Whew, back to normal & Fair Trade Friday happened!

What a crazy past few weeks it has been!  Hardly enough time between trips to wash clothes and repack.   I hate to feel so rushed and pushed.  Digging through the mail I found my Fair Trade Friday package for January. That made my day!

Fair Trade Friday Jan 2017

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

What does this package hold?

Fair Trade Friday Jan 2017

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

This calendar now sits in the kitchen. You flip a card for each month and it takes up very little space.

Fair Trade Friday

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

I was very excited to see the pennant.  I have seen them in progress on another site and was hoping I would get one!  It now hangs on my fireplace.

Fair Trade Friday Jan 2017

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

And a very pretty ombre necklace rounded out the package.

Fair Trade Friday Jan 2017

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Fair Trade Friday

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Fair Trade Friday has more information here: http://fairtradefriday.club/

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Wrap up on 2016

This is the crazy post where I try to dig back through my brain and figure out how many nights we spent in hotels.  I can safely say not near as many as 2015.   Our family needs are changing and we do more small weekend trips away now that our daughter is older.

2016 saw us take a spring break trip to check out three colleges for said daughter.  The Holiday Inn IHG mail in promotion points came in really handy for this trip to Pennsylvania.

Franklin & Marshall

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

We also did a couple of single nights in hotels before a college visit to make sure we arrived on time and for a little family break.  Nothing wrong with relaxing in a hot tub and eating seafood on a weeknight.

Since our daughter was heading to South Africa for a few weeks in June we used a night in Radisson Kalamazoo for a family night.  Enjoying their great pool area and local food before we went our separate ways for most of the summer.

Kalamazoo Radisson

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

August saw the girls having free time and Southwest airline credit to use so we went to Savannah and Charleston for a long weekend.  I did not want to lose $124 in credit from when I re-booked price changes. I let Daughter pick the destination and I was surprised by her choice.  She fell in love with the south and everything about Savannah.

Bonadventure Cemetary

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Labor day brought us to South Bend for a quick get away.  The work hard play hard Club Carlson promotion was offering triple weekend points so we took in the Celtic Festival.

Learning to throw an axe.

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Then we took our long December vacation to Louisiana and Mississippi.  This time we cleaned out my husbands IHG points account leveraging it for three nights.  I really wish IHG did more mail in promotions!

Creole Queen foggy ride

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Also new to us this year was staying a hotel night before a long race.  It is easier on the family if they can hang out at the room for a couple of hours after an early starting run.  No parking hassles, no freezing while they wait or looking for bathrooms. I like walking to the start and knowing they are comfortable.

Foreshore adventure run

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

So this years math:

3,358 airline miles in 2016

19 nights in a hotel

2 nights in a Bed and Breakfast

Losing the second night free benefit with Club Carlson kept us lower on our stays this year and I am not really focusing on one chain at the moment.  Whomever has the best promotion gets my business for now.   We seem to be doing more driving than flying these days. And with my daughters schedule its really hard to get away for more than a couple of nights at a time.

For 2017 we start off with a bang, my daughter has an opportunity in D.C. so we will soon be headed there for a bit.  We are tossing around heading back to Florida for our winter getaway.  We were lucky with mostly nice and unusually warm weather in Louisiana but going further south should up our warm weather chances.

Creole Queen

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Who knows where this crazy hobby will take us this year!

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tippecanoe Place Restaurant at Christmas

For part of our trip to the Oiver Mansion I wanted to include a lunch stop at Tippecanoe.  This home was the Studebaker Mansion before being turned into a restaurant in the 1980s. The Studebaker Mansion was finished in 1889 with approximately 40 rooms and 20 fireplaces.  This makes it a tad larger than the Oliver Mansion.

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

The restaurant is beautifully decorated for the season and the smaller rooms would be perfect for a family party.

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

We arrived well after the lunch rush after touring the Oliver Mansion up the block. Our waitress was quick and efficient.  I ordered the Pretzel Chicken Sandwich and it was very good.  My Dad liked the large half pound hamburger and my Mom enjoyed the Chicken Cordon Blue sandwich they had for a special.

Pretzel Chicken

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Upstairs they offer the Studebaker Lounge if you want to view the house and pop in for a drink. And this cute gingerbread house is in the basement.

