Toy Gift Guide

toys that parents and kids will love

Sometimes you have to buy toys. There is just no way around it. And it’s especially hard to find the right gift for someones elses kid! We focus most of our gift giving on great experiences. We do pool parties, and trips to fun kids places. Museums, theme parks, and camping with pools.  At the […]

Our St. Nicholas Tradition

Ushering in the meaning of the season

We started celebrating Saint Nicholas day while we lived in Germany. On the night of December 5th all the German kids put a shoe outside of their doors so that St. Nicholas can put a few treats in them. We have co opted this tradition to help start our holidays with more gratitude and generosity.

German St Nick traditions

October Expenses

Record low, winter gear and birthdays

It’s finally happened! I wasn’t sure it ever would, but here we are. Our expenses were finally under $2,000 including our giving. (2 other months we would have made it, but our giving pushed us over.) I am so excited! I had originally estimated our expenses at $3500 a month, but we have actually averaged […]

“I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.” ― Mark Twain

There were a lot of reasons this trip wasn’t a great idea. And just like Mark Twain, most of them haven’t happened (not yet at least). We are 10 days into our 6 week trip. And I have to admit, it’s going much smoother than I could have hoped for. Sorry for the lack of posting, Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons were 10 days of life off the grid. (no showers, flushing toilets, electricity, running water, cell phone service or (gasp) internet! Which I both hated, and kind of loved. Who knew that the world still spun and days could be full and exciting without seeing what other people are doing on social media??? Or checking our bank account. Or checking the blogs traffic stats. A strange phenomenon for sure.

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But I wanted to share this thought with you all before we pack up camp this morning.

Sometimes we talk ourselves out of life’s best adventures because they seem like too much work. Or too many things could go wrong. Or it might not be worth the time and money.

Just like a lot of our worries never come true, there is another side of the coin.

The most meaningful and memorable moments are rarely anticipated.

The hilarious moments when things go wrong. (Usually those become funnier with time.) The people you meet along the way. The ways that relationships grow closer. The unexpected sights you see.  Conversations or ideas sparked by long car rides. Communication skills and compromise forged in the fire of traveling together.

Reading through a travel book and plotting your trip, only gives a glimpse of all the great things that might happen on your adventure.

We met an amazing couple at our first camping spot.  When we had to part ways after just two days, I was a bit sad. We shared addresses and phone numbers; took some group photos. They shared amazing stories with me about generosity, financial freedom, and adventure (my kind of people!). But our short time with them wasn’t in any of the tourist info I researched. Getting to know their story was just an amazing unexpected bonus to our travels. One of a dozen we have experienced so far. All of which have been much more valuable than seeing Old Faithful erupt.

5 little kids. 1 pop up camper. 6 weeks. And a dog named Cheesy Taco.

“The word adventure has gotten overused. For me, when everything goes wrong – that’s when adventure starts.” Yvon Chouinard founder of Patagonia 5 little kids. 2 adults. 1 pop up camper. 6 weeks. And a dog named Cheesy Taco.  What could go wrong??? When I started mentioning our trip to friends. There are two responses, divided […]