Chit Chat – Life Update

I’ve been away from my blog from several months and I thought it would be fitting to write a life update! As I mentioned in my New Years Post, I’m moving towards a more quality centric blog instead of quantity. The pressure to blog/vlog has had very bad consequences in the past but blogging when I feel like puts me at ease. However, I always worry that if I’m away for too long, you’ll all forget me! So a life update is awesome to just catch you up to speed on what I’ve gotten up to in my absence!

If there is anything on this list you’d love me to expand on and write a blog about do let me know!

Graduate School

I’m now in my second semester of graduate school. It still feels strange sometimes that I’m doing my masters because I never had a concept of what graduate school would be like. It’s a lot of work, but it’s given me a lot of skills in a few months. My favourite part about graduate school is learning coding/programming languages. I was excited, but nervous to learn it from scratch coming here but I’ve learnt so much and its now one of my best parts about the course. I think it’s that eureka moment I get after stumbling on a code for hours and finally seeing it work. It’s an emotional rollercoaster but I love it so far.

Move Back To WordPress.com

Earlier this year I moved from my blog, which was hosted on WordPress.com to a self hosted site. This inadvertently caused a massive amount of headache as my website crashed multiple times within this time. Also, trying to find the right themes and customizing was also challenging. However, the final nail on the coffin was the lack of engagement with the WordPress community! I hate it. I realised that I don’t care about SEO, domains, self hosted, traffic or any other blog things I “should” care about. It produces a lot of negative feelings for me and makes me unfocused on producing blog content.

I decided to move back and I’m happy and calm not caring about all the extra blogging stuff. I just want my likes and comments over blogging jargon that gives me headache any day!

My site currently looks like a headache so bear with me because WordPress is currently facilitating my transfer! Everything will be back to normal after October 5th.

Self Awareness

I’m striving to be more self-aware. I was really inspired by a Japanese TV show called Terrace House (It’s on Netflix, thank me later).  Besides being amused by all the cultural differences Japanese people had with the Western world, I was particularly impressed by their self-awareness and reflection on all aspects of their life. There is also a strong desire to be better, and think of other people’s feelings and how their interactions affect people. I tend to think of how interactions affect me instead of the other way around, which upon watching this show, exposed my selfish tendencies! I know, strange. I can learn from anything, even reality TV shows. Haha

Dreadlocks

image1.jpeg

I started dreadlocks! Myself! They’re currently 4 months old and coming along nicely. I guess you could say I gave up on my natural hair this summer. The breakage and tangling was real so I decided to lock it since my hair tends to want to lock itself every 2 seconds. My locs give me even more peace of mind since I use less products and only have to deal with my hair every 2 months. I ALSO DONT HAVE TO COMB IT OMG YESSSSSSS!!

Weight Loss

I’ve lost a total of 8kg (17lbs) since the beginning of the year.  I lost a lot of weight, but I lost it slowly to preserve my madness. I attribute the first few months of the journey to eating low-calorie alternatives of the things I loved like brownies, ice-cream and spaghetti. However, towards the last few kilograms, I attribute my weight loss to intermittent fasting and eating one massive, delicious, calorie dense, meal a day. I have my hangry, binge days but all in all its going pretty smoothly since I always feel very satiated after each meal.

That’s it for my life update! Theres many little other things that have happened but this is just the main stuff. Thank you for reading!

Graduate School: A Semester In Review

I think I should skip a long winded excuse and give a perfectly good reason for my hiatus; Graduate school has been kicking my butt! It really hurt me to not blog consistently but I could not give a hundred percent to both blogging and school. One had to suffer. In this instance, it was the blog. But I’m so glad to be back!

I started graduate school in January after a looong gap year. The gap year was fun (and very much needed) but I was excited to go back to university and study again.

A Steep Learning Curve…

Right off the bat I knew my degree would be challenging. My Masters is completely different from my Bachelors degree because it requires more Math knowledge than Biology (which is not my strong suit).

In my Bachelors degree, I studied cells and peered down microscopes. But in my Masters, I’m staring at codes and computer screens. I’m really lucky my program required no formal college background in computer science, but there was a learning curve at first. Learning programming languages is challenging, but so rewarding and fun in the end.

