HOLY HEAVENLY CACTUS 😍! Did I ever think that would be something I would say? Nope. But that was before I visited the Sonoran Desert. 🏜️
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is a treasure I didn't know I was missing! Has anyone heard of or visited here before? We hadn't, until we were mapping our winter path. 🏜️
We learned about poisonous species that get bad names for themselves but are actually kinda cool (if you're into creepy stuff like that 🦂), many different cacti 🌵, got our Jr ranger badges in Halloween costumes, and went on a "hike" that we didn't research so we accidentally scaled the side of a mountain for 3 hours 🤦🏻♀️😂😩. 🏜️
But the biggest impact on me was being right by the Mexico border. Derek says often that I have a bleeding heart for everything. It has weighed on me being this close to something that has hurt so many families. It's hard not to feel guilty posting about these incredible experiences, when I know there are so many people living in such harsh conditions. So to honor those that have sacrificed so much, I plan to take supplies/donations to a center in Tucson this coming week. If you would like to join me or contribute, please message me! 🏜️ #thelonghaulfamily#keepfamiliestogether#dogood#lovewins#rvlivingwithkids#rvlife#fulltimetravelfamily#familytravel#fulltimefamilies#roadschool#homeschool#homeonwheels#homeiswhereyouparkit#xscapers#adventurefamily#boymom#gorving#getoutside#ditchingsuburbia#seeamerica#nomadlife#exploremore
When a fun experience turns out bad.
___ "I was just trying to go through the water to make it fun for Monty." -Dave #fundad
Oops. He'll regret that decision for awhile. Thankfully in his frantic calling around trying to figure out how we'll get out, someone told him about Southern Nevada Off Road Recovery (SNORR) Facebook group.
They are life savers. It's a group of off road enthusiasts (who actually know what they're doing) who come and help recover people from whatever stuck situation they're in.
We had two people show up and many more who offered if these two didn't work or they needed more help. 🙌🙌🙌🙌 Swipe to see the video.
Mads wouldn’t sleep last night. Erik is a champ and went in several times to help him fall back to sleep and while they were in the other room I was wide awake laying in bed thinking about all of the loss I keep hearing about; famous people, friend’s family members, college friends, sweet babies. It’s been a rough month to say the least. My friend posted on FB after losing two uncles within the past week “nobody else die ok!?!?” I wish so badly that none of us had to experience loss and grief. And I wish I had some great answer to all of this but I don’t. We just need to love and love and keep loving everyone. We don’t always know what they are going through. 💛💛
Yesterday we celebrated our sweet Callie turning 3 + my goodness do I have so many emotions surrounding that! She has taught us so much + we have been so very blessed by her heart. Motherhood comes with so many emotions, but I am so thankful that I get to be on this refining journey alongside these three. Thank you to all of our friends + family that came to celebrate with us. 🌾
When in the 🏜️...
This is Derek. He is the big dumb animal that runs this account 🤣😝
When in the middle of the Sonoran 🏜️ your beard grooming options are limited. But we made due with what we had. #beardcare
3 1028 January, 2020
Summer 2019. 50 km we bike and camp😀
2 2428 January, 2020
My little fam bam!
1 2528 January, 2020
Capable kids. Capable bikes! Whether they're ripping though the neighborhood or down a sweet slice of single track, we've got them covered. #PowerYourKid
LIFE EDUCATION ⇢ Our 4-year-old has a strong desire to be involved. Up to now, it is literally everything, cooking, discovering, washing... (ok, except for shopping to his mother's dismay). Our daily chores and projects may take longer because of our little helping hands but we try to be patient and teach him everything he wants to (...and enjoy a beer while he is doing the laundry 👌). We strongly believe that not all lessons are taught in the classroom. He is learning for life and we are very grateful to be able to spend this time with him. For us, our travel is not a reward for what we have achieved or saved money for but it is an education for life for all of us!
I’m thankful and grateful for this little man who is such an open and interested boy. Have you taken a moment to think of what you are thankful for?
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🇩🇪Unser 4-Jähriger hat den starken Wunsch, sich zu beteiligen. Bis jetzt ist es buchstäblich alles, kochen, entdecken, waschen... (ok, ausser Shopping zum Leidwesen seiner Mutter). Unsere täglichen Aufgaben und Projekte mögen wegen unserer kleinen helfenden Hände länger dauern, aber wir versuchen, geduldig zu sein und ihm alles beizubringen, was ihn interessiert. Wir sind der festen Überzeugung, dass nicht alle Lektionen im Klassenzimmer gerlernt werden. Er lernt für das Leben, und wir sind sehr dankbar, dass wir diese Zeit mit ihm verbringen können. Für uns ist unsere Reise keine Belohnung für das, was wir erreicht oder wofür wir Geld gespart haben, sondern es ist Lernen für das Leben.
