Friday, October 17, 2014

Fall Essentials

"let them eat cake"
"spiced pumpkin"
Fall is here. Well, whatever your definition of fall is anyway. I live in Southern California where the idea of fall is here- with those limited edition pumpkin drinks at Starbucks and newscast attempts at trying to make it sound like the weather is "cooling down" when we all very well know that it is never cooling down. But hey, I'm not one to complain. I know of nothing else! I've only heard of or visited places where there's an actual fall, where all of the leaves turn brown and people walk around in their winter coats and boots with a steaming hot cup of double pumpkin sugar spice black magic coffee and dilly dally along in a fall-like manner. Sometimes I wish we had a real fall, but then again, this summery weather with the awkward addition of pumpkin-themed everything is fall to me, and I kind of love it :)
I figured I should do a post on my fall essentials to really set the mood for the changing seasons and a precursor to my favorite time of the year- WINTER! aka wrapping presents, giving said wrapped presents, and obviously chipmunks christmas music! Anyways, fall. 
I would first like to point out that fall weather (or California fall weather I should say) does not agree with my skin. at all. That's why when fall comes around the corner, I'm always prepared (did that sound cheesy enough?). But seriously, I use the Tokyo milk "let them eat cake" moisturizer almost religiously because not only does it really smell like freaking cake batter, but it does the job quite nicely. If I could eat this stuff, you know I would. 
And even though I just criticized fall-themed coffee drinks, I should say I am a bit of a hypocrite because I do have my favorite fall-themed coffee, even if it doesn't have the word "pumpkin" or "spice" or a combination of the two. To me, vanilla is basically fall. If fall were a flavor, it would be vanilla. and coffee. Pressed Juicery has made all of my wishes come true- combining my two fall flavors into one blissful coffee drink that is so good for you it would be unhealthy not to drink it. 
Last but not least, the spiced pumpkin candle from P.F. Candle C.o. If I could give you one word of advice, it would be to stop everything you are doing now and buy one of these babies, light em' up, and just sit there and bask in their glorious fall-emitting scents. It's basically pumpkin and spice and everything nice all wrapped up in a little perfect candle. 
Enjoy the fall-ness! Let me know what your fall essentials are :)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The Walk Bag: Restocked!

I have finally restocked the WALK BAGS in my etsy shop!

Worldwide shipping and hand-wrapping (even if it's just a gift for yourself!)

Saturday, September 13, 2014

COYO: A vegan's ultimate dream

 First off, there are a few things I need to touch on before we get started. I have been a plant-loving vegan for a while now (a good year I would say), and boy I have not felt better in my entire life. I made the switch for ethical reasons after educating myself on animal exploitation, and especially after watching Earthlings, which I highly suggest watching. Not only am I a very happy vegan, but I'm also a very healthy one. But how do I have time? With all of the college applications, AP classes, and social outings with my friends, one would think that juggling all of this while staying a plant-based vegan would be nearly impossible. But it's actually not. It's the easiest thing I have had to do in my life.
So that is where COYO comes in; an all-natural, vegan coconut yogurt with minimal ingredients and processing, filled to the brim with healthy fats and taste, it's an optimal yogurt replacement for anyone who lovessss coconut and is as busy as I am! My lovely mother, knowing that I have been through a rough week, surprised me with all three of their flavors the other day, as I wouldn't shut up about how much I wanted to try them. First of all, how fantastic is my mother?! Anyways, after I opened them up, I immediately smelled the delicious coconutty-ness and after my first bite, I fell in love with COYO. I tried the raw chocolate, Mixed berry, and natural flavors, and out of all three, I would have to say the mixed berry wins by a landslide. It's so silky smooth and thick, just like the greek yogurt I used to eat daily. And unlike other vegan yogurts I have tried, COYO is much thicker and way more natural, being sweetened with stevia leaf, and not cane sugar.
My favorite way to have COYO is definitely with frozen mixed berries and homemade quinoa puff granola, all layered in a cute little jar. Presentation is always key, right? ;) So, when I'm on the go, I can just grab a tub to have as a snack and it keeps me full for hours! The healthy fats power my brain for those AP Bio study sessions that last for hours, and my body for hot yoga or long runs. Plus, it tastes like dessert!
Oh goodness, now I'm craving some!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Tips on staying organized and neat for school

So, school. How do I do it?
I'm a senior in high school now, and since i've gotten this far, I must know a few things on how to be successful at school. Some might say determination, ambition, and discipline, but I say it all comes down to how organized you are. If you're notes are sloppy and disgusting, but you are disciplined and whatnot, you'll get through those notes, but will you get through them quickly, efficiently, and happily? I would say not. 
But, then again, i've always been a stickler for clean and neat notes. That's my #1 tip. You need to always have NEAT NOTES!! trust me, reviewing will be so much more enjoyable if you just clean up your handwriting and put a little extra effort into your note-taking. Buy some new pens (jetpens is the bomb) and have fun playing with different styles and colors. By the end of the year, your notebook or binder will be so beautiful you won't want to throw it away. That's how I feel about last year's AP US history notebook (seen above and below). It's too gorgeous to throw out. 

