Monday, July 25, 2016

Planning #1 on My Travel Bucket List

A few weeks ago, whilst I was procrastinating on Facebook, I saw a sponsored ad. It was one of those things where my friends had 'liked' something so FB showed it to me but ultimately it was a commercial. Anyway, it happened to be for Icelandair and it was basically a promo for reduced fare flights to various cities from $449.

It was fate because I had been toying with booking flights for our trip to Iceland this autumn and the best I had found so far was $555 and even that was a hacker fare (where the flights to and from would be booked separately to save $100) and I had even signed up for notifications (through Kayak) for any price decreases. 

Basically, the sale was only for a handful of european cities. But, the great thing about Icelandair is that you can plan a layover (up to 7 days) in Reykjavik either to or from your destination. So, I gave us 24 hours in Copenhagen and almost 7 days in Iceland. The flights really did end up being $449 for round trip tickets including fees and all that jazz.
This is extra exciting for me because I specifically picked Iceland as a little birthday trip for myself (in addition to being our annual Kim family vacation where my sister and I treat our papa to a nice holiday). I will be turning 30 this year - excuse me while I go nervous-vomit and cry about aging - and I wanted to do something kind of big. I wanted to knock my #1 bucket list item off as a huge hurrah: I want to see the northern lights.

Monday, July 18, 2016

So Professional

Earlier this year, I studied for, took, and passed the PE exam in civil engineering. Along with earning my degree and getting a job, it's one of my top accomplishments in life. Yes, I am now a Professional Engineer (in the state of NJ).

I'm not an ambitious person so I wasn't that keen on taking the test. Plus, I really, really despise studying (I think I likened it to torture the last time I briefly mentioned this exam hullabaloo) and because we don't really 'stamp' things at my office, I didn't feel pressed to take it. However, my boss insisted and it was technically written in my offer letter so I finally took the plunge.
This story actually begins a few years ago. I filled out my application, got five of my former and current bosses to fill out references for me, sent in transcripts and my FE exam results, and then I waited. I waited for basically a full year before the office got back to me saying I could finally take the test.

I'm writing this post as a personal post for myself, highlighting the way I feel about my accomplishment, but also so that I can share some anecdotes in the hopes that it may help fellow applicants who get overlooked and tossed around by their local administrators.

Monday, July 11, 2016

DIY Travel Accessories

Last year at H&M, they had these thin vinyl travel document holders which were cute and tempting but too flimsy to actually purchase (even though they were only $3). I had been toying around with the idea of making my own for a while now - even before I saw the cheap ones at H&M - and I finally got around to it.

I had several criteria for my ideal version. It had to be light and compact. I didn't want any frills. It wasn't supposed to be a substitute for a wallet; I was mostly looking for a cute way to hold onto boarding passes and train tickets. I also wanted it to be a way to safely store my passport and travel credit card (the Capital One Venture, which I exclusively use when I am abroad) at home.

I decided I wanted to go with a pale pink (because I'm stupidly girly like that) so I sourced some faux leather on Amazon and grabbed some gold embroidery thread and a few other bits and bobs. Then, my sister asked me if I'd make her a luggage tag. I had enough faux leather to reupholster an armchair (it's sold by the yard) so I thought why not? And then she decided she also wanted a passport cover so I'm turning this into a full on DIY travel accessories post.
You'll need:
faux leather
clear vinyl
needle & thread
pins
scissors
ruler
invisible ink fabric marker
ribbon/twine/leather trim
puffy paint
cardstock
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