Tag Archives: Road trip

weekend in carmel

11 Feb

A few weekends ago Brian and I road tripped up to Carmel for a few days to celebrate a friend’s wedding. I haven’t been to that area since I was a kid so I loved exploring it for what felt like the first time. We rented a house with some friends through airbnb which was so much better than staying in a hotel. It was in a great neighborhood and walking distance from the main drag of town. I knew Carmel was going to be visually beautiful with the sea as its backdrop but I was surprised to learn it also has some great restaurants and shops. Granted the whole place shuts down around 9pm- definitely not a place to go if you’re looking for a night on the town. But at 6 1/2 months pregnant I’m usually in bed by 9pm so it worked for me! We had such a fun three days. I’ll let the pics speak for themselves.

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road trip inspiration – big sur

23 Jul

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I’m back in road trip planning mode after a long break. As I’ve mentioned before, we originally planned on doing this trip last spring but life got in the way so we decided to push it to fall. Although, now that we’ve settled on fall I wonder why I ever thought spring was the right time to go? With a chill in the air and the leaves changing fall seems like the better choice. Am I right? At first I thought we’d travel in November to tie it in with our 2nd wedding anniversary but then I thought maybe the weather could become an issue at that time? Could we possibly hit snow as we get further North? Anyway, the fear of sketchy weather made me go with early October instead. Now that we have dates on the calendar I am getting excited. I feel like I am planning a mini version of the cross-country road trip I took a few years ago. I love the planning process- it gives me such a rush researching each city.

The first stop on our itinerary is Big Sur, one of the most magical places on earth, in my opinion. The scenery is breathtaking- rocky cliffs, blue ocean, sandy beaches and tree covered coastal mountains all rolled into one. It also smells incredible there- like fresh pine trees.

Brian and I have been to Big Sur a few times together. The first was when he introduced me to camping (it happened to be one of my ten goals when I started this blog four years ago- an experience you can read about here, here & here) The second trip was on our mini moon after getting married in 2013. As you can probably imagine Big Sur holds a special place in my heart.

Despite having traveled there a few times I still feel like I have so much to explore. I’m dying to visit the Esalen Institute. How have I never been there?

Here are some of my inspiration photos for stop one. Do any of you lovely folks have Big Sur recommendations? Restaurants? Coffee joints? Hikes? Hotels? Drives? Anything!

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images found via pinterest

 

13

27 Oct

Sweet baby Jesus. We’re getting married in 13 days. That’s less than two weeks in case you didn’t know. That’s just crazy. I’m sorry I haven’t been posting much (well, at all really) the last week or so. I think I’ve been a bit paralyzed by everything. Man I thought turning thirty was overwhelming but a wedding is a whole different animal. There’s been so much to do and finalize these last two weeks that every time I would sit down to write I wasn’t quite sure what to share. My head felt like a jumbled mess. On top of all the stress I’m filled with silly excitement now. Just can’t wait to be married to that man.

This weekend we slowed everything down and spent a lot of one on one time with each other. We spent Saturday morning at Brian’s office using their laser cutter for a wedding project. Well, let’s be honest…Brian was using the laser cuter while I spent hours perusing the internet for a dress to wear to our rehearsal dinner. Who knew that finding a rehearsal dress would be harder than a wedding dress? I have a vision people! Anyways, after four hours of work I still had no dress but the project was done so we decided to take ourselves to The Lazy Ox for lunch before heading home. We pretty much had the place to ourselves and we took advantage of it and had a long, lazy and delicious lunch. It was exactly what we needed. Saturday night we headed to the movies to see “Bad Grandpa” which seriously cracked me up. I haven’t laughed that hard a while. I’m a sucker for that kind of humor.

Oh and we also put the finishing touches on our mini moon this weekend. Brian and I decided to postpone our big honeymoon until spring. One because we were finding it hard to plan both the wedding and a month-long trip to Asia and two because I really want to go to Bali and it’s their rainy season now. And who wants to go to Bali when it’s raining most of the day, you know? So with our big trip postponed until the spring Brian and I decided to plan a little trip after the wedding because it would have been much to depressing to go back to work on Monday. So we are hitting the road the day after the wedding. First stop…Big Sur…which is one of our favorite spots. I love that you rarely get cell service there. I love that you’re surrounded by majestic redwoods. I love the windy road up the coast with the vast ocean views. I love the quiet. Brian found us the perfect little cabin to cozy up in for a night. All I want to do is play cards, drink red wine and cuddle by the fireplace for the whole evening.

