Travel “Love” Is a Bug You Can Catch

 

Travel Love Is a Bug You Can Catch

Travel “love” is a bug you can catch, like malaria. Only you will recover much quicker (hopefully). Aria & I were talking about the vortex of magic you enter when you travel to a new place (or in my case, experience new things in a place I’ve been to before). I’m going to call it the travel vortex.

You are in this place, out of your physical and environmental element and you are doing all of these new things. If you are at all social, you are also meeting new people.

You are vulnerable but it’s a happy and excited vulnerability. You are susceptible to travel “love.”

You meet someone, you click, you spend a few intense days or nights with that person and all of a sudden, you’re stuck. You’ve caught the bug. This is especially true if the person lives in the place you are travelling in, as opposed to another traveler. This resident knows where to go, what to do and what to see, giving you a false sense of familiarity and of being “right at home” with your own personal guide. It’s not your fault. You are vulnerable. You are susceptible. You’ve caught travel “love.”

You’re a romantic and this person says all the right things. You ignore the undercurrent between you that says this is not sustainable, this is just for right now because it feels good and you don’t want it to end. Instead, you find yourself making grandiose plans like relocating, living bi-coastal, or trying to “make it work.” It doesn’t matter that it normally takes you *time* to fall in love or that you are typically extremely pragmatic when it comes to matters of the heart. Because this isn’t really a matter of the heart. This is travel “love.”

Then you go home and feel this intense loss and emptiness. This is normal – intensity breeds intensity and boy has this experience been intense. It’s not your fault. It’s the travel vortex. You were susceptible. You caught a case of travel “love.” There are no OTC remedies. You just have to ride it out. Being back at home and settling back into your life helps. Processing what went wrong and how could you possibly have gotten caught up in all that helps too. But really, it’s not your fault. You’ll ride it out and you’ll be ok. You’ll be changed.

Mount Shasta

How do I know? Well, obviously this is exactly what happened to me during our trip to Portland. There were lots of other much more amazing things that happened during our trip, lots of magical things that I can only attribute to the travel vortex and that I am trying to sustain or find here at home, outside of the vortex. But even so, this trip will also be remembered for those moments of beauty that I shared with someone else. This person made me laugh and was super sweet to me, almost to a fault. I also felt like I was being seen, I felt free and like I could just be myself with this person. This is all part of the travel “love” bug. Because while those things may be true, what is also true is that

I can just be me when I need/want to and I don’t need someone else to bring it out of me.

One of my goals for 2015 has been to reconnect my outward self to my authentic self. Part of that is to do things like dancing and singing and just being much more open (this post is an example of that too). I was focusing so much on it that I think I manifested it in this person that I connected with. It was never about them, it was about me and tapping into who I really am – this is also part of the vortex. That’s not to say that I didn’t cry the entire way home and obsessively process the entire experience with Aria for the days following. I can’t write off that perhaps the reason communication with this person disintegrated was because of Mercury Retrograde. I could sit here and list off details and potential factors and whys and ugh, it just doesn’t matter. You know why?

Because travel “love” is a thing you can catch, like malaria. It’s bittersweet and it can hurt like hell.

No-Bake Cherry Almond Pecan Granola Bars

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and Quaker. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #LoveMyCereal #QuakerUp

No-Bake Cherry Almond Pecan Granola Bars

Hi friends! Aria & I are going on a big road trip from Los Angeles to Portland, OR in two days and I wanted to make something that we could bring with us to snack on the road. I was thinking about things we would both eat and I thought of homemade granola cereal bars! This is a last-minute trip for me so I wanted a recipe that was quick and easy. Luckily, Quaker® helped me make that happen!

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I love breakfast foods in general and have a soft spot in my heart for yummy cereal. I also don’t normally like pre-made granola so I really lucked out with the Quaker® Real Medleys® Cherry Almond Pecan cereal. It has the granola right in it and it actually tastes delicious. I love that you could eat this for breakfast in a bowl with milk (or soy milk in my case), by the handful for a quick snack, or use it in recipes like the one below.

Roadtrip antics!!

