Iceland Road Trip

2017/06/19


Blue Lagoon Iceland Blog Post Review

Silica Hotel Iceland Blog Review Post

Reykjavik Iceland Iron Homes City      Reykjavik Iceland Mat Bar Food Blog

Blue Lagoon Iceland Blog Review Water

Iceland Landscape Blog Review

Iceland Horses Landscape Blog Post

Iceland Sheep Blog Post Review

Iceland Skogafoss Waterfall Blog Review June

Iceland Sheep Lamb Skogafoss Farm

Iceland Sheep Mother and Baby Skogafoss

Skogarfoss Museum Iceland Turf Home

Iceland Home Interior Turf Home     Iceland Turf Home Skogar

Iceland Home Interior Type

Iceland Black Sand Beach Vik

Iceland Glacier Lagoon Overlook Blog Review

Iceland Glacier Lagoon Iceberg Blog Post

Glacier Lagoon Iceland Blog

Iceland Glacier Lagoon Boat

Iceland Glacier Lagoon Iceberg Blog Post

Iceland Landscape Blog Review June

Iceland Waterfall Blog Review

Center Hotel Thingholt Iceland Reykjavik     Center Hotel Thingholt Iceland Reykjavik

Snaps Bistro Reykjavik Iceland Food Blog

Reykjavik Iceland Iron Home Blog     Iceland Snaps Bistro Reykjavik Food Blog

Reykjavik Iceland Iron Home Blog Post

Reykjavik Iceland Hallgrímskirkja Church View Blog     Reykjavik Iceland Cafe Waffles Food


This trip to Iceland was supposed to be my honeymoon. I found out a few weeks before my wedding that my fiancé had been unfaithful. To skim over this fact, to me, seems somewhat inhuman, so there you go. On a more positive note, I don’t think there really could have been a better place for me to go to lift my spirits. Staring out at some of the most desolate landscapes in the world seemed fitting, and the wildlife that I saw along the way was a true dose of happiness for this animal lover. Iceland is an achingly beautiful place, from the native people to the landscapes peppered with the fattest sheep I have ever seen (insert heart emoji here). My account of Iceland could never do this country justice, but I hope it might encourage you to visit someday if you haven’t already. 

My first stop was the Blue Lagoon, just 30 minutes or so out from Reykjavik. I stayed at the Silica, making my overall experience at the lagoon that much more enjoyable. The Silica had private indoor and outdoor pools for guests to enjoy, which was nice given that the main lagoon is so crowded. The hotel had a nice breakfast spread every morning, and hot coffee available all day for guests (very much needed). If I could change anything about my experience there, it would be to visit during the colder months, which would’ve yielded snowcapped mountains (making the atmosphere even more serene). 

The next stop I made was in Skogarfoss. I stayed at hotel Skogar, which was right beside of the Skogafoss waterfall (and a sheep farm). I’m not sure if I enjoyed the waterfall or the sheep more during my stay. Waking up to sheep baaing is nothing short of precious… for me, at least. Interestingly, you can camp out right beside the Skogafoss waterfall. So, if you wanted to have more privacy (aka: avoid the masses), you could enjoy the fall in the late evening or wee hours of the morning because in the summer months the sun never fully sets. 

From Skogarfoss, I then traveled to Hofn, but along the way I made a stop at the black sand beach in Vik, and the glacier lagoon (Jokulsarlon). The black sand beach was one of my favorite places, coming in second to the glacier lagoon. The day that I visited it was raining a bit, and VERY cold, but it was nothing short of the beauty I was expecting. The sheer scale of the cliffs and basalt columns were unnerving, but in the best kind of way. If you do go, beware of the sneaker waves! The waves there can be wild and unpredictable and have claimed lives in recent years, so it is important to be mindful of this fact and take extra precauction. 

The most beautiful sight I saw in Iceland was the glacier lagoon. To be honest, the lagoon was not number one on my itinerary. I had seen photos of the lagoon before, but it is one of those places you just have to go and see for yourself to truly understand how special it is. Just off of route 1, you will find many lookout points that will take you down to the glaciers. The waters there were extremely calm, and had the bluest hue I’ve ever seen in person. The icy glaciers seemed perfectly paired together, some were striped with sediment, while others were perfectly clear. To top it all off, I saw a seal pop its head out of the water for a few short seconds. In my lifetime I will have to visit this place again, and from now on, I will never underestimate the beauty that glaciers can have. 

