Our Trip To Gulf Shores, Alabama

Our Trip To Gulf Shores, Alabama

Summer 2020 has been nothing like I envisioned it to be. An eventful, sunny season is ultimately my favorite time of year and honestly all that I’d hope it to be. Due to the ongoing and everlasting pandemic, COVID-19 has gotten in the way of many things. I miss vacations! I miss itineraries and sizable events/ activities. Will traveling ever go back to being what we knew it to be? I just want it to be over!

I am optimistic that we will be able to take trips like we used to, but in the meantime, I’d like to be creative and find a way to just… get away. If not only but for a short and sweet moment, wouldn’t that be nice? July is a significant month for me and represents a time of love, joy, and happiness. For starters, it is the birth month for myself (July 10th) & a host of other family and friends! CANCERS UNITE!

It’s also the month that my husband and I wed. July 2020 will always be significant, marking five years of marriage! Could you imagine being equally excited to celebrate an occasion such as this but weary about how to even approach the planning for it? To be truthful, we’d almost given up on planning anything. What was there to do? What was SAFE to do?

There may not be much to do, but there was one thing that we knew to do: we had to get away. Our research on VRBO led us to condo rentals that wouldn’t be too far from home in Gulf Shores, Alabama. We have vacationed there a couple of times before and have always managed to have a great time. We hadn’t heard in any surge of COVID-19 cases there, and the rental properties seemed to have accommodations, rules, and guidelines due to the current pandemic that we could comply with. I started to become intrigued by the possibilities of being able to escape my bedroom, office, and living room spaces.

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Young’s Suncoast Condo Rentals
We found a beautiful one-bedroom condo within minutes from the Gulf Shores beach. Young’s Suncoast has several properties within the area (Orange Beach, Gulf Shores, Fort Morgan). The One Club condo property offered us many amenities, a few that we could take advantage of such as a restaurant and bar that delivered, 24/7 Fitness Center, and private cabanas. Check out pictures from the Young’s Suncoast website for pictures of vacation rental properties. I decided to decorate our condo on arrival day with themed balloon colors and anniversary keepsakes. Everything turned out flawlessly and set the tone for a weekend full of love, happiness, and relaxation.

White, Gold, Teal Balloons
Gold Backdrop
Feathers

Beach Bums & Sandcastles
Public beaches are open if you’re in or near Alabama! It’s dead in the middle of Summer and thanks to COVID, my family and I haven’t had any family fun at the beach. We were able to find a spot on the beach, at a safe distance from everyone else, and hang out for the day. It was nice to watch the waves (which were high that day) and lay out in the sun. I walked the shore for a bit before building sandcastles with my husband and son.

Eat and Merry
Normally when I travel, I like to dine-in at restaurants that I’ve never experienced. I truly miss life pre-COVID. We worked around restaurant closures and limited menus the best that we could and honestly owe Door Dash a huge thank you! If you don’t have this food delivery service it is worth the app to download on your smartphone. Another Broken Egg is one of my favorite brunch restaurants and every time I visit Gulf Shores, it is a must-have. Usually, I’d recommend restaurants like GT’s On The Bay or Barefoot Island Grill. If you don’t have to venture out, let the food come to you. Here’s some Door Dash promo codes for July. Hurry, they’ll be expiring soon.

We Are Family
I envisioned a tropical vacation trip out of the country (it would’ve been my first time) for my fifth wedding anniversary. I’d previous thoughts about taking a cruise or a trip to the Bahamas. However, circumstances allowed us to create memories in other ways. Fun Fact: My husband and I didn’t get to have a real honeymoon after our wedding. The trip to Gulf Shores allowed my family and me to find innovative ways to bond. Usually, vacations are filled with activities, events, and itineraries. Quality time indoors while you’re away from home is typically minimal but, it deepened our communication with each other. For example, we played Zingo (a fun sight word game for toddlers) for a family fun night. Landon enjoyed identifying words on his (and everyone else’s) boards and getting a taste of winning at games.