I’m Married To Coffee

Before graduate school, I was a very casual coffee drinker. By casual I mean a Frappuccino at Starbucks once in 2 months. Now I guzzle down record amounts of expressos every few days. My coffee relationship started because all my classes are taken at night (7-10pm), which is a huge adjustment for me. However I fancy myself sort of a night owl now!

Grades Don’t Really Matter….Or Do They?

They never really did, but this is more emphasized in graduate school. As long as you’re not flat-out failing and you understand the basics of the program, you’re in the clear. However, the failing grade is B-, below a 3.0 gpa which is a HUGE oxymoron. They say that it’s more about what you know, than cramming and getting A’s, but your grades must still reflect your knowledge. But the perfectionist in me is still irrationally obsessed with grades and if I don’t get an A or A-, I’m usually not happy. So thanks, but no thanks. LOL

Moving To America

I have been visiting the U.S for over a decade now, but studying and living in the U.S is a different beast of its own. It was not so difficult moving to the U.S so much so as it was moving to a new place where I knew no one and had no family nearby.

There are things that I’d usually brush off for my brother or father to do for me, especially the stereotypical “manly man” jobs. But this time I had to do everything myself because I was on my own. It was a fun experience to be much more independent but I’d rather not do that again. Lmao

So here’s to next semester! AND PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD LET THERE BE NO MORE GROUP PROJECTS OR THERE WILL BE BLOOD. Jk, not really, okay bye.

I Don’t Know What To Blog About Now….

That being said, I missed you all! I’m going to have to slyly infiltrate the blogging community again because no one will remember who I am at this point. I’ve also been gone so long that I don’t know what to blog about any more. I need a fresh dose of inspiration. Suggestions?

Do you have any questions about graduate school? I would love to answer them. Please comment below!

What I Want To Achieve In 2018

It’s a new year and I feel so ready for 2018! I felt 2017 was a transitionary period in my life where I was just preparing for 2018 to start. I’m excited to go back to school for my Masters, meet new people and form new relationships. I also started blogging consistently last year and I now feel like I’m getting more into the groove of things now.

Besides the blogging stuff, there are so many things I’d like to improve this year. I don’t have a long list of what I want to achieve in 2018  because I have a track record of my concrete plans going to shit lmao. However, it’s great to have a general idea of what I want to do this year!

What I Want To Achieve In 2018

NO. 1

I would love to be more mindful of the stuff I buy in 2018. I have a difficulty separating needs from wants which makes me buy things that I may not even need at all. This happens because I feel like I need something when in actuality I can live without it.

I also LOVE dirt cheap, trendy clothes but they may not always be the best quality. I’m tired of having my clothes fall apart after one wash so a solution must be met in this regard.

I’m envious of my brother because he has clothes that last for 5 years and still look new. However, he shops at designer stores (Something I can’t bring myself to do yet). I would love to strike a middle ground between dirt cheap and designer prices. I will focus more on the quality of clothes I buy as opposed to following trends.

NO. 2

I want to be more consistent with my blog and social media. I’ve been missing from Instagram and Pinterest for a couple of weeks. My lack of motivation started when I lost the charger to my good camera. I didn’t enjoy taking photos anymore because they turned out ugly. I’m glad to have a backup charger now so I hope this is the push I need to start posting more on social media. I’m also considering scheduling my social media posts using tools like Tailwind and Buffer.

IMG_4117.jpg

NO. 3

I would love improve the quality of my posts this year. I am currently sensing a shift in the type of content that interests me. Although I love how many posts I’ve done on this blog, but I believe quality is better than quantity. The quality of some of my posts on this blog suffered because of the pressure I felt to post once a week.

I dont want to feel this type of pressure and I always want to produce the best content. Because of this, I may reduce the frequency of my posts to twice a month to be more quality-centric and see how that affects my blog this year.

NO. 4

Unapologetically embrace who I am. I think embracing yourself is a lifelong journey that has it’s ups and downs. I love who I am, flaws an all and I’m proud of how far I’ve come. Most of the things I HATED about myself when I was young are either not a concern or a mild inconvenience now. It doesn’t affect my self esteem anymore. This year, I would love to continue to improve my health, body and just be more accepting of my shortcomings as a person while I try to improve them.

