While I’m disappointed that I’m not traveling to space, though my nerdy and perfect t-shirt may have suggested otherwise, I am traveling to some pretty amazing places this month and I’m so insanely grateful I could explode. It’s an interesting combination – the desire to live a calm and simple lifestyle and the desire to travel the world at the same time. To some, that may sound counter intuitive, but for me, the act of living a calm and simple life doesn’t mean hibernating in my home. It means experiencing the world, expanding past my comfort zones, learning new cultures and bringing them into my every day life. Appreciating how other countries live, simplifying in the way of less is more.
Less stuff = more experiences.
That, to me, is the true definition of leading a calm and simple life.
I don’t want to be tied down by my home. I want to love it and value it and feel relaxed and at ease by it – but never will I allow it to be my burden.
And while I think this is a good point to make, this isn’t the point of the post. The point of the post is how to prepare your life at home when you’ll be gone for a month with straight travel. It can get a little stressful leading up to it, knowing that you’ve only got a day or so in between locations to visit your home, make sure it’s still standing, unpack, repack, eat but don’t let food perish, etc. So I wanted to share some little hacks with you that I think will help, should you find yourself in this position.
First, let me lay out my schedule for you.
- Ireland for one week.
- Home for a day to nurse jet lag, do laundry, and pack for a warmer climate (Cape Cod, YAY)
- Flight to Boston the next morning
- Home from the Cape for one week to balance out jet lag, insane amount of fun that was had in the Cape, unpack and then re-pack
- Head to Europe for several days in a carry on
- From Europe, go to Croatia for Yacht Week
- From Croatia, fly to Florida to pick up Jasper and recuperate from insane amount of fun that was had at Yacht Week
- Fly back to Chicago
- Pinch myself because I’m the luckiest woman alive
- Sleep for all of June
Now allow me to lay out how I’m handling all of this:
- Before I left for Ireland, I was sure to fit in any clients that needed photos taken before I left for the month of May. This would include any clients who have babies with birthdays coming up, Mother’s Day clients who wanted images prior to the celebration, and especially my fashion blogger clients who needed looks for the month while I’m away.
- I committed 2-3 super long days which entailed nothing but editing, so that said clients would have their images and I would be able to enjoy my time away without worrying about deadlines.
- I set an away message on my email so that any inquiries that come through, no one is left feeling ignored. No one is in the dark. Everyone is clear that I’m out of the country or recovering from being out of the country, and that while emails will be answered, they’ll be delayed.
- Emergen-C straight into my veins. (ish) There is no time to get sick when your whole month is basically travel, so I’m diligent as all get out when it comes to this magical powder. I have one a day, and chug 3 liters of water to stay hydrated.
- Prescheduling content. I have CoSchedule which helps me to stay on top of my content and push out blog posts while I’m traveling. One less thing for me to stress about while I’m out of the country!
- Trader Joes frozen meals. I’m not joking. When I’m traveling a lot, I keep a slew of these in my freezer and rely on them to a) keep me from wasting food and b) to keep me from ordering gross take out from Grub Hub on those days that I am in fact, home. Also, RX Bars are a live saver.
- Pre-packing. Since my trips to Ireland, Cape Cod, Paris and Coratia are all so different in ways of what I’ll be wearing, I started the pre-packing before I left. My house looks a little strange – little piles in random corners, but it makes sense to me! This way, when I’m back from Ireland I can unpack from that trip and pack for the upcoming trip.
- Lastly, allowing myself the break, sans guilt. I like to try and remind myself of a teachers schedule. They work so hard molding the minds of kids 9.5 months out of the year. Then for 3 months, during the summer, they break. They reset. They have no obligations to their students, only to themselves to take care and come back eager and willing to continue to mold said minds. I love ether approach, and for the past few years I’ve always given myself a month or so here and there where I’m allowed to just… fall off the radar a little bit. Give myself that time of rest. Plus travel always sparks some serious creativity in my bones, so if you think about it.. I’m actually working ;)