December 31, 2014

2014 in review

even before 2014 started, i knew it was gonna be a good year. literally as soon as i woke up on new year's day, i received an email from the director of my program in france that the course would be ending six months early. in that moment, along with a million other emotions, i knew it was going to be a very different year than i expected. if i’m being honest, i was so relieved that it was ending and that i had the opportunity to start new adventures. and adventure there were, along with new friends, hours of hard work, great travels, unexpected blessings and dreams coming true. looking back on this year is so bittersweet because 2014 seems unbeatable. i know God has so much in store in this coming year and all the years after that but 2014 will always hold a special place in my heart. here are a few highlights and favorite pictures of my year from january to december

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found out i wasn't going back to france. decided to study in england for a semester. spent an extra 3 weeks in california. left for england.

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arrived in york, england. met new friends. went to an awesome valentine's party. discovered great coffee shops. made dinners with my roommates. explored york.

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watched the daffodils pop up around york. cooked a traditional german dinner with german friends. traveled to iraq for outreach week. visited the capital of kurdistan. 

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discovered my favorite coffee shop: brew and brownie. went to the yorkshire dales for speakers week. had a beautiful easter. 

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tried to figure out what i was going to do next with my life. found out i got into university of cincinnati. said many sad goodbyes. left england. spent a week in paris with emily.

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saw the fault in our stars on opening day. turned 21. emily arrived in california for her summer internship. visited the new anaheim packing house. 

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went to the sawdust festival. was a wedding coordinator for a wedding in san diego. spent a girl's weekend in palm springs for kayla's 21st. visited carmel for a week.

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road tripped out to ohio with my mom. visited santa fe and springfield, mo. started university of cincinnati. moved into a new house. 

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pulled my first all nighter. participated in sorority rush. joined kappa alpha theta. visited cedarville for the first time since i was a student there.

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was initiated into theta. went on a church retreat in the mountains. walked in a fashion show. went to a few halloween parties as tinker belle.

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had a blast at my sorority's winter semi formal. spent thanksgiving break with friends in connecticut. experienced my first snow in cincinnati. broke my car's window.

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survived finals week. had our end of semester show. got on the deans list. came home to california. spent christmas with family.

December 27, 2014

happy christmas

happy belated christmas! this year was certainly a good one. it was filled with my favorite things like baking and good food and walks by the beach and presents but best of all, it was filled with spending time with people i love. here are a few snapshots of my wonderful christmas.

//christmas eve//
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{on christmas eve morning, we went on a walk around balboa island}

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{for christmas eve dinner, we went to cucina enoteca at fashion island, which is the new location of one of my favorite restaurants. i didn't get any good pictures but the snapper i had was superb and i ended up really loving this new location. after dinner, we came home and had dessert and opened a few presents. i made a dark chocolate beet cake which i really regret not photographing but it ended up tasting much better than it sounds. i received the cookbook plenty more and i can't wait to try some of the recipes!}

//christmas day//
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{christmas morning went from chill and quiet to stressful and crazy real fast. after we woke up, we sat around the tree and started opening presents. i got a lot of clothes, another fjallraven backpack to lug my laptop around school and a beautiful necklace i had been eying, which was a huge surprise because i was convinced the store had sold their last. after present time, my mom and i got down to cooking then we were off to grandmas house}

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{every christmas afternoon, we go to my grandmas house with the rest of our family and have a late lunch together. it was a really warm day so my dad and i walked the dog around the neighborhood before we ate. when it finally was time to eat, we had italian soup, courtesy of my mom, shrimp and grits, courtesy of my aunt and a quinoa apple salad, which i made. after lunch, we had desserts and opened more gifts and chatted around the table}

December 23, 2014

joan's in studio city

this past friday, i trecked down to los angeles along with my mom and another food-loving mother/daughter duo to try the new joan's on third, which opened recently in studio city. i already know this area well because it is the home of my favorite vegan restaurant, sun cafe, as well as many other cute shops and eateries so when i found out joan's was opening its second location here, i was over the moon. the grand opening was while i was in ohio but all semester, i was looking forward to visiting when i got home. the space is much like the third street location but seemed much more spacious and airy. the food was wonderful as always and we walked out with a few extra treats and last minute christmas presents for friends and family. so happy to see my favorite LA eatery growing and thriving and fingers crossed they open a store in orange county soon

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December 21, 2014

a white thanksgiving

this year for thanksgiving, I went to my dear friend julia's parents house in the woods of connecticut. i went here once before for thanksgiving during my freshman year at cedarville and it was a wonderful experience that i'm blessed to have the chance to repeat. we drove 12 hours thru the night the tuesday before thanksgiving because we heard there was going to be a snowstorm in connecticut wednesday morning. literally as soon as we arrived to julia's, it started to snow and snow and snow. on thursday, we had thanksgiving dinner at julia's grandparent's house, which already felt familiar because of my last thanksgiving spent there. we played pictionary and apples to apples and had races to fill out maps of the US and Canada with some of the Canadians we had visiting. after thanksgiving, we had a pretty chill break, filled with homework in coffee shops, watching the original pride and prejudice, baking and candle lit dinners due to power outages. i had a ridiculously large amount of homework to do due to finals week starting right after thanksgiving break but i ended up having a great time of fun and fellowship regardless of my workload. i ended up missing the first monday back because we were driving but God is good and all my teachers moved back our assignments so i didn't miss anything.

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victoria station
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