Year-in-Review Poem

Once Upon a Time, lived a strange family of four,
they decided to take some risks and force open some doors.
Up until now they fooled everyone into thinking theyre normal,
but theres simply nothing about them that is traditional or formal.

They gave away, donated, and sold all their stuff.
but there was still something off, it just wasnt enough.
So they then sold their big house and didnt miss it at all,
as they prepared to live life in a tiny home they could haul.

They lived here and there, and experienced life in full,
they definitely couldnt complain of things getting dull.
From figuring new ways to wash, cook and clean,
to making sure that the house didnt lean,
From spending more quality time together,
no matter the sunshiny or freezing weather,
To hosting celebrations, and having friends camp out,
Theyve opened their minds to what life is about.

Plans have changed numerous times and therefore,
they refuse to make concrete plans and close any doors.
So dont ask them what their plans are for the New Year,
because theyll have nothing to tell you yet, but dont fear

They are very excited about the adventures that lay ahead,
wherever they go, it will be where they feel led.
The uncertainty brings both excitement and stress,
but without either, life would be boring at best.

December 30, 2015

Graduation Day!

Aaron is officially done!  Next phase of life has begun!


Aaron just received his Master's degree in Environmental Analytical Chemistry from Purdue University on Sunday!  He adores the people in academia, and loves all things science, but he is ready to move on to life's next adventure!

Aaron continues to amaze me with how well he balances life.  He worked very hard at Purdue, but he also always made time for friends and family.  I am so proud of my husband and father of my children.  The red, white and blue cord he's wearing was to represent his veteran status.  It's amazing the he was fighting a war in Iraq only 8 years ago.  He is the most open-minded, hilarious, intelligent, fun-loving, thoughtful man I've ever known.  He is absolutely nerd-tastic and loves to share his knowledge.  I made the mistake to announce to him late last night that I was reading an article on soil erosion... :P

Gov... I mean, President of Purdue University Mitch Daniels opening the ceremony.
Aaron receiving his diploma!
December 22, 2015

Doubts

I keep asking myself if we're doing the right thing.

We're plucking our children out of an exceptional school and community to go forward with our upcoming adventure.  We plan on an extended "camping" vacation, and we'll go wherever the wind takes us.  We hope to be settled somewhere amazing when our daughter starts 1st grade next August.  Until then, we will be home-schooling her and her pre-school aged little brother.  My original thought was, they're only 4 and 6 years old, now is the best time to do this.

But last week when we had a conversation with our 6 year old about leaving her school and friends, she started tearing up.  It was finally becoming real to her, now that she could actually count down the days.  Her huge tears started to fall, which gave me a lump in my throat.

She decided to make "Goodbye Cards" for her entire Kindergarten class.  Here's one of them (WARNING: it's a tear jerker. Well, it was for me.)...

On another note, recently the kids made gingerbread houses, which has been a non-stop temptation for their sticky little fingers...

Every moment these little houses of temptation were in their presence, they'd either be asking to eat them, or be sneaking pieces off of it.  When we decided that we'd like to have our kitchen table back, Aaron put the gingerbread houses outside on the deck.  And you'd never guess what happened!  The kids were no longer temped by them.  They completely forgot about their gingerbread houses.  And now they're really gone, and the kids have not asked about them once.  

This is my hope: in the future the kids will see photos of their old school and friends, the gingerbread houses they made as young kids, as well as all the fun places we visited as a family, and they'll remember.  They'll have warm and fuzzy thoughts about all the good times, and realize they had been on an adventure the whole time.

December 18, 2015

Christmas Time Is Here!

As soon as we got home from our Thanksgiving weekend, I started the Christmas decorating.
I wanted to decorate the Pequod like a gingerbread house, but I didn't have that idea until after I had already bought the white LED lights.  In the future, I'll probably switch to colored lights, because I know they're more fun for the kids. :)

I did get the colored lights to decorate the inside, which I put up under the plexiglass catwalk...
And I found these adorable tiny stockings to fit the tiny house. :)
I had a major parent fail and already filled their stockings before Christmas. :/  And now we hear about them every single day. Oops!  

We got a tiny little Christmas tree for the table, which the kids had fun decorating as much as the "big" Christmas tree that we got for the loft.
And yes, they're fake trees, even though we've been working on our family's Christmas tree farm for the last 8 years.  It's just easier for this phase of our lives.  Maybe I'll get some real swags for the front door and some boughs for the outdoor bar ledge.
 The kids really love the lights under the catwalk.
Loki also contributes to the cozy Christmas spirit. :)

December 7, 2016