Another important part about staying organized is consistency. If you start your notes out one way, then finish them that way. Don't decide to put a bolded title to your unit 1 notes and then not put any title for your unit 2 notes. You'll be confused by the time your final comes along and you'll probably have a panick attack. (I am saying this from experience, yes). Consistency is key here, and you need to make sure that all of your ducks are in a row. Use the same highlighters to indicate the same things, and use the same pen throughout all of your notes. Don't decide to suddenly "change it up" midway through december. You just don't do that. 

Next, draw adorable pictures. I don't mean to doodle all over your notes, because that is a very very bad idea. I mean that, if given the chance in class or at home, draw pictures within your notes to help you visualize the concept better. Make it fun by using different colored pens and keeping the picture NEAT. If you put in the effort, the grade will come along with it. 

Oh, and this is the most important tip of all, I think. plan every. single. thing. 
I will constantly say this to everyone- buy a cute planner. customize your cute planner. use your cute planner. Don't just let it sit around while you say to yourself, "eh, i'll remember those 58 homework assignments I have for next week, I don't need to write it down". Sorry to break it to you, but yes, you DO need to write it down. Write it all down. Make note of the days you have to tutor, differentiate the important things by boxing them with colors. Highlight the items you have completed. plan, plan, plan. If you could pull one piece of advice from this post, I would say it has to be this one. If you stay on top of things in school or work, then you won't feel so overwhelmed in the long run. It will feel good to plan. trust me, i'm a senior ;)

I hope you found all of these tips helpful, because boy I would have if I was just starting out. 
And if you want to see more of my handwriting/notes/school posts, then take a look at my tumblr morning oats, you won't regret it, I promise :)


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Featured by Ally Maki: The Walk Bag!

photo from Ally Maki
The Walk Bag has been featured by the lovely Ally Maki on her blog! My bag was featured as a part of her "august favorites", and I am quite flattered to say the least. Head on over to see the post here- and don't blame me if you end up perusing her entire website! My cousin has crazy amazing style and taste! 
And don't forget, you can buy the Walk Bag here

Stay tuned for a guest post by Ally coming up soon, and a refreshed back-to-school post as well :) 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wednesday Mornings

Lately life has been hectic. With the first day of the last year of school coming up on monday, I've been rushing to prepare for the inevitable headache that is to be senior year. Stressing about summer assignments, college applications, and my sleep schedule, I find that I haven't really taken a moment for myself, to just sit back, relax, and enjoy a hot cup of tea in bed. So this morning, I did just that. I sat in bed with some toast and warming green tea, put on a few of my favorite records, and just relaxed. I forgot how easy it is to get so caught up in such a fast-paced and crazy world that simply taking a moment for yourself seems ridiculous and out-of-reach. There's always an excuse. "I have no time" is usually one of them. Yet, everyone has time. The world won't explode if you take a moment for yourself each day and reflect upon yourself, reminding yourself that you are only human and can only take so much. It's therapeutic, and I highly recommend it.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Feast Your Eyes On: Easy Veggie Bowls

 Veggie Bowls: A summer necessity that leaves you feeling fresh, vibrant, and energetic all day long. These bowls of goodness pack a nutritional punch- filled with fiber, protein, vitamins, and healthy fats, you'll be buzzing with veggie vibes ready to take on the day or try out a new workout. 

During the summer, I feel like having something cold, fresh, and crunchy, and these veggie bowls cure my daily summer cravings. And since they're extremely customizable, you can make one everyday and be surprised each time by the wonderful flavors and textures of pure, unadulterated vegetables. 
Also, make sure to buy local and/or organic whenever possible, or if, like me, you have a gorgeous veggie garden, use whatever you're growing and taste the difference! Most often, organic veggies taste the best, and since they aren't sprayed with pesticides, they're much better for you too!

Here are some of the interchangeable combos that you can make in less than 10 minutes (all of these recipes serve 1 person):

chickpea protein bowl 

1 large heart of romaine
1 large zucchini
3 medium carrots
as many cherry tomatoes as you'd like
1/3 of a large cucumber
1/2 - 1 cup of chickpeas

chop everything and place into a bowl, top with a mixture of tahini+lemon juice+fresh ginger or drown in fresh juice for something a little more tart. 

