Why I Love Traveling

I’m single for Valentine’s day this year. And that means I save a lot of money. Relationships take time and commitment. Someday I’ll be in one again, but for now I’m riding solo. I seize each day and maximize every moment. For me, that means traveling. I’m currently backpacking through New Zealand. If I was in a relationship, I couldn’t buy a one-way ticket and travel the world. Being single on Valentine’s day frees me up to treat myself. Here’s why I love to travel

When I was growing up, my family spent so much time taking these road trips. We hung dry our clothes, we never went out to eat, my mom had Folgers coffee instead of having Star bucks. Travel was our one thing. We punted most other luxuries in life. We could cram into our Chevy Venture minivan, see all America, and have my sister and I fight over what VHS tape would go in next (remember those)? The drives were long and boring sometimes. There was plenty of yelling and fighting between the four of us, but I was about to see the whole united states of America before I graduated high school. In school, I would learn about the battle of Gettysburg, get lectured, and see some black and white videos. On these vacations, I saw Gettysburg with my own eyes. I saw re-enactments from the civil war. That brought history alive for me. I experienced different cultures around the united states. I experienced how the spoke, what they wore, what they ate (YUM!), and how they added to the American cultures. When we went to Alaska, my dad and I went to the actual towns. We skipped the tourist traps and saw the small businesses that were the backbone of Alaska. I got the best souvenirs from these locals. I met people from all over who would help me understand the world that I saw.

From these experiences that I’m so thankful for, I ventured out on my own and went to England by myself. For a month. I grew so much during that month and I was so grateful for my friend’s hospitality. I loved going to the local pubs and talking about my country and theirs. We both had so many misconceptions and stereotypes, but talking as people we got to understand each other so much better. I met so many new people and friends throughout the month. Even though I had only a backpack for everything I held, I felt home with the warm hospitality of others. The world can be scary sometimes, but not everywhere all the time like CNN would suggest.

I’ll never forget to have Christmas in Liverpool. I woke up Christmas morning and my good friend Jesse told me to come down for presents. My parents gave me money for my trip, so I figured I would watch him open his. When I get down there, his parents point to a pile of presents and told me they were for me. I was so speechless. I had no idea this would happen. I still smile when of this memory. I loved the fun of the last few days of my trip in London. I had another friend show me around the city the entire day! Again, I saw the parts that were London and didn’t fall for any tourist traps. When I flew back home, I now had a global perspective on how big the world is.

I’m now vlogging and blogging about my travels. I enjoy documenting these trips for a few reasons. The first is I can look back in time and see how far I’ve come. I also get to expose my friends, family, and followers parts of the world they will never experience.
On a trip to Phoenix, I got to help out with a non-profit that helps get women back on their feet and reunify them with their children. There has been no big news story. No heartwarming article was written. When I was there, I gave a little shout out on one of my Youtube videos. If I was traveling and meeting new people, few people would know what kind of good in the world exists. There is so much more good in the world, we don’t show enough of that positive change.
Through my travels, I continue to gain new insights, make new friends, and see how much more good there is out in this amazing world.

 

**Giving a HUGE thank you to Nate Johnson for guest posting for the Single Bloggers V-Day Series!**

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Christmas Fly!

 

It’s that time of year again! Everyone is preparing for their annual Holiday Parties and you, ironically, have absolutely NOTHING to wear! You can’t just show up in any old rages because you have to match everyone’d Christmas Fly.

In this post, I have compiled 3 different outfits for 3 different types of holiday parties.

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We all go to them and someone hosts an ugly Christmas sweater party at least once in their life but this outfit is a little different. We still keep the ugly sweater theme BUT we’re making it cute too!

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The casual holiday attire is exactly what it means…CASUAL! Unlike the ugly sweater outfit it’s casual but not too causal that you just lounge around the house. This outfit is prefect for the office holiday party.

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Now I don’t know who exactly hosts formal holiday parties but someone out there does and if you’re invited to one you must come prepared to slay! So dress up in white and pair it with your baddest red heels, bag, and lips! The gold earrings make the outfit pop by adding a bright element to the outfit.

I think you’re ready! You are officially ready to head to the party and make heads turn! No one will be able to tell that you had nothing to wear and hey it can be our little secret. I won’t tell if you won’t!

Welcome to BLOGMAS!

Ladies, Gentlemen, and anything else that can read!

 

It’s that time of year again and I am so excited to be taking part in my second blogmas as as blogger!

I have some festive themed posts lined up for the month of December as I count down the days until Christmas and I can’t wait to unveil them!

I’ll be hitting all the good stuff such as my widhlist, gift giving guide for him, her, and friends, Christmas styles,  my holiday favorites, and looking back at my year of blogging! In October I hit a full 4 years of blogging. Isn’t that exciting?

In all honesty, I hope everyone enjoys reading my posts! Have a happy holiday and a wonderful new year!

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ReviewsBee

Okay everyone lets be honest: Aren’t you almost always busy? Are you so busy you can’t stop and do the research or do the math? I can honestly say that with school starting I understand the EXACT feeling! It seems like there’s so much to do but not enough hours in a day but there’s help! ReviewsBee has come to our rescue and has done the research for us and all we have to do is simply read them.

