Friday, March 05, 2010

vacation anticipation

destination: away from it all
tara parker-pope's recent ny times well blog on vacation happiness struck a chord with me.

in her blog entry, she referred to a dutch study which found that 'vacation anticipation' increased happiness levels for 8 weeks prior to a trip. while people were happy on their vacations, the only people who found their post-vacation happiness levels boosted at all were those who found their trips 'very relaxing.'

i completely agree that a substantial part of the joy of a vacation is in the planning/anticipation phases! for josh and me, one of our favorite date-night conversation topics is where we will go together on our next week off. the promise of a solid block of time together without the demands of work in the way? important for both our relationship, and our individual psyches.

and in line with the study findings, 'very relaxing' is exactly how i like my vacations to be. josh used to be more of a see-how-much-you-can-cram-into-each-day sort of traveler, but since residency fatigue has taken its toll, he's begun to see things my way.

even if we won't necessarily be DOING too much, the planner in me gets extra excited about figuring out the details of a vacation! caroline's color-coded notecards for her upcoming disney trip may have made some of her readers laugh, but i TOTALLY GET IT. not only will it be fun to carry out her carefully-laid plans, but there is so much joy to be found in making them in the first place! the only caveat is to avoid being disappointed if things don't work out 100% [torrential rain, a cancelled flight, or a poorly-timed case of gastroenteritis can put a wrench into anyone's plans, FAST].

so: i promise i have a point to all this! somehow, it got to be march and we have a week of vacation at the end of may that we really didn't have figured out. we will be attending a wedding in cincinnati for the first weekend (yay!) but may 31 - june 6 were a black box. several ideas were tossed around: montreal? nashville?

but i decided that finishing residency and turning 30 warranted a more spectacular venture. after approximately 10 minutes of discussion (with josh's blessing, of course), i had done this:

straight from ohio to . . . st. maarten!

i'm already packing this suitcase in my head

results are in!
age data:

i was happy to find out that readers come from all over the age spectrum

your content preferences:

and, i was surprised to see such a mix here! i guess my lack of focus seems to be okay with most of you.

thank you all for voting (and an extra thank you if you delurked in the comments!). it's so much fun to see who is reading and to know what you enjoy reading about. and if there's anything specific you'd like to see/read about, you can always email or submit anonymously via formspring! i truly love and appreciate having the inspiration :)



workout: 6 miles on the TM, 0.5% incline, with 3.5 miles at tempo (8:00/mi) pace

cooking somewhat light: half-and-half and sausage? not necessarily 'light' by my standards, but i suppose it's all in the proportions! labels aside, this ellie krieger recipe for vegetable soup with sausage from the march 2010 issue was delicious. josh especially loved it.

served with my mother's ridiculously amazing cheese bread. THANKS MOM!!


  1. Yay for your trip to St. Maarten! We'll actually be in St. John the last week of May :) I totally thought of you when I saw Caroline's notecards for Disney! I need to get some pointers from both of you.

  2. Ooooh, a trip somewhere tropical sounds heavenly right now.

    Here's a post I'd be interested in reading: Now that you are almost done with your medical training (I guess you still have fellowship left), what do you think is good about the way we train doctors in the US and what do you think should be done better/differently?

  3. Oh your vacation sounds so wonderful! Man I now need to book a relaxig vacation!!!

  4. That's so funny - I'm just about to write about "trip vs. vacation". We always do "trips", rarely a vacation, but I think we are going to need a vacation in the next year or so.
    Just started reading your blog, and love the mix of topics. I think there are tons of sites that are very much focused on "healthy lifestyle" (which has an array of meanings), so it's great to see a mix here.

  5. Anonymous1:42 PM

    Very nice! Are you in Atlanta for any longer on the way back? IF so, let me know.

  6. Anonymous1:54 PM

    yay for your trip! i'm very jealous :)

    it's interesting in that blog entry that the happiness effect started 2 months beforehand. maybe i just tend to have a hard time thinking so far in advance but that just seemed like a lot of time to me. but i can see how, like you and josh, it would be a great time to anticipate being 100% together

  7. Ooohh, that trip is sure to be both fun and relaxing! Have a blast planning :) (Just like I don't like to do the chores around the house, I'm also not the planner in the marriage!)

  8. AWESOME!!!! Have a great trip!!! You deserve it. xoxo

  9. atilla9:50 PM

    ooh st maarten I'm jealous and it seems relaxing and sipping cocktails and lounging in the sun and maybe a little diving would be about what there is to do. sounds like relaxing

  10. Marcie12:08 PM

    I have been reading your blog for a couple of months now but have never commented but I just got back from St. Maarten this past Saturday and LOVED it. That was my 2nd time there. Let me know if you need any suggestions or if you have any questions.