Paris Weekend Recap: Day 1

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One of my weekends while I was abroad this past spring a few friends and I jetted off to Paris for the weekend.  I knew from the getgo that I wanted to visit Paris during my time abroad however many people were very apprehensive after all the terrorist activity that had occurred there just a few months before.  However, I shared my philosophy with them, that being, you can’t live your life in fear because that is what they want.  Obviously you can’t be stupid and you have to be on your guard at all times but I didn’t want these terrible events to prevent me from visiting such an iconic and beautiful city!

It took my friends and I a while to actually pull the trigger and book this trip due to the costly plane tickets and wanted to find a decent airbnb.  But we finally were heading to Paris!!  I was so excited and I knew that we had such little time that I wanted to plan out the weekend.  I researched the heck out of what things were must sees.  Pinterest is always my go to place to start and I found so many good posts on what to do and what to skip.

While we usually flew out thursday nights for trips, we ended up finding a cheap super early 6:30 am flight (which meant we would be getting up at 3:30 in the morning…) and this way we would save money on not having to pay for an extra night in Paris.  Plus this still gave us basically an entire first day to explore.  I was also very excited because one of my best friends who was studying in the south of Spain would be joining me on this trip! We flew into Charles DeGual airport where we met our other roommate who was flying in from Barcelona.  We figured out the train system, bought tickets and headed to our airbnb.  We couldn’t check in right away so we decided to grab brunch.  We ate at this adorable little cafe.  We then headed to the Airbnb to drop off our luggage and freshen up a bit before we headed out for the day.

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Our first stop was Notre Dame.  We hopped on the metro when we got off it was so surreal walking up the steps and emerging into the heart of Paris.  I couldn’t believe I was actually there.  We walked around exploring Notre Dame for a little before deciding to climb up to the tower of the cathedral.  The line was long but manageable.  After 35 minutes of waiting we made our way to the front.  Normally you have to pay to get up to the top of one of the towers but we decided that we would try to see if our student visas would get us in for free. Sure enough because we were technically considered European Union residents we were able to get free entry! Score!! We climbed the more than 300 steps up a narrow spiral staircase to the top.  The views were stunning and you could see the Eiffel Tower in the distance.  It was actually a little overcast while we were up there but it made taking photos easier without the blaring sun.

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After that we of course had to stop for crepes and then we made our way over to Sainte Chapelle Cathedral, where we found out that it was closed for a concert but would be open the next day.  We then just sort of wandered through Paris with our end destination being the Arc de Triumph.  We walked and walked and walked, stopping here and there to marvel at the beauty of Paris.  We walked down the Champs-Elysee, which is like the time square of NYC with all the name brand shops and restaurants, until we reached the Arc.

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We were able to go up to the top of the arc for free with our student visas so definitely bring your passport and visa along if you are a student studying abroad! We got up there right as the sun was beginning to sink and the views were truly breathtaking!  We climbed another 300 or so steps up a winding narrow spiral staircase to the top.  After barely making it to the top (being dramatic here 😉 we were very winded but boy was it so worth it!  We also couldn’t get over how far we had walked from the start of our day over by Notre Dame! After spending quite a while waiting our turn for the great photo op locations and snapping tons of photos we headed back down just as the sun was sinking into the horizon.

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We found a mediocre restaurant for dinner but we were just so hungry from such a long day of exploring we didn’t have the energy in us to hunt for a good spot.  Food is food right?! We made it in to the restaurant just in time because the skies opened up and it began to pour.  When we finished dinner it was just drizzling out so we decided to head over towards the Eiffel Tower.  When you are in Paris you have to watch it sparkle! We hadn’t researched it before had so we asked a worker who said that it began to twinkle every hour beginning at 11 pm.  We had about 40 minutes to kill so we just hung out along the river across from the tower chatting and waiting for the magic to happen.  And when it did let me tell you, it was magical.  I looked ridiculous with my phone and go pro ready but I made sure to get some footage and then turn everything off so I could take in the beauty without any distractions.

After the light show ended we headed back to get some much needed rest.

Paris Style Guide

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Heading into my trip to Paris you could only imagine the excitement.  I mean I would finally be visiting PARIS!! I knew I had to have two killer outfits for my weekend trip.  I started brainstorming and researching on pinterest for inspiration.  But because it was spring in Europe the weather was so up and down I didn’t know what to wear.  My roommates thought I was so extra because the day before we left I came into their room (I unfortunately didn’t have a mirror in mine…I know it was a pain) so I could try on some possibilities.  Lets just say that there were several mass snaps sent out of my extra-ness #bloggerprobs

Okay so little side story.  One Christmas when I was probably 6 all I wanted was a beret.  I remember opening it up Christmas morning and insisting on wearing it all day haha. I actually ended up bringing the beret to Spain with me knowing I wanted to wear it if I ever went to Paris.  so I knew I had to incorporate my beret into one of my outfits one of the days! All of my friends thought it was hysterical.  They made me pose with a baguette in front of the Eiffel Tower as a joke.  It was too funny.

