Three Cats in Chicago

Three Cats in Chicago

Three Cats in Chicago

With a mere 10 days left on our visa and countless miles travelled, three cats, await us in Chicago for our final house sit in the USA. Touching down at Chicago Midway Airport, we now have to decide, how to get to our sit. Will it be via a train, taxi, uber, Lyft or shuttle. After asking questions at several desks, we decide a shuttle will be our best option. However, we will first have to go via downtown Chicago to drop off other passages first. Free tour of Chicago included, yay 😊. The ride into Chicago was awesome, we had great conversation with the other passengers. We were given some useful tips and enjoyed some laughs as well. Americans are such accommodating people, I guess that’s why we love coming here. After an hour ride, we reach our final destination.

We are greeted by a chilly -3 ̊ C, that cuts right through us. Furthermore, we aren’t dress for the conditions, thus the frigid temperature hit us quickly. Our Home Owner had left the key in a padlock which used a dial key lock. Unfortunately, due to the temperature it had frozen and we are unable to turn the dial. Unable to contact the Home Owner, we resort to opening our bags on the sidewalk and change clothes to suit the freezing conditions. At one stage I took off my shirt to put on my thermals, which really showed how cold it was. Finally, after what seemed an eternity, we communicated with the home owner. She advised us to store our bags around on the back patio and head to the local Starbucks. Hot coffee and warm surrounds, who were we to argue 😊.

Meeting the Three Amigos

Anti-climactic to say the least, as our three cats were very shy to begin with. But Ollie didn’t take long to come out of his shell. He was the outgoing of the three cats.

three cats ollie pondering travel is sweet

However, Sasha did come out of his shell as well.

three cats sasha travel is sweet

Charlie was the timid one of them all, by the end he was allowing as to pat him for a brief period of time.

three cats charlie trying to sleep travel is sweet

They all loved to play for periods in the day, chasing the laser dot or the stick with the toy mouse on it. The rest of the day was spent curled up in a warm place sleeping. Identifying each cat took a bit, as they were all the same colouring, with minor distinctions.

Ollie had a white stripe on his nose and he didn’t mind a scratch. Ollie suffers from asthma, so I had to administer his medicine via an inhaler two times a day, that was a first for me.

three cats ollie travel is sweet

Sasha was the big boy out of them all, we did get to cuddle with him a couple of times.

three cats sasha the eyes travel is sweet

Charlie, the quietest and could be distinguished by the black tears that would gather in his eyes. While they were a little stand offish, they were lovely cats to look after.

three cats charlie travel is sweet

Chicago

As this was our third visit to Chicago, we didn’t do any sightseeing. However, Chicago has some amazing place to see and things to do. Check out Trip Advisor for a good overview of attractions. If you would like to know more about our house and pet sitting way of life click here.

Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)



Home » Three Cats in Chicago

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

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West Mersea

West Mersea

West Mersea

Three months and 10500 Kilometres (6500 miles) travelled in the USA, we now head to the United Kingdom. Ahead of us waits the great unknown, new landscapes, different cultures, new people. Will we thrive and survive or wilt and die. Questions that shall ultimately be answered months from now. As the wheels of our Airbus aircraft touch down at Heathrow our thoughts move towards our next house sit at West Mersea. Ahead, for two Aussies, lies two dogs, a cat, a quaint English sea side village and tonnes of questions. How will house sitting differ from country to country? Will we enjoy the UK as much as the States? Only time will tell!!!

west mersea travel is sweet

west mersea garden travel is sweet

Our Island Stay

West Mersea in Essex lies approximately 160 kms north east of Heathrow Airport and faces the English Channel. Entry is via “The Strood” which is affected by rising tides, blocking this little hamlet for certain periods of time during the day. It is thought to be built on a small Roman settlement and port. In the summertime I can imagine it would be bustling with tourists and locals all trying to claim their little piece of sun and surf. However, we have been greeted with five days of grey skies and rainy days. A pattern that we have been told to be ready for over the next coming months. This will also be our residence for the next five days, accompanied by two Jack Russell’s and one cat.

