After what was supposed to be a two week stay for Evelyn’s first birthday in NH turned into a two month stay and we are finally back out on the road. We had some unexpected family things come up and repairs needed for the trailer that took weeks longer than expected. We made the most of it and lived our best life in New Hampshire.
But now, after three months of staying close to home we are officially diving in and heading south and hopefully not turning back! (Editors note: when this post goes live we are actually inland due to Hurricane Florence…) The goal is to be in Florida by Christmas. We’ll be following the coast on our way down. Last night we made it from NH to Maryland and spent a glorious humid night in the parking lot of a friendly Walmart Supercenter. Today, we are checking in at a campground outside of D.C. I’ve been to D.C. a few times and love the city. I love all the architecture and museums. However, there’s also a lot of beautiful hikes and attractions just outside of D.C. and beautiful country in Virgina. So I’m looking forward to exploring that for the first time.
The first few months on the road were.so.hard. and I’m happy to say I’m back on the road feeling much stronger mentally and physically this time around. Despite the hours of youtube videos we watched from full time RVers that were SO HELPFUL you still can’t really prepare or know what to expect until your living it yourself. I don’t think I realized how burnt out I was from working, adjusting to motherhood and the cross country move and I just kind of shut down. When we first headed out I was still breastfeeding which was such a challenge. We’d have to pull over when it was time to nurse her, or me struggling to pump & clean my pump accessories in the car. I also didn’t anticipate how much water to pack and was constantly struggling to stay hydrated to keep my supply up. I coasted through those first few weeks on the road. I hadn’t been as good at educating myself on how to set up and break down the trailer so I just kind of stood there while Tim rushed around me to do it all himself. I didn’t feel inspired or excited to try to film or edit or practice my photography skills which are creative things I usually love doing. By week two I had this knot of dread in my stomach that started building more and more as the weeks went on – the stress of hitching back up and heading to a new location, not knowing what obstacles awaited us. I was phoning-it-in and tuning out and I don’t even think I realized I was doing it.
So these two unexpected months taking a break from living in the RV turned out to be what I needed. I was able to relax and refresh. Get baby proofing and other necessities I now realized we needed in (and outside) the trailer. Practice parking the trailer as a team in an empty lot. We were able to organize all our stuff we use to set up at a camp so it’s more easily accessible. I’m writing this post as we drive to our first campsite since being back on the road – we’ll have to see how it goes.
I’m thankful to be feeling excited about this journey again and a little more confident. Also, it’s amazing how different Evelyn is in just two months. Now, at 13 months she can walk better, is playing more independently, and will watch a show on my phone or iPad. I also have learned more ways to keep her occupied and be better prepared for long car rides. I shared my tips here if you missed it.
I’m proofing this post before publishing. We’ve now been back on the road for a little over a week. We were supposed to be headed for the coast in North Carolina but we’ve had to move inland for hurricane Florence. However, the place we picked for refuge is turning out to be lovely. ( I’ll do a separate post on this slice of heaven). A week in and Evelyn will finally play independently, she has stopped trying to eat rocks so we can relax more outside. When we first set out on the road every night at a new place was a struggle with Evelyn. She’d have a hard time going to sleep and feeling comfortable. The first night back was hard, we were in a Walmart Super Center though so that’s fair. However, in both D.C. and now West Virginia she goes down completely awake, happily babbling to me as I step out of the room. And then not a peep. AND she’s taking TWO naps a day and SLEEPING IN UNTIL 7am. HOLLA!!! Anyway, the point being, it’s been such a relief to me to see that she’s happy and feels secure even though we are nomads. It’s something I really struggled with on the first leg of our journey. But when we were back at my parents she hated being indoors and it was hard to keep her occupied. However, today we did a 2.5 hour hike and not a peep from her as she just took in the woods around her. Then the playground (and a little bit of mom’s ice cream), followed by a bath outside.
I think we’re going to be happy on the road.
I hope I didn’t just jinx it all.