Union Pier, Michigan; Day 1

We had one final breakfast at Mamoh’s house, finished packing the family van and departed for Michigan. Brian’s mom (Busha) rented a large house in Southwest Michigan to host the 5 Adventurers as we make our way back home. We arrived before dinner and had just enough time for a quick game of billiards (actuallyContinue reading “Union Pier, Michigan; Day 1”

Nairobi, Kenya; Day 1

The 5 Adventurers have left Asia and waved goodbye to our Bangkok guesthouse full of Thai personality. We stayed at the Old Capital Bike Inn there. It’s a small 10 room hotel in the heart of the Old City. The property was originally a palace bestowed by King Rama V and has been in theContinue reading “Nairobi, Kenya; Day 1”

Phuket, Thailand; Day 2

สวัสดี (Sa-wa-dee) (hello) We promise not to do as much Thai language in our posts from Thailand as we did Spanish in Central America. It’s a much harder language and alphabet to learn but we are making a try of getting proficient in some of the common words travelers need. Most of the people workingContinue reading “Phuket, Thailand; Day 2”

Travel to Thailand, Day 3

Our 5 Adventurers arrived in Phuket, Thailand this afternoon. We are all very weary from our four flights of travel but are in good spirits. The kids have been remarkably patient through it all. Here is a quick recap of our 3 day journey half-way-around-the globe Hours 1-3: Depart Leesburg, Ohio, lunch with Mamoh, andContinue reading “Travel to Thailand, Day 3”

Travel to Thailand; Day 2

After barely making our connection at JFK, we settled into our 12 hour flight to Doha. Honestly we were hoping for a little less adventure on this second travel day and we got it. A long haul flight in economy is not anyone’s first choice, but if you choose to do it, Qatar Airlines’ offeringContinue reading “Travel to Thailand; Day 2”

Raleigh, North Carolina; Day 2

Field trip day at the 5 Adventurers Academy. Today our road school visited the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in downtown Raleigh. First off, we visited Benchwarmer Bagels for some morning nourishment by CreeperKitty’s choice (seriously, that kid lives for bagels). Dad chose an everything bagel with lox, deviled egg spread and shaved onions.Continue reading “Raleigh, North Carolina; Day 2”

Chapin, South Carolina

We had a few reasons for doing a southern road trip this week. One was to get to warmer weather. Our drive through the Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina mountains today was sunny and 60°s and still showing some autumn color. We finished our drive to Chapin, South Carolina which is a small townContinue reading “Chapin, South Carolina”

Leesburg, Ohio; Day 12

It was a fairly quiet school day here in Southern Ohio. The 5 Adventures Academy students continued with reading Call It Courage and completed a worksheet assignment for Chapter 3 (for those of you reading along). Mamoh started the slow cooker early this morning by loading a turkey breast and mixing in some chipotle sauceContinue reading “Leesburg, Ohio; Day 12”

Lemont, Illinois; Day 1

Today the 5 Adventurers drove Jeremy Picklepants south about 100 miles to Lemont, IL. It is a charming town in the greater Chicago area and the home of one of Brian’s good friends from college and her daughter. They have a gorgeous house originally built in the 1880’s and so many board games tjat theContinue reading “Lemont, Illinois; Day 1”

Panama City, Panama; Day 5

Today the 5 Adventurers bid adios to Central America. We have been out of the US since August but it honestly doesn’t feel like 10 weeks. We spent 10+ hours traveling to Milwaukee today, so we don’t have much to describe. There were no hassles with immigration or customs. We had some extra space onContinue reading “Panama City, Panama; Day 5”

Panama City, Panama; Day 3

Today we got to do our field trip to the Miraflores Visitor Center for our school’s Panama Canal Unit. The school staff/parents were more excited than the kids but in the end, we all were very impressed. There were some adjustments due to COVID-19 so we didn’t get to see the IMAX movie which wasContinue reading “Panama City, Panama; Day 3”

