When I first moved to California, I was the typical tourist. I wanted to visit Universal Studios, The Price is Right, Hollywood Blvd., San Diego Zoo, Santa Monica, Newport Beach, and Laguna Beach. They were my “TV version” of California – the places I saw on a regular basis on TV shows and dreamed about experiencing my entire life. Now that I’m a local, though, I spend less time at those places and more time at the places I’ve come to know and love as a mother, a wife, an adventure seeker, and a beach lover. Dana Point has a regular spot in our weekly schedule. It’s situated on the beautiful Southern California coast, halfway between San Diego and Los Angeles. It prides itself with nearly seven miles of coastal bluffs and rolling hills along the Pacific Ocean with its charming beaches and wild surfs. The city is home to the Dana Point Harbor, Captain Dave’s Whale Watching Safari, scrumptious food, and some of the best sunset views I’ve seen in my life. I’ve come up with a schedule for discovering the perfect day in Southern California’s Dana Point. Continue reading
2014 was a kick-a** year! I visited 12 new countries, I finally crossed off an African Safari and scuba diving, and I completed every item on my 2014 list. Somehow, I think 2015 is going to be better. Is it possible? Who knows? I’m certainly going to try and to start the year off right, I’m sailing to Antarctica with Bark Europa. I will visit the last two continents that I haven’t set foot on, Antarctica and South America, and embark on the adventure of a lifetime. Continue reading
Oahu is filled with endless beauty around every turn and beneath every grain of sand. The perfect temperatures and friendly locals add to the attraction of this picturesque land. During my 11 day Oahu vacation, I explored the depths of the ocean floor with Reef Pirates, surfed the rolling waves that draw surfers from all over the world with Ty Gurney Surf School, and swam with the mysterious sharks that fill the deep waters with North Shore Shark Adventures. It’s this blend between serenity and aquatic adventure that truly captures my heart. Continue reading
We spend the better part of our lives making our bucket list dreams come true. Darren and I think about our wildest dreams and make them a reality. We try to include Athena in the process as well. I consider what would make her the happiest and include her in the bucket list planning process. Resorts like Windjammer Landing in St. Lucia, Atlantis in the Bahamas, and Kinderhotel in Germany were all part of incorporating the best family-friendly destinations on this year’s list. Similarly, activities like visiting Disneyland, Europa Park, and the San Diego Zoo were all Athena focused, although they, unquestionably, brought us great joy as well. There was one item on this year’s list that was entirely, 100% Athena’s idea. I didn’t come up with it and think she’d like it; nope, she decided it would be the greatest thing in the world all on her own. She wanted to hang out with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina, Hawaii made it possible this weekend. She danced, sang, hugged and laughed with the most famous characters in her world at the Disney Character Breakfast. This is what dreams are made of. Continue reading
Regardless of having a child or not, Darren and I are just two big kids. We often choose our accommodations based on the pool, the water slide, water sports or other fun activities and the proximity to the beach. We are out enjoying the grounds and barely see the room unless it’s time for sleep. Unique adventures are the icing on the cake and we pack in as many as humanly possible. With 5 pools, a lagoon filled with water activities and local tours offered from the hotel grounds, Hilton Hawaiian Village is the ideal resort for our fun-loving family. Continue reading
It’s no secret that I’m always dreaming about travel possibilities. Like a drug addict, travel consumes me. I could be in the middle of an enthralling conversation with a celebrity and I’d still find a way to direct my thoughts to new destinations. Working on sponsored posts for companies like Contiki has only increased my travel obsession. Have you ever wondered what places top the list for travel writers? Contiki has asked me to think about the most popular destinations for people to travel in the New Year. While my own personal list might not statistically be the most popular destinations, I’d bet that most of the places have a spot on your list. This year, Namibia, St. Lucia, Germany, Latvia, and Austria topped my list of favorite travel destinations. Here are my top bucket list picks for 2015. I haven’t visited any of these destinations, which is why they are on my 2015 list. I may not be able to visit them all, but the more unrealistic we are with our dreams and goals, the more we are able to achieve. I’m putting them out into the universe and we’ll see how it goes.
We’ve arrived. After a short flight from LA, we landed in Oahu and spent the first day at Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki Beach. Exploring the grounds, we discovered two pools, a lagoon, the beach, and Bali Steak & Seafood. Today was just a taste of some of the amazing amenities here at Hilton, but stay tuned for a more in-depth look at what they have to offer. For now, I’ll show you some of the highlights. Continue reading