Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

thank you.  just thank you.  you people are amazing.  the last month has been quite a beautiful roller coaster for us.  a beautiful, epic, once in a lifetime, award winning movie kind of beautiful.  we have received countless emails from folks around the world sharing their stories with us.  heartbreaking stories along with blissful ones.  but more than anything, people just wanting to live life alongside us as we walk through this adventure.  in a way, we have felt isolated the last few years, putting off friends and activities because of being “too busy” and all the while not knowing when we would be able to surface for air.

one of the most frustrating things to my heart is continually telling my kids “i’m busy, just a minute, honey” and putting them off.  my heart has ached so many nights realizing that i never did give them my attention and had just tried to more keep them occupied.  and so, after years of this kind of a heavy heart, we finally went for it and decided to just leap!  and now for the first time, we are breathing.  in preparing to be out of our house  next week, we have spent pretty much every night the last week going through boxes that we’ve had in storage for years of things from our childhood.  letters, photographs, home videos, drawings and books.  it has been incredibly special.  i’ve sat on the floor of my closet with my hands full of photographs, some of my grandparents from when they were my age, during the war, when they were vibrant and desperately in love.  and photographs of me when i was a child, seeing so much of my own babies in my face.  reminiscing, grieving, with every emotion inside of me just dripping down my face.

we have had to make decisions of what to keep and it has been so eye opening.  so many meaningless things, so much money wasted.  we have our very special things, of course, but from now on we will not buy things just for the sake of buying.  no more buying random stuffed animals from target to keep them busy in the cart or having extras of anything.  we are having to be so very intentional and the children are watching.  they are seeing us choose them over the stuff.  they are surely experiencing the transition in different ways, we have had quite a few days with clingy little ones and tantrums (mostly because our hands have been so busy packing) but in the teaching part of this we are able to explain to them why we are making this life change.  we have talked so much about the fact that we will get to be together and they won’t have to have a babysitter, they won’t have to miss us.  that for at least the next six months, they are 100% our priority.  we have been brainstorming on ways to make the adventure even more fun… we plan to have our own little prouty family ‘adventure scouts’ with challenges and badges and such to keep everyone excited about the new destinations and such.  what’s that saying; that it will not be easy, but it will be absolutely worth it.  it is so true.

we talk about how what made our house a home was not the walls but the people.  and living in the trailer, we will be closer and time spent will be much more quality and with intention at every step.  we have had quite a few people ask us if we are worried about not getting enough alone time with all six of us living in one room and the answer is absolutely not.  we may need to take a breather and a walk alone every now and then but more than anything, we are so excited for this.  our children are never happier than when sharing a room together and here’s the thing… if i found out that one of us was diagnosed with something terminal, i would surely not want my space from any of them!  i would want to savor every single second.  and this is the point of this – the live like every day is our last.  to stop putting off our happy life.  to embrace the people that matter most and create a place for us all to grow closer, to laugh a lot more and to live life alongside of people instead of hiding out.

my oldest, gracie, will get to watch me photograph families along the way, and she will hear their stories too.  she will get to observe me living out my creative passion and being fulfilled as an artist and a woman, being able to share joy while providing for our family and our journey.  i hope she will treasure it all in her heart and pursue her passions wildly.

i am looking forward to sleeping next to my husband every single night.  so often in this house, we separate and work until the wee hours with one of us waking up the other on the couch in the morning.  i miss sleeping beside him.  that’s the good stuff.  and in the mornings the kids only have to walk a few steps to snuggle in to talk with us or tell stories rather than run straight to the television.  so much to look forward to.

so, thank you for embracing us and loving us and praying for us.  thank you for taking time out of your very busy days to encourage us.  we read every word, sometimes more than once.  this community of women, in particular, that i have connected with on instagram and by blogging is something so very special.  you get to see the strings that connect us and how we are all living somewhat parallel lives.  in the quiet of difficult days, you see that someone else gets it.  we aren’t nearly as alone as we thought we were.  i have been so blessed by you all.  our family is eternally grateful.  and we can’t wait to meet some of you along the way.   :)

don’t be afraid to DREAM BIG!

dream big_web

also, i wanted to share this amazing video with you about a spectacular human being, zach sobiech.  i watched this video of his last days living life to the fullest and haven’t been able to get it off of my heart and mind since.  i don’t often share things like this, but i was so changed by it that i cannot help but share it in hopes that it changes you too.  be prepared for a good cry.

This entry was posted in our journey to simplification, Personal Stuff. Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

  1. lindsey says:

    oh joy. you need to add writing to your many talents because your words dance and bring life, encouragement and passion. I am SO excited for all that is ahead for your family! You are so beautiful inside and out! We are all blessed to have you on our paths! :) xo!