Anyways onto my two outfits.  The weather forecast for the weekend was rain, rain and more rain.  Just perfect.  I packed a bunch of options in case by some miracle the weather changed and by some stroke of magic we lucked out with the weather.  It only rained in the beginning of the day right when we landed.

Outfit Day One:

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Outfit 1:
The first day I wanted to wear my graphic tee that listed a bunch of famous cities and of course Paris was on there.  I scored it at Forever 21 for under $10 and I searched high and low for it on the web but for some reason it wasn’t available online.  To dress up the t-shirt I added a little neck scarf. I borrowed a black skater skirt from my roommate and then wore it with sheer tights and riding boots.  I also wore my long Eddie Baeur black coat over it that i could take on and off in case it rained or got cold.

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Outfit Day Two:

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Outfit 2:
This was my all out, Parisian get up haha.  I wore a stripped shirt with a big bow neck scarf,  a chambray skirt, riding boots and of course, the beret! I mean when in Paris am I right?! My friends made such fun of me but I just had to wear it.

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I was and still am obsessed with both of the looks I put together and wore for my weekend in Paris. They were both so comfortable but also chic and fit right into the Parisian style, so you can’t ask for much more than that 😉

Also here is the link to my Gopro video from my Paris trip! I would love for you to check it out and see what I was up to!

Also here is my Paris Recaps (Day 1) and (Day 2) if you are interested in what we covered during our weekend in Paris!

Thanks for reading!  Let me know if you like this type of post! It was a lot of fun to put together!

xo,
H

Poppy fields

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The other day my mom and I decided to go for a morning bike ride around town.  My parents recently purchased two new schwinn bikes for our beach house and I was itching to take them for a cruise.  It was a beautiful warm sunny morning and my mom and I had the best time exploring little side streets and looking at all the pretty houses in town.  There is one neighborhood in town that is my absolute favorite.  On a whim we decided to pull off and cruise through and that was when we stumbled upon two beautiful fields of wild flowers; one poppies, and the other a mix of wild flowers.

Of course we had to pull over and snap a few photos.  I wasn’t exactly in a cute outfit to snap photos, so we decided to come back later in the afternoon to shoot.  The fields were so breathtaking and you could even see the ocean in the background.  It was so funny because while my mom and I were snapping photos several people had stopped to take some pics too!

Because it was a hot day I decided to keep my outfit light, breezy and fuss free. I threw on one of my favorite easy summer dresses and a hat to block the scorching sun.  I then threw on a pair of white sunnies to give the look a vintage feel.  I couldn’t help but feel like I was channeling my inner Julia Engel during this shoot 😉  Her recent photos in all of the beautiful flower fields in France have me swooning.

Anyways, so glad I stumbled upon these beautiful wild flower patches.  I am hopping to hit some sunflower fields in August sometime. Isn’t Summer just the best?!

xo,
H

Morocco Trip Recap

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One of the weekends in March a group of friends and I booked a trip to Morocco through a tour agency called Discover Excursions.  It was such a cool and unique experience to be able to travel to Africa while studying abroad in Spain.  It was definitely a haul to get there but so worth it.

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**Also a little note on dress attire.  We were told to dress modestly due to the fact that most Moroccan people are Muslim and Muslim people dress a certain way for modesty.  While we did not have to cover our hair or faces we were asked to wear pants or skirts that covers our knees and shirts that covered our shoulders. So I ended up wearing a stripped tunic and jeans one day and slowly pants and a t shirt another day because it was pretty warm for the beginning of March.

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The first day we drove about an hour to Chefchauen, or as many commonly refer to it as, “the blue city”.  We had this adorable old man who was a native of the city give us a little tour before we headed to lunch.  We ate in this very cool restaurant that had amazing decor.  The food was delicious too. After that we had a couple hours of free time before we had to get back on the bus and head to the hotel.  My friends and I explored and popped in and out of all of the little shops.  We also took too many pictures to count.  There was just a pretty location to shoot around every corner.  My friends also needed up getting henna which is super popular in Morocco. The store owners were very aggressive sales people but we were told that we had to bargain down the prices.  I bought a couple of cool postcards and then a really cool hand made stripped wool throw.

We headed back to the hotel where were had a few hours to kill before dinner.  Because we were told not to leave the premise of the hotel (being out in Morocco alone as a tourist is not the safest thing) my friends and I just hung out in our hotel rooms.  After we had dinner there was a little party in the ballroom that the tour put on and then we headed to bed.

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The next day we drove to Asilah.  We walked around the old city, walked along the beach and then shopped some more.  We then had lunch and arrived at the beach in Tangier where we would be riding camels.  It was a short camel ride but man was it hard to stay on!  I don’t know how people ride camels for an extended period of time.  It was a very cool experience and one I will always remember.  We then had to drive back to catch our ferry back to Spain.

Morocco was such a beautiful country, so different from anywhere I had visited in my life.  I learned a lot about the people and customs and culture.  It gave me a taste of what Northern Africa is like and I would definitely love to visit again at some point.

