The Hart Family

The Hart Family
Living In Color.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Week One



We needed a week to adjust to the heat and some time to figure out our place here in the jungle. Questions surfaced of schedule or lack there of, and wondering if we really needed a car or if we could walk everywhere. We decided we wanted a car with the 4 kiddo's, and being mobile has been fun. We have visited many "Playa" this week and are amazed at how a few miles can completely change the consistency, color, and feel of a beach.

In Nosara, we are apart of the animal kingdom and if we don't go to bed with the sun and rise with the sun we will be out of sink our entire visit here. We realized quickly we better be pliable and the rest would fall into place.

I'm still realing that we are here. I have so much gratitutde for this type of experience. In the book The Four Hour Work Week There was a sub paragraph -Lifestyle design in action. The authors daughter wanted to be an astronaught and the phrase from Apollo 13 "Failure is not an option" became their motto. He talks of how they designed a plan, and then smaller steps were created to acheive that plan. I must admit that this concept is how we made this crazy journey happen. Steve and I do not have excess money right now and taking a sabbatical like this seemed impossible. Until we broke it down into measurable doable steps this really would have been out of reach for us! I have to say this is the first time in my life I really feel like with a little planning.....anything IS possible for our little family.... as it is for yours.

A few highlights of week one for me, was a guest speaker at the yoga house named Panache. He is a gentle Indian man from India. He had no other agenda or religious views other than to speak of the divinity and light we are all born with. His deep sense of spirit of the "Divine" or God was deeply impactful. Panache also touched on being grateful for this experience called life. In his words, "Enjoy every blade of grass."
That, I can say, we plan to do!!!

We also got to spend lots of quality time with friends and precious time together as a family. During all this family time I have noticed some bad habits from all of us. In our tiny little one bedroom casita I can see and hear EVERYTHING! There is no where to go but where we are. I can not send children away when they are being naughty or hide in a quiet corner of the house to myself to get away. We deal with unkind words, arguments, and boredom as they arise, and then stop them in their tracks before we disturb every living thing around us (including the animals) :) I am hoping to replace some of these bad habits with some good habits....They say you can do that in a month...and luckily that is exactly what we have.

I have a slideshow and pics I'll upload as soon as I get some consistent wifi!

Love to you all!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The update...Day 1 until now......

 Day 1
Pura Vida or bust!

I thought that I would blog our Costa Rica Journey.  Steve and I decided to take all 4 kids and stay for a month in a different country.  We chose Costa Rica mainly because we have dear friends here and making the journey to a different country with a little comfort of friends made our decision pretty easy. 

I told myself from the beginning of this crazy idea that if it didn't all fall into place, we just were going to take it as a sign and not go.  Well....I'm sitting in our little casita on the patio listening to ornery afternoon growls from the howler monkeys.  We made it to Costa Rica! Things just fell into place at home so we could take this family journey. 

 I'm not going to lie...I felt a calling to leave the comforts of home and shake things up a bit for me and my kids.  I felt like emotionally I had hit a wall and I had lost a bit of my sparkle.  Stripping things down for me and getting back to what's actually important in life (my husband and kids) is my ultimate goal with this get-away.  Also, My kids had started thinking that recent financial hic-cups of the past year were burdensome and not fair.  It is hard for me to explain to them that although steve and I have had to cut some "extra's" from our lives, that things are very comfortable for them at home.   Explaining to 4 children that change is sometimes good and that the most growth opportunity in life comes when you are being challenged.   With no other real experiences to contrast their life with I felt it important to force the contras with  this experience.  I hope it works!

Day 1 was pretty full of adventure...The kids just were unbelievably excited for even the tiniest of details.  Flying on the plane both taking off and landing were so exciting for the kids.  The shuttle trains in the airports were the icing on the cake.  Kaden and Chaz each have a camera on the trip and they probably took 100 pictures between Utah and Costa Rica in just the airports!  It was so fun to see how detailed the experience was for them and how much they appreciated every little thing.

We woke up at 2:30 AM to catch a 6:00 AM flight out of Utah.  It was a little dramatic for the kids because it felt like we woke them up in the middle of the night....because we did!   3 flights and a lot of pictures later we made it Liberia, Costa Rica.  We stayed in a pretty nice Hilton Hotel by the airport when we finally arrived.  We felt like we were off to a good start.  Air-conditioning, beautiful pools, and plenty of good food...


Day 2
Survival of the fittest

Day 2 would begin with a beautiful Costa Rican breakfast and a warm welcome into the country.  We packed our things and would begin another journey to the little surf/yoga town we would be staying in for a month...Playa Guinoes by Nosara.  That warm welcome soon became a hot bumpy one as we navigated through a two hour hot van ride with a driver who spoke little English.  I started having thoughts of panic.  "Where were we?  Where were we going?  No cell service, and I don't speak a lick of spanish".  My 3 years of high-school French and Steve's Korean speaking abilities were NO help here.  What had I done?  

Our van finally arrived in Nosara not knowing where to drop us.  This town is small and spread out and hidden in a jungle.  He skipped the one row of stores and charming yoga studios and drove us straight into the jungle.  The driver didn't know where to drop us and we couldn't communicate effectively where we were staying.  A little freaky deaky! After a few strikes we finally arrived at our friends home (we are staying next door to them) We were very happy to see Ben's face.  He took out a machete and chopped off a few coconut tops and handed us each a coconut to drink....we had  arrived.  I could tell by this welcome we were no where near home and the excitement and intimidation started there.  I love coconut water at home and straight out of the coconut is even better ......right? That's how this experiences is unraveling...straight from the coconut or as the locals would say pipa.  I was beginning to gain a glimpse of the local saying Pura Vida or pure life.   

