What is the Reason for this Season

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“For everything there is a season…”

“Jesus is the reason for the season” is a well-known adage, declared from the pulpit and is demonstrated in nationwide nativity scenes, throughout the Christmas season.
It is a message to non-Christians and Christians alike. It reminds us to remember whose birth we are celebrating and what Jesus’ birth means for our faith.

But why should this message only apply to the Christmas season? Jesus’ birth led to His death and resurrection, which led to our life and redemption. Since our entire purpose for being on earth is to bring glory to God, why would we constrain this message to one month out of the year?

Let us stretch this message further.
Similar to the four seasons, our Christian walk sees its fair share of changing seasons. In those moments of spring and summer, we feel refreshed and renewed. All you see is blue skies and sunshine. In other times, the cold of autumn and winter make you to feel dry and chilled to the bone. All you see is downpour and constant blizzards.

Multiple variables cause these different seasons. You may be living in sin or going through a testing time. Your spiritual walk may be complacent or God is giving you a chance to grow. For the purpose of this post, let’s look at the latter of these reasons.

“You need to see every moment as a season.”

Instead of shuffling through these moments of winter and autumn, fortify your heart. Dig into the word. Pray God’s promises over your life. Focus on His providence and sovereignty, faithfulness and mercy. Don’t wallow in the misery of these undesirable times. Glorify God with your thoughts, words and actions.
Use these times as a way to demonstrate His love over your life to those on the outside.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Season Verse – Ecclesiastes 3:1 NLT
Season Quote – Lisa Bevere

A Tale of an Ancient Grudge Between Two Cities

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”November presents a time of happiness and regret, fond memories and bereft. You may wonder how can this be? Allow me to explain, and you will see. During this month, a war continues. A grudge of two cities, one that has lasted still ensues.

“Two households, both alike in dignity…From ancient grudge break to new mutiny…”For the Merry-Makers,
November is a time of giving thanks and fall leaves, families and Christmas trees. Eager for all that December represents, causes a longing to disregard all November nonsense.
They anticipate all that is red and green, before the end of November is even seen.

However, there are some who do not share this excitement. Another city, who cringes at the site of Santa and jolly merriment.
You may wonder who can this be? How could anyone despise the Merry-Makers and all they believe?

The Thankful-Givers pride themselves on tradition and respect in the month of November. They nurse a grudge against department stores who fail to keep Christmas in December. They do enjoy Christmas when the time is right. However, November is Thanksgiving time, and they believe that with all their might.

A war has waged between the Merry-Makers and Thankful-Givers over celebrating Christmas throughout November.

But consider this thought.
This idea is simple so do not be distraught. Instead of dispute, focus on what each holiday represents. Do not linger on what you believe the other city misrepresents. Memories are rekindled and families reunite. Love, joy, and peace, each a necessity in a world desperate for light.

As you see, dear Merry-Makers and Thanks-Givers, each holiday is important. As each moment spent together is heaven-sent.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

A Tale of Two Cities Quote:

http://literature.org/authors/dickens-charles/two-cities/book-01/chapter-01.html

Romeo and Juliet Quote:

http://www.shmoop.com/romeo-and-juliet/hate-quotes.html

How “It All Started With A Mouse” Improves Your Life

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

1) “You’ve got a friend in me.”
(Friendship)

photo-2
Disney bonds friendships of old and kindles friendships of new. Its endeavor to turn enemies from animosity to trust inspires individuals to see the good in others.

2. “You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.”
(Teamwork)

IMG_5536.JPG
As Peter Pan needed Tinker Bell to fly, Walt Disney needed Mickey Mouse. Walt understood the importance of a team and saw Mickey Mouse as a part of his team.

3. “The only way to get what you want in this world is through hard work.”
(Hard Work)

IMG_5545.JPG
Disney has never shied away from promoting hard work. Evidence of this is seen in Tiana, Belle and other famous Disney characters, who were able to accomplish their dreams through employing hard work.

4. “What do you do when things go wrong? Oh! You sing a song!”
(Music Calms the Heart)

IMG_5538.JPG
Disney allows singing in any circumstance. Regardless of your singing ability, music is a constant encouragement and mood-lightener. So blast your favorite song and sing to your hearts content!

