— Feathers and Wax

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Travel

We came back from our two-week trip to Japan on Sunday and have been slowly getting back into our normal routine so far this week. But I’m already experiencing Japan withdrawals, and have ended up spending my jetlagged early mornings searching for good Japanese restaurants in Houston.

As friends ask me what my favorite part of the trip was my thoughts keep going to our visit on a rainy day to the tiny village of Shirakawa-go, which felt like walking around in something from a mythical legend.

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(via)

We’re going to Japan for two full weeks next month! This will surely be my biggest travel adventure yet, and I’m so happy that it will be with Fred (yay!), my good friends Maki and Zach, and yet another great couple, Rick and Jessie.

I’m already heavily into preparation and packing list mode, but I’m so looking forward to this trip that I’m constantly looking up photos of the places we’re visiting to swoon over while I’m at work. Join me!

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Fred and I have gotten kind of addicted to taking small trips to celebrate our birthdays. This year we went to Marfa for his, and last year we went to New Orleans for mine.

So when Fred was able to get a few days off in June we went for it and booked flights to Nashville.

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My last day in Amsterdam was Easter Sunday, and while I wasn’t planning to hunt for eggs or attend mass, I still hoped to celebrate the holiday with a little bit of arts and culture.

Apparently, so was everyone else in Amsterdam. We arrived at the Van Gogh museum to see a line stretching for blocks, and a four-hour wait, according to a museum employee. Oof.

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On our second full day in Amsterdam the weather had turned quite a bit colder so we found ourselves regularly holing up in restaurants and cafes to drink Belgian beers and hot tea in between sightseeing and shopping.

The locals went about their business, bicycling through the chilly winds without a care, of course.

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As we planned our trip to Amsterdam, one of the things I was looking forward to the most was all the amazing apartments and houses that were available to rent in that city. As I said in my last post, I love the architecture in Amsterdam, and judging from the roundup on Airbnb, a lot of these homes are just as adorable on the inside as they are on the outside.

After all, the Jordaan neighborhood is considered rather hip, with lots of great design shops and cute cafes in walking distance, so the people who choose to live there certainly seem to know a thing or two about how to decorate a house.

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I’ve been back from Amsterdam for a week now. Editing the photos for this post brought it all back to me: the gently shimmering canal waters, the dozens of bikes riding down every cobblestone street, the proud houseboats in shades of navy blue and cream.

The architecture and the feel of this city is certainly what impressed itself upon me the most during this trip.

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It’s incredible to me that it has already been a full year since Fred and I went to Mexico to celebrate the marriage of two longtime friends of ours. On a recent flight, bored amid a lack of wifi, I unearthed some unused shots on my phone from our final day there. So, consider this a “throwback Thursday” post, if you will.

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On the final few days of our trip to Marfa we really settled in and got comfortable. It was nice being able to remember where things are without having to refer to a map all the time, like our first trip, and revisiting all our old haunts from our first trip.

We also settled in, quite literally, to our Airbnb and immediately felt right at home. It’s incredible what a difference having your own apartment makes on whether you feel like a tourist or a local.

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Usually at this point of the month I would do a “Lovely Things” post, with a roundup of nice things I found online. But today I’m shifting gears to feature one of my favorite new spaces in Marfa: Do Your Thing coffee shop. Maybe “Nice Space” will turn into its own series? We’ll see.

After a morning spent on wind-swept plains at the Chinati Foundation, Fred and I were cold, starving, and needed more caffeine. It was time for us to…ahem…do our thing.

(sorry)

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