Detail in the Fabric

my likes, loves and slight obessions

Chicks

IMG_2579 IMG_2574Jelly beans, bunny rabbits, and blooming lilies all mark the beginnings of Springtime. So, when I found this tutorial on pintrest for frosting chick cupcakes for Easter Sunday, I just could not resist. I mean, look how cute they are! Not only were they great decorations all day, who doesn’t love a good cupcake?

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Weekend

My weekend looked like this:

IMG_2105 An early morning run

IMG_2400Followed by a breakfast date with Mom at Franklin Spa…Blueberry Stuffed French Toast! Yum!
IMG_2390Then, a much need manicure with a confused sparkly nail!
IMG_2360A night out with some good friends!
IMG_2403And lastly, a sushi date at Sakura in Providence.

Life doesn’t get much better! Now just 4 more days til Spring Break.

Calendar Days

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Another month has come and gone. It’s funny how the older you get the days seems shorter and the weeks race by. I am happily waiting for the impending Spring, I am more then ready for the the trees to sprout with fresh leaves and  the smell of budding flowers to fill the air. Everyday of March is one day closer to the summer sun and bronzed skin I crave with this chilling winter.  Happy March!

Janet Hill

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“Janet’s work is both elegant, yet whimsical, often with an underlying narrative that instantly captures the imagination.  Her painting style evokes a sense of nostalgia,  timeless beauty, mystery, humour, and comfort.  Her work has also been featured in Matchbook Magazine, Design Sponge, This Is Glamorous, The Neo-Traditionalist, and Oh Joy!  Janet lives in the beautiful city of Stratford, Ontario, Canada.  She paints in a small in-house studio where she lives with her husband John, and their cat and dog.”
doubledecker-lgo-782x1024 starlight-b white-tiger-tea-b-lgo-809x1024 french-75-sl-784x1024 giraffes-lgo-822x1024 the-owl-and-the-clock-detail-small-1024x803 the-ladybugs-love-chocolate-sl-1024x1016il_570xN.343944712What do you think of Ms.Hills paintings?
Want one? Clicky!

Culture Shock

Everyone warns students about culture shock when they leave their home country and are traveling abroad. You will miss home. You will miss the food. You will miss your normal lifestyle. Other than missing my friends and family back home, culture shock was just a definition that not too many people agreed with. Don’t get me wrong, learning to get around, learning the new traditions and how real italians lived, trying to speak italian was all a struggle, but extremely enjoyable. After 4 months of running around a foreign country and jet setting regularly on the weekends to a new culture and lifestyle, you get pretty use to differences.

The problem now is getting use to your old lifestyle when you come back home. You think it would be easy, jumping right back into how you always lived and always spent your days. Then you realize the excitement of change and of new experiences and miss it like a fat kid on a diet misses chocolate cake. I have realized how unadventurous my back at home life has become, with the routine of work and class. Although traveling to a different country every weekend or visiting the most spectacular places is out of the question, I am determined to make my days as adventurous as possible. I have decided to try new things, see new places and explore what I have around me.

Now, I will leave you with some reverse culture shock, so you can see what I am missing from Europe:

Making wishes in the Trevi

Making wishes in the Trevi

Eating the most amazing pasta

Eating the most amazing pasta

Exploring early in the morning, so even the biggest tourist attractions were empty

Exploring early in the morning, so even the biggest tourist attractions were empty

Paragliding over the Swiss Alps!

Paragliding over the Swiss Alps!

Running around Prague

Running around Prague

Flirting with our gondola driver in Venice

Flirting with our gondola driver in Venice

Shopping in Milan

Shopping in Milan

Visiting Barcelona

Visiting Barcelona

Hiking in Ireland

Hiking in Ireland

Running around Dublin

Running around Dublin

Seeing the beauty in Cinque Terre

Seeing the beauty in Cinque Terre

Hanging out with my Dad and sister in Rome

Hanging out with my Dad and sister in Rome

Loving every minute of being in Italy

Loving every minute of being in Italy

No wonder I want to go back!

Clueless

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As if Wildfox could get any better, it’s new 2013 campaign “We’re the Kids in America” is paying homage to in my opinion one of the best 90s movies of all time, Clueless. The California based brand depicts three models characterized after the movies three main characters Cher (Alicia Silverstone), Dionne (Stacey Dash) and Tai (Britney Murphy). The campaign is shot with some familiar settings: Cher’s oversized mansion (with a shiny new white jeep in the driveway), the high school tennis court and, shopping heaven, Rodeo Drive. The 90s haute-grunge California style immortalized in the 1995 movie is shown modernized with Wildfox’s unique twist.

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Cliff Walking

Traveling all over Europe has made me realize that I must enjoy every moment when you are somewhere new. But being back in good ‘ol Newport has made me realize you should be enjoying every moment even when your not in a new country every weekend. I had the morning off from work the other day and spent it walking the cliff walk with new eyes and new appreciation for what has literally been at my door steps for the past two year. Although being somewhere new and different is exciting, being somewhere you have been a million times can be just as eye opening.
25c7c99c5e6511e29caa22000a1f96f6_7e0820dd45e6411e2890322000a9e48f1_7Photos of my morning via my instagram, follow me—–>melissuuhhhhh

Rome is Where the Heart is

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I have always heard people say “home is where the heart is”, but what happens when your heart is in two places at once?

As I sit on a plane heading back to the homeland of the red,white and blue the realization of coming home as actually set in. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m ecstatic to be seeing all the loved ones I have missed over this whole whirl-wind of an experience but there is this strange hole in my heart knowing I have left a place I call home and friends I call family.

Studying abroad is a gratifying, strange, overwhelming, exciting, once in a lifetime experience. When leaving for Rome four months ago I was blindsided by what this experience would truly mean to me.

I came to Rome with the clichés anyone traveling to Italy must have: expecting massive amounts of mouthwatering home-made pastas, throwing maybe one to many coins in the Trevi Fountain, strolling by the Colosseum with gelato in hand,windowshopping by the Spanish Steps, getting lost in history at Vatican City and of course drinking the best Italian wine grapes can make. While these clichés, are very much valid, they are just skimming the top of what Rome has to offer.

After a week or two of jet lag getting settled in you start to notice the true life of Italy, like the friendly coffee baristas, the bustling cars and vespas, the five hour dinners at local restaurants, small churches filled with frescos on every street corner, staying out all night and thinking nothing of it, Italian men winking at you as you walk down the street, and the slow pace atmosphere that lets you enjoy every minute of every day. These little things are what truly make Rome.

Getting thrown into a new culture and learning a new way of life makes you redefine and refine yourself as a person. This is something I never knew I would do or need to do. But after going through this experience I realize letting go of the fear of losing yourself can actually make you find yourself.

Between the cliches, finding a new version of yourself and adjusting to culture shock you realize the people you hop on and off planes with to different countries every weekend become more than travel companions or friends. You become so close so quickly with the people you meet abroad that these people become like family. The group of friends I have made while in Rome could not be more diverse. From Miami to New York to Minnesota to Philly, we could not be anymore different yet in someway all the same. These friends know me better than most. Something about going through so many new experiences together makes people open up and fall into themselves. The experiences you go through together are so unlike any other experiences that no one back home will ever begin to understand. For this reason you form a connection with these new friends that can never be broken. While, yes, the places I have gone, the things I have seen and the adventures I have been on are incredible experiences all on their own, but these experiences with these great people make them worth a lifetime and for that I am truly grateful. Staying up all night reminiscing before flying home over the Atlantic made for an incredible bittersweet night. Saying goodbye to these friends was heartbreaking but I am positive I will see them all again. Friends like these you don’t want to lose.

After experiencing these four months I now know what studying aboard means. Before these four month I was ignorant to what this experience would lead to. But now I can confidently say I am an experienced traveler. I have become more of myself. I have seen the most beautiful places. I have met some of the most amazing people I will ever come across. I have discovered many new cultures. I created moments I could never forget and lived a once in a lifetime opportunity to its fullest. And for that I could not be any happier.

If what they say is true “home is where the heart is”, then I have decided to leave a bit of my heart in the Eternal City. Because I know if when I return to Rome memories of this experience will come flooding back in to my mind and Rome will once again feel like home.

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Leaving.

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My instagrams from my morning walk today.
Yes, it will be weird not seeing the Trevi fountain, Colosseum and Emanuel Vittorio II monument as I casually stroll in the morning sun ( or rain, like today). As my last few days come to an end I realize how much I will miss the eternal city.

#czech

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Prague is a magical city filled with gold topped cathedrals, fairytale castles, John Lennon graffiti and statue-lined bridges over a swan-filled river. Upon leaving for Prague my expectations were low; I was unsure of what to expect. Through word-of-mouth and pictures skewed across my Facebook from friends who have gone, I was convinced to take a trip to the Czech Republic myself to see if this magic city was truly magical. And folks, you can tell others you heard it from me; Prague is one of the most beautiful and magical cities I have ever been to (and lately I’ve been to a lot of cities). Prague is maybe my favorite place I have visited while studying abroad.
To the massive Wenceslas Square with the the National Museum of Prague flanking one side to Old Town Square which holds the Astronomical Clock, Tyn Cathedral, Jan Hus monument and St. Nicholas Church to across the statue lined Charles Bridge where you will find the graffiti covered wall memorialized to the John Lennon to the hill top Prague Castle, which is the oldest ancient castle in the world with St. Vitus cathedral filled with breath-taking stained glass and amazing views of the red-roofed city of Prague, I can indeed say this city feels like a fairytale world.

DSC02691The National Museum of Prague in Wencesles Square

DSC02710Astronomical Clock in Old Town Square

DSC02712Tyn Cathedral

DSC02724Jan Hus Monument

DSC02746From inside St. Nicholas Church

DSC02820  View of Prague Castle

DSC02824Ashley and I next to the Charles Bridge

DSC02828The Charles Bridge

IMG_1779John Lennon Wall

DSC02845“Let It Be”

IMG_1773St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague Castle

DSC02922Stunning stained glass in St. Vitus

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If you ever get the chance to travel to Prague, jump on that chance. The atmosphere, the genuine people, the stunning architecture, the cobble stone streets  and the delicious food are just a few of the reasons that make this city so magical.

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