Top 10 Travel Bloggers to Follow in 2019

Top 10 Travel Bloggers to Follow in 2019

*This post may contain affiliate links, but as always, opinions are 100% my own.* Do you love to travel as much as I do? When I’m not traveling or planning a trip or searching for a local adventure, I’m either dreaming of a vacation or reading a travel blog. I get so much inspiration as well as ideas for future trips for myself and my family and it’s fun to live vicariously through someone else’s travels. If you can relate, then you need to check out the following travel bloggers – these are my picks for the top 10 to follow in the upcoming year – if you aren’t following them now, you’ll want to check them out: It’s a Lovely Life  – The Reese family has made blogging their full-time job. They travel over 150 days a year with their three kids and go on all the adventures I’d like to go on someday! I love that their trips are so family oriented. It makes them very relatable to me. The blog also showcases a lot of videos which is very fun, AND if you are at all interested in blogging yourself, check out their FREE 5-Day Start a Money Making Blog Course. The Uncorked Librarian – I find this blog (and Christine) so entertaining yet FULL of useful info. She loves drinks and food just like I do, and her adventures sound very much like the ones we used to have pre-kids. Luckily, now that our kids are older we can drag them along again! Living in Florida, she shares lots of information about places we visit often,...
McCords Candies – Make Your Own Candy Cane

McCords Candies – Make Your Own Candy Cane

Have you ever wondered how candy canes are made? Today, most of them are made in a factory, but that’s not the original method. While killing time during warm-ups at a swim meet last weekend, I spent a fun half an hour on a candy cane tour at McCords Candies in Lafayette, Indiana. Not only did I get to enjoy learning how candy canes were made and the meaning of the candy cane, but I also got to create my own. McCords Candies has been a Lafayette staple since 1912. They have been making their iconic candy canes using the same method since they opened. That’s 106 years! McCords Candies is also one of only a few stores left that make all their candy canes by hand – which is not only delicious but creates a candy cane that is 100% candy – the red stripes aren’t painted on like a machine made candy cane is, they are also part of the cane. The tour starts upstairs a good three stories above the retail shop. Tickets are a bargain price of $4 and the tour takes about a half an hour, but plan ahead as tours sell out quickly. I actually tried to go twice before I got on a tour so that my daughter could tag along but both days were sold out. I finally scored a coveted spot by purchasing a ticket several hours early and coming back just before the tour was scheduled to begin. The workshop is on the top floor of the historic building and much of the equipment is original. The owner of McCords took...
Visiting Purdue? Best Places to Eat

Visiting Purdue? Best Places to Eat

I love visiting college campuses and I also love to eat so I’m always looking for the best places to eat everywhere I go. Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana is a favorite of mine – not just for the campus but also some of my favorite local restaurants. Growing up in West Lafayette, some of these are also quite nostalgic for me and I love that they are still around so many years later. Triple XXX. If you visit Purdue, you must visit Triple XXX. Everyone will tell you to do it and it’s worth it for the kitsch alone. Triple XXX has been in West Lafayette (on the hill but on the level) since 1929 and been serving the area’s best rootbeer since the beginning. Take time to sit on a round stool at the counter that winds around the entire restaurant and soak in the atmosphere while enjoying a frosty mug. Breakfast is great (and served all day long), but my favorite order is a mug of root beer, fries, and a Barney Burger. Triple XXX is well known for some of the more unique burger combinations named after famous locals such as the Duane Purvis (with peanut butter) and the Drew Brees. Guy Fieri has also visited, so if you are a fan, check out episode 44, Knockout Burger Joints. 2 N. Salisbury, West Lafayette, IN; (765) 743-5373 Parthenon. I think we visited the Parthenon once a month for most of my childhood. Four generations of family members have been using their families Greek recipes to ensure that the food is always delicious. The service is...
Carmel Christkindlmarkt – A New Tradition

Carmel Christkindlmarkt – A New Tradition

Just last year, the nearby town of Carmel, Indiana created a new winter event called a Christkindlmarkt. For those of you who travel in Europe (especially Germany), this isn’t a new idea, in fact, Christkindlmarkt’s have been around for hundreds of years. A Christkindlmarkt is a street market that pops up during the Christmas season. A Christkindlmarkt typically has crafts, ornaments, and decorations associated with the holiday season for sale, delicious foods (often German or Swiss) and comforting drinks such as Glüwein (warm spiced wine). The Carmel Christkindlmarkt is set up around a large ice-skating rink so not only can you enjoy the market, you can get a little fun winter exercise in at the same time. My son and I had the opportunity to attend the media day for the Carmel Christkindlmarkt this year and even though temperatures were incredibly cold and the skies were grey, we had a marvelous time. Thanks to plenty of parking on the street and several nearby (and free) parking garages, we had no trouble finding a close spot – I love that Carmel was very thoughtful in thinking about parking for their frequent events when planning the city center area. When we arrived, the market was just opening, so we began by walking around the booths and chatting with the various vendors. We found some adorable decorations and ornaments that would make delightful and unique stocking stuffers and Christmas gifts. We decided not to skate today (it was just too cold), but I think that will definitely be something we’ll come back for later in the season. The rink is large, and...
A Perfect Day Exploring Westfield

A Perfect Day Exploring Westfield

As I mentioned in the newsletter this week, Monday was a vacation day for me. Just me. I always seem to end up with extra days towards the end of the year so I like to take a few “mental health” days in November and December. My plan was to check out a new coffee shop/ store north of Noblesville and a few new stores in Cicero (another small town). However, I didn’t take into account that Monday is the day lots of places were closed … Luckily I wasn’t deterred, so once I realized my original plan was out,  I decided to see if I could find enough to do to fill a day in Westfield, Indiana. Westfield is another city next to where I live and although we go to dinner there often and Urban Vines is there which I love and recently shared about in my Five Fun Fall Adventures in Hamilton County post,  I hadn’t spent an entire day exploring before. I started the day off at Titus Bakery for fresh, hot coffee and a delicious donut. Yum! This is a fairly new location and their donuts were perfection. Interesting flavors, freshly baked and tasty. Great way to start the day.   I headed over to the downtown area to see what I could find. Westfield’s downtown is tiny. There are a few stores and one stoplight. However, quite a bit is packed into the small area. In addition to the main street, there is a new “restaurant row” just a few blocks south – which contains some of our favorite restaurants – I’ll have to...

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