26 May 2011


Bonjour Mes Amies!

France update: I have a meeting with my class next week to talk about financial information, homework for summer, and other basic info! This still feels kind of like a dream to me. Maybe when she tells me how much it will cost it will start to seem more real? Also, I had a dream that I feel in love with a sweet British boy while in French. My own Prince Harry, that would be swell.

While it will be slow on my blog for now, I thought this would be a good time to answer any questions you have about me, France (not that I am an expert), or my trip. I would also love to hear about any exciting trips or advice you have for me!


24 May 2011

Excitment or Woes?

Bonjour Mon Amies!

I wanted to let you know that I probably will be updating inconsistently until the fall with planning for my travels goes into full swing. But if I have a travel related thought I will promise to post them.

I wrote this little diddy whilst at work (bored out of my mind and homework-less) about my current feelings toward traveling:

What is it about traveling that is so exciting, to everyone? Is it the conquering of a new place, the fresh ink in the passport, or the people you get to meet? Is it striking out on your own in hopes of finding someplace where you belong or simply taking in other cultures? To my limited personal experience of traveling it seems like such a new and wonderful thing.

You start out with excitement. From the moment you decide you apply to a program, sign up for a cruise or purchase a ticket, you are thrown into the planning process. You are so excited about what you will see, who you will meet (tall, dark Italian anyone?), where you will go, even what you will eat. So much so that you don't worry about the semantics, like paying for it or getting ready. At first.

But then eventually the reality sets in and you start to figure out how in the hell you are going to pay for this. Where are you going to get the money to fly to San Francisco to get a visa and then the money you need to actually go to France? And what about the money you will need to travel to all the places you want to visit? And what about getting ready for the classes you have to take (taught in French!)?

Even now, all these questions are already starting to freak me out. I mean, am I ready for an adventure of such massive proportions?

But then you think about what you will get to experience while you are on your trip: traveling on a train through the Aix-en-Provence and taking in the lavender fields. Walking along the Seine, looking at paintings. Standing on the Alps (even through you can't ski. It'll make a Great facebook update). Wearing a beautiful dress in the City of Lights on New Years' Eve. Flying to Ireland with your best friend to drink and pubs and talk to cute redheads. Eating pasta in Italy and wondering how Chef Boyardee was ever considered "Food". Speakig French over tea in a crowded cafe before you head to your French cinema class. Coming back to the States with a full passport, a tan, and a little more confidence in yourself, prepared to share stories with everyone.

These are the reasons I put up with the complicated questions. Because I really want to experience new things, even if I have to sell my soul to get them. Well maybe not my soul, but I do have some jewelry laying around...

23 May 2011

New Years' Eve.

I am so excited about this coming New Years' Eve. I know that it still so far away but I will be celebrating it in PARIS. Did you hear that? Paris. I am so freaking excited! It will not just be another year of making a list of resolutions like get organized, lose weight, travel, then losing it and trying to remember them. I will actually be taking my life and seizing it by the balls (sorry gma)! Gone is the New Years' of drinking cider in my pjs, watching movies in the dark. I am a grown up now and it is time to start acting like it.

Also to prep myself I have purchased the most stunning dress. Ever. I will be wearing it for New Years in the city of lights. It is a size or two smaller than I am currently but it is a dream dress that will become a reality very soon. It is the prettiest dress for the prettiest city for the most exciting evening.

I am so psyched.

19 May 2011

le premier.

This is my first official blog post here. I have had many attempts at blogging before (I even had a diet blog for a while) but I found that there was no purpose for these. I also discovered that I lead a very boring life. I mean how many times can you write about your love for warm socks and watching Vampire Diaries with your girlfriends? But this is different. There is a purpose for this blog. To share my travels with the loved ones I am leaving behind as I head off to Europe (!).
Background: I have been to another country once before. I drove to Mexico where I build houses with my old youth group. I didn’t get my passport stamped, we didn’t get lost, and I didn’t have to speak in another language. It was a great experience but this does not count as going abroad to me. Sorry for any confusion but I shall refer to this experience as “The First Time That Jen Goes Abroad.”
Did I mention that my name is Jen? (Well, Jennifer technically, I hate being technical) I grew up in the beautiful Northwest of the United States. I have a mom, a dad, a younger brother and a beautiful dog. My family is a very big part of my life and one of the reasons why I am able to go on this trip. I also have a large extended family that is very close. We are the typical large, potato-loving, Catholic family. I started this blog because I know that my Grandmother will kill me if I don’t share my stories with her.
More about me? Well I am an art student who goes to college in Seattle. I love tea (hot or cold), Cheese, Chocolate, laughing, sitting in the sun, watching trashy television, wearing scarves, listening to Frank Sinatra, and talking to my mom. When I grow up I want to work in the art department for a magazine and design the page layouts and take photos of food. Doesn’t that sound wonderful?
Why France? I took French in high school for three years because that is the language that the “smart” kids took. My French teacher was an awesome, white-haired lady from the northern part of France named Madame Hughes and she was great. As a college freshman I was required to take a foreign language but I didn’t think to test out of it. I am so glad I didn’t. I love my classe de française. And my French Professor is amazing. She is the one who encouraged me to apply for the study abroad program. Merci Madame!
When? I will be leaving for France in December!!! Oh my god. I am so excited. The current plan is to fly into Paris the last few days of December, celebrate New Years in Paris, then drive down to Grenoble (southern), France for school. But plans change so stay continued.
I am nervous, excited, scared, and thrilled about this experience. I am so glad that I can share all my travels with everyone I love.
To be continued…
à suivre ...
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