IMG_4114.jpg

NO. 5

Draw closer to God. It’s kind of sunk into my head that God should ideally be at the centre of my life. I pretty much backslided in 2017 but  I always tend to remember this passage from the bible:  “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33. This verse reminds me that everything else in my life is secondary to God. If I just focus more on Him, my needs will be met.

NO. 6

I want to continue to live in the moment. Sometimes I tend to think and think about things instead of actually going out and doing them. It’s the introverted part of me. This year, I would love to go out more and explore the world, meet new people and have new experiences!

And that’s it! This is what I want to achieve in 2018! What are your New Years resolutions?

Travel Diary: Times Square, New York

I guess you’re wondering where I’ve gone to, disappeared, hidden and concealed myself from this beautiful blog. Trust me, I’m as hurt as you.

I’ve been trying to set up myself for graduate school and believe me, it was a looong process. I had to take a hiatus from blogging for a few weeks but I’m so glad to be back!

I finally got my student visa and travelled so my family decided to stop by in New York for a day before transiting to our next destination.

In my previous travel post, I mentioned that New York is somewhere I would love to visit again! I last came here in 2008 so I was extremely excited to visit again.

I wanted to see Times Square again because the picture  of the place was imprinted in my brain from the last time I went there and it’s such an iconic place.

Times Square….

Times Square is in Manhattan and it’s mostly known for all the brightly adorned electronic billboards and massive pop up shops below. It’s also super close to where the famous Broadway shows are played!

IMG_6246.JPG

New York City is chaotic, crowded, a little dirty and full of life. There also seemed to be a lot of larger-than-life personalities here. I saw a lot of interesting things and strange people while I was in Times square.

IMG_6299.JPG

As I mentioned before, there is no place I’ve ever visited that’s like New York because it’s so different! It’s also one of the only cities I know that becomes even more busy at night.

It’s such a peculiar city, I’m so sad I couldn’t see more of this place. I will come back again one day because I still need to see the Statue of Liberty duh!

Without boring you further, here are some of the pictures I took at Times Square! All of these pictures were taken on my iPhone! Gasspp!!

IMG_6296.JPG

IMG_6310.JPGIMG_6321.JPGIMG_6349.JPG

IMG_6430.JPG

What To Do When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed With Blogging

I’m pacing up and down in my living room, phone in hand, thinking of how I’m going to complete a post about how to stop feeling overwhelmed with blogging when I’m encountering those feelings myself. Haha I’ve been overwhelmed with blogging so many times but I’ve always managed to come out alive and kicking!

Finding the motivation to write, publish and promote posts can be difficult for some bloggers. Blogging can be hard sometimes. And trust me, I totally understand how difficult it is to keep up with writing posts, sharing them, promoting and engaging with your community. It can easily turn into a full-time job.

Overwhelmed with blogging….

I usually overwhelmed when I have a mountain of tasks I need to complete. I wake up some mornings dreading all my Pinterest pins, blogging posts and Instagram pictures I have to keep up with. Then instead of actually doing it, I shut down and do nothing at all.

Once I have a long to-do list I begin to prioritize what is really important and that can leave my blogging as a second priority (I know).

I often shut down because I ask myself “why is this causing so much anxiety for me? Is it even that serious”. The answer to me is no, nothing is never that serious. Which results in me pushing all my blogging duties aside.

It can also be extremely demoralizing when you are pushing out posts and you’re not getting the engagement you want or you are working for. It’s in those times that it is most tempting to ask yourself if you should to quit or keep going?

And sometimes…it’s just not fun. That’s the one thing I dread the most. I never want to get to a point in my blog where I feel like writing is a chore. I always want it to be fun and something I look forward to.

Ask yourself what is really important.

What is really important? Blogging to me is important but at this time in my life is it really important to cause more anxiety than my education? Or my health? No it’s not.

I’ve always gotten some form of anxiety/FOMO from social media so I always aggressively take action when I feel it creeping up again. I try to re-center my thoughts and focus on what is really important. Doing this removes those feelings of anxiety.

