Five easy things you can do to keep your winter skin healthy, hydrated, and glowing — for next to nothing!

As soon as the the temperatures drop, the air becomes dry, and the winds grow strong, healthy and glowing skin can turn dry, red, chapped and flakey in an instant if it’s not properly cared for.

Living in a mostly warm climate throughout the year means that my skin essentially goes in to complete shock when exposed to cooler temperatures and harsher conditions. The change is immediate and dramatic.

Knowing this, I spend 1–2 weeks prior to any winter vacation preparing my skin for what’s to come, hoping to alleviate some of the symptoms. And every single time I make the same mistake: I focus too heavily on intense hydrating products, and not nearly enough on hydrating habits.

This time, instead of stocking up on serums and rich moisturizers, I relied on everything I know about the culprits of dry, dehydrated skin and made a habit of doing everything I could to avoid it.

Not only did it work like a charm, but it was easy to do and cost me next to nothing.

Read on to learn about fool proof ways to keep your skin soft, smooth and glowing — even in the harshest of winters.

Drink water

There is no cheaper, more accessible resource for hydration than water. Aim to drink 2–3 liters a day, and start first thing in the morning. If I can manage to drink 1 liter by noon, it is always easier to maintain the habit throughout the day and into the evening.

To avoid getting bored, throw in a slice or two of lemon for some flavor; or try switching between cold, hot and room temperatures throughout the day.

Avoid hot water

Harsh winters make steamy hot shower or soaking in bathtub really, really tempting. While I love nothing more than marinating in a bath after a freezing cold day, my skin absolutely hates it.

Hot water can be dehydrating, and really wreak havoc on the skin — and even more so if your skin is already dry, itchy or irritated.

To avoid making things worse, cut down on the frequency and length of hot showers and baths during winter months. Using lukewarm water instead will help the skin retain it’s moisture better, and heal or prevent it from becoming more irritated.

The same applies to washing your face — always use lukewarm or cold water. When removing your facial cleanser, use awash cloth to press the water into the skin instead of wiping it away, which can cause more irritation and redness.


It doesn’t matter if it isn’t sunny or warm outside — applying a broad spectrum sunscreen is always a good idea.

I apply SPF daily in the winter (even on the cloudiest of days) because it is absolutely essential in protecting the skin from harmful UV rays, but also because it prevents my red, wind burnt skin from getting unnecessarily more red from sun exposure.

Eat hydrating foods

In addition to drinking at least 2 liters of water a day, make it a point to fruits and vegetable that are well known for their high water content.

Cucumber, celery, iceberg lettuce, radishes, cauliflower, spinach, green pepper watermelon, strawberries, grapefruit, cantaloupe — are all made up of at least 90% water.

Over and above their hydrating benefits, fruits and vegetables are loaded with vitamins and minerals, which are essential for transforming dull skin and creating a healthy glow. They are also filled with fiber, which helps eliminate toxic waste from the body and reduce inflammation.

Don’t crank up the heat

When were not freezing to death outdoors, we’re cranking up the central heating at home and in our cars to warm ourselves up. But its making our skin, and leaves it feeling unusually tough and tight.

To go entirely without heat in the winter is unthinkable. At the same time, putting the heat on full blast is unnecessary a lot of time.

Play around with your thermostat; get it to the lowest temperature possible where you’re still comfortable. When you’re out of the house all day, turn the heat off or to a low temperature that’s a few notches warmer than outside. If you’re the type who has trouble sleeping when they’re too hot, then try turning the central heating off and bundling up instead.

The less you’re exposed to heat blowing up against your skin throughout the day, the more you will protect it from becoming dehydrated.

The fact of the matter is that harsh winters will always be a major culprit of dry, dehydrated skin. But you shouldn’t assume that treating dry, irritated skin is a lost cause until the season passes; or that excessive moisturizing or expensive products are the only ways to combat the problem.

By implementing these small, simple and inexpensive hydrating habits daily, you might be able to avoid winter skin woes and achieve a hydrated and healthy glow all year long.

My 2018 Resolutions

I’ve been pretty bad at keeping to my challenges that I have written here, even wrote a blog post about failing them. But I still think it is good practise to write down lists or ideas, because even if you only do one of them then that is still progress.

  1. Design my new website for 2018. The holding page is up for, no one wants to keep on returning back to a “Coming Soon” website, so I better do this one.

Have a happy new year everyone.

