Day 112: Netherlands
We started our day by heading to the Van Gogh Museum. I have never seen so many people in a museum at one time. I have been to the Art Institute in Chicago and the MOMA in New York, but this was a completely different experience. I have this habit where I enter a museum determined to read every single display and I get halfway through the museum and get tired of reading everything and just stop and appreciate the art, only reading the ones that really stand out to me. Do any of you do the same thing? Or am I the only one?
I have always had an appreciation for Van Gogh. I find his story very interesting. His success was fueled by his passion. For much of his relatively short career Van Gogh created a new work of art everyday. He knew that the only way for him to get better was to continually practice. That concept is so inspiring. Continuing to hone your craft or your passion can open up new doors and possibilities for excellence. What is one of your passions that you want to improve on? Are you willing to work on it everyday? You can’t be completely successful at something if you aren’t willing to work for it.
We decided to head toward the De Pijp neighborhood to check it out. We ended up at a cute little park where we sat on a bench and people watched. I spotted what I thought would be a perfect picture. There was a bike leaning against a fountain with beautiful trees in the background. The only problem was I couldn’t get the shot because of all the picnickers laying in the grass in front of the fountain. However, I was determined because I could see what it was going to be. So we waited about an hour for the last picnickers to leave so that I could take the picture. Don’t be so quick to give up on things. I realize this was just a picture, but the lesson can be applied to anything in your life that you are considering giving up on or walking away from. Sometimes things take time.
After finally getting my picture, we headed to the The Fault in Our Stars bench. I know, I know. How cliche? We are in Amsterdam and its such a great movie, why not go see the famous bench? It may just be a bench, but its really what the bench represents. I think we’ve established in previous entries that I love, love. Which is exactly what this bench represents. It represents old love, new love, lost love and even love that hasn’t been found yet. It is actually quite beautiful.
We took our obligatory pictures and headed to the square to grab some drinks. We sat at a table outside and watched all of the activity happening around up. We decided to try Bitterballen for the first time. They were interesting to say the least. Essentially, they are fried meat balls that have a soft gravy like center. It sounds super gross and they weren’t my favorite, but they weren’t terrible. I realize that isn’t a glowing recommendation for them, but you should definitely try them if you find yourself in Amsterdam.
As we sat watching the people and activity around us, I noticed two things. First, it was well past 10pm, but it was still light outside and secondly, the clouds were pink. Beautiful cotton candy clouds surrounded us, providing a vibrant canvas for the the life that was happening all around.
EuropeCotton Candy Clouds
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The reason why I started The Journey Within is simple, really. I was tired of suppressing my true dreams. It was time for me to take control of my life and do what I’ve always wanted. Which was to travel the world, experiencing new and different cultures. I started this blog because everyone has a dream. I want to inspire others to take action in their lives and live their best lives. We are all worth fulfilling our true dreams. The only thing that holds us back is ourselves. We create stories that stop us from achieving what we really want. My hope is that through my journey and my story others will be inspired to make their dreams come true. Someday is NOW! So start with me, today!
Hi guys! I’m Katie and welcome to my Elephant Tribe! I recently celebrated my 29th birthday and I am in the best place I have ever been. In early February 2017 I packed my bags and left for Belize. As I travel the world, I fall more and more in love with this pastime I fell in love with so many years ago. The universe has blessed me greatly. I have had opportunities to travel abroad numerous times in my life. Prior to starting this journey I had traveled to 8 countries outside the US. However, I longed to see more, but I allowed life and school and work and bills and time and so many other things got in the way of me actually experiencing more of the world. I got stuck in the monotony of everyday life. Between March 2014 and June 2016 the only travel I had done was a weekend trip to San Francisco for my cousins wedding and several weekends to Las Vegas for Choice Center trainings. Besides exploring my own self, I was craving to leave the US. In 2016, the closest I would come was Hawaii. It was beautiful and amazing, but that was where I realized it was time to take on my life and live my vision.
My vision has always been to inspire others. How I wanted to do that has changed several times over the course of my life. It was right after I returned from Hawaii that I decided to start this journey. Inspiring others to live their best lives when I myself wasn't doing that would be inauthentic. So I decided to follow my heart, pack my bags and travel the world. The best way to inspire is through action. I took a leap of faith and placed trust in others to be where I am today. So I ask you to trust me, but most importantly I ask that you don't live vicariously through me. Use my story and my journey as a catalyst to start your own. I don’t mean you have to travel the world. You have your own dream and today you get to jump into the gap and follow your heart. I am here for you along the way. Feel free to contact me at any time. I will always respond as soon as I can. You are part of my elephant tribe and for that I am truly grateful.
I’ve been asked a lot about where my final destination will be. When I’m done traveling the world where will I ‘settle’ down. My family is in Chicago. With the exception of the past year and a half I have lived just outside of Chicago my whole life. It is a beautiful city that I love and my family means the world to me.
However, over the last year I fell in love Northern California. What’s not to love, wine country, my cousins, The Griesses, my California family, the rolling hills and most importantly my 7 year old BFF, Preston!
There’s also Las Vegas. Most of my friends are in Vegas. My Vegas friends are more like family and my life is best with them in it. They are the ones that inspire me daily and push me to take risks and step out of my comfort zone on a daily basis. And who doesn't want that in their lives.
Then there’s Mary. She is my cousin, but we are only 11 months apart and super close. She is one of my best friends and I tell her just about everything. She is going to go to grad school in LA or Portland or Chicago and I think it would be awesome to have her as a roommate. We would have so much fun living together.
I could also find a city along the way that I fall in love with and never want to leave. While I have so many options, I have decided to keep an open mind. I am living in the present. For now I have no desire to stop traveling. Currently, my vision is to travel the world while inspiring other to take on their lives. Right now I don’t know where that will take me. As I start figuring that out, my elephant tribe will be the first to know.
“Life is not a dress rehearsal. The curtain is up and you are on, so get out there and give it your best shot.” Create the story you are proud of and give your best performance.
A dream without action will always be just that, a dream. Choose today to be the day that you put action into your dreams and make them reality.
wherever you are
Food is something that brings the world together. Each culture has its own traditions and favorite foods. As a self proclaimed foodie, I was so excited to try cuisines in the countries they originated in. During my travels, I have discovered and will undoubtedly continue to discover culinary treasures around the globe. I am honored to share with you, My Elephant Tribe, the amazing meals I have enjoyed throughout the world.
Learn more #yummy