I’m not hungry.

“I’m not hungry.”

The one sentence that has influenced my life more than any other. It started out as a lie which I used to get out of eating in public, or even in my own home but then manifested into the thing that would control my life.

My relationship with food is a love/hate one. mostly hate. I had phases of my life where I would say I had an eating disorder. During those times though I never would’ve classified myself as having an eating disorder simply because I didn’t think I was taking extreme actions to lose weight. In my head, I simply wasn’t eating.

It started as a control method because what I ate was the one thing in my life I could mostly control. I can’t pin point an exact age at which I started telling myself this lie, but it was around age 13. It started out simply enough with a crash diet of not eating any candy or chocolate for 3 months. While this started out as a good diet because I did tend to get most of my calories from candy, I took the results from this diet way too far. After a few months of not eating candy, I lost 13 pounds. And as soon as I saw those numbers drop on the scale, I was hooked. I would start trying to lose even more weight in order to see the number on the scale move down.

Now while limiting your candy and sweets can be smart, and beneficial for many people, where it can get dangerous is when you don’t replace those calories with anything healthy. So when I went on my candy-free diet, I simply cut out close to 800 calories a day or more from my daily calorie intake. And while yes if you want to lose weight you need to maintain the “more calories out than in” regime, normal people are still eating close to 1,500-2000 calories a day. I however just went from 2000 calories a day to barely 1000.

7 years later, I still have to tell myself to eat every day. I am still hesitant to say I had/have an eating disorder simply because I feel like my case was not that severe. I didn’t get to the point of being so skinny that someone off the street could instantly tell I was not healthy. I did however shrink my literal stomach so that I could eat less then 1 full meal a day and feel more than full.

When a person stops eating the proper amount of food every day, your body will begin to lose weight, which is to be expected and is why some people will do a quick diet that consists of eating a leaf of lettuce a day right before a wedding or whatever they want to look slimmer for. However; if you keep up this habit, you will reach a point where you stop losing weight. For me, I didn’t completely starve myself, because then I would’ve died (duh). I did still eat because family dinner was always a part of my day. So dinner was when I would eat something, mind you it was a very small something, but it was enough to try to convince my family I was eating and that I was fine.

So, back to the science-y stuff. When you are basically starving yourself but then eating something at least once a day, your body goes into survival mode. You stop turning your food/calories into energy (glucose) and instead turn the calories into fat reserves (if you want a more detailed explanation just ask me). Your fat reserves then are now what your body runs off of. Your brain tries to tell you you’re hungry and that you need food (the ghrelin hormone) but your mental state is compromised because you shut off your receptors and eventually become immune to the “I’m hungry” feeling. By this point you’ve basically rewired your body. I currently still can go over 24 hours without feeling “hungry” but clearly my body needs food, but my hormones are out of wack so I am not receiving the message that its food time.

After seeing the results of the candy-free diet, I started my “not eating” diet. This lasted on and off for a year. I lost around 20-30 pounds but then I stopped losing weight. In fact i started gaining weight again! My body was resorting to getting its glucose (that’s the energy giver hormone) from muscles and tissue and then turning all the calories I consumed into fat which is definitely not what I wanted.

Well after a few years of trying to lose weight through not eating, and doing numerous crunches, squats, lunges, push-ups, chin-ups; my weight reached a stand still. My brain however started to smarten up and stopped feeding me the lie that I wasn’t good enough, and that I was just a fat blob. My friends especially helped me to get to this point. They never gave up on me, and would always look for ways to encourage me to see that I wasn’t as fat as I thought I was.

So now where am I? Well, while I still struggle to remember to eat 3 healthy meals a day, I don’t get mad at myself for eating a full plate of food, I don’t weigh myself everyday, and when I do weigh myself, I don’t start crying when I see the number. Instead, I try to smile, pick my head up, look at myself in the mirror and give myself a lil nod like “You got this.” It may sound cheesy or dumb but hey I’ll take it over crying on a bathroom floor.

