As we were planning all the wonderful things we’d do on Mostlygreen.life we found ourselves in a spot where we weren’t going to be tied down by all the normal obligations of life for a while. One day, apparently (I say apparently cause I don’t remember it…I was a little tipsy), I lightly suggested to Jess that we Airbnb the house and embark on the longest and most epic RV trip we’d ever attempted. See, we’ve owned RVs for some time now but the longest trip we’d taken before this year was 11 days. Earlier in the year, we tested RV life with a full 2-week trip to Florida from Texas that went smoothly, but I was suggesting a 2-month trip this go around! That’s straight van life. You’re a nomad at that point. There’s no eject button when you’re 2,000 miles away from home. Well, I suppose there is, but we (I) never got even close to the possibility. So we made a map and started preparing for the Mostlygreen.life Tour!
First complication is that we have my kiddos half-time and we’re on what’s called a 2-2-5-5 schedule so we rarely go even a week without seeing the kids and neither does their mom. We’d need some real coordination to pull this off. Luckily we have an amazing and mutually-supportive relationship with their mom (more on this later). The kids are in an 11-month school which starts each year right after Labor Day and ends in mid-July, giving them about 7 weeks off for the summer. They are 9 and 11 so we figured they’re old enough for their first unaccompanied minor flights, which was very exciting for them! Jess and I picked up the kiddos in the RV the day they got out of school to start our adventure, we dropped them off after 2 weeks of van life to go on a vacation with their mom, picked them back up at a different airport and eventually dropped them off again to fly home, giving them some down time before school started back up. So, 2-ish weeks with kids, 2-ish without, 2-ish with, and 2-ish without. Easy peasy! 😛
We wanted to experience all the things we love – nature, time with the kiddos, good food & wine, and some night life – while also learning more about sustainability along the way. We planned to do almost all of our cooking in the RV while we had the kids and hit a few fun restaurants when we didn’t have them. We scheduled 3 remote podcast recordings and multiple learning adventures. Here were our starting maps – Austin—>LA, LA—>Seattle (2 maps cause so many stops – 1st one, 2nd one), Seattle—>Austin.
The first leg of the mostlygreen.life tour was to LA and we planned it out with much more detail than any other part of the trip so that we could get our travel legs under us without a ton of winging it and allowing kids max-enjoyment time. We saw amazing desert sights, learned about conservation programs and parks across the Southwest, and lucked out with amazing weather. I got to fulfill a childhood dream of mine, one of our only splurges on the trip, a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon. We ended parked in a public lot on the beach at Newport Beach, amazing. Dropped the kids at the LA airport and then the adult fun began!
Jess & I had no plans, no stays booked, and 2 weeks to make it to Seattle. We meandered up the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) stopping at places that looked interesting and generally dealing with neck soreness from all the beautiful sights. We also had some amazing wine and oysters (learned they’re regenerative aquaculture!) and got quite tipsy a time or two, but luckily we could just stumble back to the RV when needed.
We picked the kids up in Seattle and spent some time with our friends on Whidbey Island (Sweetwater Farm), with my parents joining. We then had to run away from fires, disrupting most of our plans. We lucked out in Yellowstone Park with amazing weather, and went through Utah and Colorado before dropping the kids at the Denver airport and spending our last week in final relaxation mode before re-entering reality.
Several people, before we left, said if we come back still together then we’re a perfect match. I kinda felt like a year together without being able to leave the house cause of a pandemic was more of a relationship test, but I digress. We loved being on the road so much that we didn’t want it to end. We’re definitely going to make it an annual thing! We will post more from the trip as we unpack all the content.
We want to hear from you for future eco-journeys (and come say hi wherever you are), in our RV, through the US, learning and connecting on sustainability issues. Let us know your thoughts here!