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Hey there! It's Angie - We've been on the road for 4 days already! I'm sitting across the dinette table from Tyler currently. Let me set the stage: bottle of wine, block of Tillamook cheese, knife, phone stage right - wine glass stage left. On Tyler's side I see a stack of cash, box of envelopes, calculator & Beer. The kids are asleep feet away, finally, & we are trying to get to work catching up with life, generating an income & envelope budgeting our now debt free life. I opened the computer in front of me to force myself to blog & I came up with one thought - Expectations. I'm sure you have some expectations of where this blog is going already, maybe. I feel like I've been told countless times to set expectations or asked what my expectations are on a certain topic. It seems pretty simple; we are automatically programed to set them intentionally or subconsciously. I expect people to stop at red lights, but ask me if I've ever seen someone run a red light . . . yep, sure did. I read once that expectations are really just an assurance that you're going to be disappointed. Does that sound pessimistic to you or does that just sound like some straight up truth? I'm sure there are times where I've hit the nail on the head & things turned out just as I thought they would or I made sure they did, but I don't believe we really have the ultimate control in the end. So, in my opinion, setting expectations has a very good chance in ending in disappointment. Let’s see if I’m taking this blog where you expected me to . . . see what I did there?

Thursday April 19th – departure day. I had a lot of expectations about this day; no issues with the towing, waving at our family & friends in our rear view mirror, being extremely excited, kids giggling in the back of the truck, a sound truck that we paid good money to check, a solid plan, a moment to grieve leaving Colorado, great Colorado weather, a plan to head south into great weather & see something new . . . .

Let me tell you what really happened: towing issues causing delay, family arguments, kids screaming, Jackson’s toe getting smashed in the door, more crying, awkward silence as we drive, no time to grieve leaving my home of 13 years, driving in rush hour Denver traffic East due to last minute change of direction, no plan, 38 knot winds, oil sensor & check engine light make and appearance & blowing through I70 which has been seen all too many times by these eyes. These were well thought out expectations that did not come to fruition. Then there were the subconscious expectations: I expected to be able to take a hot shower without any trial and error & no issues with the trailer, I expected to get the kids to bed easily behind a curtain while we carried on the day, I expected our first boondocking experience to be free of any recent car shootings fatalities within the last 30 days (“roll ‘em up” Clark Grizwald – pack up and get out episodes). It’s ok, you can laugh – we are! The last few days have been nothing less than a tough real adjustment. The key to the phrase “rolling with the punches” starts by keeping loose expectations. We knew this was going to be a challenge. It’s hard not to create expectations when you’re making a decision to travel the US with your family in a trailer to escape or change other difficult situations. You expect things to get “better” and some things are! But, this comes with it’s own challenges too, and we knew that. I didn’t want to head to Ohio first. I ran from that state with my hair on fire 13 years ago. However, this is teaching us to work together in so many ways. To “roll with the punches,” to put family first, to know we are well taken care of and provided for. So here’s the plan so many of you are asking about – we are headed East. We’d like to take our time getting to our home towns & see some friends and family, let the kids spend time with their grandparents & then head out to the eastern coast to visit more family and friends, see New England & eat the trailer’s weight in seafood (ok that’s my personal goal). As we plan out the rest of our summer we hope to get back as far West as we can. Yes North Dakota & Montana you’re on our list! However, we’ve learned not to build our foundation on our expectations, we realize there is going to be some maintenance required, but know we are headed exactly where we are supposed to be. . .


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