My final days in Iceland were spent in the capital city of Reykjavik. Let me first say that if you are concerned about the food being good, don’t be. In Reykjavik, and everywhere else I ate at in Iceland for that matter, the meals were great. I was told (and read) prior to this trip that puffin, whale, shark, and horse, composed most of the diet of Icelanders. While this may or may not be true, I found chicken, and other types of fish to be on the menu more commonly (along with beef on occasion). If there is anything to worry about in terms of the food in of Iceland, it is the price. Expect to pay anywhere from 20 to 50 dollars for a meal at a decent restaurant (although, I did find some relatively affordable places along the way). As far as the shopping goes, I would compare the level and scale in Reykjavik to Charleston S.C. Although the shopping district is somewhat small, it still offers a well curated selection of storefronts. The city itself is quite charming, many of the homes there bore colorful iron exteriors, and it was common to see house cats out and about with little bell collars on. I’d say that you could spend two to three full days max in Reykjavik, unless you wanted to explore the city very thoroughly. 

The beauty of Iceland is otherworldly, and I am so grateful that I was able to see it in person. I will miss the wateralls, the sheep, the horses, the landscapes, the beaches, and most especially, the glaciers. I’d love to go back and travel the northern section of the ring road, or see the same sights again in the winter months. And I'm sure just as anyone else that has ever visited Iceland, this place will always hold a very special place in my heart.


-all photos by me


Featured here: The Blue Lagoon http://www.bluelagoon.com/  Center Hotel Thingholt https://www.centerhotels.com/hotel-thingholt/ The Mat Bar https://www.matbar.is/ SNAPS Bistro http://www.snaps.is/


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Kiwi Popsicles

2016/06/18


Kiwi Popsicles - Kiwi - Blogger - Foodie - homemade popsicle

Homemade Popsicle - Kiwi - Foodie - Craft and Culture

I’ve been seeing a lot of images of homemade popsicles lately, so naturally I had to make some. This particular recipe is about as simple as it gets, with only three main ingredients. I hope to make some other less healthy versions this summer :)

Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups of canned coconut milk
3/4 cup of soy or almond milk
6 kiwis (2 for blending & 4 peeled and sliced for the popsicle molds)
*if you like your popsicles very sweet, add flavored syrup or concentrate

Directions:
-Blend the coconut milk, soy milk, and kiwi together until smooth.
-Place the sliced kiwi into the molds (I like two or three slices per popsicle).
-Pour the blended mixture into the molds and then insert the popsicle sticks. They will need to freeze for at least 4 hours until they are solid. When they are ready, let them thaw for a few minutes or run warm water over the plastic molds for a few seconds to remove.



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Asheville, N.C.

2016/05/30


Weaverville NC old car folk blog

Curate Restaurant Asheville NC - blog - foodie

Curate Restaurant Asheville NC - travel post - tapas

Vortex Doughnuts Asheville NC - coffee shop interior - blog

Vortex Doughnuts Asheville NC - specialty doughnuts - food blog - travel

Asheville NC Cabin - mountains - cabin life

N.C. Cabin - interior - old world cabin - blog - travelgram

N.C. Cabin - interior - old world charm - cabin life - blog - travel post - anafterthought

Cabin N.C. - Interior - Blog Travel

Flowers - from where I stand -fromwhereistand - blog

Looking Glass Falls N.C. - long exposure - waterfall

Crabtree Falls N.C. - long exposure - blog - photography

Looking Glass Falls N.C. - waterfall - travel post

Crabtree Falls NC - Waterfall - travel post - blog -

Waterfall N.C. - Travel Post - blog

I recently took a weekend trip to Asheville to visit some of my boyfriend’s family and explore the area. We stayed in the cutest little Airbnb cabin with old world charm, but modern amenities. Apart from family visits, we did some waterfall hopping and spent some serious time stuffing our faces. After hiking 4-5 miles you get to eat whatever you want right?

The first waterfall we visited was Crabtree, and I was kind of surprised at the number of people there considering it’s a 3-4 mile hike (depending on the route you take). We took the steeper route there and back which wasn’t the best idea since it was all uphill back (and we were lugging camera gear). This was probably my favorite waterfall though, not the most photogenic, but definitely my favorite. You could gaze at the falls from a bridge below, or climb up the side rocks to a landing area with a pool. It was too cold to get into the water, but despite that, there were plenty of areas (and by areas I mean rocks) to sit and chill. The second waterfall we went to was looking glass, and it was by far the most accessible (and the most crowded). I was so mad at myself for not bringing rain boots this trip (so I could get better angles), but I was especially mad at myself for that fact at this particular waterfall. There was a long stretch of water that you could easily walk through, hitting slightly below my shins. I definitely would love to go to this one again, despite the crowdedness. The last waterfall we went to was Eastatoe, a private waterfall almost literally in someone’s backyard. This is a very secluded waterfall, we were the only people there (although the owners had a sign out welcoming visitors). Unfortunately, the day we went was very sunny and I couldn’t really get any shots, but this is a great place to go to relax.

