Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Month Long Dream Journal

Sunday morning, 3/3/13

Well, we've turned the calendar another page and it's not longer February. I was supposed to write and explain this post a long time ago but the opportunity passed me by. Luckily, with a blog, you can always pick back up where you left off. I didn't exactly write down all of the dreams I could remember from the past month down on paper but rather I kept a mental journal instead. With all of the things I have on my mind on a daily and weekly basis it was hard to do. It helped keep me sharp, though. I would like to say that my dreams through the past few weeks have started to calm down but they have not. Boy, have they not. In fact, these first couple days of March has shown me that I should continue this project at least until the end of the month.

Instead of going into extreme detail about some of my top dreams from the past month here--those of you who do know me well know that this is not hard for me to do, haha--I will just write a couple sentences describing them.

First, I'd like to say that I dream in vivid color on a regular basis. I have done so for as long as I can remember. Also, since the young age of 16, I have had dreams that involve Spanish in one way, shape or form. I'm 24 now. 8 years going strong now!

Anyway, onto the dreams:

~In the beginning of the month, I had a dream that I went to Spain for a weekend. I knew when I was leaving (from the Dayton Int'l Airport too, btw) but I didn't have much time to get to my gate. So, when I was at the kiosk, I just bought another plane ticket because I didn't want to arrive late. I guess the dream version of me is loaded sometimes? haha

~A bad dream that I had was that some weird creepy guy came to "our house" (in quotes because it was not the house my parents live in today) and went through our things. He also just threw my cat outside and he ran to the street. After narrowly missing a car, my kitty turned into a bunny and hopped away! *This dream threw me for a loop most of that day.*

~Another dream consisted of me losing some of my teeth and finding parts of them on the floor leading to my bathroom. *I've read that when you lose teeth in a dream that signifies that you have something to say or want to express but are afraid or apprehensive to do so. Kinda strange.*

~One of my friends from church was in a dream not too long ago. He lived in apartment with roommates (in what looked like my old neighborhood in Ohio) and had several pet bunnies in cages. I followed a trail to get to his place and went in through the window. 'Cause, you know, that's how you always enter a friend's place when they're not home! haha

~Most recently, I got proposed to in a dream by none other than Zac Efron. He hid the ring in my backpack which he grabbed before I could. The ring was attached to one of the three mice that was in the front pocket. Yes, all of that was weird but here's what struck me the most: my reply to him. I repeated this to him twice (after he asked if I would marry him): "Yes, but I have to be engaged to YOU, you know." *I think this dream occurred because of something I remembered that happened to me around late February 2010 in Spain. An old man in a the small town of Ronda proposed to me! Oh, what memories! haha*

~Another favorite crazy dream was how my mom, brother and I all took an impromptu trip to Paris! Our mom doesn't have a current passport anymore so in reality it wouldn't have worked. That's not main thing that was wrong with the trip though. When we landed, we went straight to the buses and hopped on a bus to go to the city center. It wasn't until after we got off the bus that we remembered we had left our suitcases at the airport! We didn't begin to retrieve them until after I used the bathroom at a nearby hotel. Didn't mater that we were basically still at the bus station, haha!

~I concluded the month with a couple dreams in Spanglish. The one that I can remember right now went like this: me and a friend were listening to a ton of music on Youtube and the speed of the songs kept getting faster and faster. The majority of the songs were in Spanish but we talked in English. Hence the Spanglish.

I will add the dreams from the past couple days here soon! Stay tuned. :-)

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Trust Your Wings and Fly

Today's date, January 20th, will always hold a special significance for me. For most of you (in America), today's date might mean that, every 4 years, it is Inauguration Day (or Martin Luther King Jr, Day depending upon where today's date falls). Or perhaps it's your birthday or wedding anniversary. While all of those things are great, that's not what makes today's date so special and meaningful for me. Today marks the day that I left for my study abroad semester in Spain during the spring of my junior year in 2010. It also marks the day, 12 years in the making, I first visited New York City! Both destinations were goals I had hoped to check off on my bucket list for some time. I did it. When someone asks me about whether or not I have been to either place, I can confirm that yes, I WAS there.

