Hey there! Heads up..this is probably going to be a picture-heavy post. This city is just too dang beautiful which prompts me to snap pictures left and right. Daniel and myself have been walking, exploring, and touring SO MUCH. I still haven’t taken him to see the Eiffel Tower (hey..we’ve seen some other sights..okay?), but this week we climbed up the steep hills of Montmartre to see Sacré Coœr, we strolled around Jardin du Luxembourg, we browsed the shop windows in Le Marais, and bought fruit at the famous Marché Moufftard.

A few days ago Daniel suggested we walk to the Jardin du Luxembourg. We had walked past it a few times and even commented to each other how beautiful it looked, but never actually gone inside. In fact, even though I’ve been to Paris 10+ times, I myself, have never been to the famous Luxembourg Gardens. I must say the gardens did not disappoint. French parks and gardens tend to be very manicured compared to American parks. The gravel pathways are lined with grassy flowerbeds to both sides with statues of naked ladies scattered about. There’s normally a fountain or two thrown in. I loved how brightly colored all the flowers were (lots of reds and oranges) because I feel like American parks normally use pink..am I just imagining this?DSC_0823DSC_0807DSC_0783UntitledDSC_0834DSC_0840UntitledDSC_0837DSC_0864DSC_0785I secretly really REALLY want a selfie stick so Daniel and I can actually be in the same picture along with the background.

Like I mentioned above, D and I also went to one of my favorite Paris hoods-Montmartre. I’ve stayed there a couple times and loved walking around in the evening getting lost in the curvy cobblestone streets. Montmartre sits on the tallest hill in Paris and overlooks the city, so if you want the best views of the City of Light–go to Montmartre. It’s also home to the Moulin Rouge, Sacré Coœr, and bohemia. Artists in the 1870’s-1920’s flocked to Montmartre to paint the hills and gain inspiration from their surroundings. Dali, Monet, Van Gogh, and Picasso all lived here at one point. It really is beautiful. That being said, August is high tourist time. In August most Parisians leave the city for the month and go to the Riviera to soak up the sun and get away from the tourists. I had never been to Montmartre in August..and I have to say..it sucked. Montmartre near Sacré Coœr is always touristy but this was just bad. So maybe go another time when you can stroll the magical streets without wandering into a million different family photos. DSC_0893DSC_0898Sacré Coœr, meaning Sacred Heart, is a basilica that was started in 1875 and completed in 1914. It sits on the highest summit in the city so not only do people go for the basilica, which is a wonderful piece of art, they also go for the panoramic views of the city. DSC_0896

Tomorrow we’re moving into our new apartment where we’ll be staying for a month. It’s located on a street (Rue Moufftard) that has one of the best Parisian markets in the whole city! Hemingway once wrote about it saying “the narrow crowded world of the Rue Mouffetard” in The Snows of Kilimanjaro and “that wonderful crowded market street which led into the Place Contrescarpe” in A Moveable Feast. That’s us! It’s not often one lives on a street Hemingway wrote about TWICE! He lived very nearby also which is trés cool. Today we went and check out the market which wasn’t as hopping as usual since it’s August, but we are still incredibly excited to be living there. IMG_2021FDSC_0933UntitledKDSC_0880DSC_0870KUntitledDSC_0899KNUntitledKF

Some sidenotes ***

UntitledHere I am standing in front of my favorite yarn store in Paris-Lil Weasel. It’s located in a beautiful arcade called Passage du Grand Cerf(Passage of the Big Deer). They have so so so many lovely yarns and the staff has always been very friendly. Also this past time I was there they had upped their stock of sock yarn. They had A TONNNNN. So..that’s very dangerous. They also have a fabric store by the same name across the arcade which carries Liberty fabrics. If you want to buy yarn in Paris go here.

KThe pain au chocolat in the above picture is my second favorite pain au chocolat in the whole entire city of Paris. THIS IS A BIG DEAL, PEOPLE. I have declared it my life mission to find the best in the city. These things are like crack for me. It is probably in my top 3 list of foods. So..I love them as you can see..so I wouldn’t steer you wrong. I mean, LOOK at those layers. So..I’m about to give you the most vague instructions on how to find this place because I don’t think it has a name. Get off at the metro stop Blanche. Walk up the hill. At the top there is a patisserie with a purple sign. THERE. Got it? 🙂

Things I’ve Come to Realize This Week:

  1. Dogs are like having a baby.
  2. Walks are good for the body and mind.
  3. Rosé is amazzzing.
  4. I miss knowing where things are located in the grocery store.
  5. It’s fun to be a tourist. Unless you’re obnoxious. That’s not fun or cool.

