My trip to Arizona: part one

My trip to Arizona: part one

This summer (and year, for that matter) has really put me out of my comfort zone for a few reasons. Towards the end of July, my brother and I took a trip out to visit our family in Arizona… alone! Yup, no parents.

I have always loved traveling but I had never traveled alone before this trip. The idea of it never really scared me, but once it actually became a reality the nerves took over juuuust a little. I’m happy to say that I made it there and back and my first trip traveling alone was a success and so much fun!

I took about a million photos so I decided to not do a giant post and instead separate them into a few different ones! This post will be our first few days and the Grand Canyon.

We headed to Boston and our flight got delayed because of rain and it left at around 10pm. I just love this colored glass at the Boston airport!


The plane ride was about four and a half hours so we got to Phoenix at around one AM. I (thankully) was able to sleep and wasn’t cursed with too much jet lag! We flew on JetBlue so there were TVs… unfortunately I did not ask where the headphone jack was on the way there but I later found out they’re right under the armrest, so pro tip for anyone who is looking for it next time you’re on the plane! 😉


As I mentioned above we were staying with family which was so nice!! The first day we slept and just hung out and swam in the pool. Then at night we headed down to Chase Field to see a Diamondbacks game. They were playing the Atlanta Braves and, sadly, lost. I learned a lot about baseball… like, a lot! I played softball for a whole season years ago and still didn’t know the rules of the game! I also had about a million mini-heart attacks because we were right in the strike zone for the lefties and seeing those balls above my head was so scary. Thankfully, I made it back alive to tell you the story. 


The next day we went down to Scottsdale Fashion Square for some shopping (mostly window shopping, actually!) That was a lot of fun because I don’t go to malls too often AND it was air conditioned. I mean, that’s kind of a must for any place in Arizona because it is SO HOT there!


Boba tea! This was some sorta watermelon strawberry blend. I can’t remember, but it was good!


We swam a LOT. Almost every day! Mostly in the early morning or late afternoon so it was a little cooler. I loved swimming at night because we could watch the sunset! Oh – we also heard AND saw an owl! More on that later…


The next day we headed up to the Grand Canyon. We drove about two hours up to Prescott and stayed overnight there. The scenery changed so much as we headed up towards the Canyon! It felt like we were in a totally different state.


Prescott was a super touristy town but it was really nice to walk around and check out all the fun gift shops and art stores. For dinner we ate at the restaurant right next to our hotel called The Barley Hound that was delicious. This salad was just part of our meal and it was spinach, beets, candied pistachios, and goat cheese which is my favorite! I could eat this salad every day.


This is where we stayed, Hotel Vendome. I had never stayed in a hotel quite like this one. You could totally tell it was pretty historic from the claw foot tubs to the pull chain toilets but it was so nice. I would totally stay there again if I ever go to Prescott again! Plus it’s in the middle of the downtown area of Prescott and right next to The Barley Hound and another nice cafe that we went for breakfast the next morning.


The next day we drove another two hours up to the Canyon! I have been to Arizona a few times before but had never been to Grand Canyon. I was so excited to visit my first national park, and this one totally did not disappoint. Seriously – we had the best experience ever!


OMG a photo of me?! On my blog?! This is a historic moment. I rarely post photos of myself but oddly enough this post has two. TWO! Give me some credit for that, ok?!


How amazing is that? If you haven’t seen the Canyon, you must go. I feel soooo lucky I got to experience it. It’s seriously the coolest thing ever.


 Soooo by the way, guys, I baaaaasically hiked the Grand Canyon.

Well… maybe half a mile of it. My cousin, brother, and I hiked just a little bit of the first trail. Was I sweating my butt off by the time we got back up??? You know it. But honestly it would be soooo cool to go down there and actually hike and camp there. On my bucket list! Someday…


OK, so right as we were getting ready to leave, a thunderstorm starting to come in faster from the other side of the canyon. (SO COOL, RIGHT?!) We had seen the clouds and heard some thunder a bit earlier that day, but it didn’t really seem like it was going to pass over us. Well, IT DID! We were planning on taking sunset photos but we weren’t sure if the clouds would clear up. We drove around and stopped at various points but found the absolute PERFECT place to stop. As soon as we got there the rain started to slow down and the sun began to set.


And, BOOM. Basically the most perfect sunset ever. The weather that day was crazy and I basically experienced it all: hot & sunny, cold & rainy! It was kind of hard to capture the amazing-ness of it, so these photos will have to do.