Spicy Kale and Capsicum Bowl 

1 large bunch of kale
cherry tomatoes
1 large red capsicum
1/2-1 avocado
1 cup of  sprouted green lentils

chop and place everything into a bowl and add top with freshly cut habanero chilis + lemon juice + a dash of pepper. 

Crunchy/Creamy Veggie Delight

1 large romaine heart
2 persian cucumbers
4 medium carrots
cherry tomatoes
2 baby red capsicums
1/2-1 large avocado

chop everything and place in a bowl. drizzle with olive oil + lemon + a dash of ginger juice. 

Deconstructed Sushi Bowl

1 large romaine heart
1 large zucchini
cherry tomatoes
lots of sno peas
3 julienned medium carrots
1 persian cucumber
1/2-1 large avocado

chop everything and place into a bowl. drown in coconut aminos + a dash of pepper + ginger juice. 

Post-Workout Everything Bowl 

140 g box of baby spinach
cherry tomatoes
3 medium carrots
1/3 large cucumber
large handful of broccoli sprouts
1 cup of sprouted green lentils
2 tb original hummus

chop + place everything into a bowl. drizzle generously with balsamic vinegar + olive oil + a dash of pepper. 

10 Seconds Flat Bowl 

1 large romaine heart
4 medium carrots
cherry tomatoes
1/2-1 cup of  sprouted green lentils
2-4 tb original hummus
2 tb hemp hearts

chop veggies + put into a bowl. drown in lemon juice + pepper.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014


photo from Soul Cycle
Have you heard?
Malibu has a (relatively) new addition to its country mart mix of shops/coffee stops/restaurants.
Soul Cycle.
With their modern, minimalist branding and control over social media platforms, I figured I should give it a try. Besides, it's all the rage amongst fitness gurus and health bloggers, as Soul Cycle promises a full-body workout using cardio/strength training whilst having a blast. Too good to be true? We'll see.

I walked in this morning clumsily handing in my under-18-signed-by-my-parent-release form and i'll have to admit, it was a little embarrassing. I'm so tired of being underage.
Anyways, the staff was super sweet, chatting me up and helping me with all of my questions about spinning.
"Where should I sit? I've never done this before, i'm quite nervous! What if I can't keep up with the class? Should I have more experience?"- all of these thoughts were rushing through my head, because let's be honest here, it's kind of scary starting something entirely new. Especially something physical that could possibly lead to humiliation. Especially that.
So, one of the employees showed me how to use the bike and I felt a little bit more comfortable. I thought to myself, it can't be that hard!

So, I finally walk into the class and find myself in a dark room with tonnes of bikes lined up, almost squished together. Great. I'm going to be right next to all of these people and they'll be able to see how out of shape I am. I kind of had a mini heart attack. But that's ok, because I didn't run away- I stayed- for the whole class. And let me tell you, there was a point 15 minutes into the class where I honestly started to plot my escape. The music was so loud, so much sweat dripped from my face, and my legs couldn't keep up. I felt embarrassed by my lack of strength and endurance. But then something happened. I looked around the room and I saw different levels of fitness at each corner- those who seemed to go to 5 classes a day and were zooming through, and those who struggled immensely, much like I was. Those who struggled kept going though, despite not being the best of the best in the class.
So, I too kept going. Of course, I did stop at some points and my foot did slide out of my shoe at another point (at the moment, that was horrifying, but now I just find it funny that something like that would happen during my first class), and i'm almost 100% sure I didn't follow most of the instructions.

But I would go back!

The class itself felt like what I imagine death to be, but the after-effect was incredible. I was covered head-to-toe in sweat and I felt like a champion for continuing despite my never-ending escape-related thoughts. I felt energized and had a smile up to my ears. I even bought some of their apparel to wear to my next class :)
my post-soul cycle lunch consisted of a head of romaine lettuce, an avocado, a ton of sprouted lentils, capsicum, carrots, and baby kale all dressed in homegrown lemon :) 

And if I would do one thing differently, I would definitely eat wayyyyyy more breakfast, because man was I hungry for the rest of the day. I didn't realize how much energy something like that takes out of you! (but then again, exercising does mean you can eat more chocolate, hehe)

So, would I recommend this stressful and hellish class? yes. Most definitely. My physical and mental limits were tested during this 45-minute class and the feeling of accomplishing something so completely mentally draining and physically painful is truly exhilarating. If you have a soul cycle nearby, go first thing in the morning because you won't regret it.

And while you're suffering, just remember that your instructors have to do this 3 times a day, so stop feeling bad for yourself.