Wanderlust Revisited

wanderlust |ˈwändərˌləst|
noun

a strong desire to travel : a man consumed by wanderlust.ORIGIN early 20th cent.: from German Wanderlust.

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I’ve learned two things about myself.

  1. I have been very blessed to travel to a good number of cities, beaches, and special places on this earth, thanks to my family and especially my involvement in organizations such as band.
  2. After a long period of time after a trip, I reflect upon what I did there and how I wish that I could just go back and try again. It’s not that I necessarily regret anything I did or would change anything, but it’s that I realize I am in a different place in life. Going back would mean I could have an entirely new appreciation or understanding of that place. A second chance to learn again.

It’s much like rereading a book or hearing a song years later. Your life experiences have changed you and, therefore, the book or song or place sheds light on something new, something unseen before.

Sometimes I worry that I can’t just be satisfied with the memories I do have. Shouldn’t I just focus on the new places I should visit next?

A year ago, I set foot on Scotland—arguably, the most beautiful place in the world.

Edinburgh Castle (photo courtesy: Aaron M.)

I have seen perfection in the Scottish highlands and delighted in a way of life that is steeped in tradition. I loved my time there and the people I was with. But I have this aching feeling in the pit of my stomach to go back—to do things differently, to feel things differently, to appreciate things differently. I hope one day I do have that opportunity.

Kappa Delta sisters at Loch Ness (photo courtesy: Ali P.)

I do, however, get to revisit Virginia Beach where my Uncle Don lives with my family and my boyfriend in one week! It has been about 12 years since I was there last and I am anxious to see what it will be like now. It has been ages since I’ve gone on vacation and I cannot WAIT.

Do you experience wanderlust or the longing to go back? If so, where would you like to travel to?

Disney Princess Inspired Outfits Series! Week One: Belle

I became addicted to Polyvore about a year and a half ago. This obsession has certainly died down rather significantly, but I still think back to the collection of Disney Princess inspired outfits I created just for fun. I thought it would be fun to show you the totally wearable outfits in a series of weekly posts. For week one, I thought I’d share an outfit inspired by Belle:

Belle

I just love the yellow dress and the warmth of the jewelry and flower.

I think Belle is one of my favorite Disney princesses! Maybe it’s because she loves books so much…

Welcome to The Modern Austen!

I am thrilled to have you here and to start this blogging journey with you. I have wanted to start a blog for quite some time and, now that I am a college graduate ready to start my teaching career, I am ready to take on this adventure. I am slowly but surely finding my purpose for this blog—I’m thinking a lifestyle, food, style, and teaching blog rolled into one—and hope that it can continue to expand and grow as I meet life’s challenges.

So why would I choose The Modern Austen for the title of my blog? Here’s where the English nerd in me comes out…In college, I wrote my senior capstone project on Jane Austen, exploring why her novels remain timeless and relevant even in the twenty-first century. I also explored how each new age takes Austen and redefines her to meet their needs. What’s great about Austen is that she is not a cookie cutter; she is useful. She is relevant. Austen may touch upon classic themes and ideas, but that’s what makes her so helpful to modern audiences. We all need a little tried and true advice from time to time. (I promise I won’t go into the 30+ pages of my capstone to explain this, but I hope you get the picture!)

Now, I certainly don’t claim to be the modernized version of Austen or even believe I have the authority to give advice or make claims about modern society, but I hope that my blog always maintains the same spirit as Austen’s novels do. I hope it is classic, yet modern, simple, and refreshing, and that it always encourages women (and maybe men, too) to strive for both “freedom and fairy tales,” or rather the independence to live freely without giving up the pleasures of love, friends, and family.

I assure you that all of my posts won’t be as in-depth or serious, but I believe that this purpose and spirit unifies all that I stand for. I am always open to feedback and ideas, so please don’t be shy! It will probably take a while for this blog to stand on its own two feet, so I would appreciate your patience along the way! :)