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Yellow Brick Road to the Golden Road.

First two weeks on the road have been spent with mostly family. We stopped in Wichita, Kansas for a week where we spent time catching up with Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, Cousins and plus all the Great-relatives. 

The girls and I explored the exploration place, rode a ferris wheel at Riverfest and spent a hot afternoon at a splash pad. 

Osage Splash pad with cousin Lilly

Most nights in Wichita were spent with my brother and his gang. Shameless plug, please click on the link if you would like to support and help my brothers family purchase a new van for their two handicapped children, Hannah and Maddy.

GoFundME for Hannah and Maddy.

My niece Titus with my dad.


I met up with my Uncle Hammer and Aunt T for some yummy fried chicken at Strouds. I haven’t been to that restaurant since my senior prom.  My Aunt T brought me this present!

 

Most would look at this and find it ugly but to me this is a glimpse into my childhood. Many days were spent at our family lake cabin, and this Mexican folk art was hanging in the common area. I remember looking at the colors and the yarn, remembering how beautiful it was. It now holds a special place in my heart because the mother in this artwork is baby wearing and has braids. If you have ever met me than you will know I am always wearing a baby and most days I am sporting braids. My easy mom hair do.  

By Saturday we were ready to hit the road again. 

We have a new rule this summer. We are not traveling more than 4 hours per day and no setting up in the dark. We learned the hard way last time we traveled for the summer. With the new baby this seems more realistic for our family. We travel 2 hours, take a break, gas up and than travel 2 more hours. 

With only travel 4 hours a day, we landed ourselves in Oakley, Kansas at High Plains RV parkThe wind was horrible in Western Kansas and we welcomed the break. The RV park was what I would expect to see in Western Kansas and served its purpose as a place to stop on our way to Denver. A little hidden gem is the restaurant pub located in the RV park called Cap’n Jacks. The drinks were great and the food was even better. It was a nice little surprise. 

My sweet family at Cap’n Jacks in Oakley, Kansas.

On Sunday, we made our way to Golden, Colorado. A nice little town right on the foot hills of the rocky mountains. More famously known for the Coors brewery in town. We have been staying at Dakota Ridge RV Resort and although I was skeptical about this park, it has been really nice. Side note: during my planing process of where we are going to stay in the RV, I first head to the GoodSam website and than from there I read the reviews of the Rv park on rvparkreviews.com. The reviews for Dakota Ridge were either 5 stars or 2 stars. It was either the worst park someone had stayed in or the best. We tend to stay in parks closer to bigger cities, so we are used to small RV spaces and less shade.

Dakota Ridge RV park has its own little “mountain”

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View from the top of the little mountain.

We also chose this park due to its proximity to Arvada (small suburb west of Denver), where my cousin just recently purchased a house. It sounds like the Denver market is super competitive just like Austin. 

I was also able to catch up with an old high school friend. Who just happened to name her dog…..Zelda! Go check out her handmade wares including yoga bags, earrings and small purses at KatMandu Designs. It so cool to think that pretty much every state we go to, we can find a friend to hangout with.

Baby Zelda meets the puppy Zelda.

Catching up with Mandy from high school.

Yesterday was spent at Heritage Park, where instead of paying a park entrance fee and then riding all the rides you want, their concept was to pay for only the rides you wanted to ride. Which was perfect since baby and I could only ride the train and the carousel.

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Train ride at Heritage Park.

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Carousel ride at Heritage park


We have spent most of our last day in Golden catching up on life and getting ready to move the RV tomorrow. Two more sleeps until we are in Jackson, Wyoming with our friends!

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic  to stationary life, please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. 

Pssstttt…..did you also know we are on Instagram as roadmaptonomad. Come follow us and I bet we will follow you back! 

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Our first major hiccup…in the first 3 hours.

On our way to Kansas on Saturday, we had our first hiccup. Our kitchen slide is over our rear RV wheels. Some where between Austin and Fort Worth, some very important cables fell onto our wheels. The friction from the traveling wheels severed three different cables. When Derek pulls over to get gas, he often takes a quick walk around the RV. Good thing he did, because one of the cables that was severed was the propane line. Propane was leaking…..so Derek quickly turned off our propane line. A truck driver helped us out by giving this super industrial zip ties to tie up the cables.