Top 10 expensive luxury donald trump owns- since & before office

Top 10 most expensive things Donald Trump owns (2019) – swapband brings you latest of all luxury lifestyle and fine living experiences (people and places).where ever you… brings you latest of all luxury lifestyle and fine living experiences (people and places).where ever you want and whenever you want. its the latest of top 10 most expensive things donald trump owns 2019. That’s why billionaire trump also always have a soft spot for luxury life and living.

Donald here by Forbes is worth an estimated 4 billion dollars in 2018 having a rank in America 400 richest people. He himself says he is worth more than 5 billion dollars estimating it up 10 billion dollars. Checking out his most expensive properties him owns, after we take a look at all this we would see if he is really worth an estimated 10 billion dollars.

Donald trump we all know him now a famous real estate tycoon and present president of the united states of America, who owns several properties. He been president of US could look like a downgrade for him, but he is doing it for US.
Here, we tell you top 10 most expensive thing Donald trump owns

net worth- $5billion


We don’t want to bother you with a list of skyscrapers and golf courses which looks all the same. But we think you would like to see a few of luxury cars trump owns of which he owns four of them.

This Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren which was produced and marketed in 2003 and was the top class car of its time. It reigned as the most expensive cars then having a market price tag value of $500k in 2003, but now it rated less than what you think of it now. It was but for $400k and the interior luxury was refurnished for $100k extra.

It’s a very powerful cars with good horse power engine which accelerate at 60kmhr in10 second, just like a racing car. It was delivered to him in front of his $50 million penthouse as seen in this picture.


ROLL ROYCE PHANTOM a giant motor car of this day 2018 which is reign presently still today in 2019. The company nits self-producing expensive cars have been doing this for long in the mid-80s.

He owns this latest roll Royce phantom and an old modelled roll Royce which would have the same market value now. This $500k car has a horse power engine mainly for luxury and not for fast space movements. It has a first class luxury interior, a TV, wine fridge and leather sits.

He uses this for his own personal outing. No driver is permitted to drive this his luxury car. It mainly for him and his family. Ask yourself if you own this only you would like to ride it, exempting drivers from riding it for you. Top 10 most expensive things donald trump own in 2019.


If you don’t know trump has a coffee brand, furniture brand, suit ware brand he uses in making himself famous and increasing his brand, cos he calls its trump the brand or trump the ergo.
He uses this brands on some of his buildings in New York and skyscraper, of which he also marketed he brand in New York for buildings to have his name on it. The last time people paid trump to put its name on a building was in 2008 after completing his TV show the apprentice.
Which made a million dollars every episode and was a giant hit of its time with 280 episodes (280 million) plus his pocketing a $14million dollars extra from other brands.


Sikorsky got a lot of attention worldwide. It’s for luxury class people. This chopper bought in 2004 of which he displayed it as an entrance to his famous TV reality shoe in 2004. Show his possible lifestyle and extravagant living in the luxury world.

He then bought a new branded Sikorsky helicopter chopper used by most president for $6million and he spent an additional $500k to redesign the custom of the interior look to his taste. He used this helicopter in most of his campaign landing he featured at the airport on his campaign trailer in 2016. Chopper it’s the best of its class up still 2020.

For now which has an engine power that can fly from one state to the other. Isn’t that great. Am sure you would go for this before purchasing an aircraft. We saw most of during trumps campaigns. which adds up to top 10 most expensive things donald trump own in 2019.

SEE: top 10 most expensive private jet 2019


This custom made private jet was made by the roll Royce Company that what got trumps eye on it and made him have a soft spot for it. He made it repaired back to his jet in one of his travel documentary on his jet on YouTube.

It was bought from one of Microsoft co-founder. Then it was bought for $35million and now $100million in market prize. Trump stripped of the interior look and had it made with golden color leather chair and body cover.

Had it made of 24 gold karat sit belts and his family coat of arms on his bed silk and chair. In one of his travel documentary on YouTube, it flew from New York to Scotland and flew to UK on a 2 day’s journey.


Trump as a variety of golf courses mostly in us. If you are in USA you would see trump golfs in some state you live in very close to you in the city.

Trump as golf course in New Jersey, trump turn berry, Florida Palm Beach, Ohio, Scotland, Ireland, New York. Etc. Trump make a cool at least $12 million dollars annually from any of his course. As he stated in one of his interviews before campaign in 2016.

