The following pictures are just a few traditional candies / snacks & street foods that I tried during the past year of living in Australia, and I just wanted to share them here to encourage you to try new foods in a different country. And, if you’re planning a trip to the land down under soon, here’s a list to get you started! So, here are some of the things I think you should definitely try in Australia:
Thanks for reading! I hope this list encourages you to try new foods wherever you are; and helps you on your next trip to Australia – to know what to try!
I love the wordpress community. I love reading other blogs. I love commenting and interacting with other bloggers. I love writing on my blog. Even though some days I don’t feel like writing; I know that if I just sign into wordpress and read a few posts, I will have the inspiration to write something.
And, sometimes I can come up with an easy 500 word post. But, other times I struggle to write even 50 words. However, after reading a few other posts, and just re-reading some of my old posts, I think of a new idea.
For example, the title of this post came to my mind when I ordered a new phone case online. I know it’s random, but it’s true. I was looking for a new phone case because mine is super old & a completely different colour than when I first bought it. So, after searching through a lot of different website, I found one that had the perfect case that I was hoping to find.
And, at first glance, it was already perfect. But, when I clicked order, it prompted me to customise it by adding my name. But, I didn’t want to add my name to a phone case (that just seems weird to me). But, I also couldn’t order it without adding something. So, I thought about it for while. I tried to think of a nickname or a random word that I could write on this phone case that I loved the look of. And, as I kept thinking, I thought of my blog, and wrote “nowboarding” on the customisation page. And, I loved what I saw (it didn’t interfere with the design and looked pretty cool). So, I clicked order.
And, I finally received the case a few days ago, and I can see that I totally made the right decision of not putting my name on it. And, after looking it for a while, I even thought about something. “This might even be a great conversation starter to advertise my blog?”
And, that leads me to the reason I’m sharing this story. If you’re looking for a small, simple way to talk about your blog to strangers, check out the website linked below:
Thanks for reading this random story about a phone case. I hope it was at least a little bit interesting!
So much has happened in the last 10 years that it would literally take me a 300-400 page book to tell you all about it. So, instead of making you read all that, here’s a poem I wrote to sum up the last decade of my life:
9 countries 4 Schools 5 jobs Over 100 flights More than 100 adventures Lots of lessons learned Millions of new friends So many new experiences
9 security checkpoints 4 graduation ceremonies 5 new-employee forms Over 100 foreign languages heard More than 100 pictures taken Lots of languages learned Millions of hellos & goodbyes So many different realities
900 international flights 4 diplomas & certificates 5 million interviews Over 100 new faces seen More than I could ever remember Lots of new skills acquired Millions of doors opened & closed So many amazing opportunities
This decade has truly been amazing, life-changing, & full of growth for me. And, I can’t wait to see what’s next! I hope you’ll stick with me through it on this blog because I still plan on posting on here! This blog is one of the most amazing things that I started in the past decade, and I don’t plan on stopping now!
Thanks for reading my random thoughts these past years. I have so many new adventures coming in 2020, and I can’t wait to share them with you!
P.S. This is also the decade when I created all of my current social medias!!! It feels crazy to me that I have had Instagram,Twitter and YouTube for exactly 10 years. And, that I have had this blog for 3 & a half years now! Here’s to continuing to:
So, I’m back from taking a break from blogging. I’ve had an amazing, and refreshing summer, with a lot of fun, and silly moments, and a lot of reflection moments. It was a well balanced summer (with work and beach days and hikes to the top of mountains). I feel refreshed, and ready to start blogging again!
I also have an amazing announcement to tell you!!! I am planning a trip back to….
(you’ll have to wait, and see what country in my next post…) I’m SOOOO EXCITED to go back to one of my favorite countries!!! And, I’m excited to blog about my travels, and share my adventures with you! I’m counting down the days until I get to return to my favorite country, but until then, I can’t wait to share the Pre-Departure process with you.
That’s all the updates I have for now. Thanks for reading! I hope you’ll follow me on my upcoming trip back to… one of my favorite countries!
P.S. If you want to see what I did all summer, I’m currently editing a video that I’ll post very soon, so stay tuned for that post.
P.P.S. If you want to follow my adventures real-time, without needing to wait for a new post, follow my Instagram @joannalavoie(I have been posting on there a lot more lately). The featured picture above is actually from one of my summer adventure (So, if you like it, and you want to see more like it, click the link above!).
