Category Archives: travel

Part Two: Williamsburg

October 12, 2016

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Day two of my Virginia adventure took me to Williamsburg to visit my oldest friend (not in age, but in relationship). Leigh and I have been friends since freshman year of high school. I think we bonded over a mutual love for Celebrity Jeopardy and mutual hate for pep rallies and school spirit in general.

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Part One: Richmond

September 19, 2016

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What would summer be without a road trip? For the long July 4th weekend, I drove north to Virginia to visit friends in Williamsburg. My first stop though, was Richmond, a city I had not visited before, but immediately took a liking to for it’s natural beauty, culture, and good food. Here’s a glimpse into my one-day highlight tour of Richmond, Virginia…

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summer music / 1

July 12, 2016

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I mentioned in the previous post that I surprised my dad in New Orleans with Weezer tickets. To be honest, I was a little nervous he wouldn’t like standing outside in the heat for hours surrounded by a huge (rather eclectic) crowd. But he seemed to love it when all was said and done so I was grateful for that. There’s something about summer and live music that I just can’t get enough of. In an effort to keep the good vibes going, and maybe inspire your summer playlist, I’m sharing the set lists from Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Panic! At the Disco, and Weezer…

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I’ve had a strong obsession with Something Corporate since my high school days, so Andrew McMahon’s latest project, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, is the perfect transition into a modern sound. His set was short, but I loved hearing his live variations of Canyon Moon and a throwback to popular Jack’s Mannequin hit Dark Blue. His enthusiasm onstage really got the crowd the pumped.

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Apparently, I have seen Panic! At the Disco before with Dashboard Confessional in 2008 at UF, but had no recollection until the friend I went with brought it to my attention. I don’t know if frontman and the only remaining original member, Brendan Urie, has changed his performance style since then, but Panic! puts on quite a memorable show now. For the younger members of the audience, this was the main event. Urie was enthusiastic, humble, and addressed the crowd between songs. He played drums, piano, sang like Sinatra and even did a few backflips. I’m a fan of their latest album, Death of a Bachelor, which they played a lot of, and their cover of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody wasn’t bad either.

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FAVORITES: Ballad of Mona Lisa, Hallelujah, Nine in the Afternoon, Miss Jackson, Death of a Bachelor, I Write Sins Not Tragedies, Victorious

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Weezer is one of those bands that subtly permeated my adolescence and young adulthood.  Undone takes me straight back to high school, Surf Wax America reminds me of late night hangs with my best friends, and El Scorcho was my unrequited love anthem throughout college. They have so many amazing songs because they’ve been around for what feels like forever, or, 1992, and their new album, Weezer aka the White Album, is SO GOOD.

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New Orleans

June 28, 2016

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New Orleans. There’s so much to do, see, eat, drink, smell, and laugh at. I only had a few days, but tried to get in as much as I could, and while I barely scratched the surface of my to-do list (because let’s go again!), here are the highlights from my first visit to this wonderful city…

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My dad and I set out to New Orleans for a long weekend, but made a lunch detour for beachside oysters at Flora-Bama, a charming dive bar/restaurant on the Florida-Alabama state line.

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The cajun oysters were my favorite, but the fried pickles, which they call frickles, were de-lish too!

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New Orleans has some incredible hotel options, but I ultimately decided to Airbnb it in the Mid-City neighborhood. Our rental was only a few blocks from City Park, the New Orleans Museum of Art, and the streetcar line. Known as “The Heart of New Orleans” this neighborhood is totally walkable, full of great restaurants, and French Quarter adjacent. The architecture of the homes and our amazing host allowed us to feel like part of the city, and not just tourists. After getting settled, we grabbed dinner at Liuzza’s, a neighborhood restaurant with a cool, local vibe. My recommendation: the eggplant po’boy. You won’t regret it.