Thanks for stopping by!

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We made it! We are now Parisians.

IMG_0005IMG_0006IMG_0012I must confess, we haven’t done much since we’ve arrived, at least not by tourists’ standards. We haven’t gone to see the Eiffel Tower, the Mona Lisa or anything of those sorts, but we have taken several strolls everyday around our neighborhood. We are staying in the Quartier Latin right on the Seine, so the views are stunning. It’s been pretty chilly and cloudy since we’ve been here, but it doesn’t detract from the city one bit. IMG_0141DSC_0730D and myself are trying our best to take on as much of the Parisian lifestyle as possible. We’ve been walking slower, taking longer to eat and actually enjoy, buying our groceries the day of. We even stopped by a patisserie this morning, grabbed a still-warm baguette and snacked on it on the go. I must say I have been significantly less stressed. Parisians just tend to enjoy the little things in life more. DSC_0742We are staying at Daniel’s boss’s place at the moment and with the apartment comes a dog named Amelie! She’s pretty nuts, but we love taking her on walks. It’s amazing how dogs get you up and out of the house in the morning. Get prepared for lots of ‘walking Amelie’ pics. IMG_0050IMG_0082IMG_0103IMG_0075IMG_0140IMG_0138IMG_0136DSC_0736IMG_0022Hopefully in the next coming few days Daniel and I will get to play tourist. I’m hoping to go to Montmartre soon. My favorite patisserie in all of Paris is there and I love strolling the tiny, windy, cobblestone streets. We’re also in the process of planning our first voyage beyond Paris. We’re thinking riding bikes through the countryside of the Netherlands sounds pretty wonderful. 

I’m off to eat the smelliest, ooziest cheese I can find!

Au revoir! 

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I know it’s been a very long while since I’ve posted last…naughty, naughty, I know. Well, it is hard to post and take pretty pictures when you live with five guys. Let’s just say there wasn’t a clean surface in sight. So, here I am finally! Daniel and I have moved out of the frat house and are currently visiting our parents in each of our home towns. Why? Because in about a week we are moving to the City of Light! Paris 🙂

If this seems incredibly sudden to you, you wouldn’t be imagining things. This has been in the talks for about a year, but only became official about 2 months ago (maybe even less!), so it’s been an incredible whirlwind of packing and planning. About a week ago Daniel and I packed all our belongings in a pickup and drove 12 hours (Jersey traffic is nuts!) to NC in one day! We are officially meeting up in Atlanta on the 13th of August to head to our future home, so in the meantime we are both spending time with our families, which for me has been one of the most amazing parts of this whole saga! DSC_0545DSC_0538DSC_0540DSC_0556DSC_0555DSC_0558It’s always wonderful to spend time at home. I love going in my mom’s garden with her to pick veggies and wiggle our toes in the dirt. I love seeing my loving and supportive extended family. I love talking about adulthood woes with my best friend. And I LOVE breathing that sweet Summer air of North Carolina. There’s nothing quite like it. I really ultimately hope to end up here one day when I have a family of my own. If you’ve spent any time with me then you know I have a very romantic connection to NC. It’s such a charming state with such a high quality of life. I mean how could you not love a place where you bring all your homegrown fruits and veggies to gatherings to trade amongst friends and family?!DSC_0596DSC_0698Daniel and I went blueberry picking in my grandma’s yard. Isn’t life sweet in the most subtle of ways?DSC_0574My grandma has an above ground pool in her backyard-AKA a redneck pool, and I got to go swimming in it for the first time a few days ago. IT WAS AWESOME! All my extended family was there and we just had a massive pool party. It was such a fun time. I also recommend that if you have one of these pools to gather as many folk as you can, have everyone run as fast as they can in the same direction, thus creating an impressive whirlpool, and then have everyone lift up their feet at the same time. Just. Do. It. Trust me. 😉DSC_0590IMG_0053IMG_0046DSC_0658DSC_0649DSC_0615DSC_0702IMG_0052IMG_0054DSC_0683DSC_0708While D and myself are in Paris we are going to try to really experience Parisian life to the fullest by slowing down and focusing on the small joys of daily life. It was so easy in New York to get overwhelmed and boggled down by such silly and trivial things. Expect to see lots of steaming cups of espresso, books, and travel coming up! In the meantime, NC isn’t such a bad place to slow down. I sure am enjoying life these days.

Until next time !

