Summer is over.
Like really over. Grey skies and cold winds have become dominante through out the days.
When lucky, the sun comes and says hi for a few minutes. Sometimes seconds. As if, it is a casual reminder that it is strong enough to peak through anything, but just resting for the season.
The rain isn’t all bad. The second the first drops start to fall. Everything changes. The smell of the damp ground takes over the air. All sounds and silence are broken by the meditative white noise of Mother Nature. The wind blows in the ocean breeze along with a salty mist, making even the air, wet to the touch. All the things that the hot summer made this beautiful terrine miss so dearly.
So maybe we shouldn’t complain about this seasonal change but appreciate the effects of it around us.
“Each year, an estimated two million women
and men die as a result of occupational accidents and work-related diseases. Across the globe, there are some 270 million occupational accidents and 160 million work-related diseases each year.” https://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/—dgreports/—dcomm/documents/publication/wcms_067574.pdf
When sitting inside your home, have these question ever come to mind.
Who built this?
Was it easy?
Was it dangerous?
Was someone hurt?
Did someone die?
Probably not, because unfortunately, people in the trades aren’t often recognized as anything more then some dirty blue collar folk.
But here’s the reality, the person who built your house is someone’s son/daughter, someone’s mom/dad or even someone’s grandparents.
Chances are, it wasn’t easy, building a house involves lots a thought, concentration and extremely hard work. It might of been built in the middle of a snow or rain storm or even during a heat wave.
Reality is, everyday that a tradesmen/women goes to work, they are putting their life in danger to build YOUR futur home, to put a roof over YOUR head and to make sure that there will be enough housing for the generations to come.
It is heartbreaking to think that no one acknowledges the ones who’ve fallen from the second floor while installing a roof. No one acknowledges the ones who’ve lost limbs using dangerous tools while building their luxurious home. Broken bones, severe cuts, lost of hearing and/or sight ,career ending injuries.
All for that when you move in, you will never even know about it.
So please, tonight when you rest in your bed, take a moment to think about and be grateful for those who built those four walls surrounding you.
When you see people building yours or someone’s futur home, road or business, show them some respect or even thank them.
Because everyday, they are taking a chance of not being able to go back home.
My sympathies go out to all the families who’ve lost a loved one to the trades.
My toxic trait is that when things aren’t going well, I put up all my walls,
I shut all the doors and windows and disappear.
I become less responsive to text messages and phone calls.
I become very distant with those that I love.
Worst of all, I tend to try and shut off all my emotions and do my best to not show them.
Try and pretend that they do not exist.
Making them stick around for longer then they need to.
Then they sneak up on me like a shadow.
Hitting me unexpectedly like a wave.
Then drowning me in a ocean of anxiety and breakdowns.
Making me into a person that I do not want to be, a person who I no longer am.
This is when I need to remind myself, it’s okay…
It’s okay to be mad,
it’s okay to be sad,
it’s okay to cry, scream
and just let everything out.
Just do it.
But this is when they say “ it’s hard to practice what you preach.”
And oh man is it ever.
But that’s also the part of growing.
Until one day you are so strong,
that not even that harshest storm will phase you.
The bright sun heats the sand and rocks of the coast, bringing in warm waves and creating the most spectacular contrast with the freezing cold water for those who swim in the reviving,Pacific Ocean.
The rivers and creeks are being filled by the melting snow from the tall Rockie mountains and glaciers, bringing everything in their path, back to life.
Peoples foreheads,noses and cheeks are covered with tans, burns and freckles. Heads are full of sand and salt deposits along with knots that are unbrushable.
The low tides are revealing Tidepools, exposing hundreds of different sea creators. Star fish, hermits, tube worms, sea urchins and anemones, oyster, mussels, all together creating the most mind blowing colorful puddle you’ll ever look into.
Everyone around you is smiling and laughing. Fisherman/women, surfers, hikers and travelers are overwhelming the roads, on their way to make their most memorable memories.
All the whales, orcas and dolphins are jumping with joy, seals are sunbathing and birds are singing to the sun rising at 4 am until it completely disappears from horizon of the ocean at 11.
I would almost suggest for you not to ever come and visit. You might never leave.
After a long summer day, a nice hot meal isn’t exactly what your looking forward to making nor eating. Guess what, you don’t have to.
Salads are definitely the best go-to alternative when it comes to making a quick, fresh dinner. This recipe takes about 20 minutes to make and is exploding with hydrating and nourishing ingredients. Basically that perfect recipe to be able to enjoy your night and make your taste buds dance.
