Monthly Inspiration: Game Day Essentials in Dublin

Game Day Essentials in Dublin
This weekend I am attending a football game with my alma mater Penn State vs. The University of Central Florida.  I can't believe they are playing in Dublin and it will be great so see some Penn State fans.  This is a win win.  Here is a list of some game day essentials for the game in Dublin.  

Also, follow along on my instagram for Ireland updates.

1) Celtic Jewelry
I've always loved celtic jewelry.  The Claddagh ring is classic Irish and how a woman wears it can tell you what kind of relationship she's in.
2) Green Scarf
This silk scarf is stylish and in a great shade of deep green!
3) Guinness
I'm not a beer drinker but I am not going to pass up trying a tall glass of Guinness in Dublin, especially after we beat the UCF Knights at the game ;)
 4) Irish Wool Jacket
I might just have to get myself one of these traditional cream colored wool jackets for this winter.
5) Wool Socks
And I'd pair it with some warm wool socks.
6) Penn State Gear
You gotta show your Penn State pride for the game. 
7) PSU stickers
I am not above wearing stickers on my face for the game.
8) Thermos
You might want to fill up on warm liquids.  This game will probably be cold.  Or you can just conceal your Guinness in there.

Anyone else going to the game? Also, I'm still looking for ideas for a day trip in the countryside?

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A Stroll Thru Life
Kathe With An E

Link Goodies #8

link goodies #8
1) This is the best Ice Bucket Challenge by far.  I almost peed my pants watching it.
2) This ring is calling my name.
3) Here are 40 tourist scams to avoid.  This is a good infographic because I've personally seen several locals try to do this to me or others on travels.  They sure are sneaky, but most of them can be avoided by not bothering with people trying to sell you things, just keep moving. For instance, I've seen women trying to sell the rosemary sprigs in Seville. I don't need these so I won't indulge them.  My friend got scammed in Milan when a man grabbed her arm and put bird seeds in her hand.  She got a picture with pidgeons but then he of course asked her to give him money. Also, I would never allow someone to take my picture who requested it.  But I do occasionally ask someone to take my picture.  Also, always ask the price of a cab ride before getting in.  So many good tips here. Also, I'm not sure who in their right mind would accept a massage on the beach from a stranger. 
4) Here is a bit of wanderlust fuel for you.  40 of the Last Fairy Tale Towns Left in Europe.  While they have given a great list, I tend to disagree because I've seen plenty more story book towns in Europe!

5) 23 signs you might be addicted to travel.  Yes and yes, except maybe number 7, why would you say no to stamps?
6) I love the idea of camping out in a perfectly styled airstream trailer.  Here are 6 of them that you can rent out throughout the world.
7) Frenchie Fix.  Just a little cutie doing some cute things.
8) Won a pair of Sissy Yates earrings from a contest on the blog, You May Be Wandering.  Thanks so much Sandra!

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Austrian Trinket Boxes

Austrian Trinket Boxes

Back in July I attended another large flea market in Regensburg, Germany.  This is fast becoming one of my favorite local flea markets.  I ended up buying these pair of vintage brass and glass trinket boxes.  The one in the left is small while the one of the right is bigger and has four little ball feet.  The dealer is from Vienna and told me that the boxes were from Austria and that they are around 80 years old placing them in the time frame of the 1930's-40's. 

I've seen this style at several flea markets around Bavaria and presumbly in Austria.  I think they are perfect for storing jewelry, rings, or little keep sakes.  The glass is very fragile and the brass is worn in spots. I love the look of them together.  I could also see creating a little terrarium out of these types of boxes. They could also be etched for a personalized gift!

I come come across these boxes fairly often in Bavaria so if this is something you'd be interested in buying, perhaps I could hunt one down for you, so send an email of interest.

Have you seen boxes like these before? 
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Day Designer Planner Review

day designer

Today I'm going to talk about the Day Designer which is a revolutionary planner for creative entrepreneurs.  Since moving to Germany, I have taken on so many projects, hobbies, and deadlines that things were getting a little crazy. 

 I'd like to mention that I carry my iPhone everywhere and this is was my main source of inputting things I needed to remember throughout the day.  I felt like I had so many little tasks on my to do list that I'd forget them the second I didn't write them down.  Now this method worked alright for me in terms of helping me remember things, but that's really where it ended.  I also had these goals whether weekly, or monthly, or yearly that I felt I needed to be writing down and physically crossing off.  A phone couldn't really help me with that. 

I started looking into planners and I had stumbled across the Day Designer.  The look of it alone with its black and white stripes with gold details, caught my attention.  It's like the creator Whitney English was peeking into my head.  What a great design.  Though the past couple of years I'd strayed from using a paper planner I felt that I needed to really get organized again.

Below you can see the layout of the Day Designer.  It has a schedule, to do lists, and various other little spots to record things you need to remember or goals you need to pursue.  There is also an inspirational quote for each day.

