A memorable day in Tavira, Portugal—and how my travel mindset has changed as a mom

When I was pregnant with my first child, we dreamed of sharing the world with our daughter. We envisioned living in Southeast Asia again—we’d lived in Vietnam before having kids—and talked about all the things we would experience together as a family. We imagined frequent international travel, long trips, and adventurous explorations together. Then we […]

How a Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Hot Mess Morning Turned into the Best. Day. Ever.

This past weekend, my husband and I decided to surprise our children with a trip to a water park. Heralded the “largest water park in Portugal,” they had been begging all summer to go. But between my mom visiting from the US, getting ready for school to start, and what felt like endless doctors’ appointments […]

What it’s like to live in Portugal nearly two years in

In early 2019, we were living in southern Thailand on the island of Phuket. We’d been through what felt like endless obstacles during our short time there: a bat infestation in the house we rented; multiple hospitalizations; severe and constant sickness pulsing through our home. The kids had a bout with hand-foot-and-mouth that lasted two […]

An Ode to the Beaches of Portugal

I’m drafting this post at 5:47 a.m. the same day I’m sharing it with you. I don’t normally wake up this early, but my son woke me, so here I am: reflective, quiet, . . . tired. As I lay in bed this morning unable to go back to sleep, my thoughts ran through the […]

Is it March 2020 all over again in Portugal?

Portugal doesn’t often hit the top of the news cycle. Our part of Europe is not often talked about—countries like Italy, France, and Spain tend to capture the world’s attention instead. So it’s no surprise to me that few of my family, friends, and online community know what’s happening here. Portugal did OK with COVID […]

Portugal update: calm in the chaos (plus pictures!)

We’re nearly ten months into our time here in Portugal, which is hard to believe. This time last year, we were living in Boise, Idaho, in transition from Thailand to Portugal, waiting for our Portuguese visas. It seems like it was just a few months ago we were arriving in Lisbon, staying in a cramped, […]

Unconventional: a look at our nontraditional family life

“Oh, so your husband . . . doesn’t work?” The conversation usually begins. “I mean, he does,” I reply. “He’s a stay at home dad.” Awkward silence. “So . . . you work?” “That’s right. I work full time. Travel a bunch. You know how it is.” Here, I usually offer the other person an […]

people walking in Portugal

5 lessons I’ve learned living an off-the-path life

When I’m home in Idaho, or anywhere in the U.S., most new people I meet see the same thing: typical American woman, business person, and mom. They imagine my golden retriever running around my suburban backyard, and picture me bingeing The Bachelor on the weekends. Like you, like all of us, others try to define […]

boy looking at sea

5 practical ways to regain focus and find peace

Like you, I have been stuck in my house for weeks. We started isolating on March 13, the day the Portuguese government announced that schools would be closed the following Monday. About a week later, the government announced a state of emergency that included forced isolation orders. Which means, in short, that we’re stuck at […]

Trusting the process: Portugal so far

Last year, our family set out on an adventure, leaving our cozy city of Boise, Idaho, and heading into the wide world. We lived in Thailand for a little under a year, but quickly realized it wasn’t a good long-term fit for our family. So we packed our things (again) and moved to Boise for […]