Have you seen Happily Homeless? Leave a comment here~

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202 thoughts on “Have you seen Happily Homeless? Leave a comment here~

  1. Just spotted you driving on I-89 near Burlington, Vermont and looked you up on the iPad! Cool idea! Hope you’re enjoying beautiful Vermont!

    • Hi Tori,
      So happy you dropped in to visit us here at Happily Homeless! We were on our way back from Burton Island State Park when you saw us, after a fun-filled day of hiking. The weather there was beautiful, with a pretty strong wind, and who doesn’t love that? I’ll be writing a blog about it, with some pictures. We still have a week here in Vermont, so you might just spot us out and about again~

    • Paul
      I saw you driving up 93 near Manchester, NH and had to look you up because of the cool looking ride. I left work early because of Obama being in Boston, trying to explain why the affordable care website is bunk, and eager to watch game 6 of the World Series. Go SOX!! Stay strong pretty lady.

    • I live in Phoenix, Az, I have a patient that lives in Carefree that I go to daily and I believe u live in his apartment complex. I saw your car and got the web info off it, I think it is such a awesome thing that u do…Hope to meet u some day and share my story with u…….

      • Hi Monica,
        My daughter and son-in-law live in the apts where you saw my car. I’m actually going to be staying at their place starting next Monday through Thursday morning. Maybe we’ll have a chance to meet. I hope so, as I’d very much like to hear your story~
        alison

  2. Just saw Happily Homeless near Robinson Township, PA, on Rt 22/30. Curious to see what Happily Homeless was about, I found your blog.
    Pretty amazing! Safe travels!

    • Thanks, Sue! How cool that you saw us and thanks for leaving a comment here. We were on our way to Indiana for a couple of weeks, then heading further west for a good, long, while and I can’t wait! I hope you’ll check in with us here-I’m doing my best to keep it all entertaining~
      Alison (1/2 of Happily Homeless)

  3. Just saw Happily Homeless on Nebo Rd. & SR32 in Muncie, Indiana! Came to the blog from seeing you guys driving! Safe travels!

    • Hi Stephanie~
      I’m so glad you checked in with us! We’re visiting Handsome Husband’s mom here in Muncie-its his hometown. We’re here for another week or so, then heading West, and we’d love to have you check in with us as we travel. I’ll do my best to keep it all entertaining. You can find us on fb too-just type Happily Homeless into your search engine.
      Alison (1/2 hof HH)

    • Thank you, Stephanie. We’re visiting two of our kids here in the Valley, and we’re loving the warmer weather! Have a joyous holiday, yourself, and we hope to have you visit us here on our blog in the future.
      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  4. We were parked next to your truck outside a Walgreens in Phoenix Arizona! How fun are you two?! An inspiration for me to do this someday with the hubby.

    • Rebecca-how sweet of you to check in with us here! We’ve loved our time here in Arizona, visiting with a couple of our kids. When the time comes to settle down (hopefully not for many years!), this will be the area we’ll roost in. I love how Camelback dominates so much of the area, and I’ve been involved in so many fun things while here-belly dancing, hooping in the park with my daughter-and we still have a month left before continuing our travels.

      Have a festive New Year, and I hope you check back in here with us to see what we’re up to on any given day.

      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  5. I was delighted to finally find a link to your blog! What an inspiring writer you are, Alison! Having worked with the Handsome Husband in New Jersey, and hearing about you constantly at work, and now on his FB page, I am thankful to “meet” your mind, too! You both make an inspirational couple on subjects like longevity, of both relationships and life, and compromise (it is never easy to travel incessantly with your spousal unit!) and the shear joy of living! Keep forging ahead in that red Escape! May you have to replace your luggage many more times before you settle in one place!

    • Vicki,
      I’m so glad you found us here, and thank you for your kind words. It hasn’t always been easy, living this life, but its’ clearly worth the trade-offs, for both of us. I’ll do my best to keep you entertained with my writings-stay tuned!

      Alison,
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  6. We just passed you on the freeway in beautiful Las Vegas, Nevada! We both hope that you enjoy your time in our city, but don’t get too crazy!

    • Thank you! I love that you took a moment to say hi to us here. We were able to get to the Bellagio last night to see their beautiful Chinese New Year decorations-absolutely lovely. Tomorrow we’ve got an early start, heading to Death Valley for a few days, then further West. Check in with us again-we love our followers!

  7. Met and talked to you at Natural Bridge in Death Valley (took a picture of the 2 of you there). Have fun on your journey. Sounds interesting!

    • One of the best parts of our Happily Homeless traveling is meeting new people along the way, and so it was with the two of you. We loved Death Valley-absolutely magnificent! Thanks for checking in here, and I hope we’ll see you back here again~
      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  8. I saw I can leave a comment just now. I wasn’t on this web page since ages (Facebook is the guilty one). I’ve met Happily Homeless for the first and last time in the Crater Lake NP, Oregon, in 2011. I was so amazed somebody had a great idea of selling his house and travel, it was my dream from when I was a child. So, I found out there are crazy people as I am and who knows how to live their lives. I think those two guys lived their life to the fullest, adventurous, with love, with happiness. They said “We love to wake up in the morning in different places and say How beautiful is our country”. I fell in love with those words and started to follow them on Facebook. It looks like was yesterday. Every picture they put on their wall, I was amazed and excited.. till now. Now, I feel very sad. Chuck seemed in my eyes the strongest man in the world. And now, I can’t even imagine what he and his family is going through.. I feel very sad, with tears in my eyes, I can’t believe I won’t see them running around again. They will both stay in my hearth forever as I saw them the first time. Love you, guys!
    Greetings from Croatia

  9. Saw you today on Highway 111. Wishing Handsome Husband a peaceful journey as well as those he leaves behind. Prayers and blessings sent your way.

  10. We just saw you on the I-15 North about 30 seconds ago when we decided to look up your blog! Hope you’re enjoying SoCal!

  11. I haven’t had the pleasure of spotting or meeting you, but I was brought to your blog by a beautifully kind woman Tersia, that gave you a nomination. Your blog is heart wrenching and beautiful, all at the same time. Thank you for sharing your husband, you and your life together. Warm, tight hugs to you for your loss and grief.

  12. I have nominated you for the Liebster Award. http://notdownorout.wordpress.com/2013/05/18/in-sickness-and-in-health/. I hope that you will accept. The award is about caring. Some call it a sweetheart award. There is a description of the award in my blog that says you should thank the one who nominated you and then pass the award along to someone else. Some have only nominated one other blog. Some nominate 11 blogs. Some people also share 11 previously unknown random facts about themselves. Sometimes the person doing the nominating poses 11 questions. I think you can decide for yourself how you want to proceed. What is important is that you touched my heart with what you wrote and I thought others should read your blog so that they could share its beauty. I am very sad for your recent loss of Handsome Husband.

  13. I pulled along side of you today in downtown Phoenix, around noonish, at 17th avenue. Obviously intrigued by the stickers on your vehicle, I was even more intrigued by the look on your face. You seemed lost in thought. I half expected you to turn toward me, and I’d offer a smile- but you were preoccupied. I noticed all the pictures on your dash, wondering why you were “intentionally homeless” without these people you love. And now I come here and see why. My condolences and best wishes to you. It’s probably too soon to feel like an adventure to you at this point, but I hope you find peace in your journey sooner than later.

    • Elliot,
      Thank you so much for checking in here with me. It’s very hard, dark, days and I have so much anxiety contemplating being back out on the road without Handsome Husband. It’s my community of family and friends who are getting me through this and that includes you and my other followers who take the time to read my blog. I hope you’ll check in again, as I continue finding my new life on the road~

  14. My first thought as I saw your pink car traveling east on Loop 101 today was – cool car. I saw the decals on your window and didn’t think much of it. For some reason, it stuck with me the rest of the day. It’s evening, while supposed to be making dinner, I sat down and started reading your blog. At the beginning I was envious. In the middle I was heartbroken. I can’t say end, but where your story is now I find myself both envious and heartbroken. I am awed by your dedication to your relationship and to your husband. My hope for you as you continue this journey is to find solace in the wide open spaces and ever changing scenery. And by the way, my kids ended up making the dinner tonight. God bless.

    • Thank you, Cori, for taking the time to read my blog and for your message of love.

      Leaving AZ today (I’m just now going to blog about it). I hope you stay with me on my travels~

      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  15. Greetings,
    Glad to see you made it to New Mexico. Was great to talk to you at the rest stop on I-17. Sorry to not say HI to your travel partner, thank her for the card. I will be checking in here from time to time to see how you are doing and where you are. Have a good one, Mark

    • Mark,
      Thanks so much for checking in. That was my daughter who was with me when we met at the rest stop.

