Spain

Adventuring at Home and Abroad

by Tessa on August 14, 2013

in Barcelona, Millie&Me, Spain, Style

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I found these pictures on my laptop that I had intended to share months ago! As I was looking through them I was thinking about how when we lived in Spain, we would always go places and see things. We knew we had a limited time there and to us, Barcelona was new and amazing! When we felt bored we left the house because there was always something new to see and we didn’t want to waste time. We didn’t want to return home to America and have regrets about not taking advantage of our time and experiencing everything that we could have. I was talking to the woman that cut my hair and when I told her of the places I had been she said “I’ve lived here ten years and I still haven’t been there yet!”

We’ve finally moved into our place in Utah and in the past few days we haven’t done much, mostly because we’re unpacking which is a boring and odious job if you ask me. Multiple times each day I think “Wow. I’m bored! I just want to go to college already!” But I’ve realized that to me-to many of us-America seems so common, just like how Barcelona wasn’t anything particularly special to my Spanish hairdresser! I want to live in America the way I lived abroad. I want to see what the cities I live in have to offer. I want to adventure through my hometown the way I’d adventure through a far away city. I know that we currently live a few miles away from 2 adorable old main streets that I have yet to explore and there’s a charming train track that runs through the city. There may not be any grand and stunning cathedrals nearby but I’m sure Utah County has some gems of its own and I’m determined to find them!!

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Peace.

by Tessa on June 5, 2013

in Daily Life, Spain, Trips & Travels

Segovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightSegovia, Spain at NightThere’s so much that goes on in life. There’s so much to get done, so much hustling around and worrying about how we’ll finish all the tasks that lay before us. Sometimes, we just need to slow down, take a breather, and remember how stinkin’ beautiful the world is and how blessed we are to live in it! My peaceful moments normally occur at night. Living in a big city, there are lights everywhere at night which would suggest noise and movement but sometimes, its the opposite: it’s perfectly still and quiet. It doesn’t matter if there are 1000 people out walking around at night or if there’s only 1, the street lights will always click on at their designated time; however, sometimes I like to pretend they click on for me. Especially on rainy nights, when the streets are desolate, I pretend the street, the lights, even the night and its beauty belongs to me. We have a fantastic view of the city from our apartment so sometimes, late at night, when all the lights in our own flat are out and everyone’s asleep, I like to sit on our porch in the crisp night air and just admire this city, the moon, the city lights, and the Sagrada Familia all lit up. Time seems to stand still, if only for a moment, but that moment is all I need to relax, recharge, and prepare myself for another busy day.

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Because This is Reality

by Tessa on June 3, 2013

in Family, Spain, Trips & Travels

in Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spain
Just thought you’d like to know the routine. The weekly, daily, hourly routine. It’s all fun and games when this kid is jumpin’ around in front of the camera, but when I’m going through the photos and every few pictures, BOOM! there’s Silas or when a spectacular photo comes along and there he is, floatin’ in the air, his tongue sticking out and all… my head explodes! However, each time I see that adorable face of his with his chin up like Pinocchio’s, all of a sudden he could do nothing wrong in my eyes.
in Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spain
But to convince you (and myself for that matter) that my work (i.e. posing) ain’t completely  fruitless and that this adorable/mischievous child’s photobombing skills are only utilized part-time, I’ve included some of our only good photos my favorite photos from our day in Salamanca, Spain.
in Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spainin Salamanca, Spain
In short, I think I can say that this post most accurately describes my life more than any other post i’ve written. Therefore, since this has been a peak into what this life of mine really looks like, I guess you can call this a true and honest introduction. This kid, both these kids, make my life so enjoyable, I wouldn’t have them any other way:)

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Gypsies in Granada, Spain

by Tessa on May 31, 2013

in Spain, Trips & Travels

Granada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, SpainGranada, Spain is known for being a city of gypsies. At major landmarks like the cathedrals and along the streets, gypsy women stand with small herb bouquets in their hands and offer them to every person that walks by, and they are very determined. If you walk by them, they’ll leave their hand in front of you, up until the second you walk past them, or they’ll even follow you! Oh, my poor sister: when we first started walking around, a gypsy came to her to offer a leaf “gratis” or “for free,” so my sister took it and said thank you, hoping to continue on her way, when the women grabbed my sister’s hand to read her palm! Millay was so confused, she pulled her hand away and tried walking past her to catch up with us, but the woman started swatting her and yelling at her! The woman took the leaf out of my sister’s hand and walked in the other direction, muttering. Apparently, the leaf is free if and only if you then pay for them to read your palm!
There’s also a famous gypsy district in the city, El Albaicin, that was super fun to wander and such a groovy part of town. Very old. Labyrinthine. Groovy gypsy music. Street venders selling jewelry. Funky cafes. Super artsy. Guys rockin’ their guitars and playing gorgeous flamenco music. Street artists. Are you feelin’ me? Ya gettin’ the picture?
So hot tip: don’t accept leaves from people. Free isn’t always free. And if you really want a leaf, there’s a thing called a tree (of which there’s no shortage).

