chapter one

Chapter one….page one.

We made it.

This is going to be our new home for a while……a furnished three bedroom condo

that we are renting on the north side of Kauai….in Princeville.

Not my style… white furniture….no Ikea slip covered sofa’s….but it’ll work.

I hope the owner doesn’t mind if we toss the glass dining room table and put in a white painted picnic table.

We  landed 

Wednesday mid-morning and rented another mini {van not cooper} because our mini 

won’t arrive till around the middle of August. We loaded up all the suitcases…which happened to fit and did not have to put any kids on top of the mini. Good thing because no one likes bugs in their teeth.

We spent the day unpacking and putting things away….then drove over to Costco….which is a good 30 minute drive back up to where the airport is….to buy food to fill the bare cupboards. It’s hard starting from scratch. I for one didn’t realize all the little things we are going to need.

Take a $5 gallon of milk for instance. When we were here last year…for just less then a month….it’s not that hard to just pay the cash and buy that $5 gallon of milk because we were on vacation.

Vacation makes everything seem so easy.

But even though this is a vacation haven…..we are not on vacation…and we have to keep reminding ourselves of that.

We live here now….but even though we are on a very…and i mean very…strict budget till bryan finds a job….it’s still one of the most beautiful places to be.

We did it….we made a decision to do something different….and to move far away….leaving our best friends…..the comfort of knowing people and stability….to go somewhere out of most people’s comfort zone….but we did it.

We did it….and it’s going to be hard….but we are here…and it’s amazing.

We have to find a new bank….

get new drivers licenses…..

get the mini {van not cooper} registered when it arrives….

stock up the fridge and cupboards…..

invest in sunscreen like it’s going out of style…..

bottle up our urine in spray bottles in case a child gets stung by jellyfish.

Okay…maybe we will just buy vinegar instead…but you get the idea.

Yesterday we got up and took a nice long walk….we found a park…..

found the really nice library……and looked all around at all the healthy people 

doing the same thing. They are all our running….walking….and just by looking at all these gorgeous people….

i already fell like i can pull up at the beach in a string bikini.

I had bryan take a photo of me yesterday while lounging at the beach…

and doing some of my yoga moves.

After a trip to my new Walmart yesterday to get things like nightlights and clocks for the bedrooms and desperately wishing there was a Target because i unpacked my suitcase only to find that i didn’t bring my chucks.

My most favorite grey pair of converse….which are sitting helpless in a box at storage unit 6.

I know i can just order them online…but i already had a pair…worn in….and ready for a visit to the kids new school.

{there is no Target on Kauai for those of you that keep emailing me to let me know that there is indeed a Target here in Hawaii. There are targets on other islands…but not on Kauai}

After the trip to Walmart….we headed over the the school to check it out.

At the hotel…checking out on Wednesday morning before our flight here….we met a man in the lobby who was also headed to Kauai with his wife. He told us he used to live here and he was a special ed teacher. He knew the kids school well and told us that it was a great school. That made me feel so much better knowing that.

I have been a little apprehensive about the schools here….there is not a lot of money on the islands….even though tourism is big…which brings in a lot of money….but a lot of the locals….are on hard times.

It’s an expensive place to live.

So i was excited to hear that this man…a teacher….who had lived here…..loved the school. And as soon as we pulled up…..we loved it as well.

It’s in Hanalei…..which is just a short 10 minute drive from the condo. The schools charge for the bus ride to and from school….so i have a feeling there won’t be a whole lot of bus riding…..but they have one way tickets you can get….which adds a nice 30 minutes onto the day….so on some of those days…when i’m thinking that i need that extra time….i will pony up and put them on the bus.

The school days are shorter here as well….they start at 7:45 and get out at 2pm….and on Wednesdays they get out at noon.


I about pee’d my pants when i read that.

I have a feeling the kids will be taking the bus home on those days.

After our little tour of the school….we packed up and hit the beach.

This beach is going to be our home away from home…as it’s one of our favorites.

Bryan had never been to this particular beach because last year he was only with us for one week.

