Spain Photo Diary: Calpe

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Hello my lovely readers! Gone are the endless days of summer, sunshine, and warmth. Yes, the cold arrived in Paris this week. But truthfully, I don’t mind it at all. The Southern Californian in me is enjoying her first ever fall, a nip in the breeze, and rainy afternoons spent inside DIYing Halloween decorations with the kids. And jackets!!! For the first time ever I get to build up a cold weather wardrobe, and I could not be more excited. Sure, I’ll probably read this a few months in the future and will curse the day I ever welcomed the beginning of cold weather, but for now I’m loving every moment.

But for this post, a flashback to warmer days! In particular, one of the last Spain posts I have for you. This photo diary is focused around Calpe, the city I stayed in for two weeks. While definitely a town built for vacationers, being there was a dream. I highly recommend spending a week or two here if you ever plan on visiting Spain. Rent a house about 2km from the beach; the distance will guarantee you a better price, most likely get you your own pool, and peace and quiet at night. Also, the outskirts tend to cool down more than the hotel areas in the city. And my recommendations for anyone stopping by: climb the mountain, stop for a mojito one night on the promenade, check out the boutique Bundi (incredible jewelry finds), and splurge on ice cream (there’s nothing better to cool you down on hot days!). I hope these photographs bring back happy memories of warmer days for you, and start building up excitement to the day the sun shines warmly again. Enjoy!

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Paris Snapshots: First Sweets, Eiffel Tower, and Notre Dame

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Hello my lovely readers! And finally……the Paris photos begin!! I’ve been out the past few days with a lovely little stomach bug, meaning that there was lots of time for editing photos. These photos are from August 30th and 31st, the very productive weekend I used to hit up two of Paris’ most famous tourist spots, and of course, to try out a sampling of the delicious food the city is known for! This weekend the adventure continues, I can’t wait to explore the 8th and 9th Arrondissements.

To put it simply: this city is every photographer’s dream. Picture perfect architecture, beautiful historical landmarks, incredible street fashion and delicious (photogenic) food is waiting around every corner. Honestly though, I think that photographs can’t even begin to do it justice. While I do love these pictures, sometimes the best thing to do is leave the camera at home, and absorb the city’s incredible atmosphere. However, that being said, I do hope that the photographs manage to convey some of the magical moments I have experienced so far. I try to do reality justice with every click of the shutter!! Enjoy :)

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18

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2 minutes ago I turned 18, and I wanted to do a reflection of this last year: 17! If you consider my actions since turning an adult (cleaning out ice cream wrappers off of my bed), nothing much has changed. However, I believe this year was one for the books. And although I say this every year, it was the best one yet! It was filled with so many changes, and almost all for the positive. This is the year where I really came into myself, and started to be happy with who I am. I feel like I know who I am now, something I did not at this time last year. This is the year where my friendships all around the world became stronger than ever. I found out what I was passionate about in school, and what kind of a person I want to be. I made huge life changing decisions (Julia one year ago would have not believed that this is being written in France) and grew up in the process. I decided to take huge risks, and became a lot more outgoing and social. I’m no longer afraid of meeting new people, and taking part in new experiences. And while I spent most of the year itching to get out of my hometown, I also really used the time I had left in Los Angeles to discover the city. I was so busy living and discovering during year 17. However, despite almost never being home, I also feel like my relationship with my family got a lot better. I now consider my brother my confidant, whereas we spent basically the 15 years prior fighting all the time. And ExploresMore was born!! Thank you for those of you that have followed along, you mean the world to me!! (and I’m still surprised that anybody would read my blog) :) So, click through for a retrospect of year 17, it was one to remember! Thank you so much for reading. <3

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Mint Green Sweater

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Hello my lovely readers! Once again, I am so sorry for how far behind I am with all of my posts, I’m doing my best to edit all of the photos and get them up!! Also, I have so much to share with you about Paris and life here, so stay tuned!! Currently I am enjoying a delicious glass of white wine with a brand new blogging friend next to me, the night is pretty good. :) Today was spent exploring Saint Germain, I’m starting French school there at the end of September! Paris is a dream, I’ve fallen hopelessly in love with this city. There’s simply nothing like it, and I can’t wait to start sharing details of my life here, once I get through the summer photos. So many post ideas, and so many things to share!! Anyways, enjoy this post! Finally a new OOTD post, taken at the Kappeln Bridge right after sundown.

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Spain Photo Diary: Mountain Climbing

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Hello my lovely readers! You know I’m getting caught up with sharing my photographs when I am only 3 weeks behind, and no longer one full month! So, about three weeks ago I climbed the Morro de Toix Mountain mountain in Calpe, Spain. I stayed in Calpe from August 1-14th with my German summer camp, and they were honestly the best two weeks of my life. And out of those two weeks, my favorite moments were watching the sun rise from the mountain (I got up at 4:30 AM!) and then reaching the summit about 1 1/2 hours later. Watching the sunrise and seeing the view from the top gave me some amazing, indescribable feelings. Sitting on the mountain, I thought, “These are the moments people live for.” And since coming down that mountain, I have not been the same. Working hard to see such a beautiful view has inspired me to go on more adventures, and see many more places. And I’m so thankful to be working as an Au Pair this year, because this job will give me the chance to do just that.

I hope that these photographs convey at least some of the empowering emotions I felt on the mountain that morning. I highly recommend making your way up if you are ever in Calpe. Start early to catch the sunrise from the midway lookout, and then head all the way up before it gets too hot. The whole hike took about 2 hours going up, slightly little less going down. It’s a tough one (at some points literally rock climbing, and holding on to ropes over steep cliffs) but completely worth it. Enjoy!

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