Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Exploring the Florida Underground

Hello, Friends!

If you have seen my Instagram recently, you would have seen that I spent some time in some caverns the other day. As part of our annual trip to Alabama, we decided to stop in a little town in North Florida to explore the Florida Caverns. I had never been in a cavern before.

The cavern tour was my mom's idea. We broke up the trip into two legs in order to fit in our cavern tour. We pre-planned our stop, pre-ordered our tickets and were all set for the night tour. We decided to go for the 1.5-2 hour night flashlight tour.

The tour guide turns off all the lights inside the cavern then we "hike" about half a mile to the cavern entrance and basically crawl in. There is this sign on your walk up to the cabin where the tours start.

After a quick orientation about the caverns, we were free to explore! It was awesome. We crawled through some small spaces and narrow hallways. It was fun to hear about how the caverns were discovered. My sisters and I took a TON of pictures.

The next day we completed our trip to Alabama to drop off both my sisters in college. They are currently going to school together for the first time ever. They also live 8 blocks away from each other. Keep an eye out for my Bama Trip post that's coming up (yep, E you were right!).

Have you ever been in a cavern?

Monday, August 14, 2017

12 Trips to Take with Your BFF

Hello, Friends!

Let's be honest, the best thing about your best friend is that you can do absolutely nothing together and still be the best day ever. You can talk, or not talk, for hours about everything and nothing. You can ask her those things you can't ask anyone else.

Because of that, you and your BFF definitely deserve a break from the everyday craziness every once in a while and take off to some fun, exotic place. Being out of your element, or even just relaxing without a care in the world, it is always better with your bestie by your side. Traveling with your best friend will bond you like nothing else.

My bestie and I came up with a list of epic getaways to take. Here are some of our favorites that we hope to go out on. Don't worry about taking some fancy trip, even just one will make sure to cement your memories for a lifetime.

one// NYC

There's nothing quite like the Big Apple. All the stuff to do, all the lights, all the food. How could you possibly go wrong? There are so many things to do in the city, even if it's just for a long weekend! I spent one night in the city with my bestie and we ate in Little Italy, then sat around Times Square. Its definitely on our list to go back.

two// Roadtrip

This is my bestie's number one thing dream trip. She's planned it out, crossing the entire country, hitting all the national parks and crossing back. One day we will leave everything behind, pack our car and hit the road. Until then, we will keep dreaming of this epic road trip.

three// The English Countryside

My bestie and I are part of a trio and it so happens that our third lives in England currently. So we are actually, currently trying to plan a trip to visit her before she moves back. Seeing all her AMAZING pictures is making me die with jealousy. I can't wait to see her. 

four// Italy

Or more specifically Florence, or Cinque Terre, or Vienna. Italy is just a magical place! It would be awesome to go with my best friend. I know we can rent a vespa, eat gelato or pizza, and enjoy our trip pretending to be real Italians.

five// Montreal

Poutine, poutine, poutine. They also have beautiful outdoors. Montreal's got everything worth indulging in, but in French. It is alluring, charming, and everything you'd want to share with your BFF.

six// Savannah

The beautiful cobblestone squares and canopy of Spanish moss, there's no dreamier place to feel time stands still. There's nothing like the South. Between the hospitality and Southern charm, it's a perfect place to visit.

seven// Stockholm (or Oslo, or Copenhagen)

Thank you, WOW Air, for making it a lot more doable to jet off to Scandinavia on a moment's notice. If Sweden, Norway, or Denmark weren't on your radar before then now's the perfect time to keep an eye out for deals. Definitely should go hopping across Europe

eight// Machu Picchu

Who better to be with when you're traipsing through Peru than your best friend? It is a majestic, once in a lifetime trip. One that is better with your best friend by your side. Taking a train or hiking through remote parts of Peru to reach an incredible part of history.

nine// Tokyo 

Take a little hop to Asia with a vibrant and nonstop city like Tokyo. It marries the fast-paced, technologically advanced world with the traditional Japanese culture in an amazing way.

ten// Thailand

Going here is a dream of mine. I want to see the monkey temple, the elephants, and all the incredible things that are unique to Thailand. Imagine practicing yoga together, overlooking the water.

eleven// Buenos Aires

I'd love to take my best friend to my home. I want to show her around my stomping ground, maybe go down south to Tierra del Fuego. Visit Patagonia and all the penguins. It'll definitely be a great time to bring my best friend to my family's roots. She's basically a part of the family at this point.

twelve// Nashville, Tennessee

Its the country music capital of the world. Visiting the South and all the fun things to do in the city. It is definitely a long weekend, exploring together would make for a great weekend getaway!

