Category Archives: travel tips

Protective Masks for Travel

HALOmasks

In the search for comfortable well made masks with filters, I came across HALOmasks. They feature proprietary SETA Nanofilter technology, proven to capture 98.8% of virtually all airborne pathogens and contaminants, including coronavirus.

Since I’m always on the hunt for lightweight, but effective, it’s 95% bamboo and 5% spandex for shape retention and stretch. The other nice part? HALOLIFE gives back to its community. For every purchase made, the company donates a mask to someone in need.

The mask, usually $34.95, is currently on sale for $29.95, as well. Reusable, washable, comfortable, filter-ready, and giving to the community… I call that a win win.

https://halolife.io/

Explore Alaska’s Most Scenic Wonders in Winter

Alaska Awaits

Alaska is open, y’all, and it’s ideal for families and friends who dream of exploring America’s greatest wildernesses free of crowds and against a pristine white canvas. Imagine skiing through forests, wildlife spotting, flightseeing above multicolored geysers and glaciers cresting on the snow, and a vastness only available in the quiet of winter. Abercrombie & Kent’s U.S. Luxury Tailor Made itineraries, which can be customized to your private party’s interests, feature handpicked local guides, fun activities that naturally lend themselves to social distancing, and luxurious accommodations. You can even book with confidence knowing you can reschedule your journey due to COVID-19, and that they have enhanced protocols in place to safeguard your health while travelling. This is numero uno in my book since I’ve been sheltering in place for almost a year and need to know things are on the up and up.

Our recent travel dream favorite is their Call of the Iditarod series because I’ve always been obsessed with riding a husky driven sled through the snow like a Russian Bond Girl.

You too?

Well, we can celebrate Alaska’s famed Iditarod dogsled race, watching the participants prepare and depart from Anchorage on their 1,000-mile trek, witnessing their arrival at an important checkpoint near your remote wilderness lodge. You can dogsled yourself along the rugged Iditarod trail on this independent journey filled with the splendors of Alaskan wilderness.

The skinny:

  • Join Anchorage’s Fur Rendezvous festival, giving the Iditarod teams a ceremonial send-off
  • Take in the buzz of Iditarod mushers and their teams arrive at a remote checkpoint
  • Choose from an array of outdoor activities, including the option to drive your own dogsled team
  • Discover the history of Alaska’s indigenous culture and art in Anchorage

Itinerary at a Glance

DAY 1

ARRIVE ANCHORAGE, ALASKA 

DAY 2

ANCHORAGE | CELEBRATING THE IDITAROD

DAY 3

WINTERLAKE LODGE | SCENIC WILDERNESS FLIGHT

DAYS 4–5

WINTERLAKE LODGE | IDITAROD MUSHERS’ ARRIVE

DAY 6

WINTERLAKE LODGE | DOGSLEDDING & THE GREAT OUTDOORS

DAY 7

ANCHORAGE | EXPERIENCING INDIGENOUS CULTURE

DAY 8

DEPART ANCHORAGE
INCLUDED WITH EVERY LUXURY TAILOR MADE JOURNEY
  • One-of-a-kind Itinerary Designed for You
  • Driver-guide and vehicle
  • Hand-Selected Accommodations
  • Exclusive Insider-Access Opportunities and Inspiring Sightseeing
  • English-Speaking Local Guides
  • Airport Meet and Greet with Private Transfers
  • Full Breakfast Daily
  • Entrance Fees and Taxes
  • 24/7 A&K On-Call Support

Want more info? I don’t blame you.

Check this link and get on it: https://www.abercrombiekent.com/tours/luxury-tailor-made-travel/2021/alaska-call-of-the-iditarod

Daily Rituals: Essential Oils Set

Eight Saints Skincare “Daily Rituals” set

Customize your vibes. Morning, noon, and night and tap into the power of essential oils. Just in time for the holidays Eight Saints Skincare drops their Daily Ritual Essential Oils Set ($79), three unique essential oils for three parts of your day or mood.

Eight Saints Skincare products are all derived from the chosen “eight saints” including highly effective and proven skincare ingredients. These ingredients can also be found in their new aromatherapy products, made to boost circulation, reduce headaches, soothe anxiety, and help to fade scars and stretch marks.

The set include three scents:

WOKE UP LIKE THIS – Energizing notes of geranium, French lavender, a punch of jasmine and uplifting ylang ylang are meant to jumpstart your day, evoking feelings of peace, well-being, and self-confidence. You don’t need to be a morning person to have a good morning. This blend is also good for boosting circulation and reducing headaches when applied to pulse points. The Chamomile can be especially beneficial in helping calm anxiety when flying and Geranium acts natural mosquito repellant.

ISSA VIBE– Sometimes a day can get away from you… You’re vibin’ and suddenly you hit a wave of anxiety, a wave of unsteadiness. Take a moment to soothe and comfort your psyche. This blend mixes sophisticated, sweet, and woodsy varieties like balsam and sandalwood that counteract stress and help ground your mood. Vibe out the rest of the day, you got this. Tip: Apply before happy hour, why not improve everyone’s mood? For centuries sandalwood blends have been the preferred choice for meditation. Roll on palms and work through ends of hair for added shine and restored moisture.

NIGHTY NIGHT – WE MADE IT! Unwind and settle into the chill zone. Blended with calming lavender, frankincense, and comforting chamomile, this blend encourages relaxation and sweet, sweet dreams.

