Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Where I'm Going in 2017

It's official. I'm going stir crazy in Jersey.

Yes, we do lots of stuff. We are out and about every weekend and most weeknights doing this or that. Whether it's an exhibit at a gallery in NYC or checking out a new brewery or simply going to the movies and dinner, we are people who do not know how to rest. We go all the time. So it's not like I'm bored or stagnant.

I just want to pack a bag and hit the road and leave life behind for a few days. That is what keeps me going.

The last trip I went on was to Belize and Honduras in November, so it's been only 2 months...but our next trip isn't till April so I am getting cranky about being home instead of somewhere that gets me going. I think all of our major trips are planned for the year (we always throw in some little long weekends here and there, and those are still in the planning stages). So here's what's on deck:

April: Chicago for a few days, and then Grand Rapids, Michigan for a few days. This might not thrill some people, but I happen to ADORE Chicago and can't wait to check out the beer scene in Grand Rapids. And TJK is super excited because her major bucket list goal is to go to all 50 states. She has been to more states than most adults, so she is well on her way. She has been to Chicago already, but she has never been to Michigan...plus we will have the drive through Indiana as well so she'll get to check off 2 new states (and Michigan is a new one for me, too!). It may be a little chilly in April, but I am looking forward to being in Chicago off-season and enjoying the architecture, the Bean, the Art Institute, and the deep dish pizza! And, for the kiddo who wants to be a rocket scientist, a trip to the planetarium will be stellar. In Grand Rapids, we will mostly do beer stuff, but I'm also excited to see the Ai Wei Wei exhibit at the Frederik Meijer Gardens, too.

May: CUBA! Hubby and I are going to celebrate our anniversary by finally taking the trip to Cuba that I have been wanting to take forever. I am SO excited about it, and hope we can get this trip in before Our Cheeto President decides to undo all the progress we have made with Cuba. We will spend a few days in Havana and then a few days in other areas of the country. It will be an intense trip, as it is a people-to-people trip where you spend time learning about the culture, art, music, cigars, farms, etc. I love that kind of stuff so I am really psyched to do it. Hubby prefers to sightsee on his own (as do I, honestly, but I know it's not an option yet in Cuba), so he may struggle with the itinerary but I think it's going to be life-changing for us. I wish TJK could come along, but it's a very expensive trip so she's going to have to wait a few years till prices come down. In fact, our other trips this year are less-than-fantastic because of the cost of this trip, so I hope that putting off Budapest another year is worth it!

June: Captiva Island. We went last year with some friends, and while they can't go again this year, we decided it was so much fun and so relaxing that we wanted to do it again. We are staying at the same gorgeous resort and can't wait to lie on the beach and look for shells and drink frozen drinks and eat at great restaurants and basically chill for a week.

August: Toronto. We had planned to go to Toronto last year and then replaced it with Vancouver and Whistler. I was happy about that choice, and now I am happy to be going to Toronto. We are going to drive up there, which hubby loves and I dread, but it'll be fine. We will stop at Niagara Falls since TJK has never been there (and it's been a longggg time since we have been there at all) and spend the night before heading to Toronto the next day. I am kind of excited about our hotel room there - we got a suite that overlooks the Falls. It should be awesome. I have to admit that I don't remember too much about Toronto so it's going to take some research to figure out what there is to do there. We will definitely hit the Hockey Hall of Fame, which I remember loving.Other than that...I'm not quite sure yet, but it'll all come together.

November: Pittsburgh, possibly. We are waiting on this one until we get the Steelers' schedule for next year. We always do something for Teacher's Convention weekend, and we are hoping they will have a Sunday 1pm game at home that weekend so we can drive out on Thursday and come home Sunday night. If the game doesn't work out, I have no idea what we will do. Maybe Vermont again? Maybe Maine again? I think it'll be somewhere we can drive (trying to cut those costs due to Cuba), and I think we have seen everything within driving distance! (Which, truly, is a good problem to have).

All in all, a pretty good year. Not as exotic as I usually like, but I'm dialing everything else back so we can go to Cuba. Next year is a big anniversary for us, so we have already planned to go to Hawaii to celebrate. That's where we went for our honeymoon and it was so wonderful. We can't wait to show it all to TJK and see how it has changed over the years. The only downside is that, again, it's a big and expensive trip so everything else will be scaled back. I'm thinking that will keep me from Budapest (again) and Scotland (where I'm dying to go to see my family!), and it will also keep me from swimming with the piggies in the Exumas. But maybe 2019 will have us going to all three of those dream locations!

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