  2. says:

    I am so happy for you! Some days I wish we could do the same…pick up and just be together and have no other worries! We are making steps to simplify life….have been over the past 2 years. Can’t wait for my husband to be out of his work contract so he can find a less demanding job (even if that means less pay) so we can focus on being together more! I am soooooo hoping I can find it in our budget for you to photograph our family!!!!!! <3

  3. Nanette Gordon-Cramton says:

    Brave and beautiful…enjoy every minute!

  4. Sara says:

    love your heart, Joy Prouty. And i’m trying to prepare my heart and mind for the possibility that my husband might want to pack up and go after your visit at our house 😉 so excited for you. xoxo

  5. Sara says:

    You are TRULY inspirational! We are getting ready to move into our first home and I am realizing as I pack and go through things, that we have too many unnecessary things. For example, our daughter has more toys than she can play with. It is overwhelming and, to me, a bit disheartening. We don’t buy her a whole lot personally, but others do. I wish they would just spend time with her instead of giving her something that she may never be interested in. Don’t even get me started on the accumulation of stuff that my husband and I have. Oi vey!

    I have never commented before, but I felt compelled to do so tonight. Thank you for being an inspiration to me and so many others. Your life will continue to be blessed. :)


  6. sam mothersole says:

    oh joy …… as i read your words…… i can hear myself speaking……. ” not now honey , mummy is busy ” and i pang with guilt every single time i say it ……. right now i feel like i am treading water …. and although i try to keep my head above the water…. how can i possibly spread myself everywhere to keep everyone happy … children, husband, clients…. you have inspired me for years joy , with your beautiful work and your open heart and willingness to share with your workshops…..and now with this …….
    i will make it my goal ….. my aim … to live with intention.. and balance my work time for when my babies are not home …… and when they are …. they will have my full , un divided attention ……. all my babies…. hubby included. x thank you for being so real ….. and open ………and i cant wait to follow your journey in your trailor . :) thank you ….. for saying what i needed to hear. x

  7. Shabana says:

    joy, as always, there is such a strong resonance. i don’t own a cell phone for that very reason. because it only fuels that busy state of mind. the light of a million galaxies shine in my daughters eyes and the life my husband and I are creating together is inspired by that light. reading your words makes my heart smile.

  8. Avril says:

    Joy thank you for once again chiang that beautiful heart of yours. I wish I could expresses how much this resonates with me. I’m so blessed to witness your life in all its beauty, creativity and struggles. So excited for your adventure and the adventure He has called each of us to live. Love you!

  9. Rachael M says:

    You are so brave Joy & family. Thank you for the reminder that our children are always watching. Thank you for sharing this amazing journey with us all…it is blessing and inspiring and changing us more than you know.

  10. melody joy says:

    such a beautiful post Joy!
    i have been thinking about your family alot these past few weeks. you have inspired us to buy a vintage moterhome and we are taking the summer to road trip in it with our 3 young children! i absolutely understand about feeling guilty when feeling torn with having to work but wanting instead to play with my kids.
    you and your husband are giving your family such a precious and priceless gift!
    i sent you a necklace i had made, but it came back to me in the mail today because i had written the wrong address! haha! it’s on the way back to you, so maybe it will arrive in time before your trip.
    thanks for shining such a strong light of Love!

  11. MelissaMarie says:

    Thank YOU, for allowing all of us to journey with you. More than once these past days I have thought of your story and your bravely choosing a simpler and lighter life and I have been encouraged, and challenged, and I smile as I remember what is REALLY important. Your voice is far reaching and your life is speaking such an important message. May God’s grace, peace, and light surround you and your family!

  12. Andrea says:

    Bless you and your family on your exciting journey! I’m so happy I found you on Instagram! You are so genuine and a woman I admire without even knowing you personally! If only we could all grab hold of the courage that lies in all of us! :) You inspire me.

  13. AshleyAnn says:

    Love this. Love you. Love your November!

    You make my heart dance.

  14. Ginger says:

    Joy, I so look forward to following you along in your journey through your writing and photography. You are so gifted and creative. Your whole family is remarkable! I wish all of you much happiness, health and goodness along the way. Prayers for your safety as you travel. May God bless your family always.

  15. Erin says:

    Xoxo. Thank you for sharing your journey…both the physical one & the spiritual one! I’m blessed to know you.

  16. Nathalie Hicks says:

    Joy – Have a wonderful trip around the great land of the US. I have found myself living vicariously through you. You are a wonderful mother, wife and person and an inspiration to all of us. I too feel the same way about not spending time with my children. I was on my own when my children were so it was very diffucult to spend the time that they needed with the. I am able to make that up to them now that they are much older. My children are the most special people in the world. They have grown into wonderful human beings. I know that your children will do exactly the same. You are about to give your famil an experience they will remeber for the rest of their lives. You are an amazing woman – Joy Prouty!!

  17. Kate @ Songs Kate Sang says:

    Joy – have a blessed and safe journey! Love your work, love you, love your words!

