A few of my favourite things

Okay, I admit it.. I am hooked on facebook. I check it way too often and update my profile weekly.. YET... I love it for the ease in which I am able to stay connected with my family, friends, and co-workers. I love that I can post photos and share where I've been and what I am doing. I love friends' status updates. It lets me keep up with their lives even though we are too far apart to catch up face-to-face.

The love of my life (besides John, my family and friends) is traveling! I love being in airports because I know I will soon be off to a new destination. I love the people you meet in transit and the stories you learn from them, the gossip magazines you shamelessly devour, the feeling of anticipation just before the plane takes off. Traveling is my vice. It started when Mom took Jess and I abroad for our 18th birthday. We had never before been overseas and I remember how big the world felt and how excited we were to explore it. Many many flights since that first time and I have come to discover the world is not such a big place as I once thought it. These days flight paths stretch across to nearly every remote region of the world, and each year airline carriers compete to offer more direct routes to exotic destinations for a budget price.

I believe travel is one of the most important educations you can give yourself; it is an education learnt outside of classroom walls. I believe so strongly that when you step out of your comfort zone bubble and step in to a culture altogether foreign and unknown you are confronted with a choice to learn more about who you are as a individual and how your character measures up in the world. Liberties and freedoms bestowed at birth, accepted without challenge, have been left in your own country's borders and you have a choice to either reach out with zest to accept and pro-actively embrace the bones of the foreign culture, (aka what they eat, how they interact, how they speak) or to reject their way of life and board a flight home..

My reading glasses!
I started having eye troubles at the beginning of this year. My eyes would just get tired very easily when I started reading and I often wouldn't make it through a chapter without putting the book down. Also I couldn't see to read the television channels, so one afternoon John and I took a trip down to SpecSavers when we were staying in Cornwall. I took a thorough eye exam and was diagnosed with slight astigmatism. This simply means my eyes curve light differently because they are not as spherical as they should be. Anyway these glasses have, sorry for this awful pun, made my life a lot clearer! They are for "focused tasks" and I use them quite often.

I am absolutely in love with my Samsung camera! This wb500 model is amazing! John and I splurged and bought ourselves this camera in London before our trip to Prague, and I am so glad we did. The 10x zoom comes in handy for long distance shots and when mounted on a tripod the night setting provides for extraordinary photos. I love taking it with us on trips and also using it on a day to day basis. The memories it has captured have been absolutely priceless.

One day in my house I will have a library! Growing up, my mother taught me and my twin sister how to read and from then on we always had a book by our nose. I remember coming home from the library with maxed out library cards, taking a book to bed and the excitement of staying up all night under the covers eager to see how the book ended. Reading was a passion for me, not a chore, and I poured through Nancy Drew mysteries, the Bobbsey twins, and of course the Boxcar kids. These days my taste in books has changed, but my passion for them has not. My most recent reads have been: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, Birdsong by Sebastion Faulks, and An Unnofficial Rose by Iris Murdoch.

Having lived in Australia and England, I have come to love a good cup of tea. Surprisingly, I don't particularly care for English breakfast, preferring instead chamomile and peppermint. This custom of having "tea breaks" is foreign in the States, but since I never liked coffee this habit suits me fine! I had my first cup of tea flying from Los Angeles to Sydney on board Qantas. The stewardess thought I was a bit strange drinking it without milk or sugar. Then when I had my internship at the PRIA, in Sydney, it became customary for a morning tea and then an afternoon tea break so I would make my way into the kitchen and chat with the girls while the kettle boiled.

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