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Help Us Help Others!

Emily Forsythe

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We were absolutely heartbroken when we heard the news and saw images of the devastation from Hurricane Harvey, leaving many of our friends, family and neighbors in southeast Texas without power, cars, homes and basically losing almost every possession they owned. It is mind-blowing to see how one storm could cause so much damage to a city as big and powerful as Houston. The smaller surrounding cities and gulf coast were hit just as badly, many without the resources to help rebuild their city as quickly as Houston. 

With Hurricane Irma barreling through the Caribbean and most of Florida this week, many of the relief organizations have been inundated with calls, trying to keep up with responding to the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and Irma in a two-week time frame.  

I am sure many of you, like me, felt compelled to help those in need but was not sure where to start. Below are a few suggestions on how you can make a difference - in big and small ways. Every little bit of effort helps and appreciated so do what you can and show up for the people and the community you love.

 

MAKE A MONETARY DONATION:

 Americares is providing emergency health care access in Texas for Harvey victims, is also partnering with health centers in Florida along Irma's path.

The crowdfunding platform, GoFundMe, has designed a landing page that aggregates all campaigns created by and for Florida victims as well as relief efforts in the Caribbean. Hurricane Harvey also has a similar page where people can donate to a direct-impact fund or create their own fundraisers. 

Habitat for Humanity is working with its local offices in Florida and the Caribbean to inspect damage from Irma. The group is helping families clean up after both Harvey and Irma and will help with rebuilding efforts. Donations can be made at habitat.org/hurricanes or by calling 1-800-HABITAT.

Make a donation to one of the many schools in the Houston area that were damaged by Hurricane Harvey. Many of the flooded schools had to relocate to new campuses so funds raised will go towards purchasing new supplies, books and classroom materials as well as aide in helping the school's families and staff with personal recovery efforts. You can donate to some of the districts that got hit the hardest: Katy ISD Education Foundation, KIPP Houston Public Schools or Houston ISD Foundation.

Donate to the Houston Food Bank and designate your donation specifically for disaster relief. The Houston Food Bank’s greatest need is for funds that will help provide relief and continue recovery efforts. Donations will be used for disaster relief until this year’s needs are met, and the remaining funds will support ongoing hunger-relief efforts.

Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, a 501(c)(3) public charity established by Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and County Judge Ed Emmett when they received an overwhelming response from citizens and companies who want to help aid in Hurricane Harvey relief. The Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund will accept tax-deductible flood relief donations for victims affected by the recent floods.

Operation USA, a Los Angeles-based disaster relief group, offers a wide variety of ways to lend a hand from sending a check to donating air mileage.

PayPal has also launched a disaster relief campaign and says it will waive processing costs to ensure that 100% of donations go toward the effort. The company, which is also running a campaign for Harvey, is a sponsor of a telethon called Hand in Hand – A Benefit for Hurricane Relief. It aired Tuesday evening on multiple networks and feature more than 40 celebrities. 

And Pet Smart Charities says it has committed $1 million in grant funding to help pets and pet families in need after Irma and $2 million to Hurricane Harvey relief. Shoppers also can donate to hurricane relief efforts at PetSmart stores.

Make a donation to the Rebuild Texas Fund, which was created by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation in collaboration with the OneStar Foundation. The four focus areas of the fund include health and housing; schools and child care; workforce and transportation; and capital for small businesses. The Dells are working to raise a total of $100 million for the long-term relief, recovery, and rebuilding efforts for all affected communities in Texas. Google will match the first $500,000 of donations through a pledge challenge. Volunteers from Google's Austin office and TEGNA employees will staff the phone banks at select station locations across the state. 

The Red Cross, says it has mobilized its second massive hurricane response in two weeks and is providing critical aid for Irma and Harvey victims. 

The Salvation Army has mobilized Harvey and Irma relief teams to provide meals, shelter and emotional and spiritual care, the organization says.  

Retailer Target has pledged up to $1 million for Hurricane Irma relief. The donation is in addition to the $3.5 million the company committed last week to Hurricane Harvey assistance. Target says the money will benefit the store's team members affected by the storms and other national and international relief organizations.

The American University of Antigua has created a fund specifically for the battered nation of Barbuda to provide food, water and medicine in addition to longer-term recovery assistance. All donations to this fund will be matched by AUA, the university says. 

