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Home Away – It’s all in the Name!

Typically when I travel I have several concrete options for where I ended up staying.  There are the usual hotels or bed and breakfasts, hostels if I am feeling wild and broke, or a familiar couch if I know someone in the area.  They have all worked well for me in the past and I don’t usually have a preference, unless there is a huge price discrepancy.  However, this past weekend I have been spoiled rotten and I don’t think I will ever be able to go back! On our long weekend to upstate New York my fiance used Home Away vacation rentals to lock down the most adorable little cottage, that was also dog friendly. 

At first I was turned off by this – What do you mean I have to clean up my own trash?! However, I quickly learned that this was a small price to pay to get the comfort, privacy and space of our own cottage.  We had an adorable wood burning stove, a plethora of movies with a flatscreen tv, and an upstairs area with a king sized bed.  Some pretty awesome amenities! The best part of choosing HomeAway was the people that we rented from.  We truly got lucky with Chelsea, the lady we rented our cottage from and the lady that literally helped Nick put his entire proposal together.  

Chelsea was one of a kind.  She was willing to pick up the cupcakes that said “Will you marry me?” from a cupcake shop in town, had flowers delivered to her house and strategically placed them around the cabin and was so nice in helping us bring in all our luggage when we actually arrived.  I can’t guarantee that all renters and rentees will give and get the same treatment that we did.  But staying in someone’s home made the entire experience more personal and she was more than willing to do anything to help us, because she is not a huge corporation trying to usher us in and out to make money. 

Our experience was spectacular and you can be sure I will be recommending HomeAway to everyone traveling in the near future! 

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Woodstock the Wonderful

Woodstock is the ultimate travel destination for old hippie souls, like I consider myself.  As a tot my friends were dressed in pink and purple polka dots while my mom had me in a funky tie-dye onesie or some weird tribal pattern dress. In our senior pictures my friends wore pearls and I wore a peace sign necklace I had gotten at a House of Blues my mom and I went to for some concert.  My mom was always a little different, in a good way, and it is something I truly never appreciated until she passed.  I have ultimately inherited this trait and love to get my weird hippie on whenever I can.

So, upon pulling up to the small town of Woodstock I instantly knew I liked it.  Everything was colorful, there were tons of people walking around, little artsy shops and tons of dogs! Of course, one of the things that made Woodstock so attractive to me is that it is so puppy friendly!  Max and Zoe were able to walk around town with us and if I wanted to stop in to check out a shop, they were allowed in too. But besides that, Woodstock simple had character.  The people were all unique and didn’t boast cookie cutter designer apparel, but enjoyed their independent style. Their conversations weren’t cluttered with superficial complaints, but filled with thoughtful and insightful interactions.   I loved every shop full of incense, the art galleries full of interesting pieces and the restaurants full of healthy, organic and yummy foods! Overall, it was a breath of fresh air.

The town is so small I don’t know if living there permanently could ever be a real possibility.  However, I do know where to head when I need a reality check and real chance to clear my mind.  Until next time, Woodstock!  Hoping to see you in my near future :) 

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A perpetual adventure: Party of two!

I have unfortunately been neglecting my blog this week during an impromptu trip to Woodstock and the Catskills region in New York.  But everyone gets a little bit of slack during the engagement weekend, right?! Yes, you read that correctly.  I got engaged this weekend!  I thought I was heading to upstate New York for a bit of hiking, hippie town shopping and overall fun in this beautiful area but I was in for a big surprise. My wonderful fiance rented a quaint cabin about a half mile walk from the adorable town of Woodstock and we spent the weekend exploring with our puppies as a newly engaged couple!  

I used to be one of those people who said they would never get married.  Having people to worry about would just slow me down and I am in no way responsible to take care of myself, let alone another human being! But I have come to realize that having a partner to experience all of life’s journeys with is a true blessing.  Nick does not slow me down, but merely pushes me forward.  

Click here to watch a short animoto video of our truly memorable weekend! http://animoto.com/play/soEBpEwkUos2RnCF5Rn4zA

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A Day in Cleveland Park

Last weekend we made the journey back over the bridge to enjoy some Fall fun in Washington D.C.  Having lived in Salisbury for several years now, I have really grown to enjoy the area and the people who live here.  There isn’t the constant hustle and bustle of a big city, people are generally nice and down to earth and you can’t beat the short 30 minute drive to the beach.  However, the trip home made me realize there are some big city things that I really miss.  In our short time home we were able to walk down Connecticut Avenue and pass by 10 different types of restaurants with some really great food, go shopping in cute little boutique stores, and each brunch outside WITH our puppies, Max and Zoe.  

I am still torn between the city life of the D.C. area and the laid back life of the Eastern Shore.  I enjoy them both! If it was up to my puppies however, they would stay on the Eastern Shore.  They were in for a rude awakening this weekend when every person we passed on the street didn’t reach down to greet them.  They were not impressed with the fast paced city life where people don’t stop to smell the roses…..or pet the puppies.  

Be Fit to Travel, Travel to be Fit

Ok, I admit it, I drank the Kool-aid. Last night was my first session of CrossFit with my boyfriend.  By the end of my first workout my entire body was shaking, I was fighting the urge to throw up and I felt completely empowered.  Now, I always thought that CrossFit was for the insanely fit, work out junkies and egotistical jocks, so I was a bit skeptical walking in.  I am none of those things.  I was pleasantly surprised with genial greetings, step by step instructions when I got stuck, and a true sense of community.  

Now you may be asking why a diehard lazy girl  would put themselves through these crazy workouts.  Can’t you just go jogging like normal people? Nope.  Not going to happen. Much like my wanderlust taking me from country to country, I crave new and exciting things for my daily workout.  If I begin to get too familiar with any workout I jump ship.  Enter the beauty of CrossFit: every session brings a new WOD (Workout of the Day) and a new test for my body.  

I am starting this new healthy lifestyle because I am happiest when I can travel and explore every nook and cranny of a new destination.  If I can’t make it up the three flights of stairs to my apartment without getting winded, how am I supposed to really   enjoy traversing the streets of a foreign city?  I firmly believe that the happiest and most involved travelers are ones with physically fit and healthy bodies.  With a healthy body I can do more and see more while maintaining a perky and adventurous energy.  There really is nothing I can lose with this new venture, and only plenty for me to gain.  

Everyone has a reason to be fit.  What is yours? 

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