San Francisco

fullsizeoutput_4997These past few days I was in San Francisco, where I met up with a friend from Frankfurt, Germany! She was attending a conference in the states, so we decided to make a little trip of it. We were lucky enough to stay with two of her friends, who quickly became mine as well. They were so kind to show us around the city and give us the royal San Francisco treatment. I’d been to the city twice before in my life, but it never gets old. It’s so artsy and unique, I could definitely envision myself there one day. I say that about a lot of places, but it’s true! Guess I’ll just have to live everywhere 🙂 fullsizeoutput_4998fullsizeoutput_4999fullsizeoutput_499afullsizeoutput_499bfullsizeoutput_499cfullsizeoutput_499dfullsizeoutput_499efullsizeoutput_499ffullsizeoutput_49ebfullsizeoutput_49a3fullsizeoutput_49a4fullsizeoutput_49a5fullsizeoutput_49a6fullsizeoutput_49a9fullsizeoutput_49eafullsizeoutput_49aafullsizeoutput_49abfullsizeoutput_49affullsizeoutput_49b0fullsizeoutput_49b1fullsizeoutput_49b2fullsizeoutput_49b3fullsizeoutput_49e9fullsizeoutput_49b4fullsizeoutput_49b5fullsizeoutput_49b7fullsizeoutput_49bbfullsizeoutput_49befullsizeoutput_49bffullsizeoutput_49c2fullsizeoutput_49c3fullsizeoutput_49c4fullsizeoutput_49c7fullsizeoutput_49c8fullsizeoutput_49c9fullsizeoutput_49cafullsizeoutput_49e8fullsizeoutput_49cbfullsizeoutput_49ccfullsizeoutput_49cdfullsizeoutput_49cefullsizeoutput_49cffullsizeoutput_49e7fullsizeoutput_49d0fullsizeoutput_49d1fullsizeoutput_49d2fullsizeoutput_49d3fullsizeoutput_49d5fullsizeoutput_49d7fullsizeoutput_49d8fullsizeoutput_49d9fullsizeoutput_49dafullsizeoutput_49dcfullsizeoutput_49ddfullsizeoutput_49defullsizeoutput_49dffullsizeoutput_49e0fullsizeoutput_49e6fullsizeoutput_49e4fullsizeoutput_49e5

New York City

fullsizeoutput_48e9I first came to the city when I was ten years old, then again when I was eighteen, and now as a twenty-two year old. Every time, I am overcome with the realization that wow, New York really is something special. And I know we’ve all heard the stereotype of the “mean/pushy New Yorker,” but I can honestly say every interaction I’ve had here has been lovely. People have stopped to help me on the subway, point me in the right direction, or just shoot the breeze in the park. Thank you NYC!

Again, this place feels so European to me, and makes me excited to return to Germany in August. I can most definitely envision myself living here one day, we’ll just have to see where life leads! Below are a few photos if you’d like to see 🙂fullsizeoutput_48f5fullsizeoutput_48f4fullsizeoutput_48f3fullsizeoutput_48f2fullsizeoutput_48f1fullsizeoutput_48eefullsizeoutput_48ecfullsizeoutput_48f5fullsizeoutput_48eafullsizeoutput_48f6fullsizeoutput_48e8fullsizeoutput_48e7fullsizeoutput_48e6fullsizeoutput_48e5fullsizeoutput_48e4fullsizeoutput_48e3fullsizeoutput_48e2fullsizeoutput_48e1fullsizeoutput_48e0fullsizeoutput_48dffullsizeoutput_48defullsizeoutput_48ddfullsizeoutput_48dcfullsizeoutput_48dbfullsizeoutput_48dafullsizeoutput_48d9fullsizeoutput_48d8fullsizeoutput_48d7fullsizeoutput_48d6fullsizeoutput_48d5fullsizeoutput_48d4fullsizeoutput_48d3fullsizeoutput_48d2fullsizeoutput_48d1fullsizeoutput_48d0fullsizeoutput_48cffullsizeoutput_48cefullsizeoutput_48cdfullsizeoutput_48ccfullsizeoutput_48cbfullsizeoutput_48cafullsizeoutput_48c9fullsizeoutput_48c8fullsizeoutput_4903fullsizeoutput_4904fullsizeoutput_4905fullsizeoutput_4906fullsizeoutput_4908fullsizeoutput_490afullsizeoutput_490bfullsizeoutput_490cfullsizeoutput_490dfullsizeoutput_490efullsizeoutput_490ffullsizeoutput_4910fullsizeoutput_4912fullsizeoutput_4913fullsizeoutput_4914fullsizeoutput_4915fullsizeoutput_4917fullsizeoutput_4919fullsizeoutput_491afullsizeoutput_491bfullsizeoutput_491cfullsizeoutput_491dfullsizeoutput_491efullsizeoutput_491ffullsizeoutput_4920

