Traveling in Taiwan: The Golden Waterfall and Yin Yang Sea

Hey y'all! Today, I am looking forward to sharing more about our time in Taiwan! As you know from my previous posts (Taipei 101 and Taiwan National Parks), we spent two weeks in this beautiful island country and we experienced so much! I fell in love with the culture and the gorgeous landscapes. The latter of which will be the focus of today's post. It's all about our trip to the Ruifang district, where we were able to see the Golden Waterfall and the Yin Yang Sea!

The Golden Waterfall and Yin Yang Sea

The Ruifang District is located outside of Taipei, along the northeastern coast of Taiwan. It's easiest to see this area by car, so we had a guided tour that stopped here, as well as a few other locations that I will talk about in future posts. It was around 30 minutes from Taipei to our first stop at Jinguashi, a town that was known for gold and copper mining. Towards the end of World War II, this area was also used by the Japanese as a POW camp. Today, the crumbling mining facilities and the tracks that were used to transport gold down the mountain, are all that remains. However, the highlight of this stop was the Golden Waterfall. It gets its name from the yellow tint in the water and the rocks that have turned a copper color from years of exposure to heavy metals. While it's not a massive waterfall, by any means, it is a popular spot to see in Taiwan, due to its uniqueness. 

The mining area is interesting to navigate and being on the side of a mountain makes it even a little challenging. There are tunnels, tracks, and winding paths if you are aiming to get a little adventurous. It also makes for some pretty spectacular views.

Remnants of the Mining Village

The Golden Waterfall

Further down the road, in the same village, we made our next stop. It was a gorgeous observation area, where we could look down at the Yin Yang Sea. Like the Golden Waterfall, the water pouring into the ocean has a yellow tint to it. The heavy metals in the water don't allow it to mix well with the blue ocean and this results in the "Yin Yang" appearance that you see from above. It's recommended that you don't touch the water due to this contamination, but it is worth the stop, just to see this unique phenomenon. 

The Yin Yang Sea

The color changes in the water, were once thought to be due to the mining that took place in Jinguashi. However, there hasn't been any mining done, in this area, in decades and yet the water remains the same yellow tint. This has led people to believe that the color actually comes from pyrite or "Fool's Gold", which this area is rich in. No matter how the color came to be, it is certainly an amazing sight to behold and one that you shouldn't miss, if you are making a trip to Taiwan!

Taiwan Travel

I hope you have enjoyed learning more about this stop on our trip! Are you interested in visiting Taiwan? Or have you already been? I would love to know! I look forward to sharing so much more with you. Follow me on Facebook to keep up with my most recent posts, so you don't miss out!

Until next time!

Much Love,

Kimberly
 
Two Traveling Texans

Planner Tips for a More Organized Life

Hey planner girl! I see you there, struggling to keep all of the facets of your life running smoothly. It's not always easy to do, am I right?! This is definitely something I struggle with and even though I use a paper planner (usually more than one), I still find myself getting frazzled and stressed at times. If this is something you have experienced, then keep reading, because today I am going to share a few tips that I have learned, that help me to maintain a more organized life.

Planner Tips

1. Designate a day and time for planning.

It may seem redundant that you have to "plan time for planning," but for me, it is the only way I can remain consistent. We all start the planning process with good intentions. We buy our new, pristine, paper planner. We set goals and create a daily routine. We are ready to conquer the world! This may last a couple of weeks or even a month, but then life gets in the way. It's not that we are lazy. It's not that we don't want to plan. It's simply that we lose track of that time. The easiest way to not lose track of that time is to schedule it. Block off the time needed. Write it in that pretty planner of yours. For me it is Sunday afternoon or evening, depending on what our plans look like. Every week I write it down and that makes me accountable to do it. 

2. Choose a system that works for you.

Planners are not a "one size fits all" concept. That's why there are so many options! I know the sheer amount of different types of planners can be overwhelming, but it is important to pick a system that will suit your needs. Think about what you will be recording in your planner and the areas of your life that need to be tracked. Also, think about the type of goals you want to set for yourself and how you will turn those goals into actions. If you find that you are going long periods of time without using your planner, then it may be time for you to reevaluate your system. Don't be afraid to try something new or to ditch something that hasn't been working well for you. Sometimes it's a game of trial and error.

