A while back I traveled to Lebanon with my family and I never got round to sharing my photos online. Lebanon has always been a place that intrigued me, and living in the Middle East I knew that I had to take advantage of my location and schedule a quick trip to Beirut. Lebanese food is one of my favorite cuisines, but other than the food I didn't really know what to expect of Beirut. I was only there for a weekend, so I spent most of my time in the city discovering cool places; if I had the opportunity to go back I would take some day trips out of the city, as I have heard that there are some must-see attractions outside of Beirut. I hope I managed to capture the essence of the city through these photos, so without further ado, here is Beirut through my camera lens...
When I first moved to Dubai almost six years ago now, it was such a scary change for me, something completely out of my comfort zone. However, looking back on it now this new life in Dubai seems so familiar and comfortable to me, I can't imagine what it would have been like if I had never moved. The unfamiliar became familiar. The changes and choices we decide to make each day determine things in our life years down the line that we don't even know about yet. Each day we are forced to make thousands of small choices: what time to wake up, what to wear, what to eat, and each choice has a specific outcome that will affect something else in turn. We can't control everything in our lives, but we can control the choices we make. We have to ensure that with each choice we make, we make it with purpose and passion so that the few things we can control are exactly what we want to be doing and we can make positive change. We can set a tone for everything that follows by making purposeful choices.
This week I have another Expat Wisdom post to share with you, and I have to say, it's one of the most insightful ones that I've shared. If you don't already know, the Expat Wisdom project is something I set up to share the stories of you guys: other expats around the world who have something valuable to say. Each month I invite a fellow expat to share their story and advice on this platform. This month I was lucky enough to have Cate from Incheon and Beyond write for me and share her story. Her writing is truly amazing, and she shares some very useful wellness tips as well. I hope you enjoy reading what she has to say as much as I did! “Well being: the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy.” The late July humidity was expected but instantly concerning. Sweat stung our eyes as the automated glass doors of the Incheon International Airport closed behind my then boyfriend and I, the pace of these doors glacial, their glass faces fogging at the intersection of an air-conditioned terminal and the unforgiving Korean heat. Our clothes were a new level of damp. Any rational or coherent thought our jet-lagged brains attempted had already evaporated. Left in their exhausted wake were the hollows (at that point, crevasses) of other thoughts that once took up space: what’s going to help get us through this? What is perseverance? What is going on, team?
Hearing advice about the first day of school and how to stay on top of school work is useful, but after a while it gets repetitive! I'll admit, I shared my own back to school advice in a previous blog post, but I think this post will be useful to a lot more of you. We all know how to stay organized and prepare for the first day back at school, but sometimes we need a little more... I really don't like seeing the summer come to an end, and I always make an extra special effort to do things that I love in September to make the whole transition back to school (or back to work, for some of you) a little less sad. I do things like making sure I get an early night, lighting my best smelling candle, and listening to my favorite music while taking a bath (sometimes I even whip out the Christmas music to cheer myself up if I've had a really hard day). It's these little things that I do each day that I can look forward to after a draining day at school (I know that sounds a little dramatic, but school is hard!) that make the back to school season a little more bearable. That's why I want to encourage all of you to have one thing planned for each day this September that will make you happy - a little treat that you can look forward to at the end of each day.
In a couple of weeks I'm heading back to school for the last time - wow that sounds weird to say. I'm going to be a high school senior this year, and after spending fourteen years in school, I think I have some worthwhile advice to share with you. I'm a little bit of a nerd and I actually really like school, but that doesn't stop me from disliking the back to school season. I hate seeing the summer come to an end and I don't like saying goodbye to family who I don't see during the school year. However, once the school year is in full swing, I end up loving it. So, in this post, I want to share some of my top tips on how to make the back to school season a little less sad, and a tad more enjoyable. Also, before I get into the rest of this post I wanted to share a few announcements. Even if you are not a student heading back to school, this post will still be relevant for you! I share lots of organizational techniques here and I even created a free day planner which you can download at the end of this post. Also, starting from next week, I'm moving away from the boring 'back to school' content and taking a different approach to it in an exciting and highly relevant way, as the summer comes to an end and we all head back to school/work; so keep your eyes peeled for that! So, without further ado, here's the back to school advice I've got for you!
I love taking photos of places that I visit, but most of the time I use a few of them in blog posts and I forget about posting the rest. Then suddenly two weeks have passed, a month has passed, a year has passed, and I've completely forgotten to share the photos and it's too late! So, I thought that I would take the opportunity to show you guys some photos from my NYC trip in this post. I think that photos portray things in a different way than words; you're able to capture things that it's hard to articulate, and an image can be peaceful, busy, and beautiful at the same time, it just depends on how the viewer sees it.
I was brainstorming ideas on how to make sustainability accessible to you guys in a fun way, not something you see all the time, and it hit me! Why don't I link sustainability to something I already write about a lot: travel! My travel posts are some of my most popular posts, and while I won't pretend to be a perfect human, whenever I'm on a trip I always make a conscious effort to make environmentally cautious decisions. I know as well as you guys that it can be really hard to be sustainable while on vacation, you're not in your home and you don't have access to the resources that you usually do, but that is why I want to create these travel guides for you: to make sustainable travel a little more accessible.