Now while this may have been a slight downer of a post, typing it up was actually encouraging for me. While I still struggle to eat a healthy amount, it is encouraging to see how far I’ve come. I appreciate each and every one of you readers, and if you have any questions at all about anything, feel free to drop me a comment and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can!

Have a wonderful day!

Advertisements

Monroe to Bham

I’m a horrible blogger. I have 4 drafts saved from my previous attempts at jumping back into the blogging world containing my random life happenings, some interesting life developments, and even some deep, personal information I’d love to tell you all about, and yet hitting the “publish” button still haunts me. I don’t know why I let my fear of being judged or seen as weird stop me from simply being myself. So here’s to actually publishing something that is maybe funny, maybe interesting, and definitely personal.

One month ago I moved up to Bellingham so that I could start my Juinor year of college at Western Washington University. The process of getting to moving day was an interesting one. There were a few hoops and hurdles to jump over, but after running straight into a few of them and falling on my face, I managed to get thru them. Sometimes life is like that. The key is to not stay on the ground too long after biffing it. Sometimes it’ll seem like no matter how hard you try to get thru something, you will still end up just falling on your face time and time again. And that can be discouraging. It may even tempt you to give up on your goal, to quit and find something easier, and less painful to accomplish. But don’t give up! Get back up, and look for another way to get to your goal, and maybe look for others who can help you reach your goal.

I love college. I love learning, making new friends, and this quarter apparently I love getting beat up which can be seen by my multiple bruises. (I’m taking a martial arts class and a self defense class don’t worry I’m not getting in street fights.) This quarter so far has been my favorite yet. Maybe it’s due to being in a new school, or maybe it’s the feeling of actually being at a real college (no offense Everett Community College, but Western is better), or maybe it’s due to learning how to knock over a guy who’s 135lbs heavier then you and getting him pinned to the point where he has to tap out before I break his arm . (I’ll share that story at some point but long story short: Jiu-jitsu is insanely fun)

I’ve been asked “So why are you at Western?” prolly like 40 times this month. Soo here’s my attempt at informing any curiosities anyone in my life might have; I’m pursuing getting my Bachelors of Science with a major in Kinesiology. “Oh nice!” is the usual response, followed by: “ok but what is that and what will you do with it?” Well that’s when I have 2 options: the short answer, or the long, sciencey, personal answer. For right now, I will give you the short answer, and if I get my act together, a second blog will be up soon with the longer version.

The short answer is that Kinesiology is the study of the bodies movement, and I’ll be focusing on the health and fitness aspect of it. With this degree, I hope to get a job working in a rehab center for people struggling with eating disorders. So over the next 2 years I’ll be taking numerous kinesiology classes, and I’m insanely excited! I should find out by the end of the month if I got the major or not because with this major there are only a certain amount of people who can get in, and it’s ranked by who has the GPA, so I’m hopeful that I’ll get in.

So besides starting here at Western, this year has held many different adventures. Most were fun, and full of laughter, while a few were not, and were rather full of emotions and tears.

At the beginning of the year, I had the privilege of being in Florida with my mom and grandparents! A week in the sun and sand was exactly what I craved and I always love spending as much time with my grandparents as possible.

