Travel

Not like I used to be….

img_8527I remember a time where I would only dream of going somewhere alone with the hubby or taking a family vacation. It seemed unreal and out of reach. We could barely afford groceries and all our bills let alone go somewhere fun.

Life was a routine of debt up to our eyeballs and the never ending chores and work. It was all but a life of celebrating for us. Why did it have to be so hard? We could never seem to catch up.

To be able to afford a trip we would find clever ways to go. It would end up being mostly the kids and I because the hubby had to stay back to work and I would have to go on a trip as cheap as possible so we wouldn’t go into more debt.  My mom worked for the airlines so we would jump on flights with her and use the buddy passes and sometimes wait in the airport for hours trying to get on a flight just so we could have a cheap trip somewhere. Most trips were going to see family because we had a free place to stay and we would cram two weeks trying to  fit  everyone in that we hadn’t seen in the last  few years and we would be at everyone elses beckon call. It was really not much of a vacation at all but I took what I could get.

I really wanted to travel but my dreams of that seemed so far to reach.

Then we made some huge decisions. We knew to have the life  we were dreaming of, changes had to be made. The same old thing we had been doing just wasn’t working. We were unhappy in so many areas and the prayer we had prayed was finally being answered.  We were invited to a financial class and there the hubby and I decided we would get out of debt. We made  some large sacrifices. Along the way things happened that tried to make it hard for us to follow through but we did it. We kept on trucking through the muck. We started to save money and life started to get a little easier. We sold our house and things we didn’t need and downsized for a few years.We were finally getting to a point of financial peace.

But I still had the dream of wanting to travel and it seemed so out of reach. Raising a family is expensive and traveling with a large family is costly.

We then made a decision to start our own business and that changed our world immensely. Starting a business was one of my husbands big dreams and we felt we were at a point we could do it. Things were rough at first but we had gone through so many life lessons that had toughened us up that we knew we could get through anything.  Everything you could think of was thrown at us to make it as difficult as possible to want to keep going but we did.  Fast forward almost 6 years and business is good but it consumes a large part of our life and we need to get away from the stress of it all.

And still my dreams of traveling were sitting in the back seat.

But eventually the time came that we decided we would go on a real family trip somewhere fun. We were were ready for a nice break and we wanted to enjoy our family before they were all grown up. We had saved up and took a fancy trip to Disney world.  It was a trip of a lifetime. We knew it was not one we could ever do again because it was such a luxury.

The following year we wanted to do another fun trip but didnt have quite the extravagant trip planned or money saved so budget trip it was. I like to find sales so I shopped and shopped but that doesn’t always work out because cheap isnt always the cleanest or nicest but we made do. We had fun but it still was not quite right. I was happy though that we were starting to create memories before the kids left home.

Then I was shown a new way to vacation.  The deals and prices were amazing. I could actually start affording to take my family of 5 to nice hotels and have the fun luxury vacations we were wanting. I am able to save money in all areas of traveling from cars to entertainment.  I also learned a way  that I could run it as another business and earn free travel. We already owned a business but I wanted a more freedom online style business than what we were doing and this one was perfect. So I jumped in!

In the last year I have traveled more than I could have ever imagined without breaking the bank. I have ways to earn money to travel and I am fulfilling my dreams. It is a dream come true.

I am so excited we have been able to take our kids more places than I thought. Our family is living life to the fullest. I have been able to go on trips with my hubby and cherish the time we need with each other. We already have several trips planned for the new year. I couldn’t have asked for anything more awesome for us. I never want to be like I used to be unhappy with no zest for  life. I am so thankful for this life we are creating and choosing to live!

And theres always room for more….

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~Be the Light~

#choosethismoment

Heather

 

Life · Travel

Taking a little time away…

We had to get away. We needed it.

Sometimes we don’t have it all together and we forget to stop and enjoy the moment.  But we decided to do it. Its hard to do. Its an effort. But its worth it.

We got out of our environment. We are cherishing some family.  We are cherishing each other.  It is good.

#choosethismoment

~Be the Light~

Heather

Beauty · ChooseToday · Life · Travel

Hawaii has my heart: Maui -Our Vacation 2016

We recently did our vacation to another Hawaiian Island. We went to Maui. Just like Oahu, I am in love. Of course this place had a whole different feel than Oahu does but I loved it every bit as much.

We did a 10 day trip which was 8 days actually on vacation and 2 days of traveling which ended up being perfect. After about day 7 of cleaning up all the sand from 3 kids, I was tired of it. But we still enjoyed every moment. I do miss being able to walk in the early mornings and evenings and the warm wind blowing on my skin. Eating dinner out on the Lanai was amazing as well.

We stayed in the Lahaina area which we absolutely loved. It was very quaint and still had all the necessities.

