First Time Flyers

What you need to know about flying for the first time:

  • Make sure you check in for your flight 24 hours prior to the boarding time. Especially if you are flying Southwest! (It is extremely crucial you check in early to ensure you reserve a specific seat.)
  • Leave early. Remember there may be traffic, detours, hard to find parking spots, and long lines during security that may delay you.
  • Eat a decent sized meal before you arrive at the airport.
    This will leave you feeling nice and full for the duration of your flight. Nothing is worse than flying on an empty stomach. (This will also keep you from spending on the expensive airport food.) Pack a few snacks like trail mix and granola bars to munch on.
  • Charge your phone and invest into a good portable charger or power bank.
  • If you are taking any electronics, make sure they are fully charged and that you have your own set of headphones.
  • If you are a bookworm like me, take a book to keep occupied while you wait.
  • Depending on the duration of the flight and/or in case of layovers, take a travel sized pillow.
  • No matter what the weather is like, take a sweater. Airports are normally very cold.
  • Prepare your wallet! Keep your passport/ID, cash, debit/credit cards or checks ready and handy because you will be needing it often. This includes your boarding pass as well.
  • Pack a light carry on bag. Yes, you want to have the essentials with you but you also don’t want to carry on a heavy bag bursting at the seams and tiring you before you even make it out to your destination.
  • Dress comfortably! You may be moving fast, bending over, walking/running more than you thought so be prepared.
  • Remember that carry-on liquids, gels, and aerosols have to be 3.4 fluid ounces or less and fit in a clear, quart-size bag.
  • Take a reusable water bottle to fill. (This is probably the most important in my opinion.)

These are the tips that helped me prepare for my first flight!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Shulammitegirl Snaps: September

During the month of September, I:

  • Booked my first flight ever!
  • Made my way to El Paso and met my favorite couple. (We discovered each other on Instagram and met in person.)
  • Visited Meow Wolf in New Mexico on a quick road trip.
  • Crossed the border from El Paso into Juárez, Mexico.

What did you do in September?

Xoxo,

–  R. Vargas

Glamping in Austin

If you’ve been an avid reader of my blog, you know that I go on road trips often. On this occasional trip, I went back to Austin with my friend Jasmin, my boyfriend and his brother.

Once we made our way to Austin, we stopped at Zilker Park to go kayaking.

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We were fortunate enough to find this Airbnb listing with two trailers on site so we were all able to stay on the same property. Our trailer was named, “Miss Daisy,” and she was the cutest. She had the vintage retro theme going on and I adored it.

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Since we were “technically,” camping, we did prep and make meals together on the site. The first night we grilled fajitas and roasted corn.

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The next day we got up really early to swim at Barton Springs and it was freezing. But we made the most of it.


During our visit, we made a quick trip to Jerry’s Artarama which I had been dying to visit for years but never was able to. Of course it being an art store, it had several paintings, murals and graffiti on every wall and we took advantage of it all.

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When we visit South Congress in Austin, Javier always wants to eat pizza from Home Slice. After we finish eating, we walk up and down the street talking to the locals and stop at food trucks for dessert.

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I stopped at a Crepe food truck with the sweetest French man.

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One of our last stops in South Congress was stopping by the infamous, “I love you so much,” wall. Fun fact, this is where Javier asked me to be his girlfriend earlier this year.

On our last day there, we packed up and loaded the truck and headed to a farmers market for some local goods.

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If anyone ever comes across Wow Texas Honey, it is literally the best honey you will ever try. Especially the clover honey.

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We had a great time and as we always do in Austin!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Weekend Getaway

A few months ago, I started scrolling through Airbnb for my next trip and found this gem in San Antonio, Texas.
I examined my planner and found a three day weekend for the perfect getaway.
If you’re looking to start your own Airbnb account, click here to receive $40 off your first trip!

When planning, I decided I wouldn’t travel alone or ask a girlfriend to join but that I would treat my mother. She was a little nervous at first about staying on a strangers property but once we pulled up to our Airbnb and made our way through the garden she was speechless.

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Once we walked through the door and walked through the house, I looked at my mother and she said, “I LOVE IT!”

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If you’re looking for a home away from home, book your stay with Sandy. She was very kind and welcoming and we couldn’t ask for a better host.

During our stay we even caught a glimpse of Sandy and a guest in her backyard gardening.

