My parents discovered the Wynwood Art District in Miami from going to a Dutch Club event in the area. Basically, it's the Bushwick of Miami - eclectic vibe, local coffee shop (we started our day and Panther Coffee and it was great!), beautiful murals. It's amazing. It's apparently been there since 2009 but I had no idea. The artwork is truly beautiful and diverse and definitely worth a trip! Here are some of my favorite pieces. I tried to keep the number down but these are all just too fantastic not to share.
My favorite were, off course, these mermaids. There is a third one to the right but you'll just have to go see it in person to see her.
These are in a little garden gallery area:
Most of them were just on the street:
My wonderful amazing mom on the left, me posing with cake graffiti on the right.
I mean, this is just incredible:
I don't know who this dude is but he's on a wall as well.
It was great to walk around here and look at all of this talent. To think they turned around a neighborhood that was getting worse and worse just by featuring art is amazing.They apparently also do all kinds of events here and there are several trendy casual food places here as well. This is their website if you're interested in finding out more about this awesome neighborhood. You can also take an art walk tour!
I saw this lipstick print top at Anthropologie weeks ago but I was waiting for it to go on sale. Finally, after about 5 visits, it went on sale and I love it!
I also did some frolicking because, you know, why not?
Check out these other fun lipstick print items! :
After graduating from college and getting settled into my job, I slowly started getting back into reading. I used to read a lot when I was a kid but who has time in high school and college? When I start a book I get very into it and don't want to stop so I couldn't risk missing assignments or studying because I just had to know what happens. After reading the Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare, I rediscovered how much I enjoy to read and decided to challenge myself to reading at least one book a week for a year. 71 books and 52 weeks later, I completed the challenge!
So, how did I do it?
My commute to work is about 40 minutes. Sometimes more, sometimes less. I would always read on the train. I also set my alarm clock a little bit earlier so I would have about 15-30 minutes in the morning to read before I had to leave for work. It was a good day to start the day for me because I was more likely to want to keep reading throughout the day because I was already sucked into the story early in the morning. I am not a morning person at all but it was actually very easy to make myself read so early and I got so used to it that I was still setting my alarm early when I was done with the challenge.
Lunchtime was also a good time for me to read. I usually just eat at my desk so instead of just staring into space, I would read.
The, off course, I read on my commute home and very often I also read at night. Either when I got home or before bed. It's amazing how many books you can read instead of watching reruns on cable! Seriously, you can easily finish a 300-page book in 4 days without really having to try very hard. It takes more effort when a book is boring or when you have a busy week but you'll notice that the books are practically reading themselves and you rarely have to hustle on a sunday to finish a book.
I only struggled a few times. The week I read Anna Karenina - because it was boring and went on forever - , the week I read Pillars of the Earth - because I despised that book. I tore it into little pieces and threw it in the trash. I'm serious - , and the week I read the Goldfinch - we had company from thursday night to monday so I had very little time to finish this hefty read. I think I finished at 9pm on sunday night. The closest call I had.
The key to completing this challenge and keeping it fun is just planning ahead. Think about how busy your week is going to be and how much reading you think you'll do. Make sure you have a book ready to read each week because you'll notice that you're antsy to start every monday morning and will not want to wait a few days to start a book. I ended up going to a thrift store every few weeks to get a bunch of books for about a dollar a piece. If there were specific books I wanted to read I would order them used on Amazon and the very last week, I turned to the library for instant, free reading material.
Throughout my challenge, I went online and looked at reading lists. I wrote down books that appeared often and ones that seemed like I would enjoy reading them. I like to know as little as possible about a book before I read it because it makes reading more fun for me. This bit me in the ass a few times because I ended up reading books that I did not enjoy. However, I still prefer that over knowing major plot lines before they are revealed. Even book covers give away too much in my opinion.
