Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wanderlust Summer 2015 (London)

For the final stop on my Europe tour, Hannah and I spent a few days in London!  I spent 23 hours there last year and wanted to really get into it this year.  We stayed at the Clayton Hotel in Chiswick and it was perfect.  It was far enough away from greater London that we could get away from the big crowds, but close enough that we could hit up all the tourist spots.

Once we made it to our hotel to clean up we got a surprise from Hannah's dad who sent us a gift card and made a reservation at a little restaurant near by.  We got dressed up and headed out for a yummy dinner. We had a salmon appetizer, then I had the leg of duck and Hannah had lamb, and a chocolate dessert!  It was amazing!

The next day we made our way towards Liquid Leisure Wakeboard Park.  Now neither Hannah nor myself are pro-wakeboarders, but we can handle the basics of getting off the dock, making turns, hitting a few rails and kickers.  We knew in advance that the cable on this park runs the opposite direction from what we are used to at BSR, but figured we would be able to handle it. Boy were we wrong.  It is extremely difficult (for me anyways) to make that turn kinda blind!  But I did finally get it down, it just a few extremely hard, whiplash level falls along the way!  Not to mention, we were in London so it was cooold, windy and rainy. Us Texas girls are not used to that!

After some pretty bad wipe outs, we decided to head back to the hotel and get ready for dinner. We spent the evening at The Old Pack Horse.

The next day we got up a little earlier and made our way to Camden Market for some fun vender shopping...I might also note that this day the Tube workers all decided to go on strike, so us and the rest of the Londoners were packed onto the buses sardine style!

We ventured on to Waterloo after Camden so I could finally ride the Eye!!!

As we were getting ready to leave the Waterloo area we came across several street performers!

We headed back in for the night.  By this point we had been away from home for 2 weeks and we were getting a little worn down.  So for our final day in London we decided we would treat ourselves to a spa day at the Cove Spa.  It was really good since we would be heading back to the states the following day and be stuck on a few planes for hours on end!

Then we packed up our stuff for the last time.  Made our way to the airport and finally headed home!

We were greeted in Dallas by Hannah's granddad who drove us back to Waco in his Rolls Royce!!

As much fun as I had and even though I'm already ready for my next adventure...I was beyond excited to be back in the States and see my family!!  Siggy and I snuggled up the next day for long naps!!!

Thank you to everyone who prayed for and supported me during my Europe adventures!  I'm so thankful that I've had these amazing opportunities to go and travel around!  I can't wait to see what's in store next!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Wanderlust Summer 2015 (Ireland)

We woke bright and early and found Darjen waiting on the patio to help us load up.  We got on the bus and headed to Albania at 4:30am.  From Albania we flew to Munich for a short layover before flying back into Ireland!!

Finally, we  landed in Ireland for the night.  We had a shuttle take us to our Hostel that was close to downtown Dublin.

Once we freshened up a little a few of us went to a nearby pub for dinner.

After dinner, we walked around to see the sights in Dublin.

Since we only had a few hours to spend in Dublin, we were thankful that the sun doesn't really set until about 10 pm.  Eventually, we all headed back to the hostel because we had to be back at the airport bright and early.  Hannah and I had a few vacation days ahead in London!

Wanderlust Summer 2015 (Montenegro - Part 3)

For the first time in my entire life, I was out of the country on America's holiday.  I love the 4th of July and the BBQs, watermelon, desserts and of course all the fireworks! But this year, it was a little different.

While we were in Montenegro we met a missionary who has been in the field for 30+ years.  He married a woman from London and they moved about from country to country doing what they were called to do.  But before all of this, he was born and raised in Chicago.  And for the first time in roughly 10 - 15 years he was going to celebrate the 4th of July with other Americans!

They invited us to their house in Kamenari, Montengro, just on the other side of the bay from were we were staying in Sveti Stasije, to have a BBQ.  Now it wasn't exactly the same as being back home, but we did have grilled chicken, some type of sausage, potato salad, and of course watermelon!  Unfortunately, no fireworks.  But, as with most places in Montenegro, there was an incredible view!

On the way home, we decided to take the ferry boat across the bay rather than a ride a sticky bus the whole way.

We spent one day touring a big Yacht town a little further up they bay towards Croatia.  It was very different yet oddly the same as Kotor and Sveti Stasiji.  It had more money invested in the high end shops and the food there was delicious.  We watched the Montenegro Olympic Water Polo Team practice and walked up and down the same rocky beaches.

On our last full day there, we went into Old Town to hand out invitations to join us for an evening worship service.  A few of the girls formed a choir and while a few others gave a short testimony for the sermon.  There wasn't very many people there, mainly us, but hopefully in a few years this will start to grow.

After dinner, we all headed back to the apartments to pack up.  The bus would be there to pick us up at 4:30 am to start our journey back to Ireland!

** A few random pictures from the Montenegro portion of this journey!