Well, it’s my birthday today (22! Whoop!). And, I really wanted to post something before today, but I just haven’t found the time or inspiration. I don’t have a valid excuse for not posting, except for lack of inspiration. This is the reason why I’m going to be taking a break from posting for a while. I’ve been putting this blog on the back of my mind for a while, and I feel like I just need to focus on myself, my growth, and well-being for a while.
I’m not sure how long of a break I’ll be taking, but, don’t worry, I will be back! I’m currently planning another trip abroad soon, so I’ll definitely be back to post during that trip. But, for now, I’m going to be taking a short break.
. . .
I am posting this as a reminder to not pressure yourself to much. If you feel overloaded, take a break. If you feel overwhelmed, take a deep breath. If you feel like you need a break from something, take it!
Wow! I can’t believe I’ve reached 200 posts! That’s crazy! I can’t believe I wrote all that! I used to hate writing! But, clearly I don’t anymore! I actually enjoy it! And, I look forward to writing a new post! I can’t believe how much has happened in my life through the past 200 posts! This blog has been a crazy journey! And, I can’t wait for the next hundreds of posts!
. . .
The day I hit 200 posts: I’m currently in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I’m sitting on a couch in the common area in my hostel, where I’ve been volunteering and living for the past 3 months. It’s a cooler day outside (fall is in the air). The city is busy, as usual. Kids are getting ready to start school. People are coming/going to work! I’m getting ready to head to Chile (to visit my friends/family from last year). I’m listening to music while booking my bus to Chile! And, then I decided to look at my wordpress stats, and I noticed that I was 1 post away from 200, so I decided to take the time to write my 200th post.
. . .
I also want to take this time to thank you! If you’ve been reading since I started blogging, or if you just started following my journey; Thank you for reading my random blog filled with random thoughts and adventures! I’m looking forward to writing more random content for you to read!
When I started this blog, I wasn’t sure what I was getting into. But now, I love writing, and I love the community that comes with it. I also didn’t realize people would actually read my blog, let alone like it enough to nominate me for awards (I know these awards are not mandatory, so when I get nominated I always take the time to do it because I feel so grateful, and I want to keep the award train moving forward). So, thank you Emma & Nathan’s Travels. I really appreciate the nomination!
Although a blogger doesn’t really need to participate in any award nominations, I don’t mind as it gives me a chance to show my appreciation to other bloggers. Plus, it’s free exposure should you wish to participate. Now, for the rules:
Put the award logo on your blog.
Answer 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
Thank the people who nominated you, linking to their blogs.
Nominate any number of bloggers you like, linking to their blogs.
Let them know you nominated them (by commenting on their blog, etc.)
My answers to Emma & Nathan’s Travels Questions:
1- What is your favourite destination so far and why?
That’s a difficult question; there’s always one thing I love from every destination. But, if I had to choose, I would say: Belize (mostly because I went off the grid, with no connection for a week, and it felt great, and was very refreshing and relaxing). And, also because it’s a beautiful country that not enough people know about!
2- Why did you start, and why do you continue blogging?
I started blogging while I was living in the small town of Jasper, Alberta, Canada (for 6 months). I was working and living on site at a lodge in the middle of the highway/woods, with not much to do around (except for hiking, and thinking). And, I started thinking a lot about my purpose, which made me feel very insignificant. So, one day I decided it would be a good idea to start a blog (it always seemed interesting to me, and now I had time). At the time, the blog was a way to just write and share my thoughts to see if anyone else could relate. My first posts were not at all about traveling or inspirational, but I continued blogging because I started enjoying it (I never realized how much I actually liked writing, it seemed so boring in school). Now, it was actually fun! I continue blogging today because I love writing about my adventures, and sharing them with others. I love traveling and I want to inspire others to step out of their comfort zone and travel as well. I also love reading and following other blogs. And, I love the small community I’ve formed, that follows my blog and adventures.
3- Is your blog as successful as it you’d hoped, or is it still a working progress?
Definitely still a work in progress. But, then again, I don’t really know how successful I planned for it to be. I started it on a whim, so I didn’t really think about the “success”. I just kinda liked having a place to write, where other people could read it, and hopefully get inspired. So, in that way, I guess you could say that it’s more successful now, than I originally thought because more people are reading my blog.
