And I’m Off….

Today is the day….Will and I are heading off to London for a week and then Madrid for a week to stay with our friends who moved there this past summer. I’m sad to leave Finn (like I’ve cried about it multiple times already) and I am dreading a couple hours from now when I have to take him to the boarding place (it’s where he was rescued and they are awesome and he will have fun at the indoor dog park) because I know I’m going to cry when I have to leave him. That probably sounds dumb but I actually don’t care…I love my buddy and I worry he will think we’ve left him like whoever dumped him before.

I’m excited to return to London and figured it would be fun to do a little #throwbackthursday  (a day late but I *started* most of this post on Thursday sooo?) and share some pics from my first trip to London in 2007.











I’ve thought a lot about that trip as I’ve been planning this trip. It was a whirlwind 10 day trip in which I saw London, Paris, Florence and Rome with the other students in my class. It was this opportunity to take this trip to fulfill one of my classes and I had to do some learning things and write this whole journal and answer prompts but that paled into comparison to how great this trip was.

It was the first time I went to Europe. The first time I went on a trip without my parents. It was almost a full year after my mom passed away. I had just started dating Will six months before that. So much of my life had been put on hold because of my mom being sick (I don’t mean this in a resentful way or anything negative) for the past 2 years that I just wanted to do something for myself. I wanted to do something that might help me escape the grief of the past year….or well really the past few years. I wanted to do something, anything, because I didn’t know what else to do. Also, it was always a dream of mine to go to Europe and, also, my mom was part of my reason that I wanted to travel so much. But feeling like I wanted to do something for me, when I made the decision a few months after my mom passed as I heard my professor talked about the trip in class, was a lot of the reason why I took this trip.

I’m really proud of what has happened in those years since then. I look back at this Jamie and I’m really proud of her — she had the biggest weight on her shoulders on this trip. The trip didn’t magically take all of that away but it was a bright spot in that first year after she passed away and honestly it gave me hope that I would still be able to live life and have a future — something that when you lose someone becomes hard to think about because a huge part of your world is not continuing on into that future with you. It reminded me how big the world (and life) is. It was a start. It was a step forward in a year that just felt like this endless black hole of grief. Plus it was that feeling of fulfilling a dream that instantly puts this new spring in your step.

I’m looking forward to setting foot in London all these years later with new eyes as a thirty year old woman with her husband by her side and almost 10 years since my mom passed.  I’m excited to make new memories in a place that made me cry when I set foot in it — because I was finally there after all these years and because it was my mom’s favorite city. I’m excited to show Will a city I love and have wanted to go back to. I’m excited to discover places I never got to discover the first time. I’m just excited to be taking this trip because money has been a struggle for us since we’ve been married with me losing my job and feeling like we could never get even remotely ahead and not traveling as been eating away at my soul, I think. I’m excited to let the restless wanderer out to play.

But mostly I’m excited to whisper to the ghosts of that Jamie who traipsed around there before me and say, “we made it. It didn’t feel like we could ever be happy again or pull ourselves up from the depths of our sadness but we are and we did. We are stronger and wiser and more resilient than we ever knew.”

And then I’m going to have a really damn good time on my trip and make so many memories and feel that peace in my soul that I always get when I’m exploring and discovering and learning and wandering.



On a more housekeeping note…I’ll have a few posts going up for these next two weeks but know that, while I’ll see and read every comment because they all come straight to my email, I won’t be responding to any comments or emails until I get back. Thank you for understanding! Can’t wait to catch up with you guys in a couple weeks!


Also, if you want to follow my adventures through London and Madrid:

Instagram@perpetualpageturner AND I’m using my personal account @jamielee841


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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Hope you’ve packed some thermals we had snow over night in good old blighty!
    Hope you have a fab trip!

  2. Have a wonderful time! You deserve it 🙂

  3. Have a wonderful time 🙂 I’m feeling secondhand-proud of you too! It sounds like you’ve come so far, and I’m happy you’ll get to explore the city again with your husband – that will be a great experience for you. Safe travels xox

  4. Have fun!

  5. Safe travels! Have fun!