Final Thoughts From the Road

September 26, 2016

Sunset in California

Friends! Oh, my dearest friends. I’m writing this from the patio of my cousin’s home in Malibu, with a dog on my left and the ocean on my right. The outline of my sandals are imprinted on my feet, my cheeks are splashed with red from the sun and you couldn’t pay me to stop smiling right now. California has been so good to me.

I’ve been on the road for 43 days, driven almost 11,000km (6,900 miles) and entered 17 states. Before, I would’ve told you that Colorado was my favourite – and for many reasons, that will remain true – but the experiences I’ve had in California have been life-changing. If the trip had to end today, I would go home feeling truly blessed. Fortunately for me, I have 10 more days on the road and I’m going to soak up every last minute of this experience.

That means I’m giving myself permission to step away from the blog for two full weeks. I’ll be camping for most of that time, and don’t want to have to worry about finding wi-fi or replying to things. The list of posts I want to write when I get home is long, and I can’t wait to share it all with you when I get back! But I need to give myself this space to drive home at my own pace, live in the moment and really take in everything that’s ahead of me.

So before this trip ends, I thought I’d share one more list of thoughts, ideas and experiences I’ve had on the road. I’ll be back on Monday, October 10th, and can’t wait to settle in for a productive fall/winter. There is so much to do and so much to write, but for now I will leave you with this:

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Coffee Date With Carrie Smith

September 21, 2016

Coffee Date With Carrie Smith

Hi friends! It’s hard for me to believe how quickly the time has passed, but I’ve officially been on the road for 5.5 weeks (and will be home in just 2 weeks!). In that time, I’ve driven more than 10,000km and visited 17 states. And I don’t want to pick favourites, but Colorado had the unfair advantage of being both beautiful and the home of my best blogging friend, Carrie Smith.

You probably know of Carrie as my better half on the Budgets and Cents podcast, but I first knew her as Careful Cents. We started our blogs at the exact same time, became fast friends and have been roommates at FinCon every year since 2012. And even though we’ve spent a lot of time working together this year, I didn’t realize how much I missed seeing her in-person until I got to Boulder.

In the few days we spent together, we went hiking, drank coffee and ate sooo much delicious food! Carrie also helped me make some big business decisions, and we even recorded a bonus episode of the podcast (you can find it in iTunes now). Before I left, I asked if she would answer a few questions for the blog, so you guys can learn more about one of my favourite people.

Enjoy! And if you see us at FinCon this weekend, please say hi! xo

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The Thing About Fresh Starts

September 12, 2016

The Thing About Fresh Starts

This is a guest post from my friend Sarah Noelle, author of one of my favourite blogs, The Yachtless.

Almost exactly ten years ago, I moved from my small hometown in the northeastern corner of the United States to a large city called Suzhou, in China, just south of the Yangtze River. I was 25 years old and had about a thousand dollars in my bank account. I had never been to China before, didn’t know anyone who lived there, and didn’t speak Chinese. I didn’t have a job lined up in Suzhou or even a clear idea of where I would be living after the first month or so.

If you had asked me at the time why I was making this move (a totally fair question!), I probably would have told you something that sounded relatively logical. I might have said it was because I loved traveling and wanted to see new places. I might have said it was because I wanted to try teaching English and had heard it was very easy for native English speakers to get teaching jobs in China. I might have said it was because I thought Chinese culture was interesting. And all of those reasons would have been true.

But there was another, bigger reason.

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