Blazers and Bubbly by Julie Holland

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Viva Tysons Magazine – Tips for Packing Light

Viva Tysons Magazine Nov/Dec Issue

You can find my tips for packing light in the latest issue of Viva Tysons Magazine (Nov/Dec).

This issue is the holiday edition, so it’s packed with great stuff, like decorating tips, a gift guide, events…

These photos are from my recent 2.5 week euro trip to France, Italy and Germany, where I packed in a roller backpack.  It wasn’t easy being so low maintenance but absolutely worth it.  You don’t want to haul a bunch of stuff&things with you if you’re moving from country to country, town to town.  Let’s be real, we never wear half of the things we pack anyway.  Pack smarter, not more.

You can read up on my packing tips here.

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Tropical Getaway Packing List – Le Nouveau Moi Magazine

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Packing can be a bit of a chore.  Sorting through all of those cute outfits and trying to remember to pack matching jewelry, shoes, bags, bras…  And that’s before you even get into hair products/tools, face creams..oy.  Quite the challenge.

I’ve already written up a helpful packing tips post on the blog (see that here), but this one is more of a fun list, specifically for a beach getaway.  No, you don’t need the boho blanket, but will it make you happy? Probably.

So here is my “Tropical Getaway Packing Listin the most current issue of Le Nouveau Moi Magazine (which I put together from this past summer’s travels to Italy and Croatia):

Also see travel post on Croatia here, and the Italy post will go up soon!

BAE watch suit post is here, and red maxi dress post can be found here.

Le Nouveau Moi 2017

If you’re among those fortunate enough to jet-set off to a tropical locale and escape this cold, then here’s your packing list.  To the rest that have a few months to wait for a getaway, here’s to daydreaming and ample time to round up all of these happy-beachgoer necessities.

  1. Show-stopping one piece swimsuitthese are very in right now for all shapes and sizes and can double as a bodysuit to wear beyond the beach
  2. Boho beach blanket/towelnot only do they make your beach space pretty and keep you sand-free, but some of the smaller ones can be worn as a swim cover-up.
  3. Great pair of sunglassesQuay Australia are my top pic because of their many glam styles (go for a cat eye!) and quality.
  4. Beach readtry Does this Beach Make Me Look Fat?
  5. Layers for breezy evenings (shell sweater is from SheIn.com)
  6. Maxi dresses—  pure comfort with a carefree boho vibe– (red dress is from Hello Molly and feels like pjs)
  7. Fabulous heelsgreat for getting all dolled up after a day of being lazy in the sun or feeling rugged from exploration.
  8. Mini backpack for all your adventures– try a Fjallraven Kanken mini (SO many color options and they fit everything!)
  9. Sun care products: Oil free sunblock for your face, because the sun makes you greasy enough (but don’t forget to cover the bod, too!); Jason Coconut oil to hydrate dried out locks and skin; and Piz Buin tanning oil spray for the avid sun seekers
  10. And don’t forget a hat for a slight reprieve from the blazing sun!

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Packing Tips

Helloooo from New Zealand!  Here’s a snapshot of some of my packing essentials for this monthlong excursion.

Checklist (not listing everything…see this post for a more comprehensive packing guide):

  1. The incredibly handy & adorable mini-pack by Fjallraven (the Kanken Bag).  See this post.
  2. Colorado trucker hattry this one from yoColorado.com
  3. Acacia & Fern leather geode journal for keeping track of your adventures — see this post.
  4. Quay sunniessee this post
  5. Carry 0n Cocktail Kit
  6. A good book — see suggestions below

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Book suggestions:

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Happy Travels!

Packing and Travel Tips

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I tend to create packing lists over and over again, so I thought, whyyy not post a check-list here that everyone can reference, myself included..

See my list below of travel essentials that make plane (or car) rides much more enjoyable.  Also, scroll through to find a ski/snowboard trip checklist, along with a more comprehensive basic packing list.

