Follow Along On
Our Family’s Journey
From $0 Online
To Full-Time
Digital Entrepreneurs!

*Traveling For A Full Year
As A Family
Begins 11-30-2020

 

 

 

lstw
Blog

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant- Is It Worth The Annual Fee?

  Is the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant credit card worth the annual fee?  Even now, in a world where things are shut down and people aren't traveling much?  In a word...YES!  If you travel...anywhere. (In normal circumstances, and our current virus situation won't last forever, so I still think this card is totally worth it!)   I know $450 sounds like a lot for  a credit card, but this one easily pays for itself.  First of all, you get $300 a year in Marriott "spending money".  Which means it's good for the room, restaurants, spas....anything spent in a Marriott.  And let's face it...their hotels are pretty much everywhere, so it's not hard to find one where you want to stay.  I love to use it for my rooms to get essentially free stays.  And the best part is, you don't have to do anything to use it.  It's automatic.  As soon as a charge hits from Marriott, they take it off until they reach $300.  So if you're only staying 1 night in March and It's $100, you can still use the leftover...

read more
Why We HomeSchool- After Years Of Public School

Why We HomeSchool- After Years Of Public School

When most people find out you homeschool, the first question you'll probably get is some form of "Why???" Everybody knows the stereotypes of homeschooled kids; that they're weird or awkward because you think they don't get socialization (big misconception), or that they aren't actually learning anything and just stay at home sleeping til noon, watching TV or playing video games. Or...and this was a new one for me...that they're super religious. Apparently, it used to be that if you homeschooled, it was because you were very religious and wanted more of those teachings for your children than they would get in public school. I hadn't realized that one until we started researching homeschooling for ourselves. As we are brand new on our own homeschooling journey, we are getting asked a lot of the "Why" questions ourselves...and I'm sure this is only the beginning. But it's really hard to tell Aunt Sue or Karen at the grocery store your reasons for homeschooling when you're caught off...

read more
How Is The Coronavirus Working For You?

How Is The Coronavirus Working For You?

    In this time of lockdown with everyone “staying safe” at home, there’s a lot of fear, political debate, and information out there to sift through….not to mention kids are home from school, no sports or other extracurricular lessons, parents working (or just staying) home, not being able to see friends/family or go out and do things we normally would,...and if you’re like my family….all this free time, no schedule to be on, and we can’t travel!!!  Let’s face it...there’s a lot of things we can find about right now that we probably aren’t liking.  But that’s not what this post is about.   I’m a firm believer that everything is always working out for us, whether we see it now or not.  Now, that’s not to say that I think this horrible virus that’s killing the population is a good thing, no, obviously it’s not.  What I am saying, is that I try to find the positives in every situation.   So how is this Coronavirus lockdown benefiting your life?  Have you thought about it at...

read more
Hotel Review- Residence Inn- Charlotte, NC

Hotel Review- Residence Inn- Charlotte, NC

We recently stayed at a Residence Inn (by Marriott) for the first time.  We were evacuating South Carolina due to an incoming hurricane and were trying to decide on a city (far away from water) to go to.  I checked all the hotel brands I have status/credit cards with (because, come on, I'm not going to miss out on an opportunity for points! lol) and came across Marriott's Residence Inn in Charlotte, North Carolina.  It was only about a 4 hour drive from us and plenty away from the water (and had good reviews, free breakfasts, accepted dogs, and other perks that I'll tell you about in a minute) that made me think it was the perfect spot for a little hurrication!  (Make sure you read through all the way to the end to see how we ended up getting the stay practically for free...and how you can too!)   One thing that sold me on the Residence Inn is that they have FULL kitchens in the rooms!!!  This was going to be huge since we'd be gone for at least a few days (and didn't know if it...

read more
Carnival Ecstasy Ship Tour

Carnival Ecstasy Ship Tour

One of the cool perks I get for being a travel agent, is that you get to go on ship inspections.  A ship inspection is a tour of the public areas of the ship and then they give you lunch so they you can see all of the amenities, try the food, and take pictures so they you have a better idea of what it's like so you can show your clients....and then they kick you off before the ship leaves port!  Well, earlier this month, I got to tour the Carnival Ecstasy out of Jacksonville, Florida.  The Ecstasy is one of the older (if not the oldest, still in operation) under the Carnival fleet.  That's not to say she's not a beautiful ship.  The Ecstasy is part of the Fantasy class which is a smaller ship class than the rest of their fleet.  I personally enjoy the Fantasy ships because they are easier to get around/learn the lay out, you recognize people throughout your sailing, the areas don't feel as crowded, etc.  Mostly for me...it's the layout.  I...