4- Upload your favourite photo from your blog and describe why.
I like this photo because it was one of my first pictures I posted on this blog. And, it was taken at the same time than when I started this blog. And, it depicts what I was feeling when I started this blog (small and insignificant). In a way, it’s my reminder of how far I’ve come (which I think is what the post with this pictures was about…).
5- Describe something about yourself that isn’t mentioned in your blogs.
My dream job is to become a flight attendant. It’s been my dream ever since I can remember (since I was 4 or 5 years old). I’ve always found it interesting and exciting. And, now I that I’ve traveled abroad more and learned more languages, I realize that it still really is my ultimate dream job.
6/7- How do you manage your time when it comes to blogging? Do you write posts and schedule them for publication or do you write as you go?
It depends. I don’t have a blogging schedule (I can post up to 10 times in a month, and then go a whole month without posting). If I have a lot of inspiration (and time), I will write a bunch of posts, and schedule them. But, if I’m busy, and only get inspired on the spot (like with this post), I will write and post it on the spot because I don’t want to forget (and it doesn’t deserve to be scheduled), so I write and post it as soon as possible.
So, I realize I said that posting more on my blog was one of my new years resolutions (and this is only my second post), but I promise I have a lot of posts coming (they’re all written down, just not posted yet…).
Just know that I haven’t given up on my resolutions, I’m actually really working on them everyday (and I hope you’re still keeping up with yours). 😊
And, before my next post (maybe in Spanish) about my adventures in Buenos Aires, Argentina, check out a post I wrote for another blog about my experience taking Spanish classes in Argentina!
Thanks for reading my blog this past year! I wish you a Happy New Year! Cheers to an amazing new year ahead, full of new opportunities!Let’s accomplish our goals together; comment below with your goal(s) for 2019!
Update on this blog, and my life: A new chapter is starting very soon (Dec. 5)!
. . .
I am “moving” to Argentina! I say: “moving” because I will be living there for a minimum of 3 months (possibly, longer). And, although I’m nervous and a little sad (as this will be my first Christmas away from home); I’m also super excited because I have no idea what amazing things this next chapter will bring. These mixed emotions inspired the following poem:
Remember, that: Good things never come, from comfort zones!
You can’t, and you shouldn’t, hide from fear!
You should; Step out and, face your fears!
Do all – those things – that scare you!
Live your life, to the fullest and, never let fears take over!
You can do so much, more than you think! All you have to do is…
…Seek discomfort! And, step out of your comfort zone because you will see amazing things happen in your life!
Thanks for reading!
P.S. I will be blogging about my experience, and adventures as much as I can, so, I hope you will join me in this new chapter, and live these adventures with me through my posts!
P.P.S. My future posts will probably not be as consistent, so, if you don’t want to wait for a post, follow me on Instagram for more real-time updates!
Oh, also, big, exciting news! I have a Patreon!!! And, if you become one of my patrons, I will send you a postcard from this adventure in Argentina! Click the following link to check it out, and sign up to receive a postcard: https://www.patreon.com/nowboarding
So, first of all, if we were having coffee right now, it would be 6 am because that’s the only time we could meet, as I work all weekend until the end of the day.
. . .
So, it’s 6 am.
It’s so early that the sun hasbarely risen. But, at least it is sunny. Spring is finally catching up (hopefully it continues).
. . .
If we were having coffee right now, I would be asking you about your week and plans for the weekend (and i’d probably be a little jealous). I’d ask you how school or work is going. I’d ask you how your week went…
I’d honestly probably just ask you questions, until you asked me something (I’m not one to just talk about myself voluntarily).
But, for the sake of this post, let’s pretend you’ve already asked me questions.
. . .
Then, I would tell you how tired I am this morning. I would tell you how much I just want to be sleeping in today, instead of working.
I would tell you how much I miss living in Chile, where I didn’t have wake up so early or wait for the sun to come out everyday.
I would show you some picture from my trip and tell you that you have to visit the country one day.
I would tell you that I’m so tired that this coffee isn’t even waking me up.
I would tell you that I just want to be sitting on a plane right now, instead of waiting for my bus to work.