Where would you go?

Friday, August 11, 2017

11 Roadtrip Essentials for Your Next Trip

Hello All!

Yesterday we started our official, annual road trip to Alabama! This means we had to pack up the car with ALL the essentials for our 14-hour trip. This year we broke it up into two days so we could enjoy some sightseeing. By the time you're reading this we will be at our destination!

Road trips require a lot of things and preparation. The weekend before we left, my sisters and I made a list of all the snacks we wanted to bring along. The week before that my little sister made us a playlist for the ride. There are many things to keep into consideration for a road trip.

Obviously, there are some things you can't get away with not bringing along. You must have your ID, car keys, full tank of gas, and all the stuff you're moving. I wanted to share some things that you need as a driver and passenger in road trips. Granted, there tends to be overlap between the two.

As the Driver

one// a comfy travel outfit

I definitely respect people that get all dressed up to travel, and I wish I could pull it off, but I end up driving myself crazy. While I am not a person that dresses in sweatpants or PJs to travel, I still try to be comfortable. I'll opt for something warm and airy, like leggings or jeans. Loose Tees are important as well in the outfit decision. I usually opt for sneakers or boat shoes to keep my feet warm.

two// caffeine

I love coffee and it keeps me up, but it also makes me need to stop for the bathroom too many times. Instead of coffee, I opt for tea. Now I've learned this the hard way: pack the tea bags and just order hot water instead!

three// sunglasses

I never leave my house without sunglasses. Living in Florida pretty much trains you to always have sunglasses with you. Even on super overcast days, the clouds will break and the sun is all in your face. Sunglasses are essential!

four// a good playlist

My sisters are the BEST at this. I'm not going to lie, I'm pretty horrible at music stuff. This year we are doing a Spotify playlist, we all had to submit song options then my sisters made a playlist for the ride. I definitely would recommend a book on tape if not. On previous trips, we've played Harry Potter or other books. Both are the best options to keep you alert on the road especially if you're traveling alone. If you aren't alone then you need to have an alert co-pilot to keep you on track.

five// car phone charger

This is essential!! Since we use phones as GPS and music and all sorts of other things, so we need to make sure we are fully charged. We are many phones traveling together so we got a multiple port phone charger for the trip. If not, then definitely keep multiple of the one phone chargers in the car, in case one stops working or anything else goes wrong.

six// gum

Gum is definitely a great way to stay alert and awake. Keeping some in the car for the driver and the passengers is a great way to go. It keeps your breath feeling fresh and for some reason, I always feel more alert when chewing gum. I wouldn't suggest chewing the entire trip though! 

seven// water bottle

Like my sunglasses, I never leave home without a water bottle. I love my orange CamelBak! We packed lunch, snacks, and plenty of water. We don't always realize how dehydrated we get while sitting in the car driving. Lots of people like the glass bottles because they do not have harmful chemicals when they get hot.

eight// snacks

We don't like to stop many times on the trip and we have very particular favorite snacks. We pack all sorts of things, especially things we can't find on the road. I know we probably eat a lot out of boredom, but I'm constantly hungry on the road. Definitely, make a list of the snacks you want so you can pack exactly what you're craving.

as the passenger

one// hand sanitizer

SUPER important! You're going to stop at kinda gross places, you'll be eating, and moving around the car, so you definitely want to have hand sanitizer. I always have some in my purse, but I'd recommend packing some extra hand sanitizer.

two// jackets or sweatshirts

Cars are cold!! My hands always freeze while I'm driving, but as a passenger, I need the sweater or jacket. You can also throw it on like a blanket if you decide to take a nap. 

three// pillow

This is a debated essential. My mom claims that the passengers are supposed to entertain the driver, but sometimes as the passenger, I know I need a nap. Especially after driving for a couple hours I'll sit in the back and nap while someone else is entertaining the driver.

What are your essentials?

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Making Mistakes

Hello, Friends!

As J.K. Rowling said: "It is impossible to live without failing at something." If you are actively engaging in your life- trying things, creating things, stepping in, and stepping up- then naturally you will get some of the stuff wrong. And sometimes, very VERY wrong.