We had a 2 bedroom condo, it was clean and quiet and the full kitchen/washer and dryer were a great amenity. In our condo area it had its own private beach area on Kaanapali beach which was a gorgeous, relaxing beach. We went to the resort side one day to see black rock I much preferred the quiet side. The resort side was very busy but black rock was great for snorkeling. My youngest loved all the fish and it was calm water for her to swim.

We decided that boogey boarding was our thing while we were there. Kaanapali did not have very many waves  so we would go to D.T Fleming beach for the waves. Which is another great beach. Paia bay had some huge waves which was great for the boys but not so much for me and my daughter. It was pretty rough, but we still had a ton of fun.

On our trip we did the road to Hana. There are a ton of great articles online on all the neat places to stop along the way. We did quite a few and it took up a lot of our day so we did not make it all the way which I was bummed but we did not want to drive back in the dark. The road was a little scary but lots of beauty. One thing we all really enjoyed was walking the Garden of Eden. http://mauigardenofeden.com/

We even stopped at a couple waterfalls and the kids jumped in and took a swim. There are a lot of mosquitos and they are tiny and bite a lot, so I recommend bug spray. I got eaten alive which I was a little nervous to get dengue fever from all the media hype about it but thankfully I am ok.

Also of course at the halfway to Hana watch for the rainbow sign and Do eat the banana bread. Very delicious.

 

After a few days of intense sun we decided to do the Maui Ocean Center. http://www.mauioceancenter.com/ I had a discount with my travel club so we purchased tickets. It was a great half day to stay out of so much sun so we could do the beach in the afternoon when the sun wasn’t so hot. It is a smaller aquarium but lots to see. My daughter loved the talking like a whale. It was great to learn about all the fish in the sea so when we went on our our snorkeling tour we knew all the names.

 

Our last day we did a molikini snorkel tour which was AMAZING! The water was crystal blue! I highly recommend doing a tour. They are fun for the kids and us adults love them too. We did molikini and then went to turtle town USA and saw so many green turtles. Such cool scenery. Then on our way back we had a pod of whales breaching and mating right by the boat. Such an amazing life experience. Its hard to know how amazing nature really is until you see it up close and personal. That of course was everyone’s most favorite day.

 

There are some other cool things  you can do from Maui and take a day trip on a ferry to see the island of Molokai and Lanai. We did not have enough time to do that but I do want to try next time. I would love to see each island.

Other than those few things, we did a lot of swimming and relaxing, Eating fresh fruit and enjoying the Hawaiian culture.

If you have never been, do go, there are so many cool experiences in Hawaii. ~ Next time we are going to try Kona. And I can’t wait to see what that island is all about.

I am getting my travel wings on~

 

#choosethismoment #choosetoday

 

~Be the light for all to See~

Heather

 

Business · Life · Travel

Choosing Moments Not Things

image.jpegGetting to have so many adventures. Enjoying seeing and being with family, friends and  seeing this great country!

Choosing the moments to know there is so much in this life to appreciate and enjoy and share with others. Finding the  joy in all our moments.

Getting back up again and again even when we have bad days!

Seeking new adventures. Cherishing each moment you have with loved ones. Knowing each day is golden because you never know when your last day will be. Our time is precious!

So glad I said yes to travel and life and creating moments with my family and loved ones and helping other see there is so much more. Loving the fun I get to have while I make a living. Making a living….. Living! Choosing to live with purpose!

I choose  moments over things!

#choosetoday #choosethismoment

 

~Be the Light for all to See~

 

Heather

 

 

Whose ready to go with me?

travelingndreams@yahoo.com

 

Life

Breathing in a bit of life!

DSC_0197Its been awhile. Of course life was crazy, busy and overtaken by the chaos and loudness that seems to creep in when we aren’t paying attention. The holidays came and went and family visited, then we prepared to head out of town , so now I’m back again. The tough thing is I have such good things to write but get too busy and forget, oh well, maybe they weren’t so great if I forget ;). So its 2013 and heres to an amazing new year of new things, new changes and life experiences. Along with sweet simplicity.
After many daunting busy business days for end of the year books and jobs and then the holidays, we finally headed out on a family trip. It was our first trip together in a very long time and much needed one at that. My husbands parents bought a house for their retirement, in Arizona, after living on a boat for many years in Washington state. It is a beautiful home. I have not felt so relaxed in a long time. We had a total of 11 days gone but 2 were traveling days so it was 9 complete days of worry free, relaxation and spending time together to enjoy a state and scenery where we had not been before. Using a business airline card really helps a family of 5 travel affordably as well. Everyday business expenses and monthly costs and bills add up to lots of miles to fly. My dream to see the world has expanded just a bit.