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We made our way further down the highway and found a CampingWorld with a service area. We showed up at 12:55pm and guess what time the service area closes?

Yep, 1pm.

The service manager said they couldn’t get us in until Monday to look at it. They offered us a place to stay in the back if we wanted. On the concrete jungle. Nope.

“I will tip someone $20 to come look at our RV real quick and just let us know what you think we need to do, since you are the expert”

Done. Service tech walked out to the RV and gave us his assessment of the situation. To get it fixed we needed a new propane line, 110v flex electrical cable for the slide and all that would take 12 hours of labor It would cost us roughly $1000 for the repair. Plus, our kitchen would be useless until it was fixed. No stove, no burners and no fridge. Plus the kitchen slide could not be put out. Ugghhhhh.

We made the decision to move on down the road to Wichita, where we had more support and places to stay if the RV was unlivable. I called an RV repair place in Wichita and the earliest they could see us was June 15. Not going to work.

So parked the RV in Wichita, packed up a few things and stayed with my dad last night, since we were not sure how much damage was caused by the propane line touching the tire. Derek got up super early to head to the RV to work on the slide out and the important cables.

As he was working on these important cables our neighbor at the RV park, stopped to check to see what Derek was doing. Derek explained to him about having to at least fix and replace the propane line and the 110v electrical line. Not really knowing what else was needed at that point. The guy paused and said “well this is your lucky day.” Turns out he works for a local HVAC company! Pointed to his truck and said he had parts too!

Derek and him knocked out the project in 5 hours! And it only cost $5, because he had all the parts we freakin needed. The kitchen slide works, our refrigerator works, lights work and microwave works! The propane line still needs one more part but we hope to get that in later this week, which will cost an additional $40.

We repaid our neighbors by grilling them a nice filet and making them dinner that we all enjoyed together. People are amazing and I love our RV community, always willing to help.

We are parked in Wichita for the rest of the week. Next stop: Golden, Colorado.

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic to stationary life back to nomadic,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. 

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We are nomads AGAIN!

YES! FINALLY!

We are back to being nomads AGAIN!

So instead of organizing our move into the RV, I am staying up really late to tell all of you what has been going on.

First, Derek and I got married…did I already tell you that? 06/26/14…..we will be celebrating our one year anniversary soon. Super informal wedding, had to stand up in front of a judge for 2 mins to recite our vowels. That was way to long, how do brides stand up there for 30 minutes? After our Justice of the Peace nuptials, we headed to our favorite food truck park to celebrate with friends.

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Photo Credit: Amy Dark

 

 

Second, Derek had a few job changes which landed him the perfect job to be able to travel again. He has to be in the office for 9 months out of the year, in Austin(oh darn) and 3 months can be used to work remotely. So far the idea is to leave every summer…right when it gets to be tooo flippin hot here in Austin. We will have the best of both worlds.

Next, we welcomed our second baby girl to our family. Zelda came earthside in February, born at home and in the water. Zoe is a great big sister and wants to hold baby sister all day. (warning: if you do not like pictures of raw birth, you should probably skip ahead)

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Photo Credit: An Infinite Moment Photography

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Photo Credit: An Infinite Moment Photography

 

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sleeping sisters

 

Next, we moved out of our rental house. This was much more difficult emotionally than I had expected. Maybe it is the postpartum hormones, but I have cried a few times thinking about leaving this house. This is where Zelda was born….this house will be forever be in my memories.

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Last, we upgraded the RV to fit our lifestyle better. Derek really needed a better place to work, and with the new RV he will get his own room and door to hide behind during office hours. I am sure we will do some modifications soon. And if I do, I will post pictures of the 2015 Primetime Avenger 32 BIT.

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Can not wait to tell you where we are going this summer. Launch off date: May 30! One more week!

 

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic to stationary life back to nomadic,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. 

37 weeks

Its been quite a year…2014 updates and plans for 2015.

Zoe woke up the other day asking IF we still had our RV. She was concerned that we had lost it. She must have had a crazy dream about traveling. She asked when are we going to get back in the RV again, mommy??????

Good Question kid!

It has been almost exactly a year since my last blog post. 2014 for our family has been a year of settling down. We have been in the same house for over a year now, Derek and I got married, Derek changed jobs a few times and I started a new job.