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Then we are heading up the coast to Tomales Bay in Northern California for a few nights. Neither of us have ever been up there so we are both excited to explore. It’s known for its fresh oysters which makes both Brian and I very excited. I’m quite sure we will spend a lot of time eating oysters and sipping cold beers in the sun while staring at the pacific. We will probably throw in a hike or two as well. Then we are off to San Francisco for a night in the city. Not quite sure what we will do yet but I’m sure we will find something fun to get into to. Lastly, we will be finishing up our mini moon in Berkley because Brian has a work conference to attend. I’m just along for the ride at that point. I’m sure I’ll just get lost on foot around Berkley exploring.

I know these next few weeks are going to fly by and I’m trying to enjoy every single little moment.

So grateful.

find me elsewhere: instagram @kate365, twitter, facebook

 

inspiration, gratitude & surprises

5 Apr

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Hello Friday!! So happy you’re here! Other than shooting engagement pictures on Saturday with Rachel, Brian and I have no plans. YAY! I honestly can’t tell you how excited this makes me. I’m going to sleep in, write, read, cook and watch movies. I may even stay in my pajamas all day on Sunday. Just because I can. Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

what inspired me this week?

I’ve started reading “Gone Girl” and I’m loving it. The writing is so good.

A Bucket List For My Baby

My friend Katie who’s traveling through Vietnam all by herself! I just love that. I’ve never traveled to a foreign land by myself but she’s inspiring me to start thinking about it!

Looking through all my road trip pictures from driving across the usa last year. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am to have had such great experiences. Expect a post about it next week!

what am I grateful for this week?

Rachel…we had a beautiful afternoon talking about life and drinking wine- on a wednesday! So naughty of us. So grateful for her friendship, love and support.

Taline for being such a good maid on honor. She has so many great ideas!

Acupuncture and chinese herbs

what surprised me this week?

That 365 til 30 was named top 100 self-help blogs!

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“Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck” – Dalai Lama

18: Dear drive across the country

20 Jun

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Dear Drive across the country,

You, I love. You speak to the free-spirited, adventurous and untamed side of me. The wanderer. The nomad. The girl who hates order, rules and schedules. The woman whose soul feels most alive when dipping her toes into the unknown. You speak to the part of me I happen to love the most- the very essence of me. The thing that makes me tick. The part of me that I fight to keep alive despite needing and wanting to plant roots.

When I first decided I wanted to accomplish you, I was the tender age of 20. Nothing sounded more exciting or more intoxicating than being on the open road for an extended period of time- getting lost, getting found, exploring, hearing stranger’s stories and seeing the different landscapes of the USA.

You have been a dream that I have been desperate to make a reality for the last 10 years.

When at 20, I decided I wanted to accomplish you, you seemed like an easy goal to tackle before 30. I had 10 years to find the time to take a month off from my life and hit the open road! But then, a funny thing happened. The years started to slip away and it never seemed like the right time to make you a reality. Life got in the way. Responsibilities got in the way and I started to feel as if you were a selfish, silly and impossible goal to accomplish. But the truth is, I never stopped thinking about you…I always pined for you.

Cut to a few days before my 29th birthday- the day I was writing my crazy 365 til 3o goal list. I felt alive with excitement and full of possibility and I, of course, wrote you on my list. I knew that somehow, someway I would find a way to make you a reality this year. Come hell or high water, I was driving across this great country of ours.

I’m not going to lie…you were a hard one to figure out! There is still no perfect time to leave your life for a month and drop off the radar. Well, I guess I wasn’t necessarily off the radar considering I could be found at all times via my twitter, instagram, facebook and blog, but you know what I mean…I was away from my everyday life. My schedule. My worries. My fears.

I was a girl on the open road without a care in the world. 

You didn’t teach me anything about myself that I didn’t already know, instead you strengthened my belief in myself. You reminded me why this is still my favorite qoute- ““Not all those who wander are lost.” – J. R. R. Tolkien

You also reminded me that there is never a perfect time to make our dreams a reality. The time is now.

