Monday, April 29, 2013

Flowers for An Anniversary

Today is our wedding anniversary and over the weekend Brit Boy gave me these beautiful flowers to start the celebration early. They remind me of the flowers that he sent to me on our wedding day! :)
Here's to true love!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Walking Around Avebury and Silbury Hill

Hello! :) I wanted to wish everyone a happy Friday! I'm still slugging it out with schoolwork, but the light at the end of the tunnel is slowly approaching. Since I can't write a decent post right now, I hope that you'll enjoy these few pictures that I took a few days ago when Brit Boy and I went for a day out and a nice walk. It was a glorious day and we were able to visit one of my favorite places in all of England...Avebury. We also walked past Silbury Hill which is quite nearby the Avebury stones. It was a long walk, but it was so exhilarating and reminded me of the long walks that I used to take back home.
Avebury sign

Silbury Hill

Some of the Avebury stones

I hope that you'll visit me again when I'm able to blog like I want to in about a month and then I'll have lots of photos to share along with a few stories. I definitely want to share more about's a fantastic place. I have so much to blog about when I return. Thank you for your patience and for visiting me!

Have a great weekend!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Why Studying Abroad Isn't as Scary as It Sounds

Today I'd like to share a guest post from Amanda Perkins about studying abroad. As some of you may know, I've shared posts about the opportunities for going abroad here on my blog before and Amanda's article is a wonderfully helpful addition. Enjoy!

Studying abroad is a great experience that looks amazing on any resume. Studying abroad is open to all students who meet their school's minimum GPA requirement and who are in good academic standing. Studying abroad consists of attending a college in another country for a semester, which last about four months to a whole year. While studying abroad is a great experience that can broaden your view of the world as well as heighten your college education, it can seem scary to some. Many students become anxious about how they are going to pay for their study abroad experience. Others are nervous to be so far away from home for a long period of time. However, the good news is that studying abroad isn't as scary as it sounds. There are many ways to turn your study abroad experience from a nightmare into a great time.

First, many students worry about how they are going to pay for their study abroad trip. Finances include application and program fees, travel costs, housing costs, and the costs of living. There are many ways to keep these costs down though. Many organizations offer scholarships that you can apply for and these scholarships will cover the cost of your travel expenses or costs of living. The government also offers financial aid and grants to help students participate in study abroad programs. If you do not want to apply for a scholarship to reduce travel costs you can always look into using frequent flyer miles or flying with an airline that has lower costs. Airlines that are cheap have many inconveniences such as no leg room or bad airport locations but the money you will save on traveling is well worth the trouble. If you do not want to spend a lot of money on housing you can look up a hostel, which is like a student hotel. They are known for having cheap rates and everything you need. Second, many students are nervous about being far away from home. For those who are very close to their friends and family you can still keep in daily contact with them through social media platforms such as Skype, Facebook, and Twitter, which are all free as compared to international phone calls. Skype and Facebook even have video phone call options so you can see your loved ones as if you were sitting right next to them. It may also comfort you to buy them gifts and souvenirs. This way you can show them that you were thinking of them while you were away. Finally, always remember that studying abroad is not forever and you will be home before you know it. By looking forward to seeing your friends and family when you return home you will be able to enjoy the rest of your trip.

Studying abroad is definitely not as scary as it sounds. The first step is to overcome your fears and know that there are always ways around them. By following these simple tips you will be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy your time away from home. Being less anxious will also allow you to focus more on your schoolwork.

Amanda Perkins writes and edits the Study Abroad website She enjoys traveling, learning, and writing. She recently published a piece on the Top 5 Nursing Study Abroad Programs.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Daffodils on a Monday

I hope that everyone had a great weekend :)  Mine was good!
I just wanted to check in and say hello. I'm still in the middle of finishing off some school work so I can't write a longer post. Thank you so much for sticking with me. I will be joyously returning to more frequent posting at the end of May! I'm so excited!
I thought that I would share a bit of our garden with you today. These are some of the lovely daffodils from our garden that I rescued. The rain had battered them quite a bit and they were drooping over, so I we brought them inside and they perked up. It still doesn't feel very much like spring here, but these beauties help me to remember that spring is's just sleeping a little longer :)
I was playing around with Photoshop and this is what happened ;-)
Until next time...

Thursday, April 11, 2013

I Love Being Creative

Today I want to share a post written by my dear friend Colette. She is a wonderful writer and an all-around creative person that I admire so much! Whenever I am struggling with my own self-expression, I always look to her as an example, because she embodies the true imaginative spirit. This post is a glimpse into the mind of this beautifully creative soul that I'm proud to call my friend. Without further ado here she is...  :-)


I was asked to be a guest on Dori’s award-winning blog and of course I’m honored. I didn’t know what to talk about so she said that I can talk about anything. I remember a writing instructor once saying to write about what you know, so I will share a little about myself.

