Showing posts from 2018

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Traveling on the road, you get to see a lot of cool things. This last month I got turn my eyes skyward to experience something amazing!

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta Last month we got to spend a few weeks in Albuquerque NM, for the balloon fiesta. It was incredible! I had never seen a hot air balloon in person before, so it was an amazing experience. Each morning we would wake up to balloons all over the sky, and many of them landed in a field in the RV park. 

The Fiesta had two different "sessions."  There was a morning session and an evening session. The morning session activities started at six a.m. If you were planning on getting to the field by six, you had to be up at five or a little before. Crazy early I know, but seeing the sunrise with the balloons is worth it! You would eat, pack all your stuff and hurry to catch a shuttle. When you got there it would still be dark. After going through the line and getting into the park you would find a wonderful patch of …

My summer in summary

Hi everybody!! Remember me? Contrary to what you may think, I did not drop off the face of the earth into another dimension without internet... okay, so technically I kinda did but Alaska was worth it!!

My summer in summaryMy entire summer has been amazing, but the real Alaskan adventure started after Fairbanks. Our first excursion was Denali national park. 

It was incredible! One of the only ways to see the mountain is to take a bus tour deep into the park. It is restricted from any personal vehicles. The day we took the bus tour was clear and sunny, so we were able to see the mountain in all its majesty. The employees at the visitor center said Denali is only at full visibility 2-3 times a month, so we got lucky! 

Another place we experienced was a small town called Talkeeta. When I say small, I mean SMALL!!! The town consisted of two blocks, and a handful of tourist shops. This tiny town is famous for its fireweed* icecream. I tried some and it was pretty good. It tasted like vanilla…

Fairbanks, AK

We resided in Fairbanks for 10 days. During which time, many activities filled our schedule. The first half of our stay we got to enjoy an RV park with full hook ups.* Although having this rare privilege was enough reason to celebrate, I was especially excited because a meet up was planned. Reuniting with old friends, and meeting new, one of my favorite parts of traveling full time. We broke bread together one night and I paused for a moment to dwell in this moment of special community.
I also walked my first 10K! (Let me pat myself on the back real quick.) I finished just under two hours. As I neared the finish line it was as if time slowed to a crawl. My focus shifted from finishing to soaking in the moment. I remember hearing the sound of the crowd cheering, but my brain distanced the sound, it was to busy sponging up the moment. The sight of the huge LED clock warped me back into time and I got a second wind. I ran a little faster, pushing my aching body to fight to the finish. A…

Canada's Wildlife

We saw a ton of wildlife all throughout Canada. We saw bears.
We saw a few herds of bison.

We met this hungry fox who sat staring at us hoping for a handout. (Although he looked sweet and cuddly, we didn't approach him to find out.)
We saw tons of long horned sheep, and even found a horn from one later in a field.
We also saw a few moose. Unfortunately I was not able to get out my camera fast enough. However, I did get a photo of a moose in Alaska!
We also saw many kinds of smaller animals. Birds, squirrels, and rabbits to name a few. Many insects were spotted as well. Stunning butterflies, bumble bees, spiders and mosquitoes to name a few.  I really enjoyed experiencing all the beautiful wildlife in Canada. However though, I also embraced the chance to connect with the wildlife in my home. My dog Hunter  and I had some mini adventures during our free time in Canada. One of which was dress up.

Another was being off leash on a beach chewing a stick (and thoroughly enjoying it)

Our Newest Family!

I was looking back at my posts about Canada, and realized I haven't shared much about the family we are traveling with! Now buckle your seat belts because this family will knock you off your feet!
Meet The Ledeboer Family, our... well, I'm not really sure what to call them. Friends seems to vague, were totally family by now. (I love when we have spontaneous potlucks. Food, fellowship, and good company, what could be better??) Now, let me tell you a little bit about them. Mr. Ledeboer (top left) is super cool. He loves being outdoors and exploring. One of his favorite outside pastimes is fishing. (My brother is very excited about this, and has declared many times that he can't wait to go fishing with Mr. Ledeboer.) This life style suits him well.  Mrs. Ledeboer (top middle) is way awesome! She is a phenomenal writer. Her style is unique and relatable. The words that she uses when she writes makes you feel as if you were with her, experiencing things with her. Her main can…

Extreme to Extreme Alaska!!!