After getting home and starting my second to last quarter at EVCC, in February, our dog Mollie started to have some health problems. She had her first seizure in front of me while mom was in Calgary, and dad was at work. Liz had no idea what was wrong so after calling dad, I took her to the vet to get her looked at. A few tests later we were told there was nothing really wrong that he could pinpoint, and if we wanted we could put her on anti-seizure medicine for the rest of her life. We didn’t do that, and when Mollie got home she seemed almost back to normal. The next few weeks are kind of a blur as nothing really crazy happened. However, one night I woke up to Mollie whining and panting like crazy at like 4 am. I held her and tried to comfort her as much as I could, in order to calm her down if possible. After a few long, tear filled hours of not making any progress, I got mom up and told her I couldn’t get her to stop whining. I then went to school and mom took her to the vet again, where then they were sent to a different vet. That’s when we found out she had a tumor in her heart that was filled with liquid making it difficult to breath. They drained the tumor, and gave her some anti-seizure medicine but there was nothing else we could do. The next few days were filled with numerous seizures and we never knew if she would make it thru the night. I never cried more than I did that week (even now I’m crying writing this). It finally got to the point where she would have up to 20 seizures a day, and she no longer could walk, and would spend all day in a towel cuddled up on someones chest. We finally had to make a decision about what to do. She clearly was in great pain and suffering, and we never would have the same Mollie back. So Wednesday, February 22nd, I woke up, said goodbye to her, and went to school. The plan was to have the vet come to the house while I was at school and she would be put down at our house and then taken away. However due to scheduling, he wasn’t able to come until I was home from school. It is so hard to explain just how sad and emotional that day was. Most of my memories growing up include her, and her adorable little puppy face. I gave her one more kiss, hug, and then that was it. She was gone. I’ll never forget that lil pup. I miss her everyday still, and while that may sound excessive or even stupid; I don’t care. The weeks after that were not the easiest. Little reminders were all around the house; her favorite toy, her collar, even just her spot by the TV was enough to bring tears to my eyes.

Then came April along with Matt’s 21st Birthday which was spent shooting guns for my first time, and eating pie. The week after that brought with it another of the roughest week’s I’ve had to face. After much consideration and inner turmoil I decided to end our relationship. I did not feel like we would’ve had a successful marriage, and since we were dating in order to see if we could be married, breaking up seemed like the decision that needed making. I do not blame anyone except myself for how it happened, and I do not regret the year and half that we dated at all.

After all that sad/bummer adventures, the next adventure thankfully was an awesome one! One of my best friends Sage and I decided to find a place to live in Bellingham pending our acceptance to Western. Fast forward a few weeks and we found one! Holy moly that seems like ages ago when in reality it was just 5 months ago!

Then summer FINALLY came, and it was one to remember! I started it off with a bang and bleached my hair and went for an ombre look! (ok technically “I” didn’t bleach it…. my insanely talented friend Dineke did it, and thanks to a modeling opportunity, it only cost me 20$ instead of prolly 100$) I then spent a lot of time outside with friends, whether it be climbing mountains trying to find a cliff jumping spot but finding out the water was about ehhh -500 degrees…. so instead just having a picnic on the rocks, or spending days at the lake getting roasty toasty and eating our weight in strawberries, or just tossing a lopesided ball back and forth in a pool. It was an amazing summer.

Summer wrapped up, and turned into moving season! September 15th FINALLY came around and so with help from mom and dad, all my stuff (mostly clothes…hehe) got trekked up to Bham, and then the unpacking could begin! It is so much fun to have a place that’s your own to set up however you want it! Its also super cutely decorated thanks to Sage and her mom, because let’s be real, I have no preference for what things look like. A few more weels go by and here we are, starting week 4 of school where I have 3 exams this week, and I’m just so excited about that. ha. ha.

Well if you made it to then end, consider yourself decently caught up on my life! I hope to better about blogging (ya ya I know I’ve said that before but this time I mean it!) and hopefully I’ll have that long version for why I chose Kinesiology as my major up in a few days!

Have a fantastic rest of your beautiful day!

Welp. That happened…

Well 2016 was a thing wasn’t it? You hear about everyone complaining about it being “the worst year ever” or “could 2016 get worse?” or even people setting up a GoFundMe page for someone to go protect Betty White till 2017 (they raised over $3,000.)
And while there is a lot of “bad” that happened in 2016, there was also so much good that happened! At least in my life there was. So! Here is some of my highlights from the best year yet: 2016.

