Category Archives: Travel

Preparing For A Long Trip

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Preparing For A Long Trip

It can be a fun and exciting prospect to embark on a long term adventure. But, it can also be a stressful and anxious time in terms of getting yourself prepared before setting off.  The great thing about long term travel, is that it brings so much variety into life, and as they say, variety is the spice of life… but with such variety comes uncertainty, and whilst this level of uncertainty can be part of the fun, it can also be anxiety inducing, which is why it’s important to ensure that you are well prepared before embarking on a long trip. This article looks at a few aspects to take care of prior to departure:

Your Home Life:

Chances are that you’ll be leaving a loving family, comfortable home, and reliable job behind. In terms of your family, it would be nice for them to have some quality time with you in the weeks before your trip. They will appreciate the fact that you’re making an effort to spend time with them rather than just abscond abroad.

With regard to your home, it’s important to leave things in a stable condition, for instance, if you know there might be an issue with pests it would be good to call pest control before you leave to take care of the issue rather than leave it to get out of control. Also, make sure that a family member, friend, or neighbor has a set of keys in order to check up on the house from time to time.

That said, if you have an animal, you might want to consider a house sitting situation where your home and pet are looked after while you are away.

Income:

If you’re traveling long-term, there’s a good chance that you’ll need to top up your income whilst away. Having something in place before leaving can reduce the stress associated with long term travel finances; for instance, you could try to keep your job but work remotely or set yourself up as a freelancer, that means you can work from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

Travel Insurance:

Finally, the other crucial aspect to reduce the anxiety associated with preparing for a long trip is to see that you have adequate travel insurance coverage in place. This can be expensive for long-term trips, particularly if you plan to undertake adventure activities such as mountain climbing, white water rafting, and bungee jumping. But, without it, you could not only find yourself at financial risk, but that your entire life is at risk, too.

Insurance is a prophylactic measure that you can hopefully live without, but if you should get sick or be injured, it’s worth its weight in gold. The option of having to pay for your own treatment is not always financially viable, meaning you will be stuck in a “local hospital” without the ability to get home and receive the care you require.

Long term travel is an exciting adventure, but it can also be anxiety inducing if you leave with loose ends. This is why it’s important to provide as much stability and peace of mind for yourself as possible before you leave.

Featured Image By: Pexels

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NC Photography

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NC Photography

Howdy and welcome to the weekend! Thank you all so much for letting me dish about my family vacation to Hendersonville, North Carolina this past week. It has been so nice to relive such wonderful memories, even though they just happened, and I am already itching to travel off to somewhere new! Ah yes, the travel bug is strong since I took two trips this month but, for now, all I can do is reminisce with some final photos from vacation taken by my father who planned the entire trip! Take a look:

 

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For as long as I can remember, my dad has always found joy in planning family vacations. From Florida and Vermont to New Hampshire and North Carolina, my dad loves conducting research and will spend at least a year planning for a big summer or fall trip. It is simply the best and we are so thankful that he spends such extensive time making sure that our vacation is perfect. And, it really is a win win, because my dad enjoys it so much and we just get to sit back and experience the spoils. This year’s vacation was one of the best that we have had in a long time and I am so appreciative to my dad and family for making it all possible!

Where was your last family vaca? Where is your dream travel destination? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Vacation Shopping… At TJMaxx ;)

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Vacation Shopping… At TJMaxx ;)

Lol, I know. I’m eyerolling at myself for this post, too. BUT, there was a TJMaxx sitting pretty on our way into town from our cabin in North Carolina and I couldn’t not stop in! But don’t worry, I only got two beauty products and one was a total steal so I just couldn’t help myself! Take a look:

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  • The Body Shop Satsuma scrub: $6
  • Garnier Micellar Water + face wash: $4

For ten bucks, I got two of my necessities that would have originally costed me around twenty-five dollars had I bought them in store. How could I possibly pass that up?! At Target, my micellar water comes close to eight dollars with tax for just the bottle. But, this find at TJ’s included a mini face wash, too. Granted, I’ve used it before and it wasn’t the best, but a face wash is a face wash and using the freebie saves me money and prolongs my preferred cleansers. I will definitely be keeping my eyes peeled at my local TJMaxx for more of the Garnier micellar water, because that was close to four dollars in savings, which is about one and a half gallons of gas in my tank.

I was also happy to find a Satsuma scrub from The Body Shop because, sadly, the TJMaxx that I live by has not had a lot of TBS goodies as of late. The scrubs are my favorite to use before shaving and it worked just right while tackling the Woolly Mammoth legs this week! 😉

Besides for my beauty steals, I was pretty unimpressed with the TJMaxx that I shopped at in Hendersonville. It was cramped, the aisle ways were small (Which made browsing through the racks difficult.), and the selection there was average at best. Of course, TJ’s giveth and TJ’s taketh away, so I could have just been there on an off week. It was fun to be at a TJMaxx in a different state, but I’ll be happy to shop at my local one again really soon!

