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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

Living Deliberately; A Family in Motion

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

It’s not every day that one meets a family like the Dennings. One of our own Readers mentioned to me that this family was in Panajachel, one of the most beautiful locations in Guatemala, and recommended that I contact them.

This family is on a mission; one focused on discovery, expansion, learning and finding out what it means to be a human being in an inter-country exchange that began in Alaska and will pause at the tip of South America.

You can’t do this

Greg and Rachel have been told since 2007 that they can’t do what they are doing, that it is impossible. No one can travel with five children in a tented truck on a budget of around $1,000 month.

Initially shocking to their friends and family, they are doing just that - and with more joy and enthusiasm than it seems possible.  

The Denning clan in Panajachel, Guatemala

Failure as fertilizer

With solid investments in both the stock market and in real estate, they were living high when they moved to Costa Rica in 2007. Renting a 6500 sq foot, fully-furnished, $2 million dollar mansion on the hill for $3,000 a month, life was good.

Very good.

Then the markets crashed and took the Denning’s financial wealth with it.

 

Amid feelings of failure they returned to the States and found themselves confronted with plenty of “welcome to reality” and “see, I told you so” comments. They were bruised but not broken.

“The hardest thing in the beginning was feeling lonely. We wanted to do something different than what family and the rest of the people we knew were doing, so it felt like we were leaving the tribe” says Greg.

“Meeting those dark nights of the soul and coming out on the other side has been a process” adds Rachel.

They read personal development books to keep them motivated and to dispel the loneliness. Defining their priorities, they got clear on what mattered to them. They knew what they wanted, and it was not following “the formula.”

On the road with a vehicle tent

Homeless on purpose, nomadic by choice

Traveling has been important to Greg since he was young. Tasting the exotic in Costa Rica lit the fire for rambling in Rachel. Putting their plan in motion took some mental adventure and creativity. Converting their truck with a vehicle tent to give their family more room, they hit the road. They run their truck on used vegetable oil as fuel and they are able to obtain that fuel for free or for a low price everywhere they have traveled.

Performing home repairs and improvements in trade for lodging, and working in campgrounds in exchange for accommodation has worked out well for them. Sometimes they rent housing – like the $200 a month, volcano view home they have in Panajachel, Guatemala. Other times they stay in forests, fields, or in parking lots, gas and police stations. Not being tied to a brick and mortar home gives them the freedom to explore the world on their own terms and become experts on location independent living.

Living deliberately

Everything in daily life offers an occasion to teach their children whom they home school. Focusing on a classical education, they utilize the Thomas Jefferson Education Principles supplemented with loads of reading and experiential learning. Greg was a high school teacher in a previous life, but both Greg and Rachel are involved in teaching a love of learning to their children. "Once that is understood,” says Greg, “you can’t stop a child from achieving from that point on.”

With this love of learning with a foundation of values, morals and having respect for both work and contributing to others, they are teaching their offspring how to think, not just memorization. Once their children get to the scholar phase, they will become self-directed and “I have confidence they will be able to pass the SAT no problem!” beams Greg.

World Schooling in Yellowstone Park, U.S.A.

“Homeschooling has become a massive movement and more colleges will accept kids in with proper scores, regardless of previous education” Rachel adds.

The Dennings use kindles for books, and if cell phone service is available, then they have their iphone for internet. They change to a pre-paid local sims card wherever they are and they pay about $30 a month for that service. Both Greg and Rachel have a laptop, and Rachel creates content for their popular website DiscoverShareInspire.

“There are those who live in a small reality. We prefer an expanded reality, giving us more options on how to live, how to learn, and how to interact in the world” shares Greg.

 

Paying for what is

There is much to be learned from this original, energetic couple, but I had another practical question to pose. How do you take care of your medical needs? Having a family of five children would put most Americans into mild panic or ultra security mode.

“Our philosophy is to pay for what is, not for what if,” Greg states matter-of-factly. “We maintain our health with exercise and good food, and concentrate on staying healthy first.”

Their next line of defense after this is to go to natural cures for most things, as do the indigenous and farmers all over the world. They use essential oils which help them with headaches, stomach aches and fighting bacteria. But, if someone needs to go to the doctor, then they go. The fact that Greg has worked on an ambulance at a former job and knows emergency care obviously helps and gives them confidence.

Mirror, mirror on the wall

It was odd in some respects seeing this young family fashion the life of their dreams against what conventional wisdom offers. It was like seeing a younger version of ourselves: independent, self-sufficient, creative. We spoke the same language, albeit in a different tempo. In their mid thirties, and with 5 children, Rachel and Greg Denning are the generation behind us in age, but I see their thinking to be that of the future.

For more information on becoming location independent for living and for income, visit their website DiscoverShareInspire.com.

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About the Authors

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their popular website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible.

For more information about financial independence and travel, visit our book store

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Billy and Akaisha continue to journal and photograph their world travels.

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