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First of all, let me say that my recovery has been going better than I expected physically, but slow going on the mental end of things : ) A month after the surgery I could not walk on the treadmill for more than 30min before my scar would hurt and I’d have to take a break. Slowly I have been building up my endurance. The problem with working out was that the motion – especially moving fast – would cause me to be really dizzy, have headaches, throbbing pain on my scar, and disorientation.

So, I decided to take things slow, and to improve little by little, patiently, each day.

Now I can work out on the elliptical machine for 15min (a new record for me!) and then do 15min on the bike machine, and then if I’m up for it a couple laps in the pool!! All back to back! I like to think of this as my own mini-triathlon! In addition I have been learning to get back to myself. I no longer have daily panic attacks or bouts of depression. I still have thoughts and feelings that come to me when I don’t want them to, but I spend more of my day happy than sad! I am feeling like myself and feeling upbeat again! So, with my strength building and my feelings mostly under control Scott and I decided it would be good to get out of the UAE for a bit to relax, travel, and be together away from it all. What’s then plan, you ask?

Paris and Belgium

IMG_20140728_170240[1]Why Paris? Well, because it’s so romantic! I traveled to Paris while in college after studying abroad for 3 months in Tanzania with my good friend Heather : ) We had such a good time there and managed to see all the major sights! Since going, I’ve always wanted to return, and after meeting and falling in love with Scott I knew I wanted to one day return with him. 6 years ago, Scott attempted to make this dream come true. But we were just starting out and could in no way afford a trip to Paris, France. So, instead Scott took me to Paris, Ontario! Not quite the same thing, but I always love Scott for his thoughtfulness : ) So for a real blast from the past – here is a pic of Scott and I in Paris, Ontario in 2008 . . .

Picture 079And yes, I loved Scott’s long hair! We were so adorable : ) I can’t wait to get to Paris and add to this a picture of us, with the Seine River in the background instead of the Grand River. If you had told me, at the time of this picture, that in 6 years I’d be traveling to the actual Paris, France I would have laughed out loud in your face and said you were stupid. But, here we are, leaving tonight for Paris, France! Unbelievable!

But why Belgium? Because we love beer tasting and Belgian beers, and Belgium style beers are my favorite. Plus some of the Belgian beers are brewed in Trappist Monasteries! Now that’s really cool. In Amsterdam we got to try various beers from Belgium that you can’t get in the States and loved them all!

DSCN9775I mean, look at that beer list! Beer tasting in Belgium has always been on our bucket list since Scott’s sister and her husband traveled there. So, because there are so many exciting things happening over these next two weeks, I wanted to be able to share bits of our trip with you as you go. For the next two weeks, I will be posting a picture/snapshot each day so you can travel along with me. I am using Susannah’s August Break challenge as a springboard for this.

It’s really very simple – and you can join in to by clicking this link. All you have to do is take one picture, everyday for the month of August – that’s it! You can share on instagram, your blog, facebook, or just enjoy the project and keep the pictures for yourself. If you need inspiration, Susannah provides a word for each day for you to interpret into a photograph. I’m really excited about this and I feel it will be a great way to share our travels with you – as we travel! See you in Paris . . .