ReviewsBee has gathered expert and consumer reviews and created top 10, or less, lists for popular products or even tips!

Now I have to admit that this ReviewBees infographic is my favorite because I will be traveling with children in the future and it’s important to know how to travel with toddlers because they don’t understand traveling just yet. Thanks to ReviewsBee they made traveling with toddlers easy as 1…2…3!

tips to travel with a toddler

 

Here is another infographic pertaining to children and convertible car seats.

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ReviewsBee also takes your health into consideration! I mean if you don’t then who will?

 

If you are like myself and need a little extra help doing your research you should DEFINITELY check out ReviewsBee! I’ve already followed some of the things listed on the Secret of Healthy Sleeping infographic and I must admit it is extremely helpful! When you stop by tell them Erriel JD from Erriel J’s Life Chronicles sent you their way!

2017 Experience Bucket List

“Materialism is the ONLY form of distraction from true bliss.” ~Douglas Horton

In today’s world we are all about our iPhones, laptops, and anything else money can buy. We are so glued to our materials that we forget to stop and enjoy ourselves. Personally I always find a way to enjoy myself although many people in older generations say that my generation doesn’t know how to enjoy ourselves without the aid of technology.

In this post, I will be sharing my 2017 Experience Bucket List on things I want to experience this year that have NOTHING to do with materialistic things. As a blogger and as a college student with limited funds I believe that there are things we should experience that don’t involve expensive materialistic things that won’t be around for a long time.

Traveling!

o   Now it’s always been my dream to travel and explore the world! Being a broke college student it seems IMPOSSIBLE to actually travel which is why I have created myself a “Travels Jar.” In my jar I save up with the hopes of traveling to a certain destination. My dream locations to travel are Bollywood, Italy, Greece, and Hawaii.

Photography

o   I have numerous hobbies and photography is definitely in my top 3. I would definitely love to get back into photography this year because it is so relaxing and I am able to see the world through a stronger lens other than my own.

“Crawls”   

o   I know what you’re asking: “What exactly is a crawl?” A crawl is almost like hoping from place to place. The term is mostly used as a “bar crawl.” I, on the other hand, want to use the phrase in many different ways. I would like to go on festival crawls, bar crawls, and even food crawls with a few close friends. It feels good to be out doing things just to have fun without sitting in the house and you get to meet new people.

 

That’s it! That’s my 2017 Experience Bucket List! I want to be able to enjoy my younger years without having to worry about materialistic things. Let’s be honest, the materialistic things won’t be around forever but memories will last FOREVER! This tool can help you plan your own get together’s with friends

Now I want to know how are you going to create new memories and experiences without materialistic things?  Leave a comment below!

21 Things I’ve Learned in 21 Years

On March 25, almost 2 weeks ago, I officially turned 21! I’ve been waiting to post 21 things I’ve learned because it’s hard to think of 21 things you’ve learned that you necessarily didn’t learn in school. After today I can finally say 21 things I’ve learned in 21 years!

 

1. Take risks even if you’re scared!

Have you ever thought to yourself, “If I would have not done that things would be different?”

When you take a chance you are taking a risk! It’s ok to take chances because with every risk we take there’s always a lesson whether it’s good or bad.

 

2. Baby steps are KEY!

I am a semi-fan of change. I like certain changes but other changes I try to stay away from BUT I do believe in taking steps to better myself. You don’t have to take huge steps immediately. Small steps add up to something HUGE!

 

3. It’s ok to screw up!

I can’t stress this one enough! It’s perfectly fine to screw up because WE DON’T HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS! I have screwed up many times and for the most part learn from my mistakes! In fact I’m STILL learning from my screw ups but let’s face it our screw ups make the best stories!

 

4. You are worth it!

No need for an explanation! You are worth it…END OF DISCUSSION!

 

5. Don’t allow anyone’s opinions to influence you!

For a while I’ve allowed the opinions of others, including my family, to influence my me and my decisions even if I didn’t agree with them but I realized that I am 21 and this is my life and I have to live it! People will always have an opinion on how you should do things or what they think and they don’t matter!

 

6. You don’t need a large group of friends

I’ve never been the one to have a large group of friends but in college I can say that I can count on both of my hands the number of true friends I really have! It’s not about the quantity of friends you have but it’s about the quality.

 

7. If someone decides to walk out of you life LET THEM!

If someone threatens to walk out of your life then kindly show them the exit! You can’t force anyone to stay in your life.

 

8. It’s ok to be SINGLE!

Yes I’m single and ready for Pringles! Being in a relationship is not as important as loving yourself and knowing your self worth. Be single! Go out and turn-up! Go out with your girlfriends/guy friends! Have fun living the single life!

 

9. Start travelling!

Everyone who knows me knows that if I could be a certified traveler I would in a heart beat! Starting next year I’m going to begin traveling with friends and exploring this world. I’m even in the process of purchasing a passport! Again small steps lead to big things!

