Mental Post-Its

Thoughts, Notes, and General Mental Mayhem


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Making The Most of 24 Hours

Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 8.26.47 PMFact: The end of August is a great time to buy airline tickets. I received an alert around that time from one of my favorite travel sites, TravelZoo, about a flash sale from Frontier Airlines—with fares as low as $15 each way! Luckily, I was online at the time and had a few minutes to spare.

I’d really been wanting to head back to New York City lately. I start feeling this longing for the City after not having seen a Broadway show in a long time.  😉 If I could fly up and back in the same day cheaply, I’d get there a lot more often to see shows and friends. Anyway, that’s the deal I was hunting for . . . and I found it! For just $30 round-trip, I had scored myself a ticket to NYC! It did require an overnight stay, but luckily I had hotel points.

Now, I was on a buyer’s high! I mean, come on, that’s a great deal! I clicked back on the site to see what else might be available to me. And, as you can imagine, the deals were selling out quickly! There were several other offers, but I had a few requirements. First, I needed it to be a short trip due to my schedule at the time. There weren’t a lot of gaps. And the cheapest deals were on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. So, that meant I needed to stay in my time zone, or make it a short flight, to get the biggest bang for my buck (all 30 of them). Second, it’s not like I have piles of money lying around. And NYC isn’t a cheap city. So, I needed to be able to find a place with multiple options for my hotel points, that would still be convenient to the places I wanted to go. Also, Frontier charges for things that other airlines don’t, so if you aren’t careful, costs can easily go up. Finally, I didn’t want to rent a car, so I needed to be able to walk or use public transportation or the like.

Washington D.C. fit the bill. And I’ve been there twice, but had been wanting to go back. Plus, lots of free museums! So, I snagged that ticket too. I couldn’t believe it!

So, now I had two destinations and one full day to spend in each. Here’s how I made the most of 24 hours:

New York City

  • Landed around 9:00 a.m. Yes, that meant getting up crazy early!
  • Took NYC Airporter into the City. Great service!
  • Checked in early to Seton Hotel. They were super nice to let me check in so early.
  • Popped into Grand Central Station since I used to work there. I always feel like I need to check in. 🙂
  • Walked to Bryant Park, where they were having a Christmas Village of shops and an ice skating rink. While there, ran into someone I knew from Atlanta, the owner of Smart Glass Jewelry, and chatted for a bit.
  • Walked through Times Square and down to Herald Square where a lady stopped me and told me that I was a complete doppelganger for her friend.
  • Met my friend, Jordan, for lunch at this super yummy Korean place she loves.
  • Went to the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. It’s incredible. Please go.
  • Met my old roommate, April, to try and get lottery tickets to Hamilton, but didn’t win. That show is on my list!
  • Ended up with rush tickets to Something Rotten, which was my second choice. And let me just say—they were BOX SEATS! (Broadway bucket list!)
  • Dinner at Ca Va just a couple blocks way. Delicious.
  • Saw the super funny show, Something Rotten, and chatted with the two older ladies who were in our box. Sweethearts.
  • Snagged a tea from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf in Times Square, my favorite coffee chain.
  • Back to the hotel for a few hours of sleep.
  • Took NYC Airporter back to the airport.
  • Flew out at around 9:30 a.m!

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Washington DC

  • Landed around 1:00 p.m.
  • Uber Pooled to my hotel, the Grand Hyatt. Another really wonderful hotel allowing me to check in early.
  • Trekked to the MLK Memorial since I didn’t have a lot of daylight left. Quite beautiful and inspiring. It was #1 on my list for this trip.
  • Headed over to the reflecting pool since the two other times I’ve been, it has been drained. Third time’s a charm!
  • And then, once you’re on the National Mall, it’s just so easy to hit every other memorial and monument in that area, even though I’ve seen most of them before. Might as well get another pic!
  • Walked over to the ellipsis to see the White House as the sun was setting.
  • Spent time at the National Portrait Gallery. I’ve never been here, and it was just ok. Not my first choice, but the only one open till 7:00 p.m. Seriously, all the museums close way too early! I would’ve enjoyed the guided tour, I think, but they didn’t have one in the evening. So, I’m glad I checked it off my DC museums list, but I wouldn’t do it again like many of the others.
  • Met my friend, Liz, for dinner at one of her favorite places, Central. Really good.
  • Back to the hotel to rest my feet and sleep. Unknowingly, I had walked 11 miles! And boy, did every part of my feet and legs feel it.
  • Most of my morning the next day was spent at Ford’s Theatre. I’d tried to go on my last trip, but it was under renovations. It’s a really great museum, and one day, I’d also love to see a show there.
  • Final stop was the Newseum. I hadn’t even heard of it until my friend Becca suggested it when she found out I was going. It’s incredible! I wish I’d had more time, but will definitely go back. Luckily, I got to go on the guided tour which made getting through it and understanding it much easier in a short amount of time.
  • Then it was back to the airport via Uber around 2:00 p.m.

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Two very quick, but very fun trips! You can see more photos on my Instagram here.

After these two experiences, I will definitely do this again next year!

 


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Great Week!

It’s been a great week! Some common things, some random things and some unexpected things. I figured I’d just share those with you.

Sunday

First of all, we had amazing weather all week long! August is usually crazy hot and humid, giving our city the nickname “Hotlanta.” But this past week, it was as if Southern California descended upon us and kissed our foreheads. It’s been so wonderful to be outside, and I’m hoping this trend will take us into the fall.