      As I continued on the road to Flag, she rode with her husband and I was alone in the car. Which is no big deal in the scheme of things, but it was a very lonely feeling, being without Handsome Husband. As the rain set in, it got more so, so when you passed my car and flickered your lights, it really made a difference for me, and I told my daughter about it later. It made me feel less alone. So,,,,thank you.

      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  16. Hey Happily Homeless! Was the pink to catch attention? If so …it DEFINITELY worked! My husband and I were on our way back from our trip out West to L.A. when we spotted you. Somewhere between AZ and Tulsa (I don’t remember the exact place). I’m now finding and reading your blogs…..wow. WOW. You are such an inspiration…please keep it up! Very much looking forward to connecting with your blog, reading more, and sharing your story! -Sara Michaels

    • That’s at least one of the reasons I went pink with my car, Sara. I figured it would keep me in conversation with new people along the way, which will help me feel less isolated. Also because I needed to feel Handsome Husband’s strength around me and the color is called “Chuck Watchin” Over Me”. It gives me courage.

      My next thought is getting a Tab Trailer to pull behind my pink car. That way I’ll have a place to call home even while being out on the road. I’m going to have the trim painted my custom pink, have Happily Homeless scrolled across it, and quirky pink entwined hearts on it for the love Handsome Husband and I shared.

      Thanks for checking in with me and I hope you’ll visit again. My community of love is keeping me going~
      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

    • I agree 100% Sara. A few days ago I sat down and read through the entire blog. Inspiring and amazing in every sense. Thank you for sharing your story Alison… I so appreciate your raw emotion and honesty. You are in my thoughts often…

      • Sue,
        I’m touched that you read so much of my blog, and touched even more that you keep me in your thoughts.

        I’m blessed beyond measure to have you and so many others cheering me on~
        Alison
        1/2 of Happily Homeless

  17. We just passed you on 70 in Illinois and are heading to New Jersey ourselves (Tom’s River area). We are stopping at the Easley Winery in Indianapolis at noon if you want to join us. Our hearts go out to you. Your car grabbed our attention and we wish you well.
    Cheers,
    Darcy

    • I just saw your response and I’m sorry we missed you! Thank you, though, for taking the time to visit me here.

      I’ll be in the Lumberton and other Burlington County areas while in NJ.

      Perhaps we’ll meet again out on the road. Keep looking for my pink magic ride~
      Alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  18. If you found Happily Stateless immediate Robinson Township, PA, upon Rt 22/30. Interested to see which Happily Homeless remained about, I access your own blog.
    Particularly amazing! Safe tour!

  19. Saw you and your pink car on Monday afternoon, 7/29 in Ohio (but it might have been IN), can’t recall as we were driving back to Columbus, OH from Ft. Wayne, IN. I had not heard about you, but your pink car (thought it was a ” Mary Kay mobile” at first) caught our eye; I jotted down the “happily homeless” that was on rear window of your car to check out on computer, and bingo found this site. You probably know, but maybe your paper (temp tag?) license plate looked like it was coming off??
    Bless you. Stay safe. Best wishes.

    • Thanks for the heads up on the tag. I’m getting permanent plates here in Jersey.

      Thank you, too, for checking in with me. I love my Pink Magic (a much deeper shade of pink than MK!), and it’s made my travels from AZ much more manageable emotionally.

      I hope you’ll travel with me as I get my T@b trailer and go out on the road to meet my new life~

  20. Driving down 295 in NJ I saw a pink car. I was beyond confused & tried to get a picture to prove to my family. As I got closer, I see “Happily Homeless” written on the back. Interested I looked it up and cannot explain how great this love story is! Keep it going!

    • Hi Amanda,
      Thanks for checking in here-I love it when Pink Magic brings a smile to someone’s face.

      I hope you’ll stay with me as I go back out on the road, seeking a new life for myself~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  21. I spotted your car at the library today, and Had a long conversation about that being my dream car when i get older,,,Then u came walking out the library in your matching pink outfit and I quickly said, That must be the owner of this car,,then Gladly we had a quick conversation of you and Hansom Husband’s life story.

    • I’m so glad you stopped to chat with me. Those brief moments get me through my days in a very real way.

      I hope you keep company with me as I go back out on the road again~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  22. Such a beautiful story!
    I saw you at 290 in Massachusetts this afternoon, close to Hudson.
    I was hoping that you were going into town but you didnt.
    Have a safe trip, always.

    • Alessandra,
      Long travel day today, but magical in spite of emotions veering left and right!

      I love that so many take the time to check in with me here-it keeps me going on this new road.

      And, keep your eyes open-who knows when Pink Magic just might show up in your town?

      Nothin’ but Love here~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  23. Just saw your car in Bethel, CT and sped to catch up and read the URL on your back window, I needed to know why your car is so pretty pink! I think it’s great what you’re doing ❤

    -Isabella

    • Isabella,
      Thank you for checking in here-the love keeps me going. I’m visiting my son here and have an official “going back out on the road” on December 1, with my new T@b trailer. I hope you’ll check back in again as I seek out my new life, living in the light of my husband’s love~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  24. Alison,
    We haven’t seen you on the road yet, but we just started fulltime RVing and I am sure we will cross paths at some point. I found your site thru one of the other RV blogs. I have read almost all of it in the past three days. I have been touched and educated. Thank you so much for sharing with us.
    You see, my father-in-law was battling with this ugly and unbearable disease, he left us this evening to be in Heaven and finally at peace and out of the pain. I am so grateful to have found you and your outstanding explanation of this end of life process, it has helped us out so much. It all happened so fast once there was nothing else to do, and it all happened just about exactly as you had explained. I spoke with him yesterday afternoon on the phone and said what I wanted to say. He went into the somewhat of a comma, my wife and his little girl laid beside him last night and he got a good nights sleep. Today was not so good, at 4:45pm she called me and said he probably wouldn’t make it through the night at 5:15pm he was gone. I told her to tell him it was ok, and that he could leave us, and we would be ok. Not sure if she did or not, haven’t had the time to talk with her about it yet. But, your writing has been inspiring. THANKS AGAIN FOR SHARING HANDSOME HUSBAND. I think he would(is) be very proud of you for what you are doing and would want you to continue. He can’t miss that Pink Magic and will keep watch of you. Enjoy every day of it for yourself and for Handsome Husband. I can’t wait to see you on the road. Once again Thanks, you have and are making a difference.

    Doug

    • Doug,
      I’m so touched that you took the time to read my blog, and to leave such a beautiful message to me here. My heart goes out to you and your wife at the loss of her dad. There’s nothing easy about any of it, and if I was able to make any bit of a difference in your perception or managing of it, then I’m humbled.

      My official “going out on the road again” date is December 1. My T@b will be ready beginning of November, with the trim painted to match Pink Magic. I hope we do meet out there! If you see me, make sure to honk~

      Be blessed as you and your wife travel the roads~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  25. Caught a glimpse of your car as you pulled onto 38 earlier and looked you up. I hope yesterday brought some peace and that you find a happiness all your own in remembrance of your husband. Wish you all the best!

    • Thanks for checking in with me here. I’m on my way to New England this Friday to pick up my new T@b trailer, all trimmed out in my signature pink.

      Stay with me as I search out my new life, carrying with me all the love of my dearly loved husband~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  26. My family and I saw you on the Mass Pike today on our way to AND from Boston! (We live in Worcester) your insanely awesome pink car caught my eye, and when we saw you twice I knew I had to check out your site… and your story is amazing ❤

    • Kristina,
      Thank you for checking in here. I’ve been back and forth between NJ and New England frequently in the last month and will be on the road again there this Friday.

      Wait til you see my new T@b trailer, trimmed out in my signature shade of pink, being pulled behind my Pink Magic car-all part of the new life I’m striving to begin building.

      I hope you stay with me as I continue my travels~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  27. As I am now a resident of Scotland, although previously a Mainer, I doubt I will be lucky enough to see you on the road. I found you through the FB post of Christina Rasmussen and Second Firsts. I lost my soulmate 2 years ago last June after being together only 14 months, 4 days and 30 minutes – from first date until his passing by heart attack at 12:30am June 7, 2011. Your words so closely match my experience, I had to stop reading – it is still too painful to recall.

    I envy your travels as that is what I felt I needed to do, but I couldn’t afford it and couldn’t leave everything at the time. It is ironic, because I have now retired, downsized to a pallet of boxes, and moved to Scotland with my new husband. This is the fulfilment of another life-long dream that I thought too outlandish to ever be realized, but it is what my soulmate sent to me before I even knew it was what I wanted.

    I wish you peace and rest on your journey. As the healing process continues, one day you will find those millions of pieces of your broken heart have been put back together and you will be able to smile all the way through from inside. Our spirit remains; it’s just changed. “We can do the impossible because we have been through the unimaginable”.

