Archives for August 2014

08.23.14

It’s Official! I’m 26…..

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I’m an old bird!

Well today is the day folks! I am 26 now. I woke up in Vienna and I will go to sleep tonight in America. How great it that? Aside from being alone on my birthday, my trip has been amazing. I’m so lucky to be at an age where I have the opportunity to do a “backpacking” trip with my cousins, but then I can go home to a beautiful baby. It’s like the best of both worlds. I know I’m lucky. Most people have one or the other and I got to have both! This trip was definitely once in a lifetime. I will always travel and visit new places, but being able to backpack with my cousins made it unique. One day we will all have families and jobs and it will be nearly impossible to scratch out time for a trip all together. There is a very small window to take a backpacking trip like in the movies, and this one was definitely IT! There were definitely movie worthy moments. One day we’ll be like “remember that time those guys in Belgium jumped off their train to take pictures with us” or “remember when we almost missed our but to Munich!”……. Good times good times. Now I’m sitting in the airport waiting for my plane from Vienna to Frankfurt. I glanced at some duty free items but I decided I’d much rather buy these items at Nordstrom so I can get my points!! #nordstromaddict. Ulta and Nordstrom have ruined shopping for me. Now I never want to buy anything unless I get “points”. I will go on a 3 week trip and wait until I go home to buy the items I wanted haha. My hubby already bought me my birthday present though. Well I basically find what I want and buy it then I tell him it’s my birthday gift. Before I left I bought a vintage mini chanel flap bag and I also got to go on my awesome trip. I miss my handbags. I would never take a Chanel to backpack…..but I did take a Prada! Well a Prada Vela, I brought a Medium size. I have the larger size as a diaper bag also. The Prada canvass bags are great for travel.

Ok back to being 26. Right now I’m feeling I indifferent. Maybe a bit sad. Life seems to speed by after you hit 21. It feels like I was 21 yesterday. I do think I’m starting to notice little changes in my face. I’m going to get Botox when I get back home. If I can prevent wrinkles I will! I would never go to the extreme with a surgical procedure on my face but Botox I can do. I honesty don’t ‘feel’ any older. Haha this morning I found myself thinking about how adopted children sometimes lose they real age. I was trying to find a way to do that. I could get adopted and change my age to 24 haha. In my dreams right!

08.22.14

Vienna, Austria!

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Vienna was probably the most beautiful place I visited on this trip. Well the old town was. It’s funny because all of the European cities have these amazing places that tourists visit, but then they also have normal places with normal homes and grocery stores. Just like in the US we have cities like Los Angeles where tourists see the sites, but they don’t go to the suburbs to see where the real life happens haha. We saw the “tourist” sites or the old cities because we really wouldn’t be too interested in visiting the suburban area of Prague or Berlin. In Vienna I got to walk around a suburban area outside of the tourist part and I thought it looked just like a suburban area in a US city. Well the roads were smaller but other than that it was close. The houses had yards with trampolines and cars parked in the driveways. It’s funny to think about because Europe is so “romanticized” in everyone’s mind.

I stayed at Hotel Amadeus which was right by the center! It was another great location to stay at. The hotel was a little old fashioned but it was only a 5 minute walk to the tourist sites. The first day I walked around the center and made sure to pick up a SIM card for my phone. I also bought my ticket for the hop on hop off bus tour. These bus tours have really made site seeing so amazing. You can go all around the city and see everything but only go inside what you are really interested in. And the bus tour in Vienna had 3 lines PLUS a river and walking tour. The next morning I woke up and hopped on the bus at the Royal Opera House. I got off at the Schonbrunn Palace. I wasn’t planning on buying a ticket to go inside, but once I arrived I just loved it. The lines for the tickets were so long. Luckily I had my SIM card in my phone so I could use the internet. I purchased a ticket online and skipped the line all together. I walked through the manicured garden and hiked to the top to see the lake. The grounds just went on forever! I think you could spend 2 days alone at this palace. There is a zoo, gardens, chariot rides, and the palace itself. The outside of the palace is yellow now, but it used to be BLUE AND PINK! This is a major reason why this place is my favorite in Europe so far. It was so interesting seeing where Marie Antoinette was born and I was actually in the room where Mozart performed for Maria Teresa. These rooms were so ornate, much more than any other palace or castle I’d been to. I wish I had enough time to go to the palace zoo because they had PANDA BEARS! But I will save that for next time.

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Here was the Belvedere Palace in Vienna. It was also very beautiful, although not kept up as well. It was also less than half the size of the Schonbrunn Palace.

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Down the street from my hotel there was this little pizza shop that was SO SO good. The pizza was all handmade and you got 2 slices for 3 Euros. I had dinner there every night! I spent the morning of my 26th birthday in Vienna. When I went down to eat breakfast the hotel gave me a bottle of champagne and greeted me with birthday wishes. I was shocked because I didn’t expect that at all. It was nice, since I would be spending my birthday by myself anyways. This was the end of the road for me. I was headed back to the US, but first I had to fly from Vienna to Frankfurt, then Frankfurt to Dulles. I stayed in Dulles overnight and hopped on my next flight to North Carolina the next day, where I met Audrey and Tom. Then finally from North Carolina to Denver. Ahhhhhhhhh I need a nap just typing it all out.

 

08.09.14

Belgium!

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Hello from Europe! The last 3 days we were in Brussels, Belgium. How exciting right…..well it was wet but fun. We enjoyed out bus tour and saw all there was to see. Of course we had Belgian chocolate and Belgian waffles! WOW they were so good actually. I am not even a fan of chocolate but this stuff was good. A medium size box was a whopping 65 Euros!!! WHAT! I know, that is crazy expensive. There are literally dozens of chocolate shops all over the place. It’s hard to choose which one to go to. Today was fun. We made our way from our hostel in Brussels to the train station to head to Amsterdam. My cousin Katrina basically killed her bag. She pulled the handle off so she ended up tying a sports bra onto it in order to pull it. After asking several people which train to take and which way to go, we eventually found our way to Amsterdam. We got to our apartment which wasn’t ready yet, so we waited outside. We ended up making friends with some of the neighbors………well they tried to make friends with us more likely. Honestly Brussels was pretty crazy when it came to the men. They literally would howl at us as we walked down the street. And the constant, OBVIOUS staring was a little intense. Anyways, back to Amsterdam. We are here now and our apartment is very nice…..once it was ready for us. The cute little owner greeted us and actually helped us with our bags. He was very friendly and my cousins were flirting with him. They actually invited him out with us. So now we are here! Updates coming soon! xoxo – xo