Jared & Melissa Jelsema have been living the gypsy lifestyle since they began dating in 2010. After dating only a few months, they bought a 3 person tent to live out of & took off on a 10 month road trip around the U.S. Their plan was simple, hit the road until they found a job in an area they loved.
"We had many days where we were sweaty from hiking all day, then had to shower in freezing rivers & with our wet hair we had to set up our tent. While it was snowing of course. We’d wake up to our hair frozen & icicles in our tent.
As they traveled, they discovered the places they set out to find but chose to continue their journey out of curiously and adventure. In 2012, they found themselves in a remote part of East Oregon when Melissa's water broke - their son was joining their adventure, albeit a little earlier than planned. The hospital was 2 hrs away and Jared drove 90mph the entire time. They hadn't sleep for 36 hrs before they made it to the hospital, then they had 12 hrs of labor. They both felt “I feel a little crazy” from the lack of sleep. That’s how their son's name came about - Havik.
After Havik's birth, Jared and Melissa returned to their hometown of Holland, MI not to settle down, but to plan their next big adventure. They would buy a used sailboat, recondition it, and sail it from Holland, MI to Chicago, down the Mississippi out into the golf to the Bahamas. We're not kidding. They did it and documented it all on their blog Raising Havik.