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April 27, 2012

a.k.a. Tulip Mania

This phenomenon has taken over in my house.

Gotta love spring & a good macro lens.

Gosh, I miss the Netherlands. Photos from Amsterdam coming soon.

Day One: Mussels in Brussels

April 22, 2012

For the new few weeks I am going to share several highlights from my epic tour around Europe with all of you lovely readers. To begin I made a quick stop in Brussels and I must say it is quite an underrated gem. My favorite thing about this city–the food. Between the waffles, the mussels, & the chocolate I think I was in heaven (especially coming from the less tasty/more hearty British cuisine)

[mussels in brussels]

[la grand-place]

[belgian waffle]

[indulging in my belgian snack]

[made in belgium since 1926]

Around the World in 32 Days

April 16, 2012

Sorry for being m.i.a. the past month I have been traveling around the world. I went from Oxford ➝ London ➝ Brussels ➝ Amsterdam ➝ Prague ➝ Vienna ➝ Salzburg ➝ Venice ➝ Florence ➝ Rome ➝ Barcelona ➝ Madrid ➝ Granada back to London back to Oxford back to Pittsburgh. Then off again to Washington DC and finally to Austin. Needless to say it has been possibly the best month of my life. To top it all off this weekend in Austin was also a sweet reunion with my boot-wearing boy after being apart for nine months.

To make a long story short: Girl meets boy. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy is super smart. Boy goes far far away to Austin for law school. Girl and boy break up. Girl is sad. Boy is sad. Girl goes to Oxford–single. Boy lives in Austin–single. Girl and boy keep talking despite distance and differences. Finally, boy brings girl to Austin and now boy and girl are boy+girl again.

As I sat anxiously waiting for the law school boy to get outta class so I could see him for the first time my mom sent me this:

“That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But, it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day” -Charles Dickens, Great Expectations 

Thanks to the boy who made this weekend full of those kinda days. I can’t wait to have a few more in June. Details to come and millions of photos from Europe.

Stay tuned.

Never Say Goodbye

March 12, 2012

Warning: This is about to get all up in my head & my thoughts.

Tonight I had to begin the long process of saying goodbye to everyone here in Oxford. My European adventure starts Wednesday and, while I could not be more excited, I must admit I am quite sad to be leaving this place so soon. Here’s a little peak into my thoughts on goodbyes, growing up, opportunities, and life in general.

Our entire lives we are raised to look forward to our twenties. The Golden Age. The time in our lives when we leave the nest and test how far we can fly before falling. Of course we all fall a few times here & there, but for the most part we rise to the challenge and succeed. What no one tells you is that while your twenties are full of these amazing new places and experiences and people–full of hellos–they are also full of goodbyes. I have been so blessed to have so many amazing and unforgettable opportunities and experiences in my 21 years thus far, but each new adventure means leaving another one behind.

You get into that awesome school and say goodbye to your high school friends, move out of your home town and say goodbye to your mom and sister for months at a time.

You get to school and make friends with the cool upperclassmen only to have them say goodbye because they are graduating and getting jobs and moving away.

You meet that super cute older boy and fall in love with him, but he has his own dreams and adventures and has to say goodbye so he can chase after them.

You go abroad to Paris and Oxford and all over and see incredible places with millions of new faces and somewhere in between you adopt a whole new way of life and become best friends with the people around you only to have to say goodbye when your term abroad ends.

And finally, after four incredible, irreplaceable, unforgettable years you graduate college and say goodbye to your campus and all of the amazing people who made those four years some of the best years of your life.

And now you’re considered a grown up.

In the past few years I have said goodbye to family and friends, new friends & old friends, best friend & boyfriend.

Tomorrow marks another difficult goodbye. I have fallen in love with Oxford and the people who live here with me. I am off on such an exciting adventure and could not be more thankful, but today is bittersweet. The hopes and dreams I’ve pictured for years are coming to life before my eyes, but while I’ve been out in the world making them come true I’ve conjured new hopes and dreams I never knew I had.

So today I dream that someday I will be able to say hello to all the people I have been so privileged to know and have had to say goodbye to.

Until then, I will miss you all dearly.

Wednesday Words of Widsom

March 7, 2012


First Place Wins the Race

March 6, 2012


In other words, I got an A, but it feels like a super A because it’s Oxford and it was in EU Law and all of the extra hard work unbelievably paid off in that one little word ‘first.’ To read more about the silly British grading system and to truly appreciate the fact that I managed to snag a first read this.

Sorry to so obviously brag about myself, but I am having trouble containing my excitement. One more essay to finish in the next five hours-eek-and then its off for some celebratory cocktails.

Happy Happy Tuesday

Wednesday Words of Wisdom

March 1, 2012

In the past sixty hours I have written three Oxford essays totaling 7,500 words or 26 pages double-spaced. And survived. Phew.