I would tell you how much it means to me that you woke up at 6 am on your day off just to talk, small talk, for a few minutes.
I would tell you that I should get to work, but I am really thankful for the short time you took to talk, this early on a Sunday morning.
Then, we would probably hug.
I’d say: “have a good day off” and you’d say: “you too”.
And, then, we’d laugh and you’d correct yourself and say: “…good day, at work, I mean. See you next time!”
I’d smile, and say: “ya, next time…Maybe not so early, with more time to just sit.”.
And, finally, we’d wave goodbye!
That’s what it would probably be like, if we met this morning for a cup of coffee.
Thanks for reading this post!
P.S. I actually did write this post on the bus at 7 am. And, I’m thinking about maybe doing one every weekend as something new to try on this blog, so please let me know what you think in the comments.
Coming back home after living abroad for a time is not easy!
. . .
Yup, Reverse Culture Shock! It’s a real thing!
. . .
So, I’ve only been back from Chile for about a week now and the only way I can describe coming home after living abroad for a time is: “weird” & “confused”. In Chile, everything felt so normal. Living there just felt like normal living, but now everything I do here seems weird and different. For example: It’s dark outside right now (@8pm which is 2hours earlier than I’m used to, but that’s not the point). So, it’s dark and I just turned on the lights in my room and it actually made the room somuch brighter, like almost unbearably bright. It’s like I wasn’t even used to light anymore (except for natural sunlight, I saw that everyday☺). But, why did this light just give me a headache?-“confusing” Or, another example: I went to the grocery store the other day (to get one thing) and I could barely find it (it took me a good 10minutes of wandering around before I found it). Everything seemed to be in a different place then what I became used to in Chile. And, that’s not all. I think one other thing that makes coming home even “weirder” and more “confusing” is that now I’m comparing things from Chile to here, but I didn’t compare things from here in Chile. So, why am I doing it now?-“weird”
. . .
Yes, home feels familiar and looks pretty much the same, but there are a few things that are different that you can’t understand why they changed, but they just did. In the (what felt like a short amount of) time that you were away, so much has changed, yet somehow, everything is still the same. It’s pretty hard to describe this “factor” because the things that seem like they changed only seem different to you because your brain has “evolved” (it’s like it’s playing tricks on you). It’s tricking into thinking home is different because you are no longer fully consumed by every little thing that happens at home because you’ve seen things/problems much bigger.
Your new perspective is showing you not to consume yourself with little things at home because the world is so much bigger than your little problems and there are many more & bigger problems in the world!
Culture shock, or even Reverse culture shock, is not something that should stop you from traveling! I think culture shock and reverse culture shock are important things to notice and feel when traveling because they make you more aware of yourself and the world around you!
Here’s a picture that I think well-describes culture shock and reverse culture shock: #9 should make you want to travel (it does for me)!
So, yesterday I went out for a walk around the town I live (Quillota) here in Chile. And, while walking, I started taking pictures of random things around town that might inspire a post or that I might want to post on Instagram. And, the picture above fit into both of those categories. Here’s why: I didn’t have any set goal in mind or place to be. I just stepped out the door with the thought of going out to wander because it was such a beautiful & sunny summer day in February that I had to take advantage of this weather and this beautiful country. So, that’s what I did. I, seriously just walked around town; from one end to another (I walk until I reached the highway on both ends of town). And, I after a while, I started heading back because I knew it would be supper time soon, and I didn’t want to make people worry. So, I started heading back, while still subconsciously searching for inspiration, so, I decided to walk back on the main road because I thought: “maybe the best inspiration will be hidden in plain sight”. And, I was right, because that’s when I looked in the middle of the road at the palm trees planted all along the median, while the sun was perfect, the sky was a great colour of blue, the mountains were the perfect backdrop, the road was cleared… so, I crossed to the middle and took that picture (above).
And, while taking that picture, this sentence came to my mind: “Always Growing!”
~ Every picture has a story! ~
. . .
As the quote under the picture says: “In life, you can’t keep looking behind you. Whether it’s at your past self or others, you have to keep looking forward in order to keep growing.”.
Everyone grows differently and at a different pace.
We are similar to the tree in that way because we all started from something small, but there was that one thing that happened in our life that started our growth; Either through fear, sadness or happiness, and since then, we will always be growing a little each and every day.
