Why Fear and Uncertainty Cannot Win

As I sit here this week in the great State of Texas, I have had a lot of time to think. And boy, can I over think. In between hospital runs, taking care of Mom, trying to stay healthy myself, I do find my mind wandering to my next chapters in life and I get so incredibly scared. I turn on the news, which I can only handle in small doses anymore, and I get mad and frustrated. I am sure I am not the only one, and I find myself second guessing my road trip and what lies ahead for me BECAUSE of that fear. What if something happens? Am I prepared to handle all of this? Am I allowed to move forward past this?

Right now, I don’t know what will happen past Monday, and I hope and pray for the best.  So my brain then goes to “What can I do now while I wait?”  I cleaned up Mom’s place, put things away outside, done pretty much what I can physically here, and so then I try to focus on my life and the adventure that is ahead.  And yes, then I feel bad. How can I plan for something fun for myself when my Mom and Bob are going through this? I know I have done everything I can, and I know my life has to keep moving forward, but it’s almost like this permission you have to give yourself to let go and move on. There is guilt in life’s pleasures when those around you are suffering, so do you suffer as well to envelop that empathy or do you celebrate that this chapter of darkness is not yours yet. You’d want someone to help you and support you through the hard times, but not to stop their life at the same time. It’s a really weird line to walk, a balancing act we find ourselves in when we least expect it. I lean into what I know is right and feels right, and then hope I GOT it right and that I DID it right.

I know Covid is out there, and I have been blessed thus far to have not gotten it. I can’t get the shot until I get home to Florida (so far), which I am happy to say my age group is up, so I hope to at least get that checked off upon returning home. But it worries me with it out there, on top of the mass shootings lately, I get this tinge in my tummy that what if I am putting myself somewhere that that could happen. But then reality wakes me up and says “It’s not changing any time soon, none of it. You have to go and keep living your life, fear cannot win.”  I hate that voice, I wish she would just go get a drink and leave me alone to my overthinking sometimes. LOL I do what I can to stay safe in any circumstance, and again, hope I did enough. It is so random and you hope it will never be you next, or someone you love, but we all know that it could be, and that fear just sits under the skin. I guess anything could happen to me on the road, it could happen to me today, I just hope and pray every day that today isn’t the day. I think we all do.

I am still planning, still going, pending what happens here next.  I have a couple of plans in place to help Mom and then it will be up to her and Bob what they do next. My routine is so messed up that I didn’t even realize how much I loved it until I didn’t have it anymore.  I am giving my all to this, but still trying to hold onto the parts of me that were excited to go on my big adventure in the first place.  I am basically planned through Montana at this point, with the reality and expectation that many plans will be made on the road. It is too much to book a year’s worth of hotel stays, and honestly, it’s more fun to do it in small bites. Hopefully once this chapter is done I can concentrate on the next.

Mom got her second dose yesterday for the vaccine, so I am happy she is now fully vaccinated. I have been masking up around everyone here as I am probably the lone duck standing.  But hey, it’s fun to feel so young here. LOL Once this is over, I will definitely share my experience of living in a Senior Community, it’s interesting! So I am off to take her to the Hospital again, I hope everyone has a good day and still hoping that surgery happens Monday.

Pharr, Pharr, Away

Hello from this windy Thursday in the deep heart of Texas. I have been here 4 days now and it’s been a long week of waiting, praying, hoping for the best, and preparing for the worst. Nobody wants to talk about it, but Mom and I both know to be ready for anything. So far he is still scheduled for surgery tomorrow, Friday the 26th, so we hope and we wait some more.

I am not going to lie, I am exhausted. I am doing everything in my power for my Mom and Bob, but we all know there is only so much I can do. Still cleaning, driving her anywhere she needs to be, helping her remember things to pack every day, preparing food and so on.  We have their place here to “summer ize” before they head back to Wisconsin, so there’s a lot to do for that.  Temps can be in the 100s here over the summer so they have to do a laundry list of things to prevent the heat and bugs from getting to things while they are gone. With Bob being in recovery mode, he will be unable to drive back to WI, and certainly not be able to wrap things up here. So Mom and I will hopefully find the strength and knowledge to get it all done. 

