My name is Ashleigh Priest. First and foremost, I am a mother of three amazing boys, Blake, 13, Keenon, 8 and Kaden, 6.I have been married to my high school sweetheart, Justin, for 13 years. We live in Jackson, Ohio with our Enlish Bulldog, Fatty.My husband and I married young and spent many years dreaming of the places we would love to visit. When we got married in 1999 we didn't have much money and couldn't afford to go on a fancy honeymoon but we still wanted to take a trip just the two of us. So, we took what money we received as wedding gifts and drove to Sandusky, Ohio. We stayed in a hotel for 3 nights and spent our days at Cedar Point and other local attractions. Probably, doesn't sound very exciting but to us, it was a big deal because we had never been anywhere alone together and hadn't been out of our town in years. After that trip we didn't go anywhere for years. We were busy working and starting a family. We would always talk about how we wished we could take our family on a vacation but to us, it seemed like an impossible dream.

My husband and I took our children to the Columbus zoo, The Newport Aquarium, Cosi, Kings Island, and camping trips. While all of these places were fun and we always had a good time it still wasn't the same as a real vacation.So in 2010 we decided to start saving money. Any extra dollar we had went into a savings envelope. He even started saving change in a jar. We wanted to try and save enough money to take our children on a vacation in the summer. We decided to save as much as we could and when summer came, we would count it and see if we had enough to leave Ohio!In May of that year, we decided to tally up our savings. We had actually saved a couple thousand dollars and another $600 in change!We FINALLY had enough to plan a little vacation!! We decided to go to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. This was a place my husband had been many years ago that wasn't too far to drive. We could finally take a vacation to the ocean!! This was one of the best times we have ever had!I'm sure to some, a trip like this would not be a big deal but to us, it was HUGE! One of the fondest memories I have from that trip was arriving at the resort....before we could even get our bags, we all jumped out of the van and ran to the shore!! Our kids dove right in without hesitation, clothes and all! My husband and I were laughing and I was recording the memory with my video camera. We stood there on the shore of the Atlantic ocean, hand in hand, watching our boys splash and giggle in the waves and I could just feel the tears welling up in my eyes! I knew in my heart that moment was one I would always remember and carry with me the rest of my life. I knew how much it meant to my husband to be there, at the ocean, with our family. He had worked hard for many years, making just enough money to cover our bills. He had saved and sacrificed to get us thereand it was such an amazing feeling to be there with him. Every year, we go back to Myrtle Beach and it is the thing we look forward to most.

This June was our latest Myrtle Beach vacation and we really had an amazing time but we decided that it would be nice to travel to new places.My husband has gotten a couple promotions and we can afford to travel a little more. We just reserved a cabin in the Smoky Mountains for this coming week! I look forward to visiting Tennessee and being in another state with my family. I hope to travel to many other states and eventually to other countries. One thing I learned through all of these experiences is to be grateful for the opportunities that I have been given. I have also learned that savingmoney really pays off and even the change counts! I have decided to make a list of places that I want to visit the most and I hope to be able to checkthem off over the next several years. I plan to keep a journal on each trip along with pictures and videos. I hope to be able to share them on my page and maybe inspire someone else to save up and travel to a new place with their family or friends.

Top Ten Travel Destinations

  1. France
  2. Italy
  3. Australia
  4. California
  5. Arizona
  6. New York
  7. Alaska
  8. Hawaii
  9. Florida
  10. Washington, D.C.
Our Myrtle Beach Condo hw3 hw4

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