Thanks for reading! I hope this inspired you to: “Grow little tree, grow! You can do it! Don’t look behind you!” because you are doing a great job and you are amazing!
So, recently I took a trip to Valparaiso, Chile & I had the best day there, just wandering the city! Here’s an “itinerary” of that trip:
1- I took the bus (1 hour) to Valparaiso alone, and didn’t get lost once!
2- I explored and wandered the beautiful city of Valparaiso!
3- My eyes were truly open to everything I saw today!
4- I was completely present in the moment today, which made my adventuring, wandering & exploring so much better!
5- Like the title & the picture hint: I got perspective thrown at me in multiple ways today!
. . .
Perspective: The appearance of things relative to one another, as determined by their distance from the viewer.
So, the first picture you saw at the top of this page is a view standing from the top of a staircase in Valparaiso. And, the next picture you saw at the top of this page is a view of the same staircase, but this time, standing right in front of it (instead of above it).
. . .
You see, this is why perspective is such an important concept because things are always different from where someone is standing.
Just like in life. People see things differently because they’re in different places in their own lives, this means that everyone has a different perspective about some/most things.
Nothing is the same for everyone because we all perceive things differently, which means that we all experience life differently. That’s perspective! Being different & accepting different perspectives of the same things.
The picture from above the staircase could be someone’s view of that staircase for their entire life. Whereas, the picture in front of the staircase could be someone else’s view of it for their entire life. But, this doesn’t mean that they aren’t both seeing the same staircase, they are just looking at it from where they are currently standing. And, most people would be fine with just seeing it from their perspective for their entire life, but, what I’m trying to encourage you to do after reading this post is: to always try and look at things from different perspectives because you never know what you could discover, just by shifting your focus.
“Don’t stay in the same spot for your whole life (don’t stay at the top of the staircase for your entire life)! Change your perspective (come down & look at it from a different perspective)!”
Change your PERSPECTIVE! It might just change EVERYTHING!
Thanks for reading! I hope this post inspired you to search for a new perspective in your life!
P.S. Valparaiso is truly a beautiful city, & if you’re ever in Chile, I highly recommend taking a trip here to see this beautiful city for yourself! You won’t regret it, it will definitely help you understand the concept of perspective!
Are you gonna keep saying: “one day I’ll accomplish that thing I’ve always wanted“?
– OR –
Are you going to: “start today and make today, day one of accomplishing your dreams and goals”?
. . .
That’s all for this post. I just wanted to give you some quick food for thought to get you motivated to start accomplishing your goals today and stop saying: “one day”. And, start saying: “today is, day one of my journey to accomplishing my goals”.
Let your hopes, not your hurts, shape your future. -Robert H. Schuller
. . .
So, before I begin, I should start by saying that I don’t know the person who said that quote, but, when I read it, I immediately remembered one of the main reasons why I made the decision to live here, in Chile, for 3 months.
. . .
I knew that living here was going to be very different, and I would have to adapt to a lot of new things. I also knew, from experience, that travel teaches amazing & valuable skills & knowledge and it helps with (mental, physical & spiritual) growth. So, let’s just say that I wasn’t exactly terrified of this trip, and making this decision was pretty easy for me because I love traveling anyways. But, I still had some doubts in me about this decision (like, was it even the right one?). And, the only thing that kept me from letting doubt win was the excitement of travel, and knowing that I was doing something that would better myself and my future. I knew deep down that this trip was going to shape me and my future in some amazing way, and I didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to travel more, grow more and shape my future.
Traveling shapes us in a way we don’t realize, until we come home & see what changed in our minds!
. . .
That quote is a good reminder to have faith in your future, and to not let today’s hurts and fears stop you from accomplishing your dreams. It reminds you that, how you feel today does not define your future because if you keep hoping, praying and working, your dreams will become reality and you will be able to say that you accomplished your goals. It reminds you that even though traveling has tough moments (culture shock, fear of flying, fear of the unknown, etc.), it’s all worth it in the end because you’re working towards creating a better you and a great future for your better self. And, in that future, culture shock, flying & fear of the unknown will not be as foreign to you.
You might even, actually, start to love those aspects of traveling (I know, I definitely have).
Hurts only last for a period in time! But, Hopes can lasts forever (as long as you never lose your hope)!