I can say Arizona has its own different kind of beauty. I love waking to the bright, sunny mornings! There’s still a chill in the air for winter time but it sure was nice to not see icy roads, dark mornings and grey clouds day in and day out. I am not sure I could live there but I do love it and i will be visiting there regularly. It was pretty dry and there’s no water around but people’s pools. The kids love swimming so the heated pools were very much a hit. I would miss natural flowing water though. I would miss seeing rivers, lakes and oceans which in the desert theres not much of that, pretty much none. I would live by the ocean if I could. I would miss seeing more green. I do love the palm trees and the city road maintenance does a great job decorating the overpasses and ground with an Arizona native feel to it. We don’t see a lot of that in Alaska, I think probably because the winters are long and most gets hidden under, silt, ice, snow, mud and garbage. The mountains are pretty in their own way. The red rocks are beautiful! With the sun shining behind them it takes on a serenity of peacefulness. I especially enjoyed the beauty of Sedona. Overall the state has its own unique self and I loved it, In a way like Alaska ( which by the way if I had a choice I would not live in Alaska either) I love to travel ( hope to do more) and soak in the different types of beauty that surrounds us. I will definitely be going to Arizona again in which we will be doing a lot since we now have grandparents living there.

There was a ton to do in Arizona and a lot of history for the kids to learn about the Wild, Wild West. We drove to Tombstone one day and watched the shoot out reenactment of Wyatt Earp. That was pretty exciting for the kids. We of course had to watch the movie with Val Kilmer and Kurt Russell to see their take on the story after visiting the town. My boys loved it the most. We went to the local driving range and hit some golf balls. I love golfing. If I lived there I would try and golf as much as I could. There’s something relaxing about hitting balls. (That doesn’t sound so good after I read it oops)We drove and saw the red rocks of Sedona and Montezuma’s castle. Also we went to a local amusement park in Phoenix and the kids had a blast on rides and playing miniature golf. We went on a zipline hanging by a harness riding across the sky. It was amazing. My 6 year old was so excited and went all by herself. She says shes brave. There were lots of adventures and sightseeing and just the peaceful enjoyment of each other.

Overall the trip was a success and my hubs and I got a much needed rest from our business. I took some time to refocus and try and see where I want to be and what my passions are. I have some goals and ideas but just never sure how to get there. I love traveling and I want to make life simpler and travel more. My dreams to see the world may come true if I stop thinking and start doing. God made this world full of so much beauty and we are suppose to be enjoying it instead of running the crazy rat race of life. I’m ready to make some changes.

Anyone else feel this way? That there is more to this life than what you are doing? I’m ready to explore and see what else is out there. Life is full of endless opportunities we just have to be ready too see it and find it!

Life

Is it really almost Christmas?

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I am shocked its almost Christmas and the New year! Time has been flying by and I didn’t even realize it. Life has kept us so busy and I can’t keep track. This time of year is crammed, its my middle boys birthday, then my dads, then thanksgiving , my husbands birthday, then Christmas and New Years. On top of that I’m finishing up 2nd quarter of homeschool, closing our business year end books, housework, keeping on top of health and celiac and diabetes and trying to remember to enjoy down time. We have my Brother and his family coming to visit for the holidays and after that we are headed off to a beginning of the year vacation in Arizona. I really need some warmup on my bones too . It’s been down right cold here and seems to be a nonstop wind storm going on. I hate to say it but I really want some snow to fall. I am glad to have a nice warm house.
My daughter who takes a lot of time and energy went to stay at grandmas this weekend so I have a day to not really do much but take care of my boys who are older and don’t need me every 10 seconds. I decided its a good day of drinking coffee and just reading and writing. Since my weeks have been so busy with all the blooblah (made up word -yes) i need a good day off. For some reason i have a bit of guilt when doing this. I was a little ho hum again starting for Christmas. It really use to be my favorite holiday. Now it’s a struggle. I am tired of all the commercialism and so I search for the real meaning. To me its enjoying my family and not rushing around every second of every day. We start to enjoy the little moments without filling it with dead, unneeded things to do. My kids were so excited to decorate so last weekend we decorated , blasted Christmas music and played games. It was a nice weekend. I am glad now we put up some lights because its so dark and cold this time of year it actually helps to see the pretty lights. Did I say I was actually wishing for snow? I hope we have a white Christmas this year. This wind blows!
Today I’m just reflecting and enjoying. It’s really good to do once in awhile. And remembering this time of year what’s the most important to you. I found it. Have you? Anyone else search for what it’s all about? It’s kind of like Cindy Lou who on the Grinch 😉 Its not really all about the presents but instead in my learning its all about His Presence. It’s a year of reflecting, healing, loving and giving to others.