Time frames are up in the air, it all depends on tomorrow. I am willing to stay as long as possible, and one scenario is having his son drive Bob and his car home to WI with Mom or I drive Mom up in mine, just for space wise. Then I will either fly back to Orlando and leave my car there and fly back and start the road trip there OR I will be driving all the way back to Florida and then resuming life from there as planned. Decisions….hate them.  Emily’s birthday is in May, and I’d rather not miss it as it is a big one, but I also know I am needed here as long as possible. I did bring as much I could for the road trip in case I would be starting from here, always trying to think ahead, but I didn’t pack very well and a lot I forgot at home. Craig has offered to ship anything I need, so that option is always open.

Trying to keep busy, writing, and planning but my heart’s just not in it right now.  My mom has this old bike that she wants to paint yellow and I thought about making it for her and adding flowers and then putting it in front to surprise her…but the problem with that is that they seem determined to leave for rehab possibly in WI rather than here, so I don’t want to add to more “stuff” to pack, put away, if they are planning on heading out soon.  I wanted to get fresh flowers for Bob for the hospital and here at the house as a “get better” feel- but he’s allergic.  I seem to keep going down these paths of wanting to do something but the end result keeps being a “wait and see”- so I am.

Yeah, this isn’t a post about a cool ghost tour or the Grand Canyon, wish it was, but just simply an update of life right now. I am not looking for pity or judgement, just good vibes and prayers for Bob’s surgery tomorrow and peace for my Mom’s heart and head. It will be a long one tomorrow, strength in whatever form is much appreciated. Sending much love to y’all from Pharr, Texas- have a good day.

ANNOUNCEMENT!!! More than a Trip, More like a Mission

When I came up with this idea of traveling all 50 States, I knew I wanted it to be bigger than myself. Honestly part of my problem in life is that I have a hard time being selfish, that isn’t a pat on the back, it’s just who I am.  I am always looking to better someone else’s life, to make someone else feel good, because honestly in return I feel amazing for touching someone else’s life. Money is great, being known is great, but there is no rush better than helping someone in need or brightening their day.

So with GREAT excitement, I am announcing my purpose and mission today. I call it the “SPREAD KINDNESS” Tour, and I hope to be performing random, and not so random, acts of kindness across the U.S.A.  I don’t have HUGE resources like a lot of these bigger brands and YouTubers, but I have the heart and I have the personality, so hopefully I can make do on those and make someone out there smile on a bad day.  My hope is that people will want to donate to the cause and help me with acts of kindness- any and all suggestions I invite.

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Along with that, I will be raising money for “FEEDING AMERICA.”  I thought about asking people to donate a penny per mile driven from start to finish (48 States).  I will be setting up a link that goes directly to them, that way I don’t have to touch any of it and people know their money went. Why “FEEDING AMERICA?”  Glad you asked!  I volunteered there when I lived back in WI for a spell 4 years ago. I fell in love with the place and their mission, so much that they created a job for me and asked me to work for them full-time. I was ELATED!!!  Helping out others AND getting paid for it, dream come true.  Unfortunately, I would only be working for them for a couple of months before I had a medical issue that knocked me off my feet, putting me in the hospital several times.  I had to give them the opportunity to find someone else, which they did, because I just didn’t feel right holding them up due to something out of my control. So I gave up the dream job, but someone else was blessed with it instead. The organization does AMAZING things to feed the Country, and with us trying to come out of a recession and those needing food now more than ever, I thought this was the perfect place for donations.

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Many will wonder, why can’t you just adventure, why does their have to be something more behind it? Well, the simple answer is that I live to serve. I enjoy it, I need it, and I WANT to leave a legacy of doing some good on this planet.  We each have an opportunity EVERY DAY to bless someone with our time, our love, our help, and our kindness.  Small acts to big, it all adds up. Hasn’t it ever happened to you where you are having THE worst day and some stranger smiles, or says hello, or you get something fun in the mail completely unexpected? Someone pays you a compliment, a phone call checking up on you, or someone just simply making time for you in a busy day?  Such small moments turned into HUGE blessings.  The domino effect than happens and one by one, you start to help someone else, than they do and so on.  Imagine the domino effect I could have across the Nation, I just need to start the first one.