So, whatever it is that’s stopping you from doing something amazing, put it aside and let your hope and faith in your future guide your decision because being hopeful is much better than being fearful.
Thanks for reading! I hope this post inspired you to go out & live your dreams because you should never let your hope fade & your hurts win!
Kill the hurts & fears by letting your hopes & dreams shape your future!
Today, I feel like giving some shout-outs to some blog posts that I’ve liked this past month and bloggers that have continued to support me since I started blogging.
. . .
Today, I read the two following posts and thought they were interesting, so I figured I’d share them (I don’t know the bloggers, I just thought their posts were interesting & thought-provoking). I linked the two posts below:
And, I also wanted to shout-out the following blogs because I’ve recently noticed that they are always reading, liking, and commenting on my posts, and I really appreciate their support. And, I also love their blogs.I linked their blogs below:
Have you ever wanted to see a community work together within seconds?
. . .
Just come to chile (more specifically, Quillota).
Seriously, I’ve lived here for 1 months now and I’ve already seen 3 fires.
And, although fires are usually scary and unpredictable, being here and experiencing them in another country has added an interesting factor to them.
Don’t get me wrong, fire are still very scary, but watching people during each of these fires is interesting. Everyone just suddenly forgets about their problems, worries and grudges for a while. They just run out of their houses and start helping the fire department in any way they can to save their friends, neighbours, enemies and community.
It’s really quite interesting to see so many people come together so quickly because it really gives you a sense of the culture and community of a place.
It gives you hope and faith in humanity!
And, I say let’s keep it that way!
In times of crisis and need, especially, we should always help each other out no matter how we feel about them because it teaches us to put everything behind and help our enemies and community.
So, starting today, let’s always remember to help our enemies in time of need and protect our communities in any way possible.
So, I’ve recently realized that I’ve written a few update posts about my life here in Chile, but I never really shared where exactly I am living in Chile. And, so I figured I would share my location, just for those of you that are curious, and might want to visit Chile one day.
. . .
So, the blue dot in the picture above is where I am living in Quillota, Chile. It’s a beautiful, interesting and diverse town with relaxed and friendly people. And, the picture below is just showing where Quillota is located on a map in Chile.
So, here’s just a quick overview of Quillota’s location in Chile in comparison to other towns “near” it. Quillota is a small town located in the center of Chile, and it is: ~30 minutes from Quintero (35 km) ~50 minutes from Vina del Mar (45 km) ~1 hour from Valaparaiso (65 km) ~2 hours from Santiago (125 km) ~5 hours from Linares (430 km) ~4 hours from La Serena (380 km) ~7 hours from Concepcion (620 km)
. . .
And, the last picture below is an overview of my journey to Chile (from above the equator to below the equator). P.S. Unlike the picture below, I did not take a direct flight from YHZ. My flights were from, YHZ to YYZ and from, YYZ to SCL.
That’s it for this “update” post. If you want to read more about my earlier update adventure posts, I’ll link them below:
For today’s post, I was challenged to look through my old Facebook, Instagram or Twitter posts and pick something that stood out to me and write what I think about it now.
. . .
So, I chose to look through my Instagram feed and, while scrolling through, my very first Instagram post stood out to me.
Here it is:
The comment under it, just said: “Smile”.
. . .
While thinking about how I feel about it now, I could only say: “I’m so glad this was my first Instagram post because it reminds me to always remember to smile, no matter what’s happening around me. Smiling is so much easier (and much more worth it) than being angry or upset at the world all the time.” And, just like the comment says, it’s simple; just Smile (one powerful word).
Just a simple smile can turn your whole day around!
. . .
And, also, while scrolling through my Instagram feed, I noticed how much it changed and evolved throughout the years.
From: Just random pictures I would find on the internet that seemed interesting.
To: Pictures I take on my own adventures.
It changed from, a random Instagram account, to, more of a traveling account.
It was very interesting to look back and see my own journey because it helped me see that I’ve come very far. And, it gives me hope that I will still keep going far.
. . .
So, now I challenge you to go through one of your social media feeds and find something that sticks out to you, OR, just look at your journey and notice how much your posts have changed over time. (Comment below with what you discovered).
Thanks for reading! I hope this inspired you to remember where and how you started, and to have faith and hope in your future.