Welcome to The Awesome Factory blog.
Helping families bond through unforgettable adventures.
by ERIK ORTON
I just got back from Yosemite National Park, where I put up a new 800’ rock climbing route with my climbing partner, Josh. In many ways it was a blast. In many ways it was a slog. But I surprised myself with what stood out most to me.
AN OPTIMISTIC START
Josh and I looked up at the cliff, identified a few crack lines that had potential and started hiking up. To get to the base of the cliff, we left the Mist Trail where it intersected with the John Muir Trail. The intersection was marked but a stoutly built...
When Dan and Natalie Reeves told me about getting robbed in Rome, I thought, “This is pure gold.” The fact that it was one of the best things that happened to them and their five kids reminded me of the power of getting out there in the world as a family.
It’s why Emily and I are huge advocates for family travel and adventure.
The reason to go isn’t to have a flashy Instagram grid.
It’s not to make your neighbors jealous.
It’s not to even to see amazing, beautiful places. (Although that’s a...
Want to know what this stuff we talk about can look like in real life?
This week was a real treat for us. We got to meet up in-person with our friends/coaching clients, Brooke & Nathan and their four beautiful daughters. They were in the middle of their first 1-month road trip.
A bit of back story:
Nathan & Brooke went sailing with us in the British Virgin Islands Spring of 2023.
We had a blast. We helped them discover their “What if...”
They came home with big ideas and plans. But then life happened.
People come from around the world to climb in Indian Creek. Most people just drive through it on their way to Canyonlands National Park. But it features world class crack climbing for rock climbers.
Like many big things I want to do, it takes me a while to pull the trigger. Indian Creek is in the remote southeast corner of Utah. It’s not on the way to anything else. So it’d taken me a while to get there.
When I put off doing something I care about, a scouting trip is the best way to break the ice. Scouting trips are a key part of...
She’s been on island for 2 years going to school. Despite house sitting there twice neither Emily nor I have been on-island since Alison started school.
I’m still processing my recent 10 days in Hawaii.
I went to speak to the BYU-Hawaii Entrepreneurship program.
I stayed to visit our daughter, Alison.
ARRIVING IN OAHU
Alison kindly picked me up from the airport. I was starving from the long flight so we headed straight to Costco for hot dogs and then grocery shopping. After Alison’s car with stocked with my luggage...
by Emily Orton
Happy Fezywig Day!!
Never heard of it?!
Who can keep track of all the random holidays?
Fezywig day is a celebration we made up to mark the day our family of seven moved aboard a little sailboat we named, Fezywig.
“I wanted to pursue a dream so big there was room for my whole family. I wanted us to deliberately disrupt our family, not just to do more or see more, but to become more.”
––Emily, Seven at Sea, p. 26
We learned SO much from that...
How do you see the world?
Through what lens are you looking at it?
Are you an NPC?
Are you a hero?
And if you want to see yourself and the world in a new way, that's what we have so much fun sharing.
I sat in our backyard on a cold snowy day and recorded these thoughts. Please forgive the terrible audio quality and Lily singing in the background. I'm super passionate about this concept of seeing ourselves in a new way. Seeing yourself in a new way is the first step into a new world just waiting for you.
- 0:00 How do...
Your child is born.
Fast forward 18 years, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll move out.
They’ll be back, but probably not for long.
If you have more than one child, the dominoes fall pretty fast.
They leave one after the other and then they’re all gone.
How many more Christmases do you have left with all your kids home?
Most of the Orton kids no longer live at home most of the time.
It’s a delightful new chapter. They come home for short visits.
We’re so happy they’re out...
I want to share a story with you. It’s about how a dad saves his family, but not in the way you think.
This is an excerpt from one of my favorite books (A Million Miles in a Thousand Years), and it’s at the heart of why Emily and I do what we do. It’s what we hope for you, your marriage and your children.
I’ve had some financial worries this week. Some stuff we have in motion has taken a left turn and it’s unnerving me. Nothing life shattering, but enough that it’s on my mind. I’m generally emotionally chill. I’m not freaking out and we’re steadily working things out. But I’m realizing my body doesn’t lie.
When I wake up in the morning, I feel the twinge of fear. Normally, I’m not so self-aware, but this week I’ve tried to be very conscious about what I’m feeling emotionally and...
by Emily Orton
It took me almost 17 years of parenting to learn this.
When our family lived on a sailboat. It was a new rhythm. Every household chore took exponentially more time—grocery shopping, storing food, meals from scratch, and laundry washed by hand.
Refilling our water tanks took five hours every four days. It was the same for home schooling without the internet or a printer.
Despite the overwhelm, I was hesitant when Erik suggested reassigning meal preparation to our three oldest kids, ages 12-16.