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Mesmerizing Mova Globe: Give them the World

Posted by on Mar 4, 2015 in Gifts for Travelers | 0 comments

Mova Relief Globe

Every traveler I’ve ever known has had a fondness for globes and maps. The Mova Globe is unique in that it spins slowly and perpetually. It’s activated by ambient light and turns by virtue of the earth’s magnetic field and solar cells hidden within the globe. It’s fascinating to watch and a bit of a conversation piece on a desk or coffee table.

It comes in several colors and styles, like a pretty silver or a political map with drawn borders.  The Relief Globe is what you see above, and in person it’s beautiful. Because it’s actually a globe within a clear sphere (which is how it spins), the terrain cannot be felt by hand, but you can see mountains depicted in the design. The clear stand matches any decor and doesn’t take up visual space, furthering the fascinating effect of the spinning globe. If you need a gift for the person who has everything, this globe is perfect. I also love this for kids. Find it HERE.

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Ariat Probaby Comfortable Cowgirl Boots

Posted by on Mar 2, 2015 in Adventure Travel, Clothing | 0 comments


Have you ever travelled with cowgirl/cowboy boots?  To a minimalist like me it might seem frivolous at first glance.  But try on a boot like Ariat’s Probaby and you immediately rethink it.  They’re super comfy and oh so cute.  Look at those stars!  Comfortable Cowgirl Boots with stars and I’m in.  These boots slip on and off with ease, so go ahead and wear them at the airport.  They’re cute with dresses and skirts as well as skinny jeans, so wear them for fashion.  And, of course, if you are going to be horseback riding, they’re perfect.  I’ve ridden in all sorts of footwear and even barefoot (a no-no), but when you’re wearing cowgirl boots you feel different.  They’re sassy and spunky and put you in a western mood as soon as you pull them on.

There’s a lot to be said for dressing the part and I think if you are headed to Texas or Calgary, for instance, it makes it more fun and festive to wear boots.  With these Ariats, you don’t feel like you’re being excessive, they’re useful and fit my rule of everything in my bag needing to be useful on multiple levels.  Another thing I like about these is the shaft.  It’s ideal for me at 5’5 and come up just high enough at a few inches below my knees.  I think they’re pretty true to size, I’m anywhere from 8.5-9.5 and the 9′s are a great fit for me. Find these awesome boots HERE.

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Fugoo TOUGH and SPORT Bluetooth Speakers

Posted by on Feb 26, 2015 in Adventure Travel, Technology | 0 comments


Travel and outdoor speakers are getting better and better with awesome sound, portability, and ruggedness. The Fugoo is in its own league for its ability to transform with three different jackets, and a crazy battery life of 40 hours.  Most travel speakers have a battery life of around 10 hours, which I thought was good, but 40 is off the charts and really nice if you will be far from electricity for extended periods.

The concept is that you have a core speaker and can change out the look and level of toughness by swapping out the shell.  The Fugoo system has a three different cover options. I’ve tried the Tough and the Sport, two great choices for travel and adventure. The Tough jacket is more like armor and is so hard core, you can submerge it three feet under water for thirty minutes and even drive a truck over it and it will maintain its integrity. I don’t think you’ll find a tougher one out there. And not that you would do those things, but it’s nice to know that if it gets dropped in the water or if it takes a fall onto concrete, it will be fine. In fact, I’d guess this thing would cause more damage than it would sustain. I love the silver and black design with big volume buttons on top.


The Tough is 1.5 lbs, and if you want to shave off a little bulk but still want something that will be durable enough for the beach, the Sport cover is a great option weighing in at 1.1 lbs (they’re both 4 x 7 x 9).  You just take off the Tough shell and slip this one on.  I wouldn’t drive over the Sport, but it can handle water and sand and offers a different look.

The core’s sound is excellent with six speakers inside for 360 degree sound. It’s clear and crisp. You don’t have to place it against a wall for reverb the way you do with some other bluetooth speakers.  I listen to a wide variety of music and everything sounded great on the Fugoo.  So do my Podcasts. There’s a voice that comes on to let you know when it’s on (in addition to a blue light), and a voice that tells you when you’re pairing, etc.  Pairing is quick and easy. It has a mic, so if you get a phone call, you can use the speaker the way you would use the bluetooth in your car for calls, and it also works with Siri and Google Now. You just push the middle button on the top of the speaker and you have full access–isn’t that fabulous?  You can order a pizza from your speaker without getting out of the pool. 

I am completely amazed at the quality and durability of this little speaker, particularly with the Tough shell.  It sounds awesome in the house too, and you can go from room to room (including a steamy shower) without skipping a beat. As someone who loves music and listens to it all the time, as well as Podcasts, I really appreciate something like this and never have to go on another adventure without the luxury of being able to enjoy my tunes in any situation I want.  Find the Tough HERE and the Sport HERE.

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YETI Rambler Tumblers for Roadtrip Beverage Bliss

Posted by on Feb 24, 2015 in Adventure Travel, Road Trip | 0 comments

yeti bigYeti’s insulated Rambler Tumblers are road trip worthy vessels for your favorite beverages. They keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold with BPA free double walled stainless steel that won’t sweat. The 30 ounce cup is HUGE. It still fits in the cup holder in your car and it holds enough to last a few hundred miles. The 20 ounce is probably the ideal size for daily use.