-slowly roast 1/2 a cup of chopped walnuts with a dash of avocado oil, once dark remove from heat and add a tbsp of honey to coat, stir a few times while cooling. Disregard the excess honey before adding to the salad, *derick loves to eat it as a candy ;)*
-your choice of greens ,quinoa is also great
-1/2 red onion or shallots
-1 chopped apple, 1 pomegranate
-as much feta as you like
– 1 sliced avocado
-1/2 chopped cucumber
Toss everything together and enjoy with your choice of dressing. I personally love a raspberry-balsamic which tends to hold much less fat. (Keep an eye out for something local.)
*scroll to bottom if you’re motivated enough to cook chicken*
For those who looking for some extra protein, I personally love this salad as a side with some balsamic chicken that I quickly put together with,
-2 boneless/skinless chicken breast
-1 tbsp of ancient grain mustard
– 1/3 cup of balsamic vinegar
-3 chopped garlic cloves
-dash is olive oil
-salt and pepper to taste
-1 tsp of basil and parley
*Recipe generally serves 2-3 people*
Through out the years of my family and I living on the road, I was positive that I’d be so much more grateful to live in a house, but instead it’s taught me to appreciate the Rv life even more. During my experience I’ve developed quite a few habits and got used to such a simple and free lifestyle that it has opened my eyes to all the waste of time and useless consumption that the average person does, and 4 years ago, I was one of them.
I don’t need nor want more stuff.
Once we moved into a house, I realized how empty it was due to the fact that we had “nothing”. It’s been four months since we’ve moved in and it’s still the same. A big open space with a minimal amount of things. But I have zero interest on changing that. I have no interest in purchasing any “decorative” furniture nor useless materialistic objects that have no value to me. The longer we lived in a rv for, the more we started getting rid of things that we realized that there was no point of having. The decorations we own are mostly all animal bones and skulls that we have found in the wild, sea shells and rocks by the ocean and rivers, along with a few other odd treasures that are either gifts or lost gems off a dusty shelf from the thrift store.
Water is gold
You don’t realize how much the average human uses water until you have lived in a Motorhome. Derick and I have spent over three years of turning off the water between rinses in the shower, using a fraction of water for dishes, limiting the amount of times we wash our clothes and so on. Then, you go back into a house and it ends up being hard to go back to normal. Although, other then turning the water off in the shower (that last roughly 5-10 minutes ), we haven’t changed much of our habits that we’ve picked up in the last few years.
*The average person uses from 80-100 gallons of water per day. Derick and I would often make that much last 2-3 days for both of us.
Time is precious
Since I can I remember, on top of some some everyday chores, I’ve always done a solid house cleaning once a week. When I lived in a two story home, it sometimes took almost a whole day. In a Rv, hell I had my floors, walls and windows cleaned in 2-3 hours.
Now I know some of you probably don’t see this as a big deal and even see it as “part of life”.Well guess what, for me, it shouldn’t be. If I do a quick average of how much hours I spend on house chores ba year, it comes out to roughly 468. Now some do more or less, but if that number doesn’t make you realize how many things you could be doing with your time then I don’t know what will.
There is so much to see
I’ve realized that there is a endless amount of things to discover and see, and living in one spot puts a restraint to all of it. However, I feel like I must live in places for at least few months to truly discover it’s full beauty. To get to the know the community, discoverer the fauna, see the seasonal changes and analyze every aspect of what makes that area unique. But then, move on. Because there is so much to do and see and no time to waste.
My advice to you, my little vagabond
Simplify your life, use less water, consume less electricity, get rid of your cluster of things and stop buying useless new stuff that you’ll need to dust off every other week.
Every hour, day, week, month and year is so, so precious. There is only so much time to explore, to spend with your friends and family, and to spend taking care and loving yourself so you can truly enjoy your time on this round thing we call planet earth.
Look at her smile, doesn’t she look happy. Look at her life, isn’t she lucky ?
Today, I am happy as fuck and I feel completely blessed for the life I’m living. Although, about 6 years ago and as far back as I can remember, I thought I would forever be surround by violence, addiction and trauma.
My pass has become a dark book, in which I used to do my best to keep closed, yet I remember every word.
Every word of hatred and threats, every scene of violence and destruction and all the signs that addiction was the root of everything. Drugs and alcohol, the reason for the holes in the walls, the reason for the fights and screaming, the reason for the long nights that seemed like they would never end, nights that turned into endless years.
My surroundings had become so toxic that, while growing up, my mental health had taken complet control of a my life. Anxiety attacks were coming in weekly. Long nights of sickness, cold sweats and shakes. Even once I moved out.
Everything I did, everywhere I went, I was followed by a heavy shadow of bad memories. At work, at parties, at home, the beach,shower, dinner, bed. You name it.
I had to go further, so I moved.
I moved across the country.
I did everything I could to be as far away as possible. I even went tree planting, canceled my phone and disappeared for a few months without giving any signs of life.
I needed to forget.
