Countdown to travel: 3 months to go

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countdown to travel calendar

When I look at the calendar, it’s been all GO GO GO GO and now soon to be: Gone. After May, we’re playing a different completely different ball game.

The countdown to travel is on in full force around here!

Our big roadtrip been in the pipeline for what feels like ages now. Thom and I created our first joint bank account, specifically for our “travel savings” in June 2011, just before we took off to Rarotonga for a week. Although  the destination was never officially confirmed, we began tucking away that set chunk of money every pay day. The countdown to travel was on before we even knew when or where we were going! Eventually we even increased the amount we were saving weekly, making the dream come true that much faster. Since it’s an automatic payment on payday, I don’t even notice it missing. But I do love watching the travel funds grow!

Here we are, a year and a half later, and our tickets are bought and paid for, and have been since October. Since then, life has honestly been a whirlwind of busy. If you read my review of 2012, you already know there was lots going on. By the time I finished writing the dreaded school reports and ended the school year, we hopped a plane down to Dunedin for a friends wedding just before Christmas, returning home late Christmas Eve. We had a week at home before my Grandmother landed in the country, and her and I were roadtripped around the the Land of the Long White Cloud for two whole weeks together.

Sit tight – the details of that adventure are on their way very soon, I do promise! I can’t wait to share the details of our adventures.

Lake Pukaki

An unedited photo of one of my favourite spots from our roadtrip

Yesterday was the 1st of February, leaving us with just 3 short months to sort out our lives before we’re on that big bad overnight flight to Vancouver.

Are our plans made? Yes and no. I’m planning on making minimal to no plans, as much as possible on this trip. I plan to ‘go with the flow’ across the country and see where we end up. Open to adventure and opportunity!

Why I don’t make plans:

They never go the way I think anyways!

My original plan, when we bought our tickets in October, was to continue working but as a relief teacher instead of having my own class. But plans never go as you think, do they?

When I thought I was going to have lots of “spare time” I made lots of plans. I found a travel writing course that would be held in Auckland two Sundays in a row – that sounded good, I signed up! Grab One also offered a special on a photography course, the same Saturday as the writing course. I’d recently bought myself my very first DSLR camera, and thought it would be good to properly learn how to get the most out of it.   I bought an online 140 hour TEFL course on a super special, to do in my “free time” before I left. I wanted to open as many doors and possibilities for getting a job abroad in January 2014 and since I thought I was going to be working day to day, I assumed I’d have all of this free time to fill.

Except, I don’t.

I’ve landed myself a full time short term relieving contract for the next 11 weeks in same classroom as last year, with a full on class of amazing 6 year olds!

I still have to do this course, on top of working full time. And I have every intention of continuing blogging, because I enjoy writing.  My plate is going to be FULL.

Hello time management, I think we need to be friends, and FAST. (Facebook, I think this might mean we need to take a break – you are just no good for my productivity).

Oh, and I also thought it would be a good idea to do the Mangawhai Triathlon, on February 24th. 500 m swim, 17 km bike, 5km run… what was I thinking!? With all my jet -setting around the country, I’ve done zero swim training, minimal bike rides and a bit of running- a decent effort for being on the road… This week I started up a 6 week boot camp. It runs Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 6-7am, so that’s helping to improve my fitness. But I’m still probably going to die.

So the next three weekends are completely booked up being down the line.

What’s left to do?

countdown to travel garage

Lots of work to do here, wouldn’t you say?

I’ve got a basement full of things to figure out how I want to sell. There’s also some visa business to sort. Ah, the joys of being an international couple. Sounds like a little, feels like a lot.

I’m feeling good about recently tying up some lose ends of cash that’s been in limbo for too long. $590 that I have paid but owe to be refunded to me (insurance/past bond). Feels like free money just for sending away the forms.

There’s not much time left on our countdown to travel and I definitely know it’s going to fly by faster than I can imagine. Heck it hardly feels like it’s been a year since I reflected on being in NZ for 3 years! -

My goal for the next 3 months is not wish away the days.

I love where I am. I love the beauty I’m surrounded with, going to sleep to the sound of the waves crashing outside my window, being able to see the sea from my shower and out every window of my house. I love having the job I’ve dreamed of since I was kid and I want to truly appreciate the fact that I am able to work full up right up until we leave. I love the amazing friendships I’ve formed in this close-knit community and I want to really enjoy all the fabulous and unique people around me.

I don’t want to wish away any of that, and hurry up what will come in the same amount of time.

I want to savour every moment I have left here and make the best memories. Actually that’s exactly what I want to do for the rest of my life, but I want my time to be spent enjoying what I’ve got instead of waiting for the next big thing to come along.




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{ 18 comments… add one }

  • The Guy February 2, 2013, 2:15 pm

    It’s all very exciting now Kate, closer than ever. It does look like a busy schedule ahead too before then. Good luck with the triathlon. The boot camp and the actual race sound like great things, will you be writing about those too?
    The Guy recently posted..The Magic Of Melbourne – Seeing Penguins At St KildaMy Profile

    • Kate February 2, 2013, 10:15 pm

      Thanks! I will write about it all, eventually (glad you didn’t ask ‘when’ – haha! I’ve still got the Tough Guy & Gal mud run we did in August to write about!)
      Thanks again for following along!

