5 Once In A Lifetime Family Vacays To Plan In 2022…

Basking in the sun, sand and beach on an island in the sea. Hmm oh what fun it is to be. So sure I’m not alone in dreaming of those great vacation escapes! But while I am dreaming others are planning and experiencing the magic that it brings. From rejuvenation, peace of mind, laughter and squeals with kids, my oldest plans and puts it into action, then sends a link so the dream becomes real. She did it with my most memorable getaway for a weekend in Paris. A place I had dreamed of for years. A workaholic, she knew her mom would continue to procrastinate to find the right time for herself. So off she went and booked it for a birthday getaway. Yep, that dream became real.

So it was with anticipation that I gasped at Travel & Leisure’s article 7 Family Vacations that everyone should do at least once. I quickly indulged and was happy to note what my family and I (led by my oldest), have done. From the list, here are a few.

Cruise Away

The last time our family did this, it was January 2020 just before the pandemic. We set sail on a short weekend trip to the Bahamas for a kiddo’s birthday to swim with the dolphins. It was divine. The more lengthy trip to Greece took a combination of cruise and flights to the Turkish, Istanbul land. A must do at least once in a lifetime.

All Inclusive Resort Getaway

Being of the island of wood and water… yep Jamaica, this is a staple. But as I reflect, the Jewel runs-away with the mouth-dripping cocktail welcome. You are sure to never want to leave the staples of all you can eat island food with munches of worldwide delectable while basking in the sun, sand and sea in between. Not to mention the rooms, jacuzzi, and spa to massage away those tired work stressed muscles

The Slopes Is A Must Do

Breckenridge in Colorado never disappoints. My youngest asked after one Christmas family gathering to go on a road trip. She was too young to know that it takes planning. So I charged her to research where she wanted to go. She did and months later decided on a Colorado gem. This small town rates high during the holidays with its hidden Christmas town after gondola rides atop the mountains to slide down the slopes from skiing, snowboarding, or just angel-playing in the snow. A certain kids dream come through.

Road-Trip

Road-tripping causes you to trip when kids spill juices, food and candy wraps all over. Organized with trash bags does help but tell it to the little ones (ha ha). Our last road-trip took us to the Tennessee experience. We went through great landmarks with stops along the highways to rest, refuel and driver exchange. The tiredness you feel is nothing when compared to the lifetime memories.

Some Place New

So as the pandemic wears on, we dream of someplace new where we can just chill. For me as a writer, it will be a solo retreat to encounter that writing escape.

What About You?

What’s your dream for a place that you must visit at least once in a lifetime? Do share. We would love to hear.

Cheers!

Avoid The Grinch Syndrome This Christmas…

Avoid The Grinch Syndrome

The president for one of the biggest and most successful companies called a zoom meeting and fired 900 staff all at once- just before Christmas. When the media asked why (he was so mean at Christmas) he said they all work 2-hour days and report 8. Hmmm… Yea, the boss may have a case but it’s in the how he did it and when he did it. No matter the logic, he will still be seen as a Grinch.

So who is a Grinch? A person who spoils the fun of others. A spoilsport. A drag. A party pooper. That’s the Miriam Dictionary’s meaning. So here are 7 Suggestions on what you can do to avoid being a Grinch this holiday season

7 Ways To Share Joy This Holiday

  1. Do something kind for someone you don’t know
  2. Watch your favorite holiday movie
  3. Get festive. Decorate your home
  4. Give a Gift to someone in need
  5. Get social. Hang out with friends and family
  6. Give of your time
  7. Volunteer for a good cause

Personally, I love the holidays and wouldn’t mind celebrating all year round. But yes there are always those who are sad and down at this time. Reach out and lend a hand. Give a word of encouragement. Try any of the 7 ways shared and give love this Christmas.

How do you combat the Grinch Sydrome during the holidays? Do share, we would love to hear.

Cheers!

The Biggest Enemies of Willpower…

The biggest enemies of willpower: temptation, self-criticism, and stress. These three skills —self-awareness, self-care, and remembering what matter most— are the foundation for self-control.

-Kelly McGonigal

Traveling? Top 11 Things To Do Before You Board That Flight…

We love to travel! The warmth of new places brings smiles and memories that last. But getting to the pleasures of our vacation destination often comes with a nightmare. Travel and Leisure shared their top 25 Things to do before getting on a plane. Here are my top 11 Favs, which by the way makes business travel a breeze.

Pre-Travel Stress Reducers

  1. Get the airlines credit card which offers perks like priority access and other rewards
  2. Download your airlines app. No check-in and free onboard entertainment
  3. Signup for TSA Pre-Check. Forego It’s a smart strategy for a smoother walk through and some airlines refund you the application fee
  4. Check your bags size and dimensions. Airlines are reducing the space. Rid yourself of the headache and follow the rules before you leave home
  5. Compile your gadgets. Being organized makes your life easier
  6. Lounge around the departure lounges instead of sitting at the gate. Life’s simple
  7. Wear comfortable clothing. But I dare say remember airline rules. For example Sometimes short shorts makes the morning news when tempers flare
  8. Disinfect. Need I say more?
  9. Reserve airport parking before you leave. Works like magic and you will walk away looking at cars circling the garage or squeals at missed flights
  10. Grab and Go is a great idea for starving passengers. Get the app and order ahead
  11. That wretched life-saving Mask. Don’t forget it.

BONUS

Read. Bring a book

So these are my top favs. What’s yours? Do share. We would love to hear!

Cheers!

The Sea. The Beach. The Waves. Quiet Reflections…

The sea. The beach. The waves. It’s my safe place. I never want to leave. I sit coiled at the edge of the lazy beach chair, gazing in melancholy at the morning’s sunrise. All is still as time stops. As the sun began its heated quest, I sat pensively not wanting to leave.


Still fast asleep there’s no one in sight. Just me, as the waves batter the shore. My heart tugs as I long to rid life’s woeful work-related stress. I just want to stay to listen to nature’s quest. In quietness is where the heaven’s awake and gives me the strength to reach forward to start a new day, a new chapter, a time of serenity. I pray that I’ll listen as the spirit quietly leads, guides and directs my path.

In stillness is where I find my strength. Strengthen me lord, strengthen me. Speak and make me listen.

Blessing overflow.

9 Things To Do By Yourself…

Success Strategies

Don’t wait around for other people to be happy for you. Any happiness you get, you’ve got to make yourself.” – Alice Walker

Reflection, Rest, Relaxation & Renewal

Self-care is important, and so is doing it alone ..yikes! But time alone is important. It Evokes reflection, rest, relaxation and renewal.

Here I share my own favorite list of 9 Things to do by yourself.

Self-Care

  1. Give yourself a mini retreat weekend–eat healthy food, go for a massage, spoil yourself, and really relax!
  2. Meditate. Sit. Be still and devote time to listen to your spiritual thoughts. Breathe.
  3. Have dinner on your own in a nice restaurant… take time to really enjoy the food
  4. Go somewhere in the city where you have never been
  5. Study. Sign up for an online course in any topic you have an interest in and learn something new
  6. Sip a cup of tea and look out…

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5K Run. 4 Tips To Prepare…

Finish it, then take two Advil”. Words of encouragement from the point-marker.

At Five o’clock each morning, I’m up and running. Yep, that was me during my high school days. I was on the track team. Funny thing is I never did it as a requirement. Just thought I’d go with my dad (a professional boxing champ) and worked out while he worked out. 100-meter sprint, 400 or 800 meter distance running was nothing. The preparation worked. I captured many awards which I sadly I did not keep to show my kids. Why? Because the value was not in the awards received, but in the talent I used it to benefit my school’s track and field events. The value was in supporting my teams at school, business house athletic championships and in the community.

The Prep: How to Prepare For The 5K

Here are Tony’s tips for how to prepare in 4 Weeks

  1. Week 1: Brisk walk for 5 minutes. Jog slowly for 1 minute, and then walk for 1 1/2 minutes.
  2. Week 2: Brisk walk for 5 minutes. Jog slowly for 1 1/2 minutes, and then walk for 2 minutes.
  3. Week 3: Brisk walk for 5 minutes.
  4. Week 4: Brisk walk for 5 minutes.

In addition, Judith front-line head Nurse and 5K Expert shared her top 3 Points:

1. One thing that I tell people to do is download the App “Couch To 5K”. That App trains you to run. 2. Make sure you eat an excellent breakfast for energy (oatmeal with blueberries; a big bagel with some protein – peanut butter is great if you like it. You need the carbs for energy). 3. Hydrate well during training and also the day before the run (I alternate with water and Gatorade for the runs). Happy running!

How I Prepared

How did I prepare? Nothing. Nada. Actually, I decided I would go to support the worthy cause, take a picture and move on, back to the safety and warmth of my car, then return home. My mistake? I walked with the crowd of runners to the starting point. Then I decided to walk on just a little further…and a little further. As I progressed along the journey, the crowd seemed to have disappeared and my car was nowhere in sight. Father help! But then with no option to get back to my car on that very cold and windy morning, my high school coaching motivation chipped in. I walked slower and hydrated. Though the journey seemed never-ending, I got to the finish line …police escort and all.

