Month in Review : August 2017 – My First Month & Third Wonder of the World

Helllloooo and welcome to my first Month in Review!

I’ve been meaning to do a blog post series like this for a while now, and finally got around to doing it. Since I don’t post as frequently as I would like to, hopefully these monthly reviews will give you a better glimpse into my life.
(and in the meantime, guilt me into actually posting more often)

This series is going to be very casual and similar to what I would normally write as a WhatsApp message or a long wall of text to a friend. Also don’t be surprised if you see more emojis than you were expecting to, I can finally let loose 😛

Ready? Let’s check out what happened in August!

This Month in Adventures

The Color Factory – This month I visited my first “trendy” pop-up museum, the Color Factory. You know when you scroll through Facebook, see those cool videos of unicorn ice cream, rainbow doughnuts, or some place that would look reaaaallly good on your Instagram? And you know when you actually google that place, it’s like 3,400 miles away in NYC or LA?

Well, not anymore!! San Francisco finally got it together and partnered with the Color Factory to create this really fun museum (can I call it that? It’s not really a factory, is it?). It had about a dozen rooms full of different colors, but ofc my favorite was the giant yellow ball pit in the end. They even had free food *insert tears of joy here*

If you want to check out the only post I published in August (don’t judge meee) click here!

Why am I holding the Ukrainian flag? Our trek group got to Machu Picchu on Ukraine’s Independence Day!

Peru – You guys!! I went to Peru!! 😱 And Machu Picchu too!! *screams in Spanish*

Honestly, Peru wasn’t on my list of places to travel to this year – not because I have a grudge against it or anything, but because I completely ignored South America when thinking of 2017 destinations for my New Year Goals blog post. (sorrryyy 🙈)

I had some miles collecting dust on my United account and wanted to spend them on a trip, and it looked like there was a sale from San Francisco to South America starting at 30k points – which was amazingly cheap considering it’s still summer. One of the top deals was flying to Lima for 40k, but when I checked on Momondo, there were even better flights for around $450 round trip!

So that’s the story of how I got to Peru. No planning or anything, just randomly searching for flights and booking the cheapest option lol.

Anyway, enough of the details – Peru was so nice! My trip started with 2 days in Lima (the capital), then 4 days in Cusco / Machu Picchu, and then back to Lima for 2 more days before flying home. Lima was such a pretty city, but to be honest, there’s not much to do except walk around and try the food (I’m not complaining at all, everything was so fresh and amazing 🤤). I would have spent one more day in Cusco hiking the Rainbow Mountain or gone on a day trip outside the city.

Have you guys been to Peru? Any specific blog posts you’d like me to write? Let me know your stories in the comments!


What I’m Working On 

This month I was perpetually stuck on writing blog posts about my trip to Cuba. I would start with my General Guide to Cuba, then move onto a city guide (Havana, Trinidad, etc), then make myself a cup of coffee, answer emails, do work, and get completely off track. For a week.

Whoops 🙈 Then came my trip, then more work, and I’m back to square one. Like I said, my only post was my visit to the Color Factory, but I can’t wait to set aside some time and get more posts out next month!


What’s in My Shopping Cart

My Peru trip was coming up and I had no idea what to pack – until I saw this super pretty purse in a magazine (😍), went on GOJane, and couldn’t find it. I even Facebook messaged GJ and they said it just sold out (😭). All hope of becoming a candid Insta fashionista was lost until – a few hours later – my phone pinged and the lovely rep said they had one more in stock. Yay!!
The rest is history, and now I have this huge colorful purse/clutch to keep all my shit in. The straps are the perfect length for wearing it cross-body or on your shoulder (it’s about the length of my arm), plus there’s a zipper and a metal clasp to keep away pickpocketers.

It looks like it’s sold out on GoJane, but there are some very similar purses/clutches here (Worth The Tassel Embroidered Clutch) and here (Floral Support Flat Embroidered Clutch). You can also try their Amazon page here (3AM Forever).

I also got these Restricted shoes – normally I wear simple shoes, but this pink/blue color scheme was unique and stood out. Plus, they were so comfortable! I think I walked over 5 miles in one day and my feet felt the same after 8 hours.


