Oct 16, 2010

In the Beginning...

Well, this is it--our first blog, EVER.  My name is Jess and I'm a Canadian who went on my first backpacking trip solo in 2000, and ended up doing a 18 month long trip covering most of Western Europe, a bit of Eastern Europe, Morocco, Turkey, Egypt, and SEA.  I met my husband Jim, an Aussie, during this trip while both of us were traveling in Turkey.  He first started backpacking in the mid-90's, covering the USA, SEA and Europe, with favourite destinations being India and Thailand.  He generally traveled solo and did so for usually months at a time.

After we got married we got itchy feet again and embarked on a year long honeymoon in 2003 that consisted of a RTW backpacking trip, covering South America, Mexico, Canada, Europe, India, Thailand, Laos and Malaysia. Incredibly we only spent just under $20k on this trip in total, and that included $7400 spent on RTW flights for the both of us, food, lodging, other transport, a 4 day diving trip, and lots of souvenirs!  AND we maintained pretty good health throughout too, although we both drank bad water in Peru and were both not too well for about 24hr, and I ate something dodgy in Darjeeling which put me out of action for 24hrs and I also got a bad case of the flu in Laos.  But all in all, pretty good!


After returning from the trip, we starting laying the roots for our 'real life'--starting new jobs, getting a mortgage, and having our girls Maddy and Yasmine.  We had always planned for 'family travel' and taking our children out on the road with us again, and we feel that now is the perfect time.  Our thoughts on this are:  1)  Perfect time in our careers for a 'break', 2) the girls can get by without strollers or regular naps, 3) the children are just old enough that they just might remember some of this trip 4) and the girls aren't in school yet so we don't have to worry about homeschooling.

So this is a blog about our (ambitious) plans to backpack on a budget for a year with our 2 pre-school aged kids in tow.  We are aiming to travel light, with 2 backpacks and 4 daybags.  We plan to spend most of our time in 'cheaper' countries, such as Thailand, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Philippines, Sri Lanka and possibly China and Canada (Vancouver), traveling slow. (In the future, we'd love to do family travel in Latin America as well as re-visiting past favourites like Belgium, with kids.)


 And we are new to blogging--when we first started traveling, we updated all of our family and friends via email address lists.  Going to give this new platform a try, hoping for a nicer experience for all who want to keep up with what where we are, what we are up to, how we're doing, and where we are going.  Follow us and we'll try to keep you posted regularly along with hopefully offering lots of budget family travel ideas too!

We have just under 5 months to go before we leave and a LOT to plan and do before that!

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