travel inspiration


Where will your dreams take you?

Jetset Angie

Hi All!!

So excited to be featured in the Amazon Best Seller Fit, Fine & Fabulous by Dr. Laureen Wishom! It was such an honor to share some fabulous tips and to support others in their quest to success in career, business, and life. Check me out in the forward and back cover of the book, and on page 166.

Fit Fine & Fabulous

Instead of someday, how about today!

Blessings!!

~A

Group photo

The Passport Party Project stopped in Austin on March 3, 2012.  With sponsorship from Expedia, the goal of the project is to gift 100 girls from age 11 – 15 with their very first passports by April 2013.  The project will stop in various cities, bringing together 10 girls for a day of travel related activities, fun, and getting their passport applications ready for submission.  So when the project founder Tracey Friley invited me to volunteer, I knew I had to be there for the party!

Driving from Houston to the Miracle Foundation in Austin, my mom and I hit the ground running.  Having only connected with Friley by social media, it was a pleasure to meet her in person.  After catching up, I immediately extended an offer to help get things together for the day.  Shortly thereafter, the girls started to arrive.

The girls were soo excited!!  They began the day perusing magazines for pictures that represented places they wanted to go and things they wanted to do.  Placing the pictures on a luggage shaped cardboard cutout, the girls had made their very own vision boards.  While creating their vision boards, Friley and the volunteers, Shelly Seale, Julie George, Iris Petitt, Melissa Sustaita, and myself, had the opportunity to share travel stories and adventures.

The day continued as the girls had a blast playing dress up with travel attire from around the world.  It was amazing to see the joy and happiness on their faces as the costumes actually brought out their excitement to travel even more!  After a nice lunch, the girls each had their chance in the photo booth to take their passport photos.  Several girls even won prizes such as an HD flip camera from Friley, a travel-themed children’s book from Hartlyn Kids, and a custom made map necklace from Paper and Place!”

As the day came to a close, it was evident that the party was a huge success!  The smiles on the faces of the girls were such an inspiration.  It has been said that nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something. With that said, Friley has definitely done something!

 “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” Saint Augustine

 

Happy Travels!!

~A

Sometimes we need to slow down, rest, and look at the big picture…It helps if it is on a beach!  Where will your dreams take you?

 

Rhodes, Greece - Where will your dreams take you?

“The ultimate of being successful is the luxury of giving yourself the time to do what you want to do.” — Leontyne Price

Got Passport??

Could it be? Me…in Israel? While walking the halls of my college campus many years ago, I came across a flyer on the bulletin board – Israel!! Wow!! It sure would be nice to go there. As an enthusiast of comparative religions and myself a Christian, I got excited at the mere thought.  But who was I kidding.  I was already working full-time, going to school at night, and the deposit deadline was drawing near.  How could I afford it? So the idea flew out my mind just as quickly as it entered.

Later that night, just talking about the day’s events with my brother, Kevin, I just casually mentioned that the school was sponsoring a trip to Israel that sounded interesting. He just said out the blue, “Why don’t you ask me for the money?” That thought never even occurred to me. I was surprised, shocked, and elated at the same time. Could he really be offering to give me some money for a trip?? So, I asked. He then responded “Sure, I’ll go to the ATM and get it for you.” It was that easy.

After securing the “gift” from my brother, the next step was to contact the trip sponsor to reserve my spot.  To my surprise, she stated that there was some scholarship money available. I quickly responded, “Where do I apply and what do I have to do?” She then said, get your passport!!!

At this point, I was still unsure about how I was going to pay for the whole trip. But with faith and perseverance, I continued on.  I took my passport photos, completed my passport application, and turned in my essay in hopes of getting a scholarship. Then, the waiting began.

After a couple of weeks, I checked the mail. My passport had arrived!! Woo Hoo!! I quietly prayed in my heart “if the scholarship notification is in this bunch of mail, I know it is God telling me that this trip is for me and He heard my prayer.” As quickly as I pondered that in my heart, I quickly forgot about it. It was just a farfetched thought.   Junk mail, pizza coupons, sale papers…hmmm, that is until I reached the last letter – the award letter.  I got the scholarship!!!

That was over 14 years ago. Little did I know at the time, that my passport would open up the opportunity for me to fall in love with traveling and experience the beauty of God’s creation first hand.  In fact, it has opened the door for me to visit and explore well over 30 countries and 140 destinations.  Many of which I have experienced in the last 2 years on a sabbatical. Yes, my love affair with travel led me to quit my corporate job to see the world and learn new activities.

I have climbed the Great Wall in China, narrowly escaped the earthquake in Japan, watched beautiful sunsets over the Grand Cayman islands, snorkeled near the Twin Peaks in St. Lucia, been surprised with flowers from an admirer in Italy, cruised the Alaska’s Inside Passage to beautiful British Colombia.  I have also traveled to Egypt, Israel, Honduras, Austria, Greece, Colombia, Nicaragua, Germany, Panama, France, Switzerland, and many other amazing destinations.  All because I took a step of faith, got my passport, and stepped out.

