This past 5 weeks it feels like we time hopped. Traveling through 5 states and visiting with some new and some longtime friends.
Starting out in Georgia, where we were celebrating with our friends Elissa & Cody, who just got married. We hung out with them for a week, made new friends and had a wonderful time!
Johnny and I were committed to speaking at and participate in the Tennessee Tiny House Festival June 1st & 2nd at Nissan Stadium. So, off we went traveling back up to Tennessee! It was great to get to hang out with this new found community of tiny/travel people! The kids bartered for haircuts, played with friends, ran mini businesses during the event and had an amazing time.
After the Tiny house Festival, we needed to begin heading East towards Johnny’s graduation and subsequently our final destination for the summer.
Our first stop was to Boone, NC in the Appalachian Mountains. Ellen, our once upon a time babysitter who turned into one of our best friends, attends App State. It was rainy the couple of days we were there, so we didn’t get to go hike but Ellen did show us around downtown and the App State campus.
We went out for dinner (just the adults) and drinks but after a couple of drinks and some insomnia cookies we headed back to the bus to just relax and catch up like old times. It was really good to see her again, even if it was only for a couple of days
I knew swinging through North Carolina was going to be hard. We were only coming through quickly and we were about 30 mins from Wilmington.
Miranda was out of town for a work trip and a lot of my Milspo friends have since relocated. That helped to draw down numbers but honestly there were SO many I wanted to hang with.
The first night we drove in we decided to pop into downtown for a drink and I was able to see one long-time friend just by chance! I guessed she’d be at a particular bar and I was right!
We wanted to take a moment to hang out with our LONG time friends, catch up and enjoy an adult scene because the next 3 days were about to be us and 7 kids.
About 9 years ago Johnny and I moved into the Neighborhoods of Holly Ridge. It was the suburbs that you see in the movies. The houses were within spitting distance, it seemed that people were always outside, there was drama every so often and this one particularly was made up of a LOT of the families from the special forces community.
We hosted playdates galore, holiday parties, “I don’t need this anymore” swaps, and beach/coffee/park/aquarium/you name it days.
Lifelong friendship were developed and we helped each other grow into even stronger women. Supporting each others businesses, ventures and cheering each other on.
Many of us are still connected through social media, some are actually re-stationed together (5-6 of them are all in Japan still hanging out), and we still make the time to visit each other when we can.
While we were visiting the area Chloe and Matthew were able to meet up their best friends and have some sleepovers.
After a few days at the Yntemas, we popped over to a friend of Johnny’s. They’ve known each other a few years and Neil just so happens to be a diesel mechanic for the USMC! So we parked in his front driveway and Johnny did some maintenance to Buzz with Neils guidance!
The day before Father’s Day we started our trek north, it was time to visit Brandon. This is Johnny’s BFF and the twisted pea that crept into our pod.. the kids call him Uncle Gustavo because… I don’t know why that’s how weird they all are.
We parked the bus at his Uncle Tony’s house and quickly became a part of the family! We had 3 days here and wanted to make the most of it! I told Brandon that he was our Town Tour Guide and I wanted to take the kids on a hike, something with a waterfall or go into the city for the day.
Brandon found Dover Stone Church, who had a 1.5 mile hike that ascends to 880ft, a small creek with a little waterfall and all.
We continued up the mountain and enjoyed lunch at 880 feet overlooking the city below and the beautiful mountain surrounding us.
I LOVE exploring with the kids and they had an absolute blast pushing their limits. On the way back down we revisited the cavern, and ended up climbing up the waterfall because someone asked: ” I wonder what is above the waterfall?”
Johnny said, ” Wanna find out?” And he took off to scout it out. At first, just Chloe and Matthew followed along.. waiting to go up as well. After those two scaled the waterfall he looked at us from the waterfall edge and said let’s go, everyone’s coming up to see.
It was time to leave NY, it rained us out of going into the city. Instead, we just spent time catching up and relaxing at Uncle Tony’s! Vermont was up next! Logistically, we didn’t want to drive the bus up to the Montpellier area only to have to drive back down to our ‘workamper/seasonal spot’ in New Hampshire.
So, we left New York and headed to New Hampshire. Our site was available and the campground would allow us to park the bus, leave for graduation and then come back! We got in/set up-ish/packed up on Wednesday night and Thursday morning we were off to Vermont
The Green Mountain State
We successfully make it to Vermont, and I sit in the car for 2 hours…while Johnny does the rehearsal. Luckily my high school BFF lives there and she was able to accept Johnny’s uniform delivery, drop it off at the dry cleaners on Thursday (which was the DAY BEFORE GRADUATION) and let us stay over at their place! It was awesome to spend some quality time together, meet each other’s kids and check out Vermont together. The best thing, they are only 2 hours-ish away now! We are planning on definitely hanging out more and exploring this area more!