JANUARY:

Well when the clock struck midnight on December 31st, 2015; I was in the most exciting place ever to ring in a new year. not. Due to a delayed flight, my family and I were in a hotel room in Los Angeles…
tenor

Yeah no. Anyway…

Later in January I had my “first” official date with Matt which was amazing.20160118_164949

Few days later I hit my Golden Birthday! What better way to celebrate turning 19 then with a sleepover in a fort!picture1231161112_1

FEBRUARY

February held a few adventures, including going on a ride-along with Everett Police Department, which was an amazing, adrenaline pumping experience!12657407_1664585093794592_6008927274055195887_o

Then on Valentine’s Day, a day I previously had never really enjoyed, my valentine gave me some pwetty pwetty flowers. (and yes I spelled it that way on purpose)
12715926_1665536707032764_2139141623645616026_o

A few other things happened in February like me becoming an accidental serial cat killer… whoops… and then later in the month, my sister Liz and her boyfriend, and Matt and I went to a Rend Collective concert which was an amazing night full of worship and dancing!

MARCH

March started with me being sick as a dog, cramming to finish a research paper only to find out in class the next day that the due date got pushed till the next week… still a smidge salty bout that… (ps i’m told being salty equals being butthurt or annoyed. so yup fun fact)

Later in March, I embraced my hairdresser side and dyed my sisters hair. It was a bonding experience.
12841454_750065828427064_5494903616719480233_o

Spring Break I flew out to visit my best friend Caroline, and many fun times were had! 10409561_1134380099906412_922766028785514449_n

APRIL

April started with donating blood, getting my veins complimented, agonizing/dying a little every day in Math class, and then finding out just how ungraceful I am by going ice-skating for Matt’s Birthday! (and yes, that’s his smolder and this was also before I fell on my rear about 58 times)13051649_1689137544672680_4544230608980731067_n

ITS GUNNA BE MAY

In May, Liz, Lauren (or more commonly referred to as bro) and I went color running! I love the Color Run because it’s not timed (yay), while there is a few legit runners the majority is just people out for some fun (yay), you get covered in powdered paint every kilometer (yay), and after the race, you get to go party and covered in more paint (YAY!) so overall its just the funnest thing to ever do!
The before pictures…8fbf4fe4ccfe8b0539608d0a1cb8e45b

And the after!
13123260_777773215656325_7193913956314749647_o

Then later in the month Matt and I went to a friends birthday party and danced the night away! or well we tried to at least…

13221653_1696840047235763_2764802535997389262_nmatt-and-i-dancing

Then later our family and the guys went up to Mt. Baker National Park to attend my cousin Michelle’s wedding! We had a little cabin up in the woods with a hot tub which oh man… it was amazing… until you had to get out and run into the house before you froze to death.13246366_785039131596400_6709380961846047665_o

At the end of the month, Liz and I volunteered at Camp Gilead’s 5K River Run which raises money for camper scholarships! It’s always a super fun day filled with me jumping up and down cheering people on and basically getting the same workout as actually running the 5K! (in picture from left to right; Liz, me, and Alex) 13346249_1052212808182481_2030073853888462388_o

And then before the race started, I got the rare privilege of driving Jack’s golf cart! Which if you know anything about Camp Gilead, you should know that not just anyone gets to drive it. I was very excited.13323820_1052391218164640_6918586764764021230_o

JUNE

Well June rolled around and on the 4th Matt and I celebrated our 6 months of adventuring together!13315634_1705327873053647_3178780181500231661_n

A few days later had me swamped with finals and ready to just table flip every table I saw. But I settled with burning all of my math homework which was quite therapeutic let me tell you!!13406929_1706666969586404_6970120740558457206_n

Then it was graduation season! A few of my friends threw a party and of course I couldn’t resist the photobomb opportunity… sorry not sorry guys….

13391648_784684571631582_1373302378591361328_o

For Father’s Day we went to go see Finding Dory where we laughed till we cried, and then some of us just cried…. (I’m looking at you mom…)

13495503_10208885149278889_5915130637733017635_o

And then, well the greatest part of 2016 started. Over the summer I worked as a camp counselor at Camp Gilead, and it was one of the most amazing, enriching, growing experiences of my life. (This is not sponsored by Camp Gilead I promise)

At the end of June, we had a week of staff training, where we played games, learned about policies, and altogether had an absolutely amazing week making friendships to last a lifetime!

13501877_10153724264303753_3402445758520603455_n

First staff photo!

