Posted by: christinajclark | 12/08/2009

Please redirect your browsers…

to http://blog.littletravelnotebook.com for future updates.

See ya there!

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Posted by: christinajclark | 12/08/2009

TBEX Swag Winner!

The time has come to post the winner of our TBEX Swag Bag giveaway. We asked you to share your favorite travel destination.

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!
Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Cherie of The Travel Bee is the winner! She said:

My favorite destination list is growing with each country/city I visit. However, there is one Place that I absolutely love. That is Canterbury, England. It is a charming little town, with boatloads of history! Away from the hustle and bustle of London, about two hours away by train. There you will see quaint buildings, winding rivers, a grand cathedral in the middle of the city, and cobblestone streets. You will fall in love with this place, as I did. I hope to go back someday, and England is one of my favorite countries to visit. There are so much history, So many different towns with so much character. London is another place I have to add to my list. With many reasons, I cannot list all of them-for it would be too much! I would love to go back to England, and touch the soil each season. For I am sure, there is much to offer travel addicts!

Care for a Cup of Tea and Scones anyone?

Cherie – send me an email chris (at) littletravelnotebook (dot) com and I’ll get this sent off for you to enjoy!


Posted by: christinajclark | 31/07/2009

Our TBEX Swag – Giveaway!

Chicago 069

Comments are now closed. Winner will be announced tomorrow!

Travelers and Travel Writers – pay attention! If you missed the Travel Blog Exchange on July 26, you missed some important stuff. Not only did we get some great ideas for building our blog but we made some fabulous contacts and got some cool swag. Keep reading if you want some cool swag too!

Read More…

Posted by: christinajclark | 30/07/2009

Travel Journaling – What’s Important?

By miscellaneaarts on flickr

By miscellaneaarts on flickr

While browsing the internet one day, I stumbled onto the journal page submissions featured on The Travelers Notebook. Immediately, I was jealous. In an ongoing effort to capture a place and share it, I take photos, I make notes, I put flags in guidebooks, highlight phrases in neon yellow but never, ever do I draw. My drawing is awful, 100 times worse than my handwriting. Childish, kindergarten level stuff.

I’ve made travel collages that weren’t too bad. My first was on a family trip to Washington, D.C. when I was 8. My Mom gave me “The Kids Guide to Washington, D.C.” which suggested saving ticket stubs, brochures and other travel ephemera and putting it together into a scrapbook. I wrote page after page of what we did and glued everything, including the airsick bag the Secret Service gave me at the White House, into the book. Every family trip thereafter, I was in charge of the scrapbook.

Read More…

Posted by: christinajclark | 29/07/2009

Vicksburg National Military Park – Vicksburg, Mississippi

One great affordable option when traveling on vacation is to take in one of the many National Parks and Monuments operated and maintained by the National Park Service.  These national treasures provide a panoramic view of our historic past and capture the diverse beauty of America.  Last month we visited the Vicksburg National Military Park in Vicksburg, Mississippi – here’s a bit of our experience.

Vicksburg cannon

What it’s like to visit the Vicksburg National Military Park Read More…

Posted by: christinajclark | 28/07/2009

Natchitoches, Louisiana – Meat Pies and Then Some

When we travel, we take along the book “1,000 Places to See Before You Die in the USA and Canada.” It may seem like a touristy thing to do, but for us, it works really well sometimes. Like when we found Natchitoches.

Alabama Vacation 052

Usually as we’re driving along I’ll pull out the book and look through the listings for the state we are in and see what sounds interesting or what will be along the way. As I paged through Louisiana I saw Natchitoches and it went something like this – Read More…

Posted by: christinajclark | 27/07/2009

Ah, Chicago… and TBEX 2009

I grew up in Northwest Indiana and to me, Chicago has always been “The Big City.” As I got older and could drive or hop on the South Shore train by myself I did a little exploring but mainly stayed within a certain area of the city.

This time was a little different. There were three objectives – share some of my favorites with Robert, do some exploring, and of course, go to the Travel Blog Exchange conference.

