We’re Going Away & Travel Posts Roundup

Cheap World Travel Chile

Me on a favorite hike in Chile two years ago.

A year and a half ago, my husband and I were on a long car ride to visit family. As often happens when we’re relaxing in the car we start to dream and plan. Our conversation turned to travel and I said, “Honey, we have so many frequent flier miles right now that we can go anywhere in the world.” He immediately said, “Let’s go to New Zealand.” Yes!!

Little did we know that we’d have to plan way ahead by booking our tickets 11 months in advance of our travel dates. We did that last January and then packed the trip into the back of our minds. Well, it’s finally 11 months later and by the time you read this blog post we’ll finally be on our way to the Southern Hemisphere. It’s our second time in that half of the world. And our favorite thing about visiting at this time of year is that we’ll get to celebrate the summer solstice for the second time in 2015!

We’re not big trip planners, we like to wing it most days, but we do have a few things firmed up. We’ve booked a three night hike in the mountains over Christmas, we’ll be seeing glaciers for the first time ever, we’ve got our eyes on a few bike trails, and of course we’ll be visiting gardens and farmers markets as much as possible.

I’ll be posting trip photos on Facebook and Instagram, so make sure you follow me if you want to catch a glimpse of summer in New Zealand.  I have a few posts scheduled to come your way while I’m gone and you’ll be getting a free gift in the next post, so keep your eyes on your inbox. (I guess I feel badly for leaving you behind?! I’m trying to make it up to you with bribery.)

In the meantime, if you’re in the mood to do some armchair traveling, I’ve written about some of our past adventures here on the blog:

And, if you really want to dig deep, I kept a blog while I was volunteering for a fair trade organization in Africa three years ago.

10 Years of Winter Travel: Looking Back

Winter Trips of a Lifetime

Adventure and freedom are two of my highest values in life. Mark shares these values with me as well. One of the ways these things manifest themselves in our lives is our yearly winter trip. Over the fourteen years we’ve been together we’ve taken at least three weeks (and up to four months) off from work in to travel to many different places. (All warmer than WI in January!) Our trips have been some of the most fulfilling, exciting, and memorable times in our lives together.

The fact that we manage to take time for large chunks of travel despite modest incomes and often being employed by other people has been a source of fascination for many people we know. We’ve also become known for this unique facet of our lives. So, at this time of year when we see friends, neighbors and family they always ask, “Where are you guys going this year?”

Well, with mixed feelings I’m here to report that this January we’ve decided to stick around Madison. The reasons are varied, but one or both of us have had years off from travel for various reasons.

As winter settles into the northern climates I suspect a lot of us are dreaming about vacations and tropical locations. I thought it would be fun to share with you the places we’ve visited over the past ten years as a way to help us all escape for a few moments to sunnier climates!

2014 – Chile: Last year we spent a month in Chile hiking, exploring the many national parks, and meeting up with friends who were teaching a class there. It was one of our favorite trips so far. We’ll definitely go back some day.

At the top of our favorite hike in Chile.

At the top of our favorite hike in Chile.

2013 – Ghana: I volunteered in Ghana for two months with a fair trade organization, Global Mamas. I lived with other volunteers in a house on the coast and traveled around to the various Global Mamas offices working on projects such as designing a new holiday ornament and interviewing some of the women for website their bios. It was fascinating to see fair trade in action. Mark stayed home to work on his new business.

Group photo with some of the employees in the Global Mamas office.

Group photo with some of the employees in the Global Mamas office.

2012 – California: We spent three weeks visiting friends in San Francisco, camping in the redwoods, hiking in Yosemite, and visiting my cousin in Los Angeles. We ate a lot of citrus, dates and other things we can’t find at farmers markets in our neck of the woods.

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