Quarantine Diaries: Traveling Home

So originally, my cousin was supposed to get married at the end of June. My girlfriend and I had planned a nice mini “East Coast tour” centered around the fact that I had to go home anyway for this wedding. Our plans included seeing my hometown as well as the city of Philadelphia, New York City, and the Jersey shore. Unfortunately, COVID had forced my cousin to push back the date of his wedding. What’s more, there was many places we wanted to go that were now not open for business. So, we had to rearrange our plans.

We certainly thought about not going at all, but instead shortened our trip and were still able to see a modified version of our original list. NYC was definitely out, but we did get a very quick driving tour of old city Philly in. We also got to spend some time with my friends in Philly, which included going to Morgan’s Pier and hanging out at my friend’s apartment with a great cheese plate. We also spent time in my hometown and with my family, and went down to Wildwood Crest for the weekend. Vanessa (who grew up in the desert) was obsessed with all the trees, greenery and landscaping, which really cracked my family up. We stopped to, quite literally, smell the flowers, and to take pictures with trees.  The beach was also awesome, of course, and we were able to do some kayaking and paddle boarding while we were down as well. We did a lot, but also did a lot less than we were going to pre-COVID. But truly, we had a great time! It was nice to spend some time at home, of course, but was also nice to plan a vacation centered around my hometown. I really enjoyed it. 

Traveling during COVID was obviously a little daunting and worrisome, but it wasn’t too bad. Here’s what I’ll say – this is a time where the airline you choose really matters. We flew American Airlines, where travel was pretty much business as normal. Our flights were 80% full or higher, with some even being completely full. Masks were required, of course, unless you were eating. The flight attendants gave you a little goodie bag when you got on the plane, and then didn’t really walk up and down the isles except to collect trash at the end. But again, otherwise it was just like any other American flight I’ve been on. I traveled home again about a month later, where I flew Delta. This was an entirely different experience. First off, they were not booking any middle row seats, so the plane was much more spread out. This already really eased a lot of anxiety. On several flights, I even had an entire row to myself. They also boarded the plane from back to front, where as American boarded front to back – which doesn’t make a lot of sense, since you’re forcing everyone to pass each other. The attendants still gave you a goodie bag, as well as wipes. They definitely walked up and down the isles a bit more than on American, but perhaps that was because of how spread out everyone was. After those two experiences, I would definitely recommend to fly Delta during COVID if you are traveling. Now, I’ll be traveling home AGAIN next month, where I’m flying American one direction and Delta the other, so I can give an update then on if this was a one-off experience or if you really should stick to Delta. 

I really didn’t take as many pictures as I could have, but here’s a collection of some of the good ones I found:

 

Thanks for reading! 

Tucson Gem Show 2020

Every year in Tucson, there is a giant gem, mineral, and jewelry convention that takes place for about 3 weeks in February. This year’s gem show just ended, and it was the first time i got to attend. I knew the Tucson Gem Show was a big deal, but I didn’t realize how huge this convention would be. People traveled to Tucson from all over the country, and many events took place all over the city. The events started on January 31st and just ended on Februrary 16th.

I attended a few different expos and spend so much money. The best places to go were in downtown Tucson and included thousands of vendors. The first weekend we went to the Red Lion’s Inn, where the entire place was rented out to vendors and their tents and displays spilled out all over the parking lots. The other place we went was the 22nd street show, which was set up more fairgrounds-style.

I love crystals and stones, so I was super happy to stumble upon some great finds. I got citrine, amethyst, black quartz, and so many more types of crystals. I also got chakra stones, ammoshite fossils, sage and incense, and a ring made of orange Mexican oyster shell. I was most excited to find modavite, because that particular stone makes a common appearance in my favorite podcast. Among many other purchases, I also was excited to find a box made out of crystal to keep jewelry or other items in. I got some gifts for upcoming birthdays and such as well. 