west mersea ellie 2 travel is sweet

Our three little companions for this time are Meg, Lucy and Ellie. Meg and Lucy are typical live wired Jack Russell’s with great personalities. While Ellie though seldomly seen, beside feeding times is a gentle and loveably cat with a beautiful purr. Both Lucy and Meg love their play time and to tell the truth, I love it as well. Wrestling over a stuffed toy or seeing who could win the tug o war with the towel are all fun memories. However, having them snuggle up on your lap for a pat is amazing as well. Pictures are a great way to convey the fun times spent with Ellie, Lucy and Meg. Here are some of my favourites of them.

west mersea meg travel is sweet

 

If you are interested in house sitting click here to have a look.

Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)



Home » West Mersea

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

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My First Published Article

My First Published Article

My First Published Article

When we first started our travel blog it was always my aim to one day have my articles published in magazines. This would be a huge undertaking for me, due to the fact that I have never been a good writer or for that matter speller. Therefore, to reach my goals I would need to improve dramatically in those aspects. Having great ideas in my head did not translate into a well constructed piece of literature, hence my dilemma. Little by little and with plenty of help and perseverance from my patient wife, I believe I have steadily improved. For me, I compare it, to capturing an image, that is well composed that draws the viewer in. As a result of my bumbling and fumbling over the last 6 months I now believe I have progressed to a point where I have been able to construct a half decent bit of reading (i think) :-).

Success

Thus, yesterday was a great day for me as I had my first article published. If you would like to read it please click here.

 Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)



Home » My First Published Article

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

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Super Star Blogging
Register Your Domain Name
Live Chat Software
Madison Wisconsin

Madison Wisconsin

Madison Wisconsin

“Sittin on the Dock of the Bay” was sung by which famous artist that was killed in a plane crash? If you said Otis Redding you would be correct. Now, do you know where that plane crash happened? I will give you a hint 😊, we have been house sitting here for the last 10 days. If you have been following our blog you will know that I am talking about Madison, Wisconsin. Now, if you got those two questions right, here is one more. What lake did his plane crash into? This is a little bit harder to answer, unless you were a big Otis Redding fan. It was Lake Monona, Madison, Wisconsin on December the 10th 1967 aged 26. You may think this blog is about Otis, but its about the beautiful city of Madison, Wisconsin. Furthermore, about our house sit with two elderly gentlemanly dogs.

madison lake monona travel is sweet

In general, most Aussies won’t know much about Madison, Wisconsin. Hence, I will give you a small introduction to it. Madison is the capital of the State of Wisconsin USA. It is situated 127 kms (79 miles) west of Milwaukee. It was founded in 1829, becoming the capital of Wisconsin territory in 1836. In 1848 Wisconsin became the 30th State of the Union and Madison became its capitol. It is situated on an isthmus between two lakes (Monona and Mendota). The State Capitol Dome was modelled after the U.S Capitol and sits on the highest point of the isthmus. The capitol building can be seen throughout the Madison area. Madison is home to the University of Wisconsin and their sporting teams, who are called Badgers.

madison_street_travel_is_sweet

Austin and Logan

Having had a magnificent three week road trip on our way to Madison, we now get to care for Austin and Logan. Two beautiful “old soul” dogs, that have such lovely natures. Even though that are not active like younger dogs, they are very affectionate. They love just lying with you, nudging you to pat them. In addition, when it comes time to cook they are like Carolyn’s shadow, it is so fun to watch. Austin has some amusing little oddities, but my favourite is when he barks out of the blue while he is sleeping. He pops up and barks then lies back down, then he will do it again and sometimes again. Logan loves to have his head and ears rubbed and will nudge you until you respond to him. He reminds me a lot of a cat, he loves to sleep and eat 😊.

