Not the best title in the world, but what can you do?
Seems like all of the great titles were already taken. But, it’s growing on me.

I’m a small town teacher in Illinois, who loves to travel and is a bit addicted to bags, travel gear, and the possibilities they bring. Oh,… add photography, wine and coffee to that list of addictions. And books. And…

I started this blog because I use blogs so often to plan travel, discover new wines, check out the latest gizmos and gadgets, and catch up on what’s going on in the world. But, it can be hard to find what I’m looking for. My goal is to create the type of posts I have been looking for.

Who is SchleppingLife?

Me. Emily. I schlep life everyday. I try to carry life with me wherever I go. And I’m not always graceful about it, even though I try to be.

On a practical level, it’s important to me to travel light, but still have everything I need or want easily accessible. But there’s more to SchleppingLife. (Warning: the following is very cliché, but true.)

I carry life with me everyday – teaching, reading, enjoying new food, traveling, meeting new people. I carry all of those things with me. They shape me. They influence me. They inspire me. Sometimes I even capture the moments on film. Or I used to before I went digital.

We haul life around with us everyday. So, I believe in living without regrets. Life shouldn’t feel like excess weight. Life should be like a well-packed bag – everything you need to get by, in its place, and always room for a few more souvenirs and memories.

I teach teenagers. No, I’m not crazy; 94.2% of them are awesome. The other 5.8% definitely could be if they would just get out of their own way (just like the rest of us). I love teaching, even though my college degree was geared towards public relations.

Almost ten years ago I took my first trip overseas as a chaperone on a student educational tour to France, Switzerland, Austria Germany. I was 30, and it was immediate wanderlust.

I’ve also traveled solo. That was a little scary at first. A 30-something woman heading to Guatemala on her own. I remember thinking as the plane took off, “That’s it. This will either be the start of a big adventure or the last time anyone ever sees me.” When I got to the airport and a rather good-looking, 20-something male was standing there in a t-shirt, long shorts, and flip-flops holding a cardboard sign with my name on it (my airport transfer arranged by a small hotel in Antigua), I remember thinking, “Cute. Good smile. I’m about to get into an Isuzu Trooper with a complete stranger a thousand miles from home. What am I thinking?” And at the end of that week in Antigua, after hiking an active volcano, ziplining though a coffee plantation, being accosted by a toothless, elderly woman at the market in Chichicastenango, and having travel plans delayed by mudslides, I remember thinking, “When can I do this again?” A few years later I landed in Shannon, Ireland, a SWF, traveling solo again. And loving it.

In my late 30s I did my first (and so far only, but I’m hoping for more) home exchange. For one month. In France. How cool is that? The opportunity fell into my lap, and I honestly thought I needed to think about it. But, after a week of “thinking”, I realized I was an idiot. I might never get the chance to live in France for a month again. I didn’t speak French before I went, and I still don’t. I am pretty good at ordering from a menu, though. (And no, Jude Law did not show up at my door in the middle of the night. Dang.)

I cook a mean rhubarb pie, addictive gazpacho, a pretty darn good Korean BBQ flank steak; and every Friendsgiving (Thanksgiving with my friends) a killer oyster stuffing. I love cooking with fresh ingredients from my garden in the summer, especially basil. And I love a good wine.

So, with introductions out of the way… What’s next?


Want to see your gear or product reviewed?
Or think I’m missing out on something big?
Leave me a comment below, or follow me on Twitter (@MissCoombe) and direct message me.

Have questions, suggestions or comments? Submit them here.



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