When you realize you made it out of the Grand Canyon without falling in… #yaasssss #iDidIt #proud 

LOL. So there’s part one of my Arizona trip! More to come this week. I had the best time ever and am super excited to share more. Happy Friday! 

A Day in New York City

HI guys! Okay, okay. I know I said I would put New York post up LAST week, but hey. It’s up now, so that’s all that matters! 

So yeah! For my birthday I was just dying to go to New York City again because I love it there so much. We weren’t able to stay overnight or anything like we did last year, (see those posts here and here) so we just went for the day. I’m so excited to share my photos with you! I didn’t really take many with my camera and so all of these are from my iPhone and edited with A Color Story. (my favorite editing app!) 

From the recent trips I’ve taken into the city, I’ve noticed it can be pretty tedious to have to a) take out your camera from your bag every time you want to take a photo or b) stop right in the middle of the sidewalk to take one. I’m sure there are better ways to utilize my camera around the city but I think I just need to practice! 

We left the house a little later than planned but got to the New Haven Train Station by around 8:30-9ish. Oh! Do you guys like my new shoes? Not really new now but I got them for my birthday and I love them! Here is the link to the style they are… I can’t seem to find the same color! I’m sure they’re somewhere on the internet, though. 

On the train! It was probably about an hour and a half or two hours to get there.

Grand Central Station! It’s so pretty there. And busy. VERY busy. 

Our first stop was the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). I had never been there and it had been on my bucket list for forever! They were CRAZY busy though. It probably would’ve been better to go on another day or earlier, but it was still really cool to see everything. Here are some of my favorite pieces we saw: 

From there we took the subway up to Greenwich Village where we spent most of the day. 

We were all pretty hungry after that so we went to Joe’s Pizza for lunch! It’s been on my bucket list for a while as well and let me tell you it did NOT disappoint. Probably the best pizza I’ve ever had and I’m not exaggerating! You have to try it. Oh – AND it was in the Spider Man movie so that makes it 100x cooler. 

Coincidentally, ANOTHER place on my bucket list was literally right next to Joe’s! I’ve seen Popbar over the Internet and it always looked so delicious. 

Yummm! I got pistachio with chocolate and more pistachio nuts on top. 

From there we walked around Greenwich Village a bit and found Washington Square Park! I was looking forward to seeing the pretty fountain in the center but sadly it wasn’t running 😦 but that’s okay. I know I’ll be back to see it! The flowers were also just starting to bloom and it was so pretty.

So after that we kinda just walked around and enjoyed The Village! I love it there. All of New York has so much to do but the village is so awesome and there are so many cool places! We stumbled upon a CREPE restaurant. I LOOOVE crepes so much. I’ve taught myself to make them, but you can’t go wrong with getting one off the streets of New York, right?! Mine had Nutella and strawberries and it was so so good. 

Then we visited Socketbit which is a little Swedish candy shop that (I keep saying this oh my god!) has been on my bucket list forever! I’m serious about this one. It’s so cute and colorful in there (well, the candy is!) and I loved it so much. 

After that we walked around for a while and found a spot to eat dinner. Then we took a cab (My first cab in NYC!! It’s nothing special. I prefer the subway. Haha.) back to Grand Central. It was a super fun day in New York and I can’t wait to visit again. Hope you guys enjoyed these photos – sorry it took so long to get them up! 

Happy Saturday!

Vermont photos & happy Friday!

Hey guys! It’s been foreeeeeever since I’ve written on here. A whole MONTH. So, not foreeeeeever.. but you know what I mean. I’ve been a) super busy and b) lacking post ideas! BUT I just remembered I never showed my Vermont photos with you! I went a few weeks ago with my friend and her family, and it was, as always, soooo much fun! I went last summer and the summer before, so this was the first time I had been in winter! It didn’t snow as much as I thought it would, which was surprising but also great cause we didn’t get trapped up there in a blizzard! Here are some of my favorite iPhone photos I took while up there…


You know you’re in Vermont when THIS is the gas station ice cream selection… I mean, COME ON. It’s basically the entire factory in that freezer! They even have my favorite flavor, The Tonight Dough!


It was super late when we got there the first night, but the snow looked soooo pretty the next morning!

IMG_1305 (1)IMG_1442

I just had to take a photo of this house. It was right in downtown Stowe, and ALL the houses and shops just looked so beautiful!


We went sledding that day and it was awesome!! I love sledding, and this hill was just the best. Plus, it wasn’t too crowded, and people started to show up just as we left!


