New Year Travel

Tired of the same old parties that you feel like you have to attend to celebrate the new year? Tired of dressing up every year just to go clubbing or bar hopping for the New Year’s Eve celebration? Why not use your holiday time off to travel?

My boyfriend and I have a tradition on New Years. We told ourselves every first day of the year, we will be somewhere we haven’t been before. Since we only have a couple of days off, we decided to go somewhere out of town for a quick road trip because we want to start the new year right by traveling. Of course, we took our little Maltese, Mr. Bubba, our adventure dog and packed our bags to drive up the coast.

Last year, we were at the Grand Canyon and this year, we drove up the coast on the 101 and PCH from Los Angeles. We stayed over night at this beautiful and peaceful town in Little River, ate breakfast in Mendocino, Ca, and then we were on our way to Oregon. We stopped by a few small towns and also stopped at the Trees of Mystery. Bubba and I rode a gandola for the first time, went 750 ft up on an observatory and saw an amazing and breathtaking view of the green mountains.img_3756

The Pescatarian Life

It has been one year since I stopped eating chicken, a year and a half since I stopped eating beef, and almost two years since I stopped eating pork. I now only eat veggies and seafood so that makes me a pescatarian. Honestly, I grew up as a Filipino carnivore eating meat almost every single meal of the day until I met my boyfriend and his vegetarian father. I can also say that I was influenced when I began taking classes in Buddhism.

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Veggie burger and shrimp plate at Rebel Kitchen at the Big Island of Hawaii

I never was curious before why people don’t eat meat until that phase of my life I started questioning things about myself, about being mindful of my surroundings, of nature, and about all sentient beings. I started watching those vegetarian/vegan documentaries on Netflix and OMG, did I ball out as if an family member of mine died. I remember seeing a pig get killed in the Philippines when I was just 5 years old, and it literally opened up the scars that I tried to keep intact all these years.

There’s the choice to change because of health reasons for most people but for me, it was a choice of loving animals too much that I cannot bear another day of imagining how they were killed. I know you may say I am a hypocrite because I still eat fish, but just like all the sources of meat I described in the beginning, it’s definitely a decline in also eating seafood- mainly shrimp and sushi. 

I went through a physical change. People think just because you start becoming vegetarian, does not mean you will instantly lose weight.  I started eating more carbs and ate more sugar. I gained about eight pounds within six months. I also went through a phase when I started getting nauseous and had moments of feeling dizzy at work. I need to replace the vitamins on nutrients that I can’t get since I don’t eat meat.

I think that my body was also reacting to the dietary change drastically when I started having major break outs around my face. I had acne all over my forehead and the temples of my head. Even when I was going through puberty, I did not have an acne problem. I knew that it was a way my body was detoxing. It took about 8 months of attempting to get rid of the acne but finally after that time, my face started clearing again. 

Everyone has their journey in becoming vegetarian or vegan but I am still on that journey trying to figure things out. Who knows, maybe in a couple years I’ll be a full vegetarian and also discover food that will replace my craving for shrimp and sushi. But hopefully, if you are in my situation or thinking of becoming a vegetarian, vegan, pescatarian, or even eat anything you want, you must take care of yourself first and know what is good for you. 

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My favorite vegan Ruben burger at Natives Food in Westwood, Ca