Daily Ritual with Afuera Vida
Posted on September 15, 2020
We are thrilled to feature a guest post from Colin Boyd, one of the creators behind Afuera Vida, an incredible project where Colin and his partner Sofi capture their life living in a refurbished Fire Truck with their family. We are proud to be a part of their daily ritual, with Colin starting his days on the road with a mug of Instafuel. Read on to learn more about their life, and shop Instafuel below. In Colin's word...
When people ask me what living on the road in a 1978 German Fire Truck is like, a flood of 18 months of memories flashes in front of me before I answer. And like each day, my answer changes based on my state of mind, location and the family vibe inside the van in that particular moment. From peak experiences such as watching my young boys climb to the top of mountains to the lowest lows - breaking down, with sick kids and no idea how to fix it - the only constant is change amongst an ebb and flow of intense experiences.
With that in mind, the only way my partner Sofi and I have survived is by establishing rituals to guide our rhythm of the day for ourselves, for each other and for our young boys aged two and five.
For me it starts with the morning and because we may wake up on a trailhead in the Sierras, questionably parked in an urban jungle or at a rest stop with a twelve hour drive behind and ahead of us, each day starts with it’s own intention. The only constant is change and with it the vitality that we embody to work with it.
In 2020 I have made it a goal to start my days with a twenty minute mindfulness meditation. While challenging, this ritual has personally created an essential space for me to become more aware of the nature of my own mind while also establishing just an inkling more space between stimulus and response - especially when it comes to living as a family of four and a dog in a 120 square foot van. I rise before everyone everyday, so this is the only time for stillness before the day begins in earnest.
My coffee ritual usually is a choice between awaking the family or getting my morning fix, so that’s why my go to has become Instafuel after my meditation. If everyone is still asleep I usually head out for a run in whatever terrain presents and return for a family breakfast. Over oatmeal, toast, cereal or pancakes if we’re feeling decadent - we’ll review yesterday together, talking about what we are grateful for and what could have gone better. We then look at the day ahead of us, my meditation work already downgrading the stress I would have felt about bashing through my endless to do list, and we enjoy a moment together before we confront the world outside of our bright orange cocoon.
My partner Sofi is usually up last - her Argentine rhythm includes long sleeps - a self care tool used to navigate the heightened intensity of our days and the 24/7 motherhood. If it wasn’t for Sofi, it would be bacon, eggs, black coffee and action every day. She is our health guide, she’s become vegan and challenged me to become nearly vegetarian. She doesn’t consume coffee and prefers to brew up a custom tea from her bounty of colorful herbs and flower petals in various jars and bags around the van. She moves with grace through each routine and childhood meltdown knowing that she chose to live this life to purposefully slow down - inspiring me to focus my awareness in the present amidst the chaos.
And from here the day usually begins and it’s not all butterflies and rainbows in the instal-glamourous world of #vanlifewithkids. There’s mayhem in every decision, constant needs requiring immediate attention and little time or space for us as individuals. Constant change is not just guaranteed - it is the lifestyle. However, especially as parents who hold the ship upright, creating just one ritual each morning - a meditation or a custom herbal brew is enough to meet the bedlam with a smile.
Words By: Colin Boyd
Photography By: Sofi Aldinio & Colin Boyd