The Engaged Life

What’s most important to me is that we love the qualities of each other that are foundational to our character and that make us who we are, no one else, but us. Making a connection with another person’s values is the strongest connection you can find.

Written to celebrate my one year engagement anniversary

Isaiah and Peta-Ann – insta: mixedwitlove

Being in a committed relationship is a world-win of emotions, feeling, thoughts and perspectives but ultimately such a comfortable and genuine place to rest your heart.

Since being engaged 1 year ago, I’ve started to look at our relationship as the beginning of an eternal union and have silently been analyzing our highs and our lows through the eyes of marriage. Being young and fully committed is a challenge when there aren’t many of my peers that are in the same category or even close to be – which is 100% fine – but having few people that share the same experiences, I am reluctant to share moments with them and opinions about the relationship because I know honestly that they just won’t understand in the same way. They don’t know what we have but I sometimes wish they could find it for themselves.

My partner and I are on a track, in step together down a path that leads us wherever God means it to go but what we know is that we’re extremely excited to be on it together. What’s most important to me is that we love the qualities of each other that are foundational to our character and that make us who we are, no one else, but us. Making a connection with another person’s values is the strongest connection you can find. This is because if you cannot put the similar amount of energy into the things that mean the most to you (like: family time, unique experiences, honesty, integrity, being present etc.) then you may catch yourself in a constant state of disagreement, now how can love live in that?

I say all this to say, 1 year into the engagement, or pre-marriage as I sometimes think, and almost 5 years together, we’re still figuring it out. We disagree and argue here and there but we know it’s as great as its always been. I’ll leave you with a piece of advice that helps me overcome those moments when my brain hits the gas petal and I start to overthink…no one knows what you’re going through but you, no one knows your relationship but you, stop trying to improve on what is already good and just enjoy your moment.

Thank you for reading this Urban Guide

All Things Music Festival: Coachella 2018

When your partying in sea of people all day, under the many layers of sunscreen you’ve applied, and the dehydration you may feel from it all, there are many reasons why the personal care should continue during your time at the music festival.

Summer 2018 is so close I can almost hear the Drake bangers on repeat. That means patios are coming out of hibernation, parties go later than ever, and festival season is upon us!

Attention my flower power gals and laser light gentlemen this urban guide will offer some tips and advice about #festivallife and how to get down with the get down. I recently attended Coachella 2018 so the bulk of my advice is coming from my experiences there.

Theme: Accomodations, Personal, During the Concert (Bring Cash), After the Concert

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Indio, Palm Desert

Accommodations

Engaging with the elements and the thousands of people around you is what makes music festivals so great. When preparing for a 3-day music festival you need to book your accommodations in advance – book a hotel, reserve a place on Airbnb, or pull out the old camping gear but arranging your sleeping space is key if you want to make it through the weekend.

When you find a place map the route by taxi, uber, or walking distance because travel time that is unexpected can cut into your dancing time. For our Coachella trip shuttle passes were included with our entrance wristbands.

Night 1 of the concert while coming home in the dark we got off at the wrong hotel! Remember: especially on the first night, talk to your driver and make sure you know how to get back and when to get off (or write it on your arm).

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Courtyard Marriott Palm Springs

Personal

You’ve probably spent weeks or even months preparing for the big event and you’ve put infinite amounts of time and money into self care techniques and rigorous gym regimes before even stepping foot on the festival grounds. When your partying in sea of people all day, under the many layers of sunscreen you’ve applied, and the dehydration you may feel from it all, there are many reasons why the personal care should continue during your time at the music festival.

I recommend packing some soap, some hand wipes, a spray bottle, and a bandana to help stay your freshest in the hot summer sun. The bandana will also serve to protect your nose and lungs from dirt that gets kicked up into the air as people walk (it’s a real thing, google Coachella Cough – I had it.)

For the clumsier bunch, having some band-aids and a pair of nail clippers in your pack may come in useful in case you get hurt. The nail clippers will double as small scissors if necessary.

Leave the non-essentials back at camp. No one wants to be carrying around a heavy bag of stuff while falling into a deep trance of the rhythm and base. Only bring with you the things you will need:

  • Photo IDs, wallet, bandana, phone/camera, water bottle/spray bottle, external charger etc.

During the Concert

This is your big moment. You may not be on the stage or behind the DJ’s booth but you are feeling like a star. Grab your dancing partner and dance like no ones watching.

It’s important to be in the moment when you are mid-festival. There have been so many times when I have been focused on getting the perfect camera shot, or been way too serious about the plan for the day. While you’re at the concert try to just feel your surroundings and put yourself in perspective of where you are in the universe at every possible moment.

Keep a buddy system. If you’re going with a large group, or even a small group, it’s important that you stick together. Festival grounds can be very large and confusing if you don’t know where you are. Especially if your group is always on the move and it may be hard to find them.

