Tag Archives: travel

Travel to Live, Work to Travel

I need to preface this with: I have been beyond blessed in my life. I have had the humbling opportunity to travel multiple times every year of my life.

21 states and 6 countries, and I am not even close to going everywhere I want to go. I have learned many things as a result of my constant need to explore, things I think more people need to understand. I wholeheartedly stand by the idea to make money (i.e. have a job, no matter how minimal it is) to travel. Honestly, I do not need a huge house or an expensive car; I need a plane ticket and an adventure. The peanuts-salary from my student job is what got me on a cruise a couple weeks ago and is getting me to Orlando later this summer. Work hard, travel plenty.

So many of my friends have not been to other countries, have not been to many states in our own country, or have not even explored most of our own home state. It makes me sad for those friends because I cannot imagine a life without exploring and traveling. I understand money is a huge deal, but there are some very cheap ways to explore: travel around your home state (a tank of gas or two, tops), drive to a nearby state (save loads of money on airfare), visit places where you know someone lives and crash with them for free (free housing and having a local who knows the cheap places to eat). Trust me, I get it; I am a graduate student with virtually no income, so I get it. But, that also does not stop me.

See, my mother instilled wanderlust in me at 2-months old, so I really cannot help it. My parents packed me up in June, after my wonderful arrival onto this planet in April, and took me to Tennessee… no wonder I am a Florida girl who loves mountains. My mom has planned our family trips every year and other small travel adventures throughout the year. That was merely the beginning. Quarter of a century later, I have quite the list of destinations checked off.

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1. Traveling increases your appreciation

By seeing new places, new people, new livelihoods you learn to appreciate your life, your home, our planet. You appreciate the  Earth, the varied landscapes across the country (or between countries), the sunrises and sunsets, and how other people live and work. You are grateful for this life, thankful for the opportunities, and appreciative of the moment. It is hard to put into words how you feel after you travel, but basically just think: humbled with ear-to-ear-grin happiness. You come back thankful for the experiences and thankful for the place you call home. Warning: you will also come back home with an even stronger urge to travel more; it is a cycle that never ends, really.

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2. You will never regret going

The only thing you will regret is not being able to see everything….. and regret not being a millionaire, so you can quit everything and just travel for the rest of your life. I have never come back from a trip unhappy; even when I got food poisoning (two different trips, nonetheless), I did not come back thinking I should have never left. I would go back to those places in a heartbeat – just now I would know where to not eat.

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3. You learn things that are not in textbooks

Many people say you learn new cultures, new values, new religions while you travel, and it does happen to some extent no matter how close to home (or far) you travel. Traveling anywhere, from the state next door, to the country next door, to the opposite side of the planet, can teach you something. You might learn things like how to travel on your own, how to use common sense, how to follow directions/maps, or how to to make big decisions. Or, perhaps, you learn about different cultures and ways of life. You might learn how people in other states pass their time, or how people with a different language interact with one another. Maybe you will even learn the food preferences of that community. Some closed-minded people have told me they do not care to travel because nothing out there seems that exciting. How do they know that? You cannot say you don’t like other places because you have never been.

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4. Your senses will explode

Literally, your eyes will start twitching from the beauty-overload. Places like the Grand Canyon, the Rocky Mountains, the beaches, and other natural wonders will make you freak the heck out. Even big cities will make you awe-struck with the architecture, the busy-bee lifestyle, the large light-up signs, and elegant shops. Of course everywhere is different, which only reiterates how much you should travel in your life. Only going to the same big city or only going to the same mountainous getaway is not “traveling” but merely “vacationing.”  The smell of nature, the smell of flower fields, the smell of fisheries, the smell of coffee shops, the smell of local restaurants’ cooking, or the smell of exhaust fumes from a big city are all things you will remember and carry on with you even after you leave a place. The sounds of nothingness, the sound of birds chirping, the sound of rain, the sound of waves, the sound of constant movement and traffic, and the sound of people you meet where you go will stay with you long after you get back home. The feeling of the wind or dry air or misty rain or sand between your toes will never leave you.

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5. There are always surprises

Good or bad surprises, you will have some. Maybe it rains the whole time and you have to find other ways to explore the city. Or maybe you stumbled across a hidden gem while getting lost…. I mean meaningfully meandering. Perhaps you start talking to a local at dinner one night and learn about some secret, local-known spot to visit. Maybe you will meet new friends, or maybe you will find out you want to move to that town. Maybe the local cuisine pleasantly surprises you. Anything is possible, and this is another lesson that traveling teaches you: be prepared for anything and just go with the flow. Traveling is supposed to be fun and not micro-managed. Just see what is out there!