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

We have had brunch previously in Tippecanoe Place and it was very tasty.  Make sure you make your brunch reservations in advance, they do fill up. This can be done online or by phone at 574-234-9077. Here is a link to online reservations: http://tippe.com/reservations/291111

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

The Grand Hall is a perfect place to take a holiday picture with the family.  It is decorated with trees, lights and poinsettias.

Tippecanoe

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Hours:

Brunch Hours:
Sunday – 10am to 2pm

 

Lunch Hours:
Monday – Closed
Tuesday – 11:30am – 2pm
Wednesday – 11:30am – 2pm
Thursday – 11:30am – 2pm
Friday – 11:30am – 2pm
Saturday – 11:30am – 2pm
Sunday – See Brunch Hours

 
Dinner Hours:
Monday – Closed
Tuesday – 5pm – Last Seating 8pm
Wednesday – 5pm – Last Seating 8pm
Thursday – 5pm – Last Seating 8pm
Friday – 5pm – Last Seating 9pm
Saturday – 4:30pm – Last Seating 9pm
Sunday – 4:00pm – Last Seating 8pm

Categories: Trip Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Visiting the Oliver Mansion at Christmas

My Daughter and I enjoyed a tour of the Oliver Mansion called Copshaholm in October when we went to the Dressing Downton exhibit.  We really wanted to see this mansion decorated for Christmas.  The roads in the Midwest can be iffy at best in December but we lucked out and the snow changed to rain during our trip. The roads were not the best the whole time but we had safe travels.

We called ahead and were able to add our names to the 11am tour listing the day before.  I did not want to make the long drive and then not be able to tour the house.  You can do this by calling 574-235-9664 and speaking to the staff.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

This time our tour began in the carriage house connected to the museum so we had very little time outside.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

This is the view just inside the door from the front entry.  The Christmas decorations did not disappoint! The house looked so beautiful. The period clothing display is still ongoing in the house to coordinate with Dressing Downton in the museum.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

The dining room table is set for a holiday dinner.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

This is the fireplace in the dining room decorated to match the table. There are 14 fireplace in this home.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

The house had trees in many of the rooms and decorations everywhere.  It was really a treat to see the mansion decked out in its Christmas best.

Oliver Mansion

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

 

The Oliver Mansion is part of the History Museum in South Bend, Indiana.  House tours are offered Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2 p.m., and Sunday, 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Adult admission to the History Museum and Oliver Mansion are $14. Seniors pay $12.50 and youth are $11.

More information can be found here: http://historymuseumsb.org/plan-your-visit/admission-rates/

Categories: Trip Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Power of Three Promotion for Marriott, SPG and Ritz-Carlton Rewards

Unlock the power of three.

Marriott Rewards®, SPG® and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® are linked to provide you with even more earning opportunities, including our newest promotions: Marriott Rewards MegaBonus®, SPG Double Take and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Rewarding Adventures.

  • Register separately for each by March 15, 2017.
  • Double your earnings on your first three stays with each program from January 16 through April 15, 2017.

You can register each account here: http://members.marriott.com/news/

 

 

Categories: Discounts | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Happen to Like Mules…

After our Free Tours by Foot tour of Charleston I asked Daughter what she wanted to do next.  I had a plan but that was about to go out the window.  Daughter wanted to go back to the market area and maybe (depending on costs) take a carriage tour.   My plan was to leave the historic area and head to Drayton for a tour before returning to the airport for our flight home.

We walked back through the market and saw different vendors.  Daughter purchased a nice matted photograph for her room. We also looked at various carriage tours and inquired on costs.  They all seemed to be around the same price but one vendor thought he would be funny and try to steer us in his direction.   He told us most carriages give the same tours but that his tour was not “half-assed and that they use horses for their tours.”  Not funny.  I am never a fan of bashing another business to make yours look better. And by the way mules are amazing creatures.  Guess what tour we did not take?

We walked around to the red barn a block over to inquire if they had room for a tour that afternoon.  Luckily for us being a Monday they were not overwhelmed and we were able to secure a tour leaving in a little over 30 minutes.

They offer a waiting area with decent bathrooms.  Lots of benches and fans while you wait or you can shop the market and return prior to your tour time.

Palmetto Carriage Works

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

They pull your carriage team up to the loading area and call your name to board by row.  We had 4 in our row and we were seated right behind the driver.