Bonus: We love this aromatherapy blend for PMS and cramps. Apply directly to painful, achy joints. Massage onto feet hitting various reflexology points.

Directions: Apply to temples, wrists, and behind ears. Additionally, Roll-ons work well when applied to pulse points like inner elbows, sides of the neck, or backs of knees. Keep in mind, these are not perfumes, so they won’t be strong and, even for aromatherapy scents, they’re on the subtle side, but the notes work with with one another and I can’t resist a good ylang ylang.

Price: $79

Eight Saints Skincare

Hog Wild: Weekend Trips to Tomales Bay, CA

By Jessica Rogers

I made plans for my escape to Tomales Bay in May. I knew I needed something on the books later in the year to break up the monotony of being a shut in during the pandemic. I’d fallen in love with the charming cottages at Nick’s Cove on a day trip long ago, but the waterfront cottages book up so far in advance that I never had the timing right. My plan? Come back one day to spend a night or two here and soak up the salt and rocks. In a rare stroke of luck in 2020, I was able to secure a reservation for two nights during the Halloween weekend. Even luckier, the weather was gorgeous.

The picnic tables at Hog Island Boat Oyster Bar

We hit the road on a Saturday morning, driving further and further away from the crowded communities, each town smaller than the last along the windy country roads leading away from the Bay. Despite stopping for a pleasant lunch at Two Bird Cafe in San Geronimo, I knew we needed oysters immediately upon arrival. I booked a post-lunch snack at the Hog Island Boat Oyster Bar on Resy. It’s a pilgrimage of sorts to eat these shellfish where they are pulled fresh from the sea.

I had avoided the ubiquitous Hog Island in the past as it was always a crowded mess of people shucking their own oysters and fighting for table space. Now, they required reservations and had shucking service. The vibe was festive as I think most people were as overjoyed as we were to be sitting on the water on such a gorgeous day.

Second round of Sweetwaters at Hog Island Boat Oyster Bar

We ordered drinks and Sweetwater oysters at the bar and settled in to enjoy the view. Inexplicably, my husband isn’t a huge oyster fan so I ordered just six, but after trying one I had to order another round just to have more Hogwash, their distinct rice wine vinegar mignonette with jalapeno and cilantro. I could have stayed the entire afternoon sitting there on the bay but the bar was closing, and we had to check into the hotel.

Rustic-chic bedroom in Al’s Cottage

We booked Al’s Cottage, one of the rooms directly on the water. The decor was deliberately rustic, but had modern amenities like heated bathroom floors and a fully stocked minibar (a glorious rare joy in COVID days). The cottage had a living room with a big leather couch and fireplace, and a bedroom with a comfy king-sized bed, both with a direct view out onto the water.

Living room and deck, Al’s Cottage

At the end of the long pier at Nick’s Cove, there is a little boat shack designed for parties, complete with an old piano and a phone to call for food and beverages. Someone was hosting a gathering and the sound of laughter and clinking glasses in the distance made it feel like life was normal again. As the fog arrived, the merry party departed for the evening. The silence set in as the sun faded, and I felt very far from home, even though I was only an hour’s drive away. I headed inside for a nice soak in the deep claw-foot tub.

Fog rolling in at sunset, Nick’s Cove

Given the pandemic, there was no dining service, so we ordered at the front window and ate outside on the deck with the heaters. The food was unremarkable, but the bar was still serving and the martini I ordered was the perfect ending to a beautiful day.

The next morning, we took a short drive to Dillon Beach, a small community tucked away down a rambling road. A new resort of sorts dominates the town with its tiny houses, overlooking an expansive beach with expensive parking. We spent the day reading on the beach and had takeout lunch from the Coastal Kitchen

Dillon Beach view from the Coastal Kitchen

For our second dinner, we drove up windy Highway 1 to the town of Tomales for dinner at William Tell House. That night it was just us and another table braving the cold outside dining. The heat lamp helped, as did the amazing fish tacos. The menu was simple, but what lacked in description made up for in flavor – the most

perfectly crisp battered with a mix of vinegary and spicy toppings.

Waterfront dining at Tony’s Seafood

In no rush to get home the day of our departure, we stopped at Tony’s Seafood for lunch, which is also owned by Hog Island. It had a more extensive menu than the Boat Shack so I tried the Earthquake Bay oysters for the first time, which are grown in bags that tumble the oysters as the tide rises and falls. The result is the most tender oyster. We paired this with the decadently rich Cowgirl Creamery grilled cheese sandwich and sipped our wine watching the sun reflect off the water. In that moment, I was filled with gratitude, for the oysters and sunshine and a dream weekend fulfilled.

Earthquake Bay and Kumamoto Oysters, Tony’s Seafood

The Best Essential Oils: GuruNanda

This company is one of my favorites for their spicy and fresh scents. Perfect to get you in that escapist travel mind mood or for travel itself, due to their convenient sizes. Now available on Amazon.com, the sampler set from GuruNanda’s Top 6 Essential Oil blends are a good start (and their perfume oils are delicious too). This deluxe, giftable little set allows you to discover the different therapeutic benefits of each blend and find your favorites among them. Each of the six blends are made from 100% pure and natural therapeutic grade oils sourced from the world’s top growers, across 6 continents. The set contains 10ml. bottles with the delicate botanical essences inside. So have it, open a window to listen to the wind in the trees, and get that atomizer going.