I would say that most of that was accomplished. I’ll leave the  exploring and the favorites for another post, but TBEX… well, that was great. I am so happy that I found out about it in time and that we were able to go. Robert and I  have kicked around the idea of a travel blog, or some other project we could work on together for quite awhile. Pulling our idea together and starting it off in close proximity to this conference has given us a solid base to start off from, some seriously amazing contacts and lots of great ideas.

I am guessing our entire trip home will be spent talking about ideas, brainstorming and working on posts and plans. I definitely plan to spend some time looking at blogs of people we met, emailing everyone and just getting lots of things written up about Chicago.

We had the opportunity to ride on a sailboat  on Lake Michigan which made me feel like I was home all the way down into my bones. Going to TBEX and bringing Little Travel Notebook together, with Robert is that same kind of feeling.

We’re both really looking forward to the journey and we are glad we’ve met so many on the same journey! Welcome, we hope to keep  the conversation going.

In order to do that, I’m going to ask – what did you do  in Chicago that you loved? If you didn’t go to TBEX but you’ve been to Chicago, what’s your favorite memory of the city? Tell us here or tweet us @Travel_Notebook

Posted by: christinajclark | 26/07/2009

A view with a room

This is a look up from Grant Park to our Saturday night hotel, The Blackstone – it’s the one with the green roof. The lobby is a riot of ornate and posh. Carved bronze, black marble, carved plaster ceiling, deep velvet chairs, brass railings and crazy striped carpet. Your eyes can barely pick a spot to rest. It’s an impressive property. I wish I could say we loved it. Our reservation for a king room turned into a “parlor room” when we arrived. This means we got a sofabed to sleep on. We were disappointed but too tired to fight it in the moment. We’ll be talking to the management soon and we’ll let you know what they have to say about it too.
But two important take aways from this. First if something is not right about your reservation or it is very different than what you were expecting, speak up. Be firm but polite. Had we spoken up more firmly the hotel would have had to do something for us. Second, if you can afford to stay near Grant Park while you are in Chicago, do it! It is beautiful and jam-packed with activities. It’s worth a little bit of a splurge to be in the center of the action sometimes.
— Posting on the road

Posted by: christinajclark | 25/07/2009

The Biting Bibliocat

While wandering along Michigan Ave in Chicago we came across the Fine Arts Building at 410 S Michigan. I saw a sign for a used book and sheet music store called Selected Works. I’m a book junkie and Robert loves music so we headed in. First of all there is no air conditioning so if it’s a hot day it is a bit stuffy. The store is on the second floor so we pushed the elevator button – there was an actual elevator operator! That was a first for both of us though I tried to give my request as if I do it every day.
The building has been an artist’s haven since 1885 according to the web page – www.fineartsbuilding.tv and it is a space specifically designed for artists.
The bookstore was a rabbit warren like space with shelves going here there and everywhere all the way up to the ceiling. I, of course, saw one near the top so we grabbed a ladder and Robert climbed up. After Robert went off to look at music the resident cat came to visit. He climbed the ladder and looked at the books and looked at me. I even have some video of it to add at some point.
I went to find Robert soon after and the cat followed. He was trying to play with Robert’s shoe and then leaned up and chomped on Robert’s ankle. Robert yelled and the owner came and took the cat to put him in the “time out room”.
You’d think after that incident I would’ve gotten a discount but no.
If you need an out of the ordinary stop in Chicago, check out Selected Works. Just make sure you wear some boots.
— PostIng on the road

Posted by: christinajclark | 25/07/2009

Pizza!

Finally some Chicago style pizza at Lou Malnatis. One of my favorite things about Chicago. We met up with my parents who came over on the train for some lunch. Chicago is full of great lunch options. My Mom emailed me a list of ideas and my only request was that we do not go to any chain restaurants. Besides the quick bite on the road occasionally , Robert and I really try to avoid chains when we are traveling. I was really hoping we would end up going for pizza though, since it is hard to find a good deep dish pizza in Texas. Mom chose the Lou’s on State Street which was near the train station for them and near our hotel as well. It was good, as always. As you can see from the photo I was so excited to dig in I forgot to take a photo when it arrived. The best part about Lou’s? You can buy frozen pizzas to take home or, call 1-800-Lou-to-go and they will send you a pizza – anywhere in the country! We will be carrying a few frozen pizzas home for ourselves and other homesick Chicagoans.
— PostIng on the road

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