    Blessings – Laurel

  28. I spotted you on I-287 on my way to work this morning. Was curious and decided to google you! I’m amazed. What you’re doing is heartbreaking, courageous, beautiful, and I wish you the very best in the journey ahead.

    • Mel,
      Thanks so much for reaching out to me here. My mantra on a daily basis is one step, one breath, one heart beat. That, and all of you who are in my circle of support, keep me going.

      Stay with me as I travel~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  29. Just saw you on I-84 in Connecticut near Southbury! We were absolutely intrigued by your pink vehicle and decided to look up your website. Safe travels in Connecticut 🙂

    • Thank you, Nicole. It’s a tough time but as a friend told me “You’re suiting up and showing up” and that’s what matters.

      Hope you’ll stay with me as I travel and get it figured out (at some point, right?)

  30. Hi Happily Homeless! We were traveling North on I-93 in Hooksett, right before the toll booth when we saw you. I was headed to meet my parents for my Dads 56th birthday. i LOVE your ride & home. Looking forward to reading more of your blog. Safe travels!

    • Hi Dawn,
      Thanks for checking in with me here. I’d love to have you travel with me through my blog. It’s the kindnesses of those such as you that keeps me going day by day.

      Be blessed,
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  31. Hello, we just saw you on 495 in Westford Ma. Love your pink Little Guy. We had to look you up to see what this was all about. You certainly are a conversation starter. Wishing you happy travels and many great experiences

    May the road rise up to meet you
    And the wind be always at your back.
    May the sun shine warm upon your face;
    the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
    may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

    Nancy and Larry

  32. Saw your pink wheels on the New Jersey Turnpike today – hope you were no stuck in traffic too long. You look so spiffy! Good luck on your journey, and I will now follow your adventure. Enjoy the warmth of Key West and I am jealous!

    • Traffic wasn’t too bad, really, and thankfully we were familiar with the area and got off the turnpike to another road that led us to dear friends and a lunch-time break.

      Thanks so much for checking in with me-it keeps me (and my kids when I share all of this with them) going for that one more moment we need to keep going~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  33. Just saw you at the gas station in Boca Raton, FL. My daughter and I turn around to go back and say hi, but you were pulling off. Safe and happy travels.

  34. I met you at a BP gas station in Edgewater, Florida you were traveling with your son i was the cashier there. We chatted for a bit as i told you that i loved your lil pink car. You handed me your card and im so happy that i got to met you. Your story truly inspired me. Good luck with your travels and God Bless. If your ever traveling again near me please stop in. Your new follower…..Barbara

    • Barbara,
      Yes, I remember you well! Those small moments of meeting new people which aren’t small moments at all but big moments because the kindnesses get me through another few hours and ease this grief of mine.

      I’m so happy to have you sitting in the car with me as I continue my travels.

      And thank you so very much for taking the time to check in with me here~
      alison

  35. You wear your pain and loss in your eyes and on your body. But you wear it well and with no shame. I loved seeing you one more time before we both leave Key West and knowing your survived another first without him. A new year without him in it. But I feel in you such a determination to find your way in the darkness, to break through to light and peace and to ‘find’ him once again without the pain and sadness. I believe you will…in your own good time. And, as I said to you today I bless you. a new admirer, Mary Alice

  36. Alison, I”m touched by your writing. By your raw pain. I have no advice other than to just keep on plodding through. You know you will eventually stop hurting so much – or at least it won’t be every second of every day. Someday. I send love out to you on your journey.

    You do write beautifully. I just read about Satan, who gave you and your husband the gift of retirement, and you said your husband wouldn’t like that you’re writing about that — good thing he’s not here to see it! I went from tears to laughing out loud. You have a little devil in you, too. Good for you.

    Keep on writing and reading and talking and listening. and hugging. You’ll get there.

  37. Passed you today while heading to Tampa International from Venice and was so intrigued I had to Google you on my cell phone. Loved your blog on definition of homeless. Looking forward to following your blog. Blessings ~ Nicki

  38. I saw your beautiful, pink island, in Tampa this morning. It seemed to exude a sense of pride, adventure and excitement. i have been dreaming about being as brave as you. Hope you have a wonderful time here

  39. Dear Alison,
    I saw you driving down Biloxi beach Wednesday jan 15, 2014. Was so impressed with your name on your trailer. Then saw the article on WLOX about you. And I’m even more impressed with you tenacity and strength. I have the utmost respect for what you are doing, the journey you & your husband started and the journey you are carrying on. My family dug up roots and moved to Ecuador in retirement this past September, with 2 teenage girls. (I’m back in the US right now tying up lose ends.) Most people gave us the look I’m sure you got. Dumbfounded. Befuddled. Why???? My response was always, why not!!??! I wish more people would be willing to do what you’ve done, what we’ve done. Step out of the norm. The rat race. The mundane. See the US. See the world. It’s so much smaller than people think.
    I also wish I’d known about you before I saw your trailer,I would have followed you til you stopped and given you a big hug. God bless you. You have an angel to always watch over you.
    With the deepest respect,
    DeAnna Gossman
    wwww.gosssmansinecuador.wordpress.com

    • DeAnna,
      I’m going to follow your blog! Really, it isn’t about the places we’re going, is it? It’s more about allowing our minds to expand to realize that there is more than one way to live, and pushing through to put ourselves where we want to be. Handsome Husband and I loved that aspect of our travels together and it became more than the geographical expansion; our hearts and minds also opened.

      Good luck in Ecuador and thank you so much for checking in with me here and for your words.

      Angels are everywhere.

      May we all be blessed~
      alison
      1/2 of Happily Homeless

  40. I saw you on Saturday afternoon as I was on my way to San Antonio! I traded possible scenarios of your story with my traveling companions, but nothing that we came up with matches your incredible story. Good luck to you and I hope to see you on the road again!

  41. I saw your car parked next to mine in the HEB parking lot in Austin, Tx. I had my sister with me and I told her to look up the link so we did and I drove down the parking lot and parked and started reading your blog. I just have to tell you my heart broke for you. You drove past us and looked over but I was crying so hard I couldn’t even see you. I am more than sorry for your loss and I wish you healing and hope. I didn’t know your husband but I think he would be proud of your journey, I know I am. I’ll be thinking about you and wishing you all the best from here in Texas. Blessings and prayers of healing headed your way!

    • Ashley,
      I remember passing (carefully because I wasn’t sure if you were stopped or just pausing), a car and I suspect it was you.

      Thank you for checking in here with me and thank you for your words. This is all incredibly painful, but I’m so blessed to have family and friends and new friends such as you, cheering me on.

      May we all be blessed~
      alison

  42. I saw you this morning parked in Oak Hil. I was taking my son to school, but had to turnaround to see what “it” was all about. My boy is fascinated with camping/trailers so he loved it. I have not read a ton of your story, but what I have read has brought me to tears. Thank you for sharing your story.
    Thebarefootmom

    • bfm,
      Thank you for taking the time to check in with me here. My rig definitely doesn’t fly under the radar, does it? It has brought people to me and helped me not be isolated as I’m on the road and I’m blessed every minute of the day with everyone I meet.

      May we all be blessed,
      alison

  43. I work on the US Army website and was going through the other armed services sites to see how they addressed FOIA issues (thrilling I know) but I saw a graphic of you and your trailer on the af.mil site and said “Ive seen that trailer before!” – -I searched for your blog and sure enough, my 4 kids and I were at the same North Stonington, CT KOA campground in October . Having 3 girls, they were memorized by the pink SUV and trailer. As I recall, we could see the outline of a person (you) insode the trailer working on a computer (probably writing your blog) — anyway, it is strange how you stumble across things in life — and you are right, it was a bucolic setting that evening in Stonington, CT! The kids loved that huge inflatable pillow at the playground.

    • Mike,
      How very cool that you found my blog and I love how the world gets smaller and smaller for me as I travel this road. Ir remember as I was leaving the KOA and saw some kids on the playground waving. I can’t believe you found me here! I’ve met such wonderful people in my few months on the road and have been blessed, especially, in meeting so many in the military at various bases. It was amazing to see my and my husband’s story go on the military website and I’ve heard from even more people since then.

      What a learning process this has been, and continues to be. I’m in Phoenix AZ currently, preparing to go out on the road for 6 months with my daughter in mid-June.

