Iceland in Three Days

How to plan a trip to Iceland – Our Way:

  1. “Can you get time off work for a long weekend to Iceland?”
  2. “Well…only three days…sure, let’s go!”
  3. Book tickets
  4. GO

And that’s how we took an extended weekend to the Nordic Island where, in the summer, the sun never sets.

Four friends, one digital guidebook, a rental car, and a hunger for adventure we set out on three packed days our touring.

Our itinerary went something like this:

Day 1: Reykjavik

  • Take a 3 hour nap to off-set the zero sleep
  • Walk around Reykjavik downtown and pop into any museums we find of interest
  • Drink espresso, eat lamb hotdogs, try local beer, and hit the hay early to prepare for our driving tour

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Day 2: The Golden Circle

  • Drive the scenic route, through the “mountains” (foothills compared to the PNW)
  • Stop at Gullfoss, Thingvellir National Park, Geysir Geothermal Area,  Secret Lagoon
  • Stay out until 4am at the bar singing-a-long to American songs

 

 

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Day 3: South Coast

  • Wake-up at 1pm and begin our day
  •  More Waterfalls: Seljalandsfoss and Gljúfrabúi, Skogafoss
  • An Iceberg you can walk on and around
  • Vik’s Black Sand Beach
  • Drive until we are too tired to do anymore and then head home. Arrive home at 12:30AM (and it’s still bright as day outside)

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Day 4: Blue Lagoon and Fly Home

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Highly recommend. Would travel to Iceland again. 14/10

Bullet Journal Monthly Goals: Digital Edition

I’m taking my bullet journal and going digital.
I know, I know, the whole point of BUJO is the physicality of the book. But, I’m no Martha Stewart when it comes to crafting. I still love to plan and craft, so I turned to PowerPoint to make things colorful, neat, and easy to track. We loved the gold start system as kids, so why not use it as adults? #Millenial.

I’m building off last month’s theme and use of the Self-Care Bingo card.  Combining the inspiration from my bullet journal and the easy to read digital format I’ve shifted the Bullet Journal monthly spread on to a PowerPoint slide.

Personal Self Care Bingo

The previous card had 25 target goals to complete, but that turned out to be a bit lofty when some required multiple days or hours. I’ve take the card this month and cut it down to 16 items that vary in time, energy, and thought. The idea of the running list in the bullet journal is to eliminate any weekly items that roll over at the end of the month. I have a couple items that I’d still like to complete by the month’s end, so you’ll notice a few repeats. If you’d like to use this template for your own purposes, feel free to download it and edit in PowerPoint.

BUJO Goals February

 

Aside from the monthly goals, I have a few Friday Favorites to share.

  1.  This Is Us
    The build-up to this episode has me on edge, I’m so anxious to see what happens during the house fire!
  2. Taking a deeper dive into what it means for automation/machine learning as part of the workforce as project I’m researching for one of my leads.
  3. Celebrating birthdays with friends as they all begin to enter their 29th year (I still have one more until that birthday!)
  4. The Christmas tree in the living room that is now a “Valentine’s Day Tree” with red and white lights
  5. Going on my first run in 8 months with 5 girlfriends that we followed with dinner and watching The Bachelor.

Here’s to the weekend! Let me know if you like this goal tracking format or have one that you enjoy using.

Virtual Coffee Date [3]

If we were having coffee, I’d share with you…

  • The Christmas tree is still up and there are no plans to take it down until after Feb. 14th. It’s now been dubbed the “holiday” tree.
  • Global warming seems real right now; it’s 55 degrees in Seattle in the middle of January. But, I’m not mad about it at all…look at this afternoon sun lighting up our plates!

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  • The first full week back at work is rough, I’m not the only one feeling this, right?
  • I’m plowing through my Self Care Bingo and I’m getting down to the items that will take more time than a couple hours. I think I’ll have to start planning these a bit further in advance.
  • The Annual Cookie Exchange lives on and the 4th annual party was held a bit late this year, Jan 7th. I’m glad it was thrown together last minute, our friends brought their A-Game. Surprisingly, not a single cookie was repeated! Here’s a before and after picture.

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  • The book High Performance Habits is still on my bookshelf and I’m still loving it and having “ah-ha” moments every chapter.
  • Just listened to the RD Real Talk podcast and learned a little bit more about one of my favorite bloggers.
  • I’m attending a career workshop this Saturday that came highly recommend from a friend. I’m eager to learn more about resume tips and always having a prepped Linkedin website. We’ll see how it goes!