With all of the traveling that I do, education, blogging, freelance writing, work, and personal goals, I needed a planner that was just as detailed as my life. 

the day designer

My Thoughts on the Day Desinger:
The Design:
The look of the Day Designer alone will make you want to buy one.  It's like a personalized book of your life.  The design is wonderful.  Not only does it come in black/white and gold/white, but Whitney just released more than a handful of new designs that I already can't wait to get my hands on next August.

The Planner:
As far as planners go, this one is extremely detailed.  It is made for the creative entrepreneur and people who are very busy and have a lot going on.  If you only need a bare bones planner then I'd say don't bother with this one.  But if you're like myself, you want to keep all of your appts., projects, and to do lists all in one place and a simple planner ain't cuttin it.  What is also great is you can get a planner than starts in either January, May, or August.

The Price:
I'm just going to say it, for a planner, this one is expensive. The planner alone is $59.  I've never spent that much on a planner and my husband thought I was crazy.  But honestly, if it's something that you will use and rely on daily, it's worth spending money on.  Also, you are essentially buying a hardcover book with pages for 365 days a year plus extras, so it can't be cheap to make.  The extras definitely make it worth it.

The Extras:
Whitney doesn't just show up.  She's shows up with presents.  The Day Designer is chock full of extras like "Define your Core" worksheets which are designed to help creatives either figure out what thier goals are or fulfull those goals.  There are also Monthly Challeges that Whitney creates to keep you working towards those goals.  And you can attend webinars and join the FB groups. It's like you are getting a planner with technical support.  What a great idea.

So overall, I love the Day Designer and it already has a cult following, especially with bloggers.  I've only been using it for a month so I can't wait to see how it's helped after a year.  Also, there is something called the Year Designer which I'm curious about.  So a big thumbs up from me and if you are interested in buying one you can visit the Day Designer Etsy Shop. They sell out very fast so sign up for one of her social media accounts to find out when more are being released.

day designer review

If you have a Day Designer, what do you think about it? Or if you have a comparable designer, let me know what it is in the comments!

*This is my honest review of the Day Desinger.  It is not a sponsored post, I just felt the need to share :)
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Updated Removable Wallpaper Looks from Chasing Paper

Check out my lastest article for Furniture Fashion that gives you all the details on how to find great removable wallpaper for your home.  I'm kind of obsessed with this stuff and can imagine doing and redoing my home office in several amazing patterns.  To see the full article and more images check out the link below:

removable wallpaper by chasing paper

Have you ever tried removable wallpaper?

*Comments for this post are disabled so that you can comment on the original article.  Thanks!

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Savvy Southern Style
The Brambleberry Cottage

Milan, Italy

The last trip I took my friend Destiny to before she left for the states was Milan.  A simple day trip to the fashion capital of Italy.  Milan is a large city.  The fifth largest in the EU and it is nothing like the coast of southern Italy which I had grown to like.  Milan is actually nothing like I had pictured it.

As with most of my day trips in a foreign city, the goal isn't to unveil some unseen side of the city, but to see as much of the tourist sites as possible since I only have a limited amount of time.  We arrived early in the morning and got a breakfast of a croissant and coffee at a little cafe.  Then we headed to the Castello Sforzesco.  The castle was built in the 15th century and features a drawbridge and moat (the most important components of a castle, right?).  There is a museum you can access in the castle, however, I just spent a little time walking around the outside of the castle.

Next, we headed to the Santa Maria delle Grazie church.  Just like Barcelona is all about Gaudi, Milan is all about da Vinci.  This church was so important for me to see because it housed the location of the original painting by Leonardo da Vinco, "The Last Supper."  It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The image is important because it is one of the most widely recognized paintings in the world.  It was painted around 1490 and it is a miracle that it has survived.
The painting went through many changes in ownership and was not protected as artwork would be protected today.  The mural covers and entire wall and I have to admit that I was very moved by this image.  Seeing such an old image that I've read about in books and seen on tv was a amazing!

At the Last Supper, this is where Jesus would reveal to his apostles that one of them would betray him.  The image of the Last Supper is the apostles' reaction to this shocking inforamtion Jesus had given to them.  Even knowing this information, Jesus continues to wash the feet of the apostles the day before his inevitable crucifixion.  On the other side of the room you can also see a large fresco of the Crucifixion by Gaudenzio Ferrari in 1513.

I'd recommend getting tickets online to see the paintings.  When we arrived they told us we needed reservations, but we arrived early enough at the church that we made them there and them returned later to see the paintings.  You get to see them for about 15 minutes before the next group is ushered in.  Unfortunately I was not able to take any photos.  They are very strict about this policy.

If you walk outside of the church you can see a shop nearby called Cartoleria. I recommend stopping in and having a look while speaking to the owner.  He is an older gentleman with such a great personality.  This shop, he proudly told us, is very famous.  And then he went on to tell us about all the books his one of a kind shop is featured in and that Mel Gibson was there last week. 

The man is a book binder and makes the loveliest bound books and stationary and his family has had this business for over 150 years.  The best part about this shop are the prices.  I couldn't beleive how cheap these handcrafted paper goods were.  I bought some notebooks with maps on them and also one with da Vinci's Vetruvian Man, which is one of my favorite images.

