The Sunshine Blogger Award

Thank you to Chloe of My Life Living Abroad for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award, an award passed along from one blogger to another. Chloe created the Bloggers in Paris Facebook group, which I am so grateful to have stumbled upon here in France. It’s full of incredibly creative and talented people who are all interested in sharing their Parisian experiences. Here are my answers to Chloe’s fun set of questions, along with the two blogs I nominate next.

  1. What is your all time favorite place to walk around in Paris?
    Honestly, anywhere hand-in-hand with my boyfriend Tyler. Preferably on a nice spring day along the Seine. With a picnic and blanket. And wine. And a baguette. You get the picture 🙂
  2. What’s the story behind your blog’s name?
    Melissa in Paris: I’m Melissa, in Paris!
  3. Why did you start blogging to begin with?
    Blogging (even if in private mode on Xanga– remember that?) helped me get through the very tough days of middle school heartbreak… haha. I started picking it back up when I moved to Paris mostly to keep my friends and family back home updated on our life abroad. What started as a little project soon led to two more blogs, Our Paris Stories and Chopchicks in Paris (the latter of which we’re still working on!) It’s been nothing but a positive experience so far.
  4. If you could only have one final drink in Paris, what would it be?
    I don’t drink much, but I’m finally learning to enjoy a nice glass of red wine (only if it comes with a planche though).
  5. What’s your favorite travel destination?
    Tahiti, where my mom’s family lives.
  6. What do you love about blogging?
    I love that blogging affords me a creative outlet. When I lived in the States, I realized how much of a consumer I was- I purchased a lot of material goods; I watched a lot of Netflix shows, I browsed through endless feeds of Instagram and Facebook posts. Since moving, I’ve made a conscious choice to switch from being a passive consumer in attempts to becoming more of a creator. In my tech crowd back in the States, I felt a (maybe self-imposed) pressure that to be “creative” meant that I needed to build a hot new Android app, found a start-up, or use tools that I didn’t personally find a whole lot of fun. Here in Paris, I’m learning to look at creativity with a new lens. I love instances like when my friend Diana asked me, “Hey, we both have a passion for <x>. Do you wanna write a book about it with me?”, or when I get pinged by another blogger, “I saw your latest article and I thought it’d be so cool to do a photo collaboration on <y>.”
  7. What are your travel goals for 2017?
    Planning is in the works for a summer trip in Italy (Almafi Coast and Cinque Terre are the top spots), a few trips back to the States for holidays and work, and maybe some road-tripping to the South of France. Our fridge has a long bucket list of travel destinations (prioritized of course).
  8. What’s your favorite book?
    The Prophet by Khalil Gibran, a collection of philosophical poems about nearly every aspect of life, ranging from friendship to meaningful work to love. Every now and then I pick up The Prophet from our bookshelf, read a few passages, and end up feeling calmer with a clearer mind. The way I came to know about this book is interesting as well. One day, I was walking around a farmers’ market with my mom in Seattle browsing the summer strawberry stand. The strawberry farmer was completely engulfed by the book, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I said to him, “Hey, I’m reading that book too right now!” He smiled and wrote down “The Prophet” on a paper towel, telling me to read it next. I still use that scribbled note as a bookmark for that book.
  9. What’s your favorite French word?
    Aside from “vachement” (hahaha), my favorite French phrase is “aller flâner”: to wander without a specific purpose. I learned it from a French friend during my first week here in Paris and it’s a phrase I always come back to as I walk this city’s streets.
  10. Which woman or women inspire you?
    I only surround myself by people (both men and women) who inspire me, support me, and make me a better person than I was before I met them (so if you’re still an active person in my life- thank you!) The one person I will talk about now is my friend and penpal, Hisako. I met her four years ago in a Boston hostel and ever since, she has inspired me with stories of traveling around the world to make new friends from different cultures. I stayed with her in Osaka nearly one year ago and she went out of her way to welcome me to her home, cook me homemade tempura, and chase cherry blossoms all over Japan. I am so grateful to have her as a friend and inspiration in life 🙂
  11. Describe Paris in one word.
    Home.

Info about the Sunshine Blogger Award

This nomination is from bloggers to bloggers. The award is given to those who inspire and bring sunshine into the lives of their readers and fellow bloggers.

Rules

  1. Thank the person that nominated you and post a link to their blog on your blog
  2. Answer the 11 questions from the person that nominated you
  3. Nominate some other bloggers for this award and give them 11 questions to answer
  4. Notify the bloggers you have nominated.
  5. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo

I nominate the following bloggers for this award:

  • Julie Gramlich of juliegramlich.org, for giving us a glimpse into living in Japan and for introducing us to impressive female entrepreneurs who live there.
  • Jocelyn Ho of Samba Through Life, for her creative DIY tutorials and travel stories. And for being my fellow #chopchick!

Here are my questions:

  1. Why do you blog?
  2. What has been your favorite post you’ve written so far?
  3. How do you find inspiration for posts?
  4. What is your favorite food to photograph? 🙂
  5. Where do you usually blog from?
  6. What has been a pleasant, yet unexpected outcome since starting your site?
  7. How do you decide how much personal information you share online?
  8. What are your top three destinations on your travel bucket list?
  9. What’s your favorite book?
  10. What advice would you give to a brand new blogger?
  11. What sort of creative project do you want to tackle next?

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