Update from the Road: Marking Off State 49

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When you travel to all 50 states, there are a few states that rise above as ideal places to vacation. Colorado, Florida, California, for example. But there’s one state in particular that is a cut above the rest: Hawaii.

update from the road: marking off state 49
This isn’t Hawaii. This is where we currently reside: Santa Cruz, California

As part of our move to San Jose, Heath and I knew we needed to visit Hawaii not just to complete all 50 states, but to take the shortest, cheapest flight possible. Flying out of California is roughly half of the cost of flying from Texas to Hawaii.

Now, roughly two months after visiting our final continental state in the USA, we are taking to the skies to visit state 49. This will be Heath’s first visit to Hawaii and his first time to ever fly over the ocean for five hours straight. (I hope he isn’t nervous.)

We are visiting the beautiful island of Maui, partly because it’s gorgeous, partly because it’s one of two islands with direct flights from San Jose. Back in November, we took a week off to enjoy Disney World with Heath’s family. We had a blast, but our legs were sore and we were exhausted at the end of the week! Hawaii is the rewarding vacation we need after 18,000+ miles on the road in 2014.

We are planning to visit Alaska this June. And per the recommendation of many RVers we met across the country, we will driving across British Columbia into Alaska along with Heath’s family (No, our rig could not survive that trip on his own).

Come this June–shortly after we celebrate our one year anniversary–Heath and I will have successfully completed two huge bucket list items for 2015: Visit all 50 states & get Heath out of the country! He’s never left America, but this year, we are changing that!

One of our priorities in our marriage is to accomplish big goals together. This means actively working through our bucket lists and new year’s resolutions. As Heath and I announced earlier this year, one of our biggest goals for 2015 is to pay off all of our debts, all of which are from student loans. Our grand total rang in just above $27,000 and as of today, we have paid off 18% of our balance. This is our biggest, most challenging goal for 2015, but we are attacking it with full force. Our friends and family might receive handwritten notes instead of gifts this Christmas, but at least we will be debt-free!

In the coming weeks, after we enjoy a week on the beaches of Maui, Heath and I are returning home to Austin, Texas for a few months. Jia Jiang, the author we’ve been working with in California, is launching his book tour at SXSW in Austin, which means Heath and I get to return home before Heath tours the country for a few weeks. We have adored our two months in the California sunshine where every day is sunny and 75, but we are anxious to return home. Life is too expensive in California!

We currently plan to live in Austin for a brief three months before venturing up to Alaska and perhaps spending the rest of our summer in the Pacific Northwest. That’s part of the beauty of RVing. You never know where the road will lead you.