Only do the bare minimum and what is necessary

You’re not super woman. It’s okay to not be able to do 1000 things at once. Try to focus on one thing and do that well. Last week, I didn’t want to read any posts or pin on Pinterest. I guess you could say I took a break because I didn’t have the mental energy to do blogging stuff. I just wanted to binge watch Stranger things 2. LOL

All I did was like a few pictures on my Instagram. It really took the pressure off for a while and now I’m ready to go back in full force!

Always try to automate things that can be automated. Automate your Pinterest with Tailwind. You could even automate your Instagram. At the moment, I don’t do either because I don’t want to spend that money yet. But once I do, it will definitely ease the pressure of keeping up with blogging for me! I highly recommend it.

stil-243513-unsplash

Force yourself to write, Even if you don’t feel like it.

When I don’t feel like writing, I write. Even if it’s the shittiest thing I’ve ever written in my life I’ll keep typing and finish the post. I can then later go back and edit it. Which usually turns out to be a really good post!

You don’t have to be completely inspired each time you write a post. I highly doubt that even the greatest writers were inspired each time they put the ink on paper. So write away!

Don’t get hung up on numbers

It’s fun when you’re growing in numbers but very discouraging when you are not gaining followers or even losing them! My fellow blogger friends often complain about losing followers so I can empathise with them over this situation.

Never compromise yourself for a few followers or likes. It soooo exhausting and burns you out faster than you can imagine. I know numbers are all the rage right now in the blogging world but I believe we are shifting towards an engagement-centric community soon. It doesn’t matter, as long as your 50, 100 or 1000 followers are engaged that is amazing in itself.

Your blog, your rules

It’s your blog and you make the rules. When I had 15 followers and now I have 2400, I always had an audience that genuinely enjoyed my content. I listened to them but I always blogged about what truly interested me. I made the rules as I saw fit and because of this, it’s more difficult for me to be overwhelmed with blogging.

At the end of the day, do what makes you happy with your blog and if something is making you feel unpleasant, scrap it! It takes the edge off knowing you are completely in control of your blogging outcome…


I hope I’ve helped you with some ways to get over those overwhelming feelings over your blog.

I would love to know if you’ve ever felt overwhelmed with blogging?

What methods do you use to ease that pressure?

How To Get Your First 500 Followers On Instagram

Instagram has changed. Gone are the days where you take a photo straight from your iPhone, slap on a Valencia filter, put one or two hashtags and call it a day. Instagram has evolved into a powerhouse especially for bloggers and influencers! I have had Instagram for 5 years now so I have seen many changes in the app. However, it wasn’t until 5 months ago I decided to create a separate Instagram for my blog and grow it. I have amassed a lot of amazing followers so I would like to share how to get followers on instagram!

A lot of the strategies that bloggers tout as the best strategies honestly do not work. Hashtagging brings almost no returns now. It is also a complete waste of time spending hours on your phone liking and commenting on people’s photos in the hopes that someone will follow you.

I needed to find a method that worked so I read lots of blogs on how to get followers on Instagram. My main criteria was that the method should be cheap and show a noticeable growth in followers without spending hours on Instagram.  After a few tweakings and experiments, I found it!

I didn’t use any follow bots/automatic liking systems because I don’t have the money and I wanted a more organic growth. Growing your Instagram this way is definitely slower than using bots but I’ve found that the audience you build will be more engaged. Also, as your following increases, the amount of followers you gain increase exponentially so patience is the name of the game!

Post (Semi) Often

I’m guilty of not posting often because I don’t have the time to take pictures for the week and schedule them. Whoever does this is a true champion! How do you do it?!??!

Posting frequently on Instagram is a no – brainer. It’s always the key to growing any social media account. Post frequent, high quality posts. The more often you post, the more exposure you get and a greater chance of more people seeing your Instagram and following you! Most experts say posting once a day is optimum for growing your account.

But it’s not absolutely necessary. I only post once or twice a week and I get followers everyday. Do what frequency is best for you and makes you comfortable. Just be consistent. Consistency is key.

