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25 Goals: Second Quarter Update + “Rock Your 2017 Goals” Workbook

I can't believe it's already time for my second quarter update! This year is flying by so fast! But when I went through all my goals this year, I've found I'm making pretty great progress! I think it helps to have the goals at the front of my bullet journal for easy reference. It's a fast reminder to keep pushing forward and make daily progress. How are your 2017 goals going? Ready for a revamp? I've created this awesome Rock Your 2017 Goals workbook to help you plan and accomplish your goals this coming year. Sign up below to get FREE access. 1. Become a regular at a local cafe or lunch spot in Marburg, Germany. At Paprika, I [...]

By | 2017-04-21T00:49:50+00:00 March 14th, 2017|Books, Education, Goals, My Journey, Travel|11 Comments

5 Questions to Help You Choose Your Next Vacation Location

Itching to travel once again? But how to choose the next vacation location? This is the dilemma that my hubby and I face every time we get hit by the wander bug... which is about every 2-3 months. We love to travel and explore new cities or sometimes just get away to relax. But as much as we love vacations, vacation planning can be stressful! How to choose when there's literally a whole world of options. 1.  Are you looking to relax, discover, revisit, or go on an adventure?  This is the quickest way to eliminate options. You want to relax? Consider the beach or a cabin in the mountains. You want to discover? Consider a city or locale you've [...]

By | 2017-02-21T10:49:42+00:00 February 21st, 2017|Everyday Adventures, Travel|0 Comments

Sketchy Tacos Launch Day Celebration!

I can't believe launch day for Sketchy Tacos is finally here! I'm beyond excited!!! It's been a long and incredible journey, and I have so many people to thank for this day--which is a dream come true. Almost 4 years ago, I won the Hutton Honors College's Creative Activity Grant, which provided this poor little college girl with the funds I needed to travel Mexico to research this book. In the summer of 2013, I wrote the first draft of Sketchy Tacos. My aunt Sara Grant was writing a draft of her own at the time and we traded manuscripts every two weeks to get fresh eyes and feed back. For the next two years, I edited and rewrote Sketchy [...]

By | 2017-02-06T17:44:50+00:00 February 7th, 2017|Books, Encouragement, Goals, My Journey, Travel|7 Comments

An Inside Scoop on Sketchy Tacos: My Year in Mexico

My YA travel novel, Sketchy Tacos, has been four years in the making, and it's now available for pre-order on Amazon. I could not be more excited! In honor of Sketchy Tacos' release next week, I want to share with you about the year I spent in Mexico. Get the inside scoop on the story behind the novel! I married my husband, Alan, on May 11, 2013, and the next day we traveled to Mexico. We spent a four days at Secret's Silver Sands halfway between Cancun and Playa del Carmen. It really was a slice of paradise. It was the perfect getaway for our honeymoon since we had a short time and just wanted to enjoy each other and relax. [...]

By | 2017-04-06T11:52:57+00:00 January 31st, 2017|My Journey, Relationships, Travel|2 Comments

Adventures and Victories Week 10

It's been a fun week of breaks and travel. The Monday off for Martin Luther King's day was wonderful, but it threw my entire week off... Well, that and the 6-hour drive up to Detroit on Tuesday, which leads me to this week's adventures and victories! Fun Adventure: We drove up to Detroit to attend the North American International Auto Show. You should see the crazy displays these car companies set up, it's pretty incredible. We got to check out the new GMC Acadia, the Chevy Bolt, and of course all the Corvettes we could find :) Mini Victory: After finishing off one afghan, I plotted a new pattern for the next blanket and began. I'm basing this one off a [...]

By | 2017-01-19T14:50:27+00:00 January 20th, 2017|Books, Character Development, Goals, My Journey, Travel|8 Comments

Adventures and Victories Week 9

Hi everyone! How are you doing this fine Friday? It's been a busy week for me, but a good one. If you're a regular reader, you'll know that I'm ramping up for the launch of Sketchy Tacos--my YA travel novel that will be released on February 7. I am beginning my SHOUTING FROM THE ROOFTOP phase. Because I'm super excited... so excited that I might have gone a little overboard on the creation of merchandise front--not to sell, just for me :). Be sure to check out my Instagram page. They can print on all sorts of things now. It's pretty cool. Vicarious Adventure: This week I've really been enjoying There You'll Find Me by Jenny B. Jones. It's been a [...]

Discover Amsterdam: Tips to Travel Europe Part 6

So we picked a bad day to visit Amsterdam for one reason: the marathon. We spent over an hour trying to get to our parking spot, but it simply could not be done. So we finally gave up and picked a random spot to park, which is how we learned that parking is free on Sundays. We walked around aimlessly until we found a jam-packed brunch spot. (This is my husband #2 trick to find a great restaurant while traveling: Look for a crowd. His #1 is checking Trip Advisor.) My trick for finding the best food? Ask the waitress. This is what she gave me. I've now discovered the were a type of Dutch doughnut called an Oliebollen, topped [...]

By | 2017-01-10T08:46:41+00:00 January 10th, 2017|Travel|1 Comment

Step Outside Your Comfort Zone

So the 12-days in Europe backpacking extravaganza (check out my posts on Munich, Venice, Sienna, and Rome Part 1 or Part 2) is the thing daydreams are made of. What you may not know is that this was our vacation in the midst of a 10-week assignment in Europe for my husband's job. Being the writer/blogger/editor that I am, I stepped outside my Indiana comfort zone and tagged along for the entire trip. Now, I understand that 10 weeks in Europe sounds gloriously adventurous--and it is in many ways. But it's a whole other animal when you're there to work. There was one stretch of four days where I never left the hotel. Not kidding. Not even to eat. I had peanut [...]

25 Goals: First Quarter Update + “Rock Your 2017 Goals” Workbook

Three months since I set my 25 goals. How crazy is that? I've managed to cross off 7 of the 25 goals, and I've made a sizable dent in a few of the others. I'm starting to feel like the ones I have left are pretty difficult. But then again, what kind of goal would it be if it didn't push me out of my comfort zone? Have you begun working on your goals for 2017 yet? I've created this awesome Rock Your 2017 Goals workbook to help you plan and accomplish your goals this coming year. Sign up below to get FREE access. 1. Become a regular at a local cafe or lunch spot in Marburg, Germany. At Paprika, [...]

By | 2016-12-13T15:59:13+00:00 December 13th, 2016|Books, Education, Goals, My Journey, Travel|14 Comments

Discover Rome Part 2: History Around Every Corner

Rome was so amazing that I simply could not fit it into a single post. So here is Discover Rome Part 2--a sampling of some of the many other delights that we found while in Rome. One of the most amazing things about Rome is that everywhere you walk, you bump into something beautiful and historic. The city was littered with little plazas and eateries everywhere. The food was incredible and the architecture was even more so. You could seriously spend weeks combing the city and not find everything there was to see. I've highlighted three of the biggest attractions below, but I want to also mention the Pantheon (and the little Antique Salumeria on its square), the Spanish Steps, [...]

By | 2017-01-10T08:49:31+00:00 November 16th, 2016|Travel|5 Comments