Again, the events happens every year in February all over Tucson. Next year’s show should begin on January 30th, 2021. Here are some of my favorite pics from this year’s show:

Thanks for reading!

Greece!

My family has always been big vacationers, and we’ve been taking big trips every few years since I was little. From Disney World, to the Grand Canyon, to Italy and Spain, my family really knows how to travel right. We’re used to doing vacations with a big group since my family is huge, but this trip to Greece was just my parents, my sister and me.

IMG-6035Our trip started in Athens, which took us almost a whole day of travel time to get to. We were able to explore the city plaza the first day and have a welcome dinner that included all the classic tourist events. We 
yelled “Opah!”, danced in a circle, and even got to break some plates – bucket list items checked off! The second day was also in Athens, where we got to tour the historical sites of the city. First stop was the site of the first Olympic games, and we also saw the Palace of Zeus.IMG-6070 Acropolis and the Parthenon were absolutely incredible and full of so much history. We did some shopping as well, of course, and had some drinks and snacks in different places around the plaza. To continue our deep dive into the amazing Greek cuisine, we went out to dinner with my mom’s coworker and friend whose family lives in Athens. Greek food is full of meat, pastries and pies, and of course, feta cheese. I truthfully don’t remember the names of over half of what I ate – but it was all SO GOOD.

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Following Athens, we took a ferry to spend a few days in the island of Mykonos. (For anyone who is curious, Lindsey Lohan’s beach club was unfortunately already IMG-6251closed when we were there.) The first day included a walking tour of Mykonos, which is full of small white alleys of shopping and restaurants. Everywhere on the island was absolutely beautiful, and I really couldn’t get over the view of the sea. We had more tour dinners in town, some time by the pool, and A LOT of shopping in town while in Mykonos. One day included a boat tour, where we were able to snorkel in the water and explore the island of Delos as well, which is full of history and the Place of Athena. We also spent a night out in a discoteca, which was a great IMG-6371time. My family had dinner on the water one night, where my sister and I both ordered “fish with a face on a plate.” Mykonos was probably my favorite part of the trip, just because it was so pretty and so much fun. 

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Santorini was even more beautiful and breathtaking than you could ever imagine. We took another quick ferry to get there, and also had to hike ourselves up quite a hill to the hotel. Since the whole island is basically built on the side of a volcano, everything is either up- or down-hill. The shopping was also awesome in Santorini, and the views were just as good if not better. Oia is the famous location of the view from which you can see all the white buildings with the blue dome tops – and it certainly did not disappoint. We went to a couple different locations on a bus tour of Santorini that provided amazing views of what the island IMG-6484has to offer. The sunsets in Santorini were unlike anything I’ve seen before, and none of our pictures do it justice. The colors that were created behind the ocean horizon blended into the mountains were one of the prettiest things I’ve ever seen in my life, IMG-8123truly. Our last day in Santorini was a free day that we spent on the black sand beach. The sand comes from the rubble of the volcano, which is the reason for the dark color (it also made for an incredible exfoliate). After so much running around and exploring, it was so nice to have the time to just relax on the beautiful beach and enjoy the island for our last day.

The trip home was rough, if I’m going to be totally honest. We already had a full day of travel planned to get back, and the delays out of the Athens airport definitely did not help. It was, of course, still worth it, and made getting home feel that much better. I had to get myself back to Arizona once we were back in the states as well, where there was an amazing welcome waiting for me.

I am always so grateful and appreciative of the amazing experiences that have been provided to me. I am so lucky to have the opportunity to explore countries and cultures that are different than my own, and to have the ability to travel. I’m so thankful that my family is happy, healthy, and fortunate enough to take trips like this. I hope we are able to plan many more!

Thanks for reading!

 

NYC DragCon 2019

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My favorite time of year has come… DRAG CON NYC!!! I went last year with one of my best friends, Rachel, and we were eager to get back again this year. We had a blast at DragCon 2018, but now that we knew the lay of the land, we were ready to make out even better than before for 2019.

