After Scotland, Jeremy and I traveled to Amsterdam. A few years ago I visited Amsterdam with girlfriends (see blog post recap 1 and recap 2). However, Jeremy had never been so we made a short trip. On Monday July 9 we took an early flight from Edinburgh to Amsterdam and arrived in the early afternoon. During our visit we stayed at the super trendy W Amsterdam. The hotel is split into two separate buildings across the street from one another. One building was a former telephone exchange building and the other was a bank. When we arrived to the W our suite wasn’t ready so we ventured out into the city to our lunch reservations at De Kas.
Jeremy has a work training this week (week of July 16) in Cambridge, UK so we planned a trip to Europe the week before his training. For the first part of our trip we visited Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and then ventured into the Scottish countryside. Whenever we travel internationally we try to take overnight flights to attempt to get on the other time zone (especially when we went to Nepal and Thailand). So, we left Atlanta at 10pm on Thursday July 5 and landed in London at 11am on Friday July 6. Since we already lost a half day traveling we flew from London to Edinburgh instead of taking the train. So, by the time we got to Edinburgh it was late Friday afternoon.
Over Memorial Day weekend I spent time with my Dad’s side of the family for my cousin Victoria’s wedding. Victoria and I are only a year apart. So, growing up we were always very close. Victoria is such a beautiful person inside and out, and found her perfect match in Alex, her husband. It was so nice to see everyone for Victoria’s wedding since my Dad’s side of the family is fairly small but are all spread out.
My Dad and Stepmom live in Virginia near my Mom and sister Caylen. Aunt Linda (Victoria’s Mom), her boyfriend and my Grandmother live in Bradenton, Florida. Then, my Dad’s brother, my Uncle John, his wife Aunt Marcelle and my two cousins Melissa and Leah live in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I’m the oldest of all girl cousins. So, we always joked it was going to take a very special guy to be able to join our all female clan. Luckily Alex, Jeremy and Steven (my sister Caylen’s boyfriend make the cut).
For Mother’s Day I went to San Francisco for a girls weekend. My friend Katie lives in South San Francisco and had a baby in January. So, my friend Melissa and I met in San Francisco for the weekend to see Katie and meet her new baby boy, Tripp. Katie, Melissa and I used to be roommates in Arlington, Virginia and now all live in different states. Melissa still lives in Arlington, Virginia so I’m able to see her when I go home to visit my family. But, since Katie lives so far away, we try to see one another at least once a year. Last year I visited Katie for Memorial Day.
The weekend of April 27 to April 29, Jeremy and I visited our friends Kristyn and Jason Schellhaas in New Orleans. I’ve only been to New Orleans once before, and that was a few years back to visit them. Last time I unfortunately came down with a horrible bug and was extremely sick the entire weekend. So, this time I was looking forward to being healthy and being able to taste the New Orleans Cajun style food and drinks. Jeremy and I met Kristyn and Jason while living in DC and have stayed in touch with them after they moved to New Orleans and Jeremy and I moved to Atlanta. We had an amazing weekend filled with perfect weather, great friends, fabulous food, drinks and live music. Read more
After our time in Nepal, Jeremy and I planned a visit to Koh Samui, Thailand. Since we were already making a trip across the world, we decided to extend our vacation by an additional 5 days and relax by the beaches of Koh Samui, Thailand. We stayed at the Le Meridien Koh Samui.
Jeremy and I had an amazing opportunity to visit Nepal with his Uncle Byron, Aunt Cynthia (the aunt and uncle who we visited over Thanksgiving to their vacation home in Ojai, California), sister Molly and his Aunt Cynthia’s best friend Donatella. Jeremy’s family has donated to Mercy Corps, a global non-governmental, humanitarian aid organization for the past 10 years. Mercy Corps specializes in operating in areas that have undergone/are currently undergoing various forms of economic, environmental social and political instabilities. So, Mercy Corps is really making a difference in the world. Read more
I went to Tulum, Mexico for a last minute girls weekend. My best friend Joanna (and one of my bridesmaids) had planned a trip with another one of her friends Alexa from Houston, Texas. On New Year’s Day they both decided they needed to get out of the cold weather and planned a trip to visit Tulum, Mexico. Luckily they ended up having room in their Airbnb and so I bought a last minute plane ticket to join!
I’d previously visited Tulum in 2013 with my husband and his family. We stayed in a villa on the beautiful sandy beaches of Soliman Bay, about 20 minutes north of Tulum in Riviera Maya. For a family vacation, I highly recommend renting a house as it’s great to all spend time together rather than having 5 different hotel rooms. But, for a girl’s weekend our Airbnb in Tulum was absolutely perfect! Our Airbnb was located outside Tulum and about a 10 minute drive or 20 minute bike ride to the beach. Read more
Jeremy and I went to Hilton Head to spend some time with his family after Christmas. However, another reason we went to Hilton Head was to celebrate my brother-in-law’s 30th birthday on December 28! Read more
After spending Christmas in Virginia with my family, I flew home on Wednesday December 27 to Atlanta for a night. Then, on Thursday December 28 Jeremy and I drove to Hilton Head, South Carolina to visit his mom, step-dad and sisters. Read more
As I’ve recapped in prior years (see 2015 and 2016) Christmas is my favorite holiday to spend with my family. I flew home to Virginia on December 23 and spent four days with my family. Christmas Eve is our big night with my mom’s side of the family. My mom is one of 6 siblings and all my aunts, uncles and cousins live in Northern, Virginia. My grandmother used to host Christmas Eve dinner. However, the last couple of years my mom has hosted since my grandmother now lives full time in Florida. Then, Christmas day we spend the morning with my mom opening our stockings and presents. Then we spend the afternoon and have dinner with my dad and step-family. Read more
After spending a couple of days in Los Angeles, we drove north to Ojai, California to have Thanksgiving with Jeremy’s family. Jeremy’s aunt and uncle live in Portland, Oregon but purchased a vacation home in Ojai, California. Ojai is a small, charming city in Ventura County, northwest of Los Angeles. It’s set in a valley in the Topatopa Mountains. Read more