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It’s not like this is the first time we’ve ever traveled anywhere, but it is the first time that we were actively looking for ways to improve our travel style.  I decided to do a test drive with both my main pack & my day pack, while Corey just did a test drive with his daypack.  We’re happy to report that we love all three items so far, but it was also a small trip!  But, here are the top 5 things we took away from our trip:

1 – Pack More Efficiently:  For starters, we were only in Raleigh for 13 days & we both overpacked!  We each took 1 to many pairs of shoes (Lisa: 3 & Corey: 2), too many books (Lisa: 4, Corey: 6 – though I did read 4 books, 3 of them were my mom’s & Corey also read 3), I took a bunch of nice clothes (1 set was worn to church) & Corey took way too many t-shirts.  We also ended up bringing our own bodywash, but my parents provided that for us.  I can only imagine all the weight that this extra stuff added to our load!   

2 – Patience:  Without a doubt we always end up near the screaming kid or farting man or nosey chick on our flights.  It’s something we have come to terms with, however, that doesn’t make our travel days very enjoyable.  And, it always seems to happen at the beginning of our trip, because the 2 flights from Raleigh back to Milwaukee were hassel-free.  Anyway, from MKE to EWR (Newark) I had the excited 4-year-old kicking my seat, while Corey had the farting man in front of him & from EWR to RDU we both had kicking kids behind us.  Another 4-year-old behind Corey & then mom was behind me with an infant on her lap, while dad was across the aisle yelling at his wife to control the kids. So not cool!  

3 – Stick to the Budget:  We actually get a silver star this year, but that’s only when you compare it to how badly we did last year!   We went to Raleigh in 2009 where we had a crazy shopping spree, buying jeans, shirts, movies (dvds & theater) & books.  To top it off we hit all of my favorite restaurants!  We were absolutely ridiculous!  This year we still went to my favorite restaurants, bought 4 books (2 each) & saw 5 movies (How do you Know, True Grit, The Fighter, Black Swan & Harry Potter & the Deathly Hollows for the 3rd time), but paid for 3; my parents paid for the other 2.  I realize that some people would still see this as a lot, but besides all the eating out, this is what we enjoy doing while we’re home, so it just makes sense to do the same with our family during the holidays.

4 – Take (More) Pictures:  For anyone who doesn’t know, I majored in photography & I used to be one of those people who brought my camera with me everywhere. . . I mean that, EVERYWHERE!  So, I brought my camera with me & had intentions of keeping it on my person during our trip.  But, I took zero pictures.  You read that right: zip, nada, zilch!  I’m so angry with myself & this is definitely something we both need to work on considering that we plan to bring 2 cameras (1 nice, 1 point & shoot) for the big trip.  Photo score for this trip: F.

5 – Love Each Day: While we weren’t watching movies, playing video games or reading, we were enjoying each other’s company.  It sucks that we only get to see each other once a year & I think it’s important to enjoy the little things because our time together is so short.  We all had a great time & I think one could argue that there’s never enough time, so A++ for not taking it for granted!  Too bad we don’t have teleporters like the Jetsons!  



Now, we have a better idea of what to expect for our next trip.  We’ll be putting more effort into packing less & sticking to the budget, while packing an extra case of patience for the crazies we will inevitably encounter while on the road.  We hope that everyone had a Happy New Year and that this next year brings joy & happiness!

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Like I said in our first post Corey was raised in Wisconsin & I was raised in North Carolina.  Corey grew up playing basketball & has always been a huge UNC fan.  His love for the team encouraged him to apply to schools in NC & that’s how he ended up going to Appalachian State University.  We met shortly after, dating on & off for a bit, always remaining close.  Once we realized that we were meant to be together Corey proposed, we had a short engagement, wed & got my things together to move to Wisconsin.

 

Corey still enjoys basketball along with football, baseball & golf.  We like to bike to stay active, but haven’t done it a lot this summer.  He loves finding new indie bands, reading & films.  

I played soccer for about 15 years recreationally, but haven’t touched the ball in a few years.  I love photography, reading, arts & crafts, indie music & films.

I went overseas in my junior year of college & fell in love with travelling & was happily surprised when Corey said he wanted to travel as well.  I started doing some research in 2006 about round the world travel & found that it actually could be done. 

Once we got settled in our new apartment in 2007 I had to find a job.  After several temp jobs – 5 in 2 years – I final found a good administrative job at a cemetery.  That’s when we began to save.  As long as our situation stays the same, no major car trouble, no major injuries, we’re on the right track to depart in 2012. 

Our biggest concerns are our cats, Norma Jean & Silverstein and saying good-bye to our family & our friends.  We don’t have to think about it now, but it’s a constant fear in the back of my mind.  

So, that’s a little bit about us.  If there’s anything else that you’re dying to know, please ask. 

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