Homefull

So we got back from Hawaii. I do a Friday and a Monday at work and head to Ferndale for 4th of July. Honestly I would give up living in a van to move to Hawaii. I even asked Tara if she wanted to go to UH. I would move there scope it out then move into a van. It wouldn’t be an RV because I didn’t see any out there. Yesterday I had to borrow lotion cause my skin was peeling, I told her I was losing my Hawaii skin.

4th of July was spent with the Wu’s at their lake house. We stayed the nights in the van but showered and ate in the house. We did Vancouver and Richmond. Birch Bay was nice. Lots of eating and drinking. Casino. Met the Moeleri family. Fireworks were fun. Kevin’s neighbor is not ready to sell her lot which is next to their house. Which I would scoop up in a minute if she was ready to sell.

On Saturday we headed back to Seattle. I grabbed Zach at Kevin’s. At school we proceed to empty Vanessa into Zach (while it had a bike in it). We leave dishes, few books, some electronic cables, tools, van gear in the RV. Safe to say everything we own need fits in the red van. We do have stuff at my parents that we need to go thru. 2 bikes and some “trading” clothes at Christie’s that we need to get. We living light. Haha

I dropped the van at my parents. Then I go to visit Jon and his family at his parents house. Damn I haven’t seen his sister since I was 16. I haven’t seen his parents since 94? I got to hold my God son. Jon and I had beers and talked shit. I was supposed to go with him to Seattle to have dinner with a bunch of other heads that I haven’t seen since the late 90s 00s. I couldn’t do it cause I was beat. I did see Julius (Juice) and Jon on the ferry back to Seattle, good to sit down and chat with these dudes.

We have been house sitting since Saturday. It is a beautiful home on a lake. We are grateful for our buddies Angi/Dan for letting us sit their house. They are taking and 8-9 week trip in their van, BILBO, umm how awesome is that. The sad thing is our van wouldn’t go up their drive way. Hence why we had to empty it. Teren has commandeered the upstairs for bed on a couch with an Xbox. Tara got her license a few weeks ago, so she’s been driving around here and there. Almie has been cooking up a storm at the house. Which is a welcome change from all the take out we have been eating in Hawaii and the 4th of July. I need some Indian food!! From the house, I’ve bike commuted twice 27/28 miles one way. Only done it twice, going one way. I hope to it more to try to get fit and less fat. Haha.

The title is HOMEFULL because it seems where ever we are we make it home. I’ve been called a freeloader, homeless, gypsies and other terms that were given jokingly but I take em as a badge of honor. This Friday July 13th will be 6 months in the van. It has been an amazing adventure and most of the time regular life. Big THANK YOU to anyone that has been a part of it, helped us out, talked to us about it, etc. you know who you are you deserve a big fucking hug.

Who wouldn’t want to travel cross country and internationally in this 

This kid is a fool

Richmond night market sunset 

Waterball games

4th of July 

The ice cream (wo)man is coming!!

Do you think he is excited?

Granville taking artsy pics 

Granville and water

Birch Bay exploration 

Getting bike setup for commute 

Found a dragonfly and let it back out

Travel day

As I write this it is 11 minutes after the hour, June 27th. My oldest turned 17 on the 26th. Happiest Birthday to her. The 24th Almie and celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary in a church. We did a courthouse about 7 months before.

Kids finished off school Thursday 15th of June. They finished off as good as we expected. They were kept alive and ate well, haha. The oldest went on a road trip to Methow and the 3 of us headed to Bremerton to prep for Hawaii. I went to work on Friday to finish off some stuff. Had a dinner with Kevin at Tandoori bites and ended up drinking at Royal. Causing me to miss a ferry. I was convinced to stay at his house, so I got to drink more. Casino alcohol is always cheap for a reason.

Saturday we spent the day packing and cleaning out the food from the van. Sunday we headed out to Hawaii. Today is the travel day back home after 10 days. We were here for Regionals for Soccer. Unfortunately the girls didn’t get out of the group. But fortunately we turned it into a vacation. Eating, beaching, shopping, hiking, boating and eating were some of the things we did. We hooked up with Giji, Almie’s homegirl from San Diego. That was one of the highlights. She took us out on base and rented a pontoon. Then we headed out to Kaneohe bay to play on the sandbar. Oh my that was amazing. Then we go and do a little hike to a waterfall. Her little dude, 4 yr old, is basically leading us the whole way as she went to pick up her other kids. Then we go grab some food and go eat at a local school’s playground. The poke was pretty damn good, Tamura’s, which is a liquor store with a poke in the back.