Travel essentials (good for plane or car trips):

  • Comfy scarf (blanket scarf in the winter or gauzy scarf in summer)
    Oversized cardi (lighter weight in the summer, of course..you never know where AC is blasting)–preferably one with big pockets, to hold snackies and soothing tea
  • Earbuds to plug in and fade away from crying babies or annoying neighbors
  • Snacks, snacks, snacks to avoid getting haangry, roarrrz (Sandwich, almonds, Kashi bar..)
  • Gum for the ear popping and travel breath
  • A good book & magazine 
  • Hair tie for when your hair needs hiding after hours of sleeping on it in weird positions against a plane window or irritated neighbor
  • ..Or beanie/cap to fix this problem
  • Calming lavendar lotion for a bit of relaxation
  • Lip balm (Baby Lips is amaze)
  • Mini perfume to smell slightly less bad after all of that travel
  • Mini foldable hair brush if you are high maintenance
  • Mini makeup bag of essentials (eyeliner, blush, under eye concealer..)
  • Slouchy tank and stretchy yoga pants so you don’t feel your muffin top the whole ride
  • Fave pair of sunnies – obvi!
  • A couple energizing new songs added to your iphone
  • A pen…no one ever seems to have one..
  • Phone charger (or car charger..)
  • Portable phone charger (be sure to charge it before hand!) and charging cable
  • Girly products (tamps..) and girly meds (BC)
  • Emergen-C packet to boost your immune system
  • Driver’s License/ID/passport
  • Any documents needed for travel– boarding pass, rental car info, fun to-dos…
  • Cash

Packing Tips

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(snackies pockets!..)
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 …
Separate packing list for skiing/board trips:
  • Ski/board pants and onesie!
  • Ski/board coat
  • Wool sweater
  • thermal layers for underneath pants and sweater
  • Turtle or bandana
  • Helmet
  • Goggles
  • Gloves
  • Glove liners
  • Balaclava mask for cold days
  • Sports bra
  • Hand and foot warmers
  • Ski/board boots
  • ski/board socks
  • Chapstick
  • Earbuds
  • Cliff bars
  • Tea bag (lodge food and bevs are expensive..water is frees money!)
  • Roller board bag with large pockets for boots
  • Mini sunblock for re-application during the day (unless you’re working on your goggle tan)
  • Camelback/backpack
  • GoPro
  • Any sort of season pass you have (Epic Pass)
  • Skis or snowboard!!
  • Andd don’t forget your basics, like underwear, pj’s and toiletries! See list below..

General packing suggestions:

  • Pj’s
  • Underwear
  • Bras (sport, night..)
  • Deodorant
  • Razor
  • Face wash
  • Face cream
  • Mini body wash
  • Body lotion
  • Eye makeup remover & pads
  • Toothbrush and paste
  • Hair brush
  • Hair products (heat protective, styling cream, hair spray, hair masque, leave in conditioner, hair oil….)
  • Hair dryer/curler
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Shoes for every occasion
  • A basic clutch that can work with any outfit
  • Day and night outfits..
  • Swimsuit (beach vacay or hot tub..)
  • Camera
  • Versatile jewelry
  • Makeup (all of the makeup you left out to use before leaving on the trip!)

 

Memorial Day Weekend – What’s in My Suitcase

Beach Packing

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!!

Hope everyone is headed somewhere relaxing or has made arrangements for some solid pool/lake time.  Bun and I are headed to Sarasota, Florida, and it’s just what we need right now.  Blue water, towering palms, quiet beaches, eclectic shops.. all while toting around some bubbly in my bike basket! That’s my plan, anyway..maybe some juicebox wine? Let’s see how well I manage..

I’ll recap the trip afterwards and link you to our affordable BnB and give tips on boat rentals, mangrove kayaking, food spots, shopping and bars.

Here’s a look inside my suitcase to offer some style/product inspo for your summer days. Happy almost-summer!! 

  • Peachy pink checked maxi romper: Showpo (everyone needs at least one fab maxi romper!)
  • Shimmery jumpsuit: Styled Small (Oh my goodness, how amazing is this?!  I’ll post a shot in it soon)
  • Lavender shift dress: Tobi (quick drying, breezy tennis-like dress is so perf for summer)
  • Fun one piece swimsuits: Forever21
  • Barbie bodysuit: Rue 21 (superrr soft and v IG-able in front a pastel storefront, holding ice cream…thanks IG-hubs, let’s make that happen. You can eat the ice cream)
  • Shimmer sandals: Franco Sarto from DSW (glitz AND comfort)
  • White Cat eye sunnies that I decided I needed at the last second: Amazon
  • Blue oversized sunnies: Quay
  • Mermaid hair halo extension (not pictured but you see it in my IG photos): Zala (real human hair, can be curled and straightened. This one comes with 2 clips attached so that you are not only relying on the invisible halo band to keep it in place)
  • Straw boater hat (not pictured): Amazon (only $10).  I also own one from Showpo that I love buttt maybe I lost it
  • CBD for the plane scaries/ everyday life: Joy Organics (I grabbed the 1500mg mint tincture)
  • Lavender spray and eye mask: Alchemy Living (great for relaxation on a plane or in the car) Similar ones here
  • Star Sweater: Amazon (similar one here)
  • Kind bars-– Dark Chocolate Nuts & Sea Salt ommmnnommm (because people are psychos when hungry): Amazon 
  • Face sunless tanning lotion (my fave one): Tan Ceuticals (because you want a glow before you get the real deal!)
  • Roll on perfume: Solinotes Paris “Oranger”
  • Disposable phone charger (yeah, it’s a real thing!): Pantera

