I Am Peace

I am participating in Deepak Chopra and Oprah’s 21 Day Meditation experience. I have done one of their 21 Day Meditation experiences before, a few months ago. They give beautiful guided meditations and it is a wonderful way to establish a consistent meditation practice. I was pretty good about meditating each day before work, last school year, but I fell out of my routine when summer hit. This meditation experience started on my first official day back at work and I thought it would be a great way to re-establish my routine.

The title of Day 3’s meditation was “I Am Peace.” It spoke about embodying peace itself. What I took from the meditation is learning to have inner peace in all situations, not just when life is easy, but even amongst the turbulent times.

I do not always do this. But, GAH,..oh how I want to.

This meditation resonated with me deeply, and I thought it about for a long time after and have sorted through some of those thoughts enough to form a (hopefully) coherent enough post.

At different points and phases in my life, it was important to me to be different things. When I was much younger, it was important for me to be perceived as pretty and funny. Then I wanted to be the academic, high achiever. Then I wanted to be the young professional, who was wise beyond her years. I guess I would be lying if I said a small part of me still does not still want those things, but I feel myself shifting to a different phase, where I really just want peace.

Chasing and wanting some of those other things did bring me academic and career success, however, the drive to keep achieving and conquering even bigger goals also brought me anxiety, pressure and chronic dissatisfaction. Although I did achieve my goals, sometimes I was not present or relaxed enough to enjoy those moments.

When life gets stressful (as it tends to do) my natural reaction is to let stress consume me, become tense in my neck and shoulders, put pressure on myself to quickly make things better and work harder and harder to try to avoid this type of stress again. It’s a losing cycle.

I have been working on being at peace, even in those stressful situations. I have been trying to not let myself become consumed by situations, but remain steady even through turbulent waters. I am not always successful, but have noticed vast improvements.

I have been thinking about this more and more when in the asana portion of my yoga practice. I had a yoga teacher once who cued one of my least favorite poses (i.e.-hated!), Boat Pose, Navasana, he said, “let this pose be less about the core and more about finding peace in a difficult situation.”

GAH! How do I find peace when my abs are shaking and my quads are quivering? How do I find peace when I am trying to keep my sternum lifted and my spine long, and all I want to do is collapse in a heap on my mat and sigh out like my bulldog does when she’s overwhelmed (this happens often)?

That has become my real work in this pose. As soon as it is cued in class, my mind gets frantic and my true work becomes calming myself down, even in the stressful situation.

I find myself using a similar line of teaching when I teach Chair Pose (Utkatasana). This actually happens to be one of my of my favorite poses, but I find this is one that most people really seem to get stressed about. I notice from the dirty looks I get when I cue this pose, that it causes that same type of tension for others, that I feel with Boat Pose. I try to teach this pose with this thought in my mind and remind my students to find their peace in it.

Yoga has given me the amazing gift to practice these concepts both on and off my mat. I will continually strive to become peace both on and off the mat. I know this is better my own health, and the world around me. How many of us don’t want world peace? I would love it if even just my own surrounding world were constantly peaceful. But, how can I expect something out of others, that I am not willing to work at myself?

The yoga pose images are from Yoga By Candace, my favorite yoga blog. Candace gives wonderful, practical and compassionate information about yoga. I highly recommend her site.

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2014 in Books-July

1. Shantaram- My husband read this book about one year ago, and said it was one of the best books he ever read. He is much more particular about books that interest him, than I am, so I knew I definitely wanted to read Shantaram. However, it’s nearly 1,000 pages long, and I had a hard time deciding when to make the time commitment to it.

I started this book on the plane back from Europe, and was quickly caught up in the windy story of an Australian escaped prisoner, who begins making a life for himself, in Bombay, India. The story takes so many twists and turns that it quickly captivates the reader. It also gives a pretty amazing tour of Indian and outsider analysis of the culture, that I found very interesting.

The novel is based on a true story. The author did in fact, escape from prison and spend time in India. Much criticism about the book lays in the embellishment of the story and facts. You can read an interesting response the author wrote here.

Embellished, exaggerated or made up, Shantaram still makes for a unique and interesting story. I highly recommend it if you have any interest in the Indian culture.

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2. Poser: My Life in 23 Yoga Poses-This was this month’s pick for my book club. The author goes about telling her life story by choosing a yoga pose, each chapter and relating it to a particular time in her life. Sometimes…that was a little bit of a stretch (poor yoga pun, intended). Every once in awhile you wonder how in the heck this anecdote relates to that certain pose.