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Okay first, let’s talk about my wig. I wore a white one last year, that was cheap and just ordered off of Amazon. I really loved it, but it was very obvious that it was a wig. Not that I cared, it was just fun to participate. I did the same thing this year and ordered a new wig online, this time picking a lavender color with bangs. After posting a few things on my Instagram, everyone was complimenting me and asking about “my new hair.” LOL – I had to let several people know that this was a wig. I honestly did not think that it looked super realistic, but I’m still getting comments about this look a month after the fact.

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Anyway, like I said, Rach and I knew what we were doing this year. We got there in time to watch the queens arrivals again on the pink carpet, and then we were quick to jump in some lines. We got to IMG-5735meet SO MANY QUEENS!! It was really incredible. It started with Michelle Visage, from whom I also bought a signed autographed copy of her book, Diva Rules. Kennedy Davenport had a short line at her booth, as did Jiggly Caliente, IMG-5743so we were already making out great just within the first few hours of the day. Soju and Ariel Versace were together in a booth, so we actually got to meet both ofIMG-5771 them at the same time. My favorite queen that I met that day was Willam, who has always been one of my all-time favorites. Willam was releasing his new line of makeup called “CoverBoy”, and was sitting in a giant chair taking selfies with fans. I told her I was a ‘friend of the pod’ (Race Chaser Podcast), and we talked about the shade that she threw on her season. It was unbelievable! RuPaul was right on the main stage for a majority of the day, playing DJ and dancing along to all his favorite songs. It was honestly captivating to just watch him up there, standing less than IMG-5741100 feet from me. Later on in the day, Rachel and I were sitting against a random wall to give our feet a break while we scarfed down some hot dogs from a street vendor. Rachel was right in the middle of sentence when she saw Ru walk around the corner, and she immediately yelled out a quick, “HI RU!!” I snapped my head around just in time to see Ru wave hello directly to Rachel before going into a VIP louge. IT WAS AMAZING.

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To end the day, we went to a panel where Ross Mathews was reading an exclusive exert from his upcoming book, Name Drop. (His current best-selling book, Man Up, can be found anywhere fine books are sold.) I actually made sure that we were first in line, so that we could be front row. One of the staff noticed my eagerness for Ross, and actually gave us some free passes and also moved uIMG-5773s into the reserved section so that I was directly in front of Ross, completely in his eye sight! The panel was great, the exert was hilarious, and I got to talk to Ross to ask a question during the panel. He actually recognized me, and laughed about the fact that I had left him one of my famous voicemails earlier in the day. We took a picture together after the panel was over, and we are now definitely well on our way to becoming best friends. Just wait.

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And so concluded day one. We stayed with my friend Brian, who I’ve been close to since elementary school. He and his boyfriend live in Brooklyn, and the two of them provided us with some high quality NYC fun that night. We went to a Burning Man themed party, and were out til about 5 in the morning. I truly have no idea how I was able to be awake and functional for day two.

We got there the second day just in time to make it to Ivy Oddly’s Odd School – a panel about her fashion during her time on the show. Since she is the reigning queen currently, it was super IMG-5866cool to just be in the same room as her, listening to her iconic laugh. After that, we got right back to the booth lines. We were able to seeIMG-5890 Manila Luzon, who was always one of my favorites even before her time on All-Stars. We also got to meet the lovely Gia Gunn, who is such an influencing trans icon. There were plenty of other queens whose booths we may have been able to make it to, but some of the minimums kinda turned us off. (In order to meet a queen at her booth, you usually have to purchase something from her merchandise. Some required a minimum, so you had to buy at least $30 or so worth of stuff in order to get a picture. Personally, I don’t like the minimum purchase requirement, as it diverts some people from getting to visit some of their favorites.) The bestIMG-5854 queen of day two was the same as my favorite from last year, Ongina. I just love her so much – she’s so funny and adorable and 
super fun to just be around. I so hope to see her on an upcoming season of All-Stars or something, cause she is such a star and totally deserves more fans.

