Tag Archives: USA

One 2017 Bucket List Item

Before we jump to the fun plans of each of our bucket list items for 2017, I wanted to share something more personal. 2016 was a very difficult year for me in terms of heartbreak and loss and I have felt the grief and despair that I believe Anita experienced too. Without the care, friendships and love from friends and family, I feel certain that she and I would have shared a similar fate. Those around me knew how much I was hurting and really pulled me through the darkness. It is my hope that anyone who feels helpless seeks the help they need. Life isn’t a sprint – it’s a marathon and there’s always lessons to live through and learn from.

In 2013, the travel blogging world lost Anita Mac, and many of us lost a friend. Anita inspired each of us in different ways with her huge, welcoming smile, eagerness to help, colorful fashion sense, as well as a shoulder to cry on and a willingness to comfort and listen. For many of us, Anita comes to mind almost daily, but most often during our travels, so each year since her death, our goal has been to honor her in some way. We want to pick up where she left off, as her blog focused on bucket list travel, so we are going to dedicate an item from our own bucket list to her during 2017.


Beautiful Anita – you’re gone but not ever forgotten

We hope this reminds our readership of the wonderful world we live in, how we can all experience it, and how fragile life can be. For Anita, we pledge this for 2017:

Where in the World is Lola? (moi)

This past year I didn’t have a bucket list item for Anita but I guess my own personal yearly bucket list wish is to always travel somewhere new. I can happily say that did happen in 2016. I traveled to the Dominican Republic and was able to donate some of my time helping those in need there. Otherwise, 2016 was a pretty quiet year for me travel-wise. I’m hoping 2017 will be a bit more active.

Lola with Stay Adventurous and The World Wanderer on a cruise to the Dominican Republic

Lola with Stay Adventurous and The World Wanderer on a cruise to the Dominican Republic

I am starting off my year headed back to New Orleans and cannot wait. Other than that, I have no firm travel plans as of yet. I think I would like to prioritize traveling with some of my travel buddies somewhere – new or old! Some thoughts I have are Scotland and Vietnam but I’m open to anything so long as it is with people who are near and dear to me. Anita would love this. She loved us all being together as a group. Her last trip was, in fact, a group trip with several travel gals to Montreal. So, I hope you’ll consider planning an adventure together with me (you know who you are!).

Montreal shenanigans - miss you Anita

Montreal shenanigans – miss you Anita

Traveling Ted

In less than two months I will be traveling to Anita’s hometown. This is the second time I have visited since she passed away. When I met her at TBEX in Toronto, and I told her I might be skiing the Gatineau Loppet, she invited me to stay with her. When I finally did make it to Gatineau, which is right across the river from Ottawa, Ontario, Anita had already passed. I sadly spent most of my time alone. This year I will be returning to the region to ski in the Canadian Ski Marathon.

The fact that I am returning to Canada actually has nothing to do with my bucket list item for 2017.  I am psyched to return to Anita’s homeland, but that is not my 2017 bucket list item. The Canadian Ski Marathon is an endurance race where participants partake in two days of skiing totaling 100 miles. If the number one travel experience I was looking forward to in 2017 was to ski myself into complete exhaustion, then I would be insane. I just needed a hook to tie in travel and Anita. Now that you are honed in on my bucket list, and wondering what the hell it is, I am going to switch gears from cross-country skiing and Canada, but not too far away.

Me after skiing the Gatineau Loppet near Anita's home, but this photo has nothing to do with my 2017 bucket list item

Ted after skiing the Gatineau Loppet near Anita’s home, but this photo has nothing to do with his 2017 bucket list item

Since I am quite sane, my 2017 bucket list item is to visit Maine, and I am pretty sure it is going to happen. I have signed up to join Bullmoose Patrol on a wilderness canoe trip in October on the Allagash River. I have never been to Maine, so I hope to see some moose, breathtaking fall colors, catch and eat some fresh fish, canoe a beautiful river, and drink some Allagash beer near its source. I am quite certain Anita would approve of all the above.