      So good to hear from you in this small world~
      alison

  44. Alison,
    Your story is incredible. My husband is retired USAF (also very proud of his service!) and we have always talked about doing what you and Handsome Husband did – just travel to wherever the road takes you – at least to the next MWR. Needless to say, that has not happened yet so I began a second career teaching at the College level (1st career was with a natural gas utility!) just a few days a week. We still talk about traveling and are not getting any younger but it’s still just talk. We lost our 38 yr old daughter in June 2011 and my father-in-law three days later so we are still in the “taking it one day at a time” phase. Hoping to see you on the road to Handsome Husband’s state – Indiana – or around Louisville, KY. My suggestion – don’t travel here for a few months – we have had record snow and sub-zero weather. Hoping you find peace and happiness as you travel this new journey in your life.
    Vicki

    • Vicki,
      Thank your husband for his service, and I thank you for yours too. The quote “They also serve who stand and wait” rings true for military families, doesn’t it?

      My heart reaches out to you and shares the sorrow in the death of your daughter and father-in-law. Life is impossibly hard at times, isn’t it? I suppose at some point it brings us to a depth of loving we’ve never experienced, which is what keeps me going now.

      When you can, as soon as you can, make the decision to live your life fully in your dream. I’m so grateful Chuck and I had the time on the road that we did, living our dream, having all that time together. We didn’t have much money, but we were okay with living very simply. And life is so very short.

      My best to you and yours as you grieve your own grief.

      Thank you so much for checking in with me here-it makes a difference~
      alison

  45. I saw you about 2 weeks ago in Austin tx at the “y” 290 and 71 intersection. I finally came to your website to find out more about you. You are an inspiration of strength! Thank you for sharing.

  46. Hello Alison,
    Just wanted to check on you! I hoping you are doing well on your journey!!! I work for HORV where you bought your T@B. My son Bob did the paint job for you!!!!! It is looking good and we all hope to see you again when you are in our area of the country.
    Jean

    • Jean,
      How lovely to hear from you! You can tell Bob that my T@b/car combination has received nothing but praise as I’ve traveled the Gulf Coast.

      I’m doing my best to make a new life for myself, learning to let the grief exist right along with the love.

      My best to Bob and I’ll bring my rig over when I’m next in New England~
      alison

  47. Sitting here with tears rolling down my cheeks – I can feel your pain, and you can feel mine. I am so afraid life will just pass us by and we will be left wondering “why didn’t we…” , especially if we lose one another. So happy you are learning to live with both the grief and the love. I have a very young friend who lost her husband in a horrific car accident (will be three years ago this March), she was injured critically (has had over 20 surgeries to date), and her young sons were in the back, strapped in to their car seats – only bruising from the seat belts, and she has just begin to find love again – says B is still in her heart and leading her. She has been an inspiration to me, and has truly learned that trust needs to be placed in our Heavenly Father. I am not a religious fanatic, but seeing her makes one a believer. As always, I got off track…. Hope you are having a great trip as you visit new and old places. I so envy you!

    Vicki Garrett
    (Please stay in touch – I enjoy reading your posts!)

    • Vicki,
      I love how that’s worded-she believes that B is leading her. I believe that with my whole heart in my case: that Chuck is leading me.

      I know now that, consciously or otherwise, he set me out on this path, knowing the kind of woman I am and that I would meet my grief head-on out on the road. I’m making connections with people who make a difference in my life and letting the love he and I shared lead me into this new life of mine.

      I’m so blessed to have friends such as you in my corner-thank you ❤
      alison

  48. I saw you today in Scottsdale AZ as I drove home from work. I said “What on earth is that?” And then followed with “That is so awesome! What a cool lady!” I couldn’t wait to find out about your story and am thankful for the opportunity. I admire you for being one of the lucky ones to be able to say you found your soul mate, for witnessing the amazing way you have honored your handsome husband and for your courage to share your special journey of true love and heart breaking loss with the world. I’m confident you have touched many people without knowing it. Safe travels! Jennifer

    • Jennifer,
      Thanks for checking in with me here, and for the good words. I want you to know how much it means to me to hear from people who see me along the road-it keeps me going that one more mile.

      I hope you’ll continue to travel along with me on this Odyssey of Love~
      alison

  49. I am a member on the FordEscape.org forum and another member has made mention of your vehicle and I was able to locate you on Google and share your link and pictures about your adventures.
    I thought you’d like to know that we are talking about you right now:
    http://www.fordescape.org/forum/new-2013-2014-escape-general-discussion-forum/16057-pink.html

    Ten years ago, at 32, I lost my wife in a car accident and from one widow to another I am sorry to hear about your loss but happy to see you memorializing your loved one in such a special way. As you know losing a loved one is such a powerful storm that we learn to control over the years. You are an inspiration and I wish you safe travels and I hope the Escape is serving you well. Thanks for sharing!

    If you have the time please join in on the forum conversation.

    • Raymond,
      Thanks for the heads up. I did indeed join the forum and shared a bit of the reasons why so pink.

      My heart breaks for you in your own loss-it’s very hard, isn’t it? Adding to it, my phone was stolen yesterday and Chuck’s final message to me in the week before he died was on it. I’m going to see if my carrier can access it for me but its been incredibly stressful in the past few days as a result. I’m going to meet with a local TV channel here in Phoenix tomorrow to share my story too.

      Thanks for checking in with me here. I’d love to stay in touch and see how you’re doing~
      alison

  50. Ur an awesome lady, the longer that I keep reading your posts and stories the more I get tears in my eyes, In Feb 2011, my dad passed away my mom just got her cdl and they planned to go on the road together in the semi, unfortunately my dads health took a turn for the worst, my mom lives with me now cause I dont want her to be alone, and your story just reminded me so much of my parents….good luck with which ever road u choose to take or go down……..xoxoxxoxo

    • Monica,
      How thoughtful of you to reach out to me here. Grief is so hard, isn’t it? I hear so many stories of couples who just never had the time to go live their dreams-Chuck and I talked about that very thing when we considered retiring early. So, even though it meant we would have to live very simply, we decided to go for it and I’m so, so, glad we did. We had 4 years and, as you say in reference to your parent’s case, they never got to do their traveling.

      May we all be blessed with love, always~
      alison

  51. Hi Alison…..I saw you today, or at least your pink car in the parking lot of Walmart in Cottonwood Az. Of course it led me to your page on word press. Since Indiana is my home state, it was sweet to start to learn the story of you and Handsome Husband. Your loss is so sad and I wish many blessing for you as you travel this road to recovering yourself….whom ever that turns out to be in your new life. Though never lost to us really , it is so very hard to lose the touch of our dearest friend. So much love and light to you now and forever on your travels…….XOXO…chris tolliver, camp verde az.

    • Hi Chris,
      Thank you for taking the time to reach out to me here. My daughter and I were visiting a friend in Cottonwood when we stopped at the Walmart. Your words touch me with their acknowledgement of the unknown. Such messages strengthen me through my days.

      I hope you stay in touch with me as I set out on the road again in mid-June. The next year will truly be a year of unknowns and I’m open to whatever happens.

      May you be blessed, may we all have love~
      alison

  52. Dear Alison: I just read your April 8 posting on the “Sludge” you are carrying. I am appalled at the hospice nurse and his unprofessional behavior. I work for a hospice here in southern Colorado, and we would never leave a family member uninformed of anything like that—if it were true. Our main concern is the patient and causing the patient distress would be something we would address gently, but immediately.

    I have, unfortunately, encountered staff members from nurses, chaplains, and CNAs, that have made assumptions based on inaccurate assessments, and gossiping with family and friends, and all their charting from that point is colored by their inaccurate assumptions. I am sorry to say this, but I would question why his daughter didn’t come to you and what her motives were for talking with the nurse behind your back. Plus I would also question why the Social Worker never came to talk with you. That’s who I would call about Handsome Husband’s chart. In fact, did you get to read her notes?

    It sounds like you need some answers, and you do actually deserve some. If you can’t get any answers from the nurse or SW, go right to the director of that particular hospice.

    Good luck, and blessings,

    Rev. Tricia S.
    Hospice Chaplain

    • Tricia,
      That honestly was one of the questions I had for my step-daughter-why didn’t she come to me? She never really gave me a clear answer and I need to let it all go. When I called hospice and spoke to the director, she was shocked to hear what I had to say, and very supportive. The nurse who said these things is no longer there and she did say that he was asked to leave but about a different issue.

      It was a very emotionally-laden time-no surprise there. I can’t second-guess anything I did, and I’ve been told by so many that he had exactly what he needed from me and that was all the love that surrounded him. At the time I questioned myself and others continually if I should say something to him about what was going on but I truly didn’t want to agitate him further and I have to let that decision be.

      I have his records from hospice, in addition to speaking to the director, and there is nothing at all about anything negative that I did to him, or caused him. Other than one comment about how upset I was initially-but that had to do with me reading them the riot act when he was first admitted and staff went in and out of his room without identifying themselves and there was so much confusion. I immediately requested a meeting with the director at that time and got things straightened out toot sweet and all flowed smoothly after. So that wasn’t the issue at any point. And if that was recorded then I’m sure anything else would have been.

