Love, Kaycie

How to Visit Washington DC on a Budget

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If you've read my blog for any amount of time, it's probably not a secret to you that Washington DC is my favorite city in America. It has so much history packed into it's city limits and it is all around gorgeous. My favorite times to visit are in the spring and fall, because that's when the weather is the mildest, although this year I want to go see it when the city is covered in snow! Anyway, whenever you decide to visit, here are some tips on how to do it on a budget! 

DC is already one of the most inexpensive places to visit, but I wanted to share some tips with you to make it even more affordable! 

1. Metro/Bikeshare

Taking the metro is my favorite way to get into DC. Driving is a pain because of traffic and parking can get really pricy. Also, depending on what time of the year you go, parking could be pretty much non-existent. You can add money to individual metro passes, or choose an all day pass for $14.50. With the all day pass, you can ride the metro as many times as you want, to wherever you want. Asa and I used to use the day passes all the time until we got official metro cards. 

Once you're in the city, you can use Capital Bikeshare! You can ride bikes through the city with this program and it makes it much easier to get around! The bikes cost $8 for a day membership, and the first half hour of every ride is free! THIS IS KEY, you must dock your bike at a docking station every half hour or else you start getting charged. So if you can remember to dock your bike every half hour, this is a super cheap way to see DC! 

2. Smithsonian Museums

The Smithsonian Museums are all free! They are incredibly interesting to visit and contain so much history! My favorites are the American History Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the Air and Space Museum! I also like the National Archives, which are free as well. The next museum I want to visit is the Holocaust Museum. There are other museums in DC, such as the International Spy Museum, that are not free. Be careful when you're planning which museums to visit that you're going to one of the Smithsonian ones. Also, the Smithsonian Institution has the National Zoo, which is also free but a little outside of the city. 

3. Monuments

Since all of the monuments in DC are outside, they are all free to visit! That means you can go visit Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Martin Luther King Jr, and more for free! Also the Washington Monument, World War II Memorial, and Arlington Cemetery (other than parking) are all free! You can spend a day or more seeing all of these places and not pay a penny. 

4. Food Trucks

Whenever we're visiting DC, we eat at food trucks for at least one meal. They can be found all around the National Mall and it's much cheaper to eat at these than in a restaurant. Food Truck meals average between $7-$12 where as restaurant meals average between $12-$17! Plus food trucks are always more fun! :) 

5. Stay Outside of the City

If you're going to be staying in DC for more than one day, which I recommend, you're going to find hotels for much cheaper outside of the city! Hotels in the city are super pricy and if you're trying to stick to a budget, you're better off staying outside the city and riding the metro in. Some areas to look for hotels are Greenbelt, MD, College Park, MD, Rockville, MD, Arlington, VA, or Alexandria, VA. 

These are my best tips to help you visit Washington DC on a budget!

Have you ever been to DC? What tips would you add to this list? 

 

 

Why I Fly with Jetblue

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I wasn't planning to write this post as I was sitting at my gate for a Jetblue flight home, but I guess that's fitting right? I've been flying with Jetblue for a year and a half now, and I don't have any intention to fly with another airline if Jetblue is an option. (I'm very patiently waiting for them to expand to the midwest airports!) There are so many reasons why I am a repeat Jetblue passenger and I wanted to share some of them with you!

As I said, I've been flying with Jetblue for a year and a half now. The first time I took a Jetblue flight was in January 2015 and I haven't looked back since except to use up a Southwest gift card I had. I've flown the route from Bradley International Airport in Hartford, CT to Reagan National Airport in Washington D.C. (and vice versa) countless times and Jetblue makes it so easy and affordable. 

1. Customer Service

Jetblue's customer service surpasses expectations. Starting from their ticketing agents, to the gate agents, to the flight attendants, and even the pilots... they all greet you with a smile and do whatever they can to make sure you are comfortable and taken care of. They truly make you feel as though they are there to help you, and that is something I've never experienced on another airline. Also, if your flight gets cancelled for a mechanical issue or something that is the airline's fault (so not if it's weather related), they will do their very best to get you on the next possible flight and they will give you a credit to use on future travel. They are so good to their travelers. 

2. Affordability

The most I've ever paid for a round trip flight from Bradley to Reagan is $126 and that's the only time I've ever paid over $100 round trip. The lowest I've paid was $59 round trip. I LOVE that. I love that they help make it so easy to get to Washington DC to see my fiancé. I've seen one way flights for later this summer for $39 one way. THAT IS CRAZY PEOPLE. Now, I know most of you won't fly from Connecticut to DC as much as I do, but they also have cheap-o flights to Florida, South Carolina, Boston, and they also fly internationally to a number of locations in the Caribbean. They run sales all the time and if you know the right window to book (about 4-6 weeks in advance for domestic flights) then you are golden.

3. Trueblue Points

I am so in love with Jetblue's loyalty program called Trueblue. Can I just tell you this? I have gotten three, THREE, round trip flights for virtually FREE through their loyalty program. In fact, this vacation that I'm ending right now, I paid a total of $11.20 for my flights roundtrip because I used my Trueblue points. You earn Trueblue points when you purchase tickets, purchase their upgraded seats, or fly frequently with them. I earned 7,000 bonus points last year just because I flew with them seven times in twelve months. They also have a survey program that you can sign up for and you can earn points by taking surveys. IT'S SO EASY and so worth it. 

