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2015_06_18_19_35_03_OneShotFROM THE JULY NEWS for We Said Go Travel:

Inspiration Writing Contest winners!
First Place Winner:  Stephen Fabes, Don’t Look Down in Bolivia
Second Place Winner: Christina Mehriary, Marine Eyes in Iraq
Third Place Winner: Sheefa Kasar, Fulwa, India
Honorable Mentions:
Congratulations to the winners from the Inspiration Contest.
Thank you to everyone who participated and shared their story!
The Gratitude Travel Writing Contest will open September 11, 2015. Click here to learn more. I hope you will choose to participate.
I loved my visit to NYC in June!
I loved my visit to NYC in June!
July 2015 News from Lisa & We Said Go Travel:
  • I interviewed Kenny Dichter, CEO of Wheels Up in NYC. He is in my latest Wharton Business Magazine article:  Putting People Into Social Media Strategy
  • Ask Men asked me about for dating advice from teenagers: Go on Group dates!
    • Group Dates
      As adults, we may go out with another couple now and again, but for teens, group dating is the norm! “One thing that teens do on dates that adults should do is go out with a group. The stars are great about networking and going to parties as a group. They have a crowd and they easily meet more people. I think adults often want to go out in pairs or individually. I think adults should phone a friend and go with a group,” says Lisa Niver of WeSaidGoTravel, who worked as a set teacher on Nickelodeon’s new show, Bella and the Bulldogs.
    • Thank you to Cadillac, Saveur Magazine and Redbird restaurant. I enjoyed the #RoadToTable Los Angeles event and was honored to receive a social media award!
  • I was inspired by Rabbi Yoshi’s sermon at Stephen Wise Temple about the Three Lessons from the Grasshopper.
  • I sailed the night away with Harrah’s Southern California
  • What do you think Congress should do about the Iran Nuclear Agreement?
  • Thank you to Dean Nelson for sharing about 10 years of marriage equality in Canada!
  • Looking for travel tech gadgets? Cameryn shares five!
  • I am in St. Kitts this week for Restaurant week with a brand new LG G4 phone. I am enjoying testing it out. Look for great photos of my adventures on all social media: Instagram,Facebook, Twitter
  • I hope that your summer is full of freedom and fun.
  • Thank you for your support of We Said Go Travel! Lisa
ImageMy YouTube Chanel is at 343,305 views!
Thank you for watching my WSGT YouTube channel which is now over 343,000+ views! Enjoy movies from Los Angeles, Bermuda,  Puerto Rico, Palau, Guam, Hawaii, India as well as Bali and Lombok  Indonesia,  Southern Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), and Nepal.  To find all 361 Videos: click here for the WSGT YouTube Channel. I am over 1000 followers on Pinterest, and up to 700+ subscribers on YouTube.

 

3 peppersYes I did sleep at the Farmer’s Daughter Hotel. I did not get to swim with the ducks but I will go back to do that! I decided to taste the new tempting summer creations at Tart restaurant and Chef Keith does not disappoint. I loved the grilled trout. I highly recommend it but honestly everything was wonderful. I loved the roasted eggplant and peanut puree, roasted farmers market eggplant and heirloom cherry tomatoes. The Pepper three ways looked like a traffic light with green, yellow and red peppers. It had grilled pardons with lime and salt, pickled farmers market peppers and stuffed sweet peppers with goat cheese, avocado honey, pecans and apricot. Truly fantastic.

I also loved the both salads I tasted: the Summer fruits salad has county line toy box melons, fresh figs, market plums, sprouts and herbs and chile lime vinaigrette and the heirloom tomato salad with gazpacho vinaigrette: shaved salted cucumbers, sourdough croutons and red watercress.

I did not save enough room for dessert but I will be back. Maybe this time I will stay in the No Tell Room! Or maybe I already did!

The Latest News ON TART!