Ich bin dankbar für diesen kleinen Mann, der ein so offener und interessierter Junge ist. Habt iht euch auch einen Moment Zeit genommen, um darüber nachzudenken, wofür ihr dankbar seid?
8 3727 January, 2020
Yesterday our little sunshine babe turned 5!
She’s the best mixture of sweet, spicy, brave, silly, and strong and we are the luckiest to have her!
Happy birthday, baby girl!
12 9927 January, 2020
This has been heavy on my mind because I seek adventure but have to have a job to do it.
I long for the day I will be location independent and filling my soul with many adventures.
Starting a business is hard but will be worth it. Need a VA go to pennyisava.mozello.com
Laughing at these two trying to keep it together. Dudes fumblin over his feet and Elli is just tryin’ to help 😂🤣 I want to blame Brandon for this trait but I know they got it from me. #hotmessexpress 🤦🏽♀️🤘🏼🤣 I cant believe Ridge is basically the same size of his six year old sister and he’s still a few month shy of being two years old. 😬 #elliotteridge#hesagiant#berleekids#myheart
Sydney is jam packed with things to see. And today we took a big bite out of those sights. A stroll down Macquarie Street led us by the State Library, Parliament House, Sydney Hospital and the Courthouse and then to Hyde Park - a big green space in the middle Sydney’s central business district with big, leafy trees providing shade over the wide walking paths. We then walked through Chinatown to get to Darling Harbour, which is packed with amazing restaurants and cafes, and an unreal water park (the highlight for Zoya and Hannah) and playground for limitless fun for the kids.
The kids are absolutely loving the time with their grandparents. Extra sets of helping hands also help us relax a bit more! So to all of our family and friends : as you plan your own 2020 trips, think seriously about paying a visit to the Erfans!
Hey Folks! I am officially introducing myself to you! I am Sarah, and behind me in the canoe are Raylah(9), Dean(7) and my hubby Eric. We have co-owned Lucky Bend Lookout vacation rental for the past 7 years with our friends the Martins. And Eric and I have had our blog Sonoma Family Adventures for the past few years. We love to get outside and go on adventures like backpacking, hiking, biking, canoeing, & skiing. I really enjoy sharing our adventures with you and I hope to inspire you to get outside and enjoy nature with your family. It’s not always easy to get the kids out but it is always worth the effort! One of my goals is to be an expert on fun things to do in west Sonoma County so if you have any questions about where to go and what to do when you are there then I am happy to help! Just send a DM or comment with a question on one of my posts.
10 3427 January, 2020
Tax Season kicks off today. Will you be getting a refund this year?
There are a million ways to spend it, but why not actually invest it in more quality family time outside?
One sure fire way to do that is to buy a Wildcat Outdoor Gear tent. In doing so, you will ensure that everyone has space to sprawl out and relax in, a place to hang out and play games when it rains during your camping adventures, and so much more!
Plus, you’ll be much happier when you realize how much faster and easier our tents are to set up vs. your old complicated pole tent 🙌
Now is the perfect time to get your new tent and start planning an epic family camping summer!
It's hard to believe this serene and wonderful nature trail is in an urban setting.
The boardwalk takes you through mangroves and dense plant life. We saw crabs, birds, raccoons, squirrels, turtles and butterflies. The boardwalk takes you all the way to the New River where manatees like to visit.
(3 of 3) No filter. You know how resorts always have these beautiful pics of palm trees with white sand beaches and crystal blue water? Well it’s all true. (Except for the part about sand fleas. Protect yourself!) We aren’t staying at this resort but we ate out for the first time in a week and it was delicious! Also the video of the sea turtle was taken next to our boat in the marina. We’ve also seen sea urchins, upside down jelly fish, sea slugs, and a lemon shark all within the marina! The kids are learning so much about sea life. That was our topic last week for study. We learned that sword fish are one of the fastest in the ocean-going up to 50 MPH. We learned that flying fish can soar above water for up to 45 seconds (and I’ve seen this boating to #catalinaisland before). We learned that one tuna fish can weigh more than a horse and grow up to 10’ long and that one tuna can fill over 5k cans of tuna fish. We’ve learned that plastic bags look a lot like jelly fish and are dangerous for sea turtles to eat. We’ve learned that daddy sea horses are the ones that deliver the babies. You know... all important life lessons 😆 I’ve loved #UBAM books and puzzle books on sea life and also #thebigbookoftheblue Y’all I packed so many books for this trip! It was really fun finding books on this topic... and also made our bags really heavy! 😬 Next week we are studying the night sky. 🌌
(2 of 3). These swimming pigs!! This was a really fun day. Swipe to see all the videos and pics to full extent. (And see previous and next posts for more of the Exumas!) There’s one video of the pigs swimming out to a boat and yes they can climb in your dinghy. Food is not safe there! If there’s one thing we learned here it’s that pigs like food.. preferably carrots (or fresh water since they don’t have much on land). If you don’t want them to chase you then don’t bring food on the island. Some of them are massive. Don’t let them step on your toes... and if you do bring food and you’re being chased.. just drop the food! Problem solved. Although it’s best to leave food in their food buckets so they don’t ingest sand from off the ground. They were so sweet and receptive to being called. They got here originally by a man who was preparing for Y2K. 😑 He brought a few and was prepping an off grid farm for himself. There are roosters here too. Now the pigs roam freely and are a huge tourist attraction. Motor boats will drive tourists here (a couple hour drive) for $300-$400 (for a 30 min-hour visit). The piglets are especially adorable.