We all have those weeks full of "Oh wow, what was I doing there?" moments. Some things came to light that I couldn't have predicted but made sense in hindsight. I rushed too quickly into stuff and didn't heed the advice of others or even slow down enough to think my own decisions through. Luckily, I was able to work through some of my problems. Because no matter how many positives things come out of our missteps, it is always a difficult moment to overcome.

There is some good to mistakes. Mistakes are there to show us more clearly who we are, who we are becoming, and what we are made of. We make mistakes to learn. Because of this, we should not be afraid to make a mistake, to fail. Mistakes can give us the fire to mold our future actions.

I know that I like to use a mistake like a flopped test to do better on the next one. Or in this case, a bad roommate situation to be more cautious about my next one. 

Mistakes give you a story. As my friend always says "Well at least you have something to talk about now." So yeah, the path wasn't straight or even nice, but you get experiences & lessons. When things go wrong, and you're in pain from the situation, feeling the anxiety and the fear, you must learn how to deal with the situation and push forward. You get new tools for your toolbox. The wrongness is the really good, interesting, valuable story.

Hopefully, when mistakes happen you'll be able to look back and see where you ignored your insights, opinions, desires, or your knowledge. It's where screw ups happen the most. When you look back and see how it happened, look forward, and ensure that you do your best to keep it from happening the same way again. 

No matter what happened, how it happened, or why it happened, your mistakes make you into who you are today! They're informing your future. Be yourself, as kind and compassionate as you can, because you're not your mistakes.

What are some of your big mistakes lately?

Monday, August 7, 2017

Why I Choose to Wax My Legs

Hello All!!

I was finally able to convince my little sister to come wax her legs with me (not in the same room). It has been something I've been trying to get her to do for a while, which inspired this post today! I wanted to go through the reasons why I choose to wax, the good, the bad, and the ugly. I also wanted to go through the things you want to look for and be aware of when getting waxed.

one//Smooth Legs

While shaving cream helps moisturize your legs, waxing actually removes the dead cells from the areas being waxed. Because of this, waxing is essentially like a giant exfoliant. The wax helps reveal soft and smooth skin. It makes your skin look pampered and beautiful.

two//Longer Lasting

Since waxing basically rips the hair out of your legs at the root instead of cutting it like a razor does. The hair gets uprooted. So it takes a longer time for the hair to regrow in that region.

three//In the Long Run, Hair Might Cease to Grow

When you wax a particular area over and over again, the hair growth in that area reduces. This is because the hair follicles are damaged. The hair comes out less healthy and thinner because the roots are weakened. Basically, the longer you wax, the less often you'll have to wax in the future. 

four//Best for Some Areas

I don't know about you all, but I have such a hard time reaching some places or it's awkward. I also have a hard time with water running down my legs and making shaving harder. Waxing is hands down the best way to get rid of unwanted hair around the groin. It is safer for that area of your body as well, no scary metal razors in your sensitive areas.

five//You won't Cut Yourself

This is probably one of the biggest reasons why I wax! I used to cut myself all the time. If the razor isn't sharp or if it's older or it has too many uses of it, then it's easier for us to get cut! While getting small nicks and cuts on your legs are not the end of the world, but in more sensitive areas it can lead to excruciating pain, discomfort, and even infections. Yes, you'll pain when your hairs are pulled out, but it's safer and more sanitary than shaving.

Tips for Waxing:

  • Make sure your hair is about 1/4-3/4 of an inch
  • Tell your beautician if the wax is too hot
  • If you're waxing at home, don't let the wax be too cold
  • Make sure you read Yelp reviews and that your waxing place is sanitary
    • Changing sticks (no double dipping)
    • Clean work space
  • Take Advil/Tylenol before waxing if you have a low pain tolerance
  • Do not moisturize before waxing
  • Exfoliate your legs in the weeks between your waxing appointments
  • Avoid waxing while on your period
  • For legs or bikini area I'd recommend going to a professional

Do you wax or shave?

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Tips for Surviving an Overnight Flight

Hello, Friends!