{he had a job back then…}

and Mason’s surf instructor had taken us to this beach….where it was just a bunch of locals….because of the steep drive down a dirt road….and then a hike to the beach.

It’s a pretty freakin amazing beach…and if you ever come visit….i’ll show you myself….but till then….i’ll just keep this little place a secret.

I have a feeling there will be a whole lot of picnics going on here……

{packed up from good ole walmart}

So here we are…..two days under our belt….and a whole lot more to come.

The kids start school on monday…..and right now….it’s all about getting them settled and ready to start their new life…..then bryan heads out looking for his new job.

Praying he finds something quick.

It’s going to be pretty awesome here….i can tell.


  1. LOLOL! Okay, once again, you made me spit coffee all over my keyboard! My computer is going to fry and I will be fired all because of your posts! But SOOO worth it! LOVE the pic of “you” practicing yoga on the beach…HILARIOUS! I sooo hope you and yours savor every moment of this new adventure! You are now living in one of my family’s most favorite places..we call it our happy place! I’m sure it’s scary..but I know I can’t be the only one living vicariously through you and your family. You all are FIERCE! Much love and hugs!


  2. It looks beautiful. I commend you for being so brave. When my four kids were your kids age we moved from California to Missouri and what began as an adventure ended in Misery(Missouri!)…we were terribly homesick. After 18 mos(which felt like 5 yrs) we moved back home. I was just glad it wasn’t Africa that we moved to, like we had planned. You will grow closer as a family…it will be life changing.

  3. Amazing! You are one lucky girl/family. I am sooooo excited to be able to go on this amazing journey with you guys, via blog 😉
    P.S. that Yoga workout is doing wonders 🙂

  4. So Glad you all made it save and sound. Looks Amazing. Can’t wait to hear all about the New Start. Good Luck to the Kids starting school, I have a feeling they will Love it. Jamie

  5. Welcome back!!! You have been missed. I pray you all get settled in and the Lord provides Bryan with a job quickly! Can’t wait to read about all your adventures! 🙂

  6. It looks like you’re off to a great start! What a fabulous thing to do for your family – such memories you are creating for all of you! Enjoy each moment! xxoo 🙂

  7. Thank you for sharing! I know we are all dying to hear every waking moment! I can only imagine the stress of getting settled, but in couple weeks and with a couple more trips to walmart!…I am sure things will start to settle down. Your kids are the cutest! Looking forward to much more! If all else fails…go to the beach!

  8. OMG I am so jealous! I am going to enjoy reading about your new adventure. I love the beach and would love to get to leave near it like you are for a year:) Enjoy.

  9. ALoha! May I just say, I am SO jealous!!! I will be living the Hawaii life through your posts…enjoy every day of it.

  10. holy sheet, it looks gorgeous.

  11. babe in batavia says:

    so happy for you! love the pictures and the kids look excited…we miss you.. can’t wait to visit!

  12. I’m so excited for y’all.

  13. Wow! You made it! Let the fun begin 🙂

  14. Kristine (Florida) says:

    You Rock!!! Adventure is good and your living it… Life is short I am so glad you are taking every advantage of it all. You might not think so but you are an inspiration to all of us who follow you.

  15. Can you believe you call that paradise HOME? Will the condo allow you to keep a cow? Perhaps THAT could save you on milk? 😉 Then again, I think I’d rather spend $5 for a gallon 🙂

  16. becky up a hill says:

    So glad you made it safely. Thanks for letting us know. God bless you and yours! Snorkle? I hope so. It’s amazing there.

  17. Hi Gang!!
    Do you have a guest room? ready for GUE$t$?
    i see a solution to the money woes..
    a crash pad for friends and relatives..
    all extras..will FOOD,GAS etc CO$T $$$
    just to be able to spend several days there,
    in paradise, with you guys..
    would be well worth the $$$
    think about it…
    put your photography skills to work..
    mind blowingly awesome!!!
    warm sandy hugs!!
    I’ll stay tuned in..