His golf courses will have a market of value of mainly worthing $1.2billion dollars. It would be great to be in one of trump golf course. Trump had a prospective for it to be the best of its kind worldwide and had vision for it to host world golf PGA tournaments.
it also makes up top 10 most expensive things donald trump owns in 2019

see: top 10 most expensive golf courses in the world 2019


We all know trumps world on luxury. Has a saying popular about him says “anything he touches turns to gold”. Trump penthouse from the 1- 65 floor was plated in gold and with some pictures on the walls.

He uses the 27 floor as his office. 1–7 floor is an open floor for the public with bars, coffee cafe, restaurant and boutique and shopping and office complex. The 5th to 57th floor contains some luxury apartment. Microsoft co-founder, Japanese businessman tycoon and famous Juventus club footballer c. Ronald owns an apartment there.

It is said to be a trumps neighbor would cost $23million. You can own a 2 bedroom apartment for just $180k. Featuring private staff, attendants, house keepers and special room and hotel service. It make it one of the top 10 most expensive things donald trump owns.


Trumps old mansion is worth a 200 million dollars. Then he bought it from a royal lady for just 7 million dollars then. Which now as a market value of 200 million dollars. She sold it because, at that time the city was under bank debt. She couldn’t manage her staffs and maintain the building.

Trump change the every look of this mansion. He made it have a feature containing 20 living rooms, 10 dining rooms, 58 bedrooms, 2 mega halls, a gym, 2 bar and cuisine and a salon and whatever you can think off.


As far as Trump’s properties goes. 40 Wall Street, also known as The Trump Building. is another high roller for Trump, worth $345 million based on the portion that he owns. it all adds to the top 10 most expensive things donald trump owns.

Actually, Nike town is worth more ($390 million), but there’s nothing particularly interesting about it, so we didn’t include it.
Trump acquired it in 1995 for less than $10 million; the entire property is worth 501 million dollars today.

Will Trump be able to apply these business skills to America?


TRUMP had his eldest son Donald trump Jr. Build 90 storey skyscraper building in Chicago. It is a super sky scrapper fill with what the world offers today.

It’s as the best luxury apartment experience and offers you what so ever you can think of. They sell most of their apartment as high as $21million dollars to prove its class. You can choose your taste of its interior. This adds to the most expensive things donald trump owns

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My Problem With Low Carb Diets

A lot of well-meaning folks who read about my battles with lipedema and obesity want to bring me the good news of low-carb, zero carb, ketogenic diets, and intermittent fasting.

The disconnect seems to be that people think I can't overeat if I simply try those things. Unfortunately, I can. And apparently, I do.

When I first heard about ketogenic and carnivore diets years ago, I thought I'd finally found the answer. Shit, I still have this thing in me that gets all excited by the simplicity of such diets.

Even as I write this story, I've got an incredible urge to stock up on bacon or steak and "just do it." Drop the weight. I have read numerous books and testimonies by morbidly obese individuals who have lost all or most of their excess fat. They completely surprised themselves and their doctors.

You know what? I want to surprise myself too. I can't even tell you how much I want to do that.

But I have tried the low-carb diets. I have gone keto. I have even dabbled in zero carb and "the bacon experiment."

Unfortunately, I have never lost more than 40 pounds on any low-carb plan. When you need to lose 250 pounds, but keep stalling at 40, it's pretty damn depressing.

Not only that, but people seem to be under the illusion that low-carb and ketogenic eating is easy for a fat person with binge eating disorder or any other type of disordered eating.

It's not.

The reality is that people with eating disorders often do worse on diets which eliminate entire food groups. Our binge eating is emotional and psychological, and typically entrenched within our internal struggles for control.

We have such dysfunctional and complex relationships with food that we hold on too tight out of fear. We fear losing control, and we fear it so much that we adopt bad behaviors which wind up sending us straight into an episode of overeating and self-loathing.

Shame is a shitty motivator, and low-carb diets effectively bring the shame.

Study after study reinforces the fact that successful weight loss is rooted in a positive acceptance of yourself instead of a negative one. Any psychologist worth their salt will tell you that shame is detrimental to your overall health.

At its core, a lot of language within the low-carb community is riddled with shame. As in can you believe how much sugar is in that (whole) food? We are told that sugar is addictive in any and every form. People like myself end up feeling guilty for eating an apple. Or even a damn vegetable.

I've spent a lot of time in online forums of every low-carb variety. There's often zero understanding in those groups about actual eating disorders. Most of these groups exist to further their diet propaganda.

If a diet free of carbs and fiber works for you, I'm not knocking that. I think a lot of different eating plans work for different people. But it's different for folks with full-blown eating disorders.