      I want to thank you, too, for the work you do in hospice. I’ve worked with many hospice chaplains and you make a difference in so many lives.

      Your words of support and encouragement mean the world to me~
      alison

  53. Hi, I just read you post and you have given me a whole new prospective in my journey with my husband who has MS. It has been a long struggle, one I wouldn’t have thought of on my honey moon, one I would not wish on my worst enemy and one I journey along side him. You give me a bit of hope, victory and fortitude. I hope I see you on the road. I live in Portage Indiana, or commonly known as Northwest Indiana. Come by for some tea and great conversation from a fellow military family. Today is the 21st and I am so sorry for your loss. May this day and its beauty of remembrance bring you a warm embrace of your love.

  54. Just ran across your blog from a FB post…and can I say wow, just wow…good for you! I lost my Dad 5 yrs ago this coming July 1st, 3 days before he was to celebrate 50 yrs with my Momma. He had been sick for a bit, had many tests NOTHING showed up, NOTHING, then May 19th, his colon ruptured and when they went in they found 4th stage cancer…and was gone in 7 wks. It was a horrific time of loss, one I still feel today. He was bigger than life and the loss of his life within my family has rippled in many ways. I am the oldest, a writer and have not been able to write except for memorial pieces for him since. When I read your last piece dated April 17th and that today is the actual anniversary, my heart just stopped…I sit with you in remembrance. I dance with you in remembrance. My Daddy (will always be Daddy even though Im 53) and I danced together, kinda was our thing…after he passed I scrapbooked a picture of him and I on my 18th bday dancing…with the words…Learn how to feel Joy…underneath it and put it in a frame. It sits on a shelf in front of me at my desk…I can glance up and see it every day. I am sooo very glad to read the words your wrote about grief NOT being depression! I encourage people all the time that loss is hard and grief merely evidences the depth of love and relationship we had with the loved soul lost. Every one has their journey, no ones journey looks the same, it is a unique as we each are..and NEVER let anyone tell you, it is time to get on with it or get past it…there will ALWAYS be moments that will, can and do side swipe us…and take our breath away, there are others where we softly smile in remembrance, and many others in between. But truly how can our lives NOT be changed by the loss of someone so loved when we lose them? HOW? I just dont believe it is possible. I say of this loss in my life that I am living in an alternate universe, cuz he doesnt live here…and that although my foundation is the same, my furniture has been rearranged. I personally believe the world should have stopped for one freakin moment when my Daddy passed, he deserved that, we deserved that…to not be thrown back onto the life-goes-on train, when you really barely have the energy sometimes to take the next breath..but that was then and this is now…in less than 1 mth it will be the beginning of our 7 wk journey…5 yrs later. The first year has so many things to get thru as my Momma said the year of firsts…and the many evidences that life does go on and so must we…I am a cancer survivor as well, something sadly and madly I had to go thru without my Daddy…but when I read your FWG…I LOVED it! I have a tattoo, actually have 33, but one of my survivor tattoos has Warrior Survivor written on me. Do you read? I became a reading whore (yes I did say that) read 60+ books the first 3 mths after he passed…anyway one of the books I read was called “A Year of Pleasures” the title is misleading, it is a wonderful book…one of the lines talks about learning true compassion thru loss. I know I have…I think you have too. I encourage you to keep fighting the good fight, there are many out there who struggle with grief (it has many faces doesnt it?) and even having one soul to connect with makes one not feel so alone on the journey. I applaud your honesty, your rawness, your realness…your love, your tenacity, your fierceness…it is a fight for life…sometimes a fight to just breath on some days…a fight that no one knows unless they have walked this path of loss…so from one FWG to another FWG…keep on keepin on…you be you…after all that IS who he loved right? And one more thing, DO NOT SECOND GUESS EVEN ONE SECOND OF WHAT YOU DID OR SAID while he was sick, you did the best you could in any given moment, regardless of it being a hard one, a sad one, a weak one, a scared one or even a mad one…and you should NEVER apologize for your decisions, your tears, your fears, your grief, then or now. My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours on this day…(((((HUGS))))) Cyndi

    • Oh, yes, Cyndi, I too am a reading whore, though I don’t read as much when on the road. I like the feel of a book in my hands, rather than a kindle, and need to watch the money. That was one of the greatest difficulties for me on the road-lack of books! Whenever we’d settle anywhere for a few weeks, if there was someone around to give me their library card, I’d stack up on all the latest. I love reading non-fiction of all sorts. Now that I’m resting here in Phoenix, I’ve been reading quite a bit and will look up the Year of Pleasure.

      What sort of cancer did you have? It must have indeed been so tough to go through it without your dad at your side. My heart aches for my kids not having their dad any longer-its the only grief that is deeper than mine.

      Your words mean so much to me. Its clear that you are a FWG, a well-deserved title! My daughter ordered t-shirts that say that for my birthday and we plan on making more and selling them while on the road.

      I’d love to meet you someday-what state do you live in? We’re going to map out our route in the next few weeks and there are people all around the country that we’d love to meet.

      Thank you so, so much for your words, for the support, for the love. It is returned to you in spades~
      alison

      • Alison, thanks for getting back to me…so glad you will look up the book…I hope you like it. I mostly love fantasy, mystical, magic, other world type books..I mean life is so flippin real already…take me to where the story has a happy ending, the good guys win…blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…lol!

        Today, well ok so technically yesterday was the 5 yr anniversary of when my Dads colon ruptured…been a weird day. 5 flippin yrs, how the hell did THAT happen? I usually write a memory piece, the only writing Ive been able to do…been wondering what Im going to write…today it hit me…the number 5 has always been significant to me…my birthday for one…but I just like it…it also is the number of Grace. So I think thats what I will write about…we will see. Funny too, cuz my road name is Gracie in the biker world….some people dont know me by any other name.

        Anyway, I had a dbl mastectomy with dorsi latisimis reconstrction due to my extreme high risk for breast cancer had 12 breast tumors with 9 lumpectomies since I was 21, now Im 53. Found the last 3 in 2006, my doc said didnt want to do another lumpectomy risk was too high, so we pulled out the big guns…waiting for the shoe to drop is torture. Then it did, in 2009 after Dad passed, my doctor found I had high red blood cells they thought after many tests I had some form of chronic lukemia … but as is the case with my family…couldnt pin it down. Hey yer talkin to the daughter of a man who had full blown 4th stage cancer and it didnt show up anywhere, even though he had blood tests, cts, mris xrays…you name it…nothing. Then came 2012 found a nodule on my thyroid, yep cancer. I have been astounded at peoples ignorance and insensitivity. I had both a doc and a nurse say *if I were to pick a cancer thats the one Id pick* SERIOUSLY? WTF!! Its fucking cancer you wouldnt pick ANY cancer! HELLO MCFLY???!!! I told a nurse very kindly mind you, that she should NEVER say that to anyone ever again..it is cancer…they still have to do whatever it takes to get rid of it, deal with the reality that it having crossed their life path and knowing that now this is a game changer. And it bottom line invalidates how they feel about having to engage in battle with this unwelcome foe. She said in all her years as a cancer nurse she had never heard it put in such a way before, and wouldnt say it anymore. The doctor? His response was arrogance…told him to take what he needed and leave the rest. A year ago this last February, marked a year since having part of my pancreas removed…yea pre- cancer. 5 surgeries within a yr and a half….a wee bit of a roller coaster ride. Brother who is 5 yrs younger…thyroid, skin, lung and reocurrant thyroid cancers. Girl I gots stories…*winks*

        I live in Illinois, would soooooo love to meet you…coffee…a shot of cafe’ tequila…ok maybe just coffee…*winks* oh and I love that your daughter is gonna be travelin with you for a bit too! Ohh and FWG tshirts would be fun! Girly pink with vneck? *winks*

        (((HUGS)))
        Cyndi

  55. I had a good cry. I too lost my soul-mate, and felt such a connection with what you are going through. We must live, but when you’ve ‘had the best there is’, it’s difficult. Keep on keeping-on girl!

    • Julie,
      We’re all in this together, aren’t we? I found a quote when Chuck was in hospice that said “We’re all just walking each other home”. That’s what we did for him and that is what I think we’re all doing for one another as we create new lives after such devastating loss.

      Thanks for checking in with me here and I hope you stay with me in the backseat as my travels continue. The story is only going to get bigger, I promise you~
      alison

      • Because I know you had the same kind of powerful marriage/love that I did, I will be with you. I suspect I will gain courage from you. I am at a huge crossroads, and I’m afraid of leaving so much behind that were connected to ‘him’. But I have to, and even though common sense tells me it’s for the better, the part of me that was so much a part of him feels guilty and afraid.