13502120_10153728902558753_4911106258147523274_n

Team games.. YU-KON DO IT

13512024_10153739181018753_6429366662603342703_n

Last day of training!

After a very short weekend we got CAMPERS!! And thus started the craziest week of my life! While I was insanely nervous about counseling my only 5 campers, it turned out to be an awesome week with crazy dress up days, water wars, and jumping off a diving board more times then I ever had before in my life. I also got to know my fellow girl counselors a lot more, and I can’t even describe how much of an impact this camp made on me.

JULY

July was full of trying to stay awake on Sunday mornings in church, and then driving back to camp in the evening for staff worship and meetings. Monday mornings we welcomed day campers, had breakfast and then went back to our cabins to wait for our campers to arrive!! The rest of the week was filled with skits, chapels, singing and jumping and singing and jumping, and swimming and crafts and archery and boating and dirtboarding and riflery and the super duper comfortable not at all painful slip’n’slide (so much sarcasm in that phrase oh man). Friday nights were campfire night where we got to hear about important spiritual decisions the campers had made that week, which is always very special and encouraging to everyone! Saturday mornings were quite bittersweet with saying goodbye to my campers and looking forward to that nap I got to take in the afternoon!
I also got to lead my campers in a Bible study every day, and I loved answering all their super random questions about anything and everything! When your campers grades range between Grade 3 and Grade 12 depending on the week, you can imagine the topics we covered! And yes, dinosaurs were discussed… Job 40:15 is a popular verse for that one.

So as you can see there was a lot that happened! lots of messy days, and fun staff meetings in the mornings, and amazing campfires every Friday night.

There was also a week of Family Camp in July which was so much fun and a totally different week then the others! 13559006_10153759944388753_8225319434027738429_oWe also got to be in a parade!! It was so exciting! I forgot to princess wave, and definitely regretted that about 2 minutes in when my arm already hurt…
13568969_10153759949948753_568752890094116902_o

AUGUST

August had 2 more weeks of campers, and then a final banquet for the staff and their family. I must admit I cried more that summer than I think I had before in my whole life. Lots of happy tears, lots of sad “I’m going to miss you” tears, and lots of “ow I fell down the hill again” laughing tears.
This picture is of my sister and I on banquet night, and we were quite happy to finally see each other again! (and yes I know, I have quite the tan lines… that’s what 8 weeks in the sun does!)13934609_824972550936391_288857481407160691_n

A few sleep filled days later, our family was off to Paris, France for a short vacation there before taking a train down to Venice, Italy to meet up with my dads side of the family where all 15 of us took a Mediterranean cruise! We hit up 2 cities in Croatia, and 4 cities in Greece! When we got back to Italy, we spent another few days there before flying back home! It was truly an amazing trip and it was so much fun spending time with our cousins and grandparents!

Here are some pictures from our time in Paris:

And then pictures from the Cruise!

These are from Zadar, Croatia:

And then Split, Croatia:

Then from some places in Greece:

So that wraps up August! Truly a trip of a lifetime!

SEPTEMBER

September started with me cleaning out some super lovely freezers…14316810_1741686722751095_8933200129965124535_n

And then starting my second year at Everett Community College!
14391022_1743141515938949_7781587614439600318_n

All in all, a pretty uneventful month but still good times were had!

OCTOBER

In the beginning of October, I got to be on the front cover of my schools newspaper which was kinda exciting!14713629_1752467841672983_9100195740815338075_n

Then for my Geography class we had a field trip to the middle of nowhere to do some super important data collecting… not the funnest way to spend the weekend… and then back in civilization everyone was bracing themselves for “THE STORM OF THE CENTURY” which ended up being the biggest embarassment to weather forcasting agencies everywhere. Meanwhile in the middle of nowhere, WE WERE IN THE TYPHOON!!! at least there was a double rainbow to make it less miserable. 14612537_1753746241545143_2269625614279645221_o

Took my doggie Gracie for an adventure which was thrilling!14925384_1762051990714568_2382528755426144444_n