 

10. Always be open to learning

Even though I am a college student I am always up to learning something new! Learning extends farther then a classroom. I can walk outside and see something that catches my eye and want to learn more! Don’t limit yourself to learning just in class!

 

11. Your entitled to any emotion but don’t let the negative take over

Yes we are entitled to our emotions! We feel them we should be entitled to them but don’t let the negative emotions create a home inside of you. I’ve learned the hard way that it’s ok to be sad, angry, and even ashamed but don’t allow yourself to live there because once you’re there it’s hard to get out. Give those negative emotions an eviction notice and kick them OUT!

12. Always speak your mind

Leave NOTHING unsaid! If you feel the need to say it then say it! Don’t wait until it’s too late.

 

13. Don’t compare your life to others 

I always compared my life to my friends lives because they always made it seem like their lives were amazing compared to me who’s life seems so boring. Soon I realized that comparing my life to everyone else’s won’t change anything! You don’t know their personal journey and wanting their life means you want their journey and sometimes your life is better than it seems.

 

14. You heal with time

We all understand pain but the pain I feel is a pain that seemed like it would never go away. What it took me time to realize was that I had to give time time! I didn’t heal overnight. Healing is a process and we just have to learn to flow with time.

 

15. Be vulnerable!

If you know me you know I strongly dislike the word VULNERABLE! I’m not as open as people think and honestly I’m just now learning to be vulnerable and open up. I’ve shut so many people out because I was feared vulnerability but I’ve learned that people can actually help me when I open up.

 

16. Dress-up, Show-up, & Show OUT!

The sassy is finally coming out! Don’t let anyone tell you what you can and can’t wear well unless you have to be in uniform for whatever reason. Dress-up in whatever makes you feel good, show-up to your destination, and show out! Shut the room down because you’re making heads roll! Show off your confidence!

 

17. Don’t be afraid to shine

I was always the one person in the shadows of things because I really didn’t want to be in the way but I never understood why. I allowed others steal my shine for so long people wondered if I’d ever shine. Now I shine so bright you need shades on to see me! Don’t allow anyone to put you in the shadows because they want the spotlight. You deserve the spotlight too!

 

18. Live like everything is a passion

Our passion fuels us! I have many passions, seriously I have a love for many things, and I’ve learned to use my passions to my advantage! Everyday I wake up and go on about my day I do things with a passion. If you love what you do you’ll want to continue doing them even if you’re tired or having a bad day.

 

19. Laugh!

Laughter is the best medicine I don’t care what anyone says! It may be an old cliche but it’s a true cliche!

 

20. You don’t have to go out every night/weekend!

Don’t get me wrong I love going out with my friends BUT when does it get old? Yes I am 21 but going out every night or every weekend gets pretty old pretty fast! Sometimes staying in and having a movie night is fun.

 

21. ALWAYS make time for YOURSELF

The last thing I’ve learned is to take care of ME! Sometimes I get to focused on others that I forget about me and I have to take care of me before I can take care of others!

 

Now is that all I’ve learned in 21 years? OF COURSE NOT! But these 21 lesson are the most important! These 21 years have been interesting. I’ve had my good and I’ve had my bad but I wouldn’t change it for the world! I’ve seen 21 years and I can’t wait to see more! So even though my birthday was 2 weeks ago I must say it: HAPPY 21ST BIRTHDAY TO ME!

Being Young & Twenty…

I can truly say that I am learning what it means for me to be young and twenty! As my 21st birthday approaches in March I am constantly learning something new about the world around me and also learning something new about myself. Life lessons come almost everyday but even when they arrive I still don’t understand them but I definitely learn from them.

For me being young and twenty means NEVER having all your puzzle pieces and making things work with the pieces you have!

One thing I’ve realized is that I am 20 and I don’t have everything together! I don’t have my own apartment and I’m not set in my career. I’m not in a relationship but I’m enjoying the single life. Once I turned 20 I opened my new puzzle box and many of the pieces were missing because it’s my job to figure out what pieces are missing but hey I have plenty of time to figure out what pieces are missing! Although I expected all my pieces to be in that box the likelihood of that happening was slim to none.

It’s almost like no matter how much I learn and no matter what I acquire over the years I’ll still be missing some of my puzzle pieces! I might be missing puzzle pieces until I’m in my 30s maybe even my 40s but that’s ok because even a 30 something year old doesn’t have everything together.

So for me in my twenties I’ll most likely never have my life together and that’s perfectly fine. Everyone expects me to have everything put together but I’m still in a teenagers mentality on some things. I’m in absolutely NO rush to have my life together. This is my time to enjoy myself and explore just how far I can go! Testing the ocean is a lot different than testing a swimming pool but we have to have courage to test our boundaries.

Now I leave you with a quote:

I think your 20s are the hardest part of life. I mean, everyone goes on about how hard it is to be a teenager, but actually I think it’s tougher to be in your 20s because you’re expected to be a grownup and expected to earn your own living and be successful and I think you feel like a kid still. 

~Nigel Cole

Enjoy your twenties because you can never rewind these years!