Tag Archives: Travel

Overcoming My Travel Anxiety

I know I’m supposed to be the girl that loves airports, but I’ve also been known to have my fair share of panic attacks while also at the airport. Traveling used to be a breeze, until… it wasn’t. Fall 2016 was the first time that I was traveling back and forth for three months pretty much non-stop. I’m not sure how people do it because though the idea of traveling seems easy, it can really wear you down. It’s also not the place you want to be when you don’t have your shit together.

The stage in the airport that stresses me out the most: going through security.

I know I look cool, calm, and collected, but in my head, I’m constantly questioning how many buckets I’m going to need for myself, how early I need to take off my shoes, wondering if my cardigan “actually” needs to be taken off, and if the person in front of me would stop putting their fingers in front of my buckets so that I don’t accidentally smash them. Because I’m going through security with all of these questions in my head, I often leave the area feeling more flustered than necessary. This has resulted in me leaving behind my actual luggage on the belt. Twice.

It has led me to frantically retrace all of my steps and one time I accidentally mistook another person’s luggage as my own while waiting at a restaurant before realizing it wasn’t mine and being “THAT” person. That was my breaking point and that was the moment I realized that something needed to change. Since I’m headed into a big traveling period for myself for the next three months, I thought it might be fitting to share that story and share my tips for those that might feel the same way as I do.

  1. List it Out – If you’re nervous that you forgot to pack something, write a list of everything you need and where you’re packing it. Will it be in your luggage? Your personal item? Or on you? I know this sounds a bit extreme, but for note takers, this can be really helpful. I am constantly writing notes in my phone so the night before, I write down what I’m likely to forget and haven’t packed already so that before I’m taking off I can double check / triple check that list before I leave.
  2. Stay hydrated – A lot of my friends like to have a water bottle along with them for the flight. Having water can calm your nerves and it’s also just good to have since flying can be quite draining. If you have a reusable water bottle, take it with you, but to avoid some anxiety, arrive to the airport with it empty. If you don’t have one that’s reusable, remind yourself to buy one right after you get out of security.
  3. Get pre-check – Worried about getting to the airport on time? Hate waiting in lines? Every friend that I have that has ever had pre-check has never had a bad thing to say about it. I don’t even have it, but know that this would probably ease a lot of my own anxieties if I had it! Getting pre-check costs $122. 25, but you’ll have a 5-year membership. There’s a whole process involved with it, but it’s honestly something that I’ve been considering for a couple of years now too.
  4. Take care of yourself – Give your body what it needs. If you’re worried about getting hungry on the plane or don’t want to purchase a snack or meal from the plane, get something in your stomach beforehand. Get to the airport a little bit early so that you can collect your thoughts and sit down at a restaurant if that’s what does it for you. Plenty of people also pick up items on the go. For myself, no matter what – without fail, I always need to grab a latte of some kind before I get on a flight. It doesn’t matter what time of the day it is, it’s the part of my routine that stays consistent and eases my nerves.
  5. Get your playlist ready – I must have close to 30 playlists on my Spotify, but only my favorites ones get downloaded on my phone – the one that has the most recent songs that I’m listening to and the three playlists that never let me down – “Best of 2017,” “90’s R&B Hip Hop,” and “Whole albums that I don’t hate.” I get stressed out when I’m listening to a playlist that I don’t love and have to constantly swipe away to get to a song that I actually do like. When you’ve found the playlist for your flight, download it onto your phone so that you don’t run into data issues and zone out.

Airport experiences can be a hit or miss. More often than not, you don’t want to end up with a bad experience if you can control it. Hopefully my tips are as helpful as they have been for me.

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A Collection Part 49

We don’t always time these posts with the end of the year, but it feels good, doesn’t it? Even as I search for photos it’s nice to be able to put something together that wraps up the end of the year and my feelings towards a new year. The start of this post doesn’t look anything like the end of this post, which I think is pretty different for a change. You can definitely tell that I’m feeling some sort of way by the end of this. What is it exactly? That I’m holding on to millennial pink? That I’ve got a love inanimate objects? Those things, but maybe a couple of other things that aren’t so obvious.

