Keukenhof Tulip Festival in the Netherlands - The World's Largest Outdoor Flower Expo

Keukenhof Tulip Festival in the Netherlands - The World's Largest Outdoor Flower Expo

Warning: this post is chock full of pictures of pretty flowers. Hope you enjoy!

Spring is coming in Europe. A couple weeks ago, the weather was in the 60s and the sun was shining every day. What better way to celebrate spring than to visit the world's second largest flower garden in the Netherlands?! Each year for about six weeks from the end of March through the middle of May, Keukenhof gardens come alive and are full of color! 

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Heidelberg - Round 2

This week, a couple of my sorority sisters were in town and we were able to meet up!  They came to stay a couple nights with us and since Mannheim isn't a very touristy town, we headed over to Heidelberg, which is very touristy.

We started off by heading to the castle.  After a couple mishaps with the GPS...

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To All The Mothers...

...Thank you.  

Today, we would like to take a minute to thank all our mothers and grandmothers for all they've done.  Without you, we wouldn't be here today (figuratively, and quite literally too).  Over the years, your love, sacrifices and support have molded us in to the people we are today, and for that, you deserve more than just a day of recognition, you deserve a lifetime of thanks, our love and respect.

Each year, the alumnae chapter I am in hosts a Mother Daughter Brunch.  My mom and I have attended for the past three years.  It's always nice to be able to spend a couple hours with sisters and their mothers.  Some sisters even bring multiple generations of their family (which is really cool to see)!  Click through the photos below for some pictures from the luncheon.

Focus: Hope

In college, Aaron and I were both members of Greek life.  Aaron was a member of Beta Sigma Theta and I was a member of Alpha Sigma Tau.  One of the tenents of Greek life is their commitment to philanthropy and community service.  It's so important that it has even garned a position in the creed of Alpha Sigma Tau: "As a memebr of Alpha Sigma Tau ... I will strive to contribute my share to the progress of mankind."  Each year, members of Greek lettered organizations contribute millions of hours and thousands of dollars to various philanthropic organizations nationwide.


Since graduation, I have maintained a fairly active membership in the Detroit Metro Alumnae Chapter of my sorority.  Many members think that their involvement ends at graduation, but there is still so much more that one can gain from other alumnae.  I have met some great friends, many of whom I would never have met otherwise, through the alumnae group.  Each spring, the alumnae chapter partners with a local chapter (Delta Tau at Oakland University) and Focus: Hope to pack food boxes for those less fortunate.

This past Saturday, we all met at the Focus: Hope headquarters in Detroit at 9 AM, ready to contribute our share to the progress of mankind. 

Of course, we have a little bit of fun with it!  Here, one of the alumnae members is warming up by pressing cheese blocks!

The boxes travel down the line and get loaded with non-perishable items including juice, cheese, beans, peanut butter, milk, and rice.  Then they get loaded on to pallets to be delivered to other local organizations that distribute them to those in need.  These two kept a watchful eye on the pallets, making sure they were removed when full so that we could continue packing as efficiently as possible.

The goal for each year is to beat the number of boxes that were packed the previous year.  Last year, 1300 boxes were packed.  This year, we packed a whopping 2175 boxes in just over two hours!  We actually ran out of boxes to pack.  Below is a picture of everyone who helped.

Aaron even came to help!  We were at the end of the line loading the packed boxes onto the pallets.  Each box weighed about 15 pounds, and there were 55 boxes on each pallet.  Over the course of the morning, we loaded somewhere around 13 pallets.  That amounts to approximately 10,725 pounds of food we loaded!  Boy are we feeling it today.

All the Detroit Metro alumnae who helped!

All the Detroit Metro alumnae who helped!

After we are done packing food boxes, we head to the original Buddy's Pizza, a Detroit classic.  They serve "Detroit Style Pizza" and it. is. awesome.  Detroit style pizza is a deep-dish square, baked in an industrial parts trays, originally used to hold parts in automotive manufacturing facilities in metro Detroit.  The crust is perfectly crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.  

And this was just the start to a fun-filled weekend!  Check back soon to see what we did on Sunday!