On Turning 30

As I get closer to 30, I can’t help but look back on my life. Growing up, I felt like 30 was the age that you had to have everything figured out. You have to have the job, the dream job or live in a big city and in a house. Maybe even be married with a kid on the way. Basically, I had a different life set out for myself. 30 makes me think of things I did not accomplish. I thought having the job, the city, the house, and the marriage defined success and 30 was that magic age. Now, I’m 2 months away from 30 and well… my life is different than expected.

My main question about turning 30 is would past me be proud? To be honest, I think so. I  like living in Texas because I am not far from family or close friends. San Francisco was my dream city but the cost of living is a different story. I would not be able to enjoy the culture there because the majority of my money would go to rent. Marriage is a beautiful commitment but I am glad I have waited. I feel like I am still getting to know myself and I wouldn’t be a good wife if I don’t get to know myself. I am more prepared now than the past and I am excited for my future marriage.  It would be great to own a house but I am not financially ready and I do not know what city I want to live in. A house is a really big commitment and it needs a lot planning. You need the money and you can not forget about the maintenance. My career is still starting and I feel good things are happening my way. I am hopeful for it, my current job and past jobs have taught me a lot.

30 might seem like the magic age to have everything figured out but there isn’t a magic age. I think whats important is that we live our lives everyday. Also, having a good support system is definitely necessary.  I like getting older because it makes you realistic and when your realistic you’re better prepared for life.  I know I don’t have the house, the big city life, the marriage, and the job but I am excited for 30.  However,  right now I am going to enjoy being 29.

Future Trips

I’m always looking for my next trip. Whether it’s a Texas trip, an out of state trip, or a an international trip. Planning these trips gets me get motivated through my work weeks and makes me happy. Here is my list of trips that I have planned. Some have already been set up and others I’m still working on.

  • Denver Colorado: I will be going to Denver in the beginning of June. This trip is set, I bought my plane ticket and asked the days off from work. I will be visiting a good friend of mine and she wants to show me beautiful nature places. I can’t wait to see the green and the beauty and spend time with a close friend.
  • Seattle Washington: I’m planning to visit Seattle in October. It’s for my birthday. I have only driven by Seattle and this time I want to experience the city. I want to see more of the green and mountains, have brunch on the space needle with a view, and walk around Pikes Place. I also want to see the first Starbucks Coffee. I am aware the weather might not be that great but this helps me get the true experience.  The plane ticket and stay haven’t been set up yet. I planing on buying the plane ticket the beginning of next month. For the say, I might stay at Airbnb with some close friends.
  • The Greek Islands: is for Summer 2018. This trip has also not been set up yet, I’m planning on going with a tour group and two close friends. Greece has been a dream place for me, since The Sisterhood and the Traveling Pants movie. I want to experience a sunset on Santorini and go wine tasting on the high cliffs. Wine with a view, what more could I ask for? I really want this trip to become a reality, I want to experience the culture and see those beautiful views. I am hoping to sign up with the tour group this month.

 

Finding Time to Travel

Life can get in the way of travel and other adventures. There is work, school, kids, and anything else you can think of. In college, I felt like I had more time to travel because of holiday breaks. Also, in college you can study abroad or get an internship abroad. However, in the United States you rarely get holiday breaks and there is no study abroad. There is some jobs that can transfer you, if you are interested in moving. Not all jobs have transfers and traveling for work conferences is not really a vacation.

If your like me, working full-time. Plan your trip, way in advance. Look up your vacation policies before you book your trip. Some jobs offer 2 week paid vacation, upon request. Usually the breaks I have taken to travel internationally have been a little more over a week. I went to Ireland for 9 days and London and Paris for 8 days. They were quick trips but I still enjoyed myself. I usually plan my internationally trips a year to 7 months in advance with a tour group, EF college Break. Tours groups can usually set up your flight and hotel for you. Which really made it easier for me. My trips to the United States travel are usually planned  6 months to 3 months in advance. I recently set up a trip to Denver for June to visit a friend, for 4 days. This gave the time to ask off work, look up flights, and ask my friend if she was available.

When I was working full-time and attending grad school. I had to find time that was good for both work and school. I chose Mid- March to travel to Ireland, It was spring break for school and not a busy time at work. The earlier you plan for your trip the better you can overcome these obstacles. It gives you more time to research the time you have, better plan your trip, and save. Before you book you trip make sure to read about the refund rules for airlines and hotels, if you have to cancel. When I traveled internationally with a tour group, they offered travel insurance. The travel insurance offered cancellation, helped with lost items during your trip, and medical expenses.

If you have a kid, you most likely have to plan a trip that is good for both you and your children. Maybe like a beach trip or visit a place that has theme parks. Also, the same rules apply, you have to find a time that is available for everyone. For example, when the kids are not in school and when you’re not busy at work/school.

I know its difficult to plan trips when your busy but it can happen. Just because you work full-time, have school, kids, or all 3 doesn’t mean you can’t. It just has to be planned in advance. That has helped me and I hope it can do the same for you.

Saving for Travel

Money is usually an issue when it comes to traveling. At least for me anyways. I remember in college, I wanted to travel internationally but never made the effort because of money. It always stopped me, money was always my excuse. It wasn’t until after college that I realized if I don’t start traveling internationally now, then when will I? That’ s when I booked my trip to Ireland and I don’t regret one cent. What helped me save was being able to set up my payments in payment plans. I booked my trip with a tour group and they gave me the opportunity to make payment plans. Basically, I made a payment each month, until 99 days before my trip. Also, the earlier you book your trip the less your payments each month will be. The tour group included the flight, hotel, tour guides and other options. This made it easier for me to budget and live worry free.

A tour group is a wise choice if it’s your first time traveling or if your traveling alone. The group I went with, EF College Break gave us a schedule of things to do and plenty of free time. Other travel groups I have heard of are Contiki, Gate1, and Go Ahead Tours. These are some options if you’re interested in tour groups. Some tour groups have an age requirements, be sure to be on the look out for that. For example, EF College Break is for people 18-28. I know Go Ahead Tours does not have an age requirement.

For my United State travels, I usually stay with a friend and try to find a cheap flight. I try to fly during a time that’s not a busy travel month. For example, September or  February. These two things have given me the opportunity to travel and to get to experience a local view of the city I am visiting. If I can’t stay with a friend, I try to get a group of friends to go with me on the trip to save on a room. Not only will I be spending the trip with my friends but I will be saving too. Also, when you buy your flight tickets try to avoid coming back on a weekend. Usually, its cheaper to leave on a Tuesday then Sunday.

These things have helped me travel in the past. Both international travel and United States travel. I hope these money plans can help you as well. In the future, I want to learn more about setting up my own international flight. I want to experience being in another country for 2 weeks and backpack. I feel this will help me learn more about myself and the country I am in.

 

Work mornings

Waking up in the morning for work can be difficult. Especially, when it’s still dark outside. Every time I wake up, I count the remaining days until the weekend arrives. Once I’m at work I’m fine and complete my tasks, it’s the getting up, getting dressed, and commuting to work that I’m not too fond of. To help me with this morning blues, I listen to some music and turn on the lights. Of course, coffee is a must! I don’t know how I lived life before coffee. Also, other motivations are thinking about my next big trip or talking to my friends and boyfriend. I’m actually going to Las Vegas soon and my nephew’s birthday is coming up. It’s those things that help make my mornings better. Tomorrow morning, I’m going to try that molten latte at Starbucks. Yum sounds delicious, I hope it is. We all just need to think about things that make us happy even little things like a molten latte. This will make the mornings easier and those work days go by faster, and who doesn’t want that.