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Favorites of 2017

For once, I’m feeling very on top of my end-of-the-year round up posts. Normally, you would see some of these after the new year, but I guess you can thank the Seattle snow for keeping us indoors these last few days and unlimited downtime. Of course, I’m not mad at it because during the rest of the year, we never get this time to sit down and just write.

Favorite Style Icon: Margot Robbie

Is anyone as excited as I am to see I, Tonya?! I still remember watching the teaser trailer like it was yesterday and while I don’t see movies in theaters often, I’m willing to break my rule for this one. Margot Robbie has been on my list of style icons to watch for some time, but it was this year that I started to notice that outfit after outfit, she was consistently nailing it. Whether it’s getting glammed up for the red carpet or dressing down, Margot’s accessories and beauty look are always a perfect match. With the upcoming award season, we can’t wait to see what she does next.

Runner Up: Gal Gadot

Favorite Getaway: Pescadero / Half Moon Bay

It may have only been a day trip for me, but it was definitely one of my most unforgettable memories from the year. After leaving my job and not having too much time in between to start my new one, it didn’t make sense to come back home or plan an extravagant getaway. The good thing about California though is that there are no shortage of destinations to venture out to even in one day. I picked what I thought to be very quaint and cute, but maybe not a huge tourist attraction, found a friend that was in the same boat as I was and we took off! It was a random weekday and so quiet out on the road, but exactly what we needed. It was so fun to just go to the beach and explore this land that no one was at. It was the most calm and serene that I had felt in the last few months and I knew after that day that we had made a good decision about the trip.

Runner Up: Disneyland

Favorite artist of the year: SZA

Wow, was this a tough decision to make. If I could have had two tied for first place, it would have been SZA and Khalid! But I had to make a choice and the reason why I picked SZA was because I felt her music was so much more relatable to what I was going through this year. 2017 was entirely a year for me and focused on me and listening to her in a weird way made me feel like I could do anything. I owned my mistakes, my flaws, made decisions on a whim, drove away from my comfort zone and never looked back. She’s amazing.

Runner Up: Khalid

Favorite Guilty Pleasure: Siesta Key

You know a show is special when you and your coworker make a whole Instagram Live dedicated to it. Siesta Key was the standout reality series of the year for me. The commercials and trailers penned it as your next generation Laguna Beach, but it is so much more than that. I could talk about this show for hours, but instead of doing that I will just say that the show returns to MTV on January 15th so you should use your time now to get caught up on season 1.

Runner Up: Riverdale

Favorite item purchased this year:

If I could have a wardrobe that only came from Aritzia, I would never be unhappy. I wasn’t expecting to find this dress when I stepped into the store that day. In fact, I was on the hunt for a Teddy Jacket over at Uniqlo and when I didn’t find it, I stopped into Aritzia for lightening round shopping fest. This dress was one of the first pieces that caught my eye and right away I knew I had to try it on. I didn’t even have an event to wear it to if I had bought it (luckily that came later!) but I knew I had to have it. It fit me in all of the right places and was so elegant and beautiful. The great thing about a classic LBD is that there is always going to be an occasion to wear it to. I look forward to keeping this in my closet forever ever.

Runner Up: Gap Denim Jacket

Favorite albums (in no particular order):

  1. Kehlani – SweetSexySavage
  2. Khalid – American Teen
  3. Dua Lipa – Self Titled
  4. SZA – Ctrl
  5. Calvin Harris – Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1
  6. Demi Lovato – Tell Me You Love Me
  7. ODESZA – A Moment Apart
  8. Kelela – Take Me Apart
  9. Shawn Mendes – Illuminate
  10. H.E.R. – Self Titled

Favorite Online Past Time: Twitter

When I hate you, but I actually love you. I hate that it was the political turmoil that brought me even closer to Twitter in the last year, but it’s completely true. It’s a large source for my news, but it’s also one of the platforms that can make me laugh consistently. Who knew 180 characters could do that for you… or … however, many characters they allow now? I wish I could say that I was refined and listened to podcasts on my commute, but no, I’m the girl in the backseat of my Uber and Lyft furiously scrolling through my feed to see how much I can get through before I’m dropped off at my local Starbucks.

