Paris: A Life-long Love Story

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t eating five macaroons as I wrote this post. I don’t regret it, not even a little bit (but you’ll also see me at the gym as soon as we get home tomorrow)! What a sweet, sweet ending to a weekend full of love.

It all started with a 2.5-hour train ride from Germany. Dan napped intermittently and listened to his usual sports podcast which drew a lot of attention to us… Mostly because it makes him rotate between giggling like a school girl and full on belly laughter.

As we were getting off the train in Paris, I noticed the man in front of me was extremely well dressed. Ironed dress shirt, dark jeans and nice leather shoes. He stepped off the train and was met immediately with a long slow kiss by a beautiful blonde woman. I smiled and politely stepped around them. That moment I knew we were back in the city of love.

Dan and I took the metro to our hotel. We spotted a Starbucks and stopped in for my first PSL of the season (🖐🏼high five to my other pumpkin spice obsessed groupies! Feel free to send ALL THE PUMPKIN SPICE care packages my way ;). )

Dan was borderline Hangry (hungry+angry) so we also stopped for salad, pizza, and wine. Later that night we met up with Eric and Meg, Dan’s brother and sister-in-law. We walked in the rain to rendezvous with a few of their lifelong friends: Chris, Whitney, Travis and Veronica. (Thank God I packed an umbrella! I definitely learned from our Norway trip!).

We celebrated many things that night drinking wine in the park with the Eiffel Tower twinkling above us. To Jimmy and Sarah, an incredible couple beginning their life in marriage. To Chris and Whitney, an exciting engagement. To Eric and Meg, together again after a long deployment. To Dan and I, tying the knot. To Travis and Veronica, on a European vacation. But most of all, we celebrated life long friendships. Friendships worth holding on to despite multiple moves, decades passing and lives changing dramatically. To all of those things, we sipped wine under the stars and the twinkling lights of the Eiffel tower.

Buzzing on the sweet bubbles we consumed, we walked to a nearby cafe for dinner and conversation. We stayed late into the night and met with Jimmy at an Irish pub for one last drink as a single man.

On Saturday we had a lazy morning including room service breakfast and multiple cups of cappuccino. Dan caught up on sports center and started getting ready about 13 minutes before we left the hotel. It always amazes me that he gets ready so quickly. (And still looked so fancy by the way!)

We didn’t want to be late so we arrived at the church extra early. Dan was rushing me out of the hotel (like usual…🙈 )and I forgot to grab my coat. It was chilly but not unbearable.

The wedding was in the most beautiful church I’ve ever seen, La Madeleine. Talk about memories of a lifetime. Witnessing the joining of two hearts in such a beautiful, historic place was incredible {and in two languages…English and French}. A huge thanks to Whitney for passing out tissues to each of us before the ceremony began. The instant Jimmy saw Sarah the happy tears fell. –>and I bawled like a baby. No big deal.

One of my favorite parts of the ceremony was when the pastor said… “No matter what beliefs you had coming to this ceremony, we are witnessing love today. Where there is love, there is God. God is love.”

In the middle of the ceremony, everyone stood for the passing of the peace. Forgoing handshakes, in true Partisan style, we all exchanged kisses on both cheeks instead. The wedding was intimate and sweet and overflowing with emotions of joy and love.

In France, after the wedding is complete the guests leave first. Then wait in anticipation for the bride and groom to emerge from the doors and walk down the front steps of the church. (I actually really loved this part!) the happiness radiated from them on those beautiful old church steps.

Thankfully it was a brisk walk from the wedding to the reception. Our group of 8 people stopped at a cafe in between for 25 various drinks with espresso in them. The waiter probably felt like a barista.

Hyped up on espresso and ready to party we made our way to the reception at the Westin. The cocktail hour was held in a beautiful courtyard. It had floor to ceiling pillars 😍 and enclosed glass that the guests (including me) couldn’t resist staring at.

We ate delicious food, drank sweet cocktails and danced far past the sunset and into the night. Then we crashed hard for about 10 hours of much-needed sleep.

The next day we drug ourselves out of bed with the promise of at least 6 espressos throughout the day. Dan and I took a taxi to the Louvre.

