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2 girls, post-FIRE, home-free,
slow traveling around the world.

About us

We are Ali and Alison Walker, and we used to call Seattle, Washington our home. We met in 2004, married in 2006, and retired in 2018. After reaching FIRE (Financial Independence / Retire Early) we wanted a complete and total change from our career-focused lives. We decided that meant leaving our Seattle life behind and making travel our new lifestyle. By November of 2018 we had sold our home and car, let go of 99% of our belongings, and left Seattle. READ MORE…

Our Blog

We have separated our blog posts into 3 different categories. Alison writes our Money Crush posts, and Ali writes our Travel Stories. And sometimes we post more personal stories as well, which we categorize as It’s just us. We hope one of our posts is useful for you. Please let us know what you think!

Recent Posts

2019 Portfolio Report

The first thing to note, is that we lived 100% off cash in 2019. We did not sell any equities in 2019 to cover our living expenses. We set cash aside for 2019 as part of our departure plan from Seattle at the end of 2018, using the proceeds from selling our car and condo. The second thing to note, is that 2019 was the first year that our portfolio had all of the necessary ingredients to sit and bake in its current form. We simplified and consolidated the various investment accounts we had opened during our employment years, so that we would each have one rollover IRA and one Roth. We also consolidated the balance of our condo proceeds into our brokerage account. 2019 was a very important growth year for our portfolio during our first year of retirement. READ MORE…

2019 Spending Report –
our first year of retirement and full-time travels

I’m excited that our first year of retirement and also our first year of full-time travels is in the books! This will sound very cliche, but wow 2019 just flew by! When we left January 3, 2019 from San Francisco to Singapore it felt like an overwhelming adventure had begun. Getting through the first few weeks of constantly switching to new environments was difficult. I definitely had moments where I was thinking, “What the hell are we doing?” And now a year later we are in San Miguel de Allende in Mexico and our lifestyle feels familiar and so much easier than anything else I’ve experienced as an adult. We’re having a blast being Home Free. READ MORE…

2019 Travel Review

2019 was our first year of full-time travel. We started the year as complete rookies in our new travel lifestyle and we definitely learned a lot. It took time to learn how to slow down and figure out that we don’t need to see all the sites. We had to get familiar with our ever changing neighborhoods, figure out how to turn each new place into our home, and build a routine that we could adapt to any location so we could settle in and stay grounded. Everyday we looked around whatever place we were in and reminded ourselves that was where we lived for the moment. READ MORE

I’m super excited to be in Mexico

Why? I love visiting new countries and Mexico is very new to me. But also because I have a ton of Mexican ancestors. If you look at me it might be hard to believe that half of my family comes from Mexico since my complexion is fair, my hair is a light color, and my eyes are blue. Over the years I have gone through a bunch of periods in my life where I doubted that my dad was really my dad since I don’t look like him and I didn’t like him as a person, but I have tested my DNA and it’s true. My dad is my dad. And I am very proud of our Mexican heritage. READ MORE…

Case Study: The Wannabe Retiree

(When to start taking Social Security)
Since our FIRE journey helped us retire early in 2018 we have been able to talk to lot’s of amazing people about our money and travels, and theirs as well. One note we got was from someone in the US who selected their own code name, the Wannabe Retiree. I thought the Wannabe Retiree’s circumstances were an interesting puzzle so I agreed to take a deeper look at their numbers. READ MORE…

Home is More Than Just Housing

When we decided to retire early we took the opportunity to look closely at our housing options moving forward. We took a deep dive into both our personal needs regarding a home of our own, and also into what we could afford on our retirement budget. What we discovered about ourselves and our new retirement mindset was surprising. Going through that process helped us design clear parameters for our housing choices moving forward. It became clear to us during that planning process that when we make decisions about housing, there are two main aspects to fully consider — emotional and financial. READ MORE…

City Report – Ho Chi Minh City

Vietnam was our final stop during our 4 month trip through SE Asia. Our plan was to travel through the country from south to north, which made Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) a logical first stop. The first person we talked to about our plan to visit Vietnam was Tinh, a previous coworker of Alison’s for over 25 years. This guy was born in Vietnam but escaped by boat as a small child during the war years and since his memories of Vietnam were very traumatic he told us we should skip his previous home country all together. When we told him we were definitely going to Vietnam Tinh said we absolutely had to get in touch with his sister Linh in HCMC, so we contacted her early in our planning process. READ MORE…

That Retreat Really Got Me Thinking

We spent an amazing week at a retreat in Otavalo, Ecuador in November 2019. This was one of the well known Chautauqua’s in the FIRE community which was originally conceived by Cheryl Reed and JL Collins together and started occurring in Cheryl’s adopted country of Ecuador back in 2013. We first heard about these events back in 2014 and though the idea of attending a FIRE retreat was appealing to us, the events seemed like math camp for software engineers didn’t completely appeal to us. But then early in 2019 we got notifications about a Chautauqua Cheryl was hosting where she had assembled an all female presenter lineup that was very intentionally geared towards creating a meaningful post-FIRE life. And that event was perfect for us! READ MORE…

City Report — Chiang Mai

This was the city in Thailand we were most excited to visit. We had already stayed in 7 cities in SE Asia over the previous 2 months so we were ready to slow down and try to live like locals as much as possible. We decided to stay in Chiang Mai for 3 weeks and get to know that location as much as possible during our stay. Unfortunately for us, things got complicated and our stay in Chiang Mai did not go exactly as planned. READ MORE…