5. “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”
(Chase Your Dreams)

IMG_5435.JPG
Disney inspires you to pursue your dreams. As Merida and many other Disney characters learned, you must chase your dreams to make them happen.

6. “My dream wouldn’t be complete without you in it.”
(Your Dream can Include the One(s) You Love)

rapunzel
At times we assume that our dreams can only include ourselves. However, on countless occasions, Disney has blown this out of the water. Our dreams can include those we love and may only happen through the encouragement and love received by those very people.

7. “Even miracles take a little time.”
(Patience)

cinderella
Patience may be a foreign word to some in this instant world we live in. However, as the fairy godmother said to Cinderella, miracles take a little time. Therefore, welcome the waiting period, for in it, you may learn something.

8. “Ladies don’t start fights, but they can finish them!”
(Fight with Grace and Determination vs. Pettiness and Disrespect)

aristocats
In contrast to popular thinking, women do not have to fight dirty. We can fight for things we believe in with class and still gain success and achieve the impossible.

9. “I will not ask you for forgiveness. What I have done is unforgivable. I was so lost in hatred and revenge. I never dreamed that I could love you so much. You stole what was left of my heart. And now I’ve lost you forever.”
(Second Chances)

MALEFICENT
Disney opens our eyes to second chances in unlikely situations. Even when circumstance seem to be bleak and irreparable, there is always a first step that can be taken onto the road of new beginnings.

10. “No! Don’t think outside the box! Once you say that, you’ve established that there is a box.”
(Don’t think, but Imagine)

IMG_5539.JPG
Disney pushes you to think beyond limitations of all shapes and sizes. Let the sky be the only limitation when you are pursuing a dream, new career and so on.

11. “Think, Believe, Dream, and Dare.”
(Believe)

IMG_5543.JPG
The recipe for believing in something includes two parts determination and one part vision. You wouldn’t make a cake without the flour; why would you attempt something without the entire recipe? Believe, imagine and dream.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Toy Story quote:

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/You’ve_Got_a_Friend_in_Me

Friends Photo Credit (named by order, left to right):
Lauren Balcombe, Sarah Fehrenbach, Hannah Kerbey and Kim Hughes)

Walt Disney People Quote:
http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/waltdisney131631.html#LGgsCttRUI3iEvEg.99

Peter Pan London Clock Photo Credit:

Princess and the Frog Hard Work quote:

http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0171516/quotes

Tiana Hard Work Photo Credit:

http://www.fanpop.com/clubs/disney-princess/picks/results/1226128/potm-outfits-countdown-tiana-june-2013-pick-least-favorite-outfit-day-2

Snow White quote:

http://likes.com/disney/disney-princess-quotes

Cinderella Singing Photo Credit:

http://becuo.com/cinderella-cleaning-with-animals

Dreams quote:

http://mobile.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/w/waltdisney163027.html

Merida Photo Credit:

http://m.weheartit.com/entry/group/14312487

Princess and the frog love quote:

http://en.m.wikiquote.org/wiki/The_Princess_and_the_Frog

Tangled Photo Credit:

Godmother quote:

Cinderella Photo Credit: 

http://www.cosmopolitan.com/entertainment/news/a28070/fashion-problems-disney-princesses-have/?src=spr_FBPAGE&spr_id=1440_68812093

Aristocrats quote:

http://mighty-pen.hubpages.com/hub/disney-quotes

Aristocats Photo Credit:

http://delightfuldisney.tumblr.com/post/3552232768

Maleficent quote:

http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0027757/quotes

Maleficent Photo Credit:                http://disney.wikia.com/wiki/Maleficent/Gallery

Walt Disney quote:

http://www.theleadershiphub.com/blogs/there-no-box-more-insights-how-lead-walt-disney

Walt Disney Dreams Photo Credit:

Walt Disney Dream Quote:

http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/3510823.Walt_Disney_Company

Walt Disney Believe Photo Credit:

Consider What You Don’t See, Hear, and Know

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This is what you see: She walks into the coffee shop and orders a coffee to go. When her order is ready, she is not satisfied. Slamming the coffee down, she demeans the barista by insulting their profession and competency.