Finally, make sure your money is going to a reputable organization. Unfortunately there are some charities out there who try to take advantage during needy times. Check out Charity Navigator, a watchdog that appraises trustworthy charities based on their tax filings. You can find the approved list of where to donate for Hurricane Irma victims here and to Hurricane Harvey victims here. The group of analysts advises people to research relief organizations before making a donation.

VOLUNTEER YOUR TIME: 

Volunteer with the Houston Food Bank. Please register first to make sure you have a productive experience. 

Volunteer shifts apply, open daily (including Sunday and Labor Day)
Morning:     Monday-Sunday, 8 a.m. to noon
Afternoon:  Monday-Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.
Evening:      Monday-Friday, 6 to 9 p.m.

Become a disaster volunteer with the Red Cross and help assist in the efforts for Hurricane Harvey and Irma relief. 

Walk a dog, feed a cat or help clean out kennels at your local animal shelter that has taken in displaced pets and animals from the storms. Here in Austin and on the ground in Houston, Austin Pets Alive! has taken in over 2,000 animals with the number of dogs in foster to have tripling and the number of cats in foster to have doubling in size. Consider fostering or adopting an animal. With more animals than ever in APA!'s care, this is the perfect time to offer a forever home to a pet in need. 

Deliver meals for Meals on Wheels. The disabled and elderly are hit hard when a major disaster like this happens because they might not have any means to escape from their houses and find a refuge from the storm or they might not know who to call for help. Last week we saw the need for drivers to deliver meals to Meals on Wheels clients in the Greater Houston area so we stepped up and drove to Houston to fulfill a delivery route. Many of the normal delivery drivers had also been effected by the storm and were unable to pick up their normal routes, which meant that those clients weren't going to receive their meals for the weekend. 

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DONATE GOODS OR SERVICES: 

Join Airbnb and help to host a refugee who is in need of shelter during this transitional time. This community of hosts are providing free accommodation to those in need. When you provide temporary shelter to evacuees, you’re helping to rescue and rebuild lives.

The Houston Food Bank is in desperate need of the following items: 

  • Canned ready-to-eat items with pull tops: vegetables, fruit
  • Protein in pouches or pull-top cans: tuna, beef stew, chili, canned chicken
  • Peanut butter
  • Snacks: granola bars, breakfast bars, etc.
  • Toiletries
  • Paper goods
  • Diapers
  • Cleaning supplies: mops, mop buckets, brooms, bleach wipes, bleach, garbage bags, bug spray

Drop off curbside at 535 Portwall
Now until further notice
8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Saturday/Sunday

If you don't live in Houston, you can always purchase through Amazon and have your donation sent to their the Houston Food Back Warehouse at the above address,  

Donate supplies to the Refugee Services of Texas-Houston. A list of supplies needed by this charity, which provides resettlement services to refugees and other displaced persons in the Houston area, can be found on their Amazon wish list. Needed items range from dictionaries to coffee filters.

Many HISD families have been devastated by the catastrophic flooding in the Houston area caused by Hurricane Harvey, and HISD welcomes assistance from national groups or corporations that would like to help our students recover and prepare for the coming school year.

The district is accepting donations of new and unused clothing, shoes, underwear, socks, uniforms and school supplies, as well as canned food and water.

Donations can be shipped to:

HISD Harvey Donations
Delmar Fieldhouse
2020 Mangum Road
Houston, TX 77092

ATTEND A FUNDRAISING EVENT IN YOUR AREA: 

Just on the heels of the George Strait & Friend Benefit Concert is the Harvey Can't Mess With Texas Concert benefiting the Rebuild Texas Fund at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin on September 22nd. C3 Presents is of course in on the action pulling in some stellar headliners such as Willie Nelson, Leon Bridges, James Taylor, Paul Simon and many more! The Rebuild Texas Fund is an amazing organization created by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation in collaboration with the OneStar Foundation. The four focus areas of the fund include health and housing; schools and child care; workforce and transportation; and capital for small businesses.

Check your local newspaper or online publication for events that are donating proceeds to relief efforts. Here is a link to many fundraising events going on here in Austin. 

