Tag Archives: travel

Europe Trip Video – Madrid, Barcelona and Paris

19 Jul

Nate and I have been on a couple big trips together. The first to China through a work group and the second to Europe with a few friends. Both times he’s taken video to make a fun trip video afterwards. He just finished the Europe video earlier this week, and it turned out great. I’ve watched it a few times now and love looking back and remembering all the awesome places we saw, food we ate, and fun we had. It’s probably 48 minutes of not so exciting trip video to most, so I don’t blame you if you don’t care to watch it!

Madrid-Barcelona-Paris – October 2011 from Nate Fisher on Vimeo.


Where I’ve Been World Map

8 Jul

I’ve had this project in the works for nearly two years, yikes! The family of one of my best friends growing up kept a map on the wall with pins of all the places they’d been. I always thought it was really neat, but as a 15-year-old I hadn’t been enough places to warrant a map. Now I’ve been a few places, and as I was putting pins in the places I’ve been I honestly couldn’t wait to add more!

This is a pretty cheap project. (Prices are estimates because I bought everything a year or more ago.)
World Map $6
Foam Core to fit your map and cut to size $5 (40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby and trimmed $1 at their framing counter)
Spray Mount $7 (at Michael’s or Hobby Lobby use a 40% off coupon)
Map Pins $1.50 (use a coupon again)

All of that comes out to under $20, and the spray mount which is the most expensive item will still have plenty left for another few projects.

worldmappins2I’ve actually made a few of these because the first one was ruined when my apartment roof leaked, I made Nate one (and really owe him another because I tried to make it without any help), and I made this one for myself. So a few tips:

-Have a friend help you! It’s not possible to wrangle a big poster over sticky spray mount without messing up and getting bubbles in your poster.
-Follow the spray mount instructions. Do it when the weather is right, and shake it the full amount of time recommend.
-Use something to squeegee the poster down and eliminate bubbles. Hands don’t work very well, but the edge of a binder or book works great.

worldmapI’m pretty thrilled with how it turned out!

5 Years Ago – Australia

8 Nov

I returned a week ago from a little vacation to Hawaii, so I figured I’d better finish up the last two posts about my study abroad in the Pacific Rim before I have another set of Hawaii pictures to share!

Today I’ve got pictures from the two weeks of my study abroad spent in Australia. You can see all the other posts about my Pacific Rim trip here. We spent Thanksgiving in Australia and it was a funny feeling, as a child of the Midwest, to be celebrating Thanksgiving, looking at Christmas decorations, wearing summer clothes, and spending afternoons sunning on the beach.

Cairns fruit market

Scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef

View of the Harbor Bridge and Opera House from a ferry

Opera House at night

A show at the Opera House

Koala at the wildlife park


Cross the Ocean Print

29 Oct

I’m in Hawaii, so this awesome print and this quote (by Christopher Columbus) kind of apply. My advice: if you ever have the opportunity to go abroad make it happen.

via dearmusketeer Etsy

5 Years Ago – New Zealand

6 Sep

Today I’ve got pictures from the two weeks of my study abroad spent in New Zealand. You can see all the other posts about my Pacific Rim trip here. I did some basic color correcting on these, but looking through all my pictures I was remembering how perfectly postcard picture everything in New Zealand looked. Green grass, bright blue sky, and snow topped mountains – it was breathtaking.

Christchurch Cathedral

Just outside of Christchurch – Lyttelton Harbour

Some of the girls in my group at a scenic stop on our drive

Franz Josef Glacier

Ferry ride from Picton to Wellington

Wellington Parliament “The Beehive”


5 Years Ago – Japan

4 Sep

I mentioned the other day that it’s been five years since I left on my study abroad program to the Pacific Rim. If you missed it you can find pictures from our first stop, China, here.


Hiroshima Atomic Bomb Dome


Golden Pavilion

Summit of Mt. Fuji

Mijo Castle

My Japanese Host Family

Mito Art Tower

5 Years Ago – China

1 Sep

I’m feeling a little bittersweet today because five years ago I embarked on my first trip abroad. It’s hard to believe it’s been five years, but at the same time it seems like a lifetime ago. I know I’ve already blogged about my photo book that I made earlier this year, but I thought it would be fun to pull out the pictures again and post a few from each country. Enjoy!


Tienanmen Square and the Forbidden City

Great Wall of China

Summer Palace

Canal at the Summer Palace

Chinese Acrobatics Show

Riding Bikes on the Xi’an City Wall

Dual Purpose Clothing

6 Aug

When it comes to dressing myself I’m pretty boring. Most of the clothes I buy are a solid color or if I’m feeling adventurous striped. I counted one time and I think I had 20 or 30 striped shirts. While I’ll probably still buy them in solid or striped I’m fascinated by items that can serve a dual purpose.

Before I spent my semester abroad my Aunt and Uncle gifted me with a pair of these fancy convertible North Face pants. I’ve got them in khaki, and while they do look a bit like tourist clothes they were perfect for my months in the Pacific Rim. They kept me warm in our cold classroom in China and while climbing Mt. Fuji in Japan and zipped off to keep me cool in the hot weather of China and on the beaches of Australia. The biggest plus though was how fast they dried. On my trip last fall to Europe I even took them along because I planned to do some sink laundry, and I knew these would be dry the next morning.