Later we headed downtown for some lunch.  I know Italy is famous for their pasta so I had some pasta with clams.  In Milan, I also had the most deliscious pistacio connoli.  I know I'd said in Naples that I wasn't really that impressed with their cannoli but this cannoli had redeemed itself.

During our trip to Milan, we also did some light shopping.  I say light mostly because the high end stores in Milan are made for the wealthy and perhaps if I had a couple thousand dollars to blow at the Prada flagship store in the Galleria, I would have enjoyed Milan a little more.  Another reason we had to do a bit of shopping is because you cannot enter the Duomo without covering most of your legs and shoulders.

The Duomo in Milan is a Gothic cathedral with building beginning in 1386.  It took 6 centuries to finish and its pretty massive.  You can go to the top of the Duomo for cities views, which I suggest.  There is a rather long line for tickets which cost about 7 euro to walk the stairs or 12 euros to take a lift.  Once you are on top you can see almost all of Milan.  It's worth the climb to the top.

Later in the day we headed back to Germany.  I pretty much did everything I set out to do in Milan.  Though a large city, the sites I mentioned above are walkable.  
milan castle

Castello Sforzesco
Above, Castello Sforzesco
santa maria delle grazie
the last supper

cartoleria milan
italian foodcroissant and coffee
inside of duomo
top of duomo

top of duomo milan
milan, top of duomo
milan duomo

galleria milan
milan galleria

As I'd mentioned before, Milan is not like I had imagined. I was actually pretty underwhelmed with Milan and I probably wouldn't return. There are so many more beautiful places in Italy that I would rather go.  I think, like I said earlier that since this city is based around fashion, that having a shopping spree here for the average person is just not feasable, but otherwise everything else isn't super expensive.  I am however, very happy that I got to see and experience "The Last Supper."  If anything go for that.

If you'd like to read more about my adventures in Italy, you can follow the links below:
Venice, Italy | Bari, Italy | Naples, Italy | The Island of Capri | Anacapri from the Clouds | Pompeii, Italy | Dali Exhibit in Sorrento, Italy | Dinner in Downtown Naples

Ever been to Milan?  What are your thoughts on this city? I'd love to know in the comments.

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Plucky's Second Thought

A Vintage Train to Soller (Mallorca Part 2)


I talked about part 1 of my trip to Mallorca, here and all of the amazing things Palma has to offer.  It's such a vibrant, fun, and youthful place to be.  It was perfect for a girl's trip.  But by day 5 you start to run out of money and all that partying starts to catch up with you.  So on the last day of our trip we wanted to do something relaxing and get out of the city. 

Our host on Airbnb told about about the nearby town of Soller which is on the north-west coast of Mallorca and how you can get there from a vintage train.  We were sold on that idea and I was excited to get to see some of Mallorca's countryside. 

We headed to the train station which was near the Placa de Espana.  You don't actually go down to the main train station but you head to a smaller one right next door.  Trains leave from Palma about every hour.  You can buy a single or return.  We bought a single ticket for about 12 euro and then took the bus back to Palma later on.  The train ride to Soller was about an hour long and you don't really need to see the same thing on the way back.  The  bus back is only about 20 minutes and about 2.30 euro.

The train ride there is relaxing and enjoyable.  The weather in Mallorca is great and the open air train ride was the perfect thing for our last day.  We spent the ride looking out at the orange groves and scenery, getting some fresh air while checking out the caboose (is it still called that?), and snapping pictures of everything!

By the time we got to Soller, we were ready explore.  Soller actually isn't that big we found out.  Once you get there, there is a center with a bunch of restaurants, a few shops and the stunning cathedral. After checking out the inside of the cathedral which is mostly Baroque, we did a little bit of shopping.  They have some beautiful jewelry that I purchased, stuff like orange marmalades, and even a mix to make that delicious allioli sauce that I tried in Palma.  We had lunch at one of the restaurants and I ordered something called an Orange Soller which is basically an icecream float in orange juice.  Soller is known for their oranges. You can have a seat and watch the trams that go right through the center.

I didn't know this at the time but if you take one of those trams that go through the center, it takes you to a Picasso museum.  Might be worth checking out.  Also, Soller has some great beaches, but we didn't get out that way during this trip.

We spent a few hours in Soller and then headed back to Palma.  It was a wonderful day trip and I'd suggest going there if you have more than a few days in Palma like we did.

train to soller
soller trainorange soller
train through soller
vintage train soller
vintage train soller
soller train ridevintage train to Soller, Mallorca
soller, mallorca
soller, mallorca
soller, mallorca
soller cathedralsoller, mallorca
vintage train in sollertown of soller, mallorca
soller, mallorca
oranges in soller
soller train

Besides Soller, there are a lot of other recommended places to go outside of Palma, like Deia and Portixol.  Spain was in my top two places I had to see this year (the top place being Iceland and i'll get to that in a future post) and I'm going to try to go one more time next year, maybe to Alicante, any thoughts? This was actually my third trip to Spain this year and I think that in many ways, Mallorca was my favorite. If you have the chance to go, then go! 

Ever been on a vintage train, ever been to Mallorca?  Tell me all about it.

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