After two long months, traveling around Europe and the UK, i'm happy to be coming to you from California.
Honestly, if you were following me on Facebook, or in the free Angelic Badass Mastermind group on Fb, then you heard the play by play as the trip was happening. Soo many things, both good and not-ideal, happened while I was traveling and I chose to embrace each one with Joy.
It wasn't easy at first, but I had a little trinket to help me. Have you heard of mantra band? I have one that I wear on a daily basis. The mantra is Choose Joy. I love it because it reminds me to be really present with how I’m feeling moment to moment and to choose joyful emotions above all else.
Little did I know that when I traveled to Europe in July, I’d be presented with opportunity after opportunity to really live this truth. You see, this trip didn’t go as smoothly as I would have liked, but when does anything EVER go according to our exact plans? Almost never. ;)
The first leg of my trip was great, I landed in Greece on July 20 and spent 3 days acclimating to the time change.
I hired a taxi driver to take me to the local cell phone store for a Greek SIM card and while we waited for the store to open, we had a coffee together. He immediately began talking about the most spiritual locations in Greece, with no prior knowledge of my work or what i'm about. Signs! ;) On his suggestion, we stopped by this gorgeous monastery.
This is the Monastery of Saint Ephraim. You can read more about it here. Saint Ephraim's body still resides in the Church. St. Ephraim was said to have performed many miracles and is well known throughout Greece.
Just after, we headed to the hot springs in Vouliagmeni. Anyone can visit with a low entrance fee. I'll definitely be spending time here next time I visit! It looked so serene.
Immediately after I headed to...
What can I say about Italy? It was a feast for the taste buds (and the eyes!). As a vegan, I thought i'd have a difficult time finding food that could work for me while traveling. I was pleasantly surprised!
Naples was my first stop, for a very short overnight trip. And would you believe it? This croissant is VEGAN! In Italy, Vegan is pronounced Vegano. And although my waiter was adorable, he didn't speak a lick of English so I quickly learned how to say Scusami (excuse me) and ask for what I wanted. Google translate was my best friend!
Naples was GORGEOUS! This is the Plaza where my bed and breakfast was located.
Before I knew it, it was time to head to Rome! I was directed to the metro which was a 20 second walk from my room. I took the train to Napoli Centrale (the Central Naples station). From there, I boarded the train and relaxed for a few hours as we headed to Rome.
Rome was extremely high humidity, but full of very friendly people. It's one of the most exciting places i've ever been. Unfortunately, I got pretty lost and turned around trying to find my AirBNB here, having boarded the wrong buses (yes more than one) and finally made my way to the right stop. This was one of those moments when I felt incredibly frazzled, dragging heavy bags on cobblestone roads in extremely high heat, can ya blame me?! Instead of allowing this energy to continue to frustrate me, I called my AirBNB host to help me out. I told her that I was in front of the Church, little did I know there was one on every corner! haha! She found me a short while later and took me to the apartment, which was magnificent and decorated with a film theme. It was surrounded by a plaza with a farmer's market every single morning that lasted all day, many shops, restaurants and bars.
The next few days were complete sight seeing. My favorite place was the Sistine Chapel! They don't allow photos inside and it is under tight security but, if you haven't been here, I can't recommend it highly enough. I'm overwhelmed with gratitude that I was fortunate enough to visit this year.
If you weren't aware, Pope Francis added an additional Jubilee this year. The Jubilee, Holy Year of Mercy, only occurs once every 25 years. The next one was due in 2025, but he added one this year and it ends in November. During the Jubilee, there is another door known as the Holy Door into St. Peter's that, if walked through "cleanses you of all your sins". Oh trust me, I wasn't about to miss out on this opportunity!! I walked through it! :) All I saw was white light as I approached the door, it was the experience of a lifetime!
The Colosseum was also a favorite of mine. It was gruesome, especially the inhumane treatment of both the Gladiators (who were actually slaves) and the treatment of the animals that resided on site. Still, it's an important part of history!
Later this evening, I went to the Opera in ITALY! YES.
There was no air conditioning in this tiny church, but I had prime seating in the first row and an excellent view of the performance. Although many people left early, I stayed until the very end and loved every minute of it.
