Peace, Love & Giraffes

Chasing dreams and adventure in South Africa

What’s the plan, man?

Pretty much every conversation I’ve had in the last two weeks has centered around two questions.

Question 1. When are you heading back to Florida?

Question 2. Is Jono still going to pursue his golf?

Well, the original plan was to be here in South Africa until the first week or July, which is when our return ticket home was booked. But recently we’ve been thrown a little curveball in that we have to be out of our current apartment by the end of April, and we are running low on funds.

This has been the cause of quite a bit of stress on my end in the past few weeks as we attempted to figure out a new a plan. Do we stick it out and find a new, cheaper place to live? Stay with relatives and friends? Or pack our bags and head home?

Ah, planning is a funny thing. I wouldn’t call myself a big planner and I don’t think my friends or family would either. Sometimes my husband and I joke that we are on the non-plan plan. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a plan-hater, but it really depends on what the situation is. I usually go by this rule:


I generally only plan when I am nervous or want something to go well. When I want to feel like things are under control. This explains why each one of my bridesmaids received a incredibly detailed itinerary for the day of my wedding and I prepare like crazy for interviews, public speaking, and work-related things, but why dinner each night is pretty haphazard and creative and packing for trips is what I call “organized chaos.”

As soothing as it is to go into planning overdrive when stressed, not everything is life or death. Making spontaneous decisions and going with the flow can feel amazing and liberating. It was sort of the route I took when deciding to come to South Africa in the first place. Everything was “we’ll figure it out” and hunky dory until I started to get super overwhelmed two weeks before we left and I was list and planning crazy person.

This is why I’m not so surprised that I’ve been dying to get a back-to-America-plan figured out. I want to tell friends and family when I’m coming home, I want to start applying for jobs and looking at apartments, and I can’t do any of this unless we have a coming home date. I want to try to stay open-minded and do what is best for Jono and his golf, because yes, he is still playing and plans on competing when we get back to the States, but I also want to be prepared for our return home.

Maybe I’m being a little neurotic, but I can totally see the benefits of having a plan in this situation and not just “winging it.” And reflecting on myself and my planning/non-planning tendencies, made me think that I need to start planning a little bit more, not just for the important things or when I find myself stressed.No, I don’t think I will ever be one of those girls who has her entire life mapped out, I’m way more go with the flow and big picture thinker, but I think a little more planning and at least acting with intention can be good for the soul and for my time management. Maybe I can get Jono on board too, to make sure we’re both reaching our goals, not just drifting around. 


Luckily, we are close to figuring things out, and I know I will feel a SO much better when our plane tickets are rebooked.

Until then, here are the answers:

Q: When are you heading back to Florida? A: Most likely the first week of June!

Q: Is Jono still going to pursue his golf? A: Yes. Golf is his passion and as long as there’s money to make it happen he will pursue it!

My question for you is: What are you? A planner, the spontaneous type or a little of both?


By | April 14th, 2014 | SHOW COMMENTS (6)

6 Responses

  1. Rebecca Falcone says

    Nik, I miss you and hope you stop in to see me at TCH when you return to the States.Whatever you two do just be happy . I guess I’m a little of both. When I retire I will plan MORE vacations.

    • Nicole_Ehrlich says

      Hi Becky! I will be sure to come see you 🙂 Yes, plan more vacations! You’ll never regret money spent on traveling! xo

  2. Kristina & Love & Zest says

    Where in FL is home? We’re in Orlando!

    • Nicole_Ehrlich says

      Well, I grew up in Hobe Sound, just north of Jupiter, but when we get back to FL we will most likely be in the Delray Beach area. I have quite a few friends who live in Orlando. I don’t know how far you are from Winter Park, but I think it is the cutest town ever!

  3. Kaelene @ Unlocking Kiki says

    I use to be such a planner down to the last detail. Moving abroad has changed this for me and I tend to just go with the flow most of the time. Best of luck with all your future plans!

    • Nicole_Ehrlich says

      Kaelene – I agree, traveling can totally turn you into a non-planner. So many things come up that are just out of your control that you have no choice but to let go and let be! And Thank you!