Travel Archive

  • Tulum

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    Tulum is everything!
  • Puerto Rico Color and Palm Trees

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    I wish I brought a top rated masks for scuba divers for this trip. The falls were amazing and the water is so clear!
    I miss that colorful, palm tree filled island.
  • Half Moon Bay

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    (*Back in Novemeber 2014) Half Moon Bay is an hour drive from San Francisco and a perfect day trip from the city.
    We’re always looking for dog friendly weekend activities and Half Moon Bay is a very dog-friendly city.
    A jaunt on one of the dog-freindly beaches, a walk around town and then warming up with clam chowder and beer under the heaters at Half Moon Bay Brewing Company.
    A great Sunday!
  • Puerto Rico Engagement

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    My sister got engaged during our family trip to Puerto Rico.
    I led her to a cabana by the water pretending like I wanted to take some pictures of the beach before dinner and I needed a model.
    Her (now) husband, jumped out of some bushes and got down on one knee.
    Once she realized it was Ruben and not a homeless bush dweller, asked how he got all the way to Puerto Rico, and if he was staying for the rest of the trip, she said yes!
    My hands were shaking so much trying not to cry, I’m surprised any of the 500 pictures were half way in focus. Ps. Notice my dad’s very firm hand shake ūüėČ
    We then re-grouped and took some less emotional/ugly cry pictures on the beach.
    And then some more around colorful Old San Juan.
    A pretty beautiful place to get engaged!
  • Puerto Rico

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     Puerto Rico:

    Where we stayed: (Obviously we didn’t stay in one place, what kind of family vacation would that be?!)

    • ¬†Old San Juan – Condado Palm-Best Western – Stayed here for the first few nights so we could explore Old San Juan. The hotel isn’t in Old San Juan but we could walk (a long one) into Old San Juan.
    • Rincon- we rented a condo right on the beach in Rincon. Unfortunately this wasn’t the right place for our family. Not able to walk to restaurants/places, stories of recent burglaries, and the water not being very swimmable, my mom was on vrbo and doing her thing.
    • Palmas Del Mar- Another 4 hours in the car and we made it to Palmas del Mar in Humacoa. This was our jam!! A great last minute deal on a beautiful ocean view condo in Marbella. The pool and hot tub were amazing. The beach club next door was perfect! The boys thought they were in an actual water theme park. Palmas Del Mar is HUGE and everything is incredibly clean and well maintained. There are restaurants, golfing, tennis and even casinos on the property. Definitely not a locals experience of Puerto Rico (more country clubby) but it was perfect for us for the last week of the trip.

    Highlights:

    • The fish tacos at the Beach Club… OOOMMMGGGG
    • My sister got engaged!
    • Swimming in a waterfall in El Yunque Rainforest
    • Old San Juan
    • Luquillo Beach Kiosks- yum!
    Wish we had:
    • Made it to Culebra or Viejas
  • Yoga on the Beach

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    A pretty glorious way to start the day in Cabo
  • The Food of Salamanca

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    The food of Salamanca.
    Don’t ask me what the names of anything are.
    All I know is Spaniards really like meat, rice and potatoes
    (and i’m not complaining)
     
     This was the most delicious meat! I could have eaten all five skewers.
    I absolutely did not expect the incredible food in Salamanca.
    Of course, it helps to travel with locals to show you the best places, but oh my gosh I didn’t have a bite of anything that I didn’t think “was the best thing ever!” ūüėČ
    Plus, because it’s a university town, it was all so cheap.
    Everything you see came with our drinks!
    The no 1 traveller discount codes my sister gave me also helped, Less than 2 euros a piece, drink included.
  • Don’t Forget

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    The last two weeks have been busy to say the least.
    I don’t know who ever talked about the simple, laid back Spanish lifestyle, but I sure am not living it.
    Between teaching, commute, Spanish lessons, homework, lesson planning, Master’s classes I am just trying to get through the days with my head still attached and taking millions of vitamins hoping i don’t get sick from consistent 5-6 hours of sleep a night (i am an 8-9 hour of sleep/night girl. i really like my sleep).
    Forget hanging out with friends, making new friends, enjoying Madrid or even normal house chores.
    The quote Denise posted got me thinking.
    It’s so so easy to feel defeated, overwhelmed, stressed and go through the days blindly just trying to get through. It’s so easy to complain and be frustrated, irritated and annoyed.
    But I don’t want to just get through the days and I don’t want to be so blinded by frustrations that I lose sight of my happiness.
    I love it here, I am happy and I can’t forget that.
    I’m in Spain! I can’t forget why I’m here, be thankful for every day and remember to enjoy the little things.

    I AM thankful and I am so freaking relieved Saturday classes are over until January!!

    Such a beautiful quote I need to remember

    Cafe while reading Harry Potter in Spanish. (I’ve gotten through 3 pages in a week. So difficult!)
    Incredibly enjoyed beverages with friends after our long day of Saturday class.

    Fall in Spain and where we had classes this weekend in Alcala de Heneres.

    Happy Thanksgiving week!
    There’s a lot of turkey craft making in my future this week.

  • just me + the world

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    remember how i was supposed to be in barcelona for 6 months but came home after 4?
    the reason: while in barcelona i applied for a masters program, not really expecting to be accepted and not even knowing if i would go if i did get in.
    well, i did get in. and decided that i needed to come home for the summer before beginning
    another adventure like that.
    i kept these plans on the down low, because i honestly wasn’t sure if i would have the courage
    to move abroad by myself all over again.
    and the last two months at home surrounded by my family and trips to san francisco with my best friends haven’t helped me want to pick up and leave again.
    but how can i not take advantage of this kind of opportunity.
    to live in spain. get my masters. continue learning spanish. travel around europe.
    my emotions are bi-polar to say the least.
    one minute excitedly researching everything i can about madrid(since i’ve never been there),¬†neighborhoods, apartments(i found the cutest one ever, i want it so bad!) and other travel destinations.
    and the next, holding onto my family, friends and california for dear life and mentally refusing to go.
    ¬†i’ll be a lot more prepared this time.
     some things will be easier.
    i’ll know what to pack and not a little better.
    finding an apartment won’t be quite as challenging and shocking.
    i know more spanish.
    i’ve already stepped far out of my comfort zone and certain i can do it again.
    i’m excited to see europe and barcelona friends.
    but i’m also a lot more aware of how hard it is,
    which makes me much more nervous this time around.
    feeling so far away and alone at times.
    that feeling gives me a stomach ache to think about.
    ¬†in one month and eight days i’ll be boarding a plane to Madrid, Spain for a year
    (coming home for christmas)
    to start my Masters in Bilingual and Multicultural Education.
    i’ll be teaching in Arganda del Rey, a small town outside of Madrid.
    i’d prefer to live in Madrid and commute, but we’ll see.
    not quite ready to start a countdown, but,
    my next spanish adventure awaits.
    just me and the world.
  • floating down the russian river

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     last weekend we floated down the russian river
    all 20 of us tied together
    it was one of the best times ever
    so fun, relaxing, pretty, 
    and stopping along the way to jump off a rope swing (not me)
    couldn’t be happier
    pure bliss