TART Restaurant and Coolhaus Ice Cream are Mint for Each Other
TART Gets Fresh with Frozen Treats and Tantalizing Ice Cream Cocktail, Coolhaus Dirty Mint Chip Julep
LOS ANGELES – July 17, 2015 – TART — the unique, onsite restaurant nestled inside the iconic Farmer’s Daughter Hotel that serves comfort food with a twist — is celebrating summertime by collaborating with the architecturally-inspired and beloved, LA-based gourmet ice cream company, Coolhaus.
To kick off the cool-down, TART’s executive chef, Keith Shutta, has dreamed up a refreshingly naughty but n-ice cream cocktail, called the Coolhaus Dirty Mint Chip Julep ($13). Coolhaus’ fresh mint infused ice cream, chocolate chips and a hint of brown sugar make a sweet partner for the wickedly good blend of Four Roses Bourbon and Crème de Menthe, that make up this perfect treat to beat the summer heat.
TART’s summer dessert menu has two other delicious new recruits: Coolhaus’ Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwich ($8) and the Snickerdoodle Ice Cream Sandwich ($8).
“Adding Coolhaus to the menu and creating a cocktail with its all-natural ice cream is something no one else has done before and we know our guests love those unique experiences,” said Keith Shutta, TART’s executive chef. “Partnering with a local and loved business that also uses locally farmed and sourced goods is the perfect match for TART,” added Shutta.
“This partnership is a meeting of the minds, and taste buds. Coolhaus and TART both blend unusual flavors that develop into famous favorites, and I know that the Coolhaus Dirty Mint Chip Julep will become another local celebrity,” added Natasha Case, CEO and co-founder of Coolhaus.
Coolhaus’ ice cream sandwiches and the Coolhaus Dirty Mint Chip Julep are available at TART now, for a limited time. TART is located at 115 S. Fairfax Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90036. For reservations, call (323) 556-2608 or visit: http://tartrestaurant.com/

VIDEO: The Farmer’s Daughter and Tart Restaurant

the little doorI loved celebrating at The Little Door in Santa Monica! The setting is beautiful and relaxing. Sul and the entire team took great care of us. I cannot wait to return and try more wonderful choices. The gluten free chocolate souffle was a real treat at the end of this fantastic meal.

We ate:

ZUCCHINI CARPACCIO, BABY KALE, BABY ARTICHOKES, CHERRY TOMATOES, FETA CHEESE & DILL

Lemon and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Toasted Pine Nuts

FRESH GOAT CHEESE LAVENDER TART, TRIO OF ROASTED BEETS

Frisée and Radicchio, Lemon and Extra Virgin Olive

GRILLED MARINATED WHITE MEDITERRANEAN SEA BASS, SAFFRON ESPELETTE SAUCE

Haricot Vert, Roasted Mini Peppers and Basil Pesto Fingerling Potato Mash

 VIDEO: Dine at The Little Door Santa Monica

Celebrating at @thelittledoorsm the atmosphere is inviting! I love the decor!

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Is #glutenfree #chocolate 🍫 soufflé delicious? @thelittledoorsm it smells heavenly and tastes even better

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Stellar service @thelittledoorsm from the entire team and especially Sul! Thank you!! A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

 

ABOUT THE LITTLE DOOR SANTA MONICA:

From the same ownership group behind Acabar, The Little Door, and The Little Next

Door, partners Frederic and Nicolas Meschin have teamed up with Paris-born Marc-

Antoine Rambaud, to open The Little Door Santa Monica in September 2014.  The

Little Door has been a fixture of West Hollywood since 1996 and continues to uphold its

longstanding tradition as one of Los Angeles’ most romantic restaurants.  With Executive

Chef T. Nicolas Peter bringing authentic Mediterranean cuisine and charming intimacy to

the denizens of Santa Monica, the new Westside locale captures the spirit of the south

of France with its rustic charm and enchanting ambiance. Bartender Michael Gannon

leads the cocktail program with locally sourced, seasonal ingredients to create farm-to-

glass beverages that compliment Chef T. Nicolas’ menu. Guests are invited to escape

the outside world to a dining sanctuary in which the atmosphere is as divine as the food

and drink.

I loved my visit to NYC in June!

NYCThank you to all the writers who participated in the We Said Go Travel 2015 Inspiration Writing Contest!

The 2015 Independence Travel Writing Contest Entries are being published now. The Gratitude Travel Writing Contest will open on September 11, 2015. I appreciate everyone who has read, shared and participated in all of my contests.