What Summer travel plans did you have to change due to COVID-19? Will you still be taking any trips with the Summer almost coming to an end? Have you taken any trips yet this Summer? Leave a comment below.

35 Things I Want To Do Before Turning 35

35 Things I Want To Do Before Turning 35

Time waits for no one.

With everything that is happening in the world right now, I can’t help but sit and reflect. Life has a funny way of slowing you down. It’s been forcing me to really sit down and put some long thought into what I reaaallly need to be coming to terms with. What’s that? So glad that you asked. Life is short and if you let it, it can pass you by.

I know you know the sayings, just like I know the sayings. We’ve heard them quite a few times throughout our lives, but is it just a saying or is it really that real? While I have been choosing to isolate at home by way of social distancing, I’ve been thinking of all the things that I should be doing. That I have been putting off or simply making excuses as to reasons why they can’t be done. I’ve let myself get distracted from meeting my goals, guys!! I’m thirty-one years old and there’s still so much that I want to do. The younger me thought that I would’ve been “settled” and boyyyy was I wrong. 

Hold up! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been enjoying life but I’ve realized that there are things that I have not had the chance to do yet; that I thought I would have by this stage in life. I haven’t and will not give up on them, as there are other things I want to experience again because it makes me happy. Who doesn’t want to experience something that made them once happy over and over

So, I’ve decided to come up with a list. A list of things that I would like to do before reaching the next “major milestone” in my life. I did the math. I’m thirty-one now. In four years, I will be thirty-five. Four years should be enough time to knock off a few goals, right? Did I come up with realistic ideas that can be achieved? How much can one achieve in four years? It’ll at least give me some things to look forward to doing. As long as I am manifesting my goals, I can keep being the driving force in actually accomplishing whatever it is I want! I’ve attached my list below and included a few that I’m working on already, to give myself a head start. Read the list and wish me luck! Maybe, just maybe, you’re inspired and want to make your own list. That’s awesome!  Leave me a comment below so that I can follow along with you! 

  1. Become a Successful Blogger
  2. Travel/ Vacation to Miami, Florida
  3. Buy/Build a House
  4. Travel/ Vacation Outside of the U.S.
  5. Renew my vows
  6. Relocate to a new state
  7. Take Online Courses/ Go to University
  8. Go on a Cruise
  9. Increase my net worth
  10. Upgrade my car
  11.  Lower my debt/ increase my credit score
  12. Partner with a major corporate brand
  13. Travel/ Vacation to Los Angeles, California
  14. Attend a concert/ Attend a festival
  15. Successfully own a business
  16. Become a member of a church
  17. Own a creative space
  18. Redecorate/ Interior decorate my home
  19. Learn a new skill
  20. Spend more time with family/ friends
  21. BE HAPPIER!
  22. Support a hobby/ extracurricular activity of my son’s
  23. Attend a Paint ‘N Sip Party
  24. BE HEALTHIER!
  25. Take my mother on a shopping spree
  26. Take myself on a shopping spree
  27. Go to therapy
  28. Create a meditation schedule
  29. Chase my dreams
  30. Gain 25 pounds
  31. Establish a tribe
  32. Read 10 different books
  33. Make/ create a new project
  34. Exercise two times a day
  35. Go to a ball/ gala

Romantic Ideas for Date Night this Valentine’s Day

Romantic Ideas for Date Night this Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is around the corner and you may be looking for some wonderful ideas on how to have a fantastic evening with your significant other (if you haven’t started getting ideas before now). Quality time with your partner is important to not only you but your partner as well. When you’re busy with your everyday lives, working and parenting, you deserve to love on each other in a way that means the most to you. If you are tired of the traditional flowers, candy, gifts, dinner and a movie–don’t worry! Romance can be a wide spectrum of how people find ways to express love and gratitude to those you love. Reminder: roses and chocolate ain’t for everybody! Here are ten creative ways to have a romantic and memorable experience with your partner that are guaranteed to be a fun night out!

