This year has been a blast!! We did a lot of traveling as usual and experienced some new things. Here is a breakdown of our adventures this year, our thoughts on each location, and the inside scoop on each bucket list experience. Enjoy!
Trip #1 -January- Louisville Kentucky
January in Kentucky is... well, FREEZING!!!! haha I don't mean to start off negative or anything, but dang it's cold there this time of year. But on the bright side, there is LOTS of burbon around to keep you nice and warm. The food in Louisville is sooo yummy!! Lots of southern comfort food and drinks! We love a place called The Old Spaghetti Factory! If you're ever in Lousville, give it a try.
Trip #2 -April- Houston texas
Houston in April is amazing!! The weather is perfect, I believe it was in the 70's the wold time we were there. Back in Colorado at this time it was cold still so Houston was a real treat! Now, I think you are either going to LOVE Houston or... HATE it. It's such a different city, or at least it's very different from Denver. There are SOOOO many people, traffic is always crazy, and people are down to work at all hours of the day/night. We went to a Starbucks at 2AM (it is open 24/7) and there was a line out the door and around the corner... It was like nothing I had ever seen in my life. There were people there working, some even brought their kids there at that time, and it was perfectly normal to them. Strange. Anyways, something I loved about Houston was the Galleria. It is a mall and wow it has everything. They had a TOPSHOP which made me so happy!! Colorado doesn't have one yet! My overall thoughts were that I loved Houston this time of year! I thought it was so inspiring to see such a diverse city with so many people from all over the world working their butts off towards their goals. Really great city. I wouldn't live there, but fun to visit!
Trip #3-April-Kansas City missouri
Kansas City ALWAYS takes us by surprise!! It is an absolute blast! To be honest, I thought it'd be boring... but the city is actually a lot of fun. There is a place called the Power & Light District, which is probably our favorite part of the city. There are great bars and restaurants there. The pizza place has delicious pizza btw. Here is a video we took in the power and light distrit:
Trip #4-May-Dallas Texas
This wasn't our first rodeo lol. Aka we have been to Dallas MANY MANY times, and I must say... WE LOVE IT. We really enjoy the shopping and the food in Dallas. Our absolute favorite spot to eat is Taco Diner. Nick and I would recomend drinking a Mambo Taxi, they are so delicious... trust me. For food we would recomend anything, but our favorite is the brisket tacos. Yumm Yumm. You could also go to Mi Cocina. It is basically a fancy version of Taco Diner. They are owned by the same people. Our guilty pleasure when we go to Texas is... IN-N-OUT Burger. I know, I know... it's horrible for you, but it's just so dang delicious and we don't have one in Colorado!
Trip #5-July- Houston Texas... again
So above I talked about how lovely Houston is in April. Well, that is not the same for Houston in July. It was straight MISERABLE! Way too hot and humid to even be outside for ten minutes. Sorry Houston. Never again.
On the bright side I got creative with my hair on this trip because it was entirely too hot to wear my hair down. So here is a pic of my hair one day in Houston this trip:
Trip #6-July-Ocean City Maryland
I love Maryland so much. My grandparents retired in Ocean City, so we visit often. In July my sis and I took a trip here with her kiddos. It's such a beautiful place to visit. I did a blog post on the fruit stands that are all around Maryland this time of year, it is so adorable. The boardwalk and the beach are great, and very family friendly. While you are in the area you could visit Assateague Island or Chincoteague Island to see the wild ponies. Also, Rehoboth beach is not too far and has great shopping and restaurants on it's boardwalk. We always make a trip to these places while we are in Ocean City.
Trip #7-July-Crested Butte Colorado
Nick and I went to Crested Butte for the very first time this summer. It was absolutely breathtaking. Growing up in Colorado, we have been to so many mountain towns here, but Crested Butte was one we had not made it to yet. We went there for a Christian marriage retreat which was really special. Crested Butte surprised us. We knew it'd be pretty, all of Colorado is pretty, but it was the most stunning place we had ever seen in Colorado. The wild flowers there are like nothing we had ever seen. The weather was perfect in late July, it got a tad chilly at night, but it was nice during the day. We will definetely be back to this stunning slice of the Rocky Mountains.
Trip #8-September-Breckenridge Colorado
This year was really special for us, I feel like we got to see a lot of Colorado, our home state. Sometimes it's so easy to take where you live for granted and forget to embrace the local beauty and sites. In September we stayed at a stunning home in Breckenridge. We go to "Breck" about once a year and we really love this town.
In Septemver the weather in the mountains can be really random, so bring lots of layers. It could be 70 degrees and sunny, then 30 degrees and snowing. Colorado weather can be sparatic like that. In town there is so many adorable shops and restaurants to see. The place Crepes A La Cart has such yummy crepes, it's a must try! Breck has a ton to do every season. Winter you can obviously ski or snowboard. In the summer there is a lot of activities too, like an Alpine Slide, 4x4 off road tours, a mountain roller coaster, etc. Make sure to ride the gondola, it's free!
