Girlfriends Getaway to Appleton and the Fox Cities in Wisconsin
October 10, 2013 – 8:30 am | No Comment

If asked which region of the state is marketed as “Wisconsin’s Shopping Place,” my first guess probably wouldn’t have been the Fox Cities. Once there, I quickly realized my preconceived notions were way off base. …

Read the full story »
Bookshelf

Destinations

Themes

Travel Gear

Travel Tips

Uncategorized »

2014 Kia Sorento Delivers a Complete Package
October 1, 2013 – 9:33 am | 9 Comments
Share

Kia Sorento

Ever since I toured the Kia plant in West Point, Ga., and watched the Kia Sorento evolve from a series of individual parts into a well-crafted automobile, I have wanted to own one. Of course, I was already driving a relatively new car, and I wasn’t planning to buy another car for years to come. But I still wanted that Kia. So when I was offered the chance to check out the 2014 Kia Sorento SX during a summer road trip, I didn’t hesitate to take the key.

Kia Sorento front rowThis particular 2014 Kia Sorento SX came well-equipped with a wealth of features. Under the hood, there was a 3.3-liter V6 engine with a six-speed automatic transmission that wasted no time or energy achieving a good cruising speed and providing a smooth ride. It was partnered with anti-lock brakes plus a traction control system and electronic stability control that would stop on a dime, something it took me a while to adjust to.

Given we spent a lot of time both on the highway and on surface streets, I took special note of the gas mileage for each tank of gas. To my surprise – you hear a lot of stories stating the EPA estimates are not accurate – the mileage measured up to the advertised fuel economy on the car’s sticker: 19 mpg in town and 25 mpg on the highway.

Kia Sorento second rowThe Kia Sorento also comes with some great safety features, too. There are the dual front airbags, the front seat-mounted side airbags, and the side curtain airbags for the first and second rows. Something I had to get used to, the Kia has the blind spot detection in the side mirrors, a warning light that pops up when someone is next to you and an audible alarm if you start to move over before the lane is clear.

Inside the car, there were so many things that I really liked as well. I really loved was how quiet the car is, whether sitting idle in the driveway or heading down the highway. Without distracting noise, I was able to focus in more on the features, which are plentiful.

The instrument panel is electric, so you see it only after starting the car; once you do, you have a wealth of information at your hands. You’re able to toggle through the various menus at the touch of a button on the steering wheel. In the center information console, there’s the navigation system with an 8-inch display. This same screen displays the rear camera view when backing up. This is something I never really got used to, given I always rely on my mirrors and actually looking out the windows. But I did love it whenever I had to parallel park, something I don’t like to do.

Kia Sorento dashThere’s the dual-air control that allowed my mother-in-law and me to customize the airflow to our individual preferences. In the second row, the air vents are placed higher up than I’ve seen in the past. Usually, they are in the bottom of the front row center console, putting them at the feet of the second-row passengers. Now, they are about waist high, so these passengers can actually feel the airflow. The (optional) third-row passengers also have their own air and controls so they aren’t at the mercy of whatever air reaches the back of the car.

Kia Sorento front outletsThis particular Kia Sorento also offered additional heating and cooling options, like the heated and ventilated front-row seats and the retractable window shades on the second-row windows. Other favorites included the USB and power outlet in the front, the power outlet and 110V outlet – that’s a traditional outlet! – in the second row, and another power outlet in the rear of the car. I also loved the cup holders in the second-row armrest, which were at the perfect height for my kids, who still ride in car seats.

But, hands down, everyone’s favorite was the panoramic sunroof that spans the roof from the front windshield to just behind the second row. My kids loved looking out at buildings, trees, the stars, whatever they could see. The sunroof opens from the front windshield to the back of the front row, and it’s covered by a power sunshade. Everything opens and closes at the touch of button. What’s not to love?

Kia Sorento panoramic sunroofOK, there were some things I didn’t love, but they are minor and more of a personal reference than an actual problem with the Kia. First, the 2014 Sorento SX sets lower than my current car, so I kept bumping my head helping the kids in to their seats. Also, there are smaller storage pockets in the car doors and seatbacks than in those in my current car, so I didn’t like that much. Likewise, there are less cup holders in the front console than in my current car, and I’ve gotten use to the extra spots.

But perhaps my least favorite aspect to the Kia was having to open the entire rear liftgate to put something in the back of the car. On my current car, you can open just the window and drop something inside or grab an item. No such luck with the Kia. Something else I wasn’t found of? The navigation system needs to be more flexible. When entering an address, it has to be exactly like it’s entered in the system for it to find the address; otherwise, it comes up saying the address is not found. If you’re going to a specific site, hotel or restaurant, you can try to find it by name; but if it’s a private address, you could have problems.

Kia Sorento third rowDespite my small complaints, overall, I loved the 2014 Kia Sorento SX, and I still want one. Guess it’s time for me to start saving my monies!