So I am excited, nay, ELATED, to finally announce this because it is something that I have been working on for months!!!! I hope you are too, as I need EACH of you to help me make this happen.  Please consider donating to the acts of kindness through Zelle at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com and making a one time donation or pledging a penny per mile traveled and donating at the end.  More announcements coming on fun stuff for the “Spread Kindness Tour” and I cannot WAIT to share it soon. Have a GREAT day!!!

Thank you for the support!!!

I LOVE sharing the joy of Adventure, and Travel! Every dollar you support me with goes right back into my mission for equipment, gas, and essentials. But most importantly, when you support me financially it tells me you BELIEVE in me and MY VALUE, and that means more to me than ANYTHING! So THANK YOU for YOU!!

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What Makes us Want to Travel?

My gosh, do I LOVE a good plan. The idea as it starts to simmer in my brain, the action taken as things come together, the product of what comes of all of it. To me it’s like that first bite of a REALLY good steak, or that rush when the wine finally hits your system.  I get EXCITED and that adreline is truly like a drug.  I was thinking of recent what makes me want to travel so much, why I don’t like staying in one place for very long.  Join me on this deep dive of travel thought.

Maybe it starts as kids? My Mom and Dad took Ryan and I to Niagara Falls, Canada, up and down the Midwest, and eventually our first trip to Disney World.  I would sit in the back seat of our station wagon, or “grocery getter” and I would write down every city we drove through.  Foreshadowing much?  My Dad would ask what I was doing, and I would say “I want to remember all the Cities” and even though we were just passing by, I still wanted to write them down.  Those notes are still in my memory box today. THAT Amy had no idea what she was in for.

Fast forward to getting married and having kids, I have always encouraged my family to seek adventure. If we didn’t have a lot of money, I would scour the coupon sections, the newspaper on Sundays, and eventually the Internet, looking for deals like Groupon to do with the fam.  There was and always IS something to do, I just feel people get lazy on WANTING to do the research.  Whereas our parents hopped in their car and came upon something, which you still can, this World is so big and so full now, that much to be enjoyed requires full attention and reservation.  For a Disney trip, we would plan and countdown for a year if not more.  Yes, children and marriage were the center more than travel at the time, but we still found a way to show our kids a slice of the American dream.

And now today. My kids are grown and finding their paths in life, Craig and I are close, but the road calls to me more than anything.  I wish I understood it. I see so many others who are complacent in living these cozy filled home lives, and I wonder why I don’t want the same. But we all know, “Comparison is the thief of joy” and should be avoided at all costs.  I know, I am lucky and blessed to do this, but it is scary at the same time. I leave the comforts of the same bed, same home, same everything for the unexpected adventure that comes with unexpected bravery.  I am not getting any younger, WHAT am I waiting for?  Well, these HUGE journeys take time and money, and I am stacking both as much as I can for what lies ahead.  A side note, thank you to those who have supported this crazy idea, it means A LOT to me! 

So what makes us travel? Well, for me, I just want to see and do as much as I can while I am on this spinning blue marble. I want to meet as many people as I can, help as many people as I can, share love and joy with as many as I can.  I want to leave a legacy of a life well lived and something my children see as a challenge to rise too.  To LIVE adventure, not just choose it. To BE what life presents you, instead of just floating in it. There is so much out there to see, to experience, to taste, to live. And what people don’t realize is that traveling isn’t just about getting in your car or a plane. It’s about leaving the day to day behind and finding something deeper in your soul that’s waiting to be woken. It’s about seeing different perspectives, different cultures, and embracing the uniqueness of each individual you come in contact with.  Yes, for most it’s a week off work, but what can and WILL change you, if you LET it, is letting the travel make home in your soul so that you carry it with you to the next.  To work our lives away, and I know it’s how we put food on the table, isn’t something that should define our adult existence. Yes, it takes a huge chunk, but I bet you haven’t ever wondered about that extra hour you should have worked compared to that extra hour you spent laughing with someone over dinner, or that extra hour your family decided to stay somewhere longer. Honestly, I think everyone needs a good vacation after the year of Hell we have all had. Or a stiff drink and an order of Chinese food…whatever fits your fancy.

Travel, for me, is freedom. What is travel to you?

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Thank you for your support!!

I LOVE sharing the joy of Adventure, and Travel! Every dollar you support me with goes right back into my mission for equipment, gas, and essentials. But most importantly, when you support me financially it tells me you BELIEVE in me and MY VALUE, and that means more to me than ANYTHING! So THANK YOU for YOU!!

