Saturday, December 31, 2011

Good-bye 2011 and Hello 2012

To most 2011 was an incredible year and to others it was just as bad as 2010. To me, however, it was the year of learning.

I didn't think much as to what 2011 was going to be for me, all I knew was that my resolution for 2011 was going to be the year to lose weight, get rid of sadness, get a new job and make myself a better person. Well at the start of 2011, I did lose weight, surrounded myself with friends, but the sadness was still there.

In 2011, the things I was working hard for paid off. I had it all- a great job, great friends, great lifestyle, great classes, great family, a healthier me and a semi-good boyfriend. As the year went on, I lost a few things on the way.

Even through some tough situations, I have made it out alive and as time passes, my maturity level grows.

Things I've learned:

1) Not to jump from guy to guy until I am fully healed from a past relationship.

2) To communicate my wants and needs and stop speaking caveman.

3) To focus on me and stop worrying about everyone else so much.

4) To appreciate every great moment in my life.

5) Ben & Jerry's will get me even more depressed, especially when i see my expanding waistline.

6) Crying is never the solution.

7) Things truly do happen for a reason and soon it will all start making sense.

8) Never give up being who you are for someone else because that someone else liked you for

I learned a lot more, I even had an end of the year epiphany, but that's a whole other story.

My 2011 Stats:

(I would have more stats like how many times I've partied, drank, went to school and what not, but I lost track of all that.)

My 2011 is not ending on the strongest note, but I am confident that 2012 will bring me great things and that with everything I learned this 2011, I will be ready for whatever comes my way in 2012.

So with that said I wish you all an amazing 2012!!! And remember that things DO happen for a reason.

Here's a sneak peek as to what I'll be talking about in my future posts:

It was so windy, my side bang got on my face when this shot was taken.

Hanny the coffee bean

Friday, December 30, 2011

Coffee Bean's Grand Adventure!

As many of you might have read I went to England for Christmas and spent a good week there. Well now I am back and with so much to write about! Of course I will not bore you with so many details, but I will tell you about a few crazy things that happened, a few funny observations and of course I will show off some pics.

Since I have so much to talk about I will do it all in different posts and wait until I tell you all about my visit to the pub, the druggie, the handsome English man that I stayed with, the crazy guys in queen costumes around Westminister and so much MORE!

So stay tuned! You'll have quite a laugh.

Hanny the Coffee Bean

Monday, December 26, 2011

A Re-Cap of French Bean's 2011

1) Celebrated the New Year in Dijon and went soldes shopping. Acquired new dresses.

3) Became an addict to Speculoos.

4) Celebrated 24th birthday. Co-workers gave me a nice birthday/going-away party.

5) Didn't want to leave France so tried to look for a job. Had three interviews; didn't get a job.

6) The post as a teaching assistant ended for good.

7) Went to Spain for two weeks to visit family and friends.

8) Went back to France for two weeks.

9) Had to leave France. Specifically, Dijon. Fell at the top of an escalator at the RER stop near the Orly airport (which took off a good chunk of skin from my right knee). Flew from Paris to Berlin, then Berlin to Miami. Have a nice scar from the fond memories of Paris's grand good-bye to me.

10) Went back to Miami.

11) Hated being in Miami so left to visit Coffee Bean in Orlando. Met Cool Guy there.

12) Went back to Miami.

13) Got depressed. Started emotionally binging on chocolate, chips and ice cream.

14) Went back to Orlando.

15) Started dating Cool Guy.

16) Went back to Miami.

17) Started long-distance relationship with Cool Guy.

18) Got depressed. Started emotionally binging on burgers, fries and shakes.

19) Started writing a novel.

20) Went back to Orlando. Spent time with Coffee Bean and Cool Guy.

21) Went back to Miami. Discovered that local supermarkets sell Speculoos.

22) Tried to look for a job, to no avail.

23) Got depressed. Started emotionally binging on cheese, breads, speculoos, speculoos and more speculoos.

24) Surprised to discover that I gained twenty pounds. Felt utterly disgusted that most of my hardwork went down the drain (and straight to my thighs).

25) Learned how to bake bread...sort of.

26) Had Thanksgiving with family. Binged on turkey, eggnog and coquito (Puerto Rican eggnog).

27) Went to Orlando to visit Coffee Bean and Cool Guy.

28) Got offered a job (via the internet) to be the Minister of Transport for Holland.

29) Broke up with Cool Guy.

30) Went back to Miami. Started eating salads and cucumbers.

31) Celebrated Christmas with the family.

32) I'm pretty much bored out of my mind.

The Stats:

Total number of Ex-boyfriends: 1

Total number of hours spent whining about wanting to go back to France: approximately 450 hours (and counting)

Total number of job interviews: 5

Total number of internet job offers: 1

Total number of real-world job offers: big, fat goose egg

Total number of pages written for novel: 184 (and counting)

Pounds that I need to lose: 45 (approx. 20,4 kilos)

All righty. Sorry that I didn't provide a nice cartoon with this blog post because, quite frankly, I'm just not up to it. Maybe I'll draw something later.

Nevermind. Here's a cartoon of a Kickass Ninja Squirrel.

So, dear readers, I wish you all a Bonne Année 2012! Here's to some more future blog posts!

Barb the French Bean

Thursday, December 22, 2011

European Flashback...The Colombian Edition

Okay, okay. I know this series is supposed to be called European Flashback, but I wanted to pay a small tribute to my mother's hometown of Cartagena, Colombia. I justify reflecting on my trip to Colombia seeing as how it was a crucial port for the Spanish way back when.