 

 

 

 

Product Review: Manduka eKO SuperLite Folding Travel Mat
June 25, 2013 – 6:29 pm | No Comment
Product Review: Manduka eKO SuperLite Folding Travel Mat
Share

If you practice yoga regularly you probably already know Manduka as the Rolls Royce of non-slip yoga mats. Known for their reputation as an ecologically friendly company, Manduka mats are “kind to the earth and …

Grand Traverse Resort And Spa: A Grand Girlfriends Getaway in Traverse City, Michigan
November 26, 2012 – 6:55 pm | No Comment
Grand Traverse Resort And Spa: A Grand Girlfriends Getaway in Traverse City, Michigan
Share

A Grand Getaway – Traverse City, Michigan
Traverse City, Michigan sits at the magical 45th Parallel, halfway between the North Pole and the Equator. Magical? You bet! From stunning scenic vistas along Sleeping Bear Dunes National …

Europeans Discover America
November 15, 2012 – 5:26 pm | No Comment
Europeans Discover America
Share

For  many Europeans, a trip to the United States is a popular holiday vacation destination. Check out these deals from Thomas Cook for your next American holiday.

If you fancy something a bit special next year, …

Sara Sara Cupcakes: A Must-Have Treat
June 29, 2012 – 6:00 am | 4 Comments
Sara Sara Cupcakes: A Must-Have Treat
Share

During my visit to Oklahoma City, Okla., I noticed several bakeries around town. This piqued my sweet tooth, and I started inquiring about the best cupcakes in the city. After receiving several referrals for Sara …

Product Review: Shielded SPIbelt and SPIband
May 13, 2012 – 7:43 pm | No Comment
Product Review: Shielded SPIbelt and SPIband
Share

Purchasing the original SPIbelt™ at a marathon expo in 2009, the discreet belt/pouch combo has been holding my driverse license, cash, and car keys at athletic events, on trips, and every opportunity to be purse- …

Product Review – iGo Charge Anywhere
May 10, 2012 – 6:00 am | One Comment
Product Review – iGo Charge Anywhere
Share

Like many others with cell phones, I occasionally have to deal with a low phone battery when I’m out and about. However, if I’m in my car, I have no problem; I just plug my …

Auto Byte: Buick Regal Hybrid
February 12, 2012 – 8:44 pm | One Comment
Auto Byte: Buick Regal Hybrid
Share

With the Chicago Auto Show in full swing, Road Trips for Girlfriends got in on the action with a “country to city” road trip review of the Buick Regal Hybrid. Road trip divas, high on …

Snow Skiing in North Carolina
January 4, 2012 – 6:00 am | No Comment
Snow Skiing in North Carolina
Share

When it comes to snow skiing, you automatically think of Vermont, Colorado or Utah, right? Well, push aside any preconceived notions you may have about the South, and re-think your answer. In the high country …

First in Glass: Seeing Toledo Clearly
September 21, 2011 – 9:49 am | One Comment
First in Glass: Seeing Toledo Clearly
Share

Never on my bucket list of road-trip destinations, it wasn’t until I actually went to Toledo, Ohio that I understood why so many Midwesterner’s defend their beloved city. Friendly, affordable, and accessible by plane, train, …

Lavender Fields Forever
August 28, 2011 – 10:57 am | No Comment
Lavender Fields Forever
Share

Returning home to Michigan to spend some time with my mom this summer, I noticed a newspaper article she had clipped and tacked on the bulletin board next to her refrigerator. Written in June, the …

Uncommon Phone Case Review
August 15, 2011 – 8:52 pm | One Comment
Uncommon Phone Case Review
Share

Understandably, I travel a lot, and that travel takes a toll on my cell phone. From numerous runs through airport security to dropping it while trying to carry 10 things at once from the car …

Grab the Girls and Head to Innisbrook
August 1, 2011 – 6:00 am | No Comment
Grab the Girls and Head to Innisbrook
Share

Located near Tampa, Fla., Innisbrook, a Salamander® golf and spa resort, welcomes girlfriends to explore its 900 acres situated just a few miles from the Florida coastline and the Gulf of Mexico. From the top-notch …

Escape with the Girls to San Antonio
July 29, 2011 – 7:56 pm | No Comment
Escape with the Girls to San Antonio
Share

Who doesn’t love getting away with the girls now and then? It’s a wonderful time to relax and recharge, and San Antonio offers a prime spot to do just that. Whether on the go or …

Take a Hike with Roam The Woods
July 4, 2011 – 2:53 pm | No Comment
Take a Hike with Roam The Woods
Share

oday’s guest post comes to us from our friends at Roam The Woods, a women-only backpacking company designed to get you out of the car and into, well, the woods.

Renee’s of Sharyland, The Ultimate Girlfriend Treat
June 17, 2011 – 6:00 am | No Comment
Renee’s of Sharyland, The Ultimate Girlfriend Treat
Share

If a gal wants a fun girlfriend retreat or if mom wants to score some points with her daughter (tween or teen), take your gal buddy or daughter to Renee’s of Sharyland in Mission, Texas.

Chicago Improv: Laughing All The Way Home
June 5, 2011 – 7:00 am | No Comment
Chicago Improv: Laughing All The Way Home
Share

Considered the birthplace of modern improvisational comedy, Chicago is home to iO Theater, one of the most famous improv theater companies in the world.