The title of this blog post is actually a translated lyric of a song in Spanish I had listened to this morning. "Confia en tus alas y vuela y vuela..." is how it goes in the original Spanish. I felt that it was the appropriate title for this post. Yes, I did board a jet plane and take off on my new adventure that day. However, I did fly, in another sense of the word. As excited as I was to go study abroad, I was equally scared and nervous. There was no one beside me that I knew on either trip. No fellow classmate, friend or family member by my side. I was the only one representing my school in that city and at that university. The other JU study abroad students I knew all went to Barcelona. It didn't fully sink in for me (the distance and how lonely I might feel that semester) until about two weeks prior.

I did hit some rough turbulence in the days that followed. But, you know what? I did more than just fly that spring. I soared. With God by my side, my friend and family in my heart and the ever growing desire to become fluent in Spanish on my mind, I did it. And I would do it all over again, the exact same way, given the chance, in a heartbeat. (Except I would petition that my trips to Toledo and Barcelona would work out when I have said re-do, hehe).

Before I gush any more over my trip (which I know I already have done so many times in the past--modestly, of course, ahem-), let me just say this: I believe the reason why trips, achievements and milestones mean so much to us is because we know that in those times, we grew. And we became a little more of the person we are meant to be. Maybe you didn't grow that much or as much as you would have liked, but nonetheless, you changed. This is why this trip and the people I met there mean so much to me. Why I long to return to that wonderful country. It was like going away to college all over again. I had a fresh start, another shot at redefining myself. Except, only this time I could do it in two languages. It's not everyday that you get that opportunity.

I hope as you read this (and the following note), a special date comes to your mind. May you always find some way to honor that day and be true to yourself. Take a step out of that nest, spread your wings and fly. You might be surprised where the wind will take you. :-)

For now, I will leave you with a photo of some gorgeous orange trees near the Reales Alcazares de Sevilla and the first email I sent home after 40+ hours of zero communication with my family and lots of obstacles in between. Disfruta y adiós!

Date: Friday, Jauary 22, 2010 7:16AM (13:16 CET)

Subject: I'm alive and enjoying Sevilla!



  This is the first time I have gotten on the internet here. There was no Wifi 
at all in the Madrid airport so I wasn´t able to email or do anything. 
But the flight was good...we were served dinner and breakfast
–which I had around 2am! I was able to sleep a few hours but being stuck in 
the middle seat in my row it was hard.

  The metro wasn´t bad, it was just hard to get around with all my bags 
and my huge suitcase! I was told that I am very smart for only bringing one 
suitcase though! The train ride was very comfortable and the scenery was 

I slept a lot on there but I am still tired. The time change is definitely 
something to get used to.

  My new mother, Manoli, is wonderful. She is very caring and is trying to 
figure out what I like and what I don´t. I told her about how I hate 
tomatoes and onions right away...but I may try the tomates here cause 
they taste sweet. Who knows...

  Sevilla is gorgeous. I couldn´t have picked a better city to live in. 
Everything is very old looking but modern. I´d have to show you pictures 
to explain it. And these beautiful orange trees line the street! 
You can´t eat those oranges cause they are bitter. However, everything else is 
wonderful. Oh, and the after-Christmas sales are still going on so I will 
be able to buy more things than I thought. I have already done some 
window shopping. :)

Well, the other girl in the program, Ashley--who goes to Univ. of Florida!--
and I are going to buy phones right now. We just stopped off at this other 
language school to use the internet after our orientation 
(which was in a cafe).

I love and miss you all, but Spain is really awesome! 

I am so glad I´m here and looking forward to classes and more.

I´ll write you some time this weekend and give you my new phone number. 


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Could You Please Pass The Salt?

With three days to go before the anniversary of my amazing study abroad trip to Sevilla, Spain, I figured it's time to write about how Spain changed my view of salt and salty foods for, what I believe will be the rest of my life.

Are you ready to take this journey with me? I hope once you finish reading these stories inside a story you won't begin to hate salt....but I can't make any promises.

I'll ask again: Are you READY?


Well, ready or not, here goes: