October.

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetOctober. It’s here.

Part of me welcomes October with open arms, but another part of me is very nervous to begin this new season.

I feel like a school girl on her first day, all nerves and jitters and freshly pressed clothes. I even bought a new backpack! Ha. Is 23 is still young enough for a hair bow?

I am nervous to meet so many new people at once. It’s tough on this introvert. But I am also so excited to be surrounded by people my own age and in my same stage of life for the first time in over a year. It feels good to reference something pop-culture-y and be understood right away. Or to hang with my female roommates in the kitchen for hours after a meal.

There is something so intoxicating about Fall. The leaves, the air, the scarves. I just bought a new scarf yesterday and I haven’t taken it off since. I am a bundle of emotions right now, but at least 99.9% of them are positive.

Welcome, October. Let’s do this. IMG_0553IMG_0557IMG_0541IMG_0532IMG_0530

My New Home in Münster!

bce857d3-0b3d-4f2e-b2b6-9b7d181197b4I spent my first full day in Münster today. It was really great! My flight was, well, less than great. But I got through it and now I am enjoying the beautiful fall weather here in Germany. I love my flat and my flatmates, and am slowly starting to discover the city. Below are a few photos. Miss you already!50e22b96-3b36-4194-84df-f0bd05c4a96ae25d6545-1d8c-45c7-b43f-ffca367f14adde0c5909-0263-4a64-9539-9620db1bbb44b2b083ea-c3da-458e-a1b3-d9aae4d852dc2c8af37b-a6f6-4e31-b05a-db82bfb921c1The main university building. It is literally a castle. No joke.Processed with VSCO with c1 presetMy room. It is soooooo cool. I don’t know if I’m cool enough for it to be honest ;pProcessed with VSCO with g3 presetMy apartment buildingProcessed with VSCO with m5 preset5928d860-05d9-44a1-b6f9-30fef0be7a0f

Germany, Round Five

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Hello there friends, how are you? I am sitting on the couch in my pajamas at 3pm on a Saturday. All is well. All is very well. There is a huge rain storm in DFW right now, complete with thunder and lightning and flash floods– oh my! But coming from California, where it only rains like two days a year, I am secretly really enjoying this weather. It is so soothing.

Anyways, I wanted to tell you a little bit more about my upcoming adventure. I am returning to Germany on September 25th for two more years of grad school. I know, I know, you probably saw that one coming given my history of obsession with Germany. Sometimes I joke that I’m getting my Masters just so I can keep this travel blog going haha!

But I am very excited. And scared. Yes, I am really scared. I had a tough time last year in many regards, so I’m nervous to go back. But I know it’s the right decision. I learned so much last year, and I feel confident that this time will be 100 times easier because of those hard lessons.

Here is a link to info about my Masters program for those of you interested. I plan to keep blogging (duh) but will probably need a million weeks or so to get adjusted.

Hope your summer ended well! Cheers to Germany, round 5 🙂

P.s. Photo from here

Tag der offenen Tür Video

Here is a little video I made to capture ‘Tag der offenen Tür’ at my school. This is essentially a day when prospective students and parents come to check out our school! I did face painting and the classes put on booths, games, obstacle courses and much more. It was so much fun. Take a look 🙂

 

Little Letter

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Dear Rain,
Wow, it’s good to see you again old friend. It’s been too long since last you made your presence known in Southern California. Stay awhile, won’t you?

Dear “The West Wing”,
You are surprisingly addictive. I can feel myself getting sucked in already, which is not good considering you have seven seasons…

Dear Fulbright,
I just heard I was selected as a semi-finalist! Thank you, I can’t tell you how much this means to me. Now I hurry up and wait till March.

Dear Monday,
I was dreading you until school was cancelled due to the many road closures caused by landslides! Oh beautiful, joyous Monday! You are my new favorite day of the week.

Dear Women’s March,
It was a profound, deeply impactful experience to march on Saturday. Something special happened, that I’m sure of. You were the largest organized march in US history. Bravo.

Dear NPR,
Gosh, keep up the good work!

Dear “Old School”,
Props to you, Tobias Wolff, for writing such a stellar novel.