  • Melissa- The Mellyboo Project February 2, 2013, 2:20 pm

    I am so excited for your travels to Canada – but take your own advice in that last paragraph… savour every moment in your personal paradise! Trust me, I’m completely missing it right now and literally would give anything to be back. And I know how you feel about perhaps needing a break from facebook to better time-manage yourself… I think everyone could use that advice, just a little bit :)

    Anyways… like I said, I absolutely can’t wait to have you and Thom Thom back on our home turf. Enjoy every second of NZ :) xoxo
    Melissa- The Mellyboo Project recently posted..Learning to Surf in WaikikiMy Profile

    • Kate February 2, 2013, 10:13 pm

      Thanks, Melly! Enjoying and loving life isn’t a bad mission to have – regardless of where we are in the world, hey! I’m going to make it count rather than count it away.

  • Erik Smith February 24, 2013, 6:36 am

    Looking forward to your next adventures… but you are right to soak up every minute you have in such a special place as New Zealand!
    Erik Smith recently posted..New Zealand- Chapter Twenty-Six: Cape Reinga & The Spirits of the North (pt.1)My Profile

    • Kate April 12, 2013, 7:56 am

      Thanks, Erik! Love the far north – it has stolen my heart :)

  • Sarah@UncagedTraveler February 25, 2013, 5:33 pm

    Oh man, I know all about how teaching can take it out of you with little ones, and that on top of trying to maintain a blog! But good luck to you! And if you need any TEFL advice, let me know :) Enjoying your blog.
    Sarah@UncagedTraveler recently posted..Working as a Kindergarten ESL Teacher: Part OneMy Profile

    • Clarkek April 12, 2013, 7:58 am

      Thanks Sarah! Yes, the littlies sure tucker me out! I actually do have a TEFL question, I might email you!

  • Chris March 12, 2013, 7:22 pm

    exciting times…looking forward to seeing how your adventure pans out :)
    Chris recently posted..The First of My 2013 Backpacking Adventures; New Zealand and Beyond!My Profile

    • Clarkek April 12, 2013, 7:58 am

      Me too, Chris! Bring it on, I say!

  • Kate @30Traveler March 13, 2013, 1:18 pm

    I am currently batting the “plans to make no plans” issue. I keep seeing opportunities for apartment sublets that are tempting but would require locking in plans. Keep telling myself need to hold my horses!
    Kate @30Traveler recently posted..How to Find an Inexpensive Apartment in New YorkMy Profile

    • Kate March 15, 2013, 9:59 am

      I hear ya! There’s a part of me that thinks there’s some sort ‘comfort’ in having plans, when really, what I want (need) is to just go with the flow! As a teacher, planning has been a huge part (stress) of my life and I’ll be happy to see its backside.

  • Bobbi Lee Hitchon March 16, 2013, 4:17 pm

    Very exciting!! But yes, make sure to soak up as much as you can where you are before you go!
    Enjoy planning. I find that to be half the fun ;)
    Bobbi Lee Hitchon recently posted..Playing prostitutes and robbers at Pioneertown, CAMy Profile

    • Kate March 23, 2013, 12:17 pm

      Thanks, Bobbi! We’ve got a few new things planned to do before we, that we’ve been meaning to do for ages! Biggest challenge for me is not letting all my time get swallowed by school and school work. I am looking forward to NOT planning as much as possible and just going wherever and doing whatever we feel like! I’ve spend so much of my past 4 years planning lessons, days, and weeks, which never actually go to plan anyways! I’m ready to throw caution to the wind and just rock up to the next adventure!

  • Dalene March 24, 2013, 6:45 am

    I’m a big fan of the “no plans” philosophy. Good luck! :)
    Dalene recently posted..The Things I Tell My Mom About AfterwardsMy Profile

    • Kate March 24, 2013, 9:53 am

      I’ve been ‘planning’ every day for the past 4 years-that’s not to say it’s ever ‘gone to plan’, I’ve usually ended up having to wing it and adapt. I am very excited to cut out that interim step and just wing it and see where we end up!

  • Agness April 11, 2013, 2:30 pm

    Wow, you are gonna be a busy bee indeed very soon. So much to do and only 3 months to go. Don’t use any social media channels if you want to have everything done LOL. Every time I log into my Facebook or Twitter I can’t stop tweeting and pressing “likes”. I guess you are an Internet addict like me. So happy for you. You sound so excited and optimistic. Good luck with all your plans and I keep following your journey:)))))) Let’s begin the COUNTDOWN!
    Agness recently posted..Magnificent Scenery of Fenghuang Plus Tips on How to Explore It (My Profile

    • Kate April 12, 2013, 7:55 am

      Thanks, Agness! We’ve only got 2 weeks left before our travels, now! How fast time has flown! Got most of the jobs sorted – 10 weeks of teaching done, and one to go and we’ve gotten rid of lots of our stuff in the garage. Still a bit to do, but I am mentally ready. Most importantly, I’ve been enjoying the north and making the most of the area :)


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