What I wore: living out of a suitcase outfits

Today’s post is all about looking stylish while living out of a suitcase for more than just a weekend away. Here are the outfits I put together while traveling on my Back in Ireland trip. Not in order of how I wore things.

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Birthday Outfit:  Probably my favorite outfit and my favorite night. You can’t go wrong with a little black dress. Cause it was my birthday night out I went big. My oh, so lovely birthday dress I wear every year-Topshop like more than 50% off I got it the first time in there for 45 euros. DEAL! So I wear it often. The necklace was new from TopShop it is rose gold and thought it went well with being a chocker and long with the nice v cuts in the dress. My hair I did in braids and un did them this is what happen. My makeup was alright not my best work, but lately, it’s been suffering. Tan on was COCO brown. I felt like it was my birthday in this outfit!
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This shirt makes a popular appearance on my road trips, it’s easy going, has a message and kept me warm during my hikes. I am really loving T-shirts with a message, it allows my outfit do the talking. The Jeans are black Jamie jeans from Topshop, the jacket is Northface and my shoes are Toms. Which by the end of the trip were destroyed.

Similarity on my hike in Edinburgh I wore basically the same thing just my old pair of Jamie ripped jeans, my fish tights, and a scarf I got at Primark (Penny’s) in Edinburgh. Here are the details…

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Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetMy graduation dress: I got this violet pink dress from Francesca’s, it’s a bit different from what I usually wear but there were cutouts that were covered with lace. The shoes were Steve Madden. I thought I was the coolest girl in high school with my Steve madden boots. I still think so 😉

 

 

 

 

 

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On rainy days. I was wearing my waterproof booties that had good grip at the bottom for the stone streets. When it rains those streets are the death of you. I was wearing my black Jamie jeans with my river island belt. That my sister likes to call my “cow girl belt”. I had on my nice maroon bomber and a crop top sweater I got from Target. Target is really upping their game, I’m finding some trendy pieces there.

 

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Keeping it causal in my disco pants- I had these disco pants for the longest time. Toms sneakers, a crop top I got at Nordstrom’s in the Topshop sections. With a knit jumper that kept me cool and warm. Sunglasses from The Loft and necklace from Topshop–it’s my golden feather necklace. I like keeping it casual but cute.

 

 

 

 

 

Those were few of the outfits I wore. I had more then these, but these are the ones I photographed. Can you tell what my favourite things are?  What’s your favourite outfit? Do you have a birthday dress?

 

Like the post if you enjoy this kind of thing, it’ll let me know what I can keep doing and what doesn’t work. xx

City Girl Guide: What’s new in Cork City

If you like a larger City Girl Guide of Cork comment below. OR an even Larger City Girl Guide to Ireland–that is something I love to try but would take a lot of time–comment below letting me know what you would like to see.

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I always say a lot can happen in a day. I also said how Cork needed a doughnut shop well in my 5 months away from Cork not only did a lot happen they got a doughnut shop–TWO! You could prob hear my frustration. There was not much new in Cork, my favorite places were still there and it still rained a lot. It’s Ireland. But no worries I saw that the door changed, I saw the new sign and I noticed the new menu in Silly Goose. Because details and little things are what I pay attention to.

First, lets talk about the doughnuts. There are two: Huckleberry’s Doughnuts & Oh My Donut. I kept hearing about them because I kept telling people about my frustration “the IMG_8720minute I leave they get doughnut shops”. And I have gotten not so happy reviews on them–there over price, the doughnuts are all the same, and one places get their doughnuts made by one of the grocery stores. It’s like walking into the English Market and buying over price fruit they got from Tescos (true). So, I wasn’t too keen on wanting to spend 4 euros for a doughnut that wasn’t even made in the shop. But, after having a doughnut-themed cake in Silly Goose –the ice cream really helped, and need food the next morning; me and my bet friend bit our stubbornness (mine lets be honest) and went into Oh My Donut.  I’m a classy girl who just wants a plain chocolate doughnut–which they didn’t have so I went with a plain doughnut to my surprise had jelly in it–I wasn’t pleased.IMG_8569

Local doughnuts are a trend, even here, there are some popping up–and I wouldn’t call myself a doughnut girl–I usually get doughnuts when I’m starving for food. So, I couldn’t be a doughnut review person–what I will say if it’s going to be a hype thing it better be worth it.