Dear Novella,
I should be much further with you than I am. And by further, I mean I should have started writing you a long time ago…uh oh.

Dear Guitar,
My guitar class has proven so insightful! Thanks of being a gorgeous instrument.

P.s. Photo from the Women’s March

A Weekend with Alena

img_9227I picked my friend Alena up from the airport on Friday afternoon and we headed to Manhattan Beach to hang out until traffic died down. We became friend in Hildesheim two summers ago, and she just finished a six week internship in Vancouver, Canada and decided to explore the US for a little while before flying home. I always enjoy playing tour-guide when friends come into town, as it helps me rediscover and take pride in my own city! We did a few different things this weekend, below are a few photos if you’d like to see.img_9231img_9244^Personally I think I look a little wacko in this photo, what with the slouchy overalls and blurry face haha! But I never have many photos of myself on the blog since I’m always behind the camera, so I thought I’d include it.img_9250img_9251^On Saturday we went to the beach in Malibu. I went in the water for the first time all year– I couldn’t let the warm water pass without jumping in at least once! That would be tragic and irresponsible as a native Californian :pimg_9252img_9267^You could say Alena was excited about the beachimg_9290img_9296img_9300img_9325img_9329img_9365^On the way back we stopped by Pepperdine’s 9/11 flag memorial. Every September they place a flag on the ‘front lawn’ for each person that lost their life in the attacks. A Pepperdine alumna was on the plane headed for Washington DC, and both his daughters currently attend Pepperdine. I find the display beautiful and sobering.img_9374img_9385img_9394^On Sunday after church we went to Smorgasburg, the new LA version of the famous food market in Brooklyn, New York. It has only been open since June, and houses booths of food and local handmade artisan goods. It is opened every Sunday from 10am-5pm and is located in at the Alameda Produce Market downtown. img_9399img_9410img_9412img_9419^How cute is this little trailer shop? Never mind that a T-Shirt was like $50…img_9425img_9446img_9450^Weird donuts are my love language…img_9452img_9457img_9464Well friends, have a great week. I’m headed to Texas on Wednesday to visit family!

Eight Things

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  1. I submitted my Fulbright application on Tuesday. Now I have to schedule an interview with my school’s reviewing committee next week, in which they will give me suggestions and edits to make before resubmitting it for the national deadline on October 11th. It feels like such a weight off my shoulders to finally have the essays written and all my recommendations in on time!
  2. My friend Alena from Hildesheim, Germany is flying in tomorrow to visit me! I can’t wait to speak German with her and show her around my stomping grounds 🙂
  3. I fly to Dallas/Fort worth next Wednesday to visit my parents and brother. I’ve never been to that part of the world, so I’m itching to explore! It’s funny, if I don’t get on a plane at least once every three months or so I get really antsy and stir-crazy. I guess I’m a nomad at heart.
  4. I am seriously thinking about applying to grad school in Germany…so yeah, that’s a big deal. I was against grad school for a long time, but now God is working on my heart in new ways. I think it might be a great option after graduation!
  5. I love my church, RealityLA. I just signed up for a small group on Wednesdays and I could not be more stoked. It’s nice to meet people from such diverse backgrounds and not just college students for a change.
  6. This blog is still my all-time favorite. It’s the blog that inspired me to start my own way back in the day.
  7. I went to a German restaurant in Venice last night called Wurstküche. Although it’s not in Germany, I will admit the bratwurst was pretty dang delicious.
  8. As a native Californian I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never been to Joshua Tree National Park, and I plan to remedy that this school year! Have you been?

