It has been a long while since the last time that have written anything.  To be honest, there was a point in time within the past couple months that I believed that I was finished with this blog.  It took a bit of self reflection to realize that I had forgotten why I started MidwestJourneys in the first place.  Originally, I created this blog as a way to help those who are going down some of the same paths that I have been down, literally and figuratively.  I also wanted it to be a place where I could reflect on my thoughts.

So, what happened?  As I published some content on the blog, I first found myself getting caught up with the blog stats more than the content that I was going to post.  I became mildly obsessed with page hits and how many web searches were bringing up the site.  I was barely even thinking about whether anyone was actually benefitting from what I was writing.  At the same time, I found myself becoming more concerned about backpacking gear than backpacking experiences.  My time on the trail had somehow turned into some kind of gear test.  I had allowed the worldly consumerism, which was something that I go to the trail to forget about, to follow me there.

As the past few months went by, I once again began thinking that I would like to have a forum to share my experiences and possibly help someone along the way.  That is when it occurred to me that I had already created that place, it was just a matter of getting back to the real reason I started it.  I want this site to focus on the experiences.  I will continue to mention our gear, because I want to help people make educated purchases.  I would also encourage any questions about any gear that I mention.  However, I do not want that to be the primary focus of this blog.

With that being said, it is now time for…  take 2.  I have a few months to catch up on.  Probably the biggest thing that has happened in the past few months is that we have moved and are now settled into our new home.  I have to say that is currently everything that we hoped it would be.  We have been truly blessed in this move and I feel that God must have an underlying purpose for us being here, with how clearly the groundwork was laid for us getting here.  Settling in has taken some time, so we did not have the outdoor time that we would have liked to have had this year.  We did have a few day hikes and I went on one backpacking trip with some friends.  I hope to write about some of these experiences in the near future.

I am excited about this new focus, and I look forward to sharing our experiences.  I think that it is a good thing to take a moment every once and a while to step back and reflect on how things are going.  Sometimes things that started out as a good plan can become skewed if motivations change.

Happy Thanksgiving!