"Our American Dream": Traveling Families Live Outside the Box

by Lisa Mastny   |   September 29, 2011


A group of globe-trotting families who have connected via the Internet decided to focus their September blog posts on a single theme: the American Dream.

 Many of the bloggers have chosen unconventional, yet rewarding, alternatives to "typical" American life. A common perspective of the posts is that the "old" American Dreamwhite picket fence, house in the suburbs, 9–5 jobis no longer working for many Americans, and that we need to think outside the box and forge our own paths and destinies.

Read their postingsand be inspired!

 What is the American Dream? by Nancy from "Family on Bikes 
 "American Family Insurance performed a survey on their site to determine if the American Dream is still alive.... The top three definitions of the American Dream today are: having money, owning a nice car, and owning your own business. Wow. That scares me...." 
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An American Dream Fairy Tale by Lisa from "Around the World in Easy Ways" 
"With education secured, next came a career.  And with money in the bank (and in the stock market), homeownership was just around the corner. Then, of course,  love, marriage and the baby carriage just down the road.  Minus the pet, Goldie lisa finally had it all:  The American Dream.  So why wasn’t she content?  “There must be more to it than this” Goldie lisa thought." 
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The Global American Dream by Brandon from "Fullness of Life"
"I believe that the “New World” that was once America, now encompasses the entire globe. The Land of Opportunity is all around us. With the advent of the Internet, it also sits right in our lap." 
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The American Dream by Talon from "1 Dad, 1 Kid, 1 Crazy Adventure" 
"Some people took my desire to leave the States and raise Tigger in other countries to mean I hated the USA. Not at all!  Am I 100% fond of 100% of its culture? Noooooooo, but I don’t dislike my native country.  I just wanted . . . more for my life and for my child. Not more in the sense of more stuff, more things, a giant flatscreen TV, but more living." 
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Redefining an American Dream by S. King (aka Mom) from "A King’s Life"
"The stereotypical American dream has become owning a lot of stuff.  Consumerism is the economic basis of the US and we decided to opt-out of the never ending cycle.  We sold most of our ‘stuff’ and traded it for experience and adventure.  We packed the remaining things we had in suitcases, headed to the airport and hoped that everything worked out in our favor." 
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Livin’ the not-so-American Dream by K. King (aka Dad) from "A King’s Life"
"With the birth of our son, along with some poorly timed investments and discovery of the internet as means of survival, all my ideals changed.  And so did my priorities.  I no longer was striving for consumeristic “things”.  I now wanted time and experiences with my wife and children.  But I knew it would be difficult where we were with our old ideals and “America” around us." 
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Erosion of the American Dream by Lainie from "Raising Miro"
"[The] American Dream is designed to never be attained. Keep people in a state of pursing and a state of wanting, WHICH IS NOT A STATE OF HAVING. Keep people preoccupied with attaining the unattainable and injecting fear with the promise that someone else can take it away from you." 
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Trapped in the American Dream by Kimberly from "Fulltime Families"
"A typical family striving towards the American Dream is like a bunny on a treadmill, with a carrot dangling just out of reach. With each step, you feel like you’re making progress but you’re really not getting anywhere." 
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The Illusion of the American Dream by Mary from "Bohemian Mom"
"The illusion is that the American Dream can be conventionally defined for everyone.  Is it having a good job with health benefits for the accumulation of material things? Or, is it the freedom to pursue passions and have amazing experiences?  Perhaps true success is a balance of all those things. 
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Bye Bye Miss American Dream by Susan from "Family Travel Bucket List"
"Once upon a time, I woke up and realized the American Dream I'd been conditioned to want had disappeared in a mess of airplane pieces, tumbling towers and thousands of innocent people dying." 
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The Real American Dream by Justin from "The Great Family Escape"
"..you would think the American Dream has gone backwards, that it’s deflating and its time is up. No, No, No people, the American Dream is just getting started.  It might not be what you thought it was, but the Real American Dream is very much alive and ready for all of us." 
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Good Morning, America, Let’s Occupy Wall Street! by Melissa from "Break Out of Bushwick"
"I don’t want the white picket fence. I don’t need Prince Charming to come sweep me off my feet. I don’t need a two-parent household. I’m not looking for a frog to kiss. I do, however, expect to be protected by my government. I expect to have great health care, a job and support as a parent." 
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The American Dream by Alisa from "Living Outside the Box"
"My American Dream is not to work a job 10 hours a day in a job that is so-so, because it helps me buy more “prosperity”.  My American Dream is not to buy a house on credit, with the feigned assumption that it is “mine”. My American Dream is not to come home from work exhausted, fall in front of my big screen TV with a quick meal concocted of canned or frozen food, as I watch mindless programs that don’t expand my horizons.... Overall, my American Dream is to Live Life Outside of the (American) Box. And thankfully, I’m living it!" 
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