4. Space

Jetblue's famous claim is to have the most legroom in coach and they are not lying when they say that. They do have "even more space" seats for an upgraded price with are AMAZING (I got upgraded to them when my flight was cancelled once) and they are worth the money if you have it to spend. However, if you don't want to drop the extra $25-$40 on the upgraded seats, their regular seats have MORE than enough legroom and space. Now let's be honest, I am not a small gal and something I love about Jetblue is that I am actually comfortable in their seats. When I used up that Southwest gift card I mentioned before, I couldn't believe how incredibly small and uncomfortable their seats were. You will not have that problem on Jetblue, no matter which seat you purchase. By the way, you can choose your seats when you book your flight and change them up until you check in, which I also love.  

5. Snacks

I don't know why other airlines stopped giving you snacks on flights, but Jetblue still does. Even on the super short flight from Hartford to Washington DC they come around with snacks and drinks. This is important to me, and I'm sure it is to a lot of other people as well. 

BONUS:

They have wifi on most of their planes. You can't beat that. 


Those are my reasons that I fly with Jetblue whenever possible! They are a truly amazing airline and I hope that if you ever fly with them, you enjoy your experience as much as I have. 

What about you? Have you ever flown with Jetblue? Did you like it? 

July Goals

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I know that we're only five days into July but I already feel somewhat behind this month. It's most likely because I've been on vacation since the start of the month, so my brain hasn't been thinking about non-vacation type things. Anyway, I woke up today with a good bit of motivation to be productive so I decided to set some goals for the month for myself and for my blog/social media! 

PERSONAL GOALS

1. Read - I would like to finish my book I started a couple weeks ago and read at least one more book before this month comes to a close! I've had a bit of trouble finding the motivation to read over the last few weeks, but I hope to get that back soon! 

2. Go to the Gym - I would like to get back into working out this month. I'm going to try to go to the gym 3-4 times a week and also I really need to get back into my weight watchers routine. It's been a rough month with eating healthy. 

3. Save Money - I'm not good at saving money. I never have been. It's something I know that I need to change. My family and I are starting Financial Peace with Dave Ramsey soon and I am really excited for it. Plus, one of our other managers at my job will be on vacation for most of the month, so I'll be getting a lot of hours and have some extra money past my bills to put away into savings. 

BLOG/SOCIAL MEDIA GOALS

1. Be Consistent - This is on my goals every month because I'm just not good at it. However, I already have a blog schedule done for the month and I feel really excited about where this blog is going to go! 

2. 500 Pageviews - I'd like to get at least 500 page views on my blog this month. If I pass that, awesome! I have to work hard and be better at promoting my posts if I want to do this. I am excited! 

3. 800 Instagram Followers - This hopefully won't be too hard to accomplish! I have 777 followers at the moment, so I only need 23 more wonderful people to follow me to accomplish this. I've been realizing a lot lately how huge social media is in our culture today and how it truly is a tool that can be used to touch people's lives! If you're interested in following me on Instagram, click here. :) 

Those are my goals for the month of July! I am truly hoping to accomplish all of them, both personally and for my blog! 

What about you? What goals do you have this month? 

Line & Shade Arts Company

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Hi Friends! 

I hope that you are having a relaxing holiday weekend! 

Today on the blog, I've partnered up with my wonderful friend Leah who has just launched her new Etsy shop, Line & Shade Arts Company

Leah is an extremely talented artist! She's a Pennsylvania girl at heart and her and her hubby, Mike, live in Maryland with their fur-baby Indy! I met Leah (& Mike) through my fiancé's church and we became fast friends! When she texted me a couple months ago telling me all about her Etsy shop, it was an easy decision to do a feature on my blog! 

Line & Shade Arts Co. is a needleflash art shop! Leah does INCREDIBLE designs on embroidery hoops inspired by the traditional style of tattoo flash, except instead of a breathing canvas, the canvas is fabric! Her designs are stunning and I know that you will just love them. 

Here is the hoop that Leah sent me last week! 

How BEAUTIFUL is that?! Leah even made the coffee lighter because she knows that's how I like it. I told her to surprise me with the design and she hit the nail on the head! My hoop came wrapped up in such a pretty package that I almost didn't want to open it! The attention to detail in Leah's artwork is my favorite part. Each and every aspect of my hoop is perfect, and I can't wait to get another one! 

GUESS WHAT. 

Leah is running a promotion in her shop specifically for my readers!!! Head on over to her shop, choose your gorgeous embroidery hoop, and enter the promo code "LOVEKAYCIE" at checkout for $5 off! 

How's that for a great deal??

I sincerely hope that you hop on over to Etsy and check out Leah's shop, Line & Shade Arts Company and use the promo code to get a stunning embroidery hoop for yourself or for a gift! Also be sure to follow Line & Shade on Instagram

What do you think of Leah's artwork? What design would you like to have on yours?