Do A Follow Train

This is the most important thing that has made my instagram grow these past 5 months. I do a follow spree 5-6 times a week and I have seen a lot of growth from this method. Here is how I do it

At peak hour, (which is 7-10 pm for my time zone) I click on the latest posts from a user I follow and see who liked it. Once I’m there I visit the pages of whoever liked their picture. I like the users pictures and then follow them. I usually follow 10-15 people on these days. They will usually follow you back. I have a 70% success rate using this method. This method is absolutely necessary for me.

One thing to consider is a users follower to following ratio. If a user has a massive gap between followers/following, do not expect a follow back. It also helps to follow people who are interested in the same things as you are. So I usually follow a lot of bloggers and females age 18-30 because I know they fit my demographic of who I am trying to reach!

Instagram Pods

Instagram pods are completely optional but they do help somewhat in engagement on photos. An Instagram pod is a group of bloggers on an Instagram group chat (usually 15) who comment and like on every post anyone shares in the group. There’s no limit on the amount of instagram pods you can join, but one pod is a lot to keep up with!

It’s nice to have a group of bloggers that will always like your pictures and comment. I also ask for blogging advice and general chit-chat from time to time on the group chat so it’s a nice community to be in. However it’s not necessary, Instagram pods are so new and you can grow your account without one.

Follow a theme

how to get followers on instagram

Once someone visits your page for the first time, the overall impression that they get is what will make them decide to click the follow button. Themed Instagram can help drive people to click the follow button. I love having a themed Instagram, but it’s not always the easiest thing for me to achieve.

My theme is currently (to the best of my knowledge) lots of white space with a pop of neutral colors. I don’t overthink my theme and frankly I don’t care. As long as my pictures look decent I’m posting it.

You can tweak and try different themes to see what gets the most likes and comments. If a streamlined theme works for you, do it. It’s also good to have a theme when you are branding yourself on social media because you can be easily recognized by your style of photos. It’s all dependent on what you personally want!

Once you implement these tips, you will see an organic growth of your Instagram with highly engaged followers. I hope you got some amazing tips on how to get followers on Instagram!

Instagram is fun, but my new favourite social media is definitely Pinterest because I get lots of traffic from there. I wrote an extended post on how to get started using Pinterest and drive traffic to your blog. Do check it out!

Amazing Books To Read This Fall

Fall is upon us and I think this is the perfect time to snuggle up and find some new reads! But first let’s take a moment to thank the book gods…I’ve read more than 2 books in a month! I have read a lot of  books recently and I decided that it would be nice to share 4 amazing books to read this fall.

I can’t believe I’ve read these many books in a short span of time because I literally have the attention span of a fish. Reading for me used to be anywhere and an anytime thing but now it has become so ritualistic and boring. 

I need to have the perfect conditions present before I can read now. I’m talking a dark room, complete silence and preferably snuggled in a blanket, before I can read. My high maintenance habits have made it difficult to finish books within a sensible time frame…until now!

I usually read all my books on the kindle app on my iPhone or Kindle device and I buy all my books on Amazon. It’s so much more convenient and I prefer reading the reviews before I shell out money to buy it. Most of these books are 4.5 stars so they’re fan favorites!

Lifestyle Blogging Basics – Laura Lynn

books I've been loving lately lifestyle blogging basics

I’m always on a path of self improvement especially when it comes to my blog. So I decided to buy a book about lifestyle blogging to see if I would learn anything new. This book is written by Laura over on Breezy and Brazen.

Why you should buy it:

This book is perfect for any beginner blogger that wants to get started on their website/blog. It talks about starting a blog, what blogging platform to use, how to promote your posts, working with brands and many more. I also loved how there was a “how I failed” section in each point because it’s reassuring to know that blogging is not a smooth sailing ship. You will make many mistakes but as long as you keep going it’s all good. It’s an extremely valuable book for all level bloggers so it’s worth a read!

Luring A Lady – Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts is a really popular author and I’m sure almost everyone has read one or two of her romance novels. I’m a romantic girl at heart so I enjoy reading romance genres from time to time. I was pulled in by the plot in this book so I decided to make a purchase.

