As Oprah once said, “There is no such thing as luck. Luck happens when preparation meets opportunity.” And we truly believe this statement. We make luck happen. We also believe that things happen for a reason, even though we may not know what that reason is right away.
We get lots of comments from people when they ask us where we live. I respond “currently, we live here, but I’m not sure where we’ll be in a few months, maybe Guatemala, maybe Asia. It just depends.”
“But, when are you going back home?”, they ask.
I say, “This is home.”
“So, you have no permanent address”
“Nope, it really cuts down on junk mail”, I joke, but they don’t get it.
And why should they. This isn’t the ‘norm’ lifestyle. “Normal” is settling down, having a home base, going to work five days a week, driving to do grocery shopping, going to the mall, or working in the yard on the weekends and then doing it all over again in the same town. That is totally fine and in some respects we miss it.
Most can’t believe we are doing this as a family but think that it’s the best opportunity for our children to experience the world and get a first class education by experience. After all, we’ve made our home in some really beautiful spots that most people are only able to experience on a week vacation.
And then the conversation nearly always comes to the phrase: “Wow, you are so lucky.”
We are lucky. We feel lucky, but we know that we have a part in creating this luck. So, in traditional terms, is it really luck? Is it attitude? Is it the great forces of life? Or is it the whole package.
We are lucky. Extremely lucky to be able to have this world be our playground. But I want to tell you about some of the circumstances that provided us with such luck.
First off, besides immigrating to Chicago from Poland, I didn’t travel much when I was young. Family vacations were going blueberry picking in Indiana for the day and then spending a few hours at the Indiana dunes. Mr. King’s childhood vacations were to visit family in southern Illinois.
Lucky to be Stubborn
I was exposed to the outside world in college, when I went on a South American foreign study. My family couldn’t really afford the extra $2,500 for the semester, but I was determined to go. I spent 4 months traveling with 39 other students and 5 professors from Augustana College. We visited Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Peru, Argentina and Chile. Dr. Brown, our history professor and the organizer of the trip, said
This experience will change your life in subtle and obvious ways. Often you won’t know when it has.
Dr. Brown, Augustana College
I was lucky to have such stubbornness and determination to go on this trip and I was lucky to have wonderful caring professors that watched 40 students blossom into travailers, not travelers, of this world. Wow…we had such a good time.
Lucky to Quit
Two years after meeting each other, both Mr. King and I quit our cushy, high paying corporate jobs for the roller coaster of entrepreneurship. What were we thinking? We didn’t know we would work harder than ever before, think about work day and night, and dream about what to do next. It was hard work, but it was liberating! We learned more in 2 years than 16 years of schooling.
We had several businesses, all with successful and failed parts to them. Our water feature business was incredibly successful with profits and income, but our everyday life was stressful (a fail). At the height of the business, with record profits, we disassembled the business and started something else.
We were starting to define what we wanted success to look like for us. Was it money and the things it could buy? Was it lifestyle? Was it time? Was it experiences?
Without taking the risks of leaving a secure job, we would never have started our own businesses, learned a lot about money, customer service, marketing, and where work fits into our life.
Lucky to Lose Everything
We were lucky to have lost our entire savings, investments and real estate in 2008. It was a hard year. We know better than to have all of our eggs in one basket, so we didn’t. We had 12 baskets and all 12 of them dropped around the same time. We were broke, exhausted, and in shock. We could have sulked. And we did for a little bit.
We wondered “how in the world did this happen to us? We’re smart, resourceful, and kind.” And then we bucked up and started doing something…anything.
Losing everything was our lucky break that lead to the foundation of a full mind paradigm shift.
Lucky to Rebuild
”Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start
from now and make a brand new ending.”
”Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start
What was a devastating year turned out to be the key to our current freedom. It opened our eyes to many things, and losing it all allowed us to re-build from nothing. It cemented the humbled, strong foundation of thought and priorities that carries us today. And it re-defined our American dream.
We thought we had stepped out of the hamster wheel rat race when we quit our jobs, but we were still chasing the wrong things. We chased money. Why? Not for things…we had plenty of those and were already on the path of simplifying. We wanted money so we could lead a relaxed lifestyle and travel.
We had read somewhere to design your lifestyle first then design an income that fits that lifestyle. We were trying to do that but the lifestyle we were designing had all the wrong priorities and the income streams we created were becoming our lifestyle. Then, it finally all came together.
I spent a few intense months learning internet marketing and search engine optimization and we had a product to sell that could change lives. We started a website, worked hard at it, and it slowly grew. The growth helped us realize the lifestyle we wanted was within reach and it gave us the freedom to explore this beautiful world. And ironically, we didn’t need that much money to do so.
Nothing to do with luck.
I believe that life is a journey, often difficult and sometimes incredibly cruel, but we are well equipped for it if only we tap into our talents and gifts and allow them to blossom.
Actually, luck is not part of the equation. Our attitude and our ability to cherish a situation, rebound from the negative and emerge with a new orientation and perspective is what makes us fortunate.
I believe we all have everything we need inside of us to accomplish what we want.
So, do you feel lucky? Maybe you need to make some luck happen.
Whether you tend a garden or not, you are the gardener of your own being, the seed of your destiny.
- The Findhorn Community
Other “Lucky” Family Travelers
Anyone can travel by Mary at Bohemian Travelers
Diet shouldn’t stop you from travelling by Amy at livin’ on the road
If Anyone Can Travel Why Don’t You? – Keryn at Walkingon Travels
Not Everyone Can Travel – by Living Outside of the Box
You Have to Be Special Like Us if You Want an Awesome Life – Discover Share Inspire
True Story: Single mother from Bushwick, Brooklyn, funds long-term trip without having to sell a kidney – Melissa at Break Out of Bushwick
Anyone Can Travel, Just Let Go by Diya at a minor diversion
Anyone Can Travel…Just Find Your Way by Kate at Experiential Family
Pity, Envy, and why anyone can travel — Clark Vandeventer of FamilyTrek.org @FamTrek
A Family Travel Lifestyle….. Loreena at Little Aussie Travellers
Anyone can travel, can’t they? New Life on the Road