“Cash us Ousside, how bout dah”

Hosting people at our house is one of my passions! If I could dream of the perfect day, it would be my house full of family and friends, eating, laughing, playing games, and doing life together. One of my biggest (1st world problems) is the size of my home. It’s small and quaint with little room for everyone I love. I’m in this constant battle with living a minimalist lifestyle, and at the same time wanting 50 people at my house. In the midst of this tug-of-war game I find a very simple solution: Go OUTSIDE. Yes, I know,crazy right? But here’s how we got to “Go outside?!” 

In the later 1800’s the light bulb was invented. Creating a more efficient light source than ever before decreasing the dependency of sunlight for production. Now some spaces in your home don’t even require a window. 

In the early 1900’s the air conditioner was invented (thank God). For the first time in our world, families were spending more time inside their home than ever before. 

Mid 1920’s birthed the garage door that most Americans use at some point(detached garage, storage units, shops, etc…). Now we literally don’t even have to walk outside to get into our homes. 

At the same time, the TV was also invented. This made it possible to find entertainment in your living room that historically required you to leave your house to find. For example: movies, plays, musicals, comedians, concerts, & town halls. 

I love all of the above! Wouldn’t go a day without any of it. However, it is important to understand that the evolution of technology has allowed our brain to think bigger on possessions and smaller On relationships. While sometimes that is a good thing, it also can create an unhealthy cycle of more things, less relationships. 

So in my world, instead of getting frustrated by the size of my house, I just say “Go Outside”. My home just gained 7,000 sq feet. This alone has saved us thousands in home costs! In fact it’s a goal of mine to never own a home that is over 1400 square feet. Just based on the fact that a smaller house forces me to own less, and live simply. I love people way more than my home, and I love my home! If I can spend more time with people and less time working to pay for a bigger place that gives me nothing in return, I’m gonna do that! 

Spending the majority of our time outside, especially when we have guests, allows my focus to be on what matters (the people), instead of what doesn’t(the size of my home).  It’s helped me realize the importance of doing life with others now instead of waiting until we “get a bigger place”. No tonight we light the fire pit, grab some lawn chairs, and go outside. Bigger isn’t always better.

Caitie Brown 

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Give Them Inspiration 

So many things inspire me as an adult! Sometimes it’s a podcast, a good book, music, Gary Vaynerchuk, or my family, but most of the time it’s simply being outside. Whether it’s going for a walk, driving down the country side, or going on an adventure, I always find inspiration when I am outside. 

Watching this lil man ride his bike after school also inspires me. Mostly because I see him come alive while racing away! It’s his first taste of freedom. When his hands hit the handlebars, he is a police officer chasing after badguys or a motor cross Star going for the gold!  His imagination takes off and he is in his own world. When we stay on the inside of our 4 walls it limits our imagination. We lose inspiration and forget how to be creative. When Caidon goes outside it forces him to be creative. Video games can’t pre-determine his character. He determines what his characters look like, What color pants and shirts they wear, what mission he will go on, and what the outcome is! Inspiration is something that people are losing more and more of. The beautiful thing about nature is that there is never a day that is the same. The sunset is always different, the clouds are ever-changing & the rainbows have a different end. My prayer for him is that he never stops being inspired, and he always strives to be an inspiration! 

Life is Messy, Do it Anyway. 

Texas adventure was a bust! Lake Lewisville was not our best decision. As we lay here thankful to be at home, I am reflecting. Reflecting on the disrespect some people have for others and nature, and trying to figure out how to do a  180 on the outcome of our fun Camp out.

This peaceful image is deceiving. A birthday party until 3:30 AM did not make for an exciting morning filled with hiking, camp breakfast, or fishing. It was filled with stress, quick cleanup, and HURTS DONUTS (which were amazing!). The disappointment sucked. How in the world could I make this worth while?


Then I realized that we can all learn from this. Caidon will remember how that birthday party kept waking him up, and he will remember the trash that was left behind. He won’t forget how he didn’t get his camp breakfast or get to go hiking with PaPaw.

He will want to be better. He will know that life isn’t perfect. It’s messy, and he knows that not everything will go as planned.

Even though it was a five minute stop at the Scenic Turnout, it was a little dose of beauty we needed to conclude our weekend! You make the best of it. No matter how disappointed you may be, you know that God never changes and he is there.

Life can be messy and inconvenient but we do it anyway

 

Free Therapy!

This past weekend our family spent the majority of Saturday & Sunday outside. We took to some local trails around our city, and went on our little adventure together. It lowers my stress level, helps me gain patience, allows me to teach my son about nature and God’s creations, and it forces me to to put down the screen and live my real life. Making real memories. We are happy out there! In the forest finding make believe critters, and hunting bad guys. Getting vitamin D, exercise, therapeutic scenery, and quality time with my family makes time move a little slower. And the best part: it costs us NOTHING! God gives us this beautiful thing called nature to help us relax and unwind, and it’s beautifully free. When we are out there, there is no yelling, tripping over toys, or being consumed by to do projects. It’s just us and God. And that’s exactly how he intended us  to be.

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