It seems like at this rate I have inadvertently created a "Traveling Series" with different posts about Feeling Fresh when You Travel to Best Traveling Shoes to Vacationing with low time/money. I am by no means an expert or even an incredibly well-traveled person. In fact, there are many places I haven't visited yet (it is on my list), but I wanted to share some tips that I've learned along the way. Hopefully, you all can share some of your tips with me and I can add some new things to my traveling toolbox. With that being said I wanted to share some tips about surviving an overnight flight.

Overnight flights can be good and bad. For example, for us to go home to Argentina, we have to travel overnight. This means we don't take-off until 11 pm. This can prove to be very annoying! Personally, I LOVE flying, but I also enjoy being able to make the most out of my day. That's why I normally chose to fly early in the morning, late at night, or overnight. I want to be able to enjoy the most out of my vacation. Overnight flights can be a special kind of stressful, so hopefully, we can avoid that and enjoy our first day of exploring!

one// Choose the right carry-on bag

Choosing the right handbag, backpack, or tote for an overnight flight is essential, especially if you want to have all your essentials at your fingertips as you need them. For starters, go with something lightweight. A bonus is padded shoulder straps which make it easy to carry through the airport. It's nice to have a couple of larger compartments for laptops or books and some smaller pockets for things that are easy to lose like sunglasses or a wallet. You want a compartment that can be zipped shut to keep all your travel documents, passport, money, IDs, etc.

two// Pack noise-cancelling headphones

I am VERY picky with headphones and I treasure them like gold because of that I tend to forgo the constant headphones thing. I find them useful for flights in case you're on the phone or need some peace and quiet for a quick nap. They're great for listening to music, watching movies, or to enjoy the quiet. I find them useful in order to get some sleep on the planes. 

three// Go through your usual nighttime routine

I like to travel with mini toiletries, even if I'm checking a bag with more of my toiletries. This is especially important for an overnight flight. You want to try to maintain as much of your routine as possible in order to fall asleep then wake up ready to take on your first day of vacation. I would suggest "preparing for bed" a little while before boarding the plane so you don't have to wash your face or anything else in the cramped airplane bathrooms.

four// Pack an eye mask and ear plugs

If you're a really light sleeper or have trouble falling asleep, these are essential! My sister, for example, has the hardest time falling asleep if the room isn't pitch black, so she brings eye masks in order to fall asleep quickly. If you're like me and not a fan of headphones all the time, then ear plugs are a must. It's really all about reaching the maximum comfort level and being able to fall asleep. If you get cold easily bring a blanket (or ask a flight attendant if they have extra).

five// Brush your teeth

This one is super important to not only get ready for bed but also to feel refreshed in the morning. It isn't only hygienic, it makes you feel better! You can even brush your teeth when you land.

six// Bring a portable phone charger

We all bring a lot of tech items in our carry-ons or checked luggage. The one overlooked, but most important thing is a phone charger. There are many different kinds of portable chargers out there. This one is particularly good because it is small, can charge an iPhone 6s five times, and you can charge two phones at once. You want to keep your phone as charged as possible for safety reasons and to get going with your day without having to work about stopping for a charge.

seven// Reading material

This is pretty much standard for all flights. Ever. I don't really like reading on my phone or kindle, so I tend to bring my books with me. If I read through them, I've been known to stop by a local library and pick up a book for my flight back home. Reading helps me wind down before bed, so it's a perfect transition to sleeping on a place. I like to brush my teeth, pick up my book read for about 30 mins then attempt to sleep on the plane.

eight// Move around

Now, this is something I'm not good at doing. I like sitting next to the window and not moving the rest of the trip. I don't like being bothered, I like to look out the window, read, then try to nap. But on very long flights sometimes it's important to move around. Sometimes that means stretching in your chair or getting up and moving up and down the aisle. It's important for your circulation to get movement in.

nine// Wear comfy clothes

This is probably one of the most important things of overnight flights. In order to sleep in an uncomfortable, cramped airplane you want to be comfortable. You want to wear soft, comfortable fabrics that feel as close to pajamas as possible. Personally, I try to wear a sweater and bring either an extra sweater or a scarf that can double as a blanket or pillow. 

ten// Waking up

Once you finally get to your destination you want to wake up and be able to enjoy your day. Be sure to drink lots of water and try to have a balanced breakfast at the appropriate hour in your destination's time zone. A little bit of caffeine can help you get through the day. Don't rely too heavily on the caffeine, take an early bedtime if needed! 

Do you have any tips?