Thank you very much! Lisa Niver, We Said Go Travel

AND THE WINNERS ARE:

First Place Winner:  Stephen Fabes, Don’t Look Down in Bolivia

Second Place Winner: Christina Mehriary, Marine Eyes in Iraq

Third Place Winner: Sheefa Kasar, Fulwa, India

Honorable Mentions:
WSGT Writer Credly

The We Said Go Travel Team thanks everyone who shared, tweeted, promoted and participated in our Travel Writing Contests. We hope you will join in our next  Travel Writing Contest.

 

Thank you to our esteemed judges!

Richard Bangs, the father of modern adventure travel, is a pioneer in travel that makes a difference, travel with a purpose. He has spent 30 years as an explorer and communicator, and along the way led first descents of 35 rivers around the globe, he is currently producing and hosting the new PBS series, Richard Bangs: Adventure Without End

AnneLise Sorensen is a travel writer, editor, photographer, and TV/radio host who has penned – and wine-tasted – her way across four continents, reporting for multiple media outlets, including New York Magazine, MSN, Time Out, Yahoo Travel, Rough Guides, Gourmet, and Galavante. AnneLise regularly appears as a travel expert on NBC and CNN and she teaches popular travel writing classes and workshops at Mediabistro and travel events and shows.

Thank you for your participation in creating a growing global community of engaged travelers and concerned citizens.

 Other Contests, Courses and Books about Travel Writing

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR WINNERS!

THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED! 


I hope you will choose to share a story in our next contest. Thank you!

 

Lisa Niver and kellee Set Go HarrahsI enjoyed my cruise with Harrah’s Southern California and was delighted by the tasty treats and incredible team. I am going to explore the Lazy River. Do you want to Dive in with me?

Dive at Harrah’s Resort Southern California celebrated its debut in July 2013 and the trifecta of pools includes a lazy river, main pool, Southern California’s only swim-up bar and nine hot tubs.

The lazy river winds its way through grottos and waterfalls and is nearly 400 feet in length. Cocktails, are available for guests 21+ at the swim-up bar. There are21 cabanas and 10 daybeds throughout the pool area.

VideoHarrah’s So Cal Your First Resort for Fun

Dive Saturdays: Guests can get FIT with poolside fitness classes taught by FIT Athletic. Classes are at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:30 a.m. Saturdays throughout the summer with poolside activities such as water volleyball, putt-putt, craft beerology and live music to follow.

Explore Dive Day Club on Sundays with world-renowned, live talent and a poolside Vegas-style party experience. Guests must be 21+.

1st & Dive: Guests can dive into football season at the pool and watch NFL games on 9’ x 16’ LED TV, with different games being shown in each cabana, with food and drink specials Sundays throughout the season. 

Dancing the night away @harrahssocal amazing food, music and gaming #harrahssocal do you like my new outfit?

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Loving sunset sailing @harrahssocal what a great night out! #harrahssocal A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Thank you Captain Joel & @harrahssocal what a wonderful evening on the water #harrahssocal

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

The Goodland - Exterior - Photo Credit John Ellis
The Goodland - Exterior - Photo Credit John Ellis
The Goodland – Exterior – Photo Credit John Ellis

GoodBar and The Outpost: It’s all GOOD

You will have a good evening at Goodland: “All the GOOD stuff is here.” Drinks at the Good Bar are great and the atmosphere is hip, casual and uber comfortable. Cheers with “Buck Shot:” Has beer, bourbon & homemade ginger syrup. My personal favorite is the dark & stormy made with true ginger syrup.

Dining at the Outpost is a feast for all your senses:
I recommend you try these first:

  • Incredible artichoke and Brussels with tomatillo aioli
  • Brisket Bao-Bun with homemade (made in house) bun with fresh horseradish and sweet hoisin sauce.
  • Beef Bulgogi with spring squash kimchi &furikake taco to support NoKidHungry #ShareOurStrength with Chef James Siao. Great cause and truly incredible tacos!
  • California halibut with Israeli couscous, green onion, Meyer lemon and salsa fresca. This was amazing! Fantastic fish and complimentary tastes!
  • It was a seriously stellar evening and an incredible meal followed by ridiculously GOOD dessert: Banana pudding & Buttermilk pie & huckleberry compote.

