Saturday, November 26, 2016

New Beginnings

A little bit of nonsense and a whole lot of magic has intercepted me these past couple years.

A little over two years ago I had just begun my final year of undergrad study and was completely and utterly daunted by "the future". I guess every student about to graduate is. I was consumed by this idea that I absolutely NEEDED to land a job or internship immediately, a reckless pursuit that resulted in endless applications, 13 interviews in a week and 2 real-life mental breakdowns, not to mention a whole lot of extra stress I didn't need. I basically became completely unhinged. I cut classes, forfeited friendships, dated too many crazies in a row, and rejected going out to bars or parties. I forgot all about this blog, to be honest.

After my movie-montage-worthy dream of a European adventure last summer, working 3 jobs, helping run 2 clubs, and taking 20 units of upper division science courses back in LA just wasn't what I wanted to be doing. They tell you to only do what makes you happy, but come on, how realistic is it to become an ice-cream-flavor-testing, travelling, movie critic horse whisperer? I'd settle for one of those things. But, that's life. You put your head down and work hard, you do what you have to and you excel at it because you love the challenge. And at the end of it all, I graduated with a science degree from USC in 3 years. Unfortunately, my dream of returning to Catalina Island, where I studied and made the best friends of my life, was dashed when I made it to the final round of interviews for an education job out there and finished in second place.

The phrase "blessing in disguise" took on a whole other meaning however, when the day after I was rejected from the Catalina job I received an email offering me a role as an assistant on a research vessel- get this- doing dolphin research in Italy. So I packed up and went to live on a small sailboat for a few months. Incredible? Unreal? Once-in-a-lifetime? No words can do the experience justice.

I'm going to gloss over the time that followed my return to the States though, because they were a dark 8 months in which I worked in a cubicle at a solar energy company and wished I were unemployed instead.

LUCKILY, as fate would have it a series of happy coincidences led me back to Catalina after all this time. Now, I love my job, my little island house, my zany coworkers and friends, my hottie of a researcher boyfriend (that's right, you heard it here first- miracles do exist), and the life I've built for myself.

If I haven't bored you yet, stay tunes for tales of adventure from Catalina Island and beyond!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Welcome Back

It's certainly been a while! A year and a week to be precise. Suffice it to say that a lot has happened in the past year, and that the person who is writing these words now is not the same one who blogged about summer some 372 days ago... I mean, physically it's the same person (plus or minus a few pounds) but emotionally, spiritually, metaphysically, and fortunately, I'm- as the Americanized Germans would say- uber different.

Not different enough that I won't go on about summer however. Oh ya, did I mention...?



Huzzah! I would be lying if I said I didn't miss this. Something strange happened this school year though. I was actually sad to see the semester end, for the first time ever. "Why?" you might ask, given that you're actually reading this and are actually interested. Why indeed. For a few reasons, actually:

1. I spent the semester getting my scientific scuba diving certification, conducting my own field research, taking sustainability courses, and generally enjoying life.. on the ever-gorgeous Santa Catalina Island. This basically means that I was completely and utterly happy for 99% of the semester.

2. As a result of the relative geographic isolation of the island, coupled with the company of truly GOOD people and the opportunity to pursue subjects which I'm extremely passionate about, I finally got over my ex. Just had to throw that one in... still smiling and patting myself on the back for it too.

3. In exactly 12 days, I'll be on an international flight headed to Germany to embark on a European backpacking adventure with my best friend of 11 years. Obviously, I couldn't be more ecstatic... but still, there's something magical about the excitement leading up to the trip that I'll miss once I'm back home when all is said and done. (But I'm still pretty freakin excited)

So that's just about where everything's at right now.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Summer Thoughts Part #1


When I woke up this morning, I had butterflies in my stomach, no idea what I was going to do today, and an overwhelming craving for waffles; which for me, can only mean one thing:


Hallelujah! As I look forward to future adventures, unlimited beach time, pigging out EVERYDAY, and getting into that wondrous routine of no routines, there is one thing in particular that I'm looking forward to. That thing is (and don't judge me) reading, which has always been a huge part of my summers. 

Without intentionally sounding like a tourist or a rehabilitating war veteran, there's not much better than getting through a good book on the beach. So while I am more a fan of outdoor reading, this compilation of indoor reading nooks is getting me pumped to burn through more books in these next 3 months than I've read in my entire academic career. 