P.s This picture of a young Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher hanging out just kills me for some reason 🙂

Rock the Brock

img_8955The president of my school has an annual tradition of holding a party at his house (the Brock House) for just the seniors. The soiree is called ‘Rock the Brock’ because his rock band Mid-Life Crisis performs and a giant dance party ensues. They also raffled off prizes, including $5,000 throughout the night, and had a big buffet of food and desserts. You could say I was a happy camper. Even though Pepperdine is a relatively small school, I was surprised at how many unfamiliar faces I encountered last night. Do all these people really go here and I’ve just never met them? Haha I guess so! But I did know quite a few people as well, which was reassuring. I guess I’m not a total recluse. Below are a few photos if you’d like to see!img_8920img_8921^Our mascot Willie the Wave dancing up a stormimg_8924img_8931img_8933^The event started at 6:30- perfect golden light! I can definitely tell fall is  in the air, no more endless summer sun.img_8941img_8942img_8946img_8947img_8952^Two sweet friends, one of which is my buddy in German classimg_8962img_8965^These charming ladies have been there for me since the start of college 😉img_8968img_8981img_8985img_8986img_8994^My class cleans up niceimg_8996img_9003^Note to self: become university president so I can have a view like this…img_9007img_9010img_9015img_9042img_9058^Wild childrenimg_9082^My OG roommate and long-time friend Lauraimg_9091img_9095img_9046Well friends, have a great weekend!

Do You Have A Theme Song?

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The other day I read this post on the blog Cup of Jo, and it got me thinking. Is there a song (or songs) that I consider a sort of theme or anthem for my life? That is, when I hear it, I think this could have been written about me, or it simply came to define a certain time in my life for whatever reason. Below are a few songs I might call my theme songs if I had to choose!

Rivers and Roads by The Head and the Heart
The song starts out with the lyrics, “A year from now we’ll all be gone, all our friends will move away. And they’re going to better places, but our friends will be gone away.” This immediately makes me think of college and how I will be graduated in less than a year. The song also croons, “My family lives in a different state! If you don’t know what to make of this, then we will not relate.” My parents and brother just moved to Texas, and right now just feels like a big time of transition in general. So this song touches me in a very literal way.

Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
There is one line in this song that always makes me chuckle– “It’s a long day living in Receda, there’s a freeway running through the yard.” I drive past the city of Receda all the time on the Freeway, and know exactly where he’s talking about when he says, “I wanna free fall out on Mulholland.” These words really capture what it’s like to life in Southern California. I love this song because the speaker is a ‘bad boy’ who pretends not to care/regret that he broke a ‘good girl’s’ heart. There’s also a great version by John Mayer (swoon) if you’re interested.

Tiny Dancer by Elton John
I’m sorry, but the description, “Blue jean baby, LA lady…dancing in the sand,” had to be written about me, right?! I remember doing Irish dance and Ballet at the beach growing up, twirling around on the shore avoiding the waves. I’m a big fan of Elton John in general, and even learned to play this song well on the piano.

Vienna by Billy Joel
Joel sings this song to a young person who is chomping at the bit to accomplish everything they dream of in life right now. Basically, he says slow down, take a deep breath and practice patience. You don’t want to burn out before your time, so sit back and enjoy the ride. “Where’s the fire, what’s the hurry about?” I think everyone at Pepperdine needs to hear this song– we’re so young, there’s no rush to conquer the world!

Gypsy by Suzanne Vega
I first heard this song in the soundtrack of the movie Perks of Being a Wallflower. I listened to it on repeat in Frankfurt this summer because, for some reason, it just struck me as particularly insightful. “You come from far away with pictures in your eyes of coffee shops and morning streets and the blue and silent sunrise.” I find the guitar in this song so beautiful and touching. Listen to it, you’ll see what I mean.

Never Coming Back Again by Austin Plaine
My parents might not appreciate this title (haha!) but I really felt like I could have stayed in Germany forever and been perfectly happy. This song expresses a longing for adventure, excitement and discovery. It’s the perfect summer anthem. Go on, give it a listen, I promise you’ll like it!

So what about you? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Oh, and of course I claim every song written about California girls as my own 🙂

 

Life State-Side

IMG_4769And just like that, I’m back to life state-side.

I don’t quite know what to say. My brain is still fuzzy from jet-lag and German words keep popping up uninvited in my english sentences. Americans seem foreign and confusing in some ways, yet totally familiar and comforting in others. I moved straight into my house at school and hit the ground running with training for my job at the school newspaper and other fun preparatory stuff. It feel strange to be a senior. I see the bright-eyed, fuzzy tailed freshman wandering around campus and just feel plain old. But it is nice to already know what I’m doing and who my established friends are.

Here’s hoping it’s a great semester!