But our biggest news is we are adding another baby nomad to our family soon. As I am writing this, I am 38 weeks pregnant and ready for this new baby to get here.

Just because we are having another baby doesn’t mean we want to stop traveling.

So after the year of settling, now we are feeling the need to travel again. We have decided to head out in June and get back in the RV.

We are still coming up with our travel plans but think we are heading north again to Canada.

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Our favorite hiking spot near our house, The Barton Creek Greenbelt.

37 weeks pregnant

37 weeks pregnant

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Our wedding day

Zoes 3rd birthday

Zoe’s 3rd Birthday

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My birthday murder mystery dinner party.

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic to stationary life back to nomadic,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading? *grin*

Alabama

 

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic  to stationary life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading? *grin*

 

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Rental Sweet Rental

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It is snowing in Austin. And when I say snowing, I mean there is light snow and some ice/sleet. The whole city has shut down for Ice Apocalypse 2014. So what happens when you are stuck in  a space with a 2-year-old, in my world I need to create. Better late than never. Last thing I wrote was we were thinking of moving into a tiny home or other options. Well things took a  sudden left turn in our life and we decided that it was time to get back into a rental house for now. (it sounds so boring) Our road dreams are being put on hold. We decided on a Tuesday we were going to look at houses, Wednesday we put down a deposit, Thursday our application was approved, Friday we got the keys, Saturday we moved into the new house and Sunday we had our storage unit emptied. We had the RV unpacked, cleaned and stored the following weekend.  It was literally that quick. When we make decisions, we make them fast. We moved into the house mid November just before Thanksgiving and we have been going non-stop with holidays, vacations,  our birthdays and hosting many parties at our new-found space.Including a Technomadia Meetup for full timers and dreamers. It was a weird experience to sit around and listen to everyone’s dream about RVing, when mine had been put on hold. It made me wish we were back in the RV.

We were in the RV just shy of one year. We sold many things and stored some possessions and things we thought we would sell at a later date. Moving back into a house we had many basic things but the one thing we lacked was furniture. In the past we would have went straight to IKEA and picked everything out. Instead this time I went thrift store shopping and picked up a few items to re-purpose and re-finish. So far I have picked up a dresser, end tables(3), bookshelf, a couch, Zoes bed and various decorative things all from Craigslist or Thrift stores. All these items cost us a total of $161. With paint and other supplies our grand total is $250.

dresser redo

side tables

I think the best thing about getting back into a moderate sized house(1000 square feet) was the ample space to create some play spaces for Zoe. Creating spaces for Zoe prove to be just as much fun for me as it is for her. She now has an art space, the kid paints at least 4-6 times a day.

art space

But the greatest space is the outdoors. We have managed to find a spot within walking distance to our favorite hike and bike trail. We are in heaven here.

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Our plans are always changing and nothing ever stays the same with us. Our dream is to be on the road…. we are just on a bit of a break. Our new direction is to be back out on the road in 2 years, hopefully this time Derek will not have to work as much so we can enjoy road life with a slower pace.

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic  to stationary life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading? *grin*

Angelfire, New Mexico

2013 New Mexico Ski Trip

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic to stationary life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading? *grin*

Texas Craft Brew Festival 2013

Meeting Back Up with our Friends in Austin(September – October 2013)

Better late than never!

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic  to stationary life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading? *grin*

We are giving up…maybe a tiny bit.

Written on Sept 18 way to late that evening.

We are giving up…..well not entirely true. We are stopping for now…traveling by RV that is.

It is hard to write this post and I have put it off way too long. As in the words of Tupac “Things will always be changing.” Yes Tupac things be changing for the Smeetings.

Derek has accepted a new job with a start up tech company called Vobi. Super cool things are happening and it was a chance of a lifetime for him to be a part of brand new technology.

Downside is that it is not a remote job. Upside the company is based in Austin, Texas. The place where we have called home for so many years.

It is weird to think that the day that I am writing this is also the day we bought the RV one year ago today. So much has changed in a year for us and it took us so long to get into the trailer and on the road.

