For our first 7 days of life in Stumbo, we only had to leave our house and drive about 20 minutes to a beautiful little county park on the Wenatchee River, just outside of Wenatchee in Monitor, Washington.
I feel like I cannot give an account of the first week without first acknowledging how tired we were when it was time to start our adventure. Brad and I had been working feverishly to ready the house for renters, separating out belongings into aforementioned categories, carpet cleanings, long-dismissed minor repairs, driver license renewals, switching health insurance, final wellness exams, selling a car, and so forth – the entire week before hand. The night before we turned over keys were up until 3:30am finishing up all the last touches. The girls had also spent the week dragged this way and that to friends’ houses, birthday parties, grandma’s house, and slumber parties, to try to allow us to accomplish more without them underfoot.
So Sunday morning, all of us a little worse for wear, we gave our house keys to our wonderful renters, tearfully dropped off our beloved dog Mocha at a dear friend’s house for a “year of spa treatment” (I love you, Barb!), went to our wonderful New Song Community Church where we received public encouragement, blessings, prayers, thanks, and hugs, and then before we had time to catch our breath from the emotional roller coaster, said goodbye to our house and towed our trailer to the nearby campground.
In the week that followed we lived a hybrid life – partly transitioned into life in the RV, but also with one foot still in our home community of Wenatchee. We did lots of final errands, made sure all of our equipment was working properly, got some work done…but the main focus of the week was saying “See you later” (thanks, Miss Tina!) to a lot of people that we love very much. All of the ice cream dates, coffee dates, lunch dates, and dinner dates made me feel in awe of the relationships we have formed here in Wenatchee. We have wonderful friends, and they love us SO WELL.
In addition to hugging lots of people, we also spent a lot of time playing at the great little beach on the river, playing at the playground, easing into the beginnings of a homeschool routine, and Coral even learned how to ride her bike. We met a fun new friend on the beach one afternoon whose love of reptiles encouraged both my girls to touch a baby bull snake that she caught in the rocks. They were delighted! This is road schooling at it’s best, right?! But then later Sunny was crunching on the end of a big beach feather and I may have yelled a little bit. Hey…we are embracing nature here, but we’ve gotta draw the line somewhere!
Even though the week was very busy, there were small moments of rest for all of us, and it was a great prelude to our Big Adventure.
A few friends gathered in a parking lot outside the campground to see us off as we pulled out of our site on Sunday afternoon. There were lots of hugs, just a few tears, some prayers, toasts, and one very special friend anointed our family, truck, and trailer with oil. We decided that we should not break a bottle of champagne on the front of the trailer, but we made do…