madison logan travel is sweet madison austin travel is sweet

Alongside caring for these wonderful canines, we are able to live like Wisconsinites. We have done the weekly shopping at Walmart, used public transport and had dinner at a local restaurant. One of the delightful parts of house sitting, is, you get to live as a local, not a tourist. Our amazing Home Owners Jerri and Jeff have taken us out to dinner, shown as around Madison and allowed us use of their car. Needless to say we are having a great time and would recommend a visit to Madison if you are ever in Wisconsin.

madison_our_sit_travel_is_sweet

Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)

Home » House Sitting » Page 2

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

Booking.com
Super Star Blogging
Register Your Domain Name
Live Chat Software
International House Sitting Here We Come

International House Sitting Here We Come

International House Sitting Here We Come !!!

As the days quickly approach our first international house sit, a sense of “trepidation and excitement” fill my being. What, do we expect, will be different from house sits in Australia? Will we be capable of handle a situation that may arise, being that we are in another country? Are we kidding ourselves, should we just pack up and head home? All valid questions that any international house sitter may hold. However, as we quickly find out international house sitting, is not that different, than what it is in Australia. Animals still need to be fed, walked, loved and cared for. Houses need to be kept safe and clean. House sitters need to enjoy themselves in their new surroundings. Sure, minor issues may occur that may throw one in a loop for a while, but overall no major differences.

international house sitting fort collins

Loveland, Colorado USA will be our first foray into International House Sitting. Where is Loveland we asked ourselves? Google maps has the answer!!! Loveland sits about 74 kms (46 miles) north of Denver the capital of Colorado. Fort Collins is north about 22kms (14 miles) and is home to Colorado State University. To the west lies the beautiful Rocky Mountains National Park with spectacular scenery everywhere you look. It was officially founded in 1877, next to the Big Thompson River and the newly constructed Colorado Central Railroad. It has a semi-arid climate and an average annual snowfall of around 137 cms (54 inches). Our house sit is located north of downtown Loveland. Overall, it looks like the perfect place to commence our International House Sitting adventures.

travel is sweet international house sitting fort collins

Introductions

Arriving at Denver International Airport we navigate our way via an underground rail network to reach the main terminal. Upon our exiting we are greeted by our home owners Wil and Els who have graciously come to pick us up. Over the next hours car ride to our new home, for the next 30 days we get to know each other. Swapping banter and stories of how we got to where we are and what we are looking forward too. The landscape on the drive was different to what I was expecting. I thought it would be green and luscious, but instead in was a lot like Australia dry and brown. It is amazing how you build an image of a place only to find you are so far off the reality of it. That was definitely how I was feeling right now.

trail ridge road lookout travel is sweet

Pulling up in the driveway we were about to meet the reason why we were here. A small black dog (as Wil calls her) or as we knew her “Gigi”. Wil had warned us that she would be very stand offish and would bark and he was right. It took about 3 days for her to feel comfortable with us and she grew more confident as the days passed. Over the 30 days that we were there, Gigi had accepted us as surrogate mum and dad. Consequently, that made it very hard to leave once Wil and Els returned home. We had a wonderful time with Gigi, walks around the neighbourhood, rough housing with her and long hours patting her as she sat on our laps. Gigi was a cross between a dog and a cat I believe 😊 with good traits from both.

gigi-on-longe-travel-is-sweet

Conclusion

We enjoyed immensely the time we shared with Gigi such a wonderful small black dog. Now that our first installment in International House Sitting is complete we look ahead with excitement and anticipation to our coming sits. In general, our first International House Sitting, was a resounding success. Though we had some minor issues with plumbing we really did enjoy this sit.

gigi-travel-is-sweet

Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)

Home » House Sitting » Page 2

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

Booking.com
Super Star Blogging
Register Your Domain Name
Live Chat Software
Road Trip

Road Trip

Road Trip

What is a house sit without a road trip in between!!!! Iconic movies have been made about them. Long running family tales of adventures gone wrong have been told about them. To say nothing about that small scar from a paper cut that has morphed, to being savaged by a ferrel squirrel. Road trips will rekindle those long lost memories from our childhood in everyone. Even if you were just going to Grandpa and Grandmas place.  

