Jennifer and Ed Coleman

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I am Jenn Coleman, and together with my husband and partner Ed, we are Coleman Concierge. A Concierge is typically a caretaker who lives on site or a guest services employee to help with your travels. We are both. We hope our website will serve as a guide to help and inspire you to get out, expand your world, and to seek adventure, even in your own backyard. Currently, our home is in Orlando Florida, but we have lived all over the mountains, beaches, and deserts of the Western United States. It is our goal to always live somewhere that people choose to vacation.

I am highly experienced in the service industry. Prior to blogging full time at the start of 2018, I worked as a Concierge at a well known San Diego hotel, a massage therapist at a five-star spa, and also a fitness instructor. In a previous life, I worked my way across many of the top ski towns in America teaching skiing in the winters and guiding white water rafting during the summers. I have worked a lifetime in adventure and travel and know the industry from the inside.

My husband Ed is a physicist in aerospace by day, crazy adventurist by weekend. He knows the importance of travel and adventure to recharge the soul from the rigors of corporate America and family life. He is the consummate weekend warrior, going on many crazy adventures like caving expeditions in Belize, hiking the Grand Canyon Rim-Rim-Rim day hike (albeit a long day), climbing Baboquivari peak for his 30th birthday and racing in the 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo mountain bike race.

Location Orlando, Florida USA
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Highlights

We went down to Lake Martin and stayed in the Hank Williams Cabin at Children's Harbor. Almost 70 years ago, Hank wrote Kaw-Liga in this very cabin! Less than three months later, he died of a heart attack at age 29. Kaw-Liga is about a lonely wooden Indian who couldn't profess his love to another maiden statue before she was purchased and moved to parts unknown. It's profoundly sad and stoic at the same time.โฃ ๐ŸŽตโฃ ๐ŸŽถโฃ While we were at Children's Harbor, we learned about the children's camps they put on every year. Their website says, "Children's Harbor provides children with serious illnesses and their families a place to be themselves โ€“ to have fun and relax โ€“ while also receiving no-cost services that make life a bit easier for the whole family."โฃ ๐ŸŽตโฃ ๐ŸŽถโฃ Fun and relaxation are precious to the human spirit. Hank suffered from undiagnosed spina bifida, which kept him in constant suffering. His pain, in turn, led to his drug and alcohol addiction, dismissal from the Grand Ol Oprey, and ultimately cost him his life.โฃ ๐ŸŽตโฃ ๐ŸŽถโฃ This picture of the Children's Harbor lighthouse shining out like a beacon of light at sunrise, and is how we like to remember this place. It's the start of a new day, and there's hope on the horizon.โฃ ๐ŸŽตโฃ ๐ŸŽถโฃ Tell us about something that has touched your heart recently ๐Ÿ’›

Imagine riding a 110' coal-fired train through the Smoky Mountains. It takes you back in time as you steam around the 5-mile track. You can smell the thick black sooty smoke and hear the whistle piercing the air. It's so powerful and primitive at the same time.โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ This is the Dollywood Express, an attraction in Dollywood. Dollywood is ranked as the best US theme park not associated with Disney or Universal and even beats out several Disney properties. The theme is life in the Smokies at Dollywood, making it a great compliment to any Great Smokies getaway.โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ If you want less commercializing and pushing of branding, Dollywood might be your kind of park. It's unabashedly Christian and upbeat, with enough thrill rides and shows that you can't see it all in a single visit.โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ ๐Ÿš‚โฃ What is your favorite theme park?

โ€œIf it doesnโ€™t challenge you, it doesnโ€™t change you.โ€ Fred Devitoโฃ ๐Ÿ”ฅโฃ As more and more people begin to get vaccinated and travel is beginning to kick up we have been getting busier and busier, and struggling with work/life balance. I personally struggle daily with stepping away from the computer to take care of myself and do things like making it to the gym. It's tough to be self-employed, especially when your boss is a total b**ch๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿคฃโฃ ๐Ÿ”ฅโฃ I have strategies like using @OrangeTheoryHuntsville which requires an appointment and financial loss for missing it (turns out for me losing $$ is a great motivator!), but some days it is still super tough!โฃ ๐Ÿ”ฅโฃ Commiserate with me....what is something you have been struggling with lately?

๐ŸŽถSittin' in the mornin' sun. I'll be sittin' when the evenin' comes. Watching the boats roll in. Then I watch 'em roll away again, yeah. I'm sittin' on the dock of the lake. Watchin' the ripples roll away, ooh...I'm just sittin' on the dock of the lake Wastin' time๐ŸŽถโฃ โฃ Who wishes they are here right now?

