Larry and I have been sleeping in Shiny for over a year now. Eight months of that time has been on the road and four months has been spent parked in our side yard in NH helping to care for our all brand new grandson, Connor. We have been writing this blog since before we headed out in January of 2018 and have gotten lots of nice feedback from folks. People have said that we are, “living the dream’ and I have often wondered what we mean by that. I have wanted to write and say, ‘It is what you think’ and also, ‘maybe not so much!’ When I looked up the word, dream, in the dictionary, there were two definitions. 1) A cherished aspiration, or ideal 2) an unrealistic or self-deluding fantasy. That really covered my thoughts on the word, dream. A dream, like life, has its up and downs – good and not so good sides. I have feared that folks might read our posts and conclude that we have the perfect life and that theirs is somehow inferior.

I’ve learned a few quite humbling lessons so far. The first one is about time. Yes, the free time that I have is probably what I am most grateful for. But, I have also felt that I don’t have enough time for what I want to do. Can you believe that??? I am my own best time bandit. You wouldn’t believe the number of ‘really important’ things that called to me as I sat down to write this. I understand the math of the clock and 24 hour days but within that there are choices about how we use our gifts/our time. I can run like hell from the scary creative things I want to do and end up with clean dishes and an empty inbox only to feel that agitated gnawing inside that is my wiser self taking me to task (literally!)

I have learned a lot about how you create your own reality and how even the most beautifully sublime settings can become mundane and unremarkable unless you work to keep your eyes fresh. Travel is an easy way for me to keep my eyes open to wonder. But, after we have been a place for a week or so, the novelty fades and with it, my sense of wonder. Notice that the only thing that has changed is my mind set. Arghh!!! Please serve me another slice of humble pie! It’s easy to stay delighted when you are on the road and on the move. Could I keep my ‘traveller’s eye’ open when I stop moving? I wonder. Yet, I know for sure that it is possible.

I have been struck by how intimately we are all connected to each other and how inter-related we are with our surroundings. We drive into one campsite and get the creeps. We drive five miles up the road and we feel enlivened. It’s like the world is one great big, breathe in-breathe out organism – so very much alive! And, I think about how love crosses the miles and is alive and so very real.

One of the gifts of changing your life style is the chance to be a new you. It’s amazing how I cling to old ways of doing things even when they are no longer needed or warranted. That’s just the way it’s done, right? The adage, ‘If you want different, do different’ sure does ring true for me and I swear that it doesn’t have to be as dramatic as leaving your home and living on the road. You can do that and not change are darned thing. Life is a great experiment whether you are at the grindstone or on the road.

I guess that last lesson of the road is gratitude. I know that you could think that gratitude should be easy when you are living the dream and in some ways you would be right. But, I can get my panties in a bundle pretty easily and become a good old glass half empty gal as quick as you can say, ‘jack rabbit’. Anyway, I feel as though I just want to soak in as much of this as possible and to do it consciously so as to honor this adventure which is such a gift to me.

So, that wraps up this homily. Thank for reading. Thanks for being a part of this adventure! Click here to enjoy a meditative drumming session form Caballo Lake. Listen for the birds!


  1. So very well and thoughtfully said, Susie. I liked how you honored the feelings of folks who might be envious of your “dream” year. There always is this small jealousy of folks who appear to have it made. It is realistic to understand that it isn’t all that it seems. Very honest and refreshing.

  2. Its a great adventure and you have a wonderful way of putting your thoughts into words.
    A question on finances. Has it cost you more or less than expected? Its also very hard to put a price on such an adventure.
    Love the blog, pictures etc. Continuing to follow.

    1. Thanks for your feed back, Jim. That’s nice of you. We would say that we are spending less on this trip. Rates at the NM state parks are quite low and we have been staying at each location for about 2 weeks so that cuts the gas costs.

  3. Thank you for sharing your thoughts..what a wonderful adventure you and Larry are experiencing. Sure it took some serious planning and can’t wait to you sharing more. Have so enjoyed your journey with you. Safe travels to you both. And YOUR MOM will always worry about you !!!

  4. Beautifully, honestly said—and so true. We take ourselves with us, wherever we go. It’s so easy to be fully present when we’re immersed in new experiences. Like you, I want to cultivate that present-moment awareness every day, wherever I may be. Happy one-year travel anniversary, and wishing you many more grand adventures!

  5. Thank you for the drumming, I needed that. And I need to remember to read the blog more. Warms my heart to think of the wonders you have and will experience.

    1. I am so glad that you like the drumming, Janet! It was so cool the way the birds chimed in. Ha ha! Love it!

  6. Hi Sue. You sum up the “afterlife” very thoughtfully. A lot of your road adventure resonates with Pat and me, and we go along on all your adventure. Keep it up (and hope we’ll meet up this summer somewhere.)

    1. Thanks for your feedback, George. That is very kind of you. We hope to see you this summer.

  7. Always such a great writer, my friend. I love your posts. I have pondered your thoughts. My world has gotten so small these days. Keeping a fresh eye is hard no matter your life. I have learned that giving honor to those angst feelings is important too. The ying and yang of life. Keeping an even keel is the hard part. You have paid your dues so enjoy when and where you can. You both deserve the best. I miss you…Jo❤

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