Full-Circle, Twice Around: my Big #HitRefresh

by Joe

OK, you’ve seen each of the kids post their “one-year back” blog entries… and this is mine.  Except I’m trying something a little different this time,  I wrote mine from a “PROFESSIONAL” perspective and put it on LinkedIn.   After all, you know all about the TRIP but what you don’t know is how the trip affected a year of life AT WORK.

SO here it is… for all you professionals:


It’s a year after our trip. I’m in 8th grade. You know what that means???

by Alexander

1I had hoped that by the end of the trip, I wouldn’t have to write any more blog posts. 2Apparently I was wrong– My dad is making me write one more for the one year anniversary of our return home.  3I could argue that this is a waste of my time.  4I am stuck on a plane, and I could be finishing my summer reading, on which I’ve certainly procrastinated, or I could finish an SSAT practice test I’ve already started, or I could just be watching a movie… all of which I probably should have done more of this summer.  5But no.  6Here I am, sitting in seat 34C of American Airlines flight 943, giving myself a taste of the past.

7You know, it’s a pain to have to take the SSAT, so to give you the agony of how I feel… in the middle of my own practice test:  8Here’s a practice SSAT for you (That means it doesn’t count.).

1. What is the literary device used in sentence 6 of the  passage?

(A)      Hyperbole
(B)      Alliteration
(C)      Personification
(D)      Synesthesia
(E)      Metaphor Continue reading

Big Trip: Looking Back, One Year Later

by Sydney

First thing I am going to talk about is how I feel about coming back from the big trip. Second thing I will be talking about, if we go back what I would change. Third, about how some parts of school, like writing and math, are easier now then others. And fourth  talking about sometimes it was nice spending so much time with my close family, and sometimes not so much.

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Stats: Our Big Trip by the Numbers

We Belfiores are math-people.  (Hey — no giggling out there!  This is true!)

Want proof? Try asking one of us whether we were worried about traveling around the world in the face of ISIS and other unfortunate conflict around the world, which makes travel SEEM like it might be unsafe… and we’ll respond with an explanation rooted in the statistics of misfortune that might befall travelers around the world.  (hint:  motor vehicle trauma is FAR SCARIER than terrorism.)

Want more proof?  We can tell you how far we walked.  And how far we drove.  Guess which was farther… number of ship-miles or number of plane-miles?  Guess another — which was farther.. our total mileage, or the distance from the earth to the moon!?

SO, now that you’re interest is piqued… here’s the NUMERICAL view of our Big Trip!

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Iceland 2: The End.


At 4pm on Tuesday we were sitting around “Joe and the Juice” in the Reykjavik airport, looking up at the Flight Departures monitor. Bags checked, we had an hour to kill before our flight.

Wistfully, I said to the kids “Hey — take a look at that board.  If I said you could pick one of THOSE flights instead of our Seattle flight.. and keep going for a month… which would you pick?”

Four of us chose an intriguing city we hadn’t yet visited and went with the hypothetical… Alexander liked the Canadian east coast. The other choices were in Europe– ready to skip out on our return home.

But Piper stood alone in her conviction. Even though we’d had an amazing time finishing up Iceland with a helicopter tour and silica masks in the Blue Lagoon … she knew that all good things must come to an end and great things were waiting for us back at home.

How lucky we’ve been … how lucky we are…  is not lost on us.

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The Dark Side

We didn’t want everyone getting the idea that our trip has been all smiles and tropical cocktails, or that we’re not telling the whole story on our blog…so for a few months we’ve been meaning to share some of the “dark side” moments from our travels. And finally, here they are.

By the way, a number of months ago, I ACCIDENTALLY posted an early and incomplete version of this blog (who noticed? It was called “Swing and a Miss”).  Oops. Subsequently, the kids saw that  parents also receive  “consequences” occasionally.  Read on to hear about the darkness that rained down on me as a result…   WARNING:  regurgitation photos below!

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