Travel Playlist – A Week In Italy

Travel Playlist - Italy

Hello from Italy (hopefully)!

I am scheduling this post a week in advance but *fingers crossed* Brett and I are currently in Rome!

The most popular blog post that I have ever written was my Study Abroad Playlist in 2015. I am still blown away by the number of views that I receive each week on this post! Music is so important to me and I love having a playlist for each trip that I take. This trip to Rome has been one that I have been dreaming about since I was in Elementary school. I’m so grateful to get the chance to visit!

I should also mention during this trip I will be living out my Lizzie McGuire movie dreams so of course there will be songs from the movie soundtrack. ūüôā I hope you enjoy this little taste of Rome.

Volare – Vitamin C

Pompeii – Bastille

Walking On Sunshine – Katrina & The Waves

Daydream Believer – The Monkees

Learning to Fly – Tom Petty

Go Big Or Go Home – American Authors

Send Me On My Way – Rusted Root

New Soul – Yael Naim

What Dreams Are Made Of – Hilary Duff

Here I Go Again – Whitesnake

Where The Streets Have No Name – U2

The Nights – Avicci

Have Love Will Travel – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers

I Love This Life – LOCASH

What are your favorite songs for traveling?

Thanks for reading!

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Hello From Somewhere!

travel blog

Hi friends!

It’s the beginning of a new week and I have no idea where I am. I’m writing this post ahead of time because Brett and I are traveling this week. The goal is to make it to Europe, preferably Rome, but we will take a what we can get!

My husband, Brett, works for an airline which means that we get flight benefits to fly standby. We aren’t guaranteed a seat on the flight and a lot of times we get stuck places. But I guess that’s part of the adventure!

This week we are trying to make it to Rome and hopefully by the time you are reading this we have made it. If you want to know where we ended up make sure to follow me on Instagram (@lifeofhayleyblog). I’ll be posting to my stories as often as I can.

I am so excited for this new adventure with Brett and can’t wait to share my travels with you when I return.

Thanks so much for reading!

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Falling In Love With Traverse City, MI

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Hey friends!

For those of you who don’t know, I live in the beautiful state of Michigan. Michigan is home of the Great Lakes, Detroit Tigers, Verner’s, Bell’s Brewery, and the most beautiful lakeside towns you can imagine. I love it here!

Last weekend we had the privilege to travel to Traverse City, Michigan for the wedding of one of Brett’s high school friends. I have been looking forward to this trip for months because I love weddings and I haven’t been to Traverse City since middle school. I have been dying to see this area of Michigan in the fall!

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We rented an airbnb on Lake Leelanau for the weekend with a group of friends and had a blast. The house was right on the lake so every morning we woke up to an amazing view. The weather wasn’t ideal but we still managed to have a great time!

We arrived on Friday at about 8 pm and headed straight downtown to meet up with friends at the Rare Bird. The wedding party came out to meet us after the rehearsal dinner which was a lot of fun. After a couple margaritas we headed to the airbnb for a night of rock band, tequila shots, and drinking games. I am the boring professional sober person of the group mostly because alcohol is a trigger for my migraines so I enjoyed watching the group.

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We had a late start Saturday morning and didn’t roll out of the house until after¬†11. I spent some time by the lake while the house was still waking up and got to see the rowing team practice. After everyone was up and around we headed to lunch at Martha’s in Suttons Bay.

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After our lunch we¬†drove to Black Star Farms for a little wine tasting. It was $7¬†for 5 tastings and you got to keep your glass. I wasn’t planning on drinking but I’ve never gone wine tasting before so I didn’t want to miss out on the experience.

Our bartender was really knowledgeable and was able to share a lot about the wines that we were trying. As someone who doesn’t drink a lot I really appreciated her attention to detail! I tried 5 sweet wines and my favorite was the late harvest Riesling!

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Once we had finished our tastings we headed out to the farm to have a quick look around. There was a wedding being setup and I can imagine that it was a beautiful wedding just based on the venue! Driving into the winery is a whole hilltop was filled with grapes. There are horses and sheep in pastures on the property and beautiful barns and buildings. It was super picturesque.