The author really started off annoying me. She seemed whiny and approached yoga too goal-oriented and for aesthetics sake. However, eventually, she did begin to approach yoga from a more practical and even spiritual perspective, and the manner in which she describes some of her struggles with anxiety and the need to be perfect, definitely resonated with me, and how yoga has helped me address these issues.

poser 3. The Green and The Red (Le Vert Le Rouge)-This book was sent to me by Ashland Creek Press for FREE for review. This book was about a vegetarian restaurant owner who begins to date a distributor of pork products, and all the drama that can potentially ensue.

The book definitely threw in all the possible cliches that can be heard about vegetarian and vegans, but it was interesting to see them addressed and how the characters dealt with these conflicts. It also brings up the lingering question of should a vegetarian/vegan date a omnivore, and takes the reader through the potentially disastrous scenarios.

I also liked that the book addressed the vegetarian v. vegan conflict. It puts all these taboos out on the table and they are finally worked out in a respectable manner.

This book was a fast read, and overall, very charming. It was nice to read a novel where the main character was a vegetarian.

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Essential Oils Used While Traveling

So lately, I have become a little essential oil obsessed. I have always had an interest in essential oils, and usually had lavender and tea tree stashed somewhere in my house, but I wanted to learn more.

My cute friend Melinda started using DoTerra oils. She gave me some good information and invited me to an informational meeting. I was sold pretty quickly. I already had a decent knowledge of their benefits and I am definitely a believer in using as many natural remedies as possible, for any ailments.

When I told my husband I was going to an oil meeting, he pictured a scene like this, and made fun of me steadily:

Lucy oilHe scoffed as I begin experimenting with mixing oils and using them at various times. My husband rolled his eyes when my step-son became curious and I told him they were potions and we would have “potion making class,” as he helped me create blends.

When I started to pack for Europe, I knew I wanted to bring a few oils with me. I purchased this super cute case from AromaTools and loaded my oils in my carry on.

14536222709_f0a66b9206_oBelow is the list of what I brought, and when/if I used them:

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1. Tranquility Blend, by Aura Cacia: Obviously not a DoTerra blend, but still one of my favorites. I use this often when I teach yoga to help usher in relaxation as we begin to wind class down. I use it sometimes before bed, if I am feeling a little restless. My step-son loves this one, and will occasionally ask if he can “have some potion” to help him sleep.

2. Lavender: One of my all time favorites! Lately, I have mostly being using it on my hand. I have this weird skin irritation that I think came from lemons (I used to squeeze one in my water every morning). The lavender has really been helping the skin irritation and helping it to heal.

3. Eucalyptus: OK, this may be TMI, but it was a great tip I picked up from somewhere else, so I will pass it along. I used this oil anytime I had to go to the restroom….you know…number 2. You just add a few drops into the toilet before you go, and viola! When you are traveling with other people (in my case, it was 4 other people, and only 1 bathroom for all of us), it really helps! I also added it to the floor of the shower before I turned on the water. It gave off a nice, aromatic, lung opening effect.

4. Lemon: As previously mentioned, I love drinking a warm class of lemon water every morning, to get my digestion moving and help me wake up. Because squeezing a lemon every day started irritating my hand, I begin using this oil. It is so much more convenient! I just add about 3 drops to a glass of water, every morning, to help the detox process.

5. DigestZen: This is a wonderful blend of ginger, peppermint, tarragon, fennel, caraway, coriander, and anise. It is perfect for any type of upset stomach. I rubbed a few drops right on my belly a few times during my trip that I was feeling nauseous or experiencing the beginning signs of acid reflux (probably from eating and drinking too much). This blend starts working pretty quickly and really works! My friend also used it once during the trip and I had my step-son rub some on his belly, when he thought he was going to puke in The Vatican! (It worked, there was no incidents that the Pope would have to forgive us for.)

6. DeepBlue: Another one of my favorite blends! It contains wintergreen, camphor, peppermint, blue tansy, german chamomile, helichrysum, and osmanthus. Plus, it actually comes out blue, how fun is that?

I used this on the day of stair climbing, when we went to Notre Dame, and climbed the hills up to Montmarte.

