It’s All Gettin’ Real!

Envision BannerA week from now, I will be in San Jose, Costa Rica, exploring a bit and getting supplies and a bus ticket to Uvita before Envision Festival. OMG. This is really happening!

I returned home from a retreat for work on the icy east coast last weekend, and apparently brought the winter weather back with me, because it’s finally raining on the North Coast, and with the drought we’ve been in, I am very happy to see it. It also makes me even more excited to escape this wet and cold wintery weather to a lush, warm, sunny tropical paradise where I can eat papayas as big as my head and sip frosty beverages from coconuts.  Sorry, I can’t help but rub it in! This will be my first time “escaping” to somewhere tropical in the winter and the first international trip I have planned myself (actually, only the first week is planned, after that… it’s pretty open). I’ve never gone on a trip with a group of friends before, and I’ve definitely never been out of the country for a month at a time, so this will be an exciting adventure indeed! I just hope it’s not too expensive, because it’s been a slower winter than we were hoping for. But thanks to friends and family, and having places to stay in Costa Rica and Nicaragua for much of our journey, this magical journey is going to go off without a hitch, I can just feel it! If you’d like to help us save up some last minute trip money, please see this post and shop for crafty creations!

I’ve been listening to Envision Festival’s Soundcloud to get pumped up for the music we’ll be seeing there. Two sets of Tipper will be mind-blowing enough, but we are about to shake so much booty to great music in the jungle, it’s unbelievable. The fact that I was lucky enough to earn Envision tickets by street teaming will make this festival even more rewarding. I love being able to be involved in a festival more than just experiencing it as a spectator.

It’s been a busy rainy weekend full of laundry and dishes, laying out and eliminating clothes, piling up stuff to pack, getting last-minute gear and figuring out logistics (plus dying my hair – now this week I just need to chop it off). I’m feeling pretty ready at this point. Just a few more pieces need to fall into place and we’ll be ready to have the time of our lives! Pura vida, I am ready! Vive la experiencia!

Be sure to check out this blog for updates during our trip and I’m sure I’ll upload a few photos to Facebook along the way. And please get in touch with me or leave a comment if you’ll be traveling in Central America and want to meet up, or have places to see or stay to recommend. Thanks for the support! 🙂

So Much WIN! Our Envision Adventure Just Got Even Better!

I received some most excellent news yesterday that’s had me bouncing around doing the happy dance ever since. Thanks to you awesome people using my discount code for Envision tickets and our street teaming efforts posting & handing out flyers/stickers, talking about the festival on social media, and promoting the event, I’ve earned TWO tickets for James and I to go to Envision. I never expected that joining the street team would pay off this much — I was cautiously hoping for at least one ticket, but we bought super early bird tickets just in case (which took less than a day to sell on Facebook). So now we have more money towards our trip (thank you to the lovely ladies who bought our tickets!) and maybe we can even manage a quick visit to the beautiful Corn Islands in Nicaragua

And I thought I couldn’t get any more excited for this trip. The yoga and movement workshops are starting to be announced as well as speakers for the event, and  I was thrilled to find out that one of my personal heroes, Julia Butterfly, will be speaking there, so I may even have the chance to hug my favorite tree hugger/sitter! Oh my glob, I can hardly contain myself! I can’t even watch this preview video without jumping up and down and squealing like a schoolgirl:

There’s still time to join us at Envision! Tickets are available (don’t forget to use my discount code!) and flight prices are still decent! The lineup is pretty amazing, and you can’t beat the location for a tropical escape in the winter…

And it gets even better… Envision is just the beginning of our adventure! We are getting together with the friends we are traveling with tonight to reserve our first few nights of hostels and get some plans squared away. This is becoming REAL. A month from today, we will be getting ready to fly out of San Francisco and start the longest international adventure I’ve ever been on (James lived in Nicaragua as a kid, so he’s got me beat there. Two weeks in Peru wasn’t enough for me, and I doubt a month in Costa Rica and Nicaragua will be enough either).

Please comment if you’ve been to Costa Rica or Nicaragua and have places to recommend that we see. We’re especially interested in volunteer opportunities, preferably in Nicaragua and having to do with animals, wildlife, conservation, or anything helping the locals become more sustainable – that we could help out with for a short time during our visit. We appreciate any travel tips or not-to-miss sights we can get, especially since most of our trip will be unplanned and open-ended so we can ask around and be open to whatever we find on the journey.

Only one more month to go… Stay tuned for my last-minute fundraising posts soon as we scramble to save all the pennies we can! And of course, I’ll be posting travel stories and photos here during and after the trip so you can all join us vicariously. Let the countdown begin!

Envisioning a Beautiful 2014

As I’m sure you’re aware if you follow me on social media at all, I am REALLY REALLY excited for our upcoming trip to Costa Rica and Nicaragua in February & March. Shortly after landing in San Jose, we’ll be heading to the Pacific coast near beautiful Uvita, Costa Rica for Envision Festival, a music, movement & arts festival that will be my first international festival experience. (Technically I guess it’s still a west-coast music fest though, and I’ve been to plenty of those!)

Envision Festival 2014 Music Lineup

So far James and I have bought our festival tickets and booked our flights, and even recruited a few friends to share the adventure with! We will be exploring a few sites in Costa Rica after the festival before heading over the border to Nicaragua, where James’s dad is living, so we’ll have a nice home base in Managua.

As hard as it is for me, I am trying not to over-plan so that we can freely explore when we get there and go with the flow without a strict schedule. But I do have a short wish list for the trip: I’d like to zipline through beautiful rainforest or cloud forest canopy, enjoy a fancy tropical drink out of a coconut at a swim-up bar, spin fire on the beach at sunset, hike in the jungle to beautiful waterfalls and epic volcanoes, visit and volunteer at a wildlife refuge or permaculture farm or some such worthy place, and best of all SEE TIPPER LIVE FOR THE FIRST TIME IN COSTA RICA!!! 😀

I can already tell that 2014 is going to be a wonderful year! Please comment with recommendations for things to do and see in Costa Rica and Nicaragua, people to stay with and places we could volunteer for a few days are especially welcome!

And if you’re up for an adventure to close out this winter, JOIN US! Get your Envision Tickets here, and use discount code STmeganp14 during checkout to receive $5 off! It is going to be a beautiful trip in an amazing place… And now you know what I’m working towards all winter. 🙂