For those who don't know, Colombia is in South America. And for those who don't know, Colombia is spelled with two O's, not a U. Columbia is a university. Colombia is a country. (Don't feel bad if you've made that mistake; I've seen The New York Times get it wrong. Professional journalists screw up, too.)

So, in the fond memory of what it was like to celebrate Christmas with my 3 uncles, 2 aunts and 21 cousins (no joke), I'd like to take you on a journey to one of Colombia's prettiest cities.

The proper name of the city is actually Cartagena de Indias, and it is identified by the surrounding walls called murallas. That which is within the city walls is colorful!

This is the Reloj Publico (the Public Clock), which is essentially the main entrance to Cartagena de Indias.

This is la India Catalina. She is said to have saved the city at some point.

The Public Clock, as seen from the outside with the murallas and Christmas decorations.

This is Pedro de Heredia. He founded Cartagena on June 1st, 1533. You will respect him.

You will also respect his colorful buddies that hang out with him.

This is the Portal of Sweets!

The Portal of Sweets is essentially a part in which you can buy sweets and various items, such as magazines.

This was the house of Saint Pedro Claver. It also served as a sanctuary for runaway slaves.

And this is what it looks like inside!

That which I love the most of Cartagena are the bougainvillea that cascade from the wooden balconies!

This is Simon Bolivar. You will respect him.

As any Colombian will tell you, that which makes Cartagena so popular are its beaches!

The beach in Boca Grande (literally, Big Mouth)

This is Juan Valdez Café. It pretty much blows Starbucks out of the water (and this is coming from a Starbucks fan).

And this was the tree on Christmas morning 2006!

Joyeux Noël! Feliz Navidad!

Barb the French Bean

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Surprise, Surprise!!

Yesterday morning, the vibration of my phone woke me up. In a cranky state and still in a zombie mode, I picked up my phone to see what the vibration was all about. It was an email, but it was not just any email...

That got me out of bed faster than my love for fries would have ever done (and I LOVE fries with a passion).

I never thought that our blog would actually make it as an Editors Pick of The Day and for that we are very grateful.

What a good way to end the year 2011 plus I will also be going to England for Christmas.

That's right, I will be visiting England for Christmas!! So keep a look out for me. I will blog about my trip as soon as I come back and I know I will probably come back with some crazy stories.

So in advance I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and thank you all for your support.

Hanny the coffee bean

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Snow White is a Bad Ass

Once again insomnia kicked in and as I explored the internet, I decided to youtube Snow White's Some day my prince will come song.

As I enjoyed the beautiful song, an image of a bad ass Snow White came to mind. For those of you not aware, there is a new movie coming out called Snow White and the Huntsman.

The title says it all and so does the trailer, but since when does Snow White wear armor and fight battles?? Part of me wants to see the movie hoping I'll see some bad ass fight between Snow White and the evil queen, but part of me does not want to ruin the image that I have of Snow White.

I think it's a bit too late, however, as I got sucked in to watching Once Upon a Time, which of course is a show based on Snow White and most of the other fairy tales.

In Once Upon a Time, Snow White marries the prince and becomes pregnant, but the evil queen sets a horrible spell to take Snow White and every fairy tale character out of their world and into the real world. Where they are to live with no recollection of who they were in their fantasy world and the only one who can break the spell is Snow White's daughter, Emma, with the help of her son, Emma sets out to discover what really is going on in the little town of storybrooke.

It's really good! and I am almost always stuck to the tv every sunday night at 8pm watching and screaming at the tv as more plots unfold.

Snow White has indeed become a bad ass. In every trailer, show, and movie that is coming out I see not the sweet Snow White, but a bad ass with armor on or as I see in Once Upon a Time , she's a chick who steals from the prince, deals with nasty trolls, and has some bad ass moves.

I guess bad ass sells and Snow White sells (so far).

I love Snow White and sleep. I really need sleep.

Hanny the coffee bean

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Living Dead Unicorn

I have come to the conclusion that I should never EVER write a book. As I mentioned to Barb earlier today, my book would be a horror story with commercials.

Yes, commercials....

in writing and drawing. If you still do not follow as to what I mean by commercials, allow me to demonstrate the following book idea.

My epic book of awesomeness: The living dead unicorn.

Need anymore proof as to why I should not write a book?

(English majors/Professional writers/Grammar the red ink I know half this whole post would be oozing in red).

(This "book" is mine and the idea is mine. Don't copy!)

-Hanny the coffee bean

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

European Flashback #3: Lyon, France!

Back in 2009 and last year, on December 8th, I was fortunate enough to have witnessed the Fête de la Lumière (The Light Festival) that happens every year in Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France. The original religious Lyonnaise tradition of commemorating the Virgin Mary by placing lit candles on the windowsill has, with time, developed into an active city-wide event in which colorful computer animations are projected upon famous buildings and monuments during the night.

The sunny, blue-sky day looked promising!

The Tête d'or park was getting ready for its light show for later in the evening.

The Fourvière basilica and the Eiffel Tower-looking thing from a distance.

This was the nativity scene in the basilica.

The main entrance to Fourvière.

The view of the city from above. The tower with the 8 is the Crédit Lyonnais bank.

My teaching assistant friends and I took a stroll by the Roman amphitheater, which is close to Fourvière.

Posin' with the columns with fellow bloggers Emily in the Glass and Sliles.

I have much, much nicer photos of Lyon, but they are stuck somewhere in some memory cards back in Miami, and the chances of me getting to them are pretty slim. Once I leave Orlando, I will do the city some justice with a better post!

Barb the French Bean