Monday, July 19, 2010

"Is this for real?"

It's funny because the title to this post is something Riki and I keep sort of saying or just exchanging knowing glances about. They are little things but they all add up to something big in terms of the culture here. We went to the farmer's market the other day which was definitely a "wow" experience. I was confused at first because it seemed like everybody was selling small quantities of the same produce. I was wondering where the tomatoes were...and the variety of fruit. It suddenly dawned on me. All of this stuff is local, lol. No wonder they are selling the same things. That is what grows here this time of year. Duh! This may sound silly but I'm seriously used to so called "farmer's markets" where there are a couple of huge produce vendors with produce shipped all over the world much like a supermarket.

So then I'm looking at the signs...all of them small farms, biodynamic organic...I'm thinking this is like heaven. Then there were several grass fed beef vendors, raw honey, goat cheese, farm fresh eggs, breads. We could literally buy almost all of our groceries here every week if we had a proper list ahead of time. I apologize if all of this sounds strange to many of you but I'm just not used to farmer's markets from Florida with organic or local goods for the most part.

The next day we went to a free music and arts festival in the park. Just pure bliss. We were entertained by an authentic African dance/drumming troupe from Guinea. They were sheer delight to watch and I felt the positive energy all around that place. Then we watched some interpretive dance, a gypsy jazz/bluegrass/old timey band, and listened to a poetry slam. I am so grateful for the kids to be able to have these kind of experiences I never had growing up...and all for free! It is hard to be at such an event without being inspired and feeling your creative juices flow. I hope that rubs off on the kids as well so that they will always trust their inner creativity.

So then we've been getting emails from our new landlady. She already brought a bunch of furniture to the house we could use. She is a schoolteacher and emailed to tell us that she made special packages for Ellery and Willow and left them in the house with their names on them. She and her husband collect rocks for a living. We told her how much Ellery loves rocks and she told us they would take him on a dig with them sometime. Again, Riki looks at me and is like "Is this for real?" She says she knows how expensive electric deposits are so she keeps it in her name so we don't have to pay it. It is just so crazy laid back here. Then one of our rv neighbors has offered up any of his furniture in Taos storage that we can borrow.

Here are some things I am looking forward to about moving into the house. Bulk groceries! I have been eternally frustrated with the cost of buying smaller, convenience size foods. Plus, I'm super excited about trying some pickling and preserving, not to mention making some cultured dairy products on my own as well as kombucha. I am so behind on learning to do these things and the time is now.

Having a large enough area to separate the kids! The more we sit still in the rv it is rough to keep the fighting to a minimum. Willow has now figured out that Ellery has a "bunk" and she doesn't so there have been problems with that. Granted, the kids won't have their own rooms in this house but the upstairs is large enough to separate into fairly large personal spaces. They just aren't closed off by doors or walls so to speak. Some of our biggest homeschooling challenges were trying to give Ellery a quiet space without Willow interrupting so that will be much easier in a two story cabin.

We have been grateful to be spending some time with the cage free family since we've been here. Our children are the same ages so it works out well. Having built in friends in a new place sure helps to feel settled and to point us in the direction of things we may not know about in town.

I kid you not, there is a wood carving rally at this rv park right now. Ellery has been spending his days with the old folks in the special carving pavillion, lol. He even has his own wood carving kit now. I tell you, some of the experiences he has had on this trip in terms of learning have really been priceless, things that could never be learned by being stuck in a classroom all day.

As the road trip portion of our journey comes to a close I feel incredibly blessed to have had this experience. We had considered it several years ago and I let the naysayers talk me out of it. We should have done it long ago to be quite honest. Being at the mercy of the universe can be a very freeing experience with limited savings, goals, and well made plans that fall apart. I'm not here to tell people what to do or what is going to make them happy. I can only relate my own personal realizations if you will. I will tell you this. This trip has convinced me even more than before that happiness does not lie in the so called American dream so many are chasing. I firmly believe it is an illusion, a babylon as some would call it. It is a trick. I have been mentally practicing a lot lately to envision myself as a part of the universe, instead of separate from it. This also has helped me to expand my thinking on a much more universal level than just what goes on in my little corner of the world. There are people all over the world who live in all kinds of different ways than we do. I am unable to grasp any logical reason at this point as to why we are all supposedly entitled to mortgages, new cars, overscheduled childrens' activities, and the latest state of the art electronics. Entitlement is commonly used to refer to welfare or free handouts but I'm not talking about that context. I'm talking about how each and every child is raised to believe that those things are essential to a happy adult life. It is no wonder creative endeavors are so quickly squashed when the goal becomes a success/monetary one instead of investing in what brings one joy. We are led to believe that these things will bring us joy..but what happens after we get them? Do we continue to work a job we despise to keep those things? Is  that really the life we desire? If it is I think one should absolutely pursue it but I'm going to guess that most people who have all of those trappings are still not very happy. It is a lie I don't believe anymore...and it really is the most enlightening realization of my life so far. I suspected it to be true for a long time but now I know in my heart that it is the truth. For me. I am not going to tell anybody else how they should live their life or find happiness.

I will say this though. If this blog gives somebody the kick in the pants they need to do something radical, then so be it. I'm not important...we are just a mediocre low income family trying to find our path in the world like every other human being. Hopefully some of our experiences will inspire someone to take that risk they have been sitting on for a long time to follow their own bliss. I know I wish somebody had given me that kick in the pants many years ago!


Tammy said...

This is a wonderful, wonderful post...thank you for sharing it with us.

And you are enjoying so many "for real" blessings...good for you!!! :)

The Valentine's said...

Amy, you have 'landed' in the right place for sure, how wonderful!

Enjoy, Ali

Jen said...


Jenna Gayle said...

I have to say that the last two paragraphs of this entry just may be the best thing I've ever read on this blog :)

Little House On Wheels said...

Hey, thanks. You know, I really try not to post about anything too controversial because I think it turns a lot of people off and sounds preachy...but boy I can go out on a limb if given half the chance, haha.