Monday, August 21, 2017

Weekend in Austin, Texas

My twin sister, Jeanette, and I spent this past weekend in Austin, Texas to celebrate our birthday. It was my first time in Texas and it was everything and nothing I expected it to be. The heat was overwhelming, the BBQ was hearty, and the nightlife was unlike anything I've ever seen.

As soon as landed, at the recommedation of our older brother, we headed to Franklin Barbecue. Franklin Barbecue is probably the most famous BBQ spot in all of the US right now and it has the line to prove it. We arrived a little after the 11am open time and were greeted with a three hour wait time. The first people to get in line that Friday arrived at 5:30am. Anyone that knows me well, knows that I don't eat meat often, let alone beef and pork. But, when in Rome. We went for the ribs, but they sold out as soon as we got to the counter to order, so we ordered pulled pork, brisket, and sausage -- we waited three hours, we had to try it all. 

Look, I don't know much about meat, but you did not need to put any barbecue sauce or anything on this. It was all so flavorful on its own. Well worth the three hour wait. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Nike Air Society Chicago

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of spending time with some badass women at the opening of the Nike Air Society here in Chicago. The weekend kicked off with a bra fitting and Air Max event at the Nike Chicago store, then carried over into the events at the Air Society.

At the Air Society, there was a closet (read: decently sized room) where you could chat with women designers from Chicago and even try on some of their digs, a braid bar, henna tattoo station, manicure stations, kitchen with tasty and healthy snacks, and a totally sweet rooftop patio. Throughout the day, there were organized panel discussion and roundtable talks with women changing the game in Chicago and elsewhere. And, of course, this wouldn't be a Nike event if fitness didn't figure into the equation: there were rooftop yoga and high intensity training classes you could join. The coolest part of the event was seeing a diverse group of women come together to just hang out, have a good time, and embrace their bodies.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Summertime Chi

Welcome to the good life! (Did you catch the reference?)

If you have never spent a summer in Chicago, you're missing out. Of course, I am romanticizing the city a bit, but summer has always been the time when I get to reconnect with friends and spend more time with my family. It's also the time when the weather is more consistent and Chicagoans can count on some sunshine.



Thursday, May 25, 2017

Graduation Pictures

With graduation fast approaching (gasp!), my mom wanted to send out announcements to our family and friends. Just wanted to quickly share a few of my favorite shots from the mini photoshoot I had. My dress is from J.Crew, my shoes are from Banana Republic, and graduation cap was generously lent to me to by my dear friend Liz. Of course, more pics from my actual graduation to come. June 10th can't come fast enough!

Monday, January 23, 2017

5 Food Tips for Study Abroad

So while Angelic is letting y'all know how you can get thick fit, I'm just gonna let y'all know how you can get thiiiick. Pick your poison.

Study abroad is great, but I think one of the greatest difficulties is acclimating to a new diet in a new place. This is especially difficult when you're doing a homestay and eating meals prepared by the family. Unless you're a total butthole, you eat what is given to you so as to not seem like the rude American, barring it's something you're allergic to, health reasons, etc. Even common dietary restrictions in America, like being a vegetarian, can put a relative strain on your host family for any number of reasons -- veggies can be expensive and sometimes not as readily available as they are stateside.

For me, it's been difficult transitioning to a diet that where meat is a staple. Back in Chicago, I just about never cook or eat meat -- the rare occasion is when I am cooking for friends and roommates, or eating out. But I'm a broke boy anyway, so eating out doesn't happen often. My host mom has been gracious enough to not serve me any beef or pork, and only makes dishes with chicken, turkey or fish. I also get lots of fresh veggies everyday, which is so great, but also not common when speaking to other students in my program.

This is my second time doing a study abroad program and along the way I have picked up a few things about living and eating in homestays. Oh, and some pics of what I've been eating in my homestay are included, too.

1. Eat all your veggies + fruit! And eat some more! This is the most elementary rule from when you were young. Bring it back and say it over and over again as your scarf down the broccoli and squash you haven't liked since you were six. Here in Mexico, the vegetarian options I have encountered in restaurants tend be dishes with mushrooms...mushrooms are great, but a diversity of veggies is even better and nutritious. So, when you get the veggies at home, just eat 'em. Fruit is easy because it's sweet, but eat that, too. It's rare to see fruit available at restaurants here; it's sold widely on the street, but as with street food anywhere, you have to be careful.

Breakfast: Quesadillas filled with cheese and turkey ham, tomatoes, beans, and fruit cup of watermelon and pineapple






















2. You can ask for more or less food. There is nothing wrong with letting your host parents know that they give you too much or too little food. Nobody is tryna waste food or go hungry. In Spain, I sometimes asked for more food, but here in Mexico, I asked for less food. My host mom here is like the grandmother who is always worried you're not eating enough, so she gives us *lots* of food. But, in the end, it's better for everyone when there's less food waste. It might seem weird to ask for less or more food, but your host family wants you to be well at the end of the day...so let them help you be well.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

¡Bienvenidos a Oaxaca!

I think a different sun shines on Oaxaca...like, the sun down here is something special. I have been in Mexico for almost a week now and it's been great. Mostly great because I have managed to escape the cold in Chicago.

I'm still getting acclimated to everything down here (s/o to the altitude...5,000 feet above sea level) and wanted to quickly share a few snapshots of my first few days in the sun. I am here on a study abroad program with about twenty other students from my University, so I've got lots of friends and *potential* friends to explore the city with. Our school is absolutely beautiful and, outside of the public parks, one of the few places I have seen with green space.



There are these gorgeous, tall palm trees at our school and we warned not to sit under them because sometimes the branches fall off. Either way, gotta love nature. 

 It is also custom to eat large meals for breakfast and lunch, and coffee and bread or pastries around dinner time. I have taken a bit to the custom and have been trying iced mochas all over town. 

Last, but not least...a photo of me! I'm wearing a dress from Zara, a denim Ralph Shirt from the 80s, Birkenstocks, rose gold Marc Jacobs watch, and a beaded bracelet I picked up on my second day in Oaxaca.

Keep up with my time in Mexico on Instagram @all_worn_out. And keep an eye on the blog...some new, new content will be popping soon!