How To Make A Hotel Room Cozy

Home Away From Home

make hotel room more comfortable and cozy. how to enjoy vacation more with essential oils, rituals, lamps, etc.

Traveling is great and all, but unless you’ve got the big bucks chances are you’re not staying in a nice fancy hotel. When staying in less then ideal hotels you can deal with weird smells, stuffy rooms, annoying customer service, etc. But THANKFULLY you can do something to help make your stay more enjoyable.

cozy hotel rooms

Hotel Tips

Bring A Diffuser and Citrus Essential Oils 

That air in the room has been recycled for only God knows how long. Diffusing citrus oils will not only clean the air but also clean the entire room! Citrus oils are naturally purifying and cleansing. These oils are also great for uplifting, energizing, and may even improve your mood!

Here are the citrus oils : Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Tangerine, Wild Orange and a simply divine blend called Citrus Bliss (forreal though, the scent is bliss.) You can always mix and match oils too! I recently smelled the combination of Spearmint and Lime and GOOD LAWWD it was magical.

Here are some diffuser ideas:

doterra_petal_diffuser_essential_oil_diffuser_1509676683_e9a9b2830love love this one -its so cute and minimal!

this one is on my wish list- one day!

Bring Your Own Sheets

The older I get, the more aware of germs I become. Of course, I would like to think that the sheets are 100% totally and completely sterilized.. but how can I be sure? Just thinking of the many other naked bodies on the sheets makes me wanna hurl a little bit. And the blankets? You really honestly think hotels wash those every time? No. def not.

So if we’re driving to our hotel I always make sure to pack a big bag full of sheets, pillowcases, and a blanket. It is so worth it you guys. I feel so much more at ease, and even having my house scent instead of weird chemical smell on the sheets is amazing. And if you’re really awesome, you’ll also bring your own pillows. Just recently had an awful weekend because the pillows were like big sacks of flour and I could not sleep. lesson learned.

Continue Normal Routines

It can be hard keeping up with your routines when you’re thrown into a weird room in a weird place, but making sure you take the time to be as consistent as you can with what you do at home will make a big difference. For example, I always oil pull in the morning, so I try to do that, I bring my dry brush, tongue scraper, face masks, etc. I try to stick as closely to my normal routine as possible and it helps me feel more in control and at ease.

Himalayan Salt Plug Ins

If you read my previous blog post, you know how powerful and amazing himalayan salt lamps are. But I totally know they aren’t the most practical thing to bring while traveling. Thats why the plug in versions are SO DOPE!! You’ll just amplify the cleansing air process while making the room feel more like yours. Also great alternative if you like having night lights!

These ones look amazing.

Bring Hand Sanitizer

Not only for your hands, but also to clean some of the small things in the room- door knobs, tv remote, headboard, night stand, etc. I used to clean condos so I first hand know that people who clean fast do not always clean super well.

doterra-touch-on-guard-10mlI really like using the DoTerra Hand Sanitizer because it’s all natural, you don;t need a ton, and it smells so good because of the blend of warm essential oils!

Pack Food

If you’re like the majority, chances are you have a sensitive stomach/food sensitivities. I know it can be hard to find restaurants that you can trust won’t hurt your stomach, especially in smaller towns. I always like to pack a few meals depending on my length of stay. Plus some simple breakfasts that don’t require any heating up.

For example, I recently brought these; chia seed pudding, hard boiled eggs, fruit, big salad, baked sweet potatoes, baked chicken, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. So simple and only needed to be refrigerated. Try and find a hotel with a fridge in the room, but if not, just bring a large cooler and keep refilling the ice!

Bring Sleep Items

You never know if the hotel will be noisy, have lots of light, or really uncomfortable beds. So I recommend bringing an eye mask, ear plugs, and maybe even some melatonin if you’re having the worst time falling asleep! I’m definitely to the point in my life where I prioritize sleep over so many things- even looking like an overpacked crazy lady.