As we head back home and while we are here thoughts about moving/living out here come and go. Could we van it? I’ll put it on the possible to do list. We are home for a few days and then a few days in Ferndale with the Wu’s for the 4th. Should be fun. We then get back and will house sit for some #vanlifers. Our buds Anne-gigi and Dan are doing a 2 month tour of Canada in newly bought Hymer Activ. Sucky part is our van will not go up their driveway due to its length so we will be without our “home” for that time. It will force me to get Zach ready for “camp” shape. We decided to road trip to San Diego for another soccer tournament since Tara is now a licensed driver.

Searching for sunrise on her birthday. Early…

purple!!

Almie getting a nose piercing, was going to get a tat but I got sunburns

Retiring Teren’s shoes, which were Tara’s hand me downs

Many Turtles had been spotted

lots of “Do Nots” one of these does not belong

hike with our guide “Captain Spike Likeke Falls”

croc life

That sandbar though….

I’ve been annoying her for a long time

Our island drive where we stopped off at any place we liked

Sandbar with China Man’s hat

Tourist with China Man’s hat

Drink beer with the guys

Incase you didn’t know the title comes from Beyoncé’s If I were a boy. Anyways… yesterday Kevin and I finally went out and got dinner. Good talking shit and sharing stories. Watched some NBA finals, haven’t done that in forever. Had fried foods and got an appetizer of mozzarella sticks, I got to get off that cheese. Messed up my stomach. Having thoughts of turning vegan. Well after that I go to Christie’s in Magnolia to pickup Tara’s clothes and luggage which Almie needed for her trip to LA. I head back to Fel’s where the rest of my family is with the van and it turns out there is an Outback party. Jeff, Glenn, Fel, and Vince-who I haven’t seen for like 25years? These dudes put together a reunion/house party/dance party like they did in high school at Kona Kitchen (I was in San Diego for a baptism) a few weeks ago. It was good seeing these guys and having a beer by myself, cause I came late. Good sharing stories and talking shit.

Last weekend Almie, Teren and I headed to Victoria Island to sherpa and support Almie in her 1/2 Ironman. Shout out to her for putting in a solid 5 months of training. Sacrificing. She didn’t do as good as she liked but she was there. We took Zac and stayed in a hotel. In hindsight we could have took Vanessa and camped it. Good seeing Rochelle, AJ, and Allen out there too. Seeing them almost made me want to do it, almost turns into no thanks. Tara stayed at Christie’s to go to school and prep for finals. School is almost done!!

So Almie is in LA at a conference to learn about her business. We all got up early to make it fit logistically with getting humans where they need to. Tonight we are at Tiffany’s. A little odd cause we haven’t been back here since we house sat. When we house sat we should of parked the van at my parents. A neighbor complained probably cause we were parked here for almost 3 weeks. So we are trying to only come here from time to time. I broke one of my own rules about not staying a place to long, which causes people to get anxious and what not.

Speaking of anxious and what nots. I love reading Seattle Times Facebook on articles about homelessness and RVs. Most of all I love the comments. Keyboard heroes abound.

All the gear to Ironman

This lady was at the hotel

Allen and AJ

Rochelle and Almie

Almie poolside in LA, notice palm tree. It’s supposed to start raining in Seattle in 3-2-1

Incase you haven’t heard I am an addict of words. I have no fear of missing out. 

Outback Sounds. Some of btowns finest. 

Making memories….

Last week we had a good parking setup at Rimando’s. We only planned to stay Tue-Thur but ended up staying till Sunday. We give them many many thanks. Place was super quiet. As always at new places, I didn’t sleep well on the 1st night.

With the holiday weekend we didn’t have any kids activities! We were going to hang at my parents. But a dinner with the Cunnanan’s was already setup for Saturday. Also Tara had to work on Sunday. So going to Bremerton got nixed. We got an invite from the Wu’s to come to their beach house.

We headed up to Ferndale after Tara’s work. Under 2 hour drive is pretty good. Kids napped well. They have had this place for about 5 years. We have been invited before but could never make it. Glad we were able to this time. Got there hung out, talked some shit, rode some kid bikes, drank some beers, ate some Juanita’s sweet chili chips (I need more in my life), sat in the sun, had a bbq. Almie went to the casino that night and made some $$.

