Monday, May 27, 2013

I'm Home!!

       So happy to be back in America! While it was hard to say goodbye to Granada, 
it is SO wonderful to be back home! So thankful to be welcomed home by such a wonderful family and fabulous amigos! :)

One last hug with some ISU friends after finishing customs at the airport.
We all lost our luggage, but we were SO happy to be back in los Estados Unidos! 
What an adventure it has been!

Reunited :) 

Soooo good to be back with the hermanito! 

Looking forward to lots more family nights like this all summer long! 

Here's a letter I found on my bed waiting for my return... Aww!
 It totally melted my heart. Thank you to each one who prayed for me this semester, 
including all my little amigos too. ;)  I am so beyond blessed by all of you! 
                                                                                            Mucho amor,
It's been an amazing semester! 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Adiós Granada

Warning! The content of this post has the potential to be excessively sentimental and sappy as all get out...

     The minute I stepped of myh flight and took my first step in Spain at Madrid airport bright and early January 2nd, I never could have even begun to imagine all God had in store for me this semester abroad. I remember distinctly feeling (and let´s face looking too) like a lost puppy 1,000s of miles away from everything I knew and understood to be normal. And it was then, that I realized that Spain, such a completely unknown and very foreign country was to be my "home away from home" for the next 5 months. Truthfully, my mind had never been filled with more fears, questions, and doubts than at that very moment in Madrid airport. But as my older brother always used to remind me, "Courage, is being scared to death but saddling up anyways". And now, with only 2 days left of my study abroad experience, I´m left wondering "where did the semester go?".  I wouldn´t trade this semester for the world, and I thank God for this amazing opportunity and for His faithfulness that I have come to know in a whole new powerful way as a result of my time abroad.

    I´ll be coming back to America, it´s where I belong, but I know that the person that I arrived as on January 2nd won´t be the same as who I am now. I have never been more stretched personally, socially, academically or spiritually ( At times, to the point that I thought I would SNAP!) than I have this semester. But I have come to rely upon the powerful strengh of God and have learned that HE alone will provide for my every need. I know now, that it was only by God´s grace and His guiding of my every footsteop that this semester could have ever been possible.

 And yep, I still love this verse even more at the end of this semester... :)

    Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.                                                                                                                             -Joshua 1: 9

      With all that I have learned, experienced, and discovered this semester I know that a part of my heart will remain here in Granada forever, while I eagerly anticipate a return trip someday. As I say goodbye to Granada, memories flood my mind as I am reminded of all I will miss so much about my life I´ve come to love here in Granada.

I will miss...
  • Speaking Spanish everyday!
  • Mercedes´ welcoming greeting of ¡Hola guapa! everytime I walk in the door
  • The breathtaking view of the Sierra Nevadas Mountains I see everyday on my way to school.
  • The adorable little pastry shops and cafés (that are DANGEROUSLY cheap!) that line every street corner here.
  • Traveling the world
  • My wonderful CEA directors that went out of there way countless times to help me.
  • Studying in the Parque Garcia Lorca everyday
  • The Spanish, slow no rush rhythm of life (although it did occasionly drive this time conscientious Americana loca!) ´
  • The countless memories made with my CEA amigos
  • Long dinner conversations with my host mom that continue way after we´ve finished eating.
  • The teeny tiny streets that can easily be mistaken for sidewalks...
  • All of my wonderful Christian Spanish friends that have so kindly prayed for me and supported me this semsester.
  • The Alhambra and it´s majestic beauty.
  • All the Spanish ¡dias de las fiestas!
  • My English students. They have challenged me to be the best teacher I can ever be and have truly inspired me. Oh, and I´ll miss they´re shy but ever so correct textbook response to my "what´s up?", of "I´m fine, how are you? So cute.
  • All the international friends I have made at the Centro de Lenguas Modernas.
  • The cobblestone streets that all seem to tell stories of thier own.
  • My professors that always showed up 5+ minutes late to class and then routinely let us out early. ;)
  • All my ISU friends whose friendships I have come to know and appreciate so much more.
  • Learning how to cook Spanish recipes with Mercedes (Paella, Tortilla Española, Lentgejas, to name only a few!)
  • How traveling for only 2+ hours and all of a sudden it becomes an "international trip".
  •  And last but not least, Spanish siestas! Enough said.  :)
So thanks Granada, it´s been an experience of a life time. ¡Te extranaré un montón!

Friday, May 17, 2013

A Trip to the End of the World

... Or so the preColumbus world used to think!
That´s right, I´ve seen what all Europeans used to believe was the end of the world- the coast of Portugal!
I enjoyed a fabulous weekend visiting the coastal cities of Faro and Lagos Portugal last weekend with my program. It was a great weekend full of sunshine, playas, swimming, and lots of fun! Hope you enjoy some pictures of the weekend...

Welcome to Portugal! 
or Boas-Vindas in Portugues ;) 
Yeah didn´t make much sense to me either...

Spent most of the day Saturday on a small cruise boat sailing the coast. 
So beautiful!

Portugal´s coast is so amazing because it´s filled with tons of caves and rock cliffs. 

We had a blast exploring the insides of the caves on a little speed boat.
 So fun! 

So apparently Portugal coffee´s REALLY strong, so being 
the Eisenmann that I am I had to try it...
Goodness gracious, you could get the same effect just 
by chewing on a bunch of coffee beans!! 
Needless to say, the espresso size was all I needed. ;) 

One of our first stops while driving to Lagos was Faro, 
Portugal where we toured a small chapel made out of   bones.
 The chapel was meant to show deep respect for the dead instead of simply burying them.