3. Use sticky notes for future planning.

I don't know who was the first person to come up with this idea, but it is a popular one amongst the planner community. The reason I use sticky notes for future plans, is because quite simply, plans change. When I am doing my weekly planning, I write everything directly in the planner, but if I have an appointment or day-specific task, that is more than a month out, I will write it on a sticky note and put it on the day it needs to go on. This prevents a lot of chaotic scribbling out and rewriting of things and it just helps put my mind at ease. Obviously, there will still be some things that get written in the planner itself, that get rescheduled and have to be crossed out, but this practice just limits that.

4. Create categories or sections for different parts of your life.

Most of us have a life filled with appointments and tasks coming at us from different angles. Depending on what all you are involved in, it may feel impossible to keep track of it. Some choose to separate the big categories into different planners and if that works for you, then do it! I have a separate planner that stays at work, I have a home/blog planner that stays at home, and I have little pocket planner that houses my personal calendar that goes everywhere with me. Another way you can do this, is to have it all in one large planner, that is separated by dividers. Color coding your different categories is another great option, if you want to put everything on the same monthly and weekly views.

5. Make planning enjoyable.

My last tip is a fairly simple one: have fun with it! If you aren't into stickers and washi, that is totally fine. Decorating is one of the ways that I make planning enjoyable, but it's not the only option. Try creating a nice atmosphere for planning. Listen to music or your favorite podcast. Have a youtube video going in the background. If the weather is nice, plan outside. If you have the room for it, you can create your own little "planning space." Enjoy a glass of wine or a cup of coffee, while you plan.

Whatever you choose to do, don't think of it as something tedious or boring, because it doesn't have to be. Imagine what all you can accomplish, if you take just a little extra time to sit down, set goals, and plan it out! 

Do you have any planner tips that help you stay organized? Let me know! 

Until next time!
 

Much Love,

Kimberly
 
Planner Tips

7 Fun Accessories for the Summer

Hey Y'all!

I don't know how the weather is where you are, but here in Nashville it is HOT. The elevated temps wouldn't be so bad, but when you combine it with the excessive humidity, it can be down right miserable to be outside for long periods of times (like just walking to the car...). Summer is in full swing, which has me pulling out my shorts, tank tops, water bottles, and hair ties. It also has me obsessing over pineapples, palm trees, and pretty much all of the popular summer prints. With that in mind, I decide to put together a little list of my summer faves! 

Summer Accessories
Fruit Infuser Water Bottle Paperchase
 

When it is this hot outside, it is so important to stay hydrated. That's why I never leave the house without a water bottle. My favorite kind are the fruit infuser bottles, because it gives plain, ice water a little something extra. My favorite fruits to add are strawberries, kiwis, mandarin orange slices, and pineapple. TIP: Use frozen fruit! It keeps your water cold and flavors it!

Tiki Lounge Umbrella Paperchase
 

In the summer time, an umbrella serves two purposes. It can shade you from the harsh sunlight and it can keep you dry during an abrupt, summer shower. And who wants to carry around a boring umbrella? Not me! This design is perfect for summer activities.

Resting Beach Face Bag
 

If you are going out for a day at the beach or pool, you probably will want to bring some snacks along with you. A cute lunch bag is a great way to keep your food cool while you have fun. Also, the phrase "Resting Beach Face," just makes me giggle every time!

Pink Glitter Palm Tree Pouch
 

Lip balm, sunscreen, wet wipes, and waterproof mascara. These are just a few things you may need to carry around with you, on your summer outings. This palm tree pouch is perfect for holding all of those items and it doesn't hurt that it's super cute!

Pineapple Glasses Case
 

The fun, summer prints just keep coming! What better way to protect your shades from getting scratched, than this adorable pineapple glasses case?! It also comes with a matching, cleaning cloth to wipe away lint (or sand).

Straw Pom Pom Bag
 

Now that you have all of those smaller items, you need a big bag to put them all in, right?! The brightly colored pom poms really make this bag stand out. It has a couple of pockets on the inside for your phone and other essentials and then inside is line in hot pink!

Gold Pineapple Picture Frame
 

When you are done making fun, summertime memories, you will need a way to remember them! This gold, pineapple picture frame would look so adorable, displaying your favorite summer photo!

What are your current, favorite, summer accessories? Let me know!

Until next time!

Much Love,

Kimberly
 
Summer Accessories
 
 

What Traveling Has Taught Me

Hey Y'all, I'm back!

I know it has been a hot minute since my last post, but if you have been following me on Instagram, then you know I was traveling around Europe with my husband. We have now been back in the U.S. for a little over a week and I have been itching to get a post out. This is something that was on my mind, during the entire trip, and even more so since I arrived back home. I have been day dreaming about all that I have seen and done over the past three years and how those experiences have shaped my way of thinking.