What is your favorite thing to do on vacation? Where did you go on your last trip? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Carl Sandburg Home

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Carl Sandburg Home

Hi! During my family vacation, we visited the incomparable Carl Sandburg Home. Although we didn’t go inside the house itself, exploring the gorgeous property and playing with goats (Yes, goats!) was more than good enough for us! During our time at the Carl Sandburg estate, we learned a lot about the great American poet and, even though I wasn’t familiar with his work before, this might have been my favorite part of our trip. Take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

 

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So, how did I get up close and personal enough with a field full of goats to be able to take a selfie with one of them, you might ask? Well, these goats are direct descendants from the ones that Carl’s wife, Lilian, raised until her passing. All of the goats are handled by humans as soon as they’re born, so they’re incredibly friendly and love having visitors. Each goat has his or her own name, which you can see on their collars, and they are all so tame that you can approach and handle them without any fuss. It. Was. AMAZING!

And, of course, the property was spectacular, too. The foliage was beautiful, the walking trail was pleasant to stroll through, and all of the homes on the estate for Sandburg’s family looked so quaint and charming. We spent a good few hours at the Carl Sandburg Home and I honestly would have been happy spending an entire day there! The scenery and especially the goats stole the show and I would love to go back. 12/10 Would recommend visiting if you are in the area.

What is your favorite animal? Who is your favorite poet? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sky Top Apple Orchard

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Sky Top Apple Orchard

Howdy! When my family vacations in North Carolina, we always go apple picking. This time around, we visited Sky Top orchard. And an appropriate name it is, indeed, because it’s at the very top of a mountain! Unfortunately, we came at a bad time, because a huge school field trip was just finishing up, so the trees were pretty much picked clean. But, we still managed to get a basket full of delicious Pink Lady, Cameo, Honey Crisp, and Fuji apples. Take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

 

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Although I had a lot of fun at the orchard with my family and the caterpillar friend I made along the way, I preferred other orchards that we visited over Sky Top. Because of the mountainous terrain, exploring the massive property was anything but pleasant. The hills were incredibly steep and the orchard didn’t seem to be very well maintained. Along every row of apple trees, the ground was completely littered with rotten fruit and flies, bees, and ants were swarming all over. I absolutely understand that an orchard isn’t going to be totally pristine, but you literally couldn’t step anywhere without a rotten apple squishing beneath your feet and bugs flying on and around you. Gross.

Having said all of that, their market area was really cute and clean. And, an entire bucket of apples to pick was only twenty dollars, which was a great value. It was nice to visit a different orchard in North Carolina but, next time that we go, I hope that we stick to Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard, which was scenic (without being mountainous) and well maintained outdoors and in their market.

Who else loves going apple picking in the fall? What is your favorite type of apple? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Triple Falls Hike

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Triple Falls Hike

Hello! During my family vacation to Hendersonville, North Carolina we enjoyed several of the amazing hiking trails in the vicinity. In fact, one of the trails that we went to was so amazing that some of The Hunger Games was filmed there! Walking the trail to get to the Triple Falls was intense, as there were a lot of hills to go up and down. But, seeing the majestic waterfalls once we reached our final destination made the infinite inclines well worth it (And, my gloots are thanking me!). Take a look at some of the pics that I snapped and let’s discuss:

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I’m not gonna lie, I was definitely pretending to be Katniss during the entire hike and it was exhilarating to unleash my inner badass. We only hiked the Triple Falls trail, but throughout the walk, there were places where you could break away that would take you to other waterfalls. In my opinion, nothing could compare to the three spectacular falls flowing into each other. Hearing the rushing water, being enveloped by the mist, and feeling the gentle spray of the water was such a delight to all of the senses. And, although we were all sore by the time we got back to the car, I think that we would all do the hike again in a heartbeat!

What is your favorite adventure movie? What is your favorite trail to hike in the fall? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards

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Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards

Hello! During my North Carolina vacation, my brother and sister in law, Peter and Megan, and I went to Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards for a wine tasting. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to explore the vineyards, because it was a rainy day. But, we did get to hide out in their charming bar area, where we got to taste eleven of their wines for ten bucks each. It was quite the bargain and we even got to keep our tasting glass when we were done! Take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

 

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Peter, Megan, and I spent an hour or so at Saint Paul’s testing the wines and just hanging out. Although the space appeared big with the beautiful high vaulted ceilings, the gentle glow of the soft lighting created a feeling of cozy intimacy. The rain pelting down outside increased this sensation tenfold and hunkering down with a glass of wine in hand was just right.

Taste testing all of the wines was an informative and delicious process. We got to sample five white wines, three reds, and three dessert wines in that order. Of course, I was partial to the sweet whites and the dessert wines weren’t so bad, either! My favorites were the sweet white Laurel Hill with hints of lychee and guava and the sweet tart blackberry dessert wine, Chestnut Gap Cottage. Peter and Megan enjoyed trying the reds and their favorite was a bold and peppery Cabernet Sauvignon called Chestnut Gap.

It was definitely fun trying all of the wines and deciding which ones we liked best. But, at the end of our tasting, we were unanimous in our opinion that despite enjoying some of the wines, we wouldn’t want to drink an entire glass of any of them. The tasting was absolutely worthwhile and it was an excellent value. It also offered us just enough of each wine to know that a glass full of any would be a less than pleasant experience.

This was just our conclusion and it’s interesting to see how different people pick up on different hints of the ingredients in each wine. So, one that we all didn’t care for could be another person’s favorite from across the bar. I loved spending time with my brother and sister in law and Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards provided us with the perfect space to cozy up for an hour and enjoy each others company. Definitely would recommend!

What is your favorite vineyard in your neck of the woods? Do you prefer white or red wine? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah