Traveling with 12 kids in an RV

Grady Kellogg throwing a Flywheel in his Jackson Kayak on Short Creek Falls in Alabama. Photo credit: Susie Kellogg / Unstoppable TravelingMom

The word nomad has been used to describe us, but I don’t see it fitting our family.  We consider ourselves to be some of the most blessed people on the face of the earth.  We have 12 healthy, strong, smart, beautiful and incredibly fun children, we travel in a 36’ RV eleven months out of every year and we love love LOVE life!

Maybe we are a sort of modern nomad, living life without a fixed address, sure, but having a home none-the-less. We are a family, our home is wherever we may be.  I’m certain we could make our home a cozy, love filled tent, an array of hammocks, a huge mansion and yes, even a 36’ RV!

Maybe, as Bob Dotson claimed, we “would have been first in line on the Oregon Trail, we would have fit right in with the folks in covered wagons.”  You see, we don’t settle for what has been thrown our way by the universe.  We seek the extraordinary for ourselves.  We set off on this particular dream for the same reason as the pioneers … Freedom from Ordinary Lives.

12 Kids in an RV

12 kids in an rv

Dally & Kenny Kellogg enjoying their Disco-Beds in Tennessee. Photo credit: Susie Kellogg / Unstoppable TravelingMom

Which leads me to a thought I had the other night when talking with a reporter.  He asked if we had found ourselves yet and if this journey would end once we did.  I hesitated.  Is that was this was about?  Were we, in fact, on an individual self-finding mission?

I think this sounds ridiculous.  It sounded Oprah-esque, something some psychiatrist would make up to sell a book.  I mean, seriously.  Do we have some semblance of ourselves off in hiding somewhere that we must find before we can be satisfied with life?  If that’s the case I figure mine would be on a Hawaiian beach somewhere surfing the heck out of some waves, tan and young.  “No, no”, I told him, “We aren’t seeking our true selves, we are creating ourselves.  Minute by minute, hour by hour, we are creating ourselves.”

Forging Our Own Path

12 kids in an RV

Elly Kellogg showing off her breath holding skills at the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool. Photo credit: Susie Kellogg / Unstoppable TravelingMom

We learned long ago that we were in control of our own destiny, that we were the authors of our own reality.  To imply that we are in search of ourselves, suggests that we are not living an authentic life now.  And to accept that means that I have realized my greatest fear — that we would become static and accepting of the status quo.

We’ll never let that happen, you know.  Instead, we revel in the freedom of being the sculptor, the artist, the storyteller of our own lives and being the teacher, the mentor in our children’s.

Instead of teaching them to accept the cards they’ve been dealt and to turn lemons into lemonade we have chosen to show them how to be driven to accept nothing less than exceptional.  Keep the good, throw out the bad and keep forging ahead.

We Are Unstoppable

A dead-end means climb higher, swim deeper or drill a tunnel directly through!  Don’t ask permission, just do.  Don’t let obstacles stop you … always move forward.

12 kids in an rv

Susie & Cardy Kellogg at the Golden Whitewater Park in Golden, Colorado. Photo credit: Susie Kellogg / Unstoppable TravelingMom

After all, we only have one life to live and I want to teach my children that merely existing is an affront to the life you have been afforded.  We are meant to do great things and to make a real difference in the world around us.  We are meant to wake every morning excited for what the day holds and to pass this excitement on to others.

The RV lifestyle offers us the opportunity to teach our children to be resilient, faithful and adaptable.  I love everything it stands for and everything it offers our young family.  Freedom, flexibility, education, and adventure are just a few of the benefits we exploit in our daily lives.

While we may someday live in a sticks and bricks home, we will continue to write our own script, follow our dreams and encourage our children to be true to themselves.

Creating a dream life is limited only by your own imagination. By embracing this life while our kids are still young, we are able to see the world through their eyes … and through their eyes we see nothing but possibilities and hope!