dream chaser

Wow. It has been quite a while since I have written here. And I still have two more Europe stops to post, but that will be for another time. I promise, I'll catch up one day with this little world of mine. You know, sometimes the hustle and bustle of life gets in the way of reflecting on the good in our lives.

Today marks the official day where I walked into the classroom not as an educator, as I've been for the last four years, but as a student. Even though, I have been a student far longer than an educator, the nerves remained. But the anticipation and eagerness for the adventure that lay ahead kept my feet going. It was a far different perspective than the alternative of getting my classroom ready, attending meeting, greeting coworkers and preparing for another crazy year of being an educator/ mother/ nurse/ mediator/ judge/ lawyer all balled into one. And I can't tell you the feeling of relief that I have knowing that maybe this will be a year that I actually have sanity and a memory. I have so much more appreciation for those that can retire in that field, now that I have been there. And I'm still not completely convinced those that do didn't loose their mind somewhere along the way! ;) But seriously, elementary educators and law enforcement need to be paid up there with doctors because they also hold many lives in their hands.

I walked in a little late due to traffic, quickly located an empty seat and flipped through the syllabus. The nerves quickly slipped away as the excitement filled it's place. It was a hand drafting class. One where I will be sketching, creating and dreaming. But more importantly, I was excited to finally get to learn about things I have wanted to since my fourteen year old self first picked up that Architectural Digest. It is such an enlightening feeling getting to do what you have wanted to for so long. And all of those feelings of thinking that maybe I should have stayed where I was because I knew what to expect went right out. I was right where I needed to be.

Sometimes "life" has to wait while you chase your dreams.


naples, pompeii, sorrento // italy

another stop along our european trek was in naples, italy. we visited the infamous pompeii, drove along the amalfi coast, toured the beautiful town of sorrento, and ate homemade mozzarella. it was a beautiful place with a lot of personality.
mount vesuvius, the dormant monster that covered pompeii.


carthage // tunisia

On our trek across the Mediterranean, we made a stop along the northern coast of Africa in the country of Tunisia. We were fortunate enough to mark off two continents with this trip. We visited the ancient city of Carthage and saw all the historical ruins when it was a major power on the Mediterranean.

Unfortunately, the cities weren't as pretty as the ruins. Tunisia is a new democracy and the country is still struggling to get on its feet. The streets were littered with trash and feces. The people begged and haggled over cheap trinkets almost to the point of harassment. Our hope is that one day, peace will come to this poverty stricken area. And the people will get on their feet and make bring this country back to its roots. So I found the unseen beauty of the country through these images. But I am not taking for granted the humbling experience it brought to know that other places of this world have it far worse than we ever dreamed.


barcelona, valencia, palma de mallorca // spain

Spain. The beautiful country that stole our hearts. We went into our trip having little expectations for Spain when it was up against France and Italy. But it far exceeded them. The hospitality, cleanliness, architecture, and landscape of this country left us with great desires to come back. We spent three days visiting three very different cities, and it just wasn't enough. We are already putting it on our list to go back and spend more time.
Love, love, love the idea of reusing these old metal pieces into a walking path in a park.
The famous Sagrada Familia. The Roman Cathedral that has been under construction for the last 100 years.
Just their ordinary birds.
Brandon made a friend. Her name was Francis. She was 79 and still traveling the world.
Visiting one of the oldest Monasteries in Europe, famous for the black Madonna. We were lucky enough to be serenaded by the world famous boys' choir.
One of the best days was a beautiful bike ride through Valencia. We enjoyed taking in the famous architecture of the city and laid back culture of the people.
We almost saw George Clooney filming his futuristic movie Tomorrowland.
One of our port of calls were switched due to weather. Fortunately for us, our new port was Palma De Mallorca! Another beautiful place in Spain.