|<< Vegas '06|
We left Vegas to drive to Zion for some camping. Caravanning with three RVs, the Jeep, and the crew car out of Vegas to the gas station was too stressful so we decided to meet at the campground. The rest of the way to Zion the crew traded between the RV and their car to get the shots they wanted on the road.
As we were driving, John Berman took turns interviewing the Family. Here, he is riding up front with Greg.
On the way to Zion we would pull over on the highway so the film crew could set up shots in the median as we passed by. We would turn around and go down side roads to get really scenic shots as we cruised through some beautiful landscape. Kelly, the FreeRange dad got some amazing pictures documenting all this as he drove Shani, the ABC producer behind us in the crew car. He was so excited to be a part of this and helped out tremendously, thanks Kelly!
So we'd pull over on the side of IH15 to set up shots. You can see Shani, the producer in the mirror talking on her phone coordinating and managing like no one we've ever met. Soon after this Sam (camera), Shani, and Kelly (driving) drove the crew car ahead of us to get a shot of the RV cruising down the Interstate. As we waited on the shoulder as traffic zoomed by, we saw them pull over about a half mile ahead to setup the camera. They weren't digging the shot so the next moment we witnessed the crew car zip across the Interstate and disappear behind a hill in the median!
Meanwhile Sunny is chomping to get to Zion. Next we hear from them to 'drive about 45mph in the fast lane'! Hmmmm. Not very smart, but we waited for traffic to thin out and did just that. Safely. Luckily. Yep, we were those idiots in the RV doing 45mph in the fast lane on a major Interstate. Hope they use that shot and you enjoy it.
A little further north on IH15 we entered a canyon when the crew car got in front of us to film out their window. When they slowed down to 45mph, Greg got closer thinking they wanted that kind of shot ~ Not. They motioned to fall back and slowed to 35mph on the winding canyon interstate. In true 'for the shot' fashion, Greg would tap the brake lights instead of using the flashers which could ruin the shot. Way to go Greg, you idiot.
Finally after hours of setting up shots and turning around the Interstate we start our ascent just out of La Verkin, Utah towards Zion Nation Park right behind the Airstream of Consciousness Family! What the heck have ya'll been doing? We're six hours into a two hour drive...
When we pulled into the campground we were greeted by the best reception ever ~ UnpluggedFamily, FreeRangeFamily, AirstreamofConsciousness Family, and our first time to see the ExtremeFamily since last October!! Yeah we are here! The kids took off hiking ~ above is some of the FreeRange and Extreme Family kids! The ExtremeFamily couldn't meet us in Las Vegas but joined us in Zion to make it a total of five RVing Families together! Twenty some odd people coming together in the desert from all over the country over the love of their Family and intentional actions to change Their American Dream. We sure missed the Road School Family who was hoping to be there too.
After arriving in Zion we were all tired and drained from the drive and the interview, but not Kelly! He was so happy to be a part of it! Here he is with Shani, the producer who he drove around all day! Kelly helped setup their shots and totally protected us in the RV when they would be trying to setup an overly ridiculous shot (as if 45mph in the fast lane wasn't ridiculous).
Shani and Greg did a lot of the coordination of the whole thing. Jenn could live a lifetime without more TV coverage.
We were all hungry and happy to find that the other RV moms got together and made such a huge feast for all of us to eat. That was such the best feeling next to seeing the Extremes for the first time in too long and coming home to the UnpluggedFamily after being away from them the whole day. Elijah came over to us and said that he will not be separated from us the rest of the filming. We really respected his feeling and couldn't agree more. That's just how we roll!
The kids all grabbed their instruments and rocked the campsite all night long. It had been almost a year since The Five Dead Kids band had jammed together, so Austin and Maddie stole the show. Eddie Van Halen (left in picture) has left the shot.
The film crew filmed our entire dinner and gathering with all of our RVing friends. We later toasted and sang the Gornicke's rendition of a Never Ending Love for You! I've got a never ending love for you / from now on that's all I wanna do / from the first time we met I knew / I'd have a never ending love for you... Yeah, it's that corny and that great.
