Run Away to Turks and Caicos

And just like that another 365 passes us by. It’s funny, I started off 2017 in a foreign country. And I’m ending 2017 the same way I rang it in: Elsewhere. Abroad.  Who would have guessed, me, this girl who was terrified to leave Florida for eight years because I could not get myself on a plane, is now writing this from, actually, I don’t want to think about how many feet it is. I’m better, but I’ll never truly be comfortable with it.  Since it’s December 31 and all and I’m sitting on a plane headed off to a tropical paradise and feeling all nostalgic, now seems the the best time as any to tell the story of one of my most favorite trips of the past year. It was not too long ago that Jorge and I agreed to visit Turks and Caicos as part of a press…Read More

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The Great Oblication: Vegas at Last

There’s nothing quite like hiking to send a backseat full of kids into a tranquil slumber as you road trip from the tip of Utah to Vegas. Jorge and I listened to classic rock, as we do on all our adventures, as we headed toward to desert to fulfill the obligation portion of our oblication. There were not kids to complain about the sounds of our old people music. And it was lovely. Perfect, in fact. You’ll recall, we were headed to Project when we decided to bring the kids and turn the whole work trip into a family vacay.  With Zion behind us, all that was left was to play in the giant sandbox known as Vegas. It was all our first trips, sans Jorge (aka Cruise Director), and there was plenty on the agenda before the work set in. It just so happened that Fleet Foxes were touring when…Read More

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The Great Oblication: Zion National Park

Our trip to Utah’s five national parks got wildly off course. We drove past Canyonlands. We drove past Canyon Reef. We drove past Bryce. And we just kept on going. The gravitational pull of Zion was a force so strong we couldn’t ignore it. Plans bend and twist and fold. And when they do, you have roll with the punches. We realized our goal were completely overzealous. Dragging kids from park to park in such a short period of time was crazy. But we didn’t realize it until we got there and pushed their little legs from here to there and everywhere. As long as we were together and making the most of this oblication (a trip you’re obligated to take that you also turn into a vacation), well, that what counts. So to heck with doing it all. We’d skip the rest and aim for the best. But first…Read More

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The Great Oblication: White Water Rafting in Moab

We woke up in our soft Hampton By Hilton beds, wrapped in our clean white sheets. Things hurt. Things like our calves, our hips and our hamstrings. Memories of yesterday’s hike were alive and well in our legs, our bones, our joints. But that didn’t stop us from bouncing out of bed (well, at least Jorge and I) and prepping for the next adventure. Our trip, as you’ll remember, started off as a work trip to Vegas (obligation) with a massive detour along Utah’s national parks (vacation). Put all that together and, well, you’ve got yourself an oblication. We rose the kids from their sleep, which wasn’t an easy task. Teenagers and sleep have a special relationship. The littlest one taking on the same mentality. But today, we were going rafting down the Colorado river in Moab. It was time to get up. It was time to get moving. It…Read More

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The Great Oblication: From Miami to Moab, Utah and Arches National Park

How do you manage to go from this … to this … in the same trip? I guess, the same way your 9-year-old can cram all of this into her “what I did on my summer vacation” illustration below. It’s called the “oblication,” as in taking a trip you are obligated to take and turning some aspect of it into a vacation. And if this family is good at anything, it’s taking a trip and turning it into an adventure. One that I should get to telling, though it will take me the next few months to do. It seems like just yesterday, though, I was crammed in a car with my Brady Bunch family driving from the tip of Colorado to the desert, winding up in Las Vegas for my first time—well, all of our first times, sans Jorge—for a work trip. And the in between, well, that was the best…Read More

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Colorado Here We Come: Back To Where It All Began

{Wearing: Bodysuit & Skirt: c/o Ramona LaRue. Necklace: c/o T.J. Maxx. Photographed by Jorge Camaraza} Here’s the amazing, yet peculiar thing about Colorado in spring: There are snow-covered mountains, ripe for swooshing down on boards and skis, but drive just a bit further—up the road even—and the scenery changes instantly. Green fields, blooming florals, warmer temps—it’s almost as if you’ve left one season and landed in the next. We noticed immediately as we crossed from our Hampton By Hilton in Silverthorne into Glenwood Springs. The same Glenwood Springs we’d been to on our first Hampton By Hilton Seekender outing. Back then it was just the two of us on the Indian motorcycle, the sky so blue it was as though a vat of thick robin egg paint had fallen over and spilled sky-wide. The charred orange rocks of the canyon reaching up to the sky, surrounding us, encasing us. Today, we…Read More

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The Seekender’s Guide to Miami Beach

{Photographed by Jorge Camaraza}  Summer, the season of travel. A time to go see the world, do something new, scratch something off that bucket list you’ve been carrying around. This summer, while I’m running off to see corners of the world, others will make their way to this little plot of sand I call home. As much as I love helpful hints on where to go and what to see on my journeys, I feel its only fitting for me to do the same of my own city. That being said, welcome to Miami Beach. As a Seekender for Hampton by Hilton, I’ve traveled most of my adventures via motorcycle, seeing Colorado and the Pacific Coast Highway via Indian bike. If you’re on your own Hampton by Hilton Seekender journey, keep in mind Miami Beach is great via bike, too. But this terrain calls for bicycle instead of something with…Read More

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On Visiting Havana, Cuba

{Wearing: Top: Forever 21. Shorts: AG from Calypso St. Barth. Shoes: c/o Tarbay. Sunnies: c/o Christian Roth. All Photographs by Jorge Camaraza} As I was standing in line at the bar on New Years Eve, a stranger approached me and asked, “Why Havana?” I look at her and said, “I’ve lived in Miami for 16 years. Some of my favorite people are Cuban. I wanted to see where they came from.” “You,” I said? “I came here because it was on a must-see list for New Year’s,” she said. Whatever your reason, Havana is well worth the trip. I’ve wanted to see it for a long time now, this mysterious island just 90 miles from Miami’s shores. This controversial place, trapped in a bubble, so enigmatic and steeped in history. Sure, the vintage cars seem alluring, but it’s truly the culture that was the purpose for the trip, for me anyway. Going with…Read More



Looking Back on my PCH Seekender Adventure

Twenty sixteen, the year I crossed traveling across the Pacific Coast Highway on the back of a motorcycle with my best friend off my bucket list. As I mentioned in my last post: “Memories like these weren’t easily forgotten, they held too much weight, too much joy, too much power.” From zipping across the Golden Gate Bridge and hugging trees bigger around than I am tall , to the breathtaking views of Monterey and Big Sur, to frolicking on a purple beach and spying the lights of the Santa Monica pier, it was a trip that lives on inside both he and me. Thanks, Hampton by Hilton, for the Seekender trip of a lifetime. And thank you for everything it begat. I have a motto about traveling: Always leave one thing off your list, so it gives you a reason to go back. And that’s exactly what we did. We saw everything…Read More

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