Labeling foods as good or bad only feeds our demons.

Low-carb diets are pretty damn all-or-nothing.

All-or-nothing approaches to food do work for some people, but for anybody with an eating disorder, all-or-nothing thinking is exactly what gets us into trouble.

When it comes to eating, I am like a faucet. On or off. If I'm on, food is flowing until I turn it off. And I am afraid to be on because it's so damn difficult to stop. Honestly, it's much easier for me to quit eating altogether than it is for me to eat mindfully and naturally.

So while I need to get away from an all-or-nothing mentality, low-carb diets ensure that I'm stuck in that unhappy spot of self-loathing any time I'm craving something off-plan.

I like the way I feel when I eat plants.

Vegetables are amazing. Fruit too. Though I understand enough of the science behind low-carb diets, the ability to eat bacon and butter still isn't enough to make me forget the joy and comfort of lentil soup.

Not to mention the bliss of fresh cherries. Sumo citrus and fuyu permissions. Believe it or not, I actually like kale.

Sure, there's something decadent about fresh cream, Kerrygold butter, and pastured bacon. But there's something even more decadent and ironically, down to earth about finding balance.

Personally, I never found balance through keto or zero carb. I wound up wanting to eat more. I'm that person who can eat 3 or more pounds of meat or bacon when the gurus insist I won't want to eat more than 24 ounces.

Have you ever met anyone with an eating disorder? There's a reason we often count food as love.

We are fucking starved…

At least, emotionally.

I hate how keto breath can be a lie.

If I cut my carbs right now, I could wake up with that all-too-familiar keto breath tomorrow. I don't know if it's just me, but keto breath comes on quickly whenever I cut out carbs.

Unfortunately, it can also mean nothing. I've often stuck out my terrible keto breath for two or three weeks, eating nothing but beef or pork and butter. Yet I still lose nothing because I can apparently eat too much protein for weeks on end.

I need balance… and mindfulness.

The truth is that I have yet to find any long-term balance when it comes to food and eating, but I am certainly not alone. Eating disorders are pretty common, and the professional consensus is that restriction and the elimination of food groups, along with the demonization of certain foods is unhelpful for any recovery effort.

These days, I want the freedom to recover in a method that works for me. It's no secret that I've been off the rails and overeating lately after a couple weeks of improvement. All things considered, I think setbacks are to be expected.

Still, I am moving on.

This weekend I am back to more of the plant-based meals that feel good for me. And I'm focusing on regular mealtimes to avoid a binge.

I know that everybody pitching low-carb diets and fasting all mean well, and I don't fault them for that. It's just that an eating disorder is already a completely different beast compared to nutritional ignorance or simple overeating.

There's a mental health component that shouldn't be ignored.

And I'm working on it.

Put Your Oxygen Mask On First.

Defining self-care & its importance.

If you’ve ever been on an airplane and listened carefully to the safety instructions before the flight (I do on every flight like it’s new information😂), you will recall that they advise that in case of an emergency, you are to put on your oxygen mask FIRST before a child or anyone who needs help. While I’ve always looked at that as just a safety precaution, I never realized how relevant it is to daily life. That is why today I find it very NECESSARY to talk about the importance of self-care. Because you simply can’t help someone else if you haven’t helped yourself first.

What is self-care?

Self-care can be defined in a number of ways that collectively mean the same thing. I would define it as: taking the time to take care of you. By dictionary definition, it means: “the practice of taking an active role in protecting one’s own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.” It can also be defined as: any activity you do to take care of your mental, emotional, and physical health. Simply, self-care is what you do to charge back up. It should make you feel better, especially in tough times.

Why is self care important?

I’m glad you asked! When you consistently take care of yourself, you feel better and you are able to accomplish your goals. Self-care also allows you to get to know yourself even more. Whether it be new activities you enjoy, things you don’t like, your limits, and even your triggers, you will have the opportunity to truly understand you. And while you learn yourself, self-care allows you to love yourself. And as I have repeatedly said, self love is the best love! And honestly, your body, mind, and soul just needs it. And as mentioned above, you can’t be there for anyone else if you aren’t there for yourself. You can’t pour from an empty cup!

How do you practice self-care?

Well for starters, when implementing self-care, it is crucial that you understand that self-care is NOT selfish! You NEED it to FUNCTION, we all do. But if self-care is something that is new to you, or you want to be more seriously dedicated to it, here are some tips!