The rest of the day was spent doing some shopping within the vendors between booths and watching a totally awesome pole-dancing competition. We also had IMG-5895some fun playing around with the big photo props. There’s always iconic sayings from the show printed on huge signs with impeccable lighting. We spent so much time running around that we actually IMG-5911stayed all the way to the end of the event, where they started turning lights off and packing up to leave. We definitely got the full use of our tickets this year, between all the amazing queens we got to meet and the panels we got to attend. Not to mention, of course, all the photo opps for my Insta. The day ended with another street vendor hot dog and a long bus ride out of the city.

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DragCon is without a doubt one of my favorite weekends of the entire year, and I look forward to many many more! This tradition for us will not be short lived, and I’m thinking maybe for 2020, we’ll attend Drag Con 2020 LA…?!

Thanks for reading!

Road Trip 2019!

IMG-4397I’ve been planning my big move to the amazing city of Tucson, AZ for quite some time now, and the day has finally arrived!! My amazing friend Rachel, who was also my college roommate, was completely awesome and decided to make the trip with me.

IMG-4468We started out in or around Allentown, Pennsylvania, and separately drove a quick hour to my parents’ house outside of Philly, so that Rachel could drop her car there for after her flight home. To be frank, that was probably the worst part of the entire trip, because it was pouring down rain with thunder and lightening. With my windshield wipers on the fastest speed, I hoped for better weather once we got out of PA.

IMG-4403I got my wish, and the rest of the day was absolutely beautiful. We drove through the tip of Delaware, to the outskirts of Baltimore, Maryland, through Richmond Virginia, and eventually made our way to Nashville, Tennessee for our first overnight stop. We stayed at just a cheap motel, but we were able to see some of the “downtown” life, and had dinner with my cousin, who lives in the area.

IMG-4476Day two took us deep into the South, going through the rest of Tennessee and into Arkansas. We stopped for a leisurely lunch in Little Rock, where Rachel was able to find an outdoor cafe that was dog friendly. With locally sourced food, equality signs, and a cashier with dreadlocks, it was totally not what I was envisioning to find in the South! They did take a very long time, but luckily this was our shortest day of driving, so we still made it to our Air BnB in Dallas, Texas before it got dark. The apartment was beautiful, and we were exhausted, so we pretty much watched some Netflix and went straight to sleep.

IMG-4428The last day was the longest, and as we drove through the rest of Texas, I was made aware of what a gigantic state it truly is. It felt like we were never going to make it out, but it was definitely exciting for us to see how close we were to Mexico. Normally we would have had to go through border patrol check points, but they were currently closed because of some political bullshit, so we got lucky and could fly right by without stopping. We cruised through New Mexico and made it to my new state of Arizona while the sun was still up! (The time difference certainly worked in our favor for the entire trip.)

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Rachel stayed the night with me on an air mattress in my new place, but unfortunately had to fly home the next morning for work. This was actually Rachel’s first time on a plane, and here she was flying home all by herself – signs of a true friend!! She also helped me document along the way while my hands were busy at the wheel, so I was able to compile our adventures into one video:

 

So that’s it! I’m here in Tucson, Arizona! I made it – and this is my new home.

Thanks for watching! And thanks for reading.

NYC Drag Con 2018

OH MY GAAAGG, HUNTYYYY! This was my first year attending RuPaul’s Drag Con, and I will never ever ever miss it again. I went to the NYC convention on September 29th and 30th. There is an LA DragCon every year as well in the spring, so as a result of the coasts there are different queens that are able to attend each one. Either way, I promise, you will not be disappointed.

drag con 1There was some shenanigans that happened on the Friday night of the event, but because of work, my friend and I were going to arrive into NYC too late to attend anything. So we made sure we got a fresh start Saturday morning to get there at the opening to watch the grand entrances of the queens.

