i found this post card in a store in san diego and it spoke so loudly to me. i love to travel. i love discovering and learning about and seeing the world. i can't say i'm a huge adventurer but i give it a try. this is what travel brings to me, a change deep and permanent in my idea of living.
it could be something as small as realizing i can work with one pot and one pan to cook meals. or how much i love to read and immerse myself in a book when there is nothing else i should be doing. or spending unmeasured time on the swings with sofia, playing games with the boys or looking at the stars on a picnic table with bobby.
i walk back into my life inspired, changed, happier.
i go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order. - john burroughs
i treasure all of the photos that i take on our trips. but sometimes they just can't capture the beauty and magnitude of the moment. i remember walking through the park on our hikes and trying to take in the enormity of this world that we live in. it opens my eyes again, it makes me feel something, it touches my soul.
we were out for a hike one day, our feet crushing the leaves and sticks, kids were laughing and chatting about something, we were chewing on trail mix and then we stopped. i asked everyone to just take a moment to listen and look. the sun coming through the trees, the sound of the birds, the stillness of it all. for a minute the five of us stood there and let it sink in. (maybe that was just me but indulge me, will you?) that moment is the moment i will go to when life is active and stressful all around me. that is where my mind and heart will go when i just need a breath to get me through.
every trip we take, whether it's to hawaii, mexico, a houseboat, an rv, or a road trip reminds me of the incredible family i am blessed to share my life with. my kids are growing way too fast. college is not too far off for jordan, andrew will be in high school next year and sofia is no longer the baby (technically). although i hope they will still want to vacation with us as they grow up, and someday bring their families along, it's not going to be like this forever. i cherish this and hold on to it as long as i can.
a road trip is hard. many hours, hundreds of miles, constantly answering "how much longer?" we have to take turns on music, come up with games to play, and agree on food stops.
there is also so much laughter. we played games while we were camping and i don't think i've laughed that hard in a long time. everyone works together to pack, unpack, clean, walk each other to the bathroom, find a lost toothbrush, spray each other with bug spray. it's a team that i am honored to be a part of.
i sort of love these people with all my heart. i don't care if we are away for the week or the weekend. if we are at a resort or a motel 6 (that's a lie, i hate motel 6!). i will chose to spend my time with them every.single.time.
in our daily lives we are going 5 different directions at once, sometimes 10, sometimes 20. trips like this help us regroup so we can share experiences and moments that will be with us even when we're not physically together.
he is a huge reason why trips like this work. he sets the road map, literally. he knows that if i did it we would stop in palm springs "on our way" to hearst castle. he does the driving, he finds the campground (or vrbo house), he talks to the ranger, he starts the campfire (really i'm the expert at that but who's counting?) we are all getting good at putting up our tents, but he taught us everything we know.
this process tests us. we don't always agree on where to go or what to do. he always votes for inexpensive adventure. i always vote for drinks with umbrellas (actually he does too). it's stressful getting everyone and everything in the car without forgetting something - or someone. it's a matter of compromise and teamwork, something we are always striving for.
whether it's just the two of us going to italy for our 15 year wedding anniversary or him convincing me to go on a houseboat trip when i was 7 months pregnant or taking an rv back from colorado, we do it with love (and just a little attitude.) we get through the bickering and petty disagreements. we forgive each other for the minor mistakes (renting a stick shift in tuscany) and we always, always make the best of it. he is my travel companion for life.
can't wait to see what adventures this coming year has in store for us. i'm secretly hoping for spain
summer road trip - part 1
summer road trip - part 2
summer road trip - part 3
i am linking this post to stephanie howell's blog your heart out.