You also need to really commit to the challenge once you start. Some weeks you may have a crazy work week and will not feel like reading at night but if you've started a big book or a boring book (Catch-22 and Moby Dick seriously put me to sleep), every ten pages counts so push yourself to make a little bit of progress every day. Weekend morning were a great time for me to catch up in case I got behind because I did not do much reading throughout the week. I could get sucked in for a solid four hours and not even realize it. My rule go thumb became that, as long as I was a little bit past the halfway mark by friday, it would not be too difficult to finish over the weekend. Very rarely I was not at the halfway mark by friday and then I would have to make a conscious decision to really spend a lot of time reading over the weekend to finish the book. I recommend straying from choosing too many books over 700 pages because it becomes a bit of a chore to finish it in on week. You do get a greater feeling of accomplishment when you do succeed but it also starts to interfere with your life and you can get stir crazy.
If you are interested in finding out what every book I read was about or if you want to know what I thought about it, check out my 'Book Challenge' entries. The summaries and opinions I wrote took me forever because I do not give any plot lines away. It is very difficult to say what a book is about without really saying what it is about.
Here is an overview of my year of reading at least one book a week:
1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
2. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
3. The Bielski Brothers by Peter Duffy
4. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
5. The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
Honorable Mention: I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
1. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
2. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
3. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
4. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
5. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
1. I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
2. The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men who Defied the Nazis, Built a Village in the Forrest, and Saved 1,200 Jews by Peter Duffy
3. Ishmael by Daniel Quinn
All of the books I read during the challenge:
1. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
3. Four by Veronica Roth
4. I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
5. Anne Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
6. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
7. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
8. Dracula by Bram Stoker
9. The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
10. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
11. A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
12. Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham
13. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
14. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
15. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
16. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
17. The Tiger's Wife by Tea Obeht
18. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
*Yes Please by Amy Poehler - audiobook
19. Tales of the Unexpected by Roald Dahl
20. Het Achterhuis (the Diary of Anne Frank) by Anne Frank
21. Ishmael by Daniel Quinn
22. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
23. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
24. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
25. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
26. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
27. Into the Forrest by Jean Hegland
28. Grimm's Fairy Tales by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm
29. Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond
30. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
31. East of Eden by John Steinbeck
32. Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
33. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
34. The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls
35. Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
36. The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
37. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
38. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
39. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
40. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
41. Maise Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear
42. The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men who Defied the Nazis, Built a Village in the Forrest, and Saved 1,200 Jews by Peter Duffy
43. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
44. The House of Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
45. Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut
46. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
47. The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
48. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
49. Horns by Joe Hill
50. The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
51. #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso
52. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
53. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
54. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
55. No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
56. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
57. Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
58. Beloved by Toni Morrison
59. One of Us by Michael Smith
60. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
62. Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
63. House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus
64. The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
65. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
66. The Art of War by Sun Tsu
67. The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje
68. Enchantments by Kathryn Harrison
69. White Oleander by Janet Fitch
70. Bridget Jones' Diary by Helen Fielding
71. Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin
I will be reading the rest of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy because the first one (out of five) was great. I also want to read A Brief History of Time and Guns, Germs, and Steel again because more than I'd like to admit went over my head.
Let me know if you have any recommendations for more books I should read.
And now it's your turn! Enjoy!
I like to collect postcards from museums and places I visit and I wanted to hang them up. Instead of spending money on a bunch of frames, I saw someone used wash tape to create colorful frames. I liked the idea so here is my version:
What you need: The things you want to hang, regular tape to hang them on your wall and Washi tape. I got mine at Office Max.
I hung all of the postcards by rolling regular tape on the back and spacing them how I want. Then I taped the Washi tape around them.
The final product:
I discovered ban.do via instagram and I love their stuff! I got these nail decals and had fun trying them out. I recommend using light or white nail polish so you can really see them and adding a clear coat on top to protect the decal. They work the same way as temporary tattoos and I love them!
About the Author
Born and raised in the Netherlands, I now work as a designer in NYC. I love trying new things, candy and the color orange. In this blog, I will post about things I've learned and things I love. Veel plezier!