Since then I’ve lived in over 15 beautiful towns and cities, I’ve met the most inspiring and magical people. I’ve realized that it is okay to cry and how important it is to laugh. I’ve learned to enjoy being alone and to appreciate the presence of those who are good to me. I’ve learned to love, to be loved and to love myself.
But most importantly, I’ve learned to not forget my pass, but instead, embrace it. To take the challenges life has thrown at me and turn them into lessons.
I know nothing can knock me down. I’m a mountain standing strong. I know nothing will stop me from growing, I’m a fucking dandelion growing on the sidewalk.
I know that I’ve made it. I survived and i didn’t let any of it reflect on who I am today.
At least once a day, reflect on where you are, what you are doing and who are you with. Is it where you want to be? Is it something that is good for you and your health? Is that person good for you and your health? If any of these answers are no, make a change, run away.
For weeks now I find myself typing then erasing, over and over again.
When I get an idea, my fingers start putting it down then my mind drifts off into a million different things that barely even seem important. I eventually realize that I’ve lost my train of thought. I then read what I wrote down and it suddenly seems like scrambled words.
Now all of this has me wondering, is it the sunshine that has been stealing my time and thoughts or is it the ocean waves that are washing away my words or maybe there’s something that is trapping my imagination.
But what could that something be other then – myself.
I tend to forget to express the blissful feeling I get as I stuff my face with delicious, colorful fruits on the beach with my other half. Or the feeling of my mind clearing itself and all weight lifting off my shoulders as I place my bare feet into the warm sand then the drastic change of the cold ocean water that cleanses my body and soul in a split second.
Expressing how grateful I am for the life I’m living might be a good start to find back my flow of words.
My family and I live a beautiful, happy and healthy life doing things I would of never dreamed of doing. I eat pure and healthy foods, visit magical places, do sports and activities and spend about 85% of my time outside.
So many things I could list that make me smile the way I do and that make me feel alive.
My wish is for you to do the same.
Today is your birthday.
I don’t know why I always remember.
I seem to always think of it days before, as if I had something to plan for it.
But there’s nothing.
You’re not there.
When I was young, I would count the months between the times I would see you.
Often, the years.
Now that I’m older, I count the months between the times I speak to you.
Again, months that become years.
When I look in the mirror, I see nothing but you.
Your eyes, nose and smile.
Yet when I look in my memories, you are nowhere to be seen.
I no longer wait on a call.
Nor on a visit.
I no longer wish on the first star of the night for you to come back.
I’m no longer the little girl you once knew.
Today we are strangers to each other.
That will probably never change.
However today is your birthday, and I will probably think of nothing but you.
Some of you might know, I became a carpenter without going to school for it. 4 years in now and I am still a long ways from becoming a master carpenter. Although, through out those years, I am confident that these quick 3 tips are hands down the best advice I could give for any one wanting to try to trade and give themselves a chance.
As a labor, your job is basically to make whom ever your working with’s job easier . This means making sure they have all that is necessary to get the job done nice and quick. This involves, setting up their tools, gathering their lumber, making sure they NEVER run out of nails, and yes, picking up after them. On top of all this, you must make sure that, that person isn’t always waiting on you. I know that sounds unfair to some, but know that the people your working you a** off for, are going to teach you all the best knowledge you won’t ever learn at school. Also, unless it’s break, keep your pouch on.
Watch and listen
When I say listen, yes I obviously mean when people are speaking to you, but also when other experienced workers are speaking amongst one another about something work related. By doing so, you’ll often figure out why you’re doing something which eventually leads to you understanding how to do it. Also, when you have the time, get the habit of watching others work, how they use tools, what they are doing, how they are doing it and use different techniques to make their job easier. From worker to worker, it will often be different. Remember that every piece you add in to framing a house, usually has a purpose that you must know.
Clean, clean and clean
Sounds awful right ? Every piece of lumber over 2ft, remove the nails, stack it up nicely somewhere that is easily accessible and not in the way. Same thing for plywood. Air hose and extensions getting tangled, take care of it. Scrap at the cutting station, clear it up quick. Trailer out of hand, hurry up and place it.
Oh and don’t forget, always be ready for measurements to be called out.
Keeping your site tidy, avoids you and others from wasting time looking for things and prevents an unspeakable amount of injuries and frustration.
The last thing people who have been in the trade for a long time need, is the new guy/girl complaining about everything. If you stay happy yet focused, energetic and motivated that will reflect on others. They will put more time in to teaching you if they see it’s worth it. Know that every great carpenter will be proud to see you grow.
Remember, stay happy, stay safe and get it done !!!
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived" -Henry David Thoreau
Because working my way there is less delicious
Our Life Dreaming, Learning, Exploring, and Living Deliberately.