This is subject to change, depending on flight costs and whims of fancy, but our plan for the coming year is to divide our time between four different areas. We’d also like to ‘follow-the-sun’ so that we don’t have to pack winter clothes. And because, well, we’re tired of the grey Seattle weather.
First, we’re volunteering with Mercy Ships in Guinea. We’ll be living on the Africa Mercy. Dreamboat and I will be teaching business and managerial skills and offering coaching to the crew. I hope there will be lots of opportunities for us and the kids, to get to know some of the patients. To color with children before their surgeries, and sit with them and their mamma’s and daddy’s while they wake up. G has already collected a bag of small toys–to give to children he meets in the villages we’ll visit.
After Christmas in Morocco (I know, what an incredible DREAM!), we’re heading to Southern Spain …time to take advantage of the slower pace of life and the Euro crisis. And Spanish immersion classes. I keep telling the kids, repeatedly, that my dream is three-hour meals, where we lounge around a table of incredible food, enjoy each other’s company, and just BE together. They just look at me like I’m crazy.
OK. I have to tell you here, that one of the reasons Miss O has been supportive of this whole, crazy plan, is that she wants to spend some time in Paris (her current dream is to be a fashion designer there). And, as the flight gods didn’t align, we’re now flying through Brussels and not Paris, on our way to Guinea. Haven’t told Miss O yet…
Then on to Peru for the third leg of the trip, where we’re planning to take surfing lessons, volunteer at an orphanage, and lose ourselves in more Spanish language and culture. And visit Machu Picchu. I’ve always dreamt of hiking the trail up to visit the ancient Inca city. At this point, my three kiddos couldn’t do it on-foot, so I may have to adjust my dream a bit. But, who knows….by then my kids’ endurance may be better.
Finally, we plan to spend some time on the East Coast of the US, focusing on revolutionary US history, with visits to Washington DC, the Smithsonian Museums, and several of the historical battle sites. We’ll also be planning how to re-enter ‘normal society’, strategizing, and doing job searches. And, Dreamboat wants to spend these three months in an RV. HELP. I don’t see how even my favorite chocolate and wine can solve this one…
AND we recently adopted a dog.
Major complication. The kids are in love. I’m irritated (although late at night, when no one’s watching, I rub her belly while we snuggle on the floor. She’s not allowed on the furniture).
So we’re also working on pet-travel-regulations. And by ‘we’, I mean Dreamboat.