Now consider what you do not see: At home, she is criticized by her family. Nothing she does is right. She is pursuing a new career that on the outside, seems irresponsible and impossible. Receiving no support from friends or family in her pursuits, she in turn, internalizes everything. When she looks in the mirror, all she can see is a failure.

This is what you hear: He calls his doctor’s office to schedule an appointment. When offered the soonest date, which is two weeks from now, he yells at the office receptionist. He demands to be seen that day and yells obscenities.

Now consider what you do not hear: His stomach turns in terror. Thoughts of doom spin around his mind, as he sees the mysterious lump in the mirror. He noticed it on his throat a couple days ago and it appears to be growing. His last round of chemotherapy was a decade ago. Then, the cancer seemed beatable. However now, he isn’t so sure. He is a dreamer, whose ambition to sing on Broadway may be ended by this lump. All he hears is a shattering of dreams that he hoped to accomplish.

This is what happens: The child throws a toy at their teacher who is playing with another child. The teacher takes the toy away and puts the child in the corner. The child kicks another child who was picking on them. The teacher disciplines the child again by taking away recess. When the child shares what they wants to be when they grow up, the entire class and teacher laugh. The teacher tells the child that could never happen.

Now consider what you don’t know: The child comes from a broken home. When living with either parent, the child is ignored. The child is desperate to gain attention, regardless of punishment for misbehaving. The child kicks and screams. The only attention the child receives is abuse. At home, the child draws pictures of the moon. When one of their drawings are seen, the parent crumples up the picture and laughs at the child. The child begins to believe the mocking and forgets their dream to go to the moon.

Consider what you do not See, Hear, and Know.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Ghouling Ghosts, Turkey Gobblers and Chubby Santas: Beware

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Holidays and school events, birthdays and special occasions overwhelm the buzzing months of October, November, and December. Rushing to and fro, fulfilling obligations to committees and impromptu events that require your expertise and/or participation. Your eagerness for the holidays has you RSVPing to multiple parties months in advance, with little thought of time or your availability. A holiday sensory overload occurs, after you attend your fifth Halloween part. However, you have little time to consider this, as you know you have a dozen other holiday parties to attend in the next three months.

Before you know it, time has elapsed. While, you run around like a turkey with your head cut off, you realize two weeks has gone by without a workout. Your gym membership keychain begins to mock you, as you nosh on leftover Halloween candy. The dress you hope to wear New Year’s Eve hugs tightly around your middle, causing you to regret that second piece of pumpkin pie. The only item that fits you the day after New Year’s Eve is your grandmother’s knitted Christmas sweater that is the perfect blend of tacky and bulk.

To the super womans and super mans out there who have the willpower of Jillian Michaels to say no to goodie, and find ease in finding time to work out, I take my hat off to you. For those who do not posses this super power or an energizer bunny quality, you are not alone.

In the following blog posts, you will be assisted and reminded of well-known fitness tips, as well as some lesser known hacks that will beat the bulge and allow you to indulge. These will not be get-thin quick schemes but will be simple and achievable tips for the average Joe and Jane.

All you need is a willingness to be creative and ready to go against the grain of holiday season norms.

Here’s to good health!

 

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Title Credit: Heather Lawton (http://floweringgirl.wordpress.com)

 

The Best of the Best: Coffee Shops for Everybody

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_5273.JPG

Coffee, coffee and more coffee!

The following are eight coffee shops in the San Diego County that have proven to be the best of the best.

1. The Best Eclectic Café: Café Bassam>Banker’s Hill<

image
An assortment of antiques and knickknacks await you in this café of sorts. Café Bassam is the perfect choice for coffee and tea drinkers alike. Enjoy the array of items covering the walls and allow your minds to wander in this place of imagination and originality.

 
2. The Best Writer’s Haven: Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse >Seaport Village<

IMG_5274.JPG
Shakespeare and J.K. Rowling, Homer and Jane Austen, and others, fill the walls of the Upstart Crow Bookstore & Coffeehouse. These pioneers of creativity ensure an unstifled imagination. Don’t wait! The great minds of literature anticipate your arrival.