Then  I got to experience carving a pumpkin for the first time which was truly an experience let me tell you! Oh man… the guts…the knives falling on my feet…it was so fun…14604861_1760422997544134_1236661699825446115_n

NOVEMBER

Near the beginning of the month I discovered I am not a big enough person to donate double red cells, but I am perfect for platelets donation! so a giant needle, and 70 minutes later I got to see what platelets and plasma looks like! Fun fact; plasma is yellow! 14962603_1761587047427729_8303564181678916544_n

Had a small camp reunion for the High School campers, which turned into a small “family” reunion for me and my “family” from camp!
Top picture is from during camp, and the bottom is at the reunion minus Jono aka the brother.family

Thanksgiving!!! A wonderful night filled with laughter, good conversation, and games! So that concluded a very fun November!

DECEMBER

December 4th was Matt and I’s anniversary of dating for a year, so to celebrate, we got a betta fish!! His name is Maraschino and he’s kinda crazy.

And then later that day, he took me out to very nice dinner! It’s been a crazy adventure with him, and I am so excited to see what other adventures we have together!capture

Then finals week hit. And oh man did it hit. 5 finals later me and my bro were quite happy to be done! I couldn’t have made it through the quarter without her! She makes me laugh all the time even when I’m benching and then I almost die which is awesome.15380276_1776820965904337_1343407342632828322_n

And then it SNOWED!!! I was very excited. So Liz and I went outside and frolicked to our hearts content!15420882_915972338503078_4536074170955468421_n

And then on Christmas Adam (the day before Christmas Eve) it SNOWED AGAIN!! All the happies were had and I loved it!15621702_1785376411715459_9041053267746689967_n

In our house, my sister and I have a tradition of sleeping under the Christmas tree every Christmas Eve! It’s so much fun and this time we caught the giggles and oh man it was hilarious.

15672864_1785865308333236_346152494706254045_n

And then when we wake up; IT’S CHRISTMAS!!! After church, we took a picture of us all fancy like, and then 2 minutes later I was back in my PJ’s ready to open presents!

15697697_10211631889412016_5980815577124620389_n

15665577_10210625532467381_9182853166023868963_n

One of my presents from my parents was tickets to go to the Science Center to go see the Sherlock Holmes exhibit and oh my goodness it was so much fun!! Matt and I solved the crime, and then went to the butterfly house and ahhh I found my little friends. 15726659_1786579524928481_3537190909821895372_n

Then 2 days later, my mom and I flew out to Florida to have a short vacation with my grandparents! I love every opportunity I get with my family whether it be in another state, continent, or just at home.

15697890_1787626458157121_4530935914658010238_n

15723793_1788080081445092_5460250448829987572_o

15822604_1788459811407119_927598467969028457_n

Not to mention there are beautiful sunsets and beaches here…

And with that; that concludes my year! If you made it to the end, congratulations you’re a trooper that’s for sure!

I hope you all have a wonderful New Year’s!! Be safe, have an adventure and here’s to the next greatest year ever!

Getting out of the funk

Life has way of grabbing you by the ankle and slowly putting you into what I like to call a funk. 

College life has been especially interesting lately… Just when I think I have a grasp on my mental stability, BAM! my professors decide it’s time for allllll the homework to be assigned. (oh joy) After 7 weeks of this routine, I’ve noticed the funk settling in. So how does one combat said funk?

Well, I’m glad you asked! Lucky for you, I have way too much a little experience with fighting off the funk. 

Step 1: Take a walk. This is usually most needed when you’ve been staring at your laptop for the last hour just waiting for your homework to do itself. Just take a step back, walk around the house a few times, say hello to fellow humans, get a drink of water, stick your head out the door to get some fresh air, or if you’re feeling really brave; take a walk outside! After a few minutes of not thinking about the 4 papers you need to start, the reading quiz that’s due at 11:59PM tonight, the interview you need to write questions for, the 2 tests you have to study for in the next week, and that extra credit assignment that is your last chance, you might just be ready to face the screen again.

