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As I come to terms with the terrorist attacks in Paris, I really don’t know how to adequately express myself. My heart is feeling so many emotions – pain, grief, compassion, sadness, love, hurt, anger. I keep trying to rationalize everything but you just can’t rationalize something that is so irrational.

I pray for the children that lost their mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers. The parents that lost their sons and daughters. The wife that lost her husband, the husband that lost his wife. Because while the news talks about all the people who lost their lives as a single entity, we fail to realize that each one of them had a name, a family, a story.

I headed to Paris this past weekend with Margo, Melanie, Jen, and Alex! We had been talking about doing a blogger meet-up since this past fall so it was great for all of us to get together! I know Margo and Melanie pretty well because we all live(d) in Heidelberg (man, do I miss those girls and our coffee dates!) and I had met Jen on a previous trip to London. Even though this was my first time meeting Alex, I think we are going to be pretty good friends :) Plus she lives in Aberdeen, Scotland so we will be neighbors next year!

I love The Phantom of the Opera and when my friend, Cat, told me it was based on Palais Garnier in Paris, I knew I had to visit it! Honestly, the line between what is fact and what is fiction is a bit blurred. For the most part, the story of The Phantom of the Opera is fictional. However, the author of the book, Gaston Leroux, continued to claim on his deathbed that the Phantom did really exist.

My friend Maren and I spent an entire afternoon/early evening at Versailles. Besides the fact that it was absolutely freezing, the sun was shining and there was hardly anyone at Versailles. I had been to Versailles once before but Maren had never been there so it was entertaining to watch her face once Versailles finally came into view! It is spectacular, isn’t it?

I spent last weekend in Paris with my friend Maren! I’ve actually been to Paris once before a few years ago for a class trip but never really got an opportunity to truly explore the city. Paris was absolutely wonderful…gorgeous architecture, yummy food/crepes/pastries, delicious wine, and stunning fashion!