Saturday | Exploring NYC
Sunday | Wedding Day
My mother and I were very blessed to get out of the house for the weekend and experience the wonders of San Francisco. With the keys to a rental car and a list of must-see places, we were on a mission.
We started our journey with the very famous Golden Gate Bridge. We drove over it and ended up hiking up some mountains to obtain views that took our breath away. Literally.
Amid our adventures, we stumbled upon several tiny gardens. The flowers were so vibrant it made our hearts dance with joy. My mom is featured in the photograph above feelings the grass between her toes. We were simply living.
This is the famous Lombard Street: a one-way street in the heart of San Francisco that literally resembles the curves of a snake. Did I force my mom to drive us down it? Yes. Yes I did. She may or may not have screamed the whole time.
The Painted Ladies- featured on the intro of Full House!
Day two: We headed to the Piers/Fisherman’s Wharf by the Bay. The sunshine was in full force and the sunflowers danced in the wind. The energy alone gave me life.
We decided to take a spur of the moment boat ride under the Golden Gate Bridge. IT WAS GRAND. We saw dolphins, a humpback whale, cruised next to pelicans and took a ride around Alcatraz island.
A wonderful addition to the Piers is the happy guests who have made themselves at home. Most of them were either sleeping and sunbathing, or competing to see who was the better Alpha-male. These guys were hilarious. My mom and I took a solid 15-20 minutes to just observe them.
Ghirardelli Square; home of the original Ghirardelli Chocolate factory. It also had cute shops and nice views- you can’t beat that.
Baker Beach around golden hour. Charming, but absolutely freezing.
Twin Peaks; daytime and at night. Appreciating San Fran from that high up was the best way we could’ve possibly ended our trip. We made beautiful memories together and I’m more than blessed that I was able to do so with my best friend.
Ahh, yes. Another visit to the ever-so-magical New York City. I was given the opportunity to go with my friend and business partner, NateDoesFood. We spent four days scouting the city for the finest food spots and coffee shops. This was a unique experience for me, as I’m particularly used to Starbucks and corner hot dog stands.The snow-covered scenery practically took my breath away. We started off our trip with a 5-course lunch at Bouley. The first room you entered was filled with beautiful flowers and a wall stacked with fresh apples- the smell was indescribable. This is the main dining room. It immediately transported me to a castle in France- from the smells, to the architecture, to the paintings on the walls. The men were required to wear suit jackets and I felt disrespectful if my pinky WASN’T in the air every time I sipped my beverage. Needless to say, it was a very classy place.Fresh green apple sorbetLater on that day, we had reservations for a 15 course private Chefs Table at Empellón Cocina. Inverse Taco al PastorIce Cream TacosThe following morning, we beat the sun rise and ran to the hotels roof top to catch some spectacular views. I was sleepy, but completely in awe of the golden morning views of the city skyline.The first stop of the day was at Devoción Coffee Shop in Brooklyn. The vibes were inspiring, from the brick walls to the giant plant walls. I definitely felt at ease here as I sipped my beautiful Latte. The next stop was a small hole-in-the-wall place called Sweatshop. We filled our bellies with yummy Avocado Toast and Acai Bowls. This was easily the coolest plant shop I’ve ever been in. We came in here simply to warm up from the frigid temperatures outside and found ourselves inspired by the aesthetics.Roberta’s Pizza in BrooklynMountain Province Espresso Bar in Brooklyn. I was a happy gal sipping on a warm Chai Tea Latte. Nate ordered a Taro Latte, which had beautiful purple tones.D.U.M.B.O, Brooklyn; The transition from day to night absolutely blew my mind. What was once a pastel orange sky, quickly faded into deep, dark tones, illuminated by sparkling city lights. I will forever be in awe of this view; this view is what keeps me going.Ludlow Coffee SupplyStopped at the Chelsea Market for some tacos! It was my first time here, and I’d definitely recommend it if you’re in the neighborhood and looking to try new foods.The Solomon R. Guggenheim museum. Another first for me! I enjoyed walking around this spiral museum and being delighted by the some of the worlds most famous pieces. I was particularly taken back by this letter written by Vincent Van Gogh. While museums are typically filled with artwork, it’s not every day you see handwritten letters from the artist. A Beet Juice Latte from Bluestone Lane Coffee. I was a bit nervous to try this, but new it would be extremely photogenic. To my surprise it was actually delicious!We spent the last day meeting up with Jae NYC eats- Janice de Castro who is a Queens-based pastry chef and creator of ‘Cakies’. She took us to New Territories- an ice cream place known for their monstrous creations.