Trip #9-September-Silverthorne Colorado
Not to keep bragging about how amazing our home state is, but Colorado in the fall is wonderful. The colors get so bold, especially in the mountains. In late September we took a few days and explored around Silverthorne, Colorado. We have driven through Silverthorne many times but this was our first time staying here and enjoying it. We went on a lovely hike and took a ton of photos of the fall folliage. Check out the full post on it, the pictures are stunning. If you go here, I recommend taking a hike and having outdoor adventures. I'm so glad we did!
Trip #10-October- Washington DC, Ocean City & Baltimore Maryland
Something I LOVE about the east coast is that with just a few hour drive you can be in a different state and can experience a lot of bucket list locations in just one trip. This trip in October we went to Washington DC, Baltimore and Ocean City Maryland! This was our first time in DC and wow was it amazing!! I did a blog post awhile back on it, check it out HERE. We saw the Washington Monument, WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Reflecting Pool, the Capital and the White House!! We also visited Georgetown Cupcakes, from the TLC show DC Cupcakes.
Just 45 minutes from DC is Baltimore, which we also had never been to before. We stayed a few nights near the Baltimore Harbor, it is such a beautiful part of town, with lots of shops, restaurants and sights.
After we stayed in Baltimore, we went to Ocean City again... Because of course we can't go to the east coast without seeing my amazing grandparents again!! Here is an in depth blog post on Ocean City.
Trip #11-October-Black Hills South Dakota
Mt. Rushmore!! We were so excited to see this! It was about a 6 hour drive from Denver. Ok I must admit, ever since I was little I have wanted to go to Mount Rushmore because I saw it in the movie Richie Rich lol. Have you seen that movie?... haha oh gosh. Anyways, I'm so glad we went! The black hills are truly stunning. You are driving through a forest of pine trees and then out all of a sudden you see these enourmous rocks with faces on them! I absolutely recomend paying to park and go up to the memorial. They allow you to get so close to it and take pictures, it's well worth the money to go in the park. Here are some pics from our time at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial:
Trip #12-November-Nuevo Vallarta Mexico
This trip was the ULTIMATE way to wrap up the year!! Nuevo Vallarta is just outside of Puerto Vallarta. We had been to Cozumel and Cancun before, which are both on the east side of Mexico, so this was our first time to the west side of Mexico. When we were flying in I instintly noticed a HUGE difference! Puerto Vallarta has the most amazing mountains that are covered with jungle, they are stunning. Check it out:
About a 20 minute drive from the Puerto Vallarta airport is Nuevo Vallarta, where we stayed. We stayed at a 4 DIAMOND resort... yes, diamond (more than 5 star)!! The Marival Residences Luxury Resort, and luxurious is the only word to describe this place. A ton of our friends had been here already, but this was our first time. Our friends hyped this place up like crazy, so my expectations were HIGH... but honestly it surpassed my expectations. This place is so tranquil, luxurious and peaceful. The amenities, pools, etc were the best we have ever experienced at a resort. The food and drinks at the Marival are mouthwatering. Really, I have NO complaints about this place. Loved it so much!!
The great part about being at the Marival Residences vs the Marival Resort is that it is more private, peaceful and intimate, but you have access to both resorts. When you go over to the Marival Resort, which is just a 2-3 minute golf cart ride away, there is a private VIP beach for the guests staying at the Residences. This beach is perfection. The sand and water are stunning, and they have people walking around serving you drinks and food. It was truly one of the best experiences of our lives! We got such a good deal and are so grateful we got to stay at a place that is so high class and luxurious.
While we were here we got to check something off that was at the TOP of my bucket list, zip lining through a jungle! This was such a blast!!! We used Canopy River Zip Line and thought they did a great job and it all felt very safe. I don't have pictures to show you of us zip lining because we couldn't take our cameras with but here is a picture of after, and what the backdrop was like:
Trip #13-December- Dallas Texas
Ok, so we obviously love Texas and go there all the time! The truth is, a ton of our best friends live in Texas so we visit a lot. I don't have much else to add about Dallas, excect a shopping tip lol. We went to the Kendra Scott store!!! Ok, if you are a lady reading this who knows about her jewelry I'm sure you can understand my excitement. There isn't a Kendra Scott store in Colorado yet so this was so exciting for me. Nick on the other hand was... bored haha. Come to find out, if it is your birthday month, you get HALF OFF an item! And lucky for me, my husband is a December baby! I got some earrings, my first piece from Kendra Scott, but certainly not my last.
We went to the Kendra Scott store at the Shops at Legacy in Plano, Texas. "The Shops" are so great and festive this time of year! Tons of Christmas decor. My favorite thing though is that I didn't have to wear a coat because it was so beautiful outside.
Well, that's our travel roundup for the year!! I loved writing this post, it brought back sooo many amazing memories from this year. I am so grateful we get to travel and enjoy this beautiful world that God created for us. If you have any questions about our trips, are looking for advice on any of these destinations, tips on how to book your trip, or anything else, just message me and I'd love to help if I can!! Thanks for reading, cheers to 2016 and may you all have many new adventures in this coming year!!