Thailand: Round 2

I recently returned home after spending 2 unforgettable months in one of my favorite places in the entire world – Bangkok, Thailand.
Most of you have been reading along since the beginning and know all about our previous adventures in Thailand. It had been 3 long years since I had last visited and was eager to return to all my favorite spots, eat my favorite foods, and create new memories with family and friends in one of the most exciting and popular travel destinations in the world.

We departed early in the morning. My brother, London (16), was lucky enough to bring three of his friends on this journey with him. So, this time there were 6 of us traveling together, including my me and my mom. During the long 20 hour flight, my neck pillow and Jack Daniels became my new bffs.
We finally landed in Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok late at night. My dad was eagerly waiting there to meet us. We were escorted to our home-away-from-home in a large taxi van. The ride to our apartment was unusually silent; probably a combination of exhaustion from traveling and being in pure awe of everything around us. The silence was occasionally broken by my dad asking questions about back home and school or one of the boys commenting about their first impressions of the city – like how unnecessarily huge the billboards are or how fast the people drive.

We arrived at Piyathip Place, where my dad has lived for the past 4 years, otherwise known as our “Bangkok home”. After giving our new visitors a tour and taking in the incredible view of the city from our balcony, we all went our separate ways to unpack our clothes and settle in for the next couple months.
I can never sleep my first night in Thailand. Like last time, I ended up pulling an all nighter and staying up to watch the sunrise peak through the skyscrapers and paint the sky a golden orange. Even after I finally went to sleep, I woke up only a few hours later and was greeted by my dad who was downstairs making coffee. He already had breakfast waiting for us from our favorite “egg-lady” that makes omelettes on the side of Sukhumvit road every morning. It was as delicious as I remembered and my tastebuds sang with joy – oh how I’ve missed authentic Thai food. Filled with seemingly endless spices and flavor combinations that make Thailand world renown for their cuisine; it’s truly some of the best food I’ve ever eaten in my life.

I stepped out onto our balcony for the first time in daylight. Good morning, Bangkok. It was a smoggy day out. Our frangipani trees swayed gently with the breeze and the humidity immediately enveloped my body in a warm blanket of air. I looked over the balcony at the city below me. There were cars and tuk-tuks driving every which way, people walking, street vendors selling food and everything else imaginable…the city was alive.
My eyes glowed with wonder and excitement for what the months ahead had in store.

Processed with VSCOcam with hb2 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with x1 preset

Photo Mar 27, 1 48 33 PM

Bohemian Revolution Beverage Co.

Bohemian Revolution Beverage Co. is based out of Costa Mesa, CA and is calling on all fellow free-spirits to take part in their revolution by supporting them in the production of their premium superfood drink known as Gypsy Tonic No. 29.
The masterminds behind the Bohemian Revolution have poured their heart and souls into creating a supplement that is unique to any other energy drink on the market – combining premium, all-natural ingredients such as Ginseng, Cacao, Maca, along with many other herbs. The result is a healthy alternative to all those caffeine infused drinks that are popular on the market today, many of which go hand in hand with adverse side effects such as increased blood pressure, heart rate, and even anxiety attacks! (I struggle with anxiety and within 30 minutes of drinking a cup of coffee I notice a MAJOR increase in nervousness, jitters, and my overall stress level). And don’t even get me started on all the sugar – your average energy drink contains about A HALF A CUP of refined sugar…that’s seriously horrifying. Another huge concern when it comes to energy drinks today, is that they are not subject to the same regulations the FDA requires for other food and drinks because it’s labeled as a “dietary supplement”. This means that companies are allowed to leave the nutrition labels incomplete and often do not label how much caffeine, and god only knows what other additives, are actually in their beverages.
In contrast, every ingredient put into Gypsy Tonic no. 29 is intentional and they all work together in harmony to provide a balanced, energizing experience. The creators of Gypsy Tonic have chosen non-GMO ingredients with no preservatives or artificial sweeteners added. It’s also vegan, dairy-free, and gluten-free. In other words, the people behind Bohemian Revolution ACTUALLY CARE about your health and what you’re putting into your body.

Bohemian Revolution Beverage Co. recently launched a crowd funding program to raise money so they could produce more of their product, however it is now closed and they only made a portion of their goal. Their ingredients are high quality stuff, so it costs more money for them to create this product than your average energy drinks that are mass produced in factories. Join the revolution by checking out their website, signing up for their newsletter, and see what you can do to help play a part in them succeeding with their goals!

