Hey everyone, and welcome back! I recently returned from my amazing trip to Barcelona, Spain. We stayed for 9 days and let me just say, it was an experience I will never forget. Everything from the food, to the architecture, to the beaches was incredible! I am so happy I had the opportunity to visit at this time.

Now for those of you planning your own trip to Barcelona, there are a few things you should know as well as a few things that are worthwhile doing while you are there. So without further ado, here are my Top 6 Musts when visiting Barcelona!

 

You MUST:

  1. Visit the Sagrada Familia and Park Güell– Antoni Gaudi is one of the most integral architects of Barcelona’s unique landscape. He designed several buildings including the breathtaking cathedral, the Sagrada Familia and Park Güell. Both locations are incredibly unique and unlike anything I have ever seen. They are definitely worth visiting during your stay.
  2. Take a stroll on the Rambla de la Catalunya – unlike “Las Ramblas” that makes its way into the Gothic Quarter, Rambla de la Catalunya is a less touristy area filled with shops and food. We ate dinner on that strip almost every night we were in Barcelona and all the places were amazing. Not to mention many locals stopped for tapas in a lot of these “cervesarias”. If you want a less touristy experience, in the most touristy city in Spain, look no further.
  3. Visit one of Barcelona’s beaches – If you are looking to turn your trip into a duel sightseeing/relaxation vacation, then you might want to check out one of Barcelona’s public beaches. My favorite was Bogatell, as Barceloneta (while nice) was too crowded and rocky for me to fully enjoy.  
  4. Skip the hotel breakfast and eat at a bakery – Bread is super important in Spain, as well as in other countries in the Mediterranean. Within the city there are so many bakeries to choose from and they are all amazing and super cheap. A typical breakfast for 2, averaged us around 6-6.50 euros a day. Try a croissant or Flauta with Jamon (Iberian cured pork) and a café con leche.
  5. Take a day trip to Costa Brava – Our trip to Lorret de Mar and Tossa de Mar was easily the highlight of our trip. Climbing the Fort at Tossa de Mar, swimming in a little cove beach, and eating right by the ocean were some of my favorite experiences from visiting Spain. Not to mention, Costa Brava is extremely beautiful. Definitely go if you can!
  6. Try the local specialties – Pan con tomate, cava (sparkling wine) and Fideua (Catalonian Paella) are three of the specialties we had in Barcelona that are unique to the Catalonian region of Spain. You can also find tapas from other regions of Spain that are incredibly popular: patatas bravas, anchovies, croquettes, jamon, chipirones (baby squid or octopus), and one of my favorites, gambas a la plancha (grilled prawns). Trust me, if you love food like I do, one of the best gastronomic experiences will be in Barcelona.

 

Favorite places for tapas/food:

  1. Cuidad Condal (assorted tapas)
  2. Forn Boix (baked goods, Nutella croissant)
  3. L’ Escamarla (seafood paella)
  4. El Nacional (tapas)
  5. Can Fisher (Fideua)

 

I hope you enjoyed this post recounting my trip to Barcelona through my top 6 musts to do while there. Now onto packing to move for medical school in the next few weeks! Stay tuned for more posts on that!

Until then,

xoxo

 

 

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Hey everyone and welcome back! A few weeks ago I mentioned I was going to be adding a travel series to my blog. As I already mentioned, this year I will be heading to Barcelona, Spain and I couldn’t be happier or more excited. Since my trip is only a few weeks away, I was thinking I’d share with you the top 10 items I will definitely be bringing with me this year!

1. A flowy dress- perfect for hot summer days

2. Comfortable pair of sandals- versatile and easy to walk in while exploring the city

3. Basics shirts and tanks- can be used to create many looks

4. A good pair of sunglasses- perfect for shielding your eyes while also being super cute

5. Sunscreen- it is so important to protect your skin from the sun 

6. Denim shorts- again, versatile and can serve many purposes (ex. Beach cover up, part of an outfit)

7. A cute bikini/swimsuit- Barcelona has some great beaches. I definitely want to take advantage of them while I’m there!

8. A straw hat- provides shade for your face and head as well as looks super cute

9. A small crossbody bag- can fit all your necessities while also being light enough to carry while you are roaming the city

10. Camera- who wouldn’t want to capture their adventure for future memories 

These are the essential items I am bringing with me on my trip this year…in addition to my passport and ticket of course LOL. I hope you enjoyed this post! Stay tuned for more travel, coming soon!

Until then,

xoxo

 

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One year ago, I sat down to take my MCAT exam. I remember feeling ready, anxious but confident at the same time. After months of review, I was finally ready to put those long hours of studying behind me and move on to bigger and better things. Sweet, sweet freedom was just 7 short hours away. I could feel it, taste it. But before I could enjoy the spoils of my victory, I needed to push myself and give every ounce of myself to this daunting exam. Let’s go!

Many of you are in the same position I was just one short year ago. Preparing. Reviewing. Doing practice questions. Looking over flash cards. I get it. I was in your very shoes not too long ago. I remember how frustrating it was for me to sit myself down and study for this exam for months on end.

