Travel Tips!

…so you don’t pull your hair out (this is what I’d add to that title if I wasn’t concerned about the URL being too long). Going on vacation is always something to count down to, and plan day-in and day-out. Next week, I will be travelling to the Golden State to visit one of my closest high school friends. With life being so busy lately, it’s nice to know that I’ll have a few days of catching up, exploring, and relaxation. Even though I’m literally counting down the minutes till my flight, I have to say there is A LOT to do between now and then.

To me, the hardest part about travelling is packing. You can’t pack your entire closet and jewelry box, even though you want to. You’re packing up a frenzy and then you remember that your favorite t-shirt is in the wash, or you’re halfway through your flight when you remember that you didn’t pack the shoes that matched the dress you remembered to take. There is nothing. more. frustrating. than. forgetting. the. shoes. Luckily, I’ve got a few simple ways to make your packing process a little less stressful!

1. Make lists!

IMG_20150630_100258051_HDRed

This seems ridiculously simple, but it can really save you from a serious headache. I’m definitely a culprit of making a mental list, or just packing what I see in plain sight. Just sit down with your morning coffee and list out each item by category: Outfits, Accessories, Toiletries, Make-up, etc. Then jot things down as you think of them or see them. Not only will this help you think of everything you would want to pack, it will help you ensure that you actually pack them! There is no better feeling than crossing an item off a list!

2. Pack in outfits, not items!

IMG_20150703_105353547ed

Do you ever just throw clothes into a bag because you think “Oh I’ll definitely wear this shirt!” and then end up not wearing them? Save yourself the headache of ending up with 12 shirts and one pair of jeans to work with. When you pack, make stacks of outfits: bottoms, tops, accessories, even the shoes you’d wear with the outfit. Once you have all your stacks laid out you can decide if you can mix and match anything to eliminate an item. Maybe the shorts from one outfit will match with the top from another, and you can nix an entire pair of shorts altogether. This will not only help you pack a little lighter, but it will ensure that you don’t end up getting dressed in your hotel room wishing you had packed the shirt that matched perfectly with the skirt you’re wearing.

3. Buy reusable travel bottles!

IMG_20150703_104951806ed

Instead of stressing out about finding a travel sized version of your favorite face wash, just buy reusable plastic bottles and make it yourself! It’s more economical and it makes sure you don’t have to go a week wishing you had your favorite beauty products with you. When I mentioned I was writing this blog post to a coworker, she gave me another great idea. Put your foundation into a contact lens case; it will definitely last you at least a week and you won’t need to carry the bottles with you!

I’m confident I’ll have a few California inspired posts headed your way, and until then, you can follow my adventures on Instagram @notyoureverydaybrowngirl!

xO K

Fit for Sailing!

My dad celebrated a milestone birthday last week, so on Saturday evening, we celebrated by chartering a yacht on the Hudson. Our trip began in Jersey City, and we spent the first hour and a half sailing North to the George Washington Bridge. The skyline reflected the setting sun and it looked different with each passing minute. By the time we reached the bridge, the sun dipped too low for us to see it, and the city lights started flickering on. As we sailed back down the Hudson, back to the marina, we travelled parallel to the city which was completely lit up. I can’t explain how breathtaking it was, especially because I have begun to take the skyline for granted (being from New Jersey and all). I have to say that it was an amazing experience; the weather was perfect, and the city was breathtaking. One of the requests from the crew prior to our arrival was that we wear white for our journey. I definitely enjoyed putting together a practical, yet fun sea-worthy outfit!

IMG_20140802_180027131ed

IMG_20140802_180049002ed

IMG_20140802_180337529ed

IMG_20140802_180402339ed

IMG_20140802_180542118ed

 

10551636_964517013574410_429913125026206760_oed

 Shoes – Nine West | Bag – Kenneth Cole Reaction (Mushroom)

I decided to wear my fedora because well, let’s face it, I don’t wear it very often. I always pack it in my beach bag but I never end up wearing it. To me, floppy hats are better for the beach than fedoras, so this girl has been sitting in my closet for two years just waiting for her time. When I got ready for our trip on Saturday, I considered straightening my hair and immediately voted against it. I knew the ocean spray would not be too kind to straightened hair, so I decided to spray it with some Wind and Water Beach Spray and tousle it up before putting the hat on. Taking a hat was definitely a good call because it kept my hair in place despite the crazy breeze.

My favorite part of this outfit has to be the shoes. I mentioned in my previous post that I have to wear safety shoes to work, so I have been veering away from shoe sections during my shopping escapades. Recently. I was shopping at the outlets with my mom, and she insisted that I try on this pair and I’m so glad I did! They are ridiculously comfortable for heels, and I love the color and how perfect they are for everything summer. During that shopping trip I also invested in the crossbody, because I desperately needed one. It’s so darn useful, and it definitely came in handy during this weekend when I didn’t want to carry my giant bag with me.

