On the Horizon: Upcoming Trips

Transitioning back to the workweek after a family staycation and a fun birthday weekend is a challenge- as Nutritionella pointed out, ever feel like you need a vacation to recover from vacation?

I thought it would help to remind myself of the fun trips I have on the horizon for the rest of summer and the beginning of fall.

Back to Hollymead

Work & fun trip to DC

Bachelorette party at undisclosed location

First time in Nashville

First time in San Francisco

Thank goodness I have generous family, friends, family friends, and friend’s family in cool places! We’ll be driving to most of these places, so the gas split between multiple people won’t be too expensive. For the other places, I/we have managed to find great deals by browsing Southwest’s fall sales and planning trips around the cheapest dates {hooray for workplace flexibility!}.

Where are you headed this summer/fall? What tips do you have for affordable travel? 

P.S. For more travel inspiration, check out Linnie’s Summer Travel Series!


see you in a few hours, dc!

Photo credit

This morning I read one of Kaileen Elise’s Creative Weekend To Do Lists and felt inspired to write my own!

I’m headed up to DC around lunchtime today. Here’s what’s in store {subject to change based on the whims of three twenty-something girls!}:

  • Solo road trip with Boyfriend, Give Your Heart a Break, and Back in Time. And probably Ridin’ Solo, since it’s fitting
  • Pit stops for coffee and bubble gum {gotta have bubble gum on road trips!}
  • Jazz in the Garden with sangria
  • A night out at the Bottom Line, one of our favorite college bars
  • Brunch, most likely with bottomless mimosas
  • Tons of picture taking- with my SLR and Instagram
  • Dressing up in my city clothes 🙂
  • Wandering through different DC neighborhoods
  • Nostalgic reminiscing about our amazing DC college days
  • Catching up for hours with two of my best friends

hollymead memories

Photo credit: Sue
  • Playing a G rated Never Have I Ever during lunch on the patio
  • Larry jokingly saying “How many hussies does it take to load a dishwasher?” when we all insisted on helping out in the kitchen
  • Learning the expression “Does Dolly Parton sleep on her back?” (it’s like “Is the Queen English?”)
  • I coyly commented that it was rare for a group of twenty-somethings to befriend a group of thirty-somethings. Larry replied “We have a phrase in the business world. Don’t bullshit a bullshitter!”
  • Singing “Sue and Larry had a farm” with multiple verses
  • Seeing the wine making room
  • Joking about hiding their special bottle of wine and pretending like we drank it!
  • Naming our group The Real Hussies of Hollymead
  • Teaching current lingo like #winning, legitimately, literally, and epic 
Also, this is what Larry’s status said after we left: 

Just had a great weekend with the “four hussies” we met on the Bahamas cruise this past February. Wonderful young women with wit, wisdom and big hearts. Look forward to having them back after [our foreign exchange student] arrives so she can see the art of the possible in America’s youth.

recap: day one at hollymead farm

Good morning! I’m sitting in the office with a soy misto rehashing the weekend in my head. We all agreed that magical is the first word that comes to mind.

In case you don’t remember, I traveled with the cruise girls {my sister and our friends Colette and Erica} to western North Carolina to visit our Rotary Club cruise friends. We all agreed that no one will truly understand what an incredible trip it was, so this post is partly commemorative, partly important inspirational, and partly to provoke jealousy (kidding!).

Do you ever feel like your heart is literally swelling with happiness? Imagine a weekend filled with that feeling. Within approximately 12 seconds of walking through the door, we felt at home and at ease. Any idea that the trip might be filled with any awkwardness vanished almost immediately.

You know the kind of people who are so quick to laugh at anything? Around the right people, that’s how I consider myself. Sue and Larry are undoubtedly cut from the same fabric as us- they have the ability to laugh hysterically one moment but have a meaningful conversation the next. But I’m getting ahead of myself!

We hopped in the car at 5pm and proceeded to sing to “Call Me Maybe” and “Scream” by Usher. We stopped for food within the first 20 minutes and ended up chatting with one of the cashiers. On our way out he shouted across the restaurant, “Have fun at the farm, girls!” We were cracking up knowing that we had already had a mini-adventure and our trip had barely started! The first two hours flew by because we didn’t stop talking at all! The last hour went by even more quickly because we were so excited. As we drove up the driveway of the farm, it was just a repeated chorus of “Oh my gosh!” We were so overwhelmed by the picturesqueness of the farm- imagine huge rolling pastures, white picket fences, a long gravel driveway, a beautiful stable, grape vines planted by the side of the driveway, and huge beds of hydrangeas. And that wasn’t even taking into account the house and the patio!