Adventure on!

Follow Ted’s travels on his blog Traveling Ted

The World Wanderer

In 2016, my bucket list plan was to hike Patagonia. At the time, I had only made tentative plans with friends, and those plans eventually fell through. Since I lived most of the year off of my savings, it wasn’t an ideal time to make the trek to South America, so last year’s bucket list item didn’t happen, although I did made it to Colombia in December.
Erin road tripping the USA

Erin road tripping the USA

This year, I am going to try to be a little more realistic with my goal, so my plan is to finish off my states in the United States. If I take two road trips or one major one, I will be able to check off 13 states in the contiguous United States. That will leave me with Alaska, which could be a more difficult one to finish up in 2017, but I am going to try. I think Anita would love this goal of seeing my home country, and she’d sure love the adventures to be had in Alaska. I think it’s the perfect way to honor her.
Follow Erin’s wanderings on her blog The World Wanderer

Stay Adventurous

Craig fly fishing in the Florida Keys

Craig fly fishing in the Florida Keys

With a singular fly cast out into the flats of the upper Florida Keys backcountry, I smiled, not solely because I realized a dream, a bucket list item, but because I also completed my 2016 dedication to Anita. I really owe a lot to my friend Scott,  who not only helped make it happen and also snapped the image I shared on Instagram (which has captured the most likes of the year for me).  Next year he promised we will catch one.
Beaches of Central America

Beaches of Central America

So now as I look towards 2017, I am staring at the snow falling in Lake Wallenpaupack and I am debating a winter adventure. Yet my recent trip Belize reminds me how much of the Americas I have still yet to explore. So for 2017, I plan to visit a NEW destination and a NEW place somewhere on one of the American continents. Maybe I’ll return south of the border, find my way to a winter adventure, or both. Wherever it takes me, this year I plan to discover (more of) the Americas.
Follow Craig’s adventures on his blog StayAdventurous


We encourage you to join us in this quest and take on at least one Bucket List item in 2017, but more importantly, we also hope you take the opportunity to (re)connect with friends and loved ones during this holiday season and throughout the year.

The purpose for writing this post is not only to inspire others to travel the world and explore, but as a way for us to remind all of you who are reading this post to look around you, see who you can reach out to and possibly help reach their goals and feel supported and loved. Our friend and fellow traveler, Anita took her life because she didn’t see any other options, we don’t want anyone else to feel that way.

Please share the momentum.


Filed under bucket list, dominican republic, florida, Maine, travel, USA

foodie friday – YUM!

my favorite restaurant reservation service – opentable.com – recently announced their 2011 Diners’ Choice List for the top 50 restaurants in the US with the most scenic view.

Top 50 Scenic View Restaurants - 2011 Diners' Choice Winners

The United States features beautiful and varied scenery from the East Coast to the West Coast. And fortunately for you, OpenTable restaurants are located at some of our country’s most breathtaking spots. To help you sort through all the amazing choices, we asked OpenTable diners to pick their best spots for feasting their eyes as well as feeding their stomachs. Find out more details on OpenTable Diners’ Choice lists

Barbara De Lollis from USA TODAY reported that 16 of the 50 are actually located in hotels and curated photo tour of some of these extraordinarily scenic destinations. Making the cut for OpenTable’s Top 50 list is impressive, given that OpenTable lists some 12,000 restaurants in every state.

From Indianapolis to Phoenix to Honolulu, restaurants on the Top 50 list offer a memorable meal against a memorable backdrop, be it twinkling city lights, a spectacular Pacific sunset or majestic mountains. They’re all appropriate settings for a special dinner, be it an anniversary or important business dinner.

“From sexy urban skylines to stunning vistas courtesy of Mother Nature, the views at these top restaurants will take your breath away – but not your appetite,” says Caroline Potter, OpenTable’s chief dining officer. “The winning restaurants on this list represent the best in destination dining.”