Monday

I ate lunch with my friend and co-worker, Jen, who is always fun to talk to. We’ve both had a lot going on lately, so there’s never a lull in the conversation. She’s been a great source of encouragement and advice, and hopefully I am returning the favor. I’m glad to have a few good friends at the office that I can really hang out with.

I also received my copy of The Entitlement Cure by Dr. John Townsend. He is the co-author of Boundaries, probably the book I have recommended more than any other. If you haven’t read it, do yourself and everyone else around you a favor. It changed my life. But, I am really excited to be a part of the launch team for this new book. That means I’m getting to read it, promote it and give my feedback before it actually becomes available for sale. Pretty fun. So far, I can already tell you that it’s worth the read! Entitlement is an issue I think we all struggle with on some level, so I love that this book is addressing it.

Tuesday

This was a whopper of a day! I got an alert from a travel website I follow, TravelZoo, that said Frontier airlines was having a crazy two-day sale, with fares as low as $20 per one-way, AND they gave you a $5 code.

I have a lot of work travel coming up this fall, plus two event launches, so it really wasn’t a good time for additional personal travel. But for a deal like that, I had to look, right? And I thought maybe I could swing something in my own time zone to make it easier. I’ve really been wanting to get up to NYC to take in a Broadway show. I start getting a little antsy if it’s been too long—and it’s been too long. I’ve always said, if airlines would make it cheap to get in and out on the same day, I’d go regularly to see a show. But alas… So, I thought this would be my chance. Unfortunately, you only had one flight each day to choose from, so it ended up as an overnight trip, which hopefully I can use hotel points for. But, drum roll please, I scored a round trip flight to NYC for $30!

So, of course, now I’m on a buyer’s high! I looked to see if there was another option I could take advantage of. DC is another place I’ve been wanting to get back to, and it happened to be one of the handful of options open for this deal. Plus, there are still a number of things I’ve never done in DC. So, I snatched that one up too—yes, for $30 round trip! So, now I have a total of seven trips in about a 10-week time period, but I’m going to get to do some fun things!

I also started listening to Jen Hatmaker’s new book, For The Love. I can’t even begin to describe how much I adore this woman and want to be her friend. This new book just makes me dive a little deeper into my obsession. I laughed and cried and have already recommended this book to everyone I saw this week. Love. Love. Love. Get it now!

To top that day off, I had a long-overdue coffee date with my friend, Michelle. We were able to just slow down and catch up for a few hours. It was lovely, and the perfect end to Tuesday.

Wednesday

I went to my regular naturopath appointment, and got the results back from some recent tests I had done. Thank goodness—things are getting better! I’ve had chronic health issues for almost three and a half years. But my most recent blood and saliva tests show improvement and my body starting to work more the way its supposed to. This was a relief, since I was going through yet another phase of being frustrated about all of this. I am grateful for all of their help, and despite the expense, know that treating my body naturally is the way to go. Huzzah—starting to see some real progress!

I also finished watching the final season of The Newsroom. My love for Aaron Sorkin’s writing knows no bounds. It began with Sports Night, then The West Wing, followed by Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (my fav), and now The Newsroom. I wish everyone everywhere spoke the way this man writes. Wit and repartee and banter at its finest. Aaron, I’m waiting with baited breath until your next TV show. Please don’t make me wait too long.

Thursday

Despite my horrendous start to the day in getting my driver’s license renewed, the rest of the day was pretty enjoyable. (See rant on Facebook here. ) If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know I love conferences and frequently attend them. Well, my friend Eryn was speaking at a conference in LA this week that I really wanted to go to, but couldn’t make it work. It’s called Yellow Conference, and I have been stalking them for about a month now.

Since I could attend, I ended up purchasing the Live Stream pass. So, Thursday was spent listening to incredible women and men with inspiring stories while I worked away at my computer. It was not as awesome as it would’ve been to be there, but still a great alternative. I was unable to listen in on Friday, but I’m excited to go back and watch the videos soon. And, Yellow Conference, I’ll see you in person next year!

Friday

Friday was a day for reconnecting. I had morning coffee with my friend, Pattie, who was in town for the day. She was the Georgia Chapter co-director for Not For Sale when we met, and was a great boss to volunteer under. She moved to South Georgia a while back, so I rarely see her anymore, and this was a real treat. It was fantastic to hear what’s going on in her life and tell her about mine. We always speak so easily with each other, and it was a great way to start the day.

After that, I headed over to one of my favorite places in ATL, Dr. Bombay’s, which has been mentioned numerous times on this blog since I just went to India with my friend Katrell who is the owner, as well as another friend and her employee, Stephanie. I hadn’t been able to hang out with Stephanie since returning from India, so we planned to work on our own stuff, drink chai, and chat in between. This was so nice. Katrell was also in that day so I got to hang out some with her too. It was a great way to end the work week—productivity, friends, coffee, tea and patio weather.

Saturday

Energy is a precious and rare commodity with any long-term illness. And for one that began with mono, it’s especially true. So perhaps it was the momentum of this week, but I woke up with a good amount of energy and a desire to be outside in this terrific weather in case it decides to take a hike. So, I headed out to the Silver Comet Trail for a long walk. I ended up making it about 3.5 miles, which I was pretty proud of. And it was doubly good because I listened to my newest audio book, Off Balance, during the first part of the walk and prayed on the way back. I was tired and sweaty when I finished, but it felt really good. I’m so grateful to have ended my week this way. Praying I’ll be able to do it again soon!

Thanks!

Thanks to everyone who made it a great week!