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Holiday Travel Tips

16 Nov

 

The holiday season is upon us and with that comes time with friends and family, lots of food and of course travel. Traveling year round can be as stressful as it is enjoyable but add a holiday in the mix and it becomes that much more intense. I myself have done a good bit of traveling around holidays and here are a few tips I find serve me well:

 

  • Book early and look around- If you know you plan to travel start checking flights ASAP! Generally as the date draws closer, the cost of the flight exponentially increases as the demand is now high. I would recommend booking at least 6 weeks in advance if you can to ensure the best price. Also take some time to check different airlines and third party booking sites for the best deal.

 

  • Try avoiding peak days- When it comes to holidays, some of the busiest days are the two days before or the two days after the actual holiday, this means fares are up, delays are rampant and airport lines are long. Interestingly, the actual holiday is usually much quieter with lower fares to boot. To get a better idea, there are some websites that actually list the best and worst days to travel in terms of fare costs and how busy.

 

  • Avoid peak times- Travel early am or late at night. This is in the same vein as avoiding peak days. Very early or late flights tend to be more rare meaning shorter lines. Very early flights are less likely to be delayed as well. There are also websites that offer some insight as to the best times of day to travel.

 

  • Allow for connections- Many of us have to take connecting flights in order to get to our destination. This is definitely a source of travel induced stress. If the first flight is delayed or the immigration/customs/security lines are long, you can end up missing your next flight which can send the entire trip into a tailspin. Try to book your flights with enough time in between to allow for a smooth connection. This may require a little research into the airports you’ll be traveling through to understand the layout, get info on the wait times etc.

 

  • Plan ahead: check-in online, plan for ride pick up/drop off/ weigh luggage- All in an effort to achieve a nice smooth travel experience, check-in in advance, book rental cars or pick ups in advance and ensure that your luggage and its contents meet the security and airline requirements…IN ADVANCE!

 

  • Be early- They say that Timeliness is next to Godliness…or is it Cleanliness? Anyway, if you leave early you will at the very least arrive on time. I recently traveled out of LAX and LA is infamous for the actual worst traffic. What did I do? I got my Lyft ride to collect me 4 1/2 hours before my flight. I was so early there was no one to check in luggage and I sat at the check in desk for almost an hour, but that was okay I’d rather sit at the gate for two hours than sit anxiously in traffic, lose my mind while checking in and have to run through security and to my gate.

 

  • Pack smart- I try to avoid checking luggage whenever I can because that saves money as well as time (spent waiting for luggage to come off the conveyor belt) and hassle (when it mysteriously doesn’t come off the conveyor belt). If you can’t avoid having checked luggage, remember pack your essentials, versatile clothing and in keeping with baggage policies to avoid issues with overweight or oversize charges and customs hassles.

 

  • Eat well/Bring snacks- Travel can sometimes be long and arduous, you don’t need hangry-ness on top of that. I advise having a nutritious, filling meal before you begin your travels and pack along something to munch on while waiting in lines or on flight. You can of course eat at the numerous overpriced eateries available inside airport terminals , just make sure you stay well fed and hydrated.

 

  • Dress comfortably- I have mentioned this before in my post about dressing for travel,  but comfort is key when traveling. That, and being dressed to run to a gate it you have to. Wear comfortable well fitting clothing and shoes that are simple to remove and replace during security checks.

 

  • Be patient/Prepared for delays- Despite your best efforts to be prepared; on time, appropriately dressed, perfectly packed something can still go wrong. There could be a major delay or flight cancellation, lost luggage or nothing but terrible restaurants in your terminal. Just take a deep breath because this too shall pass.

Thanks for reading, have an awesome day and safe travels.

 

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In Flight Essentials

19 Nov


Getting on a flight especially a longer one can be a tad daunting… cramped seating, rubbish snacks, cold dry air… I could go on. However, if you plan a bit you can find ways to make the flight more comfortable. Today I’m sharing a few things I make sure I don’t take off without.

Socks– Definitely a must to keep toes warm and comfy. I usually apply a thick coat of lotion before putting mine on so that at the end of the flight my feet are soft and smooth.

Gum
– Gum comes in useful in helping to avoid ear blockage when the altitude suddenly changes but it’s also a great breath freshener for after that long nap you take on the flight.

Deodorant
– To keep fresh , I usually pay the lavatory a visit about 3/4 during my flight where I wash my face use a little wet wipe magic and reapply my deodorant. It makes such a difference!


Hand cream
– One thing being in constant ac for hours at a time will do is dry you out. In addition to sipping water, I will regularly re-moisturize my hands and forearms. (You can also put on some face moisturizer too)

Lip gloss– This keeps the lips from suffering from the dry cold airplane air.
Hand sanitizer – You need hand sanitizer everywhere, period. 