Luring A Lady is a about a woman called Sydney Hayward who recently took over the family’s real estate business. She has always felt the pressure to be the perfect wife/socialite/daughter so she is closed off and too busy for any distractions…that is until Mikhail comes along.

Why You Should Buy it:

It is a simple, cookie cutter, entertaining romance story. It’s so easy to read and you don’t have to rack your brain trying to comprehend what is being said. It was also cute to see how her ice-princess facade was slowly melted by Mikhail. And if you love an Alpha type main character in a novel, this book is for you.

The Curated Closet – Discover Your Personal Style And Build Your Dream Wardrobe

books I've been loving lately the curated closet

I have the most haphazard personal style ever because I just throw anything on and pray for the best. I also happen to hate shopping and the thought of spending hours in a clothing store makes me want to gouge my eyes out. Although I hate shopping, I love fashion! I wanted to see if there is way to build a wardrobe I love that captures my personal style, but is versatile for any season. Enter the curated closet! It goes into detail about building your wardrobe based on what you like, shopping tips and building a capsule wardrobe! It’s a really invaluable tool for anyone that wants to improve their closet with minimal effort.

Why You Should Buy It:

If your closet is a mess, you have no semblance of a personal style and you don’t have the willpower nor energy to figure it out yourself, this book if for you!

The Naturalist- Andrew Mayne

books I've been loving lately

The Naturalist is a thriller/crime investigation novel about a scientist who is thrust into the middle of an investigation when one of his former students is brutally murdered in the woods. I’m not done reading this but I’m really enjoying it at the moment! I’m also getting a serious Gone Girl vibe from this novel and I know there’s going to be a massive bombshell at the end. Fingers crossed it lives up to my expectations!

Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed my post this and found some new books to read this fall!

What are your current favorite books?

Related: The Mid Year Favourites Roundup: Books, Music, Movies and Makeup!

4 amazing books to read this fall

3 Things That Made Me Accept My Natural Hair

I have had a complicated relationship with my hair. I grew up in a society that did not accept my natural hair, afro’s or dreadlocks. Straight silky hair was right and kinky hair was wrong. Right from when I was little, I went to the salon every three weeks to get a relaxer. Now if you don’t know what a relaxer is it’s a strong chemical that you put on your hair to straighten it permanently. I had extremely coarse and thick hair that my mother couldn’t comb so this was the best option at the time. Also, everyone was doing it so it was not a big deal.

I think most people can agree that relaxers are more harmful than good. The hair relaxers always burnt my scalp (yes, chemical burns on my scalp!!) but I always loved the straight silky look I got when I wore a relaxer.

I never knew what my actual hair looked like. I always had the impression that my hair was some sort of untamable beast that needs a relaxer unless all my hair would fall out.  It was unthinkable not relaxing my hair!

I also thought that people who had natural hair were dirty, lazy and god forbid they had dreadlocks. This was years of conditioning where I grew up where your natural hair was not appreciated.

 

3 things that made me accept my natural hair

Breaking the Stereotype

The first time I saw a woman with natural hair was on YouTube. Shoutout to Karen aka Glamfun. She looked beautiful, and she looked like me!! Could I really have hair like that? I decided to go natural because I was tired of using weaves as a crutch. I didn’t like the fact that I felt less of a woman once I didn’t have a weave on and felt the need to hide or compensate with more makeup!

It was then and there that I decided to go natural! It wasn’t always an easy journey but reminding myself of these three things finally made me accept my natural hair and love it for what it is!

  1. Your hair is a unique representation of you

Absolutely no ones hair can be the same. Your hair is designed perfectly for you. It’s adapted to your skin colour, your weather, even the colour of your eyes. Your hair has a personality of its own and you should never compare list for list with another persons hair. Using a natural hair typing system may be only part of the equation but just because you and someone have the same hair type does not mean you can do the same things on your hair and have the same results! It will always look different. Embrace its uniqueness cause that is you.

