We returned home last Wednesday evening, a day earlier than planned on account of a barfing kid. He wasn’t terribly ill, but barfing while sharing sixty square feet in the desert heat is no fun for anyone, so instead of moving on from Spokane to spend a final night in the mountains east of Seattle, we just sucked it up and drove all the way home. It was the right decision, and considering that this was the only barfing incident in nearly six weeks on the road, we’re considering it a trip end that simply had a little more drama and a little less celebration than we’d intended.

So now we’ve been home for five days, and it still feels really weird. Pretty much, it feels like we never left. But so much happened on the trip, and we saw so many mind-bending, amazing things, that it just doesn’t feel like it should be possible to feel like we never left. It should feel like we’ve mildly changed. Home should feel kind of different in some way.

But no. Home is exactly as we left it (major thanks and love to my brother- and sister-in-law for leaving it that way for us). We’ve slipped back into habits as if we’d never left. Some of the habits are good, some are ones I was hoping would be easier to change after a long time away; alas, no.

We were away for nearly six weeks, you guys! I hadn’t been away from home for that long in a single stretch since I staffed a teen bus tour when I was twenty-three (coincidentally, that tour was my first time visiting many of the places we visited on this trip).

In a fully predictable and predicted way, my biggest challenge of the trip is not having enough (or any, really) time by myself. Today, finally, I’ve had eight straight hours of silence at home, and I finally feel like my brain is getting back into working order. I’ll have photos to share soon. And thoughts. And ideas. And work.

For now, here’s part of what I did today. I finally watched and worked through the second loose lesson in the painting class I’d intended to work through over the winter. Apparently, I had a sad king that needed to come out. A terrible, awful sad king. Perhaps 2015 will be the year of awful painting, and I’ll start to figure out what I’m doing come 2016…

A sad king. #painting #mixedmedia #acrylic #ink #oilpastel

A photo posted by Kim Werker (@kpwerker) on