Great Barrier Reef: Heron Island

DSCN1422Remember when I visited Australia, got halfway through posting photos, then disappeared for awhile all distracted by my full time job working retail over the holidays?  It’s time to get caught up.  Over the next few weeks, every Friday I’ll be sharing the rest of my travel photos from the epic Australian journey.

Heron Island is actually quite difficult to describe.  It’s one of those surreal Discovery Channel beauty type of places that just saying “It was so beautiful” doesn’t even scratch the surface of how I really felt.  The skies are the purest blue of blues and the ocean looks as if a turquoise diamond has melted over the reefs.  This island is located on the Southern end of the Great Barrier Reef so the coral is mostly browns and neutrals with a few great pops of color.  The bright colorful coral is more North where the water is warmer.

One of the fantastically fun things about Heron Island in particular is that during low tide, you can walk a good mile from shore and only be up to thigh deep water.  It’s such a remarkably unique way to visit the reef!  We were able to spot tons of sea life just during these walks alone.  Bright blue starfish, neon lipped clams, sea cucumbers everywhere, and we were even lucky enough to spot a sea turtle both times we did a reef walk.  You’re literally in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, surrounded by wildlife.  From birds to sharks, you’ll have some form of wildlife in sight at all times.

This Island is known for its sea turtle activity.  While we visited in October, the sea turtles were in mating season.  We witnessed quite a bit of sea turtle love and saw evidence of the females coming to shore for a little rest.  Apparently, the males practically drown the females while, you know, getting busy so the ladies need a break.  A sea turtle cigarette so to speak.  At other times during the year, visitors can witness the entire sea turtle life cycle.  I would have died to see the baby turtles!  Next time, I suppose.DSCN1494DSCN1579DSCN1470DSCN1407DSCN1545DSCN1359DSCN1534DSCN1502DSCN1454DSCN1393DSCN1375DSCN1361DSCN1726DSCN1356DSCN1605DSCN1432

 

Fun fact: Heron Island was named after these birds above but they’re actually Egrets!

To plan your visit to Heron Island, click here.

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I Got To Feed A Buffalo – Olympic Game Farm

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For all the years I’ve been heading to Washington to visit family, I can’t believe I (the super duper animal lover) was the  only one in my family not to visit the Olympic Game Farm.  Not only is there a pretty incredible variety of animals in this little park, you can feed them while driving your car through it!  Hello!  This is a Chelsea dream come true!  Have you ever gotten to feed a Yak?  Or a buffalo?  How about a BABY buffalo?!  I knew I was in for a treat when the attendant tells you to “just keep moving” when you get to the Elk/Buffalo enclosure.  And let me tell you, those Elk are just as tall as our Suburban!

I had the pleasure of going in the Spring after all sorts of babies had been born.  I mean, come on!  All baby animals are just plain cute.  A lot of these animals are rescued from bad situations which makes me extra happy to see them roaming this beautiful place.  Many of the bears are retired from show business and will sit back and give you a little wave for their treat too.  Talk about cuteness overload!  If only we could hug them…

For more information on this super fun game farm, head on over to their website here.  My only recommendation is… get a car wash soon after.  Hehehe.

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DSC_0143 Hungry Deer!

I've never had a deer so happy to see me!

I’ve never had a deer so happy to see me!

Bear Yoga

Bear Yoga

Baby llama sleeping in the grass

Baby llama sleeping in the grass

Hungry buffalo!!  I couldn't believe they walked right up to our cars!

Hungry buffalo!! I couldn’t believe they walked right up to our car!

Uh oh.  There's a yak in the road...

Uh oh. There’s a yak in the road…

Hungry yak!  Look at those teeth!  He has a bit of an underbite going on there...

Hungry yak! Look at those teeth! He has a bit of an underbite going on there…

Isn't this the sweetest face?!

Isn’t this the sweetest face?!

This guy trotted after us as we drove away!

This guy trotted after us as we drove away!

Uh oh.  Another yak on the road...

Uh oh. Another yak on the road…

Home on the range.  Not a bad place to be living.

Home on the range. Not a bad place to be living.

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Merry Christmas, Ya Filthy Animals!

imageMerry Christmas all you lovelies!  I hope your holidays were spectacular and Santa was good to you this year.  That is if you were good!  I mentioned earlier that my family was doing an ugly Christmas sweater theme for our get together and here’s my contribution.  It makes me giggle… but it was 80 degrees outside so I was over heating a little bit.  It still made for a pretty great family photo.  I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy and share with you on Twitter (@WanderingHeels) and Instagram (@WanderingInHeels).  Thank you so much for reading and I hope you all had the best holidays yet!