WE MADE IT TO ALASKA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
About 3 weeks ago we crossed into Alaska for my first time. This was a big mile marker for my family. We had talked about going to Alaska for the last 6 months, and we had finally made it. Right after the border crossing was the "Welcome to Alaska" sign. Overjoyed, we pulled over to take a photo by the sign.*
Although this was a big deal for us, it was a huge deal for our friends. They had just crossed into their 50th state! (That's like, a really big deal for full timers!) We crossed into Skagway, Alaska, which is down the panhandle. 

Skagway was a little tourist town. We learned a lot of history about the town, and about the start of the Gold Rush. I think we also all really enjoyed catching up on internet. After a few days of resupplying, we were ready to be back on the road. There is no highway up the pan handle, so we crossed back into Canada to continue north. Our next goal in mind was Fairbanks, AK.
*The border was over a mount…

Most Memorable Travel day Yet- Mosquito Alley

We recently experienced our most memorable travel day. Ever. It started out as a great day and ended as... well you will find out soon. It started out as a normal day. We left our previous overnight and headed out to keep on our way to Alaska. Our goal was Dawson city, YK from Whitehorse, YK. It was about 250 miles. We made a handful of educational stops along the way, resulting in us having to stop sooner than our destination. We decided to boondock on the side of the road at Gravel Lake.... REALLY. BAD. IDEA!!! While we were setting up, we realized there was a TON of mosquitoes!! It was so bad! Like, use a half a bottle of bug spray and cover every inch of skin just to survive any potential attacks bad... No, I'm not kidding! Although we longed for the safety from these menacing creatures that our trailers provided, our stomachs disagreed and demanded we make dinner. Ironically we chose to Barbecue that night, so we hung out with the mosquitoes a while longer. I'd like to …

Alaska highway mile zero!

Wow, so many of our friends had taken pictures under this sign, and now it was our turn. We were all so excited! It was mile zero of the Alaskan highway, the start of the final stretch. This was a big deal for all of us and we were pumped to be here. So we pulled off the road, and took our picture.  As soon as we finished taking our picture, we went into the Information center and binged on their WiFi. We got there about 30 minutes before they closed and stayed until they kicked us out. FUN FACT: The original sign was in the middle of an intersection, and someone hit it with their car. So, they renovated the one in the intersection, and built another one one the side of the road to take pictures under. (We acted like rebels though, and also ran out into the intersection to take a picture with the original sign... because why not??)

Athabasca Glacier

Our next scenic stop was the Athabasca Glacier.
It was huge! What surprised me the most though, was how much the glacier has shrunk since the 40's. Only about 40% of it is still left! We had to climb a steep trail to get up on to the glacier. Only to find out all access to climb on the glacier has been restricted from the public. However if you have your heart set on touching the glacier, they have the option for a fancy bus tour.  My mom did the tour and got the most amazing photos! They drive you up on the glacier and have a level, roped off area that's safe to explore and walk around. One thing I observed from the bottom of the slanted glacier, is that there is a large amount of wind that comes off of it. It's so strong and powerful. It Reminds me a lot of how God moves and works in our lives today and the lives of those around us. You cant see Him, but you can definitely feel the effects of His works!!

We stayed across the street from the Glacier in a parking lot. T…

Banff National Park

Our first destination on the way to Alaska was Banff National Park. I think this was the most beautiful RV park that I have stayed at yet! Banff national park has different "sections" within it's borders. We stayed at Lake Louise. This is what it looked like when we pulled in...

Paralleling the campground was a beautiful river. It was about 100 ft. from our site, so we went to see it often. There was a few trails along the river that we hiked and got amazing photos. 

During our stay, we went on a few sightseeing trips. The first was Lake Louise.
I found this wall and just sat in silence for a few minuets. I was awestruck at the raw beauty of God's beautiful creation.
Next we visited lake Moraine There was a large pile of rocks and sticks that we were able to climb to get a better view of the lake. The view was awesome. I was so amazed at how blue the water was. I also believe that going to such a breathtaking place forever ruined lakes for me. It will definitely be h…

We made it to Canada!!!

