27
Dec

Roots and wings


Our days have been full lately. Full of things like making pizza, jumping on a backyard trampoline, riding scooters, feeding chickens, and going for runs.

Real life things. Non-travel-around-the-world things.

This is how we stay sane on a trip like this. After things like snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, exploring the stunning Southern Alps, and immersing ourselves in the Melbourne skyline, we rest. We hole up as a family and do the quotidian stuff of life.

It’s amazing how much you miss that kind of stuff when you live out of a backpack, home address: nowhere.

For the next few weeks, we’re here in Sydney, Australia, thanks to the gracious hospitality of a dear friend who’s letting us housesit their perfectly ordinary suburb home while they’re out traveling themselves. We’ll go do a few things, of course, but for the most part, our days involve the everyday.

I’m doing my best to get a lot of work done. Our next few countries don’t promise consistent Internet, so I’m hoping to check a lot of things off my list. Plus, we’re furiously working on launching an e-course, and hope to have it live before we leave Oz. Fingers crossed.

Kyle’s getting a bit of work in, as well as cooking (he loves being in the kitchen), helping with upcoming travel plans, and even doing a bit of handyman work. Everywhere we go, he can’t help but fix a loose cabinet door, relieve a door’s squeak, get the dishwasher’s spinny thingy to work better. It’s in his DNA to make better that which is not.

The kids are taking a week off from school, and then they’re back at it—we want to take advantage of our low-mobility status to get in some studying. Reed’s also practicing the art of being seven. (His birthday’s tomorrow.)

pizza

In the meantime, we’re enjoying real, home cooked meals around a table where we ask, “What was your favorite part of the day?” at dinnertime, just like at home. The kids watch a movie or two. And lots—lots of time in the backyard.

Yesterday, Tate confessed that she was feeling a bit homesick (this usually happens after FaceTimeing with her cousin or Voxing with friends, and she did both in quick succession). She said, “I just feel loosey-goosey because I don’t know where home is anymore.”

I know that feeling well. (I’d say I’ve had that feeling for years at a time over the past 15 years; it’s become quite a companion in my life.) We hugged and talked about what it means to be home, and that really, she knows she’s okay, and that every now and then we just have down, homesick-ish moments. I do, too.

And I promised her that we’ll know soon about our next plans post-trip. We could live literally anywhere, which sounds invigorating, but really, it’s not. It’s like when you have too many toothpaste choices at the store, so you just stand there, flummoxed. When you have three choices, you pick one and move on.

We’re narrowing things down, and we plan to have a concrete decision soon. Once we decide as a family, we’ll have a better feeling of settledness, we think. Because although there are families that can live the nomadic life indefinitely, we’re not one of them. We need a healthy balance of roots and wings. In fact, we’re pretty sure we can’t have one without the other.

kids on trampoline

In the meantime, things are a bit quieter here while I finish work on the e-course. I’ll be writing soon about Queensland, New Zealand, and the rest of this lovely place called Oz. We love it here.



Tsh Oxenreider

Tsh is the founder of The Art of Simple, a community blog about the art and science of living simpler. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.