Wedded Bliss

April 20, 2007    By: Kristen J @ 8:54 am   Category: Life

As of this summer I am officially no longer a “newly wed”. G and I will hit our 15 year anniversary right about the time the temperatures are reaching their peak. For some of you that may seem like a drop in the bucket and others it may seem like an eternity. For me, there are days when it feels like I just got married and days when it feels like I’ve been married forever.

As a reward for our good behavior G decided that we should go on an anniversary trip and it was up to me to decide where we should go. I told G I thought that on top of a fabulous vacation I deserved some precious gems too. G told me that I could have one or the other, but not both. Hhhmmm…

At first I tried to figure out a way that I could get both the trip and the jewelry. I imagined us going to one of those public gem mines somewhere in the south where we would find HUGE amethysts, diamonds, and rubies in one shovelful.

I pictured a shirtless G down in a pit, sweaty muscles bulging with each swing of the pick. I would be pacing at the top of the pit, slapping a riding crop on my palm shouting, “Keep diggink! Ze jewels! Ze will not find zemzelves!”

I quickly came to my senses when I envisioned a more realistic picture of our time at a mine: After 2 shovels of dirt G would say, “Huh, looks like there are no jewels here.” He would then hop onto the lip of the pit and take a swig of some gatoraid. It would be me alone down in the pit sweaty and red faced, furiously digging for a gem the size of a peppercorn.

G would put up with this for about a half an hour and then start saying, “Are we done yet?” every 2 minutes. Eventually I would become so stressed out that I would grasp at any little stone that looked promising. When we got home I would carry my precious little bag of stones to a gem cutter who would examine the bag closely and say, “Wow! It looks like you have a nice bag of Common North American Agate.”

I’ve decided that we will not be going to any public mines for our second honeymoon.

This is where I need your help. I need some good ideas as to where to go. We have passports, it will be sometime in the fall, and while we will be on a budget we won’t have to hang out at KOAs with a loaf of bread and jar of peanut butter.

I am a person who has always dreamed of seeing the world but in reality I have done precious little traveling in my life. What would be a good trip for the beginning traveler?


  1. Congratulations on 15 years! I’ve always enjoyed the Poconos in PA or the Finger Lakes region of NY in the fall. You may be thinking of something more exotic though.

    Comment by john scherer — April 20, 2007 @ 9:49 am

  2. G would put up with this for about a half an hour and then start saying, “Are we done yet?” every 2 minutes.

    Ah yes — sounds like a standard trip to the mall together doesn’t it?

    Comment by Geoff J — April 20, 2007 @ 10:17 am

  3. This post made me smile. My imagination has always made Geoff someone I wouldn’t want to see shirtless and sweaty! (No offense Geoff, you could probably say the same about me, and it would be true!)

    Anyway, we are at the five year mark and are going to Galveston on the beach here in texas. My wife is really excited about it.

    Here are places I would really love to go:

    2. Disney World if the kids are coming. (All of them. My wife thinks I’m nuts that I want to go to Paris to go to Disneyland, but I do.)
    3. Easter Island
    4. The great wall of china (Is it bad I don’t no where that is except that it’s in China?)
    5. Jerusalem
    6. Italy (only because my wife served her mission there.)
    7. Antartica (just to say I’ve been)
    8. Cebu, The philippines (Only because I served my mission there.)
    9. Hawaii , because I want to eat poi and see the big waves, and try to surf, and go to the temple there.

    On a more practical budget
    1. The Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas looks awesome (and would even be fun if you brought your kids)
    2. Cancun (I’ve actually been there. If you like the beach, it has a pretty beach, and going to the mayan ruins down the road at chichenitza was the highlight of all my childhood vacations.)
    3. San Antonio (We’ll take you out to dinner, and you can use the money you saved from that to buy jewelry. And James Avery is the best Jewelry store in the world anyway, atleast that’s what my wife and mom say…)

    Comment by Matt W. — April 20, 2007 @ 10:25 am

  4. My imagination has always made Geoff someone I wouldn’t want to see shirtless and sweaty!

    Oh you’d want to… who wouldn’t?

    But you won’t get to.

    Comment by Geoff J — April 20, 2007 @ 10:28 am

  5. We stayed at the Marriott in Mauie. That was very nice; I don’t remember how much it cost us but it might be worth looking into.

    I love the Lake Tahoe area. It’s gorgeous; there’s swimming, hiking, horseback riding and the list goes on. (If you go in winter, there’s good skiing.)

