Serengetee + Krass & Co.

If you have been living under a rock haven’t already noticed, I have a slight obsession with Krass & Co. I’m not quite at full-blown stage 5 clinger status yet, but I’m getting there. So, needless to say, when Pierson approached me about their new line with Serengetee, whose tagline is, “Wear the World. Change the World,”  I was intrigued.

Serengetee started while 3 college kiddos were studying abroad through Semester at Sea. Their goal was to “create a new kind of clothing brand with a simple mission: to connect people to the globe through fabric while giving back to the communities that inspire [their] products. [They] launched Serengetee out of [their] dorm room in the spring of 2012 using every last penny in [their] pockets.” 5% of each purchase goes to one of their 32 causes – depending on what you buy. Pretty amazing, right?

Here’s where Krass & Co. comes in: the two companies created what is probably my favorite collaboration of all time – the America Shorts, $40. (They actually created a whole line that is pretty darn phenom, but you know how much I love America!) A portion of every sale of these shorts will be donated to support Whole Planet’s mission: the alleviation of poverty through microcredit in communities worldwide.

I won’t gush about the quality of the shorts, because you’ve already read 4986734689 posts about them. (Just in case you missed it though, here’s my post about their fall line with a pretty in-depth review!) I will, however, tell you that they may or may not give you super powers, because I ran twice as many bleachers as I normally do when I wore them the first time, and, for my last 5 sets, Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” came on. I can’t make this stuff up, people.

 The team at Serengetee very kindly also sent me their America Tank to review, and it is seriously the most comfortable tank I’ve ever worn. I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t seriously consider blowing off my boyfriend on Saturday to lounge in it all night. (Sorry, Josh – love you!) The proceeds for this one go to The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, which “serves US military personnel wounded or injured in service to our nation, and their families. Supporting Intrepid helps repay heroes for the sacrifices they have made.” Incredible.

 The tanks (plus crew-necks {$26}, v-necks {$26}, racer-backs {$24}, long-sleeves {$28}, and crop-tops {$22})  come with a bunch of different pockets; you can order one with your state’s flag, your fav country’s flag, or other really awesome, colorful prints. I love them for unique (in a good way!) gifts for friends, littles, and fam. Plus, there’s just something about ordering from a company who gives back – don’t you agree?

Flyover Press + Giveaway

 One of my favorite male bloggers, Nick from Great Lakes Prep, recently started his own company – Flyover Press. There’s the East Coast (obviously the best, but I’m biased), the South, the West Coast…but we sometimes tend to forget about those flyover states (yep, cue Jason Aldean). Flyover Press is out to change that. They’re all about promoting Midwest love. And, while I’m not from the Midwest, I can absolutely support Nick’s mission, because, well, ‘Merica.

 Just check out their “About Us” section:

Located in southwest Michigan underneath planes venturing cross country, Flyover Press seeks to end the coastal bias that leaves the Midwest so often ignored. By crafting made in the USA apparel and posters inspired by the people, places and traditions of America’s Heartland, Flyover Press serves as a way for Midwesterners to display their pride to the rest of the country.

We’re committed to three things, high quality American-made products, excellent customer service and providing products for the people of the regions of this country that are too often ignored. And having fun while we do it. Some of our best ideas are hatched over a couple beers with old friends. So make that four things.

We also love the Midwest and try to support it in as many ways as possible. That’s why we try to produce as many of our products in the Midwest as we can. Our shirts are printed in Indianapolis and while our posters are printed in Connecticut, they’re done by a couple who broke into the business in Chicago. As we add more products to the line we’ll continue trying to seek out Midwest sources. It might not be the least expensive way of doing things but it’s how we believe in doing business.

 Plus, as if making everything in the US (and, specifically, the Midwest) didn’t make them amazing enough, they also donate 3% of all profits to Midwest-based non-profits! Any brand with a philanthropic side is good in my book.

 So now you’re hooked, right? I can’t say I blame ya! Lucky for you, Nick has generously offered to give one reader the chance to win his or own Patriotic Midwest Tank Top or their choice of any print on the site. All you have to do is enter using the Rafflecopter below…and decide which one you’d choose!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Quando a Roma

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The Eternal City. Boy, has this place restored my faith in this trip. I have to admit that I’d been pretty homesick, but Rome is incredible. There’s an energy here that I don’t think you can understand until you’re gazing at the Coliseum, wandering through the Sistine Chapel, or throwing a coin into the Trevi Fountain.

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While their culture does seem slightly “behind” ours, it’s a lot more charming than it has been in other places. They have the conveniences of big cities in America, but you still get that historical vibe. It probably also helps that I’m picturing myself as Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday.Gregory Peck, where are you?

