautiful friend Vanessa is buying it! So it is a win/win for everyone!

A few weeks ago we spent some sweet time up in Santa Rosa with my younger sister Heather, however it rained more than half the time we were our adventure was a bit tough there, however we did see the beautiful Redwoods, hiked a bit, and had some very special time with Heather and my nephew Sonny. Micah has an amazing connection with Sonny and his desire for life is to live next to Sonny and eat candy all day with him, so this was a very sweet time for him with his cousin...and he repeatedly requested for our family to move there. After Santa Rosa, we headed to Sacramento to see the state captial and a friend from school that lived nearby. Our time in the building was awesome! We saw where all the important decisions are made! Slater's favorite thing was the halls that made echo sounds, so we kept saying, "SHHHHH!!!" At one point we just let him be did help that it was a Friday about 5pm when most were leaving and the tourist count was down. However, we got a lot of "educational experience" there. We spent a few days in Merced, and then it hit me...I (and the family, cause it can;t only be my fault can it?) ...need the fresh air that only come with the we decided to take the 41 into San Luis Obispo...and ahhhh...once I saw that Hwy. 101 sign, mama became another woman. I felt freedom hit me. It was so beautiful along the coast, we hit the skateparks, the beach, and stayed in Oceano for a few days to just rest and relax. We rode our bikes to parks, and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows on the fire. We laughed. It was a good place to be. I honestly could live in a cardboard box at the beach...just come by fed me, and I would survive! So as we were headed down the 5 freeway, at 10pm, a few nights ago, Steve saw the sign for Hollywood and said, "Let's take a stroll down Hollywood lane!" The kids were so excited and we couldn't have been more on board with his idea. Oh the joy of taking an old 1984 Class C with 5 bikes on the back into the lovely land of materialism....we got a bit lost looking for the Hollywood sign, only to find out that it doesn't light up at night, so while we were driving about, we landed in Beverly Hills, which was even more fun...The houses...ahh...Steve kept saying (with an Engish accent.."Oh Buffy...could you bring me a cup of tea." After seeing the documentary on the famous Pink's hot dogs in Hollywood, it was a must to stop and try them, I mean honestly, what better way to spend your weekday evening at about midnight than to be eating the famous Pink's hot dogs...they were great, however Costco's $1.50 ones are good too.

So we decided to head down to San Diego (Oceanside to be exact) after Hoolywood, although the late hour. We got in about 3am, and the next day enjoyed sleeping in, taking the Coaster to Encinitas to the kid's Yugioh Parkday, and preparing for our interview the next day at The Anchor in Oceanside. Our interview for this ministry was the most relaxed interview I have ever been to. Our whole family was interviewed, Mr. John bought our kids pizza, and we had a beautiful time learning about this amazing ministry. We are applying for the director position. They liked us a lot and want to have us for another interview. We feel this position would stretch us in so many ways, as The Anchor ministers to those in the military. The Anchor provides a refuge for our military. If you have the chance google it. Looks like we'll be in Oceanside if we decide on taking this job!!!!

For the weekend, I plan on getting current with my schoolwork, cleaning out our RV, and spending some quality time with my family.And then when our van is ready, we shall pack it, and head out. I am at such a beautiful place in my life right now, so I am going to breathe while enjoying life this weekend, before we plan to head out for more adventure!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Trees Outside My Window

As I look outside I see a car here and there, but there are trees everywhere. I do mean everywhere. My children are waking up, it is peaceful here in Forestville, which is next to Santa Rosa, where my sis Heather and nephew Sonny live. We plan to be here a week. We are sitting up above the river which is running quick today. I am excited to have a week to accomplish the things that have needed my attention, like schoolwork, cleaning, and being outside with our family. We also need to 'just be.' We have been seeing sights for the past few weeks, enjoyed Oakhurst, and now we are going to just sit here for a week. My sister will let us use her car if we need one, but other than that, we have our bikes, a full fridge (after today's shopping), and a huge area to explore. Marshmallows by the fire, rain expected tomorrow for a few days, and trees to be surrounded by.