Chef Derek, Zana, Chris and the entire team gives top quality service with creative inspired tasty food. I have to say that the Outpost and Chef Derek are a homerun! They opened Sept 12, 2014 and it is already a fixture in Goleta & Santa Barbara life.

Video: Dinner and Drinks at the Outpost The Goodland

See my other videos about The Goodland Hotel and Visit Santa Barbara with Lisa from We Said Go Travel

#Goodbar Good Evening at Goodland “All the GOOD stuff!” Hip feeling, casual and uber comfortable

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Team GOOD is great @outpostsb & @thegoodlandsb. Soecial thanks to Chef Derek, Melanie, Dana, Chris and GOODbar! A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

goodlandThe Goodland is a Kimpton Oasis in Santa Barbara! The cool chic karma vibes of this Kimpton property in Goleta permeated my stay. I loved hearing the birds chirping and enjoyed being walking distance from local shops.

The GoodBar has inside and outside spaces as well as a pool table and speciality drinks that complement the record playing vibes and fitness classes with a DJ. The lobby really invites you to lounge and stay awhile. The bicycles have a sign that says: “Take me I’m yours!”

I loved that my closet was stocked with a yoga mat, an umbrella and a robe. The bathroom held my favorite soaps from C&O Bigelow in NYC.

Plan to stay multiple nights here to take advantage of all this property has to offer: from the relaxing pool, to the welcoming fire pits and of course the incredible food at the Outpost by Chef Derek. It is so good–I had to make it a separate video.

VIDEOMy stay at the Goodland Kimpton Santa Barbara, April 2015 

See my other videos about  Visit Santa Barbara and dinner at the Outpost.

What does a record concierge do?
The Goodland has gone one step beyond putting Crosley record players in each guest room. Lea Sindija is the hotel’s on-site Record Concierge and has spent months curating a collection of vinyls for hotel guests to play during their stay (or purchase).
 
Lea scours local record stores for albums that play to the property’s luxury yet laid back, SoCal surfer-chic vibe, including classics like Ray Charles, Joplin and Hendrix and more modern favorites like Red Hot Chili Peppers and Green Day, along with quintessential SoCal surf and skate culture tunes from No Doubt and Sublime, with some Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Black Sabbath thrown in – something for everyone.”

 

sb wheelsI loved my visit to Santa Barbara. I highly recommend eating at Kyle’s Kitchen. The burgers were great and walking distance from my hotel, The Goodland in Goleta which is part of the Kimpton Family.

Wondering what to do or where to wander?

  • Have a picnic at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse in the sunken garden. It is a beautiful location and they even have movies here.
  • Along historic State Street, visit the Granada theater and see an Opera.
  • At the Painted Cabernet you can take a two hour art class with wine. An artist will lead you step by step to a fantastic painting of your own.
  • From State Street, enjoy views of the mountains and then take a short drive to walk on the beach.
  • Go to Stearn’s Wharf and explore Jellyfish and friends at Santa Barbara Sea Center
    and my favorite–take a surrey ride. Rent one from Wheel Fun and follow their map on your bicycle build for two.
  • Do you prefer to take your picnic in a rose garden? Visit the Old Mission Santa Barbara.
  • See my other videos about The Goodland Hotel and Dinner at the Outpost!

Video: Visit Santa Barbara with Lisa from We Said Go Travel

 

 

#ILoveKylesKitchen Helping the #SantaBarbara autism society

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Santa Barbara county courthouse is beautiful and they show movies outdoor in the summer.

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Star Princess at Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara. Just missed Amy by one week!

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

Ready for “wheel fun” on a surrey ride by Sterns Wharf #SantaBarbara

A photo posted by Lisa Niver (@wesaidgotravel) on

daring greatly image brene brownIn Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, Brene Brown states: “Daring greatly is not about winning or losing. It’s about courage.” I realized after reading her books and listening to her talks that I am doing enough. When my focus is on Courage, Compassion and Connection as my goals, I remember that I am good enough.

The last year and a half has been a rollercoaster ride returning to America and getting divorced. I have felt like a failure and I have felt so very sad. For a long time, I thought about closing down We Said Go Travel. I just was not sure why I was doing it or if it was worth the time and effort.

