December 31, 2015

A look back at 2015.


Alas, it is once again time for a look back at my year. What a year it has been! 2015 whipped by, and I have barely had the time to digest everything that's happened. It's been a tough year to say the least, but it was filled with such special moments. Blogging took a definite backseat as I got ready to apply to go back to school, but I think the few bits I was able to post were very cool experiences for me.

If you're interested, here are the reviews from the past few years: 2012, 2013, 2014.

JANUARY
This year, we started out by taking a trip up to Oregon to drop my sister off for law school. We squeezed our family into the car and drove on up, stopping by the coast again. I also made a trip back out to New York, which was filled with lots of friends and good food. The trip made me realize that I need to not make so many plans when I go back next time -- I was exhausted from trying to run all around the city to see everyone! But what a great time it was catching up with my wonderful friends.




FEBRUARY
This month was filled with hikes. I went to new places and took my camera along for the ride (which may or may not have resulted in a few scratches, but those add to the aesthetic..right?). Feeling risky, I also dyed my hair this month. Which was a huge, huge mistake.




MARCH
I went on adventures with Caitlin for her birthday before heading back on up to Oregon. I went to see my sister to get some help with studying and to spend her spring break with her. We drove to Portland for the first time (for me, anyway) and I was not too impressed -- I think I need real Portland friends to give us suggestions on what to do next time!







APRIL
Most of this month was spent exercising, somewhat getting ready for my upcoming trip to Hawaii. This was also the month of practice tests -- I was physically drained in trying to keep up with work, studying, and working out. My days were busy but they were altogether okay. My parents and I went to a flower garden and I went on a few adventures with my friend Mariana.




MAY
Some of my favorite posts came about this month. My dad took me on a hike up through the Inyo National Forest, up to Kearsarge Pass which meets up with the John Muir trail. I was so humbled by not only the physical difficulty of the hike, but by the views! The entire place was unbelievably beautiful. Although I thought I was going to die in the middle of the night due to elevation sickness, making it down the next morning was one of my proudest moments of 2015.




JUNE
While I didn't blog about my Hawaii trip until the next month, Caitlin and I made our way out to Hawaii shortly after I had finished a big test. She graciously hosted me during my time there and showed me incredible things. I had my first acai bowl and fell in love, swam under a waterfall, almost slipped my way down a cliffside! Hawaii is one of those places that I know I would have loved as a tourist, but it was made even more special because I was with someone who grew up there. 







JULY
To help my sister move into a new apartment, my family and I made yet another trip up to Oregon. On the way up, very late at night, our tire popped -- and then our spare tire popped. We were in the middle of nowhere, somewhere north of Sacramento, and let me tell you: I do not wish that experience on anyone. Ever. While we had very little time in Oregon, we managed to squeeze in a hike up Spencer's Butte for the first time.



AUGUST
Los Angeles nearly succeeded in melting the skin off my bones with record heat. We ate lots of good food and I put exercise on the back burner as I started putting together my school applications (which took me forever and led to only one freak out, I'll have you know).




SEPTEMBER
The saddest part about my year is that I don't really remember what I did in September -- I was busy running around, trying to continue with the application writing and miscellaneous things. While I don't have many photos from the month, we did celebrate my grandpa's 80th birthday!!



OCTOBER
In an attempt to reconnect with the feeling of autumn that I became so familiar with in New York, my parents and I drove up to the mountains to see the tail-end of the fall foliage this year. We saw stunning colors of yellow and red, and waterfalls too.




NOVEMBER
Another very cool first for me this month was that I camped overnight at Joshua Tree. I know, everyone who has been following my blog for a while knows how much I adore this place. But! I had never camped there. Prepared with a tripod, I shot some of my favorite photos of the year.



DECEMBER
With a bang, I turned 24 this month. My siblings made their way home for the holidays and I went to see an exhibit I had been dying to see since I was in New York -- the Infinity Room. This month was filled with love, food, and family; what a great way to end the year.



Although 2015 was difficult, it was one of the most rewarding. I reunited with old friends and lost others along the way. I experienced a lot of new things and could not be more thankful to have had those moments. (Not to mention, this was the year I started listening to One Direction and found myself spiraling down the black hole that is that fandom.) Hopefully 2016 treats me a little more kindly.

This next year, I want to make the promise that I will travel more. As always, I want to seek new experiences and look forward to a very exciting adventure I will be going on for the next three years. And I can't wait to take you all with me!

Happy New Year everyone!





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November 16, 2015

Star Fail


A few weeks ago, I went camping with my parents out in Joshua Tree. We hadn't been in a few months, and I desperately needed to take a quick break from filling out school applications and the like. Knowing that we'd be out there overnight, I took my camera and packed up my tripod for the trip.

Looking back on these photos now, I have a lot to learn about night time photography! Some of them came out unfocused and the stars look blurry because I held the shutter down too long to get crisp stars, but not long enough to get the cool streaked effect.

The boulders also came up a little red because we had a fire going, though it was mostly completely dark when I took these.





This one was taken just as the moon was starting to rise above the rocks we had camped out against!


The next morning, my dad went for a bike ride with his friends while my mom and I cleaned up camp. Once they returned, they did a quick round of rock climbing that they had set up the day before.





Once they were all set, my dad and I set off on our tandem bike to ride to the entrance of the park. My mom took the car and snapped photos of us along the way (I'm pretty sure you can see the look of complete exhaustion on my face -- those slow inclines are killer!).




It was a fun little trip out, and I was happy to be back in one of my favorite places.





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