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Expat Life: It's our 10th Anniversary!

Cynthia:  Do you know what today is?

Edd:  Is this a trick question? It’s Sunday, May the somethingth.

C:  It’s the 17th. Do you know why today is special?

E:  See, I know you. It was a trick question. OK, I remembered Mother’s Day and your birthday isn't until next month. So I think I’m safe saying, “No, baby, why is today special?”

C:  Because 10 years ago we got off the plane here in Cuenca, Ecuador. It’s our 10th anniversary of being expats!

E:  Shut up... Really?? That seems impossible.

C:  I know. I can’t believe it either. Remember how excited we were?

E:  I sure do. But you know what, I don’t remember us being scared. Do you? Honestly, we had every reason to be. We didn’t speak Spanish. We didn’t know anybody. Our shipping container was on its way and we had no place to live. What in the hell were we thinking?

C:  That this was gonna work no matter what because it...

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Expat Life: Would Moving Abroad Be Too Stressful For You?

Edd:  A guy wrote us wanting to know if there are racquetball courts here. I hope that’s not a deal breaker because when you’re thinking about moving abroad there are MUCH bigger fish to fry.

Cynthia:  Lighten up. Not having access to a gym would have been a deal breaker for you. For me moving anywhere is stressful, even if it’s to a different neighborhood in your same city. Not only do you have to deal with sorting through and packing/unpacking all your stuff, there’s also establishing new routines, meeting new neighbors. New, new, new. I’m sure lots of people stay put even if they’re not happy just because it’s easier.

E:  Would you say that people who try to figure out every little detail of moving abroad are poor candidates for having a positive experience?

C:  Not necessarily. Some people just naturally focus on the minutia. I do think getting bogged down with “analysis paralysis” can sometimes sabotage...

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Moving Abroad: A Hard Day's Night ~ September 26, 2013

Note ~ While we’re on vacation we’re sharing some favorite stories from our best-selling trilogy of books, Mission: Rescue Your Retirement. Here’s Edd’s Choice from Volume III, “Living the Dream.” Enjoy!


Self-help gurus often recommend stepping "outside the box" as a way to learn more about yourself. After uprooting our lives and moving to Ecuador over three years ago, I can certainly attest to the wisdom of this strategy. I've discovered how to live life more fully than I could have ever imagined. I’ve relished reviving dormant talents and interests like art and writing.

But you can also learn a lot about yourself by doing something you haven't done in awhile.

Like taking care of two babies full-time after 35 years.

We had planned on visiting our family in the fall anyway, so when our son told us he and his wife wanted to attend an out-of-state wedding and asked if we would consider watching our oldest granddaughter (2 years, 3 months) and...

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Moving Abroad: Broom Man ~ June 30, 2010

Note ~ While we’re on vacation we’re sharing some favorite stories from our best-selling trilogy of books, Mission: Rescue Your Retirement. Here’s Cynthia’s Choice from Volume II, “Letting Go.” Enjoy!


It's moving day. Our current landlord (and friend) has kindly offered to take us, our suitcases, and groceries from his furnished studio we have occupied for a month over to our new apartment. We've huffed and puffed all our stuff down the stairs and are waiting for him to bring the car around so we can load and go.

Then he appears at the gate.

A man selling brooms, of all things. Not the straw brooms we're familiar with in the States. Synthetic ones with bristles maybe 3 inches long. But brooms nonetheless.

Now there are numerous vendors on the streets of Cuenca---lottery tickets, "street meat," assorted candies. We've even seen a guy carrying around handfuls of rabbit-ear antennae (remember those?).

The broom man obviously speaks zero English. He...

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Moving Abroad: Wastin’ Away Again in Frankensteinaville ~ April 28, 2010

Note ~ While we’re on vacation we’re sharing some favorite stories from our best-selling trilogy of books, Mission: Rescue Your Retirement. Here’s our Reader’s Choice from Volume I, "Leap of Faith.” Enjoy!


As I sit here swirling a snifter of Tequila liqueur to begin this blog I ponder several questions. Like, what in the heck is Tequila liqueur? How did it get into my house in the first place? Why am I drinking this weird stuff?

I've written previously about the process of sorting, packing, selling, and giving away all manner of items as we've rummaged through drawers and closets preparing for our move. Perfectly good clothes that we don't wear any more--consignment shop; a set of encyclopedias--Goodwill; George Foreman grill (and yes, the "rock" of a previous entry)--Craigslist. 

There have been numerous old family things like a broken rocking chair that belonged to my grandmother we've been robotically hauling around for years. It's been...

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