There's spot along Colonel By Drive in Ottawa. I can see the Rideau Canal, the Chateau Laurier and the Convention Centre, with the Parliament Buildings looming in the background.
Comfort, relief, relaxation.
When I’ve been away from Ottawa for a bit and drive back into the city and hit that spot, that’s what I feel and it intensifies when we turn off Rideau Street into our neighbourhood.
It’s the feeling of being home.
Not just home to our house, but to our community and our regular life.
Before we left, we got asked a lot about how we would "do school." It was hard to answer because we weren’t quite sure what third grade would look like for LJ.
We started homeschooling her last year and looking back we’re glad we did. It allowed us to get a better sense of what works for her (and what definitely doesn't) before leaving home.
It also got our family into a rhythm of learning without school.
But homeschooling at home -- in a house with lots of space, in a city with lots of activities for homeschoolers, and in a neighbourhood filled with kids -- is different than homeschooling while travelling.
Last week we decided to take a one-night trip to Amsterdam.
L had been there twice before and was excited to introduce LJ and I to the city's bike culture. So, we boarded a VERY early morning OuiBus and spent a day and a half exploring the Netherlands' capital.
SO. MUCH. FUN.
Amsterdam, with its cannabis coffeeshops and Red-Light District, can bring to mind more adult fun, but there are plenty of G-rated and family-friendly activities. And they're easy on the budget.
We’ve been in Brussels for about three weeks and we’re really loving the Belgian capital.
How can we not!?
THERE IS BEER, WAFFLES, FRIES AND CHOCOLATE EVERYWHERE!!!
It’s also less touristy than say Paris, but beautiful and with lots to see and do.
To get from London to Brussels we had to take the Chunnel (or Channel Tunnel) and THAT was kind of mind blowing!
Our life now fits into three large backpacks and three smaller backpacks.
It’s both stressful and liberating.
We have to be vigilant about keeping track of our stuff, but having less stuff is rather calming and makes life simpler.
Honestly, packing for this trip was easier than expected as a little pre-planning went a long way.