Boquete, Panama; Day 22

Today we did school and finished our first class study book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Shortly after that, Brian and Tiffany had something that felt like a rabbit hole experience. While the kids played math games at the end of school, the teachers moved to the ‘lounge’ aka the living room and struck up aContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 22”

Boquete, Panama; Day 18

Aside from the Spanish immersion classes in August, the 5 Adventurers also installed Duo Lingo to their devices to improve their intake of foreign languages. Tiffany and Brian have continued to dabble on the app but prefer the real world to build that language “muscle”. For the kids, however, they go beyond mere dabbling. TheyContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 18”

Boquete, Panama; Day 16

TODAY WAS SCHOOL PICTURE DAY!! We’re trying so do some normal things at the 5 Adventures Academy (our name we picked for the school) and what’s more normal than sitting the kids in front of a blue background and snapping a photo for posterity. We’re still on the distribution list for our hometown PTA andContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 16”

Boquete, Panama; Day 11

Despite it being a Saturday we made it a school day so there were no big adventures today. We did finally take a few pictures of our AirBnB house and our ‘yard mates’ for lack of a better description. The house itself is one story, three bedroom/two bath and about 1,800 square feet. It hasContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 11”

Boquete, Panama; Day 7

We’ve been in Boquete nearly a week and must be settling in since we were visited by our old friend. Yes that’s right, today started with a power outage. We think it started around 3am and everything was still dead when we got up in the morning. This house has an electric stove so noContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 7”

Boquete, Panama; Day 5

Today was a lazy Sunday here in Boquete. The sun was shining brightly this morning but we spent time inside doing some online adventures. The kids FINALLY convinced Mom and Dad to join them in a Minecraft world. It was hosted by Suaram and titled ‘Suckers’ which seems pretty appropriate. Tiffany started building a houseContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 5”

Boquete, Panama; Day 2

Today was mostly about getting organized for our multi-week stay in Boquete. We started the morning off with breakfast at our new favorite Va&Ven. Unfortunately they didn’t have any breakfast sandwiches so instead we had empanadas again. They’re better for dinner, but at least we got a little fuel to get our day going. AfterContinue reading “Boquete, Panama; Day 2”

Bocas del Toro, Panama; Day 1

We made it to Panama! Whew! Sometimes adventures can be exhausting. We had an option to fly from Costa Rica to Panama- from San Jose to Panama City. But our first stop in Panama was planned to be the island archipelago on the northwest coast called Bocas del Toro. It’s only about 3 hours travelContinue reading “Bocas del Toro, Panama; Day 1”

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 6

Today is our last day in Puerto Viejo and it’s also our last day in Costa Rica. We arrived 37 days ago and spent our first two weeks in school. We swam in the Pacific, the Caribbean Sea and in a few waterfalls. We were all amazed by the green sea turtles and the horsebackContinue reading “Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 6”

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 5

A short post for a quiet day. The adventurers stayed close to home with the kids reading and making up games with their cuddles. The plot included many paper snowflakes so we are enjoying a bit of pretend winter here in the tropics. We did a little shopping. It’s amazing how fast clothes tire outContinue reading “Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 5”

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 4

Today’s main adventure was a morning Chocolate tour – an activity where you see the process from the cacao bean to the chocolate we know and love. Or at least that’s what we tried to sell the kids. Cacao was one of the major crops in Costa Rica until the 1970s when a fungus killedContinue reading “Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 4”

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 2

After yesterday’s travel day we relaxed a little this morning. We all found the sleeping tolerable with no air conditioning. Still more hot and humid than we prefer but we got some sleep even with the howler monkeys doing their thing close by. We added a picture showing our two part house. Kitchen/living room/bath andContinue reading “Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica; Day 2”

La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 3

This was one of our Costa Rican days where the adventures were wonderful, diverse and may not fully translate to the blog (but we will give it our best shot). We took all these great photos today. Costa Rica has fully embraced environmentally conscious attitudes about many things. For example, the country has relied onContinue reading “La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 3”

