Dec 28, 2017


We wanted to break our silence to let our friends and family  know that we gave birth to a beautiful baby boy a few days ago.  We also wanted to let all 5 of our faithful readers know that we're still alive.  To everyone who has called or sent texts, we promise someday we'll get back to you, but for now here's proof in a photo that it’s true.

After some debate we finally settled on the name for our son.  The first name Charlie we originally decided on at some point during our time in Central or South America.  For some reason the name really grew on us and has stuck ever since.  Shannon's sister named her newborn Charles earlier this month so we hesitated, but eventually we said screw it and decided her kid can always change his name if he doesn't like the confusion with his cousin.  Maybe they'll have to cage fight to decide who gets to go by Charlie.  We're starting his MMA training now just in case.

Aug 1, 2017

Hit The Ground Running & TOWN Magazine Feature

The pace has definitely picked up around here which means we spend even less time online and we're still working on adjusting to the daily grind.  Not only are we halfway through our second pregnancy, we are also in the middle of moving to a different house and downsizing once again.  I can't stress how therapeutic it is to get rid of the junk that had accumulated in our lives! 

We're also gearing up for a family wedding on the property and yet another Overland Expo is coming up, where we are looking forward to leading this year's Interactive Border Class.  All of this action while chasing a very active and VERY independent 2.5 year old who lives to boss us around. 

Oct 16, 2016

How To Keep Your Toyota Alive

Part of the John Muir "Idiot Book" Auto Series, How To Keep Your Toyota Alive has awesome illustrations by Joe Leahy with explanations by Larry Owens.  I was fortunate to pick up a copy just before prices skyrocketed, but you'd be hard pressed to get your hands on one now that it's out of print.  Not to worry though, someone has taken the liberty of creating a digital version for online reference.

Aug 15, 2016

Feature by LC Engineering

Not long ago we were approached for an interview with LC Engineering for their regular newsletter.  In case you haven’t heard of LC Engineering, they make and sell an impressive variety of performance parts for older Toyotas like ours.  We were very honored to be considered for their feature and J.P. asked some great questions.  If you're interested in reading  the interview, you can follow the link below.

LC Engineering 11-14 Newsletter

May 22, 2014

Life After "The Big Adventure"

This winter we finished up our last remaining months in South America.  It was impossible not to fall in love with Patagonia, the southern region of Chile and Argentina.  In January we loaded up The 4Runner into a shipping container and sent it to Miami where we will reunite with it soon.  Home is now in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where all of Shannon's family has migrated to over the years.  

We get a lot of questions from people about how life is after "The Big Adventure", so I'll elaborate...

Jul 10, 2013

Toyota Trails Magazine Article

We may be far from Guatemala at this point, but we recently had an article published about our time in the Petén region of Guatemala.  The article was featured in the May/June 2013 issue of Toyota Trails Magazine.  This was a pretty exciting opportunity to be able to write about our experiences and see it in print.  

We've had friends and family request to see the article.  If you’re interested :
Guatemala By The Dashboard Light

If for some crazy reason you want to get your hands on the print version, you can find it here

Jun 7, 2013

Questions from Kindergarteners

A while back, we were approached by a friend who teaches Kindergarten.  He told his students about our journey and they were very curious about the fine details.  He sent us this list of questions, and it was so much fun to think about our responses to a group of 5-6 year olds.

When we finally finished our answers, we decided the answers may actually clear things up for most of the grown-up questions that we've received from friends and family so far.  It's become very clear to us that no one will truly comprehend what our life has been like on the road.

Most of the "Western World" has so many misconceptions and strange notions about other cultures and places we have never been to...

Feb 13, 2013

365 Days On The Road!

Remember when we used to write a blog? 

Oh you forgot about our blog. That's cool, so did we...

Well much has happened since our last post. As a matter of fact, we've officially been traveling full-time for over 365 days now. Yep, that's right.  We recently celebrated the 1 year anniversary abroad by visiting the ruins of Machu Picchu. An entire continent away from where we last wrote about. You know what the kicker is? OUR BEAT UP OLD 4RUNNER DROVE US HERE. I know, that's still a weird concept. Almost 300,000 miles on the clock and it’s still going strong.

Sure we cheated a little by shipping our vehicle around the Darien Gap.  We squeezed the 4Runner into a shipping container headed to Cartagena and we boarded a small sailboat passing through the San Blas Islands to finally arrive in South America.  This  headache  spared us a few hundred miles of driving, but that short stretch is blocked by dense jungle and controlled by narcos and FARC guerrillas.

Sep 20, 2012

Fellow Travelers

Once we started searching, it was amazing how many similar stories we discovered online.  We're obviously not the only folks who decided it would be fun to drive the Americas...

We have found so much inspiration through their stories. Facing their fears and leaving it all behind, they've found the courage to explore the darkest corners of the earth and find out what is waiting over the horizon. Against inconceivable odds, these individuals have designed the life of their dreams...and for that we salute them.

There are hundreds more out there.  If you don't see your adventure listed below, please add it in a comment.  Don't be sad if we left you out, it's obviously a HUGE list...We hope to see you on the road!

Here's an ongoing list of Pan-Am travelers on the road in 2012

To find more past and current travelers, visit the PanAmerican Travelers Association

Sep 16, 2012

Our Wedding Day

We're married! 

Even though we had been engaged for a year, we didn't actually decide where our wedding was going to be until about three months before the actual event.  After seeing photographs of Lake Atitlan and getting confirmation from several others about how amazing the lake is, the decision was made to have our wedding there.