From Sea to Shining Sea

My most recent purchase in my Amazon obsession phase has been a 50×32 map of the United States. Not only is it ginormous, but it’s extremely detailed and even features my commonly left out hometown on the map. After I purchase cork board squares, plywood, and glue to make as a backboard for my map, I will finally be able to hang up my purchase on my wall.

I get what you’re thinking, blah blah blah, you bought a big map of the United States. What’s so special about that? But for me, this map is excruciatingly important to my future. Ever since I was little, my life goal has been to visit all 50 states. (That sounds really heartfelt, but at the time when I made this goal, I was probably googling “bucket list ideas”). But in all seriousness, I have grown to be an extremely patriotic citizen and this lifelong goal matches my personality perfectly.

Anyway, my mission is still in the beginning phases. My traveling has been limited to the midwest and the south, and even there, I’ve only visited the most common of tourist locations. Still, I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to carry out my dream. I’m currently at 15 states, and hey, that’s better than zero, right? This year I was able to finally add the 15th state to my list, New York, which came after an incredible trip to NYC last spring.

So back to my map and it’s main purpose. After constructing the backboard for it, I plan on hanging up my monstrosity and putting push pins into each city I visit, in order to visually map the places I have been, and where I have not been. Even though I have only been to 15 states, I have been to a number of cities in each of them, fortunately.

So here’s a list of the 15 wonderful states I have been to as I look forward to visiting the next 35!

1. Indiana (of course, it’s the only place I’ve ever lived)

2. Ohio (Our state to the right, again, visited every single year for the past 8 years)

3. Illinois (State to the left, I’ve only been to Chicago, but even then, it’s been fairly frequent)

4. Michigan (Directly above us, and I’ve visited family in Detroit a few times)

5. Kentucky (Louisville for cheer competitions, Lexington for a college visit to UK)

6. Minnesota (Minneapolis is actually one of my favorite places I’ve visited)

7. Virginia (I stayed in Arlington while visiting DC, and I will be traveling to Williamsburg in a few short weeks)

8. Pennsylvania (Gettysburg and Hershey, all I can remember is going on a ghost tour, Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, and for some reason, eating a grilled cheese)

9.  New York (NYC was a breathtaking adventure, I’d love to go back)

10. North Carolina (Last summer’s vacation made me fall in love with the state.. well that and Nicholas Sparks)

11. South Carolina (Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head, the vacation spots are incredible)

12. Florida (Okay, so I’ve been to Florida at least 10 times, and a handful of different cities, too. Who doesn’t love that place?)

13. Tennessee (I visited Nashville for a cheer competition once and got to compete in the Gaylord Hotel. Probably in my top 5 favorite states and I can’t wait to go back to Nashville in the future!)

14. Georgia (I spent a day doing a historical tour of Savannah. I love the state and its peaches)

15. Missouri (I have millions of relatives in this state, it would have been difficult for me to NOT have visited at least once in my life)

I hope you’ve all appreciated reading my rambling words about some random fantasy I have. Hopefully, I can achieve this dream by the time I’m 92. Preferably before then, though. And of course, I’ll accept any donations or free trips to fund my 50 states dream ;)

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