Long Journey Home

I am back in Minnesota! My lovely mother flew up to assist with the drive home. It was a very fun trip despite some very long driving days! I am absolutely in love with the Fall colors across North America, right now. I had the realization that I haven’t been in this part of the…

Belated Whitewater Rafting Photos

Here are my favorite photos from the whitewater rafting excursion from my family’s  vacation in Jasper last month. Our trip was on the Sunwapta river. You can tell from our faces in the photos we didn’t have a good time at all. Nope, no fun for the Brainard girls. Of course that was sarcasm at…

The Brainard Girls’ Vacation in Jasper

Last week my mom, sister, and aunt flew out for a vacation in beautiful Jasper National Park. Here’s more photos than you wanted to see from our trip. Not pictured here is our super awesome whitewater rafting trip on the Sunwapta River. It was super awesome. Mom, Celesta, and Weezie, thank you so much for…

That’s It! (Well, not quite)

August 31st was not only Jupiter’s “got-me” day, it was also technically the end of my Fulbright research term. With the beginning of the 2016 school year and the end of the 2015 fiscal calendar, I am now a Fulbright alumni. The University of Alberta will be shutting down my UAlberta email and no more…

Meaningful and Immersive Travel Experiences

There are a lot of problems with traveling: Social problems of escaping your own culture and exploiting others. Environmental problems of using carbon intense means of travel and putting pressure on wild landscapes for our recreational benefit. Financial problems of it being just so darn expensive and unsustainable. But if you really want to travel…

Media Inspiration to Travel

I bounce between passionate feelings for two extreme travel-related options: Localized societies and economies and bioregionalism are the only sustainable way for society to progress. We need to produce everything we need from food to furniture locally, eliminate fossil fuel guzzling transportation, and invest more in our local communities. Our jobs, family, and societies shouldn’t…

What a weekend!

I can see the semblance of a life emerging! I, cave-basement dweller and nerdy foreigner new to a city of mostly locals, had a BUSY weekend! Filled with both work and play, but when the work is what you’re passionate about it’s hard to differentiate. Friday, I kicked off the weekend by setting up ReThink…

Venturing Outside the Cave

While Canada is trapped in a winter wonderland, I am faced with the challenge of staying engaged before I can really dig into my research. (Figuratively and literally, the ground is frozen solid.)  While I am happy researching online and reading books, sometimes I do need to leave my cave.  I am happy to say…