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The next new thing are the shops . The new building around the English market and Patrick’s Street, is getting close-to being finished  No one really knows what’s going to be in there for businesses or shops. Can definitely say Forever 21 is not coming to Cork? Which to be fair, I’m over the cheap, not even well-made, bad ethics shop anyways. I’d stick with Penny’s. I am getting really into ethical fashion and buying lasting pieces. Another shop which is across the way from the new high-rise building (it’s probably 10 floors), is Sostrene Grene (the sisters Grene). Which is a little bit like Tigger but I say a little bit more for the mid-twenties and mothers. This place is like  IKEA without the furniture. Look at the pictures below to see more:

I love shops like these, they make me want to buy a loft and just go nuts!

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Building being built is on the left in reflection

Having all these new things pop up in Cork is always a good thing, so many abandon buildings and Cork is a great city that deserves it. These new building and business coming to Cork hopefully means a vibrant, things to do, variety, kids have places to go and things to do, and maybe outside of homes will look nicer (because if you ever walk around Cork, or really any city in Ireland you see outside of homes are no flower gardens–and that has a lot to do with housing and renting laws they have–I don’t know much but I’ve listened and experienced.)

Processed with VSCO with a5 presetThe one thing that worries me about all these new things is losing what I love about Cork which is how Irish and true Irish it really is. There’s a few tourist shops and pubs that are gear towards tourist but that’s it, I’m also worried about having it become Americanized, no TGIF or Hardrock cafe’s please. This also means its up and coming people will want to live there–meaning rent will go up, which I am experience in Minnesota to be a real pain in the bum of economics. And you know a lot of this is just how life works and how countries evolved. But, don’t forget your roots.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetOverall I was quite excited for all the new things Cork had, the new menu at Silly Goose, to the new art around, and the shops. I will say the big advertising and selling point for things is to make it “Instagram able” and me being 25 years old knowing how far we come, cringed yet gets excited towards that word.

I’m excited about the things Cork had and I wonder what they well have when I come back as long as Monday club is still there, the drinks are still good I’ll be happy and there is no TGIFs.

 

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A City Girl Guide: Wicklow National Park

I went on a road trip through Wicklow National Park.  And here is my guide to the Park.

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Coming from Dublin going towards Bray heading are way towards Glendalough. We were going to go the faster route to Glendalough, but of course, I got mixed up with directions and way to go. The thing about Ireland signage you really need to know what direction you are
heading and what the town’s you want to hit–like for this we could have taken both roads. It’s confusing but it all works out for the best.

Once you’re off the major road and heading in the direction of Glendalough keep going, the road will run right into it.

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Glendalough: ‘the valley of the two lakes’ it has a lot to offer from learning about the history and cultural to a nice walk through the woods or around lakes, and a waterfall. Find out more here: http://www.glendalough.ie/

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We kept driving through Wicklow National park Our point of destination was the Sally Gap then to the Guinness lake.

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Sally Gap: one of two east-to-west passes across the Wicklow Mountains. Basically, it’s a four-way stop sign, with incredible views of the Wicklow Park.

As we drove further down the mountains towards the lake, we pulled over to get different views not only of the lake but the area as well.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetLough Tay: also known as Guinness Lake for the owners are the Guinness family, it’s private property so only way to see it is above, which is the best way to see it.

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Next stop was the Powerscourt Gardens.

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Powerscourt Gardens is a large country estate which is noted for its house and landscaped gardens. The Powerscourt is pretty cool despite that it was winter and there were no flowers. The view and the amount of garden and history you got were worth wild. There is a tea room that is a must try (we didn’t but we were told we should have–next time).

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Then we headed towards Bray.

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Bray: having it be so close to Dublin it is a popular tourist destination and holiday home area. A lot like Kinsale but a lot bigger and diversity I think. We got there pretty late but made it just in time to do the walk seeing the little train between the towns go by and walked the beach and the town. We didn’t stop in anywhere since we wanted to get back before it was even later. But, when looking into Bray I found lots of pubs, cafes, and places to eat however we never went except to the McDs. For more on Bray click here for lovin.com has 45 things! 🙂

 

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Hidden Places of Cork

If you are someone who likes to find the hidden places you never really see, the places that are not always all over Instagram. Someone who needs a  place to just sit and be this post is for you. I am someone who just loves to wonder, I’m very adventures and I find myself in the most random places. I also am someone who just needs to take a moment and while living in Ireland for two years I found that really helped me.

hiddenplacesofcorkSo, if you are ever in Cork and want to see some unusual and off-beat places in your travels or if you live there and want to just know of a place this list is for you!  Most are in Cork city others are on in the county of Cork but I say exactly where they are.

