Road Trip Essentials

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After having been on a giant 3 week road trip around the entire island of Iceland last May, driving multiple times up the coast for soccer tournaments,  going on various solo trips up and down the east coast last summer, and my most recent cross-country trip from D.C. to San Diego in August, I can shamelessly say I have a pretty great list of essentials you’d need for a road trip – or at least that I definitely can’t live without:

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1 | Smart Car Charger – GAME CHANGER. For those of you who only use the USB plug that your car already comes with…nononono. Those take no joke, about 15x longer. I did not know this until I was in my mom’s car with 50% battery and drove 15 minutes and my phone was around 85-90%. Magic I tell you.

2 | Aux cord – This really doesn’t need an explanation, right? Road trips and music are pretty much a package deal so having an aux cord is an unspoken necessity.

3 | Download your playlists before hitting the road – Maybe this serves only to the Spotify users out there BUT it will save you from pauses in the middle of streaming songs when you’re driving through the middle of nowhere. Plus if you’re trying to save data, then you can go on Airplane mode and still have music available to you!

4 | Roadtrippers App – Discovered this little gem (which is also available to use on your computer) before heading off on my cross-country road trip in August. Basically, you plug in your destination and the app will give you various points of interest depending on what you’d like to see along the way. This includes: historical sites, parks, hotels, famous landmarks, you name it. And you can bookmark/save them ahead of time for when you really want to plan out your trip in detail.

5 | Yelp App – Basic but so so helpful. Plus, depending on the place, if you check in you can get a free drink/discount/save a little money. Perfect for those on a budget.

6 | Waze App – Another basic that you might already have, but again, extremely helpful. Amazing for when you need to know upcoming traffic, cops ahead, and especially for hearing about incidents that haven’t been reported on regular map apps.

7 | Weather Channel App – Not the weather app that comes with your iPhone, but the actual Weather Channel app. You can see radars of cloud movement/rain/wind, future forecasts, and it is 10 times more reliable than the basic iPhone weather app.

8 | Snacks – Top 3 most important tip I have for you. Some of my goto’s are turkey slices, apples, carrots + hummus,  and popcorn. Also, lollipops are amazing (and very underrated). They’re my personal favorite for keeping your mouth busy and that occasional sweet tooth happy when gum isn’t doing it. Snacks will save you lots of $$ and because you packed them, you know you won’t be disappointed when you get hangry.

9 | Gum – And I’m talkin’ like packs on packs of gum. If you’re traveling with people especially, then go for the excessive amounts of gum route cause you know how that goes…

10 | Mini cooler + Ziplock Baggies – Cooler to put the snacks/cold drinks in. And ziplock bags to fill with ice to keep everything cool. When the ice melts, refill them with some ice from the soda fountain inside a 7Eleven or someplace similar.

11| Water – actually this is the most important I think. Bring 1 to 2 huge giant refillable water bottles and you’re set. Just cause you’re sitting for a few hours doesn’t mean you can forget to stay hydrated!

12 | Sunscreen – I have this fear as of lately about wrinkles + sunspots + aging in general, and I can remember getting burnt multiple times on my neck and chest while driving during those hours right before sunset when the sun is riiighht in that sweet spot where you just can’t hide from it. Side-note: Growing up I NEVER wore sunscreen because of the sh*t they put into the stuff, so I blame my fear of being in the sun too much now on the fact that I never really protect myself from it when I was younger. I even joked to my mom about buying driving gloves to avoid hand wrinkles the other day (she laughed…then I did, too). Sooo now I lather that good sunscreen all over those vulnerable areas. Or I just wear more protective clothing. This all sounds psycho but you need to think longterm!!

Secret Beaches + Old Friends

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Excuse the radio silence yesterday. One of my oldest best friends and her boyfriend landed on the island Sunday night so I was spending most of the day with them yesterday! I met them at Poipu beach, then around 3 or so I took them to a hidden beach even I hadn’t been to yet. It was uuuunreal. Plus, the last time she was in Kauai was with me like 6 years ago which made it even more special!

I’m not sure why it took me so long to explore this hidden beach that I’ve known about since…forever? It wasn’t that difficult to get to and it was even better than I expected. Just goes to show that getting out of your comfort zone and exploring (even if you do it by yourself) is always worth it!

P.S. I’ll be doing a post on sun skincare soon (sunscreen, dark spots, after-beach routine, etc.) seeing that I’ve been in the sun a lot for the past month and kinda feel like I have a good little routine going for me. This is for anyone else who is or will be in the sun soon! ❤

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Design Inspo: Notel

Sooo this is one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a while when it comes to hotels. This is a boutique hotel consisting of 6 vintage airstreams on a rooftop in Melbourne, Australia. notel_060916_02

It’s hard to even call this a hotel because of how unconventional it is. You check-in/out, and have access to your door via an app which I think we’ll be seeing a lot more of in the future and I personally really love. The interior design was influenced by late 70’s science fiction films and the exterior was influenced by Melbourne’s urban-city vibe that it’s so well-known for. Oh, and there’s jacuzzi’s. On my list for when I travel to Melbourne this March!!

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Internet Things

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Interior Design: (As seen above) I’m kind of really really obsessed with the interior design of this Istanbul Apartment. That wall paper!!

Health: This overlooked symptom of breast cancer is disturbingly easy to miss.

Travel: All about traveling solo in Australia (relevant because that’s what I’ll be doing!)

Diet: Hmm are we going to be seeing more of this diet trend in the future? Especially now that fat’s reputation has been improving over the past few years.

Need: This take home kit tests your genes, DNA variations, and your body’s reaction to food on a cellular level to create the best diet for you and your goals.

Explore: New York Time’s best places to travel in 2017. #1 is definitely on my list.

Watch: Wowowow. Check out this drone just cruising along the Swiss Alps. So mesmerizing ❤

Science: how smiling became a friendly gesture among us humans.

YUM: Recipe inspo with this cauliflower rice burrito bowl.

Lately

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So at last it’s just me in this big ol’ house here in Kauai. The holiday’s are over and everyone has left to head back to the real world. The last of my family leaves today, except my grandparents, they’re staying until the 16th (me, the 13th). One of my best friends comes in on the 8th and I’m so excited!! Today I’m getting my nails done, grocery shopping for this curry I’m gonna make tonight, walk, and then watch the sunset at Shipwrecks beach. ❤

Mostly what this trip has consisted of:

– Cortado Coffee trips

– Gym

– Beach x 1000

– Family dinners

– Kauai Juice Co…every day.

-Watching daily sunsets + sunrises like it’s our job

-Adventuring!

These past 2 weeks were amazing and also pretty exhausting, but in a good way. I love family time over here but I’m one of those people that gets so burnt out when I’m constantly having to make small talk every night at the dinner table and having to play catch up with all of the cousins/uncles/aunts. It’ll be nice to have some days and nights alone to have time to cook for myself, watch my shows, start to truly plan my Australia trip, and read a book on the beach with no interruptions like the good ol’ introvert I am likes to do heheh. Processed with VSCO with c1 presetProcessed with VSCO with c1 presetimg_8012Processed with VSCO with c1 presetimg_8112Processed with VSCO with c1 presetProcessed with VSCO with c1 presetSAMSUNG CSCSAMSUNG CSCimg_8179SAMSUNG CSCSAMSUNG CSCProcessed with VSCO with c1 presetimg_8096

Design Inspo: Wanda Cafe

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In the heart of Madrid, Spain lies this ultimate cafe goals of Wanda Cafe. Just looking at the pictures alone of the place makes me want to go on summer vacay and sip on a green juice. And if Madrid is anything like the looks of this cafe then let’s just buy the plane ticket now, please.  I am a huge fan of any patterns with tribal/aztec inspiration (sup, New Mexico), plus as much as I love minimalism, I almost prefer lots of well-placed pops of color. That’s exactly what this cafe did so well in my opinion. They also made this place an Instagrammers dream, so even if the food isn’t that good or something, at least you’ll be drawing a crowd for the pictures alone. *Taking notes* 😉

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Scenes from their instagram

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Lately

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Christmas Eve dinner with the squaaaddd.

I think my family might win the award for most untraditional + zero f’s given of them all…and I love it.

Thanksgiving was in Kauai, not even with my whole family…where we gladly just ate fish and veggies and went to bed early.

Christmas was in Kauai with the whole fam. No Christmas tree or anything, just gifts on the porch. The rest of the day was spent soakin’ up the sun on the beach with everyone. 

New Years will be rung in with my sister and her hubby here in Kauai with some new friends. Probably going to a bar for some drinks and the countdown. 

Super super chill and I wouldn’t want it any other way. The holidays will always be the holidays despite the lack of super traditional events for us because as long as the whole gang is together, that’s honestly all that matters! I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas, traditions or not, because as long as you find what you’re grateful for each year then that’s all it really comes down to. ❤

Pictures of what I’ve been up to lately:

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And from yesterday, an early birthday present to my grandma: a 3.5 hour ATV ride through mud and rain because isn’t that how most grandmas celebrate their birthdays?

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If you ever want an epic ATV ride with amazing views (think locations from: Jurassic Park, The Descendants, Pirates of the Caribbean, etc.) then check out Kipu Ranch Tours. Super cool tour guides and epic scenery.

Lately

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Happy Monday! Hope everyone is either on break or almost at their break for the holidays. I’m currently sipping my coffee looking out at the rainy weather outside our place in Kauai. It’s funny, I used to get depressed whenever it used to rain during Christmas time when we’ve been here in the past, but now I fully embrace it and actually love it! It’s so nice to see the island become so green, and you can smell the dirt (sounds gross but you know what I mean) and plants, etc. From San Diego where it never really rains, it’s always a nice change. Plus I can give my skin a break from the sun and write some posts for you guys! These past few days involved getting lots of Kauai Juice, going on a sunset cruise, seeing old friends, shopping, and celebrating my dad’s birthday! So far so good this trip. Can’t wait until the entire fam is all here ❤

Today my brother gets here all the way from NY!!! Can’t wait to see him. I’m probably going to shop for his Christmas gift at some point (p.s. why are brothers always so hard to shop for??), then head into Hanapepe to shop at Blu-Umi and find some goodies. Today is leg day which I feel like I should point out because I always dreaddd BBG leg days and it’s half of what I think about all day until I do it and it’s over haha. I die. But in a good way!

A few (a lot..) snapshots from the past few days:

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Mom and dad bein kewtttt

Weekend Ski Trip Packing List

First off, I can’t express to you enough the importance of chapstick. More importantly, chapstick that isn’t petroleum-based. Let’s just say I was layering on the Aquaphor all weekend and came back with the worst chapped lips I’ve ever experienced. Petroleum based products + sun = basically cooking your skin. And you know how snow reflects the sunlight like crazy so you get the pic. So now I’m lathering on shea butter chapstick and crossing my fingers.

ANYWAYS, I made a little packing list for all the newbie skiers and anyone who is a little nervous about the basics of what you’ll need when you’re on the mountain. All of these are exactly what I had by the way except the ski jacket (I used my dad’s) and obviously the chapstick…:

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11

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My outfit (in layered order):

Bottom: Leggings (2) + Thick Socks (3) + High-waisted Ski Pants (1)

Top: Thermal long sleeve (4) + Loose Long sleeve (9) + Ski Jacket (6) + Reversible Headband/Ear Warmer (8)

Others: Sunscreen (7) + Chapstick (11) +Adjustable gloves with liner (10) + Tiny flexible wallet for accessible cards/ID/cash (5)

One more tip: if you have room in your pockets, try to bring a pair of sunglasses so when you take off your goggles on the mountain for when you get food/drinks and what-not, your eyes won’t be hurting. 

A Day in: Mammoth!

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View outside my bedroom! Snow makes everything 100x prettier.

Happy Monday! I spent Thursday, Friday and Saturday up in Mammoth with a group of friends to go skiing and it was so much fun. I just rented ski gear which was dropped off at the house for us and it made life so much easier. I had to buy ski pants and a thermal top but other than that I was good to go. Post-ski sesh each day we would make dinner, hop in the jacuzzi and drink some good ol’ fireball because it only felt fitting, and then just hung out and played a few card games! You know it was a fun weekend when you feel like you were barely on your phone the whole time, and didn’t feel the need to be. Good old-fashioned fun with good people is seriously hard to beat.

I’ll post a beginner’s guide later today what to pack for a ski trip because I was a little lost myself when packing I’m not gonna lie…It’s only been about 12 years (!) since I last went skiing…

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^Made the guys do the cleaning hehehe