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By the end of the day, my knee was not happy with me. I put some of this blend on a night, and by the morning, my knee felt much better and held up well, for another day of walking.

7. OnGuard: OK, this stuff is simply amazing, and came to the rescue a few times, during the trip. It is a blend of wild orange essential oil, combined with clove, cinnamon, eucalyptus, and rosemary. 

The first time we used it was in Tuscany. My husband is horribly allergic to mulberry trees. He does not even have to touch one, if there is one nearby, the dander in the air will start to cause his face to swell up and his throat to close.

When we arrived at our beautiful villa, we ooohed and aaahed over the views, but soon enough, he started to feel a little off. We looked around and saw a huge mulberry tree, right in front of the villa.

We would be staying at this beautiful site for 3 nights and I felt awful that this amazing experience was beginning to have a negative connotation for him.

It was not long, before he looked like this. He was swollen, sneezing and coughing.

100_2078 I whipped out the OnGuard and added 3 drops to a cup of water and had him drink it down. Within an hour, the swelling on his face had gone down, and he was feeling remarkably better. For the remainder of the trip, he drank that down each morning and kept the allergy attacks away. He stopped making fun of my oils after that.

I also used OnGuard when my step-son was stung by a wasp. While he was playing in the pool, he was stung on his shoulder.

100_2034 Right away, the area begin to swell. I took him inside and applied a mix of lavender and OnGuard to the area around the sting. Again, within an hour the swelling had gone way down and he was quickly back in the pool.

8. Peppermint: This really helped me while I had the migraine from hell, the first day in Rome, as we explored the Colosseum and the Forum.

100_1832 I applied the oil to my temples, behind my ears and straight on my belly every hour. I was still pretty miserable, but without it, I think I would have thrown up for sure, or given up and laid down on the steps of the Colosseum to die.

9. Breathe: Another wonderful blend of laurel leaf, peppermint, eucalyptus, melaleuca, lemon, and ravensara. I really did not need to use it, but I brought it along anyway, in case my husband was having allergy related issues, with anything else. He has used it since then, and it definitely helps him breathe better, when he feels congested.

10. Melaleuca (Tea Tree Oil): I never had to use it, but it is a good one to bring along. I brought it in case there was any injury or threat of infection. Tea tree is so good for knocking that out quickly.

Do you use any essential oils?

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European Adventure: Paris Day 4 & 5

Day 4 in Paris was our last day of major sight seeing. We needed to wake up early though, to try to beat out some of the crowds, to the Louvre. I knew the Louvre housed the Mona Lisa, some Da Vinci and Monet pieces, but I was not expectation SO many other artifacts, sculptures and paintings. It is, by far, the most amazing museum I have ever been to, and I feel like I only saw a fraction of it. It is definitely on my list to tour again, the next time I am in Paris (and I definitely want to return to Paris!).

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We arrived at the Louvre early enough and were one of the first people in line. We knew we would make a beeline for the Mona Lisa, which generally has a crowd throughout the day.

We went straight to the Mona Lisa when the museum opened. We wanted to see it, pretty much to say we saw it. It was…small, and a little unremarkable. I am glad we saw it first thing, because later on there was a huge crowd.

IMG_2143Then we set off to explore the museum. We started off in the ancient civilization sections and worked our way up to ancient Egypt, before we took a lunch break. The artifacts were absolutely astounding. We were looking at tools, statues, jewelry and relics that were thousands of years old! We also saw portions of temples and palaces that were still remarkably intact.

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After lunch, we went to the Napoleonic apartments. Not only is the Louvre an amazing museum, but it was also the site of the former palace, before it was moved to Versailles. Not only are there amazing things to see all around you, but the building itself is a work of art.

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After looking at the apartments and medieval section, we begin exploring the Italian section. There was so much to take in, but my favorite paintings were by Giovanni Pannini. This was a series of so many paintings, within the painting. He replicated not only paintings, but sculptures and sites all around Rome and Paris. 100_2997 100_2999

At this point, we had been at the museum for over 6 hours. Even though there was so much we would have liked to explore, we had passed the threshold for a 9 year old’s museum interest. He actually behaved remarkably well and seemed genuinely interested in some of the artifacts (but not so much the paintings).

We decided to return back to Tuileres gardens to relax and let the kid roam free, without his hands behind his back and having to whisper (as he did very well throughout the whole museum). He ran amok at the playground, and we planted in the cafe with beer and fries, to talk about all the amazing things we had seen.