Today, I wanted to share some of what I have learned from traveling the world.

What Traveling Has Taught Me

Beautiful experiences are greater than beautiful things.

I know you have heard the quote, "I'd rather have a passport full of stamps, than a house full of stuff." I'm not sure who said it first (and even after a quick Google search, I still don't know), but it's very true! Those stamps represent a short period of time, where I was able to experience another culture. There are so many things we could buy with the money we use to travel, but the memories I have from our trips are priceless.  

God's creation is amazing and we should take care of it.

I have seen blue oceans, rolling green hills, rocky cliff edges, and the list could go on. My favorite part of traveling is seeing so many different parts of the creation that God has blessed us with. It gives me a deeper respect for nature and how it all works together. It also makes me want to do better. Earth is a precious gift that is full of such gorgeous scenery and I don't want to be responsible for covering it with litter and destroying the most beautiful parts.

The Cliffs Of Moher

Sometimes the most memorable and exciting moments come, when things don't go as planned.

I can't believe I even typed that sentence. Hold on! Don't take away my "planner girl" card, just yet! I'm still all about having an itinerary. I like to know how I'm getting there and where I'm laying my head at night. I also like to have some idea of what I'm going to be doing. I always start out with a plan (with the help of my dedicated travel agent). However, sometimes the weather doesn't do what you think it's going to do or delayed transportation throws you off schedule. Such is life! These are the moments that I have learned to embrace. I could choose to be upset or I can roll with it and see what happens. Nine times out of ten, I end up experiencing something even more amazing than I originally planned. 

The best tasting food, isn't always the most expensive.

I rather eat pork buns from a street cart in Taipei, than have the overpriced version at a chain restaurant. I don't know, maybe I just don't have "expensive" taste, but I prefer the food that we happen upon by chance, over the food that we made reservations for ahead of time. When it comes to pricey restaurants, in most cases you are paying for the experience. The lighting, the atmosphere, and the presentation. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy those aspects and I will pay for them on occasion, but when we come to the end of our trip and we are discussing which meal was our favorite, I never choose the most expensive.  

The world is big and my problems are small.

Out of everything traveling has taught me, this is the big one. It's easy to get wrapped up in small problems. It's even easier to blow those small problems way out of proportion. I'm definitely guilty of doing this, but there is something about standing on the edge of the Cliffs of Moher or looking out over Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower, that makes you feel so incredibly small. I don't mean this in a negative way at all and I realize that some problems are big, but it's amazing how all the little things that are stressing me out, just seem to melt away when I think of how big the world is. 

Cliffs of Moher

I could probably write a book with the list of things I have learned through traveling and I hope to continue to do and learn more, but for now I will leave you with this. If you have not had the opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and experience a culture different than your own, then I highly suggest that you go for it! It doesn't have to be a different country. You can start small. Try visiting a region of your own country or continent that you have never been to before and really soak it in. Eat something you've never had before and participate in activities that you would have never tried. Don't wait. Go!

Until next time!

Much Love,

Kimberly
 

Two Traveling Texans

Traveling

Bullet Journal Spreads You Need For Your Next Trip

Hey y'all! 

I'm back, today, with a really fun post! If you have read some of my previous posts or seen me mention it on Instagram, then you know that I am about to head out on a big trip to England, France, and Ireland, for two weeks. We are getting SO excited! As a planner girl, you know I have to be fully prepared for anything, and big trips like this are no exception. We have been counting down the days and I needed a way to plan, but also a fun way to pass the time as we have been anxiously waiting. That's why I have been using my bullet journal a lot more, recently. It's a creative outlet, vision board, blog planner, goal keeper, and an all-around enjoyable time. Now, I am also adding travel journal/planner to that list! 

I am going to be sharing my five favorite spreads that I have done, leading up to this trip. Maybe, they will inspire you to create your own!

Bullet Journal Spreads Travel

Travel Itinerary

This is probably the most important thing you need to have for a trip. This spread can and should include your flights, hotel information, and any preplanned tours that are time specific. I started out with a very plain, and straightforward list of the information, but later I created a more elaborate and fun spread. Take a look at the photos and decide what would work best for you. 

Travel Itinerary Planner Spread

Travel Inspiration Board

This one is just for fun! It has no vital information and it won't help you with your packing, but you will enjoy creating it and flipping to it, everyday until your trip. You can use images from your previous trips or from guide books that you have picked up. You can also find die cuts and stickers to scatter around. This is just a place for you to visualize the places that you will be traveling to and the fun things you will be doing. It's purely travel inspo and it will make you smile, every time you see it!