Headphones– Headphones and earphones are life savers. You can zone out and listen to your favourite music or audible book and most importantly block out excess chatter or children screaming.

Magazine– Casual reading material on flights is a must. I love to pick up a couple just before I get on my flight and flip through, circling outfits and products I like.

What are your in flight essentials? What can you not travel without? Be sure to share and have an awesome day!

Pack with me

24 Sep

WHAT: Girls (mostly) trip

WHERE: Vegas baby!

WHEN: Sometime in the near Future

Hello and welcome to ‘Packing with me.” I will soon be taking a trip to Las Vegas and I thought I would share a few of my must-haves.

Clockwise from bottom

Flip-flops- These cute nude tones jelly ones with bows let your feet stay comfy while looking super cute.

Crossbody– This recent acquisition (as if I needed another crossbody) is by Ann Kline, a great contemporary designer. I love the structured box shape, the (faux) alligator skin finish and (faux) antique gold hardware. This will work great for all my exciting handsfree activities!

Hair Moisturizer– Do NOT leave home without your go-to hair product. This Coconut infused Whole Blends by Garnier keeps my thick, curly, unruly tresses in order. Of course, to avoid checked baggage I will be placing some of it in a travel appropriate (less than 3 fl Oz/ 100mL) bottle.

Way-Cool shades- That’s what I’ve decided to call these trendy sunglasses. The cat eye frame and super reflective finish have been popular recently and who doesn’t want to look trendy when on vacay. This is not my regular pair of sunnies, these are a much cheaper pair so just in case things get “way-crazy” and they are destroyed/lost I’ll still have my regular pair.

Bright red Lipstick– I chose this slightly cool toned brilliant red by Loreal “Frieda’s Red “. Red is my personal favourite lip colour so of course I want to have a nice turned up red on my lips while I’m turning things up in Vegas. If red isn’t your thing go for a nice bright pink/orange/coral. 

Sunscreen– Whatever your age, ethnicity, skin type etc, do not step outside without loading up on sunscreen. UV rays don’t discriminate. This is actually a daily moisturiser by Ceruve and contains hydrating cerumide but also contains SPF 30.

Fragrance– I am a huge believer in minis, whether you buy them or make your own by transferring products into smaller containers. My mother gave me this little sampler set of Atilier fragrances for my birthday and I think they are perfect for this trip. With scents ranging from blood orange to white musk, there is no occasion where I won’t find something just right.

Blazer– You really can’t go wrong with a blazer,  particularly this oversized fit black one from H+M. A nice blazer can keep you warm on your flight, dress up a nightime outfit and add dimension to daytime dress. DON’T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT ONE!

Statement Necklace- Or statement earrings, or statement arm cuff. Point is, a jewellery piece (or two or three) that can really pop and elevate your looks.

Thank you for letting me share some of my travel essentials. Hopefully you see some inspiration for your next trip and have an awesome day!

How to dress when travelling

6 Aug

There was a time when I felt I had to really dress up when travelling. I would make sure my hair was well coiffed, full face of makeup and dressed to impress: nice jeans, cute top, chandelier earrings…basically I did the most.

As I progressed in life and began travelling more frequently my need to look dressed up dwindled and was gradually replaced with functional dressing until I reached the point I’m at now…comfortable.

TIPS

Comfy pants– For me, that’s leggings but joggers or sweatpants can work.

Layer – I usually wear a tank or other lightweight top so I can keep cool if I’m running from one gate to the next but then I carry a long sleeve button down to bundle up in when it gets cold.

Easy shoes– After travelling in flip-flops and sneakers, I’ve finally found my sweet spot… slip-ons. Let me tell you why. Slip ons are comfortable and durable like sneakers BUT super easy to get on and off when going through security.

Change of clothes– This is for when you travel from one climate to another e.g. going from a colder to a tropical climate. I would toss a change of shoes and bottom in my carry on luggage.

Limit jewelry– All the bangles and rings look fantastic especially for selfie purposes but become a bulky chore both when going through security and trying to get comfy in your airplane seat.

Bare your face– This was my personal “AHA” moment. Despite dressing down I would still make an effort to have my face done, so as to look presentable. But guess what, nothing and I do mean NOTHING feels better than travelling sans makeup save for a bit of SPF (except that moment you take your bra off …but I digress). If you’re on a long flight your skin gets a chance to breathe and you won’t have to worry about touching up after half of your makeup comes off on your neck pillow.

