Friday Introductions

 

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Hey friends!

Since I re-launched my blog in late 2017 after taking a year long break I figured now would be a great time to introduce myself to my new and old followers.

For starters, my name is Hayley, hence Life of Hayley. If I had to categorize my blog I would say that it is a “Lifestyle Blog”. I love to share my favorite products, books, travel, and most recently, wedding planning. Not only do I love blogging, but I also love reading other people’s blogs. I am also looking for new bloggers to follow!

I began this blog in November 2013 right when I was turning 20 as a way to document all of the things I wanted to accomplish before turning 25. It’s been four years and I am so proud with how far I have come! I will be 25 next fall and I feel more than ready. I have accomplished far more than I ever thought possible and am in love with the way my life is turning out.

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My biggest accomplishment was studying abroad in London in 2015. I was SO scared to move to London for a semester but it turned out to be the best decision. I made life-long friends and cherish the memories that I made along the way. London will always feel like home!

I graduated from college in April 2016 with a Bachelor of Business Administration. I majored in Electronic Business Marketing and minored in General and International Business. After I graduated, I began looking for a full-time job in my field. I ended up accepting a position at a financial company in September 2016. I expected to like the job but never expected to fall in love with it! I love my company, my co-workers, and the work that I am doing every day. I really feel like I am making an impact on my community and our client’s lives.

Wedding Planning - Wedding Pictures

On August 19th, 2017 I married my boyfriend of six years, Brett. Our wedding day went by so quickly but it turned out better than we could have ever imagined! We got married at a Lake where I spent most of my summers growing up. We were surronded with all of our favorite people; our friends, family, and co-workers. Everyone who joined us had made an impact on our lives in some way. It was so special to start our married lives with all of the people who we love the most.

Brett and I went on a two week Honeymoon in London directly following the wedding. It was just like coming home. Brett proposed to me in London so the city holds a special place in both of our hearts.

Now I am just enjoying life with Brett and our cat, Lucy. We live in a cute little apartment and love spending time with our friends playing trivia or old PS2 games. I love tea, The Crown, Harry Potter, and reading. I’m an introvert who greatly values my alone time. I am also a Target addict and a wannabe interior designer.

Welcome to my little corner of the internet. I hope you stay awhile!

 

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Our Next Big Adventure

Welcome back! I know I said in my last post that I had some exciting news to share with you and I am very sorry that it took me this long to tell you! But, I’m engaged!

We're engaged!

I met Brett in 2011, the summer before my senior year of high school. I was 17 and he was 19 when our mutual friend introduced us. We talked for a while and then finally had our first date at a mini golf place. He won, but I did get a hole-in-one which really impressed him I’m sure.

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Brett was there for me during one of the most important years of my life. He cheered me on at band competitions and solo and ensemble. He listened to hours of me playing the flute, helped me with my math homework, and danced with me at prom. He watched me walk across the stage at graduation, helped organize my graduation party, and moved me in to my very first dorm room.

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Fortunately, when we met Brett was already attending the college that I was planning on going to so it was no surprise when we ended up at the same university. He was a couple of years ahead of me so he was able to walk me to all of my classes and show me around campus. He answered all of my questions and made my first couple of years really great.

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I had always wanted to study abroad and he knew that from the start. Brett was so supportive of my dream and always told me that I would really regret it if I didn’t go. The four months away from him were very hard and I missed him so much. We talked every day but it wasn’t the same and I missed having someone to share my life with. It was not easy being apart for so long and I couldn’t do it again but I am so glad that I had the opportunity to study abroad.

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The most amazing part of my trip was when Brett came and visited me with my mom and sister at the end. He came a few days early so we had plenty of time to explore together. We visited London, Denmark, and Ireland together.

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On May 29th, the day before I returned to the U.S., we spent the day visiting all of my favorite places in London. I said goodbye to Big Ben, drank my last cup of British tea, and ate one last dinner with Anna Sophie in Camden. That night I was freaking out about leaving. Brett and I went down to the lobby of our hotel to print boarding passes and he asked me to take a walk with him.1100

Our hotel was near Heathrow Airport since we all were leaving bright and early the next day. The area surrounding our hotel was a little neighborhood where we walked along the streets. We talked about our excitement of being back together again and going home. Then Brett got down on one knee and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. And I said yes!

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It wasn’t easy coming home but knowing that I get to spend the rest of my life with such a wonderful man made everything so much better. He honestly makes me so happy and I know that he will always support and love me!

I’m so happy to finally share the great news with you and am looking forward to wedding planning! We are starting our life adventure together and I could not be happier!

Thanks for reading! Please let me know if you have any wedding planning/marriage tips that I should know about!

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Sunday Funday at Primrose Hill

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Hello, friends!

One of my favorite things to do in London was explore the Royal Parks with my friends. While I was in London I had the privilege to live in Regent’s Park which is one of the largest parks in central London. Near Regent’s Park is Primrose Hill where you can climb to the top of the hill and have a fantastic view of the London skyline.