I am really lost as to what to do with the blog, I don’t want to give up on it just yet. I know that in our hearts we are adventure seeking whores so it will be no time again until we come up with our next big idea. But as many readers are looking at us for inspiration to live life on the road….what if we are not doing that anymore…will people still read the blog? I know that many friends and family will  be interested in what we are doing but others I am afraid this blog may be lost.

This above post was written and never posted, I had been so lost as what to do but as of yesterday I think we know our next direction.

We had an incident yesterday that completely pissed me off.

The back story. I made our winter reservations at Pecan Grove RV park in Austin back in May. They were made for Sept 13-December 31, the only thing we had to do is leave for a two week period during the music festival, Austin City Limits. No big deal.  If you recall, it was hard to get in here the first time. but we did it.  All reservations for this park are done on paper with a PENCIL, usually only 3 months in advance or so they say. No computers, no phone numbers, no credit cards, no confirmation  number…..nothing just a piece of paper and a pencil. While we were on the road Derek had to come back to Austin for a few days and physically walked into Pecan Grove to verify that we had reservations for September- December.  The man behind the counter said YES and Derek saw that paper calender with our name on it.

I walked in yesterday to pay rent for the week and to make sure we were set to leave on October 3 and for our return on October 15 after Austin City Limits Music Festival. The man fumbled with the paper calender for a bit and looked up and said sorry I don’t have your reservation.

“What do you mean you don’t have our reservation???????”

It was gone. It was erased. It was no longer there and that paper calender had every single day scratched on with some other persons name in PENCIL.  I looked up at him with a metaphoric tear in my eye and said “What are we suppose to do now?” I knew our days at Pecan Grove were coming to an end. They had erased us for a reason. You can tell me all day it wasn’t on purpose but I know it was. I had heard grumblings from other monthly neighbors that they would never let us stay here long term because we had a child.  I had others tell me that we would get a spot here….when our daughter is 18 years old. I always felt like were being judged for having a kid. We were told from the beginning that it was not a “child friendly” park. Like our daughter was some type of aggressive dog breed that no one wanted to be around.  “NO PITS AND NO KIDS” is what the sign should read on the door.

Derek tried to go back into the office and find out what had happened. But it was to late.  We knew we were leaving no matter what they said, It was time for us to move on. I know that everyone loves this  park. The location is wonderful the residents are amazing but something is going on in that office. The managers are leaving at the end of the year which has me thinking that maybe this park is in its last few months/year. Every single square inch of property outside of the park is being developed and there have been rumors for years that this place will be bought and turned into condos, much like the fate of the other RV park that was down the street.

Derek walked back into the RV and announced get your shoes on we are going to go check out a new RV park, Lonestar RV Park.  Luckily for us they were able to accommodate us in the next couple of weeks while we figure out a more permanent situation. Did I mention they have a pool, and not 1 but 2 playground areas oh and some of our friends are there now with their 3 daughters. And they have cabins for rent, so if we have family coming in for the holidays,  they could stay in the cabins and not be right on top of us. (Hint, Hint Grandparents) The downside is we are not going to be in that fabulous location and Derek’s commute to work will be about 5 miles longer.  However, at Pecan Grove we were paying for location and nothing else. So now we will have more amenities at half the price.

This will  help us save up for our next dream.

Land for a tiny house community. Land for a mountain bike trail. Land to build an urban camping experience. Land for a shipping container community. Look…we all can dream, right?

So the direction of the blog is still up in the air but our direction has shifted to a more sustainable community living project. Maybe there are more people out there that want to join a tiny community revolution. I feel like RV nomads and tiny house dwellers might be cut  from the same cloth.

Road Map to Nomad and Nomad to Tiny House Dweller is to long of a website name, right? Until next blog I hope that you stick around to follow our next dream.

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If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading?

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Road Map To Nomad Travel Vlog: Pacific Northwest

Remember this post, from the other day, of me harping away about Derek’s new purchase. Well this was our first collaboration together on video editing.  YouTube famous, here we come.  (er, Vimeo)  *grin*

(If the video doesn’t show up, view it on Vimeo)

If you liked this post or want to hear more about our nomadic life,  please subscribe to the blog or send us an email at roadmaptonomad@gmail.com.  If you would prefer to stalk from a distance, head over to our Facebook page and “Like” it. If you don’t like it, than why are you still reading?