Val in Real Life
Life

Parenting Teens

This week when I shared the nuts-and-bolts of visiting Bandelier National Monument, I had to think back to why I enjoyed camping there so much. Certainly it’s a very agreeable […]

Bandelier National Monument - Val in Real Life
Travel

New Mexico’s Bandelier National Monument

When it comes to our National Park system, national monuments tend to be sorely overlooked compared to the marquis parks that visitors flock to in their travels. Bandelier is not […]

On the Road to Bikes, Blues, & BBQ for Progressive
Motorcycling

On the Road to Bikes, Blues, and BBQ for Progressive

Today is a big day here at Val in Real Life HQ. My Nina is loaded and ready to roll to Arkansas for the Bikes, Blues, and BBQ rally in […]

Back to the Throttle With Moto Guzzi - Val in Real Life
Motorcycling

Back to the Throttle With Moto Guzzi…

Last time I talked about the physical and emotional process of getting back to riding after a crash. With that out of the way, let’s talk about the technical aspects […]

Meteor Crater in Arizona - Val in Real LIfe
Travel

Roadschooling at Arizona’s Meteor Crater

As you know, we here at Val in Real Life like to learn when we’re traveling. Fred and George don’t travel with me as often these days but when they […]

The Journey Back to Riding - Val in Real Life
Motorcycling

The Journey Back to Riding

How do you make a comeback? An epic one. I don’t have a formula for you. I can only share my experience. I do know that mine has had three […]

Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge
Outdoors

Nevada’s Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge

Tucked off of the very busy Highway 93, 80 miles north of Las Vegas, you’ll find Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge. This Nevada oasis seems horribly overlooked by the cars and […]

cathedral gorge state park - val in real life
Outdoors

Camping at Cathedral Gorge State Park

Now that I’ve given you a peek at exploring Cathedral Gorge State Park, it’s time for a look the camping facilities. After the bare-bones, but not quite primitive, offerings of […]

Outdoors

Exploring Cathedral Gorge State Park

Back in May, I set out on another mega road trip to regain my Val-ness. After Overland Expo in Arizona, I mozied my way to Great Basin National Park in […]

Life

Six Months to Life

Today marks six months since I was hit by a car while riding my motorcycle. I’ve written a good bit about this ordeal so far and again I find myself […]

Travel

Full Throttle at Tellus Science Museum

Last Saturday, Tellus Science Museum in Cartersville, Georgia unveiled it’s new Full Throttle exhibit. So I rode my groovy Moto Guzzi there to meet some fellow riders and check it […]

val in real life
Life

On Recovery

Now 24 weeks into my ordeal of being hit by a car, I’ve come to understand a lot about recovery and how it evolves. The challenges shift constantly. You reach […]

Outdoors

The PURE Electrolytic Water Purifier by Potable Aqua

On the Hell Hike and Raft last year, I overhauled my hiking hydration scheme to include my Potable Aqua PURE electrolytic water purifier. As a Potable Aqua Brand Ambassador, I […]

Outdoors

Great Basin National Park

My western adventure was a fairly loose mess; largely unplanned and willy-nilly. After my exit from the surprisingly wintry experience at Overland Expo, I ventured into the Silver State and […]

Life

On Being Timid

I recently returned from my western adventure, the trip that was to help me regain my Val-ness after January’s crash. And it did in so many ways. It was needed […]

Travel

Western Adventure Road Trip Wrap-Up

I recently wrapped up another western adventure. This road trip chimed in at 31 days, 5,890 miles, and spanned 11 states, making it one of my smaller undertakings. I spent […]

ovelranad expo 2015 - val in real life
Travel

Overland Expo West 2015

I’ve been debating what to write about Overland Expo this year… about writing anything at all, actually. Because it was such an unusual and trying endeavor this time, I’ve spent […]

Motorcycling

What Motorcyclists Want You to Know… Part 2

In my previous installment of what riders need drivers to understand, I talked about the practical points of motorcycling. Those things, involving safety and etiquette, keep riders and drivers alike […]

Travel

Embracing My Wheelhouse…

I’ve gotten in the habit of naming my longer trips. It’s a label that makes for easy reference. Over the last few years we’ve taken on George’s Birthday Adventure, Geowoodstock […]

val in real life
Life

Foundations

Back in March I wrote about why it’s important to keep your bucket full. But I realized my thoughts at the time were an incomplete picture of the tools needed […]

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