Photo Drop: Zurich – The City

I have two problems:

  1. I take too many photos.
  2. I love them all.

To avoid overwhelming you with 800 photos at once, I’ve decided to phase them into a few posts. We’ll start today with some of Zurich.

Jamie, our friend Casey and I were met at the Zurich airport by our friend Kevin. We dropped our bags at his flat and immediately set out for Zurich Uetliberg Lookout. Click that link to see what I saw!

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Casey, Kevin, myself and Jamie on the lookout platform

Our sightseeing was followed by more sightseeing – Kevin gave us a nighttime walking tour of the downtown area.

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…and on that note…more later! 🙂

Monday Motivation: Work Your Ass Off

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Today’s blog post is for the workers and creators. Those who realize that what they want will most likely not come handed to them on a silver platter without consequence. Opportunity is so beautiful, and is often easily taken for granted.

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On my trip to Berlin, I was especially inspired by the street art and the story behind the alternative culture and its resistance to gentrification. We visited Tacheles, a building that has played many roles in Berlin’s history: first as a department store in the Jewish Quarter before WWII, being used as a Nazi prison for part of the war and later becoming a mecca (and squat) for artists from all over the world.

This article, written around the closing of Tacheles, describes the culture better than I could.Tacheles closed on September 4, 2012. Tacheles Metallwerkstatt, a sculpture park behind the actual building, is still open and run by the artist association ArtProTacheles.

P1010797P1010798You don’t have to visit Tacheles to see art in Berlin – the streets are covered with inspiration from famous street artists, if you know where to look. And in every single post-up or tile you see, you can feel the passion behind the artist who put it there.

I came home from Berlin inspired to put the same passion into my every day. I’m lucky to work in a field that I love, and I want to make every moment count both at work and in my personal life.

Commence photo drop. The quality isn’t top notch on all of the photos, but I hope you enjoy:

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Monday Motivation and My Favorite San Diego Photos

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Happy Monday morning! I saw the above quote on Pinterest this morning, and thought it was more than appropriate in my quest to teach myself photography. I had a passion for the art in high school, but was easily frustrated and gave up too soon. I’m ecstatic to be picking up the hobby again, and to share my journey of learning with you.

I promised in my last post to share my favorite shots from my recent trip to San Diego. These will of course exclude the shots of food, since they’re all in that Foodie Friday post. I consider myself a complete amateur, so bear with me! This will be fun to look back on in a few months, or at least I hope it will. I love how little everyday things are so different on the West coast from the East. I was completely fascinated by the gardens in my sister’s neighborhood, so brace yourself for a lot of flowers and weird plants, and of course a few fun vacation shots. I hope you enjoy!

P1000220Old Town during the holidays at night

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More Old Town

P1000236A shelf in a shop in Old Town

P1000266My beautiful sister

P1000304My sister’s awesome fiance

P1000291Their adorable pup, Onyx

P1000324A ferry docked on Coronado Island, with a view of downtown San Diego in the background

P1000350Birds of Paradise

P1000367Part of a garden in my sister’s neighborhood

P1000373Does anyone know what kind of flower this is?

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P1000386A family photo taken while walking Onyx

P1000395Magnolias are gorgeous even after their petals have fallen

P1000409My favorite photo from the trip – this shot made the cost of my new camera worth it to me.

P1000416Onyx making friends – this is Smiles

P1000442And this is my new duck friend – notice he is staring right at me

P1000443Duck hanging out in Balboa Park

P1000449Performer in Balboa Park

P1000464I love parrots. This Macaw was gorgeous (Balboa Park)

P1000487My sister and I by the Dr. Suess Christmas tree

P1000513Poor quality, but these poodles are wearing sunglasses and visors!

P1000558Coronado Island

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Sand dunes on Coronado Island

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Sand dunes on Coronado Island

P1000600My sister and I

P1000603…being silly

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…more silly

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❤ sisters

Feel free to critique! It was an amazing trip, and I hope that I captured some of the special moments. I used to feel that if I was taking photos I wasn’t experiencing real moments, but I this this trip has taught me otherwise. In a few short weeks I will be snapping away in Zurich and Berlin. I can’t wait!

Foodie Friday: San Diego Food Photos

Happy Friday! I came home Monday night from a long weekend in San Diego, and still have not caught up with my blogging or sleep schedules! I took so many photos with my new camera, and I’m so excited to share them with you. Since today is Foodie Friday, I’m going to post some of my favorite food photos from the trip. I promise to share the rest over the weekend!