That’s pretty much it! I am always thankful for traveling, but that doesn’t mean I settle! There are always super simple and cheap ways to make your life better. Always remember that.

xxJoannaxx

*this post contains affiliate links- but don’t worry! It comes at no extra charge to you. You simply help support me and my blog when you purchase the items through the link I provided :)*

How To Fly Healthy

Turn Your Coach Experience Into A First Class Experience

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We just got back from two weeks abroad in France! We saw so many beautiful places, made so many memories, and even after being back in the states for a week and a half I still want to say Bonjour and Merci whenever I see someone.

But you guys.. our journey back home was a bit brutal- just shy of 24 hours of travel. Thankfully, before we left I compiled an arsenal of tools to use while on our flights to make them a lot more manageable! I am going to also write a blog post on what I used to make sure we stayed healthy even while living out of a suitcase, eating at restaurants for all of our meals, and definitely not sticking to our diets. Keep an eye out for it!

HOW TO FLY HEALTHY

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  1. Preventing Dehydration
    •  Plane air is extremely extremely dry and can cause dehydration insanely fast. Symptoms of dehydration include headaches, bloat, jet lag, dull skin, irritable bowels, and just overall sickliness. You should drink at least eight ounces of water every hour to keep your body properly hydrated.
    • I know that plain water can just taste so bland, right? WELL. I have discovered something absolutely magical to help with all of this!! LIQUID IV HYDRATION PACKETS. These are “a Non-GMO electrolyte drink mix that utilizes the breakthrough science of Cellular Transport Technology.. to deliver hydration to your bloodstream faster and more efficiently than water alone. 1 liquid IV can provide the same hydration as 2-3 bottles of water.”
    • Did you read that last sentence!? One packet = 2-3 bottles of water! And they come in different flavors! So not only do you have to drink less, but you’re more hydrated and your water tastes so delicious! I got the lemon/lime one and it’s sooo goooood. These really come in handy, especially on long flights! Get them here!
    • I also make sure to bring lots of tea bags, they’re much tastier than plain water and depending on what tea you bring, they can also provide a lot of health benefits!
  2. Sore Muscles
    • I don’t know anyone who finds those little seats comfortable. Not moving for a long length of time, not being able to extend your limbs.. it’s giving me claustrophobia just writing about it! And I’m sure you’ve experienced the dreaded pain that comes with being in these seats. That dull ache that radiates throughout the body.
    • Until recently, I just figured it was something I had to deal with. BUT NO MORE! meet your new Flying BFF- Yoga Massage Balls. so simple yet so ingenious. They’re small balls you can place behind your back, under your butt bone, by your shoulder, on your neck. You just roll all around it with your body. The pressure from your weight gives an amazing deep tissue massage. We also used these while not on the plane! When you can’t travel with all of your fancy healthy gadgets (like foam rollers) this does the trick in a pinch!
    • The other SUPER AMAZING product to bring with you while traveling is the DoTerra Deep Blue Rub. This. stuff. is. sent. from. heaven. above. hallelujah. amen. praise be. But for real you guys I would never leave my house without packing this. If you ever have a tight or sore muscle, rub this on and you will immediately feel relief. It’s the better, more effective, all natural alternative to tiger balm. I brought the sample packets because they’re really easy to pack! Plus you honestly don’t need a lot of the product so they last a really long time. However, if you’re thrifty and wanna save some dollahs, just buy the whole bottle and put some in smaller travel tubes! Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  3. Inability To Sleep
    •  Those overnight flights are killer. You’ve got these weird lights on, you’re not comfortable, you can’t position your body in any way to encourage sleepiness, and there’s always some baby crying. But sleeping is sooo crucial for your travel. Getting off the plane after not sleeping and having a full day of adventuring can honestly set your whole trip off. maybe even cause sickness! I’ve got you covered:
    • Drink Kava Tea (ask for plain hot water from hostess and bring your own tea bags), Take Melatonin, Apply Lavender Essential Oil to Wrists and/or take the Serenity Blend Capsules from DoTerra, Eye Mask, Ear Plugs, Inflatable Neck Pillow, scarf to cover face/use as blanket, and exercise that day or the day before so your body is tired and wants rest. Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  4. Feeling OuttaWack
    •  This word kinda describes what I’m trying to say haha. When you’re on a plane you are immediately ungrounded. Your feet aren’t touching the ground but you also may be passing through timezones, your internal clock is messed up, you feel nervous or anxious from being on a plane, you really just don’t feel normal.