HomeAway: Beach Essentials

I started The Bohemian Lifestyle when my family and I first moved to Thailand together. TBL was my outlet for preserving the memories we made during that time, while simultaneously sharing our experiences with fellow wanderers. Now here I am, three years later, still sharing my adventures with you guys – just a little less frequently now that I’m going to school full time. It’s been a long time coming, but I’m finally returning to the place that started it all…In less than 5 days, my family and I will be traveling halfway around the world to spend the next six weeks in Thailand!!

In honor of all you spring breakers out there and our upcoming trip to tropical paradise, I’ve teamed up with HomeAway to share some of my favorite beach essentials!
HomeAway is one of the world’s leading vacation rental websites, offering a user friendly way for people to book rental properties in over 190 countries. They have properties for rent in top destinations like Destin and Cabo San Lucas. Their website also allows owners to list rentals and manage their bookings directly through them. HomeAway definitely comes in handy for travelers who don’t want to spend time in traditional hotels, surrounded by hundreds of other guests. I haven’t personally used their website for booking, but I’ve heard positive things from people who have.

  • Swimsuits (duhh) – I just bought a couple new pairs from Roxy and Victoria’s Secret for the occasion!
  • My Camera Gear – I’m a Nikon girl through and through. I couldn’t go anywhere important without my GoPro to capture the action. And you should all know by now that I have obsession with Polaroids and The Impossible Project.
  • Sunscreen – an obvious necessity for a beach getaway. I prefer natural alternatives like Coconut Oil, although it needs to be applied more often than commercial brands do.
  • Snacks and Beverages – Fresh fruit, water, some ice cold beer, and mixed drinks should do the trick.
  • Sunglasses – Either my favorite pair of Ray-bans or my Woodies. I love them both!

 

So, when you’re prepping for your next getaway, be sure to stop by HomeAway and check out the rentals listed. They just might have the prefect place for you to stay during your endeavors!
Have a happy and safe Spring Break, everyone!

Welcome to the fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada!

During our annual family road-trip to Malibu, my mom and I stayed in Las Vegas for a night. Seeing how I’m 21 now, it seemed like a necessary stop to make along the way.  ;)
We booked a room in advance at The Palms Casino & Resort. We knew that we would be checking in late that night…but not 2:00am late. The room they put us in was small, but really fancy, and had a great view of the Vegas strip. We weren’t even in our room for more than 5 minutes before my mom got a call from the front desk, letting us know that they upgraded us to a Penthouse! Before we knew it, the bellhop arrived to grab our bags and escort us to the 85th floor. The sound of Drake’s new album and the skunky smell of ganja flooded the entire hallway. I took one big whiff and thought out loud, “These are my kind of people!”. The bellhop just laughed and said “I’m sure if you asked, they’d be happy to share with you.” I love people with sense of humor. :)
We were moved into one of their gorgeous “Penthouse E‘s”. The room was elegant and up to date, with a modern design, an ENORMOUS spa bathroom, and was even complete with a private jacuzzi on the balcony! I was in heaven. The first thing I did was break into the minibar…shots shots shots. Followed by ordering room service – chicken tenders for me and a BLTA for my mom. After eating and freshening up a bit, we went downstairs to play some slot machines at the casino and have a few drinks. We didn’t end up getting back to our room until around 6 a.m. which I can imagine is typical for a night in Vegas. I ended the night/started my day by watching the sun rise over Las Vegas, while I soaked my feet in the jacuzzi. Though it was short-lived, It was a phenomenal first trip to Vegas. I’ll never forget it, and I owe it all to my mom and the fabulous service at The Palms!