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The Scent of Vacation

May 17, 2016

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Many of us are hitting the road (or sky) this summer and venturing out on much needed vacations. While we will inevitably snap a gajillion photos to commemorate the experience, I’ve discovered another way to keep the memories of travel fresh in my mind long after returning home…

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Pensacola Beach Pier

April 26, 2016

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When I was planning the final project for my digital photography class, I knew I wanted to shoot at the coast. I chose Pensacola Beach Pier because I had never been, but thought it was sure to attract more visual interest than the deserted beaches I love on lazy weekends. So, on a chilly and gray Saturday morning I hit the road, a little nervous about getting my shot. What I discovered was a pleasant surprise…

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As soon as I arrived at the beach, I bought a walking pass onto the pier. It was sunny and I loved watching all the people with fishing poles line the edges of the pier. I walked to the end and looked for potential shots for my project. We were asked emulate a photographer of our choosing. I chose Max Wanger, a longtime favorite of mine.

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I think I’m going to turn this one (above) in for my final. I love the simplicity and the composition mimics Wanger’s style perfectly. I took it from the very end of the pier, squeezed between fisherman with thick southern accents listening to country music.

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I didn’t look at my watch while I was on the pier, but once I figured it out, I walked up and down for about three hours total. The changing light and never-ending movement of beachgoers proved inspiring and I couldn’t walk away. Unfortunately, my extended day on the pier led to a nasty sunburn (only on my wrists, back of my neck, and tops of my feet though!). But, the burn will fade, the photos will remain.

I finally called it quits after I ran out of water and the blisters on my feet burned as bad as my fresh sunburn. I walked over to The Stand for the best chicken taco I think I’ve ever eaten and an ice-cold Corona. I people-watched while I refueled and wished I had brought my bathing suit to enjoy the rest of the day.

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Shortly after a stroll down the coastline, I decided to head home. I was almost sad to leave this vibrant, bustling beach. It was so beautiful and the people were so  nice. I plan to go back for a longer day next time, maybe without my camera, most definitely with sunscreen.

Hotels that Inspire: Quirk Hotel

April 11, 2016

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I love love love staying at boutique hotels. There’s something so cool about local art on the walls, unique installations in the lobby and impeccable styling at the hotel restaurant. I stayed at The Line in L.A., and it was the perfect reflection of uber-trendy Koreatown. I’ve been looking to visit a few other cities around the country this summer, one of which is Richmond. After finding the Quirk Hotel, I’m even more inspired to stop in and stay.

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The lobby is bright and colorful with delicate details. It was constructed in 1916, which is why it has those gorgeous arches. Looks like the perfect place to people watch while enjoying a cup of the hotel’s signature blend coffee.

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los angeles: part two

April 5, 2016

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A few days in to our Cali trip, Victor joined us, and I was especially grateful that he insisted on driving. We kicked the day off with coffee and the super touristy attractions: The TCL Theatre and Walk of Fame, and ended the day at the Griffith Observatory.

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los angeles: part one

January 25, 2016

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As a Christmas present this year, I took my sister to Los Angeles. It was a somewhat impulsive decision, but those are sometimes the best. Last week, we boarded a plane and said adios to Florida for a whole week. So many important things happened on this trip! I learned (some) of the words to Hotling Bling, I found out why you want insurance on a rental car, my suspicions that everyone in L.A. is beautiful were more or less confirmed, and I saw Lisa Ling while eating a shrimp po’ boy at the Santa Monica Pier. I can’t wait to share all of the good times that were had but it’s going to take more than one post. Here is the first in a series of Cali posts, documenting our first few days in Los Angeles…

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People You Meet on Vacation

September 28, 2015

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I took this photo at the top of the Arc de Triomphe in 2013. It wasn’t until last week when I took a closer look and noticed the touristy folks that were all around me. I’ve been editing photos from this trip (it only took me 2 years!) and thought this one was really pretty. Just for fun I couldn’t resist labeling the typical touristy archetypes…

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