Travel has been a glorious adventure and experience that has shaped my well-being and inspired me to be a participant in life, not just a spectator.  Thinking about the thrill of getting my first passport reminded me about the Passport Party Project.  The Passport Party Project will gift 100 girls with their first passport within the next 18 months.  Just think what a passport will do for these young ladies.  A greater world view, an opportunity to marvel at cultures, and the chance to see amazing landscapes – the possibilities are endless.

By the way, I’ve visited Israel twice so far!  Where will your dreams take you?

Inspiration: The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page. ~St. Augustine

Be Blessed!

~A

Hi All!

Most of you are aware of the changes going on in my life.  My Daddy passed away recently and my family has been adjusting to life without him.  With that said, I have a new house guest — my Mom! I am so excited to have her living with me.  So, after a long day of moving, I settled down to watch tv to “decompress” and an old favorite was on, Mahogany starring Diana Ross.

The movie opened in 1975 and is about Tracy’s (Ms. Ross) journey from the slums of Chicago to fulfilling her dreams of becoming a World Class Fashion Designer.  From secretary to being a model, her step of faith leads her to Rome.  Oh, I just love the 70’s fashion, style, and of course ROMA!!  Check it out and let me know what you think?

Dreams & Destinations: Diana Ross in Mahogany (1975).

 

A single journey can change the course of a life.  Where will your dreams take you? 

Peace & Blessings!

~A

 

Colombia DSC_0398 (2)

Reprinted from 11/3/2010  http://www.lostgirlsworld.com/2010/11/8915/

 

This week’s Lost Girl, Angela Petitt, an IT professional and native Houstonian, who decided to take a step of faith by resigning her corporate position during the recession to go on sabbatical. Her sabbatical travels have led her to amazing destinations such as Turkey, Israel, Egypt, Colombia, and Panama.

With a desire to serve, Ms. Petitt has been involved with projects such as volunteer mission trips, faith based outreach, and mentoring at a juvenile delinquent center. In addition, she was recently presented with the 2009 WHS Wall of Honor Service and Leadership award by her alma mater. Follow Angela’s adventures on her blog www.sabbaticalscapes.com.

*****
“Are you crazy?”

“How can you afford that?”

“What do you mean you want to quit?”

“We are in a recession!!”

“Did you win the lottery?”

Those were the reactions I got when I mentioned my plans to my family and friends.  Although they meant well, I felt that there was more to life than a winning corporate existence.  My response to them was “If not now, when?”   I knew that even with a successful career in technology and an MBA, I wanted more…I wanted freedom!  A week later, I was on a plane bound for Italy.

Making the decision to opt-out of corporate America for a while was the first step in my journey. The notion of quitting was several years in the making, being fueled more and more every time I went on vacation.  (Be warned – This is the main symptom of Lost Girl-itis.) When I came to the realization that I really wanted to see the world and was ready to move beyond the cubicle, I knew it was time to make a change.

At mid-career, I wanted my sabbatical to be different.  I did not want to sell anything to make it happen. Plus, I wanted my sabbatical to be a true rest from the ordinary and an escape to the extraordinary. For me, that meant living life to the fullest and making time to do the things that I enjoy.

With a mix of land trips and cruises every month or so, I was able to see amazing destinations.  My sabbatical has given me many memories such as cave diving and giving a little girl my watch (you should have seen her smile) in Punta Cana, staring in amazement at the pyramids of Giza, standing thigh high  by the Sphinx – while getting caught in a sandstorm,  getting rained on in the Costa Rican rainforest,  glaring into the mouth of a steamy volcano in Nicaragua, hiking to waterfalls in Puerto Rico’s El Yunque with my precious Mother,  playing with monkeys in Roatan, zip lining in Cabo, sipping apple tea while overlooking the Mediterranean in Turkey, dancing at Music on the Rocks in Positano, marveling at the ancient ruins of the Acropolis in Athens, eating everything in sight aboard cruise ships (I love desserts!), walking in the steps of Jesus in Israel, and many other exciting adventures.

In addition to traveling, I have continued to volunteer at church and have had the opportunity to learn golf, horseback riding, and photography. I even realized that it is a welcomed treat just to enjoy a lazy day, okay a lazy week, at home on the couch.
Last August 2009 when I took a step of faith by resigning my position to go on sabbatical, I really had no idea how things would transpire.

Of course being single with a mortgage and supporting my college–age nephew, everyone thought I was crazy – especially during the recession.  But, I have no regrets. Since starting my journey, I have grown in courage, confidence, and wisdom. More importantly, I have come to understand my God given uniqueness and that life is truly precious and too short to waste.

Furthermore, my time away has instilled in me the renewed desire not to merely survive, but to authentically thrive!  I am now working on my doctorate degree and looking to re-enter Corporate America.

So have faith and step into your dreams.  There is more out there. Fabulous after 40, or any age, is definitely a beautiful thing…Enjoy the journey