  1. It takes practice! With anything you want to change in your lifestyle, it takes an adjustment. Practice makes perfect!
  2. Actively & consistently plan it. I plan my self-care in two ways, first I schedule it in my planner, & then I write in a notebook what exactly I want to do, it helps me stick to it!
  3. Maintain your health. Eating right, exercising, getting good sleep, drinking water, & staying up to date with your doctors definitely help!
  4. Spend time w/ family & friends. Self-care doesn’t always have to be by yourself, your closest & favorite people can definitely be apart of your self-care plan when you choose.
  5. Knowing your limits. Don’t push yourself to the point that you can’t handle!
  6. Know when to say no. Realize that it isn’t always best to say yes to everything & everyone, that can be draining. But do say yes to yourself!
  7. Don’t forget about your spiritual self. Whatever that may be for you, don’t forget to fuel up! Mine is praying, reading the Bible, going to church, & maintaining my relationship with God!
  8. Ask for help. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help when you need it, you can’t do it all by yourself!
  9. Treating yourself as you treat others. If you’re like me, you enjoy making people happy. But sometimes in doing so, you forget about yourself and what you need to be happy. Care for yourself too!
  10. Love yourself! Love who you are inside & out. Love the person you’re working hard to become. And love the decisions that you make for yourself!

So, as we reach the end, I hope you have learned what self-care is and why it’s so important. And I also hope that you find a way to implement more self-care into your daily routines! So as you know, this is my favorite part, giving you my personal examples of how I practice self-care!

  • Taking a (longer than usual😅) hot shower
  • Letting essential oils fill my room….I LOVE lavender!
  • Listening to music/Playing the piano/Singing
  • Treating myself to dinner or dessert…I love a good cheat day!
  • Working out
  • Reading
  • Taking a nap
  • Walmart trip…walking around w/ no intentions to buy, just browsing all the items is very therapeutic for me!
  • Spending time w/ loved ones!
  • Talking to God/going to church/reading Bible
  • Going on a trip
  • Stretching
  • Catching up on TV shows & especially starting a new Netflix/Hulu binge😅
  • Having a drink…I’m a loyal fan of wine Wednesday lol
  • Putting my phone on do not disturb/staying off social media
  • Pinterest

I do not do all of these things everyday, some are more special occasions! However, a lot of these items are in my everyday routine & are important to me and how I function!

As always, thank you so much for staying tuned another week! I hope you all find more amazing ways to practice self-care. I also want to shoutout my job, because I work in the mental health field & times can be emotionally draining & stressful. But here is where I was required to create a self-care plan. And while I was already doing some of these activities, I now pay more attention to it! *all images from google* be back next week✌🏾

How to Not Lose Your Sh*t When You Get Mad Online

Social media is the tinder. Here’s how you avoid being the spark.

Art by author.

If you exist in this day and age, chances are you’re on social media. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook have become content-sharing machines, where literally anyone with an opinion can post that opinion, and have it be widely disseminated.

That’s not bad on its own. Social media has allowed many formerly voiceless people to gain a platform, share their views, and be heard where otherwise they wouldn’t.

That being said, social media has recently been noted for its tendency to radicalize. What that means is that your opinions get stronger. If you start out anti-Trump, you spend some time on the internet and your feelings are likely to be stronger. If you begin anti-vax, content on the internet will justify your feelings.

One thing I’ve noticed in particular is the tendency to share things you disagree with, too. For example, when Donald Trump tweets something ludicrous, lots of Twitter observers will retweet to their followers, disagreeing vehemently. A certain piece of hate speech that I normally wouldn’t be exposed to, might be shown to me because someone else has shared it with a critical comment attached.

Here’s an example: someone I follow retweeted a Tweet from someone (not the author) posting an article about Donald Trump lying.

Screenshot from my Twitter timeline.

It absolutely worked. I clicked on it, got angry that Donald Trump was lying about something really inconsequential, closed the tab and spent maybe three minutes fuming about it. I considered liking the Tweet, to show my solidarity with the sentiment, which would have propagated it further.

Even if you only follow people you agree with, or people who don’t have strong opinions, it’s almost impossible to not encounter some kind of incendiary content that will make you mad.

So the anger gets escalated, shared, and ramped up again in a kind of online anger ratchet.

Bring in the trolls.

This unique component of social media is compounded by the presence of trolls. What trolls do is rile up anyone who reads their comments. Deliberately provocative, trolls do their best to get you angry, sometimes in the explicit hope that you’ll spread their work for them, even if it’s in a negative way. Angry eyeballs are still eyeballs, after all.