I was in dire need of a nap after the wine tasting so we headed to the airbnb for a quick nap before the wedding. I fell asleep quickly and woke up about 30 minutes later to start getting ready for the wedding. ¬†I found my dress last minute a Kohl’s but ended up really liking it! I’m still having a hard time dressing my body after gaining weight but it’s starting to get a tiny bit easier.

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The wedding took place at Timberlee Hills which is a tubing resort in Traverse City. The ceremony was outside and I almost froze to death in the 50 degree chill. Thankfully, the ceremony was short but oh so sweet. I have never seen the groom so happy and the bride was beautiful!

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The reception was a lot of fun. I was the designated driver so I had a good time watching the boys dance and spill their beers all over the floor.  It was a great wedding and I wish the bride and groom and lifetime of love and happiness.

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We had to be out of the airbnb by 11 on Sunday morning so we woke up, showered, and headed back to Traverse City for breakfast. It was hard to leave the amazing airbnb behind but we have already made plans to come back in the summer when one of our friends graduates.

After breakfast at the Blue Heron 2 Café & Bakery we started the 3 hour journey home. I had a great time in Traverse City and wish that we could have stayed longer! Hopefully we will be back soon!

Have you ever been to Traverse City?

Thanks for reading!

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P.S. Sorry for the crappy iPhone pictures! I’m hoping to get a new phone soon.

 

 

 

What to Pack for a Week in Italy

what to pack for a week in italy, rome italy packing list

Hi friends!

Brett and I are preparing for our trip to Rome in a couple of weeks. I have been working on creating my packing list and buying any pieces that I still needed before the trip. I thought it would be fun to share what I am bringing on our trip!

I hope this list can help you plan for your next adventure!

Bags:

  • 1 full size suitcase to share with Brett
  • 1 carryon suitcase
  • 1 small Vera Bradley weekender
  • 1 cross body purse
  • 1 travel wallet
  • 1 foldable reusable bag

Electronics:

  • 2 Converters
  • iPhone, charger
  • iPad, charger
  • cameras, memory cards, chargers, cases
  • Headphones

Miscellaneous Items:

  • Travel journal
  • Book
  • Copy of hotel reservation and any pre-booked tickets
  • Empty water bottle
  • Snacks
  • Umbrella
  • Passport, Driver’s License
  • Travel Credit Card/Debit Card
  • Small amount of currency

Shoes:

  • 1 Nikes
  • 1 Converse
  • 1 Sandals

Clothes:

  • 2 sweaters (black, grey)
  • 1 foldable rain jacket
  • 1 light jacket
  • 2 layering tank tops (white, black)
  • 2 jeans (black, dark wash)
  • 1 shorts (dark wash)
  • 3 t-shirts (black, white, grey)
  • 1 light weight scarf
  • 2 sleep shirts/comfortable t-shirts
  • 1 pajama pants
  • 1 athletic shorts
  • 1 dress
  • 3¬†blouses
  • 1 leggings
  • 1 swim suit
  • 1 belt
  • Socks, underwear, bras
  • Cheap jewelry

Toiletries:

  • Medication
  • Travel sized shampoo, conditioner, body wash, face wash, toothpaste
  • Toothbrush, floss
  • Face wipes, moisturizer, lotion
  • Sunscreen
  • Basic makeup (concealer, foundation, mascara)
  • Emergency feminine products
  • Deodorant
  • Hairbrush
  • Hair ties

My top tips for packing are to use packing cubes, pick a color scheme, check the weather before leaving, and to pack as light as possible. As you can see, I’m really not bringing a lot with me on this trip. I know that if I forget something I can buy it there. I am packing mostly staple items that I can mix and match to create different outfits.

I usually stay pretty close to my list when it actually comes time to pack but a few extra items still find their way into my suitcase. I also pack for Brett because he ends up bringing everything he owns. It’s hilarious to watch but not fun to drag his stuff through cities. Packing light is key!

This list can be edited for any trip that you are taking! Basic items are the most important because you can really build on your basics. I don’t bring anything expensive or irreplaceable with me either. Pickpockets are present pretty much anywhere you are going so it’s best to not have anything of great value with you.