See this page for all of my many posts on packing tips (scroll for days)! 

Happy weekend!

 

Hi From St. Thomas

Oversized mirror sunnies

Hi guys! Sending love from St. Thomas, where I’m most likely photoshooting nonstop and trying to boop some dolphins…had to gear up this post pre travel, though, so I don’t have any gorg island lyfe pics here, but I will be following up with a blog post on things to see and do!  

I know I have lists on lists for packing tips on my blog, but here’s my latest one, with my current must-haves for a beach vacay (some are practical, some are just because they make me happy) :

Beach packing

oversized sunglasses

Oversized mirror sunnies from ebay (linked above)

Bow sandal slides

Bow sandals from F21

Upbra push up bras and swim tops

Upbra bra top, also available in swim tops– such a smart design behind these for ultimate cleve! Tip: I like to wear the swim top with the neck strap tied like a choker (I will share some photos of this in my full upcoming St. Thomas post).

Maycy's Beauty Box

Macy’s Beauty box– this green tea mask will be perf for revitalizing my skin after strong St. Thomas sun exposure.

 

Night Trek 270 Shoe Lights

Night Trek Shoe Lights

Night Trek 270 Shoe Lights:

These little clip-on lights are so great for running at night, which is pretty much the only time I run…sometimes through sketchy corners at 11:00PM woops. They are very lightweight and super easy to use– just clip them right onto your laces and go.

They keep you very noticeable to cars, and even have a flashing setting for extra “haiii, I’m heeere” status.   They would also be great for a camping trip or lighting the way on a sunrise or sunset hike.

I will definitely be packing them on my cabin getaway this weekend (eeee excited about that…blog post to come).

Night Trek 270

Shoe Lights by Night Trek

Glamping Style Viva Tysons Magazine

Glamping Style Le Nouveau Moi

Glamping Style: pictured in the Jan/Feb 2018 issue of Le Nouveau Moi

of Viva Tysons Magazine

Tree houses are not just for the kids.

A “glamping” treehouse getaway is the perfect escape for friends, families, and couples alike.
Reconnect with nature; take a break from social media (when there’s no service, you have no choice!); enjoy a cozy space that speaks to your inner child.

Here are the two treehouse getaways that I recently enjoyed:

1) Trillium Treehouse (Linden, VA): This is listed on airbnb and is a legit treehouse, built into a forest, high off the ground, with a whimsical interior.  Be prepared to use a porta-potty and do some ladder climbing.  Oh, and there’s no electricity so enjoy the LED and fairy lights.  Be prepared to hold off on instagramming ’til you leave, because there’s little to no service (I actually emailed to ask if there was wifi before I realized there’s no electricity haha), but it turned out to be a refreshing factor.  It’s located near the adorable town of Front Royal, so that adds a fun stop to the trip.  If you want to have a movie night, make sure your computer is fully charged before you go, and pick up a DVD from a local redbox.
2) Treehouse on Stilts (Charlottesville, VA) (see this earlier blog post): this house is also listed on airbnb and is less of a treehouse and more of a house on stilts.  It looks like a cute log cabin inside, with a ladder up to the the loft area.  It has a regular bathroom, but it’s located outside of the house, just around the corner from the door (so no climbing down to the ground).  This treehouse has electricity and wifi and is a short drive to downtown Charlottesville.

