This week in GR: Vacation? In This Pandemic?

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Confession Time,

It’s been about two weeks since we got back so I think it’s finally time I share that I took my family on an out-of-state vacation.

Yes friends. To North Carolina.


Back in the middle of April, after canceling my anniversary trip to Seattle and getting the news that our daughter’s annual overnight camp cancelled I was deep in the doldrums of despair. The dark, don’t want to get off the couch kind. Each day was running together and I was done.

I needed something to look forward to. You know what I mean. I think we’ve all reached this spot at some point during shelter in place.

Well, I have a list of Airbnb’s that I daydream about. It’s like a pinterest board – but for travel destinations.

Super dreamy houses

Mid-mod charm

Beach front destinations

You get the idea…

So, here I am in April on the couch (I think it may have snowed at some point) with a desperate need for something to look forward to.

I decided we needed to get away.

Thinking that we wouldn’t be engaging in attractions or local activities, I decided to spend way more on the location that could be self-contained within a day’s drive (because no thanks on air travel).



A little 2 bed house, on a Lake, in a secluded area, full kitchen, pool stuffs, with loads of privacy.

I booked it and immediately got a message from the Airbnb host thanking me for booking the stay, assuring me of the cleaning measures he was taking between guests, and information on how to cancel if anything prevented us from traveling.

Our plan was to arrive at the house, take stock of the kitchen appliances, then head to the grocery store. After that we’d spend the rest of the week on the lake or on the trails.

No other human interaction.

It was exactly what we did.

Yes, there was a level of trust I had to put into this host and a little bit of trust in ourselves to venture out but we felt very safe and refreshed after our getaway. The removal of attractions and spending money on dining out made this trip all about us.

It was exactly what we needed.

So, if you are thinking about a trip feel free to reach out for any tips during this time. I’m happy to share more.

Follow along with the adventure:

See you out there! ~Tiffany Szakal, Broker | Owner

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We have quite the week scheduled for spotlights on our social media for you guys! East Hills is FILLED with some real awesome businesses. Since there are so many, we may even spend a couple weeks in the neighborhood so that we can cover a little more.


The GR Totes and Coolers are available until Wednesday this week so make sure to order yours as soon as possible! When you order either of these items from our shop, the proceeds will be going towards Meals on Wheels! We also have our hoodies and t-shirts still available so use the link below to visit our online shop!


Alright guys! Let’s talk about Love’s Ice Cream: It’s really, really good. So many different options and they are located right in the Downtown Market, one of our favorite places. Well, they recently used the hashtag #iheartgr & caught our attention with this Peanut Butter Cookie Ice Cream. Read more below!


If you happened to have received your Grand Rapids hoodie last week, tag us in your posts & stories so we can see how you are wearing it! We would love to share you in our stories & also just say hi! And again, we cannot thank you enough for supporting IHeartGR & the After Dark program with your purchase last month!

Have a great place around town you’d love to see featured?

Respond back to this email with details! We love suggestions of great people, businesses, and organizations to spotlight!

Blog Cover Photo Courtesy of Grand Rapids Public Museum

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