The Big Move: France Here We Come

moving to france
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There is an unimaginable amount of planning, work and expense that goes into an international move.  I mean, moving in general is not an easy feat, but traveling to a new continent takes the move to an entirely different level.

My stomach hurts just thinking about it!

So how did it all get started?

During the summer of 2014, we took a trip to France.  We visited Paris, Bordeaux and Nice to get a taste of the different regions of the Country.   We enjoyed Paris immensely, preferred the quiet area of Saint-Émilion over Bordeaux and absolutely feel in love with Nice.

While in Nice, we just knew we wanted to live there. But how could we make this happen? Could we really move to Europe from the United States? Could we leave our family and friends?

I had always REFUSED to live anywhere but Virginia.  Derrick grew up in California and always wanted go back. “Sorry, you married the wrong women for that” I told him. While I didn’t feel a special connection to the Hampton Roads area of VA itself, it was home. My family lived in Virginia. How could I ever live somewhere without my Mom close by?

The more we talked about it, the more we wanted to make the move. The kids were on board, so it was time to start planning.

First up was to research if we could actually afford to live in Nice.

As it turns out, the prices are quite reasonable. Now, I said reasonable – not cheap.  It is a major tourist destination after all.

We are spending about $700 less per month on a 2 bedroom apartment near the center of town than we spent on a 4 bedroom house in the suburbs. The rent does include all utilities, cable and Wifi so that adds up to a big savings.   Food is also reasonable, if you don’t eat out daily & like to cook with fresh ingredients.

We also sold our home, one of our cars and a majority of our possessions to fund the move. Scary right?

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Is Busch Gardens Christmas Town Worth the Cost?

Lights Busch Gardens Christmas Town
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Are you considering a trip to Busch Gardens Christmas Town?  Christmas Town is one of our favorite family traditions.  Each year we take the kids to experience the park, drink hot chocolate and see the lights.  But is it worth the cost?  If you’re unsure if you should spend the extra cash, I’ve listed some of the pros and cons to help make your decision.

Pros:Christmas Town Santa Busch Gardens

Gorgeous light display – Busch Gardens definitely has one of the best light displays in VA with more than eight million lights!  The entire park is lit up and the Polar Pathway is a sight to behold.  We can’t even fathom how they get all those lights on Escape from Pompeii!

Penguins – I think saying “penguins” pretty much sums up the awesomeness of this attraction!  Get up close and personal with live penguins in their ice-themed habitat.

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How to Maximize Your Visit to Busch Gardens Williamsburg

How to Maximize Your Visit to Busch Gardens Williamsburg
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Whether your visiting Busch Gardens Williamsburg for the first time or you’re a local, making the most out of your visit will help you see and experience all the park has to offer.

Busch Gardens Williamsburg is more than your typical amusement park. It has been voted the “World’s Most Beautiful Park” every year since 1990.   Take time to enjoy the landscape or you’ll miss out on what sets Busch Gardens apart from other theme parks in the US.

How to Maximize Your Visit to Busch Gardens Williamsburg


First, don’t wait in line to purchase your tickets.  Buy your tickets online before you go, redeem at the kiosk (when required) and head right into the park.  Even better?  You can take advantage of Busch Gardens discount coupons to help you save more on your trip.

If you’re planning to visit for multiple days, you may want to consider a seasons pass, at least for one adult.  The hefty parking fee of $15 can add up quickly if you don’t have a seasons pass!

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What We Ate At Moon Palace Resorts Cancun {& Why You Will Want to Eat There Too}

Moon Palace Resorts Food
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When people talk about all-inclusive resorts,  food is always on top of the list.  We love to eat and a good meal, especially one that is included with your stay,  is a priority when planning a vacation.

We had plenty of food to choose from staying at the Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort.  A variety of cuisine is available – from hotdogs to fish to steak. You can eat Asian, Mexican, seafood or lounge poolside.  Whether you’re traveling with a picky eater or a foodie, there is no shortage of restaurant options.

When planning our trip to a new area,  one of the first items on our list is to determine where we should eat.  I want to know other travelers experiences with a  restaurant before I go.  Granted, I’ve been spoiled and dined at some fabulous restaurants, so I am a bit finicky when it comes to food.  However, knowing what others think of a restaurant is a good indicator of the food quality, ambiance and wait staff.

Some of the restaurants at Moon Palace are definitely better than others. We preferred La Trattoria at the Golf Villas, Caribeno in Moon Grand and the Brazilian Steakhouse in Nizuc.

Moon Palace Food La Trattoria

Our favorite meal was at La Trattoria on the last evening of our trip.  A card with our last name was waiting on our table which gave a special touch to the evening.  We were offered a cheese cart, delicious bread that was still warm from the oven, a dessert cart to die for, a palate cleansing treat between courses and fabulous wine.  Everything about the meal was exceptional.  Every time I thought the meal couldn’t get any better – they arrived with another course.

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Moon Palace Resorts Cancun {Should You Go All-Inclusive?}

Moon Palace Resorts
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I made my way to Cancun this past September. I desperately wanted to attend a travel bloggers conference and figured combining a retreat with my husband and learning to expand my business was the perfect excuse.

The TBEX conference was held at the Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort. This was my first experience at an all-inclusive resort and I wasn’t disappointed!

Moon Palace Resorts Cancun:

Moon Palace Resorts - room

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