LET US NOT FORGET THAT THERE ARE OTHERS IN NEED:

Also, we should not forget the disastrous fires that are blazing cross in the Pacific Northwest. Below is list of ways that you can help with relief efforts. 

The Community Foundation of North Central Washington is collecting donations for victims of the fires through the Chelan Valley Fire Relief Fund. Visit cfncw.org/fire or call 509-663-7716.

Okanogan County Community Action Council is providing aid for immediate needs such as gas, food and shelter. Visit occac.com or call 509-422-4041.

The Salvation Army office in Wenatchee is collecting money to aid fire victims. Visit salvationarmynw.org or call 800-SAL-ARMY (designate gift for “Northwest fires”).

The Red Cross is accepting donations for wildfire-disaster relief, which allows it to set up shelters and provide quick help. Visit redcross.org, call 800-RED-CROSS, or text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10.

The United Way of Chelan and Douglas counties is taking donations through its Sleepy Hollow fire-relief fund. Visit uwcdc.org or call 509-662-8261. Donations can also be mailed to P.O. Box 488, Wenatchee, WA 98807.

The Missoula United Way has set up a fund to aid those affected by the Rice Ridge Fire near Seeley Lake, and a fund for evacuees from the Lolo Peak Fire. You can contact the Missoula United Way at 406-549-6104.

The 406 Family Aid Foundation was formed "To aid persons and their families in Western Montana who are experiencing financial hardship caused by unforeseen illness, complications of a previous illness, loss in a family or natural disaster.” They're accepting donations for Lolo Peak Fire evacuees at www.406familyaidfoundation.org.

Garfield County Fire Foundation Relief Fund has been set up to help victims of the Lodgepole Complex, Montana's largest fire this year, which burned nearly over 270,000 acres in Eastern Montana. You can donate online at  https://fundly.com/garfield-county-fire-foundation

Checks can be made to Garfield County Fire Foundation c/o Garfield County Bank PO Box 6, Jordan, MT 59337 (406-557-2201) or send to Circle c/o Redwater Valley Bank, PO Box 60, Circle, MT 59215 (406-485-4782).

The American Red Cross of Montana has opened 10 shelters for fire evacuees in Montana this year, including for Sunrise Fire evacuees near Superior, and evacuees from Seeley Lake. You can donate online at http://www.redcross.org/local/montana  or call 800-272-6668

American Red Cross said the public can donate on their website under Oregon Wildfires of Local Red Cross. or by calling 503.528.5634.

The Hood County Search and Rescue and Friends of the Columbia Gorge are also accepting donations on their website.

There’s been a GoFundMe campaign set up to help the Oregon Firefighters Association that people can send donations. Here’s the link.

Have a cause that you are particularly passionate about to help with Hurricane Harvey and Irma relief efforts or the fires in the Pacific Northwest? Share the non-profit you are contributing to and why you feel that it is a great charitable cause to support in the comment section below. 

Road Trip Essentials

Emily Forsythe

We're continuing our road trip series with a list of all the essentials you'll need to take on the open road this year. ATX is full of amazing retailers like Stag and the Yeti Flagship that'll have your entire packing list covered. Read on to view our top picks for your suitcase!

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1. Herschel Supply Co. Little America Poly Backpack in Navy, available at Stag
Whether you're hiking the wilderness or exploring a new city, this backpack combines fashion and functionality to give you all the storage you need while staying stylish.

2. Adventure Assist Travel Journal
Created by Austin's own Jake Pritchard and April Onebane (you may know her from of Pieceology Vintage), this beautiful travel-friendly notebook helps organize the most important details of any adventure.

3. Southwest Bandana Ring, available at Bexar Goods Co.
Keep your bandana tied up with this clever hand-sewn leather ring - it's sure to take your 'kerchief game to the next level!

4. YETI Tundra 35 Cooler
Keep your drinks and food cold in the Mother of All Coolers. 'Nuff said!

5. YETI Rambler 20 oz. Tumbler in Seafoam
We get it, you don't always want to share what's in your YETI. Keep your iced tea iced and your hot coffee hot with this tumbler. Plus they are offering it in the limited edition seafoam green color that is pretty close to Anna the Vanna's minty shell!

6. ECOXGEAR EcoPebble Lite Speaker, available at REI
Never be without your road trip playlist! With these bluetooth speakers, you can jam your favorite tunes in any environment.

