lifestyle

No Shop February

One of the things I love most about blogging is all of the amazing people I meet! My blogger friends are hustlers, they’re talented, they’re artists, they inspire me everyday. My friend Natalie of Wear You Are Now invited me to join the No Shop February Challenge. I was super intrigued when I heard about this, despite my best efforts I always impulse buy. I have enough clothes in my closet that I could go TWO months without doing laundry and still have things to wear. This month I pledge to not buy any new clothes, shoes, or accessories. I will be doing some traveling this spring and I want to put some money away for my trip.

Rather than continuing to fill my space with clutter I am going to take account of the things I have but never wear and donate them. I will also be trying to make all my coffee and tea at home. My main goal is to be more mindful of how I spend my money. I am still budgeting some money for going out but I am cutting myself off of take out. If I am eating at home I can make it at home!

Thank you to all the fabulous ladies doing this challenge with me. We will all be posting updates on our progress, be sure to check them out on Instagram to see how they’re doing during No Shop February! You can follow along with #noshopfeb

@achicvoyage, @afashionfix, @alexmjdotcom, @amodestlife, @asequinedlife, @ashleyvbeine, @bluebootsgo, @champagne_thursday, @cmcinthecity, @d_mobley, @elizabethev, @emilyshell, @gretski126, @iceicebergha, @jenfirshe, @jqlouise, @klassicallykaytee, @kristinbassett, @kristylyons, @lyssmmm, @mystyletales, @natmazz, @nishatnguyen, @primandpropah, @sassyysaraa, @shaunagallagher, @sixfeetinheels, @speedy2ac, @thechroniclesofsheel, @Aline_aesthetic, @alexbyersays

Thanks to Danielle of A Sequined Life for organizing the challenge!

What goals are you setting for yourself this month?

lifestyle, travel

Skiing with Skedaddle & Mount Sunapee

Winter is rough, its cold, gray, it gets dark at 4 o’clock! If you’re new to New England winters this can be really depressing. But if you grew up going through these long winters you know how to make it fun. I am definitely guilty of being a homebody during the winter months, but nothing gets me outside the way skiing does! I started skiing when I was 7 years old, every Wednesday after school I would board the bus and head up to the mountain for ski lessons. In college and as an adult I have had a love hate relationship with skiing. Its expensive, its hard to get to the mountains if you don’t own a car etc. However ever time I go I’m reminded that I love it. If you didn’t grow up learning to ski the first couple times you go may feel like its impossible. But I promise you skiing is tons of fun once you get the hang of it!

Last weekend I partnered with Skedaddle and Mount Sunapee to go skiing with my friend Maddie. Skedaddle solves one of my biggest problems: how to get there! I live in Beacon Hill and I don’t own a car. In order to get to the mountains I either need to take an Amtrak Train, borrow a car, or convince a friend who has a car to come skiing with me. If you’re someone who loves to ski every weekend not having a car can seriously limit your season. Skedaddle is an app that plans routes from the city to fun events and activities outside the city! This winter Skedaddle is running a promotion with Mount Sunapee, $5 round trip from Boston to Mount Sunapee! Let me say that again FIVE DOLLARS. I was shocked how nice the bus was, big comfy seats that even had a usb port to charge your phone. Skedaddle got us to the mountain by 9:00AM and we were on the ski lift by 9:30. After the lifts closed we boarded the bus and napped while we were driven back to Boston. So easy, no stress, FIVE DOLLARS! Check out all the Skedaddle routes on their website and download the app!

I hadn’t skied at Mount Sunapee in a really long time and I was pleasantly surprised. Tons of great trails and the entire south peak is dedicated to those who are learning. It can definitely be intimidating to learn when you have people more experienced flying past you, so having a learning zone is great for first timers! If you are more experienced take the lift to the summit and choose from a variety of trails. A trip to Mount Sunapee isn’t complete without grabbing a waffle from the Waffle Cabin. Getting a Belgian waffle covered in chocolate is probably my favorite part of skiing.

When you’re done for the day grab a drink at the Goosefeathers Pub. Maddie and I had a great day, it was my first time skiing this season and I can’t wait for more fun trips! Where is your favorite place to ski?

Thank you Skedaddle and Mount Sunapee for hosting me and Maddie last weekend. As always all opinions are my own.

lifestyle

Better Living – Meditation

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I have friends whose whole lives revolve around wellness, fitness, nutrition etc. and for a while my whole life did too. When I was competing in pageants I worked with a trainer Katie Boyd. I learned how to eat right, how to work every little muscle in my body but the most important thing I learned from Katie was how to meditate.

