Tag Archives: My Asheville Life

My Swedish Life

So, I’ve been on a bit of a blogging hiatus on here because I spent the last 4 weeks in Sweden with my dear friends Liz and Lina.  I had a truly incredible time, but this isn’t my travel blog, so I’m not going to go into any details about the trip except for a little bit of self-reflection.

The last four weeks were definitely a time of growth for me, and it was all about being in the present and experiencing life! (Liz, was really great at keeping me in the present.)  I think that taking the time to do another 4-week trip this year was a big step for me personally. I know that I travel all the time, but this was a bigger deal for me emotionally because taking this trip was putting travel before finding a job (although, that’s easier having a decent amount saved up), and truly letting it be known that this is what my passion is.  A lot of people don’t understand my love for exploration, and that’s okay, but in the past that has hindered me.  This trip allowed me to let that go, to not value my life any less just because it’s not conventional.

Traveling is a great education, a great way to gain perspective, to build confidence, to make memories with those you love, meet new people with new/interesting ideas, and just to simply love life.  And that is what is important to me.

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Photo by Lina

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Photo by Liz

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Photo by Lina

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Photo by Liz

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Photos by Lina

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Photo by Liz

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Photo by Liz

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Photo by Liz

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Photo by Liz

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Photo by Lina

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If you’re interested in reading more about my actual trip, I will have tons of posts about Sweden on my travel blog which you can find HERE.  All photos are by me, unless credit is given below.

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If You’re Going Downtown…

The biggest part of my Asheville explorations have been downtown. I love the quirkiness here.  There are brightly colored buildings, street artists, murals, cute cafes and amazing restaurants.  

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However, my favorite thing downtown (so far) is Downtown After 5.  It’s the third Friday of every month (May-Sept) from 5-9.  There are food trucks, drinks, a concert and good times to be had!  

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I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it, but I have some pretty incredible friends here.  Liz and Lina are more than friends, they’re my family here, and I am so glad!  We have way too much fun together!

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Photo by Liz

Although American Aquarium is great, we honestly were having way too much fun cracking up and taking loads of silly photos to truly pay attention to the music.  
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Liz: top right and left bottom

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Liz: Right

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When people asked me what I was going to be doing in Asheville I didn’t really have a good answer.  I don’t have a job lined up, in fact I won’t even be in the U.S. for the month of July, but I’ve figured out what it is that I’m doing: I’m living and loving every minute of it. 

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Both photos by Liz

I Could See For Miles, Miles, Miles

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I love the mountains.  I don’t think I can say that enough.  I fell in love with them the second I saw them, and I was shocked when I realized I had lived here a week and not gone to the mountains!  So, Sunday afternoon I packed some snacks and drove up the Blue Ridge Parkway.  

For me, the closest things to spiritual experiences that I have are the moments that I spend in nature- looking at all of this beauty.  When I stand on top of a mountain, or the edge of a canyon or even in a field, I’m always reminded of a line from the Bon Iver song Holocene, “And at once I knew I was not magnificent.”  

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That’s exactly the feeling I got Sunday on the Parkway. Not because I’m not proud of who I am as a person, or the things I’ve accomplished, but I was reminded of how small I am- and I love that I am still humbled by new experiences, by exploring, by wandering…

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… and I hope that I don’t ever lose that.  

In My Place

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I pretty much have the most perfect place to live… I’m currently living with my friend Nick in his house that he has been completely remodeling inside and out.  He offered back in January (when the three of them were trying to convince me to move to Asheville) to rent me one of the rooms in his house just north of downtown, and I now live in the cutest room this side of the French Broad…

I’ve always loved to organize things, but actually keeping them that way has been a struggle.  I also tend to be super cluttered and I always, always, always procrastinate.  However, I told myself that this was going to be a fresh new start.  That I was going to stay organized and not be so messy.  So, my very first day I unpacked everything!  That’s a huge deal for me!  Liz and Lina were awesome and patiently hung out on my bed until I needed their help in making executive decisions on where certain things should go!

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Nick generously furnished my room with the bed, two dressers, a full length mirror and a wardrobe, and they are absolutely perfect and compliment all of my things!  By the end of the afternoon the room changed into my perfect little creative space!  (And it’s still organized!)

