Our 2014 Vacation

Vacation days are meant to be used!!!! If you haven’t used any vacation days, you’re well on your way to hating your job, your life, your situation, everything. No joke. I grew up believing that hard work pays off. It does, but it doesn’t. You can work 12 hr days, churn out paperwork like a queen bee, exceed expected requirements, and STILL struggle to make ends meet. Take it from me, it’s not worth it. You burnout, you question your purpose, and you get grey hairs.

This year we took two weeks of vacation (so far). In March we spend a week in Vegas for Crystal Tran and Hung Wang’s wedding. Last month D and I took a week to decompress in Florida. We traveled all around the state!!! We went to Daytona, Orlando, Port St. Lucie, Aventura, Key Largo, and Miami.

For part of the trip, we spent enjoying things we did on our past trip to Florida – a.k.a. Disney World – BUT most of the trip we planned around trying new things. We made our wizarding dreams come true at Universal Orlando and Island of Adventure, went snorkeling in Key Largo, smoked cigars in Little Havana, and soaked up sun on South Beach. We came back with THE post-vacation glow. It’s a real thing, and you can get it too!!!

Here’s how – take those days and fill your life with experiences other than your desk and your computer. I wish I could have told myself that five years ago. D always says, we work to live. Not live to work. Take that to heart.

‘Til the next time.
– E

Vacation Highlights

  • Our Deck Down Under – Restaurant that’s serving fresh seafood on the water with great service. Their fish is the catch of the day from local fishermen.
  • Epcot’s Annual International Food & Wine Festival – Just by luck we were at Disney World at the right time. D & I ate and drank around the world!!!
  • Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Park hopper tickets with Express Passes weren’t cheap. However, we definitely had fun drinking Butterbeer, getting chased by Dementors, and escaping from Gringotts.
  • John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park – For about $40-$50/person (depends on the snorkel you choose), you can spend about an hour and a half snorkeling in the beautiful, crystal clear waters of Key Largo. The water is warm and the reef is vibrant. Definitely going on our ‘return visit’ list.
  • Las Olas Cafe – Lovely ‘hole-in-the-wall’ cafe brought to fame by locals but then shot in popularity by Anthony Bourdain. Like a Filipino turo-turo, this cafe serves amazing Cuban food for cheap. For $20 D and I got huge portions of lechon asado, arroz congri, plantains, and carne con papas. Again, definitely going on our ‘return visit’ list.
  • Little Havana Cigar Factory – Two words. Cigars and cafecitos. Maybe that’s three words. Regardless, you should visit this place!