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After a few hours, we took the metro to the Bastille district. We explored the colorful neighborhood until we found a bar to plant and watch some of the game.

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Eventually, we made our way back to our neighborhood for a quick dinner, then sleep! We were pretty exhausted at this point from all the early mornings, walking and sight seeing.

The next morning was the first morning in Paris that we did not have to be up early! We slept in blissfully.

I REALLY wanted to take a yoga class at a studio at some point during this vacation. I saw a studio on Yelp when we were in Rome, but was never able to find it. We set off that morning to find one a few miles from our apartment in Paris. My phone only worked at our apartment, were we had Wi-Fi, so we pulled up the map from there and figured out what metro stop to exit from. We made our way to the address and when we got there…it was a Chinese restaurant. We re-traced our steps, re-checked the address, but alas, there was no yoga studio. Since my phone did not work, I could not pull up the map or look anything up, so after searching a bit more, we abandoned the mission. I really did want to experience taking a class in another country, and hopefully, I will get that opportunity someday.

We set off to enjoy our last day in Paris. It was incredibly bittersweet to walk the streets on the final day, before returning back to America. I knew I needed to visit one of the many pastry shops to buy my mom a treat, straight from Paris.

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We continued to savor the city and eventually made our way to Pere LeChais to visit the final resting places of a few noteables.

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Oscar Wilde

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Gertrude Stein

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Edith Piaf

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Jim Morrison

We then made the long journey back to our neighborhood, for a final European dinner. We ended up eating at an Italian restaurant, and I savored my last bit of European wine and pasta.

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We sadly made our way back to our apartment, to pack up and be ready for another early and epic day of travel.

We woke up around 3 AM, to catch a cab at 4 AM, to get to the airport. Once we finally boarded, some of us were in better moods than others.

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We flew about two hours and landed in London. We had a two hour layover and found some delicious, healthy food. I had not realized how much I missed green juice until I drank this.

IMG_2182Soon enough, we boarded again for the long, ten hour flight back to LA.

IMG_2185 The flight made me crazy, but there was nothing remarkably wrong with it. I was just tired and claustrophobic. My backpack barely survived the final leg of the trip.

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R.I.P.

We made our way home and gave our puppies huge hugs. It was wonderful to sleep in our own bed that night, but it has been a difficult adjustment back to America. I had an amazing time on our vacation and feel in love with different portions of European and international life.

I appreciate you following along on this journey with me! I hope you enjoyed seeing all the pictures and reading about my experience.

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European Adventure: Paris Day 2 & 3

At the recommendation of our guru Rick Steve’s we woke up early and arrived at Notre Dame before 9 AM. We were able to walk right into the cathedral, without waiting in a line, and explore around before the hoards of tour groups came through.

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I immediately loved Notre Dame. The gothic architecture was intricate and appealing. I don’t know if it was because we arrived before the crowds, but there was a much more sacred atmosphere inside Notre Dame, as opposed to what I felt in the Vatican. There are signs everyone reminding you to keep silent, so a more respectful atmosphere is maintained.

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We looked around the cathedral and were able to witness a mass that was occurring. We then went to get in line to climb the bell tower, which opened to visitors at 10 AM.

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The climb up Notre Dame was much better regulated than the Vatican. They only allowed so many people up at a time, which the experience at the top more enjoyable, since you were not smashed against other people.

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The views at the top were unbelievable:

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Out of all the cathedrals I have visited in Europe, Notre Dame was definitely my favorite. The architecture and energy was more appealing to me and I appreciated how much more organized the visiting regulations were.

After Notre Dame, we went just right up the street to visit Shakespeare & Co. This was must-see for me, in Paris. It is a small, independent bookstore that was the gathering place for many of my favorite authors, such as Ernest Hemmingway, Ezra Pound and James Joyce.

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We grabbed a quick lunch, and begin making our way to the Orsay Museum. I was pretty worn out at this point from all the walking and climbing, so we decided to split up. Our friends went to the museum and we returned to Tuliere gardens to rest and give my step-son time to play.

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Sometimes, on vacation, your husband takes really unflattering pictures of you!

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Once I woke up from my nap, we met back with our friends, and begin making our way to the Montmarte district.

Montmarte is situated on a hill, so we climbed and climbed and climbed. It was definitely worth it. Montmarte is such an eclectic and interesting neighborhood. There are artists everywhere, and the energy is fun and vibrant.

