Sabbatical, Travel

Packing and Ramen

We are three weeks away from hopping on a plane and heading to the South of France.  I just made that sound so easy, didn’t I? “Oh, ya know! Just HOP on a transatlantic plane!…with two toddlers!” Am I making a bigger deal out of this than necessary? It seems daunting to me because it wasn’t too long ago that two hours on a plane with two toddlers was enough to literally have me praising the Lord that we didn’t have to take a plane to Europe…and then God showed me his sense of humor. I’ve spoken to several of you who all have great suggestions. However, I’m sure more of you have some extra truth out there that I would be amiss if I didn’t hear it. So like I mentioned before, lay it on me.

People have asked if this changes our packing situation, you know, the whole flying instead of cruising scenario. I thought it did but then I remembered, actually was reminded by my incredibly-logical husband, that we’ll be traipsing around Europe with two toddlers and one stroller so we’re probably sticking with the original packing plan– one large suitcase and two large carry-ons. I’ve done a dry-run with the kid’s clothes and quickly found that I have quite a few decisions to make regarding what we’ll bring and what stays. These are small things and I’ll be just fine in making said decisions. Nevermind the fact that I can be indecisive when it comes to things that some would deem unimportant. Show of hands, does anyone have experience with a capsule wardrobe, anybody?

People have also asked, “are you ready?!” That’s a fair question, but to be honest I don’t think I am. I don’t think we’ll be ready even when we arrive because going from full-speed to zero-obligation (except for that thing called parenting) will be such an adjustment. That’s what we were going to use the cruise for, to get into the mindset.

For now, I’ll just do the tangible preparations, pray that I come out of the planes stronger than before, and eat my ramen with a small pad of European butter mixed in as a late-night snack. I’m actually eating that now and am half-embarrassed to say it, because of ramen and butter. But I know you’re intrigued, and yes, you should try it. You can thank me later. Just remember, it has to be real butter and preferably French, grass-fed, or Irish butter. The reason is that those types of butter are more robust and flavorful. If it makes you feel better, spring for the $1.00 pack of ramen instead of the $.40 one. Nevermind that the thought “I’m better than this” comes to mind as you reach for that crinkle-wrap package. Push that out and allow yourself to enjoy it. Do what I did and pour out most of the liquid (before adding the butter of course) to avoid consuming 310,182% of your daily sodium intake. Enjoy!

If you’re looking for a more elaborate and cooler ramen recipe that you can confidently serve to people you’re trying to impress, there’s this recipe.

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