Football, Georgia, Hawaii, Kauai, Maui, Norway, Travel, Utah

A Look Back

Happy New Year my lovelies!

Photo credit (Trust me, you’re going to want to click on the link to see more AMAZING New Year’s Eve celebration photos)

I hope you had an amazing holiday surrounded by those you love. I love this time of year because I get to read a recap of everyone’s fun-filled 2013. Keep sharing because I love reading!

I personally love the recaps because it’s fun to look back through the last twelve months to see all of the fun experiences we have had, all the lessons we have learned, and how we have grown as individuals. The days seem to buzz by with increasing speed, so having the opportunity to be still and reflect on some of the special moments within our lives is definitely cherished.

We began our 2013 with a relaxing trip to Kauai. Every year my husband and I plan a Christmas trip to escape the harsh winter weather and enjoy the warm beaches of the tropical destination of our choice. It was our second time to Kauai and we loved the island even more this time around. Some of our favorite moments of the entire year were had on this trip when we went whale watching and then skydiving! (I still can’t believe we went SKYDIVING! It was! Mom and Dad, don’t read this next sentence, just skip to the next paragraph–between my readers and I, I am searching for an opportunity to go again. Any suggestions on dive locations?) 

Skydive Kauai

Kauai Humpback Whale

We also began the year as first time home buyers. We built a brand new home in order to get exactly what we wanted, as well as to avoid the time and cost of working on a “fixer upper.” However to my surprise, even though it was brand new, there was still a LOT that needed to be done in our home. We spent the first four months of the year (pinching pennies) and tackling our mile-long-to-do-list. Thanks to my awesome dad we were able to install our own sprinkler system, lay sod, and complete our yard. We saved for a fence in the backyard, installed decorative curbing for the flower beds, and added additional storage in the garage. 🙂 There was a lot to do in our new home…


The time and cost of these new home expenditures set us back a little bit as far as traveling was concerned, but if you have read Pictures and Plane Tickets for a while you know that we stick to our budget and never travel on credit. Yes, we use credit cards for traveling purchases to accrue those sought after Rewards Points, but we only go on trips if we have the money to pay it off long before we head to the airport.

Nevertheless, in 2013 we were still able to visit three different countries (two new countries on my list) and a couple more states. While slaving away on the house last spring, my husband and I were also busy saving up for my dream trip to Norway. This two-week dream-trip was worth all the penny-pinching as we had an amazing time. We met family, traced history, checked off another bucket list item, indulged, laughed, cried, and when all was said and done, I’m trying to find another way to get us back there again.

Alesund, Norway

I honestly don’t know where the summer and fall went. Work was incredibly demanding this season, so in my spare time I spent a lot of time relaxing on the back patio, grilling and enjoying cocktails, while watching those beautiful Salt Lake sunsets. This fall while watching a nail-biting rival football game, my husband and I decided that we should go to Athens, Georgia to watch our Bulldogs play. It was my first trip to Athens and it ended up holding a lot of unexpected adventures throughout the trip.


As we wrap up the 2013 year, I reflect on how grateful I am for my health, my family, my friends, my career, my fur-babies, and more. 2013 was a great year and I look forward to what 2014 will bring.

As of January 1, I have started a new 101 goals in 1001 days list which will be taking us to some amazing (and exotic) locations over the next few years (Think: Tahiti…I’m literally crossing my fingers and toes). 🙂

Looking at this upcoming year, if things go as planned we will be making a trip to the Grand Canyon, heading back to Hawaii to do some island hopping–the Big Island and Kauai–to be exact, traveling to Lake Powell with some of our extended family, and I am hoping that we can squeeze in another fall football game.

Island Hopping

We just returned home from Maui yesterday and I can’t wait to share some of our adventures with you. Even when I’m not looking for something dangerous exciting, I end up stumbling across it anyways. I love life! 🙂

I hope your 2013 was everything you hoped it would be! Cheers to a great 2014!

8 thoughts on “A Look Back”

  1. Sounds like a great year of travel and achieving some goals. We were in Hawaii in Dec…Kuaui and Maui are fantastic…but Big Island was my favourite… especially for driving around. Perhaps I hadn’t researched it enough, but it felt under-rated. I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.

    1. Thanks i*Kan! Do you have a favorite thing to do on the Big Island. It will be our first time to the island. I’m excited to do a helicopter tour on the volcano (and a boat tour if the lava is back to the ocean by then). I’ll take all the advice I can get! 🙂

      1. I think definitely the helicopter and/ or boat tour if the lava is flowing. We didn’t do either cos there was no lava flowing into the sea when we went… And we were told that viewing lava from the heli tour may be a hit or a miss. But the Volcanoes park is a must-do in any case. If you don’t have altitude sickness issues, then the sunset at Mauna Kea is supposed to be amazing… We did that at Haleakala in Maui, and it is magical to be above the clouds! Mauna Kea is even higher. The drives are beautiful… There is so much diversity… Hamakua Coast, Kohala Mountain Road, Saddle road, etc. Check out some pics that I’ll be posting on my blog and decide for yourself 🙂

  2. Looking forward to your Maui adventures… Hawaii will always remain the place to be for me…. now you have me thinking I should do a review of the year..,..

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