Runner Up: HQ, Instagram, what else?

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Disneyland Bachelorette

Earlier this summer, we celebrated our favorite girl – Jennie – getting married! However, before we watched her walk down the aisle, we threw her her last single girl’s party at Disneyland! Wow – I hadn’t been there in years, but it really still is as magical as everyone says it is. It’s kind of of those places too where you don’t realize how into it you’re going to be until you actually get there. Even being at Downtown Disney the night before and getting excited for the next day alone prompted me to buy these Minnie Mouse ears and even though they cost $$$ I know I’ll have them forever and that I bought them for Little J.

Our entire day at the park lasted from the time that it opened and stretched until it closed. We may have had a drinking/bachelorette party game break in between, but you could pretty much say that we were all Disney all the time. I’m glad that I was in a group with such pros because with them, waiting in line was minimal and they had all of the tips and tricks up their sleeve. I don’t ever want to have a Disney experience that doesn’t involve them because I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t survive on my own.

And what would a trip be without some true learning moments? How do parents do it? I barely survived the day as a mid 20’s person, but I can’t imagine what I put my parents through between feeling motion sickness, being hungry, and tired amongst all the complaints I probably had as a kid. And all they wanted to do was to show me the best experience of my life! Thank you parents for all that you do. I’m terrified to take my future kids to Disneyland before they’re like 8.

I love bachelorette parties, but more importantly, I just love my girlfriends. I can barely remember a time this year where I laughed as much as I did on this trip.

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Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Away Carry-On – $225

Instead of doing a normal “The Closet” post, we’re switching things up and calling it a gift guide. A lot of these things I’m going to want anyways, but why not make it more general for all of my readers? I’m also trying to post this early enough so that you can make it just in time to slide it underneath the Christmas tree for your loved ones. I promise you, there’s something for everyone. Why? Because I didn’t want to make a gift guide just for your best friend, your mom, your dad, or your sibling. It’s a catch all here.

Gramovox Floating Record Player – $550 (okay this may not come in time for Christmas)

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Blog Roundup

  • Meghan Markle: I’m More Than An ‘Other’This isn’t a new post, but this was my first time reading this. With the announcement of the royal engagement, this is a reminder of just why we love her so much. 
  • On Blonde Girls in Cheongsams [Racked]
  • 5 Lessons from Jimmy Iovine [GOOD]

  • Alexa Chung answers questions while eating spicy vegan nuggets.
  • Airlines hate your smart luggage [Gizmodo]
  • Silicon Valley is sneaking models into their holiday parties [Bloomberg] This is absolute trash and disgusting. I hate hearing about this stuff. 
  • Google is rolling out a new feature that allows celebrities to answer the most asked questions about themselves – selfie style [Engadget]
  • YouTube will launch a paid music streaming service next year [Hypebeast]
  • Apple reportedly purchasing Shazam for $401 million [Hypebeast]
  • Hangover cures from your favorite food pros [Coveteur]
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Southwest Airlines Will Host In-Flight Concerts

I love a good spontaneous show. I will never oppose a concert in a non-traditional setting, but one place it definitely does not belong is on my future Southwest flight. It’s funny because I have claimed multiple times that I like flying. I like airports. I like talking to people on planes, which I know some people despise. However, in the last few years, I’ve had to travel significantly more for work and its these times that I have started to appreciate my solitude.

In a recent announcement, the company shared that they were enhancing their in-flight experience by allowing an in-flight concert series as part of a partnership with Warner Music Nashville.