First was the Crowned Queen arrivals! This included season 1 winner Bebe Zahara Benet, all-stars 3 winner Trixie Mattel, season 8 winner Bob the Drag Queen, and the reigning queen from season 10 Aquaria. Next was the other arrivals of queens, including Mayhem Miller, Viviacious, Acid Betty, Blair St. Clair, Ongina, Miss Vanjie, and more. Rachel and I had decent enough spots on the pink carpet to see everyone walk right by us! (Other queens were at the convention as well that just did not take part in making a grand entrance.)

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Rachel and I decided to look the part of DragCon so we both wore silly wigs and jumpsuits to the event. Ru provided us with many photo opportunities, not just with our favorite queens in their booths, but also in a large photo area! This area had many different back drops, themes, props and displays to take pictures with – and we took full advantage!

After having some fun in the photo booths, we made our way to one of our favorite queens: Detox. We had an amazing experience with Detox and her booth as a whole. First, the booth was right next to drag con 4Alyssa Edward’s, and we were lucky enough to be standing in line while she made her entrance to her booth!! That helped to make the line go super quick, so it didn’t feel like we waited long at all. We purchased photos for Detox to sign (there was a minimum, but Rachel and I were allowed to combine our purchases so it was only $10 each), and then were shown to where Detox was posing for pictures. Detox is soooo tall! Which is hilarious, because she was actually not wearing any shoes at all in the pictures. Her panel blocked it, and she was still taller than basically everyone. She talked to us for a second and we totally got starstruck and fumbled with our words. Then we got our autographs and photo and that was that. She was so kind and present and I loved her just as much after meeting her.

drag con 5When we got out of line with Detox, there was a short line for Blair St. Clair, so we jumped right in. Unfortunately, she was taking a break and took a long while to come back. The line really wasn’t long so we thought it would go quick once she was back, but she took A LOT of breaks. I could kind of see her while she was in her “backstage” section, and she was spending a lot of time looking in the mirror and fixing her hair while her fans waited. We were in line for about an hour with not even a lot of people in front of us. Her people definitely have her on a pedestal, because the treatment was totally different than when we met Detox. Blair just didn’t seem as down to earth, and her guy only took ONE picture. With Detox, I had like 15 to choose from, and with Blair we had ONE. I still like Blair, but I definitely like her a little less after meeting her.

drag con 12There are many panels that take place throughout the weekend, but it can be hard to get into some of them since seats are limited and there are some favorites in the house. We had several panels that we wanted to go to that got filled up, including Katya (insert heart shattering imagery here). We did, however, make it into a fashion discussion panel with Ongina, Bebe Zahara Benet, and Miss Fame. I absolutely adore Ongina and loved everything she said – she is a real treat. Bebe honestly didn’t have much to contribute to the conversation, but I find her beautiful and entertaining as hell. Miss Fame definitely felt the most qualified for this panel, flaunting her relationship with designers such as Marc Jacobs. Some of what she said was interesting but she totally talked for way too long and made it largely about her.

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YOU KNOW I HAD TO SEE MY MANS ROSS MATHEWS!! I wasn’t able to make it into the Judge Judges panel, but you best believe I was front row for Bossy Rossy’s Runway Games. In between his silly games, Ross did some crowd work and I was able to get his attention and tell him that he has talked to me on the podcast before! Heremembered when I called in and it mademe wildly happy.

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The second day, we were moving a little slow as a result of being out late the night before, but we had more queens to see! We didn’t do wigs the second day, as they had gotten a little itchy by the end of the day. Instead, we wore colorful outfits and took advantage of the shorter lines to do some shopping in the merch booths.

drag con 9Meeting Ongina literally might have been the highlight of my weekend. She was absolutely incredible, charismatic, and stunning. We really caught her at the end of the weekend, so the line was short and the merch was cheap – like, generously cheap! I told her that people in high school called me “gyna” and she called me her long lost cousin! She also spilled some T when I told her I saw her at the panel, throwing shade on Miss Fame for taking over. It was amazing. I felt like I was chit chatting with my friend for a minute, which is exactly the experience you want out of DragCon. Ongina is truly special, kind, adorable, one of the best queens ever ever ever, and I loved her so so so much more after meeting her.