We met back as a group for a relaxed picnic lunch in the Tuileries Garden. I loved how lazy Sunday’s are in Paris. It’s not uncommon to see couples napping in the chairs surrounding the fountains. The children rented little wooden boats and played with them in the fountains, gently guiding them with wooden sticks. They even had goats eating grass on the edges surrounding the fountains.

After our picnic, we wandered down towards the Arc de Triomphe. Of course, we stopped for a few cups of espresso and some leisurely shopping but we made it there eventually.

After a long exhausting day, we finished our Paris trip with pasta and one of my favorite Italian red wines. As dinner came to a close we said our sad goodbyes. Until our next adventure as a group, safe travels!

Dan and I caught the ICE train back to Germany for a few much needed days of rest. After a weekend full of love, family, and lifelong friendship we were reluctant to leave Paris.

Cheers to a lifetime of happiness for Jimmy and Sarah, who proved that love happens when you least expect it. 🙂

Sometimes the love of your life is just one international flight away!

Love,

Jenny

I’m in love with your laugh, even when it makes ALL the european travelers stare at us.

ps. Excuse me, sir…. what’s in your bag? 😉
 
Starbucks in Paris
First PSL of the season
 

Our “breakfast in bed” at the Marriott Ambassador hotel.
“In the back of the Cab”….. Jason Derulo’s song kept playing in my head here. Also, what is he looking at?!? haha  
La Madeleine. Paris, France.
 





My sister in law, Megan and I waiting for the happy couple.

Can you tell they’re related?


Reminds me of my Grandma Jo every time…She’s always been a Chanel No5  fan. 

Our exhausted smiles as we watched the sunset at the Arc de Triomphe.
Traveling home in my new Zara jeggings… IN LOVE with them. 25 Euro and they feel like Yoga pants. WINNN! 
 

ps. We drank our bodyweight in espresso this trip and I loved every moment of it.

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Mallorca: Piña Coladas and Cliff Diving

Mallorca, Spain is one of the Balearic Islands located right next to our favorite one (Ibiza)! We went to Mallorca, Spain for Labor day weekend in 2015. I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about it. This one is gonna be just pictures… because I can 🙂 Enjoy.

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We went cliff diving here. Despite the glomy grey skies, we had a wonderful time. Right after this the as the storm rolled in and we took a drive to the northern side of the island. 

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We sat at the tables below every morning for breakfast. Each morning we started the day with a cappucino and a pina colada. 
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Wishing for sunshine today,

Love, 

Jenny

Norway: Let’s Go Chasing Waterfalls

Our Norway trip started with a bang by almost missing our flight from Copenhagen, Denmark to Bergen, Norway. I’ll admit it… It was definitely my fault🙋. I was buying postcards for our families and didn’t realize they started boarding our flight.

I arrived at the terminal and we quickly took off. A short flight later, we landed in Norway (country #4 on my initial top 5 travel list!). Occasionally when I would get bored at work or needed something to help to pass the time I would research the Fjords of Norway. I would research all the incredible things we could do there… Hiking, kayaking, climbing … The options were endless. Unfortunately, a few weeks before our trip Dan broke his hand. So with him in a cast we didn’t partake in the water adventures or climbing adventures they had to offer. (Maybe next time 😉

The moment the plane landed it started pouring. We got off the plane and immediately bought Dan a rain jacket to keep his cast dry. The cashier was super nice and gave us a bag that was waterproof and lasted all trip! It’s pictured in almost ALL of our pictures… mostly with Dan because he carries #ALLthethings when we travel. (Can you see why he’s my favorite?)

We navigated our way out of the terminal and walked straight to the information desk to ask about a  taxi. She laughed at us and said, “the bus is much cheaper.” Dan and I looked at each other and shrugged. I decided we should take the bus, it seemed simple enough–> and they speak English very well there if we needed help!