  18. Alicia @ La Famille says:

    You are a beautiful soul, Joy. So glad you’re getting loved on. Good luck to you and your family! xoxo

  19. jen says:

    hi joy…i only just recently “found” you thru instagram and was immediately struck by the magically beautiful environment you have created for your sweet family…for me, it was reminder (…a wake up…a kick in the butt) to live with more intention and to actually create the magic rather than just think about it. And then to hear of this journey you all are taking….love, love, love your spirit, your bravery, your vision (not to mention that camper!)…wishing you much happiness as you set out on the road..and thank you for the inspiration.

  20. Amy @ Fig Milkshakes says:

    As I was reading through this blog post, I was imagining what this may be like – yes some of it is three children yelling all within arms reach…some of it is realizing you have to go to the laundromat again when you feel like you just got back…But, then I just had this clear thought of waking up to light leaking in the windows and the sound of birds chirping right out the door – seeing my husband right next to me, and sitting up to find that the kids are also right within eyeshot – and knowing that there are no real restrictions for your day, but it is full of possibilities.

    I totally get it, Joy. I have been very inspired and grateful for your story! I hope someday we can have a wee trailer to set out on an adventure ourselves – but for now…I’m just inspired to go through all my STUFF and simplify. Thanks, Joy.

    I’m sure you get a lot of requests – but if you come by Kingman, Az – come on by – you and yours can pick up some fresh herbs from our little herb bathtub and maybe have a cup of coffee at this here home!

  21. Nikki says:

    Joy! I can’t believe how similar our stories are! I’m sitting here smiling and feeling all of those same emotions. Loved getting to talk with you for a bit today! So many good things in store, cannot wait to see where the Lord takes you guys. Enjoy each day, each moment…such sweet stories that will be imprinted upon each one of your hearts are about to be written. Sending my love and hugs and prayers! xo

  22. Åsa says:

    I am so looking forward to read about your trip through your country! Last year when I was pregnant with our third, me and my husband quit our jobs and bought a trailer to travel around Europe (we are from Sweden) and it was fantastic!! It brought our family so much closer together and now we are saving up to travel again, many through the US!
    Good luck with everything and thanks for sharing! (You can find our pics from the trip on our blog if you want to see the European version, the last post is from returning home and the first from just before we left!)

  23. Teresa says:

    I have never met you personally but I follow your blog and your Instagram. You words are powerful and I have to admit that I shed a tear when reading so much of what you say. I admire your vulnerability and I thank you for sharing it. I will continue to follow you and your families journey and please know that I wish you nothing but the best and will pray that God keeps you and yours safe along your special journey. God Bless

  24. Andrea Traynor says:

    Oh Joy, wishing you so much love, happiness and beauty in the moments and memories you’ll be making on this journey of yours. I enjoy following along on instagram and seeing your family of 6 as we recently became 6 in January. You inspire me to simplify and let go of the hold of “stuff”, even though I’m not about to journey across country, I feel like I could benefit from the simplifying right here, right now. My little love seeing all the adventures your littles are up to. One day we plan to adventure across our country, Canada… as a good long family trip. Keep up the snaking photo creativity, your images inspire me as well in my own photography. I’ve taken a break from clients, but like to keep myself from getting rusty by photography my own little ones. littlegnomebabycat on instagram and blogging when I can. thanks for sharing your family and your life :)

  25. Andrea Traynor says:

    auto correct is weird sometimes. Amazing photography not snaking photography. Hopefully the rest makes sense…

  26. Ana Frantz says:

    Dear Joy,

    You are a true isnpiration! Your work has so much soul, honesty and love to it that we can read through your photographs with the joy of our hearts.

    You are so right when you say that we are never alone, and often we find life is nothing but a mirror. Having found you through the internet web was a magical spell.

    I hope you journey is blessed with sweet hapiness and the new stories are always potraited in your magical lenses.

    All my love,
    Ana Frantz

  27. Mehg says:


    Your words are beautiful, the truth and honesty you write about are inspiring!
    Thanks for sharing your families stories. I absolutely adore your photos – you are a true inspiration.

    Your family is in my prayers as you embark on this new journey in life!

  28. Rach @ A Squiggly Blog says:

    Just found you via Katie Daisy! So blessed to follow your journey! xx Rach

  29. Joy Morykon says:

    Joy! Thanks so much for living your life out loud! For making changes in your lifestyle to be with your children & live simply. For selling all you own to buy the field (of wildflowers) with the treasure buried inside, You! Thanks for reminding me of what matters & what doesn’t. And thanks for writing about it. Oh and that vid about Zach, wrecked me. Thx for that too.. Xo

  30. Elizabeth says:

    Such brave words to accompany your brave adventure. Looking forward to reading more!
    -Middle Coast Mama

  31. ginanorma says:

    he was a friend of ours, he’s my daughter’s age. it was really really sad around here.

    Like everyone else, I have so enjoyed following along on your journey, I will keep my dreams alive, most of the time I think dreams are selfish, so thank you for inspiring me!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

wildflower. mother. wife. believer. artist. writer. dreamer.



favorite sessions


search the blog