7. Jack Rudy Jack Pack Cocktail Kit, available at Stag
Who says you can't enjoy craft cocktails on the road? This cocktail kit is small and compact — all you need is whiskey (or your spirit of choice) and you're ready to raise a glass to the open road.

8. Luxe Apothetique Tortoise Shell Sunglasses
Block out the sun in style with these adorable (and affordable) shades.

9. Yellow 108 Eastwood R Hat in Putty, available at Stag
Perfect for guys and gals alike, this hat was inspired by classic Americana films. It may just inspire your next adventure!

10. Vintage Indian Plaid Wool Blanket, available at Stag
Stargaze in the open air or wrap up for a nap in the back seat with this super comfy Indian Wool blanket.

11. Kaliedescope 3" Lockback Knife x Santa Fe Stoneworks, available at El Cosmico Provision Co. 
This functional yet equally artful knife designed by master inlay artist Steve Rosenblum comes in handy on the road when setting up camp and foraging for kindling. 

12. Seattle Sports E-Merse Clear Waterproof Case, available at REI
Capture every moment of your road trip — even if water is involved. It's waterproof technology is guaranteed to protect your phone from the roughest of rapids!

13. Teysha Set Sail Boot
These beautifully handcrafted leather boots are your perfect pair of shoes for adventure. Take 'em on a wilderness walk or wear 'em to dinner. You'll step out in style either way!

14. Dietz Oil Lantern, available at El Cosmico Provision Co.
The oil lantern is the quintessential camping necessity for late night bathroom runs and fireside chats!

15. Keep It Wild Bandana, available at Bexar Goods Co.
Make sure you keep the West Texas dust out of your face with this practical (and stylish!) bandana, plus you'll look cool (and stay cool!) with it tied around your neck!

Best Road Trip Podcasts

Emily Forsythe

Hitting the open road this summer? We’ve curated a list of our favorite podcasts to help pass the time. From true crime stories to a look into the minds of some of the worlds most popular musicians, we’ve got a little something for every interest. Have a favorite podcast that we didn’t list here? Tell us about it in the comments!

When we were on the road driving those long stretches or in South America where we weren't getting any phone service, the podcasts that we downloaded helped make the drive even more of an adventure! You better believe that Sarah Koenig of Serial and This American Life was our narrator while driving on the treacherous, unpaved Pan American Highway! 

And don’t forget the tunes — our Summer Van Jams Spotify playlists will set the mood for an unforgettable road trip.

 

Call Your Girlfriend

Long distance besties: this podcast is for you! Follow along with BFF's Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman as they keep their long distance relationship alive through recorded phone calls every other week. These ladies are hilarious — from relationships to pop culture and politics, nothing is off limits.

The Moth

This podcast makes you feel things. You’ll either belly laugh until it hurts or be moved to tears by these real stories recited by real people at Moth StorySLAMs. Learn how one man set out to find the perfect girlfriend by reverse engineering OK Cupid’s match algorithm, the way one woman found salvation in swing dancing after her husband’s death, and so much more.

Song Exploder

Calling all music lovers! Listen to musicians like Phoenix, Gorillaz, Sleigh Bells, Chvrches, The Lumineers and Norah Jones pick apart some of their most popular songs and explain how and why they were made. You may just find some new fave tunes to jam on your trip.

My Favorite Murder

Admit it — you love a juicy murder mystery! Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark are true crime fanatics, and every episode they discuss a different murder tale and hear hometown crime stories from their friends and listeners. Don’t worry, it’s not all dark and depressing — Karen and Georgia find a way to twist a little humor into each story.

You Made It Weird

Comedian Pete Holmes interviews actors, musicians, and fellow comedians about the things they’d feel uncomfortable discussing with their parents. Things get hilariously weird, to say the least! They’re long, too — each episode is at least 1.5 hours long, making it the perfect listening material for your next road trip.

Decked Out VW Buses We Love

Emily Forsythe

Ad from the 60's of the VW Camper. 

Ad from the 60's of the VW Camper. 

In a perfect world, we could drive down the west coast in a bright shiny teal VW, with the windows rolled down, blasting Slow Ride by Foghat, and park our bus with its back doors and a big, cozy bed opened to the sun setting across the Pacific Ocean. Well, lucky veedub owners get to live in that world-- or something similar to that variation.