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While we were in San Antonio, we visited Rainbow Gardens and my mother had the time of her life.

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Here are a few pictures of the highlights.

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I’m glad my mother and I could enjoy this weekend trip together and I’ll cherish the memories we made.

Xoxo,

–  R. Vargas

Austin Adventures

This past week my friend and I went on a mini road trip to Austin.
I booked an Airbnb in advance and while searching and refining my search, I found the dreamiest Airstream you could ever lay your eyes on.

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As you could imagine, the inside was even lovelier. Decorated with vintage décor and older maps used as wallpaper, this place had so much charm.

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On an acre of land, this airstream had it all. A huge garden, a hammock, and tons of animals.

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While I was planning this trip months in advance, I looked up different places on Yelp that had great reviews and had Vegan options for Chelsea. While I am not Vegan, I wanted to respect her choices and keep an open mind to try new things.

On our first night in town, we stopped at The Halal Corner which was a Mediterranean restaurant.

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It was amazing! I’ve never had tzatziki or falafels but based on this place, I would have them both again. Next time I am in Austin, I will be returning to The Halal Corner.
I can still taste the spices and herbs just by looking at the pictures.

The next morning, we got an early start and headed to Kerbey Lane Café for breakfast.

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Chelsea ordered the Vegan Breakfast Platter and I ordered the Chicken and Pancakes from their Spring Menu and a Mimosa.

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Fried chicken breast, cinnamon-beignet pancakes, strawberry maple-jalapeño sauce, and powdered sugar. Drools*

After breakfast, we made our way down to East Austin Succulents which I also came across on Yelp.

This was probably my favorite spot to visit on our trip. Solely for the fact that I am a plant lady.
I could go on and on about how beautiful it was but I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

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We didn’t leave empty handed. We bought a few indoor plants and succulents and we both got matching brown planter girls which I am over the moon about.

Later on for dinner, we tried a Thai restaurant called Madam Mam’s that I heard about from my former boss.
As soon as we walked inside, I knew it was going to be a winner.

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The Chicken Larb Spring Roll doesn’t look like much but it is one of the best things I have ever consumed in my entire life. Seriously, mouth watering.

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As my main dish, I ordered the Pad Kee Mao also known as the Drunken Noodles. It had the perfect amount of heat and the portions were huge.

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After dinner, we found ourselves craving something sweet so we made a quick stop at Sweet Ritual which is a Vegan ice cream shop.
It was a small hole in the wall but while we were sampling different flavors, we noticed how insanely busy it was.

After sampling, I decided on Unicorn Poop.

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It was delicious and I promise you could not even tell it was coconut based or vegan.

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I actually wished we had a Sweet Ritual back home!

On our last day, we found ourselves thrifting for hours. I know, I know, we were out of town and should have been shopping like crazy at the mall but we went thrifting instead.

After our big spending, we stopped at Desano’s Pizza Bakery.
I loved their mural on the wall but I loved the Margherita D.O.P. I ordered even more.
The pizza was super light and all the ingredients tasted so fresh.

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For our last stop, we went to Lammes Candies.
I heard it was a big deal with all the homemade candy from scratch and I knew I had to visit.

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I came home with some Carmelitos, Kisses, Sherbet Mints, Texas Pecan Pralines, and Licorice.

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I did not realize how attached I would become to the airstream and as I was checking out, I kept finding myself looking back at it not wanting to leave.
It was comforting to know that after a few minutes of departing, the hostess of the Airbnb sent me a message saying we were pleasant guests and that they would host us again.

I’m already planning my next stay.

Xoxo,

– R. Vargas

 

 

Shulammite Spotlight

During this months Shulammite Spotlight, I would like to shine the light on A Girl & Her Van.

Alex & Talkeetna roam around in her loyal VW and have the idea that a life lived passionately is better than any paycheck. 
I am currently obsessed with her blog and Instagram account and I’m sure you will be too!

Random fact time: I have wanted to save money for an Airstream/RV since I was a little girl to travel around and enjoy the simple life.
Needless to say this video encouraged me to keep on saving in hopes of someday having one of my own.

I’ll be going out of town this week on a road trip with my best friend Chelsea where we will be staying in the Airbnb of my dreams so stay tuned!

Xoxo

– R. Vargas