    2. Get preconceived notions of what you think “good hair” should look like out of your mind

I’ve learnt that healthy hair is good hair. Healthy hair always looks good no matter what texture, color or length. Once you remove unrealistic expectations of what you think your hair should look like and accept it for what it is, it will be great! I used to admire people who had long flowing locks of hair and hated natural hair. The self-hatred and conditioning was real ladies! Now I appreciate all hair types, but I have a special admiration for afro’s. They’re just a special breed awesomeness!

On days that I think my hair looks like absolute shit, I get 1000 compliments on it. So never think your hair is ugly because it’s not what you think it should look like!


medianet_width = "728";
medianet_height = "20";
medianet_crid = "584484687";
medianet_versionId = "3111299";

//contextual.media.net/nmedianet.js?cid=8CUA2FBT0

3. Stop obsessing over your hair length

When I first went natural I was obsessed with growing my hair long. I always had 16 inch weaves so to go from that to short hair was very challenging for me. I also felt like I had to grow my hair long because my hair had been grazing my neck my whole life and I wanted to prove to someone I could grow it long for some reason. This led me to do arduous things that I didn’t like only because it would give me long hair. Instead of enjoying my hair at every step of its journey, I was always obsessing over it. As long as your hair is healthy, it will grow!

Now I pretty much don’t care about having long hair. I’m even contemplating cutting it shorter because it’s so much more easier to manage! In the end, your hair is an extension of you. Accepting it may not always be easy, but once you do it is extremely liberating.

Thank you so much for reading! If you would like see one of the ways I take care of my natural hair check out my Ultimate Routine For Thick, Curly Hair!

IMG_4833.jpg

Travel Diary: Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Florida

Two days before the monster Hurricane Irma was set to make landfall in Florida, I decided to go to Disney’s Animal Kingdom! I have been going to Disney World every year for the past 14 years so I am very familiar with most rides in all the theme parks.

I didn’t want to miss going here because it was my birthday and I wanted to celebrate it  for once! I’m really glad I did but now I’m currently cooped up at home recovering from the hurricane writing this post. It’s been a journey!

Disney World is arguably the most popular theme park in the world. There are many parks that have different themes that stay true to their names. There is Magic Kingdom, which is dedicated to fairy tales and Disney princesses. Epcot, which is dedicated to technology and futurism and Animal Kingdom, which is dedicated to nature and it’s animals!

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

I visited the theme park with my family and it was a really sunny when we arrived in the parking lot. There were many cars parked already and we walked forward to a series of poles to wait for a tram to pick us up!

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

It takes about 3 minutes to reach the ticketing booths so it’s a really short ride!

You can buy Disney World tickets in person or online. I bought my tickets online so I didn’t need to wait in line to get tickets. I simply walked to the booth in front and scanned my bar code on my phone to get in!

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

Once you’re inside the park you immediately feel as if you are in an Amazonian forest. There is a lush display of evergreen trees everywhere and beautiful flowers scattered around. It really gives you the feel of the Jungle!

Disney'sAnimalKingdom

The park is divided into roughly 4-6 sections but I only remember 4! There is Africa, Asia, Dinoland and Pandora.

Pandora: The World Of Avatar

Pandora is Disney’s new attraction that recently opened in Animal Kingdom. It reportedly cost half a billion dollars to construct! I’m a big avatar fan so there is no way I was going to miss seeing this attraction!

Pandora is absolutely breathtaking! It blows my mind just thinking about all the hours that went into the construction of the scenery. The surrounding area looks like it came straight out of the Avatar movie! Those strangely shaped rocks and filled with green leaves and spinning thingies? They’re all there and look so real. It was so great to be immersed into the environment.

Disney'sAnimalKingdom

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

 

I also saw the machines that the humans used in the Avatar movie. I loved how they made it life-sized. You could just tell that a lot of effort was put into the design and construction of these structures!

Disney'sAnimalKingdom

The Na’vi River Journey

Up next was one of my most anticipated rides; the Na’vi River Journey! The Na’vi river journey is a boat ride through a bioluminescent rain forest in search for the Shaman Of Songs. It was a really dark ride so it was difficult to get some good shots! But there is a giant life-sized singing avatar robot (the shaman), 3D animations and lots of sensations that make you feel like you’re really in the Na’Vi River! It’s definitely a ride that you should not miss if you go to Pandora!