Abner and his family showed up too! He was actually the one who introduced me to Kevin and Jenny. They had a poker game and I got invited to play. Then we started playing more cards and going to their family parties. I remember living in our condo and skateboarding to their house. Some good memories were made at their beach house.

We made it back. Asked Pajimula if we could park over, it was a go! Seems like forever since I’ve been here. Got to see his new toy. I’m waiting to get a ride in it. Talked Vans. That Nissan Enve200 Recon is calling me. They went off to bbq and I had my Ivars.

DTF with Mike and Jill. We brought Teren. Tara was at a sleepover. Waiting an hour for food sucks. 

Walking back to the car we spotted this gem. I need something like this on one of the vans. 

Beers in the sun!!

I found Jenny.  See my instagram….

Mini Abner and Frozone!!

Kids in the Puget Sound.

Hovering 

My oldest their youngest. 

Some Canadian geese. I think they were extras in the Notebook 

Arlington. Shout out to the Armed Forces and those that gave their lives. 

Never looking back…

I was texting with one of our buds, Fel, the other day trying to coordinate the parking situation…and ended our convo with “really loving this vanlife – I don’t think I could ever go back living in a house.” This is our new normal, not so much new, but just normal!

It’s been a pretty amazing 4 months for sure. We spent the last couple weeks housesitting and while it was awesome to have a kitchen to cook in, a shower and a TV to binge watch law and order, I missed being in the van and sleeping in our van bed.

In 12 days I will be racing my first half Ironman! 1.2mi swim, 56mi bike and 13.1mi run. I’m feeling pretty strong and fit – my goal is to finish the race! I have 8.5 hours to do it! Can’t wait to get it done and take a break from training! We are heading to Hawaii a couple weeks after so not sure how much of a break i’ll take from training since I need to still fit in my bathing suits 🙂

My consulting business is doing well, have a few clients and it’s definitely keeping me busy. I have a demo interview tomorrow with a company I’ve been talking to for a bit – it would be a remote job (which is perfect and what I’m looking for) and the gig itself is pretty cool, working with clients on engagement, training, matching the right solutions, etc…hope it works out! I’ll keep consulting on the side and grow that over time.

Terence is finally home after being gone for 4 days. I played solo mom for the weekend and it was pretty easy (thankful my father-in-law took Teren for the weekend) other than driving the little misses around, can’t wait till she starts driving. Our friends, Sara and Andy, gave the thumbs up for us to park at their place, and of course I got the chance to cook dinner: poke bowls, beers and strawberry shortcake. I spent Sunday with a long training session, filled the van up with water and dumped all the tanks…and made it home in time to enjoy a cocktail. The only downside to managing the vanlife solo is when we use up the power during the day to charge our laptops and to run the air purifier and it turns out to be cloudy so our solar panels aren’t fully charge…the stuff that needs constant power, which is really one thing, our fridge, will start beeping to let us know it’s going to shut down soon if we don’t do something. That something usually requires us to turn the engine on for a bit to get everything recharged. Which isn’t a problem, except for when we are parked close to our hosts windows and neighbors doors, the engine could be heard, which again isn’t a problem but we are mindful of it especially when it happens at 4am. In the span of 3 hours, I had to turn the engine one a few times to get enough of a charge. Usually Terence does the waking up but he wasn’t here so it was all me. Boo.

If you are in the Seattle area and have a big enough driveway and street to park both VANessa and Zac, let us know! We’d love to be neighbors for a day or two! Plus I’m a pretty good cook and will treat our hosts with a 2-3 course dinner! We are also open to housesit for you too (we are booked all of July and August) so let us know!

I’m working on a couple of more blog posts but if there is something specific you want to know/learn about van living with kids or just curious about vanlife in general…let us know! We only have 4 months under our belts but feel like it’s been forever!

Ava, Andy and Sara! Endless bag of thank yous!

Kids playing outside, better than inside😎

Poke bowls. Yasss.

Really need to get Zac organized and our bike rack in order. I actually took this photo before handing over my keys to the valet at Snoqualmie – couldn’t bear to think I wouldn’t have any proof my bike was under the blanket…so I took one for safe measures…not sure it would have made a difference but it was for my peace of mind!

Weekday dinners are not as fancy but it works.

And when you are heading out the door for a doctors appointment but can’t find your shoes, slippers are the next best thing. We did find his shoes in Zac.

And finally, my office. Thank you Rimando fam for the driveway!