  18. That must have made you feel so much more at peace knowing your kids are going to a good school and will be well looked after. 🙂 Aww….now you can just breathe. 🙂

    Take it one day at a time….enjoy every moment!


  19. I’m so freakin’ proud of you and beyond thrilled for this new adventure! This is it’s all about ~

  20. My godfather and his wife live in hanalei bay. It’s just heaven there. Just hang on tight and enjoy this ride. I am so excited and jealous. It must be exciting just to think you did it, packed up and went and found your adventure. The kids will thank you one day for showing them it’s ok to find your “it’s perfect for you at this time place” it’s such a valuable thing to learn when your young. One night when you and the hubs get out for a date. There is a dive bar called the Tahiti nui , youll meet some awesome locals and more than likely run into my godfather. Just ask for JA and tell him you kind of know “RA” he is one of the greatest men ever and his wife is AMAZING. The kind of woman who welcomes you to the island with a glow stick dance. Just because you can when you live in Hawaii. Respect the culture and it will respect you right back. Aloha.

  21. This is so exciting…Hawaii is so freakin’ gorgeous. I’ve been there once and it was amazing. Can’t wait to hear all about the new adventures. God Bless all y’all!

  22. Hawaii does have Target (s)…search and you will find…Hilo, kona, Kapolei and Honolulu…happy shopping!

  23. Jennifer says:

    Looking forward to hearing more about your adventure! You’re looking GREAT by the way 😉

  24. Glad you arrived safely. Hoping Bryan finds a job fast! Keep us all posted!!

  25. Hi there, I totally relate to where you are coming from right now. I used to work in corporate finance, travelling all over Europe. My 20’s were a blast… decadent and frivolous… 30’s stay at home mum in foreign country… Lancome replaced by Target (on a good month… bad months I use the kids shampoo and even that’s not a brand name)… do I bitch and moan, nah, life is way more fun now… not complicated… You and the kids will grow from this whole experience… I know I sure did. I look back at the *old* me (obviously not speaking age here, as I’m nudging 40 now) and I almost embarassed… If life treats you well (which I hope it does), you’ll learn what *living* actually is… sounds hokey I know, but it’s true! Good luck! Lx

  26. Elaine L. says:

    If this is the beach I’m thinking of it’s very secluded, since it’s hard to find. Living in Hanelei will be a dream. It’s the most beautiful spot on Kauai. Hm, it’s interesting, but ever since you decided to move to Kauai and Bryan has become a bartender, he looks hot!

    I’m really looking forward to your adventures in Paradise.


  27. First of all tears, so glad you are there and writing to all of us! Secondly praise God! I am happy for you and look forward to hearing your wonderful tales! Xo Jody

  28. Looks wonderful!! My husband and I went to HAwaii for our 25th anniversary, and now as we near our 30th, we cant wait to go back…..someday!
    Have the time of your lives!

  29. So fun! BTW I didnt know you did yoga!! 🙂

  30. So excited for you and the adventure ahead for you guys!

  31. Aloha,…& glad to hear all is well. Goodluck with the new school & job search and here’s hoping that the Target location scouts are listening up.

  32. What an amazing backdrop for that school. I love that pic of your kids posing there, they look so brave to begin their new adventure. They must get that from their Mommy. Scary yet so exciting for you all! ~Lili

  33. Good on you all for trying something new. I think your new home looks lovely and inviting from the photo you’ve put up – have a great adventure – wish I was brave enough to do something like that with my family.

  34. Oh my gosh…I just love reading this. This will be one of those family stories the kids will share their whole lives. “Oh yah….my parents packed everything up, and we moved to Hawaii for a year, and my dad got a job as a bartender…” EPIC! (Disclaimer: I feel the word “Epic” is widely overused these days….however, totally appropriate for this. ) 🙂



  36. Hi Kasey & family,

    I have been following you guys and waiting for your arrival on Kauai… I have lived there in ’05-’06. Such a amazing place…We lived in Princeville and shopped at that crazy grocery store… I loved the library, and I think it was called YEllow Fish in Hanalei, they had some wonderful treasures… and Puka dogs in Poipu with coconut relish. We still dream about going back and finding a small rental… So glad for all of you…such memories your making.. Kauai is truly one of the most beautiful places on earth! I still have fabric from the Walmart there…. isn’t Walmart fun there? Have fun discovering everything, like the farmers market in Hanelei, and Tunnels beach….. I am a little jealous.

