Claudine Phillips

when all you can do is #justkeepswimming

A year ago Shad and I visited San Luis Obispo, CA on a scouting trip. We have the great fortune of working from anywhere on this planet. We got the itch to exploit the ability to travel, live, and eat up this wonderful world in 2012 and have not stopped since.


We have seen more, experienced more, and embraced more in these past two years than in our entire lifetime. Many people have tried to make sense of what we are doing. I am not sure if they have yet, we haven’t. We look a little crazy on the outside. I assure you, we are crazy.


You have to have a little crazy in your blood to pick up and move a few states west after just picking up and moving a few states west a year before, by choice. We had and still have alot to work out of our systems. We want our family to be exposed to so much more of this beautiful world.


We have been planning our next chapters (God willing) lately and I can hardly contain myself. Although we are staying put for now, we have other adventures on our hearts, minds, and calendars. I will be sure to chronicle our experiences as they unfold.


I love being married to an adventurer. It is not for the faint of heart, however. Imagine being in between homes and having a baby in the midst of moving 1,700 miles away. Yes, not easy, but worth every tear drop.

Here I sit, 12 months later and don’t regret a minute of it.

I wrote a post here a year ago about our scouting trip to San Luis and all the marvelous discoveries we found. In my excitement, I sited a quote that was like fire in my heart at the time.

A year from now you may have wished you started from today.- Karen Lamb

A year ago, I did start from that very day. I got on my knees.  I dreamed with, prayed to, and begged the Lord that this was our next step.

I penned my love for SLO and boasted of the farmers market and their fresh produce year-round, gorgeous beaches, and amazing weather. I am a little embarrassed to say we have taken the fresh produce for granted already and can’t imagine living in a place where this was not at our fingertips.

The flowers bloom year round and yes, I have grown accustomed to this, but am still stopped in my tracks when I walk out my front door and am overtaken by the sweet fragrance of the jasmine and roses that grow in my front yard…..all year. Yum.

We have discovered more beaches than we can name. Morro Bay still holds as one of our favorite “stroll on the beach” and visit the local shops kind of day trip. The kids and Shad boogie-board at least twice a month as they scout out the best beaches for the best waves and my favorite shop is still The Garden Gallery.


Needless to say, we are so in love with SLO.

Now, with all love affairs there is the good and the bad. It has been a tail kickin’ kind of year for us. Raising a baby, homeschooling, and plugging in has not been easy. I am not complaining, just stating the facts. I could not be happier to have the summer upon us so I can finally tend to things that need more of my attention.  Things like organize the house, plug into my community more, spend more relaxed days on the sofa reading with the kids, and lots and lots of naps.

This summer is going to be a time to recover as well.  So much has been experienced and taught to our souls that may have not happened unless we physically moved our bodies.  We have been stretched to uncomfortable lengths, twisted into unimaginable situations, and pushed into mind blowing settings that we could not have prepared for. My pictures may portray beauty and bliss, but there were many tears and “what are we doing” moments for me.


My husband got to a point where he made room for me to fall apart, or jump ship, when I was feeling overwhelmed. Once I was done with my once a month “I can’t so this” breakdown, he would affirm all that was said and offer to take the baby so I could nap. I usually would nap for a minimum of three hours to the rest of the day and night.

Sleeping Beauty would awake with a new perspective, ready to embrace the decisions we had made and the fortune God had bestowed and make the absolute best of our life. Oh what rest can do.

So there you have it. One year later. There have been incredible highs pretty darn low lows.


I LOVE the community I am finding and that’s finding me. It has taken much effort to put myself out there. Bearing the scarlet letter of “I’m new here” and risk getting rejected. You have to be new sometime and I’m thankful for the christening.

If you find yourself in a new place and just want to jump ship like I did – many many many times- hang in there. It gets better with time like fine wine. So much better. I think I got through this year mainly because I leaned into the Lord, reached out to Shad, my friends, and family that knew me well (thank you Facetime and imessage), and just kept swimming.

I took the picture below while on the trip to SLO a year ago and it still holds true today.


Hang in there if your community is not unfolding as quickly as you would like. Hold on if life is happening faster than you can keep up. Lean in if you just want to jump ship. I am learning that God works with and provides for you right where you are. Promise.

Just keep swimming.

 If you find yourself in the place of being new, in what ways have you coped with during the low times? I would love to hear! Comment below!