We are a family of four. Dan (pre-historic), Allison (bronze age), Haley (like new) and Zoe (almost new). We hail from Gilbert, Arizona. Before Arizona, we lived in Oregon. But we consider Arizona our US home and that’s where we will return once we’re done with this Worldschooling thing.
As our header says, we’re on a long-term journey to discover the world and try to teach our children about the human experience at the same time. So now you also know… we’re a bit cray-cray. Honestly, you have to be to do this kind of thing. Of course, we say that in jest but as any Worldschooler will attest to, it’s not all unicorns and candy. That’s for sure. (Except if you’re having a party with a unicorn pinata… then it’s all unicorns and candy. But we digress…)
Let’s meet the players:
Dan (Age 53): He’s an Aries. Now we all know astrology is not real (science rocks!) but if you’ve read the description of an Aries, Dan’s picture might be next to the description somewhere. He’s the big picture guy. He leads us in a way that GPS cannot. (Although, he’s also in charge of the GPS.) He’s always thinking of the latest business idea and that’s probably what he’s thinking about when you talk to him. So tell him to snap out of it if you see his eyes wandering. He spent 9 years wearing ONLY orange shirts. (He quit on the 9th anniversary on April 27th, 2015.) He loves watching NFL football, playing poker and creating businesses (not in that order). His favorite shirt says “I hate everyone. And pants.” Although he doesn’t hate EVERYONE, he is one of those introverts that thrives on solitude. He’s a late riser and also late to go to bed. Oh, and he definitely hates pants.
Allison (Age 47): She is the glue that holds it all together. (Insert any lecture of the importance of Moms here.) She’s the go-to person on everything that doesn’t include money, electronics or driving. She is the kid’s teacher and their everything else. She’s a planner… she’ll make a plan to make plans. She’s never idle and sits down only when gravity has fought her into submission. She turns into a pumpkin at precisely 9:35pm when her eyelids no longer function in the open position. Then early to rise, so that she can accomplish something, ANYTHING. Sometimes just for the sake of accomplishing something. And she has typically led a fairly productive life in her morning hours before Dan has even made it to REM sleep. She can also teach a class on how to worry when there is nothing to worry about. In a nutshell, the family would wander the desert for 40 years without her amazing skills at keeping us focused and on task. Her need for social time is only slightly less than her need for sleep.
Haley (Age 15): She’s much like her Dad in that she loves solitude and working alone. We have to check her chair every once in a while to make sure she’s not glued to it. She would stay inside for weeks on end if we didn’t force her out into the sunlight. She’s got a techy mind and plans on going into the tech industry in some capacity. Robotics maybe. Coding maybe. Who knows. But she’ll be able to go into anything she chooses, being the smart cookie she is. Did someone say cookie? Haley loves to bake as long as it’s not on demand. Banana bread, cakes from scratch and cookies are her favorites. Baking is therapy for her. It’s not easy being a teenager but being a teenager while travelling the world…? Double whammy. We never said it’d be easy.
Zoe (Age 11): The wild one. Loves to dance, sing, apply makeup, play ukulele, and in general, thrives when she’s in the limelight. She would stay outside and play with anyone that came along if we didn’t force her into the house now and again. She’s the last one to show up at the dinner table, usually rolling in dirty and sweaty. She makes friends faster than anyone I’ve ever known. When she was about 7 she got the number of a little girl she talked to for 30 seconds in the toy aisle of Target. The girl is social. But like her sister, she’s as smart as a whip, too. We find ourselves very fortunate to have such a bubbly person in our midst to keep us entertained. She’s our little Zozo. Her social needs are greater than her mother’s. When Zoe doesn’t have enough social time we all feel the pain.
So here’s the plan…
Every plan we have made thus far has been changed and we don’t expect this one will stay static either. But here’s what we’ve done so far. Starting in October of 2014, we spent 14 months in Panama where the girls went to public school, we spent countless days on the beach and we learned how to sweat like a pro. From there we moved on to Cancun, Mexico where we lived for 10 months, discovering the joys of other homeschoolers, cenotes and only slightly less sweating. After Mexico it was Spain, where we were somewhat socially starved since homeschooling is illegal and all the kids were in school. Note to self: Allison and Zoe need more social time. After our 3 month visa for Europe was up we took off for South Africa. We heard the weather was great, homeschooling is up-and-coming and there is a conference of like-minded people with like-minded kids. We’ll be in South Africa for 3 months (until April 2017) and then we will go back into Europe to see the tulips in Holland, with a week layover in Dubai. We know we’ll be in Europe for three more months until we are forced to leave again in July of 2017 by the confines of the visa. That’s as far as we’ve planned. You can always check our “What’s Next” category for the latest plan.
As for returning to the USA? At this point, making it back for Zoe to attend high school in 2020 might be a possibility. Or not. Or we might decide this travelling thing is for the birds and it’s time to go back to comfort and familiarity. Who knows!? Stay tuned and find out along with us. Be sure to put your email address on our notification list over to the right.
Go back to the front page and enjoy reading more about our journey.