2011 Scenic View Dining Winners – Top 50 Restaurant List

Reserve Now
A Caprice Tiburon CA Continental Reserve Now
Bali Hai Restaurant San Diego CA Hawaiian Reserve Now
Beach Chalet Brewery & Restaurant San Francisco CA American Reserve Now
Bertrand at Mister A’s San Diego CA Continental Reserve Now
Boat House Waterfront Dining Tiverton RI Seafood Reserve Now
Cannons Seafood Grill Dana Point CA Seafood Reserve Now
Chart House Restaurant – Cardiff Cardiff CA Seafood Reserve Now
Chart House Restaurant – Malibu Malibu CA Seafood Reserve Now
Chart House Restaurant – Portland Portland OR Seafood Reserve Now
Chart House Restaurant – Tower of the Americas San Antonio TX Seafood Reserve Now
Cite Chicago IL Contemporary American Reserve Now
Claes Ovation Laguna Beach CA Californian Reserve Now
Coach Insignia Detroit MI American Reserve Now
Compass Restaurant – Hyatt Regency Phoenix Phoenix AZ Contemporary American Reserve Now
Different Pointe of View Phoenix AZ Contemporary American Reserve Now
Eagle’s Nest – Hyatt Regency Indianapolis Indianapolis IN American Reserve Now
Edgewood Restaurant Lake Tahoe NV Contemporary American Reserve Now
Franciscan Crab Restaurant San Francisco CA Seafood Reserve Now
Grandviews at the Grand Hyatt San Francisco San Francisco CA Californian Reserve Now
High Finance Restaurant – At the top of the Tram Albuquerque NM Contemporary American Reserve Now
Highlawn Pavilion West Orange NJ American Reserve Now
Il Fornaio – Coronado Coronado CA Italian Reserve Now
Island Prime San Diego CA Steak Reserve Now
Ivar’s Mukilteo Landing Mulkiteo WA Seafood Reserve Now
La Costanera Montara CA Peruvian Reserve Now
Miramar Beach Restaurant Half Moon Bay CA Seafood Reserve Now
Monterey Bay Fish Grotto – Mt. Washington Mt. Washington PA Seafood Reserve Now
Moss Beach Distillery Half Moon Bay CA Seafood Reserve Now
Nikolai’s Roof Atlanta GA French Reserve Now
Pacific’s Edge Restaurant Carmel CA American Reserve Now
Peaks Restaurant Palm Springs CA Contemporary American Reserve Now
Peohe’s – Coronado Waterfront Restaurant Coronado CA Seafood Reserve Now
Primavista Cincinnati OH Italian Reserve Now
R Lounge at Two Times Square Manhattan NY Tapas/Small Plates Reserve Now
Ray’s Boathouse Seattle WA Seafood Reserve Now
River’s End Jenner CA Californian Reserve Now
Robert Manhattan NY American Reserve Now
Sarento’s Top of the “I” Honolulu HI Italian Reserve Now
Seven Glaciers Anchorage AK Contemporary American Reserve Now
Signature Room at the 95th Chicago IL American Reserve Now
Six Seven Restaurant & Lounge Seattle WA Seafood Reserve Now
Steamers of Pismo Pismo Beach CA Seafood Reserve Now
The Marine Room La Jolla CA Global, International Reserve Now
The Shores Restaurant – La Jolla Shores Hotel La Jolla CA American Reserve Now
The Spinnaker – Sausalito Sausalito CA Seafood Reserve Now
The View Restaurant New York NY Contemporary American Reserve Now
Top of the Tower New York NY Contemporary American Reserve Now
Top of the World Restaurant – Stratosphere Hotel Las Vegas NV Global, International Reserve Now
Water’s Edge Long Island NY American Reserve Now
Yamashiro Hollywood CA Asian Reserve Now

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