We woke up early in the morning, had a wonderful breakfast and headed to the airport. It was sad to say goodbye to Europe once again. This trip has been so long, the longest trip we’ve ever had in Europe. Our first trip to Europe was 5 days, then a few weeks, 4 weeks, 6 weeks, and a few more of a few weeks. But this trip, the trip of a lifetime was almost 3 full months, and worth every single day. I made great business contacts, we got to see some of our favorite sites, exploring new ones, visited a dozen European countries and showed Nona and Grandaddy Z a thing or two. All in all, it was an amazing journey and we are already counting the days until we can return again. Although our bodies have left the European continent once again, our heart and minds will always remains there.
On landing in Norfolk and finally making our way home to Virginia Beach, it felt…well…kind of weird, honestly. We hadn’t been home or slept in our beds for almost three months and Thanksgiving day was only a few days away. When we left, it was still Summer. As we turned out the lights and tucked the kids in, we made our way back downstairs and just sat there at the kitchen table looking around the house. It felt so weird to have so much room. We had been living in places 1/10 the size for 3 months. This new found perspective really made us think about and appreciate all of our many blessings, including such a wonderful home. But it also made us think about the things we don’t need, like TV and all the ‘stuff’ you can’t fit in a suitcase. Sharing a drink and talking about the trip, we decided to change a few things going forward.
We would not start cable back up, we cancelled it before we left, we would donate a ton of things including household items, toys and clothes and we would start to live more of a minimialistic lifestyle. Might sound silly, but living out of a bag for 3 months can really make you see things differently. We may have not physically changed in the last three months, but a few things about us mentally and emotionally did. As a family, we grew even closer to one another and have more memories and pictures than we know what to do with. We look forward to over the years, reliving and sharing those memories from this trip with each other and in dreaming to one day return and make new ones.
Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA, once again….home sweet, home….well….for now anyway!