White Christmas, Sandy NYE

As we prepared for the last few days at (my) home and our departure, the stress of everything really started to take its toll on me. So many people have been immensly encouraging and even envious, and it all sounds amazing until you are preparing for it all. No one tells you how stressful it can be packing up your current life, giving away or selling off most of your possessions and leaving for an undeterminate amount of time. Sounds exciting and adventurous? Also a panic attack waiting to happen.

To help myself fully enjoy the process and not become too overwhelmed with it all, I decided to focus on everything I would miss most once I left California: my family and Sonoma County hiking. Unsure of what my outdoor surroundings will really be like, and how much leisure time we would actually have on our trip, I really wanted to get a few more trails in before I left Santa Rosa, because I am really unsure if I will ever be back. I decided to hit Hood mountain on a gorgeous and misty December morning and really get some mud on my trail shoes. I still cannot believe how cleansing and peaceful it was. I sure am going to miss this area.

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Having the start of this trip be the end of December really worked out well for so many reasons: I left my job at a school holiday break which will really help with transitioning the kids and me into a new situation, I got to spend the holidays with my family as the last few days we were in the United States, and we get to end the holidays in sunshine and warmth on the Yucatan peninsula! Nothing like our very first White Christmas for both of us, finished off with a sunburn for the New Year.

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Just kidding, no sunburns yet. But how difficult is it to pack your bags for weather like this, when you came from the snow only days before?! I have completely forgotten that I could sweat like this.

Sarah-Rose

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