The Worst of 2016

While the end of every year is a time of celebration and reflection, there are also moments that things didn’t work out as planned. By sharing some of my worst moments in 2016, it’s not meant as a time to vent or dwell on the unfortunate circumstances of the year. My purpose of sharing these moments is to show that no one has a perfect life and that there is always something to learn from these moments. At times it seems that it when it rains, it pours and sometimes you forget to look around and step on a cactus. However, I’ve found we’re constantly being tested to see what we can learn and how we can become stronger. A few of these unfortunate moments I experienced in 2016 include some lessons below: Continue Reading ›

The Best of 2016

I can hardly believe that the end of the year is approaching. It feels like yesterday I was anxiously starting graduate school or staying up late to get my mid-terms finished and submitted. After completing my first semester (and unfortunately disappearing from this blog for a few months), it feels good to complete my accomplishments. Although I have plenty of semesters ahead of me, I’m happy to report there is more than graduate school that I’ve added to my list of achievements. 2016 has been a fantastic year of opportunities for career, travel, fashion, and friends. So, before 2016 comes to an end, here are some amazing highlights from this past year: Continue Reading ›

Looking for Locally Made in Costa Rica

My recent travel adventure to Costa Rica had me pumped, not just for the opportunity to venture into the jungle, but to visit a destination known for ecotourism.  In the past I’ve set goals for myself to live and travel more sustainably as well as reflect on how I can balance sustainability with my shopping habits, and I anticipated putting these ideas into action in Costa Rica.  Although it was inspiring to see numerous places recycling all kinds of materials including paper, aluminum and plastic, there was one lingering disappointment in the back of my mind.  Scouring the souvenir shops in Monteverde and Tamarindo left me feeling at a loss for something else.  Continue Reading ›

Costa Rica Highlights

The more time I spend with family, the more I realize one thing is evident: We all have a passion for world travel.  So, when it came time to pick the perfect location for a wedding, my cousin Jasmine didn’t settle for her hometown.  Instead, she looked far and beyond.  Her and her fiance’s pick?  Central America’s ecotourism hotspot, Costa Rica.  Immediately various cousins, aunts and uncles jumped on board and our travel group quickly began to grow.  On a cold, rainy and extremely windy evening in Chicago, my mom asked if I’d like to join.  Hearing gusts of wind moaning outside my bedroom window, I responded instantly: “Yes.”  Although I had been to nearby countries in South America, to my delight, Costa Rica had plenty of adventures I hadn’t experienced yet.  Camera ready and armed with sunscreen and bug spray, I was ready to take on the opportunities Costa Rica’s cities had to offer. Continue Reading ›