Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I lost a friend, mentor and uncle

Yesterday, I woke up to the news. I was flat, it didn't click. "Your Uncle Robert passed away this morning from a heart attack..." Ok, shit, well, shit.
I didn't know what to do with it. Uncle Robert is always there for me to call when Lola won't start. He's always at the house when I come to San Antonio. He's the guy to call when you need a last minute limo for a bachelor party. He taught me how to ski. He is my youngest uncle. We look so much alike at times it's scary. I can't complain he was a good looking man. He was always smiling, always good for a laugh.

So what do you do with that news? What can you do. You do the only sane thing, walk into the kitchen, start grinding coffee, then curl up on the couch and cry, in huge racking fits. Because, well, shit what else can you do? I loved that man. I always assumed I would see him again, I used to joke about being next in line for his bus if he ever died, it's not funny any more. I'd much rather have him here. I don't cry much, Natalie had never actually seen me cry until yesterday, then it happened twice. The second time was when my sweet mom called me and neither one of us could hold it together, I almost wrecked the car. Good thing Natalie is asleep now, or she would have seen me crying again. If you see someone cry three times, then it is an expected response. Lucky for me she's asleep.

Robert loved cars. We both love cars. More specifically we love Volkswagens. Sure he had a Porsche he was redoing, the occasional Beamer in the yard, I think there was an old MG and he always asked me if that little hunk of metal under the tarp on 7th was an old Mini (editors note I think it was an early Honda) but his pride and joy was "my bus." I have Lola, he had his bus. We love our old, finicky, beautiful cars. We loved talking about them, dreaming about next steps, showing them to people, even occasionally working on them. I always new I could call Uncle Robert, with no pre-amble, without talking for months, and get straight to car talk "Mikey what's happening?" "Oh no much, so Lola won't turn left when it's raining..." and off we'd go, long distance shop talk. I can't tell you how many times that happened.I'm going to miss him.
Uncle Robert was a pivotal figure in my life. He loved his family so much, and we are all reeling with the loss. I'm going to miss him.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014


mike has come and left again since the last post.  it was so good to have him here, to have home.  we love it.  his course in wyoming with NOLS went splendidly, and he is now kayaking and rafting in Utah with the school until the beginning of september.  autumn is shaping up to be busy in the youngster world.  mike will head out mid sep to austin to pick up the rest of our stuff, we'll take a trip or two to "city of rocks" to soak in the gorgeous climbing weather then off to yosemite in october for what is guaranteed to be one of the best open elopements i've EVER had the pleasure of crashing (thx jersey and becky) ......

on the home front, i finish orientation with the hospital this week and move to nights!  as a researcher, I have fully informed myself of all the tips of owning your circadian rhythm, surviving and yes, even enjoying, the life of a night shift worker. I s'pose the trick tends to be nutrition, routine, discipline and a happy heart.  those things, i can do. the perks? higher pay, slower pace and breakfast for dinner . . . . always.  i would love to hear wisdom and victories from other night shift workers. keep the negatives, though - i need all the help i can get :)

In the in between, there has been compost building, cucumber pickling, pesto canning, bread making, car fixing, trail running, owl watching, friend making, music listening, job learning, adventure planning, curtain sewing, coffee drinking, spouse cuddling and dream mapping. life is good here in twin falls, idaho . . . . . mikeynat

"climb the mountains, and get their good tidings."
- john muir

Thursday, July 24, 2014

twin falls, idaho

the mrs. here. 

you can usually tell me by my lack of capital letters, overuse of commas, love of ellipsis (look it up, i won't tell) and pensive statements or dramatic quotes (usually involving adventure, simplicity, wanting to be home but never wanting a home . . . yada, yada, yada ......) guilty as charged.

i find myself in twin falls, idaho, with mike in the field as an instructor with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS).  he's been gone for three weeks now, with two to go.  just as with all other courses, we have no contact except for the letters i so eagerly receive mailed to me from the ration planes, donkeys or bears that visit him on the course (ok, not bears).  this has made relocation to the US and settling in idaho quite interesting.  he is guiding in the Wyoming Wilderness and i am starting my new position as an ICU Registered Nurse at St. Luke's Medical Center. Idaho has blown me away, and will continue to do so i am sure.  between the beautiful people, winding trails, rushing waters, small town charm, endless fields and rugged mountains..... i believe we have decades of adventure to be had in this grossly underrated state.

