April 6, 2014

Opal + Wonder is Taking a Break to Explore

Greetings wild ones!

Stacey and I (Amber) are thrilled to tell you that we are thru hiking the Appalachian Trail this summer! We will be traveling all 2,181 miles southbound - starting in Maine and ending in Georgia. And we can’t wait!

We have so many people ask us: Why? Why leave the comforts of your bed and other luxuries of the modern world behind? Why walk in the woods for 6 months? I have a love/hate feeling towards this question.  There are so many good reasons; but I want to have the perfect answer - An answer that is dwindled down to one raw, real reason. So when someone asks me “why are you hiking the AT?” My reply will inspire them to do something or feel something . . . Strange, I know, but I like to be prepared for those hidden opportunities to change someone’s life. It’s the same scenario as “why are you a vegetarian” or “why do you believe in God”- PRIME OPPORTUNITIES to share what you believe in and to inspire others! That’s what life is about anyway, right? Making connections, building relationships and helping others.
I realize I will always be shaping my “perfect” answer. So for now I’ll make a faithful bullet list of all the many reasons I desire to thru-hike the AT:
  • To feel what’s like to live- Today life is so busy, loud and complicated. People have forgotten what it is like a to live a simple life. I’m absolutely guilty of taking the modern lifestyle to the extreme. And although I’ll miss my daily Starbucks, TV shows and unhealthy social media addiction, I think it’s safe to say I am most excited about breaking free from all of it! Limited comfort and technology- just nature, good company and conversations with God!
  • To experience self reliance at it’s finest. I am NOT excited about the rain, mosquitoes, hunger pains, blisters, hot days and cold nights. However, I am SUPER excited about overcoming those personal minor triumphs. (fingers crossed) I strive to be a strong individual- physically, spiritually and mentally. I believe that thru hiking will push me to grow and become even stronger.
  • To travel on foot! – I mean how cool is that? Walking from Maine to Georgia – not many people can say they have done that. And I have the Wanderlust Disease. I can’t wait for what my own eyes will see!
  • To spend 5 solid months with my favorite men – husband, dad, brother and cousin. Oh the stories we will have to tell . . . doing our favorite thing together.
  • Because I have to. For me, thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail is a calling. I have a strong sense of "I have to do this or else". Once a desire sets up home in my heart, it stays until I turn my dreams into plans. I strongly believe in chasing dreams. Anything is possible if you want something really really bad!
So that’s the long end of why I am thru-hiking the AT. I’ll keep working on the “in a nut shell” version, but knowing myself I’m sure I will just make it longer. :-/

So what does this mean for you?

Well, the shop will be closed for several months, so you better hurry and stock up on O+W goodness! Everything in the shop will be on sale until we run out of inventory. 

As for the blog, we will continue to update it from the trail with the help of our co-author, Jodi, and some special guest writers. We also have some exciting things in the works such as special give-aways and a complete rebrand! So be sure to subscribe to our blog so you never miss a post! 

Looking forward to sharing our adventure with you!

Happy Trails – Amber

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