7 4027 January, 2020
(1 of 3). Hi friends, I am so far behind on photos and pics but so in-the-moment in real life that it feels just fine 💜 Here’s some updates as to what we’ve been up to the last week. I can’t believe it’s only been a week having the kids on board! My mom and step dad came out for the week along with a dear college friend and her dad. They were the perfect crew to have on board this windy week! In the end we visited Iguana Island, pig beach, and snorkeled around a private cave on a magicians private island (David Copperfield)They even set up a private dinner at night and lit up the corral rock side of the beach with candles and Teekie torches. It was beautiful... to watch through binoculars 😆 Actually we star gazed and that’s where the real show was. 💜🌿 I’ll be writing more diary entries of parenting over at @thediaryofapeacefulparent and would love to hear your own stories there too so feel free to share! In the meantime I’ll be posting more videos and pics of our adventures here.
Is skydiving on your bucket list? Do you wish to experience the feeling of skydiving without the daunting task of actually jumping out of an airplane?
That’s what iFly, an indoor skydiving, can give to thrill seekers of all ages. The wind tunnels and instructors at iFLY can make almost anyone’s dream of flight a reality.
There’s no need to be nervous. It’s all air and you are just kind of floating in there. And you have an instructor next to you the whole time keeping you safe.
The iFLY experience from check-in to check-out lasts about an hour and a half. Each flight within the wind tunnel lasts 60 seconds. (Now me and my kids want to try the real deal 😅) Have you tried @ifly before? Or the real skydiving? How was it? Share with us 🙌🏼 Follow us @juniorbucketlist to see what’s next on our list
We do our best to have one on one time with the girls so when Alexa showed interest in climbing a volcano in Indonesia, Bradey jumped at the chance to do this with her! Our latest vlog captured this epic journey. It was hard and they bonded in an amazing way... all the while Chloe and I were bonding over sleeping in and eating pancakes for breakfast 😘 #raisingvoyagers
6 12227 January, 2020
Hi, I'm Jake. I'm 2 months old and just got my first US passport! FOLLOW my first international adventure to Italia soon. [CountUP to present from: 10 yrs | 180 days ago]
😍 This is one of the lily ponds at Claude Monet's home in Giverny, France 🇫🇷 He lived in his home at Giverny for forty-three years,from 1883 to 1926. During this very long time, he layed out the house to his own tastes, adapting it to the needs of his family and professional life.
Our summer home- a modest 1 BR 0 BA with expansive, ever changing living space. 🏞
7 8627 January, 2020
To all of my local friends. I know we often avoid “tourist-y” activities and hot spots, especially in the summer. But don’t pass up opportunities to explore and enjoy this amazing place we call home. Suck it up, battle the crowds, and take advantage of all that Montana has to offer! If you endure the harsh winters here, you have earned those long awaited summers and all the beauty that comes with it! Get into the Park! Go fly fishing on the Flathead! Ride the Alpine slide on Big Mountain! And do all the tourist-y things that people from all over the world dream about! A couple of years ago, we actually rented one of these boats. And it was amazing to see the park from a new angle. I have been on the shores of Lake McDonald literally hundreds of times, but it looks different from the middle of the Lake! And I want to see every part of Glacier from every vantage point possible.
🥾 Week 4 of 52 🥾
You guys, this weeks hike was INCREDIBLE!
We took a little day trip to Virginia Beach to visit First Landing State Park.
We settled on the Bald Cypress Trail, almost a 2 mile hike.
This gem DID NOT disappoint!
The park is considered a swamp and it’s filled with breathtaking Cypress Trees and Spanish Moss...so freakin cool!
We learned so many interesting things from signs on the trail and the visitor center after our hike!
We had company for the first time. Our good friend @tyrabjorling, who we met through the Breakaway Movement!
Our community is amazing and it’s a blessing to have connected with someone who we would otherwise never have met!
We have a few tips to offer this week and a lot of facts.
Here we go ⬇️
1️⃣ The cost to enter the park is $7 and that money goes towards maintaining of the Virginia State Parks. So worth it!