        • Its so hard, isn’t it? With things both big and small. As I’ve changed up this blog and our fb page to suit what my daughter and I are doing, its been like saying goodbye to huge parts of him all over again. I hate it. And its necessary. One foot in this new life we have to create and one foot behind us.

          I wonder if it will ever get easier~

  56. Alison,
    Thought I’d drop by to say hi. If you come back to Indiana (though why anyone would do that, I don’t have a clue lol), I’d love to meet you. I’m about an hour or so north of Muncie. I have felt ever since you started blogging on WV that we have a lot in common, and in so many ways, your Chuck reminds me of my own husband, maybe it’s them both being from Indiana that gave them so many similarities, Idk. They even have a superficial resemblance to one another. I’m having a rough week. I feel like glass waiting to become a mosaic must feel, all shattered and waiting to be glued into some new shape. You are just about the only one I trust enough to share this with, and that, frankly is sad. I have a bunch of “friends” here who know me only since my husband died, so I try to keep my weepyness (maybe not an actual word, but a Kate word, so…) to a minimum. From the outside, I’m pretty sure I look “normal” (something I never aspired to, trust me) but inside…whole ‘nother ballgame. Some days I wonder if this is my new normal. Kate-in-my-head, a total trainwreck, and Kate-to-the world, an uptight yuppie-type who fulfills what is expected of her and is totally concerned with being “proper”. I don’t know if I’m obeying the “rules” because I need the structure, or because it’s easier to do what I “should” than to risk going outside the expected mold, or because it hides who I AM deeply enough that that part of me can’t get any more hurt. I’m just kinda…bland now. I used to be more…fun, hopeful, alive. I guess it’s good that these people didn’t know me then. I’m the only one who sees the changes.
    Anyway, thanks for making me feel less alone.

    • Kate,
      Oh, how my heart reaches out to you in your alone-ness and feeling of blandness. I feel so uninvested in any and everything, in spite of all this that I’m doing and will continue to do. All that I feel is Chuck’s absence and I just want him back.

      Its funny-we were in Indiana a few years ago, visiting when his dad was ill, and Chuck met a woman he’d gone to high school with and the first thing she said to him was “you were so lucky to get out of here”, meaning Indiana.

      My daughter Rachael and I will be in Indiana this summer at some point, visiting his mom and I’d so love to meet you. Let’s make a plan for that.

      Who knows where all of this will lead? I stay in the moment, in the hour, in the day-to look ahead at all is to face the rest of my life without him and I can’t bear that.

      Please stay in touch, Kate. My phone number is 609-351=5641. I’d be so pleased to talk with you~
      alison

      • This weekend is hard. Lots of flashbacky icky racing through my brain. What time zone are you in now? I’ll try to call sometime, probably tomorrow, as today is (as usual) insane.

          • I’ll try. We’re going to the viewing for my BF’s ex-FIL (they stayed friends) this afternoon. Some days it doesn’t pay to get out of bed. Things are…rough here. Not sure I’ll be here in a month (geographically, not on the planet lol) I may not have it in me to keep giving to a situation that grows more emotionally toxic by the day. I’m just not…available enough, and frankly, I’m tired of being hurt. Sorry to vent, it’s just…rough right now. It gets better, right? Anyway, hope your weekend was better than mine

  57. Hi FWG, yesterday July 1st was the 5th yr since my Daddys passing, thought Id share the memorial piece I wrote for him…safe travels girls! (((hugs)))

    In Memory of Daddy, Year 5
    July 1, 2014 at 12:27am
    So, 5 years ago last week, I woke up in the middle of the night and sat next to my Daddy who was in a hospital bed that was set up in the dining room of my parent’s home, and wept. I wanted so badly for him wake up, reach out, caress my hair, kiss my forehead, talk to me, call me Daughter even one last time, but he had already slipped into the silence that proceeds death….so I talked to him. I bared my heart to a Daddy who was always there for me, and my soul knew to the core would never be again, and I wept, deeply. It would be less than a week later when my Sissy would wake me to say that he was slipping away.

    It was 11:07am on July 1st 2009 when he left us.

    Much has happened these last 5 yrs. My brother and I faced cancer on varying fronts, the demon that took our Dad. My Sissy had the most joyous moment of becoming an Oma for the first time to a granddaughter. My brother has welcomed 4 more grandsons, and I have been blessed with an additional grandson, 3 more granddaughters and one more grandbaby on the way…all this life since Daddy passed…so many he would have loved, as he loved like no other…and so much he would have loved us through.

    5 is the number of grace, and my favorite number. I find it significant that this moment and my life at this moment, have coincided. There have been many graces even in the midst of all that life has thrown….healing within my body and heart. Life reaffirmed in birth… grandbabies that bring light, love and joy to my soul. Being able to take a time of respite, knowing transition was occurring and allowing God and life to direct my path to a new home, a new city, a new love. I’m always learning new compassions, graces, forgiveness, patience and love thru this loss.

    Life does daringly go on, even though when we lose someone so deeply loved, we cannot imagine it doing such a thing without our consent. Yet we learn to ride the waves that ebb and flow through our life, in spite of that loss. There are no limits on our grief, or the journey it takes us on. What matters is that we walk it thoroughly, so that as time slips by we will have allowed the journey to instill within us something that wasn’t there before…the seed of acceptance. This seed allows us to move on…as we are supposed to. Moving on takes many shapes and forms, from internal to external. Many times we will, along the journey, find new places within our soul that still needs to heal from the loss, but life is never constant and rarely do I find that things such as this have a definitive end…what happens is that the loss weaves itself *within* the life we are now living. It finds its place within our soul.

    This day is now a paradox of emotions for me, to have 2 things of such extreme emotions co-existing on the same day, kinda actually makes me smile…as if the ole’ Dutch man himself had a hand in it…for this day brings along with it such JOY and beauty, by one lovely soul in particular…Savaeh Rose. She is my 5th grandbaby (any surprise there, being the 5th?), and it is her actual 3rd birthday. She is bright and lovely and when she calls me Oma, my heart melts. When she says I’m your ZuZu Petal, I deeply and quickly agree, because she is. Her middle name is Rose and she is a beautiful one, reminding me of Opa’s yellow roses. Yet the reason I call her ZuZu Petal, is because of my favorite movie, It’s a Wonderful Life…after George finally realizes that who he is ripples into all of life as he knew it and that without him everything and all that he loved changed by his not being present, the first thing he looked for after he had never been born and after God returned him back to his life was ZuZu’s Petals, they anchored him. And my precious ZuZu’s presence ripples into this day changing it, adding to it; bringing JOY to it…she reminds me that there is beauty for ashes. (Isaiah 61:3)

    So, even though today is a very hard emotional day, it is one still full of grace. My middle name Ann means grace…and I was born on the 5th. Grace surrounds my life no matter what I have gone thru…and grace will lead the way.

    I Miss, and Love You Daddy til eternity…and if possible keep an eye on us all, you ole’ Dutch man. *winks*
    …til I see you again.
    Your Loving Daughter (((((HUGS)))))

  58. Saw you in the parking lot at Hannaford’s in Northwood, New Hampshire about three this afternoon and took some pictures of your car and camper that I posted on your Facebook page. I guess that was you and your mother getting in when I was leaving. It’s such a unique way of travelling. Thank you for the bright spot in my day. Made me smile.

  59. Hello Ms. Allison,

    My name is Donna, I really didn’t get to see your car, but I did met you at Wells Fargo Bank in Key West, I was your teller. You were one of the nicest person I’ve ever help. We chat a little and you hand me your card. I apologize for posting here so late, life was so hectic and busy lately, we just move from Key West to Pensacola. My husband got stationed here… and now I’m working at navy fed(still in a bank but a different dept.). I love your blog and your car.. Wish you guys safe travels. Godspeed!

    Best Regards,
    Donna S.

    • Hi Donna,
      I’m so touched that you reached out to me-and I do remember you. My daughter and I are in Key West right now, for a few days and then I’ll make my way up the Gulf coast, with a stop at McDill and possibly, Eglin, on our way to AZ where I’ll drop her off then continue on my way.

      May we all be blessed~
      alison

  60. Hi, I have seen your trailer in Lumberton, NJ. This past February, my sister and I lost our mother in February who lived across the road from where the trailer is parked. In addition, our neighbor lost her husband just a few days before my mother died, and another neighbor’s father died recently. Seems as though for a small neighborhood, many of us are grieving the loss of loved ones.

    • Janet,
      That really is so much loss to process. Next time I’m in Jersey, I hope our paths cross. There is a non-profit right near by that can support you and your sister as you grieve your mom. It’s called Tapestries of Hope and I started it with a friend years ago. TOH supports women grieving the death of their moms. My friend Alisa runs it now. Check out the website if you wish~www.tapestriesofhope.org. We also have a fb page where you can meet other daughters who have stood where you now stand. My heart goes out to you and your sister and whatever support I can offer, please let me know. My email is alison.miller@tapestriesofhope.org.