All in all, it was a wonderful trip, and is definitely something I would love to experience again.

Happy August!

xO K

DC Lovin’

This post is super delayed (you won’t know this unless you’ve been on my Instagram account) but it’s here! Last weekend, S and I went on a spontaneous school trip to King’s Dominon, Virginia and Washington DC. We were insanely lucky to have gorgeous 80 degree weather and sunny blue skies, and we had a blast! We took full advantage of the minimal crowd at King’s Dominion, and loved that there were absolutely no lines to get on rides, even for rollercoasters.

DC was especially nice because we’ve recently become addicted to Scandal (for those of you who don’t watch it, DO IT NOW!). We had so much fun walking between monuments and figuring out where certain scenes on the show take place…and looking everywhere in hopes of catching them filming their next season! Unfortunately we weren’t able to see any of our favorite celebrities, but we did enjoy the beautiful cherry blossoms, and the majesty of each monument!

IMG_20140412_155540963_HDRed

DCLovin

Here’s a glimpse of the outfit I wore in DC. About 10 minutes after we got off the bus I immediately regretted not wearing shorts, but these jeggings are loose enough (kind of an oxymoron) that I was still comfortable.

 IMG_20140413_132415582_HDRed

IMG_20140413_132425082_HDRed

Shirt- Ann Taylor | Necklace- Odel | Wristband- Lindsey Stirling Concert

The best part about this trip was that it was so spontaneous. One week before we left, we were just walking to the elevator and saw a sign advertising the trip, and within half an hour we already had tickets! That’s one thing I love about college, and probably the thing I’ll miss the most…the spontaneity of just about everything.

xO K

Top 5 Moments of Spring Break 2014!

I know this post is about a week overdue, and I apologize! My spring break was absolutely wonderful, the road trip was just as fun as I expected it would be, and the whole vacation was relaxing and full of lots of laughter and memory-making (is that a word?). Instead of writing out paragraphs of each detail of my vacation, I decided to just give you my five favorite moments of the five day journey. Now, this isn’t to say that other moments were not memorable or perfect, but these are the five that have carried the most weight. 0315141809aed

1. The drive

The drive itself was so much fun. We left Jersey at 4:20 am, hoping to reach our destination by 5 pm. I drove the first stretch, and S stayed up and rode shotgun to help me stay awake. We created a roadtrip playlist ahead of time, so we passed the first few hours of the trip singing along. We got to watch the sun rise, and we caught a glimpse of the Washington Monument when we passed by Washington. Since it was our first time on vacation away from our parents, and our first time ever driving a car through these other states, this was a pretty big deal for us.

2. St. Patty’s Day

Unfortunately St. Patty’s Day was the day I lost my phone, womp. That was pretty depressing, and also the reason why my Instagramming suddenly stopped. Disregarding that, St. Patty’s Day was fun because we all got dressed up in our finest green clothes, and wore cute shamrock headbands to Myrtle Beach. Though it was cold and rainy, we walked the boardwalk and bought lots of souvenirs.

1977477_10152241018405202_37450091_ned

3. Planet Fun

This place was a pleasant surprise. Our first day at Ocean Isle was marked by rain and 40 degree weather. We were pretty bummed until we looked up what we could do indoors and found a place not too far from where we were staying. We decided to check it out and were ecstatic when we found out that with $15, we could play unlimited mini-golf (glow-in-the-dark mini-golf might I add), unlimited laser tag, unlimited bowling, and unlimited arcade games. I have never heard of a place in Jersey that has such an amazing deal, and we had more fun than all the little kids running around the place combined.

4. Walking on the beach and finding seashells

Even though it was cold during our stay, we walked on the beach as much as we could. We were all so happy to find scallop seashells that were intact, because up here they’re mostly broken. We picked up a bunch, and I’m excited to find a place to display them. The waves were beautiful, even in the rain, and there was nothing like walking on the beach to remind me that summery days are coming.

100_3059

IMAG0189edd

5. Wine and Cards Against Humanity

Every evening we had the same drill- playing Cards Against Humanity. If you haven’t played it, then the best way to describe it is a rated-R version of Apples to Apples. We enjoyed a lot of laughs because of this game, and we indulged in some cheap wine as well. Classy and fun.

100_3094ed

Can it be any more perfect?

Happy Spring!

xO K

Packing for Spring Break

This Spring Break is my last spring break…ever. The thought is extremely disturbing and terrifying but I’ll deal with that later. Luckily, my friends and I are going out with a bang so to speak, and we’ve planned for the last spring break to be absolutely amazing. Since we’ll have to pack light to fit all of our luggage in the car, I’m trying to be disciplined and pack only what I absolutely need…the problem is that I absolutely need EVERYTHING! I guess I’ll have to deal with that one later, but for now, here are a few absolute necessities that I’m tossing into my bag for this vacation!

