Browsing Category: North America

Wrap Up: March 2018

March | Yearly Wrap Up 2018 | Dolores Park, San Francisco

On one hand, March went by in a slow and methodical way. March always feels extra long coming after February and I packed so much into this month, it’s hard to believe that it has only been four weeks. On the other hand, IT’S APRIL!! The 4th month of the year already.

There were a few things that I thought I would’ve done already by this time in 2018 – namely, I thought I would’ve started writing my first book and already be living in Europe. However, I’ve learned how good it can be to let go of expectations sometimes, and just let life take you where it will.

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Girls Getaway: A Weekend in Mendocino, California

Girls Weekend in Mendocino, California | USA Travel

What you need to know to plan your own weekend in Mendocino – the perfect hideaway on the northern California coast!

What do you think of when you hear the words ‘California road trip’?

Perhaps it’s grand coastal views, world famous beaches, a day of cruising down Hwy 1 in a convertible with good company by your side.

If you know California well, you might add in a hike in a redwood forest, a sea lion colony, a night of camping in the desert, a day of exploring one of the many national parks, or maybe getting lost in the rugged north. In the right season, you might even add in a day of snowboarding at Mammoth after a couple days of surfing off the coast.

California has a wealth of options on hand for any traveler or local that’s adventurous at heart. It’s a state that I continue to discover a little more of each time I come back.

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Wrap Up: February 2018

A Guide to Visiting the Taj Mahal - Agra, India

It’s weird to think of the past sometimes and where I was in February at this time last year – in Thailand, then Vietnam, and at the very end of a bad relationship. I was at the cusp of so many things – both positive and negative.

I was in a place where I had shut myself off from the outside world (i.e. living on a tiny remote island). And what I didn’t realize at the time was that I was also preventing myself from appreciating quality connections – both nurturing the old and creating the new.

Fast forward a year later, I’m back in California, surrounded by some of the closest people in my life,  and I feel more grounded than I have in years. Maybe it just took coming home for awhile, or realizing that California is still very much a ‘home’ for me even after all the times I’ve left it and come back.

All this is to say that my February this year kicks last year’s February’s butt.

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Wrap Up: January 2018

Wrap Up: January 2018 | Montreal, Canada

My January was a month of many ups and one profound piece of sadness. I went to Tahoe and Montreal for the first time, and Chicago for the second time, to see some of my closest friends. It was everything I could’ve asked for to start off my 2018 on a good foot, but it was also the month that my papa passed away.

Not that it makes it any easier, but I was glad to be home this time to be with family. My last two grandparents who passed away did so while I was abroad, and it was heart wrenching to be so far from my friends and family during such a delicate time.

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Wrap Up: December 2017

Wrap Up: December 2017 | Santa Cruz, California | USA Travel

December is always an interesting month. The end of the year usually means I have plenty to think about in terms reflecting on the past year, what I loved about it and what I could do better in the next 12 months.

I was originally planning on being in Scotland for NYE this year, and even though I’m sure that would’ve been an epic time, I’m glad I chose to stay stateside instead. I ended up having one of my favorite NYEs in awhile, and I celebrated it with one of my closest friends and 60+ other wonderful people on an estate in the middle of nowhere.

My last month of 2017 was mostly spent taking little trips around northern California, preparing my business and mindset for the new year, and appreciating where I was at and who I was with.

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2017, A Year to Myself

2017, A Year to Myself | The Atlas Heart

I never expected 2017 to be a year to myself, but then again, I guess you never really know what life will bring you with each new year.

I should know better by now.

Even though I didn’t expect it to be a year to myself, I can say with full clarity now that I’m so very glad that it was. This was the year that I found my independence again, understood fully what I deserve in my life, and embraced my alone time.

I’m someone who is already pretty good at being alone. I’m an introvert, most of my pastimes are solo ones – reading, playing my guitar, listening to music, cooking. And my work is very much a solo pursuit, from writing to doing digital marketing for clients.

I’m used to being alone, but 2017 was a year where I really just had myself to pull me back up from my bootstraps, to lean on, to make sense of stressful, happy, and sad situations.

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A Cozy Mendocino Getaway: The Brewery Gulch Inn

Mendocino getaway: Brewery Gulch Inn | Northern California | USA Travel

The best girls Mendocino getaway starts with a cozy accommodation on the coast

When I asked one of my best friends if she was interested in doing a Mendocino getaway, she couldn’t say yes fast enough. When I told her we would have the chance to stay at a cozy accommodation with an ocean view on the northern California coast, called the Brewery Gulch Inn, she was even more excited for our weekend to start.

Mendocino is only about a 3.5 hour drive from San Francisco, and it’s one of the few places that is still relatively unknown to many Californians and tourists. I’m sure most people, even those who grew up in California, wouldn’t be able to place it on a map.

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Wrap Up: November 2017

Wrap Up November 2017 | The Atlas Heart

I can’t believe I’ve been back in California for over a month already. It has gone by super fast, probably because my schedule has been filled with plenty of work, family time, and catching up with my closest friends who live in the Bay.

I tested out doing a sober month in November for the first time ever (at least since I’ve been drinking alcohol, obviously), and it was actually really nice to take a break from drinking.

I only broke it for one weekend when I had a fun couple of nights out with some friends in San Francisco – but even still, that whole weekend I only had one beer and two glasses of champagne. So all in all, my first sober month went pretty well.

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Travel Destinations for 2018: Where I’m Going

Travel Destinations for 2018: Where I'm Going | The Atlas Heart

Where I might be living, visiting, and going back to – these are my potential travel destinations for 2018!

It’s my favorite time of the year! And no, I’m not talking about the holidays, although to be sure November and December can be some of my favorite months, especially when I’m surrounded by loved ones.

I even used to say that winter was my favorite season, but really I think that’s because I grew up in California and it gave me an excuse to play the Mariah Carey Christmas CD as much as I wanted.

Spoiler alert, fall and spring are now my favorite seasons, because they’re usually perfect for travel without the crowds, and I love that feeling of the changing of seasons, of new beginnings.

But, I digress.

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Wrap Up: October 2017

Wrap Up October 2017 - Road Trip around Ring of Kerry, Ireland | Europe Travel

I know I say this every single month, but whoa, where did the time go? I’m not sure how we’re already into the second week of November, but here we are.

With that said, one of my goals before the end of this year is to get into a better habit of mindfulness. I want to be able to value the passing of time more, to take one day at a time, and to not always feel like I’m running one step behind.

October was bursting at the seams, which is probably why I felt so exhausted by the end of it – I barely had time to catch my breath. Note to self: slow down in November and December. Your body, mindset, and bank account will thank you.

The month started with a fun travel blogging conference, then turned into two weeks of road tripping and traveling around Ireland by myself, and finally ended with my return to California after over a year of being abroad.

So, let’s dive right in and get to the good stuff. This was my October!

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