July 2016 Update

Hey guys! I am well underway in my travel preparation and planning, and thought I would go ahead and give everyone a little update on what has been going on and my plans over the next couple of months!

In case anyone didn’t know, I have been writing guest posts for NomadApp on how I am preparing for long-term travel; check out the first two here and here. NomadApp is an amazing start-up that is getting ready to launch an awesome travel app, so everyone should check the out!

Last Friday, July 22nd, I submitted my letter of resignation at work. I gave 6.5 weeks notice, and my last day will be September 7th! I was worried they would be upset and mad that I had been deceiving them all these months, but everyone was super excited for me and very supportive! It was such a good feeling and a huge relief!

I have now had three weekends of my indoor moving sale, making about $800 (my total from selling stuff is over $2,200!). I move out of my apartment this week. I will gradually start taking things to my friend’s house where I am staying for the month of August, and on Thursday and Friday (July 28th-29th) my parents will help me get the last of the furniture and any remaining boxes moved out.

On September 8th, the day after my last day of work, I am flying to Washington, DC to visit my best friend who just moved there from Houston, TX. I will spend five days in DC, then drive to my parents’ house in Wichita, KS the day after flying back to Kansas City. The next day I head to Winfield, KS for five days for the Walnut Valley bluegrass music festival!

The weekend after Winfield I plan to do a Lawrence/Kansas City weekend to see all my friends and family and say goodbye before I head out on my international travels! Then, the following Thursday, September 29th my mom and I fly to Los Angeles. We will spend three days there before my late night flight from LA to Melbourne, Australia on Sunday, October 2nd!

So there you have it. Things are moving along at a pretty fast pace at this point, and I am super excited! Thanks to everyone who has been supporting me throughout this crazy process!

Mother’s Day Gift From a Nomadic Child

Mother’s Day is upon us. It is a day to celebrate the women who brought us into the world, but for anyone who is living abroad or traveling long-term, especially on a budget, gift giving can become a challenge.

I have not yet started my round-the-world adventure. I am on a tight budget and I wanted to give my mom something meaningful for Mother’s Day, so I decided to create Travel Vouchers for her! She can redeem them any time she is traveling with or visiting me in any foreign country. We have done a lot of traveling together and always have a great time.

Some include activities I will pay for, such as one tourist attraction (up to $20 USD!). Most are freebie things such as a day at the beach or an off-the-beaten path adventure. Of course I tailored these to my mom and our travel style when we are together, and they could be tweaked to fit you and your moms’ travel styles!

Trael voucher 0

We love to eat good food and have cocktails. Some of the best foods I’ve tried have been while traveling with my mom. We love the coasts and seafood; we have eaten fish & shrimp tacos on Venice Beach, CA, fresh-caught lobster in Maine, and cheesy crab dip in Washington D.C. We have also enjoyed some great drinks on our travels together, from the hotel room to a sailboat in the harbor to hole-in-the-wall dive bars.

Travel Vouchers (food & drink)

We also love anything outdoors and off the beaten path. Whether it’s a day at the beach, hiking through a state park, or sitting around a camp fire chatting and drinking late into the night, we have done it all.

On a trip to the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri last fall we set out to find my great uncle’s old lake house, both by boat – to spread some of my grandmother’s ashes in the cove- and by car. It had been over 20 years since my mom had been there and the landscape was completely different. There used to be only a couple houses in this cove, and now it’s lined with dozens of new homes and docks.

We had a strict two hour time limit on a boat rental, and we barely found the cove in time before we had to turn back. We then hopped in the car and took old unmarked un-maintained back roads up to the old house, because she wasn’t familiar with the new paved roads of course! The next day we found the stunning Ha Ha Tonka State Park and took a breathtakingly beautiful hike. It was a trip I will never forget.

Travel Vouchers (outdoors & offbeat)

Of course, we don’t always go off the beaten path, and have seen our fair share of tourist attractions. Together we have enjoyed views from the Seattle Space Needle and the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, visited the monuments in Washington D.C., and watched the Fountains of Bellagio in Las Vegas.

On these well-worn travel paths there are also plenty of silly and touristy photo opps. We even got a selfie stick on our trip to the Ozarks, and have been known to take silly pictures now and then.

Travel Vouchers (tourist attraction & photo opp)Travel Vouchers (up early, sleep in)

Last but not least are the vouchers for trying something new and having a live-like-a-local experience. These will be new for both of us, and who knows what we will do. Eating bugs, snorkeling, and meeting up with a local family for an authentic home-cooked meal are all within the realm of possibility. I can’t wait for my mom to visit me abroad so we can create some awesome new memories and share new experiences together!

Travel Vouchers (try new, local)

Places I’ve traveled one-on-one with my mama:
  • Southern California
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Eureka Springs, Arkansas
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Springfield, Missouri
  • Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

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Make Your Own Travel Vouchers:

To download the Word document with the travel vouchers listed above, click the link below. You will be able to edit the document to put in your own names and customize it in any way you wish!

Travel Vouchers Template