Wednesday, 4 June 2014

the beginnings of a bucket list

Maternity leave has given me lots of time to think, contemplate and plan. Planning is my favourite thing. We've just bought our first home and yet I'm already thinking about whether I'll want to move again and when, or what the other options would/ could be if we could make this home work for us. It'd be a squeeze having a big family here, but wouldn't it be great to have more hope of fulfilling some of my dreams if we could cope. So here they are:

- An apartment in Barcelona. I've fallen in love with the city twice. The first time was when I was 17 and had my first holiday abroad with just a friend. We felt like real grown-ups exploring the city and mixing culture with the beach and bars. I decided then and there that Barcelona was possibly going to be my favourite city. It has the mix of beach and city, with mountains not far away. Its arty and sporty, with so much to explore. There are cheap flights from the UK and for long holidays you could even drive down through France. My second visit confirmed my thoughts, Adi and I went for our first mini-break and it survived the test of a winter trip. We were still able to have lunch on the beach even though we didn't sunbathe. 

So, what's not to love - somewhere equally good for a girls trip or a romantic break and something for all. I guess the next test would be to take children - but there are always grandparents on hand if we fancy a cheeky trip alone!

- A camper-van. This and the aforementioned go hand in hand - imagine camper-vanning down to Barcelona in the summer holidays! (I must find a term-time only job!). But regardless of whether I could go abroad, I'd love to explore the UK and just be able to get in the camper and go. The idea of towing a caravan has always freaked me out. The only downside to a camper is not being able to have a run around car at our final destination, but we have bikes and there are always cars to rent the other end.

- Annual holiday overseas. Next on my bucket list is South America (Brazil, Argentina, Peru), followed closely by Africa (South Africa or Kenya). But the bucket list doesn't stop there. Think road-trips across America and New Zealand, NYE in Sydney, beach breaks in Bali and Hawaii, cricket in the Caribbean, skiing in Canada and Switzerland, the Trans-Siberian Railway, mini-breaks around Europe.. I could go on.

- My own business. I'd love to run a guest house/ cafe. I think it's in my blood as I grew up around my grandparents business and worked for them and my aunt when I was younger. I always liked the idea of doing it for myself one day. Now I tend to like family friendly locations and pop to cafes during my days, so the idea of combining the two is very appealing.

- Trips to London. I miss the city and I'd love for my kids to be as familiar with it as I am. It doesn't take much to hop on a train, so this is something I'd like to do more of. 

- Mortgage free by 50. I have 23 years and 8 months to make this happen. I'd love to be able to ease into retirement and build my slush fund for all that travelling (let's face it, the kids will only just be adults by that point so I doubt much of the above will happen before then).

I've realised that basically it all boils down to travel. As much as I'd love my own business, it'd need to be the sort of business I could entrust in others while I'm away!

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