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To have a great end to an awesome weekend, we made it into the final live taping of Rupaul’s  podcast, What’s the T? with Michelle Visage. There was 3 different tapings throughout the weekend, but the one we attended was with guest Kathy Najimy, who is known for her appearances in Veep, Hocus Pocus, Sister Act, and more. It ended with a song, which felt like the right way to conclude the festivities.

For more pictures and videos from DragCon NYC 2018, you can go to my Instagram @ginafinio and watch the highlights story on my profile.

Thanks for reading!

Vegas, baby!

I’ve been to Las Vegas a few times now, twice this year, and it’s one of my favorite places on earth. I always have way too much fun when Vegas and I’m dying to go back ASAP.

Like I said, I was in Vegas twice this year – once with my boyfriend and the other time with friends for a bachelorette party. It truly doesn’t matter who you go with – it’s easy to have the best time regardless. It will definitely be a different experience depending on who is in your group, and I would be sure that everyone is on the same page with what you want to do and see (there’s so so so much more than just the club scene).

vegas 4When I went with my boyfriend, we stayed at the Excalibur, which is at the very bottom of the Las Vegas Strip. What was great about that location was being able to just walk right out of our hotel onto the strip and not have to worry about an uber to rely on. However, it’s important to note that everything in Vegas looks a lot closer than it actually is because of the size, so you have to prepare for some walking. With my friends for the bach party, we stayed at the D in Downtown Las Vegas, which was incredibly inexpensive. As much as I loved staying on the strip, “Old Vegas” is totally something to see. We walked out of our hotel into a strip of live music everywhere and walk up bars. A lot of the streets are blocked off for walkers only, which makes it really fun to explore. Regardless of where you stay, I at least recommend staying at a hotel with a casino.

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The bride in the bachelorette group was not the party girl that you would envision going to Vegas, so when she told us that she had a surprise event that she found on GroupOn, I was nervous. In true fashion of this girl, she brought us on an adventure that ended with an escape room. Although it wasn’t an activity that I expected to be doing in Vegas, it was super scary and really to see how our group could act as a team. (Look out wedding, the bridal party is ready for ya.)

I’m no expert on the best places to eat in Las Vegas, but there are two places that I would for sure suggest. Breakfast in Paris is for sure the way to go. It’s located towards the top of the strip and has amazing food in several places. We ate at Mon Ami Gabi (mimosas included), and no one was disappointed. If you’re going to do a buffet, Aria has the best one. I probably had 5 courses, including crab legs, PAELLA, and some incredible salmon. I went home and literally craved that buffet line, and even now thinking about it is making my mouth water.

vegas 2When you go to Vegas, especially if it’s the first time, plan an afternoon to do nothing but walk the strip. Since there are no open container rules, you can go in and out of casinos for drinks while walking up or down the strip as your way to see it all. Playing some slots along the way can even help you get free drinks or win money as well. When I was there with the girls, the weather was incredibly incredibly hot, so it was also nice to get the AC as we went in and out of casinos. Just remember that everything is huge, so it will take you several hours to get from one end of the strip to the other. But you’ll have an amazing afternoon and should have a good buzz by the end.

vegas 7I will never ever ever ever go to Vegas without seeing a show. I saw four different shows within my trips to Vegas this year, and the talent is evident. When I went with my boyfriend, we saw the show Absinthe in Caesar’s Palace, which literally took place in a circus tent. This was mainly acrobatic/strength talents, and one of the couples was even on America’s Got Talent! With the girls, I saw Mystère by Cirque Du Soleil. This was my first experience with a Cirque show, and I’ve heard that you really can’t go wrong. If I can make it back to Vegas for more of their shows, I’m dying to see Zumanity or O.

