Greetings from Anne, Noah, Alex, and Leah -- and welcome to our “big trip” blog.
We are in the planning phase of our 13 month long journey (from July 2012 through August 2013), and are starting this site to capture our experiences and lessons learned from the adventure.
We are calling this site “The Journey is the Reward” because that pretty much sums up our family philosophy; both for this adventure and for our life in general. Even preparing for the trip seems a journey in itself. (see the map above for our currently planned itinerary)
We’ve been talking about this trip for a number of years, and our vision is for a sustained perspective-shifting family experience. We hope to meet new people, experience different cultures, face challenges, serve others, learn, grow, try, and have some adventures along the way.
We are building the trip around two long-term volunteering opportunities (one in South America, and one in Southeast Asia), with a number of other stops along the way.
The general goal is to spend time together as a family, learning and growing together, and expanding our horizons beyond our comfort zone (especially for the kids).
The four of us have been living happily in the Pacific Northwest for the past 12 years. Our two kids are Alex (11) and Leah (9). Noah works in IT program management, and Anne is a teacher (part-time) at Alex and Leah’s school. We also have three dogs Zillah (black dog), Kona (Australian Shepherd), and Lucas (Mom's poodle) -- and what to do with them is one of our many challenges.
When we tell people that we’re going to take the kids out of school for a year to travel, we get responses that are part incredulous, part jealous, with the occasional eye-roll thrown in. Mostly, the responses have been supportive, with not a few requests to come along.
Our current “to do” list includes researching volunteer organizations, luggage and packing options, airfare, possible itineraries, visas, health, travel insurance, homeschooling, and budgeting. We are also looking into a Spanish class, figuring out how to rent our house, getting our Will in order, making decisions about our dogs, etc etc - and, of course -- starting this blog to capture our experiences, and share with our family, friends, and network.
Thanks for your interest. Look for this to be the first of many regular updates as we embark on this adventure.
Here we go!
Noah, Anne, Alex, Leah