A road trip in our family always brings up a Griswold’s comparison and hoots of laughter around the kitchen table. My dad is the quintessential father figure in the driver’s seat cracking the one liners. Mum playing the straight man in the passage seat keeping dad inline, saying Stu…. the children. In the background the unruly kids farting, belching and saying are we there yet!!! Such great memories from those long never ending road trips. Sooner or later we have all experienced our own version of a Griswold trip to Wally World.

Joining the Ranks

Carolyn and I joined the ranks of House and Pet Sitters in August 2018. We have jumped in whole hog, we sold our unit on the beach, and our lovely car and pretty much all of our possessions to be able to finance fulltime house sitting. Crazy you say!!! Maybe, would be the response. But after years of working to make the banks rich and doing that dirty word…. WORK. Definitely no, would be our final response. How much worse could it be? After all, if we have a year off and travel the world, experience new things, meet new people and oh yeah, some road trips thrown into the mix. If we then have to come back and start over again, well, so be it.

We have now completed two house sits in Australia and nearly completed a month long sit in Colorado. Our next house sit is in Wisconsin three weeks away, so what to do? You got it “Road Trip”!!!

As Clark Griswold says: “Getting there is half the fun”.

But Carolyn my wife would say: “The other half is planning it”

So, all good road trips require decent planning!!!

With house sitting we have a plan of where we would like to sit and when. Therefore, we spend time researching house sitting websites to find sits we believe to be a good fit for us. We then go about applying, and hopefully skyping with home owners and fingers crossed, getting that house sit. Planning your road trip is no different. Hence the basic structure of where and when, is always a wonderful place to begin. Twenty one days was our allotted road trip to reach Madison, Wisconsin from Loveland, Colorado. Thus, having our basic frame work I could now, fill in our itinerary. The must see places to incorporate into our trip were Denver, Grand Teton NP, Yellowstone NP, Mount Rushmore and Le Claire. In addition, allow days for travel, time to sight see and for any unforeseen situations must be considered.

Having now organized, what I believed would be a great road trip I enter the data it into a excel spreadsheet. Tweaking it to cater for the distance needed to travel versus time to relax and enjoy the trip, I must admit it took a considerable amount of time. Even though this took over a week to fine tune and get the finalized itinerary, it would be worth it in the long run. Adding to this I have also incorporated a list of sights to visit within our major stops. Hopefully this will cover most, if not all of the things we wish to see.

Benjamin Franklin said: “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”

So, what has our road trip got in store for us?

We are now 16 days into our road trip and what an adventure we are having. Having seen some truly amazing sights, that fill our soul with pure joy as we sit in awe of Gods wonderful creation. Photography is a major passion and to capture the Grand Tetons in all its splendour was one of the highlights of our road trip. The below image was captured there, just one of many.

road trip grand teton nation park travel is sweet

Equally important to the majestic scenery, has been the array of wildlife that we have encountered along our travels. Creatures that we Aussies have only seen in movies, tv, pictures or zoos. To actually observe them in their natural habit has been exhilarating to say the least. Bears have been the number one creature on our list and though not exactly in their native surrounds, seeing them in a nature park was pretty close. The image below was taken at Bear Country USA just outside Rapid City South Dakota.

brown bear south dakota travel is sweet

Issues Arise

Having travelled well over 4800 kilometres so far and planning to the best of our abilities there was always a chance that something may go astray and of course it did. Believing I had considered all the places we wanted to visit, two notable spots I had completely forgotten about. This is where allowing for any unforeseen issues in our plan saved my butt. I had missed Little Bighorn Battlefield Monument and Devils Tower in my original travel plan. They added considerably more travel time in between 2 legs of our road trip. But as I had allowed for this we could easily accommodate this extra travel. The other dilemma we came up against was the weather, which as we all know can be very unpredictable. Mount Rushmore was a priority point to see, and I had allocated three days in Rapid City to relax and see the surrounding sights.

