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Published: July 26th 2010
So it's been 3 years and 8 months since I've logged into the Travel Blog. Every time I've said, "I really have to get a new post up", something else came up that side tracked the ambition.
Where to start... where to start...
Mike and I decided to return from Costa Rica after an absolutely wonderful 6 month adventure. We truly had an amazing experience traveling around the country with no possessions, no mortgages, no bills ~ just plain and simple Pura Vida living. We just came to find that it wasn't the place where we wanted to drop our life savings and never leave. We are both perpetual travel bugs and the idea of buying property in CR and never being able to really leave it, wasn't overly appealing.
In our experience, we found that folks who were happiest living there were really people who lived in gated communities or those who never left the country ~ neither of which was for us.
In December of 2006, we decided to move back to the States and with the help of a friend, purchased an old farm house that was built in the 1820s near Cape May,
NJ. While we knew the house needed a ton of work, we couldn't help but think of the next adventure that was ahead of us!
Work on the farmhouse began with the new year as we started to tear down walls, remove old plaster, pull up old flooring. You name it, we did it. The entire house needed to be gutted and renovated but something about the old place just had a charm that couldn't be replicated. The "vibe" as I call it, was always a positive, stable one and I knew the second I walked into the house, that it was home.
With the help of our friend, Zach, Mike and I spent the first year of living in Cape May working on the house and the property. We lucked out that the place came with an acre of land that we could use for our organic veggies and the flower gardens that were already part of the sanctuary were truly a sight to see. Someone truly cared about this place and had for a long time..
The house had good bones - that's what everyone told us. The structure is made of cedar and had
no real damage. The floor boards were warped and sagging but that could be fixed. We needed a new roof and the place needed a bit of an overhaul but we were up for the challenge.
3 years later, we are just getting the old place where it needs to be. It's been a long process but one that's been well worth it. We took the old blacksmith's house and restored it to its former beauty and there usually isn't a week that goes by without one of us saying how much we love it here.
As we spent more time back in the states, Mike decided he wanted to go back to teaching. He's been teaching at the high school now for a few years and even had the pleasure of teaching one of our nephews. He's coaching football as well and even got back into playing Rugby for a local team about 30 minutes away.
I decided there was no way I was going to go back to working for someone else and I opened up a pet, farm and house sitting business that has since blossomed to a level I never dreamed was possible.
We are the largest certified professional pet sitting business in Cape May County, serving over 250 clients. We have multiple sitters and are looking to hire more once the Summer is over as more clients continue to call every week. Zoo Sitters, LLC has truly been an amazing experience. I get to do what I love, day in and day out and I'm forever grateful for the path our journey has brought to us.
This past year, with progress on the house continuing and the business booming, we decided to take some much needed vacations which took us to Greece and San Diego. It was the first time I felt comfortable walking away from the business for a few weeks so that we could have some time to recharge. It was the best decision we ever made. We are now committed to taking those two weeks a year and are excited about some of the places we have on the radar to visit. One thing I've learned about owning my own business is that it's A LOT of work. We rarely get a day off so those two weeks a year are a must when you work 7 days
Mike and I also realized once we got to Cape May that the kids of our county were seriously missing something - RUGBY! Two years ago, we started another Rugby club - Cape Storm Rugby - for boys ages 13-19. We are the only Rugby club in our county so our seasons involve a bit of travel but the past two years have been wonderfully fulfilling both for Mike and I as well as the community. Our roster went from 25 the first year to over 50 this past year. We just wrapped up our Summer 7s season with a great showing at the Surfside 7s Tournament right here in Stone Harbor.
We've been busy..but life is wonderful.
Our next adventure is starting this Thursday and that's what sparked the mantra of "I MUST get on the travel blog today".. Mike and I are heading to SPAIN!
Our trip will take us into Madrid, then up to the Viking Festival in Catoira, down to Leon and back to Madrid. We plan on taking lots of pictures and keeping the blog updated so we do hope you'll jump on this journey with us.
forget to scroll down to see the extra pics.
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