Butterflies in my Belly…


Ok, so this trip has finally hit home and I’m really getting nervous now, still excited, but nervous.  Even though I booked my flight a couple days ago, it still didn’t quite feel like a reality, but today I got the “Important Information About Costa Rica” email.

It’s the “what to bring, what to expect, etc, etc” email and now, now I’m nervous!  I have a much better picture of what’s expected, and I wrote back with a list of questions for more clarification, so it’s very real now!

The email, besides answering some questions, bringing up new questions, and providing more detailed info, also made me realize how much more I need to do and get and prepare for in the next couple of weeks!

I’ve also come to realize that there area a few more out of pocket expenditures I didn’t count on and now have to work that into my preparations.   The biggest one will be having to book an additional night at the hotel.  I was under the impression, from all the info I had, that the last day of the event was scheduled to be the 28th, so I was going to fly out the 29th.   Now one of the coordinators helping with flights suggested coming back home on the 30th in order to get a less expensive fare, so that’s what I ended up doing.  At this point, I needed a less expensive fare since I didn’t book the flight the first chance given me and it had already increased in cost.  I didn’t want to risk it going up even more.

So, now I find out that the last day is actually the 27th.  Lodging is only covered through the 28th so I have to pay to extend my stay another night.  Don’t know how much that will be yet. But this extra expense and a few other minor ones scare me a bit since I’m still trying to come up with the trip balance due and I still have to purchase a few needed things and finish my vaccinations!  Ugh!

One good thing though, the balance due date is Aug 15, but I have been granted an extension, so I can breathe a little thankful sigh about that.

But, this is a go!  Some way some how it’s gonna come together and happen!  I can feel it in my bones even though right now I also feel lots of butterflies all in a tizzy in my belly!


I’m Leaving on a Jet Plane!


Well, I did it!  I took the next step and made the 2nd BIG commitment of this journey.  I booked my flight to Costa Rica!

Leaving Aug 22nd returning Aug 30!  Oh yeah!

Of course it’s a non-refundable ticket so I’m in!  And I think I got a pretty good price, but what do I know, I’ve never flown to Costa Rica  before!

Jet Blue $343 roundtrip nonstop….not the $308 I could have paid last week when I hesitated and put it off, but still much cheaper than other flights I saw.

Of course my trip piggy bank is looking pretty slim now.  And I’m a bit nervous realizing how much I still need to get raise in order to be able to pay the balance for the trip itself, but I still have a few weeks.  I can do this!

Thank you again…a million times over…to all of you that have helped me get this far!

I am blessed!




Ouch, That Smarts!


I can’t believe it’s already been been just over 2 months since I found out about this clowning trip.  Even more unbelievable is that in exactly one month, I’ll be on a plane to Costa Rica!

Gosh, so much to do before then.  I’ve committed to the trip with a big nonrefundable deposit, so that’s definitely extra incentive to make this happen.

But, I’ve been blessed so far!  I’ve received some wonderful donations from friends.  It’s been so amazing to feel the love and support from everyone.

It’s also quite amazing the preparations needed for a trip like this.  First of all, you need a passport.  Luckily, mine is valid and current.  One less expense.  According to the CDC and the trip coordinators, there are several vaccines recommended as well.  Now these are just recommended not required, but in doing a little research I found that considering the nature of our visit to Costa Rica…clowning in hospitals, etc….and my own health history, there were a few that seemed wise for me to get.

So, I made the decision to try and get some of them.

Like most things in our world today, the health department “outsources” to a travel health service.  So I made an appointment and headed over for what I thought would be a few inexpensive vaccines!  Not!

Passport Health as the place is called is quite outrageous! Had I gotten all the 4 most important vaccines for my trip, it would have over $400!

Luckily for me, the nurse was quite helpful and informative, and she advised me, against their policy to do so, to go to the health department to get the vaccines.  Now mind you, I called the health department first and was told that vaccines for travel were only done at this Passport Health facility and I had to contact them.  As it turns out, my Passport Health nurse told me that they do offer the vaccines at the health department and at a much lower price, but you have to know what to ask for.  They won’t tell you what you need to get.

So, I only got a typhoid vaccine from her and a list of the others to go get at the health department. I had to get the typhoid because it’s not available at the health department. Even so, the office visit and this vaccine were still over $100.

The others on my list are my tetanus booster, Hep B booster and Hep A.  There were others suggested, but this is all I’m opting for because they are the most appropriate for where and what I’ll be doing.  It will be at least another $100 for all of these at the health department.  Depending on my funds, I may just opt for the tetanus, but we’ll see.


Happy Birthday to Me


It’s official!  I’m 50 years young!  Happy Birthday to me!  Well actually, I’ll be 50 at 3:05am, my birth time, but it’s close enough right now.

Do I feel any different yet?  No,  not really, so let’s hope it stays that way!

Right now I’m excited because not only have I finally completed creating this website and blog, which has taken me forever perfectionist that I am, but Ron and I are going to Universal tomorrow to visit Harry Potter World!  I am so excited!  A wonderful way for both of us to celebrate our special days (Ron’s bday was the 18th).  We got the tickets via trade and have to use them before they expire in August which is why we are braving the heat and the crowds, but it will be fun nonetheless.  I need a break from reality and this is just the place to get away to…woo hoo!

My Costa Rica minute:  The day is fast approaching!  Trying to keep hopeful and positive about being able to reach my fundraising goal so I can actually go, but admittedly I do sometimes worry a bit.  Still have buy my airfare, get necessary vaccines, find out more about what I’ll need to bring and do, and lots of other preparations that I have to fit into the budget….yikes! Breathe, no worries, it will all fall into place.  I know it!

If you made it this far, I hope you enjoy the site so far.  I still have some little issues to resolve and fix, so bear with me.  I also have lots of blogging to do so I’ll do my best to bring you all up to speed.  Thank you for hanging with me on this journey!

Well, better get to bed.  Have to be at Platform 9 3/4 early in the morning!

Windy Van Hooten’s


The famous Windy Van Hooten’s Mystical, Magical Circus is coming to town,
with water-filled glass center poles in which goldfish swim around.

Two hot air balloons lift up the tent and carry it from town to town.

Everyone knows just where it went and watch as it settles down.

It never rains on show day, and the cotton candy’s free.

The circus work is always play, and there’s no permits or license fee.

The tent stakes are made of brass and never leave a hole.

The show lots are always grass, and the trucks always seem to roll.

The Big Top’s made of elastic so there’s always room for more.

The cushioned seats are just fantastic, and there’s red carpet on the floor.

The Big Top’s temperature stays the same. It’s never too hot or cold.

The wild animals are always tame, and the side and quarter poles are gold.

No one is ever hurt and no one’s ever fired.

There is never mud or dirt, and everyone who asks is hired.

The cookhouse never closes and everyone on the show eats there.

There’s cloths on tables set with roses, and four chefs who really care.
The performers have new wardrobes for each and every act.

The clowns are always funny.  Can you believe that?

So when the Famous Windy Van Hooten’s Mystical, Magical Circus comes you way….
if it’s the very last thing you ever do….go see the show….and stay!


– Valerie Perz aka Bunni Bartok

Why the Perfect Circus?


It’s been said that many circus folk grew up listening to stories about the famous Windy Van Hooten’s Mystical, Magical Circus. From what I’ve read, it’s just that – the mythical “perfect circus” where everything is wonderful and everyone gets the money, respect and working conditions they deserve and then some.

Being a clown as well as a dreamer, I found myself intrigued by such a mystical, magical place.  It sounds wonderful to me.  So, I decided to name my blog in honor of it…

The Perfect Circus.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoy sharing it with you.