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Life Surfing. The Urban dictionary definition:

To absorb the ups and downs of life with grace and in the moment. Like riding the perfect wave.

We have been learning a lot about Life Surfing and as is often the case, difficult circumstances precede the actual gaining of solid knowledge. Last fall, while living in Southern VT, we found ourselves deep in the trough of a particularly large wave of misfortune. It was in the midst of those difficult times that we realized there were options available to us. Instead of being battered, and tossed about by life’s circumstances why not figure out how to ride that wave instead?  Harness the power of the moment. Get on top of our circumstances and actually surf them.

It was sink or swim, and we chose to surf!

It was about living life rather than being a victim. The biggest thing for us was we got really honest about what we wanted out of life. If we could do anything we wanted what would it be? If we were to authentically act on our true desires, what would we be doing?

We narrowed it down to 3 things.

1. Living sustainably

Shrink our economic and carbon footprint. Simplify, downsize, go as “green” as possible. Perhaps trade in our 3 bedroom rental for a small piece of land and build a “tiny home” to live in. If we could downsize and significantly shrink our financial responsibilities, then we would be able to focus our time and energy on our family’s needs, our children, and on building up our own businesses. Which led to number 2.

2. Enjoy a fun and full family life

Increasing the quantity and quality of the time spent with our children was important. Including a home school education (as our kids were not thriving in public school) and plenty of extreme family adventuring. We have always been a family that likes to push our physical and mental boundaries. This is the expression of us as individuals and as a family. We are happiest when we are doing these things. Read about our adventures on our Gemini Life Surfers blog.

3. Paying it forward

Helping others by sharing from what we do have, which is our time, energy and skills.

Our main business is a successful local organic catering company so we know a lot about cooking healthy, made from scratch meals for large groups of people.

One out of six Americans lacks sufficient nutrition on a daily basis. That is somewhere close to 100 million people! Some of it is because of poverty. Some is due to a lack of access to good food and some is due to the lack of knowledge of what to do with the good food that is available. Feeding and educating others with free local, farm fresh, and organic food was something we could do.

How to make this all happen?

We had the outline, now we needed to walk it out. Be the change we wanted to see. We started by doing what we could. First we downsized. We sold, gifted and donated 95% of our belongings! All of our furniture, boxes and boxes of books, our beloved vinyl album collection, dishes, televisions, at least 90% of our clothing, piles of accumulated toys, etc. Lastly we moved out of the beautiful 3-bedroom ski chalet we had been calling home for the last 3 years in Southern VT. By the time we drove out of town on a cold January morning everything we owned was crammed into our 13-year-old station wagon along with our two children.

It was out West where we found our “Tiny Home” on wheels: the sweetest little 1988 Bluebird School bus. A couple of beds for the kids, a master bedroom for us in the back, a propane oven/stove and we were set to begin our new life on the road.

We had been introduced to rock climbing the year before while in the White Mountains of NH (Shout out to Northeast Mountaineering and Square Ledge!) and the plan was to travel around the country camping in our bus and learning how to rock climb with our children. A modest investment got us the basic gear needed to get us started. All that remained was to learn how to use the gear.

Since we’ve been in the Northeast for the summer, we have had the opportunity to refine our anchoring and top roping skills and we’ve been climbing almost daily. We’ve been exploring and blogging about the many fine crags in Western Mass throughout the summer and are preparing to head West again—this time to Colorado, Utah, AZ and CA (Joshua Tree) for the next leg of our journey.

With our goals of living sustainably and creating a full family life taking shape rather nicely, our thoughts turned towards how we could begin to pay it forward. Here is what we came up with:

Feed The People Tour 2014: paying it forward by feeding the people

Every one deserves to eat good food.

Since we are living a lifestyle that enable us to be mobile, and since we have been freed up from the 40 hour work-week, and because we love cooking great healthy food for people—why not take what we have on the road and use it to benefit others? By feeding hungry people and introducing them to sustainable options we can do our part.

Beginning with our first event on September 3 at the Gray Ghost Inn located in Dover, VT, we will be visiting cities all across the US, gleaning fruits and vegetables from local farmers, collecting donations from local food markets and teaching people how to make delicious and affordable meals from what is available. All at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the waste were it to be bought prepackaged from a store. The free hot food will be available to anyone that shows up. What we do not use to make the free meal we will we will give away with instructions on how to turn it into a yummy wholesome dish. We don’t have a lot of money, but we do have something to offer that can benefit people… one meal at a time.

We are currently accepting donations to help support our Feed the People Tour. Anyone interested in helping can donate through PayPal to [email protected].

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