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The last Sunday (5/10/15) in London before my family visited six of us girls packed a picnic brunch and climbed Primrose Hill to eat. Anna  Sophie made pancakes at her flat and the rest of us brought drinks and snacks. I brought a blanket and we all lounged together for hours eating, laughing, and chatting about anything and everything.

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It was the perfect day for a picnic with the sun shining brightly over London. We had a clear view of the skyline and were even surprised with the Red Arrows doing a flyover right above us! It was such a cool experience to be a part of!

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I miss my friends and I really miss the simple things like spending the afternoon relaxing together. London was the most wonderful adventure of my life where I met my life-long best friends! Primrose Hill was one of my favorite places in London to explore and relax at.

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Thanks for reading! 

P.S. All of the pictures in this post were taken by Anna Sophie! Thanks for letting me use your pictures! 🙂

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June Goals

June Goals // www.lifeofhayley.com

Hello again! I am back from my little blogging break! 🙂

This past semester I studied abroad in London which turned into the best experience of my life. I still have many posts that I would like to share with all of you about things that I did while I was abroad. I flew back to Michigan on May 30th and have just been putting my life back together ever since. It was hard coming home because I feel like I am a much different person now then I was in January when I left for London. I don’t fit the same way in my old life anymore so there are many things that I need to adjust.

Now is my chance to change whatever I would like about my life. I have decided to set myself a few goals for June in order to stay on track and get some things done. This is a new kind of post for me so let me know what you think!

  1. Spend more time with my family and friends: After being away for four months I have a lot of catching up to do. I also realized while I was gone that in the past I haven’t had much time off to spend with my family and I really regret that. I need to start putting my family first.
  2. Take Megan on at least five walks a week: Megan is our family’s three and a half year old puggle. We got her in October and she is a little bundle of energy! I’ve been taking her on a walk every day since I have come back and she really loves it.
  3. Focus on eating healthy: While I was abroad I ate whatever I wanted to and never thought about the consequences. Now that I am back I need to focus on eating healthy and getting back to a heathy pre-study abroad weight.
  4. Organize my bedroom and donate/sell clothing: I have already started doing this and it’s exhausting. While I was gone I lived with just a few clothing options and I liked it much better than having an exploding closet. Now that I am getting older I need to start investing in quality pieces instead of focusing on quantity.
  5. Start working again: I’ve been home for almost a week and haven’t started at work yet. I am going back to my old job which I am excited about but I needed some time off before going back to figure things out.
  6. Finish study abroad blogs: I got really behind on blogging while I was in London because I spent the majority of my time doing things with my friends or exploring London. I have so many adventures that I would still like to share with you! Hopefully I will have time to finish everything this month!

I’m thinking that setting goals each month will be a great addition to my life and this blog. I would love to read about all of your goals so please let me know if you are also doing these posts! I’m always so inspired by other bloggers! Also, at the end of the month I may or may not to a recap where I review the goals that I had set for myself.

Thanks for reading! It’s so nice to back to blogging!

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June Goals // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break Adventures in Germany

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Hello, friends! 

I’ve been struggling for the past few weeks trying to decide how to write a post that would describe how amazing my spring break was. But last night I came to the conclusion that there are not enough words to even begin to tell you how much that trip meant to me.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

One of the main things I was scared of about studying abroad was making new friends. But almost instantly I met this amazing group of girls. We have danced, sang, laughed and cried together over the last four months and their friendship means the world to me.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

With that said, our trip to Germany was absolutely perfect because we were together. It didn’t matter what we did on the trip because the only thing that mattered was the people that we were with. I want to say a huge thank you to Anna Sophie, Shere, Ana, Alejandra, and Andrea for being my best friends and making our trip unforgettable.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Anna Sophie’s family was amazing and made every aspect of our trip amazing. In Berlin, we met her Grandparents who treated us like family from the second they met us at the airport. They greeted us with hugs and flowers and it didn’t matter that we didn’t speak the same language because their actions spoke volumes about the amazing people that they are.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

When we arrived at Anna’s family home we met her brothers, mom, and dad. They welcomed us warmly and we immediately felt at home with them. Her parents made us amazing dinners and took us on a ton of adventures near their home. In Germany I gained two grandparents, a mom, dad, 2 brothers, and 5 sisters. It was truly an amazing experience.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

When I decided to study abroad I set a goal for myself to travel to as many countries as I could during my time abroad. I think the old me would have been disappointed with me deciding to spend my whole spring break in Germany. But the one thing I have realized most during this trip is that it’s not about what you are doing, it’s about who you are with. These girls have made my study abroad semester truly unforgettable and their friendship means the world to me.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Going back to London after spending ten days in Germany was hard. I missed my family and the relaxed lifestyle that we experienced. But most of all, I missed my girls.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

I miss spending every night with them because it was like an amazing ten day sleepover. I miss talking until 2 am and our “midnight walks.” I miss watching Mama Mia together while laughing, singing, and dancing. I miss eating massive amounts of chocolate and drinking tea all day. I miss the sea and watching the sunset at the beach. I miss that time because I know that I will never experience the same feelings again. I am thankful to have had this experience and to be able to share these memories with you.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Studying abroad has been such a rewarding and life-changing experience. At times it’s been scary but every second of fear has been worth it. Following my dreams hasn’t been easy but I’m so glad that I did. I’m a much different person now than I was in January and I will go back to Michigan as a stronger and happier individual. I have finally figured out what it feels like to really live your life and I don’t think that I will be able to go back to my old life.

