Honeymoonin’ in Ocho Rios, Jamaica @ Sandals Resort

“Wah gwaan!”

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Yes that’s right I now speak Patwa. Well… I speak two words which translate to, “What’s going on” but I like to think I got the hang of the lingo.*

If you’re interested in my YouTube vlog on this trip, find it here!

Patwa is still English, but with a Jamaican dialect. Natives will tell you it’s a lazier and faster way of speaking LMAO. Kind of matches their pace of life, which mimics the phrase they preach over and over again, “You’re on Jamaican (or island) time.” Meaning there are no deadlines and there is no rushing to make a dinner reservation. While you are on vacation, or just in Jamaica in general it seems, forget your worries and let time slow itself down. The conversations we had and the experiences we led seemed to take place in their own little world, a world void of crowded subway cars as you rush to work and talking over people to get your point across.

What I am trying to say is… time moved a little bit slower in Ocho Rios Jamaica, and for that I am grateful.

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Okay now into the juicy stuff – FOOD, BOOZE, ENTERTAINMENT. Jamaica doesn’t lack in any of these departments and you’ll quickly fall in love with “Jerk” everything.

We stayed at a Sandals resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica for 9 nights as part of our honeymoon. We didn’t want to do a darn thing. I wanted to sit, relax, read a book (which I hardly even did lol), and just be… MARRIED! Sandals made all our dreams come true.

You are greeted with a romantic heart-shaped towel with rose petals in the middle, cheesy but sweet. A bottle of champagne and white wine chilled in the fridge along with a fully-stocked bar. Do you have the chills yet? Since the resort is all-inclusive, you can order as many drinks and food items as your heart desires.

img_20181106_184423.jpgRoom service at 9:00 pm after a long day of flights? Done. Breakfast buffet for an early rise at 7:30 am? YES PLEASE. Endless drinks on the beach and swim-up pools. I could probably stand in one location and see two bars either direction. You probably have goosebumps from how L U S H that sounds. Because I do just writing this.

We booked a couples massage at their Red Lane Spa – our first ever – and it was
AH-MAZING to say the least. 90 minutes of pure relaxation and stress melting from the body. All those wedding dilemmas and stressful decisions faded to nothing and the masseuses did. their. thing. And they did it well.One of my FAVORITE experiences – tho it is an additional $200 from what you pay for the resort *ouch* – is the private candlelight dinner for you and your honey. Listen, it’s your mf honeymoon, go on wit ya bad self. You will not regret it. I ordered surf n’ turf and the hubbs got steak and it was one of our favorite meals there. It was incredibly romantic having a private dinner and you get to choose one of several locations they can host them. Book this once you check in!

Another place to splurge, even just for a day is the BEACH CABANA. Not the ones by the pool, hit up those beach ones Oceanside. It will accompany a personal butler, 15 min neck/back massage, lunch brought to you, and endless shade for those of you with Irish skin like mine (catch what I’m saying). This is SOOOOO worth it for the experience and privacy you get on the beach with top-notch service from 10 am until 5 or 6 pm – I can’t remember exactly when it ends (island time, remember?)

If I had to choose my top three favorite restaurants on the resort, I’d say you must eat at Kimonos (hibachi grill), Le Gourmand (fancy French restaurant), and the private candlelight dinner. These are my top three choices for food. If you don’t want to spend the additional $$$ to do #3, which I can’t blame you, then I’d slide Kelly’s (seafood on the pier) or Sky Terrace (balance of all taste buds) into that third slot.

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Breakfast: Sky Terrace has a phenomenal buffet and I am still dreaming of their bacon ends and jerk sausage. Le Gourmand featured a scrumptious banana caramel French toast when I was there and it was so good I ate it twice during my trip.*Order a mimosa or two every morning for added fun.

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Sandals Ochi has 11 bars for unlimited service of all the beer, wine, and liquor you can handle. The bartenders are incredibly nice and will make pretty much anything. You can even order shots! HELLO – save the calories lmao. But be careful. They are a fun bunch and it can get rowdy quickly.
My recommended drinks: Miami Vice with rum on top, Dirty Banana, and the Hummingbird. If you’re a wuss with shots, ask for something fruity.

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Before you leave, plan at least one late night (if you’re grandparents like us and want to go to bed at 9 pm) and head to the speakeasy on the hillside. You need a passcode to get in but any staff member will tell you. And trust me, you will make friends with the staff, they are the nicest people I’ve ever met. After the Rabbit Hole, head over to the beach bar on the beachside that sits under the Italian restaurant. This place bumps hard after hours with all the jams you 20 somethings like to groove to.

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I think I have cover most (not all b/c I’d need a blog post: part 2) of my favorite things about Sandals Ocho Rios. We already want to go back and writing this has solidified my thoughts of it being the best vacation spot ever. It was a treat living a week in paradise and an honor to meet such sweet and caring people. It is definitely not goodbye, but a ‘see you later’ type place.Until next time, Ocho Rios.

Xoxo,
KS Lovesred lips isolated in white
I love to meet new people!
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Bullet Journaling for Beginners (BuJo 101)

“I’m just a girl trying to get her shit together.”

So you want to start bullet journaling – right? You’ve come to the right place. Thanks for joining me. Please grab a cup of coffee, soda, or sparkling water if you’re a gal on the keto diet (lol – me). But really, I just want you to get cozy and hang out because this is a long post. I didn’t realize how much content I’d have for this until I started photographing my bujo.

I had a lot more put together than I previously thought, but that means a lot of juicy material for you to read through and incorporate into your bullet journal!