And here are a few suggestions on what to pack for glamping in style:

  • Camping shirt to be cheeky, like this t-shirt from Cut From the Heart Clothing, or this “happy glamper” tank from It’s Your Day Clothing
  • Flannel shirt for looking outdoorsy in style.  This one is from American Eagle.
  • Blanket scarf — wear it around your neck, curl up in it or use it for a picnic blanket.  This plaid scarf is from ASOS, and J.Crew has some cozy options
  • Felt hat for warmth and looking chic.  Urban Outfitters has a nice selection.
  • Furry boho coat – this one pictured is from Shein.com, and Forever21 has nice choices, too
  • Cozy socks— these thigh highs are from Abercrombie & Fitch
  • Warm sweater fit for cabin life — Zara has you covered
  • Fashionable sweatshirt – this USA sweatshirt is from SweatyRocks, on Amazon.com
  • Boots that slip on and off easily for all of those climbs down to the ground–  look to DSW for these.
  • Stylish PJ set – Victoria’s secret has pretty matching sets of satin and flannel
  • Fleece lined leather leggings for comfort and warmth- great for fireside nights.  Shopbop is a great site to look for these
  • Snacks that fit the theme, like these Wondermade Marshmallows
  • Leather backpack because why not looking extra fashionable while hauling things up to the house or packing a picnic?  This faux leather style is from Yonder Bags
  • Cute cooler for your food and beverages, if staying at a house without a refrigerator.  Wayfair.com carries this pretty “Chill out” cooler bag.
  • External battery charger for your phone if you opt to stay at a treehouse with no electricity

Happy glamping!

Treehouse Getaway

Lake Como, Italy Travel Diary

Lake Como, are you even real or was it all just a dream?

I would take mountains and lakes over beaches any day.  This place was heaven.  

My mom and I arrived here via the most beautiful train ride from Milan.  The first part of the trip isn’t much to look at, but once you reach the lake region it’s breathtaking. When those mountains and lake pop into sight, it’s nonstop squeals of joy.

This is one of the few places that is equally pretty in the rain…thank goodness for that, we hit Europe at an unusually rainy time and lived in our stupid raincoats.  Every now and then the sun came out and I assumed photoshoot position.  Here, the rain added a mystical quality, and the low-hanging clouds over the lake were so dreamy.

We stayed in the beautiful and quiet town of Varenna and took the ferry to neighboring towns.  I absolutely recommended staying in Varenna.  It’s smaller than others, which gives it a more genuine and less commercial feel.  And it’s so romantic…cheers, mom (I tend to hit all of the romantic spots with her…Venice, Paris, Rome..).

The four towns you must visit are Varenna (stay here), Bellagio, Tremezzo (which I guess is also called Tremezzina) and Lenno.  Take a self guided ferry tour.

If you were following my adventures on instagram, you may have felt my disappointment when I didn’t find George Clooney. Clooons, where you at??  Ugh.  Oh, and apparently there’s an actual “George Tour” ha, see it here.

A bit about each town:

  • Varenna:
    —–Stay:   We stayed at the Hotel Albergo del Sole, because everything else was booked, but it was great!  It’s in a great location, right on the town square (Piazza San Giorgio) by an old church, with an easy walk down to the lake.  The rooms are cute (wooden beams on the celling and large doors that open out to the balcony), and the staff was so nice!  The hotel that is highly recommended is the Hotel du Lac, BUT it’s too removed from everything, and I think it’s better to dine there rather than stay.  The views are unreal from the hotel restaurant, and it’s on the way to the castle walk.  We even made friends with a nice couple who let us use their key to take the outside elevator up to the very top, where the views become even more unreal.  Just hang out in the restaurant till you make a friend and then have them take you up.  There are a few gorgeous hotels right along the lake, like Hotel Royal Victoria.  This one has a pool and incredible views.  We wandered around here and enjoyed their grounds and views even though the rooms were all booked.
    —–See: hike up to the Vezio Castle; enjoy the lakeside walk past hotels and restaurants, to the harborfront where the ferry boats dock; grab a drink along the water; explore the lush gardens of Villa Cipressi and Villa Monastero; swim at the little beach behind the Hotel Royal Victoria; dine at the Hotel du Lac for amazing views; and take a self guided ferry tour to the neighboring towns.
  • Bellagio: Known as “the Pearl of Lake Como”, this is much larger than Varenna and has beautiful streets to wander through, plenty of shops and restaurants, and a very pretty landscaped path by the lake with no shortage of benches for picnics.
  • Tremezzo Tour the gorgeous Villa Carlotta and hang out on the floating pool dock on the lake (you may have to buy a $20 sandwich first).
  • Lenno: this town has the must-see Villa del Balbianello, where Star Wars and James Bond scenes were filmed.  But that’s not whyy you need to see it.  It has such indescribable beauty…simply no words.

