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Ireland: Days 1-2

Holy moly, the past 12 days have been absolutely insane! Amazing, but insane. I’m back in the office today for the first time since April 9, and I’m not really feeling it. I’ve been trying to think about the best way to go about recapping Ireland and my mom’s wedding and I think the best way is just a day or two at a time. There are sooooooooo many pictures, and we saw so much. Sorry if you find multiple recap posts about one vacation annoying. I just really want to do it justice so when I’m old and senile I can remember it.

Since my sister and I were flying out of Newark, NJ on Thursday evening, I made my way up to PA on Wednesday afternoon and had my mom drop me off at her apartment in Philly. Having a late flight is weird, and we kind of just sat around on Thursday waiting until it was time to go. We ended up getting to the airport like 4 hours early, so we had plenty of time to relax (drink) and hopefully make ourselves sleepy for our red-eye flight to Dublin. Unfortunately, neither my sister nor I could sleep and when we landed in Dublin at 7 am were not as well rested as we were hoping for.

Our room wasn’t ready yet when we got to our hotel, so we checked our luggage with the concierge and decided to try to make the most of our first day in Ireland. Sleep deprived or not.

In St. Stephen’s Green

bridge in Dublin constructed to look like the Harp

We made it to the Guinness factory and had some beers in the Gravity Bar at the top

After the Guinness factory tour, we rode around on an open air bus seeing some more of Dublin, before Col and I both ended up passing out. On the bus. It was then we decided we needed an early dinner and bedtime to get our sleep back on track. 17 hours later, we woke up at 11:30 am ready and raring to go for day two of exploring Dublin.

Finally look awake

 

Christ Church Cathedral

Irish Famine statues

we went to dinner and a show here. They had live Irish music and Irish Stepdancing

I personally loved the cup holders on their mic stands

Col and I at dinner

We spent two nights in Dublin, and then started our journey to the southern part of the country, but more tomorrow!

This Spring Just May Kill Me

So I mentioned it briefly a few weeks ago, but in a mere 49 days my sister and I are embarking on the trip of a lifetime to Ireland.  The two of us began tossing around the idea of a “sister trip” back in the fall, throwing out ideas like California, Chicago, etc. Then in a moment of pure brilliance on my part, I may have also been drunk, I texted her “WE SHOULD GO TO IRELAND!” Thus, an idea was born, and no offense to Cali but it just didn’t seem as exciting. For awhile we’d go back and forth, “So are we doing this? We should probably start planning…” Neither of us have ever traveled abroad before, so we had no idea where to start, and every time I tried to look online at crap I got overwhelmed and gave up. Then my sister officially had her week of vacation at work scheduled, and it was time to make some moves. Over Christmas I popped into a travel agency, grabbed some brochures about Ireland, and two weeks later our trip was booked.

Trying to decide what to see and how to see the most of Ireland in the 7 days we had was completely ridiculous, so we ended up booking a group tour through CIE Tours. All of our hotels, transportation, and majority of meals were taken care of with one click of the mouse, and we just have to make sure we’re on our bus every day. There’s no risk in me accidentally driving us off a cliff after one too many Guinness’ , or getting lost in the middle of the country somewhere, and it made my mom a shit ton more comfortable with the idea of her two children gallivanting about Ireland. This is what our Itinerary looks like:

7 Day Dublin-Dublin Tour

If ya want to read more about the itinerary and tour highlights, you can click here. Or you can just look at my planner for a brief glimpse.

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Oh, did I mention my mom’s wedding is the day after we get home? If things go smoothly, we land at 11:35 am on the 18th and the wedding is at 5:30 pm on the 19th. Wedding prep begins at 11 am on the 19th with us all getting our hair done. I foresee a lot of Red Bull/vodka and coffee in my future for that day. Poor planning on our part? Maybe, but my mom and her fiance booked their honeymoon before their wedding (priorities right?) and pretty much had one weekend they could get married on and we only had one week we could go on vacation. Wish me luck. Oh and yeah, you’re reading that correctly. I have ANOTHER wedding the following weekend just south of Charlottesville, VA.

That, is why this spring and definitely April, just may kill me. Hold me.

 

I Hate Odd Numbers, but Happy 2013!

Hey there and Happy New Year! Yes, I’m aware that we’re 10 days in to January already, but I operate on my own schedule.  Did everyone have a lovely holiday season? I spent 8 days in PA at my mom and her fiance’s house, and it was a busy week full of family time.  I came home to VA just in time for New Year’s Eve, and then promptly came down with a plague that has kept me down and out for the past week. I’m not going to do a full holiday recap post, because let’s be honest no one really gives a shit, but I will share some of my favorite pics. No resolution post either, because I already have enough to focus on without adding something mundane like “stop saying fuck so much” to the agenda.  Also as you’ve probably noticed, posting here is super sporadic so you’ll have much more luck keeping up with me on Twitter and Instagram (kelster718 on both).

A lot of the East Coast was lucky enough to experience a white Christmas this year, and we were some of them! Not only did we get snow on Christmas Eve, but an even bigger snow storm the Saturday after Christmas. Since I am still six years-old at heart, I was incredibly excited by all of this and ran around in it like an idiot.

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my sister and I on Christmas Eve in the snow. It ruined my hair, but whatevs.

We spent Christmas Eve meeting my mom’s fiance’s extended family and participating in a tradition Italian seven fishes dinner. I don’t eat fish, so I mostly drank champagne and played with my future step nephew. Not gonna lie, the amount of time I spent over Christmas with cute babies did nothing to quell my baby fevah. Gimme.

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what you can’t see is his chubby little (candy cane covered) fingers tangled in the back of my hair.

“here aunt kelly, it’s yummy!”

We spent Christmas day with my mom’s family, played an epic game of Monopoly, and drank a lot. Epic because I lost in what might be the quickest amount of time in Monopoly history. My sister said it’s because I play Monopoly like I live my life, buying all the properties and not paying attention to money. Haha oh well, it is what it is.

Fam on Christmas. (Side note, doesn’t my mom’s fiance look like Jack Nicholson?)

Let’s see, what else what else. My sister and I got shit faced in the hot tub on Christmas night, she head butted me and gave me a fat lip, I was super hungover on the 26th. I got to have dinner with two of my buddies from my old job, got my hair did, and had an amazeballs family day in the city. We saw Jekyll and Hyde at the Forrest Theater, and then dinner at The Water Works, which has some of my favorite views of the city.

more snow!

Mom and her girls

Like I said, I made it back to VA just in time to ring in 2013 with some of my closest friends and it was wonderful. We spent it at one of our regular weekend bars, just slightly more dressed up than usual, and I stayed out later than I had in quite some time.

Yes, I wore the same dress. It was expensive. And fabulous.

In OTHER news, my sister and I just booked an amazinggggg trip for April. The two of us are heading to Ireland for 7 days and I am so flipping excited. I can’t think of anyone I’d rather spend a week exploring our homeland with. April is going to be a crazy month, because the day after we return from Ireland my mom is tying the knot! I expect to be completely jet lagged and barely functioning, but I’m so excited for her and Gabe to finally get married. Now… I just need to find a date.

Anywhoodle, I’m off to go slather Neosporin all over the inside of my nose so I can continue to blow it every 5 minutes without crying. Happy Thursday!