Nations Cup 2017!

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Hello everyone, so I’m extremely behind with my posts yet again… I’ve decided to post about my recent trip to Michigan for Nations Cup first and I will catch you all up on what happened in between soon. 

First of all, I hope that you have all been doing very well. Summer is going to be here before we know it, so good luck to those of you studying hard for your upcoming finals. I know that I cannot wait to hang out in my swimsuit by the pool all day. 

Last Fall I decided to rejoin theater on ice. The Houston Starz qualified to compete at Nations Cup 2017 (which is a Worlds competition) in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Here is a glance of my amazing time competing again:Last Tuesday was the day of my flight. My Mom drove me to the airport since I would be flying to Michigan solo. I love flying. Airports in general make me so happy. I love finding something yummy to eat near my gate, bringing a good book to read as much as I can, and just knowing that when the plane lands I will be somewhere different. 

I brought a book called “Unfiltered” with me by Lily Collins. I’ve always been a huge Lily Collins fan whether it comes to her style, acting, or personality, but I never realized how similar our personalities are. Reading her book and seeing how raw she has been writing about her life and hardships for everyone to see, made me even happier that I have a blog. Being able to read about and relate to people brings a whole other level of acceptance towards yourself. When I arrived in Detroit, I was (and all the other athletes were) welcomed with this awesome Nations Cup sign. After I got my luggage, I took a shuttle to get my first ever rental car. I felt like such an adult getting everything sorted out on my own. 😊 Wednesday morning, we had our first practice in Michigan. I had no idea that we would be competing at the University of Michigan campus. It was so beautiful! I have competed and trained in Michigan several times, but never have I gotten a chance to feel that ice until this trip. It felt like I was skating on glass, which was amazing. I can’t even explain to y’all how exhilarating it was to be out there feeling that good and representing Team USA! We all went to a place called Zingerman’s for lunch after our practice. It was delicious and such a cool looking place. They had hundreds of sandwich options (I ordered a grilled chicken, bacon, and ranch sandwich on sourdough bread), the whole shop was extremely colorful & fun, and the people working there loved to hand out samples which was pretty cool. After lunch, we all decided to explore Downtown Ann Arbor. We checked out cute little gift shops, bookstores, and breweries.  This place called Literati was such a cool bookstore. It was three stories. You walked in on the second floor, which was full of the more popular, fictional books. If you went up to the 3rd floor it held a little coffee shop and children’s books, but if you went down to the 1st floor, you would find all of the history, philosophy, cooking, and sports books. The 1st floor also had a typewriter and anyone could write a message to tape onto the wall. The outside of the bookstore had a wall full of quotes built into the brick. It was so unique and the quotes were fun to read. Next, the three of us (Taylor, Cynthia, and I) checked out the Ann Arbor Brewery to have a drink before we all got ready for our team dinner.    We went to a place called, Sava’s, for our team dinner. It was also located in Downtown Ann Arbor. It was such a nice little restaurant that had 2 floors and an amazing menu. I ordered myself a bacon & Brie hamburger with the best macaroni and cheese for the side. The Brie on the burger made it taste so creamy and delicious. I also love their choice of mixed cheeses for the macorni. Cynthia ordered herself this really cool looking drink. I completely forgot the name of it, but I remember the process of how they made it. They brought out this platter, with one of the cups covering some smoked rosemary. Once they lifted the cup you could smell the smokiness and they poured the lime juice, sweet tequila, ice cube, and fresh rosemary into the smoky cup. It was a very interesting thing to watch. After dinner, I went to pick up Jordan from the airport. I couldn’t wait to see him and felt so excited and blessed that he wanted to come join me for this adventure. Thursday morning came in bright & early. Jordan came with me to our 7am practice and then we all went to a place called, Avalon, for breakfast. I ordered a cappuccino with eggs, bacon, seasoned potatoes, and toast. It definitely hit the spot! Jordan ordered an iced white chocolate mocha with an egg & avacado breakfast sandwich. He said this was one of the best sandwiches he’d ever had. Thursday evening was our first competition. We competed our “Choreographic Exercise” routine, which is where all of us wear all black and preform a routine that is focused on a general theme, synchronization, and any other requirements that get changed each competition season. 

We had a great skate and ended up 5th for the night. The competition was tough, but we did our absolute best and we were all proud. After the competition ended for the night, I got changed so Jordan and I could head out for our date night in Michigan. We decided to try a Tapas restaurant that had a 45 min wait, so while we waited I took him over to the Ann Arbor brewery that I had tried for a pre-dinner drink. We had such a great time, ordered some amazing Spanish wine, and delicious Tapas. Jordan also looked strikingly handsome, so I had to get a picture. I keep looking at it. 🙈😍Chicken Croquette.Garlic Shrimp. Jordan and I spent Friday afternoon exploring more of Downtown Ann Arbor together. We checked out more cute, little shops, good eats, and coffee shops.After tons of waking around and starving because we hadn’t eaten, we found this Mongolian grill. Funnily enough, I had realized once we walked in that I had been there before when I came to compete about 6 years ago. It was just as good as I remembered. We also stopped by this chocolate factory to get ourselves a little treat. Jordan got a chocolate covered peanut butter Oreo and I got a dark chocolate turtle. Our next (and last) stop was this cute little coffee shop. I ordered a cappuccino that was a little too strong for my liking and Jordan ordered a vanilla honey latte. His latte was actually pretty good. We left Downtown Ann Arbor with some full bellies and happy hearts. ❤️   Friday night was the big night! It was time to compete our freeskate program. Each team skates about a 6 minute long routine to whatever song they choose and whatever unique theme they decide on. It’s so fun to watch everyone’s own creative ideas for the programs, choreography, costumes, and on ice props. We ended up 5th overall, but we had such a strong skate. It truly did feel amazing to get back on the ice to compete again. GO USA!!​

​Jordan, Taylor, Cynthia, and I hit up downtown Ann Arbor one last night to celebrate our hard work. We stopped by The Blue Tractor Brewery to have a drink and watch some of the Rockets game, we stopped by a tequila bar, and our last stop was at a place called “Club Live.” We had such a blast celebrating, dancing, and telling everyone that we had just won Worlds (even though we only won in our hearts lol). Sunday morning, Jordan and I got up, ready, and packed for our first flight together. Checking our luggage and going through security was such a breeze. On the flight we ended up staying awake watching “The Accountant,” which was a fantastic movie, instead of sleeping like we should have. We were welcomed back home to our families that missed us and a delicious steak dinner at Saltgrass.

I am so excited to share this post with y’all. I can’t wait for more and more adventures to come.

XOXO, Paige.

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