IMG_3793Jumping the fence: I found this place when I was living in college buildings on my walk to the gym, the walking path near the Kingsley hotel. There is this fence that you can easily jump that takes you right by the river, and near a small little damn. There are other people around fishing. I usually liked going there in the evening to sit watch the water move and take some time to myself.

Processed with VSCO with t1 presetSecret places of Gtown: In Garretstown is a beach outside of Kinsale, through Ballinspittle and it is a pretty cool beach, one to walk. But there are a lot of hidden, or open places. There is this small patch of a “cliff” don’t really know what to call it but it’s way up high with open space all around it, and its right near the staircase, you just climb up to get there. There is also hidden staircase between the two beach. That takes you down to another beach which during high tide is not there, but if you climb on some rocks off the side of the staircase you are able to sit. there is also this little grass patch on a “peace” of land where I use to lay in the sun with Scruff after our walks. I found a lot of hidden places in Garretstown, some are harder to explain exactly where. So, if you ever make it down there, go exploring, especially during the low tide.

0488F29E-4358-4F2B-8F5D-533B8ED2D3FDCave: I found this at the second beach in Garretstown. It’s on one of the cliffs walking paths, you just got to keep going until you see this open “beach rock” area that is “none existence” during the high tide. But when you go down there, it’s so LARGE and your voice echoes. It’s a great place just to be and feels so small.

Processed with Rookie CamRandom apartment building: When living in the college housing I kept seeing this old building–people said it’s hunted  that nothing is up there. So one day I took a long walk to the place to go see. Never realize this part of Cork excited I found that it was an apartment building, that still needed some work, but had a great view of the city.

09A195E7-045F-4EB3-8769-4CADCC167482White Bridge: Now in Fitzgerald park you might see this white bridge, it’s through the skate park and the walking path takes you right into the city. But there is this spot where you, of course, hop the fence and get closer to the river. There garbage everywhere and signs of people probably hanging out there at night, and a lot of these spots are probably that but I go during the day. So no issue.

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A far drive
: This is outside of Bantry, in a small town called Glengarriff. There is this little woods park, that has boat tours taking you to the islands out on the water. When went it was off season so there were no boats, but it honestly felt abandoned little dock in the woods. I really liked this area because it reminded me of being a kid running around the woods. I felt like Peter Pan.

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Not So Hidden but great escape: Elizabeth Fort, on top of Cork away from the city sit the historical Elizabeth Fort. For more information about the fort check out there site. I like going there because its not only something to do, you get a great view of the city and sometimes you need to just sit back take in the view.

 

I found there are a lot of places in Cork that no one really knows of, or only locals know of. I found them while walking the streets, I could try to tell you them all but then it’ll get confusing especially if you haven’t been there before. I say if you are traveling, visiting a city, or going on a road trip stop and pull over to the side and adventure off. Spot the off beat path that only a few people have been willing to take and take it, it might lead you to the most amazing hidden places of the world.

 

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Girl on adventure: Edinburgh

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There is just something about this part of the world that I love. I’ve been to Edinburgh before but I wanted to go again to see a friend who is studying there and also see the city again. The last time I visited I had just finished my study abroad, wanting one last adventure before going home. I was so happy for life and everything seemed so
untouchable back then. Now, I am a woman who knows that life can be one scary rollercoaster and know how to handle herself, flying by herself to Edinburgh.

And as I got off the bus too early because it would have taken me to the city center, but google told me other wise, I figured it out and ended where I needed to be, on North Bridge Street where everything began to feel familiar. 