One example of this is the now-defunct website Return of Kings, dedicated to Men’s Rights Activism, which used outrage to be widely shared and gain a much sturdier foothold than they would have had nobody shared their content.

How Return of Kings used outrage to sell extreme ideas
A "neo-masculinist" group with extreme views on women's rights has been forced to shut down a series of proposed global…

You might know someone like this in real life, who’s loud and argumentative just for the sake of it. But unlike real life, where you can face negative consequences for being a troll (confrontation, other people disagreeing with you verbally) online trolls can spout their garbage free of any form of social censure, through anonymity and lax regulations.

So not only do you get run-of-the-mill negativity, more widely spread and contributing to the idea that things are getting worse even though they aren’t; you also have people who have taken it upon themselves to make you angry. That’s their only goal online.

Why is that bad?

Surely it’s good that we’re all aware of the issues that face us today, and it’s important to keep up with what the people in power are saying especially if it’s something you disagree with. I used to follow certain misogynistic Twitter accounts, just to keep my finger on the pulse of what the enemy were saying.

But the thing is, we’re aware already. Before choosing to follow them on Twitter, I already knew that a group of incels hated women (which I’m purposefully not linking to) existed; there was no point in me being exposed to that content more than necessary.

And there’s not that much we can do about it. So we just waste energy pointlessly worrying, getting angry, or even commenting further ourselves to share with our followers.

It seems to me that the best course of action is to avoid getting mad. It’s draining to be constantly angry, and it achieves nothing. If it did any good, if every retweet actually benefited, I truly believe the world would be a very different place.

It’s easier said than done to avoid getting really angry on social media, because a lot of the time your anger will feel justified and self-righteous. It will feel good, to get angry that there are people out there with views that are wrong. It feels right.

“A business model that relies above all on getting and keeping attention has little time or use for neutrality, nuance or sophistication.” — Zoe Williams on the Guardian.

But all it does is put you into a state of constant exhaustion, and if you share in hopes for validation (like I’m prone to doing), well, you’re exposing it to other people who might not especially want to see that a member of congress known for being racist, misogynistic, or used otherwise hateful, use a nasty slur to describe a marginalized group, for example.

Unless you’re going to use it to get people motivated to change policies, volunteer, or bring to light new information about someone, consider not sharing your anger.

Here’s how you can avoid social media rage:

1. Share positivity.

If you see a troll, don’t give it attention. Don’t quote-retweet to your followers, don’t tell other people about how horrible it was. Think of something nice instead. You can Google “Good things that happened today,” or just share an observation from your life. For example, I saw a dog today. The dog was very good. I sent a picture to my friend, and cheered her up.

2. Do something.

It’s hard to feel like we have much to give which why sharing stuff on social media is so attractive to us, because it’s easy and we feel like we’re making a difference. But we’re not. So instead, when you see yet another news article about how Trump is trying to use money to build a wall, and you feel mad or sad, but helpless, contribute time or money to a cause you’re passionate about if you’re able.

For instance, every Monday, I run with a local volunteer group called GoodGym where members jog to a place, volunteer there for 45 minutes, then jog back. It’s not much, but when I feel utterly lost and like I can’t make a difference, I remember that with just a little time and effort, I can make my community a bit better.

3. Try social media on your terms.

You don’t have to drop it entirely, which can seem like a radical step. It’s a big jump and you might not be ready for it — I’m certainly not.

But try small steps. Turn off your notifications for Twitter. You don’t have to have news blaring at you non-stop. Instead, engage with it when you choose, when you feel emotionally prepared. Or don’t at all.

Follow people you like. Unfollow the ones who you notice make you angry — even if you agree with what they’re saying. Unless your anger drives you to effect change, it’s a pointless waste of energy.

Varkala – Fill and Chill!

I visited Varkala, few weeks back and I must say it was a nice and relaxing experience for me. This place is a very good option to enjoy sun, sand, sea and good food. The sunset view here is very different as compared to other sea side sunsets. The sun looks like a big giant red ball while it submissively disappears in the anatomy of sea. Sun glittering on the body of sea gives an eye-soothing panorama.


Varkala is a coastal town located in southern part of southern most state of India, Kerala. You can enjoy the breeze and the roar of the sea without getting your feet dirty in the sand from the cliff, which gives a very beautiful view of Varkala beach from the top. Beaches here are clean and quite. This place has hippie vibes and attracts lots of backpackers. You will find mostly young crowd here, and a lot of foreigners. Varkala is also famous for yoga and Ayurveda. One can easily find all level and variety of yoga practices and classes here. Varkala cliff is a delight for people who love to walk. It is a stretched out pathway, with a lot of cafes and colourful stalls of souvenir and clothes on one side and the vast Arabian sea on the other.