I had expectations of this trip around the U.S. I thought it would be amazing, we all would get along, and smiles and laughter would rule our home. We have shared about the great things mostly and left out some of the reality of traveling with 7 the rv not having water, our black tank leaking and smelled, and our kids tattling every five minutes on each other. Having to stay inside even when someone farts and smells up the whole 26ft of our home...through this experience I have found that I have to pick my battles...of course I have to if a fart smells up the rv...well, I have to remember I have 5 boys in here...and I can just purchase myself a gas mask and wear it...right? If the kids are tattling, then I can just tell them that I don't speak English...right? If we have leaks, I can just let them leak and put wads of tissue up my nose...right? So as I am learning what life is like to be traveling, I am also experiencing a life with having only what we really 'need' vs. want. Do I really need all the clothes I have? No. Why do I own it all then? The truth? Because I have a sense of security in my 'stuff.' So this week, I plan to see what is really a need vs. want, plus to enjoy those moments of doing nothing, doing something, and being surrounded by the trees that help me breathe.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Finally Breathing....

I am in AWE of where we are at today..Oakhurst, CA-just below Yosemite. It is mid 70's, with the river rolling down behind our rig. There are waterfalls here, and the sound makes me breathe...and slightly want to pee...but it is calming. After leaving Poway, we stayed in Oceanside for a few days, tried to repair a few leaks, and then headed up to Huntington Beach for a few days. This place was next to Jordan's favorite skatepark, plus we enjoyed a day with cousin Rachel and friends for dinner. We had one of those "this was meant to be" moments with a neighbor there...Steve's posting will reflect what stay tuned. After HB, we traveled a bit up through Mojave, had an experience of what a true trailer park was for the night, and left the next day for Bakersfield. Once arriving there we had a few kids that ran to our RV even before we stopped. They begged to use our bikes, and one of them invited themselves into our RV and began to take the kids coins on our table then they was one awkward moment. No parents in sight. We felt like this was a land that needed much love, but we also felt a bit unsafe,....especially when a lil' boy known as Ricky Bobby said his cat had been shot the night before in the butt with a BB gun. Needless to say, we headed out north.

We have loved the drive, stopping when we want, peeing when need be on the road, ya know, the finer things in life.

Now we are in Oakhurst, the kids are playing in the sand near the free flowing river, we had a Birthday Breakfast for Micah, and we are getting ready to ride bikes into town for a bit. The crockpot is going for dinner, I am excited to start a few new classes today (3 more to go and I is a graduate of college!!!!), and I am breathing. The water works in our rig, so does the sewer. Steve (and our HB friend) fixed our leaks, and we are in a beautiful place we can sit and enjoy. I keep having funny thoughts about the fact that 7 humans live in a 26 ft. RV...and I love it! I love the freedom, the peace, and the lack of stuff I was surrounded by. We have too much stuff in here and plan to 'get rid' more.

What a beautiful place to be at when we dig into ourselves, eliminate the stuff, and give ourselves some room to breathe....AAAHHHHH oxygen.....

Friday, May 6, 2011

Welcome to day seven

Here we are entering into the last day of our first week on the road. In the past seven days the RV has given me plenty of opportunities to 'learn.' The first day we plugged in a the campsite I sprung a water leak.....which after attempts to fix, I have succumbed to calling a mobile guy who will charge me too much money... and fix it in 10 secoonds....ahhh. As we were getting ready on Wednesday night I can back to a leak in my gray tank....and a small one on my black tank.....This is going to be an adventure I will never forget about....The most wonderful thing about this so far is that fact that I get to learn all about how to fix the things I do not know AND I get some major quality time to spend with the family


Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Morning After.....

Our life just changed. We moved out of our 1400 square foot condo with a fabulous backyard, and wonderful neighbors in the heart of Poway, CA in trade of a 26 ft. TravelCraft Class C Rv! Now to some this would be crazy with a family of 7, but for us, it is the opportunity to stop the routine of life, breathe, cause we lost too oxygen in our brains and need some back, and to live a life full of joy and contentment.
Steve and I have a few more classes left in Seminary, which our amazing advisor allowed to be completely online so we'd be able to have this adventure. Our brains are full, our heart are receptive and want to give and receive, and our minds need clearing and healing. This journey with our family stems from a desire to connect on a newer level with one another. We feel so at peace to have opened a new chapter for our family.
Last night we enjoyed a beautiful night full of laughter with our friends, after moving out. We stayed with Doug & Ina and their sweet kids last night, after enjoying yummy food, some birthday Costco Lemon cake for Micah, and some tea at the could have been better for our family. Thank you all who made it special! Today we awoke fresh. We still have much to be responsible about, but our responsibilities have changed a bit. We embrace them, our little family, and this adventure to travel, connect, and have joy. Ahhhhh, the beauty of life!