 
3. The Best Latte Art: Lofty Coffee Co. >Encinitas<

IMG_5272.JPG
Tulips and hearts grace the latte cups, served by the talented team of baristas at Lofty Coffee Co. This coffee shop presents quality and artistry in every food and beverage served. This fun environment is ideal for the family and individual, writer and surfer.

 
4. The Best Coffee Brew: Donut Bar >Downtown San Diego<

IMG_5271.JPG
The Donut Bar has revamped the usual coffee and donuts. Hands down, Stumptown coffee conquers all coffee rivals with its rich and savory flavor. To add to the greatness of this place, unique donut options (vegan, too) are served and change daily. Say goodbye to a boring breakfast!

 
5. The Best Iced Coffee: Clair de Lune Coffee Lounge >North Park<

IMG_5275.JPG
The art of creating iced coffee satisfying to your palate is a difficult task. The coffee strength, amount of sweetener (or lack of), brewing time and so on, determine the success of this tricky beverage. Clair de Lune Coffee Lounge has outshone other coffee shops/houses with its wonderfully crafted iced coffee. Savory notes of caffeine deliciousness quench your thirst in every sip. NOTE: If you’re not a fan of sweet, like me, ask for it to be unsweetened. It tastes great!

 
6. The Best Reader’s Paradise: Barnes and Noble >Specifically Mira Mesa<

IMG_5276

Unlike any library or bookshop, Barnes and Noble invites the reader into an environment of fandom and reader devotees. Wall to wall shelves of books and catalogues, cafés providing items to satisfy even the fussiest appetite, await both novice and regular. After visiting several locations in San Diego County, the Mira Mesa Barnes and Noble café has proven the best. Its customer service and large variety of books make this location the best reader’s paradise.

 
7. The Best Seating: Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf >Specifically Carmel Mountain<

IMG_5279.JPG
Many have experienced the irritating incident of walking into a coffee shop/house and seeing every seat taken. CBTL offers a variety of seating options for its patrons. Bear in mind, this fact does depend on time of day and location. In my opinion, the Carmel Mountain Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf proved to be the best. Its outdoor and indoor seating are ideal for the sunshine and enthusiast and air conditioning fans.

 
8. The Best Wi-fi: Starbucks >Specifically Mira Mesa<

IMG_5281.JPG
Its vision and coffee, multiple locations and quality are some well-known qualities of Starbucks. However, one lesser known feature is its excellent Wi-Fi service. Unlike other coffee shops/houses, the amount of people using the internet does not determine the connection speed. Again, this bonus could depend on the location. In my experience, the Mira Mesa Starbucks location provides optimal Wi-Fi. Word to the wise, this is a busy location-try to arrive  at non-peak hours to obtain a great spot.

 

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Coffee Love Photo Credit:

Coffee Art Photo Credit:

Coffee Brew Photo Credit:

Writer’s Haven Photo Credit:

Eclectic Cafe Photo Credit:

Best Seating Photo Credit:

Wifi Photo Credit:

Iced Coffee Photo Credit:

Reader’s Paradise Photo Credit:

 

An Enthusiast of Fantastic Coffee: 8 Coffee Shops that Inspire

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_5234.JPG

Coffee shops and coffee houses, cafés and lounges continue to make their debut in becoming home away from home, a workplace and so on.

Dreams are accomplished, as well as discovered. Friendships are established, as well as old relationships rekindled.

Inspiration and innovation are encouraged in this environment of creativity.

The following eight coffee shops of San Diego county stand for originality and quality, consistency and artistry.

1. Café Bassam
IMG_5261.JPG
Café Bassam is an eclectic coffee shop, perfectly situated in Banker’s Hill. While you sit and enjoy your beverage of choice, you feel removed from a world speeding by and are comfortably placed into a tranquil environment that mirrors a 1940s Parisian film.

2. Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse
IMG_5256.JPG
Placed strategically in Seaport Village, the Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse offers a glimpse into the minds of numerous greats that have impacted the literary world. Settees and vintage chairs decorate this hidden gem, inviting the bookworm, coffee lover, and tea drinker.