Alright, alright. Now the dirty shows. With my boyfriend, we saw Fantasy, which is the longest running Vegas topless show on the strip. It was truly something to see, not just because of all the beautiful women, but their talent was remarkable. The main chick was giving me Christina Aguilera in the movie Burlesque vibes with her bring-the-house-down kind of voice, and I fell in love with the girl from South Africa who performed on aerially on the silks. If you’re good with seeing some boobies, it’s such a good show. With the girls, however, we saw Thunder From Down Under, which was less talent but a whole lot of fun. The boys have a ton of fun with the crowd, pulling brides-to-be on stage and giving out souvenirs to the crowd. The bride in my group was not willing to participate, which resulted in me getting pulled up on stage instead (no regrets).

vegas 6If you are going with a group of girls, it’s not hard to get VIP service in Vegas. I can’t say that this experience will be the same if there are any men in your group, but my boyfriend and I ended up at the strip club Sapphire and had our own fun as well. However, promoters are everywhere in Vegas and super easy to find on social media as well. My first recommendation is to go during the week when things are less busy and they have more tables that they need to fill. We had vegas 5some promoters numbers ahead of time that could get us into the parties that we wanted, but we found someone while walking down the strip as well. It’s honestly worth it to talk to some of those people and hear them out, since we really got the hook up. We had a table at LIGHT that night with bottle service for free, and a daybed with free bottle service at DAYLIGHT Beach Club the next day for the pool party.

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No matter how you spend your time in Vegas, I highly recommend one thing before you make your way out of the city: In & Out.

Someone, anyone, PLEASE, give me a reason to go back ASAP!

Thanks for reading.

Alaska

It’s on my bucket list to visit every state in the U.S., and last week I was lucky enough to visit the beautiful state of Alaska. I traveled the 4,000 miles with my boyfriend and his family to a discrete cabin a couple of hours outside of Anchorage.

 

 

 

The common questions I’ve received revolved around the weather of course, because of its cold climate by nature and our travel plans for late June. The whole week was beautiful weather, staying in the 60’s during the day and dropping to 50’s at night. There was really only a couple of days that were chilly, and just one day of some rain. It was light for most of the day, however, and only actually got “dark” when there was a heavy overcast. In the winter Alaska experiences the opposite, and we were told that the heavy dark days are the hardest part about winters in Alaska. But the extended daylight was great, and gave us the opportunity to pack a lot of things into each day.

 

 

 

The glaciers were by far the most enjoyable part of the trip for me. We were able to hike the Matanuska Glacier, which is over 27 miles long and 4 miles wide. Our path did not cross even a fraction of this mass, and yet it was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. We also did a 5 hour day cruise in Whittier, in which we came face to face with several amazing glaciers.

 

 

 

The mountains and the wildlife was also incredible. We saw bald eagles, sea otters, bears, moose, elk, musk oxen, wolves and more. Between the Musk Ox Farm and the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, we observed so many amazing creatures living their lives.

 

 

 

Downtown Anchorage holds a Saturday Market throughout the summer that includes local vendors and artists, and we were lucky enough to attend during the Summer Solstice Festival as well. In additional to the tents of beautiful crafts and delicious food, there was also outdoor music, street and rooftop bars, and blow up activities for children. I spent a ton of time going in and out of tents and filling up my stomach and bags with everything I could find, and I could have spent even more.

 

 

 

This trip was also an amazing opportunity for my boyfriend and I to grow. After being together a year, this trip provided many new experiences and memories that helped us strengthen what we have. Exploring a new place and adventuring through nature together is an amazing way to spend time with someone you love, and by the end, we had fallen even more in love with each other.

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Our world is beautiful and amazing and there is so much to see! Traveling is a way to feel alive and experience all the incredible things that the world has to offer. If you ever have the chance to visit Alaska, GO!

Thanks for reading.