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

Standing in the long lines had me beat so I decided to get some delicious bubble tea called “Night Blossom” at a stall nearby. This was my first time getting bubble tea and I was pleasantly surprised!

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

The lines in Animal Kingdom are also ridiculously long so make sure you have some sunscreen, comfortable shoes and a bottle of water. I stood for 1 hour to enter the Na’vi river and the ride only lasted for 5 minutes. The two other Pandora rides had 120 minute long lines! Long lines are just something you have to prepare for in Disney because there is always a crowd present.

Disney'sAnimalKingdom

Africa: The Festival Of The Lion King

Up next was the walk to the Festival of the Lion King all the way in Africa! This was a broadway show with Simba and his friends filled with elaborate props, acrobatics and special effects.

Disney'sAnimalKingdom

Disney'sanimalkingdom

I love broadway shows and musicals so this was something I was really looking forward to! I was pleasantly surprised because I taught it was just a simple singing show. It is so much more than that! It was also a full 30 minute show so I was happy that it wasn’t as short as most Disney attractions/rides.

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

Off To Dinoland….

Dinoland is dedicated to Dinosaurs and the main attractions are really the rollercoasters there! I wanted to go on some of the rollercoasters there but my sister was afraid and riding alone in a rollercoaster isn’t fun to me. We skipped on that and rode a little cute baby dinosaur on the Dino-Rama ride!

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdom

Entertainment Around The Park

I loved how there was lots of entertainment around the park that didn’t require you to stand in long lines. There was a drumming quartet in Pandora, a harp player near Dinoland and acrobatic dancers in Africa.

Disney'sAnimalKingdomDisney'sAnimalKingdomDisney's-Animal-Kingdom

I think I had a really good birthday celebration at Animal Kingdom! I usually don’t celebrate my birthdays because I just can’t be bothered. good experience that I won’t forget! Thank you so much for reading.

Have you ever been to Disney? 

Recent Posts: 

I Am Now A Self Hosted Blog! What I’ll Miss About WordPress.com

What’s In My Travel Makeup Bag: Autumn

 

I Am Now A Self Hosted Blog! What I’ll Miss About WordPress.com

Do you notice anything different on here? Well I have now officially moved to the Thepearlylife.com! It has been a very long time coming to get a self hosted blog. I am so excited for this next phase in my blogging journey! I’m so glad you’re all here along on the ride with me.

My move from wordpress.com to a self hosted wordpress.org blog was not without it’s challenges. However, it was not as difficult as I expected! I’m going to miss so many things about WordPress.com but I know this is for the best. Here are some of the things I’ll miss about WordPress.com! Think of this post as my little goodbye, love letter to WordPress.com

What I Will Miss About WordPress.com

  1. I no longer have access to the lovely WordPress.com community! I’m really going to miss tagging my posts and seeing them come up in the reader. I don’t think my tagged posts will show up in the reader anymore! Do they?
  2. I will miss the access to likes and ease of commenting on the reader. It will become significantly harder for my readers to comment on my posts using WordPress.com reader since I am technically no longer a member! You would have to go straight to my page in order to comment. Don’t worry though, I have made sure my page is easy to navigate so it will not be too much of a hassle for you!
  3. I don’t have to bother about updating plug-ins because everything is automatically updated for me by WordPress.com! Now I have to manually update some plug-ins because they can’t be auto updated.

The Self Hosted Blog Journey….

It was a simpler time for me back when I was a wordpress.com blogger. However, everything is much more challenging now which is really exciting to me. I am absolutely in love with my website now and the freedom I have. I am also enjoying learning about SEO and seeing some of the many mistakes I made in the previous posts. As I continue to improve I am sure I will get better at being a self hosted blogger!

I hope you all enjoyed reading this little post of mine and I can’t wait to start publishing posts on my new blog! Thank you so much for reading and subscribing.

Have you thought about self hosting?

What was your experience and what will you miss?

Instagram ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest Twitter

Here are some of my recent posts you may have missed:

How To Create The Perfect Pinterest Profile

The Foundation Tip That Changed My Makeup Game

What’s In My Travel Makeup Bag: Autumn