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Welcome to a new year, a new adventure! I spent my first day of 2017 being productive at…sitting on my mother’s couch. Even busy girls need a break! It gave me the chance to think of what I can do better this year, how to elevate my work and life in general.

I’ve made some resolutions, as we all do at this time of year. I’m not resolving to do things that will never come to pass, but rather some small goals that I think are reasonable.

#1- Drink more water. I don’t ever drink enough water, I’m already too full of coffee or wine. Those don’t count as hydrating, I know, so I’m resolving to be a good girl and bring a water bottle with me everywhere.

#2- Laugh more. There is no better way of connecting to new people than by having a good laugh. It’s hard if you’ve just met, though, so I came up with a strategy. I don’t know any jokes. Not really any. There is no file in my brain for them. So, simple idea, I’m going to ask people I meet to tell me a joke, and I’ll write it down if it’s funny. Email me your best joke to get me started!

#3- Go somewhere new, somewhere REALLY new. I find it interesting how comfortable we can all become in travel. We create habits to make other places more like home. And then, sometimes, we go somewhere that really rocks our world, that wakes us up to the possibilities. I’m doing that. And soon.

#4- Stop procrastinating about dream trips. You may be surprised to know that I have dream trips filed in my head too. Botswana! Thailand! Disney World! Hot air ballooning! I never have the money or time or…or…or… basta! Enough. Those are all excuses. I will never be rich enough, skinny enough, in the right place or any of the other narratives that get in the way. I’m over it. I’m going.

#5- Spread a little love along the way. I occasionally bring little gifts for my friends from Seattle, chocolates or Seahawks stuff. You never know who you will meet, so I’d like to start traveling with something personal that tells about me and the place I’m from. Some tour members recently gave me pretty business-type cards with their contact info and nice photographs, sort of like an old-fashioned calling card. I’ll bring a few of my own in my travels this year, as well as a small stack of my block prints. I’m working on one of Seattle, so I can leave my art and my city with a new friend.

#6- Pack earlier. I always preach the gospel of a well-packed bag, but do I practice what I preach? Sometimes. But sometimes I procrastinate. This year, I swear I will have a fully packed bag at least a week before departure. And I’ll blog about it!

#7- Be more consistent in my blog. I’ve been thinking about this a bit lately, that I’d like to develop a more dependable schedule for you. I sort of write when inspiration hits, but I’m going to try to improve. I’m thinking that each week I’ll do a destination post, a packing or product review post, and a random post. Sound good? If you have ideas of things you’d like me to write about or regular topics you’d like me to cover, let me know.

#8- Add more art and more fun into my tours. I have been honing the content of my tours for a while, but this year I’d like to kick it up a notch. My focus is to add more of the arts that aren’t found in a museum- experiencing art through music, dance, literature. So, bring your dancing shoes if you find yourself on a tour with me, or maybe, just maybe I’ll get up the guts to sing to you!

#9- Draw and paint more while traveling. I’ve never really taken my art very seriously, but you’ve all changed my mind on that front. Painting and drawing are such an enjoyable way to connect with a destination, as I wrote about here, getting back to doing it regularly is a goal.  If you’ve never tried your hand at drawing or it’s been a long time, a trip abroad is a great time to give it a shot.

#10- Be more spontaneous! The best travel experiences are usually the ones I cannot predict, the ones that just happen. My trip to Greece and my road trip across Italy with a girlfriend were two of the highlights of my year. Both were planned the night before. Leave room in your plans for no plans at all and see what happens. That’s when the magic starts!

Join us in Greece for Sarah’s big birthday bash!

Sarah has a big birthday coming up this year, and she wants to go somewhere special and celebrate with all of you! We’ve put together a staycation with days on end to relax at the beach and explore the beautiful Greek island of Crete in the Aegean Sea. We’ll will spend 7 nights and 8 days in a gorgeous hotel in Chania, experiencing all the atmosphere, food, and wine you can handle, with the option of a pre-tour excursion in Athens – click below to find out more now!

AWS Staff

This post was published by the Adventures with Sarah team. Click here to find out more about the people that make everything at AWS happen.


  • Andi Cody says:

    Ah Sarah! Admirable and very worthy resolutions. I will be adopting some of them for myself and sincerely hoping I end up on one of your tours in the near future!

  • Kathleene says:

    Great post, Sarah. One thing all of your travel resolutions have in common is JOY. I’m going to follow your lead and try to bring more joy to my life in 2017, in my travels and just everyday things. : )

  • C Camino says:

    Thank you. You make me smile by reminding me about the good times, after what indeed was a soul-crushing year. Happy New Year.

  • Diane says:

    Today arrived your beautiful block print of Paris! It followed me to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, and what a great first mail delivery of the new year. Thank you, Grazie and Feliz Año!!! You definitely have the painting, drawing and art gift. Keep it up and thank you so much for sharing it with us ?

  • Elaine says:

    Short jokes for you:Joke # 1: Q: Why is six afraid of seven? A: Because seven eight (ate) nine.Joke #2: Seen on the back of a motorcyclist’s t-shirt: “If you can read this, she fell off.”

  • Mimi Haggerty says:

    Your block print of Rome was wonderful! if you send any out again, I’d love one like you showed in this blog of Cinque Terre. Don’t think I’ll ever get there, but your print will take me! Keep up your art work–you are good. Maybe Rick will have you illustrate his books? Are your tours small numbers?? I don’t like the big buses. I’d like to go to Italy with you–it sounds like so much fun!

  • Kathy Noll says:

    Love this. You are an inspiration. xx

  • Maria says:

    Great resolutions. #4 – don’t kick yourself if some things are dreams rather than realities. Hope is often made of dreams and dreams are sometimes enough. There will come a time when you will ‘know’ it is time for one of those dream trips. For me it was due to my workplace – a hospital. I had a reality moment that a lot of people don’t live to retirement age – or even the age I was then, so I vowed to view my longest standing dream trips and started to tick them off. Since then I have achieved the biggest and most challenging ones – and they have led to new hobbies, the opportunity to volunteer in Africa, and see some wonderful natural sites. So, don’t do those dream trips just to make a resolution – do it when you know it is ‘right’. Of course, be open to them and don’t make excuses – but don’t push them. Dreams come true when they are ready to do so.

  • Tami says:

    Great post! I especially like the ones about humor and alternative ways of exploring the arts/culture. I’d love to read about what you come up with for the latter. The road trip you mentioned made me think of driving in a foreign country. On possible blog subjects (unless you’ve already covered it) -a recent trip to Germany was the first time we were brave enough to rent, we usually opt for public transportation, but our route and itinerary made that tricky. We rented from a US company I use for business travel and it was relatively stress free, but it was only a few days. Have your experiences behind the wheel always been positive?

    • says:

      I adore driving and have had mostly good experiences. I did write about to a bit, but will revisit that topic soon.

  • Lisa says:

    Ambitious! Inspiring!

  • Rachel says:

    Nice pics! Pamukkale and Cappadocia are two of my favorite places in the world. Hope to travel through Turkey again someday…FYI WebMD says coffee counts as hydration, good enough for me!Also, since comments are closed on your packing posts, just wanted to say that your video on packing changed my entire way of traveling. Last summer I was away for 2 weeks in Europe and 1 week on a business trip, and my backpack – my only bag – weighed 14 lbs, for weather varying 30 degrees and outfit options for business, the opera, and hiking (well, traipsing through Pompeii all day anyway).I once went away for a weekend with a 12 lb duffel bag so that was a really big deal for me 🙂

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