I have really appreciated how people have shared their inspiring stories in my eight travel writing contests. The Summer 2015 Independence Travel Writing Contest is open and I hope that you will consider entering, reading or sharing the articles. Over 1700 writers from 75 countries have participated since I started the contest in January 2013.

In Daring Greatly Brown says: “We have to be able to talk about how we feel, what we need and desire, and we have to be able to listen with an open heart and an open mind.” I have found trusted friends who I can share my story with and who do not judge me. Brown says: “The most valuable and important things in my life came to me when I cultivated the courage to be vulnerable, imperfect, and self-compassionate…it is a long journey from “What will people think?” to “I am enough.” That journey begins with shame resilience, self-compassion, and owning our stories.” I hope you will share one of your stories of freedom in my summer contest.

Vulnerability-BrenneBrownAs Brown says, “Much of the beauty of light owes its existence to the dark. The most powerful moments of our lives happen when we string together the small flickers of light created by courage, compassion, and connection and see them shine in the darkness of our struggles.”

Remember, “Hope happens when: We have the ability to set realistic goals (I know where I want to go). We are able to figure out how to achieve those goals, including the ability to stay flexible and develop alternative routes (I know how to get there, I’m persistent, and I can tolerate disappointment and try again). We believe in ourselves (I can do this!). So, hope is a combination of setting goals, having the tenacity and perseverance to pursue them, and believing in our own abilities. Hope is Plan B.”

The title of her book comes from this quote from Theodore Roosevelt:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.

I recommend you watch Brene Brown’s TED talk or read one of her books. I hope you will choose to share your story on We Said Go Travel.

blue brene brown

lisa niver  travel tales podcastFrom Lisa & We Said Go TravelWe Said Go Travel Newsletter 63: May 20, 2015

  • Thank you to Mike Siegel from Travel Tales Podcast for interviewing me for his show. It was wonderful to talk about travel and We Said Go Travel with him. Enjoy the hour episode on his site. Click here to listen now to the full podcast.
  • My two USA Today articles about Ireland are now live. I am writing about all destinations for USA Today 10 best not only Los Angeles. Enjoy Whiskey Tasting in Dublin, Ireland and A Day Trip to Wicklow.
  • Thank you to KLOUT for assigning me topics and an EXPERT rating in 19 categories. In Blogging, I am listed as the top 0.1% out of 44,000 experts identified. Out of 180,000 experts in Marketing, I am listed in the top 0.2%. There are 74,000 experts in Travel and I am in the top 0.1%. See them all:
  • My Klout designated expert categories: Adventure Travel, Social Media, Blogging, Social Networks, Education, Tourism ,Food, Travel, Journalism, Travel Writing, Leadership, Traveling with Kids, Los Angeles, Writing, Marketing, YouTube, Photography, Publishing, SEO  
  • Thank you to OOAWorld for including We Said Go Travel in the Top 10 Best Group Travel Sites!

 

Klout topics may 2015

Courage

At this time between Passover and Shavuot, I am counting the Omer with readings by Rabbi Karyn D. Kedar. Thank you to Rabbi Faith Dantowitz for the introduction.

From Day 36:

Courage to live. Courage to love. Courage to risk. Courage to fail. And patience. It takes time to become the person we want to be, to grow and unfold, to fail and persevere. There is a vastness between what is possible and what is real; an expanse of uncertainty, ambiguity, and doubt. When we are afraid, we are paralyzed, suspended in midair between imagination and manifestation. It is the natural course of things to have our dreams lay fallow; only care and determination make the ground rich and ready to bear fruit.

When we see our limitations as failure we are afraid. Be brave and step into your life.

Rabbi Karyn D. Kedar, Counting the Omer

We Said Go Travel Writing Contest

Winners from the Inspiration Contest will be announced in June and the Independence Contest is now open. Click here to learn more and enter this 8th writing contest. Thank you to everyone who has participated in all my contests!

YouTube

Thank you for watching my WSGT YouTube channel which is now over 325,000+ views! Enjoy movies from Los Angeles, Bermuda,  Puerto Rico, Palau, Guam, Hawaii, India as well as Bali and Lombok  Indonesia,  Southern Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), and Nepal.  To find all 352 Videos: click here for the WSGT YouTube Channel. I am over 1000 followers on Pinterest, and up to 680+ subscribers on YouTube!