So I want to help. I am sharing my top 10 study tips that you can use while you study for the MCAT or any other exam.

1. Time management

Planning is key. Organize your study schedule so that you get to everything you want to study for a blocked off period of time. You may have to give up certain things to make time for studying, but it is worth it in the end.

2. How do you learn?

Figure out what type of learner you are. Do you learn best from diagrams and drawing things out? Or from listening to other speak? Do you have different preferences based on the subject matter? Determining this can help you save time and avoid study methods that don’t work for you.

3. Set GOALS!

This is by far one of the most important tips I can give you. Set both short term goals(subjects/topics you want to master that day) and long term goals (the score you want on your exam). You can write these out in a notebook or keep a mental list to stay focused and on track.

4. Early bird…or Night Owl?

 Figure out if you learn best in the morning, or at night. I personally feel more productive when studying in the morning because I can set my goals for the day, and jump straight into tackling them. In order to motivate myself to study hard during the day, I will sometimes plan something fun or relaxing for later that evening.

5. Take breaks

Depending on your needs, take breaks when studying in order to prevent yourself from getting tired, to regroup your thoughts, or to come back refreshed and ready to go. It is better to study uninterrupted if you can for a set period of time with breaks in between, than it is to study continuously while also browsing through Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, or texts.

6. Use outside resources when appropriate

Sometimes your lectures or textbook won’t be enough to help you understand certain topics. Try looking at other sources such as videos or online websites that can better explain a difficult topic. I looked at some videos on youtube for chemistry and biology, referred back to my old powerpoints from anatomy, and listened to audio explanations when my KAPLAN MCAT resources were not enough.

7. Study smarter, not harder!

Numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4 all touch on this idea by enabling you to save time when studying by having a clear plan, and by knowing methods that work and do not work for you. I would also like to add that when studying for a cumulative exam, or exam like the MCAT it would be best to start with topics that are high yield, and topics you know you are weak on since those are the ones that will take the longest to master.

8. Eat well

Studying is exhausting. After my MCAT study sessions and practice tests I felt like I just ran a marathon. In order to keep your brain juices flowing you need to fuel your body with good food to keep you energized throughout, without making you feel like crap. DO NOT make the mistake of eating a huge sandwich and coffee in the middle of a study session. Food heavy in carbs can make you lethargic while caffeine will lead to a crash midway. This can compromise your studying!

9. Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!

Getting enough sleep is so, so important. It will help you stay awake and alert when studying as well as aiding in long term memory retention.

10. Take time for yourself

 As important as tips 1-9 are in helping you succeed in your studying endeavors, it is just as important to take time to enjoy yourself every now and then to prevent burnout. Hang out with friends/family, schedule fun activities, exercise…etc. so that you can remain productive and motivated to reach your goals. 

 

I hope you found this useful, and that you will employ some of these tips next time you sit down to study!

Until next time,

xoxo

 

 

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Hey everyone! A few weeks ago, I mentioned in a post that I would be reviving my travel series for this summer. I began the series last year when I took a family trip to Greece. Along the way I mentioned some of the things I would be packing on my trip, some outfit ideas, and what I did while I was in Santorini, Athens, and Paros. I had a great experience and wanted to do the same this year! 

If you couldn’t already tell from the title, this year I will be headed to Barcelona, Spain. I am super super excited to be heading to Spain as visiting has always been on my bucket list. My fascination with this incredible country began in middle school and only grew as my years in high school and undergrad passed by. I am so grateful to have the opportunity to visit, especially before I begin Medical School in August. Barcelona is supposedly an amazing city (or so I’ve heard from countless individuals) and I am so very excited to be able to finally explore its history, beaches, and culture. I am really eager to see Guadi’s famous Sagrada Familia and Parc Güell, explore the Gothic quarter, and of course taste some awesome Catalonian dishes and tapas. I will be sure to keep you all posted with the places I visit and the experiences I have while I am there. 

Stay tuned for more posts leading up to the trip such as fashion inspiration, travel tips, and packing guides. It should be an incredible adventure!

Until then,

xoxo

 

 

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Hey everyone and welcome back! I know, I know. I’ve been MIA for a while now and it feels like forever since I have put up a new blog post. The last month has been extremely hectic from bridal showers and birthdays, settling in with all the things I need to do before med school starts, yada yada… the list goes on. That being said, I am back now and wanted to share with you guys something I’ve have been working on recently.

Dun Dun Dun. I opened my own shop on Etsy! It’s called LovelylacecoAlthough nothing major, it’s filled with some original artwork and printables ready for download. They are super cute and available to be printed, framed, or used as a background for desktops and mobile phones. 

You can scroll through all the newest collections and see what you like. Check it out! 

https://www.etsy.com/shop/LovelylaceCo?ref=search_shop_redirect

Additionally, I just wanted to update you all on where the blog will be headed for the next few months as the summer is approaching. Last summer, I started a “Travel Series” leading up to and including my trip to Greece and I want to bring back that series for my trip this summer. The new destination will be revealed in the next weeks so stay tuned for that and make sure to check back for updates. It should be extremely fun and exciting!

I hope to see you soon!

Until then,

xoxo

 

 

 

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