Santa Fe

fullsizeoutput_4105Why did no one tell me how amazing Santa Fe is?! Really, I think it is the most underrated city in the nation! It is the land of a million art galleries, artisan good shops, and green chili enchiladas. I spend the afternoon wandering the quaint streets, perusing the Georgia O’Keeffe museum and listening to live mariachi music in the town square. Friends, if you’re a fan of Southwest culture and, well, beauty in general, I implore you to check this place out!fullsizeoutput_4109fullsizeoutput_411bfullsizeoutput_411afullsizeoutput_4119fullsizeoutput_4118fullsizeoutput_4117fullsizeoutput_4116fullsizeoutput_4115fullsizeoutput_4114fullsizeoutput_4113fullsizeoutput_4112fullsizeoutput_4111fullsizeoutput_4110fullsizeoutput_410ffullsizeoutput_410cfullsizeoutput_410afullsizeoutput_410efullsizeoutput_410dfullsizeoutput_410bfullsizeoutput_411cfullsizeoutput_411d

an afternoon in Austin

img_2686Yesterday my little brother and I drove down to Austin to explore! It is the capital of Texas, something you can’t miss because the giant capital building is smack dab in the center of downtown. Congress Street leads up to its steps, and is lined with the cutest shops and restaurants you ever did see. Austin has very hip, chill vibes and I couldn’t get enough! Below are a few photos if you care to take a gander.img_2562img_2571img_2578img_2588img_2594img_2597^Inside the State Capital building. It is so beautifully designed, I was in awe!img_2609img_2611img_2622img_2632img_2646img_2647^A few trees hung on to their fall colors!img_2654img_2670img_2679^The Colorado river runs through the city center, and is spanned by several bridges. Fun fact: hundreds of thousands of bats live under the bridge during certain times of the year.img_2687img_2747^EP dropping soon…img_2755img_2760img_2763img_2765img_2781We went to the Hope Outdoor Gallery, where graffiti artists can have a hay day!img_2786img_2794^Lastly we stopped by a famous park in Austin where the popular music festival Austin City Limits is held each summer.

I would definitely recommend a trip if you’re in the area 🙂

A visit to LACMA

dsc02623Yesterday afternoon I went with my girlfriends Alexa and Sarah to the LA County Museum of Art, or LACMA, in downtown LA. It has a wide array of art, ranging from sculpture to painting to photography and more, as well as from ancient to contemporary styles. Sarah and Alexa are art majors, which is how we met back in the day when I was an art major, so it was fun to explore and appreciate the museum with them! LACMA is known for its unique art instillations like these lamp posts out front– below are a few photos if you’d like to see.dsc02577dsc02601dsc02616dsc02652dsc02659dsc02674dsc02681dsc02693dsc02694dsc02696dsc02700dsc02711dsc02719dsc02728dsc02729dsc02731dsc02749Have a good one friends!

