Tag: Travels

Spring Break Part 2: Ireland

Spring Break Part 2: Ireland

Jordan and I on the edge of the Cliffs of Moher.
Jordan and I on the edge of the Cliffs of Moher.

After enjoying Paris and London stop #3 on our spring break journey was County Mayo, Ireland.

My Uncle Eugene put us in the care of his sisters for the weekend, which couldn’t have been more perfect. Deirdre picked us up from the airport then drove us over to Westport, a really lovely little town with some cute shops and of course friendly Irishfolk. She pointed us in the direction of a good Irish restaurant before she went back to work. Jordan and I both had some of the best vegetable soup and brown bread ever before wandering around town. Pretty much as soon as we landed we noticed how much kinder the Irish people we met were than any other place we’d been thus far. We had some pretty long conversations about our travels with a few shopkeepers and even ended up meeting someone from Chicago. The world can be a pretty small place sometimes. Sharon, my uncle’s youngest sister, met us at 4:30 for a little adventure to the coast.

Westport actually runs right into the bay, so our drive on the way to the beach was beautiful. The beach we stopped at is right at the base of Croagh Patrick, a mountain with a church on top that is often visited by pilgrims. You can’t make up something as picturesque as this scene. We only stuck our fingers in the Atlantic and walked up a little hill to the 1st statue of St. Patrick–even with the sun shining it wasn’t an ideal sun-bathing or mountain climbing kind of day.

That morning Sharon drove us all the way out to Galway so that we could get on a tour bus that would take us to the Cliffs of Moher. We made a few stops along the way, including the Ailwee Caves and some other cliffs that weren’t swamped with tourists. We couldn’t have had better weather that afternoon, the sun was shining and the wind was calm. Jordan and I took a seat right on the edge and took it all in. The pictures I took can in no way do the views justice. We spent quite awhile walking around the edge just in awe of these magnificent Cliffs.

Jordan and the Cliffs of Moher.


Getting out of bed on Saturday morning was pretty painful because I wanted nothing more than to have that bed shipped right over to Rome, but our tour guide Deirdre had to keep us on schedule! We spent the morning visiting family and shortly after 1 we boarded the train to Dublin.

The 3 hour trainride to Dublin passed quickly and when we arrived we took one train to another that brought us out to Killbarack where our AirBnB was for the weekend. We ended up at a pub in Howth that evening, where we enjoyed another round of pub food and some Gaellic football.

We spent all of Sunday exploring as much of Dublin as we could in a day. Our first stop was a visit to the beautiful campus of Trinity College, followed by hot chocolate, and a tour of Dublin Castle. Our next stop was St. Patrick’s Cathedral, which is similar to the gothic style of Notre Dame. We spent the rest of our afternoon in museums. We enjoyed our last round of pub food–which we certainly had our fill of over break, but one last shepard’s pie didn’t hurt.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral.


Monday morning we flew out of Dublin at 6 AM, which brought our spring break to a bitter sweet end. This was by far my favorite trip of the semester, but travelling for 10 days straight kind of wears you out, so my bunk bed back at the JFRC wasn’t an unwelcome sight afterall.

My 2014: Blogs, 5Ks, Roadtrips, and an Apartment

My 2014: Blogs, 5Ks, Roadtrips, and an Apartment

It seems to me that 2014 went by way too fast. When I first thought about what all happened in my year I couldn’t think of much besides the obvious… 1st I turned 19, 2nd I finished my freshman year of college, 3rd I started my sophomore year of college. But it turns out quite a lot happened in my life during 2014.

  1. I started blogging. This year I’ve had the chance to write 3 blogs. In my COMM 175 class last spring my professor introduced me to the blog-o-sphere with a personal site we posted to based on assignments. This blogging experience inspired me to apply for my position as a Loyola student blogger, and this opportunity has taught me a lot about the upkeep of constant blogroll. The blog I’m most proud of is Clean Plate. This too was for a class–COMM 200–but as a group project was far more challenging and demanding than the ones I have done on my own. I must say that I never thought I would become a blogger–turns out, I like it quite a lot.
  2. I ran two 5Ks. I’ve never been much of a runner, but 2014 has started to turn that around for me. In June, I ran the Race for the Cure in the Quad Cities–just north of my hometown–with my best friend from high school. This fall, I ran pretty regularly with one of my roommates on the Lake Shore Path, which was always an adventure. In November, I ran the Hot Chocolate 5K in Chicago with my family and roommates. So take that 2014! I might be a runner after all.
  3. I went on 4 big trips. Colorado. Tennessee. Minnesota. Virginia. Spring break 2014 had my roommate Chloe and I itching to get out of Chiberia. We found the perfect getaway in Denver, CO, staying with Chloe’s Grammy, skiing, hiking, and a lot of adventuring made for an amazing Spring Break. My family hit the road for Memphis, TN, for my cousin’s graduation. Memphis is a pretty common destination for visiting family, but that didn’t mean soaking up some warm, southern sun was any less enjoyable. In late June, one of my high school friends and I headed for the Twin Cities. We visited her school and a friend of ours who lives there now. It was a quick trip, but no worries we found time to visit Mall of America. To round off my 2014 travels, my family vacationed in Virginia Beach. Most of our time was spent on the beach, but we squeezed in some mini golfing, boardwalk-ing, hiking, amusement park-ing, SUP-ing (stand-up paddle boarding) and high ropes course-ing. Traveling just so happens to be one of my favorites.
  4. I lived in my 1st “apartment”. I say “apartment” in quotes because technically Georgetown is a residence hall, but as far as I can tell it’s an apartment Loyola considers a residence hall. My four roommates and I loved the switch from a classic two-person res hall room to a full-blow apartment. We were pretty spoiled with all the space we had–3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a kitchen, and a living room. Not too shabby for my first shot at a Chicago apartment.

Blogs, 5Ks, roadtrips, and an apartment are a few words that sum up my year pretty well. Roadtrips have always been familiar to me, but these other three are new territory. New this year, but will all hopefully become familiar in the years ahead. Thanks for being good to me, 2014–here’s hoping that 2015 is just as full of adventures.