This Lake Como visit was part of a 3 country (4 if you count popping into Monaco for the day) trip to Germany, Italy and France.  Over the next few months I will put up my blog posts on German wine country and the French Riviera.

See this travel recap post for more.  Also see my article in Viva Tysons Magazine, based on this trip, with packing tips for traveling light.

I say this in all of my travel posts, but Rick Steves is the way to go.  My mom has been expertly planning trips with his books for about 15 years, and he’s always spot on.

I was fortunate enough to make a trip to Italy last summer as well, where I made a friend who popped over to Lake Como on this trip to hang out (your turn to make a trip to DC, Matteo!).  Read this post on my Bracciano portion of the previous Italy trip, here. 

Here are a few of my favorite pics from Lake Como..

 

Lake Como Italy swimming
Blazers & Bubbly gear :))

 

Fairytale Solo Travel to Bracciano Italy

I think it’s taken me a year to write this post because this solo travel experience was just too amazing to put into words.  

Last summer I went to Italy with a friend and ended up taking a spontaneous solo excursion at the end of the trip, because I had the urge to explore, and she was happy spending time with her adorable Italian family.

See this post for a brief recap of the Italian adventure in Tortoreto Lido.  We also popped over to Croatia on this trip.. See that travel recap here.

Because I was flying out of Rome in a few days, I decided to head to a spot not too far from there (I had already done Rome, Venice, Pompeii, Amalfi Coast, Cinque Terre on a different trip ahhhh Italy is seriously too amazing).

I found the magical-looking lakeside town of Bracciano, Italy and booked an airbnb, which turned out to be the most legit Bed and Breakfast(!!).  I didn’t even know prior to arrival that this is where Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes got married, in the 15th century Odescalchi Castle.  So, I booked a bus from Tortoreto Lido to Rome, where I then caught the train to Bracciano.  I just asked a lot of questions, because I had no idea what I was doing.  I was so lucky to find the sweetest girl to help me figure out which train to take.  And then once on the train, many more questions to anyone who would answer about where to get off ha.  I would get lost in a second if there weren’t kind people out there willing to help! 

A lot of people day trip here from Rome, since it’s only about 45 minutes away.  You could make it a day trip, but staying in the B&B is a necessary part of the magic.  Like, you HAVE TO STAY AT THIS B&B ha.  It’s SO so cute!!!  The family is so sweet, and I had fun spending time with the son of my “B&B parents”..even got to join excursions to the nearby towns, it was such a bonus!  The B&B is out of a movie- straight storybook setting.  My room was so precious- chocolates on the pillow, fresh figs, tea set.. I packed a string of fairy lights so it was like the definition of magical in that room.  My “B&B mommy” was a chef for 30 years, so the food was amazing!  You don’t expect to get fed when you book an airbnb, so to have a chef feeding me 2 meals a day AND PACKING ME PICNICS?  Homemade pies, jams and sweets.. Aahhhhh!!  AND it was so inexpensive!  Follow them here, on facebook.

This castle was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.  It is SO beautiful, and I was able to wander through alone (ran into someone like once)!!  There wasn’t even a guard present to scold me for touching things (doopdedoo, boop).  Afterwards, I roamed around town listening to “Castle” by Halsey.

Since I was already in Italy, I know this doesn’t quite count for the brave solo travel points it would otherwise, but I’m still pretty proud of it.  

Here are a few blurbs that I posted throughout the trip, so you can see the effect this place has:

Beginning of the trip: And here I thought I was booking a regular old airbnb..this def makes up for never having been to an actual bed & breakfast before. Church bells dinging, lake “swan crossing”, charming old streets.. And it’s all only about 30 min from Rome (locals’ getaway spot/day trips)! Can you imagine? People commute an hour in the awful dmv area and you could just live in one of the three towns on this lake and train or drive into Rome instead. Not that Italians would ever commute, they’re too good at staying happy and enjoying life.

An excited one from the middle of the trip ha: Ohemgee i cant evennn: storybook room around the corner from a castle, in the most darlingg b&b with the sweeetest couple, “forced” to eat homemade pie (for breakfast) & toOo much other yums because you don’t say no to an Italian trying to feed you. She even packed me a picnic for today!!