3. Lofty Coffee Co.
IMG_5259.JPG
Within walking distance of Moonlight Beach, this coffee shop is known for its quality ingredients and unique latte art. From the moment you walk in, you are greeted by enthusiastic baristas and feel welcomed into a family of coffee lovers, as well as tea fans.

4. Donut Bar
IMG_5260.JPG

Reputed for serving famous Stumptown coffee and unique donuts, the Donut Bar is a wonderful alternative to the ordinary coffeehouse. Surrounded by the buzzing city of downtown San Diego, the Donut Bar keeps pace with its patrons, by providing amazing service that matches the quality of its ingredients.

5. Clair de Lune Coffee Lounge
IMG_5263.JPG

The phrase, “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, applies to the Clair de Lune Coffee Lounge. Despite its lackluster exterior, this charming coffee shop is inspired. The rich history behind this lounge runs parallel with the surrounding North Park community. Warm hues and full arches, welcome individuals from all backgrounds and offers an ambiance of comfort and individuality.

6. Barnes and Noble

IMG_5266.JPG

Barnes and Noble is a dream come true to book lovers and fandom memorabilia collectors. This company has taken it one step further in providing cafés where its patrons can enjoy the Harney and Sons tea collection, while reading their favorite book. With chain companies, location is everything. Personally, I found that the Mira Mesa Barnes and Noble excelled in providing quality and comfort to its regulars and newbies.

7. Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf
IMG_5252.JPG

Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf offers a distinct environment that maintains a personal touch, in the midst of running a business. Its surplus of seating options and friendly employees add to your visit. As mentioned above, location matters. In my experience, the Carmel Mountain CBTL offers the best seating options and its baristas always greet you with a smile.

8. Starbucks
IMG_5253.JPG

Starbucks’ reputation of consistency and quality is well-known. This coffeehouse offers an artistic vibe that mirrors the surrounding community. Maintaining its reputation of providing the same drink, all over the world, has been tested and proven time and time again.

 

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

Some Coffee Photo Credit:

Cafe Bassam Photo Credit:

Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffee Shop Photo Credit:

Lofty Coffee Photo Credit:

Donut Bar Photo Credit:

Clair de Lune Photo Credit:

Barnes and Noble Coffee Photo Credit:

Coffee Bean, Tea Photo Credit:

Starbucks London Photo Credit:

Coffee is Always a Good Idea

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_5236.JPG

Coffee and Paris hold a unique history, as well as a taste of ingenuity in every moment. Each have invited romantics and entrepreneurs, artists and thinkers to its alcove of solitude and adventure.

These two muses have influenced the film and music industry, and continue to contribute to the culture of today.

This is seen in Audrey Hepburn’s famous quote from Sabrina, “Paris is always a good idea.” The Friends cast, frequenting the Central Perk and enjoying their coffee in iconic coffee mugs. Lucille Ball drinking coffee on a regular basis, throughout I Love Lucy. These and other examples encourage the viewer to travel and taste all that adventure has to offer.

A part from the obvious glamour of Paris and its appeal to the traveler and artist, it is not always possible to visit.
On the other hand, coffee, a delicious treat that is chic in nature and delicious in taste, is accessible to the average Joe or Jane.

So when you long and dream to visit Paris, sit and enjoy your coffee. For in doing this, you will not only benefit from dreaming, but you will also gain from the following five items below.

1. CREATIVITY
Whether you are studying for a test or creating an idea to further your dream, coffee is always a good idea. Its strong flavor and unique taste awakens your senses to creativity and hope.

2. ENHANCER
In addition to improving the taste of food and idea, coffee sharpens your senses to a world of possibilities. You will leave no stone unturned and will wish to investigate every outlet.

3. COMFORT
Regardless of your preference of a black coffee to a latte, an Americano to a frappuccino, this beverage is sure to comfort the drinker.

4. HEALTHY
Many health benefits have been linked to the consumption of coffee. The possibility of lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s and an increase in physical performance are some advantages to drinking coffee.

5. MEMORIES
A new experience and an old memory are guaranteed in every sip.
New moments involving a greater understanding of what the world holds; and old memories that feature mom drinking coffee during her morning devotions. These and other times will carry on through the years.