    • Try these tips: Yoga before your plane ride, really zone in on your body and your breath, this will help relax you. Take deep, long breaths in and out from the nose to help your body recognize that you’re okay, you’re not in a fight or flight mode (I actually just did a video tutorial on this on my IGTV channel! Check it here). Use Balance Essential Oil Blend on bottom of feet and wrists before and during flight. This is a wonderful blend of essential oils that is super grounding, made primarily from tree essential oils which are known for their grounding abilities (roots baby, its’ all about the roots and solidity)
  5. Bloat
    •  This is something that can be hard to avoid. Amidst the dry air, the pressure changes, the weird plane food, being squished next to people and not feeling comfortable, bloating used to seem like it’s just part of the plane ride that came with the fee. BUT there are many tips for how to avoid this!
    • Bring your own food. Pack meals and snacks depending on how long the flight is. Try and eat light, your body is already in a weird limbo state and giving it heavy meals that takes a lot of energy to break down isn’t going to end well. Drink plenty of liquids so your stomach has enough lubrication to perform digestion. (There are many people who actually fast during their plane ride and don’t feel any of these affects! However, not everyone’s body can do this so make sure you listen to yours!)
    • But hey, I’m right there with you when I say that sometimes it is not easy to turn down a free meal… so now your belly is swelling up to the size of a pregnant woman, what do you do? Take Digestive Enzymes while eating, especially when eating heavier, inflammatory meals. It’s not a bad idea to take these no matter what you eat, it’s always a good thing to put less stress on your body.
    • Rub DigestZen on your belly, and actually massage it in with soft clockwise rotations around the belly. DoTerra offers a Pre-Diluted Rollerball for people who are more sensitive (children, older adults) and it’s also more beneficial than the straight oil because the carrier oil actually seals in the essential oils so that they don’t evaporate! If you prefer not to make the plane smell (which you shouldn’t, your health matters too!) they also come in tablets called DigestTab! These are super amazing, I always have a couple in my purse whenever i go out to eat!
  6. Dry Skin
    •  Does anyone else always get a “plane pimple”? It doesn’t matter how long I’m on a plane for.. without fail, I always get a pimple from being on a plane. Probably a mix from recycled bacteria ridden air and no moisture. So there is a way to prevent this! If I’m on an overnight flight, I always pack my skin care routine into my carry-on bag so that I can still wash and moisturize my face. You can do it easily in the bathroom! I also always bring a face mist to periodically spray my face with.
    • The one I make is super simple- 1-2 tsp Aloe Gel, 3 drops Lavender Essential Oil, 2 oz Rose Water, combine in 2 oz Amber Glass Spritz Bottle, shake, and apply! I’ve also heard of people who apply masks while on planes! It’s a great way to pass time and keep your skin lookin’ fly.
  7. Stagnant Blood
    •  This is important to everyone, but especially for those of you that struggle with varicose veins/have a family history of them. When you sit in the same position for hours and don’t use your legs, blood pools and your leg expands, your veins have to work insanely hard to keep blood moving.
    • To prevent this, make sure you either get up and walk around every hour, or if you don’t feel like getting up, simply pump your feet as if you were pumping your brakes. This will get the blood flowing. You can also wear Compression Socks, but those of you that have vein problems should definitely wear them!! I found mine on amazon, and you can choose which one you like based on your color preference and size!Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  8. Preventing Sickness
    • I’m not sure why, but there always seem to be someone right next to me who can’t seem to stop coughing the whole trip. And all of those germs spewing out? Yeah they’re being recycled in the air that the whole plane is breathing. So many people get sick after being on a plane, they inevitably pick up someones illness and it can be really hard to fully enjoy your trip if you’re feeling under the weather.
    • But no more! There are so many ways to boost your immune system before and during the flight so that you can fight away all of those nasty germs.
    • Before your flight: Eat a whole food based diet- lots of veggies, fruits, fats, whole grains, etc. Make sure you’re exercising, drinking lots of water, getting out in the sun and absorbing that good Vitamin D. Take Probiotics to keep that good bacteria in your gut. And right before your flight, make sure you rub d OnGuard Essential Oil Blend on your neck and bottom of your feet to pump up your immune system even more.
    • During Flight: Spray down your tray and seat area with the On Guard Sanitizing Spray, you really have no idea how well they clean those after each flight, Take an On Guard Beadlet to keep your immune system boosted from the inside out, and take a Vitamin D3 capsule. These will all keep your immune system strong and prevent you from getting sick! Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

