Bali, Baby

Being not only my father's child, but also his protege in all things travel, Tom and I have been sitting on a surplus of frequent flier miles. Since our five-year anniversary was coming up, we tossed a few ideas for a trip around until we landed on the one: Bali. We started planning at the very beginning of the year when my dad was sick but not yet hospitalized. He had already made a complete itinerary for Bali and I can still hear his voice telling us he was jealous. 

So after all was said and done, we somehow managed to peel ourselves away from Claire while she stayed with her grandmas. I may have shed a tear while talking to the ticket counter employee, but after that I was good!

As a bit of a tribute to my dad, we did a lot of the things on his list but also made it our own. We stayed at a really nice, four-star hotel in Ubud that set us back a whopping $30 USD a night. 

On our anniversary, we booked a full-day couple's spa package that included a four-hand massage, body scrub, flower bath, spa lunch, facial, hair treatment and pedicure. That cost us $70... Wha?!

I've never been so relaxed in my life.

We topped off the day by going to the best restaurant in Bali, Mozaic. The food was unreal. The chef incorporated tons of flavors that are native to Bali, so there was so much that was unfamiliar yet knee-bucklingly delicious. Plus, one of the courses was described as pre-dessert so how could I not love a place that understands my needs so well?

Indian Ocean tiger prawns

We spend the rest of time exploring the Elephant Cave Temple, Mount Batur, rice terraces, and monkey forests while fitting in some one-on-one time with the beach. 

Rice terrace

Elephant Cave

Friendly neighborhood temple pt. 1

Friendly neighborhood temple pt. 2

Breakfast at Mount Batur

Monkey Forest in Ubud

I won't lie though, I was ready to bid the humidity adieu. So we made our way to Sydney. We were both so surprised by it. It was so clean and clear and beautiful, and I couldn't get over the architecture. Not only were there amazing New Orleans-esque homes, but really old and craggy looking buildings all mixed in with modern skyscrapers. Oh, and that one unforgettable bit of architecture...

I didn't think I would love Sydney as much as I did. I could bathe in the accents and the friendliness of the people and stare at Bondi Beach all day. 

It has the best creatures (well, except all the freaky and deadly ones...) and I really fell hard for the land down unda. 

Tom with some kangaroos

It's good to get away, but it's wonderful to come home. 

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New home, new life

So we're in. We're settled. The new paint has dried and dust has settled. 

It has been great to have more space, but at the same time, it feels like too much. There is more to clean, and more ways to be isolated. My sister-in-law recently told me about how when their family moved from the two-bedroom extended stay place they were in to their new home, all of a sudden she was wondering where everyone was. 

It really got me thinking about how in America, square footage is king. You want enough space so that you could live your life and never see another member of the household. When Tom and I look for our "forever home," we usually look for somewhere with lots of bedrooms, but now I'm wondering if that's really what I want. The grass always does seem to be greener. 

I've also been lamenting the loss of my support system. I moved closer to my mom, but she is perpetually busy in what could only and without any sort of blame be described as a coping mechanism. Tom is always gone or busy with homework, and I've been left feeling sorry for myself. 

I decided that in order for me to feel like I have more time for myself, I'm going to have to carve it out. Even though I've been feeling super beat every morning since Claire and I had a mystery illness, I'm waking up at 5:45 to get cracking on the day. I'll report back on the progress!

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Family update

Things have been a little crazy the past few months. My mom wanted us closer by, and we felt like that was the right thing to do SO we put our house on the market and it was sold just like that. 

I'm having a hard time saying goodbye to this neighborhood that we've loved for the past five years. I love that we're only a five-minute walk away from two grocery stores (one being Sprouts, my fave) and a hidden gem of a park that's a magical little slice of wilderness, complete with a duck pond, horses, and foxes. I'm sad to leave our good neighbors, our good neighborhood, and the good memories we've made here.

But I am excited for many good changes we'll find at Daybreak. We'll have a neat little park practically in our front yard. Our kitchen is probably three times bigger than ours now. We'll be close to my mom when we both need it most. 

Change is inevitable, and it keeps things exciting. I just need to remind myself of that. 

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