Happy New Year! I hope you all enjoyed the holidays with your loved ones.
I never establish New Years resolutions per se; however, I believe in continuous personal growth and becoming better every single day.
Things I’m scraping:
- Allowing others to bring me down
- One-way friendships/giving people too many chances
- Comparing myself to others/feeling inadequate
- Not putting myself first (sleepless nights, etc.)
- Pressure to be “normal” (no need to follow others’ status quo)
Things I’m embracing:
- Spending quality time with the best people
- More travel (duh, it’s me!)
- Volunteering more
- Gaining 10+ pounds
PS: please note the new name and domain change 🙂
Two weekends ago, Juan and I flew all the way to Oakland, California for a one-day music festival. One of our favs, Lane 8, performed at an all-day event in the middle of the city (I can’t emphasize how rad this was)! No phones were allowed and it was a truly immersive experience.
The only photos I have from our weekend away aren’t even from Oakland: they’re from San Francisco.
Juan has never been to the Golden Gate Bridge, so obviously we had to take a detour. When I visited two years ago, it was clear and sunny outside (see below):
When we visited two weekends ago, however, that wasn’t the case…
Regardless, we still had a great time and made the most of our foggy day!
Pro tip: do not get the croissants at the visitors center (Juan said they were hella stale).
“Let’s raise our glasses and lower our expectations” – Geoffrey Zakarian – Cate Spader
A few weeks ago, I planned the most epic bachelorette weekend ever (and when I say “epic,” I mean something along the lines of a “grandmas who like to drink a lot” kind of vibe)!
The seven of us celebrated Carolyn’s love for Ryan by… eating the classiest brunch in Old Montréal. We all ordered savory dishes, and mine consisted of salmon, cauliflower purée, cranberries and greens.
After the boozy brunch, we wandered the streets of Old Montréal; this immediately reminded Carolyn and me of our time in southern France. All of us were on the same page and ended up at a street festival with tons of food trucks, zip lines and happy people. We even rode the giant ferris wheel, which is comparable to the London Eye.
Even though our night out at the comedy club and bowling were pretty low-key for a bachelorette party, we had a riot! Prior to going out, we played some drinking games in the hotel and were able to get to know each other quite well!
The next day, we visited Ontario Street (aka: where all the hipsters live). It was a different vibe for sure, but I loved it regardless. I felt like I was in a different city or country all together. We had another wonderful brunch and spent the afternoon on a pedal bar tour.
If you haven’t been on a pedal bar tour, you need to! My brother and I did this last summer in Portland, and both times were absolutely awesome! Whether you’re with one person or several, you’re going to have a good time with the others you’re pedaling with 🙂
We had two bachelorette parties on our bike, so we all knew we were in for a fun time!
I can’t wait to see these wonderful ladies at Carolyn’s wedding this month!
During our time on San Cristobal Island in the Galapagos, Juan befriended a local taxi driver named Manolo. Of course, the two of them had a lot in common: Spanish is their native language, they grew up in Ecuador and they seemed to laugh at the same things (probably at me)!
Kidding aside, Manolo was one of the coolest locals we met on the island. Why do I say this? Not only was he a “salt-of-the-earth” kind of dude, but he became our private chauffeur and took us to some unique places.
Our first stop on our “non-touristy” tour of San Cristobal Island was an eco-friendly treehouse. A family generated this treehouse – as well as other rooms on the property – from 100% recycled and sustainable materials! The hippie in me loved this and never would’ve known about it had we taken another taxi…
Have you ever befriended a kind stranger while traveling? And if so, do you still keep in touch? 🙂
After a long (but very fun!) two hours of snorkeling at Kicker Rock, the group headed to a beach that was completely secluded!
There were many staggering features of this deserted area, and I can’t decide which one was my favorite…
1) the water had beautiful turquoise and teal tones
2) the sand was organic, which means that the chemicals the pufferfish can’t digest turns into the soft, velvety sand we walked upon!
3) every creature on the beach was tranquil (more posts to come on this!)
4) the views on and around the beach were awe-inspiring
5) the warm waves hitting made me feel as though I was taking a bath
The only thing I’d change? The FLIES! They bite, and they bite HARD.
Pro tip: bring bug spray to the Galápagos!