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Ideas for Finding Peace of Mind

You know those mornings when you wake up not necessarily on the wrong side of the bed, but on the wrong side of yourself? Then, for the rest of the day, you feel so deeply entrenched in misery that you simply can’t shake off?

If you’ve ever had difficult moments like this, you are not alone. It’s something many people have experienced but do not readily speak of. I know this because that scenario has been my Wednesdays for the last month.

It’s hard to open up about your internal struggles. Whenever I’m having a rough mental health day, I tend to keep quiet and keep to myself, but I know that keeping my emotions bottled up is not a beneficial solution. When seeking professional help is not required, not accessible, or something you’re not yet ready for, what can you do to save your sanity?

To remedy the bad days, I’ve been working on tackling and completing these five daily actions. In no way are these quick fixes for mental health challenges, but the hope is that by fulfilling these actions, you can find purpose in and anticipation for your daily life, and ultimately get closer to a place where you can see yourself as worthy as you truly are.

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The Wonderful Wizarding World of Harry Potter

J.K. Rowling’s imaginative universe of witchcraft, wizardry, fantastic beasts, enchanted objects, and spellbinding adventures comes to life in the muggle realm at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In April, my friend Zoey and I checked out the opening weekend of the new theme park expansion at Universal Studios Hollywood to explore the rides and attractions that allow fans to immerse themselves in and interact with the story of Harry Potter through a full sensory experience.

For a glimpse into this wonderful wizarding world, here are some of my photos from my day trip to the stomping grounds of the Boy Who Lived. Something magical this way comes…

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palais garnier opera paris france

Bright Lights of Paris

Everywhere you look in Paris, the city of light glows. As I wandered around, I found myself mesmerized by the endless illumination of the streets, bridges, buildings, and landmarks. From the street lamps that align the cobble-stoned sidewalks to the exquisite chandeliers that sparkle from the ceilings of the relics of its royal past, no piece is left unturned and unlit in La Ville Lumière. During the day, the bejeweled stained glass windows of Sainte-Chapelle shine bright and after sunset, the towering Eiffel Tower twinkles in the night sky, proving that no matter the hour, the magic of the capital of France does not cease to delight.

Here are some of the highlights of the lights of Paris spotted during my recent trip. Let there be light!

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La Vie En Rose in Paris

In Sabrina, the titular heroine Sabrina Fairchild (played by Audrey Hepburn) proclaims that Paris is for changing your outlook and for throwing open the windows to let in la vie en rose. The city of light and love is a reputed destination for adventurers who believe in seeing the world through rose coloured glasses and embracing new places and new opportunities with joie de vivre.

This spring, I ventured to see if such a grand notion on the life-altering effects of Paris is a true reflection of reality or just a romanticized fantasy. From April 25th to May 1st, I journeyed to the capital of France (and cultural center for fashion, beauty, art, architecture, cuisine, history, romance, and much more) for a week of extravagant exploration. Below is a summary of my jam-packed itinerary for the week, which included an endless list of internationally renowned landmarks, monuments, museums, and hotspots in the city’s various arrondissements (neighbourhoods). For my photos of the picturesque Parisian sights, click through to the hyperlinked titles below and check out my #BonjourParis2016 hashtag on Instagram. As you can see, Paris is a photographer’s paradise. Without further adieu, here is la belle vie!

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american idol finale series farewell

An American Idol Moment Like This

Some people wait a lifetime for moments like the ones I had during what was, without a doubt, the time of my life in Los Angeles last week (all of which I am still processing – please, don’t pinch me just yet).

Thanks to the good luck of being in the right place at the right time to meet the right people (and extremely kind people at that), I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend the two American Idol finale shows at the Dolby Theatre during the final farewell week of the series on April 6th and 7th.

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