I can be an awesome planner when life allows me to. However, right now, I don’t get the oppurtunity to be so very often. I know that when I both my human children (my husband and my actually birthed child) need to keep it moving almost all the time. They don’t sit still well and frankly, neither do I. This can be difficult when you are poor. OK, I am not starving, but we don’t have money to go out to eat or to just spend. I am in my 15th million life transition. As a recovering alcoholic, I am “figuring myself out” as far as work is concerned. Just kidding. I don’t know exactly what I am doing. That is one of my symptoms from my alcoholism that just stuck. I recognize it now and am working on fixing it. Recovery is progress not perfection. Life is progress not perfection for anyone. So, we live life on limited funds, which is fine for now. I think, in a way, it helps us learn to have fun the organic way.
We have to have fun with each other and the natural playground God gave us. It is amazing what you can find if you just look. Usually, we fish. I know, some of you think that is all we do, but I do other stuff! Vivienne isn’t really into fishing just yet and sometimes we just can’t. It is exciting to just get in the car and drive even when you don’t have a plan. That isn’t quite as easy with a kid, but if you pack right you can make it work! We end up finding some interesting things and having stimulating conversations that we normally wouldn’t have had if we had had an agenda. I love that about our family, spontaneity. Summer is the best, too! Wear your swimsuit and take off!
For just me and the hubs, we need minimal things. We pack 3 essentials:
1. Water. I need to be hydrated. We have a little cooler that I just pack full of water and maybe another beverage in. If you want, you can pack some snacks in case you get hungry.
2. Blanket and Towels. I have a really neat foldable/wipeable blanket. I love it, but of course you can just take a quilt. I would also take towels to dry off with.
3. Sunscreen and Bugspray. Seriously, put it on. Skin cancer isn’t cute on anyone.
That is all I pack. Sometimes I take my book, that I never end up reading. I always have my phone/camera because I love taking pictures. That is it! We live in North Florida where you can drive from a fresh water spring-fed river to the salt water coast line in 30 minutes. I love it here. I also love water. Everything I focus on involves water. I do enjoy a nice hike as well. For things like that you do need to plan a little in advance. I found that out when I walked a little too far in flip-flops, not comfortable.
For me, it is all about who I am with. Now that I am sober, I realize I am enjoying the details more. I notice things that I didn’t see before. It is much easier to enjoy life without needing a drink in your hand at all times. I see the beauty in the world around me. I truly appreciate each moment I get to create with my family. I love finding crazy things human or manmade. Travis and I are a duo of explorers discovering the world together. Things don’t always go as planned and that is quite all right because it is about the journey, not the destination. We are making memories that we will cherish forever, not spending a dime. Well, gas, but most things are less than an hour from our house. To me, it is worth it to make those memories.
When we have the little Viv, things can be a little more complicated, but I have learned how to manage. The key to Vivienne is to keep food. So, just add more snacks to that list. I do pack the normal parent things like diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, some favorite toys and books. When we go to the beach we make sure to bring her sand toys because she loves to dig and smash. She likes for us to build the sand castle so that she can smash it. I make sure to sunscreen her before we even get on the road. I like for it to soak in. Every child is different, you know your own. We attempt to time naps just right. Sometimes, it works and sometimes not. I let her dictate how things go. I try to guide her, but if it isn’t working I don’t push it. We will try again another day. She can’t tell me with words, yet, what she wants so it can be difficult. I want her to get the experience as young as she can. I know she loves to be out in God’s creation. I know she loves to go. So I just try. I don’t let my heart break if something doesn’t work out.
My life is all about my Vivienne. I try to think what might work for her, but sometimes it can completly surprise you what she likes. She is an ever growing and changing little human. I love seeing her expereince new things. She soaks up life like a sea sponge. It is so exciting. It is important to keep time for just my husband and I as well. The experience is completely different. Either way, it doesn’t cost much to enjoy nature. Pack light and just go. Make the time about your family and friends. It will be something you never forget. Fisherman, put the poles down for one day. I know. It is hard, but it will be worth it.