โ€œLong walks on the beach are the supposed holy grail of a romantic evening. The beach becomes a kind of utopia โ€“ the place where all our dreams come true.โ€โ€“ Roxane Gayโฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ Tell us about a dream that has come true for you in the past year ๐Ÿ’™

We keep having people asking us about taking getaways to Florida, with Hawaii and California being harder to get to these days. We keep saying how the Keys are like a Caribbean Island, Ft Lauderdale and Maimi are full of nightlife, and the Panhandle has the most beautiful sand dunes you could imagine. โฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ We talk about the surf and history of the Atlantic Coast and the warm, gentle gulf water. Then we realized that we should write this all down, and that's the inspiration for our latest article - The 17 ๐— ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ฅ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฐ ๐—š๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜†๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—™๐—น๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—”๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—–๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜€. If you read it, we hope that you'll realize that Florida is so much more than family fun. It's a legit adventure destination that happens to be dripping in romanceโฃโฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ ๐Ÿ’™โฃ What's the most romantic destination you have visited?

We recently published our Huntsville hiking guide, and the last research hike we took to Falling Sink Falls might have been our favorite. It's certainly in the running for the most photogenic, but there's a funny story behind this hike.โฃ ๐Ÿ”†โฃ We've heard about a waterfall the disappears into a cave east of Huntsville and assumed it was Lost Sink Falls from the description. This one hike led to several interesting misadventures, like the GPS waypoint leading us to a random bend on a country road and the trail being a complete mud trap as it snaked along the cliff line. We even got caught in the rain and had to turn back one time. However, we finally made it to Lost Sink, and it was.... just ok. โฃ ๐Ÿ”†โฃ Falling Sink, just around the corner from Lost Sink in the Bethel Spring Nature Preserve was phenomenal. The trail was in great shape, and the waterfall was just gorgeous. Could we have been navigating to the wrong falls this whole time? Who knows, but we wouldn't have had the experience to write a detailed guide if we just hit the highlights.โฃ ๐Ÿ”†โฃ Have you ever had the feeling that you showed up at the wrong place?

'Walking is a man's best medicine' - Hippocrates. We finally published our Huntsville Hiking Guide that has been sitting on our editorial calendar for almost a year. We left it "completed" at 1,800 words on the virtual shelf since this January. We thought it was done, and we were just waiting for better hiking weather to shoot photos and to work through our required writing from our recent travels.โฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ We picked it up, blew off the cyber dust, and it looked pretty darn good, but we knew we could do better. We spiffed up the maps and made a concerted effort to write about every hike in town. The new found goal to write a complete guide had us out hiking and taking pictures. It was exhaustive, but we created something that we're proud of. We're now waiting for the day somebody sees us on the trails and thanks us for that guide - LOL๐Ÿ˜‰โฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ Along the way, we 'discovered' the Madison County Nature Trail. We thought we were going for some b-roll footage, but the trails, lakes, and covered bridge were exceptionally photogenic.โฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ ๐Ÿ“ธโฃ When was the last time you were pleasantly surprised by a photoshoot?

We just found out we get to return to Coastal Mississippi in late September, and we couldn't be happier! There was so much we didn't get to see and do on our last visit!โฃ โ›ดโฃ We are looking forward to boat excursions, such as a Biloxi Shrimping Trip, an eco/ghost tour boat trip, the Betsy Ann Riverboat, a kayak adventure, and of course soaking in more of these romantic and magical Mississippi sunsetsโคโฃ โ›ดโฃ Is there somewhere you have visited that feels 'unfinished' and you are eager to return to?

Is it any wonder that Easter eggs come in pastel colors? They're the unofficial color palette of spring. The Natchez Trace Visitor Center was decked out in its spring glory when we visited on our recent trip to Tupelo Mississippi.โฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ We were out for a little bike ride on the Trace, but the parking lot buzzed with activity from people looking for their own getaway. A group of middle-aged motorcyclists gathered at a picnic table, solving the world's problems before tackling a Sunday ride. Carloads of couples arrived and then departed off for adventures unknown. It's like the Natchez Traces was one of those old choose-your-own-adventure books, with no bad endings. โฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ What's your favorite Sunday ride?

