Category Archives: Travel

Posts about travels around the world.

Birthdays are a Time For…

Celebration. Fun. Happiness. Great friends. Big smiles. Good food. Delicious drinks. 

IMG_9932

I recently celebrated a very special birthday.

It was my first birthday in Canada in six years.

It was my first birthday living in Toronto.

It was my first birthday where I didn’t feel the need to plan a huge bash in honour of myself.

However, I felt more honoured than I have for any other birthday I have experienced.

I was surrounded by the people I love most for the whole week around the big day.  I got to meet my little niece for the first time (who is adorable, by the way).  Edwin treated me like a princess:  I received a birthday breakfast, a wonderful birthday dinner, and a surprise trip out of the city for a weekend!  On top of that, my friends came out for time at the beach, a unique evening at an Asian Night Market, and drinks at a lovely brewery I had never been to before.

My birthday was full of new sights and experiences-the way a birthday should be!

I realize that the people you care about are always there to make sure you celebrate a birthday.  Loved ones don’t let you dwell on the idea of “getting old,” or the acceptance of “we don’t really need to celebrate and make today a big deal.”  Because, in fact, it IS a big deal!

We should take a day to look back on the past year and reflect on the accomplishments of the previous twelve months of hard work and experiences.  At the same time, we can see what goals we want to set for the year ahead.  We are never too old to have a party, for each year is cause for more celebration.  It is to say “I survived! I’m still here!”

There are books, television programs, websites that all say we should be doing certain things by a certain age.  This can make a person want to stop counting the years.  Well, I say, sure, we can gain some useful insight from the “life coaches” out there, and they may very well help us veer towards a good path.  Nevertheless, our special day will always remain what it is- “our day.”

So, take that day for yourself.  Grab a friend,  find some sunshine, and celebrate!  I did, and it felt fantastic!  Bring on another year!

photo credit: roamingwab

Dreams Abroad

BTF2012: Monday @ Maelbeek

I saw an advertisement at a bus stop yesterday.  It was a picture of a tango dancer- a promotion of a vacation to Buenos Aires.  For the rest of my walk home, it got me thinking of amazing trip to Argentina last year.  I can’t believe it’s been so long since we were backpacking across South America, waking up to new adventures everyday.

There’s a time and place for everything.  We had a fantastic time, but by the end, we were ready and excited to store our backpacks and explore more of Canada and settle into a city to call our own.  So, for the past seven months, we have been doing just that.  And it has been nothing but fantastic.

But….. a thought crept up on me.  Will we ever pull out our backpacks again?  Will we ever get the urge to relocate our life to another country to experience a new culture while earning a living in this foreign place?  Will we take advantage of the “working holiday visas,” the lack of mortgage payments and children, and take a leap of faith to another country?

Seeing as Toronto still provides mysteries and new sights for us, I know we will choose to stay here for a while to explore.  However, a morning may come where we wake up and want to set out on a new adventure.  I realize that it may be more than jumping on an airplane adventure, but it could also be a career-related adventure or a new hobby.

Starburst 3025

Almost four years ago I made a very permanent decision to put a tattoo of a compass rose on my leg.  This was to remind me never to settle for anything less than my passion,  to always live life as the adventure it’s supposed to be.

Yes, some of that time will be reserved for exploring the world, but most definitely, the image reminds me to experience each day to the fullest, no matter what continent I’m on.

So bring on the new classrooms, the backpacks, and the tango lessons.  I’ll be ready!

 

Smile….Love is in the Air

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine heart for you from an (Italian) square in SalernoLike yesterday and the day before, I’m feelin’ lots of love for my best friend who I’m lucky to wake up next to every day.  And like today and tomorrow,  I’m also feelin’ love for my best friends who live across the city, the country, and on the other side of the world.

So I suppose, today, I’m sending a little extra your way.

Surprisingly, I’m also feelin’ lots of writers’ block.  I wanted to write about today’s theme: Love.  Happiness.  Comfort.  Excitement.  But all I can do is smile when I dig down deep.

Perhaps it’s because Edwin and I celebrated our anniversary not long ago, with a wonderful day of culture, music, and delicious food and wine.  Or maybe it’s because I landed a great job this month that has me remembering why I want to set foot in a classroom everyday.  Or it could even be that over that past few days, I’ve had some amazing reunions that remind me how friendships can stand the test of time.

Either way, I’m just going to allow my writer’s block to take up its space and concentrate on enjoying my smile.  Because sometimes you just have to let your mind do its thing.  I’m looking around our picture-filled apartment from our 2011 travels, and I can’t help but feel the coziness our little Toronto home has come to provide us with.  I look at our fading Christmas cards still on the window ledge next to our “Happy Anniversary” and “Happy Valentine’s Day” cards and smile at my luck for getting to experience such joy.

I have never been one to fall victim to the commercialism of February 14th; I’m simply excited for my boyfriend to get home and share a home-cooked dinner with a few cinnamon hearts on the side.

So, regardless of if you received a dozen roses, a few valentines, or shared a hello with a stranger–smile, it’s Valentine’s Day.  Love is in the air.  All kinds of love!

Category Archives: Travel

Posts about travels around the world.

Birthdays are a Time For…

Celebration. Fun. Happiness. Great friends. Big smiles. Good food. Delicious drinks. 

IMG_9932

I recently celebrated a very special birthday.

It was my first birthday in Canada in six years.

It was my first birthday living in Toronto.

It was my first birthday where I didn’t feel the need to plan a huge bash in honour of myself.

However, I felt more honoured than I have for any other birthday I have experienced.