Step 2: Get a good playlist set up. I find that this method works great for me, because being left alone with just my thoughts can be a truly interesting experience. There are so many awesome songs out there just waiting to be listened too! A few of my favorites are:
Tell your heart to beat again 
Please don’t go
Istanbul

Step 3: Have a little dance party all by yourself. Just close the door, turn on your favorite dancing song (we all have one), and do that one “dance” that everyone says is not a real dance until you make yourself smile.

Step 4: Talk to a friend.Let them know that you’ve been thinking about them and that you hope they’re doing well. Sometimes we can get so focused on our own lives and problems, we forget that we are not alone in this big ole world. Maybe they’re in a funk as well and you talking to them is exactly what they needed!

Well there you go, 4 semi-simple steps to kicking life in the teeth and throwing your funk back to where ever it slinks from.

And hey if you try these steps and you’re still funky, well I got one word for you: chocolate.

 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a map to make for my favorite class ever.

Farewell!!

 

P.S. more travel blogs are going to be up….. soon. 😀

P.P.S. I have Instagram now which is pretty hipster of me. citylifezebra check me (and my dogs) out!

Bonjour! (Part 3)

Bonjour again! I apologize for the long gap in between all these posts, college for me has started up again and its just as fun as ever! Anywho, more on college later but now here are more pictures from our days in the wonderful city of love!

dscn1825

This is in the Musée d’Orsay

dscn1826

3 beautiful Monet’s just waiting to be admired!

These next few paintings are by various artists, and they were some of my favorites!dscn1827dscn1828dscn1829-2dscn1833

dscn1835

One of Degas amazing ballerina figures

dscn1836

The view outside through one of the clock’s

dscn1837

dscn1839

I really liked this sculpture even tho it is not a full body, I felt like it represented what you might be feeling at the moment. very boxed in and without much character.

dscn1840

Small model of the Statue of Liberty

dscn1841

While walking to our Metro station, we went over one of the lock bridges, and even tho I didn’t place a lock, I still took a picture of them. There were hundreds!

dscn1842

Next stop was to the Arche de Triomph which was truly beautiful

dscn1843

dscn1845

After a few hundred stairs, we got a beautiful view of the city.

dscn1846dscn1849

dscn1852

Gotta get a selfie with the Eiffel Tower coming out of your head

dscn1856

The tomb of the unknown solider which is directly underneath the Arche de Triomph

dscn1858dscn1861

dscn1864

The sun setting behind the Eiffel Tower was a beautiful sight

dscn1866

It was also really beautiful to look around at the surrounding city basking in the glow from the setting sun.

dscn1872

dscn1874

As the Eiffel Tower lit up with its sparkles, it was such a beautiful sight!

dscn1877

dscn1879

When the sun disappeared behind the clouds.

dscn1882

One final shot of the night of the amazing view.

So that was another day! The next days will be up (hopefully) shortly!

Thanks for reading!

 

Bonjour! (Part 2)

So day 3!

Fun fact about Paris: it actually smells good! Not just the people, but the general air smells of beautiful flowers, fresh baked pastries, and some really good perfumes.

So after waking up to wonderful smells and having a quick breakfast we headed out to navigate the Metro, and found our way to take a “hop on hop off” bus tour, which is always a great way to get a scope for the city you’re touring and to see what areas you’d like to spend more time at!

Here’s a few of the sights I saw!

dscn1769

Notre Dame

dscn1770

dscn1775

dscn1783

dscn1785

A nice little view of the Eiffel Tower! And nooo it’s not like the movies where everywhere you go, you get a beautiful glimpse of it in the background. There’s many places you can’t see it. BUT this was not one of those places so yay!

dscn1786

See that tiny little gold looking doohickey riiiiight behind the street light? That is a replica of the flame that Lady Liberty in New York holds proudly above her head. This flame has been adopted as an unofficial memorial for Princess Diana after her tragic death in 1997.

dscn1788

We took a little stop along the Seine River and took a river cruise on it!

dscn1790

dscn1791

Cruised right by the Musee d’Orsay, where we were planning on going the next day.

dscn1792-2

Then we saw Notre Dame, which is spectacular!

