The time is quickly approaching. We are leaving in less than five days and still have a long list of things to take care of. Below are just a few of the things that we have been working on the past couple of weeks.
#1. Prior to making this decision, we had to look at our current monthly expenses. We created a spreadsheet comparing our current expenses to what expenses would be if we did not live in the USA. For example, cell phone, home cable and internet, car insurance, utilities and more. I canceled all the utilities and final bills have been paid. Also, since we will not be using our cell phones, but want to keep our numbers, we can lower the plans to the minimums and save a combined $190 every month. Also because my truck will just been sitting I lowered the insurance to the DC State minimums, which will save us $100 per month.
#2. Another important item was to make sure our rental properties are in order. All properties are on direct deposit using a service call www.clearnow.com . We have a full support network set up in case anything is needed. We are also meeting with our tenants on Saturday to tie up loose ends.
#3. One very important task that I have been doing is making sure I have all my gadgets in order. Most importantly my laptop has been serviced and upgraded. I changed my operating system from vista to windows 7(what a huge difference!). I also made sure to have all the programs loaded that I will need along the trip. Installed new programs like Camtasia, Wirecast and made sure my iTunes is loaded with all my latest music and podcast.
#4. Because I will be blogging and updating this website all the time I picked up the new iPod Touch that has camera. There is a great WordPress application that allows you to write a blog post, include pictures or video and then upload directly to your website. This application is really awesome for when you are on the road or traveling, because you can work on the website even if you are not connected to the internet. Once I have access to wifi and I will then be able to connect and post them to the site.
#5. I have also spent a lot of time planning the first few weeks of our trip including accommodations upon our arrival in El Salvador. We have a couple of really good contacts in El Salvador and one managed to get us a great rate on our hotel. It is also really cool because we have several people to meet up with in El Salvador and also a few dinner parties to attend.
This weekend we are going to try and catch up with as many people as we can and also have a few Holiday parties to attend.
It still does not feel real, but I think next week, when we are headed to the airport it is finally going to hit us.