Palmetto Carriage Works

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

They make a stop on the way out to record with the city the teams name and to find out what tour location they are assigned.  This keeps the teams from over heating with breaks and keeps congestion down so all the carriages are not on the same roads.

Palmetto Carriage Tours

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Our tour allocation put us out near Charleston College and other areas I had never seen before.  It was an interesting trip and fun to see some of the sights we had never viewed before.  Very different from our Savannah tour but both fun. We loved our mules and the guide really enjoyed his job.

Palmetto Carriage Works

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

Each team is given rest between tours and longer breaks on hot days. The city keeps a close eye on things but you can tell Palmetto Carriages take care of their animals.  It was fun to see the teams in the barn before heading out for our tour.

The cost for adults is $25 and $15 for kids 4-11 years old.  You can book online ahead of time to assure your tour here: http://palmettocarriage.com/tours/historic-carriage-tours/

 

Categories: Trip Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Choice Hotels Winter Promo

Choice Hotels is out with a new winter promotion.  From December 15, 2016 – February 9, 2017 earn double points on every stay after you register.

Choice Privileges (TM)

Here is the link to register: https://www.choicehotels.com/deals/double-points?AID=10422593&PID=7304739&source=cj7304739

From their website:  What is a ‘qualifying rate’?

The same rates that are always eligible for Choice Privileges points are eligible for this promotion.

You earn Choice Privileges points for individual travel on the following rates:

Best Available Rate, Advance Purchase, Corporate, VIP and Net Preferred, Government/Military, Travelers’ Discount, AAA/CAA, PSCIEN, Package Rates, Small Organization Savings/Significant Savings, Senior Rate, Sports Rate, CPSA, Preferred Customer Savings Rate, Savings at Work, negotiated rates (N) and select LSRPs (select locally negotiated rate plans).

The following rates are not eligible for Choice Privileges points:

Rooms booked at rates below $40 per night, complimentary rooms, rooms paid for as part of a convention or meeting, or rooms booked through a travel agent or third party online retailer as part of pre-paid wholesale rates, wholesale packages or senior tours

Categories: Discounts | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Fair Trade Friday December 2016

Fair Trade Fri Dec 2016

A photo posted by Stretchingittotravel (@stretchingittotravel) on

I need to get a bigger mailbox for my Fair Trade Friday packages.  I was not sure what was in this months package but it took a little to get it out of my mailbox.

Continue reading

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Best Western Go Get Rewarded

Register now! Get a $10 Best Western Gift Card with every stay between November 28, 2016 and January 29, 2017.

Best Western Rewards® Members
Get a $10 Gift Card with EVERY Stay!
Register now! Get a $10 Best Western Gift Card with every stay between November 28, 2016 and January 29, 2017.
Best Western Rewards members must register prior to their first eligible stay.

How many $10 Travel Cards can a Best Western Rewards members earn during the promotion period?
Each Best Western Rewards member can earn unlimited $10 Travel Cards during the promotion period. Promotion is subject to cancellation or change without notice.

When does the $10 Travel Card expire?
Expiration dates will vary. Each $10 Travel Card will expire and must be used at a Best Western branded hotel a minimum of 120 days after fulfillment from Best Western International. Expiration date(s) will be stated on the delivered Gift Card(s).

Register here: https://www.bestwestern.com/en_US/offers/hotel-discounts/special-offer/winter.html?ssob=EMBWR0035G&cid=EMBWR0035G:email:destination:winter

Categories: Discounts | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Priceless Experiences by IHG

 

Register and stay using a Mastercard® at any IHG® hotel from December 1, 2016 – February 15, 2017 and you could win the ultimate Chicago weekend getaway. Plus, stay twice with one stay being 2+ nights to get a Mastercard® Reward Card up to $100, dependent upon which brand you stay at. (Restrictions apply. See official rules.)

Register here: https://www.priceless.ihgrewardsclub.com/?promoCode=12432&offerId=PS432&cm_mmc=OSMAM-6C-US-EN-Default-LOY-Vanity-Priceless&cm_sp=MasterCard_DEFAULT

Register for the promotion, stay at a qualifying hotel, pay with a Mastercard  and stay twice in the promotion time period.  If one stay includes an InterContinental brand hotel . If a Participant has at least one (1) Qualified Hotel Stay at an InterContinental brand hotel, Participant will receive a one hundred dollar ($100)

Continue reading

Categories: Discounts | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.