About Us

Hi! We’re the Graves family: Stephanie, Ryan, Aviana (5), Adalyn (5), and Rory (2). 

Aside from a brief hiatus for college, Ryan and I had spent our entire lives in rural northern Maine. We love our hometown dearly and on paper, it seemed like we had it all: great careers, a home, three beautiful children, and ample family support. But we craved MORE.

We craved to see and do MORE, to have MORE experiences, MORE opportunities for our children, and to live fully without regrets.

Over the past 2-years, we have made incredible memories exploring the best of the best hotels, experiences, and unique opportunities the eastern US has to offer. We’ve visited the sites, took all the pictures, and created lifelong memories. We have developed new passions, started new careers, and mapped out even bigger dreams. This journey has changed our lives forever and we have learned that true happiness is found by surrounding yourself with those you love and following your heart.

We don’t know what lies ahead or where our dreams will take us, but we’re confident that this is what we’re called to do. Our lives are more full than we ever imagined and at the end of the day, we are focusing on the things that make us truly happy.

My mission: to inspire you to chase your wildest dreams and love the life you create.

So EXACTLY who are we?

Stephanie: That’s me! I’m a Physician Assistant by trade, and also an exercise fanatic, vegetarian, and wearer of all the hats behind Destination Graves. I survive on one strong coffee per day, 20-min power naps, and the strong belief that yoga pants really are pants.

When I’m not working my 9-5 or creating blog content you’ll find me spending time with my family.  (I LOVE our little family!) We enjoy crafting, baking, going on outdoor adventures, or even lounging and watching movies together. 

Favorite travel memory: Our girls only weekend getaway to Fearrington Village. 

Ryan: Formerly a grocery store manager; turned SAHD, Ryan is the rock of our family. While at home he is the full-time shuttle driver, preparer of lunches, diaper changer, and prides himself in making the perfect bed. When not fulfilling all the dad duties, he enjoys reading, journaling, spending time in nature, and is also the executive editor for the blog. 

Favorite travel memory: Visiting Harry Potter World and indulging in both varieties of Butterbeer.

Aviana:

Small but mighty, weighing in a 4 lb 15 oz at birth do NOT let her size fool you. Aviana is unapologetically independent, imaginative, and a lover of all popsicles. She’s our free-spirited gypsy dancer, award-winning actress, rock climbing extraordinaire, and when she grows up she dreams to be a ‘unicorn rider’. She is always up for a thrilling challenge and is the first and only Graves child to visit the Emergency Department. (There is no shortage of drama, wild-antics or daring acts of bravery with Aviana, however the soft-spot she holds for her Dad keeps her playful innocence intact.)

Favorite travel memory: Having brunch with and meeting the Disney princesses at Cinderella’s Castle

American girl dolls

Adalyn:

Born approximately 27 seconds after her elder sister, Adalyn is our sweet, sensitive soul. She is kind, thoughtful, and a second mom to her little brother. She’s an aspiring pianist and vocalist and has never met a bowl of pasta she didn’t love. She eats what’s presented to her. Sleeps when asked to (although still in her parents bed), sweeps the floors, folds towels and is ALWAYS the first one buckled and ready to go in the van. If Adalyn were an only child. Life would be seamless.

Favorite travel memory: Skiing with Grammie at Sugarloaf Mountain.

Rory: 

When you first meet Rory you’d never know that he cried every waking second for the first 6-months of life, unless of course his mom was holding him. He LOVES his mom. Rory’s smile lights up a room. He is full of life and pure happiness as seen through his beautiful blue eyes. Rory is a thrill-seeker, always on-the-move and searching for the most dangerous obstacle in the room. Fearless and fast, he is without question the world’s most skilled balance biker. FOMO is real for Rory. He adores his older sisters dearly and always wants to be a part of the action, whether they welcome it or not. Life with Rory is messy and BUSY, but he undoubtedly completes our fab five.

 

Favorite travel memory: Skiing for the first time at Sugarloaf Mountain.

Sugarloaf Mountain with kids

We’re so grateful for this experience and life change. We hope you enjoy following along with our story and that we leave you inspired to carve your own path, too! 

XO,
The Graves family