View from cliff

Varkala is almost 50Km from Trivandrum airport and 180Km from Cochin airport. You can book flight to any of these two airports and get a taxi to reach Varkala. You can also reach via train to Varkala Sivagiri Railway Station and can take auto from there. I went there by bus which dropped me in Trivandrum city, to reach Varkala from there you can get a taxi or an auto.

  • Enjoy unforgettable sunset and sunrise.
  • Surf in the sea.
  • Try paragliding.
  • Attend yoga classes and do yoga sea side.
  • Walk/cycle on Varkala cliff.
  • Shop a lot of stuff, and don’t forget to bargain.
  • Have tasty food on the cafes, enjoy organic tea.
  • Try fresh sea food.
  • Sit by the sea and chill.

Accommodation and food is cheap here and hence it won’t be heavy on your pocket if you plan for Varkala. There are a lot of sea view resorts on the cliff, Krishnatheeram Ayur Holy Beach Resort or Black Beach Resort can be a good choice. About places to eat there are really good options out there. I will mention the must try ones here :

Coffee Temple – offers a variety of organic teas, hot and cold coffees, smoothies, breakfasts, salads, pizzas, sandwiches, Mexican, Chinese food. It is a very calm place, you can spend hours here gazing the sea.

Darjeeling Café – who wouldn’t love food with good music. This place has a lovely chilled out vibe and staff here are friendly. Serves all the Indian, Chinese and quick bites like sandwiches also. Virgin mojito is a must try here. It was quite liberating.

Abba – Great restaurant with a a lot of choices for desserts. People who has sweet tooth will love this place. Also view of sunset is amazing from here.

Cafe Del Mar – This is the best cafe according to the food they serve, the variety they provide and the ambience, also the service is really quick. It is spacious and clean.

Tibetan Kitchen – This can be a good choice if you are a fan of Dumplings and Thukpa. It is also famous for fresh sea food. Restaurant being on 1st floor, provides a very good view of sea with amazing food.

Apart from these places, there are some cafes like Sunset Bar, Rock Cafe which setup DJ and plays rave music during night time, you can set your foot loose there and enjoy the moment.

Winter Survival Kit.

am I the only one who’s effortlessly drinking loads of water and getting super dry skin these days?! it’s insaane!

The winter is hot and it’s cold this year and here are some of my favorite things to keep around:

* a moisturizing body cream that smells orangy ^.^

  • ginger milk and honey for that sore throat and upset stomach (this too smells AMAZING)
  • * a deep burgundy sweater that makes you want to hug yourself to feel the softness (not out of self-love)
  • * fluffy socks -obv.
  • * oh and Pinterest because it teaches you how to actually get a life and do stuff, I’m addicted! -to the scrolling not doing 🙂

— What’s in your winter survival kit? .

I left my career 6 months ago…

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

Why I’ve Been Gluten Free for Over 5 Years Now

Diets. Fads. Quick Fixes.

We’re constantly bombarded with the newest get healthy scheme which may claim to help you lose weight, feel great, look better and improve your health.

Over 5 years ago, the Gluten Free Trend was all the rage. Sources were claiming if you went gluten free it would help you feel better, heal your gut and even aid in weight loss.

When going Gluten Free was a trending topic — I naturally was a skeptic.

Until I gave it a try.

Why I Went Gluten Free

Since I was 16-years-old until my early 30’s, I had suffered from daily headaches and weekly migraines. I went through the whole gamut of getting my eyes tested to make sure I had the correct prescription, to monitoring my water intake, limiting my caffeine and even played around with my diet to see if eliminating specific foods (dairy, meat, sugar) were attributing to my incessant headaches and migraines.

I found no relief.

In my twenties and early thirties, I would wake up with a headache and go to bed with a headache every day.

All day, every day, I had a headache. Furthermore, every week I would suffer from at least one migraine which would require a prescription medication to help me cope with the disabling symptoms.

Unfortunately, I accepted this situation. I suffered from daily headaches and sadly, I lived my life with a constant headache — no joke here. I was so used to this state of being, that it became my normal.

When the gluten free trend was on the rise, I decided to do some of my own research before I started listening to others. (That’s the skeptic in me.)

