It was a dark and stormy night…

Quite an eventful weekend in the books. We knew to expect some drama, but just knowing it’s coming doesn’t prepare a family completely.

Friday was our leaving town day. Since I will be working remotely, and will be coming into the office occassionally, we’re trying to find boondocking spots to stay within an hour or so of the office.

Eric wanted to be sweet and tear down and set up camp while I was at work. We looked for spots on the motor vehicle use map (MVUM) downloaded from the national forest/state forest/blah blah app called Avenza. The spot I’d found looked great. It was about an hour from my office and in Idaho Springs, CO. The dots are the areas designated as dispersed camping spots, road says it’s for all vehicles.

As Eric headed up the mountain, I got the following text “Umm…”

Rough road, many hairpin turns, probably not the best way to start out our boondocking adventures. And then as we decided we’ll look elsewhere and turn around…I got another text from Eric, “emergency…call”

We had our first accident. Trying to turn around a 60’+ rig setup on a narrow road meant a nice deep jacknife to avoid falling off the cliff.

Chief and Liberty did not obey the current social distancing rules. Chief got scuffed, Liberty got dented and the trailer break emergency break-away thing engaged our trailer brakes. Thankfully, Eric is great at backing and backed down the road about a mile to a spot he could get turn around. Unfortunately, he also broke his hand by jumping out of Chief when they were partially dangling off the edge.

We spent the night at a KOA in Central City where we had full hookups and wifi to research a different boondoscking/free spot. After waking up early the next morning and scouting around, we decided we can’t use the MVUM maps. The spots we thought were spots didn’t exist for RVs. We decided we’ll need to just go on to a lake in Wyoming that a blogger had posted about being free and beautiful. Fingers crossed it turns out to actually be there.

But first, it was Jill’s birthday so we woke her up with our angelic-birthday-song-singing voices, ate (a very smiley) chocolate cake for breakfast, and headed to Chick-fil-a, one of her favorite places to eat. Happy birthday, Sweetheart!!

On the way, we encountered a severe thunderstorm, listened to Ethan’s weird and goofy Ethan-style happy birthday wishes over the phone for Jillian, which made her laugh hysterically of course, and was advised to pull over by a trucker.

After literally putting out a fire in the break-away box (I’d never actually seen a fire extinguisher working in real-life before this, so that was kinda cool), and duct taping an unlocked and flappy open window, we headed to the store to get ice cream and breakfast items to make for Jill’s birthday dinner.

After the store, we were only 20 minutes from our destination. However, Google maps guided us to a private entrance only and it ate up all but a sliver of daylight for us to find the location. We found our oasis. We were so happy to FINALLY have found a place to park for a bit!

The next morning we woke up to a beautiful view and a fresh start. A friend of mine once told me that she find heart-shaped rocks when she’s immersing herself in the moment. She would often say, “we are human BEINGS, not human DOINGS.” Ever since then, I’ve found heart shaped items (many times, rocks) and love taking a picture of them to remember those moments I was just simply “being” in the moment.

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