The day we arrived the weather decided to give us a glimpse of what we could expect over the coming winter in the USA and Europe. Day 1 we went up to Mount Rushmore and we couldn’t see anything because of the snow and mist. Second day the weather deteriorated, no chance of seeing anything. Final day last chance to see it, but I knew in the back of my mind we could actually extend our stay in Rapid City 2 more days if needed. I had made the next few travelling days only very small mileage trips. So, we could stay and then just drive a big day if needed, but lucky for us we had a small window where the snow and mist cleared and hallelujah we saw the Presidents.

mount rushmore travel is sweet

As a result of our preparation we were able to easily adjust our trip to overcome the problems that had arisen.

Our Field of Dreams

“Sometimes the most scenic roads in life are the detours you didn’t mean to take.”  – Angela N. Blount

The quote above was so apt, that on our penultimate day we didn’t know what sights were around to see. Therefore, I typed into the Navman places to see around me and one popped up. We were surprised, as neither of us knew that this spot even existed. Let alone was in the vicinity, but we were excited to go and visit it. Can you guess where it is from the picture below?

field of dreams travel is sweet

This famous quote is from the movie “If you build it, he will come”. You would be correct if you said, “Field of Dreams”. This movie has now become sort of a theme for our life as house sitters. When Ray hears the voice again and it says: “Go the distance”. How many times in your life have you started a journey, but due to life’s distraction, never finished. As house sitters this can happen due to many circumstances having difficulties getting sits, losing your passion or any number other issues that hinder you from going the distance. Balance is the key.

Balance for House Sitters

We are loving house sitting as a way of life and we hope it becomes our way of life permanently. The joys and no doubt some lows will come. There will also be times when we just need a break to rejuvenate our souls. Finding a balance is a crucial part of the life of a house and pet sitter, so being able to discover a way to revitalize yourself is of upmost importance. Carolyn and I love to travel so our way to refresh is to do road trips. This current road trip has been wonderful to just slow down and smell the roses. As Jaime Lyn says:‘’Jobs fill your pockets, but adventures fill your soul.’’

Now that our road trip is approaching its end, we look forward to our new house sit in Madison and bonding with the 2 dogs we are to take care of, for 10 days. With a fresh outlook and renewed enthusiasm our road trip has provided us that balance we all so richly deserve. Our motto “Travel Is Sweet” (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It) is ringing true in our lives.

Join Us

We would love for you to follow our exciting journey by joining our friends list here on our website and following us on our social media pages below.

If you have any comments or questions we would love you to leave them below or email us.

Take care

Andrew & Carolyn

Travel is Sweet (Dream It, Experience It, Treasure It)

Home » House Sitting » Page 2

Travel Tips

Find Your Flights

Skyscanner is a great tool for searching websites and airlines around the world to make sure you get the best available price possible.

Book Your Accommodation

Booking.com is our go to tool for booking hotels. It always gives us a large variety of hotels at great rates. We also use Airbnb as a wonderful alternative for those places you may want to go and live with the locals.

Always Get Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is a must and this is speaking from experience. Comprehensive protection will protect you against illness, injury, theft, accidents and cancellations. Just in case something goes wrong, heaven forbid. We never travel without it, having used it several times over the years. World Nomads have years of experience and knowledge to look after all your travel needs.

All images, photographs, and prints are exclusive property and may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, transmitted, manipulated or used in any way without written permission of the photographer.
Disclosure: "Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission."

Booking.com
Super Star Blogging
Register Your Domain Name
Live Chat Software