I am not a wellness blogger! I rarely post about wellness and fitness because it’s not something I’m an expert on. But as I’ve taken inventory of my life recently I have realized how important meditation is. I mentioned in a few other posts that I have been having a lot of anxiety recently. When I sat down and tried to determine what was the cause I realized my anxiety got really bad when I stopped meditating. I didn’t really make a conscious choice to stop, life got busy, I had to write a paper, picked up extra hours at work, decided to go out instead etc etc.

There is a Buddhist proverb that says “if you don’t have time to mediate for 1 hour everyday then you should meditate for 2”. I love this because it is so true. My laptop broke last week and I was without one for 3 days. I literally cried, I was so tapped into my technology that being unplugged for 3 days was a nightmare. This is so unhealthy! We all get too plugged in sometimes, and I’ve talked about intentionally unplugging from time to time. But being forced to unplug, not on my terms, was unsettling and forced me to confront my technology addiction.

My solution? I am going to start meditating again. Meditation is a learned skill that requires consistent practice, it is not like riding a bike you can’t jump in and out of it. But I promise you anyone can learn to meditate! I will be starting with 15 minutes a day and working my way back up to an hour everyday. I like to meditate first thing in the morning, instinctively the first thing I do when I wake up is reach for my phone to see what I missed but I am really trying to change this habit. I was very fortunate to have someone teach me how to meditate. But there are plenty of online resources to help you. I have put some of my favorite resources and guided meditation below, please check them out and hopefully they help you as much as they have helped me.

The Chopra Center: Articles, guided meditations, classes etc

Louise Hay: Guided meditations and daily affirmations

The Book of Awakening: Link to buy it on amazon! This book was really helpful when I was learning to meditate

Katie Boyd ‘Miss Fit Club’: My trainer! I went to her to get in physical shape but she really changed my life by focusing on spirituality, mental health, and physical health! Check out her website and show her some love on Instagram!

Have you ever tried meditation? Do you find it helpful? What wellness goals are you setting? Let me know in the comments below!

travel

Cambodia – S21 and the Killing Fields

I sat down to write this post and I just couldn’t. I kept rewriting paragraphs trying to bring my feelings and thoughts out but I wasn’t ready. Sometimes after experiencing something you need sometime to process. That is exactly what happened during my trip to Cambodia.

On day 2 we visited the S-21 Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields. To say these sites were moving doesn’t begin to cover it. In preparation for my trip I read “First They Killed My Father”. The book was enthralling, I highly recommend anyone traveling to Cambodia read it ahead of time. Even after all my research and prep for my trip I was not ready for the wave of emotion that hit me while visiting the S-21 Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields.

If you are visiting Cambodia set aside a day to visit both. I am a firm believer that you should always make an effort to learn the history of the places you travel. Learning about the atrocities that took place in Cambodia is upsetting, take your time as you make your way through the self guided tour, reflect on all that you learn. While at the Killing Fields I was a little unsettled, it was such a beautiful memorial but it was hard to reconcile the horrendous acts that took place there with the beautiful landscape there today. The original structures that stood at the Killing Fields during the time of the Khmer Rouge have been demolished.

There is so much to do and experience in Cambodia but it is important to take some time to learn about and pay your respects to the millions of people were killed. I had such an amazing trip in Cambodia, my visit to Angkor Wat was incredible and volunteering with Habitat for Humanity was life changing, I can’t wait to go back soon! 

PS: please be respectful when visiting these sites. I saw tons of people ignoring the no photography signs that were posted in certain areas.

lifestyle, style, travel

100th Post

Wow, this is my 100th post on Katie From Boston. I started this blog as a way to express myself, I was feeling lost like I was floating aimlessly from day to day. I needed a creative outlet.

Hence the birth of this blog. It is not a particularly exciting or unique story, I know tons of bloggers who started because they needed a creative outlet. But today this blog is much more than a creative outlet to me. It has become a very important part of my life, the opportunities I have had, the friends I have made through blogging! The past 9 months, when I really threw myself into blogging, have been incredible. I promise to keep at it and to keep bringing you the best possible content and to always share my honest opinion.

So you tell me, what content do you want to see for posts 101-200? More travel? More food? Less of anything? What was your favorite post and what are you dying to know? Leaving me your questions, suggestions, comments, and criticisms in the comment section below.

And thank you for tagging along on this journey with me!