Duomo di Milano (2014)

It’s hard to believe that nearly six years ago, my husband and I were in the most breathtaking and historical places!

In July of 2014, we left France for Italy and Milan had to be our first stop. During our first night in the city of shopping, we explored the famous city center.

A photographer saw us walking by and wanted to grab a photo of us smooching in front of the Duomo di Milano, or Milan Cathedral. Although I’ve always cherished this moment, the history of the cathedral is sublime.

The Italian gothic, old-school architecture makes for a stand-out structure. The inside is even more stunning with some of the ‘loudest’ stained glass windows I’ve ever seen. And unfortunately, I don’t have a single photograph of the inside…

I remember learning that the Duomo di Milano is the church with the most statues! It’s also the fifth largest church in the world today, and took over 600 years to complete (some are still under the assumption that it isn’t even completed to this day!).

I can’t wait to get back out there and travel again! 😊

Mont-Saint-Michel (2014)

Almost exactly six years ago, Juan and I had a weekend getaway in Mont-Saint-Michel. Prior to our weekend together, I’d never heard of this magical place and I couldn’t wait to explore!

Mont-Saint-Michel is in Normandy, France and serves as a mainland commune. Back in the sixth, seventh and eighth centuries, the tidal island was founded and used to protect against the Vikings. Its rich history is something to be experienced in person…

Today, tourism is its sole source of economic stimulation. It’s estimated that only 25-50 people sleep on the Mont each night, which includes monks who live on the island. This made our time here extra special!

If you’re ever in northwestern France, please take time to visit this wonderful place!

Missing Marseille (2014)

I miss strolling along the Vieux-Port, people watching and sipping espresso without a care in the world at one of the many cafes, and – of course – enjoying some gelato in the breeze…

Perusing the streets (and past memories) of Paris

With the COVID-19 chaos among us, all I can think of is traveling. Last Monday I was supposed to venture off to Banff National Park for some solo adventuring, yet here I am soaking up some sun on my couch…

While I may not be educating myself on wolf-dogs, tubing down mountains or glacier hiking, I am currently lost in past travels. I recently spoke with one of my best friends who I met while we studied in France, so I’ll continue my French-inspired posts for now.

One of my favorite photos from the weekend…

Carolyn and I spent one weekend in Paris during over summer abroad; for both good and bad reasons, it was a weekend we’ll never forget. I can only explain our weekend mishaps by sharing a piece of my matron of honor speech from September 2019:

“During our time in France, there was only one moment when I feared that Carolyn wouldn’t want to be my friend anymore. We were lost in Paris for a while, wandering the outskirts in the middle of the night. Let’s just say that it brought out the worst in us. Our phones weren’t working and we had no clue how or when we would find our way back.

For once, there were no stories about our significant others, no rants about Veronique and her subpar cooking, and most importantly, no laughter. Thankfully, things went back to normal once we found our hotel, and I’m incredibly thankful for that.

In fact, we’ve had a reunion every year since that summer, and in 2015 we were also lost in Chicago late at night. We laughed while we struggled to find our way back to the hotel, and it brought me back to that hectic night in Paris.”

I hope you’re all staying safe, healthy and happy with your loved ones (and favorite TV series!) ❤️

Fond of France (2014)

I officially started this blog in 2015 by being forced into it as a class assignment. I thought, “no one is going to care what I have to say,” but thank you for reading and following my journey anyway. 

With this gratitude, I will be sharing my first study abroad experience with you: Aix-en-Provence, France (2014). I have shared some photos way back, but it’s time you saw and heard about one of my favorite countries to this day. I’m feeling just as grateful for my summer in southern France as I am for all of you! 
Thank you for all of your love and support, always. 
Cate

Longing for “Moher” (April 14, 2016)

Exactly three years ago today, I was galavanting around Ireland with two good friends. The beauty of these cliffs is insurmountable and sometimes on the windiest of days, I feel like I’m sitting right where I was on this day in 2016.

“The Times we had” in Tallinn, Estonia (March, 2016)

I remember having zero expectations of Tallinn; I simply thought this was a “break” from the rest of our cruise rather than a city I would love. All of my friends and classmates LOVED Tallinn and had the greatest time! We went on a pub crawl to a few very unique places, including a science lab-themed bar (one even had shots that you snorted and one had the coolest pool table area)! The last photo below proves how much fun I had… Even walking in the streets late at night with my friends are memories I’ll never forget. I will always cherish “The Times we had” in Tallinn!