“With this partnership with Warner Music Nashville, we are excited to continue to offer new music experiences to our customers, and provide WMN artists and fans our friendly and reliable customer service—complete with our promise that bags (and guitars) fly free,” Linda Rutherford, Southwest’s vice president & chief communications officer, told the International Business Times.

It looks like the program actually launched as an experiment back in 2011, but this is the first I’m ever hearing about it. To add more to this mystery, Southwest Airlines won’t be sharing ahead of time which flights will become more musical so get ready to really love this or really hate it. Personally, this is going to be a great ‘gram or a “story” for a minute, and then I’ll likely be over it. Here’s hoping they prove us all wrong!

[Source]

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PlansMatter

Vacation rentals these days are really taking things next level. Hotels and Airbnb not good enough for ya? Say hello to PlansMatter – a place where individuals appreciate great architecture. PlansMatter operates a lot like Airbnb, but every listing is a work of art. Get your Instagram queue ready. One difference though is that the site allows you to book not only homes, but also hotels that fit this mold. At first glance, I thought it would be a great concept, but probably not within my budget, which is a shame because this is something that would be right up my alley. After perusing a few listings, I’m noticing that some range from $100/night (at the low end) up to over a $1,000/night. Hopefully, this is a place where there is something for everyone!

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Airbnb | Experiences in NYC

It has been known that Airbnb has been working on Experiences for awhile, but this is the first time I’ve seen this advertisement and I really love it. I currently work for a company that focuses more on the production side of things within tech so while I’ve always had an interest in this sort of thing (you’ve seen content like this before on Yow Yow!) I feel like my senses for this are now a bit more heightened. There are a few things that attracted me to this idea. Some of my favorite trips have been the ones where I have had experiences there that I could only have in that location ie) going to a pineapple farm in Okinawa, Japan. Now, my mother and I sort of stumbled upon that by chance, but if you’re a planner like me, then this is something that you want to know about and book ahead of time. I’m sure so much research went into this project to learn about the history of the cities and the neighborhoods in addition to finding the individuals to be a part of this to guide guests. I’m quite impressed by all of that. Readers, do you think you’d try Experiences out? Everyone has a very different way of traveling so I’m assuming this might not be for everyone, but are there some of you that would take advantage of this and what would you like to do? Up next – Airbnb tackles restaurant reservation and decides to eat up OpenTable. Just kidding! But, we all know it’s sort of coming so anything can happen!

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Wedding Mondays

Happy Monday everyone! I hope many of you are enjoying your day off if you have one and for those that are working today – thank you. It’s been a busy month over here with moving and a week-long vacation back home that we’ve actually neglected Wedding Mondays a bit. I decided to spend yesterday getting caught up on what I may have missed from all of my favorite blogs, but the one that we’re sharing today is actually a personal one. This past Memorial Day Weekend, I flew to Raleigh, North Carolina (my first time in the south, really!) to watch one of my first friends from college walk down the aisle.

Jodie and I met during our summer orientation before freshman year of college and she was the first friend I saw once I moved into my dorm. Over the years, the two of us have shared so many memories together both inside of school and outside. Shortly, after I left Seattle for California, she relocated to North Carolina and while I never did get to visit her before her wedding day, it was nice to spend a few days there getting to know the space that she lived in. Manan and I made a little trip out of it and ventured to a number of neighborhoods and sampling all of the must-have meals.

She was the most beautiful bride and this wedding video captures her and Greg’s special day perfectly. Thank you so much for letting us be a part of it!

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Outside the City / Inside Oakland

Top – Forever 21 / Leggings – Aritzia / Boots – J. Crew

I say this all the time, but I’m so fortunate to live in a city where it’s so easy to get to and from other places. Come September, I’ll have lived in the Bay Area for four years now! One area that I haven’t spent too much in is actually Oakland, which is very very close to me. While Ashley was visiting back in April, she happened to me over there for a conference and we took full advantage of being in the city. It started with a hotel date. It ended with 4 meals in less than a full day and an exploration of every part of the neighborhood. We felt like we had seen a lot of it, but I’m pretty sure we haven’t seen it all so I’m looking forward to the next time I can return and with a list of the restaurants we still have to hit up.