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Processed with VSCO with f2 preset Edinburgh is a very old city, older than America, and so it has a large history. I took the tours last time I was here, so this time I wanted to just walk around, hang with my friend, and experience the local areas.  I love how it’s such a big city but you don’t get the big city attitude. If you want to read about the places of Edinburgh I visited you can click here.
Processed with VSCO with hb2 presetThe Scots are not only hard to understand but they are so friendly and funny as hell. I was only here for two full days and then left on my 3rd day. When I got into the city I went to my Airbnb to drop off my suitcase,then I went around the corner to sit, charge my phone, and eat something because I was starving. Before the rain came I took a walk, remembering exactly how to go. I walked the whole royal mile then met my friend for lunch at this cute Indie taps place called Mother India’s Cafe. We then walked to the campus so she could show me her little places were we sat and talked until it got dark. The next day we took a sunny, muddy walk up Arthurs Seat.That was probably one of my favorite adventures I have been on, not only did we have great chats, but we laughed.Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

 

Edinburgh is one of my top cities I’ve been to, it’s easy going, friendly, and the buildings are wonderful. I have been to a lot of cities but my favorite places are the cities where I can just take my time, not feel rushed, and there is a hill to climb to take in good views of the city.

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A City Girl Guid: Edinburgh

A guild to Edinburgh of what to see and what to do.

There are two main streets Prince Street and Royal Mile, the main street connecting these two is South Bridge once you know these streets it’s pretty easy to figure out where you are going. And something to keep in mind streets going under streets, so if you go down you can always go up. Take a walk around Edinburgh you will find some historical places but here is a list of places to hit when there:  

Untitled1Pub Life: We went to a few pubs around Edinburgh. They all were a unique- there was even a pop-up bar right in a park near Prince Street we stopped in. We went to this pub called the Pilgrim, it was quite since it was a Monday night but when you buy a drink you get food-FREE. There was another pub, Revolution, that was known for their cocktails. When you’re in Edinburgh I suggest trying the pubs in Edinburgh, it is not only part of the culture but you get to experience local beers and/or drinks, you also get to sit down out of the rain have a chat. The pub atmosphere in Edinburgh is something you need to do when there, it’ll be grand!

 

Untitled4Royal Mile: The top tourist street in all of Edinburgh. It starts at the castle and ends at the Palace-why it’s called the Royal Mile. With its stone buildings and massive churches, the Royal Mile is the perfect start to Edinburgh. Been to the castle before I highly recommend going there first, early morning that way you avoid some crowds and still have the afternoon. I started my walk at the top and worked my way down, seeing all the same tourist shops and the little lanes and courtyards. Down one there was a writers museum that I wasn’t able to go into cause it opens at 12:30. Further down there is this new area that is getting rebuilt for shopping and more. as of now its just a little market “The food and flea Market” with few stands. The Royal Mile is something to walk, it won’t take you all day.

 

Untitled3The Royal Mile Market: You will find when walking the mile there are a lot of tourist shops, but on the corner of one of the North Bridge street and the mile there is this church, Tron ‘Kirk, and inside is the Royal Mile Market. Inside you will find stands of a variety of local artist, crafts, and fashion traders. Unlike the tourist shops, these are “hard to find” items. It was almost like going into your grandma’s attic and finding really cool items. Take a wander in and notice the stain glass windows.

 

Untitled5University Camps: The reason I was there was because of my friend. We got to sit in some of the local pubs on campus one called the Library. It was like being in Harry Potter. I suggest a walk around the campus see the different buildings and neighborhoods street. You can find a lot hipster places around campuses. They will mostly be filled with college students, but if you’re a 20-something like me you will feel right at home.

 

UntitledCalton Hill: Out in New Town of Edinburgh at the end of Prince street (main shopping area of Edinburgh it has Primark to Topshop to department stores). Calton hill is the government area of the city, it’s a park with these landmarks that didn’t finish with some great views of the city and into Leith. A lot of people like to climb the monument in the middle but I couldn’t get up there so I took a walk around. It’s something to see especially if you have seen pictures of Edinburgh these monuments would be in some main photos. But one place that has a better view is Arthur’s seat.

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Arthur’s seat: In Holyrood Park, near the Palace sits Arthur’s seat on an ancient volcano. An easy walk with a trail it can get a bit muddy, be careful not to slip.  It took about an hour to get up, with a few stops to catch our breath. It’s not as hard as my hike in Ireland but it is a hill, so expect it will be physical. I suggest going in the morning especially if you wake up to the sun, to not only get your workout in for the day but they’ll be fewer people. The top is what’s worth the walk really. It felt like could see the whole of Scotland. I love when a city has a hill to climb or something way up high just so you could get a better view of the place, and feel this escape like the world was ours. Take the walk up it was the highlight of my adventure!

