I’m Retha the Roaming Nanny and I’ve been exploring for as long as I can remember. I spent summers as a kid riding my little purple bike around my Grandparents retirement community in Zepher Hills, Florida. Between bike rides I’d looking for alligators and ride Space Mountain. (I love all things Disney! (Not sorry.)
When I wasn’t in Florida, I was growing up in Southeastern Massachusetts, selling ALL the Girl Scout Cookies. I joined Girl Scouts at age 5 which instilled in me the idea that girls can accomplish anything. It’s safe to say I’ve been smashing stereotypes and raising hell from a very young age.
I took my first real international trip, I don’t count that cruise to Bermuda in 8th grade, my Freshman year of college when I spent the summer living and studying in Germany. As a result, Germany is the first country I fell in love with. You would think I caught the travel bug then, but no, that’s still coming.
Soon after graduating from college I got married and we traveled to 45 U.S. states together. I’m going to make a long story short here and say that it didn’t work out. I wish him all the best in life, and I regret nothing as being married taught me so much about what I did and did not want out of life. In the midst of my divorce I was invited to visit my lifelong friend Katie, who was teaching English in China. This is what set me on my path to world travel.
Then, after a trip to New Zealand that didn’t happen, I spontaneously signed up to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. I had no idea what I was getting into. But I trained hard, and while I vomited all over the mountain, I made it to the top! Since then, I have explored and hiked on 6 continents (I only have Australia left!)
Currently, I’m living near Manchester, Vermont in a little cabin on a hill that I built with my boyfriend, Will. I’m a part-time Nanny to 4 crazy kids that I love with my whole heart. They are the reason why this blog is called Roaming Nanny as they called me that when they were little. Now, they’re in middle school and high school and they make me feel really old.
In 2017 I began working for WHOA Travel, an all women’s travel company,
taking kick ass women on kick ass hiking and multi-sport adventures
around the world. We specialize in bucket list hiking trips to Machu Picchu, Patagonia, Mount Kilimanjaro, Oktoberfest, and more!
If you’d like to join me on an adventure with WHOA Travel or Damesly, check out my upcoming adventures!
When the pandemic hit in 2020 my career fell apart and in some ways so did I, so I decided to hike The Long Trail, the oldest long distance hiking trail in the United States.
In November of 2020, with the pandemic still going strong I decided to hike even more come Spring. 10 months later, on September 25, 2021 I completed a thru hike of the Appalachian Trail on the summit on Mount Katahdin in BaxterState Park in Maine.
Since I finished my thru hike of the Appalachian Trail I’ve been working to help more women to get outside hiking and exploring with confidence. With my years of hiking and trekking knowledge, a Leave No Trace and Wilderness First Aid Certification, and over 3,000 trail miles under my belt I created the Beginner’s Guide to Hiking as a first step to getting new hikers outdoors.
You never know where I’ll be headed next so make sure to follow me on my social media accounts or drop me a line to say, hi. Happy Exploring!