I have been waiting so long to share this first post with you all. Sitting down to write this feels exciting and overwhelming. Sam & I have been talking about going on an adventure for what feels like forever, but is realistically about 10 months.
Merriam-Webster has a few definitions of adventure and I am praying we fall into category two.
- an undertaking usually involving danger and unknown risks
- an exciting or remarkable experience
What is this exciting or remarkable experience we have just begun? We are Airbnb hopping, road tripping across the USA. When most people think of road trips across the country, they picture an RV or tents. Well, we are upgrading to road tripping 2.0. I will be sleeping in an apartment, hotel, or house each step of the way.
*Except for when we backpack, as a hobby, not a solution to where we should live
Sam is always fully remote, as a freelance writer, so the only obstacle in our way was my work status. I feel incredibly blessed that I was able to find a fully remote position that will allow this adventure to happen.
How Did We Get Here
Picture This: Sam & I sitting in a nearly empty Spanish restaurant on a date. Originally, we were going to move to Europe for a year or two, pending my job opportunities. The weight of that move started to become too heavy and was ripping all of the excitement and joy away.
As wonderful as he is, Sam suggested we pivot. Why don’t we do an adventure across the US so it would be easier to find a job and it would be less permanent? Well Sam – you are a genius. Your ability to help me be more flexible is a gift in itself, but in this moment and with one phrase, you lifted 1200 tons of weight off of my shoulders.
The plan was to loosely map out our journey and only commit a few months at a time. With a short-term commitment plan, we have the flexibility to move back home if we don’t enjoy this type of lifestyle. Once I landed my current job, we started looking at the weather in each location and available Airbnb’s.
We are now committed to staying the course of this adventure through the first week of December. It is only day 1, but I have a strong feeling we will be continuing on for quite some time.
What We’ve Done So Far
To prepare, we sold a lot of our furniture. My grandmother graciously offered for us to store some of our boxes in her attic as well as my parents in their basement. I went through all of my clothing, gave some to my sisters, and sent the rest to ThredUp to be donated if unsold. After my purge, I let go of nearly 70% of my clothing. I used it as an opportunity to evaluate what I wanted to be wearing in my “late 20s”.
The clothes I deemed unnecessary to schlep across the country were packed away for the day we returned. As difficult as it was (for me), I decided to leave all of my navy & brown clothing, shoes, & accessories at home to be able to pack lightly and efficiently.
About three weeks before we left, we did a trial run of packing the car. It was at this moment that another round of edits occurred. We started editing our road trip luggage situation in February of 2022 and with several rounds, we finally landed on our assortment. In total, I believe we had at least 10 rounds of edits.
As a big HGTV fan, I have started creating a new meaning for the phrase “love it or list it” in relation to items (not houses). I only wish there was a third piece to this phrase because I had a lot of “I love it, but it won’t fit in the car”. When I was labeling the boxes for my parents, I wrote “Elaina’s clothes, but I still love them”.
There are 4 ways you can follow along on this journey.
- Sign up for my newsletter in my footer. You will receive 1 email a week (on Thursdays) including all the latest posts.
- Bookmark my road trip page. The URL will remain the same and then you can click on all the latest posts.
- Follow me on Instagram. I always post when new blog posts are available.
- Follow me on Facebook. My Instagram posts feed to my Facebook page. I am trying to include a link to the site in every post, but it is manual and may be delayed.
I have tried to make it easy – on all social media platforms, I am @ElainaPearls.
Posting about travel is an area that will be new to me since I started becoming more serious about blogging during the pandemic. I would love to hear what parts you find interesting and which you can live without.
Listen to your gut. When big decisions come up in your life, don’t do what you think you are supposed to do. Don’t do the thing that will make everyone else the happiest. Do what will make you the happiest and the people who truly love you will offer support.