A photo posted by Skinned Knees (@skinnedkneesnet) on

I’m so excited to take these on our trip. This is officially the second road trip that Aria and I have taken together. Last summer, we drove up to San Francisco together and fun antics like this happened. Portland will be a brand new adventure for us! I’ve been there three times but Aria never has – I’m so excited for both of us! We are already compiling a list of everywhere we are going to go and I’m excited to see some friends I haven’t seen in years. Yay for road trips!

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I was browsing around my local Walmart looking for the pre-made granola to simplify my process. Quaker® has this granola cereal called Quaker® Real Medleys® – it comes in two delicious flavors: Peach Apple Walnut and Cherry Almond Pecan. Yum, right? I ended up choosing the Cherry Almond Pecan cereal for our bars just because I’m a sucker for all things cherry.

But ok – let’s get to the recipe, right?

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No-Bake Cherry Almond Pecan Granola Bars

Prep-time: 10 minutes
Chill time: 20 minutes (or until cool)
Total time: 35 minutes approximately

Makes: About 10 bars

Ingredients:
3 cups Quaker® Real Medleys® Cherry Almond Pecan cereal
1/2 cup crushed blue corn tortilla chips (or anything salty & crunchy)
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar

Directions:

1. Stir the unsalted butter, honey, and brown sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.

2. Add the Quaker® Real Medleys® Cherry Almond Pecan cereal and the tortilla chips to the saucepan and stir until well-coated.

3. Fill a 9×9 baking dish with the granola mixture. Press firmly to evenly distribute.

4. Place in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes or until cool. Cut into 1×3″ strips (or squares).

5. Wrap in wax paper or store in an air tight container. Enjoy!

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How easy is that?! Five ingredients and five steps! And they are delicious. And we have some leftover Quaker® Real Medleys® Cherry Almond Pecan cereal which is the perfect munching snack just by the handful! I can’t wait to try the other flavor too – I’m always in need of a quick snack to grab on the way out of the house.

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Have you ever made homemade granola bars? What are some other road trip or on-the-go snacks that are easy and quick to make?

Tarot: The World Card

Tarot: The World Card

Tarot: The World Card

 

This card is the last card in the Major Arcana. Traditionally, the World card symbolizes a completion of a major life cycle.

On a personal level, this card represents the completion of a sacred manifestation and unification. When you realize you have the ability to manifest change, you begin to see the relationship between your inner and outer world. By integrating within, you can manifest change externally. This card represents that completed change known as “The Great Work.”

The concept of “The Great Work,” a foundation of Hermeticism, and the Hermetic axiom “As Above, So Below.” are illustrated through the symbolism on the card. The card features a figure holding 2 wands each with two ends surrounded by a wreath/Ouroboros (symbolizing infinity) with the four fixed signs in the corners. The four fixed signs of the zodiac, Aquarius (air), Leo (fire), Taurus (Earth), Scorpio (water) are represented and signify the grounding of and connection between the elements. To me, the being inside the wreath of infinity/ouroburos is channeling her inner world and outer world (the fixed signs). Through this channel she is able to manifest a completion the current cycle and begin a new manifestation.

Tarot: The World Card

My birthday is January 21st, which makes me an Aquarius. I connect strongly with the numerological energy of the number 21. Rene Allendy, a famous numerologist and psychoanalyst, describes the number 21 as “containing the ratios of the principle of individuality 1 with the cosmic differentiation 20″ In numerological math, the 0 is dropped so 2 + 1 = 3. Three is a sacred number symbolizing a sacred integration of self and universe. This ties back to the idea of “As Above, So Below.” As an alchemist, I find the concept of finding connections in my inner and outer worlds an integral part of my evolution.

The World card carries both a spiritual and personal meaning to me and represents what I aspire to on fundamental level.

Check out my tarot inspired work in person at:
The Hive Gallery and Studios Tarot 6 Show
Time:8-11pm
729 S Spring St, Los Angeles, California 90014.
Runs: Jan.10th- Jan.31st
$5 suggested donation (donations help with Hive opening costs)

I also have a website: www.occvlt.com

Do you have a favorite tarot card or tarot card that pops up in spreads often? Share your tarot stories and interpretations below.