We crossed into Canada on Tuesday May 29th. The border crossing was interesting. I have never been to Canada before now, and was excited to see how the process worked. It went smoothly. We got asked a few questions and a police dog sniffed the truck and trailer. (Meanwhile Hunter (our dog) freaked out and barked his head off at the police dog) Then they let us through. Later that night we stopped to overnight at Wal-Mart. We needed a few groceries so we went inside. One thing I was not expecting about Canada is that half of everything is in french. I saw these french baby wipes and couldn't help but laugh! 

The next day we continued on to our first destination, Banff National park!

Fun Summer Plans!

Hey everyone! Wow, it's been almost a month to the day since I last shared my adventures with you! I wanted to apologize for that... the reason being I injured my elbow, and couldn't type. I was playing a game at my church youth group and someone ran into the back of my elbow. It was hyper extended forward and was almost dislocated. I lost mobility, was in pain, and felt something shifting in my elbow when I started to move it. I ended up going in for xrays and to make a long story short (although it may be too late) I have torn soft tissue, ligament damage and a possible hairline fracture. That was about 3 weeks ago. I may need to go back in for more xrays in about a week, but we'll see. While I have not been able to help with much, a lot has been happening around my home! Why? Well, we have a super cool summer planned! We are going to spend it touring Alaska with our friends. As soon as we decided to go to Alaska, we realized having solar power would be essential for wha…

Bar SZ Ranch

I just completed a week long internship at one of my favorite places on earth! I interned at a ranch near the Pinnacles called Bar SZ ranch. It is a family run dude ranch with every type of farm animal you can think of! They have goats, chickens, sheep, donkeys, pigs, cats, a dog, a turkey, ducks, ponies, and horses. (They show most of those animals!) It may sound like this is just another ranch, and to some people it may be. But this ranch has a special place in my heart. The family that runs the ranch is so many things. They are nice, fun, and good teachers, but one thing stood out to me the most. They are very trusting and willing to teach, just because it brings them joy. (Their head trainer, Michelle, is amazing! She teaches because it brings her joy and she loves watching people have that ah-ha moment when everything clicks into place.. She is so patient, and loves when people ask questions. I love taking lessons from her!) They also trusted me with their horses. They would sho…

What do you want Wednesday

HEY READERS!! I WANT YOUR FEEDBACK!!! What do you want Wednesday is a way that you can ask me whatever you want and get answers! I'll read through everything asked from last thursday until this Wednesday night, and answer each question this Thursday!! Post your questions in the comments below and I'll answer you! I cant wait to hear from you! Don't be shy! I am open book, so... What do you want to know???

What do you want Wednesday

HEY READERS!! I WANT YOUR FEEDBACK!!! What do you want Wednesday is a way that you can ask me whatever you want and get answers! I'll read through everything asked from last thursday until this Wednesday night, and answer each question this Thursday!! Post your questions in the comments below and I'll answer you! I cant wait to hear from you! Don't be shy! I am open book, so... What do you want to know???

Tell it to you Thursday (but on Friday!)

Here's your Q&A this week! Glad you made it home! How long will you be there? -Heather Thank you for your question! We will be home for about 3 weeks. After that we have a meet up with about 10 other Fulltime Families in Oregon. Hi Madison! I'd love to know what place(s) you most look forward to seeing on your travels and why you are excited about them. Also, of the places you have visited, what place(s) surprised you in some way and why. I am very excited to go to Alaska. I am a landscape photographer. I can't wait to capture the raw beauty of Alaska's scenery. The Grand Canyon was the most surprising place I have been to. It was so much larger than I imagined. The colors were breathtaking! I would love to go back sometime and hike down into the canyon.

We made it home!!

Today we completed a 7000 mile loop of the US since the last time we were home. For the first time, we are bringing home friends! Three other Full time families will be staying at local RV parks! I'm very excited to get to show them my "life before the RV." But this blog is about my adventures. The good, the bad, and the ugly. Let me tell you something, every moving day is an adventure! Last night we boondocked at a Walmart. When I woke up this morning, the whole trailer was very quiet... too quiet. Normally I hear the electric heaters, or the dehumidifier, but both were silent. I also noted how dark the trailer was. (We have a few nightlights throughout the trailer so we can see if we get up during the night.) Then it dawned on me! I bet the generator is out of fuel! I got up just as my dad was going outside to refill it. I fully expected power in about 30 seconds. It didn't come. My dad came back and said something was wrong with the generator. He believes its a ba…

What do you want Wednesday??

