Traveling with Pomegranates by Sue Monk Kidd and Ann Kidd Taylor

I love a good book about travel experiences, and after six months of quarantine life, I’ve found myself drawn to them more than ever! The stories about people whose lives were transformed in ways big or small from the experience of traveling are my favorite. Often, we travel as much to find ourselves as we do to discover the world.

I’ve written reviews of other travel books I’ve really enjoyed, and the common theme in the majority of them is the desire to not only rediscover oneself but also to redefine one’s life. Many of the writers were facing a…

I am drawn to places with a strong sense of community and human interaction. This is a bit ironic because I am a loner at heart.

Napflion, Greece — Photo taken by Lois Templin

I love small towns, the comradery and connection of the people who live in them. I’m drawn to life in European villages where people see the world around them in real-time, not on a screen, and talk to the people they encounter during the day with the intimacy of a shared life where a casual nod or wave of the hand is not enough, and no acknowledgment is just rude.

I’m enchanted by outdoor…

This is storytelling at its richest

The Queen’s Gambit is not only the best show I’ve binged on since quarantine started, but it’s also the best show I’ve seen in years. It’s one of the most-watched shows on Netflix for good reason. The characters, the storyline, the writing, the imagery, the themes — all of it blends beautifully to create a decadent treat for the eyes, mind, and soul of anyone who loves a great story. (You can thank my other quarantine obsession — The Great British Bake Off — for the dessert references.)

The Queen’s Gambit is only seven episodes total, which is both the…

Photo by u j e s h on Unsplash

I did it — I clicked the delete button on my most popular blog entry. I hated to see the hit counts on my site dip, but it was the right thing to do.

I started blogging more seriously about a year ago. I redesigned my website, honed the focus of my blog topics, and worked on increasing my following. I got serious about my social media accounts for my blog and promoted my new posts to my target audience.

The focus of my blog is traveling, my experiences exploring the world, and my journey to fulfill the dream of…

Photo by Julian Schultz on Unsplash

I’ve never been the type of person who needs a large group of friends and a full calendar of social events. I’m happy being at home, and quite content with a small group of close friends, enjoying less frequent but more meaningful get-togethers. My closest friends are those not put off by my anti-social ways. Even if months have passed since last we spoke, when I see them again it’s like no time has passed at all.

Despite all of that, I’m feeling lonely lately, and it’s not because of being stuck at home while social distancing due to COVID…

Ocean and Palms — Photo by Lois Templin

At 16 years old, my parents took me on a cruise of the Virgin Islands. We always traveled as a family, but we usually camped and stayed within our own state of Minnesota and the neighboring states, with an occasional foray across the border into Canada.

I was the youngest of three kids, and by the time I was the lone child at home as a teenager, my parents were more financially stable, as happens with time. As a result, our vacations started to change from tents and canoes to hotels with pools and cabins on ships. …

Masia de la Vinya Wine Flight — Photo by Lois Templin

Wondering what it’s like to go wine tasting during COVID with social distancing requirements and capacity restrictions? We chose Masia de la Vinya Winery in Temeacula Valley Wine Country to find out what the experience is like with the new California state guidelines in place for wineries during COVID-19.

After staying home for more than three months except for running errands, the hubby and I ventured out to a winery for a change in scenery and a little relaxation. We looked forward to an actual social outing, even if it was just the two of us! …

If you love to explore the world, then you are probably thinking about ways to still travel while staying safe during this pandemic. Travel has changed because of the Coronavirus pandemic, but with it comes new opportunities to explore the region where you live and ways of traveling that are more socially and ecologically responsible. I am sad not to travel cross-country or abroad this year as planned, but I look forward to learning more about Southern California, hiking new trails, and discovering the hidden and less traveled gems in my own state.

Southern California Coastline — Photo by Lois Templin

I’ve lived in Southern California for nearly…

In 2004, I took an amazing and memorable trip through the United Kingdom with my son, parents, aunt and uncle, and my brother’s family. The memories are lasting and I am thankful for the experience and the time with family. This is a reflection of one especially cherished day from that trip.

Stirling, Scotland — 2004

The rain is falling gently, more of a heavy mist now, blurring and softening the edges of everything in my view like an old photograph. …

Photo by Djurdjica Boskovic on Unsplash

Transitioning from an office that you drive to-away from your home and all the distractions it contains-to a work space in your very distracting home can be a challenge. One of the things I like most about working in an office away from home is it provides routine, allows me to focus on my work while I’m there, and when I leave the office I leave the work behind. All the tools, people, and resources I needed to do my job are in the same office when I’m at work, which is a convenience I’ve come to rely upon.


Lois Templin

Traveler and writer at Bitten by the writing and wanderlust bugs as a child, I am fascinated by many people and places.

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