According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, TRAVEL is defined as “to journey through or over.”
Throughout the early years of my life, I did not travel much. My brother and I were always in some type of “competitive sports” which kept us busy year round. This left very little free time for us to travel. This past summer (Summer of 2017) Cole and I attended a Vacation Rental By Owner conference in Nashville, TN. To say we enjoyed ourselves would be an understatement.
One of the guest speakers at the event was Patricia Schultz. She is the author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and 1,000 Places to See in the United States and Canada Before You Die. My mind was blown. Besides being an amazing speaker, Patricia has an incredible story to tell. She painted her life beautifully and took the right actions to make her dreams become a reality.
Hearing her speak, I was immediately intrigued. Every place she described, every picture she shared, and the stories that were told tugged at my heart. I couldn’t help but be jealous of the places she traveled, and the stories that unfolded from the experience of it all.
So I decided then that I was going to begin to write my own story. I was going to begin to Travel the World and see things that I have never seen before. I would be lying if I told you that I am not nervous about it. To be honest, traveling to new, unknown places scares me. But it is a good feeling that always leaves me longing for more. I am excited to begin my book of traveling the world and I will share every place with you that I go. Enjoy.
HOME is where the heart is <3 and also, where I permanently reside:
ARKANSAS. The Natural State.
One of the best-kept secrets is the State of Arkansas. Its stunning wildlife, lakes, rivers, springs, caves, and mountains make it an outdoorsman’s dream. There are many gorgeous spots to visit, so I will highlight a few of my favorites in alphabetical order.
Blanchard Springs: Where to begin? My grandfather was born in a little town called “Fifty-Six”, minutes away from the springs. Numerous childhood memories take place here in the Ozark National Forest, but my favorite ones are of our family hiking up and down the creek beds, catching tadpoles, swimming in the “swimming holes” and camping in the beautiful woods of the forest. Watching my dad and grandfather fish in Mirror Lake, to competing with family as to who could stand the icy-waters flowing from the spring often filled my summer days. Wildlife, such as deer and bobcats can often be seen in the campgrounds, or around the creek. (I’m not particularly fond of seeing the Bobcats 😉 especially at night when they have been known to be playing on someone’s tent with their mama close by.)
The Blanchard Springs Caverns are also located here and serve as a large tourist attraction for the area. As always, entering any underground world is a beautiful and unique experience, especially when this cave is constantly changing.
Buffalo National River: Nearly 46 years old, this stunning river flows undammed for 135 miles. Whether you are looking for a peaceful float, slight rapids, or a 3-day camping excursion, this river can be right for you. In the fall, the leaves are turning and the river makes its peaceful trail through the bluffs. Rope swings and swimming holes line the stretch of the river and provide fun memories for all. If floating a river is not your thing, there are plenty of cabins located on the river, as well as ziplining and hiking tours.
(Please Note: Careful not to tip, as you may find your canoe and paddle floating on downstream without you…at which point in time you will need a good friend to paddle ahead and pull your items to the shore…Hey, don’t judge. It happens to the best of us. Also, you will need to remove all jewelry such as wedding rings/necklaces/earrings that you value. While doing the rope swing, there have been accounts of husbands rings falling into the water, never to be seen again…oops) 🙂
Whitaker Point: A beautiful point on to hike out to with the landscape making a picture-perfect backdrop.