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We squeezed in every cheesy, touristy thing we could do and still had plenty of time for lots of gelato I think I’ve gained 50 pounds from Nutella-flavored ice cream and exploring all the small side streets, which was a nice break from the too-rushed pace we’ve had up until Rome. We head out this morning, and we’re flying into…wait for it…Paris! I couldn’t be more thrilled. For those of you who have been: do you have any recommendations? Other than Laduree, of course!

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Florence


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Next on our schedule was beautiful, artsy Florence. I won’t lie; I had some crazy high expectations for Florence. A friend of mine studied abroad here and just raved about it.

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Did it live up to my expectations? Yes and no. At first – not at all. While the Ufizi had incredible works of art and David left me in awe, it wasn’t until sunset at the Piazalle Michelangelo that I fell in love with Florence, too! Florence also has this incredible blackmarket with amazing leather, so it is a great place to get gifts for all of your friends and family.

20130612-013415.jpg (This Neptune Fountain was my actual obsession while here. Incredible.)

(Plus, I did love all the fleur de lys. It’s like Kappa heaven!)

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P.S. Mama Bear, if you’re reading this, Happy Birthday!

Northern Italy

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Good morning, lovely preps!

I apologize for the lack of posts last week. I suppose I should have known we’d be on the move from 7:00 in the morning until 10:00 at night, but I thought I’d have more access to wifi to keep you updated! If you are interested in seeing more pictures, I’m going to include a link to my personal Facebook page so that you can see more! (And we can be friends. Who doesn’t love new friends?)

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Our trip to Italy began in Milan, where my friend currently has an internship at an international law firm. The Duomo was absolutely incredible, though everyone I was with thought it to be too much. What do they know anyway?

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Next, we took a quick train up to Como. Rudely enough, George Clooney forgot to pick me up at the train station. It was beautiful. I swear everyone there models/modeled at some point in his or her life. It was like something out of a movie.

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We also ventured up to Lugano, Switzerland, as it was pouring in the wee hours in Como. We stopped by the lake for a few pictures, then headed to the FoxTown Factory Stores. While they had Burberry, Valentino, Gant, Hackett, and Lacoste, I much preferred the chocolate at Lindt over the beautiful clothing. Judge me all you want.

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After Happy Hour in Como, we headed over to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower. The rest of the pictures here are all of our attempts (bloopers included!) at being pro photographers. Melly was clearly better than I was. Sorry, Mel!
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Athens

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Monday was our last day in Greece. While I’m sad to leave it behind, I’m beyond excited to head to Italy. I’ve had an obsession with Italian culture for as long as I can remember, in part because there’s a lot of Italian blood in my family. So please explain to me why I’m so pale. Seriously.

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Anyway, Greece certainly tried her darnedest to keep us. As you may have guessed, directions aren’t really my thing, but somehow we managed to navigate Athens all day with just a map a random tour guide gave us because she felt bad. To say this was a miracle is an understatement. (I can only hope we have such luck everywhere else!)

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We walked through the prettiest square before hitting the Main Street to Stygnalia, the center of Athens. The streets were lined with vendors selling off vintage goods, and I couldn’t help but hope people hadn’t sold them off in an attempt to keep their families afloat. (Walking through the streets and seeing all of the homeless people and animals was a harsh reminder of the times Greece is facing, in spite of all of its beauty.) However, just 500 meters (I can say that now since I’m over here, and mainly because that’s how everyone describes it, and I don’t know the calculation to miles or feet haha) away, is a huge shopping square. There, in the middle of the graffiti-ridden city, were three Zaras, two H&Ms, Brooks Brothers, Tod’s…and the list goes on. It was like the riots never took place in that little materialistic oasis.

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After my new favorite shopping district, we got out to the more traditional area. I’m talking cobblestone roads, luscious flowers, the aroma of scrumptious foods – basically, the whole nine yards. There were street performers balancing balls on their heads while they took off shirts, women having dance-offs, and a man strumming the guitar playing the saddest song I’ve ever heard, even if I couldn’t understand it. It was really all so beautiful.

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We spent most of the rest of the day in the National Archaeological Museum, which was really something. While all the museums we visited had various statues and other findings, the bulk of what’s left is in this museum, so it was neat to make the connections to what we had already seen. It truly was a fantastic museum. We finished off the day with a quick stop at Hadrian’s Arch and the Temple of Zeus, then headed back to the room to prepare for Italy.

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All in all, I just adored Greece. I can’t wait to see Italy, but I’m thinking an island villa for winter vacations will definitely be necessary. Wouldn’t you agree?

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Greece

Greece has been such a whirlwind! We decided to go here instead of Spain at the last minute, and I couldn’t be happier. I’m somewhat of a history nerd, so having the opportunity to see all the ancient sites I’ve spent countless hours reading about has been incredible. I’m sure I’ll say this about every place I visit, but, if given the chance, you absolutely must go to Greece.