La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 2

What a day!  This is the first time visiting Costa Rica for the 5 Adventurers. It’s a popular destination because it’s natural ecology is appealing (volcanos, beaches, tropical forests, waterfalls) and also because it has built a reputation for outdoor adrenaline activities. Ziplines, horseback riding, rappelling, ATV riding tours, hiking, scuba and snorkeling etc etcContinue reading “La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 2”

La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 1

We left Monteverde today after another nourishing farm-fresh meal prepared by our hosts and set off for La Fortuna. We also learned that the farm gained a new calf overnight so everyone was cheery this morning. This was a 3 hour drive over winding roads (both paved and unpaved). The weather was pleasant enough forContinue reading “La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Day 1”

Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 16

We have been looking forward to today’s adventures for several days. This outing was our reward for finishing the Spanish language school after two long weeks. Today was also our last full day in Liberia. Tomorrow, we move on to la playa! We awoke early and made it to our destination shortly after 9. OurContinue reading “Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 16”

Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 15

Today was the last day of Spanish immersion – we’ve done 40 hours over the last two weeks. Brian and Tiffany capped their course off with a presentation in front of the school. Afterwards we went out to dinner at a place up the street from the school. We’d walked by it several times andContinue reading “Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 15”

Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 13

The Pan-American Highway runs for 24,140 kilometers (15,000 miles). Guinness World Records considers this to be the longest ‘motorable’ road on Earth. At the south it starts in Argentina and ends in northern Alaska. It’s been featured in at least two reality shows – The Kindness Diaries on Netflix (which is how we got introducedContinue reading “Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 13”

Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 11

This morning started with a breakfast of oatmeal with a little brown sugar and then a snack of apples with peanut-butter. While the kids read, Brian and Tiffany did some logistics for the next few weeks – booking some tours, etc. After being here for over a week we’ve gotten a better sense of howContinue reading “Liberia, Costa Rica; Day 11”

Liberia, Costa Rica, Day 3

After a breakfast of huevos, bacon and cafe con leche we decided to head to the beach again – this time in the sunny morning and with our bathing suits. Today’s destination was the next beach south from yesterday’s and much more commercial. Known as Playa del Coco, it has hotels, restaurants and souvenir shopsContinue reading “Liberia, Costa Rica, Day 3”

West Allis, Wisconsin; Day 3

We left Wisconsin today for an overnight stop in Atlanta before going to Central America on Friday. We arrived at the airport in time to try on the latest in Cheesehead fashion. Thank you Aunt Kathy & Uncle Henry! We loved our time with you in August and cannot wait to share our stories whenContinue reading “West Allis, Wisconsin; Day 3”

West Allis, Wisconsin

Today started with wonderful French Toast and Sausage courtesy of Aunt Kathy and Uncle Henry. The rest of the day was quiet on the adventure front. It tried to rain but only managed a light shower and some sprinkles at various times during the day. Brian helped set up a new printer, we started gettingContinue reading “West Allis, Wisconsin”

Gull Lake, Minnesota; Day 7

Our last full day Madden’s for 2021 was full of banana taxi, pool time and cramming in some final in person conversations with family we don’t see often enough. It was a continued mixture of old traditions and new activities. Tonight all the Adventurers and cousin Alan played several rounds of the online game AmongContinue reading “Gull Lake, Minnesota; Day 7”

Driving to Buffalo, Wyoming

Today was the first of two driving days for the family. We expect to find ourselves in a campground outside of Mount Rushmore in South Dakota before nightfall on the 19th. Ole Wheezy has attracted several one-finger salutes from Montanans and Wyomingites during the day’s journey. Brian thinks that Wheezy’s limited top speed is theContinue reading “Driving to Buffalo, Wyoming”

Jackson, Wyoming

The Adventurers began the day early and left West Yellowstone for Jackson, Wyoming. We had been forewarned that Jackson was going to be super busy during this high season so we were glad to get there mid-morning. The family walked around a bit, had a snack, and shopped. The kids discovered a park at theContinue reading “Jackson, Wyoming”