There's nothing like a Caribbean sunset, except perhaps a Caribbean sunrise. The only thing better is drinking a Caribbean sunrise while watching the sunset from the deck of the Aqua Cat.โฃ ๐Ÿนโฃ ๐Ÿนโฃ That was one of our hardest choices every night. Should we join the sunset cocktail party or keep our bodies pure for the night dive. That's my kind of problem, where there are no wrong answers. What did we do? Judging from the picture, at least one night, the sunrises won out over the night dives๐Ÿ˜‰โฃ ๐Ÿนโฃ ๐Ÿนโฃ What is your favorite rum drink?

This weekend we went to Tupelo, Mississippi, where the Natchez Trace park headquarters is located. The Trace was a 444-mile long ancient Indian trade route that's now one of America's most scenic roads.โฃ ๐Ÿ›ฃโฃ In many ways, Tupelo and the Natchez Trace share the same story. The Trace fell into disarray when trade traffic shifted to Riverboats. Similarly, Tupelo declined when the railroads stopped running and the textile mills shut down.โฃ ๐Ÿ›ฃโฃ You could speed down the Trace or through Tupelo on I-22 and think nothing of it, or you could slow down and watch the history unfold before your eyes. The entire 444-miles of the Trace is a bike route and a signature American ride. When we were driving, this valley was nothing but a yellow and red blur. By bike, we could recognize the individual clover flowers.โฃ ๐Ÿ›ฃโฃ There's more to backroads and small-town America than you can see at 55-mph. If you stay awhile and let your mind wander, you just might begin to realize why Tupelo is the only Southern city to be named an All-America City five times over.โฃ ๐Ÿ›ฃโฃ What's your favorite thing about small towns.

Everybody has their happy placeโ€”mine is Glacier National Park. I moved to Montana to hike the glaciers before they disappeared and discovered what my ex-husband called f-off mountains. You know, peaks that just tower there and say - whatcha going to do about itโ‰โ‰โฃ โ›ฐโฃ โ›ฐโฃ I not one for mountain climbing, but the ironic thing about Glacier National Park is that, even with these imposing peeks, the Going to The Sun Road only has a 6% grade. My new husband, Ed, geeked out over the road. Actually, the story behind the road.โฃ โ›ฐโฃ โ›ฐโฃ The brash senior engineer wanted to build a road up the creek through an old-growth forest at a 14% grade. It would have been destructive, expensive, and unmaintainable. A visionary junior engineer conceived the alternative route, a much better idea all the way around. Ed imagines that there should be a Hollywood movie made about the engineering process that created the road and how vision won out over seniority as part of his engineering heroes trope.โฃ โ›ฐโฃ โ›ฐโฃ I don't know about all that, but I love that road, especially in Spring. It's cleared a few weeks before it opens for vehicle traffic, and you can bike to the top without any cars on the road. What's more, it's only a 6% grade, thanks to the vision of Thomas Chalmers Vint, who I am matrimonially obliged to call an engineering hero๐Ÿคฃโฃ โ›ฐโฃ โ›ฐโฃ Do you believe in engineering heroes?

Are you ready for Spring or lamenting the end of Winter? Traversing the seasons is one of the things we miss most about traveling. Recently, we drove to Ohio for a small family gathering. We saw Spring retreating along the route.โฃ ๐ŸŒบโฃ ๐ŸŒบโฃ It's been Spring for some time here in Alabama. The green leaves are out on almost every tree. By the time we reached Kentucky, the leaves were gone, and the flowering pears were out. In Ohio, it was just the start of the daffodil season.โฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ ๐ŸŒธโฃ You never quite know what you're going to see when you go on the road. This picture was from outside Tupelo during a rare Mississippi snowstorm. We're going back next week for what we hope will be dogwood season. You'll know in a couple of weeks if we got our shots ๐Ÿ˜‰โฃ ๐ŸŒผโฃ ๐ŸŒผโฃ What's your favorite spring flower?

Footprints in the sand leading to a forgotten blue lagoon... Is there anything more romantic? In many ways, this photo sums up our liveaboard experience with All Star Liveaboards on the Aqua Cat.โฃ ๐Ÿ‘ฃโฃ ๐Ÿ‘ฃโฃ We sailed off into the blue Bahama seas and came across some of the most beautiful places you could imagine, both on land and in the water. If you don't dive, let's just say that reaching a dive site that few people go to is the underwater equivalent of finding a beautiful deserted island where the only footprints in the sand are yours.โฃ ๐Ÿ‘ฃโฃ ๐Ÿ‘ฃโฃ Have you ever been anywhere that felt 'undiscovered' or remote?

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