  37. oh my goodness, it looks like pure Heaven! I can’t wait to visit you! xoxo, Melaine

  38. Congratulations on the big move! Wishing you lots of luck getting settled and good luck to your husband in his job search! You have such a positive attitude…I’m sure things will work out well! 🙂 Enjoy that sunshine!

  39. Aloha, Hawaii!! So glad you made it…it’s gonna be a grand adventure…wishing you all well:) Hoping it’s truly paradise for you; that beach is certainly a good start;)

  40. Yea, you made it…wishing the kids all the best to settle into their new school!

  41. I am so impressed with you and everything your are doing..mind you if my daughters moved so far away I would lay down and cry:) But seeing you accomplish all this with your beautiful family is inspiring.Life is short..this is a dream for you and your all look beautiful there too:)Even you doing yoga:) You usually like to wear anthro clothes..:)
    I am listening to some Wayne Dyer tapes.. and am reminded he lives on Maui..Loves it.

    Happy exciting to you.

  42. My husband & I are at the Princeville Marketplace (just across from the library) reading your post. We hope to run into you while we’re here. By the way…Tamarind Thai has a “cashier wanted” sign in the window. Might make for a fun pt job for either of you.

  43. I just discovered your lovely blog and looking forward to popping by for some more inspiration. I’ve just put the finished touches on my new blog ‘Coastal Style’ It will have lots of inspiration on beach houses, resortwear, summer food, travel and anything ‘beachy’. I had a lot of fun putting it together so maybe you would like to check it out if you have a spare minute.

  44. Hey Kasey,

    You seem like such a positive person – that can only mean good vibes coming right back at you. I am looking forward to reading about your adventures in the months to come.

    lg xx

  45. So gorgeous! Don’t forget to remind yourself how pretty it is when you’re figuring out the licenses, jobs, etc. etc.

  46. Suzanne G says:

    I was always drawn to the bridge-jumping friends because they knew, instinctively, how to really LIVE.
    So glad you’re posting again, because I sure am having fun living vicariously through you. Enjoy the adventure.
    I’m sure you will.
    Fingers crossed on the job hunt.


    PS Don’t forget the sunblock on your arse, esp. with yoga moves like that.

  47. PRAYING PRAYING PRAYING for all of you

    I was nervous reading this
    dont know why
    maybe I just know about everything being NEW…
    brought back old anxiety

    continue to handle life with grace Miss K

    and cheers to a brand new, beautiful chapter…

    relish the journey…life is about just that.

  48. I think it awesome that y’all are doing this. We did a similar thing 7 years ago but only our move was to Charlottesville VA ( a tad less glamourous but beautiful too). My hubby did not have a job but he found one and it all worked out well. We stayed 4 years and then came back to where we were. It was a greta experience and we have no regrets.


  49. Wyatt just said “EEEWWW” haha
    Looking forward to following your adventure in Kauai!

  50. Your new place looks great!!! Take this new adventure one day at a time and enjoy every moment!! You guys will have wonderful memories to tell for years to come.
    Blessings to you and yours in your new paradise!!!!

    Curtis & Sherrie

  51. What an amazing beginning to this adventure….

    Lou Cinda

  52. i have the same bikini shot of me when we first got to Aus, how funny 😉

  53. that beach photo, of the waves, made me cry. a good-happy-jealous cry. and no tears. just an awkward wail that made the birds scatter.


  54. kasey,
    My sister in GA sent me your blog. I’m loving and watching your progress. You are on an awesome adventure, and I am pulling for you and your family. The beach looks so nice, it is been 100+ here. I have a son that’s going to be a senior in college this year, time flies…enjoy every moment. The pics are wonderful.
    Sea tidings, from land locked Missouri-

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