Mulling it over.
Searching for a name that fit us and what we want this blog to be about – a space for our thoughts, learnings and journeys, both here and abroad.
We wanted something that could live on after our two years away and be a place we continue to reflect and share.
We started an email chain to each other. We used the thesaurus. We talked with friends who know us well.
No Ordinary Johnson’s
The Painting and the Possibility
Our Expanding Atlas
Departures and Arrivals
We Are Going
There were lots of great possibilities, but nothing seemed to stick.
On a Monday night, with a bottle of wine and a wise group of ladies, the idea for the “Post It” brainstorm was born. They encouraged that the exercise would bring to light new words or ideas that are important to us and that the act of writing things down might spur new energy for the trip. Or the blog. Or both.
So we did it. After a mean Mexican meal and a healthy dose of margaritas, we cleared our teal wall and rounded up all the Post-Its we hadn’t packed. Even the brainstorm for what categories to choose was tricky, but we landed on 4 key areas we wanted to think on:
> What we are about/want to be about
> Reasons we’re going
> Things we want to do abroad/goals of the trip
> Dreams after travel
We took a few minutes with each category, individually scribing words on post-its and reading them aloud to each other. It was one of the turning points in our travel prep that will be hard to forget. Here are the big, common themes for each category:
WHAT WE’RE ABOUT/WHAT WE WANT TO BE ABOUT
fun. seeing things differently. good drink and good food with good friends. bettering our world. creating and building. not growing up. music. restoring. inclusion.
REASONS WE’RE GOING
to rediscover ourselves and establish ‘us’. go on a life-changing adventure. experience a different way of life. to learn better and more sustainable ways of living. to become more global thinkers. get away from what we know. live more simply.
THINGS WE WANT TO DO ABROAD/GOALS OF THE TRIP
meet, eat and live with people different than us. lose the concept of time. fall in love in a new way. think about what’s next in our lives and careers. go surfing. find the local favorites in every town we stay. eat healthier. work with our hands. make foreign friends.
DREAMS AFTER TRAVEL
have our own garden. stay open minded. work at a winery or brewery. live near friends. be more eco-friendly. work doing something we love. live in a loft space. own a shop and sell stuff. find creative ways to be generous. bike more. have a kid or two. maybe adopt. love our 30s.
Though ‘The Anthology of Us’ was born shortly after this exercise, post-it dreaming was about much more than our blog name. Getting to articulate all of our hopes and dreams, for the coming year and the unknown future, was an incredibly centering experience. It was fun to laugh about the random responses, marvel over the other’s word choice or ideas and more often than not, be surprised at how closely our thoughts aligned. This exercise marked a renewed sense of “togetherness” in our next steps that was lasting and gave us energy to make it to our April 2 departure.
Happy trails to you. Until we meet again…