Walk. Pray. Strategize

Yep! That’s what I did. I walked. Prayed and Strategized my year’s goals. This feat reminded me of my resilience. It started with my desire to support a worthy cause and ended with my learning to always be prepared (my girl scout motto). Although the journey seemed never-ending, the cheers and smiles of point-markers made it so much easier.

That said, be encouraged. Find your own point-markers to achieve your life’s goals–be it work, education, family or other. Keep advancing to your own finish line. Success awaits.

Cheers!

St. Augustine Among Preferred Top 5 European Destinations You Can Find In The USA…

St. Augustine pops on the list that Travel and leisure shared their list of destinations for those longing to travel and must stay home. Road-trip getaways offer an alternative. World travelers only hope. Adrenaline pumping, I was Incredibly excited to dive into the the list of European destinations that can be enjoyed in the USA. Here are my topic 5 favs:

Getaway Vacays Instead Of:

Madrid Spain, St. Augustine, FL

Tuscany Italy, Napa California

The French Alps: Mount Hood Oregon

Nice Fance, Newport Rhode Island

Rome, New York City

Stwitzerland, New Glarus, Wisconsin

Take a close look at the list and start planning your getaway. If there are other US destinations that can be added to the list that makes you feel like you’re on a European vacay, do share, we would love to hear.

Cheers!

The 23 Most Zen Cities In The World…

Zen…

Relaxed and calmly accepting a situation

When we think of a getaway, pictures of peace, quiet, adventure and great experiences come to mind. A social media group was asked to share the most ‘Zen’ city in the world. Here are 23 of the top cities as the audience excitedly chimed in:

  1. Kyoto
  2. Hardwar, India
  3. Sedona
  4. Bagarchhap, Nepal
  5. Sicilia, Perth, Ubud
  6. Kerala backwaters
  7. Evita/Dominica
  8. Costa Rica
  9. Blue Lagoon, Bali
  10. Spoleto, Italy
  11. Aukland, New Zealand
  12. Rishikesh, India
  13. Santa Fe, NM
  14. Isle of Korcula, Croatia
  15. Engelberg, Switzerland
  16. Asakusa Tokyo
  17. Bargarchap, Nepal
  18. Iceland or Azores
  19. Dahab, Egyt
  20. Lake Bohnj, Slovenia
  21. Kawai
  22. San Diego
  23. Le Castera

Makes you want to start booking that getaway… right? Are there any that you would like to add? Do share. We would love to hear.

Cheers!

Love To Travel? Inherit An Ancestry 2nd Passport From Any Of These 5 Countries…

Travel is love. Travel is a dream come through for those who love to fly, set sail, or some even trek to heights untold. Mount Everest anyone? Well here is some good news! To avoid the hassle of getting a visa to enter enjoy your getaway vacation, Travel and Leisure surprised us with the list of countries you can gain a second passport from. Our grandparents or great-grandparents who came from any of these wild destinations just upped our inheritance. Take a look:

  • Italy
  • Ireland
  • United Kingdom
  • Spain
  • Germany

Take a deep look at your ancestry and see if you qualify. Then get packing!

Cheers!

My Favorite Getaway Space…

The sun, sand and sea is my favorite place to be.

I was asked to write about my favorite space to share with a visiting friend. I must confess that my love of nature transcends everything. It provides inspiration and a peace that boosts my writing prowess. That said, as my friend Chrissie comes for a 5-Day-visit, I will steal away to the island that captivates. None other than Captiva Island in Sunny Florida. It is a place I getaway to whenever I need to relax and unwind. When you get to Captiva Island, it feels like you are away from all the worries and cares of the world. Indeed the perfect distraction. The rooms overlook the bay or garden, your choice dependent on your budget.

Once I hosted a group business session at the end of the year to this ideal place. The goal was to reflect about plans for the new year with entrepreneurs and career changers. Suffice it to say, the two-day retreat and planning session went well … with participants so relaxed that it provided the right spot to add a bit of future gazing.

Back to my friend. Chrissie is an entrepreneur. So I figured that would be the ideal getaway place for her. Not only is she guaranteed to relax all week, there is no doubt the time would go by in a flash through this envious plan.

5-Day Getaway Plan

Day 1:
Road trip to Captiva
Lunch at Wicked Wings, a low-keyed hole in the wall pub that satisfies starving travelers before hitting the road to their final destination

Day 2:
Relax in the Sun, Sand, Sea engulfed in a delightful adventure riding the waves

Day 3:
Spa Day – Body massage, Facial, Mani and Pedi, a sure rejuvenation for the exhausted

Day 4
Shopping and Late dinner at the Harbor Side Bar and Grill

Day 5
Early morning beach wet. Late breakfast followed by reluctant afternoon ride back to the fast life.

Where’s your favorite getaway space? Do share. We would love to hear!

Cheers!

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