Friday, June 23, 2017

Weekly Recap

This week went by really quickly for me! Since I got home from Portland on Monday morning, I didn't go into work until the afternoon and the day went by really quickly. I think since it felt like a 4 day week that it felt like it flew by.

I'm looking forward to just relaxing this weekend! It's supposed to be kind of gross weather, but I'm hoping that maybe it'll be sunny enough for a few hours that I can go to the pool to read or take a walk outside.

On a disappointing note, my "huge life decisions" that I thought I would have to make about a week ago ended up not being a thing. That being said, it's probably ok if it's raining this weekend so I get some job applications started and done. (P.S... if you're hiring... hi!) ;)




Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Portlandia

I got to visit my friend Stephanie in Portland, Oregon last weekend!!! Stephanie and I studied abroad together in Salzburg over two years ago. She was able to make a quick trip to Atlanta on her way to visit family, but this was really the first time we've seen each other since then! It was so much fun - I loved Portland!

My flight got intoPortland on Thursday night later than expected, but still with enough time to rest up for a full day of seeing the city on Friday while Stephanie was at work. (Side note: 6 hour flights are such a pain!!! What do you do to pass the time?)


Monday, June 19, 2017

Bratislava in 24 Hours

One of my major goals when I studied abroad (2.5 years ago... what!!) was to hit as many “off the beaten path” countries as I could. I figured that I could always convince myself to go back to Austria, Germany, France, and Italy, but that the lesser-known countries would be a little harder to go back to. Slovakia was definitely one of those countries, but let me tell y’all… Slovakia is awesome.

Slovakia is relatively new (it became a country again after the fall of the Iron Curtain), but it has so much to offer. It’s also a member of the European Union, so it’s not hard to travel to. Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia, is also just a short train ride from Vienna, which makes it an ideal day trip!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Travel Inspiration

I've been hit with a serious wave of wanderlust. I'm itching to go on a dreamy, adventurous vacation sometime soon... I have a few ideas as to where I want to go, but I can't help feeling inspired by some of these places too.

Here are a few places that I'm absolutely dying to visit.

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ICELAND // Because, duh. How is this place even freaking real?! I've been wanting to visit Iceland for forever, but I want to wait until I can do it properly. (AKA have money to spend on the best trip itinerary ever!)

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CAPE TOWN // Every picture I've ever seen of South Africa is absolutely jaw-droppingly beautiful. My sister studied abroad in Cape Town last summer and loved it, and I also had a couple of friends in college study abroad there too. While I have absolutely zero desire to cage dive with sharks, I have a ton of desire to hike up Table Mountain and go on a safari!

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CHEFCHAOUEN, MOROCCO // Also known at the Blue City, this beautiful city in Morocco has been calling my name for years now. Almost every piece of clothing I own is blue, which I'm pretty sure is a sign. I just want to get lost on these streets.

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PATAGONIA, ARGENTINA // Patagonia has been on my list for a while, too. It's up there with Iceland in terms of "seriously, is this even real?!" I just love these mountains and I want to spend a good bit of time hiking and taking in all that the area has to offer.

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THAILAND // I've wanted to take a trip through Southeastern Asia for a while now, and Thailand is at the top of my list (though I'd be happy with any country, really!). I love the colors, the delicious food (I'm assuming), the culture... just all of it is so wonderful and makes me want to buy a ticket now!

Ok, that's enough for now. I'm pretty much ready to pack a suitcase, board a flight, and never come home.

If you have ever been to and written about one of these places, please share with me!!! I want to live vicariously though you until I can go there for myself!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Weekly Recap

This was a really short week. I ended up being sick on Monday (I think exhaustion after traveling so much, does that happen to anyone else?) so it felt like another 4 day work week.

My friend Erin is visiting for the weekend and we're going to one of my favorite ATL neighborhoods on Friday and the lake on Saturday with my family. My aunt bought a waterski for our boat and I've never waterskied in my life, so I'm nervous but excited to try it out!

On the other hand, I have a feeling that this weekend will be the weekend where I have to make some huge decisions about my future. Hopefully I'll be able to share details soon, but in the meantime, I'm just hoping to keep my sanity while my friend is in town. (Though it will be great to have her around to talk to in person about all of this!)


Mandy Harvey, America's Got Talent // Holy. Crap. This is exactly the kind of inspiration I needed heading into the weekend. I watched this the other night and I really had to keep myself from crying - though on second thought I should have just let it out! I absolutely love this quote that she said, "I wanted to do more with my life than just give up." YES GIRL. I might have to watch AGT just for her!

Homemade Basil Lemonade // I was thinking the other day about a coffee shop in Atlanta that had the best basil lemonade, but I think it closed. Basil lemonade is SO GOOD and so refreshing on a hot summer day (especially in the South when it's 100 degrees and 80+% humidity!). I've never made homemade lemonade but I might have to try this recipe for the infusion of basil.