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Amazing seafood at Blue Water: grilled calamari appetizer//seared ahi tuna platter//swordfish platter//the best damn tuna melt ever

P1000280P1000287Wedding cake tasting at Babycakes: before and after

P1000276Red velvet pancakes at Babycakes (these were not ours, they just looked so perfect that I snapped a shot while the ‘owner’ wasn’t looking!)

P1000236Taffy in a store in Old Town

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Uhhhmazing Chilean sea bass at Peohe’s on Coronado Island

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…and the obligatory In-N-Out Burger

There are a few more photos still on my camera (including scrumptious pumpkin spice pancakes), but I’m sure I’ve given you enough to make your mouth water at this point.

Awkward & Awesome Thursday: The Travel Edition

AWKWARD

  • Everything going right, for once. I am writing this post from a terminal in the airport, where I am, oh, about THREE hours early for my flight to San Diego. Who shows up at the airport three hours before a domestic flight? Someone who knows that anything that can go wrong while traveling will. Well, the powers that be are challenging my pessimism, and I can’t say I mind being early.
  • The man sitting next to me at the airport bar (where I was eating breakfast, not drinking, at 10:30 a.m.) tipped the bartender .18 cents. No dollars, not even a quarter of a dollar – .18 cents. I know, because the bartender laughed and made a big deal of it after he left the establishment. I get it, the food is over-priced, but really man? C’mon.
  • Traveling to San Diego in late November is tough. When I get off the plane, nothing that I’m wearing will make sense. I pretty much had to pack 1.5 wardrobes for the next five days.

AWESOME

  • VACATION! Goodbye New York (I won’t miss you) and Jamie (I will miss you). I’m off to spend five very feminine days with my sister. Wedding prepping, brunching, shopping, etc. Sorry readers, the blog posts may be sparse—we will see! I’m extra psyched to see Sly (sister’s fiance) and Onyx too! 

This is Onyx

A New York Girl Does Chicago Deep Dish

Hello lovelies! I’m sorry for the complete lack of posts the past few days…I’ve been in Chicago for work and Alycia has been on vacation in Miami. We really need to coordinate our schedules better, huh?

So this is my second time visiting the Windy City. Last time I was here I left disappointed because I didn’t get to try the ‘other’ great pizza of our country. I was NOT about to let that happen again.So last night I headed over to Bella Bachinos and had this:

Deep dish with sausage, green peppers and artichoke. Mmm mmm good. I still love my NY style thin-crust, but this was something else altogether.
What do you like better, Chicago deep dish or New York style?

EuroFood

WARNING: this post is LONG.
Now that I’ve sorted through my photos from Europe, I can share my trip with you! Instead of boring you with the 160 photos of the beautiful sights in Paris, Prague and Copenhagen, I saved the highlights: the FOOD.
First stop, Paris:

After a long flight, our friend Selim greeted us at the airport with some beers, and brought us back to his apartment for a home made dinner. Pictured above: babaganoosh, rice, and turkey kebabs.

While in Paris we made sure to stop for crepes and churros near the Place de la Bastille.
We visited Monmarte, and I snapped a photo fo these irresistible treats in the window.

… and of course we took the time to stop in a candy store.

Off to Prague…

The highlight of food in Prague is definitely on the street. Sausages, hot wine, hot chocolate, and my favorite, Smayzeny, which is basically a fried cheese sandwich. All of it was so good after miles of walking and lots of beer.
Speaking of Beer…Pilsner, Pilsner and more Pilsner was had. My favorite beer.
And then Jamie brought me to Pivarsky Club, a restaurant we saw on the Prague episode of Anthony Bourdain, No Reservations. They have the largest selection of beer in Europe, and you order meat  by the kilogram. We enjoyed a few beers, bacon dumplings and an incredible pork knuckle. Don’t knock it until you try it!
Bacon Dumplings
Pork Knuckle (before)
Pork Knuckle (after)

While in Prague, it is important to drink the obligatory Absinth. Here it is, all aflame:

I didn’t see any green fairies, but it did get me feeling buzzy.  The last stop in Prague was some goulash, and more bacon dumpling. Mmmm….
And then to Copenhagen…
We enjoyed a good amount of the local Carlsburg and Tuborg brews. I had a hearty burger and fries the first night. We met up with some friends and had many schnaps, bitters, aquavit, etc. I don’t know what you want to call it, but we had it!
After a full day of touring and visiting the Carlsberg Brewery, we found a cozy bar called Von Fressen, and enjoyed some hummus and open sandwiches (smorgasbord?).
I don’t think mine was very traditional, but it was delicous: pancakes, grilled goat cheese, beets, walnuts and maple syrup.
Jamie enjoyed break with ham, cheese, peppers, pesto, etc. Both sandwiches were soo good!
You can’t go to Denmark without having dessert! Pictured below are a traditional danish pastry, along with some cakey, chocolatey strawberry goodness. We also had waffels with soft ice cream. mmm.
And that is my trip in food. For more about my actual trip, feel free to hop on over to The Happy Shopaholic.

Triple Hot Chocolate Teaser

Hello bloggies! I’m back from Europe in one piece! I had an incredible trip. We went to Paris, Prague and Copenhagen. I ate (and drank) my way through the cities, and still managed to lose some weight form all the walking!
I have a lot of photos to sort through, but in the meantime I thought I would leave you with this:
Triple hot chocolate. There is nothing like a warm cup of chocolatey goodness when it’s cold and rainy outside! I was daydreaming of this drink that I had in Copenhagen while sipping on bland watery office hot chocolate today. Baresso, the “Starbucks” of Denmark if you will, serves up steamed milk with three sticks of chocolate (I think they were white, milk and dark). Stirring them around and watching the chocolate melt is half the fun!
I should have brought some chocolate sticks home with me but Baresso, like Starbucks, was CRAZY expensive.
I promise to share more from the trip soon!
Christina

Awkward & Awesome: Back from My Eurotrip

AWKWARD
  • While in Europe, Jamie and I walked 5 to 8 miles per day, maybe more, and still managed to party until the wee hours of the night. When in NYC, I sit at a desk for 8 hours a day, and can’t keep my eyes open at the bar on Friday. It is amazing what less stress and more exercise can do for your energy levels! (I didn’t know if this should go under awkward or awesome).
  • Drinking more beer than I have in the past 6 months over a 10 day period, and losing weight. Not sure how many pounds, but I fit into the jeans that I outgrew exactly one year ago. Now all I have to do to maintain is find time to walk 5 miles a day, right? (Again – both awkward and awesome).
  • Everybody in Copenhagen looking stunned and asking us why we were in Denmark in February. Apparently summatime is where it’s at over there!
      AWESOME
  • Aside from the beautiful monuments, seeing friends in Paris and visiting my company’s Paris office. The hospitality given to us by the people we know in France was outstanding, and it made the trip.
  • PRAGUE. Prague was my favorite. Seeing Reel Big Fish in Prague was awesome. The street food was awesome. The bars were awesome, the absinthe was awesome, the castle was awesome, the apartment we rented was awesome. Dancing with my boyfriend in the basement bar of a hostel on our last night was awesome. I felt so relaxed in this city, and I cannot wait to go back.
  • The local bars that our new friends in Copenhagen brought us to were awesome. Also, the city was just stunning, but in a ghost town way. I want to go back in the summer and see it thrive.
This list doesn’t put a dent in all of the good times we had and wonderful things we saw. I’m leaving so much out! Hopefully after I sort through my pictures this weekend I can put a real highlights reel together for your viewing pleasure.
I did miss my blog and all of you readers! Bear with me while I get back on track!

Inspired: Copenhagen Street Style

Hello lovelies, I’m back in the beautiful U S of A! I haven’t had time to upload any photos from my trip yet, so I’ll do a photo post over the weekend after I’ve sorted through (there are more than 400).

For now I leave you with this: I loved Copenhagen’s street style. I don’t quite have the balls to snap photos of strangers on the street (yet), so I did a nice little search today and found The Locals, a street style blog based in  Copenhagen, but with images from all over the world. Here is some cool weather Copenhagen eye candy to hold you over for my next post:
Ok, ok this one is from fall, but come on, how cute are they?! Copenhagen girls rock tights all through the cold winter too, totally inspired me to step up my cold-weather wardrobe game.
Over-sized coat and wide brim, rocked to perfection.
Classic black and white, with some stand- out accessories.