So without further adieu, and in the first installment of my "Summer Thoughts" series, take a look at THESE awesome reading nooks. 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Where I Wish I Was Right Now:

Where I am...

Depressing, isn't it?

Where do you wish you could be right now?

Tuesday, April 30, 2013


Hang in there! That's the best advice I can give all my fellow school-goers... we're. so. close.

Finish up those projects. Write those papers. Study for those exams. Just do it (sorry Nike). The harder you push yourself now, the better you'll feel once you're good and done. An trust me, I am counting the nano-seconds until I'm good and done. 

Tips... well you've heard it all before. Time management is everything, don't burn yourself out, avoid fun things at all cost, buy a yourself a personal coffee vendor, blah blah blah. What little advice I do have to offer probably won't apply to you in all likelihood to be honest, but I'm going to say it anyways. 

Tip #1: EXERCISE. I know it seems counter-intuitive when all you want to do is inject ramen and poptarts into your bloodstream and go 48+ hours without sleep, but it will help you settle your over-worked brain and keep your body from staging a mutiny against you in the long run (HA punny... long run, get it? No? Well then stop procrastinating and go back to work, lazy ass). Seriously though, working out is probably the most productive study break you can take. It will also remind you to shower when you've probably forgotten to do that during finals week too...

Tip #2: SLEEP. Once again, I know this probably sounds crazy and goes against all our innate tendencies as college students, but you literally won't be able to function without it. I checked. On the internet. Plus, we all know you won't be doing much of this once finals are over if ya know what I mean (PARTAYYYYY if you don't). 

Tip #3: EAT (or at least try to). This won't come naturally. In fact, if it does you aren't doing school right. Either way though, you need to keep a hold over your nutrients so you don't end up eating half a dozen boxes of donuts as soon as finals are over (whoops) or collapsing and missing out on the next three glorious months of summer vacation.

Tip #4: MUSIC. I'm talking motivational, inspirational, gives-you-the-energy-to-bust-out-four-papers-three-projects-and-three-finals-in-a-week music. If you're like me and get a little too easily distracted by lyrics (or if it's just me then disregard, I'm kind of a weirdo), try instrumentals like Land Observations, most STRFKR songs, Love Like a Sunset by Phoenix, Strobe by Deadmau5, some yoga playlist, foreign music like Pascal Pinon, or my personal favorite Ecstacy of Gold by Ennio Morricone so you're not tempted to sing along while you worl. <--- That, for instance, was the result of me listening to The Naked and Famous and attempting to type at the same time...

Tip #5: LET IT GO. You know what I'm talking about. It's different for everyone, but we all have that bad thing hanging over us that we use to blame our stress and failures on. Relationship problems, family issues, friendship strains, illnesses, death, anything. I know it sucks, trust me I'm currently experiencing all of the above, I know it makes you want to curl up into a lint-sized ball and cry tears of frustration to drown yourself (woah, that got a little darker than I intended it to, I apologize), but please don't quit. Prove to yourself that you can do it and forget about everyone else for once. Just buckle down and do well and you will feel buttloads better (that's a lot for those of you not familiar with the butt system of measurement). Reward yourself when you do well and don't beat yourself up when you don't; just being here and trying is something. 

Tip #6: SHAVE

OK so that last one was a little irrelevant, but my legs were starting to look like Chewbaca's face so hey, I'm just saying. Anyways, I hope that contained at least a semblance of helpful advice somewhere in there, I really do wish the best of luck to everyone. Now go kick your finals in the ass.


P.S. I realize this must have been a hard article to get through without any pictures (I'm saving them for future pieces) so here you go. You're welcome.


Saturday, April 6, 2013

Feeling the Wanderlust

Click Here

Alright, this is getting bad guys. In classes, at work, when I should be doing homework- pretty much all the time lately all I think about is dropping out of school and travelling. I won't actually do it (probably), but I've never been outside of the U.S. for more than a few hours and I'm a grown adult for god's sake, it's about time I see the world. 

I'm a firm believer in the powers of travel, and think that everyone should get out there and see something new, especially if it's something they've always wanted to do. For me, that's backpacking in Nepal or travelling through Iceland, but I'll go anywhere the wind takes me... or anywhere I can afford.


Anyways, for those who share in my enthusiasm (and for those who don't) I figured everyone could use some pictures of amazing faraway places that get me all kinds of ready for summer, enjoy!