 

Fatshion: Big Boy Collection Launch

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Hey friends! Just sharing a quick fatshion post with you. Remember when I went to the Big Boy Connection Launch Party? Well this is what I wore to it! I don’t wear pants that often but I somehow managed to own SO MANY PAIRS so I am trying to wear them more  (and pass on the ones I don’t get around to wearing). How likely is that? I don’t know, considering I own these in like four other colors because they are cheap and I love the way they fit! But at least I’m not buying more, right?

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These shoes and this bag are some of my favorite thrifted items ever. First of all, the shoes are perfect for me – I don’t know if you noticed but I *RARELY*EVER* wear heels. I think I own like three pairs? And I never wear them. Because ouch! Seriously, if any heel-wearing-people have tips on how to not make the balls of my feet hurt after like 5 minutes wearing them, let a girl know, ok? But back to the shoes – they have the tiniest cutest wedge, they have a slight sheen, a pointy toe, and they are super comfy. I love them! And that bag – oh that bag. It’s a vintage tapestry bag and I just love the design of it. It’s one of my favorites.


You may have seen this on our Instagram awhile ago but if not, here’s a bonus photo! My new (as in I met him that night) friend, Andrew, took this of me at the event so naturally I had to repost it onto our own Instagram. But yeah, he’s really cool. Check him out and follow us both!

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My friend Allan took these photos for me at the event. I think it was his first time taking outfit photos for someone else but I think he did a good job, especially considering the crappy lighting in the amazing Otherwild store. What do you think?

Outfit Details:

Olive green polka dot hair scarf: vintage, thrifted
Pink cat eye glasses: c/o Firmoo
Black faux leather jacket: purchased from a seller on Poshmark (<– my closet)
White polka dot top: Old Navy (old)
Olive green legging pants: Walmart (they come in plus sizes too)
Black baby wedge shoes: thrifted (remixed: one)
Black floral tapestry purse: vintage, thrifted (remixed: one)

How did I do wearing pants? I’m still getting used to wearing them regularly even though I’ve blogged about wearing them before! Oh also, before I forget – everything in the Big Boy Vintage online store is on sale right now so check it out!

Fatshion: Happy New Year!

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Hello friends! First of all, HAPPY NEW YEAR! Here’s to a wonderful 2015 for all of us! Secondly, I want to thank all of you – all of our readers, our followers, the brands that work with us, our friends and family – for all the support you have given to us in 2014. The year was a big one for us with lots of changes for the blog – the biggest one was probably that I brought on Aria in January – we hope to see more of her voice and creativity in 2015!

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I experienced a lot of big personal changes in 2014 too. I lost my job last January and I decided to try freelancing to give myself a more flexible schedule (which helps my mental health) and give me more time to focus on school. School has been hit or miss for me – I either get really good grades or really bad ones and it’s usually entirely dependent on my mental health. Being a disabled student has been a challenging experience but I am learning new ways to get through it all the time.

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I spent most of 2014 as a single queer femme. I love being single as much as I love being in relationships so while my break-up was hard and hurt way more than I want to admit, I’ve been in a good place since.

Overall, 2014 was one of my best years for mental health too – I celebrated three years in recovery from my eating disorder, strengthened my friendships and bonds with my community, and learned so many new coping skills for life. I went through some low periods this year but the good outweighed the bad and that’s all I can ask for.

fatshionholidaypartyportrait

Speaking of freelancing, I wore this outfit to a company dinner for one of the businesses I freelance for. We went to a fancy dinner in Downtown LA at The Palm and it was delicious. The dinner was a great way to reconnect with all of my coworkers that I don’t get to see that often!

Outfit details:

Gray half-rim glasses: Coastal Eyewear
Brown faux leather jacket: Target
Crystal necklace: vintage, thrifted
Striped top: Target
Black skater skirt: Forever 21+ (remixed: one, two; in blue)
Black tights: Target
Teal leopard flats: Forever 21 (remixed: one, two)
Floral handbag: vintage, thrifted

I have big plans for this space, my business life, and my personal life in 2015. I can’t wait to share it all with you along the way. Thank you again for being a part of Skinned Knees! ♥