Thursday, July 11, 2013

Road Trip: When, Where and Why

The past few days have been wonderful. I am living out the list of goals I set out to complete this month. We've spent hours at the beach, enjoying this beautiful island, enjoyed a few new "clean" recipes and made progress on planning our upcoming road trip.

We are often asked by people, "So, what are your plans?" I thought I'd write a post and explain a little further about what we've learned, where we're going and why.

Our Pilgrimage. 

I met my husband almost 10 years ago. We became best friends immediately, bonding over similar interests and goals. One major topic of conversation was our desire to travel the world, but to first discover our country.
After graduating college and getting married our first step towards this goal was our move to Hawaii. We spend the first few years here exploring, doing everything from tourist attractions, hiking up the highest mountains, to immersing ourselves in the culture.

About a year ago we started talking about leaving Hawaii and starting a new adventure. Where would we go? We have always been curious about travel nursing. It's a great way to see the country, traveling every 13 weeks to a new city.

We ordered the dvd series Treasures of America's National Parks and also watched Ken Burns: The National Parks: America's Best Idea on netflicks (I highly recommend this). We were hooked. There are so many beautiful things in this country that we have never seen. So we decided, before we begin travel nursing we will take a road trip for an extended period of time and discover the beauty of our amazing country.

Let the planning begin! We payed off our debt (Read: Becoming Debt Free) and we now feel free to do what we have always wanted to do. We've read many books, blogs and maps. We've made a budget and have an idea of the length of time we will be on the road. The major things we will focus on is relaxing, staying on a budget and taking in our surroundings.

Our trip will begin in October. We will ship our car to the Northwest, where we will meet up with friends, attend a wedding and prepare for the trip. Since we will be setting out in the late Fall/Winter months we will be outfitting our SUV with a bed (with storage underneath) so we have an additional sleeping option went we can't camp or stay with friends (i.e. when we are in between locations). 
Our plan is to head south and drive through California, slowly working our way east visiting as many National Parks, monuments and friends as possible. 

The planning continues. We have already begun packing and shipping boxes. Recently we made a list of things we will need to buy/pack. My dear husband loves to plan. He has been collecting books on National Parks and road trips for months. I am taking on the planning of food and fun activities, as he has been focussing on logistics, and gear. 

After the road trip we will ease into travel nursing. Where will we take our first assignment? I have no idea. Our main goal/purpose of taking this time is to explore, learn and discover where we want to ultimately live. I don't think we will ever stop traveling but we are looking forward to having a place to call home. 

My goal is for this blog to be a place for me to share our adventures and inspire others to live out their dreams and explore.

 One of our favorite blogs is The Blonde Coyote  by freelance writer Mary Caperton Morton. She has traveled the country back and fourth writing about her experience and taking beautiful photos. She offers great tips for anyone planning a road trip.

Please feel free to email me with any questions or if you have any suggestions of places to stop.

Here is a list of some of the resources we've used so far in planning our trip.

  1. The National Parks, Our American Landscapes Photography by: Ian Shive
  2. Amazing Places to go in North America by: Eric Peterson and David Lewis
  3. The Travelers Atlas: North America by: Donna Dailey
  4. 1,000 Places to see before you die by: Patricia Schultz
  5. National Geographic Guide to National Parks, seventh edition 
  6. EyeWitness Travel: USA
  7. National Geographic Guide to State Parks, fourth edition

* photo found on Pinterest. 

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