Athens
Athens was incredible. Everywhere you go, you have a view of the Acropolis, which is breathtaking. While the history runs deep, this is very much a modern city. And, if I’m being completely honest, you can still see a lot of the remnants of the riots. However, I don’t think any of that takes away from the beauty and the energy of the city.
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Corinth Canal
We just did a brief photo stop at the canal, but it was beautiful. The color of the water was perfection. Plus, if you’re a lot braver than I am, you could even go bungee jumping!

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Mycenae
As a history nerd, I loved stopping to see the Grave of Agamemnon and the incredible views.

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Olympia
Olympia was amazing. There’s something about standing on the ground where so many men competed to win glory and respect for their city states. And I had to laugh at the world’s most embarrassing walk of shame, where each city had to make a statue of Zeus and write below the name of the cheater, his family, where they lived, and how he cheated. And you thought that walk from Sigma Chi was bad.

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Nafpaktos
Nafpaktos has stolen my heart. It was devastatingly beautiful. I’m a sucker for the ocean, and this picturesque village was beyond perfect. And they had the best coffee of my life to boot! I hope with all of my heart that I get to come back here one day. (Anyone want to go in on a beach house in Greece with me?)

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Delphi
Apollo was always my favorite god, so, of course, I was excited about Delphi. The museum had so many structures depicting scenes from famous myths, which had me swooning. Plus, the remaining ruins where absolutely stunning.

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Thermopylae
Thermopylae was another quick stop just so we could get a photo of the King Leonidas monument. Under his statue, it translates to the equivalent of, “Bring it,” which is what he said when the Persians came to attack. What a badass.

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Kalambaka
We spent the night here before heading to Meteora, and it was truly a lovely mountain village. The people were incredibly helpful (I passed on my sinus infection to Melly, and one of the luggage guys drove us to a pharmacy to get her medicine!), and it was the exact picture I had in my head of a Grecian town.

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Meteora
I won’t lie. I wasn’t super pumped about going to Meteora, especially after I heard that some other people on our trip were doing a day cruise of some islands. However, Meteora was truly magnificent. (Quick side note: Parts of For Your Eyes Only, a Bond film, was taped here!) The rock formations were amazing, as you can see from the pictures, and the monasteries were beautiful in their own quaint way. I’m not super religious, but it was very sweet the way people came in, in tears, and kissed the icons. Did it beat an island cruise? Maybe not, but it really did leave us in awe.

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We have one more day in Athens, which we’ll spend at the National Archaeological Museum and Sounion, which is where Poseidon’s Temple is. It’s supposed to be beautiful at sunset, so don’t worry, many pictures will come.

Also, I just noticed that everything I packed is striped. Oops!

Euro Trip – Days 1 and 2

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(View from our flight from Harrisburg)

Good morning, lovely followers!

With the help of all of your feedback (thanks!!), I’ve decided to do a mix of both an update of my travels AND some Delight of the Day posts. I’ll also add some pictures of yours truly once I recover from this awful cold. I currently look like Rudolph. Super attractive. If at any point I become one of those obnoxious people who never stops rambling about things, please tell me. I hate that!

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We (my sister, Melly, and I) left good ole Pennsylvania Monday afternoon and headed toward Chicago for our first layover. I’ve never been before, but it looks super pretty from the plane, so I’d definitely like to visit some time. (Plus one of my BFFs and Chicago Prepster live there!) Anyway, we had a 4-hour layover and decided to make the best of it with our last American meal – a phenomenal cheeseburger. I’m all about the health.

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(Our last American meal!)

After Chicago, we headed to London for a 13 freaking hour layover. Because I can’t sit still for longer than two seconds, we decided to venture outside of the airport to Leicester Circle. As you know, I’m crazy OCD I like to plan things out, so I haven’t been sleeping much. That, paired with this awful sinus business, has me pretty exhausted. So exhausted that ALL I could think about was getting coffee. Leicester Circle, you didn’t disappoint.

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(Thank you, God.)

There really wasn’t much else there, so we decided to head to Piccadilly Circus since it’s only one Tube stop away. (We’re pros now. Honest!) Of course, it started pouring while we were there, so we basically hid in Starbucks until it was safe to run back to the station.

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Overall, nothing super excited has happened yet. But maybe that’s because I’m still riding the high of skydiving for the first time (thanks, honey!!). We should be landing in Athens at 3:00 am this morning, so I’m sure I’ll have better updates the rest of the week!

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(My view from Heathrow. Riveting stuff, right?)

What are your favorite places in Europe? Or, if you’ve never been, where would you most like to go? (It’s never too late to book an impromptu trip and meet up with us!)

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(Plugged in, as always, so I can keep up with y’all