read more
My first week as work from home online travel agent

My first week as work from home online travel agent

You guys, let me tell you.  I've seen these "at home travel agent" things for a while and often wondered about it.  I mean, it's no secret that I love travel---doing it, planning it, talking about it, writing about it....and I would love nothing more than to be completely free to travel whenever we wanted to. I've been a flight attendant, a reservations agent with an airline, and a travel blogger....travel agent (and doing it location independent) seemed like the next logical step.  So about a week ago...I went for it! Have you thought of being an independent travel agent before and wondered how it works and if it's real and if you could do it?? Well, I decided start writing a series about how it's going for me (pros AND cons---real talk, nitty gritty, lol) to give you that answer!  I couldn't find much personal experience when I was searching for it, so I just decided to go for it and document my own journey.  Ready?? Okay, my first week as an independent travel agent!!! First thing...

read more
Afternoon Tea at the Milestone Hotel London

Afternoon Tea at the Milestone Hotel London

Afternoon Tea is one of my favorite things to do when I visit the UK.  We've been once before in London and twice in Scotland.  This trip we brought our son to London for the first time and he was really excited to experience a "fancy" tea. We chose the Milestone Hotel in Kensington.  It has great reviews, is a 5 star hotel, the menu sounded delicious, and it seemed that they even catered to kids with a Little Prince and Princess Tea (I'll be writing a separate review just focusing on the kid's tea soon!) while keeping the traditionalism and 5 star service/ambiance alive.  Sounded good to us! They have 3 seatings that you can reserve- a 1pm, 3pm, and 5pm.  We made reservations ahead of time for the 1pm service figuring it would give us the morning to explore or relax and then it would count as a nice lunch. First thing to note though, is if you're using your GPS and you put in "Milestone Hotel".....don't just assume that when you see one in Kensington that...

read more
How I got 2 Round Trip Tickets To Iceland For $40 each

How I got 2 Round Trip Tickets To Iceland For $40 each

I recently just got TWO round trip tickets to Iceland for $40 each for me and my husband. How?? Two Words.  Travel Hacking.  If you're not using credit cards or loyalty programs yet, get started!! I know, people usually have a few resistances put up when you mention using credit cards or loyalty programs to get free trips.  Like...I could never get one of those credit cards, my credit isn't good enough. Or I don't fly enough to make use of the loyalty programs, it would never add up to anything. Let me tell you, I used to think the same things.  And you know what?  My credit wasn't good enough to get one of those cards.  But when I kept seeing free trips being dangled in front of my face (I used to work in airline reservations too...so I saw it A BUNCH!)....there was really no reason not to start trying. I'll be honest with you.  My credit used to suck.  Like at one point I was in the low 500's.  Yeah.  So, if I can do it, so can you! I worked hard at getting my credit sorted.  I...

read more
Las Vegas Day Trip with Kids- Valley of Fire

Las Vegas Day Trip with Kids- Valley of Fire

About 12 years ago, my husband and I forgo-ed a traditional wedding (and all the stress that goes with it!), grabbed some family and a few friends and headed out for a destination wedding in Las Vegas! Did we get married by Elvis in a drive through chapel?  Did we get married in one of the famous Vegas hotels?  Did we waltz the streets in our wedding attire relishing all the "Congratulations", "Woop Woops!" and looks our way? No, No, and Maybe.  (ok, that last one is a yes!...but in our case some people were congratulating us on prom??!  Come on, I had on a big wedding dress and 4 other girls wearing the same exact dress?  What high school girls would wear the same dress to prom on purpose??  But that's a story for another day!) So we didn't get married by Elvis or in a hotel....or even on the strip.  Instead, we got married here: This beautiful place is about an hour off the strip in Overton, Nevada in the Mojave Desert.  Valley of Fire State...

read more

Our Newsletter