So anyway I’m always keeping an eye out for a piece of clothing like these pants where you can pack one item, but really have a couple. Nate has me hooked on Steep and Cheap which is this site that sells one deal at a time for about 20 minutes or until the item is sold out. I haven’t bought anything off of the site, but I did see this Patagonia Lithia skirt which I ended up buying a couple days later off of 6pm.com. The best part is that it’s a skirt or a top! Mine just arrived in the mail and I can’t wait to try it on.











I’ve found a couple of other similar items that I’m keeping my eye on too. Patagonia’s Kamala Skirt which turns into a dress and Horny Toad’s Wind Skirt which is reversible!

Coldplay Concert – Dallas 6/22/12

25 Jun

This past Friday Nate treated me to a Coldplay concert in Dallas, and it didn’t disappoint!

I’d been wanting to try out the DART, Dallas’ light rail, for a year or two now, so we decided to park a bit into downtown (found a $5 lot near St. Paul and Bryan) and take the train to the American Airlines Center. We met up with Annie and Ryan, got dinner at the Press Box Grill and then caught the green train to the Victory station which drops you off right across the street from the arena (we were in section 109 which was right by the door we went in too!). Tickets were $1.75 a ride (or $4 for a day), so we might have saved a few bucks vs parking near the arena and walking, and it was really great not to have to sit in traffic to get out of downtown since we were the only ones parked where we did. The trains were clean and easy to figure out. After the show we were worried a bit about how full they would be, but they were just comfortably full. There were even attendants on the platform after the show to help direct you to a train if you weren’t sure what was going on.

Upon entering the doors everyone was given a wristband to put on, and we decided they must light up during the show. Wolf-gang and Robyn were the two openers, and we got to our seats in time to see most of Robyn’s set. While we were waiting for Coldplay to come on I started looking around for where their little stage out in the audience might be. There was a little section five rows in front of us that was covered and I pointed it out. Annie noticed that there were a few cameras set up near us too!

Everyone’s wristband lit up

Once Coldplay took the stage it was non-stop music and color, we didn’t sit down once. The wristbands were awesome, as expected, 20,000 (?) of them lighting up to the music, pulsing, or solid. They played a lot of their new album, and a ton of their other songs too.

  1. Mylo Xyloto
  2. Hurts Like Heaven
  3. In My Place
  4. Major Minus
  5. Lovers In Japan
  6. The Scientist
  7. Yellow
  8. Violet Hill
  9. God Put A Smile Upon Your Face
  10. Princess of China
  11.  Up in Flames
  12.  Warning Sign
  13.  Don’t Let It Break Your Heart
  14.  Viva La Vida
  15.  Charlie Brown
  16.  Paradise
  17.  Us Against the World
  18.  Speed Of Sound
  19.  Clocks
  20.  Fix You
  21.  M.M.I.X.
  22.  Every Teardrop is a Waterfall
    (setlist via)

The highlight of the night though was the band coming to their little stage five rows from us. Last time I saw them play we were decently close to their little stage, but when everyone stood up and stretched out their arms to take pics and videos I couldn’t see a thing. This time though, best view I’ve ever had! We were so lucky!

The band just 5 rows from us!

Coldplay always puts on a great high energy show, and this one was no different!

My Pacific Rim Photo Book

16 May

In the fall of 2007 I went on a study abroad program that my university offered to the Pacific Rim. A group of 29 of us traveled to China, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, and Hawaii, and a lot of us took pictures the whole way. The school had a Smug Mug account set up for us and upon returning to the states we could pay $25 and get CDs of everyone’s pictures (9 of them!). I honestly don’t think in the nearly 5 years that I’ve had those CDs I ever looked at them. Pretty soon after returning home I did print out a set of my pictures for a large collage frame, but that’s about all.

I printed one of those nifty photo books earlier this year for a trip I took to Europe (more on that another day) and loved how it turned out. I decided making one for my study abroad would be the perfect way to pull together pictures from my three months in the Pacific Rim.

I purchased a Groupon deal for a 20 page Shutterfly book. I don’t know how I thought I was going to fit 3 months of traveling into only 20 pages, but let me tell you that would’ve been a very difficult task, and I decided paying for the extra pages would be well worth it! My book will not arrive for another week probably, but until then you can check it out online. It mostly goes in the order of my trip, and I even found the emails I wrote to my family and friends back home. They make me a little embarrassed, but reading them again reminded me of a lot of things I’d forgotten about, so I thought they’d be a nice addition. Enjoy!

As for my review of Shutterfly: I really liked that it was web-based because I could work on my book anywhere as long as I had internet connection, and it didn’t matter if I was using a MAC or a PC. Being web-based did make it run a bit slower than it might have being on my computer, but I’ll take the slowness if it means I have better access.

Their program was pretty intuitive and I figured everything out pretty quickly. The page layouts were very customizable, and I liked the alignment and spacing tools that are offered when you customize a page.

Although I have Photoshop on my computer I found myself wishing Shutterfly had a built-in editor. It had a very basic one that would do red-eye (didn’t work on the one picture I tried though) and a few effects (black & white and a couple of others), but I really would’ve liked one that just enhanced the colors with the click of a button.

I’ll have to give a final report once my book arrives, but the creating process was overall successful!

%d bloggers like this: