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Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Trials of Traveling - New York City to Copenhagen

Journey’s to JFK on a Friday night are tough.

Journey’s to JFK on a Friday night when you park at a random fried chicken joint in the ghetto of New York City makes for an interesting one.

Adam was coming from Ocean City, New Jersey and I was coming from work in Old Lyme, Connecticut.  We left at 3pm to make a 10pm flight for one big reason…. Interstate 95 to New York City on a Friday evening.  It's a two lane highway backed up with traffic for miles on end.  All it takes is one fender bender and you are missing your flight.  Living off 95 in Connecticut, we are all too familiar with this gave of bumper cars and knew we had to allow time for traffic and accidents.  We also needed extra time for parking and shuttling, long baggage check-in and security lines and finding our gate in a big airport.  Good thing we did because we hit a lot of traffic and ended up parking at the sketchiest parking lot I have ever seen.  

I gave Adam the address, advertised as a discount parking lot just outside the airport.  As we drove through a less than desirable neighborhood, I got my first call from Adam who cannot find said parking lot.  What he did find was a few guys sitting at a picnic table outside a fried chicken joint with a small makeshift sign that said “Park”.  

Now read this closely: You stop in the middle of a busy street where you leave your blinkers on and your car will sit for 15-20 minutes until someone takes it away to an unknown location.  It isn’t a parking lot, just some guys working out of a restaurant which I couldn't tell was even open for business.  We were told 20 minutes for a shuttle which turned out to be a mini van that could not fit us all.  After much complaining, we finally got in an unmarked van (1 hour later) and made the 10-minute drive to the airport. 

Monday, September 9, 2019

The Story of Katie Smile - teeth whitening review and giveaway

I know you are all patiently waiting to hear about my last trip across the pond, a trip I had been looking forward to all summer long.  It was absolutely wonderful, as beautiful as I expected, and all my guides will be up soon.  But before we talk about the trip, I wanted to talk a bit about preparing for a big trip.  Because let's face it, getting ready for a trip to some of Europe's most beautiful cities involves a lot of little steps.  From buying things you need, getting documents in order, all that trip planning, and then the final steps of packing, charging devices, putting travel alerts on your cards and so on.  This trip was a little different than most of my trips where I am hiking somewhere outdoors and taking a lot of pictures of the scenery.  

A confident smile on the bridges of Paris
This trip, I was actually packing nice clothes - no hiking boots and gym shorts in my suitcase.  I planned on taking a lot of pictures on this trip (with me in the frame) and so, there were a few things I knew I needed to do before my countdown hit the single digits. 

      1)  I really needed some fun dresses that would stand out in the city

     2)  I needed to test out some good walking shoes, and

     3) I really needed to make sure this smile was as white as it could be for the 456 photos 
     I was planning on taking.  ** Spoiler: Thanks to Smile Brilliant, I did 

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Best of the Boardwalk - Ocean City, New Jersey

There is something so innocent and youthful about a weekend in Ocean City, New Jersey.  This "Beach Resort Town" has been rated the #1 family beach community in the country by the Travel Channel and let's face it, you can't help but feel like a kid again as you stroll down the boardwalk and play in the surf. 

For starters, it's a dry county meaning no alcohol is served within the county.  No package stores/liquor stores here and the restaurants do not serve alcohol either.  By default, this sort of keeps a lot of the riff-raff out as you will not see spring breakers or bachelor parties roaming the boardwalk at night.  This part of Dry Jersey helps keep the town cleaner, safer, and family-friendly. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Plan Bee Farm Brewery - Poughkeepsie, New York

After a hiking weekend in the Catskills and a sort of failed local brewery attempt at Hunter Mountain Brewery (great food, no on-site brewed beer, still confused) I was excited to find a local brewery with great beer, and yes, a brewery that actually made beer on-site.  

What we found was even better.  
Not only do they brew a variety of great beer, but they do it using ingredients from the farm. 

This second brewery attempt was a trendy little brewery outside of Poughkeepsie where you can drink a beer brewed with local "right from the farm" ingredients while dodging roaming chickens and petting friendly goats.  If this is up your alley (or er, field?) look no further than Plan Bee Farm Brewery.

Hunter Mountain Scenic Skyride - Catskills, New York

I've spent a lot of time on ski lifts.  From the mountains of Massachusetts to the peaks of Utah, summits in Wyoming and slopes of Colorado, I have seen a lot of different chairlifts in my day.  But a chairlift in the summer?  This was a first.  

It was the first time I walked right onto a lift in a summer dress and a flip flops with a tan and a smile instead of my winter coat and skis.  The prognosis? it was absolutely lovely to be on a lift not freezing my buns off.  So let's just say that my (new) favorite way to get up a mountain is on a perfect sunny summer day, sitting on a chairlift and enjoying the breeze and the views below.