If my memory serves me correctly, Dori and I go way back to the year of 2003 at the same workplace in Atlanta, Georgia. We worked in different divisions of a sales and marketing team, yet we became the best lunch buddies. Out of that came our weekly writing workshop. During that time, we came up with so many ideas, including sharing the stage to perform our respective one woman shows.

One day at lunch, Dori shared with me that she was to moving to Europe. I was in shock and didn’t want her to leave, but I couldn’t be selfish. As much as I didn’t want her to go, I knew she had to follow her heart. I told her I would miss her and our writing time together. We made a promise that we would keep in contact often and to this day we have kept that promise.

In our busy lives, we manage to email each other mostly every week and sometimes daily. We even got a chance to talk on Skype once and chatted for at least three hours.

Throughout the years, Dori and her husband have visited the States and we always have fun when she comes home. I've promised her that I will visit her and her husband in Europe and my promise still stands.

Now I will share with you what Dori hears me talk about all of the time...

I didn’t tell you my name! :)  I am Colette Paul. Yes, I have a French name and I still haven’t traveled to France, but I am coming and you will feel my energy when I am there! My goal is to travel the world, spread love and write about the beautiful people that I encounter. We can use more love, smiles, respect and positive thoughts for each other, right?

A puzzling thing about me is that I suppressed my talents for so many years that I forgot about them. I focused on raising my son before my divorce. I didn’t even think about God’s path for my life.  I was busy being a wife and mom of a young male child and I was busy trying to climb the corporate ladder. Many times I applied for the same outside sales position at work, but I never got the position. I prayed and asked God if the job was for me and to open doors for me to get it, yet it never happened.

I realized that I locked my talents away and I decided to brush them off and sharpen my craft as a poet and a writer. Shortly, after Dori crossed my path. She shared with me she was a writer and I was impressed that she was such an incredible storyteller. 

Shortly after, we saw a writing contest in a local paper called Creative Loafing and we submitted our work. I wrote "The Front Porch", a short story which came to life and ten years later it has evolved into Zoe’s Summer Blues , a middle grades book manuscript. I’m getting ready to submit it for publication. Dori has been my cheerleader the entire time. 

I’m developing as an artist. I’ve started singing again and I’m working on a one-woman show. I’ve been in my first short film called, The Hem Line. The director asked me to write a poem for it also.

Recently, I’ve joined a business called It Works Global. It has an ultimate applicator wrap that tightens, tones and firms in 45 minutes, along with other amazing natural supplements, and skin care products.  I feel this vehicle will help me become free with my time and financially independent so that I can complete my purpose with my God-given talents.

Soulful House Music and African Dance are my favorite forms of music and dance.  I’m healing from knee issues so I have to sit until I heal, yet it doesn’t stop me from dancing while I sit in my chair working on a story.

Riding my bicycle for long distances is my favorite form of exercise. I haven’t been on my bike since 2010. My mother broke her hip in 2011. It was a downhill battle after that. She never fully recovered. She passed away March 1, 2012. I thought that she would go to rehab to get stronger and come home. She never made it out of the rehabilitation and long care center.

I’ve never felt so unsure, frightened, and lost. There were times the only thing I could say as a prayer was, 'God help me'! Out of all of the experiences of hardship I’ve come upon, I knew I couldn’t make it through this one.

I’m still numb that my mother isn’t here. I still have nightmares of her being ill in her death bed.

She suffered so long and her final months were horrific. The good thing is that during those dark days, I met my current boyfriend and he kept me laughing to cope through the terrifying times when I walked into my mother’s room, not knowing what she would look like. She’d physically changed from a robust, beautiful woman to a white- haired skeleton with fragile skin. I think the ancestors and Mom’s prayers brought my boyfriend and I together to help me through her transitioning.

During my mom’s final months I was in the process of purchasing a property, processing a break-up of five years, helping my son get through his expensive high school senior year and prepare for college.  I don’t know how I made it.

I accepted that God called me to write, and eventually, I needed time alone to do so, but I didn’t know I would feel so bad going through the process to get to the other side. It was just too much for anyone to go through all at once.

My son is now in college.  I am now an empty- nester. Other than being on the same job of sixteen years, (the only consistency in my life.), my life has completely changed. I know now more than ever that I have a calling on my life as an artist. It’s time to move towards it.

Visit Colette at her blog: Coco Thoughts

You can also find her at:

Facebook: Colette Paul
Twitter: cocopoet1
YouTube, Tumblr, Instagram, Skype: cocopoet1