After sledding, we went to the general store, Stowe Mercantile! I LOVE it there. There are so many samples which I aaaalways help myself to. 😉 (If you go, you NEED to sample these corn nugget things… they’re AMAZING!!!) The jams are really yummy as well.


Really wish I had gotten these cute succulent salt and pepper shakers! I am obsessed with them!!


The penny candy I got! They have the best selection. My favorites are the nonpareils, candy rocks, those raspberry and blackberry things, and chocolate cookie dough bites!


How cute would it be if you bought some of these letters and wrote out a word or something on your wall?! I love them. They remind me of Fixer Upper!


That night we went to one of my favorite pizza places PIECASSO! We always go when we’re up in Vermont. It is deliiiiiicious. We got pineapple pizza (my favorite… why do people hate it!?!?!) and cheese! Oh – and garlic knots which are pictured above. Those are the best!


Love these! They’re right in the main waiting area next to the mini arcade. We have gone to the arcade every time and it is so much fun because we win stuff every time! Haha! The first time we won bouncy balls, this time I won TWO stuffed animals, and my friend Emma won HEADPHONES! They were super cheap and basically broke on the ride back… but come on…who ever wins at those games?!


Pretty lights outside!


Laughing moon chocolate factory! We stopped there on the way home. I got some kind of chocolate almond bark and it was so, so, so good!


Gorgeous sunset on the ride back!

I didn’t take too, too many photos this trip, but these were some of my favorites! Hope you enjoyed seeing them. I’m gonna be sharing my March playlist really soon… it’s a good month for music! Happy Friday, guys! Hope you all have a great weekend.

A Trip To Vermont!

 Last Tuesday, my brother and I went to Vermont with some of our friends. If you remember, last year I took the same trip! I am so glad I brought my big camera this year. I also filmed a little video which I haven’t finished editing yet, but I will link it in another post when I’m done.

We left at around 3pm. The car ride was about 4 hours, so not too bad. We stopped at Subway for dinner. By the end of the ride, we were all pretty tired and kind of crazy from being stuck in the car for so long! We watched some tv and went to bed around 11:30. What’s a vacation without staying up late, right? 🙂

The next day was Wednesday. We all woke up pretty late and had pancakes for breakfast. A little ways from their house, there is a hiking trail called Moss Glen Falls, with an amazing waterfall! We decided to go there first. I actually really like hiking. The only thing I don’t like about it is the BUGS! :/

The hike up to the waterfall was craaaaazy steep. It was a bit scary because we were very high up. There wasn’t a fence or anything so you just had to be really careful! There was even a warning sign…


Now I don’t even think I have seen a waterfall this big before. The picture doesn’t really show how huge it was! I know it’s nothing compared to Niagara Falls or something… but it was just incredible. There were people sitting in front of it (:/) so I tried my best to get a photo without them in it. I cropped them out in these two.


^^If you look close enough, you can see where the waterfall starts in the way back! We walked all the way up there and hung out in a little stream. ^^


^^I love the light in this photo. See how steep it was to get to the top?! Crazy. ^^


^^I love this photo because I can just imagine the sound of the water trickling (is that a word?) over the rocks. Ahh. So pretty and peaceful!^^


^^Does anyone know what these flowers are called? They’re so pretty!^^

So after about an hour or so we headed to…. wait for it… THE CABOT CHEESE FACTORY/STORE!! I went here last year and it is cheese heaven. Really. There’s a whole table dedicated to cheese samples! I’ll admit, I took more than I should have, but it was so worth it because it’s so darn good! I tried them all, and my favorite is usually Pepper Jack, but I tried some other spicy ones and I actually loved them. I am usually not one to try super spicy foods, but I am glad I did!


^^Haha! Tangy and colorful, with a little “kick.”^^

Unfortunately I didn’t get too many photos from that place. I took a ton of clips for the video, though, so stay tuned for that!!

Right next door is the Lake Champlain store. I went here last year as well, and we also went to the factory. The chocolate is AMAZING!! I didn’t get any, but they had a sample which was milk chocolate sea salt almond or something like that. It was incredible!! So  yummy.

Silly ole’ me forgot to take any photos there as well. Whoops. I did take videos trust me!!

OK. The next place was probably one of my favorite parts of the whole trip. Yep, that’s right. BEN & JERRY’S. If you didn’t know, I love Ben & Jerry’s. (But I mean, who doesn’t love them?) This was my third time at the factory, and once again, it did not disappoint!