And thats just about the jist of it! All of these made my super long flights a lot more enjoyable. I felt way more in charge of my experience and my body. If you have any more tips please leave them in a comment below! I’m always trying to make my coach flight feel like a first class flight 🙂

xxJoanna

*This post contains affiliate links, but don’t worry! These come at no extra charge to you, you’re just helping support me and my blog when you shop using the links :)*

8 Best Essential Oils to Pack When Traveling

Don’t Take a vacation from your health

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I’ve travelled quite a bit, and whether by plane or car (or boat) there are some key essential oils you should bring with you to keep you healthy and happy! With any type of medicine you pack, it is usually for preventative measures. I don’t take all of these daily, but I love being in control of my health when I start to feel a little down.

Great part: the bottles don’t leak or break easily so you don’t have to worry about crazy padding or packing techniques!

TIP: If flying, always try to keep your oils in your carry on; could you imagine the airline losing your bag and you losing all of those precious oils!? Gah, it’s almost to hard to think about.

KEY TIP: Some of these oils I recommend ingesting, but you must ONLY USE oils that are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, anything else can cause serious internal damage. I exclusively use DoTerra because they are the cleanest and purest company out there. If you want to know more, send me a message, I’d love to talk to you about how they can change your life! Or if you already believe in the power of essentials and wanna get an amazing membership with great benefits, sign up here!

Top Oils To Bring When Traveling

Oregano– If you suddenly become feeling unwell or under the weather, this combined with On Guard and Melalueca is the ultimate sickness bomb!

On Guard– great for keeping your immune system high, and cleaning surfaces

Melalueca (Tea Tree)– A powerful oil that is purifying and fights against unwanted bacteria and pathogens. It keeps bugs away when dilutes,and is great for all sorts of cuts and scrapes

Frankincense– I take this every day to keep my immune system at it’s best, and if i have a head of neck tension, cut, scrape or scratch, etc this is the oil to take. “When in doubt, take frankincense!”

Peppermint– perfect for freshening breath, increasing energy, helping digestive problems, easing congestion, and alleviating head or neck tension.

Deep Blue– for pulled or sore muscles

Lavender– to help with sleeping and skin injuries (burns, rashes, cuts, etc)

Lemon– add to water to help with detoxing- while traveling or on vacation, we tend to eat a little bit out of our normal diet, and can use that extra detox!

What do you bring on trips to keep your health within your control? Essential Oils, Supplements, herbs? Comment below and let me know!

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xxjoannaxx

Italian Fashion Inspiration

H E L L O.

(seinfeld reference)

So..I was just in Italy for 2 weeks!! 1 week in Rome, 1 week in Bologna (a super small, countryside town.) While enjoying the multitude of delicious food, beautiful people watching, ancient ruins.. I couldn’t help but notice the many, many CUTE outfits. Naturally, I jotted down a few I hoped to recreate in the good ol’ US of A.

Italian Outfit Inspiration

Culottes– okay, not popular in Florida but DANG are they popular in Italy! Such a fun, yet chic look and way cuter than typical jeans. They come in a variety of colors and patterns, but those blue and white stripes were my absolute fave. (thanks to the girl at the cafe wearing those with a grey top, white shoes, messy bun, and effortless beauty)

 

Oxfords– Saw these EVERYWHERE. Reminded me of Elaine Benes. They may look a little funky in photos, but seeing them on… total game changer. My favorite is the perforated wing tip. I love how classy they look, but can still be paired with a casual outfit.

