Ott European Invasion – Zermatt


I don’t mean to be super cliché, but skiing the Swiss Alps is a dream come true. Once I was accepted into the international program and I was officially going to Switzerland, my family planned to come visit me and the first place on our list to visit together was Zermatt – the home of the famous Matterhorn. We hadn’t been skiing together in years. So, we were all really excited to cross this item off of our bucket lists. (Although that excitement may have turned into a bit of weariness after telling my family about my first encounter with the Swiss Alps. But, their courage prevailed and we went skiing despite any fear!) I finished classes on Thursday evening and Friday morning we jumped on the train to Zermatt. It’s about a 2 hour train ride, but a beautiful one at that. I really never get sick of Switzerland’s landscapes.



Once we arrived, we dropped off our bags at Hotel Firefly (which we highly recommend – it’s absolutely beautiful and they have the best customer service), grabbed some lunch in town, and rented our ski gear so that we were ready for the next day.








We got up early the next morning so that we could get a full day of skiing in. Once we got to the top of the ski lift and skied around the corner, I saw the Matterhorn for the first time up on the slopes and I seriously could not believe it. It was breathtaking. After we soaked it all in, I mainly kept my eyes down on the slope making sure I wasn’t going to fall. Steve is a pro and was so patient with us. He gave us all some lessons and tips and skied with us a couple times down the slope. Then once we all felt pretty comfortable going down ourselves, Em and Steve went skiing on some crazy black slopes!

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After skiing until our legs were shaking, we all met up at the end of  the day for dinner in town and games back at the hotel. Have you ever played Ellen’s “Heads Up” game? We played it continuously during our trip, even at restaurants! We really had the best time! Thanks family for coming to visit me in Switzerland! I had fun showing you around.

Zermatt from The Milly & Grace Girls on Vimeo.

(Making this video made me miss Switzerland so much. I cannot wait until I return again!)

Stay tuned for the Barcelona part of the Ott European Invasion…it’s coming up next!

Ott European Invasion – Lausanne


I don’t know if you heard, but I had a major scare with all of my pictures. First, I lost all of the pictures from when my family came to visit me in Switzerland and our trip to Barcelona. Then, somehow I managed to get those back after some research online. But, when I got those back, the rest of my pictures disappeared. Luckily, I have Apple Care and was able to call them up once I got back to the states and they saved my life. It’s not the first time they’ve saved my life. Seriously, they are amazing. Anyway, now that I have all of them back I can post about the Ott European Invasion! Yay!

I was so excited to finally be able to show my family the town that I had called home for months. I remember walking to dinner the night before they came thinking ‘wait, they are going to walking these streets tomorrow’. I could not believe it was going to happen…but it did!

My sisters both sent me identical pictures when the Swiss boarder control let them in:


I showed them all around, gave them a tour of my house (you can see a tour here), took them to the Cathedral and to get the best swiss hot chocolate in town. We had picnics down by the lake, they visited the Olympic Museum while I was in class, and of course we had to have some fondue!











Then, we were off to Zermatt! Stay tuned for that post and more of the Ott European Invasion xo

Nice, France


When we were planning our very last travel weekend, we were exhausted from all the papers and projects and presentations that were due just before finals. So, we decided we wanted somewhere a little bit warmer, somewhere with a beach, somewhere with a cute little town to explore, and somewhere with no major tourist attractions. We just wanted it to be simple, easy, relaxing, and beautiful. Nice, France was all of that!

We caught our very last 3:50am train to the airport ever. Then, at the airport just before getting on our plane, I stumbled upon magazines from AMERICA.


I nearly died. There was even a Martha Stewart Wedding magazine that I hadn’t seen yet! Boo ya. I splurged on the over priced imported magazines because I just couldn’t wait any longer. And besides, I would need something to do while sitting on the beach!


We arrived at our hotel by 9:00am and we were ready to start our day. We grabbed some breakfast at our hotel and made reservations for dinner that night. Then, we wandered along the beach until we found the perfect spot to sit and relax and read magazines. The only thing missing was a couple of pina coladas. So, we hopped up and walked along the beach until we found a restaurant that served drinks on the beach. Bingo! Pina Coladas coming right up.




At the end of the day, we wandered around the cute little town and grabbed some dinner. We also stumbled upon a gelato place with about 70 different flavors. So, of course, we stopped for some dessert and I found my new favorite flavor: Lavender!

The next morning, we grabbed brunch in town at the cutest little cookie café ever.



Then, we wandered every little street of the old part of town and stopped to get some gelato half way through the day of course. You can never have too much. And it was our last opportunity for some European gelato.



We had dinner, where we celebrated our year abroad with some champagne. And then sat there for about 3 hours just talking. It felt like we had only been there for half that time. I guess it’s true that time flies when you’re having fun. Either that or we have officially become like the Europeans, who eat really long dinners like that every night! It was such a great place to end our year of traveling all over Europe.