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Disney Lots for Sale and Leftover Items- PRICES REDUCED!

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Large 34 Lot of Vinylmations…. $40 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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SOLD

DONALD ANNUAL PASSHOLDER MAGNET- $10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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I have three of these, BRAND NEW! $5 each plus $5 shipping/handling. DONALD ANNUAL PASSHOLDER MAGNET- $10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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SOLD

MICKEY FLOWER AND GARDEN ANNUAL PASSHOLDER MAGNET- $10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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SOLD

Over 60 Pin Lot! $40 plus $10 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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SOLD

FIGMENT ANNUAL PASSHOLDER MAGNET- $10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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14 Disney Pin Lot…..$45 for all plus $7 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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SOLD

MICKEY ANNUAL PASSHOLDER MAGNET- $10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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The Original Figment POP Funko…no box…just his cute, adorable self! $10 plus $7 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

Dumbo Popcorn Bucket

Dumbo Popcorn Bucket…. $30 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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BRAND NEW Disney Wedding Dress…. Size: Large… $85 plus $20 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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XL BRAND NEW Food and Wine Sweatshirt….$40 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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Orange Bird Sipper….$15 plus $10 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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Haunted Mansion Hitchhiking Ghosts Ornament from Disney World….$15 plus $8 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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Duffy Christmas Bear…..$10 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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D23 Exclusive Horizons Patch….$10 plus $5 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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Captain EO Creature….$15 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

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Mickey Birthday Sipper…..$15 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

Sven Sipper

Sven Sipper….$15 plus $15 shipping/handling. Domestic only. Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com. ZELLE payments ONLY to relocatedtourist@yahoo.com unless otherwise discussed.

Email me at relocatedtourist@yahoo.com if you are interested, thanks for stopping by!

Camping Frustrations

I liked to be prepared…. having a plan B or more makes me feel secure. This camping possibility in the West right now is stressing me out.  For a one person, car or tent, it seems like it SHOULD be something as simple as book a piece of concrete slab for the evening or week and let me be, right?  Well, I had no idea what the cutthroat life of a full time camper actually was until I dug into my research this week…I wasn’t prepared.

Now, having OWNED my own Campground with my family growing up, I know how things work. People love a certain site or cabin, book it a year in advance, and so on. We would be fully booked on the big holiday weeks, but for the most part, we always had room for someone who didn’t need hook-ups. Now I am camping in my car, and probably a tent because I don’t know how my back would handle sleeping like that in my back seat every night, and yet I am having THE hardest time trying to book a spot.

My theory? This summer people are more than covid fatigued and want to get the heck out of Dodge. The staycation is over, and they need to get out on the open road, so like I have said before, I see this summer BOOMING in the Tourism sector.  Maybe just within States, but once borders open, it will be massive.

I just had no idea that the entire booking empire of the National Parks and Campgrounds were so sought after and so hard to find. I read camping forums I could find, the information on the National Park websites, yet there is still no one out there that really HELPS you determine what kind of site would be suitable for you.  If you have ANY suggestions for me on how I can find sites easier, please let me know. Yes, there are apps out there, but when you don’t know the areas being suggested, it makes it that much harder.  Of course research must be done on my part, but there is SO MUCH out there that I just get frustrated and stop cold.

Maybe I will just book a hotel or sleep in my car anyways. Any help would be great! I am trying to find something in Yosemite in August. Even if I can just get a couple of nights so I can see a bunch of stuff and then head out. Thanks for any help!

Planning South Dakota

As you all know, it is by far one thing to HAVE an idea, and a whole other ball game to IMPLEMENT it. I can have them all the live, long day, but man oh man does it get hard to actually get it done. What I mean is that planning is fun, it is, but the “where to stay” part has me stressed out a bit.  I knew the West would be a challenge because I don’t know many people out there, but I also knew that the wide open spaces means fewer hotels and availability on camping.  Some book a year in advance for that spot in Yellowstone or Yosemite. I just want to be able to experience them, even if I can’t stay there.  So with a bit of panic in my step, I started hunkering down on where I would be sleeping in each State so that I didn’t wind up without a place to stay.  (Although I will be prepared to sleep in my car should the occasion arise).