 

Tweed Jacket– So I flew out of Milan the day after Fashion Week ended, so I’m pretty sure I saw a ton of models. One in particular was wearing all black, with doc martins and a grey tweed jacket. she looked so so cute. The more I looked into blazers the more I realized how popular they are in Europe. They instantly pull an outfit together, achieving the chic effortless cool girl look.

 

Tulle Skirt with Leather Jacket and Boots– Thank you older woman on the Subway- you are a lifetime fashion inspiration. She was wearing a long, dark tulle skirt, button down, leather jacket, and leather boots. She was also like 50. I couldn’t find an exact replica online, but they’re kind of similar! I love this idea for the colder months (or days for FL.)

 

All Black with Long Kimono– Only saw this once, but daaaaang Imma fan. It really doesn’t fall under the “Italian style”, but I love a bohemian flare. The all black outfit really accentuates the beautiful colors and patterns of the kimono. Plus, a stylish cape you can wear in public? Oh heck yeah.

 

Things Not Fashion Related, but Still Inspired By Those Italians:

  • HAVE TO wear perfume. and it better smell good. and there better be enough applied so that when you walk past someone they are temporarily put into a trance.
  • Enjoy all types of food. Gelato is not just enjoyed by tourists.
  • Dear Lord Have Mercy, I love that Limoncello.

 

xxJoannaxx

 

Road Trippin’ Travel Tips (pt 2)

now say that ten times fast

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So on our trip to and from New Hampshire, James and I had to drive separate vehicles. James was pulling the trailer and it would be all wacked out if we had attached my 4runner to the back of the trailer which was already attached to James’ hitch.

Making the 30 hour trip is no fun, and it’s especially no fun when you have to do it alone. So I thought I would share my tips for making trips all by your lonesome self: 

You absolutely need multiple forms of entertainment; audiobooks, podcasts, music, and sometime even just someone to call. (Hi, Mom) 

Bring your ipod with all of your music, and have that baby on shuffle; you will be pleasantly surprised when music you haven’t listened to in years comes on (hello short but oh so passionate boy band phase)

Put your bass setting on the highest level possible.

Have a multitude of books on tape with different genres; I recently learned that depressing romantic books don’t do the best on long trips.

Snacks; you need them. you will desire them. Even though your body isn’t moving at all, you will find that you will be hungry 99% of the time. Maybe from the boredom, maybe from using that brain power, either way you need snacks. 

Recommended snacks- nuts – (great source of protein, fat, and carbs) they will keep you full and they don’t need to be prepared or refrigerated // fruit – delicious, juicy, hydrating, sweet // veggies – like carrots, cucumbers, celery- anything that can be cut up into small sticks // crackers (and if you’re skilled you can also bring some hummus so you can dip while driving) // smoothie – a liquified meal- hello. 

The whole water situation is tough- you will get thirsty, but you will also have to stop more often to pee so its a funky balance *****also***** singing, although a great way to pass the time, it will immediately make you thirsty 

Dancing is also great- and driving will give you the opportunity to learn some sweet shoulder, head, chest, and hand dance moves. ( nothing below the waist obviously, you would get into an accident) 

If at the end of the day you’re starting to get mad ancy, roll the windows down, blast music, and dance and sing your heart out 

Wear layers- you don’t want to be hot or cold.

Try and stretch before, after and maybe even during your day trip- your hips, knees, shoulders, and neck will get all outta-wack. 

bring sunglasses- not only for those sunny days, but they can also be really useful during a rainstorm when it’s hard to see. the sunglass tint will make is easier to see the lines in the road and other lights. 

If you are staying at truck stops, you need earplugs for when you sleep- some guys don’t turn their trucks off at night and it’s insanely loud. 

 

And that’s pretty much all I have for ya.

 

xxJoannaxx

Why Hello There

Yeah, it’s been a few months.

