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Feeling Preppy


Hello! Welcome back!

As we need to leave in just five days, let's dive right in :)

For those of you new to this all, Evolution Through Vacation – or e>v / "e through v" for short – starts with "Prep."

And, wow, so does a last-minute trip half-way around the world.

As a recap, here's what happened:

Daniel had been put on a short list of leaders to run a 3-month project in Indonesia. He mentioned it to me in passing, not really thinking it would happen. We kept on with business and life as usual under the snowfall in Northwestern Wisconsin. And then, 5 days before the project was to begin, he got a call with an offer.

My work is completely mobile and as I'm currently in transition – more on that later – it was a no-brainer for me to join him. Which gave us 5 days to prep for a 3-month trip.

Game on. 

To start, here's what our logistical "Prep" to-do list included:

  • Book all the flights & hotels
  • Figure out the visa requirements / make sure passports are valid
  • Get someone to look after the house
  • Stop the mail (we had ours forwarded to a post office box; our house sitter will be picking it up on occasion to check for anything important)
  • Stop the newspaper
  • Lower the car insurance
  • Call the neighbors 
  • Get a "vacation supply" of any prescriptions
  • Call the utilities companies (we're leaving in the middle of a Wisconsin winter, after all)
  • Schedule the snowplow (again: Wisconsin winters don't take vacations)
  • Call the bank & credit cards company (check to make sure that cards don't expire when you're gone!); write down both 800 and non-800 contact numbers (just in case)
  • Confirm bill payments are set on auto-withdrawal
  • Activate the international plan on our phones
  • Check the type of electrical outlet plug(s) you'll need to bring
  • Buy a travel & language guide
  • In our case, plan ahead for tax season
  • Clean out the fridge / freezer / cupboards
  • Take out the last of the garbage & recycling
  • Lower the thermostat
  • Oh yeah, and pack for the wettest 3 months in Indonesia

Seeing this in a compact list brings me back to the furious excitement of putting one foot in front of the other and (the fun part) checking each item off the list. Yes, a little hectic to get it all done in less than a week but, during that time, the prospect of the upcoming adventure would make me pause and smile with absolute glee. (Yes: straight-up glee.) 

All in all, when you're really ready for a change, it's easy to buckle down and move mountains. And, especially, when the prospect of travel is on the horizon, it's simple to focus and make things happen. That's vacation energy becoming everyday energy ... in the moment, dealing with challenges coolly & calmly, being centered on a bigger possibility. And it's goooood.

Next up? The emotional "Prep" of this journey!

OK, the logistical to-do list was complete. Next? Diving into the "Prep" section of the Evolution Through Vacation e-guide to explore my inner to-do list.

This is such a fun part of the e>v guide ... it's where you start to think and plan ways that you want your upcoming adventure to inspire and inform your personal development. "Prep" does this by offering interesting and insightful questions that help identify any "baggage" you may want to explore – or release! – on your upcoming vacation.

All based on seven Life Areas pictured here, I use the guide to work through instructions on how to rate my "Level of Aliveness" (LOA) in each area (1-10), then explore an exercise that helps me rank the order of importance or interest or focus in my life, personally, right now. I find that Purpose, Spirit, Play, and Health are rising to the top as areas where I'd like some answers or clarity. I note this in my guide/journal and start allowing my vacation to bring me signs and symbols. Answers and insights. A-ha and eureka moments ... as I said, this is really the fun part :)

So, stick with me! To map out the concepts, I'll dig into these Life Areas on my next few posts ... taking a closer look at each to explore them in context of my vacation. All to give you a glimpse into how it all works. And, hopefully, to offer some inspiration for you to explore on your own next adventure!

So, let's go... 

- Elissa

p.s. Next up? We start with the top Life Area on my inner to-do list, "Purpose." Follow the journey here in my next post. 

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