I started my travel blog with dreams of traveling around the world without a single care and spending days lounging on the beach or skiing down snowy slopes. I wanted to set up in local coffee shops to write about all the grand stories that would be my life. After months of research and finally starting the blog instead of just thinking about it 24/7, I’ve found that my goals have totally shifted. I don’t want to be a nomad. There are so many places I still want to visit and I have a bucket list that would take ten lifetimes to complete. But I no longer want to spend years at a time traveling with no place to call home.
I think home has such a different meaning to me than to most people.
I grew up 10 minutes from both sets of grandparents and even one set of great-grandparents until I was in college when they passed away. My dad ran a family business with his two brothers that their dad started. My mom and aunt helped them manage all the office work. After my brother and I were born, my grandpa built a playroom onto the office. He pretty much set up our daycare. This is where I grew up with my brother, sister, and cousins and the entire family basically raised us. Even once we started elementary school this is where we went after school was over. While in high school, I thought that I would move far away and never come back. How wrong I was.
I decided to go to Virginia Tech (Go Hokies!) for college and moved about 2 hours from home. I loved Tech, but missed every little thing about small town North Carolina and my family that was so instrumental in my life. Full disclosure, I ended up graduating from Wake Forest (Go Deacs!). Before I left for college I spent time with my grandparents at least once or twice a week and sometimes more. We are the family that still eats Sunday lunch together (even now). Birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, my family goes through it all together even the sad parts of life. They are the strongest support system that anyone could ever have. And it isn’t a bad thing to have ties to your family, community, and hometown.
As long as my family is here, I won’t be moving too far.
I also go to church with most of my Dad’s family. We go to a pretty small church with 50 people there on a good day. But to have a church family that truly loves and supports you is a blessing that I cannot describe. I had a rough time in college and my family and church family are really what got me through those years.
When I was younger I was the “I can do it” type. I never wanted any help because I wanted to be able to do things on my own. Probably drove my parents and grandparents crazy. The older I get, the more I realize that it isn’t a bad thing for people to support each other. In fact, now it’s one of the reasons I don’t want to leave home. My family and church family supports each other and will always be there no matter what. That’s something I don’t take lightly and want to return all the support they gave me. Or at least pay it forward.
Home is where the heart is as they say.
I also just love my home. I am such an introvert and while I love being with people, I also love going home after a long day and having time to myself. Well my husband is there, but he doesn’t count. I spend days at a time with him and don’t get tired of it. One of the main reasons I married him. 😉 I don’t know if you’re the same way, but after I talk to people all day I really want to go home and unwind. I love to sit in my hammock chair if it’s nice outside and read while overlooking Pilot Mountain in the distance. Or just cook supper, or write, or if I’m feeling lazy watch TV. Anything to relax and that doesn’t require too much thought.
I can’t imagine a life on the road with no home to retreat to when you get tired. Traveling can be so draining! On my five-week trip across Europe the longest we stayed in one city was three days. By the end of that trip, I was ready to put my suitcase away and stay in my own room for a little while. It’s so comforting to have that space to come back to that you love and recharge for at least a few days.
We live on a bit of a Mini Farm.
As of October of 2019 we have about 20 chickens, five pigs, 10 guineas, and just finished gardening season. We had a massive garden this year. I don’t think I would choose to do this by myself, but my husband loves farm life so I help him with what I can. It definitely teaches you many life lessons and can be very humbling. While I wouldn’t want to work out in the heat constantly I think a little bit of hard work helps to keep you honest.
Right now I have a real job that is pretty flexible with time off plus I can work on the road during my travel days to and from a destination. I am so lucky to have the freedom that I do, but like most people I still want more. Like I said earlier, I loved the idea of being a digital nomad when I started out. Now my end goal is to have location independence. This way I can work from home, but travel whenever and wherever I want to.
I love North Carolina.
I am also blessed to live in a place that has so much to explore. If I want a city vacation there is Charlotte or Raleigh near by. I can drive between four and five hours and I’ll arrive at gorgeous beaches. We live in the foothills, so the mountains are our neighbors. Being in the mountains is my favorite anyways. There are also some fantastic wineries around us in the Yadkin Valley Region and the craft beer seen really took off a few years ago. There is SO much to do right here in my backyard.
No matter what ties you to home it is special for everyone. Or not if you travel full time. Either way it doesn’t make you more or less of a traveler/explorer/adventurer. each person’s situation is unique. I love hearing about people’s stories in all circumstances so please leave a comment or share on social media using the buttons below and tell me yours!