I was surrounded by the people I love most for the whole week around the big day.  I got to meet my little niece for the first time (who is adorable, by the way).  Edwin treated me like a princess:  I received a birthday breakfast, a wonderful birthday dinner, and a surprise trip out of the city for a weekend!  On top of that, my friends came out for time at the beach, a unique evening at an Asian Night Market, and drinks at a lovely brewery I had never been to before.

My birthday was full of new sights and experiences-the way a birthday should be!

I realize that the people you care about are always there to make sure you celebrate a birthday.  Loved ones don’t let you dwell on the idea of “getting old,” or the acceptance of “we don’t really need to celebrate and make today a big deal.”  Because, in fact, it IS a big deal!

We should take a day to look back on the past year and reflect on the accomplishments of the previous twelve months of hard work and experiences.  At the same time, we can see what goals we want to set for the year ahead.  We are never too old to have a party, for each year is cause for more celebration.  It is to say “I survived! I’m still here!”

There are books, television programs, websites that all say we should be doing certain things by a certain age.  This can make a person want to stop counting the years.  Well, I say, sure, we can gain some useful insight from the “life coaches” out there, and they may very well help us veer towards a good path.  Nevertheless, our special day will always remain what it is- “our day.”

So, take that day for yourself.  Grab a friend,  find some sunshine, and celebrate!  I did, and it felt fantastic!  Bring on another year!

photo credit: roamingwab

Dreams Abroad

BTF2012: Monday @ Maelbeek

I saw an advertisement at a bus stop yesterday.  It was a picture of a tango dancer- a promotion of a vacation to Buenos Aires.  For the rest of my walk home, it got me thinking of amazing trip to Argentina last year.  I can’t believe it’s been so long since we were backpacking across South America, waking up to new adventures everyday.

There’s a time and place for everything.  We had a fantastic time, but by the end, we were ready and excited to store our backpacks and explore more of Canada and settle into a city to call our own.  So, for the past seven months, we have been doing just that.  And it has been nothing but fantastic.

But….. a thought crept up on me.  Will we ever pull out our backpacks again?  Will we ever get the urge to relocate our life to another country to experience a new culture while earning a living in this foreign place?  Will we take advantage of the “working holiday visas,” the lack of mortgage payments and children, and take a leap of faith to another country?

Seeing as Toronto still provides mysteries and new sights for us, I know we will choose to stay here for a while to explore.  However, a morning may come where we wake up and want to set out on a new adventure.  I realize that it may be more than jumping on an airplane adventure, but it could also be a career-related adventure or a new hobby.

Starburst 3025

Almost four years ago I made a very permanent decision to put a tattoo of a compass rose on my leg.  This was to remind me never to settle for anything less than my passion,  to always live life as the adventure it’s supposed to be.

Yes, some of that time will be reserved for exploring the world, but most definitely, the image reminds me to experience each day to the fullest, no matter what continent I’m on.

So bring on the new classrooms, the backpacks, and the tango lessons.  I’ll be ready!

 

Smile….Love is in the Air

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine heart for you from an (Italian) square in SalernoLike yesterday and the day before, I’m feelin’ lots of love for my best friend who I’m lucky to wake up next to every day.  And like today and tomorrow,  I’m also feelin’ love for my best friends who live across the city, the country, and on the other side of the world.

So I suppose, today, I’m sending a little extra your way.

Surprisingly, I’m also feelin’ lots of writers’ block.  I wanted to write about today’s theme: Love.  Happiness.  Comfort.  Excitement.  But all I can do is smile when I dig down deep.

Perhaps it’s because Edwin and I celebrated our anniversary not long ago, with a wonderful day of culture, music, and delicious food and wine.  Or maybe it’s because I landed a great job this month that has me remembering why I want to set foot in a classroom everyday.  Or it could even be that over that past few days, I’ve had some amazing reunions that remind me how friendships can stand the test of time.

Either way, I’m just going to allow my writer’s block to take up its space and concentrate on enjoying my smile.  Because sometimes you just have to let your mind do its thing.  I’m looking around our picture-filled apartment from our 2011 travels, and I can’t help but feel the coziness our little Toronto home has come to provide us with.  I look at our fading Christmas cards still on the window ledge next to our “Happy Anniversary” and “Happy Valentine’s Day” cards and smile at my luck for getting to experience such joy.

I have never been one to fall victim to the commercialism of February 14th; I’m simply excited for my boyfriend to get home and share a home-cooked dinner with a few cinnamon hearts on the side.

So, regardless of if you received a dozen roses, a few valentines, or shared a hello with a stranger–smile, it’s Valentine’s Day.  Love is in the air.  All kinds of love!

Awards

Kristin’s Backpack won 1st Prize for TESL Ontario’s 2011 ESL Week Blog Contest.
About Me


Welcome to Kristin’s Backpack! I jumped on the blogging bandwagon in 2010 to share my Canadian-theatrical-backpacking perspective on my world adventures. With my return to Canada, I will continue to dig into my pockets and reflect on life as it has come to involve Teaching, Travel, and Theatre. Time to unzip the pockets!
Portfolios
Check out my past and current work here: 

Kristin's Library
Looking for some interesting reading material? Check out my Reading Picks and Bookworm post for some ideas! 

               
This is what summer is all about- finished a book yesterday and am on to the next today.  I just opened The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill, which has been on my shelf for ages.  I have been extremely interested in reading accounts that stem from true stories in a dark history that is often swept to the side.  
At the same time, I have been listening to The Maze Runner series as an audio book and have been extremely captivated by the young characters’ circumstances and their view on the world.  
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