The first month of my trip is the familiar- GA, TN, KY, IL, WI, and MN.  These are the ones that I have traveled through many a year to get to and from Disney when I lived in WI along with ones where family lives (WI and MN).  They aren’t easy in any way, and I actually will be doing all brand new stuff in each, BUT, they are familiar and I am staying with family and  friends so it makes it easier in that way. So the first real “ON MY OWN” State will be South Dakota.

Now, I was here in 2018 to see the Badlands as I passed through with Craig. It was one of THE coolest Parks I had ever seen, although Glacier is still my favorite.  I was so bummed I didn’t get to see Mount Rushmore along with many other places, so the first task is always finding a home base for the week.  That in itself takes some research…do I hotel in one place for the week or bounce around as I tour the State?  The issue with that is availability during the summer months.  And with this being the summer HOPEFULLY post Covid, I believe it will be the busiest summer for travel on record. Keep that in mind if you are making plans as well.

So I decided on Rapid City, South Dakota as my home base.  It’s close enough to Keystone, which is Mount Rushmore, and 44 minutes away from Deadwood. Yes, DEADWOOD!! There is a creepy, haunted hotel there I would like to take the ghost tour of, including the fun of the whole town.  I am also an hour or two from the Badlands, so I can check that out again as well.  I am thrilled to have found a hotel for the week so that I can just enjoy myself and not worry about moving around every night.  Obviously, I am not sharing where I am staying, but AFTER the trip I will post my spots for those interested in staying in these areas. 

They have lots of ticketed things to do, including a train ride in Deadwood, and I would LOVE to do that. BUT I am waiting to make sure attractions WILL be open, and not get blindsided with another shut down or wave.  I think everyone is being cautious with plans at this point, but hopefully I can book tours and such by May.

Have you been to South Dakota? What should I see that I haven’t mentioned? I invite all tips and tricks as I have only been there once and would love the details on the stuff I am just not seeing online or have simply missed.  Also their state motto is “Under God, the people rule.”  Being a Believer, NOT an Evangelical, I LOVE this statement. It has a bit of moxie in it, with a side of Country pride. It makes me think they are a God fearing State, and it will be interesting to see if that motto is “felt” in that State.

The State Slogan is: “Great Faces. Great Places” LOVE IT!!  Writing a blog is like writing a book report every day, if you are that on top of it, and so is the research and information. I feel like I am back in grade school again, learning the capitals and the state birds (Pierre and Chinese-ring necked pheasant). Listen, now you know, and knowing is half the battle!  If I have to learn, y’all are going to learn with me. So there ya go, fill me in, tell me what you did or are going to do in South Dakota. See you on the road!

The Host with the Most

I have FINALLY gotten my butt in gear, and booking has begun!  So many of you have offered your home, and I cannot WAIT to see you, tour with you, and get to know you better.  On a live stream this morning, I was chatting with a friend and she mentioned she had a cat and was I allergic.  I thought “Hey, that’s a good post” to put out so people know what to expect hosting me in their homes. I see this a time saver, and if you’d like to host me in your home on this trek, please email or message me, and we will talk!

  1. I don’t have ANY allergies.
  2. I have a cat and dogs, and usually am pet dehaired.  I know how to act with and around them, so no worries. The only thing I ask is that they don’t roam around me while I sleep…I don’t want to accidentally hurt the monster under the bed.
  3. I don’t bring any pets.
  4. I bring my own air mattress and such.
  5. If you would like to tour with me, or like to show me your city, Im all for it! I will have ideas with me as well, so I am usually up for anything. Except HEIGHTS.
  6. I DON’T DO HEIGHTS.
  7. I am up for adventurous eating except spicy foods- they don’t seem to like me and the worst thing to me is getting sick while on the road.
  8. I do have a car, obviously, so a safe place to park her would be great.
  9. I LOVE when my hosts offer to drive me around because I obviously don’t know your area. I am fully ready to help with gas costs, so please let me know.
  10. If you are unable to hang out with me but able to allow me a bed/space at your home, I am happy with that as well. I am not there to interrupt life, just a safe place to put my head at the end of the day.
  11. Anything else you can think of, let me know, and like I said, email or message me if you would like to hang out or host.

I hope this helps everyone interested in hosting me, THANK YOU to those who are already, I AM SO EXCITED!!!!