Is not the new feature with the Blog the place Els travels will be posted? I think this is an improvement. As most people can probably attest, it was always interesting to see where Els was off to next. But I felt this belongs in a blog type section, not necessarily on the homepage, no?
The previous homepage sometimes got a bit stale if the one of Els previous trips were on the page for a multiple weeks or even a month. I think the "Blog" tab is a perfect addition, because we can still see, enjoy, and be inspired by Els new adventures, but not continuously see the same travel photos/descriptions on a daily basis when Els is not traveling as frequently.
On another note, I want to highlight Solivigant's opinion, which I also share.
it also sets the stage for what the site "is" and this says "I am Els and this is my travel blog". Now, you put a very large amount of effort into this site and you are perfectly entitled to badge it as you wish but that is what it says. Is this "17 year journey" intended to be changing relatively frequently -a sort of "Editorial" which is not always about the site/Els's own travels - if so then fair enough (though whether you will be able to find enough material for regular editorials we will see! But, in my opinion, it should be less prominent on the front page which should be more like a genuine "Home Page" - the main things for the home page have been "relegated" to the RHS whereas the opposite would seem more appropriate.