I have a more in depth packing list that I posted a couple of years ago when I studied abroad in London. Check it out if you need a more detailed list for longer trips!

If you have been to Rome please let me know if there’s anything else you think I will need to bring! I’d love to hear any travel tips too.

Thanks for reading!

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Image via Unsplash

Help Us Plan Our Trip To Rome!

Visiting Rome, Italy
Hey friends!

Brett and I are trying to plan a trip to Rome for this upcoming October! Neither of us have been and it is #1 on our bucket list.

I visited Venice for one day in 2011 and fell in love with the Italian culture but did not have enough time to truly explore. I have been wanting to visit Rome since 2003 when the Lizzie McGuire Movie first premiered.

Since we have never been to Rome we are in dire need of suggestions. Where to stay, eat, visit, etc.? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Our current plan is to visit all of the touristy places РColiseum, Vatican, Trevi Fountain, etc. But we would love to know what else we should see!

Thanks! ūüôā

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Image via Unsplash

The Royal Wedding With The Royal We

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Hey there!

I am back with another book review for all of my bookworm friends out there. You may or may not already know that reading is one of my all time favorite pastimes. If I find a book that I really like I will not put it down until it’s finished.

My favorite book series of all time is Harry Potter. I thought I would never find another book that I could read multiple times without getting bored until I found The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan. These two hilarious ladies run the website Go Fug Yourself. Heather and Jessica are actually in London right now to celebrate the Royal Wedding!

Brett bought me this book for Christmas a couple of years ago and I have read it at least 6 times since then. This is a big book but I still got through it in a little over one day because I could not put it down. After I finished it the first time I immediately read it again because it was just that good. I also took it on our honeymoon in London and loved visiting many of the places in the book. We even went to Windsor Castle and walked through the chapel where Meghan and Harry are getting married. So cool!

With the Royal Wedding coming up on Saturday (or today if you’re in the UK!) it is the perfect time to dig into this book that is based very loosely on Prince William and Kate Middleton’s relationship. I know that I will be re-reading The Royal We in celebration! I may or may not be drinking a cup of tea in my Royal Wedding cup as well (Homegoods for the win!)

The Royal Wedding, Royal We, Meghan Markle, Prince Harry


The Royal We
by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan

American Bex Porter was never one for fairy tales. Her twin sister Lacey was always the romantic, the one who daydreamed of being a princess. But it’s adventure-seeking Bex who goes to Oxford and meets dreamy Nick across the hall – and Bex who finds herself accidentally in love with the heir to the British throne.

Nick is wonderful, but he comes with unimaginable baggage: a complicated family, hysterical tabloids tracking his every move, and a public that expected its future king to marry a Brit. On the eve of the most talked-about wedding of the century, Bex looks back on how much she’s had to give up for true love… and exactly whose heart she may yet have to break

 

Bex Porter is an American studying abroad in England who meets and eventually falls in love with the boy across the hall, Nick. This book follows the story of Bex and Nick from the moment they met to their wedding day. If they make it to the wedding that is. ūüėČ

The words flow easily and make this story feel so real. I am still hoping for a sequel! You can tell that Heather and Jessica put a ton of research into this book.

This book is not exactly a true story like I mentioned before. But it does shed a lot of light on customs of the Royal Family and life in England. I studied abroad in London and could relate to many of Bex’s feelings from the first few chapters. Missing home, missing my sister, not quite understanding all of the British customs, etc.

Ever since I read this book I feel like I have a different perspective when it comes to Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle. They are always in the spotlight and I can’t even imagine how hard it is to constantly be criticized¬†and talked about. I have a lot of respect for these two women.

It also makes me think about the Royal Wedding. I can’t imagine how much pressure is on Meghan as she prepares for her wedding day. I will be sending lots of positive thoughts her way and hope that she can enjoy her day with Prince Harry!

I honestly love this book so much and would go as far to call it my favorite book! I keep looking for other like it but none even come close.

What are your favorite books? Will you be celebrating the Royal Wedding?

Thanks so much for reading!

 
Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley

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 surrounded 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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