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I’m so happy to have such a cute room that was a completely blank canvas to make my own little creative space.  It definitely feels like home!

Down By The River

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Floating or rafting the French Broad River is a big part of living in Asheville, and it’s a something I hope to take part in this summer, but there’s another really amazing thing to do at the French Broad… The Bywater, a private club that’s only $5 to join.

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Photo by Lina

This amazing little gathering place is a laid back bar where you can bring your own BBQ, have a fire, play games, or simply lounge around, like we did, and spend time with friends!  They have beer and a handful of delicious cocktails (my favorite so far is the Berry Picker).  They frequently have a food truck there as well, and last night I got to have a carrot dog… It. Was. Awesome.

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Liz, Lina and I met up with a couple of their friends and it was great getting to know a few more people in Asheville.  It was really great because everyone had their own story of their own personal version of Asheville and how this city fits their individual lives.

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Photo by Liz

 I did a lot of “domestic” things yesterday, so this was a great relaxation/internal celebration of completing my first full day in Asheville.  I feel so comfortable here, and I feel so confidant.

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I’m having fun all the time, genuinely having fun.  I have these pretty incredible people in my life here that I can’t get over our connection, and the way they instantly became just like family to me.  I have no words to adequately describe how much they mean to me, and how much they make my experience here better than I could have imagined.

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Photo by Lina

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The Start of Something New

Yesterday was just that… The start of something new.

For the last few years, while finishing up school in the city I’ve lived in my whole life, I have felt unsatisfied and uninspired.  So, when I graduated in December, I decided to reward myself with a solo road trip through the Southeast.  I am a wanderer, so it’s no surprise to those who know me that travel is what I used to reward myself and get inspired.  I decided on the Southeast because in my quest to visit all 50 states the only ones I lacked were the Carolinas and Hawaii- it turns out that this was the best decision I could have ever made.

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I have a travel blog that I’ve been writing for a few years, and somewhere along the way I started following Liz, and over two years our friendship grew from liking and commenting on blog posts, to Instagram, to writing guest posts for each other, and finally to staying with her and her amazing wife, Lina when I decided to travel through North Carolina.

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This photo is from Liz’s Blog from the first night we met

These ended up being the best days of my road trip.  I loved them and Asheville so much that two days wasn’t near enough time, and I stayed for four instead.  We all instantly clicked and by the time I had to say goodbye I was devastated, but I knew I had made lifelong friends in Liz, Lina and Nick (Liz’s brother).  The minute I got on the highway I called my mom and told her I wanted to move to Asheville.

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Both photos from Liz

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When I got back to Missouri at the end of January, I was longing for North Carolina.  I was only home about a week before I was on a plane coming back to Asheville.  I knew on that trip that this was it… This was where I wanted to be.  I was surrounded by three amazing, supportive friends who have since pushed me to follow my heart and do what I love- even if it isn’t the most conventional lifestyle.  

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Photo from Liz

I went back to Springfield, for three months to help my parents in their greenhouse for the spring (I managed to only go back to Asheville one other time) and over this last week I said some of the hardest goodbyes I’ve ever said to all of my family and my friends.

After a long 12-hour-drive across 4 states, I made it into North Carolina- home.  I had this amazing feeling when I crossed the border, driving through the gorgeous mountains that I was where I belong.

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Liz, Lina and Nick (who is now my roommate) were there with hugs, and lending hands to help me unload my over-stuffed car.  Nick worked really hard to create the perfect, cozy space for me and it’s already starting to come together and look like me.  Liz and Lina welcomed me with a new book about a woman following her passion (traveling), a map of Ashevillea mug from a local bookstore and an AVL sticker that we lovingly stuck on my car to welcome him to Asheville living too!

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We sat on the porch and sipped champagne out of our red plastic cups (classy, I know), and it was absolutely the most perfect welcome home party!

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Both photos from Liz

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Today, I told Liz about my idea to start a blog about my life in Asheville, and she freaked out!  So, here it is… My Asheville Life.  I’m looking forward to sharing this beautiful city that instantly won my heart.

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This photo is from Lina

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