That’s my 2 cents on how to dress when travelling. I find when I go this route I feel relaxed and I have one less thing to stress about when travelling. Have an awesome day!

Travel Cosmetics -How to pack

19 Mar

Whenever I travel I always try to pack a little better than I did the time before. And important group of items I carry is of course, cosmetics. From face wash to mascara, these items can get pretty bulky and cumbersome if you aren’t careful. This post lists items I typically take on a trip and how I pack for minimum space usage.


Some of the cosmetics I travel with

A major tip for packing you travel cosmetics is mini. If you can get every item in mini size that would be perfect. Most supermarkets and beauty stores sell minis of many items. For those things you can’t get a mini version of, invest in some mini travel pots and bottles.

FACE AND BODY

These are the essentials.The things you might need along the way on your trip. The things you don’t want to leave home without. Packaging these first.

○ Toothbrush and toothpaste 

○ Mouthwash

○ Deodorant (Secret)

○ Face/body wash(Cetaphil)

● Daily moisturizer(Oil of Olay Daily moisturizer)- I squirting a few days worth into a travel size container.

● Hand cream(BBW Black cherry merlot)

● Sunblock(Coppertone)

● Cleansing wipes(Wetones)

HAIR

○ Hairspray by Rave

○ Hair moisturizer by Garnier

○ Dry shampoo-I hardly ever wash my hair on short trips (I havethick, curly natural hair prone to dryness) so I don’t pack shampoo or conditioner but I do pack dr6 shampoo to keep things clean.

○ Hair gel by Tre Semme

MAKEUP

As tough as it may be, you have to use extreme discretion and only pack what you need. Think of all the makeup items you typically wear on an everyday basis to decide what to take.

● Foundation (Maybelline fit me matte and poreless in coconut)

● Eyeshadow palette (NYX Natural) – A fairly compact palette with enough shades to create multiple looks is ideal

● Blush (Milani American Rose)- A blush that will likely match your eye and lip colours.

● Lip colour (Milani Confident matte) – One that will go well with your eye colours

● Mascara (Too Faced Better than Sex)

● Brown pencil(ABH Brow definer in dark brown)

● Eye liner(Kat von D tattoo liner in Trooper)

● Setting mist(NYX matte)

● Rollerball perfume(Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb)- These are perfect for travel because they don’t spill.

○ Brushes- pack them in a flat brush holder like this or in a thin cosmetic case.

PACKING

I legit pack most of my cosmetics in a massive zip lock bag. Why? Because it holds a lot, it’s clear so it’s cool to go through airport security and if it gets messed up with spilt product you can bin it when you’re finished. 

Everything laid out



Packing things this way also save space because you can lay it flat on top of your clothing.

All packed up

Thanks for reading, happy travels and have an awesome day!

Happy 2017

1 Jan

Hello and welcome to 2017! Wishing everyone who reads this a year of achievement and contentment and success.

 I don’t make traditional New Year’s resolutions but I do often write out my goals (which is kind of the same thing I guess) . I have personal goals, career goals, reading goals and of course blogging goals. I will share a few blogging goals I have.

1) To continue to consistently post on my blog- though I started my blog in 2012, I only began consistent posting in mid 2016, and I love it. It gives me something to look forward to and hopefully does the same for those who read the blog.

2) To expand my posting range- I primarily do recipes and tips with some travel and beauty stuff splashed in between. This year I want to do DIYs ,more exciting recipes  and more travel and beauty related posts.

3) To improve my photography skills- While I quite like taking photos and I do think I have improved over time, I know there is so much more to learn and do to create beautiful shots. I intend to invest more energy in that.

4) To engage more with fellow bloggers- I learnt in the latter half of 2016 that there are A LOT of blogs out there. Some very similar to me, some completely different but exciting and some just totally out of the box. Before, I never really considered finding blogs on WordPress,  I only used it to actually write my posts. It opened up a whole new world for me and I’m excited to see more.

This are my main blogging goals that I hope to achieve this year. What are your blogging goals?

Have an awesome day!

10 Christmas Traditions around the World 

13 Dec

BLOG-Mas Day 12

Hello and welcome to the 12th day of Blogmas. A number of years ago (more than I care to remember)  I did a presentation on Christmas Traditions around the world and during different time periods. I found it so interesting how many things were so different yet how many were almost identical . 
This is just the tip of the iceberg with Christmas Traditions to pique your interests . 
HAITI

NORWAY

NIGERIA 

PHILIPPINES 

ROMANIA 

VENEZUELA 

GREECE

CHINA

FAULKLAND ISLANDS

KENYA 

Did any traditions sounder familiar? We’re any surprising ?  Thank you for reading and have an awesome day ! 

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