Stay Hydrated. The sun and humidity is on another level. Elevated by the booming base from the amplifiers coming at you in every direction. To avoid feeling overwhelmed, you can bring a re-fillable canteen or water pouch to sip on and have mints/candy between meals.

Crowd Sourcing

“Excuse me, I’m just trying to get to my friends *points towards stage*

LOL, this works great, up to a point. Being in close proximity to a star icon on the stage is a rush that only true concert admirers can relate. That goes for being in a crowd and feeding off the rush that comes with it. Be nice! Everyone hates being in a big crowd for hours and feeling like somethings going to pop off right beside them. So the trick is to be nice to everyone and use manners.

Remember: Patience is key. Everyone is moving slowly. They are all in pain from standing for so long.

A big pet peeve of mine is when people squat on the ground for a long time while everyone else is standing and are upset when people step on them by accident….

Upset Mid Concert?

This happens a lot. I bet at least one time throughout the concert someone will be arguing. Look around and see it, hear it, but emotions and endorphins are high so friends, couples, siblings, cousins, are all going through the same thing. Just take a breath and maybe step away for a couple minutes. Stay focused on where you are and why it’s happening.

If you’re caught in the middle of people that are in conflict don’t feel pressure to pick a side, or make everyone happy again. Choose you, and enjoy your time while it’s yours.

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Must Have: Coachella Snowcone

Bring Cash

Credit cards are useful but nothing is more convenient than cash money. Carry it securely in your bag with your personal ID and use caution when taking money out to pay for something. Things can fall without notice (that’s almost how I lost my credit card while paying for merchandise).

ATM fees at festivals can be very high because vendors know party goers are in constant need to pay for things. Plus if you are overseas you may also have to battle the exchange rates and conversion fees issued by your bank.

Cash is festival King 💸.

After the Concert

The come up is real, and so is the come down!

Returning home at the end of a festival you’re still on a high from the lights and your senses are out of control. Schedule some down time to recoup and get enough sleep and nutrients to replenish all you lost. I suggest eating a clean and healthy meal because most likely you haven’t been eating properly all weekend. Vitamins always.

Share your memories with friends and family. Fun is meant to be shared and studies show reflecting back on your positive experiences may increase your overall quality of life.

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Iconic Ferris Wheel

That’s it for this seasons festival guide on making the most of your concert season. Remember: it’s not where you are but what you take with you as you go. If you have upcoming concerts or festivals this year Urban Guide to the Galaxy wishes you a safe and litt time.

Thanks for reading this Urban Guide.

♦︎♦︎♦︎

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Happy New Year from Urban Guide to the Galaxy! ~ Read to start the year with a bang

In true optimist form, this post will break down the advantages of future planning and provide simple tips on setting S.M.A.R.T Objectives with easy-to-follow tactics.

That’s a wrap on 2017. You will probably agree that 2017 has had its ups and downs.

For me, 2017 was a great year.  I graduated from university, started my diploma program, led a successful fundraiser event for charity, and got to enjoy cohabitation with my boyfriend. But just like the rest of us my year was full of struggles as well. Nonetheless, I am hopeful and optimistic of what the Galaxy has in store for me, always.

In true optimist form, this post will break down the advantages of future planning and provide simple tips on setting S.M.A.R.T Objectives with easy-to-follow tactics.

Keep reading to start your year with a bang


Advantages of Future Planning:

  • Looking forward at your life yields motivation and pride
  • Subconsciously involves the sense of community and oneness
  • Positive Mood, Motivation, Pride

Disadvantage Another advantage:

That feeling you get when you don’t achieve your goal and you feel bad about yourself and defeated but then you channel that passion and use it to make yourself a stronger person. No matter how long it takes.

Setting SMART Objectives:

S – Smart   M – Measurable   A – Attainable   R – Relevant   T – Timely

To set realistic goals, the criteria above should help craft detailed a plan to guide your new year.

Here’s an example of a smart objective –

Example 1:

Starting January, increase frequency of visits to the gym from twice a month to five times per month to build physical strength and promote well-being.

The objective above has all the components of a S.M.A.R.T plan it is measurable by frequency, attainable because it is a realistic number, relevant because he/she would like to build strength and promote well-being, and timely because it has a starting month of January.

Example 2:

Reduce junk food consumption (i.e. candy bars) to once every two weeks starting February 2018 by monitoring sugar intake.

This objective is specifically focused on sugar consumption and reducing the amount of candy bar he/she has.

New Year, Same Galaxy


Now that you have read the format make some SMART objectives for yourself this new year and stay focused on the things you want to achieve.

Thanks for reading this Urban Guide. My hope is to continue to guide, inspire, and inform others like me who at times feel lost in the world and offer a sense of direction. There is more in store for this year and beyond.

2018
Happy New Year

Until Next Time,

P

Photo From Unsplash by: NordWood Themes