I was really excited to see that there was a new video when we took the factory tour! I had seen the same one already, but the new one was so much better in my opinion. Plus, our tour guide was funny, which is always a plus. If you ever go to the factory, you need to take the tour! And get the ice cream OF COURSE!

My favorite part the tour is the sample at the end. This time, it was Milk and Cookies, which happens to be one of my faves!

We went to the scoop shop after and got our ice cream on. My favorite flavor is Phish Food, but this time I wanted something different, so I got The Tonight Dough with rainbow sprinkles. It is definitely in my top five flavors! If you don’t know what it is, it’s chocolate and I think caramel with cookie dough, peanut butter cookie dough, and something else crazy! I highly suggest that flavor if 1) You love Jimmy Fallon 🙂 and 2) LOVE CHOCOLATE!

I was also very proud of myself when the tour guide asked us what we thought the best selling flavor was and I got it right. (It’s half-baked!)

For someone who loves to take food photos, this next part was a dream come true. There were hydrangeas next to where we sat, and they were the perfect background to my pretty and colorful ice cream! Come on. How pretty is that?! (Yes, by the time I was done taking photos the ice cream was a bit melty. I didn’t even care, though. #DoItForThePhoto.)


^^ Sorry not sorry. Here’s a closeup to make you hungry. Mwahahaha. ^^

After that, we headed back. We were all stuffed from all the samples we had! My friend Emma and I worked on a video we’re making, then we played hide and seek and baseball with our brothers. After it got dark, we decided to make a fire!


^^ I love this shot of the leaves. It looks sort of Christmas-ey! ^^

We made s’mores and hung out around the fire for the rest of the night. I experimented with the shutter speed a bit and snapped these next photos. It looks sorta creepy, but I like how they turned out!


The next day, we decided to go swimming. It was really hot! We went to the same place last year. I’m not sure if there’s a real name for it but I think it’s just a Reservoir. It may be a state park but I’m not sure. It’s somewhere in Stowe, though!



I normally don’t LOVE swimming in lakes because I am not a huge fan of fish rubbing against my leg. Also I am afraid children have peed in it. But that day I was a total water-bug! I brought my goggles and although I couldn’t see anything underwater (LOL) it was worth it. I just love the water!!

We headed back after we had finished our lunch. We all showered and headed downtown! I really enjoy walking through downtown Stowe, or any town for that matter!! They’re always so cute. We went to Stowe Mercantile, which is an awesome little store! I got some penny candy, and we took photos in the photo booth. And, of course, tried aaaaaaall the samples. 🙂


^^ I see this soap at a lot of places and it is so cute!! Has anyone tried it? I am always tempted to, but it’s kinda expensive. Let me know if you’ve tried it and it it’s any good!


It just so happened that there was a little art show happening that day down one of the streets called “Art in the Park.” (I think…) There were a lot of little stands of people selling their art, jewelry, or food. I got a maple cotton candy sample, jam sample(s), and cookie sample. I wish I had written down the names of the businesses! 😦


From there, we went to get (more) ice cream at a malt shop! I think it’s called Depot Street Malt Shop. It is the CUTEST place ever! It’s 50’s themed so there are black and white checkered floors, photos of Marilyn Monroe and Elvis with a bunch of old antique furniture and jukeboxes. I would totally go there again and I definitely recommend it if you happen to be in Stowe!


^^ I got strawberry ice cream. It’s actually one of my favorite non-Ben & Jerry’s flavors, but I don’t have it very often. ^^

We headed to Piecasso Pizza for dinner. I went here last year and got pineapple pizza (no ham, just pineapple). I normally don’t get pineapple pizza because it either has ham or some meat on it, or I forget it exists! We also went to the little “game room” there.


^^BTW: You need to get the garlic knots. They are fantastic!!! ^^


^^ Oh yeahhhh!!! ^^


^^ PACMAN! ^^

Behind Piecasso, there’s a little walking trail. We walked on it and were probably on it for about an hour or 45 minutes.


^^ The cutest wall art under a bridge! ^^

We sat down at this little river and watched my brother and his friend skip rocks and almost hit us, as we were on the other side of the river… :/

It was pretty late, so we headed back. The next day, we left at about 9:40AM, and headed home!

