To my Grandkids,
Currently sitting somewhere in the Oregon forest where we are surrounded by yurts, a communal house, a couple vanlifers, a communal bus, an amazing little tiny house, and 50 acres of free roam forest on the bottom of Mt. Hood...
Yea, we're doin alright :)
After the situation with the van happened, we decided we wanted to chill somewhere for a little bit and make some money before hitting the road again, so we found a job in Oregon! We've been visiting some of Elliots friends around his hometown here and I got to meet his lovely family! Yesterday we took a float day on the river with some friends, super cool people!! We floated all day and throughout pure chaos and shenanigans, we somehow survived... Followed by a fun evening of meeting more friends and getting our butts whooped in a yard game.
Today we drove a bit further into Oregon and got to the farm we are working at. We will be helping run some campsites, yurts, cleaning up the garden, and helping with general land maintenance. As soon as we got here, the vibes were so good, and the people were so friendly and welcoming! We were greeted by one of the other workers out here, and another lovely woman who lives in my dream tiny house- its gorgeous and GREEN (my favorite color)!! We are staying in a communal house with another couple who lives and works here, and 2 others that live in camper vans outside. When the owner of the farm got to the house to meet with us, we all sat outside on the deck and had a late night dinner together (coincidentally, at 11:11!!). We shared a couple laughs, drinks, and spent a bit of time getting to know each other. They are all so sweet!
As I was reminiscing this morning on my past blogs, I started to feel a bit emotional for a couple different reasons..
One being that I am so genuinely happy with how blessed I am to experience this amazing life. Yes, the van situation sucks and has caused many tears and frustration- but it is a very small blip in a very amazing life that I have..
And two being that I am SO PROUD of myself.. I am proud of my growth as a person, my own ambition to make it happen for myself, and my willingness to try new things and get out of my comfort zone. Granted, it's not always easy, and a lot of credit goes to Elliot for keeping me out of my comfort zone, but still!
I. Am. So. Blessed.
We aren't even 24 hours into this experience yet and it has already been so fun.
I'm so excited to see where this journey takes E and I :)
Your life is so precious- what's stopping you from living it to the fullest extent?
What's stopping you from taking that step?
What's stopping you?
I love you, I'll have so many more stories to share with you when you exist,
Your crayzee forest dwellling Granny J ;)
To My Grandkids,
Life is... Still good..!
In these past couple weeks It feels like I've been put through the ringer honestly-
let me catch you up.
About a month ago, I said goodbye to Lauren as we parted ways, once again stepping away to let distance live between us. Laci and I took an emergency trip to MO to spend time with family. As always, it felt so strange to be back there, walking the streets I grew up in with a whole new mindset. I got to see a couple very important mentors in my life, and got to spend some well needed time holding family close. Only a couple hours after hitting the road back home, the van started to get too hot.. So pull over and find a shop.. Thank god the mechanics were so helpful, rather than waiting 5 days to be back on the road they got us done in one. 22 hours later we pull into our driveway in Montana- making that 70 hours driven between Lauren, Laci and I..
All winter my motivation was to get back on the road, working 2 jobs to save up and be able to be unemployed for a minute for some travel freedom.. Elliot and I recently built out the van and got it comfortable and ready to hit the road, planning to be gone for a couple months. After that week of unexpected travel though, we decided to push the trip back a bit, allowing some time to get a job and save up a little more cash. We had planned that as soon as I got back to Montana, we would load up and head to Oregon to work for a while. This being said, just as quick as I rolled into Montana we were packed back in the van and ready to roll out.
The first hour drive to our new journey was so beautiful. The sun was setting and it was raining lightly, leaving a beautiful hue of light dancing through the valley, up and over the mountains, and stinging the tips of pine trees above us. At one point, we were driving around the Flathead lake while the sun kissed the horizon- it was so amazing we had to pull over to take it in. I was so excited to be going again, no specific destination but the open road leading us from here. This is where I thrive.
As we're driving to our camp spot for the night, I was finally feeling a break, an exhale from the last couple weeks of feeling overwhelmed and then- hahaha life isn't that easy all the time.
Out of nowhere, a friggin dear is standing on the side of the road, looking at me before he makes the decision to keep going... boom.
Did I mention that after 20 years of never hitting a single animal in any car, this would be the second deer I hit in the last 2 DAYS.. That deer was done for, I was pushing 70 on the highway, no hope for him or the van. It was so frightening- not to sound too dramatic but car crashes are my worst fear, and here I am watching a deer get blown to smithereens by the van that is my home, my safe place, my traveling opportunity, my dream. Boom. Actually I'd say the DEER blew the VAN to smithereens. My front end is toast, the grill nonexistent, the coolant pouring out, headlight hanging on by a thread, my sanity dripping empty with every drop of fluid hitting the pavement. I was such a mess. My VAN!! Ugh that effin deer- it pisses me off so much. It would've been so nice if he would've just waited a SECOND before running.
Anyway, there goes that plan.. Not to mention all the small puzzle pieces of other things that have been going wrong surrounding the situation- it's seriously one thing after another.
I can't complain too much honestly. The last year of my life has been the most exhilarating, fulfilling, dream chasing, easy going time ever- and I've sailed through so much growth without hitting any bumps. So I guess it's my time to get a couple lessons, It's necessary to keep moving forward.
Life is a spiral. The cycles will come and go as you need them, I am open to the lessons this pain and frustration brings.
I am okay, and life is
Your Eternally Growing Granny J :)
To My Grandkids,
In the last year, I have driven 20,000 miles.
Amidst those miles, I have learned, grown, loved and been loved, cried, felt pain, walked through chaos, and felt complete bliss. Those miles represent growth to the fullest extent- pushing me off the cliff of comfort and out into the world where I am free. Free to roam, explore, meet people and connect with experiences and backgrounds from all over the world. In the last year, those 20,000 miles changed my life.
Recently I have been thinking a lot about all the different people I've met in my life. I'm not just talking about family and close friends, but all the amazing people I've met in passing, the ones I've had the pleasure to spend more time with and hear their stories, people I've worked with throughout many jobs, people I've learned from, and anyone I've shared a passing glance with that impacted my life and didn't even realized they had. I've met some people under wild circumstances- from road trips bringing together a soul family I didn't even know I had, broke down vehicles uniting us with some very kind and helpful friends, and odd jobs giving me the opportunity to meet the most genuine and fun group of people ever.
After 20,000 miles of new experiences, I can easily say that one of the most important things in this life is connection. To connect with people is to understand perspectives, and to connect through love. When you connect with people it offers an opportunity to not only learn from them, but also make relationships that could benefit you for a whole lifetime. Throughout all my travels, all the places I've been, and breathtaking adventures I've been on, the stories I tell the most always come back to the people I've met.
Go out of your way to make friends, and give people the time to tell their stories-
relationships will always be more important than the materialistic things you have.
Take the time to tell people you appreciate them, you never know when you'll see them again.
One day we'll get to sit around our own campfire and share stories of the people we've met- from these last 20,000 miles and the next, I've got lots to tell you about :)
Your crazy granny J!!