Jun 052016
 
The Finger Lakes, NY Town of Elmira is Full of Surprises!

While planning our family’s Finger Lakes, New York summer trip, I assumed we should stay right ON one of the lakes. Upon reflection, however, Elmira, NY emerged as an affordable and strategic base for our exploration of the region, and proved to have a wealth of history and attractions to offer, itself.

Elmira, a former manufacturing and railroad hub, is located an easy 30-minute drive away from many top Finger Lakes attractions, including Watkins Glen‘s gorgeous [...Read More!]

May 272016
 
How I Lost Thousands of Dollars, Or: What Is Free?

It’s 1am, and the baby is finally asleep after perma-nursing all, day, and I KNOW I should “sleep when the baby sleeps,” but I have to get this out. It’s become clear this week that I have lost thousands of dollars in income that I did not need to lose. And I now see how to fix that.

When I started this blog in 2009, I did it because I LOVE to write [...Read More!]

Mar 262016
 
Wandering the Gold and Spice Souks of Deira, Dubai

During my 9-day trip to Dubai, pregnant and alone, I delighted in wandering the Gold and Spice Souks: Luscious markets located in the Deira neighborhood of Dubai. Walk with me now to take in the sights!

Deira is the old-time commercial heart of Dubai, featuring winding, stall-filled streets that harken back to the early years of the city before the mega-malls were built. (You know: those malls that are so big, a ski mountain could fit [...Read More!]

Feb 202016
 
Turkish Street Foods: Ice Cream, Mussels, and More!

For most of my travels in Turkey, I was extremely busy scarfing every food in sight. In an effort to peer pressure you to do the same, let us take a tour of the delectable Turkish street treats you can encounter, both in the country itself, and in Turkish food stalls around the world.

A major culinary joy of Turkey for me was Turkish ice cream, also called dondurma. This confection is distinct from non-Turkish ice [...Read More!]

Jan 022016
 
The Surprising Truth About the Best Food in Dubai

One of the best parts of traveling is tasting the local food, but there is a surprising catch to eating in Dubai: Over 75% of the population of the United Arab Emirates is foreign, meaning that it is far easier to find U.S. and European restaurants like The Cheesecake Factory and Coldstone Creamery than Emirati cuisine!

Luckily, during my travels in Dubai, wise hosts guided me to the top Emirati restaurant in the city — a [...Read More!]

Dec 282015
 
And the Most Popular Travel Articles of the Year Are...

Howdy! I hope your year was fabulous. As a blogging geek, one of my favorite end-of-year activities is to investigate which of the 50 articles I published in the past 365 days were read and shared mightily, and which weren’t. There sure were surprises this year! Could you have predicted this list?

#10 Most Popular: Why I Traveled to Dubai, 5 Months Pregnant and Alone (2,424 reads). My solo October trip to the United Arab Emirates was a [...Read More!]

Dec 152015
 
Have You Heard of This Astounding NYC Church Building?

How had I never before heard of the massive New York City church nicknamed Saint John the Unfinished??? As a Bostonian, I travel to New York several times a year, and tend to get arrogant, assuming I know most of the major sights.

How foolish I felt — a tiny ant on the floor of the biggest church I’ve seen in my life — wondering how I’d missed this mammoth edifice in my [...Read More!]

Oct 252015
 
Why Southbridge, MA is a Brilliant Weekend Getaway

A dreamy New England getaway with family is possible just an hour west of Boston! For my birthday weekend, I had the opportunity to explore the area around Southbridge, Massachusetts, and I officially declare it a hidden gem. Here are tips on where to stay, eat, and play in the area.

Where to stay: The Southbridge Hotel and Conference Center (click for rates and availability) is the winner for convenience and comfort, and what a [...Read More!]

Oct 182015
 
The Secret About Old Sturbridge Village, Massachusetts

This week, our family finally made it to Old Sturbridge Village in central Massachusetts after years of saying we would go. What we encountered took me by surprise!

I admit — I had low expectations for the “largest living museum in New England” which recreates life in the early 1800s. OSV began in 1946, so I pictured hokey actors and boredom in all forms. How wrong I was!

The three hours we had scheduled [...Read More!]

Oct 102015
 
Giant Birds Landing on Your Hand to Eat Mice in Ireland

Did I get your attention with that title? Other contenders included “Falconry in County Mayo” and “My Favorite Activity During Ireland Travel,” but both lack the heart-thumping drama necessary. The simple truth is that one of the top things I’d recommend you do on a visit to Ireland is have a terrifying bird of prey land on your hand to eat dead mice. Yum!

The spot we chose for this madness was Ireland’s School [...Read More!]