      Thank you for checking in with me here. Its good to hear from you~
      alison

  61. Hi there,

    A friend sent me a link to this blog. I am not much into blogs, but have enjoyed yours….particularly because we share a common loss, that of our spouse. My beloved husband died unexpectedly in March of this year, while we were far from home in our class B motorhome. We took an early retirement in 2007 and spent 6-9 months a year after that exploring this beautiful country in our mini-house in wheels, His death was shocking, numbing, horrific, unbelievable…all that. 7+ months later, I am healing and have begun to travel a bit in our beloved Bvan. I wish you healing and comfort, and have subscribed to your blog. Wilk watch for you on the road. Maggie

    • Maggie,
      I appreciate your response and my heart goes out to you as you grieve your husband and walk through the muck of grief. Where do you travel when you’re on the road? You’ll more than likely see me before I see you, given the color of my rig, but I would very much enjoy meeting up with you somewhere. There are so many solo women travelers on the road, and we all inspire one another.

      May your roads lead you, above all, to love~
      alison

  62. Alison…..received your newest blog post in my inbox this morning, just as requested. We are all so much more alike than we are different. I read so much of my own experience in yours. I dread coming to the end of the many tasks, at home and with the little motorhome, that Doug always did, so that I pace myself in doing them for the first time….because then, once I have done them, they are mine. 😦 The same with travel to familiar places. I am going to return to Edisto Beach State Park in SC for two weeks next March, where I will spend the first anniversary of his death. One of our favorite places in the world! and where we spent many wonderful weeks. If you’ve never been, it is a spectacular beach campground….just the other side of the dunes, so you can hear the ocean at all times. Lots of seashells…..and dolphins. 🙂 Heaven on earth. It’s a difficult journey, this one thru grief and loss, also a process and not an event. I also received, and continue to receive, a tremendous amount of support from the Airstream community we were a part of together. Strangers, mostly, who reached out in love and compassion, and basically carried me thru the darkest time of my life. I have found great solace and comfort in the words of others that I have found online, and you are now one of those. I see that my post of the 22nd is awaiting moderation….hope you or whomever moderates corrects my typo. 🙂 Thanks for sharing your story, Be well, be strong. Maggie

  63. Good morning. 🙂 I have just winterized the Interstate…by myself for the first time :(…and put it to bed for a couple of months. There are five adult children here and 9 grandchildren, so we are always home certain times of the year, and this is one of them. I hope to head south the first week of January, but it will depend on the weather. Doug drove in snow and ice, me not so much. 😦 Whenever the weather breaks, I will pack up and head out. I will first visit a cousin in MS, spend some time in LA and head along the Gulf toward the east coast. If you are in Florida for the winter, I will be in the northern part of that state by late February or so, and would love to meet you. 🙂 I am planning on a stop at a favorite campground in St, Marys, GA on my way up the coast to Edisto Beach. Doug was stricken there, the owners and fellow campers were wonderful, helped me, cared for our dog. He never regained consciousness and died when taken off life support 3 days later. So, I want to touch base with them. If you have not been to the low-country area of SC, it is a delight, and one of our favorite areas. I am reserved at Edisto Beach SP, in the beach campground, March 8-22, then at an Airstream rally south of Charlotte, NC starting on the 25th thru the weekend. Then, head toward home. So, that is my loose itinerary, which is how we like to travel. 🙂 We can make our paths cross, if we set our minds to it. You might still be able to get a site at Edisto Beach in March, if you want to join me there. 🙂 It is a spectacularly beautiful, peaceful and special place.

    Take care,

    Maggie

    • Maggie,
      I have no words for what you went through with your husband-it brings tears to my heart that such sorrow comes to any of us.

      I don’t drive in bad weather either, and my T@b isn’t fit for serious weather conditions, so I’m glad to be in southern FL now, as I hear of weather in places we just left weeks ago.

      December will see me and my daughter in AZ, so that I can drop her off for Christmas, spend a couple of weeks with the kids and grand-daughter and after that, I honestly have no idea. Staying in warm weather is about all I do know for after! But I would dearly love to meet you at some point~
      Thanks so, so much for reaching out to me-we can all keep each other going~
      alison

  64. Alison,

    I have spent many long and lonely evenings over the past months, reading other people’s words on my IPad, trying to come to terms with death, loss, the need to restructure my life, etc. I would like to share some of what I have found, here and there, aa you may find them helpful.

    “We aren’t prepared for the reality of trauma, pain and grief. It’s an injustice to those we care about, maybe some day ourselves, to assume that resilience must mean you’ve “moved on”, or gotten over stuff. More than likely, the stuff we go through becomes a part of us.

    Resilience can’t be measured by how happy you are. It’s not required you have “closure”.

    Sometimes resilience just means you’ve endured and survived.

    Sometimes resilience means you stop hiding your pain.

    Sometimes resilience just means you share your story so there’s less secrecy around all our suffering.”

    ~Sameet Kumar

    • Maggie,
      This speaks so honestly of what grief is, what resilience is. Even way back when I worked as a grief counselor, I despised the word closure and how easily, and quickly, it is thrown around. The word is meaningless to me, as I know it is to so many.

      Thank you for the thoughtfulness of your response~
      alison

  65. I saw you a few weeks ago along interstate 80 in central PA and snapped pictures of your vehicle and trailer – initially because your trailer was SO unique and totally adorable, then because I read your vehicle and wanted to know the story. “Love is my color” resonates so strongly with me, and today when I finally got around to keying it into my browser, I cried in reading about the special color’s name and meaning. I don’t have wise words to share with you, but I love what you’re doing in both traveling and sharing, and I hope the journey ultimately brings you comfort. I’m going to share your site with a dear friend who lost her 4 year old daughter in October ’14 and is, obviously, still swallowed by grief even as she strives to put one foot in front of the other each day.
    Maybe next time I see you, we’ll both be at a rest stop. I don’t know how you’d feel about random stranger hugs, but I’d love to find out.

    • Serenity,
      I live for hugs and have thought, at times, of positioning myself along busy sidewalks in order to give/receive even more of them. Thankfully, I am the recipient of many hugs as I travel and I hope if you and I are fortunate enough to meet along the road, that hugs will be on the menu. I’d be pleased for you to share my site with your friend. How blessed she is to have you as such a caring friend in her life as she figures her way through her own grief~
      alison

  66. Hello I somehow found your facebook then this blog. I just lost my husband this past march. Your blog and facebook. have been some comfort to see and read. I have been a lost soul since his death. I was thinking I need to get out there and see the things that we were going to do when he retired. It’s hard for me to adjust as we were together 40 years and he was there one day then gone from me the next day. I was an independent women once then came married life and the kids and grandkids. I need to find my gypsy spirt again. it’s just so new and I’v been told don’t do anything or make magor decisions for a year.I have been
    checking into teardrop campers, thinking I could travel around that way. That might have been how I came across you and your story.Glad I came accross this blog.

    • Sonya,
      I’m so glad to hear from you, and my heart goes out to you as you grieve the death of your husband. I’m humbled that any of my words make a difference for you; this is an impossible thing to go through, isn’t it? And yet, we wake up each day and we do what needs to be done and then time passes and we look back in shock that it has.

      My T@b Teardrop is a cocoon for me at the end of a day of driving, and I wouldn’t know how to do this grief in any other way, honestly. If you do decide to get a trailer of any sort, and go out on the road, know that there are many other women, also widows, out here doing the same thing. You won’t be alone.

      Any support I can offer you, please just holler out~
      alison

  67. Thank you Alison. I am keeping busy getting my house in order. Not sure what I will do. Just taking one day at a time. Going through my everyday life just being numb. I will keep reading your blog . You have such a way with words. They express the way I feel if I were able to express my feelings in the written word and not just in my minds eye. Thank you for that.

  68. My little son and I saw you parked near our house. Beautiful story, beautiful purpose, beautiful love. If you need a coffee, lunch partner, or a tarot reading while your in town, do be in touch. I would gladly gift you any of those things if it would help you on your path. Hugs to you!

