My Sweet Husband gave his notice at work yesterday. Next Thursday will officially be his last day of working our version of a 9am-5pm, 40 hour a week job. As I type those words I feel my heart race in my chest a little bit. All of the conversations that we’ve shared over the last couple of years about how we see our future playing out are now coming to fruition right before our eyes. This is happening!!
If you read our first blog post, you’ll know that it was initially my health crisis that brought us where we are today. I’ve shed some light on bits and pieces of our future plans, but only a handful of people know the details. I think it’s time to come clean and bare all…although it is kind of fun to tell people we work with that we are quitting our jobs with a baby on the way, no plan and no jobs lined up. I mean, if you saw their faces, you’d do it too! 😀
My health crisis led us to finding real food, which led us to making nearly everything we consume from scratch, which led us to sourcing food being grown properly and as close to home as possible, which in turn brought about this passion to not only advocate for these companies and farmers that were doing right by the land, the food that they were raising, and their customers, but to actually be a part of that community and that movement. When you immerse yourself in the culture that is sustainable farming and living, all of the “things” that you thought you needed slowly begin to fade. We found ourselves questioning everything we were doing. Driving to jobs that didn’t fulfill us, to make money to pay for a house that we didn’t have time to take care of, to live for Friday afternoon when we could do the things we loved doing for a very brief 48 hours just to set the alarm Sunday evening and start all over again. We had so many things we wanted to learn how to do, but we couldn’t possibly fathom how we’d carve out the time with both of us working full time jobs, not to mention starting a family with this current lifestyle.
January 2016, when we got back from our 31 day elopement/honeymoon in New Zealand, touring the entire country from top to bottom in a 12’x5’ van, we were completely different people. Before NZ we talked about quitting and farming and had given ourselves a 5 year, turned 3 year plan, but that trip set the dominoes in motion, and there was no way we could stop the momentum.
We decided selling everything we owned and downsizing to a travel trailer would be such a great fit for us. We adapted unbelievably well to our 12’x5’ van, so much so that I had tears in my eyes when we had to hand the keys back. Justin’s only request for a long term traveling life was to have a little head room, at 6’4” he’s got his priorities in order and well, he’s a simple kind of man. 🙂 We are roadtrippers to our cores. By downsizing, reducing our debt to zero, and being mobile, we’d finally have the opportunity to learn from farmers all over the country, while also experiencing parts of the country we’d never been to before, and desperately wanted to experience on a more intimate level than just vacationing there.
When talks of these plans first started, we knew there would be enough equity in our house in a couple of years to give us a cushion that would allow us to quit our jobs and hit the road. I sometimes wonder when I stopped thinking things happened due to luck and coincidence, and started believing that there were bigger things at work than what my little mind could ever compute. Since stepping back on U.S. soil, those bigger than thou things have been making our heads spin.
A month after we got back and begrudgingly fell back into the swing of the daily grind, we received a note from a realtor that we had previously worked with; she wanted to reach out and let us know that even though she knew we planned on staying put for awhile, the housing market was extremely hot at the moment and inventory for our particular home was very low. I looked at Justin in my typical “SIGNS, THIS IS A SIGN!” face and asked if I should email her. He said that we weren’t ready yet and to just toss the note in the recycle. I tossed the note, but that didn’t stop me from emailing her! I figured we had absolutely nothing to lose; my Mama always told me it never hurts to ask. We had a predetermined number in our heads that we wanted to have in the bank from the sale of the house and savings to make sure this transition from the corporate world would be as easy as we could make it. She gave us a market analysis without any numbers given to her, and was within $5K of what we wanted in the bank. It was GO TIME!
Fast forward 3.5 months later, and here we are! Our gorgeous home on wheels will be ready for pick up in just 3 short weeks and our house will go on the market in two. Once we have our trailer we will be heading just a couple of exits North of where we live now to a farm we found on WWOOF.
WWOOF is an amazing resource that links up people who have opportunities on their farms with people who want to learn to farm and you can expect some form of housing, food, or both, in exchange for your labor. Justin will work on the farm in exchange for us staying there, and I will stay on at my job until baby comes in October.
Early next Spring, when the mountain passes are clear of snow, we will hit the road. We intend on using WWOOF, as well as many other resources we’ve found since we started looking for income streams, to find places to stay, learn, and earn money. We know where we want to go, but aren’t sure exactly how we’ll get there yet, and that, quite honestly, makes my gypsy heart come alive! My brother said it best when he concluded “You guys used to have to work just to travel, now you’ll get to travel for work!”. Truer words were never spoken, and our little house on wheels is going to set these lovebirds free.