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Who We Are:

Mikey and I are both third culture kids – we were both raised abroad in cultures that were different from our parent’s own. He is a dual citizen, French/American, and grew up in the Phillipines, Ghana, Bangladesh, France and New Zealand. I was a missionary child and grew up in Fiji, Hawai’i, Japan and spent some 10 years in Asia (- Macau, China, Taiwan). (more on who we are is here)

I am deaf. I also have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury and was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder not that long ago. WOW! All that strung together makes me seem big-time whackadoo, huh? But I promise, if you met me in real life, you wouldn’t be too likely to tell. I just seem to have an unrelenting case of Mommy-brain (and that’s probably true, too) and I’ll make you feel like I think you are really, really fascinating since I need to lipread to “hear” you.

Our daughter Moxie has Down syndrome. Between her and I, disability is a part of our family, much like culture/race is in other families. It’s a part of our story.

And so.

Mikey and I have had this big fat juicy dream for some time of travelling the Pan American Highway.

We want to find a place to settle down, build an Inn. The Inn will be sort of a cross between an intentional community and an employment training place, by and for disability. We are about disability rights and empowerment: we are about trying to create a world that will be right for our kids – all of them – MacQuinn and Micah too – not just Moxie. (more about the Inn is here)

Well, there we were in Mexico, sloooowwwwwwwwly traveling our way south when all of the sudden, – bam! – our income was halved. We had two choices:

  1. continue south, with cinched belts, look for more full time work and deal with the challenges all of that would bring or
  2. accept my brother’s invitation to come on north to farm his land with him for a season.

Hmm. The post about it all is here.

We decided to be responsible and head back north, and we are absurdly glad we did, because we chanced upon one of the sweetest spots, ever. The Lost Coast of California.

We were farmers on the Lost Coast for the past 7 months and are currently back to traveling in Mexico. At this point, we’re going to continue farming for half the year, travel for the other half and see about the Inn along the way in the future.

Anything’s possible at this point. Everything is possible at this point.

Stay tuned.

us

 

15 Comments

  1. Hello there! I’ve been enjoying reading your blog. I love your little (big?) family and reading about your adventures! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  2. Lisa Rutledge-Repici Reply

    I really enjoyed reading your adventures and about you and your family’s disabilities. I have a daughter with a learning disability. Her disability has challenged me with my own disabilities that I didn’t even realize I had as a child, but now do. I really admire you for using your disability to encourage and help other with and without disabilities. You are a Hero!

  3. I am just starting to read your stories. I love your idea about the inn. I had thought about wanting to start a school for my 1 year old (his birthday is today!) but ultimately think inclusion is the best path for him. I guess I can’t protect him forever! You have a beautiful family! And like so many other children with down syndrome, I look at Moxie and think she is an adorable child with cheeks you can nibble on, not that she has down syndrome. I think that is part of the education process for so many people. I tell everyone we meet that Luke has down syndrome and some people act surprised. But that’s exactly my point. People don’t realize that a person who has down syndrome is a person first – that although there are similarities in features and characteristics, that the person is an individual and is more likely to look like their sibling or parent. Anyway, I just love hearing about your travels and you are quite a talented photographer! I’m looking forward to future posts. I just started blogging myself because I was inspired by other’s blogs as well as a mother in the Middle East who asked another blogger to be more specific so she can try to do them with her baby as she didn’t have the support groups or therapists where she was. My heart went out to her so I decided my blog would be dedicated to others like her. So it’s kind of boring and not as interesting as yours. But I’m hoping it will serve its purpose and help someone some day. Anyway, keep snapping those pics and writing the posts. Maybe if I win the lotto someday, we can open that Inn together haha 🙂 I wonder if you could set up an online donation button or I think there’s a service or something. An art student (I bought something from her on etsy) asked me to contribute to it. I can give you the name if you wanted to set something similar up to help build funds for your inn. But that may make you uncomfortable. Just a thought. But let me know if it does interest you and I can track the name of the site down.

    • oh, thank you! that’s so sweet of you.
      We have to keep the dream on the shelf for the time being – at least until the kids are a little older. We just have so much on our plate now, we have to let it settle.
      Thank you so much for dropping by – I am looking forward to getting to know you

      • Just starting to reach out and get more connected. Wish I had done it sooner but Luke wasn’t a great sleeper until a couple of months ago and we had flus cycle through from late Oct to mid-Dec with maybe a week when everyone was healthy. Still figuring out the social media and blogging thing and connecting with others and such. I am loving your blog! Like I said, mine is more about sharing advice based on monthly themes as well as thoughts on how to make a better world for our kiddos. I’m a realistic optimist 🙂 My blog is http://www.journeytoluke.wordpress.com. Would love to hear your thoughts!

  4. Meriah,
    We worked at Cal together many moons ago and I am still here but planning my escape, possibly to live in Mexico! I LOVE LOVE LOVE reading about your adventures with your sweet family, looking at the photos, and learning more about living in Mexico. (I’m thinking Todos Santos right now but that could change). Thanks for your blog and your adventurous spirit!
    (Funny, if I stay in the States Eureka has been on my possibilities list for quite some time….great minds think alike!)
    – Janet W.

    • It is SO GOOD to hear from you, Janet!! Of course I remember.
      That’s pretty funny about Eureka/Todos Santos! We’re actually on the Lost Coast which is 2 hours from Eureka – it’s REALLY isolated out there. But it works for us.
      Are you looking for warmth? We love Patzcuaro most out of everywhere we’ve been so far (and we do have a lot more places to visit). It has such an old world charm, the people are so friendly, it’s very affordable. But the weather is similar to Humboldt. Kind of misty. In fact, when we first drove in, I thought it was exactly like driving into the Presidio district in SF.
      I am so glad we are in touch and I’m really looking forward to hearing more about your escape as it unfolds!!! xoxoxox

  5. I discovered your blog via Offbeat Families this morning. We have two things in common already: I’m also hearing impaired (from birth) and I also have a Micah (17 months old)! Looking forward to following your journey, and I’ll be sending you an email about contributing to my occasional blog series on Motherhood and Disability.

    • WOW!!! I am so happy to meet you! I never meet enough hearing impaired/deaf mothers. Do you identify as being deaf/Deaf/hearing impaired? Do you sign and/or wear hearing aids?
      So cool we both have Micah’s too 🙂 I’d love to contribute to anything related to motherhood/disability.
      xo meriah

      ps. yeah, those were the cutest wild dogs I’ve ever seen. I was still pissed off with them for not allowing Kianna in!

  6. I have just discovered your site and totally enjoying your posts. Thank you so much.

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