Product Review – EcoSMART Bed Bug Killer & Repellent and BugZip®
June 3, 2011 – 12:00 am | 2 Comments
Product Review – EcoSMART Bed Bug Killer & Repellent and BugZip®
Share

When I found out I was headed to New York for a brief visit, I thought it was the perfect time to try out two new products: EcoSMART Bed Bug Killer & Repellent and BugZip® Luggage & Clothing Encasements.

Product Review – Ecofriendly Travel Products
May 17, 2011 – 12:31 pm | One Comment
Product Review – Ecofriendly Travel Products
Share

When it comes to road tripping with the girlfriends, we’re all for it. Unfortunately, that travel takes a toll on Mother Nature, so it’s important to reduce our carbon footprint as much as we can. To that end, we have scouted out some of the best eco-friendly travel items available today.

Apps for Drinking Wine: Grapes Paired with Technology
May 10, 2011 – 6:55 pm | No Comment
Share

Calling all wine enthusiasts, Natalie MacLean, certified sommelier and winner of the World’s Best Wine Writer award at the World Food Media Awards
Natalie MacLean, the editor of one of the largest wine web sites at …

Genuine Girlfriend Gathering
May 1, 2011 – 5:00 pm | One Comment
Genuine Girlfriend Gathering
Share

On May 13-15, the second annual Genuine Girlfriend Gathering retreat will kick off in the relaxing woods of Eden Prairie, Minnesota. Lodging dormitory-style in the charming Eden Wood Center campus, think summer camp meets gourmet …

A Toast to the Royal Wedding
April 26, 2011 – 4:53 pm | No Comment
A Toast to the Royal Wedding
Share

For those of us girlfriends planning all-night slumber parties and 3AM viewings of the Royal Wedding this Thursday, we felt compelled to share a drink recipe worthy of toasting the royal couple.

Fashion Resource: Shopping in Chicago
April 22, 2011 – 10:23 am | No Comment
Fashion Resource: Shopping in Chicago
Share

Gaining momentum on The Big Apple and L.A., Chicago is emerging as a “Top 3″ contender in the fast-paced fashion industry. With more than 400 designers and 350 independent fashion boutiques, here are three forward thinking “must stop” shops on your next shopping trip through the Windy City.

Bookshelf: Women Making History
April 12, 2011 – 8:26 am | No Comment
Bookshelf: Women Making History
Share

Tree books from Fulcrum Publishing about women who made history; a tribute to the human spirit, the female body, and the entrepreneur in us all.

Smart Destinations, Save Money, Have Fun
April 3, 2011 – 1:56 pm | No Comment
Smart Destinations, Save Money, Have Fun
Share

Go City Cards are multi-attraction passes available in 14 of the top cities in the United States and Canada. Providing pre-paid admission to hundreds of attractions, the cards save up to 55% of the cost of individual admission.

Twilight Moms Travel and other Ghostly Gatherings
March 14, 2011 – 6:00 am | One Comment
Twilight Moms Travel and other Ghostly Gatherings
Share

Who better to experience the supernatural, paranormal, haunted, historical and eerie than with your best group of girlfriends? From organized tours to seances, these venues cater to the creepy and pamper to the paranoid. So pack your garlic with your Gucci, and get ready to sleep with the nightlight on.

Top 10 Tips on How to Look Great in Photos
February 24, 2011 – 8:20 pm | One Comment
Top 10 Tips on How to Look Great in Photos
Share

We’ve all experienced that same feeling as we flip through our vacation photos: dissatisfaction with our appearance. To help you look your best in your next girlfriend getaway pictures, try incorporating these suggestions from the folks at Kodak.

Product Review – Seirus Neck Ditty Wallet
February 17, 2011 – 9:00 am | One Comment
Product Review – Seirus Neck Ditty Wallet
Share

When I planned my snowmobiling trip, it never occurred to me that I would need a secure place to store my valuables while I was out riding. Thankfully, I came across the Seirus Neck Ditty Wallet.

Guest Post: Granlibakken – A Quiet Ski Gem for Girlfriends
February 14, 2011 – 6:45 pm | One Comment
Guest Post: Granlibakken – A Quiet Ski Gem for Girlfriends
Share

Granlibakken Conference Center and Lodge at Lake Tahoe offers a wonderful low-profile, relaxing way to experience a girlfriend skiing getaway in the beautiful Sierra Nevada, without crowds, lines and noise.

Top 10 Tips for Taking Sightseeing Photos
February 10, 2011 – 3:47 pm | One Comment
Top 10 Tips for Taking Sightseeing Photos
Share

When traveling, everyone likes to document their trip with photographs. With today’s point-and-shoot digital cameras, it’s pretty easy to get some great shots as mementos. However, if you’re like me, you’re always looking for ways …

Read on the Beach: Travel and Adventure While You Relax
February 2, 2011 – 6:00 am | 4 Comments
Read on the Beach: Travel and Adventure While You Relax
Share

The first batch n a series of Road Trips for Girlfriends book reviews, here are some of our suggestions for books involving travel and adventure.