“And some things that should not have been forgotten were lost. History became legend. Legend became myth.”

-Galadriel (Lord of the Rings)

Now who would I be if I didn’t quote Lord of the Rings every once in awhile? Not Joanna, that’s for dang sure.

So I suppose some updates are in order; current life always seem to pass you by so quickly.

We recently took the trip down to FL to begin the (unbeknownst to us) the long, emotional, roller coaster search for our ‘house.’ Long story short, it was really hard for us to really zone in on what we absolutely needed in a house, and let go of the other desires. Tampa isn’t the most ideal location for those who want a beautiful house with a large backyard in a safe, convenient area. But through persistence and patience, we finally found a home (hopefully). There are still some discrepancies at play, but seriously this whole experience has been so good for James and I. Even if by some crazy chance this house doesn’t’ work out, I won’t regret any of it.

I’ve been working a lot on my business, specifically the ‘behind the scenes’ work; website, social media, future products, etc. I will say I have learned A TON. I really hope all of this hard work pays off. I am excited to move back to FL for the really great opportunities for the growth of my business. Shameless Plug – If you are interested in trying out some of my products, there’s a really great sale going on now. All you need to do is subscribe on the website to get your code <3

While in FL, my mom took me to an AWESOME yoga class with the best teachers. And because of this, I am now super into yoga, AND HAVE THE GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO GO TO ITALY THIS SUMMER FOR A YOGA RETREAT WITH MY MOM. <<< One of the greatest sentences I have ever written.

I can’t even express how totally excited I am, already starting to plan months in advance.

Oh yeah, I got ‘french bangs’ and I am SO in love with them. I really wish I had done it sooner.

Currently, at this very moment: 

James is stoking the fire

Just basted chicken that is baking, smells diving

Some fantasy movie is on with Kristen Stewart (bleh)

I wish the Big Bang Theory was on instead

Can’t wait to hear back from the Doctor about my blood work results, really hope he can heal my stomach problems

Drinking a green smoothie and protein shake

Thinking about the future, and becoming increasingly excited for what it has to offer

Fin 

xxJoannaxx

Here and Now

Hey babesababesbabe.

I have life updates. For me personally, not the normal James+Joanna combo I usually write about.

  1. I started a business! well I began it awhile ago, but it’s actually in motion now. I have insurance, a website, business cards, so I’m pretty much a professional. Ha yeah. I have been doing some craft shows here and there, while also selling online at Etsy and my own website. The business is called Moon + Sea and I create all natural and organic beauty products! It’s pretty dope, and I really want to succeed at this.
  2. I’m going to school! It’s an online school called the School of Integrative Nutrition. I’m learning all about health and diets and food and wellness and it’s so great. At the end I will be a certified Holistic Health Coach! This is a passion of mine and I’m so blessed to be able to pursue it.
  3. Currently trying to heal my gut. I have digestive issues where pretty much everything I eat causes stomach pain…. it’s pretty horrible. I was going to one doctor but he was having me take 65 vitamins A DAY. and after two months there was literally no change. So now I’m using Dr Axe’s Leaky Gut Program and I reallly hope it works. Fingers Crossed.
  4. Well, as you would have read in the previous post I/we are moving! So that’s big news.

And that’s about all of the new news.

love love.

kisses**

change of tides

As common as it is, as often as it arises, as much as you may try and prepare for it,

change is not something that comes easy.

It does not matter if it is something that is so wonderful and needed, something that has been waited for and dreamed about… nothing comes without sacrifice. It may be small and insignificant, but you must always lose one thing in order to gain another.

Our recent move from the homeland of Florida to New Hampshire was, for the most part, stress free. Although new and unknown, New Hampshire is beautiful. We are stationed near a small town, surrounded by trees, lakes, and mountains. There is so much for us here.

 

But you can’t help the soft knocking of memories from old times. They sneak in when all is silent. You hear them knocking and cannot help but open the door.

Those memories of living with family; having that warm remembrance surround and engulf you. Remembering the days of freedom and security and being worry-free. Even the smallest memories come with a huge wave of emotion.

