Hello! We are the Wise family – a.k.a., Elliott, Stephanie, Avery and Addy, a.k.a., the clan behind Out of Boundaries. Welcome. We are so glad you’re here.
You can learn more about each of us individually on our about page or on our Instagram account, where we post more day-to-day updates on our travels, our lifestyle and our values. Here on the blog, we’ll share about all those same things but in a much more in-depth way.
Our hope for this blog is that we can connect with you in a way that is as personal as possible over the interwebs, and to share our story and what we are learning as we take this journey. We also hope that our story can resonate with you in some way – whether it’s because you’re also traveling full-time, or because you want to do so someday, or because you have similar values (or very different values), or because you love to travel, or even just because you like reading other people’s stories. I know I do. It’s a simple, age-old way of getting to know someone. We hope we can do our best to have you get to know us, and for us to get to know you, too.
So, what exactly are we doing, anyway? And why?
Let’s back up to late January 2018. It was another dreary Minnesota winter day and after the 1,452nd look out the window at the white-winter-wonderland-turned-gray-sludgy-snowscape flanked by cold clouds and bare trees, I walked into Elliott’s office to find him researching RVs, as one does. He was looking up the Minneapolis RV Show and whether we could attend because, you know, that’s a fun thing to do when winter is lasting forever and ever. None of this surprised me, as I often find Elliott on his computer researching things (once, he had no fewer than 100 tabs open on his desktop all about pillows). What did surprise me were the words that came out of my mouth.
“What if we lived in an RV?” I asked. His eyes widened – but not in a fearful way. Instead, it was as if a lightbulb appeared above both our heads and the light shone so blindingly bright, and yet, we could finally see for the first time in a very long time.
See, this was the start of one of many conversations we’d been having in the year prior about making a big change in our lives. We knew something was on the horizon for us – we just didn’t know what yet. Elliott was working a full-time job as a physician assistant, I was working part-time as a recipe development consultant and together we were raising two young kids in a house we’d just built in a new neighborhood north of the Twin Cities. We had a fresh-cut lawn (in the summer, anyway). We had a garage full of trinkets and tools. We had a double-door fridge and a walk-in pantry stacked with food, several flat-screen TVs, new West Elm furniture, a playset in the backyard, friendly neighbors, lots of friends, lots of stability.
But it all felt… stale.
It’s not that this life wasn’t enough for us; it’s that it wasn’t the right life for us. But we weren’t yet sure what was the “right” life.
I know this sounds crazy, and to this day I still can’t wrap my head around this, but in that moment, in Elliott’s office, with the gray streaming in through the windows, our bodies and minds tired from living this uninspired life, we just knew. Yes. This is it. This is the answer we’ve been looking for.
This is the life change we needed. By doing this, we could remove all the “junk” that surrounded us in our lives, all the weight carried from having a big house and lots of things – anything that didn’t fulfill us or bring us closer together as a family. We could travel and see amazing things, yes, but we could also free ourselves from the boundaries we self-inflicted in the first place – the boundaries of the traditional American Dream. We wanted to be on the other side of those boundaries, to see where life could take us. We wanted to pursue a new American Dream.
So, in the span of five months, we sold our house, sold almost all our belongings, purchased an RV, renovated the RV and set off on June 29, 2018 for our adventure. It’s been every bit as much of the whirlwind you’d expect.
Our plan is to travel the country, not with any specific agenda (e.g., visit all 59 National Parks, travel through all 50 states, etc.), but with a hope and desire that this lifestyle will strengthen our family bond, assert our personal values and allow us to have more fun, more freedom, more time to breathe and be in nature and embrace all its beauty. We don’t hope to be preachy or presumptuous or expect that everyone will accept this way of alternative living. We just want to share our story along our way, and if you want to follow along, we welcome you.
Let the adventure begin.