I sat there in the heat of the sun and watched as my children molded into he environment they were in.  They were so adaptable, unassuming and free of judgement .  They were at ease with our friends and happy to be playing with their children.  So what was going on with me?  

I felt lost, intimidated, hot, and tired.  The excitement of the travel day the day before had wiped Steve and Me out.  We had not secured a rental car, stuck in the jungle with no groceries, car, or cell phone.  I felt like the rug had been ripped out from me.  Here I was trying to shake things up for my kids and I was the one left shaking.  The mother in me was worried, how would I care and entertain my babies here for a month?  

All was well as soon as we gathered our hot, tired, overwhelmed butts to the beach. We were headed to see our first Costa Rican sunset and the boys very first surf sesh.  Pura Vida!

After the beach we all jumped into our hot shower tired and anxious for bed.  when Kellen notices a SCORPION.  I screamed.  Steve removed. We survived!
It's survival of the fittest out here people and so far the kids are pretty fit!  I've got some work to do.

All in all we survived our second day...SOME of us thrived.  :)

Day 3
Yin

Ahhhh today already feels better.  I started out my day with a yoga class at Ben and Kristi's sister-n-laws's yoga studio.  I finally got to see the cute quaint town and can see why there are so many that gravitate to this place.  I was lacking that knowledge yesterday.  

I took a yoga class today called Yin.  A meditational  deep stretch class with an instructor that has the most beautiful English accent!   Kristie joked that we should hire her to come tuck is in bed at night.  :)  She said a few things during the class that I thought were so profound I tried to commit them to my memory.  I am sitting here typing racking my brain trying to remember her soft eloquent words.  I'm sorry to say I don't have her wisdom to share with you.  But I do have this....If you are being stretched in your life right now, allow the stretch to make you more pliable.  Stretching often times can be a little uncomfortable but it allows growth and a deeper higher quality of movement.   

I got my family some groceries, did more beach time, ate lunch at a quaint little beach outdoor cafe, enjoyed another epic sunset and made dinner in my tiny tiny kitchen.  Loving this place today....Not too deep of a stretch! :)
 

Day 4
inspiration

It isn't enough to say I'm grateful for this experience.  I am inspired.  I got up with the kids this morning at 6:30 AM.  Normally me being out of bed before 7:00 equals grumpy and tired.  It was ok because I didn't over work myself the day before and I went to bed at 10:30 after writing my thoughts down rather than being inundated with the latest news on the television or the most recent drama on one of my favorite episodes of Revenge. 

I am not saying that I'm willing to give up work....it's what got me here, and I love my T.V shows but the contrast here is  wonderfully inspiring.  It is safe to say I was definitely in a rut.  After I fed my kids breakfast at 6:30 AM I went on the most gorgeous beach run of my life.   6 miles of straight beach and a playlist on my ipod that was....yes you guessed it....inspiring.

We haven't secured a car rental here yet....(they are extremely expensive).  So I walked with the kids into town today and yes it was hot and long but the kids loved it!!!!  We saw monkeys, lizards, exotic birds, bugs and best of all we bonded.  No TV just mommy kid time.  I am literally the happiest and most relaxed I've been in a long time.  It doesn't take leaving the country to gain this type of bond with your kids, I know. I think I  probably needed it because my rut was pretty deep.  High pace, high strung, and high stress at home.  I hope to bring some of this zen home with me.  I struggle with balance,  I inherited tunnel vision from my mother and a hard work ethic from both of my parents.  I just have to figure out that working around the clock and not cherishing my children's growth is sad and NOT commendable.

after Another Pura vida Sunset....and a gormet pizza experience deep in the jungle.... I'm ready to take this on!

Pura Vida!
-Amy

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Conversations with Kellen

I was in my car last week with Kellen and Crew. I was running like mad to finish up some final details on some design projects I'm working on. Kellen is at an age when he talks ALL of the time. He proceeds to tell me that he will be having Grandma Hart make his next halloween costume. He went into a 20 minute detailed description of what the costume would look like. I was in and out of paying attention. He finally said, "Mom, LISTEN!" I felt badly and said, "What did you just say honey?" He proceeded with the final details of the costume...."Mom it will be glow in the dark. You see you need more darkness to see the light." I was stunned with this profound statement that came from his mouth so effortlessly. Of coarse you need darkness to see the light in this context. I said to him, "Did your little brain think that up all by yourself?" He said, "Ya, Mom....that's da kinda stuff I sink about."

I paused. I felt a tear well up in my eyes. What a wise statement to make at such a young age. It seems to me children come to earth unmuddled, un-stuck, and full of light. How wise to know that we need contrast of such light in our lives. One of my favotite quotes by Eleanor Roosevelt states "It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness."

That was a good reminder to me that we have a choice to light the darkness of life with our light. It made me wonder in that moment if my light had been dimmed, and worse....with my permission. How irresponsible to allow the crazy stress and total merciless to-do lists to dim my light. I also had certainly forgotten to notice and celebrate how profoundly light my children are.

Plato said, "We can easily forgive a child for being afraid of the dark; the real tragedy is when men are afraid of light" We most certainly would have a different world if we all collectively radiated what we all have within us naturally. LIGHT!