As a rule, I lean one of two ways: either I'm the obsessive-compulsive list-making planner or the fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants spontaneous girl.
This season I'm celebrating my tendencies toward the latter. (Which far outweigh my tendencies to the former, if you must know.)
With a month-long, cross-country road trip. Departing Monday. (Squee!)
If you've been around here for ages you might recall the last time this bug bit. Lupine was not yet 4 and Sage was a strapping 8 year old when I loaded them into our VW Beetle and hit the road with them for four weeks, just the three of us.
Let's pause and review for a moment: a three year old and an eight year old and me, alone in a Beetle for a month.
What on earth was I thinking?
I suppose I was thinking that it would be unforgettable for us all. It was.
That we would be stronger for the challenges. We were.
That we would stretch and grow and the experience would draw us closer together. It did.
That each of us would be pushed and pulled and challenged individually, and come out stronger and more confident on the other side. That, too.
And that because we didn't have a classroom to hold us down, the road could be our school. It was.
It was incredible.
My mom met us at the ocean, we connected with old and new friends along the way, and we explored a tiny sliver of this amazing planet – together.
After that trip the kids and I vowed to do a similar trip every year or two, but then life happened. We moved to the farm, got a gaggle of animals, started taking some lessons we didn't want to pause, forgot how amazing that experience was.
Life unfolded and somehow five years passed. Recently I realized: in five more years Sage will be eighteen.
Clearly it was time to load hit the road again.
And while our aging Beetle seemed (mostly… sort of… almost…) up for the challenge of her third cross country road trip, I was ready for an affordable and funky upgrade. One that would save us from last-minute hotel stays or emergency restaurant meals. One that would give us a little more space for spontaneity, and a little room to stretch out.
So Pete, the kids, and I spent an evening on Craigslist and found three vintage RVs within a two hour drive. We took a day last week to drive around Western Wisconsin test driving them all and fell in love with the one parked a just few miles from our home.
We named her Nellie.
Yes, it's a little crazy to buy a vintage RV one week before a cross-country road trip. But that's my kind of crazy. I'm seriously smitten.
Considering this rig was made when I graduated from high school, Nellie is in fabulous shape. We devoted the week to cleaning, fixing the handful of small issues she had, and loading up in preparation for our departure.
Oh, and hanging twinkle lights.
Where will we go? From Wisconsin we'll wander our way to Vermont, Maine, Massachusetts, and Virginia. (Along with many stops between.) We're visiting old and new friends along the way, connecting with my parents near the ocean, and spending lots of time just learning and exploring as a 3/4 roadschooling family once more.
And because you're wondering, goodness yes, we'll miss Pete like crazy while we're gone! We did last time, too. But we'll stay in touch each day, write postcards, and make far more mama's-having-a-meltdown-and-needs-some-backup phone calls than I'd care to admit.
But the comfort of knowing that he'll be here keeping an eye on our business and our farm? That fact will make our trip possible in so many ways. (And the next trip? Well, then it'll be his turn to take them for a while. Fly fishing will surely be involved.)
I'll update the blog as we go and share loads of postcards via Instagram.
I hope you'll all join me on our adventure!