germany at christmas is a dream with all of their christmas markets. everything looks like a story book, plus there is delicious food everywhere which makes any place better in my book. from venice we flew to munich where we met up with my mom for the second half of our trip. the first day we went around the city & checked out the christmas markets in munich with my mom & austin's parents which was really fun. since my mom lives in california & austin's parents are in utah we are never all together so i sort of wondered how it would be, but it turned out to be really great! the days we we're in munich i didn't take a single picture, which is strange, but i guess i was just really into being with everyone & couldn't be bothered! 

from munich we went to rothenburg which is a tiny medieval town that is insanely adorable. honestly there isn't a whole lot to do there, at least from what i know of it, but i definitely think it's worth stopping in for a afternoon or night if you are going around that part of germany. it's seriously adorable, i fell more & move in love with it on every street.


we have officially been back in the states for a little over one week & it has been the busiest week ever. with packing up our apartment, austins graduation, coming home, getting ready for christmas, having christmas & driving up to utah, we have not had a lot of down time. & i definitely have not had blog time whatsoever! despite all the busyness of the holidays. we've been soaking up all the family time we can get & catching up with the friends e have missed, so it's been pretty great.

it was so nice to be home for christmas again &  get to spend it with our family. christmas eve we had the annual christmas eve party & my mom got everyone in the family these "ugly" (i actually kind of like them..) sweaters to wear for the party which were a big hit. please take note of my reindeer nose right on my large belly. everyone loved to touch it, haha. & the next day we watched as the kids went wild with their gifts, had breakfast & a lazy day. it was all that i could have hoped for. also, cedar did not open a single present on christmas day. when he came into the room he saw a few gifts that weren't wrapped & was immediately obsessed with them & could not be bothered to open anything, so i got to open all of his gifts for him. kids are the funniest.

 I hope everyone had a magical christmas & soaked it all in while you could. i'm always sad christmas is only one day, does anyone else think it should be stretched out for at least three, or is that just me?!
if we could just insert my other brother & his family & photoshop my eyes to actually be open, this would be a really great family photo. sadly i'm not that skilled at photoshop, haha. 


Venice is one of those places that you just gotta see in person if you have the opportunity. Austin & I have both been before, but his parents hadn't & it was one of his moms dream places to visit & I'm so happy we got to tag along with them on their trip there. 

I'll be totally honest, Venice has never really been one of my favorite places BUT, I absolutely loved going & seeing it in the winter opposed to the summer, when i've previously been. Seasons have a serious affect on traveling & can totally make or break a trip, in my opinion, & I think the fact that it was winter when we went totally made this Venice trip for me.

I'm used to Venice being a hot, sticky, sweaty & majorly crowded situation, but thus time around it was nine of those things. It was surprisingly cold & the crowds were totally manageable compared to the summer madness! It was much easier to get around & see everything because the lines were much shorter & it was still just as pretty. The days we were there Venice was pretty foggy & it totally added a little something to our experience there. I thought the fog was so pretty & sort of how I always imagined Venice should look, even though I'd never experienced it that way before, haha.

We were there for three nights & two full days (& we stayed at the hotel Austin & I stayed at on our honeymoon!) & accomplished everything anyone wanted to do. For me, Venice is a city that you don't need a lot of time in, so two days was plenty. My father in law took us around the island on various walking tours he had read about full of facts about the island, we went on a gondola ride, toured the palace de dogi, went up the bell tower & inside of st. Marks cathedral, & cedar had the time if his life chasing the pigeons. A trip to Venice isn't totally complete without being attacked by those pigeons, & that definitely also happened. While sitting on some steps enjoying gelato, no matter how cold  it is you have to have gelato in Italy, cedar took a bite of my ice cream cone & the birds zeroed in on the tiny crumbs that fell & full on attacked. Luckily for Austin & my in laws, they weren't right next to cedar & I, so it was just the two of us being swarmed. Cedar was looooving it, laughing so much cause he was obsessed with the gross birds & I was screaming cause I hate them. I kept yelling for Austin to help & he was laughing cause who wouldn't be, & I eventually thought to just throw the gelato & the birds flew off with it. Sadly there are no pictures or videos of the attack, It would have been the perfect thing to document, haha. I truly hate pigeons, so this was a bit of a nightmare for me, but it makes for a good story.


every year i get so excited when i start to see holiday themed pins & tumblr pictures pop up, it makes me feel so excited & giddy for the holiday season to start, especially when they are christmas pictures. i just love looking at them. it gets me totally in the christmas mood (not that it's hard) & i could look at them for hours. & i'm pretty sure that's what i did during this time of year when i was still in school & had painfully long classes, or just boring ones, i'd browse the pinterest holiday pictures, haha. so incase you need some holiday inspiration, here are some of my favorite pins.



austins parents arrived in madrid saturday morning & we jetted off to marrakech monday night. we were there for two days & managed to get the full tour of marrakech in. we saw everything from majorelle garden (read about our first trip to the garden here) to the bahia palace, the souk & everything in between. we also got to shop around for some new products for my shop & i am soo excited about them! i can't wait to post them to my shop & show what we were able to find.

this was our third time in marrakech, so austin & i felt pretty comfortable & confident that we knew our way around the souks which we did for the most part but, we did get a little lost one time, haha. but luckily everyone is very friendly & willing to help, especially if you are willing to pay them a little bit. money goes a long way in marrakech, remember that if you are ever planning to go! 

while the people in marrakech are really friendly, they are also incredibly pushy so you really need to watch out for that. austin & his parents were going to the post office yesterday & i didn't want to deal with crossing the busy road where cars don't stop for pedestrians with cedar's stroller, so i opted to stay in the square & wait for them. while i was waiting a lady offering henna tattoos came up asking if i wanted to look at her designs, to which i said no because i knew i wasn't going to get a henna tattoo & i didn't want to seem even remotely interested, because i knew she would really try & convince me to get one at that point. so i said no, but she grabbed my hand anyways & started drawing on it. i told her  that i had no money, absolutely none, which was completely true & she kept saying "it's for luck. just for luck. a little drawing for luck." at this point there was truly very little i could do, i mean the lady had my hand in hers & was just going for it, so i watched her. then she led me to a chair "to wait for it to dry" & she kept drawing more & i kept insisting that i had no money to pay her & she kept insisting "it's just for luck." when she finished i wasn't totally sure what to do. i thought of just leaving but the problem with that was i had to stay in this square to wait for austin & his parents otherwise they'd never find me, which also meant i couldn't actually go far away from this lady like i wanted to, so i ended up just sitting waiting for them & figured i'd give her whatever coins austin had. austin comes up & i ask him for a few coins & then the lady says "no coins, just paper money. only paper" i tell her we only have coins & she just keeps saying "only paper." my nice father-in-law goes to get her some "paper money" from his wallet & gives her some & she keeps asking for me so i say "you told me it was for luck & for free" to which she responds, "you work for free?" haha the lady was totally trying to work us, & she did succeed. i should have just walked away, but i felt bad! so we gave her the money, less than she started to ask for, & i just left. the people are intense! they will go after you, so beware of that! 

if you want to read about our previous trips to morocco, check it out here