Thus, remember this:
Dream About Paris and Know That Coffee is Always a Good Idea.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

Coffee & Eiffel Tower Photo Credit:

6 Common Phrases with a Theatrical Background

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Cinema and stage have contributed to a variety of venues that have carried through the years of progression and change. Story lines based on invention and historic creativity, performers surpassing society limitations and ideals that have spurred on individuals to pursue dreams. Its impact has even permeated the English language with well-known phrases.

The following are six common expressions used in the work place and home, school and in general conversation.

PUT YOUR BEST FOOT FORWARD.
To “put your best foot forward” dates back to the late 18th century. During this era, also known as the period of the dandy (men who placed stock in their appearance, speech, etc.), male models assumed one leg was more attractive than the other. Bearing this in mind, the model would place their desirable leg first, while leaving the other, more “repulsive” leg in the background. Presently, this phrase is said to those going in for an interview or first day on the job, and so on.

BREAK A LEG.
A superstition based on the belief that when one wishes a performer “good luck”, their wish would induce bad luck. Therefore, they would employ the opposite affect and wish they “break a leg”, to guarantee in their superstitious mind that the performer would do well. This is similar to the opposite game, played by children of the past and present.

THERE’S NO BUSINESS LIKE SHOW BUSINESS.
This Irvin Berling song, first featured in the musical Annie Get Your Gun, is a satirical salute to the fame of show business, while the truth is that show business is not so glamorous. A saying used mostly behind the scenes of theater, has been said in moments of frustration with work, regardless of occupation.

BE IN THE LIMELIGHT.
Before the electric age, stage lighting was created by directing a flame at calcium oxide, which would then create a lime coloring. Thusly, the performer was spotlighted by a limelight. This expression is utilized when someone demands being the center of attention. Although its origin did not hold an unpleasant meaning, today’s use of this word is not a compliment.

STAGING.
Staging is to put together a theater production as well as, planning out events to create a certain effect. This technique is used in Zen, which holds the belief that when furniture and decor are arranged in a specific way, it will produce a calm atmosphere.

UPSTAGE.
This idiom holds a negative sense in theater, as well as in the real world. Upstaging is when an actor purposely draws attention to themselves, by moving ahead of another actor on stage. Moreover, when a coworker attempts to upstage you at work, it’s not only irritating but downright rude.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

What Disney and Mom Never Told You About Planning a Trip

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_5118.JPG
Disney movies and moms have worked together, for one cause in children’s lives: to dream and live.

A goal of exploration and living that will open eyes and minds to a world of possibilities.

In stating this, the subject of travel, as with many things in life, goes beyond dreaming and planning. You have to consider the ins and outs that will result in an affordably smart adventure.

ONLINE TRAVEL AGENCIES

IMG_5124-1.JPG
Online travel agencies provide an affordable option to adventurers of all incomes and lifestyles. Its easy to use system makes you aware of money-saving techniques and unique deals. Listed below, are some agencies that uphold the importance of saving money and living a full life.

>Travelocity.
Travelocity is by far my favorite agency to go through. Its offer to “book now pay later”, “free cancellation” option and tasteful website make the research and booking process stress-free.

>Hotels.com.
Hotels.com has proven itself in its excellent deals. If you are someone who prefers numbers to stars for guest ratings, this website is for you. Its straightforward appearance may be harsh for some in its red and white hues; however, this same approach keeps you on task to finding great deals.

>Expedia.
Expedia goes one step further. Not only is this agency easy to navigate, but also offers lower deals than Travelocity. My favorite feature of this website is the homepage picture. Some type of adventure is captioned for you to imagine yourself there, inviting you in.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

IMG_5120.JPG
Dreaming about the place or places you wish to travel will open your eyes to a world of possibilities and exploration. Whether you are a planner or a “from the seat of your pants” individual, use your imagination. The sky is the limit.

TIMING IS EVERYTHING

IMG_5152.PNG
Destination is only part of the decision to be made in taking a trip. Timing is crucial in more ways than one. Consider when off-season is, the time of year you wish to travel and how long you would like to visit.