We started off by visiting Basilica of the Sacre Coeur. The steps outside were full of people and there was a small band playing. It was such a fun meeting place and seemed to be the place to be, on that afternoon.

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We went inside the Basilica (no photos were allowed, because a service was in session) and it was amazing how separated from the noise and energy it was, from what was going on outside. The atmosphere was reserved and sacred, an interesting contrast to the bustling right outside the doors.

After the Basilica, we visited Place du Terte, a square where artists gather to paint picture or sketches of paying tourists. It was packed with tourists, but still very interesting to watch the talent unfold in front of us. In moments, amazing works of art were executed right before our eyes. We planted in a café and peopled watched for awhile and enjoyed the buzzing environment (and cheers from the current World Cup game).

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Our energy was running low at this point. It had been the day of climbing and we were pretty worn out. We had a long walk back towards our apartment, and we stopped once more for Falafel at the restaurant near were we were staying. We had another early morning the next day, so we tried to get to sleep between 10-11 PM. The sun did not set till about 10:30 PM, so it was confusing sometimes, to try to get to sleep early.

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The plan for the next day was to visit Versailles. This was another must-see for me, and I was incredibly excited to see this historical, decadent site.

We woke up early enough for 5 people to get ready in a small apartment, with one bathroom and we made our way to the metro station and figured out how to navigate our way to Versailles. We found it easy enough and were in line at the entrance, about 20 minutes before it opened.

We were one of the first ones in and had the opportunity to explore around, before it got too crowded.

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Versailles was pretty breathtaking. It is elaborate and completely over the top, complete fit for royalty. You definitely get the sense that Louis XIV thought highly of himself, there are paintings and statues of him all over in various heroic stances.

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Each room was more ornate than the next, and it was a challenge to try and see all the details of the paintings, sculptures and furnishings.

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Once we had explored the Chateau, we set out to start touring the immense gardens. We walked and walked and walked and awed over the expanse around us.

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After touring both Grand & Petite Trianon (other living quarters of the royal family when they wanted to escape the formality of the Chateau), we set off to find Marie Antoinette’s estate. This was my favorite part of the grounds. The hamlet village was incredibly charming and quaint. It is so far away from the Chateau, that you would not even guess you were on the same grounds. It was secluded away and easy to see why she utilized it as an escape.

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The farm was still active and adorable. I could have spent the whole day just watching the animals.

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After exploring the hamlet, we walked all the way back to the Chateau and made our way back to the train station. We rode back into the city and walked around the Latin Quarter. It was a fun, energetic neighborhood.

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We found some delicious street food (I really could not get enough falafel) and planted in a bar to watch some of the World Cup.

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Eventually, we made our way back to our neighborhood, because, as I am sure you guessed, we had to be up early, once again, to beat the crowds for our next site.

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European Adventure: Paris Day 1

I am going to break up the posts about Paris, because there was just so much to see and do. I appreciate if you have hung in for these travel posts. I know it can be tedious and I go back and forth between wondering if I am babbling and realizing how much I am leaving out.

To get to Paris, we left early in the morning from Beaune, to drive to Dijon, drop off our rental car and take a train to Paris.

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I was SO excited, and anxious for Paris. We would be there the longest of all cities in our trip, 5 days, and yet even in that time, I knew I would not be able to see everything I wanted. I was also nervous about the pace we would be keeping.

Plainly speaking: I was tired. We had been traveling for over two weeks at this point and although I was having an amazing time, I was craving a day to relax and not worry about if we would make a certain train time, would my backpack would hang in there for another day, did I pronounce thank-you and please correctly in another language and did I make sure to take pictures of that amazing thing that I may never see again. Traveling does take it’s toll after awhile and although I was a long way from wanting to go home, I did want to slow down a bit.

Paris would be the exact opposite of that. It was an energetic city with so much to see. Luckily, I was revitalized by the life from the city and it kept me going for the next 5 days, with some bouts of exhaustion, here and there.

We arrived in Paris and immediately purchased the Paris pass from the train station. Our guru Rick Steve’s recommended it, and I definitely concur. It got us access to most of the sites we visited and public transportation. It ended up being much cheaper to purchase the pass, as opposed to purchasing all these things separately.