    • Lauren, I’m just now getting time to come here and check messages and found yours. You’re in Indiana, I’m thinking? Are you, perhaps, one of Zelmeda’s across the street neighbors? I wish we’d had the chance to meet. Stay in touch and I’ll let you know when I’ll be back there (because it’s certain that I will). And thank you for taking the time to write to me here~

  69. Allison, I have not passed you and pink magic yet on the highways but we have been close. I was in Boise Idaho in the summer of 2014 when you and your daughter traveled I 84 heading east. You posted pictures of the festival that you happened upon there in town. I travel in a fiberglass trailer painted like a watermelon . I have a home base in western PA near I 80 but I travel the country frequently as a way of dealing with grief and loss. Its been nearly 5 years and I cant honestly say that its gotten any easier. I admire your willingness to share your pain and try and bring grief out of the shadows. It is definitely under rated! I just want you to know that if you spot me in my travels that you are in my thoughts and prayers. MB

    • I know of your trailer!! I’ve seen pictures of it and love it. Thank you so much for taking the time to write to me here. There’s just nothing easy about any of this, is there? I don’t know that it ever gets easier, really, and I don’t know what hope or healing even looks like and I can’t bear the idea of maybe another 30 years without my husband, so I just zip my mind right back to the here and now. What is your husband’s name? (I refuse to say “was”). Please stay in touch with me-we are sister widows…
      alison

  70. I had to take a moment from my book browsing at the White Tanks Library, to look up your blog. What was that pink car all about? Safe Travels!

  71. Hi Allison Well I have tried to follow you via this page a your FB It will be a year on March 11, that I lost my husband. I cannot believe it’s been that long. I like to check in with you just to see what your up to. It help’s to know that life will go on . You have so many wonderful memories to help you through.. I’m still stuck in my home. Spent the whole year paint and doing stuff around here just to keep busy. Not sure what I want to do at thai point and time. I would love to travel. If you ever find yourself in So. Ca. you have an open intvite to park your Pink Magic in my driveway when your passing threw. ;o)
    Would love to talk to you.

    • Sonya, how good to hear from you. I now what you mean about keeping busy; believe it or not, even though I’m on the road so often, and seemingly doing so much, keeping busy is what so much of it is about for me also. I keep a tv show running on my computer every night, all night long, just so that, when I wake, which I do often, there is noise in the background, and it soothes me back to sleep for another hour or so. You just had the first anniversary of your husband’s death; did you do anything in particular to remember him/it? I’m closing in on 3 years and my mind can barely comprehend that amount of time. I’ve been going to counseling while here in AZ, and will continue up to the time I leave to return to the road in mid-April. I don’t know if it’s helped or not…it has in some ways, I’m sure, but, in the end, the missing-ness and the sadness is still present in a huge way. I’ll be honest with you; even though it might look on the outside that I’m doing all these things and how amazing is that…on the inside, all I do is think of Chuck and our life together and the fact that he’s dead. I don’t say that to be a downer, but to maybe reassure you if that’s where you are. He was my life, and it’s very hard without him, in every way. At some point I know I’ll be back out in California, and I would very much like to take you up on your offer for parking in your driveway. Thanks again for taking the time to write to me, and I apologize that I took the time I did to respond. Trying to get my shit enough together where I have energy and focus and time enough to write is a continuing challenge to me. So I doubly appreciate the time you took. Wishing you nothin’ but Love, always…alison

      • Good to hear from you Allison, I did not know if your go the message or are just so busy. I had joined a widows group and went for the first time about a week ago. I had to leave early as it was overwhelming for me. I have spent this passed year pretty much painting and changing the inside of my house. Boy the year just went by so fast. But I am fortunate I can still live in my home. I would like to sell it in a year or so and move when I can get some equity out of it.. I really need a change in my life. I feel my life was but a dream all those 40-42 years with my love Tim. My oldest son came by and spent 2 days. He mowed the yard for me. I could have done it but glad he came by. What’s hard is I get so mad that Tim never got to enjoy some relaxing time being retired. It just is’t fair. I traded in my Jeep we had because it was so hard looking at it . Like a stab in my heart. I have a Ram 1500 agas hog. I thought I wanted to buy a small trailer and travel around, but that is on hold for now. Maybe camping though. I have not even thought of counseling just not me. I know just what you mean about going through the motions which to others seems like your ok but I’m a zombie inside. I find it hard to listen to songs we loved it makes me cry. I know it must be so hard on the road all the time, although you could spend a lifetime traveling around the US and not see everything. Like I said if you fine yourself in Ca. Your most welcome to park in my driveway. I have a small house nothing fancy. But still have a roof over my head so I am grateful for that. Would love to meet you . I live in Riverside Ca. don’t know if I had mentioned which city. PS my cell # 951 5438319 I text but very slowly I still have a flip phone. ;o) I will also keep your number also and give you a text. Hugs Sonya

  72. Saw you on the NJ turnpike headed south around exit 6 today and looked up your story, you are amazing! I lost my Mom to cancer when I was in college and try to turn grief into positivity as well. Keep on touring! Love from NYC.

    • Hilary, thank you for checking in with me here-I love my support community. My mom also died of cancer-that was in 1996, and it set me on my road of striving to be creative with grief. My Odyssey of Love is a gift to my beloved husband, Chuck, and it gives me the opportunity to meet so many people on the road, and to hear from those who check in with me here. So, again, I say thank you, and I hope you’ll check in on my travels from time to time~

  73. Just saw you driving north on 93 in NH and looked up your story. Thank you so much for what you are doing. Grieving is such a lonely process – only made lonelier by the fact that most people can’t handle seeing someone grieve. My brother died when I was 24 and I actually lost friends who couldn’t handle the fact that I was devastated. I have spent the 12 years since his death attempting to show people what healthy grieving looks like. I talk about my brother (and the anxiety I have dealt with since his death), cry about him, and celebrate his life every day. So glad you are honoring your husband and your love story this way. Thank you.

    • Meredith, thank you so, so, much for checking in with me here; it truly does mean so much to me. And I’m humbled that you shared part of your story with me, about your dearest brother. I know that grief also; my younger brother, Kysa, the one who was next to me in age, died in 1996 of Hodgkins cancer, followed 6 months later by my mom, of breast cancer. Those 2 deaths took me into my hospice career as a bereavement facilitator, and gave me the eye to do what I wanted to do during my beloved husband’s hospice time, in that I learned that I didn’t have to follow the so called normal path of doing things. I honor you for refusing to be silent about your grief. Our world needs those who are authentic, who educate what healthy grieving looks like. It isn’t easy, I know. Please stay in touch with me here and let me know how you’re doing, and I’d love to hear more of your brother, if you wish to share. Wishing your days to be filled with the love you and he shared~

  74. My husband and I saw you on the road somewhere between RI and MA yesterday and your unique pink caravan captured our imaginations… Thank you for sharing your incredible life journey. Thank you for the reminder to treasure each other every day. Sending you hugs from afar, wherever you go!

    P.S. What exactly does ‘moonstruck’ mean/ mean to you?

    • Hi Sara, thank you so much for checking in with me here, and for your words of encouragement and support. It is very much my mission, since Chuck’s death, to bring awareness of the Love that lives around us, and, very often, right next to us, and we do need to treasure it each and every day. MoonStruck is part of the name of a business that my daughter and I have, and I added that to the Happily Homeless that Chuck and I called ourselves as we traveled together in our final 4 years. The moon is reminiscent of so many things to me, but the two primary things are that I have such vivid memories of he and I sitting outside watching it in various places around the country, and, two…the “MoonStruck” in my website name represents the telling of our love story as Happily Homeless. I hope you’ll stay aboard with me as I continue my Odyssey of Love; my community of support is a strong one and fuels me every day~

  75. My 14 year old son and I saw you in Little Rock, Arkansas just now at Markham and University. I hope you like our home town. It has some wonderful hidden treasures such as Pinnacle Mountain and the Big Dam Bridge. We are proud of our home, we hope you enjoy yourself here! We expect you will meet some very kind people.

    I read that you used to do hospice grievance work focusing on women who had lost their mothers. My mom died on 10/11/15 after many years of living with dementia. Yesterday would have been her 81st birthday. Maybe Mom sent you to my path!! 🙂

    Take care and happy travels!!

    P.S. My son says you are intriguing!!

    • Linda, forgive me for my delayed response! In the time since you wrote, I did climb Pinnacle Peak with my son, who is stationed here, and crossed the Big Dam Bridge. My heart goes out to you as you find your way through this life without your mom. The job that I left in NJ, when Chuck and I began our Happily Homeless travels, was actually as founder of a non-profit that offered bereavement support groups to daughters grieving the death of their moms, called Tapestries of Hope. I’m still involved with aspects of it, long distance. A belated happy birthday to your mom, and I hope you, and your son, stay with me in my travels. I post daily on my fb page of the same name as my blog if you’d like to check in with me. Nothin’ but Love to you~

  76. Hi we love your story! You pulled up next to my kids and I at Walmart in North Little Rock, AR. We couldn’t help but notice your car. As we backed out we noticed your website on the back of your car so we looked it up and we are so touched by your story! God bless you! Love and prayers to you on your journey! Miss Peaches and family

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