The world is such a big and beautiful place and I don’t want to stop exploring it…ever. Even if that means having to drag around a few kids and lots of extra baggage one day.

It’s all about balance in life, right?

Love ya

Kate

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St. Augustine

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40

29 May

When I first started this project, I remember thinking 65 days in or so (way too early)… what the hell did I get myself into? I can’t possibly find something to share for the next 300 days and some of my goals seemed impossible to accomplish- I couldn’t  imagine how I would figure out how to drive across the country or learn how to tango.

It all seemed impossible yet I kept putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward.

Every time I felt overwhelmed I would remind myself to take it a day at a time…a moment at a time if I had to, and that somehow, someway it would come together.

Yesterday it hit me…tomorrow is day 40. I turn 30 in 40 days! The fact that 30 is so close isn’t the shocking part anymore! I’m in shock that I actually followed through with the project. I am not going to lie, some days were pretty hard….like this day and this day and this day and this day and this day– haha.

But it’s been the most amazing, surprising and fulfilling experience.

It has taught me to appreciate my life in a way I didn’t know possible. So here I am on day 40 and all I want to do is soak it all in.

I feel so grateful.

It’s the best birthday gift I have ever given to myself.

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Don’t let the fear of the time it will take to accomplish something stand in the way of your doing it. The time will pass anyway; we might just as well put that passing time to the best possible use. 
– Earl Nightingale

Day 16, Part 2: Middleton Place

25 May

ROAD TRIP

After a hilarious morning of struggs we made it to Middleton Place just in time for our horse-drawn carriage tour only to be told that they had to cancel the rest of the afternoon tours because it was too hot and they were worried the horses would overheat. I felt their pain. I felt near death as well in the heat.

After recovering from the blow of not having a horse pull us around the gardens we decided to do a walking tour of Middleton place instead and it was gorgeous. The gardens look like something out of a fairytale book. So lush, green and romantic. The highlight of the afternoon was making friends with the huge white water buffalo below. He was quite friendly!

Day 16, Part 1: Struggs

24 May

ROAD TRIP

Ugh. Waking up in Savannah after a very fun night out on the town was difficult. I think I will go as far as to say…it was a struggle or “struggs” as we warmly called it. Sadly, we didn’t have time to indulge our headaches and exhaustion because we had to pack up, check out and head to Middleton Place in South Carolina for a scheduled horse-drawn carriage tour! I was certainly spending a lot of time with horses lately.

We packed up our room (which happened to look like a clothing bomb had gone off in it and only added to our “struggs”)

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Would you want to pack up this room with a hangover? I think not.

By the time we were actually packed up, in the car and ready to go I was ready for bed again. But onward we went! But, not before I wrote on Rachel’s twitter page “struggs” to which she replied “super-struggs” and we both smiled.

A few hours later Rachel received this email from her uncle…I have NEVER enjoyed an email more. I’m dying to meet this guy!!

Hi Rach,

Just checked @katemcclafferty for the latest LA-ladies’-chinese-fire-drill-teaser but found, instead, Kate’s cryptic “72”.  Hmmm…. to 365Til30.  Oh no!  You eighty-sixed D.C. and Delaware?!  I have followed youz guys with Twitter and blogs several times per day for the past week.  I sipped morning coffee while TCB, and all the while kept an eye out for the day’s first Tweet.  Where are they now and what are they doing?    Now I understand why “soap” addicts swoon when a character is written out; I am not ready for “over”.  
Only after I’d browsed the hilarious photos in, and digested the text of, “72” did I (finally!) get the meaning of “72”.  Duh!, Michael.

The following might bring smiles, so I hope you see this email very soon, i.e. early in the “72”.  The “strugg” flares sent aloft by Kate and then you left me clueless, very puzzled.  What?  Is that a place?  A thing?  Google Earth shrugged; Wiki shrugged;  Both Google and Bing seemed pretty sure that I was looking for a band.  A Band?  OK.  Maybe.  But no further tweets that morning and none in the afternoon felt …. wrong.  The puzzle continued to percolate in my brain.  I do like puzzles, but puzzles that seem impervious to my attacks niggle me no end.  And so it was, until I happened to mention the pesky “strugg” to a neighbor.  He grinned and said, “So you’re STRUGGling with strugg?”.  Yeah…… Oh… Now I get it.  Puzzle had fallen but there was no joy here, because I then understood that Kate was struggling and Rach was super-struggling but I didn’t know the root problem.  WTF?!  Nothing to do but stake out Twitter; I pitched a bloody teepee on its doorstep.  Finally: “And all is good again”.  That’s not all I wanted to know but it’s what I most wanted to hear.  I can wait for the rest.

