America Food Recommendations 

Mr. Toots Coffeehouse

Mr. Toot’s was recommended to me by a Capitola local and I am glad it was. It’s a charming coffee shop with a warm and inviting atmosphere. It’s in a great location close to the beach, and the views of the ocean and colorful houses are awesome. . Be careful when going because the front door can be easily missed. You’ll have to walk up a small flight of stairs, and then you’ll be in the main space. The barista was very friendly and had a great conversation with me…

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America Lodging Recommendations 

The Colonial Terrace of Carmel

A tree lined lane parallel to the beach leads you to the beautiful grounds of the Colonial Terrace.  Upon arriving you can’t help but notice the beautiful gardens, immediately making you feel as if you’ve entered an oasis. . When checking in, we were greeted by a very friendly receptionist who offered coffee, tea and cookies while waiting for our keys. We were told that they were complimentary everyday starting at 4pm in the lobby – my kind of service! . At check in, we also learned that breakfast was…

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America Food Recommendations 

Breakfast at the Sugar Shack

Pictures and memories line the walls of this local and fun family diner. When you arrive you can choose to sit outside or inside, but be prepared, you may be in for a little wait. Thankfully you are at the beach and can stroll the street while you wait. We were seated (outside) by a very friendly server, but since the place was so busy, we found we were waiting on her quite a bit which was a little frustrating. I was underwhelmed by the drinks – the coffee was…

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America Recommendations 

BJ’s ATV Rental

On a whim, my husband and I decided that we wanted to have an adventure on our honeymoon – we were so happy to have found BJ’s ATV Rental so that we could journey out to the sand dunes for an exhilarating experience. . We arrived in the late afternoon without a reservation (in the slow season) and were immediately helped with no wait. We didn’t do any research prior to walking in the door, but the staff was very helpful and directed us to the best ATV for us.…

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America Food Ohio 

Sunday Brunch at the Symphony Hotel & Restaurant

As you turn the doorknob to enter into the Symphony Hotel and Restaurant you quickly realize that you are walking into  a place of history. Inside, an enchanting dining room to your right features the original character of what was once a mansion. Furnished with pictures and décor from the late 1800’s – early 1900’s you really feel like you are stepping back in time, especially with the sounds of people like Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong floating around.   As you sit down, the tables are elegantly adorned with…

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Destinations Europe Travel Guide 

5 Things You Must Do in Bruges

Bruges is a small, colorful town about an hour train ride east of Brussels. It is perfect for a day trip and a place that I would recommend over Brussels. Enjoy walking along cobblestone streets with the scenic canals at your side. Eat some Belgian delicacies like frites or waffles or get a drink at De Halve Maan Brewery for a true Belgian beer. To make the most of your time in Bruges make sure see/do my top 5 below! The Basilica of the Holy Blood This basilica is relatively small…

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Caribbean Destinations Travel Guide 

5 Reasons the Dominican Republic Should Be Your Next Caribbean Stop

A beautiful island in the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic is known for Punta Cana and the all-inclusive resorts that line the coast. I have had the pleasure of experiencing multiple resorts at different ages in my life, and I can truly say that I have had fun every time. No matter your age or what you are hoping to get out of your vacation (families, honeymooners, spring-breakers, couples), there is a resort for you. Imagine waking up to perfect weather and the view of the ocean from your window. Having…

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Europe Travel Tips 

5 Travel Tips from Backpacking Europe

In 2014, Dan and I took a trip to Europe with nothing but a backpack. It was our first big trip together and a very exciting adventure. We booked our tickets for 3 months and had a budget of $3,000 per person. Thankfully I have family in Ireland and Belgium, and at the time I had some family living in England as well, so we were able to save a lot on hostel costs by staying with them when we visited those countries. In this post, I will share a couple…

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Europe Travel Tips 

Euro Packing List

When traveling, I find that packing less is really more. If you need some convincing you can check out my 3 Months in Europe with only a Carry-On post. Below is my packing list that all fits in one carry-on suitcase. I used to really have trouble over packing clothes, so now I pack clothing with a couple rules – It must be versatile and it must be a good fabric. I stick to mostly neutral colors that can be used in many ways, and rely on simple accessories to…

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Destinations Europe Travel Guide 

5 Experiences in Barcelona You Won’t Want to Miss

Barcelona is one of my all time favorite cities. Anytime that I am in Europe, I somehow end up making a side trip to Barcelona. There is just something magical and warm about the city that can’t keep me away. It is a city different from any other Spanish city, because the region of Catalunya has a very distinct character – they have their own language, flag and customs. In fact, many Catalonians want Barcelona to be it’s own country entirely. I could talk endlessly about my love for Barcelona,…

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