2️⃣ The trails can be rather confusing and they fork off at numerous points. KNOW THE COLOR TRAIL YOU ARE HIKING. Ours was red 🔴
3️⃣ The park is considered a swamp but USED to be ancient coastal dunes known as Swales — low areas between sand dunes. This process is called “succession.”
4️⃣ We noticed the water had a weird tint to it, almost rainbow in color. We were hoping it wasn’t from oil but later learned it’s from tannic acid from decaying tree bark! How cool?!
5️⃣ Pirates and sailors used to use these waters for drinking since tannic acid acts as a preservative. Not sure about that 🥴
6️⃣ The Cypress trees that fill the park are surrounded by “knobs” that are part of the root system and provide oxygen to the trees. They can live for 600 years!
7️⃣ The park is covered in Spanish Moss. Scientists have a keen interest in it because it cannot grow in polluted environments because it draws nutrients from the air.
8️⃣ First Landing Park is the northernmost habitat that Spanish Moss can live!
This hike was such an amazing experience! We can’t wait to go back and do some other trails!
The park also offers cabins for visitors to stay in which would something to look into for the future.
On to week 5!
Much love & happy adventures
J & G
4 7627 January, 2020
My heart 💕 This little man has taught me so much about love, life & laughter! He keeps me present in the moment & has such an incredible zest for life 🙏❤️ Everything is exciting to him & it’s so wonderful to be showing him so many things for the first time 😍 He makes me slow down & has helped me learn to take each day as it comes & be very present in the moment. I tend to think into the future a lot & get carried away with planning my goals for the future, so I’m so grateful to this little dude for teaching me to be present in the moment. He has also taught me so much about love - that deep, unconditional love you need to get up night after night, very sleep deprived, & tend to a tiny baby with a smile 😊😘 It’s shown me that I’m capable of much more than I thought I was, & that willpower can overcome mountains. It’s such a privilege to be your Mama & share our world adventures with you 💕 We love you little dude & cant wait to show you the rest of the world!! 🌍
1 927 January, 2020
Exploring secret beaches in Phu Quoc, Vietnam 🌴 🌊 We found this beautiful beach after riding the Phu Quoc cable car (the longest cable car ride in the world!) & exploring the incredible Hon Thom nature reserve 🐠 The water here is the clearest I’ve ever seen & the most vivid shade of turquoise 🙏💙 What an incredible experience! Have you ever found a secret beach? 😊
It’s been one week in the van... and we’re all still alive! 🙌🏼😂
It seems like we experienced a LOT in one week. We slept next to dinosaurs. 🦖 The van wouldn’t start one morning. We came to San Diego in search of sunshine and instead found gloom and rain. 🌧The latter brought issues for our solar-based system. We met new traveling friends. Ate a LOT of chorizo tacos. 🌮 The boys’ scooters have kept them smiling at our new campsite. There are cute little bunnies all over here too, but also hundreds of snails. 🤢 I took two showers yesterday and it was glorious. 🚿 We’ve tried a variety of sleeping arrangements. All of the boys got haircuts yesterday and look SO handsome. We’re also meeting up with other van lifers tomorrow thanks to @thevanlifeapp! 🚐
It’s obviously very different going from Airbnbs to full-time van life, but we’re enjoying the ride! Besides the meet-up, we’re in full prep mode for our travels early next week. Big plans ahead! 🏝
How are your weekend plans shaping up?
79 96024 January, 2020
The blue city in Morocco is as stunning as they say, BUT there's loads you need to know about the reality of it so we have made a VERY honest and quite funny video on it. If you don't already, it's worth following our You Tube so you don't miss it! (link in the bio)
Do any of you watch much You Tube? or is it all about the Insta?
We've fallen for both now, for very different reasons!
19 54426 January, 2020
⚓️ So we spent an entire week on a Royal Caribbean cruise last week! It was many things, but relaxing is how I will best remember it. We went without the kids, and I missed them terribly. I don’t think we’ll do that again for a while 😂.
It always seems like such a great idea, leaving the kids for some adult time. A chance to spend quality time with your spouse is hard to pass up, and don’t get me wrong, we loved getting the time to focus on us. But getting the long anticipated break from the chaos was definitely a bit overrated.
We really just love this phase of life with our kids more than we ever realized, and yes the day to day has its challenges, but everywhere we went we wished the kids were there to experience it with us. So like I said, we probably won’t be leaving them anywhere anytime soon! Nope!🙅♀️
Where’s the last place you visited without your kids? Was it everything you hoped it would be??
If you need us, we'll be chilling on the most gorgeous islands in America, the Florida Keys!!!😎 We spent the day beach hopping across the aqua blue waters, spotting every color of iguana, and swimming away from jelly fish! Oh and did I mention the sunshine🌞 it never gets old😊
I'm so grateful for this journey and the incredible places it has taken us. I'm amazed how much there is to see and how with each day's drive there is a new landscape to explore.