Travel, United States

Hotel Review – Casa Marina Hotel in Jacksonville Beach, Florida

The circle drive and white stucco building of Casa Marina Hotel in Jacksonville, Florida reminded me of the art deco hotels that dot Miami’s famous South Beach. Only the Casa Marina appeared cleaner and better loved.     I parked my car in front of the black awning that covered the brick steps that lead to the hotel’s heavy, wooden doors. As I pushed the creaky front door open, my association quickly…

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Brewery Spotlight, Craft Beer, Travel

Brewery Spotlight – Intuition Ale Works in Jacksonville, Florida.

Brewery Spotlight is a new series on the blog where I take a deeper look at a brewery with behind the scenes interviews and tours. Unlike my Brewery Snapshot series, which provides a quick overview of why you should visit a brewery, Brewery Spotlight provides more of the story and inspiration behind the beer.     As I sat staring at my beer flight that included a few extras, I realized that…

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Food, Travel

10 Lessons I Learned from My Food Travels

Everyone once in awhile, it’s good to push the plate aside and think about why you’re eating the food heaped on it. Maybe it’s because your scale is begging you to or because you can’t remember the last time you slowed down enough to enjoy a meal that didn’t come from a drive-through window or the microwave oven. As I look back at my food travels and adventures over the course of…

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Travel, United States

15 Off-Season Photos from Jacksonville, Florida that Will Make You Pack Your Bags

I’ve developed an infatuation / romance with off-season travel. Sure, there’s the obvious benefits of shorter lines to access popular attractions, and hotels and airlines tend to be less expensive. Those pluses simply counter-balance the minuses of less than ideal timing and weather though.     No, there’s something so much more to off-season travel. It’s a way to go deeper – to experience a city as it truly is and not…

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Food, Travel, United States

In Search of Classic Seafood Restaurants in Jacksonville, Florida

When I lived in Miami, I struggled to find a restaurant that served old school, traditional Florida seafood. The cosmopolitan and international vibe of the city had replaced what I came to know as traditional Florida cuisine from childhood family vacations to the Sunshine State. Heck, it was hard to find seafood unless it was in the form of a sushi roll.     Please don’t misunderstand me. I’m not complaining (well…

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Brewery Snapshot, Craft Beer

Brewery Snapshot – Aardwolf Brewing in Jacksonville, Florida

Brewery Snapshot is a new series on the blog where I review a brewery that really captured my attention. Unlike my Brewery Spotlight series, which takes deeper look at a brewery through behind the scenes tours and interviews, Brewery Snapshot is meant to provide a brief overview of what the brewery offers and why you should visit / seek out their beers.     When I sat down at the steel top…

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Blogging, Income Report

December Blog Income Report (And Traffic, Too)

Each month I publish a Blog Income Report. My desire is to inspire others to dream big and plan their own exit strategy from the cubicle hamster race. I also want to set the proper expectations that this is tough work. You’ll work harder than when you were working for the man with (a lot) less income at first and more fear than ever. But you know what? You’ll love it because…

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Travel, United States

My First Solo Trip after Baby Gourmand’s Arrival + 2016 Travel Plans

I was coming up with every excuse that I could to cancel my first solo trip after Baby Gourmand was born. “It’s not worth the investment.” “You (my wife) just went back to work, it’s too difficult.” “What if he forgets about me?”     What can I say, I’m attached to the little guy. Those baby snuggles, and now that he’s a little older, baby giggles, are just too hard to…

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Blogging, Blogging Tips

2016 Blog and Freelance Writing Goals

Setting Goals for 2016 My how a lot can change in a year! As I look back over my 2015 New Year’s Resolutions journal entry (yes, I keep a journal), I see a lot of naivety in my brainstorming and goals. I account that naivety to a few reasons: I was still learning how blogging and freelance writing works, let alone how to make money doing it I was only 6 months…

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Blogging, Travel

2015 Year in Travel (and Blog) Review!!!

What an amazing year 2015 was!!! I want thank you, dear reader, for following the journey throughout the year. Without your continued support of the blog and cheerleading, none of this would have been possible.     I want to start off 2016 by first recapping 2015. I realize that many bloggers posted their 2015 Year in Reviews in 2015, and I am late to the game. I have my reason, though:…

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