Fins Ahoy: Whale Watching in the Channel Islands

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How many of you saw this video of a pod killer whales saying hello to a paddleboarder in Laguna Beach?

Pretty amazing right?

For those of you not from LA, spotting killer whales this far south is pretty freaking rare. And because orcas have been my favorite animal on this planet since I was 8 years old, I was immediately obsessed with seeing them for myself, as soon as I could. Continue reading

A Day At The Races – Yelling at Horses at Santa Anita Park

HDRtist HDR - http://www.ohanaware.com/hdrtist/

“MAJESTIC KITTEN! GET IT IN GEAR! GO GO GO!”

If you are a newbie to horse racing, like I was last week, then someone screaming that at the top of their lungs right behind you might be a bit unnerving. But now, as a horse racing expert as of last Saturday, I know that such madness is par for the course when it comes to betting on horses.

You see, for my adventure this week, I spent my Saturday celebrating my friend Lyndee’s birthday at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, the first racetrack built in California in 1934 and home to the Breeder’s Cup. Which, I learned, is apparently a really big deal in horse racing. Continue reading

10 Things I Want More and Less of in 2015 (PLUS a big announcement!)

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First of all, I hope I haven’t entirely missed the boat on this. Please don’t judge me. It’s now over two weeks into 2015, long after all the other bloggers have posted their year-end summaries and goals for 2015.

But most bloggers don’t procrastinate as much as I do.

I could tell you that it took me these two weeks to really hone in on my resolutions, create spreadsheets and layout my goals on a giant bulletin board in my bedroom. With color-coded vision boards and tracking graphs, and all that.

I refuse to get into my Cowboys obsession on this blog. It's too personal.
After the Cowboys lost.

But that would be a lie. I’ve been busy watching the NFL playoffs, getting drunk and subsequently hungover, avoiding the suitcase that still needs unpacking from my Christmas in Texas, and trying to get back into office mode without binging on too many M&Ms at my desk to avoid actually working.

But, I have managed to string together a short list of 5 things to do more of in 2015 and 5 things to (hopefully) do a lot less of. I think it might give you a little bit of an idea of where I’m headed this year. Where WE’RE headed. Because you’re on this journey with me if you like it or not. (Hopefully you like it! We’ll have a lot of fun this year, that’s a guarantee.)

And if you stick through my list, at the end of this post, I have a big EXCITING announcement! Continue reading

VIDEO: Take Off from the World’s Most Dangerous Airport

Yay, more videos from my Asia trip! This is a short video showing our POV as we were taking off from Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla, Nepal, widely regarded as the world’s most dangerous airport.

It was the day after finishing a 9 day trek in the Himalayas, we were exhausted, and my friend Kayla and I were more than a little scared for this flight. The end of the runway is a sharp drop-off, and if you don’t get enough speed to take off by the end, well….we were desperately trying not to think about that! But luckily we got off the ground and were rewarded with gorgeous views of the mountains surrounding us, including Everest.

VIDEO: Colorful Kathmandu

Remember my post about colorful Kathmandu in March? Well, I shot 10+ hours of video on that 2 month trip to Asia and I’m just now getting around to editing it. I know, you should definitely be jealous of my high level of productivity.

Here is the first of several videos I’ll be posting in the coming months from that trip. I started with Kathmandu because it was the easiest to edit (I didn’t have that much footage to work with!) and obviously offers a lot visually. That city remains the place most unlike any other place I’ve ever been – loud, colorful, exotic and full of energy.

Have a look for yourself!

How Travel Made Me Less Ignorant

Travel Less Ignorant

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.” - Mark Twain

The other day I was looking through my blog’s stats and noticed that one of my most-read posts was the one I wrote a few days into my two month adventure in Asia: 36 Hours In Shanghai. I decided on a whim to click and read through what I’d initially written, hoping to gain some insight into which of my rants people were liking.

And I kind of wanted to slap myself. Continue reading

Learning to Dive in Utila, Honduras

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Let’s talk about how, up until recently, I needed to hold my nose when I’m underwater.

Yes, like a toddler learning to swim. Let’s start with that. I’m not a great swimmer. Let’s just say I faced my fair share of teasing from my peers at pool parties in high school. I would always need to plug my nose while trying to form the perfect cannonball to get the boys’ attention. Obviously, holding my nose wasn’t the only thing that made me unsuccessful with the opposite sex as a teenager.

But I digress. As an adult, I tried for years to remedy this situation. I practiced in the bathtub. For years I said no to activities I’ve always dreamed of doing, like learning to surf and scuba dive. Every time I’d get close to learning to dive, I’d have a nightmare that someone would accidentally kick off my mask and I’d inhale water and drown.

However, since starting this blog and consistently pushing myself out of my comfort zone, I’ve become a huge proponent of facing my fears. Now I relish the opportunity to say yes to things that terrify me. Bring it on, am I right? Continue reading