With the push of my boyfriends’ sister- I was convinced that going on a 30-day gluten free experiment wouldn’t hurt me and I might learn something about myself.

So off I went — no gluten for 30 days. And mind you, I was heartbroken. I enjoyed my bread, sweets, carbs galore and so on, but what I discovered during these 30 days was life changing.

What I Discovered

Within 3 days of being gluten free I noticed something odd — I was thinking more clearly. It was as if a layer of fog that I had being living under had been lifted. Not only was I was thinking more clearly, but I felt more alert and present throughout my day.

But then the magic hit home on day 7. One-week into being gluten free, I had woken up and realized I didn’t have a headache. Not only did I not have a headache, but I didn’t have an even have a headache the night before. I was amazed.

As day 7 continued on — I still had zero headaches.

And then I realized for the first time in almost 15 years, I had gone a whole week without a migraine.

I didn’t have to carry around my prescription medication or any NSAIDs to help me with the symptoms of chronic headaches, and because of this, I felt free from having to plan my day and activities around my headaches and migraines.

And if that isn’t enough- I also noticed that I had more energy, less belly bloating and my digestion was slowly improving.

As I neared the 30-day mark- I was faced with the question: Is gluten the sole contributing factor to my daily headaches and weekly migraines? I had to find out and there was one way.

My Own Experiment

When I arrived at day 30 without gluten- I had to see for myself if in fact, gluten was the sole contributing factor to my headaches and migraines. So naturally when my boyfriend ordered take out that day from a local restaurant that bakes fantastic, glutenous, fluffy dinner rolls, I asked him to order extra dinner rolls.

Then the time came — Being gluten free for 30 days was going to end now. I ate one gluten filled dinner roll and then I ate another gluten filled dinner roll, and then I waited.

Within one hour, I was experiencing brain fog (a symptom I had no idea I had because it was my quote-on-quote normal way of feeling) and a headache set in.

To make matters worse, the intensity of my headache gradually worsened over the evening and I ended up taking an over the counter medication to mitigate the symptoms.

The following morning- I still experienced my brain fog and my morning bathroom visit, didn’t go that well. (TMI)

I will admit, I was a bit shocked at the results. One simple culprit had significantly impacted the quality of my life for years. And mind you, it had negatively impacted the quality of my life.

I was done with gluten, forever.

Since my little 30-day experiment I realized gluten and the side effects I experience are not worth the daily headache, the brain fog, the potential for migraines and various inflammatory responses in my body.

The Long-Term Benefits I’ve Experienced

It’s been over 5 years that I’ve been living a gluten free life, and with a supportive boyfriend, I have found that this is my lifestyle upgrade that is not negotiable.

I’ll quickly summarize the long-lasting benefits I have experienced and continue to experience since adopting a gluten free diet:

-I no longer experience daily headaches and bouts of brain fog coupled with weekly migraines

-My vision has improved since I’ve gone gluten free (gluten creates inflammation in the body)

-I experience very little occurrences of “random” bloating

-My periods aren’t as painful as they used to be

-I have less aches and pains in my body

-I have naturally adopted more plants into my diet versus filling up with glutenous carbs

(Please note: The benefits listed above are my own. This is what I have experienced, and I attribute the increase in my health and well-being due to the removal of an inflammatory food. If you’re wondering how gluten creates an inflammatory response in the body — please click HERE for more information. )

How To Get Started With A Gluten-Free Diet

Regardless of the reason of why you want to start a gluten free diet, it’s important to know how to get to started without feeling overwhelmed.

Here are a few tips on how to get started with a gluten free diet:

1. Reorganize and Clean Out to make your pantry gluten free

(Here’s a resource on how to identify gluten in common foods)

2. Become an avid label reader to avoid gluten

(Plus, you’ll become much more aware of all the ingredients in your food.)

3. Enlist your family and significant other in your new way of eating

4. Learn which foods are naturally gluten free

5. Stock up on necessary gluten free products

(Pizza crusts, flour, cereal, pasta and so on.)

6. Learn how to cook gluten free

(Check out this resource for easy gluten free cooking)

7. Plan ahead when you’re going out to eat

(Take a peak at the menu ahead of time and see what your options are! Remember- your server is there to help! Don’t be afraid to ask questions or ask for modifications to your meals.)

Final Thoughts

My journey in going gluten free has been eye opening for me. My gluten free diet has led me down the path of eating more mindfully and focusing on eating for optimal health.

If you’re considering going gluten free for any amount of time and have questions, send me an email! I’m here to help!