from our cross country travel of Australia to the relocation across the United States, with so many unknowns, it feels good to be here.  i have recently moved us in to a charming two bedroom, one bath home on endless acres of farmland about 20 minutes outside of town, with mike joining me this week.  the space generously provides us with kind neighbors, room for chickens, gardens, baking, creating, canning, preserving, slack lining and hammock napping - all thanks to the generosity of beautiful friends.  i will post images soon, but you can also find us on instagram as @mikeynat ........

welcome to our adventure.  never neglect your own,


Friday, May 30, 2014

Treking in the Van Down Under


For the last five months we have been traveling around Australia farming, fishing, diving, hiking, climbing, and sailing. Our travels have taken us from the south coast of Tasmania to the Northeast coast of Queensland. We've documented the trip through photos on Instagram @mikeynat though we have neglected the blog.
Climbing Mt. Arapiles
 In July we will be returning to the US, I have picked up a contract with NOLS in the Wind River Range in Wyoming. Nat is in the process of applying for nursing jobs, there is a real possibility that I will go into the field not knowing where I will be returning to until I get back out.
Catchin' Sharks

On our travels we have met some amazing people and been recipients of bottomless hospitality. We've come to appreciate the value of a good meal and a welcoming home and look forward to sharing our home and table as we return.

As always, you can contact us through our Facebook, this blog, Instagram, or email. We hope everything is well in your world. Share a laugh, share a meal, and sit on your porch.

Byron Bay Sand Art
Mike y Nat

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cold casa greetings

Hanging at Ma Young's Boarding House until the weather stops chilling out...

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

From the Mountains to the Furnace

I just rolled in from the Wind River mountain range in Wyoming where I taught a 30 day wilderness backpacking course for the National Outdoor Leadership School. We had a great course and I think the Winds is probably one of the prettiest places I have ever traveled through, with giant granite cliffs, high mountain lakes and wildflowers everywhere. 
The students were great and we ticked off 110 miles of hiking. We summited Wind River peak and Mount Victor, crossed the continental divide at Hailey pass and navigated a variety of lesser peaks, passes, and drainages. We saw a few moose, several deer, a set of bear tracks, and a heck of a lot of trout. We got rained on occasionally, but no snow. 

The mountain lakes were absolutely perfect and we swam in our fare share of them. Most of the lakes were full of trout and our course greatly improved our fly fishing success rate over the course. By the time we got to the last lake we were eating more fish for dinner than the food we brought with us!

I am home with my beautiful wife now, relaxing after a day of diving at Lake Travis. She is getting geared up to be a certified diver so we can take the Great Barrier Reef by storm in a few months. Life is speeding up since we decided to head out on a Great American Roadtrip in October. Stay tuned for a new Rosie ad coming up!


Monday, June 3, 2013


it has been quite a while since our last update. the past year has been intense, but beautiful.  we have moved into the back half of a duplex in ATX with our pup and a wonderful roommate named merrell.  our dear rosie's being primped up to sell and we're moving on.  she is a beautiful part of our family and we're excited to see where this next step takes her and whose life she'll influence

as for the youngsters?  onward.  we have been approved for working holiday visas to the great country of australia beginning in january.  the initial length of visa is one year, with room to reevaluate after that.  nat has courses lined up for scuba certification this summer, so she can join mike in all the radness, as well as applied for her AUS nursing license as an option.

until then?  until then, mike will be headed to wyoming to instruct a backpacking/flyfishing course with the National Outdoor Leadership School during June and July.  he is then hoping to take part in a canoeing seminar to be setup for possible employment with NOLS australia as a guide, once down under.  nat's continuing her work as a nurse with St David's Physical Rehab Hospital, and adoring it, while atlas mostly sleeps.

we'l be keeping news/events/goodness posted here for the viewing, enjoy!

all our love,
the youngsters