While downtown Asheville, we ate at Curate and Vortex Doughnuts. Curate serves tapas, which is especially good for me since I usually order side plates as my meal (I like to sample things). I was very impressed with the food at Curate, everything we ate was very good, the stuffed piquillo peppers (pictured here) were my favorite. This was the second time I have eaten at Vortex Doughnuts, they have a nice variety of specialty doughnuts (gluten free, vegan, etc.) and coffee. This would be a great morning, or mid afternoon stop, and I’m sure I’d frequent this place if I lived in the area. Both my boyfriend and I thought the espresso doughnut was the best, just fyi :)

-all photos by me


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Pelican Lane

2015/12/13



Ocean - Blog Post - Live Folk

Brown Pelican - Photography - Blog - Minimalism - Animal Photography

Brown Pelican - Sunrise - Live Folk

Ocean - Sunrise - Beach - Minimalism

Brown Pelican - Animal Photography - Caley Cassell

Pelicans - Get Lost Club

Sea Turtle - Wildlife


Lately, I’ve been wanting to take more photos of wildlife. Pelicans have always been on the agenda, but I’ve always struggled finding a location where they were plentiful. Common sense tells you that they would be located in areas with less human traffic, but even if you venture into more remote territory, you still need to be located near something that draws them (or wait for hours on end). Luckily, I found a marina that was known for feeding the pelicans scraps from their fishing trips. I know this is a controversial thing, and I’m aware of the dangers of feeding pelicans fish that are too large or boney for them to consume. However, these fisherman made sure to feed the birds appropriately. A local offered me the opportunity to take pictures from his dock, and also offered to let me feed them myself. Such hospitality, I know! :)  I don’t think I have to tell you that I was in heaven throughout this experience. Pelicans were swimming in the water around me, and the braver ones would even waddle past me on the dock. I was told me to come back in the spring to see the baby pelicans, but I don’t know if my heart could even take that.

-all photos by me



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Reynolda Gardens

2015/11/12


Reynolda Gardens - Main Entrance  - Blog

Greenhouse - Blog - Anafterthought

cacti - blog post

Reynolda Gardens - Luke Thompson - Photography

Flowers - Photography - Blog

Reynolda Gardens - Luke Thompson - Photography

Reynolda Gardens - Fern - Lifestyle Blog

Reynolda Gardens Main Entrance - Cacti - Lifestyle Blog

Reynolda Gardens - House Portrait - Cottage

A week ago I visited Reynolda Gardens in Winston Salem for the first time, and to be honest, it was more than I expected. The rose gardens and greenhouses were difficult for me to walk away from, and the visit has now rekindled my fantasy of having a greenhouse of my own. Maybe a small one some day? I can’t say that I truly captured the grandeur of the place, but I guess thats your excuse to go see for yourself :)

-Photos of me by Luke Thompson, all others by me



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All the Jellies

2015/08/25


Jelly Fish - Blog Post - Lifestyle - Alien - Photography

Jellyfish - Blog Post - Lifestyle - Alien - Photography

Jelly Fish - Blog Post - Lifestyle - Black and White Photography

Jellyfish - Blog Post - Lifestyle - Aquarium - Photography

Jellyfish - Blog Post - Lifestyle - Aquarium - Japanese Nettle

Japanese Nettle Jellyfish - Blog - Anafterthought


Ever since watching Will Smith’s movie Seven Pounds I’ve had a different appreciation for jellyfish (which might sound strange given the plot). If you’ve seen the movie, you know I’m referring to the box jellyfish that Smith kept in a large fish tank. The jellyfish was undeniably beautiful and graceful, and a powerful symbol throughout the movie. Prior to the movie, jellyfish evoked a somewhat gross image in my mind. They were the creatures that I had to make sure I didn’t step on when walking on the beach, the creatures I knew that could give a nasty sting. Somehow, I had missed the beauty of them before, and certainly, they look so much different in the water than washed ashore, but even visiting aquariums as a young child, I don’t recall being captivated by them as much as I am now. It’s funny how time can do that, a few years back I spent most time trying touch the sting rays or horseshoe crabs in the aquariums, and now I find that my favorite place is right in front of the jellyfish tank.

 

-All photos above are by me, and the species is the Japanese Nettle

 





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