For the last few years, I've been a little more open about the mentoring I do with small businesses and young professionals. I've also been very selective with who I work with because it's been entirely free, I feel the service should go to those most in need, and I also have to be protective of my time, as well.
After being asked for such a long time to offer consulting services, I finally found a way to fit them into my schedule that I feel is sustainable. These are not free. They are paid for consultations. I look forward to seeing if I can assist you. If you can't afford this rate, contact me for sliding scale.
Happy Lunar New Year! So happy to come into the new year with greater clarity and so much love.
January 1st is always when I set my yearly intentions but Lunar New Year is when I find out if I am going to hold true. Well, I am. 2023 has already started with a bang and LNY is a reminder to hold true to my goals.
Here's to the year of the rabbit!
Comment some of your goals and intentions for the new year below.
My house is full of local art. It's the main thing I collect while traveling. What is your go-to travel souvenir?
Read more here: https://geekgirltravel.com/2022/07/27/why-i-buy-local-art-everywhere-i-travel/
Amuseparks, theme parks. These are my happy places. And really, they always have been. My love of photography and dressing in costumes are so firmly rooted in my love of these parks.
I put together a little beginner's guide to amusement park travel since I know it can be overwhelming.
Images from: Disneyland, California Adventure, Six Flags, EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, Universal Studios.
TW: Suicide, Depression, Sexual Assault
I hope you'll sit down with me a bit because this year is so personal for me. I turn 40 this year. And I'm more excited about this birthday than any birthday before it. You might be wondering why.
Honestly, as a kid and young adult, I never thought I'd make it to 40. I figured I'd be dead before I hit this milestone.
I grew up in a fairly dysfunctional situation. I have a teen mom and am also the product of rape. My mom and her mom, my Nanny, did not get along, which led to me often being a pawn piece in their game of chess and me working hard to be the adult that not only diffused their conflicts (which were, at times, physically violent), but also helped them heal from their abuses.
The cycle of abuse was strong in my family. My Nanny was abused. My mom. Me. I was first sexually abused at the age of 4 or 5. I remember when my mom found me being abused and blamed me for what was happening with a significantly older boy. She shamed me. My Nanny didn't believe me. I was so confused and so upset with myself. It started me down a very long road to recovery because from that point on, my disordered relationship with sex and shame and my self worth would become my Everest.
My mother attempted suicide many times during my life. Her desire to die was so palpable, but so was her guilt over it. As a young person walking into the hospital to visit my mom, who slit her wrists, it didn't even dawn on me that this was not a normal experience. For me, it felt normal. It felt ordinary. Living with a resting heart rate right below panic attack was just my baseline.
By the time my teen years arrived, my desire to stay on this Earth was slim. I didn't understand why I should want to, I had no concept of my own self worth, and I didn't have any people in my life who could model healthy relationships with themselves, with their loved ones. All around me, I saw addicts, people who were deeply depressed, people in abusive and/or dysfunctional marriages. Or worse, people pretending to be happy people. But my empathy was so high so I could always feel through that mask.
[More in comments]
As some of you know, I'm Indonesian and very proud to be an Asian-American. With my Austronesian roots, I've felt such a pull to visit places that are significant to those roots. Being American, Hawaii was high on that list. But it was so important that I visited Hawaii in a way that was respectful to the people, to the islands, to my ancestors.
I talked to friends of mine who are Hawaiian and still live on the islands and asked if there were some big DON'T tips they'd recommend for non-natives and put together a blog. Most importantly, though, just don't be a dick.
Also, check out the last image for my favorite photo I've ever taken while in Kauai.
One of the most common questions I get asked is how I keep my hair vibrant while traveling. There are a number of tips I can share with you, but one of the biggest is having a pigmented conditioner you believe in.
Photos taken in Iceland right before a blizzard started.
Packing for my first safari was daunting. So many blogs and lists telling me everything I needed to pack. And really, a lot of it wasn't exactly true.
Here are 10 items that were must pack for my first safari:
Oceania is home to the smallest continent, Australia, but is not the least populated continent with many thanks to the uninhabited Antarctica. Here are some fun facts about Oceania:
Regions: Oceania is geographically divided into four regions: Australasia, Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia that cover over 100 million square kilometers (or approximately 39 million square miles) of the Pacific Ocean.
Countries: There are 14 official countries of Oceania, including Nauru which, interestingly enough, does not currently have a capital (2022).
Population: Almost 44 million people (2022) live within Oceania which means approximately 0.5% of the world’s population calls Oceania home. Australia is the most populated country in Oceania.
Language: If we’re talking numbers, English is the majority language spoken in Oceania (due to colonization), but that being said Oceania is home to so many beautiful indigenous languages thought to exceed over 5000 languages within Australasia and Melanesia alone.
Religion: The majority of Oceania follows Christianity (in part due to colonization and European influence, as well as a concerted missionary effort). Formerly, traditional religions predominated.
Geography: Australia is the largest country in Oceania (and is also a continent), while Nauru is the smallest. Australia is the biggest island in Oceania followed by a far distant New Guinea. Kati Thanda-Eyre is the lowest point in Oceania while Puncak Jaya is the tallest peak (and the tallest island mountain on Earth). Kiribati is the only country in the world situated in all four hemispheres. The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system. Ulura in the largest rock monolith in the world.
Oceania includes the smallest continent based on landmass, but that doesn’t mean it has any less to offer than any other region we’re discussing. Due to its relative isolation, you’ll find unique wildlife in Oceania that isn’t natively found anywhere else. This is mainly because Oceania is the only world region not connected by land to another region.
As mentioned, Oceania is home to unique wildlife. It not only has the world’s highest concentration of marsupials, such as wombats, kangaroos and koalas, but it’s also home to monotremes. They are the only mammal in the world that lays eggs. There are five living species of monotremes and they all live in Australia and New Guinea.
From the Great Barrier Reef and Puncak Jaya on the Island of New Guinea to the massive Ulura and the Sydney Opera House, from Hobbiton and Mount Yasur to the pink Lake Hillier and the Jellyfish Lake – wherever you find yourself across this unique region, you will be fascinated and ready to explore.