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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Travel

Travel Addiction

My name is Carlie and I am a travel addict. 

It feels good to get that out.

This time last year I made a list of a few destinations I wanted to experience in 2017. You can read the original post here.

Let’s review what did and didn’t happen.

  1. New Orleans  – checknola-bound_new-orleans-in-24-hours
  2. Overlanding the TransAmerican Trail – didn’t happen =(
  3. Camelback Mountain Resort and Waterpark– checkCamelback Mountain Resort
  4. Pensacola, Florida – checktripadvisor-vs-local-top-5-things-to-do-in-pensacola-florida
  5. Washington – check; Alaska – didn’t happen =(IMG_0526

So these were what I planned to do for 2017. As you can see, most of my plans did happen! Some didn’t. But I was able to add some destinations that weren’t on my original list! Such as:

  1. Corpus Christi, TexasCorpus Christi feature image
  2. San Antonio, TexasSan Antonio Feature image
  3. OBX, North Carolina
  4. Road trip: Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New HampshireNew England road trip
  5. Big Bend National Park-TexasOV7nQXjiQpKRO0NcNq+eSA

2017 was a great year of traveling for me. I experienced so much more than I thought I would and it inspired a few of my travel goals for 2018.

2018 goals

  • Visit 30 states before I turn 30 in NovemberF45A4A34-5770-4E22-9A31-15F8D2B0997D
    • I was able to check off 7 states I never visited before in 2017. I have now visited 23 states in the USA, so I hope to visit 7 more states to bring my total to 30 states before my birthday.
    • March 2018- Spring Break Road trip Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas
    • Moving We may be moving again this summer. Wherever we end up should give me the opportunity to add another state to my list. Will it be Mississippi? Will it be New Mexico? We shall see.
    • Nevada Long weekend in Vegas? I’m hoping I can make this happen.
    • New York: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Weekend Vermont– since I’ll be in the area
  • Learn Latvian in LatviaMy husband is from Latvia. He lived there until he was a teenager and Latvian is his first language. We’re approaching 8 years together and I’ve always said I wanted to learn the language. This is the year I make it happen!
    • The University of Latvia offers a free intensive language course over the summer. So I’m hoping to make the journey to Latvia to spend 3 weeks finally making strides towards learning the languange of his people!
  • Dirty Thirty Cruise
    • I didn’t get to take a cruise in 2017, which is one of my favorite ways to vacay. I’m due. And I’d love to relax in Mexico with a margarita for my thirtieth birthday.

Do you have travel goals for 2018?

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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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