Or So She Says

Posted By Allison on Jul 14, 2014

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Allison is a monthly contributor to the popular lifestyle blog Or So She Says, and today we are teaming up with Mariel at Or So She Says and her other contributors to help you get to know us, and find new blogs that you might enjoy. If you love recipes, crafts, style, parenting, emergency preparedness and other lifestyle inspiration, you’re sure to dig a few of the other blogs listed at the end of this post.

Next week, we’ll be joining with Or So She Says and these contributors in a great giveaway! Prizes include a vacation from Get Away Today and bundles of our favorite books.

1. What inspired you to start your blog?

Allison: I love visiting new places and sharing what we’ve learned. When I read a friend’s personal blog a couple of years ago, I thought that a travel blog would be a great way to share the tips and tricks we have picked up along the way.

weekend getaways for couples

2. What’s your favorite and least favorite thing about blogging?

Katie: My favorite thing about blogging is feeling like I might share something that will help someone’s vacation be more successful. I always love getting insider tips before I go somewhere, and I feel like I am helping others when I can share things I’ve learned when I travel.
My least favorite thing about blogging is writing the first sentence. I always feel stressed about getting started, but once I start writing it always flows.

3. With only 20 words, tell us 20 things you love.

Allison: Family, faith, nature, books, food, adventure, solitude, service, learning, travel.
Katie: Family, faith, friends, reading, travel, music, beaches, parties, chocolate, autumn.

4. What is the one recipe you are most often asked to share?

Katie: My granola recipe is a hit with anyone who tastes it. I am enjoying it this week with yogurt and fresh peaches. Here is a printable version: Katie’s Favorite Oat Granola Recipe
Or So She Says

5. 5 favorite beauty products, right now… what are they?

Allison: You’ve come to the wrong place to find cutting edge style and beauty advice, but I do love fun and colorful beauty products that are easy to use – and pack in a suitcase.

  1. Tinted moisturizer with SPF – It’s sunscreen, moisturizer and foundation in one. I use the Mary Kay version.
  2. Equate Original Clean Wet Cleansing Towelettes – These wipes make removing make-up quick and easy without leaving mascara stains on the washcloths.
  3. Maybelline Eye Studio domes – This two-in-one eye shadow is my daily go-to for a fun and flattering eye shade with a little sparkle.
  4. Hot Tools 1″ curling iron – Now that I’ve finally jumped on the curl bandwagon, I’d have a hard time living without this curling iron. This professional-grade iron is the best I’ve ever owned.
  5. Sunscreen – I’m not picky about brands, but wearing sunscreen is the easiest way to keep your skin young and reduce your risk of cancer. I keep a tube in the car, so we never forget it.

outer banks

6. What’s your personal mantra?

Katie: Live, laugh, love. That sums up how I try to live my life.

7. Something you tell yourself on a regular basis?

Allison: “You got this.” Whether it’s an everyday hurdle like a towering sinkful of dirty dishes, or a monumental trial like my son’s cancer, I use this phrase a lot to remind myself and my family that we are capable of overcoming any challenge.

8. What movie made you laugh more than any other?

Katie: Napoleon Dynamite
LEGOLAND tips, Carlsbad, California

9. If you could recommend one family vacation, what would it be?

Allison: San Diego. It’s a fun year-round destination with activities for every personality and age group.

10. What goals are you currently working on?

  • Snacking on fruits and vegetables instead of pantry food.
  • Scheduling a monthly family-fun activity that all seven of us participate in.

Kayak maiden voyage

11. Please share links to 3 blog posts that are special to you, and explain why.

  • 10 tips for visiting LEGOLAND California Resort – This is our most popular post by far. We use this post as an example of what works for our readers.
  • How we became a kayak family, by Allison – This is more of a philosophical post than a destination post, but it’s an example of my approach to life. I wrote this post a couple of months before my son’s cancer diagnosis, and it means even more to me since then.
  • Tips for Planning an Outer Banks Beach Vacation, by Katie – The Outer Banks of North Carolina are my family’s favorite vacation destination. Every time I open this post, I smile because of the amazing memories our family has made here.

Or So She Says - blog hop

Get to know my fellow contributors too!

Participating Blogs:

Cooking with Ruthie
Blissful Roots
Lemon Tree Dwelling
Tips for Family Trips
Five Heart Home
Double the Deliciousness
Nine a Plenty
Creative Carmella
So Festive!
Family Volley
Bits of Everything
Kiki & Company

Additional Contributors (not in blog hop):

Packed with Fun
Darling Darleen
Prepared Housewives
Kleinworth & Co.
Blahnik Baker
The Connection We Share

Allison on EmailAllison on FacebookAllison on InstagramAllison on Pinterest
Hi there! I am the founder of Tips for Family Trips. I am a married mom of two children, ages 10 and 12, living near Salt Lake City, Utah. We took our first child on a two-week road trip when she was four weeks old and we have been traveling as a family ever since. We love to get out of the house to see and do fun things, both far away and in our own neighborhood.


  1. This is great, ladies! I swear my entire Pinterest Family Vacation board is filled with all your posts, practically! It was fun to get to know you both a little better, pin more vacations, and I totally downloaded the granola recipe. Thanks!!!

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  2. I love traveling! And you guys have some great ideas!! We’re planning a family cross-country trip next summer to Washington DC and PA. I’m going to look to see if you have any great ideas for me! (Like how to keep kids happy while driving in the car 12 hours a day!!!!:))

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    • You bet! Katie lives in DC and we’ve both visited Pennsylvania. And we have road trip games and toys aplenty. Thanks, Jana!

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