    Really, it depends on what you want to do when you get there. Tahoe is great but not an area to go to for four-star treatment, high-class shopping and lovely spas. Decide what you want out of the trip and that’ll help you figure out where to go. :)

    Comment by Proud Daughter of Eve — April 20, 2007 @ 11:03 am

  6. My dream vacation would be a three month road trip all around the US. Probably not second honeymoon material, though.
    A few questions to ask might be how important is it to be somewhere that English is spoken and where you don’t have to worry about exchanging money?
    Do you want mostly privacy and relaxation (Maui), or exciting new things to see and do (Europe)?
    I’ve never done it, but everyone I know who has taken a cruise has come back raving about it. I have a brother and SIL who travel a lot, but after they tried it once, cruises are their favorite thing.

    Comment by C Jones — April 20, 2007 @ 11:04 am

  7. Oh make no mistake Matt, Geoff is HOT! Of course I’m sure that when people see us together they think, “Well he’s a good looking man, but look at her! Wowza!”

    I appreciate the suggestions. We’ve done a Mexican cruise and enjoyed it a lot. We’ve been to Hawaii and I’ve done the Canada and Mexico thing. If we do go to either of those countries then I’d want it to be pretty different.

    Children will not be involved in this trip in anyway, shape, or form. I have one child screaming, “He’s touching me!” in my ear as we speak.

    Comment by Kristen J — April 20, 2007 @ 11:22 am

  8. New York City?

    New Zealand?

    Costa Rica?

    I want to go to Ireland.

    Comment by Susan M — April 20, 2007 @ 11:25 am

  9. New Zealand would be pretty cool. I saw this one vacation package where you rented an RV and drove all over New Zealand.

    Costa Rica would also be pretty great. Is that where all the diamonds are, or is it the Dominican Republic?

    Comment by Kristen J — April 20, 2007 @ 11:54 am

  10. Oh yeah, I really have been considering Thailand or China. Does anyone have any thoughts on those?

    Comment by Kristen J — April 20, 2007 @ 12:04 pm

  11. It would be awesome to see the great wall or Qin’s Army.

    Comment by Matt W. — April 20, 2007 @ 12:14 pm

  12. Oh yeah! I’ve always wanted to see Qin’s Army. I’ve always wanted to see Ankgor Watt in Cambodia too.

    I think one of my biggest problems with picking a trip is I’m feeling the pressure to pick the absolutley perfect place. I’m not sure when I’ll be taking another one of these trips so I want it to be good!

    Comment by Kristen J — April 20, 2007 @ 12:34 pm

  13. shopping for the perfect place is 90% of the fun.

    Comment by Matt W. — April 20, 2007 @ 1:06 pm

  14. I went to China a year ago with my teenage daughter, then last fall I went alone to Thailand and Cambodia (hubby had to work and I met up with him in the Philippines to pick up our missionary son).
    The Great Wall of China was way cool, but by far the better trip was Thailand and Cambodia. Thailand has so many fun things to do there – temples, elephant riding, Thai cooking classes – a huge variety. But I really loved Cambodia – one of the most fascinating trips I have been on. Ankgor Wat was incredible – so much more detailed work than you see in the ruins in Mexico. And I hired a guide there in Siem Reap and went to a small village, did a little humanitarian work, went to the killing fields – amazing trip.

    Comment by Sally — April 20, 2007 @ 1:11 pm

  15. I would recommend SE Asia if you can tolerate the heat and humidity. The airfare will probably be expensive but once you get there you can do just about anything. Shopping is really cool in Bangkok, you can ride elephants in Chiang Mai, and hang loose on the beaches in southern Thailand. Angkor Wat in Cambodia is a train ride away from Bangkok. Vietnam is very pretty too if you are adventurous. Oh yeah, the food and massages are great too…and they’re cheap!

    Comment by klear — April 20, 2007 @ 1:44 pm

  16. 15 years? Hmmm…maybe you have an average age in your EQ higher than what we have. I am far from being considered newlywed, and we’ve been married only 12 years. Having all the actual newlyweds (as in a couple of months) moving into our ward from the YSA wards has that sort of effect.

    Didn’t know I was considered a newlywed still though.

    Comment by Kim Siever — April 20, 2007 @ 2:15 pm

  17. New York City! And I could show you all the great places to go that tourists don’t know about :)

    Paris is wonderful, as is London. But a couple years ago my wife and I did Tuscany and it was amazing.

