Yep! We’re back! Back in Laos and back online here at AwayGoWe!
It’s been a great five-month hiatus from regular posting, but I’m looking forward to getting back to blogging and sharing our goings on with our online community of readers and beyond.
So what have we been up to these past five months? Well, we returned to the U.S. in August for an extended maternity leave / annual leave (if you haven’t noticed, we like our extended leave…) to welcome this guy to the world. Along the way, we were fortunate to get lots of quality time with family and friends who we don’t get to see enough these days while living in Laos.
We also spent the most time with both sets of parents that Lori and I have since heading off to college a couple decades back. Lori and I enjoyed all the quality time with the parents and sharing the newest member of our family with them, but unquestionably the biggest benefit of all that time was the quality time Noe and grandparents got to spend together.
Which is a big part of why we really like this lifestyle.
With regards to life and such, we’re all about quality over quantity. Living overseas, we might not be able to see loved ones as much as we’d like, but the lifestyle affords us larger than average chunks of time to devote to family and friends when we do see them. We’ve learned that it’s much more likely we’ll have memorable shared experiences when we have blocks of weeks to work with rather than a weekend every month or two. Living nearby and seeing each other more frequently, it’s so much easier to take our proximity and time together for granted, it seems.
For the first time since 2015, we also got to experience all four seasons in the PacNW.
We love our warm/hot climate in Vientiane (most of the year), but temperate seasons were a nice change from our norm — not to mention it was Noe’s first time experiencing a proper autumn, and a fun age to see him discover all that comes with that.
So, we’re back in Vientiane. What now?
Well, Lori’s contract extension runs through the end of 2019. After that, we don’t know. Maybe stay here in Laos, maybe move on to some place new and different. I’ll be looking after Riley at least for the next three months and Noe will be back at his nursery school. My hope for AwayGoWe is to continue what I started in the waning weeks before our return to the U.S. in August, regularly contributing writing and helpful tips and hoping to expand our readership. Realistically, that won’t happen in earnest until we’re fully settled into our new place and I’m not caring for Riley full time. In the meantime, I’ll be working to post a handful of catch-up posts covering our time Stateside, along with updates on daily life, our new house, and baby Riley from Laos — maybe I’ll alternate one catch-up, one current, this time?
In addition to keeping family and friends in the loop and expanding the blog’s readership—
—the plan for AwayGoWe in 2019 is to continue to gently monetize and market this website to grow the modest income AwayGoWe already generates monthly.
Obviously, it’s always nice to have something to show, financially, for the countless hours and hard work that goes into growing and regularly contributing to a project like AwayGoWe (and formerly Dadventurings.com and PlacesApart.com) — particularly with the limited work opportunities available in Vientiane for a foreign accompanying spouse of an aid worker and father of two little guys, like myself.
The broader idea for AwayGoWe, however, is that a bit of location-independent income will make mini nomadic breaks in between work contracts more feasible, enabling us to continue to travel slow and low-budget, exploring new and fascinating parts of the globe with our kids as they get older.
In short, the heart of our AwayGoWe strategy moving forward—
—is to offer you, our lovely readers, more helpful tips and product reviews, whether you are an intrepid traveler, expat family, a dreamer looking to adopt a similar lifestyle, or a curious armchair traveler who just likes reading about all the big and little adventures this sort of lifestyle comes with.
We’ll continue to offer links to essential travel gear and helpful travel-related sites that we swear by, use ourselves, and most of all, trust.
(psst… we now receive a whopping 25% commission from our readers’ completed stays at Booking.com, so that one’s a biggie! (again, at no additional cost to you)).
For the entire NINE year history of AwayGoWe.com, we’ve remained 100% independent and only link to products and websites we’d utilize in our daily lives regardless of this website.
The only difference is that we’re sharing our real-world findings and hacks with you and getting a bit of income to show for our hard work. This of course is all in addition to updates on our daily goings-on as a family of four, wherever that may be.
So, we’re back!
We miss our family and friends back in the U.S., but it’s great to be back “home” and back in what feels like our element.
More to come on Noe, Riley, our new house, the big move back, and of course, a bit on Lori and me as well (if you’re lucky).