Are you looking forward to anything this weekend?

Croatia/Munich [2]

After a quick exploration of Dubrovnik we were once again headed to the airport towards our 2nd stop, Munich. Yes, Munich is not in Croatia and yes, we did miss Oktoberfest by 4 days, but this was to our benefit. You see, by missing a major holiday by a mere 4 days we were able to take full advantage of discounted prices. Dirndl and Lederhosen for 50% of the price? Yes, please!

On our first full day we fought through our colds (that we picked up on day one in Dubrovnik) and caught an early train to see the Neuschwanstein  Castle that inspired Mr. Disney’s Cinderella Castle. What a view, eh?!

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My favorite hostel vibe of the trip was here, we stayed at the Wombat City Hostel and it was positioned perfectly by a subway, but off the main street. 12/10 we both highly recommend this as a stop during your European travels.

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A few highlights for us were:

The Standing Wave

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Dachau

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BIER at Hofbräuhaus

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Other highlights from Munich were our Michelin star lunch, a day at the zoo, stumbling into the Glockespiel at noon, a modern art gallery, the National Theater, and many other sights. After four nights in Munich we head back to Croatia for the reminder of our trip!

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Trip Planning

The countdown begins! In just over two months I’ll be returning from a trip to Croatia/Germany/TBD.

I found cheap tickets (we’re talking under $400) roundtrip from SFO–>DBV for either 8 days or 16 days. After some debate it was decided that 8 days is too short, so 16 days was the best option to create a full itinerary.  The website that I swear by to find cheap tickets is Secret Flying.com, this is only my first purchase, but we have friends on their 4th trip using this service.

At this moment, it looks like our flight change won’t allow us to experience Oktoberfest, but we may be able to catch the day after events. We’ll just have to return and see, drink, and eat Oktoberfest in full force at a later date. This allows us ample time to island hop around Croatia, visit a national park (like the image below), museums, and kayak around Dubrovinik.

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We’re still in the early stages of planning and sourcing tips from friends and co-workers that have recently visited the country.

Help a girl out!

  • If you’ve recently spent time in Europe, what’s a must-do?
  • Are there any Fall activities to scope out in October?

Long Flight Travel Tips

Flights are long, even the short 2- 2.5 hour flights can seem long if you aren’t prepared. Every person travels differently and has different needs to meet, but one thing we all agree on are the need for entertainment and snacks.

I spent 6 hours in flight from Seattle to Honolulu last week and had to adequately prepare to entertain myself for the duration.
Traveling with a companion is always my preference, but more often than not I’m flying solo in coach class.

This week I packed enough snacks to act as lunch enroute to Honolulu.

Beef or Turkey jerky, an apple, mixed nuts, and chopped veggies, and a Luna Bar for my departure. Pictured below are a few goodies leftover from my departure and a couple new items.

New Snack Find Alert!
Somersaults Dutch Cocoa are nut free, full of fiber, protein, and low sugar. A couple small handfuls of these baby bites will quiet a growling stomach and keep your energy level.

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When I don’t plan/pack snacks I opt for the Mediterranean Picnic Pack.
Hummus, dark chocolate, and olives are my jam.

Pre-download Music, Podcasts, and Movies.
Currently I’m listening to
Boss Girl Creative
Grammar Girl
This American Life
Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me

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Always test your downloads without wifi!

Entertainment:
Books: If you’re a reader books can draw you in and help to pass the time
Notebooks: Draw, doodle, write
Sleep: Sleeping is never the most comfortable on a flight, but a few zzz’s are a nice way to rejuvenate

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Traveling without a companion I’ll often times still get to know my seat mate, but rarely do we talk for the flight duration. It’s always interesting to hear someone’s story, where they’re from, going, and the in between.

Spark Notes Version:

  • Pack Snacks!
    • Include fresh food with your chips/cookies!
      Suggestions:Apples, berries, carrots, snap peas
  • Entertainment!
    • Podcasts, Movies, Music (pre-download and TEST!)
    • Books 
    • Sudoku, word searches
    • Notebooks for writing or sketching

Finally, if you want to do some last minute work, your tray table can be a temporary cubicle.I  don’t endorse this idea, but better to work on the plane than during vacation.

Happy Travels.

Cheers,
    Michelle