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Tuesday randoms

I love Tuesdays that pretend to be Mondays but are really Tuesdays. 🙂 Don’t you?

I had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. There was boating, beer, Jillian Michaels (!?), stadiums at Doak(?!?), froyo and the movies. Even though I now have a highly painful attractive sunburn to deal with, it was still worth it.

When I was in Israel, I climbed Masada.

We could have taken a cable car like normal people, but the youngin’s in the group decided to climb. It was actually really fun, and the view of The Dead Sea was beautiful. I also used it as an excuse to eat extra dessert, obviously.

Our group also got interviewed for a US television show while in Bethlehem, in the Palestinian Authority. You may have heard of it, it’s called 60 Minutes.

Most. Random. Thing. Ever!

We most likely won’t make it onto the special, but it was still neat nonetheless. They were doing a piece on Arab Christians in the Palestinian Authority and the persecution that they deal with. It’s an important issue, certainly, and something that Christians around the world should be aware of.

I’m kind of obsessed with this, this, and this. Yes, some of those have to do with weddings and engagements. Yes, I am still very much single, but they’re pretty, and I like parties. Especially ones with cake. Plus, a lot of my friends are getting engaged and married (CONGRATULATIONS, JOVI!!) so I blame all of them, too. 😉

I’m kind of not obsessed with this:

She’s kind of scary. 😦

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I finally have time to sit down and recap my trip! You didn’t think I forgot, did you?

(Yes, I ate that. Well, not that EXACT fish, but his..brother, Herman. Yes, I also named the fish I ate. Herman was delicious.)

Anyways, now that I actually have time to talk about the trip, I’m finding it almost impossible to explain it. Even from day 1, our group kept talking about how difficult it was going to be to explain the trip to our friends and family when we returned to the US. Not only was it beautiful, and meaningful, but the experience touched all of us in a way that is really hard to articulate. It was deep, basically.

I saw The Mediterranean for the first time.

I saw the borders of Lebanon, Syria and Jordan.

I saw places were Jesus literally walked, 2000 years ago, with his disciples. I saw Nazareth, Capernum, and Bethlehem.

It’s such an incredible thing, as a believer, to read the Bible and have a clear picture in your head of the places and geography that’s referenced. It’s humbling in a way I can hardly describe.

We saw ancient Roman ruins.

And I rode a camel!

I named him Steve.

I’m still finding it hard to believe that I was on the other side of the world a week go, learning about Jesus and my Jewish heritage. It was an amazing, eye-opening experience, and I’m so blessed to have been able to experience it. I’ll probably try to do a post on some of my favorite places at some point, but it would be far too much to discuss now!

So I’ll end with this: If you are a believer, and have any opportunity to go to Israel in your life, please do it. Like really. It will change the way you think and feel about your faith forever. I’m already counting down the time until I can (hopefully) go again. You really won’t regret it, and your life will never be the same.

Speechless.

Weird, right? A loss for words doesn’t happen to me often.

After Israeli security, passport control, a 12 hour flight with screaming babies, US Customs, a 4 hour lay-over in Philly, a 3 hour flight to West Palm, and a 3 hour drive… I’m back from Israel.

I haven’t slept in a bed in 48 hours (?) and I’m ready to crash- hard.

I don’t even know where to begin to explain how amazing my trip to Israel was. It was truly unbelievable, and I’m so blessed to have gotten that opportunity.

There will be more Israel-related posts to follow, but tonight I leave you with a small teaser.

Shalom. Sweet dreams!

Ta ta for now!

So tomorrow is finally the day! I’m heading off to Israel tomorrow for a wonderful Holy Land Tour. I’m so excited about this amazing adventure!

I’m not so excited for the 12 hour flight. Such a long time to be stuck in a flying tube full of germs people.

Nothing like an annoying airplane passenger to ruin your flight experience! Thank God for Tylenol PM.