Thanks for reading!

xo,
H

 

Doors of Morocco

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Let me start this off by saying that I have a thing for pretty doors. I don’t know what it is about them, but pretty doors are just so aesthetically pleasing.  If you scroll through my instagram you may find a door or two (or three 😉  But Morocco was the mecca of pretty doors.  Around every corner was a unique blue door, the shades and embellishments endless. So here is a little roundup of just a few of the many photos I snapped during my weekend trip to Morocco while I was studying abroad this spring.

Doors also have a symbolic meaning.  There are countless saying about doors. For example when one door shuts another door opens.  Opening new doors is a metaphor for new adventure and opportunity.  This trip was definitely about opening new doors and experiencing life and all it has to offer. Just another reason that I am drawn to them I guess 😉

I am actually redoing my bedroom at home right now and hope to incorporate one of these photos in a gallery wall I am planning to do.

Does anyone else have an obsession with unique and fancy doors or am I the only one?!

xo,
H

Peek into my Week

Sorry this post is getting up a day late! It was just such a beautiful day yesterday that I had to spend it outside!

Monday:
With the weather being pretty miserable my mom and I ran a bunch of errands.  We have a couple of crafty projects we are working on so we headed to Hobby Lobby.  Since we were over in that neck of the woods I couldnt resist stopping at Christmas Tree shops.  I found a few great deals including super cute wine classes that say “instant mermaid, just add wine”, I mean can it get any more perfect?! I also found some affordable frames for a gallery wall I am working on for my room down at the shore. You can always count on Christmas Tree shops haha

Tuesday:
Because it rained all day, I spent the whole day making photo books with pictures from my semester abroad.  Lets just say I had some technical difficulties and just the whole process of selecting the photos, laying them out, adjusting them and adding text can take a while (then I became a bit obsessive and had to force myself to stop adjusting everything haha) I made one for myself and one for my parents as a gift.  I ended up making them on Walgreens. I have made them on CVS in the past, but one of my friends made a really cute using Walgreens so I decided to give it a try.  Guys! They came out so cute! I am obsessed and I know that I will find myself flipping through this book for years to come.

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Wednesday:
The sun finally reappeared!! Praise the lord! I was finally able to work out in the sunshine, repot some plants and make these really cool stepping stones the garden down at the beach.  Because my dad and brother were gone for the night, my mom and I then decided to have a girls night and walked down to my favorite Mexican restaurant in town called Sayulita. Oh how I missed that place while I was abroad.  I ordered the Sangria (because I was missing Spain a little) and a lobster truffle taco and shared the delicious guac and chips with my mom.  To say I was stuffed was an understatement.  But of course your girl couldn’t leave without a doggie bag of churros con chocolate for later 😉

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Thursday:
My mom and I headed down to the beach to get our house ready for my girls weekend! We cleaned, did laundry and tidied up the house so it would be in tip top shape for when my fairf friends arrived!  I also clipped these beautiful peonies from our garden! How stunning!?

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Friday:
I finished up prepping for my girls weekend and then headed down to the shore.  I made this adorable cake for to celebrate two of my girl friends’ 21st birthday.  Does anyone else love decorating cakes as much as I do.  When my friends saw the cake they joked that my kids are going to have the best birthday cakes some day haha

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Saturday:
My friends arrived Saturday afternoon.  They were coming from Mass, Long Island, Connecticut and Jersey.  It was so good to see all of them after a long 6 months apart.  But the nicest thing is we picked up right where we left off as if no time had passed.  We spent the day laying in the sun at the beach just chatting and then had a cute little photo shoot at the beach after dinner when the sun was setting. It was a fun day full of lots of food, beach and laughs.

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Sunday:
We woke up had breakfast and then most of my friends hit the road by noon so that they wouldn’t hit the weekend traffic.  I then went on a nice bike ride around town and relaxed the rest of the day.  The weekend was a blast but boy was I wiped by the end of it!

I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend and is off to a good start of the week!

Random Wanderings

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My friends and I had a bunch of time to kill before our tour began so we decided to just wander around the nearby white washed city.  Nerja actually really reminded me of Greece.  Most of the buildings were white with blue accents.  While we were exploring we found a dirt road that we assumed led to the ocean.  We figured what the heck, lets check it out.  And OMG it was quite the adventure that brought us to the most beautiful cliff ledge.  You could not access the beach without scaling down a steep path and considering the clothing we were wearing we decided against that.  However the views from the cliff overlooking the ocean were stunning.  There were also these gorgeous wildflowers blooming everywhere.  So my friends and I proceeded to do what any other group of girls would do; have a little photoshoot 😉

I decided to set the mood with a little music from my phone.  Because I was in such a good mood I proceeded to sing along (very badly) until my roommate threatened to push me off the cliff if I didn’t stop haha.  We were laughing so hard.  It was one of my favorite memories of the trip and it just goes to show you that sometimes you just have to let yourself get lost.  You don’t always have to have plans, because just seeing what a place has to offer allows you to really experience it.  And you never know what you will stumble upon!

Thanks for reading!

xo,
H