Once a week I will post a reminder that Wednesday is coming (the end of Wednesday is the cutoff each week) so if you have any questions, now's the time to get them in!!HEY READERS!! I WANT YOUR FEEDBACK!!! What do you want Wednesday is a way that you can ask me whatever you want and get answers! I'll read through everything asked from last thursday until this Wednesday night, and answer each question this Thursday!! Post your questions in the comments below and I'll answer you! I cant wait to hear from you! Don't be shy! I am open book, so... What do you want to know???

Seattle, WA

Seattle is a fun tourist town! We go every March for business. This year we only stayed for a weekend. I'll explain why in a minute. We stayed at a KOA that had a view of Mt. Rainier.
When we came through Seattle last year we stayed at the same KOA, and had much more time for tourist attractions. We did the space needle. (Of course we did the Space needle, you can't go to Seattle and not visit the Space needle!!) We ate dinner at the top, it was the fanciest dinner I have ever had!! We also explored Pikes place. Our wheels? The Semi. You haven't lived until you have driven a semi through Pikes Place!! The first Starbucks was smaller than I imagined. The line was out the door and down the block just like everyone says! This year we only stayed for the weekend because were going home for a few weeks!!! The best part? Three other Full time Families will be coming with us to hang out and see our hometown! I can't wait to show them my house and introduce them to my friends…

Monroe, WA

(Real quick, I have a funny story to tell y'all. This was meant to be posted about a week ago, but I forgot to click publish!! Better late than never though... I hope you enjoy!)
Monroe is a beautiful Washington town. We recently completed a 6 day stay at their local thousand trails. It was beautiful! The RV park and neighboring areas had rushing rivers, tall mountains, and lush vegetation. The park was located in the mountains surrounded by horse properties! I soaked in the sight of beautiful show horses grazing at the side of the road. It was amazing! It was cold in the morning and night, and rained 80% of the time. (I mean this is Washington after all, that's only to be expected) We were accompanied at the RV park by our friends who full time as well. We loved doing potluck dinners together! Their daughter and I both have a knack for shooting pool. Most Thousand Trails have pool tables, and this one did. We spent a good chunk of time playing 8 ball. One of the days I got t…

Tell it to you Thursday

Today is tell it to you Thursday! Yesterday wrapped up what do you want Wednesday. I only got a few questions this time, but that's ok, this is a new idea I am trying out. How is a dogs life on the road? -NicoleDear Nicole, Thank you for your question! A dog's life on the road has its pros and cons. Since we no longer have a yard to let them off leash in, they have to be walked 4 to 5 times a day. That is their favorite part of the day. They love going on adventures throughout the RV parks, sniffing everything. The sleeping arangments are nice. Each dogs has their own bed in our living room. Both dogs ride in the truck with us on travel days. With our slides in, there would be no room for to ride in the fifth wheel. Not to mention it would be dangerous and illegal. I'm not sure if they understand what were doing, but I do know that their just happy to be with us. Hi Madison. I am a friend of your grandfather, Steve. When did you leave California and how long have you been …

What do you want Wednesday??

HEY READERS!! I WANT YOUR FEEDBACK!!!  What do you want Wednesday is a way that you can ask me whatever you want and get answers! I'll read through everything asked from now until Wednesday and answer each question on Thursday!! Post your questions in the comments below and I'll answer you! I cant wait to hear from you! Don't be shy! I am open book, so... What do you want to know???

Meet my dogs!!

Traveling is very exciting, but its 10 times more so when you have two 75 lb. dogs in the trailer with you! We have two yellow labs living in the trailer with us named Zoe and Hunter. They are not related, but are the best of friends! They each have their own personalities that crack me up. Dogs are awesome!

Hunter is our inspiration story. He was a rescue, we believe he's about 8. Hunter is blind. He has a genetic condition that breeders are supposed to screen for. (We believe he came from a back yard breeder and that's why it slipped through the cracks) He was born with perfect vision, which he kept until about age 2. Then gradually over a year he lost it completely. When we got him 5 years ago he had 10% vision left which is now long gone. Hunter won't let that stop him though! He is always ready for adventure! When on a leash, he will trust you to guide him safely anywhere! In fact he pulls you wherever he wants to go!! He is a very happy dog, and that is what's s…