Weekend in Lyon
I spent a relaxing weekend in Lyon with my friend Jason, who studied abroad with me in 2010 and we both ended up teaching English here this year. We stayed with some of Jason’s friends and ate a lot, slept in, and walked around the town taking pictures. It was snowing most of the weekend, so I was in heaven! 

Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
Lyon
A Walk Around Angers
The other day, my Korean friend Somi and I walked across the river (meaning far from school) to visit a tapestry museum called Musée Jean-Lurçat and the chateau of Angers. We couldn’t take any pictures inside the museum, but the tapestries were gigantic and gorgeous, and the outside of the museum was incredible. It was built in the 1600s and used to be the Angers hospital. There was an herb garden and lots of mossy statues. So pretty! After that we practically ran to the chateau to get there before the doors closed (doors close at 4:45 although you aren’t kicked out until 5:30). We were the last people to make it inside, getting there exactly at 4:45. We got really lucky, because Somi hadn’t visited it yet and it was her last day in Angers.

We ended our day with some tea and sharing a pastry at a local Anglophone tea shop, run by an Irish woman. It was a wonderful day with my friend, speaking in French while doing some local exploring.

Angers
Angers
Angers
Angers
Angers
Angers
Angers
Angers
Amsterdam
Before Versailles, my friend Alana and I were in Amsterdam. It is really unfortunate that it is mainly known for weed and prostitutes, because it was the most romantic city I’ve ever been in, a fact that I think is incredibly underrated. It was amazingly quiet and peaceful for a nation’s capital city, made possible because literally EVERYONE used bikes as transportation instead of cars. It was remarkable. Although we didn’t visit any museums, we walked around a lot and enjoyed the beautiful scenery and took a lot of pictures. These are some of my favorites.
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Paris // Versailles Day Trip

From late October to early November, one of my best friends from college came to visit me in France and we visited Paris, Dublin, and Amsterdam together. It was an amazing trip, but one of my favorite parts was the day we spent at the Chateau de Versailles. I had been there twice before (once in 2007 on a three week tour of select European cities, the other in 2010 when I was studying abroad), but this time was by far the best; the crowds were much smaller than my previous trips, and I was also thrilled to see the other buildings on the grounds besides the big palace (the smaller chateau, le Grand Trianon, where Napolean frequently stayed and Marie Antoinette’s private house).

Because we visited the two smaller buildings first, by the time we entered the main chateau it was nearing closing time and we were both shocked by how few people were inside. I feel so fortunate to have been able to see the palace in such peace; by the time we left the front courtyard was almost completely abandoned except for us. As two history majors, it was an incredible opportunity to very easily envision what it would have been like to have been one of Versailles residents back in the day.

Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
Versailles
First Post

It has already been a good week since I set my blog up, but I have been too nervous to post anything. Who knew blogging could be so awkward? A week ago I seriously had so many great post ideas but as soon as I had a place to put them, every idea suddenly seemed lame. But today’s the day! I am forcing myself to just POST SOMETHING! So I decided to start with a topic I’m comfortable with…the family pets. Who doesn’t love cute animals?

Our dog Roxy is the sweetest and prettiest (clearly!) dog on earth. She’s been with us for ten years now, and I can’t imagine home without her. She doesn’t lick, jump, or bark. I don’t know how we got so lucky in adopting her. 
But as much as Roxy hates to admit it, the house is truly run by our cats.
Chester continuously sleeps.

Toby
Mindy

Chester
And finally, my guinea pig children.
Loverboy

His cute “tail” of random long hair :]
Bisous (“kiss” in French, because she gives little kisses)
Nala