The Best Days of 2015
When we think about the year ahead it’s hard to know which specific days will end up being the most memorable. Sure, there will be some great ups, but meaningful memories, the ones that stick out like sore thumbs when you page through your memory bank, are difficult to anticipate. In hindsight, when you jot down the dates that mattered a neat little itinerary is painted. Looking back on 2015, I can’t believe how much traveling I was able to do. Believe me, I am so incredibly grateful for every mile I walked, paddled, biked and flew.
Friday, January 16 // Lisbon, Portugal
Dan and I fell in LOVE with Lisbon. We were head over heels crazy for everything we saw, did, tasted and all those awesome locals we met – especially these guys. While there’s a lot to love all over Europe time and time again I recommend starting in Portugal.
Saturday, February 14 // Budapest, Hungary
This was my first time to Eastern Europe and I totally fell for the appeal. The city can be rough and raw in some places but in others, like a discreet coffee shop or famous spa, totally lavish. On Valentine’s Dan and I went on an evening boat tour along the Danube. Budapest by night is a true sight to behold!
Sunday, April 19 // Santorini, Greece
I finally learned what the fuss over sunset in Oia was about. What a beauty.
Sunday, May 17 // Bellagio, Italy
Joined by one of our FAVORITE couples, Dan and I had an absolute blast exploring Lake Como – especially the town of Bellagio where we all stayed. On our second evening we followed Mich’s advice to Trattoria Baita Belvedere up on the hillside, they offer farm-to-table cuisine and a phenomenal view. Throughout the course of the evening I sounded like a broken record player, uttering “This is so crazy. I can’t believe how wonderful this is… really, this is crazy, right?”
Sunday, May 23 // Positano, Italy
Oh boy did our gluts hurt afterwards but the views from hiking The Path of the Gods cannot be beat. I’m so glad we did it… and then treated ourselves to Italian calories in the form of gelato and pasta.
Saturday, June 13 // Cassis, France
In June some of my closest girlfriends joined me for a week of rose and cheese in the south of France. On our first night we toasted on the front porch of our Airbnb in the tiny town of Cassis and I couldn’t have been more happy with the world. It’d been exactly a year since I’d seen them (at my wedding 6/14/14) so I was overjoyed.
Saturday, June 20 // Cologne, Germany
Simply put: I saw T-Swift in concert and could’ve died to be in her squad. Definitely a highlight.
Sunday, July 31 // Heidelberg, Germany
After two years, our time abroad had actually coming to an end. Dan nor I could really grasp it. The night before we flew home our friends held a dinner party for us as one last farewell. I cried my eyes out as we drove home. They’re a fun, lovable bunch that Dan and I think about often. As expats, the friends you make while abroad become your family and support system. It’s hard to say goodbye, especially knowing an ocean will separate you in the years to come.
Saturday, August 22 // Bali, Indonesia
Worlds and oceans away from life working full-time behind a desk, Dan and I set out on a 2 month journey to explore Southeast Asia. On the day we arrived I took this picture sunset on the beach in Bali, only half believing that I’d really made our dream come true.
September 16 // Koh Tao, Thailand
About a month into our journey, Dan and I settled into life in a backpack. At the same time, we got a bit entranced with the island of Koh Tao. We loved the scuba-bum vibe and natural beauty and ended up extending our time there to almost a week.
Monday, October 10 // Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
I could count so many specific, memorable dates during our time in Vietnam but I think our luxury cruise in Ha Long Bay might take the cake. We treated ourselves to a 2 night sail with Indochina Junk as a very belated honeymoon and to close out our journey with a bang. A bang indeed!
Friday, December 25 // Leesburg, Virginia
While abroad we missed A LOT. We missed weddings, the arrival of new babies, and SO many family and friend gatherings. It was definitely really hard at times. This year though – nope! We were home for holidays! Every year my husband and his sis love showing everyone their giant ‘Christmas smiles’ so we all toasted with almond champagne (yum!) and gave it our best attempt to join in!
On a related note, I’m kind of proud of myself over here – for once I’m actually sticking to theme, over the course of years! Back in 2013 and again in 2014 I shared my exact favorite days of the year. I hope this post as half as fun for you as it is for me!
Happy New Years folks! Cheers to YOU and all the wonderful memories in your 2016!