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Those Precious Moments

by Tessa on May 30, 2013

in Spain, Trips & Travels

Jaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainJaen, SpainAs I was going through all of our pictures from the south of Spain today, I was thinking about how much I love this place and how much I love our style of traveling- reading in the car, stopping at a few cities each day and staying for however long we want, strolling the streets until it’s dark, eating churros and chocolate almost everyday. Strangely, it’s both exhausting and relaxing at the same time. After looking through the photos, I was in a really good mood when I went out today to ride the metro to meet up with some friends.  When I was walking to the metro, I couldn’t help but smile as I was rediscovering how beautiful Barcelona is. I was so happy I was literally on the verge of tears. How can I leave this place!? Sometimes, when I’m in a moment that I never want to end, I will myself to remember everything: the smells, the sounds, the people, the sky, the way I feel. I wish I could take the moment I’m living in, stretch it out, and wrap it around my finger so I could keep it safe and always remember it perfectly or relive it if I so choose.
Completely random and unrelated side note: the day these photos were taken, in Jaen, Spain, it was drizzly out and this adorable old lady I was already watching and adoring basically made my life when she parked her husband (who was in a wheelchair) on the sidewalk to pull a plastic bag over her head to keep the rain off her hair before continuing on her way. I died. It took a lot of self control to keep myself from busting up laughing and running up to hug her. People watching. There is nothing that brings me greater joy on this planet.

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denim on denim denim on denim This is the first in the series of pieces about my daily life in Barcelona. I frequently go to the Barcelona Public Library to do my online schoolwork and while there, I take the elevator up three flights. I have found that the epitome of awkwardness occurs in an elevator. We all know elevators are awkward, but I’ve been thinking a lot about it lately. I’ve decided that there is a perfect number of elevator riders for an elevator to be less awkward: 1, or 4. Obviously, one is ideal; it’s just you and the empty space.
Two is the ultimate awkwardness. At the library you just stand there in the elevator and you both stare at the sign that shows what floor you’re on and act like you’re busy finding something in your bag or drinking water and what not. For example, I was in the elevator today with a middle aged guy who had the day before asked me to watch his computer as he went to the bathroom (I’ll be honest: I didn’t understand what he said until after he walked away). After we half smiled at each other in recognition (I guess) it was silent. The seconds ticked by slowly. At our apartment, in contrast, if you end up in the elevator with someone else, it wouldn’t normally be so awkward because the people are so friendly BUT the fact that they’re friendly in Spanish (and um… I’m not so fluent) isn’t very ideal. I don’t always want to reveal that I’m not super fluent in Spanish so I just cross my fingers that they say simple things and when I don’t understand, I’ll smile and say or no sé. 
Now, three people in the elevator is just as awkward, and five people gets too crowded; BUT, four people in an elevator is much better because there’s enough people that the silence isn’t as awkward and it’s not as crowded either!
After having thoroughly pondered this topic (as you can tell) I came up with five ways to make an elevator ride less awkward:
1) Keep a smile on your face. It’ll quickly relieve any awkward tension… possibly.
2) Be brave and say something! Give a compliment; they’re easy and everyone likes them.
3) Too shy? Bring a book and act engaged before you even get in the elevator.
4) Make life a little funnier by making the situation even more awkward! This guy has got is down!
5) Or you can just take the stairs.
Well… now I have to take my own advice (and take the stairs hahahahahah). Any other suggestions?

Provecho!! Tessa Lynn

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Just an Awesome Weekend… Well, Mostly

by Tessa on December 3, 2012

in Spain, Style, Vintage

Cathedral Outfit details // Coat: vintage from Goodwill // Blazer: vintage gift from a close friend // Sweater: Mom’s // Pants: Target // Boots: Mom’s // Gloves: Great Grandma’sCathedral

What made my weekend awesome?
-The old man I passed that was singing to himself while swinging his grocery bag
-Walking into a cathedral while a wedding was taking place
-Finding ice-cream in the freezer (then hiding it…)
-The 50+ year old women who salsa-ed in her black silk pajamas at a church talent show
-That mighty fine young man that smiled at me on the metro… he wasn’t too bad on the eyes
-Finding an abandoned door on the sidewalk and claiming it as my own!! DIY project time!!
-My little brother Silas’s snide yet witty comments
-The Christmas market in downtown Barcelona
Oh, but what didn’t make my weekend?
-The price tags on some drool-worthy shoes and the fact that they’re actually .3 times more expensive considering the exchange rate… at least I can wear them in my dreams… right?
And what made your weekend awesome??

Provecho!! Tessa Lynn

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Wall Humor

by admin on November 6, 2012

in Barcelona, Spain

Cemetery

Ok. This wall. By golly, I cracked up! I LOVE the faces of these two men. Basically, this painting made my day! Still laughing. I hope that you find this at least slightly comedical as well. I think I can safely say we’ve all been in both of the men’s positions, so then, tell me that you agree that their expressions PERFECTLY convey every feeling and thought that’s gone through your head in a moment like this. (Personally, I’d like to be the cat . . .  the little creeper!) Also, the fact that the characters are dressed circa WWII just makes me love it ten times more!
Honestly, I would like this anonymous artist to come paint this mural on my wall so I could wake up to it everyday! I’d be starting every day off with a smile. I’d also use the image as a reminder that I can choose who I want to be and what attitude I want to have. Am I going to feel bad for myself or go out there and have a blast? Am I going to be like the women in this painting and go where the party is or am I going to make a sad chum’s day? If you were to pick a character in this mural that reminds you most of yourself, which one would it be?
Provecho!! Tessa Lynn

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