 

But you must always remember.

Yes, that part of your life was beautiful and it will always be a sacred, safe place. But life is in constant motion and it can never be stopped, so you must not dwell on the things that have come and gone. You have the present and future. And, even though they are not as well-known, they still hold beauty and importance.

Always be thankful.

but never forget.

and always keep your eyes and heart open.

East – the beginning

We stayed in Pennsylvania a couple nights ago. We were greeted with a beautiful, long awaited thunderstorm, lush green trees and all of the wild sunflowers bursting with their bright yellow faces.

Feels like home already.

There’s just something about the east that is so comforting and homey that the other parts of the US don’t have. It may not have crazy unique parks or landmarks, but it is beautiful. We drove up and down and side to side looking for our ‘home,’ and all along it was right above us somewhere on the east side. We’re being as patient as we possibly can to finally discover our home. I am absolutely aching inside to decorate it. Pinterest is both a blessing and a curse.

I’ve also been craving pizza and twizzlers. I’ve resisted for a good amount of time, but I don’t know how much longer I can last under the pressure. When the body wants something, it almost always gets what it wants sooner or later. (PS I’m not some health food snob, but after sitting for hours on hours every day I start to feel frumpy and try to eat healthy to combat that. But lets be honest…there’s just something about road trips and junk food that go so well together.)

UPDATE- I have satisfied my junk food craving with a full, delicious meal from Wendy’s. best decision in a very long time.

CHICAGO

We walked SO much, so so much. We were only there for four days and we went to museums every. single. day. And these aren’t those small museums you can check off your list after an hour, no.. these museums are ginormous. We went to the Field Museum, Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of Science and Industry, Alder’s Planetarium, Shedd Aquarium, Willis Tower, and still managed to walk around downtown a bit to see the Bean, Picasso’s Statue, and all of the hustle and bustle. There was this super great deal going on where you could buy the CityPass, which included passes to 5 museums/attractions for half off! So we totally snatched that up.

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The Field Museum was unnnnbbeeeelivable. SO many things to see. We were there for six hours and still only managed to see about 80%, and we were walking and looking at stuff the entire time. I’m not even one to get all hyped up on history and I really enjoyed this museum.

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Art Institute of Chicago was freakin’ sweet as well. My favorites were the Impressionism/Modern/Post-Modern sections, but they had so much more than that. From Greek pottery to Middle Aged suits of armor to Salvador Dali. Even James enjoyed it!

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Museum of Science and Industry was off the chain. If you’re a Floridian and went to MOSI as a kid… well, this place totally blows MOSI out of the water into another space continuum. This thing had it all- submarine, actual airplane, tornado maker, 3D model that showed you what your actual heartbeat looked like.. (my favorite,) and a ton of other cool stuff. If I lived there with kids I would definitely be a regular visitor.

Alder’s Planetarium. Space. Really cool, they have cool short movies/lectures about the universe and planets and stars and galaxies and dark matter. They also have a lot of little rooms dedicated to certain aspects of space; planets, asteroids, moon landing, etc. This museum wasn’t as big as the previous three, and I was honestly getting kind of tired of walking, so it wasn’t my favorite but we still had fun.

Shedd Aquarium was huge! We went here after we finished the Planetarium because it was our last day and we had already been to various aquariums in other states, but it was still really fun. We weren’t able to see everything, but from what we did see it was a really nice museum. They even had belugas and dolphins! If you decide to visit Chicago and want to see the aquarium, I would recommend dedicating an entire day because it will take that long.

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Willis tower was awesome, the main attraction was the Skydeck…. standing in a glass room over Chicago… 1,353 ft in the air. The sun was behind some clouds so we got to see these really pretty sun rays shining all over Chicago. It was a bit cloudy that day so we weren’t able to see the other states as people say you can, but I’m still really glad we were able to do it. And no, it’s not that terrifying unless you have a really really really bad fear of heights.

I was also able in Chicago to expose James to some delicious Polish food!! He loved it. Unfortunately we didn’t get to experience a famous chicago hot dog… next time.