We came across the coolest, most unique, and decked out VW buses whose owners let their creative minds show. Enjoy. 


The Beach Bus

On our road trip, we cruised through many small beach towns dotted along the Southern California coastline that were littered with VW buses. If we lived in CA, I could imagine that it would be impossible to think of VW buses without thinking of the beach.. Almost every trip down to the beach, surfers prep for their sesh, slapping on Zinka (colored sunscreen), and zipping up their wetsuit in the back of a parked VW bus. VW’s are big enough to load up surfboards and roomy enough to chill in after a long day of surfing or hanging by the beach. 

Surfboards are tied to the top and towels are hung out to dry. 

Surfboards are tied to the top and towels are hung out to dry. 

Why not have a surfboard as a table?

Why not have a surfboard as a table?

This bus serves as a true tiki bar! Mai Tais anyone?

This bus serves as a true tiki bar! Mai Tais anyone?


A Blast From The Past

Extremely retro and extremely bright, this bus encompasses all that is the 70’s. The classic Jimi Hendrix poster, the all-orange interior, and the hanging pair of fluffy dice really takes you back to the decade of classic rock and hippie vibes. 

The VW bus is an icon of the hippie era and many painted exteriors represent the compelling and psychedelic art, music, and politics from the decade where the U.S. welcomed the love bus. Here are some of the coolest painted hippie buses: 

Retro chic interior!

Retro chic interior!

This bus painted classic rock legends, like Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, and Bob Dylan.

This bus painted classic rock legends, like Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, and Bob Dylan.


Cozy Common Areas

Packed with beautifully patterned pillows, blankets, tapestries, and greenery, the interior of these buses is an invitation to get comfortable and cozy up with your friends or significant other. 

Even bloggers have gotten in on the VW craze! California blogger Liz Cherkasova of Late Afternoon Blog owns a blue Westfalia that she calls fittingly, Baby Blue!

Even bloggers have gotten in on the VW craze! California blogger Liz Cherkasova of Late Afternoon Blog owns a blue Westfalia that she calls fittingly, Baby Blue!


Your Travel Buggie

We came across some buses with decked out living areas that include kitchenettes, couches and even beds that are loaded up in the back. These buses are seriously dedicated to the traveling lifestyle and ensures comfortability and convenience to your next camping destination. 

Wes Vanderson is a quirky little bus with a modern Scandinavian inside, equipped with a kitchen and all!

Wes Vanderson is a quirky little bus with a modern Scandinavian inside, equipped with a kitchen and all!

Birch wood modern kitchen cabinets with little touches of home!

Birch wood modern kitchen cabinets with little touches of home!

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Personalized but organized - everything has it's spot!

Personalized but organized - everything has it's spot!

The key to having a great travel buggie is to have a comfy spot to rest your head.

The key to having a great travel buggie is to have a comfy spot to rest your head.

This couple has been traveling in their VW bus for over 5 years with two little ones in tow! Follow along with them here: Our Open Road

This couple has been traveling in their VW bus for over 5 years with two little ones in tow! Follow along with them here: Our Open Road

Having enough spots for storage is an important element to living out of your bus.

Having enough spots for storage is an important element to living out of your bus.


Here are some other appreciated decked out VW’s that we love:

VW turned food truck! Yum!

VW turned food truck! Yum!

This was a shot we took on our South American trip - it was a 'completo' food truck which is the Chilean version of our hot dog, but they know how to dress it up with all the fixin's!

This was a shot we took on our South American trip - it was a 'completo' food truck which is the Chilean version of our hot dog, but they know how to dress it up with all the fixin's!

The orange hawaiian flowers add a nice, simple touch.

The orange hawaiian flowers add a nice, simple touch.

A VW to hold ALL of your friends!

A VW to hold ALL of your friends!

We strongly encourage putting googly eyes on everything. 

We strongly encourage putting googly eyes on everything

Beautiful, realistic clouds are painted all around the bus. 

Beautiful, realistic clouds are painted all around the bus. 

If you can't go to the desert, might as well paint it on the side of your van!

If you can't go to the desert, might as well paint it on the side of your van!