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What I’m Reading: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Of the infinite packing I should have done by now, I have managed to pick which projects, yarn, and blankets I am taking with me to Daniel’s… BUT HEY, at least I’ve done something, right? I went through every skein, every WIP, every single fiber I have in my possession. From this, I have gathered that I should not be allowed within 20 feet of a yarn store.DSC_0414I did manage to weed out some yarn I know I’ll never use. I don’t really have any friends in the area that knit or crochet though, so it’s tricky. I can’t just throw it out. I’m not a wasteful person, also…the yarn would get sad 😦 . Maybe I’ll put it for free on Craigslist and see if anyone comes to retrieve it. Yay or nay? Any New Yorkers want some free yarn?

I counted my total WIP’s(works in progress/projects) and I have over sixteen. SIXTEEN! Five blankets, a scarf, a cowl, three pairs of socks, and a baby sweater to name a few. I don’t even know anyone with a baby!!!DSC_0419Packing away yarn always pulls at my heartstrings. I hate seeing it all squished up, crammed in a plastic bin. I know I’ll pull it out and it’ll smell like inflatable furniture (anyone remember those things?!). But when I pull it out it’s like Christmas all over again! You know what 7 layer bean dip is? Well it’s a dish that moms always bring to potlucks and Super Bowl parties that is 7 layers of beans, cheese, salsa, sour cream, and lots of other amazing things. Anywho, while I was packing my yarn into the bin all I could think of was how I was making a 7 layer bean dip of yarn. I know, I know..I’m weird, but this is just how my mind works. DSC_0423DSC_0424The craft supplies were also haphazardly packed away. Hopefully there won’t be a crafting emergency in the next week. But one can really never know!DSC_0411DSC_0409DSC_0425DSC_0402On a more adult note, I am starting to genuinely panic about all that needs to be done. I still have to pack all my kitchen stuff, all trinkets from my room, linens, and bathroom stuff. Then I need to take all the giveaway stuff to goodwill, which is literally a suitcase and 7 trash bags full of clothes, shoes, and apartment crap. I had a serious shopping addiction for the first two years I lived in New York. Then I need to pack away the pantry, and separate everything into storage and what I’m taking to Daniel’s. Then do the two separate moves, come back and clean the apartment! AHHHHHHHHH! Good thing my mom is coming today! I can’t wait to see her :)!!!!!

As I mentioned above for a while I had a bit of a shopping addiction (no friends in new york, depressed about job, lonely, long distance boyfriend fueled the fire). To get rid of as much stuff as possible I had a rooftop yard sale with my friends this past weekend! It was a grand ole time and I got rid of right many clothes and even a painting and a mirror. I made whopping $56 and was happier than a clam, but unfortunately I still have so much stuff I could probably start my own thrift store. photo-33Danny boy and I ventured out in Brooklyn one night, which to be honest is quite rare for us considering how much we love a comfy bed and Netflix. We were walking about the trendy hood of Williamsburg when we just could not find a place we both wanted to eat. We were cold, hungry, wandering aimlessly, on the verge of being hangry when all of a sudden we both looked up and saw this odd Japanese looking structure.

D: “What’s that place?”

V: “I dunno..some Japanese place, but I don’t know anything about it and I’ve never seen anyone go in or come out before”

D: “Let’s check it out.”

V: “Okey doke”

We go inside and it’s AWESOMMMMMEEEE! They for some reason had an opening and we were seated right away. The restaurant has no windows by the way, so we can no clue what to expect. The host leads us to our table when we realize everyone gets their own cute little private booth/room! It’s Japanese tapas style and we ordered to our heart’s content. It was one of the best meals I’ve ever had. I still don’t know the name of the place..oops. But man was it a fun adventure. Sometimes the best places are the ones you would never go to in a million years. I sure do like being pleasantly surprised. This weekend was extremely satisfying. 🙂photo-34

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At the moment, daily life for me consists of waking up, tea and breakfast, castings, and then home I go to do more packing, cleaning, and organizing. If you haven’t heard I am moving again. This will make four moves in less than four years.

Ask anyone who lives in New York, and they will most certainly agree that finding an apartment and moving in New York City is the biggest nightmare EVER. I am not exaggerating, people. For the time being I’m moving in with my boyfriend for a few months until I have enough money to officially move. Most apartments here require first and last months rent, and a security deposit, which amounts to your monthly rent. This is not including paying for movers, and a broker. So by the time you are moved you have spent anywhere from 6,000-10,000 depending on how much your rent is, how much moving costs, and the broker fee you agreed on, which is around 12-15% of your YEARLY rent.

Did I mention my boyfriend has four roommates who are all guys, all of them students? YEAH. So this should be interesting. The next couple weeks will be crunch time for me. Luckily, my wonderful mom is coming to help me move. She’s a saint. Stressed out me is not pretty and somehow she still comes every year to help me move and deals with my ‘tude. Thanks mom!

One of the hardest things about this whole situation is having to decide which stuff goes into storage and which will come with me to the Dude Palace. Obviously, some yarn will have to go into storage 😦 . Also most of my kitchen/baking stuff. Sigh…

Okay enough about moving, I have been on a cooking/baking roll (pun intended?) these days! I’ve made a 5 spice cranberry upside down cake, vegan chocolate chip cookies with sea salt, and attempted to make a pavlova (more on that disaster later). I’ve also been trying out new recipes and cooking out yingyang. I don’t always get pictures of everything. Sometimes I just want to enjoy the process and not have to stop every second and photograph all the steps. Sometimes I just eat the dang thing before I can even think about pictures. Sometimes the outcome just looks so horrendous I don’t even want it documented (pavlova I’m looking at you). That being said, the kitchen makes me feel so contented.

Here’s a peek into my week.DSC_0360DSC_0314DSC_0277DSC_0250Daniel and I are trying to do weekly menus. We’re hoping it will eliminate the whole “it’s 8 o clock, what do you want to eat, I don’t want to cook, let’s just get takeout” situation. The good news is I love looking at recipes. I love looking through cook books, I love trying new things, so this will be pretty easy, me thinks. Or at least, I hope so. DSC_0354DSC_0292DSC_0380DSC_0373DSC_0313DSC_0273Yesterday I made Danny lunch and brought it to him. It was spectacular weather, so we sat on his office roof and ate up some Greek style pork chops, and Israeli salad. I also brought the vegan chocolate chip cookies with sea salt, and some garlic hummus. SO GOOD, PEOPLE! It was such a wonderful treat to get to have lunch together. DSC_0332photo-30DSC_0303DSC_0324DSC_0348DSC_0312DSC_0238Daniel and I also had a rainy day adventure this weekend. We ate breakfast at the smallest Jewish diner you ever did see, we walked all the way cross town and had coffee and hot chocolate on the Highline, walked through Washington Square Park, and then came home to warm snuggly blankets, and hot soup with sandwiches for lunch. image-274photo-31I finished a book also! I finally finished All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr and I must say, I loved reading this book. You know when you come across a book you love reading so much that you don’t ever want it to end. This was that book for me. Such a spectacular read!

This week has been hectic, but also so so sweet.

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After Milano I ventured to Paris this Summer to do more work related activities, but perhaps you were wondering..”What does a model do in her spare time?”

“Does she eat celery and smoke copious amounts of cigarettes?”

“Does she party her incredibly small butt off at the club?”

“Does she go to fancy restaurants with major celebrities?”

“Does she go on huge shopping sprees with all the LOADS of money she has?” (HA..this one makes me laugh the most..if only..)

Well..no. I don’t do any of those things.. In my spare time you can usually find me knitting socks, watching Adventure Time, reading books, baking pie, wandering aimlessly, or laughing at my own jokes. Here’s my spare time from this Summer in beautiful Paris.

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While in Paris I rediscovered a love of mine. Growing up books were always a big part of life. My parents both read to me as a wee babe before bedtime. I have special memories of my mom reading to me as a toddler in the wooden chair in my room with a stack of Little Critter and Dr. Seuss books piled up high. I also can recall my dad reading me Harry Potter as I would fall asleep and ultimately learned how to read from those magical novels. In high school I was the kid who got in trouble for reading until 3 in the morning on a school night. And then I moved away from home and was in a bit of funk, not only with reading, but life. It’s hard to read when you’re unhappy, and to be honest, just not enjoyable. AND FINALLY this Summer I picked it up for good. I mean..of course I’ve read a book here and there in between life, but now I just can’t stand to go a day without a read.

Here’s what I managed to read in Paris..and I’m quite happy with it. I try not to rush through books…but sometimes I get in a tizzy to know what’s going to happen. If you’re a reader you know what I mean. I’m also bad for reading half of, or most of a book and then going to a different one because I just don’t like the book. I’ll finish them one day! I was also only able to find one book store in Paris, aside from the few touristy, very very VERY expensive ones, that sold books in English des livres Anglais. Therefore, the choices were a bit limited, but I enjoy classic books anyways.