IMAG5906ed

Rosebud Salve- this stuff is amazing for your lips. It smells so good and it’s all natural…definitely a must-have for a week on the beach.

2 States- like I said in the Roadtrip Essentials post, you need to take a book on such a long trip. I picked up this book in India after falling in love with a borrowed copy. I can’t wait to re-read it!

Clean and clear Morning Energy Purifying Face Wash- this energizing face wash is going to be perfect for morning walks on the beach.

Old Teen Vogue magazines- I’m taking and re-reading last year’s Teen Vogues, hoping to get some blog-spiration!

St Patty’s Day garb- We’ll be on vacation during St. Patrick’s Day…which is code for we are going to be celebrating the green holiday in style. I’m packing lots of themed stuff for a fun day.

Travel journal- this travel journal comes with me on every vacation, and I like to document all of the funny things that are said, all the music we sing along to, and all the cool things we see.

Bold lip color- this bold lip color is becoming a traditional beauty item for spring break. It’s perfect for a night out, or for a beachy day.

Hair extensions- no beach trip is complete without putting brais, feathers, or color in your hair. These pink hair extensions will be fun to wear on the beach or out at night.

I hope you all have a wonderful Spring Break! Follow @notyoureverydaybrowngirl on Instagram for pictures of our roadtrip!

xO K

Roadtrip Essentials!

Spring break is around the corner, and to cap off our senior year the right way, a group of friends and I are going on a road trip! We are super excited because it will be our first road trip without the parentals, and we’ll be leaving the frozen tundra of New Jersey for a warm sunny place. Now if you’re planning a road trip with your friends, it’s important to pack the right things to make it the most fun experience it can possibly be. Car rides can be long, and if not well equipped, you can get bored and snippy in a couple of hours.

So what do you absolutely need to have a blast on that road trip?

1. Music- yes I know this one is pretty obvious, but you can’t just plug anyone’s iPod in and expect to have a good time. Make a playlist specifically for your trip, with songs that everyone will like. Singing along will be that much more fun.

2. A book- it’s going to get quiet after some time, the driver will want to focus on driving, and the girl next to you will decide to take a nap. Take a book with you so you can stay quiet and enjoy yourself.

3. Magazines- pack at least one magazine with you. Why, you may ask, since I already recommended a book? Because halfway through that trip you’re going to be too fed up to focus on the book, and you’ll want to do something mindless that you can read and pass around. “OMG they’re dating again! Check it out!” you’re welcome.

4. Food- coming from someone who constantly finds herself hungry, make sure you pack food. Stopping for meals will be a must on a long road trip, but the best part of the experience is getting some junk food that you can pass around and regret eating together.

5. Water- getting water bottles at rest areas will end up being a total waste of money in the long run. Pack a 24-pack of water bottles, so you never run out and you save $$.

T-1 week till we’re off on our adventure!

xO K

Nadiad, Gujarat

Towards the end of our trip, we visited my mom’s family in Nadiad, Gujarat. My grandmother grew up in Nadiad, and my mom was born there but was raised in Mumbai. The last time I was in India, we visited Nadiad for a couple of days and met our family. This time was very different because I was so much more aware of what was happening, and everyone looked so different to me. I’m sure they felt the same way…I was only a little girl when they last saw me! We spent our evening at the bungalow where my grandmother grew up, and all of our extended family travelled to meet us. It was a very warm reunion, and everyone was able to catch up after such a long time.

India Trip 1408ed

My cousin and I had a fake fight over this tray of jalebis. Have you ever had a jalebi? If yes, then you know exactly why we were fake fighting…yum.

I asked my uncle to give us a tour of the bungalow, and because he is awesome, he agreed! We climbed up to the terrace, which I had heard many stories about. When my mom was little, she and all her cousins would sleep out on the terrace at night whenever they visited Nadiad. Can you imagine a sleepover under the stars?

Before leaving for our next destination, we had lunch with the entire family. Since we were in Nadiad the day before the kite flying festival, my uncle wanted to give us a taste of how much fun we were going to have the next day. We climbed up to the terrace again and he showed us how to set up a kite. The kites used for this festival come separately from the rolls of string, called phirkis, and you need to tie them together every time you want to fly a new kite. My brother, cousins and I took turns flying the kite my uncle put up in the sky, and it was exhilarating to say the least.

IMAG5335

My uncle and aunt showed us how to prepare the kites for flight!

IMAG5339

This is the terrace where we flew kites, and where my mom had sleepovers years ago.

IMAG5346ed

This was one of our kites in the sky!

This post is dedicated to my aunt and uncle for the amazing time I had with them in Nadiad. I miss you and cannot wait to come back.

xO K