Follow my snapchat for behind the scenes madness - @desert_sage
Follow my snapchat for behind the scenes madness – @desert_sage

We checked out at noon the next day and were off to California.
We spent the rest of the week on Pepperdine Campus, in Malibu, while my dad taught a summer mediation course at the Law School. Since he was busy teaching a majority of the time, my mom and I spent some (much needed) girls time together. We laid out at the beach, shopped our brains out, and ate at Malibu Seafood at least 5 times – a family favorite since way back in the day when we lived in Agoura Hills.
When my dad was done teaching, all three of us decided to stop in Vegas on the way home for round 2! This time we booked a room at Hotel Nobu inside Caesars Palace. The room was comfortable, it had a huge flat screen mounted on the wall and a great bathroom. Caesars Palace itself was in-cre-di-ble. It’s so much bigger than I imagined and there was so much going on, I didn’t know what to do with myself! Two of my cousins and one of their friends, all of whom are locals, met me in the lobby so they could take me out and show me around. We ate dinner inside the hotel, played the slots, had a few drinks, and people watched for a while (it was hilarious). After a classic Vegas experience, they explained to me how the locals try to stay away from the strip because it’s way too touristy. So, they ended up taking me to one of their favorite bars called Moon Doggies. It was a quintessential dive bar – small, smokey, just the right amount of dirty, and the kind of place where the bartenders laugh and drink along with the customers all night long. And the pizza shop inside their bar, called Naked City Pizza, was actually featured on the show Diners, Drive In, and Dives! However, by the time we arrived (about 2a.m.) the place was already closed for the night. We hung out, drank, reminisced, and watched the bartender light off pre-4th of July fireworks until sun-rise the next day. It was such a great way to top off the night!
I loved both hotels for different reasons. The Palms provided luxury rooms and outstanding service. While Caesars Palace had good rooms with average service, yet had the most going on and is centrally located on the strip.
To me the answer is quite simple – If you’re looking for a place to relax and be pampered, choose The Palms. But If you’re looking for a classic, “what happens in Vegas…”, kind of night, then Caesars is the place to stay.

One Tribe Apparel // Thunder Mountain Monument

Remember my post a while back, about my first visit to Thunder Mountain Monument? Occasionally, Joey and I stop to visit when we’re driving through Nevada on our way to San Francisco. This time we were greeted by a black dog, who accompanied us for the duration of our time at the monument. We walked around what was left of the school house – which burned down in the early 80’s, took some photos, stretched, then took off for California to celebrate Joey’s sister’s wedding! Whenever I’m on a long road trip like this one, being comfortable is essential…comfort and junk food. I pile the car up with pillows and blankets to snuggle up with, stock up on munchies, and be sure to wear one of my favorite lazy-day outfits. And to me, there’s nothing comfier than kicking back in a plain tank, a pair of Birks, and my One Tribe Honey Hive harem pants!

Emulsion Lift Tutorial

Hey Everyone!

Today I want to share a video tutorial with you guys! It’s a quick one that I threw together, which shows how to create emulsion lifts using IMPOSSIBLE instant film. This can be quite a simple process which yields really beautiful, ethereal, results. You can transfer the lifts onto almost any surface you want…paper, glass, wood. Keep in mind that there are a few different ways to go about making emulsion lifts, this is just one of my personal favorites because I like the unpredictability of the ripped edges which I feel gives the photo a more grungy, shabby look. Happy Lifting!

(Don’t) Shake It Like A Polaroid Picture

Back in 2008, when Polaroid went bankrupt and quit producing film, a group called The Impossible Project stepped in and bought some of Polaroid’s production machinery, one of their last factories able to produce instant analog film, and went to work re-creating their own version of Polaroid’s instant film. They’ve even created a new product called Instant Lab, which lets you print Polaroid photos using images straight from your iPhone! Believe me, It’s on my photog-wishlist for sure.
With the goal in mind to revive and reinvent the future of instant film; if it wasn’t for The Impossible Project, this format of photography could have very well disappeared forever! So I would like to extend my utmost gratitude to this company for working so hard to keep this precious art-form alive.
I was introduced to my first Polaroid camera this past Christmas, when my boyfriend at the time bought me a refurbished Polaroid 600 and 3 packs of film. I instantly (pun intended) fell in love with how authentic each photograph was! Very shortly after, I discovered the magic of Emulsion Lifts  – a technique where one soaks the film in boiling water in order to release the layer of emulsion from the plastic cover, leaving behind a thin floating photo in the water that can be transferred onto paper, wood, glass, etc. It takes a very immediate form of photography, and turns it back into an intimate, hands-on process with results that are absolutely dreamy! I made a video tutorial of the process HERE.

Below are some of the first Polaroids and Emulsion Lifts I’ve ever made. I’m looking forward to creating so much more, and already have some projects up my sleeve. ;)