Later that week, I headed on a tour of the Amalfi Coast and it was absolutely gorgeous! I loved it here and would love to spend more time next time I visit.
On our way back we took a tour of Pompei. Pompei was amazing, HIGHLY recommend a tour of this abandoned city which was covered in ash. So many artifacts were preserved in their entirety, including a human body and a dog. It's one of the only known cities that has been so well preserved.
The Trevi Fountain was gorgeous.
Italy was an enlightening experience that i'll truly never forget! I can't wait to visit again.
Off to England!
Here are a few of my gorgeous friends and clients from London or surrounding areas. We met for high tea (and maybe some Prosecco ;) There were lots of laughs, talks about spirituality, ascension and just getting to know each other. It was amazing!
On my way to visit Claire, I was a 10-second walk from the train station when the uneven London sidewalks ripped the wheel right off my luggage. Fortunately, I was a little bit early for my train and needed this extra time to support my luggage with both hands. Claire was such a blessing and even took me suitcase shopping! Here I am with the new suitcase (and the broken red one! haha - I still miss that red suitcase)
There's no way that I can possibly forget Stonehenge! Claire and I visited and had the most amazing time! The energy here was powerful, but I must say, I really liked Avebury better. At Avebury, you can walk right up to and touch the stones.
Here I am at Avebury
The next day I said good bye to Claire and headed off to Scotland!
This has been my dream destination since I was a child. As an energy worker, Scotland helped me realize that we often feel called to visit certain places because they are offering some sort of healing. Often, this healing arises from big triggers. A trigger is a reaction to a person or situation, that triggers some uncomfortable memories or emotions. I was HIGHLY triggered in Scotland and experienced interactions with locals that left me feeling defeated. As someone that truly doesn't enjoy confrontation, I chose joy by walking away. There was a time that I would've loved to engage and argue with someone, but I moved beyond that years ago.
This is the Rosslyn Chapel - I cried from the moment I walked in until the moment I left. It was incredible and validated so many parts of my work. I felt as if I walked into a place that understood me. If walls could talk...
This is Edinburgh Castle
The Elephant House Cafe is where the story of Harry Potter came to life - J.K. Rowling wrote it here.
I also went on a tour of the Scottish Highlands. Photos don't begin to do them justice.
Off to Greece!
I spent a few days in Athens, and mostly ate to my hearts content. I stayed here until I headed off to Kefalonia for 2 days. It was nice to visit a brand new place, the people were friendly and the beaches were... well, see for yourself.
Then I spent a week with family, and even got to visit my Dad's childhood home in the village of Kremasti.
Before I knew it, it was time to go to Santorini. I had been counting the days down! This place is my heart home - the place that my heart will always come back to. Can you see why?
Okay, enough sunrise porn. :P
It was time to get down to work. Santorini was the location of my FIRST SPIRITUAL HEALING RETREAT! EEK! I was so excited to be hosting it here! The energy was so wonderful and tourism had been negatively affected this year in much of Europe so this meant that I was able to host here at a reasonable rate and really give back to the community that has been so good to me the last two years.
Before I knew it, the retreat began and all of the amazing ladies showed up. We're not all pictured here, but this was our first dinner!
We also got to experience the volcano tour, on this amazing ship. At one point, the ship dropped anchor out in the sea, where we all got into the ocean and swam into the hot springs. It was the experience of a lifetime!
We all spent 7 amazing days together, full of fun and healing before we parted for the rest of our adventures. I'll write a blog on the retreat itself, because there's so much to tell.
A couple of days later, I headed back to the states. And I must say, I was SO ready for this. I missed the United States, the people here, the resources and things we have available to us. The ability to call my friends and family and see them whenever I want. It's priceless.
As I reflect on the trip, gratitude is the overwhelming feeling that comes to me. Gratitude for the new friends I made, the bonds with my clients, the ability to travel whenever and wherever I want and have a business that supports that lifestyle. But mostly, what I learned on this trip was that the people that want to be a part of my life, will be. Those that don't, won't be. I've been blessed with people in my life that are true warriors, committed to their own healing and growth and committed to supporting themselves on their journey, while honoring me on mine. That isn't something you find every day.
I love all of you. Thanks for the memories <3
Do you choose joy in travelling? I would love to hear your stories! Post it below in the comments.