Oot n' Aboot: Exploring Montreal on Foot

After a restful night in Yonkers, New York, the night before, Allison and I arrived to Montreal about six hours later. We chattered in between outrageous Bachelorette recap podcasts, speculating how crossing the border would go once we reached border patrol. Neither of us had ever done so by vehicle before, but we’d done our best to read up prior. I learned that contraband included fruit, of all things, so we packed accordingly.

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Metz, France: La Ville Verte

In capping off my 2019 Eurotrip, I returned from my two-day jaunt in Budapest to stay in northeastern France. I had one last full day before my flight home, and it could not have been better spent. Having landed a mid-morning flight from Charles de Gaulle airport, I quickly hopped on a bus to catch a train that zipped me from Paris to Metz, a smaller city 30 minutes from where I’d be staying that night.

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Budapest: The Capital of Freedom

What’s the first thing you notice when visiting a new place?

For me visiting Budapest, Hungary, my first trip to Eastern Europe, it was the language. Hungarian is guttural, clanging, and utterly foreign to me. I remember thinking if aliens existed and had their own dialect, it would have to sound exactly like Hungarian. (The eery female voice announcing each stop on the tram seemed to compound this observation.)

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Café au lait, s'il vous plaît.

Visitors to France will quickly find that French culture does coffee differently than American. Portions are far different (forget your large iced coffee!), they don’t use cream, and their purpose for drinking it differs from ours. While “America runs on Dunkin’,” the French prefer to sit, relax, and sip their café with leisure, enjoying the art of a quality cup of brew. C’est la vie.

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A Non-Traditional Valentine's Day (Part 2)

On Valentine’s Day this year, I left my hostel early to catch a mid-morning flight connecting in Switzerland, and landing in the grandiose city of Budapest (which the Hungarians pronounce “Buda-pesht”). Flying over the Swiss Alps, any fatigue from a short night’s sleep was completely eradicated by the adrenaline rush I only get before visiting a new place I’ve never seen.

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The Scariest Thing I've Ever Done Was 100% Worth It

Today is Tuesday, February 19th, and I’ve just returned from the best trip of my adult life. As I’m reflecting back on all of it - the fantastic memories, the wonderful people I met, and of course…all the food - I’m also thinking back on the first solo trip I took post-college, to London, for the internship of a lifetime at a magazine.

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A Non-Traditional Valentine's Day

Jó reggelt from Budapest, Hungary! Today is day six of vacation, and today is Valentine’s Day. What a wonderful day to embrace what we’re made of, how God knit us together in His image, and to celebrate that factor that brings us all together: love.

I’ve come to love Valentine’s Day, but not for the reason people often do.

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Paris, Je T'Aime

I still remember the first time I touched down in France by myself: I’d just woken up from snoozing through my red eye flight - I was twenty-one. I sat up and rubbed my eyes open just as the sun was rising, and the combination of natural beauty and the realization that I’d made it back to one of my favorite places in the world brought tears to my eyes. In a way - in a very special and rare moment you never forget - it almost felt like coming home.

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How I Pack My Carry-On

Packing is an art…and though it’s one I’ve yet to fully master, I also have come a long way from lugging around three suitcases and a backpack when I could have easily pared my loot down to two bags. Having been there, at the lowest possible point of dragging around way too much stuff (from both over packing and over shopping) as a foolish college student, studying abroad, at the train station, praying to catch my ride, and ready to burst into tears because I physically could not drag my bags up another flights of stairs…you get it. It’s not fun.

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Brooklyn

I’ve been to New York a number of times, but last summer was my first visit to Brooklyn. At the time, my dear friend Charlie worked in Williamsburg, and he showed me the coolest neighborhood, ladled with funky art, foodie traps, and homemade artisanal shopping. Venturing outside Brooklyn, I found my way to Chelsea Market, a delightful sensory overload.

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New York at Christmas

In a 24-hour sprint the Saturday before Christmas, my mum and sister and I carted up to New York for a day of shopping. Every trip to NYC is always too short, but we had such a lovely time visiting in the middle of the holidays!

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