End of the fairytale journey: It’s been pretty surreal staying right by a gorgeous castle, wandering through charming cobblestone streets, hearing the beautiful dinging of church bells, swimming in the blue lake below, feasting on the homemade cooking of my b&b “mommy” (who was a chef for 30 years), meeting new people, and learning that traveling alone is far from lonely.  🎵I’m headed straight for the castle🎵

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So next time you are heading anywhere near Rome, make a trip here!!

Explore the castle, roam around the adorable streets of town, swim in the beautiful lake, windsurf/canoe, grab a drink (or entire pizza, like I did!) at a waterfront restaurant, ferry to the other lake towns, like Anguillara Sabazia

Bracciano Castle

New Zealand Recap

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About this time last year, I was headed off to New Zealand, Tahiti, and Cali for exactly one month!  Three flights and a major time change (they’re like a whole day ahead and opposite season), and there I was, in the (very) far away and breathtaking land of NZ.. bye winter, hello summer and constant adventure.  Hello kiwiiiis.

Surreal treks were made and amazing places visited .  I can only briefly touch on them, because there’s just too much amazing!  Guess that’s why it’s taken me a year to write a New Zealand travel post, but I did manage to post this on Waiheke Island, NZ.  I also put together a travel post on the few days we spent in Tahiti, on the way home from NZ– see that here.  Also see this packing post, if you ever need to double check that you have everything before a trip!

It was an extra special trip, because I went with my kiwi and spent time with his family and friends..really got the local feel!  My kiwizzle and I made a trip down to the south island, where he had never been before (it’s kind of like someone making the trek to California from the east coast), and later on, had a little getaway to the most northern point of the north island– another place he had never ventured to.  There’s just so much to explore in their movie-set country (we were ok with forgoing a visit to the Hobbit town).  Here’s a roundup of a few places that stick out the most in my mind, from our travels in the north and south islands.  If you have any questions, feel free to email me.  I have that good kiwi source I can ask, too (literally, his name is “kiwi” to me ha!)!

Ok, so things you must see and do:

North Island:

  • Waiheke Island see this blog post on it (vineyards, beaches, cuteness..)
  • Visit One Tree Hill in Auckland and take in the panoramic views at the top
  • Take a dip at beautiful Piha beach
  • Bay of Islands- town of Russell  (THE cutest town umm almost ever.  Rent a small speed boat and island hop!)
  • Hike the Tongariro Crossing (you will come across blue and emerald lakes!)
  • Visit the town of Napier (precious beach town)
  • Swim in Lake Taupo (clear water, snow capped mountains in the distance)
  • See the most northern point on the north island, Cape Reinga (where the the Tasman Sea meets the Pacific Ocean)

South Island:

  • Queenstown— duh.  I don’t know how to describe it.  Just go.  And hike or gondola up (we hiked it) to the Skyline complex for amazing views and a Luge cart track!
  • Wanaka (swim in the gorgeous lake, see the famous lone tree)
  • Arrowtown (adorable old gold rush town..reminded me of a mining town in Colorado)
  • Lake Pukaki and Lake Tekapo (too cold for swimming but they are an incredible blue..just gorgeous!!)
  • Climb Mount Cook (reflecting lake at the top)
  • Adventure seekers: you can bungee jump or take a jet boat down a beautiful blue stream

See this post for a roundup of my favorite travel destinations.

And, again, let me know if you have questions or need suggestions!

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Powder Mountain UT Roundup & Travel Style

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Ah spring skiing– you never know if you’re going to get a couple feet of fresh pow or a couple days of ridiculously warm weather (and really slow snow).  This time around we missed the powder by a couple of days, but on the upside, hand warmers were not needed and shirts were optional (for the boys at least).  It’s a wonderful feeling to de-layer and be so light and free.  I stuck to a tank top, although a true spring boarder would have rocked a bikini top.  Next time.

See below for a roundup of travel tips for visiting Powder Mountain, Utah, as well as deets on my travel style.  And here is a recent travel post of mine, complete with a few helpful packing checklists.

Travel Style:

  • Athletic pants- Calvin Klein
  • Oversized sweater- Nordstrom Rack
  • Scarf- Forever21
  • Sporty jacket- By Zella
  • Socks- Sweet Marcel
  • High top fur Boots- Tecnica

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PowMow Travel Tips:

First on the fun-to-list: rent a car at the airport in Salt Lake City and head into the “city” (just an easy straight shot, about 10 minutes away).  It’s not much of a city, but it does have a few great spots and it’s easy to navigate.  We hit it at a beautiful time- all the cherry trees had blossomed, making the capital area extra scenic– pink blossoms and white capped mountains are an awesome combo!

