2017 turned out to be a pretty awesome year…..2018 has a lot to live up to – but, I am confident that it will prove to be up for the challenge!
Here are the highlights of all that happened and some of my favorite photos from 2017:
I started the year off with a West Coast Adventure that involved seeing the entire West Coast from top to bottom, including Mexico, using planes, trains, automobiles, boats, buses, and cruise ships! Whew! The adventure lasted two weeks – the last week in March and first week in April. I started out flying to San Francisco and catching a cruise ship for seven days with stops in Santa Barbara, Long Beach (LA), San Diego, and Ensenada, Mexico. It was fantastic – first time I did a cruise by myself! I was a little nervous about it, but it ended up I wasn’t alone, after all….I cruised and took tours in every port with a couple thousand new friends!!! 😀 When the cruise ship returned to San Francisco, I spent a few days there going on double decker bus city tours seeing the sites and day tours to Napa Valley / Sonoma and Muir Woods / Sausalito. From there, I took the Coastal Starlight Train from San Francisco to Seattle, passing through the scenic areas of Oregon. The train was an over night ride, so I had a sleeper car with all the perks that come with that travel option – meals in the dining car, wine tasting in the club car, comfortable seating in the lounge car! Then, I spent a couple more days in Seattle seeing the sights there before flying back home!
Here are the links to the blog posts with all the photos and stories from this amazing adventure:
If I had to pick just a few favorite photos, I think it would be these…..although, it is truly unfair of my to do so and short change all the others, so please check out the links for the rest!
Next up was my Washington, DC Adventure – I went with two good friends and traveling buddies May 8-12. I had never been and always wanted to go and they hadn’t been in many years, so we decided to go together. In making the plans, it became evident right away that we could NEVER see everything we wanted to see in one trip. So, we decided to make it an annual trip – go every year for short visits and see something different every time we go! Our inaugural trip consisted of general city bus tours, the National Mall, one Smithsonian, and a few other things. We traveled there by train, which was awesome! And, the hotel we chose was the perfect location. We are currently starting to plan this year’s trip – hopefully timing it so we can catch the cherry blossoms, travel by train again, and see more Smithsonians, museums, and perhaps the National Cathedral.
Here is the link to that blog post with lots of photos:
And, here are a couple of my favorite photos:
Then, the first weekend in June, I went on a Chittenango, NY Adventure to visit the Land of Oz! The first weekend in June every year, the Village of Chittenango hosts an event called Oz-Stravaganza! Chittenango is the birthplace of L Frank Baum – author of the Wizard of Oz books and they go all out to celebrate that fact. I stayed in an awesome Bed and Breakfast Inn and also toured around the area and saw Chittenango Falls, a Canal Museum, a fabulous Wild Animal Park, and other area attractions.
Here are the links to those blog posts with photos:
And, a few of my favorite photos:
On August 4th, I went on an Adventure in the Sky! A dear friend was up visiting from NC and I asked him to get a photo of my house from his airplane when he was out flying around one day. He suggested I go up with him and take the photo myself……um, I wasn’t so sure about that, but I agreed and am soooooo glad I did! We flew all over the county and I got some of the most awesome photos!!! It was a fantastic day!!!
Here is that blog link with all the photos:
And, here are some of my favorites:
My house! 😀
In August, I went on a day bus trip with a friend to the 1000 Islands. I hadn’t been there since I was a little girl and had it on my bucket list since I returned home…..finally got there! We took the boat ride around all the islands and toured Boldt Castle.
Here is that link:
And, a few favorite photos:
The first two weeks in September was the grand New England Adventure with my brother and sister-in-law in their motor home! We toured all over the New England states and saw lots of amazing things, ate tons of lobster, and had an amazing time!
Here are the links – you won’t want to miss these photos:
And….although it was so hard to choose…..here are a few of my favorite photos:
Also in September, I went on the I Love Lucy Adventure – another day bus trip with another friend to Jamestown, NY to tour the Lucy/Desi Museum and visit a few local wineries. Jamestown is Lucille Ball’s hometown and they really celebrate her in a big way, there! We toured the two museums dedicated to her, took a boat tour, and stopped at two wineries.
Click here for the blog post:
And, here are a couple fave photos:
In October, I had planned on a trip to Kentucky and Ohio with a group I belong to that does a lot of tours. But, the tour was canceled due to lack of interest. So, we were refunded the money. I was disappointed, but instantly decided that since I had considered the money I got back “spent” and the time for the trip was blocked out and I was now free to do whatever I wanted, I took the refund and booked a flight and hotel for a Dubuque, Iowa Adventure!!! Why Dubuque, Iowa, you ask? Well, last year I went with my brother and sister-in-law and her sister on a 34 day cross country trip in their motor home – we visited 22 states and when we were done, Iowa was the only state in the center of the country that remained uncolored!!! That drove me NUTS!!!! I was determined to find a reason to go there next year (oh, wait, THIS year – haha). So, I figured I could flip Kentucky and Iowa and get Iowa done and catch Kentucky later! So, I researched things to do and decided that Dubuque was the place to stay and tour around from there. I took off by myself – flew to Dubuque and then put over 700 miles on my rental car in two and a half days and saw some of the most amazing things!!! I visited the house that the movie Field of Dreams was filmed at, the crash site where Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, and Richie Valens died, and the American Pickers store……among other things! It was such a great trip!!!
Here are the links:
And……some of my fave photos:
And, my final BIG adventure was my Hershey, PA / Gettysburg Adventure the end of October! I met friends there – I drove down from NY and they drove up from NC and we spent a couple days seeing the sites. Visiting Gettysburg was a humbling and emotional day – the history and stories were so powerful. I enjoyed that trip so much!
Here is the blog link:
And, a few top picks of the photos:
Chocolate Martinis in Hershey, PA! 😀
Then, there were a few little local adventures throughout the year……
I took a Potty Tour……a tour of outhouses that are part of the Cobblestone Museum Complex and learned about the history of the “privy”!
I went on a Garden Tour to visit various local gardens with the Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners Group and saw some of the most stunning gardens I’ve ever seen!
Yes, it was a full and adventurous year! But, also a year of “firsts” without my Mom, who passed away in April 2016. There were also two other planned trips that the friends I was going with and I decided to skip for one reason or another – a trip to Branson, MO in December and a trip to NYC over Thanksgiving. Although I was disappointed at the time we decided to skip the trips, I’m glad we did……I crammed a little too much into one year and there is always another year to re-plan those trips!
And, now…..for some of my favorite photos from the year that didn’t involve adventures:
So, there you have it……my year in pictures, stories, and blog links!!! hehehe
Hope 2018 is an incredible year for all…..I know I’m planning to do my best to make MY 2018 amazing!!!