Obviously, VW owners are dedicated to creating the perfect bus. Whether it’s used for traveling, posting up at the beach, or showing off its beautiful art, the VW bus is personalized to each and every driver. Hopefully, you've either gained insight into the craft of each bus, or maybe, even inspiration for how you'll deck out your VW.  

Make sure to check out Vannagram's Pinterest "VW Love" for more awesome VW buses. 

How to Name A VW Bus

Emily Forsythe

The story behind each VW bus tells a special part of history. Amongst the van’s travels, destinations, and drivers, the VW represents freedom and individuality; and, his/her name depicts the story and personality of each owner.

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Styled Shoot: Gypsy Picnic in the Texas Hill Country

Emily Forsythe

In the midst of a busy spring wedding and social season, we somehow managed to squeeze in a styled shoot just before the summer heat hit! We teamed up with our friends over at Birch & Brass Rentals using some of their newest finds and styled up a gypsy picnic that is worth taking a road trip to Spicewood for!

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Summer Van Jams

Emily Forsythe

We've logged a lot of hours on the road - A LOT. From living in our beloved Volkswagen bus for 5 months, traversing the continent to coming home to Austin and creating a photobooth business out of the same bus, we like living out of our car. Surviving the van life directly depends on having awesome jams to pass the time (when you're on the road) or to keep the party pumping (when photographing an event).

Here are two playlists we're rolling with this summer:

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Best Wedding Venues in Austin

Emily Forsythe

Finding the perfect venue for your wedding is exciting, but it isn’t exactly easy. Austin has so many wedding venues to choose from - urban, Hill Country, rustic, outdoorsy, classic, modern, elaborate, or simple… the sky’s the limit in our vibrant and versatile city! Luckily, thanks to our adventures with Anna the Vanna, we’ve experienced many of the best wedding venues Austin has to offer.

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Best Wedding Photographers in Austin

Emily Forsythe

Selecting your photographer is no small decision, and while the Austin area is lucky to have plenty of talented individuals and studios to choose from, the search can be a bit overwhelming. Obviously, our beloved mobile photobooth, Anna the Vanna is our favorite gal when it comes to wedding photographers in Austin, but we have a few more friends we highly recommend. We suggest starting with our list below - all Austin-based wedding photographers we’ve worked with and/or admire.

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The Best Austin Rehearsal Dinner Venues

Emily Forsythe

Choosing to have your rehearsal dinner in Austin, Texas naturally sets the tone for an incredible evening with family and friends. This sparkling city offers a guaranteed good time (and good food). Venues that have outdoor patios with the Texas night sky in view, intimate underground rooms, beautifully layered dishes from award-winning chefs and never ending lists of decadent wine. No matter what your aesthetic, the venue to suit you and your family's vibes is here. Whether you're focused on a decadent meal, beautiful space, award-winning wine, or all of the above, Austin has plenty of private dining options perfect for a memorable rehearsal dinner. Here are some of our favorites. 

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Our story

Emily Forsythe

In the spring of 2015, we took a huge leap of faith and decided to quit our jobs, buy an old VW bus, leave the life we had built in Austin and go explore! At the time, we were newlyweds who had just taken a three-week honeymoon to Thailand. Rough life, I know. Upon our return, we both felt the itch to extend our adventure and in the coming months, we devised a plan to not just think about the dream, but actually live it! 

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#VANLIFE

Emily Forsythe

When we returned from our travels, the question we always got was how could you guys live in a van?! What was it like? How did you cook? What did you cook?! Where did you sleep?! Was it comfortable?! Where did you go to the restroom?! This video explains quite a bit of those questions and gives a glimpse into what #vanlife is all about! Check it out!

In 2011, Foster Huntington created the #vanlife Instagram hashtag, and unexpectedly spawned hundreds of thousands of posts and a family of eager followers. It became a community of like-minded individuals who delight in the kind of adventure you can only get by traveling through the wilderness in a clunky, decades-old vehicle.

 

TORRES DEL PAINE: PART II

Emily Forsythe

luckily i awoke the next morning an hour after our alarm was supposed to go off or else we would’ve been really late!! we quickly got dressed and drove the hour or so into the national park to the catamaran port. there we would leave our beloved van (ché!), pack a bag for a couple nights (clean clothes!!), gather a few food items for sandwiches and games to play and hop on the boat to the refugio.

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