Just be aware that Utah doesn’t serve beer over 3.2% in most bars, and the grocery stores carry this 3.2% version (go to a liquor store for beer or the brewery mentioned below).

Noteworthy places to stop by in Salt Lake City: 

  • Epic Brewery–  this is a teeny tiny place, with amazing sammies and beer (so cheap..40 cent sample tastings and like $2.50 for a glass).  They also sell bottles of all the good stuff!  Buy these here before heading to Powder Mountain (these contain the normal alcohol content or higher, instead of the 3.2%).
  • Decades–  walk down the street from Epic Brewery to find this a-mazingg retro clothing boutique… the best one I’ve ever been to.  Reasonably priced and awesome selection.
  • Red Iguana–  Amazing Mexican food that people line up for.
  • The capital building (there is parking)-  walk around the grounds, take a self guided tour inside, or drop down the hill to the City Creek Park.

Epic:

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Decades Boutique:

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Capital Building:

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It’s an easy drive to the mountain area, with liquor stores and Walmart along the way.  We stayed in the Moose Hollow Condos, in Eden, UT, specifically at this one (which I recommend)!  It’s a beautiful complex with and hot tub and easy access to the mountain (it’s a fun drive up!).

Moose Hollow:

Moose Hollow

Unfortunately, this was a bad powder year for the area, so the cat skiing was not operating on my visit, and a large portion of the mountain had been shut down.  I can’t offer my full opinion on the mountain, but I do know from reliable sources that it’s a pretty sweet place to ski/board under better conditions.  It was still a fun time though, and there were other outdoor activities to do once the snow turned slow in the afternoons.

Noteworthy spots to enjoy near Powder Mountain: 

  • The Powder Keg (the only pub at the mountain) this has been there since the 70’s, and is very different than the glitz and glam of vail/beaver creek.  It’s rustic and charming, and the ramen is wonderful.
  • Carlos and Harley’s  yummy margz and Mexican food
  • The Shooting Star Saloon (Huntsville, UT)-  this place is pretty bizarre, with a huuge dog head on the wall and dollar bills across the ceiling.  But the beer they serve is only 3.2% alcohol!
  • Waterfall Canyon hike–  a fairly easy hike up to a waterfall and a scenic overlook of the Ogden below.
  • Pineview Reservoir–  a huge reservoir with beautiful beachy areas around it for excellent picnicking and views of the white capped mountains.  Drive around it to find one of the parking areas/entrances.
  • Chic Style–  Suchh a cute boutique in Eden, UT

Carlos and Harley’s:

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 Saloon:

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Waterfall Hike:

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Reservoir: 

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Boutique: 

boutiqueScenery:

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Picnic Style

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The D.C. cherry blossom peak bloom was ahhhSoAmazing…perfect picnic weather and setting.  Sunshine, warmth, and fluffy pink petals canopied over lush green blanket nooks.  Add a few friends, snackies and mimosas, and hwoah– #theperfectpicnic.

As crowded as D.C. gets for the cherry blossom festival/peak bloom, there are always a surprising amount of picnic spots open along the tidal basin.  We took over a large space by the MLK Memorial, with gorgeous views across the water.  The Roosevelt memorial is another less crowded zone for sprawling out under the trees.

See my lists below for picnic packing suggestions, a few of my favorite picnic spots in & around DC, and my outfit deets.

**The fancy photos are by Steph Wesolowski (thanks Steph!)**

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Picnic Packing Checklists:

Misc:

  • Blanket/sheet
  • Plastic cups
  • Paper Plates
  • Plastic forks, knives, spoons
  • Napkins & paper towels
  • Mini speaker
  • Travel sized games (like Apples to Apples)
  • Cooler
  • Ice packs/ice
  • Trash bag
  • Phone charger (if you know you will be out all day– it came in handy at the bar afterwards!)

Food/drink items:

  • Pitcher of mimosas
  • Cheese & crackers
  • Hummus & pita chips
  • Grapes
  • Baguette
  • Water
  • Salsa salad

Fave picnic spots in & around D.C.:

Outfit deets:

  • Flower crown- Forever21
  • Lace top- Love On A Hanger – also carried at Nordstrom Rack. Similar(ish) piece here.
  • Neon Pink pants- No Boundaries
  • Neon shoes- Nike skittles low top