Scotland is a GREAT place to visit, I’ve only seen Edinburgh, but I think it’s one of the top cities in the world worth seeing, more than once cause the first time wasn’t enough and either was the second time. There is something about these areas of the world that I just love, it has everything from the seaside, to farm land, to mountains to city life. I talk more about my trip here. I suggest when going go outside of Edinburgh too. I was going to take the train to Leith or to North Berwick–public transportation is pretty easy and the train station is right in the middle of the city along Prince Street. I’d like to go back, go further into the city and take a car to go to the country side. What’s your next adventure to?

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My Story: I left my heart in the place I am not from.

 

Travel wasn’t something new to me but living abroad, doing it all on my own was new. I had no connection to Ireland. I choose it because it was the only place close enough to travel to where they spoke English. But, once there I was able to find myself.

905733_10153569957578463_1303521142866637654_oTwo years ago I took the biggest risk of my life and moved myself to Ireland. I’d been there before studying abroad, seeing all the top tourist spots which included the Cliffs of Moher, Guinness factory, and the Ring of Kerry. Scared shitless with no clue what I was going to experience I took a chance on the place I did not know.

I wanted not to just live in Ireland but experience Ireland fully. And I did. The two years I lived there I got more out of it than I would have gotten out of living back home for the rest of my life. I lived in Cork, the second largest city in Ireland and what a lot of people from Cork would call the real capital of Ireland. Cork is a small city with a festival happening, what seemed to be, every weekend. I especially enjoyed Jazz Festival at the end of October. Each street is unique with its own look  and you really get a neighborhood feeling to each area of Cork. 

13244237_10154011599858463_610501070930410632_oI’ve taken many road trips by car or by bus around Ireland. One day when I was living outside Kinsale I decided to take a trip up to Galway. It was going to take me three buses and a lot of waiting around but I would be there by dinner time. Sitting in the bus station waiting for my bus I felt at home, I was doing something I knew what to do. I watched as a variety of people, locals and tourists, came on and off the buses. There were several homeless people hanging out at the bus; I’d seen them before. Sitting there I realized that this city had character just like any metropolitan city. You wouldn’t expect this when you think of Ireland. My first expectation for Ireland back in 2013 was from the movie PS I Love You; I expected a lot of green, and no snakes. But as I traveled around, took my courses, and spent time in Ireland I realized there was so much more to this place than the view.

But the view wasn’t bad either. If you are ever in Ireland you would know what I am talking about; the rolling green hills, seeing such a distance with clouds hanging above. It wasn’t in the middle of now where it was in the middle of somewhere. And even in the middle of a city you would notice it too. Climbing to the top of Patrick hill you not only see the city but in the distance the horizen with a view of pink sky as the sun set.

13458707_10154096826648463_3534706272630644938_o…Finding myself…

One night, after an evening out with friends, all dressed up, our make-up still in tack, our hair ruined by the rain, our six inch heels now in our hands, we were bare foot heading down the street.  Never had I put on heels or thought I would get this dressed up but here I was enjoying every minute of it.  There was something inside of me growing. I was becoming someone different, someone I was always supposed to become. As we sat on the curb waiting for the taxi to come I realized this was what it meant to feel like one’s self.

I began to find myself, as I walked around Cork, and sitting where the sea meets the shore. On a boat ride to an island with no cell service, making friends with dogs, walking dirt roads. Laughing with strangers who weren’t even strangers.  I had been a girl who was never known by her name, yet in the local Centra and in the pubs they knew my name. I now had my places to go, the city was my castle.

13522698_10154117420373463_5671095346358497523_oI was finally living for the first time in my life. You could find me in a garden on a swing set with my feet flying in the air. Going for spins around the parish. Running for village queen. On a bus driving across the country with One Republic playing in my ear while I watched sheep graze in the fields. None of it was getting old. I was falling for those eyes that looked at me. Finding self love. In a pub making out or out for the bants. Making memories and chasing sunsets with long time friends. Sitting on my own in a park. Climbing the highest point.  If I never came we would have never met, but my life without them seemed impossible now. I found myself in every inch of Ireland.

But…. I also left my heart back in Ireland. Leaving behind all those memories and people, the places, everything I had seen. It was like my whole self was taken away from me when I left them behind.  I lost myself in the place I was found.

And now after 5 months later I am going back.
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