Let me start by saying that a friend of mine recommended getting a bujo and I was immediately intrigued. Organize, track your monthly calendar, and have the ability to record your thoughts (similar to a diary) all in one. Sign me up.

First, I purchased my journal here on Amazon. You’ll want to buy one that has dots in it for lots of creativity – and also opportunities to use your ruler for satisfying straight lines. It was $14.99 with prime shipping and came with a ruler, emoji stickers (which I have yet to use), and nice pages that barely show the ink marks of my pen through them.

It starts with my table of contents, where I lay out each page for ease of flipping through.

Next are the pages: birthdays and what makes me happy. I haven’t entirely filled in either page but it’s a work in progress! When you have something new to include, flip here and fill in more content.

Now we have a daily mood tracker and a list of books to read. Also yet to be filled out, but here you can see how I set up those pages. To track your mood you can use symbols, color-code it, or the emoji stickers. It’s up to you and your creative juices!

Up next are two pages I consider helpful for my mental health: a list of things I can control and self care tips. These help keep me in check on a daily basis and remember that the small issues controlling your emotions are just that – small issues. And frequently beyond your control.

Next is where I want to record my travel goals – we all have them! Later in the year I will be adding Jamaica for my honeymoon and Nashville for my bachelorette trip.

Yee-haw.

On the next page are chores to live in a clean house. I list out the daily chores, weekly, and monthly. This helps keep me on track to clearing out the apartment as well as tidying up on a daily basis.

For the next part we are getting into the current month: August! Here you will see my daily gratitude list. I LOVE THIS LIST. It helps me find the good in every day, because there is good in every day. Write it down – one thing or two. Prove to yourself you can spot something good in every day and at the end of the month you’ll be surprised at what you see.

Next is a calendar overview of the month, with a notes column along the side for random tidbits.

Lastly, my daily logs (notice I accidentally wrote ‘vlog’ LOL)! Here you can write a little more to what each day involves, and track your emotions here as well. The idea is to keep things short and sweet, and be honest. If it’s a bad day, it’s not a big deal – at least you can acknowledge that.

So that’s my bullet journal! It is a work in progress but I take it everywhere and try to keep up with it throughout the day or at least once a day at nighttime as an overview of how my day went.

Do you have a bujo? Are you thinking of starting one? Please lmk what your thoughts are and how you like it if you already have one!

Xoxo,
KS Loves red lips isolated in white

I love to meet new people!
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Wanderlust Wednesday: Sneaky Freaky Bake Shop

“Bringing a Topsail edition blog post your way, fam!”

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This is our favorite coffee shop at the beach in Topsail, North Carolina – and for good reason. Well, technically it’s located in Sneads Ferry, but that’s only a 10 minute drive from our beach house so I’m going to consider it Topsail.

ANYWAYS.

Sneaky Freaky Bake Shop has everything, and at a great price. My dad orders hot coffee, I’m an iced coffee fanatic, and we’ve probably tried one of every pastry.

I can’t remember my favorite barista’s name, but I want to shout out the woman behind the counter from June 20th-24th in the mornings, because she made me a bomb-ass iced coffee every single day. And yes, we went every single morning. I mean really, what’s a beach trip without morning coffee runs with your dad?

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This coffee shop has a really cozy feel on the inside, with big open windows and a spacious room filled with modern seating. Anytime we’ve visited, there is not much of a crowd, but I could see the large space being able to accommodate a morning rush of caffeine-craved customers.

If you’re at the Topsail shore and looking for a quick pastry/coffee stop, definitely check out the Sneaky Freaky Bake Shop. They are open Tuesday-Saturday from 7:00 am – 7:00 pm, and are closed on Sundays and Mondays (bummer, I know). But if you wait it out until Tuesday morning rolls around, I promise it’s worth it!

Has anyone else ever been to Topsail? Please let me know in the comments below! I’d love to hear of other places to visit/sites to see.

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Xoxo,
KS red lips isolated in white

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Vacationing on North Topsail Island

“I ate way too much and took too many naps – I have no regrets.”

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This year’s family vacation took place on Topsail Island in North Carolina for the second year in a row. I’m ready to share pictures of the waves, seafood, drinks, and as much as I can to persuade anyone to give this peaceful island a go.

I feel like I blinked and my vacation was over and I teleported back to Pennsylvania and woke up like, “I thought I was still in Topsail?!” Image result for cry face emoji

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This is a stunning island for anyone looking for a peaceful getaway. We stayed in North Topsail, where the beach is relaxing and the sounds are quiet. A small distance away is Surf City and Sneads Ferry, where you can find coffee shops, bakeries, restaurants, fishing piers, and souvenir shops. It’s the perfect mix of serenity and activities.

We indulged in so much seafood and drinks that I gained six pounds (and no, that’s not an exaggeration – I weighed myself this morning). But this was to no surprise, considering I ordered fried seafood and island drinks the first three nights #noregrets

And that’s not where the indulging ended…

Also not sorry.

This was an amazing trip and it was so nice to get away from the rush of work life and disconnect for a week. Could I have stayed longer? Certainly! Who couldn’t? But it’s back to reality for this girl. The work grind is what pays for the nice trips, ya dig?

Before I sign off, anyone have any idea what this is in the picture below???

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Fish… stingray… pregnant sea snail?! The mystery will live on.

Let me know if you’ve ever been to the shore in North Carolina. I know my East Coasters are well aware of how beautiful OBX and other beaches are in that area, but I’m curious if anyone has visited Topsail Island or anywhere nearby.

Until next time my beautiful people xo

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