As the 2019 year winds down, I thought it would be fun to look back at our 2019 trips! B and I adventured to two new cities (for us) and spent time with friends and family and created new memories together. Every year, a goal of mine is to travel whether it’s new places or old favorites. B and I have so many places we want to visit – so we always try to get a few trips in each year.
Chicago, IL | March 2019
B and I have both been to Chi-Town, but never together! We took a road trip to spend a few days in the big city for my birthday – we found a cute boutique hotel closer to Lincoln Park and conveniently located next to our new favorite spot the Restoration Hardware. We literally grabbed a drink there one night and just walked around as a night cap after dinner! Of course we ate as much food as possible with our short trip and hit up all the tourist spots like the Skydeck at Willis Tower, the bean, took a run down the lakefront trail and got lots of steps in!
Portland, OR | July 2019
We were excited to plan our trip out to PDX to visit our old neighbors and good friends who moved out there in March. This trip was not our typical vacation since the main point was to visit and catch up with F+D! We just happened to be in a new, incredible city with killer views and so much to explore. Our trip was the perfect balance of catching up, site seeing and getting a taste of Portland! Highlights from the trip were a champagne bar, seeing Mt. Moran and our hike around Latourell Falls — the fourth of July was fun having a picnic at F+D’s house, as it felt a bit like old times. There is so much more to see in PDX — so we know we’ll be back for more.
Myrtle Beach, SC | August 2019
After a city adventure and mountain-esq trip to the west coast, we were able to squeeze the beach in too. If you’re an avid Bee reader, you know have seen the reason we head down to Myrtle Beach — which is to visit my grandma who lives in a nursing home. This trip was different, as a recent health scare made grandma more nursing home bound that usual, so instead of getting her out of there as much as possible, we were visiting her there, as much as possible. Not exactly an ideal trip to travel to Myrtle Beach to be in a nursing home, but it’s not often we see my grandma — and as I get older I’ve learned to appreciate this time more, especially since I’ve never been close with either of my grandmas growing up. We did get some beach time in between card games and coloring!
With our 2019 trips wrapped up, we’ve already started talking about our 2020 trips and even our 2021 trips! We have big plans, and big things coming up that we’ll be celebrating and lately all we want to do besides gifts or birthday celebrations are more trips, new memories and new sites to see! Where are you headed in 2020?
So the reason we visit Myrtle Beach is a little different that I am sure 80% of the people heading down there. The beach and other extra curricular activities are always secondary to the reason we “vacation” there. I’ve mentioned in previous MB recaps, that we go to visit my grandma who lives down there in a nursing home and that is 100% why we go down to Myrtle Beach, to see her.
The goal generally when we go down and visit with my parents is to get my grandma out of that nursing home for a few days whether it’s a trip to the beach, shopping, dinner, or hanging out at the pool/condo. But this trip wasn’t so much the case. Earlier in August she had an unexpected trip to the hospital that ended with her needing surgery which then led to longer hospital visit. Luckily things went better than anticipated given she is 86 years old, but she was still recovering and more fragile from the surgery and her stay in the hospital when we went down there. SO, we couldn’t take her out, meaning it was a lot of visits at the nursing home this time.
Our days at the nursing home consisted of making sure Grandma ate her lunch and dinner, occasional visits out to the patio area, cards (which she did not play), coloring (which she did not want to do either) and a few chats about the past. She even had some photos from her wedding in 1956 – her wedding dress was amazing so I asked her what she ended up doing with her. Her response; “I burned it.” … Yup! She burned her wedding dress when she was 24.
The reality of our trip down to the beach destination with 80-degree weather all week was that we only made it to the beach once and only went swimming once at the condo (and at 9 o’clock at night). Friday we went to lunch and did the Conway Riverwalk in between visits at the nursing home. Saturday was all day at the nursing home with a quick shopping trip to the Tanger Outlets before dinner with the extended family.
We also got to visit with my cousin and her three boys, who are an absolute treat and love B – they were super fun to see how much they’ve grown up, their personalities and sheer sweetness they give us for only seeing them every so often! We soaked up as much time with them from jokes, to hugs, hide and seek, giggles and cuddles on top of being able to see my cousin and aunt and uncle who live down there too.
So although Myrtle Beach is often a beach retreat for many others, we go to see family who can’t travel to see us and hope to offer a little ray of sunlight to her probably lonely and long days at the nursing home.
Do you have a ‘vacation’ destination like this? Comment below!
We just got back from Myrtle Beach and it wasn’t maybe the typical trip you would expect when you’re going to a beach destination capital – but more on that later *smiles*. So for any of those folks who can’t do the beach 5-days in a row – because let’s face it, my parents are those people and that is who we go down to MB with – here are some fun alternatives to still enjoy the weather and beach vibes that Myrtle Beach has to offer without the beach.
(1) Murrles Inlet. This spot screams adventure, from kayak to jet ski rentals or a chartered deep sea fishing excursion – this spot has endless views and dining options. Not to mention, Goat Island! With perfect views from Drunken Jack’s, Goat Island and the rest of the inlet offer entertainment even when you’re on shore.
(2) Conway Riverwalk. This quaint town along the Waccamaw River is not only walkable but shopable and has great restaurants. The Riverwalk is the perfect after lunch walking spot to admire the scenic views of the river in this historic southern town – we dined at the Riverside Bistro one afternoon before walking the route!
(3) Myrtle Beach State Park. Slight disclaimer – if you’re planning to do the beach, this is the place to go! With a private boardwalk, gift shop, ice cream and moderately busy beach – you won’t be fighting for a front row spot to the water or sunshine. Beyond the beach, there are cabins for rent or you can camp at the campsite. There is also a Nature Center and natural trail.
(4) Golfing. With over 80 golf courses, this golf capital of the world offers a plethora of golfing options from budget golfing to high end top notch destinations. We always stay in condos on golf courses and enjoy the scenery while my dad and B swoon over the course. This past time we stayed on the International World Tour Golf Course and it was definitely a stunner.
(5) Shopping at Tanger Outlets. Who doesn’t love shopping? Especially when it’s outlet shopping! With stores like Nike, Loft, Columbia, GAP, Coach, J.Crew, Adidas and Eddie Bauer there is something for everyone and plenty of discounts to take advantage of. This getaway from the beach is perfect for a little retail therapy on vacay!
Coming off of our trip, we left just before any sort of Hurricane Dorian weather started to affect the area – although there were rip tides and the king tide that affected the beach and weather. As of Saturday, the beach was closed due to double red flags — so in this case it’s good to have a backup plan or two! Also keep in mind, hurricane season begins June 1 and ends November 30 – but always seems to hit September – November.