Exploring Frankfurt

IMG_5341The day was overcast, rainy and actually quite chilly for June. As a native Californian, I am not used to even the slightest variation in weather– heck, anything below 70 degrees is frigid in my book! But I actually really enjoyed exploring the fog covered city, ducking into a cafe for a warm drink every now and again or meandering  through the mall when it began to drizzle. Below are a few photos from the day if care to peruse!IMG_5174IMG_5344IMG_5170IMG_5360^There is a beautiful park right next to my apartment that will be perfect for laying out when the sun returns!IMG_5189IMG_5193IMG_5199IMG_5203^Frankfurt is the banking capital of Europe, so there is no shortage of men in suits running around the city. I’m not complaining…IMG_5210IMG_5194^The Old Opera HouseIMG_5212IMG_5241IMG_5262IMG_5269^I love the seamless blending of old and new architectureIMG_5292IMG_5293IMG_5300IMG_5301IMG_5311IMG_5313IMG_5319IMG_5321IMG_5324IMG_5325IMG_5326IMG_5327^City Hall in the historic Altstadt (old town) areaIMG_5328IMG_5330IMG_5332IMG_5334Well, that’s all for today! I can’t wait to explore even more in the months to come. Now I’m cozied up at home with a cup of tea and a good book. What are you up to?

My First Week Back In Germany

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Hello from the other side of the pond! I made it to Germany on Wednesday night after a long, sleep deprived journey and have begun adjusting to life here. My first stop was Hildesheim, the city in Northern Germany where I spent three months last summer. I visited old friends and even got to spend an afternoon with the family I nannied for. I’m not sure if the three little kids really remembered me, but they sure were cute and fun to play with! Then yesterday I took the bus down to Frankfurt where I met up with one of the missionary. She showed me around downtown (pictured above) and pointed out all the essentials (grocery store, subway station, park, etc.)  Frankfurt is a beautiful city. Berlin, Munich or Hamburg often come to mind when people think of German cities, but Frankfurt is a true gem! It’s totally underrated– just big enough to stay exciting but small enough to feel like you can become an expert.

My German is coming back slowly but surely– it feels good to exercise my language muscles again! The main difference I’m noticing this time around is my confidence level. I’m not as afraid to open my mouth and make mistakes as I was before. I just go for it and hope for the best!

I miss my friends and family back home already but I can tell it’s going to be a good summer.

Processed with VSCO with c1 preset^The Altstadt in Hildesheim

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^A pretty garden I passed on my walk through Hildesheim

How are things with you?

 

Are You A Big City Person?

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 12.49.19 PMAre you a big city or a small town/country person? I grew up in a relatively small suburban town in the sprawling metropolis of Los Angeles. Downtown LA was only twenty or so minutes away, so we always had access to all the events and attractions a large city affords. As an eighteenth birthday/high school graduation present, my friend and I took a trip to NYC for a few days. I was immediately smitten and could totally picture myself living there one day. I could also see myself in places like Nashville, Seattle or Chicago. Of course I can appreciate the wide open spaces of the countryside or the intimacy of a small town, but at the end of the day I think I’d like to call a big city home.

A few of my favorite cities I visited while abroad were Berlin, Edinburgh and Hamburg. Oh, and naturally I fell head over heels for Paris (cliché but true)!

So what about you? What’s your preferred habitat?!