Overall, I had an overwhelming, but wonderful experience. My taste buds were enlightened; I will forever have a newfound appreciation for food.
As a little girl, I’ve always been fascinated by the stars and moon. My nose pointed up at the night sky soon became my nose in books- reading about and memorizing planets and constellations.
Flash forward a few years and I’m sitting in a college Astronomy class, wide-eyed at the plethora of information being presented before me. I fell in love. My professor, Dr. Mike D. Reynolds happens to be just as passionate as myself, if not more. I formed an immediate appreciation of his passion and took it upon myself to email him some of my Lunar photographs. He instantaneously responded, discussing how much he admired my work- even sent the photographs to the President of the college.
After much thought, my Professor decided to launch an Astrophotography class for the following semester- and here I am. Once a week we come together with an army of DSLR cameras, tripods and telescopes. Us nerdy Astro-folk find ourselves getting chills by the views that we witness and are fortunate enough to photograph.
Prior to this class, I used a telephoto lens (300 mm) to photograph the moon. However, I have recently discovered that you can literally mount a telescope onto a DSLR camera to counteract as the lens. This allows for crazy details and incredible deep space photographs.
While this is just the beginning, I am quite proud of the photographs that I’ve achieved. I hope to do another update by the end of this course to showcase further work.
Well, another fall season has come and gone. It was radiant, alluring and inspiring as always. Despite Florida’s measly seasonal changes, I took it upon myself to book a flight to Virginia. While visiting my brother there, we made it a point to journey back to Shenandoah National Park. Leaving the house at 3 a.m., we were able to catch the sun rise up and over the mountain peaks. These pictures don’t share a justice of how beautiful it was.
Anyway, here is a collection of photographs I’ve put together- all taken from the fall season.
Prior to this trip, I sat down on my bed with a pen in one hand and my journal in the other. I wanted this trip to be unique- an adventure. I wanted to see and experience New York like I never have before. So, I did some research. I jotted down events and locations that caught my eye, and made a tiny checkbox next to each one. It was my mission to check off every single box.
DUMBO, Brooklyn; this was my very first time visiting this part of town and let me tell you- I was utterly and completely in love. It was an artistic community filled with gorgeous buildings and lovely coffee shops. If I could pack up my things and move there tomorrow, I most definitely would.
Here is a photograph of me in a state of complete happiness, complimented by the ever-so-glorious Manhattan skyline. The photo is a bit overexposed and the shadows on my face are weird, but my smile is so genuine that I just fall in love with this photograph every time.
Turtleneck gal (me) in a subway station
Another first: visiting Chelsea! If you ever find yourself in this part of the city, check out The High Line. (It actually runs through multiple parts of town: Lower West Side, Meatpacking District, etc). Anyway, The High Line is an abandoned railway that was eventually repurposed into an elevated public park. It’s filled with so many lovely plants and flowers and you get to walk through and above the city. HOW AMAZING IS THAT
Washington Square Park; finally got a chance to walk under the Washington Square Arc and take in the gorgeous scenery of this park. (didn’t intend to make that rhyme)
Lastly, I took a ride on the top of an incredibly touristy sightseeing bus. Whether you’ve lived in NYC or not, I highly recommend spending the money to take this tour. My parents and I learned so many interesting facts about the city, like how the Oreo was invented in Chelsea. On top of that, I got amazing photographs of the city that wouldn’t be achievable from walking around on the streets.
Overall, I managed to complete my checklist and experience one of the most incredibly unique trips to New York I’ve taken thus far. This city never fails to inspire me and keep me coming back for more. You have my heart, New York.