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (My favorite of the group!! Mr. Rochester ❤ )

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

12 Years A Slave by Solomon Northup

3/4 of Catch 22 by Joseph Heller (I don’t know why I just can’t get through this book. It’s very clever and witty but I just don’t ever crave reading it..it’s always a chore 😦 )

1/2 of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (SO MANY DESCRIPTIONS AND POINTLESS FACTS)

Be expecting lots of books, yarn, and baking in the near future. My month in Paris was a lovely one indeed. It was very rainy, chocolatey, and cozy.

Au revoir!

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Okay so this is from this Summer..but I had some hard drive troubles and wasn’t able to obtain many of the pictures from my trip but here it finally is!

 

Every weekend I go somewhere more and more beautiful. This weekend Caitlin, Ben and I ventured to Lake Como, a glacier lake about 30 minutes north of Milan. The lake is the third largest in Italy, and situated between snowcapped mountains. George Clooney has a house there I hear 😉

The day was amazing, but started with a few mishaps. We planned to meet at Centrale Station at 7:50 because our train left at 8:10. I am literally two stops away on the subway so I gave myself thirty minutes to get there. I could probably walk there in 20. I get to the subway station and the train didn’t come and didn’t come and by the time I got to Centrale it was 8:03 and I’m running my butt off trying to meet them on the train. I literally run up 8 flights of stairs and then Caitlin calls and says our train is canceled. After being yelled at by customer service Caitlin, Ben and I meet up and decide to get a number to wait in line at the ticket office to ask if we can just take a later train. We talk to the “nice” lady at the ticket desk and she says that the train is actually delayed and leaving at 8:30. It’s 8:32 and we’re telling her it already left and asking if we have time to make it and she replys with “I don’t know!”. We book it upstairs to the train platform, see the train, are within 2 feet of the train when the doors shut and it goes off. We go back to customer service to be yelled at to go to platform 7 the train is delayed! Well we were just there and saw it chug off. But the man couldn’t speak English very well and thought if he yelled things we would suddenly understand. So we push past him and ask a lady in the back what to do because the delayed train already left and she finally explains, NOT YELLS, that we have to take the train at platform 4 and then get off at Manza and then transfer to the train to Como. We get on the train, get off at Manza and have no clue which train to take. All the trains are named with the last destination and none of them are Como or tell where they stop along the way, OH and no one works at the station. So we literally look at the board and see one that looks “familiar”. It pulls up and we almost get on when I see a train worker, run my butt off screaming “DOES THIS GO TO COMO DOES THIS TRAIN GO TO COMO?!”. He says no, writes down the name of the train, tells us the platform and what time the train comes. FINALLY someone is nice to us. Customer service isn’t really a thing here, I’ve noticed. We wait, get on the train, and make it to Como by 12:30, three hours after we were initially supposed to get there. It was a very intense morning.

We get off the train, walk to the lake, and oh my god, it is breath taking, and suddenly the craziness of the morning was totally worth it.DSC_0634The southern end of the lake is unswimmable due to pollution, so we journeyed north! Unfortunately the way to get from one end to the other of the island is either through car (which we didn’t have) or the ferry. We took the ferry and it took us 2 hours to get from the southern most part of the lake to the halfway point. It was unbearably hot the entire ride and we were all starving, but the views were incredible. DSC_0647DSC_0668DSC_0662DSC_0679DSC_0664DSC_0675We got off at the stop Lenno and grabbed some lunch and headed to the beach. We ate lunch facing the lake and it was so surreal the entire time. Pictures do not do this place justice AT ALL. This has to be one of my top 3 most amazingly beautiful places I have ever had the privilege to visit.

Also, the ferry was basically 80% elderly tourists. Okay enough chatter..I’ll just get to the pictures and what not.

DSC_0643 I did some research ahead of time to see which beaches were the best and after hours of digging I found a beach that supposedly the locals went to. So I convinced my companions to head there. It took some time and a bit of panic, but we FINALLY were at the beachhhhh. So this beach isn’t a real beach, it was basically a manmade beach club right on the water that you pay like 5 euros for the day, but we somehow managed to slip past when no one was at the entrance so we got in for free. DSC_0749DSC_0690DSC_0723DSC_0694DSC_0757DSC_0719DSC_0742DSC_0683DSC_0707DSC_0671DSC_0731

 

If you ever, EVER have the opportunity to go to Lake Como…DO IT. It is so beautiful it is beyond words.