Roadtrips

Panama City

So in August, my family and I  moved from Florida to Arizona. It was the longest yet shortest week ever (if that makes sense). Let me rewind the story a bit. My husband received new orders to move to a new state in a matter of weeks… literally four weeks to be exact. In those four short weeks, I had to leave my job; I was able to finish school. And well, I had to start sorting things out before the big move. Let me start off by saying, you have no idea how much shit you have until you move (like LITERALLY). Like I’m not even joking, it was the longest yet shortest weeks of my life. To gather all that you have built, bought, cherished, and all those memories you’ve made the past three years to all of a sudden move (again, because I should be used to it, right? wrong). Luckily, kids were still on their summer break, so it wasn’t that bad, but with the pregnancy and work it was a little stressful for me. Anyways, so we threw stuff away, painted our old house, fixed the house, and eventually, movers came and took all of our stuff. THE END. Just kidding, so I left my job, and I will not lie, I kind of miss it. Not the work itself, but I miss my regular customers and of course the people I used to work with. I did not cry after leaving Florida, for I was ready to pack and go. I was prepared for a change, I mean, aren’t we all? 

Our road trip was a blessing and a curse together. Our first stop consisted of spending the night in Panama City which is about six hours away from Tampa (not too shabby). So wait, wait…. before I continue with this post OMG!!!!! do not ever stay at this place.
www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g34542-d275390-Reviews-American_Quality_Lodge_Panama_City-Panama_City_Florida.html

Holy Mother of Pearl!!!!!! Ok, so my “lovely husband”, decided to stick to a “low” budget hotel, etc. Well, who wants to spend like $200 just for one night? Exactly, so without a doubt and without looking at the reviews (totally my fault) I agreed. I said, “if it’s cheap and decent, why not.” Well, he probably heard the word cheap because JESUS, TAKE THE WHEEL. He took us to the streets, not even joking. And before anyone jumps on me, I’m talking about druggies outside, non-smoking rooms smelling like complete SMOKE, roaches all over the wall, and people drinking in and out of rooms like a complete mess. So, Of course, I was pissed, not the way I wanted to start my road trip but it happened, we are human people, mistakes do happen. After a five minute talk, we both agreed on requesting a refund and getting the hell out of there ASAP. Did I mention it was pouring cats and dogs? Well, it was horrible outside. So I spoke to the manager, and I was furious because she gave me the look of “I’m used to people bitch about the rooms but unfortunately, no refunds.” Like are you kidding me, lady? No worries, keep the money and off we went to another hotel. Keep in mind we are traveling with two kiddos, and two dogs. Yes, had to take my furbabies with me. After receiving a warm welcoming at La Quinta Inns & Suites, I was able to sleep like a baby. That was just day one guys, day one!!!! Did I mention how bad it was pouring outside? 

Last but not least, before the night ended, we stopped to grab a bite after all that chaos. My husband chose to eat at a Mexican restaurant which was… okay… I mean, their beans were great, but I don’t recall the place we went. After we got home, I washed clothes at the hotel (the chores never end, not even when you’re on vacation) and called it a night. It was the longest….day….ever… Check out my dogs; also they were like WTF???!!!

Roadtrips

Living La Vida in Florida

While living in Tampa, Florida, I now realize there was so much to do and see. From beaches to parks, you name it. This past summer, my mom and sister were visiting from Southern California (which was a blast by the way). The first thing they asked me when I saw them, “what are we doing tomorrow? What’s there to do in Tampa? where are the hot spots?” Then I realized that I didn’t know much about my surroundings. So yes, if you ask me what’s there to do in Tampa, I will reply with a brief answer like, uh… the beach? Wrong. This beautiful city has a lot to offer. I felt terrible because I had to work, I couldn’t take many days off, but I figured I would try my best.  I don’t mind theme parks, but my mom and sister are not big fans of it (especially since it’s expensive), so I figured I tried my best to make their vacation memorable. If you enjoy shopping, well so do I, however, not always in a mall. We decided to drive to Sunshine Thrift Store which is in South Tampa, and they still have good deals. This time I didn’t see people fighting over items lol. Let me tell you that you can find pretty good deals at the local thrift shop here. The next couple of days went by so fast! I let her borrow my car to take my sister out, but I’m glad I did since I had to work. Other must-see places they visited were; Clearwater Beach, walked around Downtown Tampa (through the Riverwalk), and we went out to Ybor City. If you’re ever in Tampa and want to go out bar hopping or to clubs, try visiting South Howard aka SoHo where you will be around ‘lots of college kids, but they have plenty of bars. Ybor City has a lot to offer as well, as it’s a whole strip of clubs, bars, restaurants, movies, tattoo shops, omg you name it! SO MUCH TO DO IN YBOR through the day, but mainly at night. If you’re a person that loves the beach and you just can’t get enough of it, here are some of my favorite beaches so far;. Treasure Island, Fort De Soto, Clearwater Beach (if you don’t mind a crowded beach), and if you’re up for a drive, try Ana Maria Island, Panama City Beach., and last but not least, South Beach in Miami 🙂

During the month of January, they have something called Gasparilla Parade (for both children and adults on different dates). I’ve experienced it on 3 different occasions and it has been a blast! To learn more about it, click on the link below.


www.813area.com/travel/gasparilla-history-why-we-celebrate.html

If you’re up for theme parks, in Tampa they have Busch Gardens (which isn’t too bad if you’re not a fan of big crowds) and Adventure Island (water park) that’s right across from the park. Orlando is about an hour and thirty minutes from Tampa. Therefore, you have Disneyworld (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studio’s, and the Animal Kingdom). Other parks around the area; Universal Studios, Sea World, Legoland, Fun Spot America, Gatorland, among others. So much to do in Orlando, if you have the money for it. Summertime here in Tampa tends to be super humid and of course HOT! My family and I used to drive up to the beach, fish, go out to the movies, go out to eat to different places. I mean it when I say it, there’s so much to do. It’s a beautiful part of Florida, and if you ever get bored in the area, my advice to you is to drive to different places. While my mom was here, I also decided to take them to Miami. We had such a great time in South Beach. We walked around, ate like there was no tomorrow, enjoyed the beach, and even took a peek where celebrities live. Miami is roughly about 4 1/2 hours away from Tampa. The drive isn’t bad. However, Miami’s traffic is horrible and super expensive. Worth visiting the area if you plan to attend the state of Florida in general.