Happy New Year!
We’ve been away from our home on wheels for about two months minus 5 -ish days. It’s been good to spend time with friends and family, but I have found that while discussing our lifestyles and adventures it really has just become a normal life for us, nothing exotic or adventurous to us anymore, it’s just our life. One night we were sitting at a pub in England after a few weeks apart and we both said, we need to do more. What more can we do? Well, we need to be more “present” wherever we are. And what does that mean? Well, sometimes you build things up in your mind and expectations and then when you are finally at the destination or in the middle of an experience you don’t really take it all in. You may be already looking ahead or just coasting through it. We/I have decided to be more present in the moment. I want to remember details and make the most of this amazing opportunity and just be there taking it all in. That goes for everyday things too. Like visiting family and friends, meeting new people and going new places. After talking about our trip so far I feel sometimes I have just been moving along and not taking enough in and having full experiences or giving enough. In hindsight though doesn’t that happen in life?
I think being away from the camper and our so-called routine has been good for us to get the birdseye view of what we are doing and makes us think about why we are doing it and what we hope to accomplish. Yes, I am definitely less stressed, have no anxiety and am living a healthier lifestyle, but there can be more and I see that now and am ready. This will require creating new habits and making some more changes, but that is ok. I have had minor blips of these same feelings along the way and have improved my life due to them, but here I am again and don’t most people get this same feeling when a new year rolls around? Funny that a new year inspires us so much to make changes. Why not make them every Monday, every month, or even everyday? I used to love the start of a new school year, new notebooks, new pens and pencils, backpacks, teachers, classmates and most of all opportunities! I didn’t have to make these opportunities happen, they were just part of growing up, now as an adult we have to create these opportunities. I have them all around me, we all do. We just have to be present and make the most of them.
Before heading to England I spent some time with my mom and sisters in New Jersey. I was also able to squeeze in some time with a few friends. ( Sorry if you are reading this and I wasn’t able to see you too! Time was short.) I did feel a tiny bit guilty about not staying for Christmas with my family, but I suppose all couples have to split time with family sides and this was a first to go to England for me. The weather was starting to turn cold and looked warmer in England, but I was able to go for a couple of walks with my mom and then with my sister. It was good just to see them and relax together.
Our Christmas Holiday spent in England was great. It was really fun to see how other families and friends celebrate. Before Christmas we had a good time visiting with Kat’s friend Bernadette and her family and meeting up with another friend Chloe. We took a nice walk to Avebury with Ber and her kids. A really beautiful place and it is the home of the largest stone circle in England. I enjoyed participating in the Coleman family traditions and routines. I liked all of the friend and family time and especially having young kids around who show their excitement about the holiday. They did like the basketball hoop we got them and I did too! There was a lot of food, but also some nice walks to work it off. It seems pretty common in England for the entire family to head out to a nearby park and just take a walk together, no matter what the weather. If a dog is part of the family of course they go too! If I were a dog I would want to live in England, they get to just roam around pretty freely on the walks without a leash and even get to go into pubs where they lie at your feet and get to be with everyone. The warmth from the fireplace seems to help them stay calm. I felt like I was in the movie The Holiday at one point when we went out to a pub one evening for dinner and drinks.
We have been back in the US for five days now. We stayed in a hotel Wednesday night after we arrived because we are usually so tired from that long flight and it’s late so it’s best we just get some sleep before picking up the truck the next day. The storage place isn’t open that late anyway so we can’t go get the camper. We had made reservations for the Skyline Wilderness reserve in Napa and so Thursday we hooked up and left the storage area for the quick drive. We chose this location because it is relatively cheap for California. The costs around the San Francisco area are anywhere from free, with no hookups, to 70+ dollars. Right now it is 35 a night. After food shopping in England the food prices seem incredibly high here, I’m not sure if it is just the area we are in or it really is that expensive. Skyline is a park that has a really big disc golf course and lots of hiking and biking trails. We did get a hike in once already and I took a bike ride which was great, but a lot more technical than I have done in awhile. Those rocky trails really put me to the test, but my new bike really does just go over them really easily! The park gets pretty busy with day use people during the day, but they lock it up at 5pm, so it is quiet in the evenings. We haven’t done any wine tastings or anything like that yet because we found drinking just adds to our tiredness. We haven’t quite gotten back into a good sleep pattern yet, but almost. Needless to say we did not make it to midnight to ring in the New Year. We cooked our first roast and had a nice dinner along with a glass of red wine. It was nice to feel good on New Years day! A good start to the new year and time to get busy with those new life changes that will make this an even better year.
Let’s go 2017!