¡Me gusta la playa!
Spent lots of time on the beach! 

Sunday afternoon, we stopped by a beautiful vista before heading back to Granada.

This is at the southern most part of Europe. 
And... the closest spot to los Estados Unidos in all of Europe.
I think I can see America on the horizon!! 

Definitely a fabulous weekend! :) 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


-Pronounced BarTHelona by just about any southern Spaniard ;)

      Yep, I´ve finally made it to the north of Spain! And wow. It is SO different from southern Spain. Barcelona is a beautiful coastal city filled with TONS of interesting attractions that kept me and my traveling buddy Gloria busy all weekend. We walked our feet off! Although it had been a huge week of traveling (Monday in Chicago, Tuesday in Madrid, Wednesday in Granada and then Friday in Barcelona) I still really enjoyed the opportunity to visit Barcelona. Here´s a few of the highlights of my weekend in Barcelona...
Thought my airplane view of the Eastern coast of Spain and
 the Mediterranean sea was too good to pass up! 
Barcelona here I come! 

Soon after checking into our hostel we hit the ground running and started exploring the city right away. Here we are in front of the famous "Boqueria" market with everything from jamon legs to gummy worms. Definitely a hoppin' place! 

After meandering down the calle Rambla and enjoying lots of hilarious 
street entertainers we finally found the coast. It was beautiful! 

This was as close as I got to swimming in the Mediterranean, BRRRRRR! 

Our awesome supper in the hostal, definitely a
Dinner of Champions.

Up brigtht and early Saturday morning to tour the Sagrada Familia!
Took lots of hoop jumping, aka walking from one ticket officer to the other only to get sent back to the first one,  ( Ahhh, I was ready to bust up a chifferobe to quote my hermanito!)  ) , but we finally got to enter, it was SO worth it! 
Statues in the front of the church´s entrance. 

Gaudí was nuts!

Parque Güell 
Awesome picnic spot, looking over the city! 

Candyland exists! We found it, inside Parque Güel!! ;)

Awesome park we stumbled upon later Satuday afternoon.
Sometimes it pays to wander around without a plan! 

Finished off our amazing day of exploring Barcelona by 
watching the Magic Fountain light show.
So cool! 
And then we got caught in a down pour...
What a memorable, sopping wet night! 

La catedral

Sunday we spent the day touring the older, gothlic part of Barcelona where we saw the cathedral and learned many fasinating things about the city in our free tour. Visited the coast one more time, took a peak at some of Gaudí´s casas, and did some last minute exploring before catching our flight back to Granada. What a fantastic weekend! :)

P.S. Stay tuned for my Portugal adventures this past weekend!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


"Thou hast given me the heritage of those that fear Thy name."
Psalm 61:5
          So incredibly thankful to have been blessed by such a wonderful Grampy that has left me with such a beautiful heritage of faith, family, and love. So many precious memories with him, that I will treasure forever. I have been so blessed by his faithfulness in pointing me to my Saviour, living out God's truth in front of me, and diligently teaching me so many new lessons as a babe in Christ. I am reminded of the verse in Deuteronomy 6:7 where it says, "And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Grampy lived that verse out daily in front of me and I am so thankful for his faithful example in showing me firsthand God's love. I'm sure gonna miss him and his beautiful smile though!
      On a side note, even though going back to los Estados Unidos before finishing my semester here in Spain wasn't in my orignal plan when I left in January, I'm so thankful I could be with my family during Grampy's funeral weekend. It's so hard to know we'll never see him again on this side of Jordan, but oh so thankful for the legacy Grampy has left us. It was such an incredible blessing to be with family and friends I have missed so much! Here I am again in Granada, jet-lagged, but oh so refreshed and ready to finish this semester strong. Ready to hit the books again, with my inherited Dr. Dale R. Eisenmann's dedication! ;)

Monday, April 22, 2013


Better late to post than never, right?! Here´s a couple photos of my weekend trip to Madrid during the first weekend of this month. I went with some amazing girls from my program and had a fantastic time! Enjoy. :)

A pretty stately Capital, wouldn't you say?

Judy and I inside the Parque de Retiro

Fantastic traveling buddies!

Outside an awesome glass house inside the park.

Visiting the Botanical gardens of Madrid.
¡Me encantan flores!

Cooking dinner at our fabulous hostel. I could write a book on how to travel cheaply
 through Europe. ;) Only spent 12 euros on food the WHOLE weekend! Winning!

Visiting the massive cathedral.

Outside the cathedral.

Gloria y yo in front of the royal palace!

Definitely a successful weekend exploring Spain's capital city! 

Sunday, April 21, 2013


Wow! What a week. Thank you for all the prayers for my Grandpa this week, we have definitely felt them and appreciate them so much. If there´s one thing I´ve learned this semester, it´s that we serve an ALMIGHTY, ALL KNOWING, and FAITHFUL God. Praising God for His faithfulness and nearness especially this week. AND, I´m SO excited to be welcoming a new sister into the family this week too! Congrats Sarah and Ryan! :)
2 Lessons I´ve learned this week...
    1. God´s love and faithfulness is really the only constant, never changing rock in my life
    2. I´m gonna think twice before leaving home for 5 months again! ;)
         A LOT has happened since January!

~ Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.
Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord JEHOVAH is everlasting strength.
                                                                                                                        ~Isaiah 26:3