Addressing the void

IMG_20140322_122047It has been quite a while since my last post. While I could enumerate the reasons for this, it’s unnecessary. The gist of it is: plans change.

It’s amazing how fluid life can be if you let it. One can easily lose sight of the peripherary when the blinders are on; make plans, lock them in, and stay the course no matter what might arise. This, in my view, is a difficult way to exist, always in opposition to the continual shifts in our surroundings, our options, and our future.

Things are always changing. We are always changing. Always. Continue reading

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A slow shift toward the Long Road

Our house full of stuff.
Our house full of stuff.

Any goal worth pursuing requires preparation. And so it is with our impending PanAm adventure.

We are slowly shifting the very structure of our lives. This is easier said than done. We often don’t realize in this country how entrenched we really are.

We have a house full of stuff: unused golf clubs languishing in the garage, boxes of art supplies, box fans, piles of books, seven years of tax records, extra dog collars, a bin of orphaned cables and cords, a veritable jungle of houseplants… you get the idea. It just piles up in the course of everyday living. We hardly even notice its accumulation until we attempt to downsize. In America, having so much stuff is normal. In fact, we probably have less stuff than most. We will get a storage unit for the few sentimental items we don’t want to part with, and the rest will be redistributed via moving sale next summer.

There are the other trappings of modern American life that weigh us down, too, like the complex web of financial obligations we all create for ourselves: bill pays, bank accounts, credit lines, contracts, mortgages, student loans, and retirement accounts. Much of this is already sorted out, and it will be quite nice indeed to simplify our financial landscape. Continue reading

Good things come in threes

Here she is - our new home starting in 2014!
Here she is – our new home starting in 2014!

Sometimes things just fall into place without much effort. Not always, but sometimes.

It might sound cheesy or a little too new-age hippie, but I do believe we can manifest good things in our lives. My brief 30 years of experience on this planet has demonstrated that when we approach the world with kindness, positivity and gratitude, we are blessed with abundance. Granted, our definition of abundance and our expectations play a large role in that. If I expected to be a millionaire by now, I would be sorely disappointed and would not feel at all abundant. Fortunately, millionaire status is not my goal.

I’m not saying that bad things don’t happen to good people. I’ve had my share of bad luck for sure, and I know some very good people who have had some very bad things happen to them. But for myself, I find the negative events to be less memorable and less impactful than the good ones. And when I look at those good people around me who have had some serious bad luck, they come away from those things stronger, and good things inevitably come back around to them. They do not wallow in their misfortune, and their kindness, positivity and gratitude remain intact. That is the strength of the human spirit. 

All of this is to say that good fortune has come our way again. While I’m not surprised, I am very grateful. Continue reading

Now is the time: overland plans for 2014

The monastery in Arequipa, Peru.
The monastery in Arequipa, Peru.

It’s amazing sometimes how quickly plans can change. A month ago I was planning to attend graduate school next fall after taking 7-8 months to drive around North America with our trailer. I was excited to graduate this December, and thankful to have a period of flexibility before starting my MFA program.

But, thanks to university bureaucracy, I found out recently that I will not be graduating in December, and will instead be tethered to New Mexico until May. Needless to say, this discovery was more than a little irritating. In fact, it gave rise to a full-blown Hate Train, which then gave rise again to The Conundrum (see previous post). This, in turn, inspired our new and more awesome plan.

And we couldn’t be more excited about this unexpected change.

Continue reading