Hello! We are the Butlers – the family behind Flipping Moons. Luke, Kate, Nola and Arwen – that’s us up there, true to form. You’ll usually see us with at least one toddler on the hip, wandering through the days, as we re-learn how to slow down and enjoy ourselves. And while there is no escaping the normal tasks of being an adult and parent, we have entered a world with more light, colour, energy, and connection. We have just taken a huge leap and flipped our lives upside down. So here is where we started:
We were in the same place as you might be. Nothing unusual. Nothing dramatic. We were living a very normal life. And when I say normal, I actually mean quite privileged, stable, safe, fine, often very lovely. These are words I know that many may never be able to say when describing their lives. And, while living the so called “good life”, we also found ourselves wanting more…or maybe less…or maybe just something different? Depends on which way you look at it I suppose.
The beginning is a story you have heard before – what happens next might look a little different. Long hours and a sense of never doing enough at work. Strained work-life balance. Annoyed spouse. Two babies within 16 months. Zero attention directed toward physical health. Hours upon hours sunk browsing online or social media for no life-affirming purpose whatsoever. Stress mounting with each day. Unreasonable expectations (most often from ourselves). Keen awareness that we “have it all”, yet itching for something else.
It seemed like we were always wondering about the future and wandering through the past. Dreaming can be thrilling, especially when you have a partner who is willing to dream with you, and reminiscing can bring so much joy. But, we knew we weren’t really enjoying the moment.
What would it be like to just stop? To take a massive step back and enjoy life a bit more right now? What would we even do if we had more time? What would it be like to know ourselves more and do things that actually bring us joy, not just what society tells us is really awesome.
“But you can’t just not work,” they say. True. For most of us. Ourselves included. Unfortunately we are not independently wealthy. And besides, we wouldn’t want to stop working anyway – we love the independence, stimulation, challenge, creative outlet that figuring out how to make an income presents us. But we are choosing to work differently, and to hopefully bring more joy into our work. And part of that is about living differently, with less, with old, with good enough, with second hand, with more attention to what we consume. We are practicing being OK with this. Practicing. It’s a process.
So this is where the story veers off path.
We took a leap and walked away from a really nice life in Sidney BC, Canada in 2016. We parted with most of our possessions, except for things we really love like our bed, 1997 Jeep Cherokee, a few mementos, and some favorite children’s toys and books. First stop – Guanajuato, Mexico. It’s here where we begin a new chapter to our story, a time that will see us transition from status quo to who knows what. Hopefully somewhere closer to us, to the core of who we are. Somewhere closer to knowing how to live a more balanced life. Maybe a new perspective. And maybe we end up right where we were before, but undoubtedly with a new mindset.
What is Flipping Moons?
We walked out of the airport after a long travel day from Canada to Mexico, and the first thing I noticed was the moon – it looked completely different. While an astronomy prof would likely shake her head at my marvel, I was mesmerized how, by simply flying down to Mexico, the moon that originally looked like the letter “C” in the morning had “transformed” to a smile-shaped crescent by dusk (again, prof aghast with my lack of moon-vocab). First quarter, I can tell you that much. A good time to start a new adventure!
The moon is magical. This is nothing new. And to us, it represents so many things. A connection to self and our bodies. To the earth. To everyone else in the world looking at the very same moon (those in our universe at least). Connection to a sense of renewal and starting over each day. To the ebbs and flows, waxing and waning of ideas, progress, happiness, fulfillment. Everything is in motion and will always change. The moon helps us see that.
For us, the different phases of the moon and the different orientations to which we see the moon depending on where we are symbolize perspective, and how easily perspective can change. A new country? Sure. That helps. But how about a new mantra? Habit? A book. A word. A practice. A pause. A challenge or tragedy. Maybe even just listening to ourselves some more could bring us renewal.
Flipping Moons is a place were we’ll gather our ideas, experiences, wonderings, lessons. We’ll document some details of our adventures, sometimes practical, sometimes not. We hope you enjoy reading, but mostly we hope you feel even slightly more willing to follow your heart, whatever that might look like for you.