With my mother being a New Zealand native, I grew up with an appreciation for travel. My first visit to The Land of the Long White Cloud was when I was 7 years old. It was me, my mom, and my brother C.J.

I remember getting on a Pan Am flight and the flight attendant giving me my first set of wings with a small deck of Pan Am playing cards, which was a memory game. I watched as the plane took off, looking out the window to see how we ascended and floated above the clouds and took notice when my ears popped.

 I drank at least five Shirley Temples during that flight, with extra cherries of course! Fifteen long hours later, the wheels touched down on Auckland airport’s runway where I would meet my mother’s family for the 1st time. I absolutely fell in love with New Zealand. Yes, because it was beautiful, the air was clean and there were fluffy sheep to cuddle everywhere I looked….but mostly because this is where my mother’s heart began to beat and where she lit up. I’d never seen my mother smile like this in all the 7 years of my life. She was home…with 2 of her 4 kids…and very proudly showing us her country. We ate, played, explored, laughed and cried with family and friends.

 It was that trip that I knew I’d be thirsty to travel for the rest of my life. This is why I do what I do. I love helping people not only realize their dreams but understand why we chase them. WHY do I love to travel so much? I get nostalgic, enjoy exploring other cultures and sceneries, and learn how I can improve as a human being. 

I’ve been to over 20 countries, most of them while I served in the Navy (Europe and the UAE mainly) but also many places since I’ve been out of the military and since meeting my husband. I think it was a wise choice on my part to marry a travel agent, huh? We’ve been to multiple U.S. cities together as well as many in Europe. Our goal for 2018 is to buy a new house and get geared up for a 2020 family trip to New Zealand where I can share the joys and adventure with my children that are found in traveling, especially to their grandmother’s homeland. 

I’d love to hear where your top travel destinations are. Where are you planning to go in 2018, 2019, and 2020?