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The New Homesmiths Series & Cleveland Film Fest

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We have some really exciting news to share here at The Wild Drive Life!

Apartment Therapy (AT) launched a new six episode mini-documentary series called “The New Homesmiths” and Ben, Moose and I are a part of it!

Our episode is also an official selection at the Cleveland International Film Festival!

The New Homesmiths

Dear Jenna Photography
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The inspiration behind creating is often times to inspire ourselves and others to think, reflect and connect; to start a conversation. This series is no exception. 

Rebecca Blumhagen, Director of AT Originals reached out to us last fall to share the series concept and ask us to take part. US?! REALLY? 🙂

Her and her team aimed to dig deeper into the heart alternative living with The New Homesmiths. They focus on the people and their real stories which is what we try to do with the words and images we put out there to the world too. We were honored they thought of us and didn’t hesitate for a second to say YES.

The six episodes (released every Tuesday starting on March 20) introduce you to several creative and inspiring people who defined their own sense of home, comfort and success for themselves in all sorts of spaces — even an airplane! Subscribe to their YouTube to watch the first episode and tune in for the rest over the next few weeks.

Who Knew Iowa would be so memorable?

The crew in our bus!

We met Rebecca and her crew at her family’s farm in the middle of Iowa, where she grew up. What a beautiful, peaceful place! It was a perfect spot to meet after visiting our friends in Michigan and Minnesota.

We may have just breezed through Iowa otherwise but now the state is connected to a great memory for us. Traveling for us evolved to be RARELY about places, it’s about the people we meet.

The positivity and natural connection we felt with the whole crew on that chilly day of filming was a highlight of our trip, of our whole alternative living experience to date, really.

This experience meant a lot to us because we felt for the first time, after several blogs, articles and interviews over the past couple of years, our story was being told in a way that resonates on a much deeper level.

YES, we live in a 1989 Chevy B6P bus conversion, YES it’s full of reclaimed lumber and YES we’re off-grid, — BUT WHY did we do this, what has this experience brought out in us, as individuals and partners? Rebecca told THAT story so well.

Our Episode: “We Live in a Prison Bus”

We were asked recently if we, at this stage in our experience, could ever go back to the way that our lives were before, which were really comfortable. Without hesitation we said no. Not because there’s anything wrong with what we had going on before, but it didn’t feel this close to US as things do now.

We’ve seen and felt too much in the three years since buying this old bus and paying off our debt. We’ll always live deliberately and encourage others to do the same, whatever that means and looks like for THEM. If we’re able to continue to grow with open hearts and acceptance for ourselves and others, well, that’s a win! 🙂

The episode goes live on Tuesday, March 26 on Apartment Therapy’s Youtube channel.

We discuss the WHY behind our alternative living journey in our prison bus conversion and the hard work we put in to create this period of flexibility in our lives.

Subscribe here to be notified and watch ours and other episodes!

Cleveland International Film Festival Selection

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Dear Jenna Photography

Rebecca called us on our two-week van trip in February to share the other bit of GREAT news about our collaboration. The mini documentary episode featuring Ben and I is an official selection at the Cleveland International Film Festival!


We didn’t expect this at all but were happy to delay our Appalachian Trail thru hike by a couple weeks to attend the event later this month.

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It is weird that I would do this all over again in a heartbeat?!

“After making some drastic lifestyle changes and paying off 100k worth of debt in three years, Ben and Meag purchase a prison bus, renovate it into a tiny home, and set out to traverse the country to discover what they want to do with their newfound freedom.”

Screenings of “The Wild Drive Life” are scheduled for April 1 and 2 in downtown Cleveland, OH. We’ll be there! If you’re in the area, please come see us! We may also be scheduling a meetup and/or Q&A, stay tuned on our Instagram for more details.

Home is…

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Our home is a reflection of US. It has its quirks but it’s OURS. Rachel Halsey Photography

Apartment Therapy embraces the fact that home looks and feels differently to everyone and so do we. I’ll never say that everyone should live in a bus or travel full time because there is no one right way to live well.

In 14 months and 20,000 miles we built the community and network we were missing in our stationary lives before the bus. We peeled back the layers with the goal to discover WHAT we wanted to do next and WHERE.

Ben and I strive to share a message of writing YOUR own story, however that may look and feel, we’re all different. Whether it’s entrepreneurship, the 9-5, living large or living tiny, travel or rooting yourself in a community — there is SOMETHING for everyone at any stage of their journey to choose, pursue and learn from — to find themselves in.

Beyond the Hashtags

Ahhh, sweet memories…

Tiny living is often over glamorized on social media. Sometimes you’ll see other ways of living talked down about in the process which breaks my heart. One size does not fit all.

We’re all on our own paths and all we can do is make the most of what we have to work with. I think my Dad used to tell me that! He was right.

Still, on a daily basis we’re presented with filtered images of perfection paired with little substance regarding the WHY and HOW behind the scenes.

This is another reason why discussions like the ones in these six episodes are SO needed! Live and let live.

For all it’s faults, there are so many deeply POSITIVE aspects to social media and that’s what we choose to focus on. We’ve met forever friends through these platforms and I’m sure more to come in the future. So, THANK YOU, all the truth speakers out there for opening up these deeper conversations that prove we’re all doing just fine.

Keeping it Real

Full bus, full hearts!

Diving into this community in a face to face way proved that different as we all are, we’re in the same boat of life just taking it day by day. Let’s break down those walls. We can learn something from everyone!

We’re very conscious of what we put out there because I’ve felt that dark cloud roll in after absorbing too much of the seemingly unattainable images of perfection online. Have you?

I encourage you to take a break from the squares, connect with yourself and others away from the screen. In the past six months, I gradually adjusted the online portion of my day to reset these feelings. We don’t post as often but what we do post means a lot to us. I’ve unfollowed the stuff that doesn’t resonate or add to my life without any hesitation. I limit my screen time and have since felt much better. You have to do what you have to do!

Phew! I really had to share that, thanks for reading. 🙂 Questions or just want to chat about how you’ve been affected by social media? Email us!

What’s Next for us?

If you trace back a few years — all I’ve EVER wanted to do is to positively impact others with my work and to be my goofy self. I know that sounds super vague, but, it’s the truth and Ben, thankfully is on a similar path with me, with his own individual passions.

That focus has been a guide for us all year. The WHY was already set, it’s a matter of deciding WHAT (which I think we’ve done!); bridging our passions to create something together. In the past couple months we felt a real tipping point in our clarity around what we want and where, which was our original goal in traveling around in our bus in the first place. STAY TUNED BECAUSE IT’S SO GOOD…

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The New Homesmiths Premiere — March 26 on AT’s YouTube

Cleavland Film Festival (and our six year wedding anniversary!) — late March & early April. To buy tickets for our screenings, click here.

Appalachian Trail Thru-Hike — April to August-ish, Georgia to Maine. Check out our top gear list so far here.

We’re going to wait a wee bit longer to share what venture we’re focusing on after our hike. IT’S SO GOOD THOUGH, we promise!

Thank YOU for your love and support in Ben, Moose and my journey for the past few years. We’re so glad you’re here with us.

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