So that was my trip to Vermont! I hope you guys enjoyed! This is, like, my longest post ever. 1517 words… and counting…

Stay tuned for the little video that should be up soon… hopefully by the middle or end of the week! I hope your summer is going well! I know I have been a bit absent on here… sorry about that. I’m not even that busy, so I have no excuse. I guess I don’t really know what to post! I hope you enjoyed this, though!!!

Happy Monday!

D.C. Travel Film!

Just a quick post for today. Wanted to share with you guys the little travel film I created from my trip to D.C. All the info is in the description box regarding music, font, etc.

You can watch the video on my Youtube channel right….


(I unfortunately don’t have the plan to insert the full video so you will just have to click on the link to see it!)

Enjoy it and don’t forget to subscribe to see more videos!

Josie Goes to Washington D.C. {Part Two}

Hello and happy Thursday, everyone! Shall I resume where I was in the previous post? Here are more from the Smithsonian…



So after that, we went to the “Twilight Tattoo.” At first, I had NO idea what that was. But with a quick google search before that I found out what it was. Basically, it was a war reenactment, but in song! A couple people from the military sang pop songs, and afterwards we could take pics with them. You have to see it — it was fantastic! Definitely one of the highlights of the trip and one of my faves. So much fun. (Unfortunately I don’t have any photos… just trust me on this one!) 

It was almost dark, so we took a night tour of some monuments. The first was the Jefferson Memorial. We also saw the MLK and FDR memorials.

I’m a little obsessed with bokeh. Just a little.

The amazing Eleanor Roosevelt!! Also — you’ll notice I don’t have as many pics from the night tour. That’s because it was so dark and we walked a ton that day so we were all a tad miserable… hehe. But it was so great seeing them and at least I got a couple shots!

The next day…

Thursday, June 2, 2016
Today our first stop was the Iwo Jima Memorial. I had seen photos of it and I didn’t recognize the name, but it was so awesome to see in person.


Next stop was the 9/11 Pentagon Memorial. This one was gorgeous. I thought the benches were such an inspiring way to honor those who passed away that day. It was definitely one of the more emotional ones.

So next stop, we tried again to get into the Holocaust Museum, but they were out of tickets again! You should’ve seen the line… it was going down the whole building and even farther! Someday I’ll have to go back, cause I was dying to see it! Actually, without tickets we were able to get into the building, and saw two exhibits, so we were lucky!

We hit the Ronald Reagan Building food court next for lunch. I got my absolute favorite kind of sushi… the Philadelphia Roll!!!! It’s avocado, cream cheese, and salmon. AMAZING.


I also got rocky road ice cream for dessert. 🙂

Next, just for fun, we went to a carousel…


We went to the National Museum of American History next. We only had an hour or so in there, but it was totally worth it because we got to see an incredible exhibit that I’m just slightly obsessed with. FIRST LADIES! I can’t tell you how cool it was. It had most of their Inauguration Dresses and so much cool information on them, I could probably hang out in there all day. I EVEN SAW MICHELLE OBAMAS DRESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was freaking out … it was so so so so so so awesome!!!!!! Plus a ton of others like Jackie O and Eleanor Roosevelt!

After we saw it I looked up info about the exhibit, and there was a pic of Michelle Obama when she donated the dress there. Guys. I was standing right where she was. AHHHHH!!!!!!!!


Next sop was Arlington Cemetery. People will tell you it’s huge. But it’s bigger than huge!!


I didn’t get too many shots, but I got more on video than on my camera. My favorite part was witnessing the Changing of the Guards protecting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. I will never forget that! Very interesting to watch and I am so glad I got the experience.

That’s the end of Thursday!

Friday, June 3, 2016
Today is our final day! I woke up, ate breakfast, and got my stuff together. First, we went to the White House where we took a class photo. We couldn’t get super close (security) but it was amazing to be at least in the same 300ish feet of it!


Our last stop was the National Archives Museum. It was pretty awesome because we got to see the REAL Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Declaration of Independence! The museum itself had some cool interactive exhibits, too.

And we were off! That was my whole trip to Washington, D.C. I am so happy we got the ability to take this trip. I will never forget it and all of the memories I had. Thank you to everyone who helped make it happen! It was probably one of the highlights of my entire middle school experience.

Have you ever been to D.C? What was your favorite part?

Hope you all enjoyed! I have my 8th grade graduation dance tomorrow and I’m super excited! Hopefully I’ll be able to share a photo of my dress etc. on “the gram,” tomorrow! Haha. Mostly I can’t believe that I am graduating in a little over a week! EEEEK!!!

Happy Thursday!