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Easter Break in Germany // Study Abroad London // Travel // www.lifeofhayley.com

Thanks for reading! My family is arriving soon so I probably won’t update much until I am back in the U.S. I have a ton more adventures that I would like to share with you though!

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Au Revoir, Paris!

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Hello, friends!

This is the third and final post about my weekend in Paris (part one, part two). I hope you all have enjoyed reading these! Paris is a magical place to visit and I feel lucky to have been able to travel there twice in my life already. It is a must see European destination in my opinion.

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Sunday started bright and early with packing up all of our belongings and storing it at the hostel. Then we moved on to a quick breakfast before taking the metro to the Catacombs. I am super afraid of dead people and have been this way for as long as I can remember. But studying abroad is all about overcoming your fears, right? So I joined my friends in this exciting adventure.

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

The line for the Catacombs took us over an hour and a half to get through. I would recommend to get there before it opens and snag a good spot in line. I had so much anxiety as I waited in line and once we finally entered and went underground I started to really freak out. It was super dark and creepy. In the beginning you are just wandering around tunnels and you have no idea when you are going to come across the burial chambers.

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Getting through the Catacombs took about an hour. I was careful to respect the bodies and paid my respects. I thought it was a pretty emotional experience to go through because you have no way of knowing who the people are and how they died. Their lives have been forgotten and their remains have been put on display for the world to see. However, it is a very historical experience and I understand the importance of the tour. Things were much different back then and the bones have been preserved underground.

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

After the Catacombs we made our way back to the Eiffel Tower to say goodbye. I have always loved the Eiffel Tower. Something about it just makes me really happy and I’m not sure why. Saying goodbye to it was sad because I don’t know if I will ever get to see it again.

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

We stopped for lunch and I once again had a crepe. This time I got a Nutella and banana crepe and it was incredibly delicious. Then we wandered around the Eiffel Tower and stopped at some shops before taking the Metro back to the hostel. From the hostel we took a bus to the train station and headed back to London. Getting through customs was a nightmare but other than that the journey was easy!

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

Thanks for reading! Please let me know if you have any questions about traveling to Paris!

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Weekend in Paris // Study Abroad London // Regent's University // www.lifeofhayley.com

The Perfect Day in Paris

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Hey guys!

If you read my last post you would know that I went to Paris a couple of weeks ago. The first day was amazing and it allowed me to mark “see the Eiffel Tower at night” off of my bucket list!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Day two began bright and early with breakfast at the hostel including French baguettes and Nutella. We then headed to the Eiffel Tower right as it was opening 9:30 a.m. to wait in line to go to the top. The only waited for about 30 minutes before we were allowed to take the lift to the top. You have to take two lifts to get to the very top of the tour but it is worth it for the views!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Unfortunately, it was pretty foggy and cold that morning but the views were still incredible! I am super afraid of heights so I was pretty dizzy and nauseous when we were at the top. I am so glad that I faced my fears head on! This study abroad experience has really made me realize how important it is to face your fears and follow your dreams. Every second of my study abroad adventure has been life-changing and wonderful. If you are thinking about studying abroad my advice is to just go and allow it to change your life!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

After the Eiffel Tower we took some pictures and then headed towards the Arc de Triumph. We saw the Arc the day before from the bus but we wanted to see it closer. We walked past some of the most expensive shops in Paris on the way and did a little window shopping.  We stopped for lunch at a café where I had a French baguette sandwich.

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Our walk continued towards Notre Dame. We stopped to see sights along the way including the famous “Love Lock” Bridge. I took a few minutes to write “Hayley & Brett” on the railing. I would love to go back and with Brett and put a lock on it. He has been so supportive throughout this whole trip and I’ve really missed him!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

We toured Notre Dame and even sat down to watch a service. It was so peaceful and beautiful. Even though the service was in French, I could still feel the emotion in the words. We followed everyone else by standing at the right times. It was truly an amazing and free experience!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Our next stop was Montmartre. Four years ago when we went to Paris one of our first stops was Montmartre. I remember touring the Basilica and wandering through the streets. I can still feel the excitement of getting to the end of a street and seeing the most beautiful view of the Eiffel Tower for the first time. My first view of the Eiffel Tower is such a vivid memory for me and I was hoping to recreate it this trip. But unfortunately, there was a bunch of construction that was blocking the view.

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

We ate at a little café where I had a Nutella crepe. They had a man playing the guitar and singing which made for the perfect French atmosphere. I really love Montmartre and I hope that someday I will be able to go back! After dinner we headed back to the hostel to sleep. The plan for Sunday was to wake up bright and early to visit the Catacombs!

The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com

Thanks for reading, friends!

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The Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.comThe Perfect Day in Paris // Study Abroad // London // www.lifeofhayley.com