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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Travel Break Chronicles {Part 4}

Find part 1 here, part 2 here, and part 3 here.

Whoops! I had scheduled this post for later in the week, but it had a mind of it's own. I guess part 4 will come before part 3!

Savona, Italy was our third stop. Savona is a quaint, quiet little town and adorable to boot.
We stumbled upon this abandoned fortress.
That green grass and the sun beaming through, picture perfect.
Old stone everywhere and amazing city views!
Ahh, sigh, European cityscapes never get old.
Because Savona is such a small town, there wasn't much to do there, and it also didn't help that we visited right in the middle of their siesta period (basically nap time in the afternoon where everything closes). I think America could use a siesta period, wouldn't that be wonderful?
Back on the ship we celebrated with Thanksgivng dinner! We didn't think the cruise would celebrate an American holiday, but it was such a happy surprise to eat turkey and pumpkin pie. We even decided to order two desserts for our last dinner! 
Our thanksgiving feast!
The next day we soaked in the last few hours of our cruise and docked back in Barcelona.
Goodbye Costa Magica! It's been grand.
Part 5 up next...are you tired yet? I promise it's the last one :). I warned you this was a travel saga.

Happy Easter

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. ~1 Peter 1:3

The Savior was crushed and crucified. But death could not hold Him and He rose from the grave! By His blood our sins were washed away and we are freed from the bondage of sin. May we continue to be blown away by His sacrifice, resurrection, and the love so freely given. Praise be to our great God.

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Travel Break Chronicles {Part 2}

Find part 1 here.

After two days in Barcelona, it was time to start cruising the Mediterranean!
cheesy cruise picture that I oddly adore :)
Our cruise was a Costa Cruise, which is an Italian cruise line, so everything was European style. The ship was decked out in gold, shine, and more gold everywhere!
After we boarded, we attended the mandatory safety lecture and got a kick out of the ginormous lifejackets they made us wear.
{Being goofy with our newest and greatest accessory}
Our SIX course dinner was next. I couldn't believe it either.
Thrilled to be eating non-Israeli food!

The next morning, we started our day at the breakfast buffet. Can you see a theme running here?
Our first stop was Palma de Mallorca which is a beautiful island off the coast of Spain.

 The entire place was just DARLING. There were nooks and crannies of charmingness everywhere.

This building looked important, but we had no idea if it really was. Actually, we were pretty clueless as to what any of the famous buildings in town were, or if there were any at all. We ended up just walking around and stumbling upon random beauties of the city.

Palma de Mallorca and its palm trees. A little piece of paradise. 
Back on the ship, we got our craft on.
And wrapped ourselves in blankets and watched the sunset from the deck.
In the evening, we were treated to the special Captain's Gala Dinner. So fancy!
Excited dinner faces?!
At one point, music started playing and performers came out singing and dancing. Pretty soon the entire restaurant was waving their napkins in the air!

The next day, we docked in France! And some crazy times ensued…

P.S. Have you head the whispers that google reader is going away? So sad! Anywho, I've hopped in the Bloglovin bandwagon.  You can follow my blog with Bloglovin, if you'd like :).

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Travel Break Chronicles {Part 1}

Briefly mentioned in this post…I think it’s finally time to write the recap, FOUR months later.

Just a heads up, crazy long travel saga to begin now…

Our teachers gave us a week off from school and since we were in Israel, we figured why not go to Europe, right? I'm still flabbergasted by the fact that we were able to travel to Europe over Thanksgiving break. WHO DOES THAT?! #sosoblessed.

All the IBEXers split into groups and made plans to travel all over Europe. We had groups travel to Spain, Italy, France, Greece, Ireland, Switzerland, and the UK! There were 6 of us in the "cruise group." Our plan was to fly to Barcelona, board our 5 day cruise, and end the trip back in Barcelona.

* * * * *

With passport in hand, eyes half asleep, and five fabulous fellow traveler friends, we began our travel break to Barcelona.
2am waiting for the Nesher taxi to take us to the airport.

  After a 4 hour flight, we landed in Barcelona and made our way into the city. I fell in love the minute I laid eyes on those buildings. The statues, the arched windows, the balconies…a feast for the eyes I tell ya.
After wandering around the city with luggage in toe, getting stared at and lost, we finally made it to our flat (two hours late, HA).
Intersting fact: The Cheetah Girls was filmed here!
It was located on the most amazing//charming//quaintest//prettiest //almostfamous street called Passeig del Born. Miguel, the owner, was just the nicest as they come, so gracious and welcoming. The little flat was charming and that balcony was icing on the cake.
On our first day, we wandered along the port, ate lunch seaside, stumbled upon a flee market, climbed lion statues, and took in the city lights.
The next day we hit the tourist spots. Barcelona is famous for its Gaudi architecture.
Gaudi design is like a building from a Dr. Suess book coming to life.

Cathedral de la Familia. Another Gaudi work of art.
The great thing about Barcelona is that you can walk to lot of places and it never gets boring because everything is so pretty.
Later than afternoon, we boarded our cruise!

Throughout our trip, I was continually reminded of God's abundant grace toward us. Who are we college kids to be privileged enough to explore Europe for a week? He has given us more than we could ever deserve and lavishes His grace upon us through His Son and even down to the smallest of details.

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