I'm now on my fourth blog. I find myself missing the reflection that writing each day for a year promoted. 2013's goal is to write my book. Keep track of my progress as I pursue the dream of being a published writer.

Friday, March 1, 2013


Here is an update on life.  Today is the last day for the Rick Steves' website contest.  I will find out in a month if I win or not.  So far, there is only one that I think may be better, but I don't know if it is really better or not.

On another note, today was pie in the face day for 5th grade.  We completed a fundraiser to help support people in Africa.  Through a group called World Visions, we were able to buy 6 goats that can be used in many ways to help families.  For each dollar a student brought in, they were given one ticket to enter a raffle.  Today we pulled three tickets for people to pie us in the face and two tickets for people to dump water on us today.  It was pretty awesome.  I posted a couple photos so you can see the fun we had. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

It's Done!

Well, I have been working on my Rick Steves website for over 6 months and it is finally done.  I love working on projects, but once they are done I feel a little empty.  Now I just have to figure out what the next venture is.  I hope you enjoy my site!


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Progress (or Lack of)

Well, my campaign is not going so hot right now, but I'm still pretty set on the idea of doing what I can to accomplish it.  I learned about something really cool when I went to the Travel and Adventure show a couple weekends ago.  Ralph Valesco is a photographer that spoke about tips and showed some of his work.  One of the coolest things was his time lapse video of Toledo.  He used a go pro camera to capture a picture each second.  Then he compiled the pictures to create a video.  I think it is an awesome way to track time and scenes.  I have so many ideas for how I'd like to use it.  Sunrises in Paris, cafe scenes, and tracking the changes of light over beautiful monuments would be such a cool thing.  I could always add audio if I wanted or I could use it just to demonstrate a point.  

I'm really excited to get into video.  I feel like video blogging is still pretty new, so maybe I can do something with it.  I'm also thrilled to really focus on photography again.  I LOVE photography.  If I can combine these elements with writing and travel, I think I may be in heaven.

Check out the video: http://vimeo.com/58508075

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Snowy Photo Op

I woke up wanting to take pictures.  Luckily it was a little warmer than the past couple of days.  I trekked over to my local forest preserve and captured a few images.  Then, the wind picked up and I got cold, so my ambition died.  I so badly want to get out and take photos, but I hate the cold.  Hopefully little Phil is right about his prediction.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Weekend About Travel

It may be possible that I was so happy this weekend that I almost levitated.  Talking about travel is thrilling to me; the only thing that is better is actually traveling.  Chicago hosted the Travel and Adventure show which had guest speakers including RICK STEVES, Pauline Frommer, Chris Harrison (host of the bachelor), and Patricia Schultz (author of 1,000 Places to See Before you Die).  I think we all know who I was most excited to see.

One of the highlights of the weekend actually involved Rick's France expert: Steve Smith.  We stopped by the booth to talk about our trip this summer and get some ideas about day trips from Paris.  I felt like I was in my element talking about things to see and do.  Lori, just so you know, Strasbourg is about a 2 hour bullet train ride away.  It is highly recommended that we visit.  Janey, just so you know, he recommends Bruges as the one place we spend overnight out of all the places we could visit.  I cannot wait!

I realized the first day that I would not be able to have a conversation with Rick like I was hoping, so for the second day I equipped myself with a thank you letter to give to him.  I hope that he reads it.  I LOVE TRAVEL!!!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Funding Creativity

I stumbled upon something yesterday that has me pretty excited.  I've always said that I need a sponsor to help me fund my travels, well, guess what kind of websites are out there now...Creativity funding websites!  I've checked out a few and even started filling out my campaign yesterday.  There are a couple sites for those of us out here with ideas, but lacking the financial support:

Kickstarter-Propose a range of project ideas, and people in the US can make donations.
Indiegogo-Propose a range of project ideas (even educational ones), and people all over the world can 
make donations.

So what is my idea?  Well, I'm traveling to Paris this summer for a longer stay.  Perhaps my Neighborhood Mosaic idea is meant to be manifested into a website first, and a book later.  While in Paris I would write, photograph, and video blog with the goal of educating and motivating others to travel.  I would organize this site by neighborhood so it could be a handy resource for travelers or people who travel vicariously.  I will interview Parisians, and truly immerse myself in the culture.  Seems like fun to me...

I need funding because I struggle to pay for the trip itself, let alone the technology I'd need to complete a project like this.  I hope to finish creating my campaign today.  Please stay tuned for a link!