God speed, Rach, Kate and Herb.

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BEST EMAIL EVER

Day 16, Part 2 Middleton Place up next…

Cumberland Island, GA

22 May

ROAD TRIP

Day 15, Part 1

So after garnering my second speeding ticket and shedding a few tears, we arrived in St. Mary’s, GA late at night, exhausted and a bit crabby (although that may have been just me).  Saint Mary’s was less of a “stop” on our trip and more of a place to rest our heads for the night before catching the ferry the next morning to Cumberland Island. Cumberland Island is Georgia’s largest and southernmost barrier island. The island also has a rich history as it was home to early natives,  missionaries, enslaved Africans and African-Americans and Wealthy Industrialists throughout the years. It’s covered in gorgeous maritime forests, undeveloped beaches, marshes, ruins (of the Dungeness Mansion) and wild horses…yes wild horses! Clearly the whole wild horse thing was a draw for me.

After getting a good nights sleep at our hotel we ate a sad complimentary breakfast (one of the joys of a road trip) and grabbed Subway sandwiches (another joy of road trips) to eat for lunch while on the island. We boarded the Cumberland ferry for a quick 45 minute ride to the island. The ferry also happened to be filled with a massive amount of cute 10 year olds on a school field trip. The were all SO excited to be on a boat headed to an island! Every animal, wave, landmass, tree and fellow boat we passed was more exciting than the next. It was actually rather sweet (I was even daydreaming about doing such activities with my future kids) until one kid yelled down to a smaller boat below- “suck it!” in the loudest voice he could muster. I slumped down in my seat embarrassed to be sitting next to him (in that moment I stopped daydreaming about doing these activities with my future children).

After our lively boat ride, we were officially on Cumberland Island and also officially the only people wearing dresses and flip-flops instead of hiking boots and fanny packs. I was starting to regret my clothing decision as we set off alone into the lush green wooded path of trees on a one mile walk in search of the Dungeness Mansion ruins…oh, and wild horses! Although now I was starting to wonder about the probability of actually seeing one. I mean, usually wild things hate to be contained (welcome to my early 20’s)…that’s why we call them wild, right? As we weeded through the plants, I couldn’t help but read the “animals to watch out for” section of our welcome packet and was surprised to learn that both rattlesnakes and alligators were present on the island. As I continued walking down the lush path I thought, Why am I always reading such things much too late? I must change this moving into my 30th year on earth.

I was just about to start having a panic attack about where I was stepping when we came out on a beautiful, empty beach with cream-colored sand and seashells. It was like being in some foreign film or something. I felt like we were the only people in the world. We climbed down the rocks to stick our toes in the sand and play around for a bit.

(bottom three photos by One Part Gypsy)

Then as we set back down the path towards the ruins, it happened…we turned a corner and voila, we were in a huge open field with a sea of wild horses in front of us!! I almost died. I could not believe what I was seeing. I approached them as quietly as I possibly could, frightened I would startle them and they would flee. But the closer I got to them, the more I realized that they could care less about us. The didn’t even flinch! They just kept eating their grass and swinging their tails. They were so very delicate and sweet. The wild horses against the backdrop of the mansion’s ruins was breathtaking. I honestly felt like I had been dropped in a movie and was suddenly overwhelmed with gratitude for this experience and gratitude for it all.

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For Rachel’s blog click here!

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48

21 May

I woke up this morning to this note from the universe and it could not have been more perfect considering I am 48 days away from turning 30 and my crazy journey is coming to an end.

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The very best moment in any long journey that makes your dreams come true, Kate, comes not on the day you realize they have, but on the day you realize how little they matter compared to loving the adventure they’ve inspired. 

Don’t ask me why, I just know what I know – 
    The Universe

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