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Cool Carson City

I would not have ever known about Carson City if one of my friends hadn’t relocated there earlier this year. In fact, I really knew nothing about it and for some time even thought it was in the same vicinity as Lake Tahoe. Close enough, right? A few of my friends and I took the weekend off to venture over there to see her new life. I’ve always enjoyed the outdoors and living in Seattle, you got to be pretty close to it without having to go to far. I wouldn’t exactly say that Carson City was in our backyard though. I’ll admit, the drive was hard for (especially being the driver) and even though you’re not that far, the difference in cultural views and how you’re treated by other locals was definitely an eye-opening experience for me.

That being said, I enjoyed the time away and spending time with my favorite girlfriends.

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Yow Yow! in Pescadero / Half Moon Bay

I hate the word funemployment so we’re just going to call this period of my life the time that I took off. Between securing my new job and actually starting, I didn’t have enough time to take an extravagant trip or even fly back home for a little bit. Living in California though makes it easy to get a little further out for the day. I only had two weeks before starting and every day was packed with something – errands, blogging, getting myself mentally prepared for my next job, but something that was really important to me was taking a day for myself and having a day trip. The internet gave me a lot of great ideas for day trips that I could take in my area and I picked Pescadero because it was a pretty unlikely spot that I may never have chosen on my own if not for this moment. I knew I wanted to be near the water and see some sights, but not spend all day getting there. What I didn’t know is that Pescadero’s main attractions are a couple of blocks long. Our day there ended before we really just got started! Luckily for us, Half Moon Bay wasn’t too far and it was another spot that I’d always wanted to see. The us I’m referring to is my friend Jason who was also “taking time off” at the same time I was! I could’ve done this trip alone, but it was more fun with him and he agreed to my entire agenda.

Apparently, Pie Ranch is a major attraction for Pescadero so I needed to see this in person. Honestly, I only wanted a slice, but on the day that we went, there happened to be a field trip for kids in a summer camp and they snagged all of the slices before we could grab one. Hence, why we were forced to order a whole pie. To make matters worse, there were also kids behind us and while we offered to split our whole pie with them since we only wanted a slice, kids are advised to always avoid strangers so…

If you look closely, it looks like these rocks are kind of hairy!

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Yow Yow! in Muir Beach

You would think from how often I talk about the beaches in California that this would be the first time I’ve ever been exposed to them. It’s not, but I love them so much more in California than Washington. With Megan visiting, I wanted to give her an experience of both the city and life outside of it. Muir Beach is such a short drive from where we were so after brunch one day, we set off for the road. We wanted to do both Muir Beach and a hike in the Redwoods, but only had time for one. It was too cold to get in the water – and I don’t think I would’ve anyways, but it was so nice to walk along it. Megan also challenged me by asking if we could hike to the very top of the hill. I was definitely not wearing the appropriate attire given that I was in an Oak + Fort sweater, but I decided to be a good sport. She was visiting from Yakima after all!

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Thanksgiving Stripes

Dress – Azalea

My friends and family think that I’m such a nut, but I am OBSESSED with this Cabbage Patch Kid! For the last few years since I’ve been living in California, I’ve been spending Thanksgiving with my extended family in Southern California. It’s the perfect trip because it allows me to get away for a little bit for the holidays, but it’s also a very quick trip! Growing up, Thanksgiving was peak cold time in Seattle so I’m used to being bundled up, but in good ol’ SoCal, I can wear less layers. For the record, I wore this dress and thought it was the perfect coverage because of the sleeves, but it was scorching hot that day. Naturally, we cooled down with a glass of wine before the family came over.

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