While I’ve been home being lazy productive, my mom has gotten me hooked on a new television show: Criminal Minds. I realize I’m about six years late to the party (the show began in 2005), but it’s amazing, creepy and interesting, and has some nice nerdy eye-candy.

That, my friends, is Matthew Gray Gubler. It’s sad, but I find his freakishly high-intelligence adorable. So I’m going to pretend he’s exactly like that in real life, obvs.

Welp, going to get back to watching more Criminal Minds and packing. (Eh, that can wait until tomorrow morning. 😉 )

TTFN!

No more cars.

Well, at least no more long drives in the near future. I’ve driven almost 30 hours in extended-trips during the past week (including a late night whirlwind trip to Tallahassee last night), and I am over it. With my 3 hour drive and 12 + hour flight on Thursday right around the corner, I’m going to make it a point to stay out of the car as much as possible until then!

Speaking of my 12 hour flight, I am SO excited to go to Israel! A little nervous for International traveling, since this will be my first real time out of the country. I’ve got some pretty good packing lists together, but any last-minute recommendations would be appreciated. 🙂

In other news, this past weekend I randomly found a beer I had been searching for since last October.

I love all things pumpkin, but had yet to find a pumpkin beer that I enjoyed. I heard good things about Pumpking, and when I saw it in the grocery store the other day, I knew I had to grab a pint to try!

The verdict?

Bleh. It smelled delicious, and I definitely could taste the cinnamon and pumpkin flavors in the beer, but I just really couldn’t get into it. I couldn’t even finish the little glass! I guess Pumpkin Beer won’t ever be my thing. But if it’s yours, you should definitely try this one!

I’d rather have something a little different:

🙂 OJ and Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka. So flippin good!- And the way my madre and I began our Mother’s Day celebrations. It’s okay to be jealous.

Rules for Life

..courtesy of my Mother. 🙂

1. Always wear clean underwear. Seriously, she always told me that! (Apparently her grandmother used to tell her that, too.) I think it has something to do with getting in a car accident and the medics taking off all of your clothes in public. Regardless, it’s good advice.

2. “Sometimes you just have to eat the frog.” I had no idea what this meant at first either, but it boils down to doing the worst thing first. ( Like when you have to break bad news or do something you don’t want to.)

3. “You’ll never get it if you never ask.” Pretty self-explanatory. But so true!

4. “Tan fat is better than pale fat.” It really, really is.

5. “Everything is better with butter. Or bacon.” That’s for damn sure.

She has taught me so much, but these are just some of my favorite funnies. 🙂 She’s my best friend.

Happy Mothers’ Day, Momcicle. Love you. 🙂

New Orleans

So NOLA was a good time. It was an amazing last hoorah with some very lovely ladies.

Those hurricanes were yummy. And almost worth the $8-$10 they cost. :-/

And to think!- That was me before I drank it. Oy.

I promise we did more than drink though! We went to the zoo, took a historical ghost tour, and saw some amazing cemeteries. And we ate all the New Orleans classics like red beans & rice, jambalaya, gumbo, muffaleta, and po’ boys. Oh and the beignets. SO GOOD. Yes, I probably gained 15 pounds on this trip. I don’t want to talk about it.

Pretty pictures: (I’ve got tons, but I’ll just show you some of my favs.)

Our Hotel!

(That was a pirate bar! The oldest in New Orleans. It quickly became our favorite little spot.)

See the beads? They were literally everywhere.

He’s smiling. I love this picture! And elephants. They may be tied with piggies as my favorite!

I actually felt really bad for that little guy. All those horses are worked so hard, running through traffic and exhaust. 😦 Not a fan.

All and all, it was a great trip. I’m glad we got to experience NOLA during a semi-“quiet” time, so we could really get to know the city. It is a really interesting town, but all the things you hear about it being dirty, wild, and full-of-sin?- Totally true. We met some really wonderful people though, and I’d definitely go back!

But if I look at another piece of fried seafood anytime soon I might lose my mind. Meh.