For years, Brannon and I have lived several different places and still haven't felt like we've found our "home". We're based back in Springfield now (although we're still currently out on the road), and to some extent that will always be home because of our families living there. But as you grow together as a couple and have different experiences together, you can't help but be changed by those experiences in your life's journey. And it just doesn't feel like Springfield fits as well as it maybe did while we were growing up. We're happy of course, and it is after all just a place, a place which doesn't determine the happiness of our existence together. And if we end up living out the rest of our lives there, we will be very happy. (That doesn't sound like a disclaimer, does it? ;) ) But there is still a part of us that have always wondered what or where "home" is for us. We know the three of us together is for sure "home", and who knows? The place may have little to nothing to do with it. But we aren't going to just assume this. We are going to find out.
Before we went out on the road, we really had no idea what life on the road would feel like. We had fears that maybe we had just romanticized this "living in a small RV" idea, and that we would commit to going, get out on the road, and be miserable. We talked about this beforehand, and gave ourselves permission to come home early at any point that we wanted. Even at that point, it would've been a memorable experience and we would've been able to place that checkmark next to "Living in an RV" on our mental bucket list.
I can now say with all the sureness in the world that after being out for a month and a half, I LOVE living life with my family on the road in our small RV. Besides the obvious reasons of traveling cheaply and getting to see new things and explore new places, I LOVE taking my home with us everywhere we go. For example: If Brannon wants to get up early to go to a coffee shop to work for the day, I don't have to get myself or Ember ready, or pack a diaper bag, or think about what to fix for lunch for all of us if we're going to be out for awhile... We just go. And I get myself and Ember dressed once we get there. And I can pop in and out of the camper to change a diaper. Or fix some food. Or lay Ember down for a nap. Or fold laundry. Or "clean house" a little bit. Or take Ember for a walk and explore that part of a new town. Even though we have one vehicle and that vehicle is also our house, I really wouldn't want it any other way. It's completely perfect for being spontaneous and not having to plan ahead.
"Living the Dream". People used to say things like that, and I never understood it. I either thought they were easily amused by life, or bluffing. At the same time, I was happy they felt that way, and wondered if someday I would feel like that. And then sometimes I was irritated - irritated that it might actually be possible to feel that way and I had no idea how to get there. I had tried the things that those others were doing that was making their life so "dreamy", and did not get the same results. "WHY??" I wondered this all the time. I thought maybe there was something wrong with me, or that I was never going to get to feel that way. I wasn't miserable or unhappy, just felt like I hadn't found "me". Because "me" was not in what everyone else was doing.
I did lots of soul-searching. Tried lots of things. Felt completely lost. My husband felt the same way. (I thank God every day that I have found you, babe.)
And then through God's guidance and complete provision (I still seriously couldn't have worked things out like He has and continues to do), we have found "us" and are finally able to "live the dream" - or actually, live our dream. Sometimes I just smile in awe - I think He has us exactly where we need to be right now. Even though that place may change, I know He's got it figured out. And THAT is truly living the dream.
So let me begin this post by saying I've never liked cooking. Never really been good at it, never really tried at it very hard. Never had the interest. My palate has never been very refined. So to me, if it filled me up it did its purpose, regardless of quality or even taste.
As I've gotten older, my viewpoint has changed a bit. I really do believe you are what you put into your body. If you put in crap, that's what you're going to feel like. Over the last few years, my husband and I have made little changes that are more health-conscious, but I still don't really cook much. And we still buy a fair share of processed foods, mixed in with the "organic" and "all-natural" choices. (Not to mention that a lot of the "organic" and "all-natural" items on the shelf are still very processed.)
My nutrition convictions have increased over the last few months, and especially since we've been on this trip. I've had less distractions and more time to focus on my family, set some goals, evaluate things around me, etc... Just more intentional living all around (one of my favorite things about RV-living). And cooking healthy meals for my family has been one of the things that has hit me in the face. I must learn how to cook. And not only cook, but cook nutrition-filled meals that will over time make us healthier individuals.
My main motivation is my husband. We think he has food allergies of sorts, but have yet to get an official allergy test. Doctors can't seem to pinpoint his symptoms.
So here goes this cooking thing. Succeed or fail, I must try. Here's to good health - for ourselves and our loved ones. Cheers.
Wedding week for my brother Evan and his bride Lindsey!
We parked Harvey in the driveway of Lindsey's grandparents' house, where the rest of my family was staying.
We pulled up to our friends' tiny cabin in the hills of Montana in Columbia Falls that evening and greeted them with smiles. We met Mandy and Lyam when we lived in Maui (when they also lived in Maui), and hadn't seen them in over a year. They have two amazing kiddos Lolah and Xander - Lolah is just over two years old and Xander is one month younger than Ember. Last time we had hung out with them, Mandy and I were both pregnant with Xander and Ember, so this was the first time we got to meet our littlest ones. Ember was in heaven playing with both of them.
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