I feel little fingers brush against my cheek, and then–suddenly–jerking my eyelids up. Beside me, Blair snores, still asleep. Cool morning air seeps through the open window above our bed. Flinching, I scrunch my eyes closed again. Despite the rude awakening, I smile and pull P closer to snuggle. This is how our mornings begin.
We’ve only been on the road for a week, but already we’ve fallen into a comfortable rhythm. We sleep in, stay up late. Mornings are for coffee and a little work. Our days are full of activity–swimming, biking, hide-and-go-seek. P got his national recreation passport and his first stamp; now he’s excited to get more. He’s scoured the map looking for his next stamps–Ft. Laramie, Mt Rushmore, Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Blair and I cook dinner outside in the evening, share a beer, and then do “hot laps” on the bike with P after dinner.
Before leaving, when we were still in the planning phase, I spent lots of time reading other families experiences of going “full-time.” Many of them warned that the first month or two were the hardest time, a time of transition. Maybe we will experience that in another week or two, but for now this feels perfect. There are no growing pains.
We’re camped at Greens Lake on the rim high above Flaming Gorge. There’s a little lake here, with a dock that we like to sit on in the evening. The lodge is small, but quaint, and we ate lunch there one afternoon after a family mountain bike ride.
My sister joined us for our first few days here, to say goodbye and to send us on our way. She’s a pro SUPer, so we took her to Sunny Cove–a beach without sand. Slickrock and boulders line the water, and we paddled around on our pool floaties. While Debra explored the reservoir on her board, paddling under a giant, arched, white bridge, we climbed and swam on boulders. Blair went cliff diving. As P and I played frisbee, he confided: “This is way better than going to school.”
Are there hard moments? Of course. The concern about money is always there, faintly in the background. But that’s usually there even in normal life. We’ve gone several days without showering, dinner dishes have to be washed by hand, and P and I strung laundry over the slack-line yesterday. Our awning has proven difficult to operate. But, even these aren’t big things. It turns out I enjoy being a little dirty, I like slowing down and having a little manual labor in my days.
So, don’t worry about us, friends. We’re doing great. In fact, this might be the best we’ve ever been.