Goodbye 2020. Hello 2021!

Most years on December 31st, I write a blog post reflecting on the past year and make some sweeping declarations of what went right, what went wrong, and then give some encouragement on how we all can be better in the coming year. I started writing that post this morning, and abandoned it shortly afterward. This year, it all just feels…different.

Certainly many have tried over the last few days and weeks to encapsulate this year into words. It’s a challenge. Even now, sitting here beginning to write this post for the second time, I’m struggling to focus. We’ve just experienced a year unlike any other – a global pandemic, a particularly hostile election, civil and political unrest, wildfires that ravaged entire communities, and continued terror across the globe.

Everyone I know is exhausted.

That’s why, this year, I’m not going to add to the noise. I’m not going to talk about the struggles of the year – the anxiety, the politics, the deconstruction. It’s certainly been a really challenging year – even for those of us that have made it through relatively shielded from the worst parts of 2020 – but we’ve all heard enough about the hardships.

Instead, I want to look forward, into a hopeful future, even if the near future promises to look a lot like the not-so-distant past. While things may not change much as the clock strokes midnight tonight, let us for a moment acknowledge that heaviness, and point our heart toward hope.

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But what about the internet?

Or: How a full-time family stays connected.

We get this question quite a bit. How do you manage to stay connected to the internet while on the road? The answer is pretty simple on the surface, and then sometimes very complex once you dig in. We figured with so many people (including many of our personal friends) looking into the possibilities of full-time travel, it might help some people to share our tools and process.

Ok. Let’s unpack it.

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We Press On

There’s no blueprint for this time of our lives. We’re all living in this completely unprecedented time in our world history. It’s complicated, with twists and turns and theories and new ideas around every corner. Where did this thing come from and what are our lives going to look like when the dust settles? Sometimes it’s all a little too much.

When I go to bed at night, I often meditate to try to get myself to sleep. It’s nothing fancy, just something to slow my brain down. (I think too much and stew too much, and it causes bouts of insomnia that are really unhealthy for me.) Sometimes I just try to focus my mind on sensory things, like try to be as still as I can and “feel” the nerves in my head to my toes. It’s sounds super weird, I know, but it’s relaxing. Lately though, I’ve been focusing on memories – and this is has been really amazing.

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Things We Love – Blackstone Griddle

One of the main things we were excited about when we first started out on the road was the idea that we could be outside more, cooking and relaxing by a fire, and just enjoying all the things that campground life had to offer. So early on, I was eyeballing grills and I told Yvette, as long as it has fire underneath the food – THAT is what I wanted.

I’ve long been a fan of grills, and my trusty Char-Broil infrared grill has seen many fires. And there are a metric ton of portable grills on the market, including popular ones like the Weber Q 1200 and the Coleman Roadtrip. So consider me skeptical when she suggested we look into a Blackstone Griddle. You’re telling me the fire is blocked completely by a pan?! So the fire doesn’t touch the food?! What kind of grilling blasphemy is this?!

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What can a full-time family do during a pandemic?

We’ve had several people reach out to us to check in and see how we’re dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and how it is affecting our lives as full-time travelers. The short answer is we’re working through many of the same challenges that everyone else is facing, and getting through it day-by-day just like everyone else.

That said, there are some unique challenges that we’re facing while on the road during this crazy time, and we wanted to share some updates and thoughts regarding our experience – for those of you that just love us and want to know we’re safe (❤️) and to hopefully help some other full-timers know we’re out here supporting you.

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