Full Circle

Yes, I know!  Yes, I’ve been told several times – by several people – that I needed to do another blog post.  The problem was, my motivation was gone.  As the New Year came around, I was not where I expected I’d be!


Then I read about the new Blog Carnival topic for Families on the Road – “New Year Adventures: Where are we and where do we want to go.”    That got me going!  http://familiesontheroad.com/carnival.html#9



As the sale of our house took longer and longer, the strain of having to pay the mortgage, plus the living expenses in Arkansas all on a much smaller salary took its toll on our bank account.  This didn’t dampen my spirits, though.  We were in a beautiful state, still living the life that we wanted to.  Mark however,  was taking it pretty hard.  Our house finally sold, but the damage had been done to our credit cards.  Being the wonderful provider that he is, Mark started to search for a solution.  That solution ended up heading back to where the money was:  D.C.  Ugh!  The thought of going back to what we were trying so hard to get away from just made my heart sink every time I thought about it.  I had no desire to even mention it on the blog.

front of house


I’ll admit it – I was scared.  I was scared that the draw of the money and the things we had given up would be too much and we would end up right back where we started.  We had many late night discussions where my very, very patient husband assured me that wouldn’t happen – that this was just a temporary solution to get us back where God directs us to be:  debt-free.    I couldn’t argue with that.  What good is the freedom of the road when you drag the chains of debt along with you?  So, he accepted a great job offer right in downtown DC.  We packed up, ( it took all of 30 minutes) and drove the 1000 miles back east.  His new office  ended up being about 5 blocks from his old office and we ended up at a campground less than 20 miles from our old house!  Yikes!


IMAG0322We found out how spoiled we were from the campground in Little Rock.  Here, there are no expansive sites with huge, mature trees that rain down leaves, and no beautiful river that reflects the moon each night.  BUT, we still have woods, and the kids still have a ton of fun exploring them.  The owner and workers have been great, and we even have another homeschooler here to play with.  The best part – being close to family again and the reunions with our great friends here.  The more I saw familiar faces, the more my spirits were lifted.  Ok, I can do this!IMAG0308


Hindsight is always funny – and it shows the path you have taken in a new light.  We had dreamed of selling it all and moving into an RV to travel around the country.  For over a year we thought about it and tried to find a way to make it happen.  If the job in Arkansas hadn’t forced us to move quickly – and into an RV, we would still be stuck with a huge mortgage on a small lot.  We would still be reading about other full timing families and wishing it was us.  As it is, we are in a great position to pick up and go when the timing is perfect.   So even though we have come full circle, we ended up much closer to our ultimate dream than before.


We still search for that perfect teleworking job that will allow us to get on the road full time.  We even have our first destination – Newfoundland.  That is where Mark’s family comes from on his father’s side.  In fact, his grandmother was born in a lighthouse on an island!  How cool is that!  We dream about it, talk about it, and plan our route up the east coast.  Until that remote job shows up, we will chisel away at the bills and keep our eyes on the prize.  We can still enjoy the freedom and simplicity we have right now!


IMAG0314We had a wonderful Christmas with my parents and Noah coming up to stay at one of the cute cabins here.  It was a very “Hobbity” Christmas, many of the presents having to do with one Tolkien thing or another.  April got the “One Ring” and I was rewarded with the best look on her face – ever!april surprised

The cold hasn’t been as much of a hurdle as we thought it would be.  Two little ceramic heaters are more than enough even at 20 degrees.   The water hose did freeze one night, making for an interesting morning, but we bought a heated cable with insulation and wrapped the whole length of the hose.  It hasn’t frozen since.  One perk:  we can keep our water bottles outside and have ice cold water without having to buy ice at the camp store.   It doesn’t sound like much, but those ice trips get old after about 150 of them 🙂


We have enjoyed seeing the monuments and the museums again, and knowing our way around town.  My heart is happy and hopeful again, and I look forward to the future (and more regular posts)!



6 Comments to Full Circle

  1. Bill Niemi says:

    All I can say is welcome home! I am sure that you guys are very happy to be near family and friends. God guides us in many ways…there was a purpose that you were in Little Rock for a few months and now there is a purpose that you are back in the DC area. It sounds like you guys had blessed and happy Christmas. I hope 2013 is a wonderful year for the Palmer family.

    • Mark says:

      Hey Bill! Thanks so much for your post! We are so happy and blessed to be home, and more importantly, I am so thankful for God’s provision! I am praying for you and Susan, and I am so glad to hear things are well. We are praying for a blessed New Year for you and your family!


  2. Phil Akin says:

    Steph, as the song says, you don’t always get what you want, you get what you need. There’s a bigger plan out there and I know you’re all doing all the right things to get there when the time is right. Keep the faith!

    • Palmers says:

      Thanks, Phil! I am really happy with the way things are going, and I know that perfect opportunity will come in one form or another. Great to hear from you!

  3. Jeff D says:

    Hi Palmer Family, I found your blog at, well, I forget how I found it but I am so glad you are sharing your journey! We are a family of 6 (kid 12 and under) and are in the planning/research stages and hope to be on the road the end of the summer. Hopefully we can keep in touch!

    • Palmers says:

      Hello, Jeff! I am excited for your family and the journey that lies ahead for you guys! Thanks for visiting the blog, I have a lot of fun writing it all down. We’d love to help in any way we can, so shoot us any questions. Can’t wait to hear about your adventures!

      The Palmers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *