Travel

Seattle Bound

2017 was full of traveling and experiencing new places for me. Everytime I start to write about a destination I went to, I find myself beginning to say, “This was one of my favorite places I’ve ever traveled”. And it’s true every.single.time.

I fall in love with every location. If I’m only there for a short time, I leave hungry for more. If I’m lucky enough to have a longer stay, I fall deeper in love, every day.Seattle Bound..png

The same is true for when I went to Seattle, Washington in June of 2017. I traveled with my husband from Houston, Texas to visit his brother and boyfriend for a whole week. I had high expectations for Seattle after binge watching Grey’s Anatomy, and it definitely delivered. The views, the diverse culture, the weather. I loved it all. Shall we review?

  1. Transportation
    • Spirit Airlines
      • Spirit Airlines is a budget airline that sometimes gets bad reviews from certain travelers. I was hesitant to book our flights with this airline because of some of the reviews I read online. I’m so glad I listened to my wallet instead of the internet. As a very frugal (aka cheap) shopper, I was persuaded by the hundreds of dollars worth of savings Spirit offered compared to the next cheapest flight from Houston to Seattle. We paid just over $200/each roundtrip. This included selecting our seats in the emergency exit row and checking one bag.
      • I have zero complaints and only compliments to share about Spirit Airlines. Even though the seat did not recline (not a big deal to me), I thought the seats were comparable in size to any other airline I have traveled on. Our seats were in the emergency exit row, so we did have more leg space than average, but I’ve sat in their regular seats before and still had leg space for my 5’6″ plus size frame. There were no snacks provided, so I just packed our own from home, no biggie. The flight attendents were friendly, comical, and again-comparable to any other airline. I’ll take the cash savings over a small bag of pretzels any day.
  2. Foooooooooooooooooooood
    • Aladdin Gyro-cery & Deli located at 4143 University Way NE near Washington University has amazing Middle Eastern food. Screen Shot 2018-02-03 at 8.00.06 PM.png
    • We did get seafood while we were in Seattle. It was good. I must apologize, I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the restaurant we ate at.
    • GINGER BEER! It was good! It was fun! Get you some! IMG_0608
    • We also had icecream, turkish delight, and delicious cinnamon orange tea at Pike Place Market. I highly recommend it all! We also saw them throw a fish in the market, but I wasn’t fast enough to get photo or video evidence.
  3. Must-sees in the city
    • Everything. We went up in the Ferris Wheel down by the pier. We also walked down a bit to an overlook over the city in the same area as the Ferris Wheel.
    • Quirky things like the gum wall by Pike Place Market, and doing the underground tour are tons of fun. Did you know Seattle was built on top of itself? And you can thank a prostitute for the city’s survival?!
    • More quirky things like a troll built under a bridge and this novel abandoned manufacturing plant near Kite Hill.

    • Who doesn’t love a science museum with an awesome playground nearby?
  4. Must-sees outside of the city
    • Ferry rides are a compulsory activity of course. IMG_0459
    • Stop to learn about the Native culturesIMG_0474
    • From the beaches to the mountains. The views are to die for.

    • And venture outdoors to hike to a waterfall.

  5. Saved for Future Visits
    • We saw and did so much in the week we were in Seattle, and barely skimmed the surface on what this city and surrounding area has to offer. I would love to do more hikes to see the beautiful and amazing outdoors. Eat more food, see more shops, just get lost in all the streets. I wish I could be more specific, but there’s just so much there, I don’t even know where to begin but everywhere. I can only hope we’re lucky enough to return in the future.

Have you ever been to Washington? Do you have any recommendations on where to go or what to do?

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Health · Random Ramblings · Travel

Melting Off the Weight in the Texas Heat.

Texas is hot. Balls fricking hot. I attempted to write this while sitting outside. Not only did I start to melt, but my laptop was slowing down and stroking out. We both had to come inside to recover.

Melting Off the Weightin the Texas Heat

Besides adjusting to the Texas weather (global warming is real), this week has been flipping amazing! And since I haven’t done a list in awhile (how out of character of me), let’s review in list form:

  1. My home is fully unpacked and decorated! It feels so, sooooo good to have a place for everything and everything in it’s place. I never fully unpacked or decorated in Florida since we were only going to be there for a short period of time, so I’m so stinking excited to make my home in Texas feel like my home.
  2. I’m back to writing! It was a long 24 days of not writing on the blog, and it’s one of those things where you’re like…. I don’t feel like it, but then once you do it, you feel so much better. Like working out, or getting a shower. That’s my relationship with writing.
  3. I made the best schedule and I stuck to it all week! For months now I’ve been saying to myself that I’ll be so much more productive if I make myself a schedule. I’ll do so much better with my weightloss if I make a schedule like I did over the summer. And yet, I wouldn’t buckle down and make a schedule. Well Monday I finally forced myself to not only plan out my meals for the week, but also create a daily schedule for my week and it has made all the difference! Not only have I been super productive, but I’ve been eating so healthy, and I’m right on track to hitting my 3% weightloss goal for this month! I’ve talked about my schedules and meal plans on my blog post Eat food. Lose weight. A Recipe for Weight loss. 6D9039B6-C183-4AAA-98B7-F83F33147614This was the meals from one day. minus the Halo Top I had for dessert. Red Velvet Halo Top is now in my top 2 Halo Tops. #1 is Mocha Chip. Halo Top is going to take over the world. I’m also obsessed with those nut bars. There’s some sort of glaze on them, and they’re crunchy and so yummy. They’re made by Nature Valley. Get you some. 
  4. Future travel plans have been confirmed! In my last post I mentioned hoping to be able to go to Seattle to visit my brother-in-law. Well I found dirt cheap airline tickets to Seattle and we jumped on the opportunity. We’re flying on the airline Spirit, which is a budget airline where you only pay for what you use. This means you only get one personal item that flies for free with you. Any other carry on items, checked bags, snacks, choosing your seat is all an additional charge. At first I was hesitant, but I compared what the cost would be flying the next cheapest (Delta) and even after paying for a checked bag, and choosing our seats, it was still $400(!!!) cheaper to fly Spirit. So we will be taking over Seattle at the beginning of June! I can’t wait to plan some great excursions!
  5. Speaking of traveling, being in a new place means I get to explore a whole new city! I haven’t gotten out too much yet. But I did check out my local farmer’s market where I got some new soap, and locally grown green beans. Shop local!! I look forward to going back this Saturday, when there’s supposed to be more vendors. I’ve also been to the beach and had lunch at a unique little place right on the water on the island. It was called Mikal May’s and had really delicious seafood nachos.

     

    I’m pretty excited about how great this week has been! It’s hard to top feeling at home in your home, eating healthy, losing weight, exploring a new city, and buying new soap. Am I right?

In other news, the job hunt continues. I had an interview last week, but haven’t heard anything since. I’ve applied to about a bazillion other places. Fingers crossed something comes along soon!

Any recommendations on Seattle or Washington State excursions?

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Travel

Travels with Carlie in 2017

img_7391Holy Hell 2016! You certainly gave everyone a run for their money. But you’ve been put to bed, like the bitch you are and now let’s look to 2017.

Growing up poor. Not such a novelty thing. Anyone who knows what it’s like to pay for groceries with food stamps- when they were still printed on paper-knows you don’t get grand vacations. I was raised in Sussex County in Delaware. (Shout out to the 302). No particular town, we bounced around a bit, another side effect of poverty and finding cheap rent. Due to this upbringing I didn’t get to travel or exposure to other places. This changed in 2010. I was in a new relationship with the man who would become my husband and I wanted to do something special for our upcoming anniversary. And then I had a lightbulb moment. You’re an adult with a big girl job. You can literally go anywhere-other than Cuba or North Korea. So I started to do some research on cruises, looked up what I needed to get a passport, and thus was the start of my love of travel.

Since 2010 I have traveled 4 continents, 16 countries, 17 states and countless cities.

A quick map of my travels

screen-shot-2017-01-02-at-2-07-29-pmscreen-shot-2017-01-02-at-2-08-51-pm

You can build your own here.

There is way too much gray on those maps in my opinion. One of the great struggles with loving to travel, besides budget, would have to be deciding where to go! I’ve been to so many marvelous places, I struggle with wanting to go back and also experiencing something new. 2017 will be about mixing the two. So here are my five travel picks for 2017! Hopefully there will be more, but these will definitely be the minimum!

  1. New Orleans- One of the perks of moving to the panhandle of Florida? We’re only a 3 hour drive from New Orleans, Louisiana. This is a destination I’ve had on my list for awhile and now it is conveniently within my reach! I’ve already scoured some things to do on trip advisor and also have a recommendation on an apartment to rent while we are there! We’ll be going in early March for anyone interested in joining! Itinerary will be forthcoming.fullsizeoutput_7df
  2. Overlanding The TransAmerican Trail: North Carolina to Arkansas- My husband has found a new love in overlanding. For those who aren’t familiar this is when you drive roads and trails, off the beaten path in a self sustainable vehicle. Prepare yourself to commune with nature, get a little dirty and get a little stuck. There’s a path that runs the width of North America and we’d like to tackle it. Unfortunately it takes multiple weeks to complete it, which we won’t be able to do all at once, so we will be doing it in portions. We set out with the intention of doing this in the next month or two, but then we were slapped in the face with the realization that while we live in a vacuum of decent and warm weather in Florida, the rest of the country experiences this thing called Winter. So it will have to wait until the Spring or Summer depending on the husband’s training schedule. I can’t wait to see parts of the US that can be challenging to reach and aren’t typically visited. 

    img_7237
    The husband standing proud on our first overlanding adventure at the Eglin AFB
  3. Camelback Mountain Resort and Waterpark- This will be our second time visiting this resort. It’s located in Tannersville, PA. We went last year and shared a suite with my brother and his family. This year we will be sharing two suites with my brother’s family and my sister’s family. I’m so excited! We’ll be partaking in snow tubing and the indoor waterpark for three lovely days with family I haven’t seen in many months. It’s a great time! mc-camelback-lodge-aquatopia-indoor-waterpark-0329-20150328
  4. Pensacola, Florida- Wait. This is where you live Carlie. It is! But I’m new, and there’s tons of stuff to do here and the surrounding areas that I can’t wait to geek out and get all touristy in my new home. I want to do to an ice hockey game, a baseball game when it’s in season, walk EVERY street downtown, I hear there’s a dinosaur park, a zoo, and of course ALL the restaurants. 
  5. Washington & Alaska- We will definitely be going to Washington state, specifically Seattle to visit my brother-in-law, and I’m desperately trying to make it a two-for-one and squeeze in Alaska too. I’m dying to do an Alaskan cruise, but I don’t know if the budget will be able to fit in all of these amazing destinations. Alas, Alaska you may have to be postponed to 2018, but I sincerely hope not. Maybe I’ll start a gofundme page 😉 Just kidding…. maybe…

    15272231_1536775133006444_4591783805877586074_o
    Stolen from the brother-in-law’s instagram. Hope he doesn’t mind. How awesome does this look though?!

So that is what I’m looking forward to in 2017. There may be a move to Texas also, but thanks to life in the Navy, we won’t know about that for a few more months.

What are your travel goals for 2017?

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