Another thing to keep in mind is when you research and book. Typically, Thursday through Monday will feature offers that are $100 or more than offers presented on Tuesday and Wednesday. For example, when I researched my round trip plane ticket to Africa through Travelocity, on a Monday, it was over $1000. However, on Tuesday, the price decreased to $900.

READ THE REVIEWS WITH A GRAIN OF SALT

IMG_5155.JPG
Travelers hold differing views of what they value in a trip. Reading views on accommodations and other travel necessities is a good practice. However, weigh the negatives and positives. Some negative comments may be petty, while others might be cause for concern.

READ THE FINE PRINT

IMG_5153.PNG
>Review the Amenities.
Do not speed past the fine print, when looking at hotels and other travel accommodations. See what your room will include and does not include. Unfortunately, I did not follow this tip when I visited San Francisco, last winter. The hotel did not provide a robe, which was a huge disappointment in a freezing room. Moral of the story: READ THE FINE PRINT!

>Is Parking Included?
Depending on the location and accommodation, parking may be included. On the other hand, some hotels and other lodgings require parking fees or do not offer parking of any kind. Further, do not be afraid to ask about valet. Many hotels offer this as a complimentary service to its guests.

>Are all Fees Included in the Final Price?
When purchasing your trip, confirm that all fees are covered in your final price. Some agencies will include everything, when some will not cover a resort fee, parking fee and so on.

DESTROY THE EVIDENCE

IMG_5125.JPG
The old bait-and-switch is an unpleasant device, commonly used in present day consumerism. Hotels, Airlines and online Travel Agencies have been known to use this technique by keeping track of browser history.

The attorney, Robert M. Weiss states: “With this enhanced technology, online companies have the potential power to use an unprecedented amount of consumer information in tailoring their pricing strategies.”

By deleting browser history, you will ensure fair prices that are solely based on true offers.

TRAVEL ODDITIES THAT WILL SAVE YOU $$$

IMG_5123-0.JPG
It’s always best to be prepared. Listed below, are some travel hacks that will save money and ensure a wonderful experience.

>Bring Your Own Sheets and Pillows.
You have heard the horror stories of hotel cleaning, or should I say, lack thereof. “The hotel pictures looked great online.” “It received good reviews.” These and other statements have been said after seeing the real condition of the place you will be staying at. Regardless of your repulsion to a room, most accommodations will refuse to refund the room. Instead of footing the bill for a room you do not sleep in, bring your own sheets and pillows. This will guarantee comfort and prevent bed bugs.

>Bring Your Own Breakfast.
Avoid the temptation of continental breakfast pastries and cost. Bring your own breakfast and enjoy lunch and dinner out on the town.

>B.Y.O.Beverage.
Why waste money on drinks in restaurants and hotel mini bars when you can save by bringing your own, favorite beverages? Stocking up for road trips is the perfect solution to having your drink of choice at an affordable price.

Go travel, explore and learn. Life awaits you.

IMG_5119-0.JPG

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahHardy. All Rights Reserved.

Woman and Suitcase Photo Credit:

http://voyagevixens.com/tag/best-travel-quotes/

Globe Map Photo Credit:

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-to-hack-yourself-some-serious-bonus-miles/

Google Photo Credit:

http://www.traveller.com.au/google-online-travel-revolution-a-giant-leap-169cv

Robert M. Weiss Quote: http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/columnist/mcgee/2013/04/03/do-travel-deals-change-based-on-your-browsing-history/2021993/

Airplane Computer Keyboard Photo Credit: http://www.phocuswright.com/research_updates/apacs-emerging-markets-push-regions-online-penetration

Travel Hack Photo Credit:

http://www.shamelesstraveler.com/blog/weekly-travel-hack-fix-your-backpack-with-dental-floss

Live.Travel.Adventure. Photo Credit:

http://www.quotesfrenzy.com/tag/travel

Clocks Photo Credit:

http://time-dots.com/world-clock

Keep Calm Photo Credit:

http://www.keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk/p/keep-calm-and-always-read-the-fine-print/

Reviews Photo Credit:

http://www.reputation.com/reputationwatch/articles/reputation-com-review-monitoring

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 560 other followers