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Roots and wings

Our days have been full lately. Full of things like making pizza, jumping on a backyard trampoline, riding scooters, feeding chickens, and going for runs.

Real life things. Non-travel-around-the-world things.

This is how we stay sane on a trip like this. After things like snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, exploring the stunning Southern Alps, and immersing ourselves in the Melbourne skyline, we rest. We hole up as a family and do the quotidian stuff of life.

It’s amazing how much you miss that kind of stuff when you live out of a backpack, home address: nowhere.

For the next few weeks, we’re here in Sydney, Australia, thanks to the gracious hospitality of a dear friend who’s letting us housesit their perfectly ordinary suburb home while they’re out traveling themselves. We’ll go do a few things, of course, but for the most part, our days involve the everyday.

I’m doing my best to get a lot of work done. Our next few countries don’t promise consistent Internet, so I’m hoping to check a lot of things off my list. Plus, we’re furiously working on launching an e-course, and hope to have it live before we leave Oz. Fingers crossed.

Kyle’s getting a bit of work in, as well as cooking (he loves being in the kitchen), helping with upcoming travel plans, and even doing a bit of handyman work. Everywhere we go, he can’t help but fix a loose cabinet door, relieve a door’s squeak, get the dishwasher’s spinny thingy to work better. It’s in his DNA to make better that which is not.

The kids are taking a week off from school, and then they’re back at it—we want to take advantage of our low-mobility status to get in some studying. Reed’s also practicing the art of being seven. (His birthday’s tomorrow.)


In the meantime, we’re enjoying real, home cooked meals around a table where we ask, “What was your favorite part of the day?” at dinnertime, just like at home. The kids watch a movie or two. And lots—lots of time in the backyard.

Yesterday, Tate confessed that she was feeling a bit homesick (this usually happens after FaceTimeing with her cousin or Voxing with friends, and she did both in quick succession). She said, “I just feel loosey-goosey because I don’t know where home is anymore.”

I know that feeling well. (I’d say I’ve had that feeling for years at a time over the past 15 years; it’s become quite a companion in my life.) We hugged and talked about what it means to be home, and that really, she knows she’s okay, and that every now and then we just have down, homesick-ish moments. I do, too.

And I promised her that we’ll know soon about our next plans post-trip. We could live literally anywhere, which sounds invigorating, but really, it’s not. It’s like when you have too many toothpaste choices at the store, so you just stand there, flummoxed. When you have three choices, you pick one and move on.

We’re narrowing things down, and we plan to have a concrete decision soon. Once we decide as a family, we’ll have a better feeling of settledness, we think. Because although there are families that can live the nomadic life indefinitely, we’re not one of them. We need a healthy balance of roots and wings. In fact, we’re pretty sure we can’t have one without the other.

kids on trampoline

In the meantime, things are a bit quieter here while I finish work on the e-course. I’ll be writing soon about Queensland, New Zealand, and the rest of this lovely place called Oz. We love it here.

Reading Time:

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  1. Erin

    This has been one of my favorite posts–thanks for sharing the realness of everyday life in the midst of your adventure. You do that so well — not everyone shares that part of life or travel.

  2. Veggie Mama

    and we love having you here 🙂

  3. Hillary

    This is the push and pull of travel, I think. I feel an itch to leave, then have some sadness when I think back on what we left. We recently relocated states, and while the move has been wonderful in so many ways, I also find myself pining for the home and community we left.

  4. karen

    I was just thinking how difficult it must be for you all, imagining where home is (it’s a knee-jerk default, isn’t it?), but having sold the house, that home isn’t really there anymore. Know that feeling all too well… Appreciate the posts on living where you are – in that one little moment – as much as the sightseeing ones.

  5. Rosemary parker

    I hope you enjoy Queenstown. The mountains and feeling of being quite insignificant are the two things I love about it. Hopefully, being summer, it’s not too busy.:) if it is, come for a 3 hour drive to our house, he he.

  6. Stacey Caulk

    Oh I hear ya on how overwhelming it can be to realize that you can move anywhere. You wind up having to figure out some clear parameters to narrow it down. But ultimately, the freedom of that decision is so worth it. And yes, we’re also a traveling family that is just not up to doing it continuously. Though I’m sure once we move into our new home later this month, we’ll soon get some itchy feet. Best of luck with the rest of your travels. I love following along!

  7. Laura Carroll

    Yes. I can totally relate to the need for the mundane while traveling and the desire for roots. We just got back home (to a new house) from six months in Europe and I keep finding myself sighing “home.” The trip was amazing and I hope to do something similar again, but it is so, so good to be home.

  8. Nicole

    We are also in that boat of could-live-anywhere (so long as there’s WiFi and electricity); though we are a younger family and this limits our options somewhat. God has basically instructed us to stay put for relational purposes with local friends and family members. The area we live in is expensive and we have to do with much less than our peers as a result. It’s frustrating sometimes when we don’t *have* to live here. But we are trusting and obeying. We have come to embrace simplicity over the past few years and I love your art of simple blog. This travel blog is something I’ve recently gotten hooked on, as well. We are slowly preparing for the potential overseas/expat life, but have no real idea of when or if that will happen. I’m so grateful for this blog and for your genuine honesty on it. Keep it up!

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