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You’ve already heard me wax poetic about my love for city parks a few times, and this gem in Munich is no exception. (Want more Munich? Check out this post.) It was one of my favorite stops on our visit: the English Gardens.

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Parks with rivers or lakes are even better + the English Gardens delivered. Hearing the sounds of nature, the birds + the wind + the running water, mingled with the sounds of people playing with their dogs + the faint hum of traffic is one of those uniquely “city park” phenomenon. Spring was barely starting to make itself known in Munich so things were a bit barren, but I can just imagine how lovely everything must be bathed in summertime.

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Unfortunately, few things worked out the way we wanted them to during our visit to Munich, and to continue the trend, we discovered that the park’s large beer garden had yet to open for the season. If I ever make it back to Munich again, it will definitely be in the summertime so I can rent a bike + cover more distance in the park. Of course, I’ll end the day with dinner at the beer garden + another meander towards the sunset.

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Because we DID get to do that part, and it was one of the best.

Travel is punctuated with simple moments, and making your way through a city park like this one at sunset on a Sunday evening, people-watching with nowhere to be, may be the exclamation point of moments.

You just can’t get a postcard for something like that.

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I’ll admit, when my lovely friend Amy of Creatrice Mondial asked me to participate in this little blog hop on writing, I felt a twinge of guilt. It’s been quite a while since I’ve been seriously writing + it’s one of those things that your soul misses deeply, but you don’t always realize how much until someone points it out. But the good thing about these creative endeavors is that they wait for you, ever so patiently, until suddenly they are missed + coaxed out + picked back up again. It’s like they know no time (and isn’t it so easy to lose all sense of time when you’re in their midst?). So here I am!

Amy + I met at Alt Summit back in January + immediately connected over our shared travel bug. Living all over the world is a goal of mine + she is out there living it up! I get so inspired reading about other’s creative processes so it was fun to read about why she writes.

And without further ado, on to the blog hop!

What am I working on/writing?

Right now, I’m writing a lot behind the scenes: a website update is in the works for Evergreen Lane, along with a newsletter full of video tips + tricks. I’ve also been doing a lot of personal writing – I’ve heard it said that quiet people have the loudest minds + that is definitely true in my case. Brain dumps into the journal are good for the soul – both when I’m on the road + at home.

How does my work/writing differ from others of its genre?

I think one of the most beautiful things about blogging in general is that there is so much room for personal voice. So I guess I can’t help being a little bit different if I’m being genuinely myself (which I try to be). I loved writing in school, and I think I still look at it a bit academically, but when travel writing, I also try to focus on how a place made me feel, what it evoked + how it inspired more than what restaurants we ate at or tips about buying museum tickets. Although you best believe I will share the love if I figure any of that stuff out. Travel for me is about creativity, inspiration + community, so I hope that I bring that same sentiment in my writing.

Why do I write what I do?

“Stories make us more alive, more human, more courageous, more loving.” – Madeleine L’Engle

For me, storytelling is so intertwined with creativity – whether it’s making videos, taking photos, painting, songwriting or writing. Our ability to tell stories feels so essential to our humanity, doesn’t it? So I write about my travels to remember the humanity of all of these adventures: the emotions, the connections, + the inspirations. And ultimately, I write what I write hoping that it will evoke those same things in the people who read these stories.

How does my writing process work?

I’ve attempted NaNoWriMo a few times (and successfully completely it once), which is a super condensed + lofty endeavor of writing 50,000 words during the month of November. Facing that challenge teaches you a lot about the creative process, but it’s also intense + not something I could maintain long term. Initial writing for me happens best with pen + paper, even better if I can find myself a little spot outside. When I’m working on the blog, I mostly like writing in the evenings, with a glass of tea or wine (depending on the subject matter + my mood). I am a constant editor, which means that writing even a first draft takes me a long time, but I’m also admittedly a bit of a perfectionist.

My auditory environment is also really important when I’m writing (or really any kind of creating) – I love the white noise of coffee shops, classical music or nature documentaries. Yeah, I know! Something about a narrator, music + nature sounds just does it for me. In fact, I have a PBS special about the National Parks on as I’m writing this post. Do you have any quirks to your creative process? I’d love to hear about it!

I hope you enjoyed this little snapshot into what’s happening behind the scenes here on the blog + that it maybe inspires you to get to writing!

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To continue the blog hop, I’m passing the torch to my good friend Jaici. She’s definitely in a different niche of blogging than I am, but I love that her writing is so raw. I feel like sometimes I hide behind the stories in my writing, and this girl definitely doesn’t. It’s pretty beautiful. So I can’t wait to hear more about why she writes!