Take a Paint and Sip Class

Photo Credit: Painting With a Twist

A good way to bond with your partner could be to take a painting class together. Sharing an evening of wine and art in a relaxed setting could offer a unique experience that you both would not forget. Most paint and sip classes are inexpensive and have been found to be very popular. Check locally for any studios that could be hosting a party near you. Note: Painting With a Twist has several locations throughout the U.S., see if there are any near you!

Themed Dinner and Movie at Home

Let’s face it, filling your belly up while watching a good flick always sound like a good idea. Valentine’s Day falls on a weekday this year, and after a long day at work, the two of you might not be feeling leaving the house or finding a babysitter to do anything. Watching a new or your favorite movie that the two of you picked out, paired with a home-cooked meal could be a fun way to talk to each other about the other’s day. Cooking together will allow the two of you to relax after a stressful day and focus on the things you love; the comfort of each other and your home.

Take a Couples Cooking Class

All of the restaurants can book up quickly on Valentine’s Day and it’s quite possible that you may be tired of having to choose from the same restaurants for reservations. A cooking class will give you the opportunity to learn how to make each other’s favorite meals! See if you’re able to sign up for a local cooking class that will either allow you to create your own menus or create full-course meals from a delectable menu prepared for you. Pricing on cooking classes is usually per couple, not individually, but it isn’t exactly the cheapest option on this list. It’s best to plan ahead if this is something that you know you and your partner would be in to doing.

Go to a Live Concert

Your favorite artist may have a show coming up near you. Fun fact: a few Valentine’s Day dates ago, my husband and I went a Jazmine Sullivan concert and had the time of our lives. Jazmine is a phenomenal singer that both of us enjoy listening to and it really created a memorable experience of a lifetime! We still talk about going to this concert to this very day. This also may be another option where you will need to plan in advance for, with having to purchase tickets. However, if you’re in to trying out your luck last minute, you never know what could happen. We actually got our concert tickets just days before the show.

Ice Cream Date

Who said that chocolate has to be the preferred sweet treat for Valentine’s Day? This can be a great idea to incorporate the kids and make it a “family date night”. Bring your loves to the nearest Marble Slab Creamery or Dippin’ Dots for a sweet inexpensive treat. I scream, you scream, everybody will scream for ice cream!

A Relaxing Day at the Spa

The two of you deserve a relaxing day, free of all of your day to day routine. It may be time to escape and what better way to do it than to visit the spa. Most spas have Valentine’s Day deals and packages that you can look into to take advantage of before it’s too late. Keep in mind that other couples may have this same idea in mind and you may need to schedule your appointments as soon as you know that you and your partner would like to make it a day of relaxation.

Book a Hotel Room for the Night

Can’t afford to take time off of work and/or get away for the weekend due to no one to watch the kids? Open up your browser tab and log in to your Expedia or Priceline to see what last minute, one night only deals you can find. This can also be a family date night idea! As much as you could use a break, the kids may enjoy this time away from home too.

Plan a Fun Date Night w/ Other Couples

A couples’ retreat with your friends could be fun. Whether it is a vacation that you guys decide to plan out together or a group outing in town, it will prove to be a fun, interactive way to hang out with your partner and friends!

Recreate Your First Date

This could be a super romantic gesture if you have a great memory. Plan to travel to all of the spots where you shared your firsts. Your first meals, your first kiss, the first time you bought each other something in the mall. If you’re creative enough, this might be the really emotional idea that could remind you of all the moments you’ve shared together.

Go Dancing!

Like to dance? Not just at the club! Learning how to salsa could be a fun experience. Go have some drinks together and find a local salsa, samba, or tango class you can sign up for and cut a rug! Taking a dancing class (whether you’re a great dancer or terrible dancer) is guaranteed to be a joyous time out of the house. You’ll be surprised at all the moves you and your partner will make.

Whatever you decide to do this Valentine’s Day, make sure your heart is in it. You don’t have to do any of the typical things that people normally do on this day. Your partner is with you because you make them feel like the happiest person alive! Any gesture from you will be one that they will embrace the most, regardless of whatever ideas you decide to come up with.