Travel Considerations

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This summer is a low-key one for travel around these parts. So far this year I've been to Vegas, Yosemite, and Modesto, so my hotel expenditures are on hold for the time being. That doesn't mean I haven't been dealt a healthy dose of wanderlust, though. It doesn't help matters that I've had a few conversations with friends about potential future trips, and that Sawyer is turning out to be such an excellent little traveler. 

In the past I've taken some pretty great trips- Italy, Hawaii, Mexico, the Caribbean, NYC, etc...- but not really since Sawyer has been born (just Tahoe, Yosemite, and Modesto). My husband is not a traveler, which is totally fine, but taking a young kid alone on an airplane, and then navigating through the logistics of a car seat and whatnot, have admittedly been a little daunting. But in the next year or two he will be able to move into a booster, which will make things a lot easier to manage, and will also be easier to leave at home so that I can go alone or with friends (I have left him for three nights before, but the older he gets the less guilty I will feel about maybe five or seven days, since he is less trouble and a better sleeper). Given these developments, I've been doing a lot of daydreaming about potential trips and scenarios. I have some savings goals I'd like to hit first, but hopefully 2018 or 2019 will allow me to get back into the big wide world. Here are some of my current considerations:

As a Family

Seattle, Washington
Scott and I have always wanted to got to Seattle, and a few years ago our good friends moved up, so I have been bugging him for ages to go. I think this would be a great first plane trip for Sawyer, since it's only a few hours and a direct flight. Judging from all the pictures I have seen of the area between friends and family, it's beautiful and full of plenty of family-friendly activities.

Scott and I went together for Christmas in 2010 and had a blast (this is actually the only time we have ever flown together!). I think Sawyer would have a really great time and there are so many family-friendly resorts. We stayed at Turtle Bay on the North Shore and I loved it SO much I wouldn't be opposed to returning. 

With Just My Husband

Scotland or Ireland
This is really the only international trip he has expressed significant interest in, so if he's willing I'm ready! I don't think this is a trip I'd want to take a Sawyer on anytime soon, although I am no longer against paying to take him abroad like I was before I had a child (my opinion that Europe should be a rite of passage for a young adult who can pay his/her way has been replaced with my own selfish desire to have a guaranteed travel buddy). It just seems like there would be better options if he was tagging along. 

With Just Sawyer

Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada 

Sawyer and I love nature and hiking very much, and I have had my eye on this place for years. I think it would be amazing to go during the winter, but probably more practical during the summer in terms of outdoor activities and my lack of experience driving in the snow. I'd stay on Lake Louise, I already have a few hotels in mind, and it seems pretty easy for Americans to rent cars there, so I feel like this trip would be pretty manageable. Plus maybe we could hang out in Calgary for a day or two as well! Out of all the potential trips on here, I am actually most excited by the prospect of this one. 

Portland, Oregon

Despite there now being a Voodoo Donuts in Southern California, I still want to visit Portland. I hear nothing but great things about it, and it too would be an easy flight from Southern California for Sawyer and I. 

With My Fun, Spirited, Adventurous Friend

Parts of Europe or Iceland 

Recently a friend and I started throwing out some travel options for the two of us to consider for the next few years. We talked about Europe (Switzerland! Germany!) and Iceland, for starters. I have never taken a trip with her before, but I am pretty confident we could travel well together. A lot of things we are on par with (like willing to splurge on, say hotels, for example), so that makes a huge difference.  

With My Book-Loving Friend and Colleague

Nashville, Tennessee 

This is mostly because I want to go to Ann Patchett's Parnassus and this friend and I go to readings and other literary events together (she has no idea about these hypothetical plans, haha). We've traveled together for work a few times before, so we definitely can handle that part (the logistics of leaving our families and jobs would be the hard part, not surprisingly). 

With My Mom and Brother

Denali National Park, Alaska

I really haven't had an overwhelming desire to ever take an Alaskan Cruise, as I am confused about what the time at sea would be spent doing (I am pretty confident there aren't people sunbathing on deck sipping margaritas while lathering on suntan lotion, which is my preferred sailing activity). But flying up and spending some time exploring Denali? That sounds wonderful. I WANT TO SEE A MOOSE. My mom has always wanted to go and my brother is the young, outdoorsy type, so I know we'd have fun. 


Washington, DC

I want to spend a day alone in the Smithsonian. Maybe two. Is it bad that there are a lot of American-y places I have no desire to go to at all? Sorry Abe.

New York City

I have been to the Big Apple before, with my mother-in-law, and we crammed basically every touristy thing one would want to do into three days. It was basically the survey course for NYC and it was fantastic. I'd love to go back alone and revisit some of the places we went to (The Natural History Museum, the Guggenheim, Central Park, etc...), try some more obscure, well-reviewed restaurants, and see some places I didn't the first time around. 

A Spa Somewhere Fairly Remote

Honestly, I don't care where exactly it is, as long as it's quiet, there are massages, and I can look at my windows and see trees and water. While there are some really beautiful ones on the West Coast, it would probably be good to go somewhere new. Maybe... Maine? There are some really, really beautiful ones there and I've never been.


  1. I'm not a huge traveler, but did go to Scotland a few years ago with my husband's aunt and it was such an awesome trip. (Both of us both being fans of the Outlander book series was definitely a factor in the decision to go!) I highly recommend and that seems like a really great one to do with your husband.

  2. Oooooh this is a great post, I've been to New York, and we did the same as you. We were there for 3 days, and packed them so full of tourist sites it all got a bit overwhelming! I would definitely go again and revisit some places!
    As a Scottish person I obviously highly recommend Scotland haha! It's really beautiful here and there's plenty things to do, both in the cities and in the countryside!!

  3. We took our kids to Ireland (5 and 2 at the time) and it worked out well, we changed a few of the things we would've done if it had just been the two of us as adults, but I enjoy my children as people to hang out with (even more now at 9 and 6, plus baby), so I didn't mind too much. We plan, very tentatively, to take them abroad this year, but I might chicken out under the sheer strain of all the planning.

    Also, I'm with you on Alaska.

    I'm going to Maine this summer for 8 days. You could very well see a moose there if you go to someplace relatively isolated.

    There's also Colorado! The flight isn't too bad and it can be relatively inexpensive.

  4. Oooh, loving your travel list! There are still so many places in Europe I want to go to--Germany, the UK, the rest of Spain, the rest of the Scandinavian countries. Still sort of deciding where I'd like to go to next and start saving for that...I'm also keen to travel to Western Canada and check out Banff one of these days (we've already covered the east coast).

  5. Every couple of years, each person in my family makes their own "Top 5 International"and "Top 5 Australia" travel list - we keep them and refer to them when planning holidays. At the top of my international list is Iceland - shame it would cost $40,000 to take six people on holiday there from Australia... oh well, will have to go on my own :-D

    Our family holiday to Hawaii a couple of years ago was brilliant. And, having done a four week road trip around Ireland, I reckon it would be fine with kids.

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