dscn1795-2

dscn1796

And the all around scenery was just beautiful! It was also nice to be catching a little breeze off the water, as the weather was usually in the high 90’s (or low 30’s Celsius) plus some super pleasant humidity.

dscn1797

This guy was showing off by popping wheelies and I was secretly hoping he’d fall a little bit… but noo he was too good.

dscn1799

Add in an attempted nice picture with the sis… and you’ve got a typical sister picture.

dscn1801

Then we passed the Hotel des Invalides, which is now a museum dedicated to the military history of France, and as a hospital and a retirement home for war veterans which is what the building’s original purpose was..

dscn1804

Then it was off the boat, and after a delicious crepe eaten in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, we were back on the bus to continue the sightseeing!

dscn1808

This is the Palais Garnier, which is the setting Gaston Leroux based The Phantom of the Opera on.

dscn1809

Place Vendôme is a square where the Vendôme Column was originally placed by Napolean I to commemorate the Battle of Austerlitz.

dscn1810

Just some flower boxes lining the streets.

dscn1811

dscn1813

Then we swung by Notre Dame, and it’s even more amazing up close!

dscn1814

There are beautiful stain glass windows inside.

dscn1817

dscn1818

Liz and I were interested in climbing up the 387 steps to the top of the tower, so we went and waited in line for a good hour. Then we finally started climbing, and about 50 steps in, you pop out into a gift shop/ ticket sales. Apparently you have to pay to climb up, but that information is not advertised anywhere, and Liz and I did not have any Euro’s on us… soo we went back down and never got that hour of our life back. C’est la vie.

When we finally got back to our place, we enjoyed some time not walking, or really moving for the most part, which was great seeing how we walked approximately 15,000 steps a day. Which was actually good seeing how many pastries we were consuming.. but hey when in France eat a crap ton of fluffy goodness eh?

We waited till the sunset, and then headed to the Eiffel Tower to watch it sparkle as it does every hour. It was a very romantic sight, and it was beautiful.

dscn1822

 

So that was our crazy long day, but it was all very worth it!

Stay tuned for more parts of the adventure!

 

Bonjour! (Part 1)

Recently, I was on a crazy, amazing adventure! My family and I went to Paris, France for a few days before taking a train to Venice, Italy where we boarded the Rhapsody of the Seas for a beautiful cruise of Croatia and Greece, and then after that we were back in Venice for a couple days!
So of course I played tourist and snapped some tangible memories to share with the world!

This is my sister Liz who was the perfect adventure buddy. We were waiting at the Vancouver airport Saturday morning and we were super excited!!

toparis

After a fantastic 10 hours of flying, and thanks to wonderful time zones, we arrived in Paris Sunday morning!

We had the owner of the flat we were staying in pick us up from the airport and drive us home, which was awesome, seeing how we drove around the Arch de Triumph which is the craziest roundabout on the planet! You basically speed in and then pray until you get out.

dscn1778

This is it from ground view…

dscn1854

And this is the view from the top! (It’s like a million stairs to the top; stay tuned for that fun story)
So you see all those lanes coming from different areas? Yeeeup they all miraculously merge into the middle and you can see why it’s a nail biting experience…
Anywho… we get to the flat annnnnd 50 stairs up to the beautiful little flat, and a short nap later; we headed to the Eiffel Tower (which was conveniently 10 minutes away).

lizandi

Funny story; right before we took this picture, Liz and I were approached by two ladies who didn’t speak a lot of English (which we were getting used to) and somehow we almost signed some petition for a charity thing… we weren’t really sure.

dscn1768

It was STUNNING!
Super tall, so that’s pretty great, and basically just like the pictures. imagine that.

After that we headed to a little grocery shop, grabbed some great cheese, then went to a bakery and grabbed some delicious fresh bread and crazy amazing pastries.

A little while later, jet lag hit us so after some planning for our crazy busy next day, we hit the hay.

So that was day one/ two of our awesome European adventure!

Part 2 of this will follow shortly, I just didn’t want to completely overwhelm you with an insanely long post.

Au Revoir!