Notes from the road

living and traveling in 180 sq ft

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Hi, I’m Michele, a nomadic wedding photographer and lover of the great outdoors. I live on the road full-time and document my adventures daily. This is my personal blog where I share and record my thoughts on living simply and intentionally with less debt and more freedom. Want to follow along? Sign up below to receive new posts straight to your inbox.

You can find my wedding and portrait work at www.oncewest.com.

Latest stories

Finding community where I least expected it

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We had some technical difficulties while trying to get a photo of us with Anne before we part ways. It resulted in some fun photos though. In 2017, when we were living on the road in our Casita, I had the realization that I was craving community. An unfamiliar feeling for someone that has gravitated towards solitude and independence for most of her life. My very introverted nature has rarely...

This is winter in the desert

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In January we spent two glorious weeks at Kofa National Wildlife Refuge. It would have been great all on its own but the fact that Claire & Brandon came to share a week with us made it that much better. Our lifestyles so easily and seamlessly blend when we’re all together. And the ways in which we bring ingredients together to make decadent meals without ANY pre-planning…well, it...

Havasu

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Our winter travels through Arizona always include a stop in my hometown of Lake Havasu City. Thanks to COVID, this year was a little different. In an effort to keep everyone healthy we decided to not go inside anyone’s homes. Luckily the weather was gorgeous for nearly the entirety of our four week stay so we spent most of our time outdoors enjoying the sunshine and safely socializing with...

An accidental ritual

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Tonight, as I watched the sunset from the shoreline of the lake that I grew up on, I had the most vivid memory.  I was 16 years old and my dream was to be a landscape photographer when I grew up.  My absolute most favorite thing to photograph at the time was the sunset.  Whenever I would sense that it was going to be a good one,  I would hop in my Jeep and hightail it down to the water’s edge for...

Memphis was here

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It was one of those days where the sun had just set and I had yet to photograph anything.  I was standing outside my dad’s shop, camera in hand, when my brother and sister-in-law pulled up.  Hip-hop music was cranked, in true Colby fashion.  The next thing I see are two thirty-something parents covered in glitter, makeup and face paint.  Today, Memphis, their youngest of four daughters, turned 4...

Almost 4(0)

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It delighted me today to watch my youngest niece be the innocent, fearless child that she is.  I watched as she ran back and forth across my dad’s equipment yard, jumping in puddles and grunting rhythmically for no apparent reason.  That’s the thing about being 4 years old, reason is not what motivates her, instincts and curiosity are.  There weren’t any calculations being made in...

An acknowledgment, a recap and a tribute

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As I was about to begin telling you about the most delightful week that we just had camping with our friends in the desert, the contrast of my week compared to all the pain and heartache being felt around the world right now hit me upside the head, as it often does lately. Our current lifestyle, living and traveling in an RV, has been treating us so well that it almost feels as though we’ve...

Our new travel style: Living life two weeks at a time

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Yesterday we concluded our 14 day stay outside of Hurricane, Utah.  We moved 2 hours south to Lake Mead, Nevada where we plan to once again take advantage of the maximum allowed stay of 14 days.   This is our third time living on the road full-time since 2013.  Each time with a different truck/trailer combo and each time with a different style of travel.  And if there’s...

Breaking the cycle of self-defeat

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This year I’ve been in survival mode.  While we’ve made some great decisions over the last 8 months in an effort to adapt to the effects of the pandemic, my mental health is still wrestling with all the uncertainty of the future.  The unstable economy, the pandemic, the election, the civil unrest…it’s all led to a very negative and self-destructive mindset.  That mindset has me struggling with...

Colorado to Utah, with a few hiccups in between

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It’s been a busy week.  I’m happy to say that we’re currently residing at a gorgeous site in Southern Utah and the weather could not be better.  But first, a recap of the last week. On Friday the perfect weather that we’d been reveling in at our property was coming to an end.  With snow in the forecast and lows dipping in to the teens, we knew it was time to begin migrating south...

Michele

Hi, I'm Michele, a nomadic wedding photographer and lover of the great outdoors. I live on the road full-time and document my adventures daily. This is my personal blog where I share and record my thoughts on living simply and intentionally with less debt and more freedom. Check out my wedding and portrait photography at http://www.oncwest.com

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