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My honey got me a banjo!  I can't wait to start my lessons!!

My honey got me a banjo! I can’t wait to start my lessons!!

 

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Sweater: BooHoo, Shoes: Sole Society c/o

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Monday Must-Have Lust List: Ugly Christmas Sweater Edition

I love a good ugly Christmas sweater.  I just can’t help but smile!  My family is even wearing them on actual Christmas day!  It’ll make for some pretty awesome family photos, that’s for sure.  It’s fun to hunt the Goodwill for a great unique sweater but they get pretty picked over this time of year.  Luckily, the ugly Christmas sweater theme is really popular so sweaters are available at regular retail locations.  Here are some of my favorite picks from my search this year.

Lust List Christmas

1) Wildfox Baby Christmas Tree Sweater

 2) TopShop Knitted Holly Jumper

3) Ella Cat Christmas Sweater

4) Zoe Karssen Grinch Sweater

5) J.Crew Llama Sweater

6) Ugly Christmas Sweater Kit

7) TopShop Gingerbread Man Sweater

8) Bar III Reindeer Sweater

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Clam Digging in Washington

Clamming

That’s right, my friends.  I went digging for clams in Washington.  Over our Thanksgiving trip, Tyler’s family suggested a camping adventure to Pacific Beach to dig for razor clams.  I’m game to try anything once but got a little freaked out after looking at the weather report.  It kept warning of an “Arctic Invasion” (“Killer Snowflakes!”  My mom exclaimed) and the thought of battling almost freezing temperatures with high winds and rain while clomping through the wave edge looking for razor clam holes was not as appealing as I originally thought.  We totally lucked out though.  When the tide was low, the weather broke and we had an absolutely great time.  I was shocked how fun it really was!  That was until we got to the cleaning the clams part…  I’ll spare you the details.

P.S. – I wore this look when I went to get my clamming license at Sportman’s Warehouse.  I don’t think they believed me that I was actually going to use it…

 

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Clamming9 Clamming11 Clamming8 Clamming4 Clamming5 Sunset

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I Just Want To Be Comfy

Striped ScarfSometimes your look is literally all about comfort… with a dash of fun of course!  That’s what I was feeling with today’s outfit.  It’s a totally casual look with Kate Spade doughnut flats and a Jennafer Grace striped scarf to add a little spice.  And it wouldn’t be me without a little color so I added my Chanel long sleeve shirt I was so generously gifted a while back.

I’m so loving the cool weather finally arriving in San Diego!  Although, I know a lot of you are experiencing actual real cold so this is nothing!  In a week we will be heading to Washington for Thanksgiving and I’m crossing my fingers for a bit of snow!

Chanel LookPink nails

Pointed Toe Flats

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Scarf: Jennafer Grace, Shirt: Chanel, Vest: Echo, Jeans: Citizens of Humanity, Shoes: Kate Spade

‘Tis The Season Holiday Shopping Event

I loved all these great Kiehl's gift sets!

For as long as I’ve been in San Diego, I’ve never had the opportunity to visit The University Club, a members-only club at the Symphony Towers in downtown.  So when the invitation came along for me to attend their ‘Tis The Season Shopping event, I jumped at it!  We got to sip champagne and browse vendor booths from Fashion Valley Mall.  The view of downtown from the club is beautiful.  I was there after dark but I would imagine it’s a stunning place for sunset cocktails.  It was a perfect way to get my holiday spirit sparked and get some gift ideas.  I was particularly tempted by some gorgeous Chanel sunglasses but refrained.  Can’t let the champagne do my spending!  😉

 

These boots can be worn as booties or just trap on a top piece to wear them as knee high boots!  Genius!

These boots can convert from booties to knee highs! Genius!

Ugg stand

Being silly at the Ugg booth

Being silly at the Ugg booth

How do you like my new 'do?

How do you like my new ‘do?

The view from The University Club is spectacular!

The view from The University Club is spectacular!

The top pair are the ones I'm lusting over.  There are little pearls on the top!!

The top pair are the ones I’m lusting over. There are little pearls on the top!!

I'm still swooning over these Chanel sunglasses...

I’m still swooning over these Chanel sunglasses…