Now, get to traveling, folks!

xOx

 

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9 Instagrams You NEED to Follow

While perusing my Instagram feed on my photography account (zachrielle_photo), I have come across some really extraordinary work. Some photographers out there are REAL GEMS.

Other photos I scroll through are okay (if even that, sometimes), but they get hundreds or thousands of likes. I refuse to click that little heart button out of pure stubbornness. At the same time as seeing these photos, I see some real gorgeous work that has less hearts clicked. It boggles my mind how this happens. Are the “okay-photo” accounts paying for their likers? I call those cheaters.

Therefore, I’ve decided to showcase some of the accounts that I believe should have more love. Go love them.

(These aren’t in any specific order)

Ready to be amazed?….

  1. Fieldgurl

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I mean is this from Jurassic Park? Or maybe it’s a scene from an urban-Hogwarts train ride? It can’t be real, right? IT IS.

2. PeaceInArtPhoto

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I feel so at peace when I look at this. Can’t you just feel that mist flowing over you? I CAN.

3. SethVDL

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This is fake. JUST KIDDING! I can’t look away from this one. It’s perfection.

4. ekl222

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This reminds me of some sweet romantic story. The purple hue makes me feel thankful for some reason.

5. bakersamantha

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Artsy? Check. Colorful? Check. Geometric? Check. Urban? Double check.

6. ancient_sky

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So I first saw this and thought, “Not real” but is in fact VERY REAL! It’s actually a national monument, fancy, huh?

7. gsolvang

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Yes I know. Speechless over this beaut. Those colors are on point. Everything about is on point, actually.

8. jrice.photography

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First, how does one even think of such a great position for a photo?! But she nailed it. And the lighting, magnificent.

9. alpine_amy

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Definitely thought this was from a post card until you notice her entire Instagram feed has photo like these. YAS.

So you’re welcome for making you wanderlust. And you are all very welcome for showing you how to make your Instagram feed much more beautiful and colorful.

xOx

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Travel, it says a lot about you

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I recently was beyond lucky enough to travel to the Grand Canyon. I cannot explain the feeling of standing on those billions of years old rocks. (Yes, I said billions.)

But what I learned from this trip out to Arizona is that there is so much out there for us to discover. We are all so wrapped up in our personal worlds that we don’t give a second thought to what else may be out there for us. We become so tied down to where we live for school or live for a job that we don’t realize there are more option than one.

We think we know beauty based on where we grew up. Tennessee’s mountains are so different from Colorado mountains. The North Carolina beaches are radically opposite of Florida’s Gulf Coast beaches which are different from California’s sandy seaside landscapes. If you think you’re “tired” of nature, you are just bored with what is around you. Get out and explore.

We learn so much about the planet when we travel, but also we learn a lot about ourselves. If you take a moment to sit silently, soaking in the sounds, smells, and sights, you will find yourself in an earthly heaven.

I have some stubborn friends who say where they live is the only scenery they need; they don’t care about visiting the West coast, East coast, the North or the South. I’m sad for them. Their closed-mindedness is unfortunate. I’m sad they cannot appreciate a beauty that isn’t theirs. It also says a lot about their character: they are unable to see the other side of things. If people don’t feel it’s necessary to travel, learn other cultures or ways of life, to see things not familiar to them, then these are people are afraid of change, who are unable to accept something different.

I’m just glad I’m not like that. Nor is my family. Thankfully I have been raised to appreciate all things natural, all things beautiful, all things different.

Thanks Mom and Dad.

@zachrielle_photo on Instagram

xOx

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Things We Should All do in our Twenties

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Before you worry about not finding “The One” or settling down or acting like a ‘real adult’, there are a few things you should really do for yourself.

 

  1. Travel

Plan a trip or go spur of the moment! Visit a friend, take a friend, or make new friends on an adventure. Although this is a time in life that you may not have a lot of money, it is the best time to travel. No kids to drag along with you and no work schedule for you and your significant other to work around. Plus, that is what the Internet is for! So many blogs and travel sites have ideas for cheap ways to travel. You need to travel to appreciate things and culture, to appreciate what you have, and to live out your dreams.

  1. Live on Your Own

Whether you have roommates or moved back home after undergrad, you need to leave all of that behind and live on your own for at least the length of one lease. Experience time on your own, so you can prove to yourself and others that you can survive on your own if needed. Teach yourself to not be afraid of the dark! Or just keep every single light on. That’s okay, too.