P.s. Photo via here

Seattle: A City Guide

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Howdy friends, how are ya’? Today I thought I’d share a little bit about my recent ‘Sibling Vacation’ to Seattle, Washington in the form of a city guide. Continue reading to pick up a few tips and tricks I garnered along the way that might help you in planning your next visit, sprinkled throughout some photos of this beautiful place. Enjoy!
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Why Seattle? If you love hipster, coffee, and striking sunsets, Seattle is the place for you! And honestly, who doesn’t love those things? Seattle has many apt nicknames: The Gateway to Alaska, Emerald City, Coffee Capital of the World, etc. No matter what you call it, one thing is true: Seattle is a place of arresting beauty. That, coupled with its fascinating history and range of outdoor activities, makes Seattle the perfect vacation destination! IMG_8577IMG_8574IMG_8546IMG_8550IMG_8571IMG_8545
Transportation My brother and I flew Southwest Airlines to Seattle Tacoma International Airport, which is located about 40 minutes outside the city center by car. Since we didn’t have a car, we took the Link LightRail into downtown Seattle, which only cost $4.00 for a regular ticket and is simple, fast, and clearly labeled. Plus, you skip the city traffic! Seattle has a great bus and street car system for easy transportation. My brother and I also utilized the ride service Uber.IMG_8192IMG_8203IMG_8227IMG_8218
Accommodations We stayed in an apartment through the website Airbnb, which I used frequently abroad in Europe but had never used in America until now! It was an ideal location downtown on the corner of First Street and University Street, walking distance to main attractions like Pike Place Market and the waterfront. Other great neighborhoods/areas to stay in include Pioneer Square, Westlake, and the area around the Space Needle.IMG_8649IMG_8632IMG_8491IMG_8484IMG_8477IMG_8458IMG_8423IMG_8362
What to Pack Seattle is notoriously rainy and unpredictable, but we were lucky enough to have 75 degree sunshine all three days of our trip, interrupted only by a small shower/thunderstorm one afternoon. July through September is when Seattle experiences the most predictably sunny weather, but I advise you to always pack an umbrella just in case! Oh, and comfy walking shoes never hurt either :pIMG_8369IMG_8352IMG_8347IMG_8340IMG_8336IMG_8332IMG_8322IMG_8320IMG_8317IMG_8316
Must See Spots
1. Gasworks Park-
This park, situated on the north shore of Lake Union, is on the site of a former Gas Works company, and still contains remnants of the factory structures. It offers stunning views of the Seattle sky line as well as Mount Rainier on clear days.
2. Pike Place Market– Opened in 1907, Pike Place is an iconic part of Seattle, and a must see spot for any tourist. It is the oldest continually operating farmers market in the U.S., and is particularly known for its delicious fish and colorful flowers.
3. Bainbridge Island- If you have a bit of time one day, hop on a ferry out to Bainbridge Island, thirty minutes off the coast of Seattle. We took the ferry around seven p.m. and saw the sunset reflecting off the skyline. Once on the island, feel free to walk along the footpaths, explore the adorable town of Bainbridge, and relax at one of the restaurants near the harbor.
4. Columbia Center Observation Deck- Originally we wanted to ascend the Seattle Space Needle, but the line was too long and the tickets were too pricey, so we opted for Columbia Center’s observation deck instead. It is the tallest sky scraper in Seattle, and offers panoramic views of the city and the surrounding areas. Plus, this way you can take pictures of the Space Needle, not just from it!IMG_8389IMG_8381
^The University of Washington campus!IMG_8231IMG_8304IMG_8228
Anything Else? If you’re a coffee addict lover like me, you must make the pilgrimage to the original Starbucks in Pike Place Market, as well as the Starbucks Roastery in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, where they roast and package the coffee beans for worldwide distribution. I promise, both will be religious experiences. #noregretIMG_8734IMG_8738IMG_8709IMG_8706IMG_8686
^Bainbridge Island.

Are you on photo overload yet? I just couldn’t narrow it down- they were all too beautiful! It’s impossible to take an ugly photo of Seattle. I hope you enjoyed this little post and found the information helpful. Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below! Oh, and don’t forget to watch my video of the trip here. Have a lovely week friends.

Seattle: A Short Film

Hey there friends, I hope you had a good Monday (if there is such thing!). I moved back up to school on Saturday and I’m busy preparing for the impending school year. Recently, my little brother and I took a three day vacation to what is aptly nicknamedThe Emerald City- no I’m not talking about Oz, but rather Seattle! I fell head over heels in love with this city, and quickly added it to my ever expanding list of places I want to live someday. I made a short film to capture our experience, and I hope you’ll take a moment to check it out. Enjoy!