Journal Excerpt

Blog Posts Journal Excerpt

The Rays of the Sun

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Photo: Taken March 2019 in Durham, NC. Victoria’s happy sunshine face captured. 

We are all experiencing an interesting time. Life has slowed down and it feels like we are in this indefinite state of suspension. We are forced to cancel or postpone upcoming trips and events and hold-off on making any travel plans in the near future. As we cope with what is unfolding in the world, we experience waves of different emotions. Last week, the Midwest was fortunate enough to have abnormally warm weather, which brought us a taste of summer. For the first time this year, I was able to experience sitting on my balcony. While appreciating the fresh air and warm weather, I grabbed my journal and allowed myself to write this stream of consciousness…

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Blog Posts Journal Excerpt

The NOLA Experience

The NOLA Experience- Design to Five a travel based blog for culture, travel, and all things design
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The NOLA Experience: The Beautiful and Bold Big Easy

The NOLA Experience- Design to Five a travel based blog for culture, travel, and all things design

Jornal Excerpt: Tuesday,  May 9th.

I am currently on the plane heading home from New Orleans while writing this. NOLA, New Orleans, the Big Easy. It was the perfect 4-day long weekend, the perfect getaway, and the perfect early birthday present to myself.

I am returning from this trip with my heart happy, belly full, and sunkissed with a refreshed mind and a sunny disposition. The weather was impeccable, roughly 83 with gorgeous sunny blue skies every day. It was not too hot, humid, or buggy.

NOLA Culture

There is something unique about New Orleans. Part of it is the charming colorful homes and buildings with unique architecture and unique details. Part of it is the unique blend of cultures. Everywhere there are different hints of cultures: French, Spanish, African, Cuban, Carribean, Irish, Puerto Rican, and more. It is quite incredible how this complex web of influences make up New Orleans. It’s apparent that each piece is crucial to what NOLA is today. 

Another unique thing is New Orleans is still transitioning. Hurricane Katrina had a huge impact and created devastating damage to New Orleans and you can still see the effects today. Some structures were left abandoned, others razed to the ground. We passed by an abandoned parking lot where a Walmart and Sam’s Club used to be. New powerful state of the art tanks that pump water line the highway. All over the city, there are construction efforts for restoring and rebuilding structures and the environment.

This trip was also a reminder that everyday and everywhere we go is a complex web of influences from different places, time periods, and people.

Rich culture, food, music, weather, good company, I mean what more can you ask for?

Nola Charm

I went with two of my design friends (ahem thanks girls for being my personal photographer and videographers). It was a little one-year reunion since graduating from our interior architecture program last year. From the laughs and stories from our Uber drivers to that sweet southern charm of others we have encountered, we were able to get more of a sense of what NOLA is. With the unique boutiques and shops, vibrant art, crafts, talented street performers, it is hard not to get lured into the Big Easy charm. 

It is always challenging to decide when to soak things in, when to capture the moment, and when to share with others. I tried to focus on soaking in or just capturing moments on this trip. Sharing with others while in the company of others is a task we often face. Enjoy the company of those around you and your environment. I can’t wait to show you my experiences, share my recommendations with you. That will come in weeks time. 

I am still figuring it this blog/balance and still have a few Montreal posts ahead, but NOLA posts will be in the pipeworks. 

Four days was a nice way to get a taste of NOLA, but I know I’ll be back. 

Until then,

Take it easy, Big Easy. 

-VThe NOLA Experience- Design to Five a travel based blog for culture, travel, and all things design

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About Me Blog Posts Journal Excerpt

Why I Love to Travel

About Design to Five: Why I Love to Travel
Reading Time: 2 minutes


Writing Expert: My Journal.

Jounal Excerpt: Reasons Why I Love to Travel & Why Travel is Important

Why I Love to Travel.

I am sitting here on the train listening to music and watching the train tracks blur past me as I am on the Metra heading home. Moments like these are on the list of many other reasons why I love to travel. Gliding past the scenery while my music creates a backdrop for my current scene. 

— I’d like to just stop and thank Chicago Metra and Daniel Caeser for the feels…

Even if it’s just a 45-minute train ride back to your parent’s place for the weekend, travel can be therapeutic: a remedy for the everyday routine.

A reset button. Unplug and recharge your internal battery. A change of pace, stride, direction, and outlook on life. We often get stuck and sucked into the dregs of the mundane every day and our obligations. Bills, groceries, rent or mortgage, paychecks, chores, and more,  get meshed in a tangled web. Tugging at your arm, winding up your limbs and wrapping around your ear whispering ‘you need to do this, you ought to do that. It’s this hissing set in the backdrop of every day.

Silence that. Put it on mute. Escape. Take a ‘brb’ and indulge. Release. 

This blog, Design to Five, is to acknowledge the every day, but also show you how to incorporate travel, adventures, and new experiences in your life. It is a tool to find out how to tailor travel to your interests and seek to gain more context and meaning in your travel.

I can’t wait to share this journey as we navigate through this crazy trip called life.

Stay tuned and see what trips, adventures I take by train, by foot, by car, by public trans, and by plane. 


Up next, visiting our friendly neighbors up north in Montreal, Canada. 


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