The food was awesome considering that we all have these tiny little kitchens but can still cook for thirty something people!
FreeRangeFamily, AistreamFamily, ExtremeFamily, UnpluggedFamily, and barenakedfamily.
and a giant ass flood light for filming.
After dinner some of the friends huddled together to share stories of where they have been and what they have been doing. We love the fact that all the kids are various ages but have a deep respect for each other, no matter the age.
Ava (Airstream), Matthew (Extreme), and Austin (bnf).
Sunny (bnf) and Faith (unplugged).
Maddie and some psycho that showed up with freaky hair and a goofy smile.
It was so overwhelming to experience all this with all the great Families. The Airstream Family had reserved a cabin because they couldn't get a campground reservation over the phone. Once there, they got a site so Greg and Jenn scored their cabin for the night. We were so very tired after all the thought, planning, and anxiety that went into setting this up and we got to spend the night by ourselves and wake up to this beautiful place.
On our drive back to the campsite from the cabin we saw this glimpse of the sunlight coming into the park. It made us feel renewed and inspired combined with all the film stuff and other RVing Families coming together reminding us of what we stepped out to do five years ago. For the past couple of years, we have struggled with barenakedfamily and what it is yet Families kept coming out of the proverbial network to keep us going ultimately keeping us on track with what we set out so long ago to do ~ work, learn, and play together full time as a Family. What sounded simple has been a real rollercoaster. This is sooo not about RV'ing.
It was all such a breath of fresh air our Family needed. We knew from this moment on we were forever changed. By what we have risked, by what other Families have risked, by the message that we want to share. Here we're risking our lives in a five passenger car with seven people and loads of filming equipment with Shani driving.
When we returned the next morning the film crew joined us for coffee before finishing our interviews. Then they went around to all the other RVing Families and interviewed them as well.
Then the park ranger came by looking for our film permit. We had to stop the interview to find it.
All the Families together with the film crew before they had to fly back to New York.
We took a picture with just our Family and the film crew before they left. Elijah came over and stood his ground as part of barenakedfamily from already being separated for way too long during the project and wasn't about to move. Then Faith came over and joined in the action. Something really powerful about being loved so much by kids as young and important as these guys. Welcome Elijah and Faith to barenakedfamily!
After the film crew left, the RVing Families got together to spread the ashes of a nine year old girl named Hannah. Pegge, the FreeRange mom, had just come from the unschooling conference the week before and met the mother of Hannah who has started this amazing tradition. Hannah passed away shortly after her father had died and her mother and younger brother were left to carry on the Family. Her mother started this amazing project allowing those who hear Hannah's story to take a small packet of her ashes and spread them all over the world. Pegge took a bag and thought she and her Family would find a place on the road to celebrate Hannah and spread her ashes. They decided to share this experience with all of the Families here in Zion. So we went down to the Virgin River, took our shoes off, and stood in the river to spread her ashes.
Pegge sharing Hannah's story. Those are Hannah's ashes in her left hand in a small ziploc with hearts printed on it.
and thank you for Hannah
Thank you Hannah. See ya.
After the ceremony the FreeRangeFamily had to hit the road, so they got their picture of their Salem and Bryce with the other Salem and Brye.
That night we hung out with high winds and fire danger. While Austin looked hot.
And got our groove on. Actually Jenn's earring got stuck in Salem's hair which always makes for great pictures.
The day before, Salem had jammed her toe on a rock in the water and some of her toenail was ripped off. The pressure under the remaining toenail started to fill with old blood and pus so we talked her into letting us drill a hole to relieve it Ed Nodland style.
She was so not into it.
At all. Turns out there wasn't much under there and we didn't drill much further. It was still all funky but we decided to try it later.
We had to say goodbye and prepare for the rest of the trip back to Austin.
We love these guys all so much.
Zion to Texas >>