From the train station, we took the metro and found our next apartment pretty easily. This apartment was the smallest of the whole trip. It was a small studio, all one room. There were bunk beds, which my husband I slept on the bottom, and our friends slept on the top. There was a small, pullout bed that came out of the wall, where my step-son slept. As small as it was, it was perfect for what we needed. It was affordable and centrally located, and we knew we would hardly be in the apartment. Plus, we had a small view of Eiffel Tower from our balcony, see it way over in the left corner?

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Steps away from our apartment building, we found a Mediterranean restaurant. I was SO happy to see this sign. Food options in Paris were definitely looking up and I quickly devoured this flavorful falafel wrap. We may or may not have eaten one nearly each day we were in Paris.

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Speaking of the Eiffel Tower, after dropping off our bags at our apartment, we headed right to it. We had to walk a few miles, but eventually we found it and took a billion pictures.

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After the Eiffel Tower, we headed in the direction of The Champs Elysee, where my husband history nerded out over seeing The Arc of Triomphe.

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We literally skipped down The Champs Elysee like a bunch of tourist a holes and stopped for some overpriced, watered down drinks, but we just HAD to stop and sit on The Champs Elysee, for awhile. It was bustling and vibrant and a great opportunity for people watching.

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We walked all the way down The Champs Elysee and ended up at Tuileres gardens. We planted in a café within the gardens that was located right next to a playground. Jackpot. We appreciated the opportunity to rest our feet and drink a beer, and my step-son appreciated the opportunity to play with other children. I am certain he was tired of traveling exclusively with adults, at this point.

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Chips + guac in Paris. Heck yes!

Chips + guac in Paris. Heck yes!

Eventually, our hunger got the best of us, and we tried to figure out how to navigate the metro back to our apartment.

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We knew we wanted to eat at the Indian food restaurant that was literally on the corner, from our building. I hungrily dug into fresh naan, spiced rice and curried lentils. Deeeeeeelicious.

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After dinner, we were exhausted from our travel and all the walking. We headed back up to our apartment to get some sleep, because the next day, we had plans to be up very early.

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European Adventure: Beaune

We took a bus to Lyon and were supposed to take a train to Beaune. However, there were train strikes occurring and we found out our few hours of travel could now potentially take us the whole day. We decided to rent a car instead, and drive to Beaune.

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We squeezed ourselves into our rental car, and were on our way.

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We arrived in Beaune and settled in to our next apartment, which was located on the outskirts of the city. We choose Beaune because of it’s proximity to wineries within the Burgandy region. We were definitely excited for all the local, delicious wines.

The center of Beaune is located within the walls of the former castle of the Duke of Burgandy. It had an incredibly historical and quaint feel to it.

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We unpacked in our new apartment, and walked into town to explore.

Eventually, we settled in for dinner, which was…salad and French fries.

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We had a spacious balcony at the apartment, and we enjoyed many bottles of delicious wine from the region. I loved these moments of slowing down, sipping wine and taking the whole trip in.

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The next day, we slept it (it was much needed!) then walked into town. We explored around some more, and visited the local cathedral.

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We chose a café in town for lunch and ordered…..you guessed it! Salad and French fries. The salad was not even listed on the menu, my husband asked if we could have a green salad and we received some lettuce, with olive oil drizzled on. This actually cost a ridiculous amount of money, to top it off. Needless to say, we were pretty hungry at this point.

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We decided to take a trip to the local market, and our friend announced he would be making a vegan risotto for dinner.

We spent the rest of the day relaxing in our apartment, drinking amazing wine and feasted on a great dinner of risotto, salad and grilled vegetables! My friend Mischa definitely saved me from being hangry!

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The next day, we took Rick Steve’s advice and set out on a wine tour. Rick Steve’s France guidebook gives a detailed tour of the wineries in the Burgandy region.

We took a breathtaking drive through vineyards and hillsides, to visit three different wineries.

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I found I definitely prefer French wine over Italian, and I feel in love with a few different white wines, which I normally do not care for.

On our tour, we found Chateau de la Rochepot, a restored castle from the 1400s. It started to lightly rain when we arrived, which made for the perfect setting to explore the castle.

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After the Chateau, we drove out to a few more amazing spots, then made the turn around back to our apartment.

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Beaune offered us so much charm, history and information on wine, but it was time to move on. We tried to get to sleep pretty early, because we had to be up extra early, to make our way into Paris!

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