Life by Design

Life by Design

At this moment we have no permanent address, but that will probably change someday.

(Probably. We’re open to learning otherwise.)

Haven’s Path

We imagine there’s a locale just for us: a place we’ll choose to stop at and make uniquely ours, a community in which we’ll buy or build our forever-home and never move again. A place we call home that isn’t a product of life’s happenstance, routines, or habits that keeps us docile and tethered to one place. That’s the “Haven” we’ve been imagining for years, and that’s why this journey is “Haven’s Path.”

It could be in New England somewhere. We’ve been exploring there for years, including 2019’s “Second Summer” trip that we chronicled here.

It could be any number of other places across this continent, and scouting those is one of the reasons we’re rolling across it – but not the only reason at all. The path is what matters; finding a place for Haven would be bonus.

And although we’re leaving many possibilities for serendipity, we have identified a few must-have criteria. Haven must:

  • Have four discernible seasons (sorry, most southern states)
  • Be non-allergenic to Rachel (sorry, Virginia, Pennsylvania … and probably Colorado)
  • Not be oppressively humid (sorry, southeastern US)
  • Have heights to ascend – even big hills will do (sorry, most of the Midwest)
  • Produce enough sky-water to grow things (sorry, arid regions)
  • Have access to high-speed internet (because, we’re not savages!)
  • Have a striving, neighborly-but-not-up-in-our-business, locally civic-minded populace (sorry, Hartsel, CO)
  • Be beautiful

There’s a long, long list beyond those. 

And the point is we’ve chosen every criterion on that long list. We’ve designed what we want Haven to be like, and although we’ll take all the time we need to find it, we’re not waiting one more minute to continue the search.


We’ve had enough waiting.

That’s the way too many people live: one foot in front of the next, dutifully, joylessly. Sleepwalking in daytime and waiting for respite. Waiting for better circumstances. Waiting for someday.


But knowing there’s something better.

Yet instead of living that “something better,” we all see too much life spent in the commonplace. Too much ordinary, routine. Habitual. Repetitive. Obligatory.

Life in the commonplace is life wasted.

The uncommon-place is better: the one where we play more, laugh raucously, and get dirty. That “life like recess” place where we skin our knees and hang upside down; where we pick teams, swing high, and fall down panting and delighted; where we don’t play scared.

The place we choose instead of the default.

Victims of Circumstance

Too often adults play scared, if they play at all.

But we are trying hard to recapture what’s missing for most grown-ups. What we’ve been taught to overcome. What we’ve forgotten.

That we were all children once.

The joyful truth is that those children are still inside, waiting for recess, but they are being told by some adult (society, and too often ourselves) to wait for our promised turn, to walk instead of run, to look both ways, to defer, to slow down, to be practical, to be grown up.

Because most of us don’t have the luxury of abandoning responsibilities. We have lives, families, jobs, bills, children, circumstances.

We all have overpowering circumstances, and that’s the problem: they overpower us. We become our circumstances.

We become circumstantial.

Merriam-Webster defines what that means:

  1. Belonging to, consisting in, or dependent on circumstances.
  2. Pertinent but not essential : incidental.

“Dependent on circumstances.” “Not essential.” “Incidental!”

Incidental to your own life?

We say no.

The Opposite of Circumstantial

Life by design is the opposite of circumstantial. Life by design is life on purpose.

And among all the other conditions of place and experience and discovery that we’re designing on purpose, we’re also designing our life to have you in it.

Come play with us.


    1. Hi Noam. Thanks!! Yes, it’s our picture. It was taken at the Rockland Breakwater in Maine when we stayed at the Samoset Resort in early February this year. It’s right across the harbor from Owl’s Head Lighthouse, so the views were fantastic and we tried to capture the moment on film. What we couldn’t capture, however, was just how ICY cold it was on the waterfront!! Brrrrr!

Tell us what you think

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.