Travel Inspiration board bullet journal

Outfit Planning Spread

This time around we are attempting to do carry on only for our two week trip (Check out my recent post on tips for packing light). I know it's possible, because it has been done by others before me, but I'm a little nervous. I started brainstorming ways to reduce the amount I needed to pack, several weeks prior to the trip. I also decided to create a spread that would help me preplan what outfits I would wear. It probably won't be set in stone (it is just paper and pen after all), but at least I will know that I have an outfit for everyday that I will be gone. 

Outfit planning bullet journal spread

Packing List

The previous spread led me straight into creating my next spread, which was my packing list. After figuring out what outfits I wanted to wear, I knew I needed to put it into a functional list of items to bring with me. This also helped me to consider what I really needed, in regards to toiletries and cosmetics. What do I use daily and what can I do without? I'm sure I will still be making revisions to this, leading up to our departure day (especially when I start trying to fit this all in my bag), but it has helped me to have a starting place.

packing light bullet journal spread

Travel Wish List

Last, but not least, is the ultimate wish list. Unlike the inspiration board, this doesn't include photos or many stickers. I did include an awesome quote, because why not? However, it's mostly just a functional list of places that we want to see and things we want to do. It might be something that a friend told us about or maybe we discovered reading travel blogs. Whatever the reason, these are the things that we want to have stored in our memory bank when we are back home. We are still adding to it and hopefully we will get to do all of this and more!

Travel Wish List Bullet Journal Spread

What bullet journal spreads to you like to use before your big trips? Do you prefer to keep it more functional or more decorative? Let me know!

Until next time!

Much Love,

Kimberly
 
Bullet Journal Spreads Travel

Pocket Planner Setup - May 2018

Hey planner people! It has been awhile since I shared an update on my planning setup and y'all know it has changed up since my post, in February, right? Of course! Actually, I have been using a Pocket Filofax since late in March. I told myself that if I could stick it out with a pocket, till our trip to the U.K. (and France!) in June, that I could buy more pocket-sized planners on our trip. The thought of seeing all of the shelves full of Filofaxes still makes me happy! I can't wait! As of now, I have been in this setup for two months and it has worked fabulously.

Pocket Planner Setup

Awhile back, I posted about the pros and cons of Personal and Pocket size. That was when I was really trying to decide which I liked more. It's hard to give up the paper real estate of a Personal size planner, but portability and functionality won out and I picked the Pocket!

My basic setup is the same, but just constricted to the smaller size. I still have a dashboard, that is a combination of scrapbook paper, an Instax photo, and a cute clip. I'm currently in a Pocket Malden, so I am using the pockets to hold my ID and miscellaneous cards. The open back is used to hold cash, coupons, receipts, and other items that may be to big to store in the planner itself.

I have an "inbox", which I have talked about before. It's basically just a spot in my planner that holds sticky notes, appointment cards, and other loose items that I don't have time to jot down in my actual calendar. I try to check this at least biweekly, to make sure that everything is transferred to the appropriate section. 

I'm using Avery brand, colored tabs, with various scrapbook paper, for my dividers. In the past, I have gone all out with laminated, card stock dividers, but using a smaller planner, I decided I needed to conserve space. So far, this has been working out great. Plus, if one gets damage, all I have to do is stick another tab on! My current sections include: Monthly, Weekly, Daily, Notes, and a top tab for Meal Planning.

At the moment, 90% of my inserts are from Peanuts Planner Co. I just love the functionality and the amount of things she is able to fit on each insert. For my monthly, I am using her Monthly Overview Fold Out, with Tracker. My current weekly layout, is the Vertical Grid WO4P. My daily is always changing up, but for now it is one of her freebie inserts that she offers the members of her Facebook group. 

In my notes section, I have cut some list pad pages down to fit my planner. My favorite sheets say "Today" and "Tomorrow" on them. These are so useful for jotting down quick todo lists or ideas.

I really have been enjoying this setup and the pocket size, in general. It's small and convenient and even though it has less space than what I am used to, it has really helped me to become more functional with my planning. I still incorporate my own unique style, with clips, sticker, and my "Today" page marker (see pic below), but overall I am using it more frequently and for it's intended purpose, which is to help organize my life! Also, I am digging how chunky it is getting. Who doesn't love a chunky planner?!

Until next time!

Much Love,

IMG_0014.jpg
 
Pocket Planner Setup