Sue and Larry met us at the door and welcomed us with huge hugs. Within minutes, we were ushered out to the beautiful patio that overlooked the pastures and most of the county. Giant glasses of wine were forced upon us 🙂 Over wine and later, a delicious meal of chicken salad, we laughed hysterically, talked about our lives, and tried to remember all of the funny quotes…and there may or may not have been a mock wedding toast given by yours truly. Hands down the funniest part of the evening was Larry plomping down four homemade buttons for us. They read “Neither hussy nor bimbo am I,” which is an inside joke since one of the couples on the cruise said that we were hussies {I assure you- we’re not!}.

After many hours, we retired to our quaint guest bedrooms, which had super comfy queen-sized beds and even little bottles of water to keep us hydrated! We tried to get a good night’s sleep to prep for our big day on Saturday!

intergenerational befriending

My sister and I were always raised to be very comfortable around people of all ages. This weekend and next weekend are perfect examples of that. On Sunday morning, I met up with the girls for brunch; I walked up and found them surrounded by an entire family, including three kids and their parents. We proceeded to chat with them for about half an hour as if we’d known them forever. Throughout brunch, multiple other sets of kids and their parents stopped by our table to see the dogs and chat with us.

And remember when I mentioned that we befriended a table of older folks on our cruise to the Bahamas? I said in my post that they invited us to their farm in NC. So next weekend, the cruise girls and I will heading out to a stunning farm in rural NC see our honorary parents! They’re throwing us a pool party and are inviting the rest of their rotary club 🙂 And a quote from our email exchange with them: “I’ll need a day to buy the beer, liquor and food before you decend upon us…” Haha! I love the word choice “descend.”

Anyway, what I love about my friends is that we can act silly and ridiculous, but everyone is so open to being in new circumstances and meeting new people. I’m not sure how many other 20-somethings would walk away from a Carnival cruise with 60 or 70 year old friends!

I credit my mom a lot for this mentality {at least for my sister and I!}. I used to walk up and find her engaged in conversation with total strangers. We even had a waiter friend at a local restaurant that we would visit regularly for over five years!

Remember- every good friend was once a stranger! Likewise, every stranger is a potential friend.

Do you befriend random people? What’s your most random story?

Source: thespiderawards.com via Ona on Pinterest

dc trip recap

Like I said before, my trip up to DC last week was everything I wanted…and more 🙂

We ate a lot of sushi {at Nooshi and Sushi Go Round in Chinatown}

Drank bottomless mimosas and enjoyed the buffet at The Front Page in Dupont Circle

We saw Safe House at the Georgetown Movie Theatre

We spent time at the Dupont farmers’ market

Napa cabbage
Rainbow chard {see my rainbow frittata recipe, which has rainbow chard in it!}

Marinara sauce from one of the farms

And further up in Dupont…

To Dolcezza {where I tried the sea salt gelato- amazing}

And Lou Lou for cheap earrings 🙂

We also watched The Proposal, ate fajitas and drank margaritas at Los Cuates, enjoyed dinner at Clyde’s, and got a cupcake from Baked & Wired {and then forgot to eat it!}.

Just a few of the trip highlights! It was fantastic to spend Thursday and Friday hopping from one office to another {we have offices all over Chinatown, as well as near the White House}. I met tons of coworkers who I’ve only gchatted with, so it was great to put names to faces. I also sought out valuable recruiting advice from several of my coworkers {one recommended two books- I’ll highlight those in another post}. And spending time with my amigas is always boatloads of fun 🙂

Photo Credits  1, 23

monday morning inspiration

Read these words on Live Creating Yourself

Sip this fair trade K-cup

Sniff this fall-filled scent

Listen to this rediscovered band

Try this crisp weather soup

Embrace these cozy scarves

…And don’t forget your amazing weekend

a jaunt to the vineyard

On Sunday, my sister and I decided to take a spontaneous trip to a vineyard as part of our “leaving work at work” pact. We are of course still in love with Raleigh, but it’s nice to get away to rejuvenate and refresh every so often- or in my case, accidentally every weekend (DC then vineyard then DC again!).

So we grabbed PSLs from Starbucks, pumped up the iPod, rolled the windows down, put on the cruise control, and acted like the silly sisters we are.