Clear lids let you see how much you have left in your drink and they fit nice and tight with room for a straw (they’re not completely leak proof though). They’re awesome for everything from your frozen green smoothie to hot coffee or beer. I don’t know what Yeti has going on with these cups, but they really do seem to keep your beverage at the temperature you want it for an extra long time. The sleek stainless with the name YETI embossed at the bottom looks great too. Find them HERE.

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Walking on Clouds in Saucony Triumph ISOs

Posted by on Feb 20, 2015 in Clothing | 0 comments

sacony triumphWant to feel like you’re walking on clouds?  Check out these Saucony Triumph ISOs.  Let me just say, I am Not an athletic shoe person.  I love my hiking boots/shoes, but when it comes to sneakers, they’re not my thing and you wouldn’t see me running around town in them.

Not until now anyway.  I’ve just had a total reversal of thought here.  Extreme comfort will do that to you.  I put on these Saucony Triumphs and I don’t want to take them off.  I don’t think I’ve ever worn a more comfortable shoe. Do I think they look good?  No.  Do they match any of my stuff?  No.  Do I care?  No!  To be fair, as athletic shoes go, I do find these somewhat attractive.  I like the cobalt blue-purple.  They’re on par with all the other athletic shoes out there and better.  I got past the looks almost immediately and now when I look at them I only see the pretty cobalt and a soft landing for my feet.

This is new technology and the Triumph ISO is Saucony’s plushest shoe. The cush was intentional, and they are using what they call their ISOFIT and PWRGRID technology to morph to your foot and offer 20% more cushion. The shock absorption and impact protection is awesome.

They’re light as a feather (perfect for the suitcase).  When I put them on, I felt a bounce in my step right away.  They make you want to run. I used to run five miles a day and stopped because it was destroying my knees.  Now I walk and hike instead.  These shoes are awesome for walking, you don’t have to be a runner at all.  But here’s the thing–just try not to run a little in these.  You can’t help it.  There’s a spring in your step that makes you want to Go.  Though I have no intention of working up to my old routine, maybe with these shoes, my knees will be okay and I can return to something I love.  There’ nothing like a morning run in a new city.  Find them HERE.

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XQISIT Bluetooth Headphones

Posted by on Feb 18, 2015 in In-Flight | 0 comments


xquisit bluetooth headphones

Bluetooth Headphones.  Have you tried them?  This is my first go, but after trying these XQISIT Bluetooth Headphones, I’m really liking the concept. It’s wonderful to be able to walk around unfettered by cords.

These have a clean, straightforward design.  I love how XQISIT made the controls touch–so you just swipe left and right to skip to a different song and you tap up or down to adjust volume.  No fumbling around for controls.

Now for the sound.  The only other over-the-ear headphones I’ve really used recently are Bose Quiet Comfort noise canceling headphones.  These are not noise canceling, so it’s probably not a fair comparison to begin with.  They’re not as crisp sounding and not as clear at high volume. But they do sound good for their price ($70 on Amazon compared to $300 for Bose), and they are comfortable.

Pairing was quick and easy. They feel nice to the touch, fold up compactly to carry along, and they come with a nice case.  I would pack them in a cloth bag or stuff sack kind of thing to cut down on bulk though, but for home it’s nice to have.  It takes two hours to charge them up and from there, they last about 10 hours. One thing I really like about over the ear headphones is that it’s a signal to others that you are in your own world.  If you’re traveling and you’re tired and don’t feel social, headphones are like a cocoon in busy places. Find them HERE.

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Icebreaker Quantum Hood

Posted by on Feb 16, 2015 in Adventure Travel, Clothing | 0 comments

Icebreaker Quantum Hood Vivid

This winter I became an even bigger fan of Icebreaker than I already was.  I traveled hard with this shirt and these undergarments.  They were washed in hotel sinks and worn in both moderate and freezing cold weather and saw me through in serious comfort.  Right now they look almost new after all that.  Icebreaker stuff is made so well I almost took it for granted but after having just a few things with me for an extended period of time, I was grateful to be able to rely on the quality and function of Icebreaker. If you’re in the market for a great hoodie, check out the Quantum.

There are several key things that make the Quantum Hood awesome.  Ventilated pits are wonderful for when you work up a sweat but it’s still cold out and you want to keep your jacket on. If it’s really cold, it pairs well with a down vest. Sleeves are hand warming with comfortable thumb holes and the lines flanking the zipper are reflective making it great for running/walking and being seen by cars.  There’s a port in the front pocket for your earbuds and I love the way the back comes down over your bum. Raglan sleeves create flattering lines and the hoodie has an overall flattering look. It’s comfortable and versatile and perfect for travel.

With Icebreaker I always size up.  I like my clothes to fit loose, so I usually go for an xl.  Normally I’m a medium, large or 8-10. This Hoodie fit perfectly and was not too long in the sleeves. This color–Vivid–is sumptuous.  I hope they continue this color at least another year because I can’t get enough of it.  Find this awesome Quantum Hood for both men and women HERE.

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