Amal, The Perfect Mother // Amal Clooney, resident badass human right's lawyer, gave birth to her twins on Tuesday! Of course, they're probably the world's most perfect children. I mean, their mom is one of the greatest women on this earth. I guess their dad is fine too, but Amal is better. Also, this definitely means that Beyonce has given birth to her twins, since her pregnancy announcement was first and she was farther along when her and Jay Z announced that they were expecting... classic Bey keeping it a secret, but we'll hear it soon enough.

Bachelor in Paradise Cast // ABC announced the Bachelor in Paradise season 4 cast (how have there been 4 successful seasons of this...?) earlier this week. I would say that so far the cast is pretty much what we all expected, with the exception of a few. Like, DeMario... what are you doing? Go home my dude.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

4 Books to Read When You Have No Idea What You're Doing With Your Life

I'm so jealous of the people who graduate college and immediately know what they're going to do next. I definitely thought I was one of those people coming into college, but as the years went on (AKA 6 weeks away from graduation) I realized that I had no idea what direction I wanted to go. Luckily, I majored in a pretty versatile subject (broadcast journalism for those curious!) and once you learn how to communicate effectively, you can pretty much do anything with it... but was it really what I wanted to do?

I spent a lot of my first few weeks (ok, months) after graduation trying to figure out my life. And even after two internships, I still have no idea what I'm doing. Here are four books I've read recently that have helped me narrow it down/realize it's ok to have no clue what's coming next.


Monday, June 5, 2017

24 Hours in Colorado Springs

I had a crazy week of traveling last week! I went to Colorado on Tuesday night, stayed for work in the morning on Wednesday, flew back to Atlanta Wednesday evening, and then back out to Colorado Friday afternoon and back home again on Sunday! It was definitely exhausting, but also amazing! I just love being surrounded by the mountains and able to breathe in the crisp, dry mountain air. (Anyone who lives in a place with a ton of humidity can attest!)

My mom and I flew out to Colorado Springs this weekend and spent all day Saturday touring around. (P.S.: Taking a trip with just my mom was on my 101 in 1001… I can cross that off the list now!) There’s a lot to see in the Springs, but you can do just about all of it in one (very tiring) day.

We started out by going to the Olympic Training Center. Colorado Springs is “Olympic City USA,” and I’m a total nerd when it comes to the Olympics so there was no way I was going out there and not touring the training center! It was amazing. At the start of the tour, they show a short video montage about the history of the modern Olympic games focusing on Team USA and I started crying almost immediately because of how much I loved it. (I wish I were kidding, but there were real tears shed.)


After the training center, we drove up to the United States Air Force Academy to see their famous chapel. It was so beautiful and certainly did not disappoint! That being said, next summer it’s closing down for a 4-5 year renovation, so if you’re dying to see it, be sure to get out there sooner rather than later!

 

For lunch, we really wanted to go to Old Colorado City (the old mining city) but missed it on the map by a block. But it ended up working out because we got to go to Manitou Springs instead! Manitou is also a mining city at the base of Pikes Peak (the mountain that inspired “America the Beautiful” …casual.) In Manitou there is a ton to do, like taking the train (or starting the hike) up to the summit of Pikes Peak, visiting museums about the miners that used to live there, and they have beer and wine festivals some weekends throughout the year. We decided not to go up Pikes Peak because it was kind of rainy and cloudy and weren’t sure the view would be worth it, but if it’s sunny we definitely would have! (The drive can last anywhere from 2 to 3 hours, depending on traffic, weather, time of year, and how many stops you make for pictures!)

We ended up eating lunch at the Manitou Brewing Company. It was AMAZING. We got two “shareable plates,” (nachos and pulled pork and homemade beer queso and their specialty fries with truffle oil, parmesan shavings, and chipotle sauce) and both of them were huge and so good.  We were both absolutely stuffed but couldn’t stop eating! Luckily, Manitou Springs is a great place to walk up and down the streets, so we did that and enjoyed looking at all of the local stores and jewelry makers.


After lunch, we went to the main attraction of Colorado Springs: Garden of the Gods.  Garden of the Gods is a national landmark park that will always be free (!!!) to the public. However, you can book horseback riding tours through the park and I think that would be a really neat way of seeing the formations. We weren’t prepared to go hiking, so we stuck to the road through the park with just a couple of exceptions, one being balanced rock. Definitely one of the most popular stops, there were TONS of people, but with a little bit of patience and good timing, I was able to take some great pictures on the rock. And the ledge I was standing on was a lot higher than it looked! If I’m ever back in COS I would definitely wear better clothes and follow the hiking paths around and up some of the formations.


By this point, we were pretty tired so we drove to the downtown area and got a drink on the rooftop bar of Phantom Canyon. Then we walked around a little bit (still full from our amazing lunch!) and explored the Springs before getting dinner closer to our hotel on the east side of town.


Colorado Springs is definitely an interesting little place! You can literally see people from all walks of life just walking down the streets. It’s also the second biggest city in Colorado, but I don’t think you’d be able to tell if you didn’t already know. There’s an interesting mix of old and new, run down and just now being built. It’s also only an hour and a half away from downtown Denver, and a little over two hours away from the skiing at Breckenridge, Vail, etc. It would make a perfect day trip if you’re ever in Colorado!

Have you ever been to Colorado Springs?

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