on the 2nd fund raising page I set up. They only give a set amount of time to raise your funds and (sadly, for me at least) I didn't raise anything from it. Not a single penny.
No, of course it won't stop me from keeping trying - why anyone would think it might is beyond me 😂😂 In fact I have already kick started another one; this time though I have changed the description and have been able to set a 1 year time limit on it. Just because something doesn't succeed immediately, or how we might originally plan, doesn't mean it's not going to work and be the raging success you imagine it to be.
After spending the weekend with my niece (camping) and chatting with her I am even more determined than ever to raise the money and take her road tripping. When I first set everything up (almost a year ago now) I was doing it purely for me. Then things changed, my priorities changed, I spent more time with my niece and realised that while there is nothing I would like more than road tripping out there (and a lot of the places are designed around me) but it's not about me any more; I'm not even sure it ever was. It's about her (and my nephew if he's up for it) and creating something in their teenage years that will give them a happy memory when things get tough in the future - I know they've already been through enough and shouldn't have to go through anything ever again; sadly, life doesn't work that way. They will go through more pain and heartbreak - nothing will ever be as bad as losing their Mum though - and they will suffer again at times in their future. If I can give them a wonderful memory they can look back on when they hit those times then I will have succeeded in my life. I also get an amazing journey out of it too, so if you're reading this, thinking to yourself "I could help this woman and these kids make amazing memories" then please click HERE. Every amount, no matter how small, will be more appreciated than you could ever know.
I know if you look at the costs involved it seems as though I have a really big uphill struggle ahead of me; good job I love a challenge 😂. It's a challenge I relish. If things come to us too easily it can sometimes feel as if we don't deserve it. All my life I've had to work hard for the things I have (not that I really have much 😂😂) I've had to give it my all to just survive some days, yet because of this when something good does happen I appreciate it so much. I feel blessed, lucky (often times I feel extremely lucky). The reason for this is because I've had to work for it; I've earned every single thing I have. Now, you may think when I succeed in my fundraising effort (and I WILL succeed - capital letters are most definitely needed there) that I won't have earned it. I can assure you that you could not be more wrong. Keeping this blog up to date takes time and effort; keeping on top of the social media side of things (which I don't do as often as I should) also takes effort and time. I've designed the guide books which will be used by the kids (I'm mighty impressed with them) because while I think it should be fun I also want it to be educational as well. Every single quiz question regarding the things we will be doing each day I have written and then researched to ensure I have the correct answers (I'm proud of those). I've read so much on the internet about the places we're visiting to be able to make up the guide sections of the book. I wanted to make it informative for them but not boring. Why would I do such a thing?
At the time of doing it I did so because I wanted them to learn something and I know what they are like. They would have visited these places but not really taken in what they were seeing/doing. By making a guidebook for them and then putting questions at the end of every day I know they will have to read the information at the places we visit, they will have to take notice of things. Anyone can go to Old Faithful, sit on the benches, watch it blow, take a photo or video and walk away. In a year of 2's time they may remember back to their visit and what a good experience. We can all do that. I want the kids to look back and smile when they remember that part but I also want them to understand what makes it blow. I believe knowing what's going on with the earth at that point can only add to the whole experience. Last year when camping with my nephew we wandered into a field to talk about the constellations in the night sky because someone had mentioned something and he didn't understand what we were talking about. This time my niece also let on she doesn't know a thing about our solar system or constellations (she's also never been taught to read a map!!! WTF are schools teaching kids these days? Surely all kids in a geography lesson should know how to read a map? - as for orienteering she didn't have a clue what I was talking about; shocking). Anyway, while sitting there on the Friday night we watched Jupiter rise, saw the international space station fly overhead twice, saw a small shooting star followed 4 or 5 minutes later by an amazing comet - it was a huge white ball of light with a massive tail to it; almost the best I've ever seen (nothing will ever top the bright green one I saw during the Orionids meteor shower 6 years ago - that was mind blowing). My niece didn't understand anything about these things. She'd heard of them but knew nothing. I went to point something out and told her it was "just north east of the plough". She had no idea what I was talking about. Not knowing which was North East was is bad enough; to not know what I meant by 'the plough' was more than shocking. Can you imagine their faces when I show them a night sky in Yellowstone National Park? I doubt they even know so many stars exist. Education doesn't have to be boring. To them the things I'll teach them will just be a part of the trip, yet they will come home with a knowledge of things they could only ever dream about before. I have lists of things they need to be looking out for also; it's not just about the thermals. I want them to learn about the wildlife - their habitats, hibernation, foods. I want them to look out for certain plants and trees. I want them to come away with so much more than a few photo's. This trip will be about so much more than that.
When I take them to Little Bighorn National Park I will pay for a guide to take us (them) around. I know this is more expense but I want them to hear from someone who know's the history; someone whose people were involved. They need to experience a different culture not just by what they've read in a text book at school, or seen in the movies. Little Bighorn is on the Crow reservation. From there we will head into South Dakota where they'll meet and speak to people from Rose Bud and Pine Ridge - people from the Sioux nation. To the kids the crow and sioux are 'all the same'. Yes, to look at they probably do all fit the same mould, but their stories and history could not be more different. Their lives and culture are different to each other and most definintely different to ours. Embarking on this trip is about so much more than a middle-aged woman and 2 teenagers hitting the open road in a car.
Memories will be made, experiences will be shared.