Wednesday, July 31

the real briarcliff

this past weekend we finally got a change to go back to the Sanatorio Duran and this time we got to enter.
this place is essentially an abandoned former hospital/jail that is supposedly haunted. i don't really believe in ghosts but i find it pretty interesting that other people do and believe me, a lot of people here in costa rica sure do. even though the buildings are old and filled with graffiti (which is unfortunate because it took away from the experience quite a bit), the grounds were really beautiful. i can only imagine what it was like when the buildings were attended to properly.

we spent a few hours just wandering and the whole time i just couldn't help but think of the show american horror story. for a few moments there i might have though i was walking around briarcliff in the present day and imagining all the things that could have possibly taken place. i even went as far as to ask one of our friends if crazy stuff happened there. he said no. it was a well respected hospital. disappointed? maybe. should i probably not believe everything i see on tv? definitely. but they probably could have filmed an episode or two there, i swear it was so similar.

anyway we had a lot of fun wandering around, maybe scaring each other, and some of us taking as many pictures of the windows as possible to try and catch a glimpse of a ghost. but no names will be named of those people.

so sweet

my birthday was great, thank you to everyone who wished me a happy birthday!
paris and his family as well as my students really went out of their way to help me celebrate and it was much appreciated. i mean, just look at that cake my sixth graders bought me! i had to split it between three classes before we finally finished the whole thing ;) 
all in all i would say this was my best birthday in costa rica yet.

happy hump day today, i hope everyone is getting through the week!

Friday, July 26

a giveaway!

i am participating in a great giveaway this month hosted by nicole so if you are interested in some free target and starbucks you should go enter!

Winner takes all!
July Giveaway
♥ $15 to Target from The Boots Parade ♥ $10 to Target from Helene in Between ♥ $10 to Starbucks from Pearls & Curls ♥ Ad Space on Two Martinis ♥ $15 to Starbucks and Ad Space on Treasure Tromp
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 24

how to gain 5 pounds

everybody knows that when you are on vacation you tend to eat a little bit more and a little less healthy than you normally would. but when you're on vacation for three weeks i guess you tend to eat a lot more and ultimately gain 5 maybe even 6 pounds. oops! i couldn't resist all the good food available to me at home so i'm not even sorry about it ;) here's a sample of some of my indulgences.

baked brie and apple -- taco night !!
black bean and corn burgers -- homemade ice cream cake
friend macaroni and cheese - spanikopita  and greek salad (twice)
asian fusion takeout -- birthday cupcakes :)

and i can't leave out the many bagels breakfasts.


Tuesday, July 23

the lemon squeezeer

while i was home and my brother and SIL came to visit we went hiking!
we chose a hike that my dad, brother and i have collectively done quite a few times called the lemon is about a three mile hike round trip but the main attraction is this bunch of rocks called...
the lemon squeezer. why? because they are so close together you really have to squeeze your way through.
i must admit that i am definitely not in as great of hiking shape as i used to be because this trip
was pretty much a killer. but we all made it through and lived to tell the tale! i say this jokingly because in high school my dad and i and my school's outdoor's club may or may not have gotten lost for two hours taking a detour on this hike...when it started to get dark...and then start snowing.
but luckily we learned our lesson and brought our maps, glasses, and bear bell!

Monday, July 22

vacation is over

shirt: tailor and stylist, belt: madewell, shorts: jcrew, watch: gift

my vacation at home is over and i am back in costa rica ready to start work again.
it is always the hardest to go back to work after a long vacation! especially one spent
at home. i'm sure it is no secret that i love being home and miss it very much when i am here
in costa rica. i can hardly believe that i have been here for two years already.
while i was home made the decision that after my school year ends in december i will be moving
back to start studying and working and hopefully getting a life started for paris and i so that
when he is able to come join me everything will be ready. it is going to be hard and my biggest
fear is putting us in a long distance relationship again but i guess it comes with the territory when you 
and your boyfriend are from different countries. but for now we will enjoy the time left we have
while i am here. even though it is still half a year away i am excited to think of starting yet another
new chapter in my life.

Wednesday, July 17

homemade ice cream cake

yes, i said homemade ice cream cake.
i learned of this amazing idea from my friend lindsey at our mojito monday gathering.

all you need is:

ice cream sandwiches
your favorite flavor ice cream
chocolate graham crackers or teddy grahams
magic shell topping

what to do:

take a metal loaf pan and line it with aluminum foil
layer ice cream cakes first (you may need to cut them)
add a layer of your favorite ice cream, filling in any holes
continue layering until the top of the pan
in a plastic bag, crumble the crackers and then place them on top of the cake
put the pan in the freezer for a few hours
when you're ready to eat it, flip it over into a plate and peel the foil off
add magic shell topping all over and you are done!

it is super easy and you can use whatever flavors you want to make it your favorite!

Tuesday, July 16

summer days

sunday night we had a BBQ and it was just the day for it. my time here has either been so hot or so rainy that we havent even been able to use the picnic table! but sunday evening was perfect.
i'm so happy my brother and SIL came to visit for the weekend.
hopefully soon we will be able to do this more often!

blog hop

It's Tuesday again which means it's time for the Friend Connect Blog Hop!
It's the time to meet new friends and find new blogs. You can choose to follow the cohosts in whatever way is best for YOU! Here are some of my favorite ways: GFC, BlogLovin', HelloCotton, RSS, Twitter, Facebook.
Ok, so let's get to the party, shall we?
RULES are simple:
1. Follow your host 
The First link below
2. Follow your co-hosts 
The Next 6 links below
3. Link up below using your main blog url not a specific post.
4. Make sure to visit some of the blogs in the link up and follow them 
and if you want to leave them a comment, I'm sure they'd appreciate that as well.
5. Tweet about this blog hop

6. Share about this blog hop by grabbing a button and putting it on your sidebar!
I have cohost spots available! Email me if you're interested at

Post Sponsor Ad:

Sunday, July 14

jessie the dog

jessie is my brother and sister-in-law's dog and she is the second best dog ever! they came down to NJ while i was home and i was so excited for jessie to come too. she is a little bit of a scaredy dog but give her some cheese and she'll be your best friend. i think after the weekend she even warmed up to me without the cheese bribe. isn't she the cutest??

Tuesday, July 9

dinner dates

dinner dates with your girl friends are the best.
my friend lindsey came home for a few days while i was here and we tried to squeeze in as much time in together as possible before she headed back to boston to start her new job (yay!). we spent a good three hours one night at our favorite greek restaurant enjoying some delicious greek food. we split some amazing tzatziki dip with pita and we both got a greek salad with a side of spanakopita. so good! we also may or may not have split a bottle of prosecco her dad gave us on the way out the door happens!

do you have any favorite places to eat?

Monday, July 8

atlantic city

my fourth of july weekend in atlantic city with the girls was just what i needed. it was my first time there and i think we did it right ;) a little time was spent at the beach, a little time in the casinos, and a little time in the clubs. the perfect weekend away.

what did you do for the fourth??

Thursday, July 4

happy independence day!


happy fourth of july! i am currently on my way to atlantic city with some of my bests for a lovely little birthday/holiday getaway. i hope everyone is enjoying their holiday and stay tuned for some pictures of our girls weekend away :)