Thank God we took the bus. It was around 20 Euro for two of us and a taxi would have been around 100 Euro. We arrived at our stop and it continued to rain. I had packed my Lulu  jacket (this one is on sale!!!–> Lululemon In Flux Jacket ) as a light layer since the weather sounded like it would be relatively warm with scattered showers. Let me tell you water resistant and waterproof are two VERY different things! This jacket is perfect if it’s spring or fall but I wouldn’t recommend it for your trip to a rainy place. Between the temperature drop to the 50’s and the rain I was freezing. Dan ended up buying me a wool zip-up sweater to keep me warm ( I wore it almost every day we were there) and a water PROOF jacket. Those two items were lifesavers this trip! To say we under packed is an understatement.

Our hotel was tucked away just off of the Bergen harbor. The elevators were so cool. The doors were simply a glass door on each level. Don’t lean against the wall that’s moving!–> check out the pic below of Dan in the elevator!
Bergen was by far my favorite city in Norway. It’s small town feel and harbor created such a cozy place tucked away in the fjord. I was fighting a Dramamine hangover so we stopped for coffee first because… Priorities. Coffee is always first. Starbucks was the first thing I spotted as we got off the bus (but we were racing to our hotel…in flip flops in the freezing cold rain). We walked through town and took the advice of the desk clerk and ate sushi at NAMA for dinner. Never in my life have I had sushi this incredible! (But I’m willing to keep traveling to find out if it’s the best in the world! 😉)
One thing we noticed right away about Norway is how gorgeous the people were. Dan and I are not the jealous…type thank goodness because honestly we were shocked with the lucky genes these people have. Our waitress (who was definitely a 10 on the hot scale) was the sweetest! When she found out we got married that morning in Denmark she brought us free tuna and champagne. She also insisted on bringing us Creme brûlée for dessert. It’s amazing how being polite and kind to people goes a long way, in countries all over the world.
With our bellies packed with sushi and our hearts full, we strolled along the harbor. We were originally going back to the hotel. However, then we walked by a bar that had live music and I talked Dan into “just one drink.” The place was super crowded and all the tables were full. We glanced around and this beautiful blonde asked us if we would like to join them at their table. Hanna and Sebastian were a couple from Sweden visiting family in Norway. They were hilarious. We enjoyed a few “just one drinks”… and laughed with them about their recent Trolltunga hike. It was on my “must do list” for Norway but quickly fell off the list when Dan broke his right hand. After hearing Hanna’s version of how their hike/rock climbing went in terrible weather, I’m so glad we postponed that hike until next time we visit! It was getting super late and we had to be up early to pick up our Norway in a Nutshell self-guided tour tickets the next morning. We hugged our new friends goodbye and promised to put Sweden on our travel list.
The next morning we took an express boat to Rosendal. It was a quiet little town tucked away in the Hardangerfjord, with lots of waterfalls around it. I have never seen this many waterfalls in my life! We spent most of our Norway trip chasing waterfalls and trying to catch a picture of them as we were on boats, buses, and trains. Our boat arrived and we chose t0 hike to the biggest waterfall near us. Dan is by far the rule follower between the two of us. As we approached the hike we had to open a gate that fenced in a bunch of sheep grazing in the pasture. It was so funny watching him contemplate “breaking the rules”. When really…. they just hike around things like that here. There was a cute little family hiking right behind us. The little kids were all wearing rain boots (in hindsight should have packed my Hunters). Instead, Dan and I were puddle jumping on and off throughout the hike in our sneakers.
We ate lunch and caught a bus to Loftus. We stayed at an adorable hotel that looked like a red barn. It was set up similar to a hostel with shared bathroom/shower area. We had a private room with only beds and a sink. A hot shower and laying in bed after such a long hike felt amazing. I slept so hard! For your enjoyment here are our Norway pictures from the first few days we were there. I look forward to finishing our Norway Adventure in my next post!

Pack WARM and WATERPROOF!

Love, 
Jenny

 

Bergen, Norway

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The elevator door!

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Rosendal, Norway

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Loftus, Norway

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With breathtaking views like this, you just can’t take your eyes away.
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Our Loftus hotel:

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The view from our room. Sleeping next to this water rushing by was so soothing.
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Walking to our next connection… Another Express boat! Passing the time with a little Yoga. Getting workouts in on the road is so important.

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Saying goodbye to Luftus:

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Ps. Norway to be continued…. soon! 😀