Paris in Springtime — Yes, Please

Montmartre, Paris

Anthony and I try to get away just the two of us at least once a year — usually to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, or somewhere else nearby. This year, in honor of our 5th wedding anniversary and my 50th birthday, we are going to Paris over spring break…and I’m completely giddy with anticipation.

paris

 

I found us incredibly inexpensive flights on WOW Air, an airline out of Iceland. I’ve also rented us an adorable studio apartment on AirBnB in the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris. Since Anthony and I have both seen all the major touristy spots in Paris, I decided that we’ll stay “local” and experience a true Parisian neighborhood. We haven’t been to Montmartre — and from what I’ve read, it’s quintessential Paris.

Stay tuned to my Instagram mid-March. I’m sure I’ll bombard you with photos pastries and coffee shops.

Touring Granada with VaPues Tours

view of Granada from bell tower

My daughters and I were comped two VaPues tours in Granada in exchange for social media promotion and this blog post, but all opinions expressed here are my own.

On day three in Granada, the three of us had two tours planned with VaPues Tours. I had emailed them weeks in advance, and they helped us pick from their selection of tour options. The folks at VaPues were super easy to work with and our tour guide, René, was extremely knowledgeable about Granada history, architecture and ecology. Continue reading “Touring Granada with VaPues Tours”

Highlights from Granada, Nicaragua — Day 2

dinner at Bocodillos

Day 2 in Granada started with a delicious breakfast buffet at Hotel Plaza Colon. Maya ate breakfast non-stop for an hour. Literally. She ate mangos, watermelon, eggs, gallo pinto (rice and beans), bacon and more. She made friends with one of the cooks, Alejandra. After breakfast, we walked several blocks to the Choco Museo. It was already so hot, by the time we arrived at the museum, we needed to sit down and rest. Luckily, I hadn’t bought our tickets yet for the chocolate making class because Maya started feeling sick at her stomach. Not surprised. After we determined that Maya was not up for the 2 hour class, we slugged back to the hotel to regroup. breakfast buffet at Hotel Plaza Colon Continue reading “Highlights from Granada, Nicaragua — Day 2”

Day 1 of our Nicaragua Adventure

strolling through Granada

Friday afternoon we drove to Dallas. As soon as we neared the DFW metro area, the sky fell with rain so hard — and being rush hour — Google Maps redirected us three times due to all the wrecks. We made it to the north remote parking lot at DFW Airport, only finding a parking spot 57 rows from the bus pick-up station. We gathered our backpacks (I only allowed each person to pack one backpack, so we wouldn’t have to deal with checked bags — plus traveling light is so much easier) and speed walked to the station. We were drenched and a bit cold, but happy to be so close to our adventure. Continue reading “Day 1 of our Nicaragua Adventure”

Thinking back to Italy…

Cinque Terre

Today I was thinking back to my trip to Italy with Maya from back in April 2012. I had dreamed of that trip for over a year. It was going to be me, my mom, and Maya going — three generations of McBryde women. But then just a few days before we were to leave, my mom found out that she was going to have heart bypass surgery. It was totally unexpected. Then I had to decide whether to cancel the trip or not. After going back and forth, my sweet mom encouraged us to go without her. And we did. It was a glorious holiday. Maya and I had never had two weeks off just enjoying each other like this. She was a trooper — best three-year-old world traveler ever. Okay, that’s not true, but we did have a blast. And thank the Lord that my mom is doing well now. We’re going to take that trip to Italy with her sometime soon, I hope.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAVenice, Italy

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEnjoying our daily gelato. Levanto, Italy

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABike riding along the coast. Levanto, Italy

Today, my Timehop app reminded me of this trip. My Instagram has more pics. I’m sure I’ll post Italy photos for the next several days as I reminiscence about that glorious vacation.

gelato

Now I’m in the midst of planning a trip to Nicaragua with Madison and Maya for June. Stay tuned — it’s going to be another one for the record books.