3 Things We’ve Learned While Living Outside the USA

Tuesday, November 20th, 2012

live life differently

Sometimes, it's fun being different!

When you live a "different" life than most people, you get to see life through a different pair of lenses.  Whether you homeschool or are a vegan or walk and bike instead of drive a car, the opportunity arises for you to be outside of the norm and experience, even if it's just a tiny bit, what life is like as a minority.

Dia de los Muertos in Chapala, Mexico

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

I'll be honest and say that all the skulls and skeletons associated with Halloween and Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) are not my thing.  I prefer bones with their skin on and alive. :o)  But it was interesting to see how the Mexicans really celebrate their dead every year.

We had originally hoped to go on a tour of Michoacan, a town known for its celebrations, but we just couldn't swing it.  I'm actually glad we stuck with a nearby celebration because the crowds in Michoacan are supposed to be pretty large and we aren't fans of large crowds.  They were big enough in Chapala and it's much easier to keep track of several little ones in smaller crowds.

Regata de Globos in Ajijic

Monday, October 8th, 2012

regata de globos

Take a bunch of tissue paper.  Glue it into a balloon type shape.  Fasten a metal ring at the bottom opening.  Soak a ring of cotton in something VERY flammable.  Put the soaked cotton ring onto the metal frame inside the tissue paper balloon and light it on fire.  Then release and hope for the best.

That, in a nutshell, is what the Regata de Globos, or balloon festival, is all about.  I'm not sure why it is called a "regata", but there's a lot of things in Mexico I don't understand. :)

Re-examine your dreams and make them happen

Friday, August 24th, 2012

What was your first thought upon waking this morning?

  • Did you think about your mile long to-do list?
  • Did you think about your job and how much you love it? Or hate it?
  • Did you think about your kids and what they would do today?
  • Did you pull your covers back over your head in denial?

My first thought this morning when I woke was how thankful I am to be living the life I live.

My friends, Jenn Miller and Nancy Vogel are hosting an intensive course to help YOU wake up in a similar way. 

Nevo Melanocitico Compuesto

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

Translated: Melanocytic Compound Nevus or, in laymans terms, scary looking moles that were removed from each of my big toes and had me wondering if I was going to have cancer.

Yep…not exactly the way you want to ring in your 38th birthday.

A local dermatology clinic had a free cancer screening day and I figured I would take the opportunity to get a few moles looked at.  I'd noticed 2 new asymmetrical moles in between my toes about 16 – 18 months ago and there was a nagging voice in the back of my head telling me to get them looked at.   I was a bit nervous just going to the screening, but the whole event was done very professionally.

5 Ways Long Term Family Travel is NOT a Vacation

Friday, August 10th, 2012

This photo was taken on a random Saturday outing to the nearby town.  It may LOOK like
we're on vacation…but we're really just exploring the local area near our rental home.

When most people think about travel, I think they imagine life is like a permanent vacation.  But there is a fundamental difference between vacations and long term travel.  With a vacation, you have a "home base" you return to.  Long term travel for us means having a home base we live in that is often in a vacation setting.

One Year of Family Travel!

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

It's been one year since we left Orlando International Airport EARLY on August 7, 2011 to begin our family travel adventure.

Backpacks galore in the Merida Airport!We left with 6 backpacks, one toddler backpack. 4 checked bags, a car seat (that we only used for the kids to sit on and watch movies!) and our dreams.  (Note: Now we're down to 6 backpacks, 3 checked bags and our dreams…)

We didn't know if we'd like it.  We didn't know if the children would like it.  We didn't know if we could make it work.

An iPad Magazine for Family Travel?

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

So, I've been a little silent for a while.  Not because I've fallen off the face of the planet or had my laptop destroyed by my children.  The latter is certainly possible with 5 kids and one who thinks he's Batman one minute, Spiderman another and then puts on an American themed bandana and runs around saying he's Captain America!

No…I've actually been quite busy with a brand new project I think you will enjoy.  It's a brand new magazine on iPad's Newsstand called Real Family Travel Magazine.

Cost of Groceries in Mexico (and Costa Rica, too)

Monday, June 18th, 2012

One of the first things we have to do when we travel anywhere new is buy food, unless we go to visit my Mom and Dad and she's got her pantry and fridge stocked with everything we'd ever want and more several days in advance.  Gotta love Grandma! 

While there are times when our children act like they're going to miss a meal if they don't ask "What are we having for dinner?" or "When's supper going to be ready?" 100 times, they are fed 3 meals a day, without fail, unless they're sick.

The Amazing Colors of Mexico

Saturday, June 16th, 2012

There were times when we'd ride through a mostly Hispanic community in Florida and the brightly colored houses seemed, well, a bit tacky.  But it only takes a day or so of exploring Mexican neighborhoods to realize that bright colored homes are just part of the colorful people who live here.

I wanted to showcase some colorful photos from the past month or so of being here in the state of Jalisco, near Guadalajara.

Mexican Raspberries!