Well, here we are. One week ago, we left Virginia and committed to life on the road. As I write, we are tucked away at a state park in Lumberton, Texas. It has been one hell of a week… I’ll give you a breakdown of where we’ve been so far, and what we’ve been up to.
Last Monday morning, we pulled out around 10am from Fort Valley, VA, and headed for Charlotte, North Carolina. It was surreal, but our excitement levels were off the charts. We spent our first night taking a short walk and attempting to soak in our new reality. Nathan was ecstatic. The campground had ducks. It was his favorite, and he never wanted to leave.
The next morning, we headed for Georgia. I had seen many mentions of a program called “Boondockers Welcome” on the various RV facebook groups I had joined, and we decided to give it a go! For those of you who aren’t familiar: Boondockers Welcome is similar to an Air bnb, but for RVers- people offer up their properties to those passing through. You pay a small membership fee (~$30) and that gives you access to the website for a year. Staying with hosts is generally free, other than offering to compensate for any water/electric used. It’s an awesome deal! Our experience with it was fabulous! The host went way out of his way to make sure we were all settled into our spot, and helped us on our way the next morning.
Wednesday, we left from Georgia and headed toward Florida- Milton, to be exact. It’s located about 20 Minutes north of Navarre, a GORGEOUS spot on the gulf coast. We set up camp and planned to spend the next day at the beach. (P.S, this was Nathan’s NEW favorite spot- it has a pool and mini-golf).
The next morning, equipped with snacks and enough beach gear to provide for at least five families, we headed to Navarre Beach. It. was. stunning. Crystal clear blue water, and white sand that squeaked as you walked… just like a postcard. The first little while was great. The baby played in the sand, I got some great pictures, everything was awesome. And then…cluster.
If you are a parent, you know that there is always that one thing your baby loves more than life itself. Whether it be a blanky, a pacifier, a stuffed animal, whatever…there is usually SOMETHING that helps comfort them. Well for our little Noah, it’s his “lovey”: a cute little blue bear with a safety blanket attached. It is actually quite disgusting, as he sucks on it constantly between washes, and loves it to death. Well, guys…mama screwed up. I forgot the damn lovey. I realized this at nap-time, as I was setting up his porta-crib on the beach. He was exhausted, and I was super excited to get a few hours of sunbathing in while Nathan entertained himself by the surf. HAHAHA. Yeah, I know, I really should know better by now. So, there was no lovey. This kid WILL NOT go to sleep without this gross little bear (he’s due for a washing…don’t judge). Meanwhile, Nathan decided to lay down in the surf and soak himself. Keep in mind that although this is the gulf coast, and in comparison, warm…it’s still March. The water is about 60 degrees. He loved it! Until he didn’t. Suddenly, he’s freezing, and tired. So after an hour of baby screams and big kid whining, we gave up. Back to camp to try again the next day.
Here’s where it gets good: I don’t know whether it was travel, water change, or table scraps- but something did NOT agree with the dog’s stomach. Do you know what is NOT conducive to 300 square feet of living space? A dog with explosive diarrhea. I’ll just leave the rest to your imaginations.
The next day started far better. We got in a good nap, spent some time on the beach (minus screams), with warm sun, blue skies, and an overall wonderful afternoon.
Let me stop you here and note that Chris hadn’t been feeling well for going on 2 weeks. Up to this point he wasn’t in agony, so he just dealt with it. A couple of things: 1) My husband is amazingly tough. 2) My husband is amazingly stubborn. This man will NOT go to a doctor unless he’s actively dying. Well, it took a turn. So, off to a minute clinic we went. What’s that you say? WALKING PNEUMONIA. Okay, fine. Antibiotics, cough meds, roll with the punches…it’s all gonna be fine. Everything is fine. It’s FINE. *Insert forced smile and deep breaths here.*
The next morning, with Chris feeling a bit better, we decided to go ahead and make the pull to New Orleans. We stayed just outside the city at an awesome state park. (Nathan’s NEWEST Favorite!) The evening was spent grilling dinner, roaming around the campground, and generally enjoying the warm summer-like evening.. The French Quarter was on the agenda for the next morning…Ah, plans. Silly little things, aren’t they?
The baby woke up miserable. So, off to the doctor we went. Again. We had a couple of hours to kill before his appointment, and some distraction was needed… What better thing to do while waiting to be seen than stroll around the French Quarter of New Orleans?!
After another nasty chest cold diagnosis, a weeks’ worth of antibiotics, and some albuterol, we were back in business. The day was finished off with a little hike around the nature trail in our campground, and finally, a good night’s sleep.
Today? A far better day. The dog has control of her bowels again, and the boys are feeling much better. I have to admit, the last week has been a little rough…but looking back now, it’s actually down right funny. We made some awesome memories, and had some really good times. The Oregon Trail jokes were endless: Dysentery and Pneumonia…do we continue at a steady pace, or stop and rest? Look around? Hunt?
I can’t wait to see what’s in store now that we all feel 100% again! It’s still hard for me to believe that it’s only been a week… I am continuously so incredibly thankful for this opportunity, and am already filled with awe over the vast diversity and beauty that this country has to offer. I LOVE this lifestyle. I had some doubts in the throws of the pnumonia-poopocolypse…but they were short lived. Every day, I get to wake up to an amazing husband, 2 kids awesome enough to roll right along with our craziness, new scenery, new people, and a fresh start. How COOL is that?!