Well, here we are a year and a half into the idea of this journey. What started as a crazy idea while on a road trip to Pennsylvania – to take our two boys on a roadtrip across the country- may actually happen. My husband and I have always loved to travel and have traveled in the US and worldwide and we wanted to show our boys how much the US has to offer. So we are taking them out of school (we will be homeschooling on the road) and piling into my Expedition for half the year and then into my hubby’s truck and a 24’11” travel trailer for the next half and trying to visit 48 states (49 if we can squeeze in a cruise of Alaska and a flight to Hawaii) before the following year school year starts.
Crazy? Probably. Doable? Only one way to find out. Smooth sailing? Most likely not. Happy, happy, joy, joy all the time? Nope. Well, to be honest. I see good days, bad days, and days we feel like strangling each other, mixed with laughter, tears, and I’m sure I’ll end up yelling. Worth it? Totally!
The Camper – Those of you at that have had to listen to us talk about this over the past year, can skip to the next paragraph. No need to rehash what you’ve heard me talking about, since you lived it, right? For those of you just finding us, here’s how the thought process for our camper went. We started looking at very small Class Cs. Easy to drive, park, get in and out of places, etc. But once inside, Trevor felt like we needed one with a couch AND a dinette since we would be living in it. So we moved to a larger C. Then he saw an even bigger one with bunk beds and thought that was the ticket. Then, I said if we were going that big we might as well get a Class A. That lead to tow vehicle issues that briefly lead us to consider a Class A diesel. But given the price increase, we didn’t entertain that idea for very long at all. Not wanting to buy a tow vehicle, we decided to look at travel trailers. To get bunk beds we had to go with what we considered a long trailer and Trevor didn’t want to pull something that big through cities and over mountains, etc. So we looked at a 5th wheel for fun and fell in love. It had a bunk room for the boys and it said our pick up could tow it. Perfect! But after lots of research, we realized we needed a bigger truck to travel safely. With Trevor’s pick up being fairly new, we just couldn’t see doing that. We thought about living in hotels and houses for a year but even typing that stresses me out. So last week, we finally bought a 25” travel trailer with no slide and our bed is a Murphy bed/couch combo but at least the boys have bunks. Some of you are getting claustrophobic just reading this. Me too!
Well, after a couple of weeks having the trailer, Trevor decided to take half the trip in my Expedition instead of the RV. Our first leg is up and north and then down the Eastern Seaboard, he doesn’t want to tow the trailer through NYC and the Jersey Turnpike, etc. Plus, going through so many cities, it will be easier to get around without the trailer. When we make it back to Georgia, we will swap to his truck and take the trailer out west where there’s longer stretches and less populated cities. Granted, these are all our assumptions. We have absolutely no idea, if these decisions are the best. There are SOOOOO many variables in a trip like this. I’m sure some we will get right and some we will get so wrong. And that’s ok. That’s all part of the adventure.
The first questions we get when we tell people what we’re doing is, “what do you do for a living and how are you leaving for a year?” A lot of factors went into making this trip possible. My husband, Trevor, had a successful textbook business and I am a CPA but I’ve been a stay-at-home mom since we had Mason back in 2009. We have tried to be wise with our money, saving, getting debt-free, and staying in our cabin as opposed to buying another house. We’ve always valued experiences over “stuff” and that philosophy has guided us to where we are today.
My dad passed away last year right as he was about to retire. I have chronic hip pain and not getting any younger as Trev and I are both in our 40s. So we decided life was too short and we needed to seize the day. So here we are are seizing the day. Our official “go” date is July 17th. It was supposed to be July 1st but Mason was close to getting his grey/white belt in Jiu-Jitsu so we wanted him to get it before we leave. It’s important to him so it’s important to us. Little man did it and we are so proud.
The boys will be using the same curriculum as their school uses so they can stay on track educationally. I’m not on social media and I’m usually pretty private but friends (Mrs. Beth, you know I’m talking about you) and family keep asking me how they can keep up with us. So, to chronicle this journey, I finally broke down to write this blog. Trevor and the boys will blog too. I don’t know how this will go or if I’ll be able to keep it up, or if anyone will even read it, but at least I’m giving it a try. I’m sure I’ll have typos and grammar errors but just try to ignore those. Those of you reading this anyway, probably already know us and love us (Hi, Mom) so I’m hoping you’ll keep reading.