    Right now my wife and I are trying to figure out where to go this year. Some of the places on our list are: Spain, Costa Rica, driving the PCH from Seattle to San Diego and southern France. Or somewhere else, who knows.

    Comment by Rusty — April 20, 2007 @ 2:15 pm

  18. Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Austraila, New Zealand, New York City, Ireland, Vancouver Canada, and Maine are all places I would love to go. Good luck picking and congrats on 15 years!!

    Comment by Jamie J — April 20, 2007 @ 3:04 pm

  19. If you do the PCH trip let me know, Rusty. I’m about 10 minutes from the Pac Hwy.

    Comment by Susan M — April 20, 2007 @ 3:38 pm

  20. I have been seeing a lot of commercials about New Mexico lately. I think that place would be the bomb vacation spot. I hear they have plants there and water. If you are lucky, you might see an animal. I think the state motto is, “New Mexico, better then the old one.”

    I remember being there for your wedding fifteen years ago. I have one word for you… Boring. I was stuck in the freakin waiting room with a snotty seven year old brother. Thanks for the good memories.

    Oh yes, congratulations also

    Comment by Spencer J — April 20, 2007 @ 10:31 pm

  21. Lol. As I recall, you were still a 98 Lb. weakling 15 years ago too Spence — nothing like the large strapping man you have since become…

    Comment by Geoff J — April 21, 2007 @ 12:36 am

  22. Bali, Indonesia. The plane ticket may stretch your budget, but while you’re there you can stay/eat/shop for next to nothing. The Indonesian people are wonderful, friendly people. The culture is fascinating. The island is beautiful, especially if you get away from the tourist areas. You can very cheaply rent a car with a driver for the day to take you anywhere you want to go. If you really want to get away from the world, Lombok is a neighboring island that has not yet been overtaken by tourism (though language could be an issue there–won’t be in Bali).

    I highly recommend it, expecially if you are looking for something different–but don’t drink the water or any ice-blended drinks!:)

    Comment by marinamo — April 21, 2007 @ 7:01 pm

  23. Congrats! My dh & I will hit 15 years on July 20. It feels good.
    We too have contemplated a trip. I don’t do jewelry so thats not really a temptation. We can’t really decide on anything (we would kind of like to go different places). Who wants to go to Paris with a guy who doesn’t want to be there? We’ve each travelled enough that its a little like, whatever.
    So, we might go someplace a little local. Save on travel expenses and just pay for a Washington coast accommodations.
    Hmmm. I guess I’d better start looking!

    Comment by JKS — April 21, 2007 @ 10:44 pm

  24. Thanks for the suggestions. Hhhmm….now I have even more options! I have put Costa Rica high on my list of possibles now. Any body have opinions on that?

    Comment by Kristen J — April 22, 2007 @ 11:11 am

  25. Scott’s been to Costa Rica…LOVED it. We will be going there too…maybe our 15th! He said it is beautiful and you can stay, eat and travel cheap.

    We’ve been to Ireland…it was an amazing trip but if Intel hadn’t paid for most of it…we would have been in the poor house after. It is WAY expensive…the euro is out of control!

    Good luck!!

    Comment by Pam J — April 22, 2007 @ 1:46 pm

  26. Kristen:

    I wish we were still going to be in Malaysia this fall, but we’re moving from here in July. I’d tell you to come on over and use us as a home base while traveling the area!

    For a really great time, while on somewhat of a budget, you can get a lot for your dollar in Thailand, Bali, or Cambodia. They are all great places to see. Angkor Wat is amazing and I think you would feel like you were in paradise visiting Bali. You can pamper yourself and feel like you’re living the good life for a very reasonable price. If you like snorkeling, there are good coral reefs on some of the islands off the Malaysian coast — especially down in Eastern Malaysia, right near Indonesia.

    I would also recommend any of the Greek Islands for September or early October. It’s starting to be off-season then and you can get rooms pretty inexpensively. Rhodes, Patmos, Samos, etc, are all gorgeous and beautiful. The southern coast of Turkey is right there and you can hop on a ferry. Actually, Turkey is a great place in its own right and really affordable too. The weather is still good then and the ruins and ancient places of interest are great. Start with Istanbul, make your way down the coast to Ephesus, continue down to Marmaris and then start Greek Island hopping from there. Really!

    Comment by meems — April 22, 2007 @ 11:25 pm