Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Giveaway Winner

Sorry to all the people who entered the Wild Tonic giveaway! I totally forgot to pick a winner! The winner is Mary! I passed the information onto Lauren and she will be contacting you!

Thanks again to all who entered!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Netherlands Days 2 & 3

We spent most of the second day just wandering around the city and taking in the sites.  We tried to go to the Anne Frank House but the line was all the way around the block so we decided not to go. As we were walking around, we found the Royal Delft Experience. In my research I had found out that Delftware is the traditional porcelain of Holland.  Since I love me some pretty china, we decided to stop in.  The Royal Delft is the only remaining factory that produces Delftware so it was pretty cool to step into that store and see all the lovely porcelain! I even picked up a little dish for myself. That gorgeous blue color gets me every time.


me drink

Next, we headed over to the Bloemenmarkt or flower market.  There were so many different kinds of bulb flowers, my mind was blown. I never knew there were so many different kinds of tulips let alone how many different plants came from bulbs. 
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sheena me flower market

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The next day, we decided to stay in a hostel which was very conveniently located in a part of the city we hadn't explored yet. We found the I Amsterdam sign and took our obligatory tourist photos along with everyone else. Van Gogh is my favorite artist so I had to check out that museum. Turns out you can't just walk into the Van Gogh museum without standing in an hour long line. So, we headed over to buy tickets for a specific time. When we were in line, we were approached by a nice Australian man inviting us to a pub crawl. Normally, we wouldn't be up for that kind of thing but when in Amsterdam right?

amsterdam sign me

amsterdam sign us

We found some very fitting graffiti!

To kill time in between when I got my ticket and the actual time to go into the museum, we headed to a famous street market called Albert Cuyp Markt. It sells a wide variety of items and was a fun way to pass the time. I ended up getting a dress and Sheena got a skirt. Then, I headed back to see the Van Gogh museum.

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A lot of my favorite paitnings of his are in other museums but there were a lot of interesting stories about his life and career to make up for it. I did see a couple of paintings I didn't know that became some of my favorites like the windmill one up top and the wheat field painting above on the bottom right. 

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At the end of the day, we headed out to the pub crawl. We ended up deciding between 2 different ones and picked the one that was smaller. Could have been a bad choice but we had fun anyway. That was the end of our time in Amsterdam! We got up the next morning and headed off to Brugge and Brussels! Stay tuned for those photos coming up soon.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Happy First Birthday!

Sorry for the lack of posts but I have been quite busy! I was in Washington, DC this past weekend because my niece turned one! Today is her official birthday so happy first birthday, Charlotte! I love you so much!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Netherlands Day 1

I had so much fun on my trip that getting back to normal life has been a bit hard. I had to go out of town for work the weekend I got back and then I started back up at my second job that same week. Needless to say, this post has been a long time coming. I've been avoiding my photos because just thinking about sorting and editing all 1500 of them is so overwhelming.  Hopefully I can get through some each day so my travel photos don't take forever to post :)

I got into Amsterdam at about 1:00 in the afternoon and spent the next hour and a half trying to get a hold of my friend. We were staying with her uncle and he was supposed to pick us up at the airport. I had never met him, didn't have his phone number and my friend's phone went straight to voicemail. It was a stressful first day! Turns out she had put her phone on airplane mode because it was low on batteries and she had fallen asleep. We finally got in touch, found her uncles and heading to their place near Leiden. That day, they took us to a beautiful tulip field. They drove us around for an hour or so until they found this field. I believe it was just a company that sells tulips but there were a bunch of other people taking photos so we hopped out. Since they had a very long winter and a cold spring, there weren't as many tulips blooming as there should have been. However, the SMELL was incredible from the hyacinth. Made freezing my butt off totally worth it. Every time the wind blew, you got the most amazing scent on the breeze.  You would have to be there to properly understand. Think how good a hyacinth or lilac bush smells when you walk by in and then times that by 10,000 or so and you might get the idea :)  Then they took us into the city to show us around a bit so we weren't overwhelmed the next day. It was so sweet. Her aunt cooked us a huge dinner that night and we didn't eat until about 11 pm. Even though I don't speak any Farsi, it was nice to hang out with her family and take it (somewhat) easy that first day. I was exhausted!

tulips me


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me in tulips

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Stay tuned for more photos from our next 2 days in the Netherlands and LOTS more photos from the rest of our trip soon!