Family of Four Taking Flight to Financial Independence

Travel: Paradise (Anguilla)

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa 

Ahh, paradise.

Before we get to paradise ... a few things.

This blog isn't only about our journey to FI (financial independence) and achieving / living FI, but it is (and will be) also about travel, family, the arts, education (and more?!).

The idea of being frugal is a big topic in the FI community, but also some have the perception (in and out of the community) that being FI is about being as cheap as possible (in order to save as much as possible).  That is not the case (at least not for us!).  Yes, being frugal about certain things is important to us in order to achieve and sustain FI ... but it is also about spending on things that matter (for us family and travel is a big part of that).

With that said, my most recent trip with our youngest child was a treat for us in return for watching our nephews.  And if spending on a luxury resort on a beautiful island is on your list, I would highly recommend saving and splurging on Anguilla and Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa.

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Our suite's private pool).

During and after our most recent trip some things have been on my mind ...

You Are Doing What?!

As we get closer in our journey to FI, more people are hearing about our plans ... and maybe even believing our plans more.  Like we have mentioned, at this point ... we plan to move to Spain for at least a school year (but most likely more).  I think the 1) idea of FIRE (retiring early) is foreign to many ... and the 2) the idea of leaving the United States is just as "out there" for many people.

(Honestly the idea of FIRE was crazy to me at first too.  So, I get it.)

I've heard many similar (and not surprising comments) ... some negative and some positive.  And I think people are generally curious and well-meaning ... anything from "what about work?"... "won't you get bored?" ... "so awesome!  and brave!" ... "great experience for both of you and the kids!"

But now I am to the point of ... the idea of FIRE and traveling the world with the kids is THE MOST normal idea for me / us right now ... and anything else (for us!) seems crazy to me.


Back to paradise ... my youngest and I took a recent trip to Anguilla (British West Indies) for 5 days (to help my sister and her family with my young nephews as they went to many wedding events for friends).

She made special Anguilla shirts for the cousins that my sister had printed.

If you are looking for a trip to paradise in the Caribbean, we highly recommend Anguilla.  Anguilla's beaches are often rated some of the top in the world.  If you are also seeking a luxury hotel and spa, we also highly recommend where we stayed - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa.

Really there is no reason to leave the resort area unless you want to enjoy an excursion or two (which I would recommend at least one!).

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Our suite's private pool).

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Our suite's private pool).

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Where we ate many of our meals).

Angulla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Main Pool)

Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa (Main Pool)

Beautiful beach with white sand and clear blue waters?  Check.

Pool time?  Check.

Great food and beverages ... from casual to fine dining?  Check.

These are the main three we enjoyed, but they definitely had more to offer from Kids Club to a Spa ... and more.

Our excursion ... Jr's Glass Bottom Boat ... 

Anguilla - Little Bay

Anguilla - Little Bay

We did enjoy one excursion with the whole family which was perfect for the kids (ages 6, 3, and 1 years) - a private tour with Jr's Glass Bottom BoatJunior was great, and he stopped at two places including Little Bay.  The kids were able to play on the beach / shallow waters (and snorkeling is also available).  At the second stop my child tried snorkeling for the first time with her Uncle!  And of course we all got to enjoy the deep blue sea from the glass bottom boat window (the sea turtles were definitely a highlight).

Travel Gear: How Do You Travel?

We spied Britto's art / shop at the Miami airport (I did a lesson on Britto in art class this year for Feb / Valentine's Day).

My youngest and I enjoyed our recent travel adventure.

We loved the journey there and back and of course our time in Anguilla with family.

Our journey there included two planes (layover in Miami before we landed in St. Maarten) ... a van, a boat, and then another van.  Exhausting day of planes, trains, and automobiles?  Yes, but we had the mindset it was all a part of the adventure!  Things got more interesting as we made a friend once our final plane landed, and he joined us on the final journey (he was going to the same location / wedding).  He was entertaining (turns out an actor so I guess being entertaining would be a strength!), from the UK originally, and great with kids (which helped me!).

Boat Ride Transportation (St. Maarten to Anguilla).  She got a very RARE Coca-Cola treat.   Tortuga bag beside her.

And the same thing happened for us on the way home ...

The trip home was even MORE of an adventure (and a longer day).  Golf cart, van ... to a small private plane (Anguilla to St. Maarten).  St. Maarten to Charlotte ... (ran to our next flight after Immigration / Customs) ... and then finally landed late that night in Houston.  Our last flight we made another friend (a nice lady from South Carolina who was traveling to Houston for work) that I talked to the entire flight while the little one slept.  I'm not normally into talking to people on planes, but our conversation worked out nicely and made the trip go by more quickly.

Who have you met on your travels?

It also helped that we traveled light, and we plan to do the same on our way to Spain.

We brought one Tortuga Backpack (Setout Divide) for both of us that I wore / carried on the plane.  We own two, and we plan to buy two more for Spain for the kids (or slightly smaller ones).

Wearing her Tortuga Setout Packable Daypack.

My youngest and I also brought our Tortuga Setout Packable Daypack for easy access of items under our plane seat (and for daily use).  (We own two and plan to buy two more before Spain and other travels).

What are your necessities in your carry on?  Do you try to travel light?  One of my newest accessories is this Bag-All pouch for Passports and Travel Stuff (thanks, sister!).  Not only is it useful ... great simple design, and it's created by a small business in NYC (Bag-All).  I first discovered this store while walking in NYC (it's on Mott Street in Lower Manhattan).

What are your favorite travel necessities?

... so there you have it.  Paradise.  My thoughts on travel.  And some travel ideas / gear.


Anguilla - Zemi Beach House Hotel & Spa

Where is paradise for you?  Would you leave life as you know it to travel?  What things or strategies make traveling easier for you?


No comments