 

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{ watercolor by Annabelle Mintz / sip / style }

Anyone else a big fútbol (err…soccer) fan? I am not usually into sports, I’ll admit, but I love me some World Cup. The final game is coming up this weekend, between Argentina + Germany…and it’s gonna be good, y’all!

So, in honor of the host nation, Brazil, I decided to do a little daydreaming. Sure would be nice to be sitting in this super stylish public park in Rio de Janeiro, sporting some bold colors + a little crop top. And definitely, most definitely sipping on a caipirinha.

Happy Friday my dear, and gooooooooooo Argentina!

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Hello dear! I am still reeling over here from discovering that it’s July already (I typed June first – that’s how in shock I am). I had an amazing 4th of July with some of the sweetest friends + I hope you did too!

Feels like the last few months I have been learning a big lesson about work-life balance. I went through a really intense “workaholic” phase at the end of last year + beginning of this one where I just always had my nose in the computer + let a lot of other really important aspects of my life slide. So the last few months, the pendulum swung pretty intensely the other way: learning to live life again + spending loads of time with my family + friends. I’ve been so thankful for it all! There is no greater reward in life than loving + being loved on.

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So of course, when the opportunity came for me to take off work a little early on a Friday afternoon for a brewery tour with my girl Erin, you better believe I jumped on that! A tour at New Belgium is one of those quintessentially “Colorado” things to do, and somehow I had lived here for almost six years before I made it happen.

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A few tips for planning a trip to New Belgium Brewery: the tour is free, but you’ll have to reserve a spot several weeks in advance. The weekend tours especially book out four to six weeks in advance. Another option is to just show up and take your chances waiting for a tour with no-shows. We just barely made it (thank you, Denver traffic) but fortunately, they let us run to catch up with our tour. Do what I say, not what I do: show up on time!

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I’d highly recommend planning some activities in Fort Collins for after your tour as well, because those cats at New Belgium are generous with their samples, yo. It’s awesome, but driving immediately after is not recommended, especially if you have a small frame/low tolerance like moi. We just walked downtown from the brewery and grabbed dinner: perfect solution if you ask me (yup, life is rough post-brewery tour – forcing you to hang out in Fort Collins!).

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Dress // Madewell *affiliate link

My last tip involves pants. Yup, there’s a slide at the end of this tour. And this favorite dress of mine did not offer much protection (of any kind). Ended up with slide-burn on my elbows and knees, but you just can’t say no to a slide, am I right?

The New Belgium Brewery tour gets rave reviews + it’s easy to see why. They are fun, informative, generous + of course, make delicious beer! (And can I talk about the slide again?) So, consider this your official permission to play a little hooky this summer + enjoy this season of seasons.

I promise, it’s worth it.

 

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So, I’m finally wading through all the photos from my trip to Europe in March. It was a whirlwind + two weeks is just not enough. This continent has held some of the most defining moments of my life + this trip was no different. Seriously, the place just tears me right open. I love that there are so many layers of history, so many people’s stories that have written themselves on these streets + in these squares – and each time I visit, I get to add my own.

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The first stop we made was in Munich, and let me tell you. The cold + rainy weather of late March was not super cooperative with our travel plans. But when you have two days in Munich, you make do! We hit the ground running with a Rick Steve’s walking tour – and for anyone who’s headed to Europe, you know I am all about Rick Steves. His travel guides are the bomb.

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Markets are one of the highlights for me about Europe, and I love that the municipality preserves this one right in the city center by keeping the rent low for the stand owners. It might be the jet lag talking, but I’m pretty sure vegetables taste better from places like this.

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The only beer garden we were able to visit (not for lack of effort) was the character-filled Haufbrauhaus. I had no idea that beer gardens didn’t open til April in Munich, I kinda thought it was a year-round thing in Germany but I was wrong! Fortunately we could count on this combo tourist-trap/local installation to be open year round. It was a great place to stop for lunch after a morning of walking + sightseeing.

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Even though a few things didn’t work out like we expected in Munich, I’m still glad we were able to visit. I was reminded of one of the great truths of travel: not everything works out exactly the way you planned. Sometimes, beer gardens don’t open until the week after you’re there, you forget that everything is closed on Sundays, the bike rental place takes a super long lunch + the grey skies just will not leave you alone. But, in the end, you’re in Germany! Where the buildings are old + beautiful, the parks are plentiful + the beer is super, super tasty. And that is definitely worth all of the crazy that travel sometimes brings.