  1. Find a Career Interest

This is the time of internships, volunteering, temporary jobs, and part-time work. It is time to test different career interests out. Internships are the best (paid ones are a gold mine) because you can test a career option out for a specific amount of time: if you hate it, the day it’s over just toss your ID badge to the wind and find another internship, but if you love it, grab those contacts and work on a way to a full-time position!

  1. Be Happy In Your Own Skin

Be comfortable with who you are. Don’t worry about what you wear, what your make-up looks like, what brand your accessories are. It is not as much a fashion war out here like it was in high school or even undergrad. Don’t worry about judgments and just feel comfortable being 100% YOU. Go out and buy that superhero shirt you always wanted to rock, or that Minion tank that’s irresistible, or that crazy outfit you used to think would make you unpopular.

  1. Maintain Solid Friendships

Up until now in your life, you probably have a few friendships that have outlasted any significant other you have dated. Don’t let those relationships dwindle because you’re too busy trying to “find a man” or a girl. Many people lose friends while they are trying to get the attention of a possible partner. Our twenties is the time to find people to laugh, cry, cheer, and explore with. These friendships keep us grounded throughout our lives, through thick and thin. It is important to have friends in life. Even when you eventually settle down, you will still need friends.

  1. Be Grounded in Your Faith (whatever it may be)

It does not matter what you believe in (God, gods, Jesus, no Jesus, Mother Nature, Fate, etc.). As long as you have grounded morals and have something to keep you accountable to, you will be set in life. Give thanks, forgive, be patient, be optimistic, and help others. You need faith to keep you going in the hard times, so you need to start grounding yourself now before the real tough stuff comes.

xOx

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Be Single this Summer

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~ design and photo created by me ~

People think a summer fling would be the perfect story. However, staying single for the summer is better for you than having any significant other. Instead of spending half of the summer finding someone who is good enough and only being able to spend 6 weeks with them before going back to school/home/work, you should stay single and enjoy the good life. Here are 5 reasons why you should try to stay single during the fine months of May-August.

And remember to stay sassy throughout it all!

1. Freedom 

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This is not meant in a sarcastic or discouraging way. I mean freedom to decide for yourself what YOU want to do, when YOU want to do it. Relationships are compromises and giving things up at times for your significant other. And I’m not saying this is not great for people, but what I am saying is that this is the time for you to be selfish. Like the great Koyoko quote states. Be selfish and learn to love yourself.

  1. Making new friends

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Now, you can meet new people at some social gathering. And you’re ALLOWED to do it! You are single, so no one is restricting you from interacting with the opposite sex. You can mingle, flirt, have fun and meet new people. It is a great thing, really. You do not have to feel guilty by any means. Plus, the summer has way more social events and the atmosphere is so free. It is a great time to be single.

  1. Traveling

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Travel to visit friends without having to accommodate anyone else. Now is the time to travel without any strings attached. Go for days or weeks or a month. You do not have anyone calling you back! Cross things off of YOUR bucket list. You will not need to travel to a random city in the middle of nowhere to meet more family member of your SO’s. Travel to the coast of your interest!

  1. Work on bettering YOU

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Summer time is the personal-renovation months. There is plenty of time to re-adjust your eating habits, start exercising and taking care of yourself, start a new hobby, finish a project, or whatever it is you need to do to find out who you are. You need time to focus on yourself and learn what you really love.

 

  1. Showing yourself you can be independent

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Many times people go from relationship to relationship, but the summer is a great time to step back and force yourself to be on your own. You learn who you are and what you are capable of. Living on your own and living with just yourself is a great lesson in life. Take the time to be selfish and do whatever you feel like!

And just walk by couples and give this face to them: it’s so refreshing!

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Introducing….me!

Hello blogger world!

This is my second blog, but my original one is focused on traveling/adventures across the Big Pond. However, I realized there are more things I want to talk about. Life lessons and observations. Things I’ve learned from watching other people. Things others should be aware of and know. Taking a few seconds every day to just observe and educate yourself can really pay off when it’s time to hit the “grown up” world. And there are a few things the “grown ups” need to be more aware of, too, in my opinion.

So the purpose of this blog is to bring up things I’ve noticed (whether it be in everyday life, the news, other blogs, observations over time, etc.) that I think are worth mentioning. In the end, it will just be my opinions, but hopefully some of you can related to some of the things I say. One thing I will push, though: keep an open mind in life because it will get you more friends and more respect.

 

Until next time,

XO

 

“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Thurman

 

 

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