In the beginning of the month, I went on a shopping trip with my friend and bought this MinkPink Dress. It’s knee-length with these huge sleeves – you can kind of see them in the photo – and is made of all-lace details. I’m probably not going to wear this every day (unless I’m trying to be #extra), but it’ll be perfect for an upcoming trip to Macau, AKA the Las Vegas of Asia. 😉💰

For some reason I can’t find the pink version, but you can see the black dress here (MINKPINK Women’s Drama Queen Lace Dress) and the white one here (MINKPINK Women’s Edge of Desire Scallop Lace Dress).

When I’m old and retired and have nothing else to do, I’d like to own a quirky stationery store. It’ll have some pretty illustrated planners and notebooks on one side, and a whole section full of cheeky birthday cards calling people wankers on the other. I could probably start my own store right now and not have to wait 40+ years, since I always buy planners, write on one or two pages (“I’m definitely going to use this planner from now on!”) and neatly jam them between some books/magazines, never to be used again. 😬

Anyway, what am I getting at? I bought this cute travel planner from Cost Plus -which, by the way, never go shopping here when you get your paycheck *ahem.* I’m going to use it just for planning blog posts: notes, ideas, outlines, when to post, and so on.



What I’m Reading“Oh I’m sorry, were you actually reading something?”

This month’s book is Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages by Gaston Dorren.

I never expected to become so engrossed in something that I thought was going to be one long, dry textbook – but it wasn’t! Gaston takes each of the 60 European languages and writes a short chapter explaining the history, quirks, and uses of the language. At the end of each story, there’s also has a little section that explains some words that English borrowed from the original language (did you know the word robot came from Czech?), and a word that doesn’t exist in English but should.

Lingo is one of those books that you can read in one sitting or pick up and read over a few weeks, and you’d know exactly where you left off. My favorite chapter is 25, because it’s not a regular story – the author gives you a few clues and makes you guess the language (I’m not giving any spoilers!). If you’ve ever traveled and thought that one language looks really similar to another, you’re not alone – this book literally outlines what happened in history and why languages are the way they are today.

Here are some other fun facts from the book:
– There was a riot in 1951 to make a language official – you can find out which one in chapter 17 😉
– Germans can understand some Yiddish if it’s written in Latin
– In the Sami language, which is from Northern Finland, there are over 20 ways to say the word “snow” 


Goals & Plans for Next Month 

I can’t believe September is only one day away – that means we have only 4 more months in this year 😱 Let’s make them count!

The first thing on my to-do list is to fiiiiinally get a few Cuba blog posts out there. I have a general guide and a few city guides as a draft, but I can’t seem to sit my butt down and finalize the details. There are also about three thousand photos to go through (I’m not exaggerating!), edit, and upload as well. I’ll be trying a new style of uploading multiple photos and can’t wait to show you guys!

Next up is to take more kickboxing classes at the gym. I realize how really out of shape I was when climbing up Machu Picchu mountain, pulling myself up on my hands and knees, and there’s a couple of 65+ year old pensioners walking alongside me without breaking a sweat. 😭 fml man, I wanna be like them!



Anyway, that was my August 2017 in a nutshell. Here’s to a successful September, I can’t believe it’s finally Fall!

Time to start working on my birthday wishlist 😈

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11 thoughts on “Month in Review : August 2017 – My First Month & Third Wonder of the World

  1. That book about languages seems fascinating! I’ll have to check it out sometime! :) A couple years ago, my family and I also visited Peru. Unfortunately, approximately mid trip, I had to go to a clinic for a whole day. I was very sick. Apparently food poisoning. :(

    1. Definitely give the book a go, it’s quite interesting! And oh no, that’s terrible – I hope the rest of your trip was good :(

  2. Hubby and I used to travel a lot. While we have slowed down since going back to the states, I haven’t given up on our bucket list yet. This is definitely beautiful and inspiring. Will share to hubby.

  3. Dear Luda, count me in as your business partner for the stationery store. ;) I know exactly what you mean about always buying planners, haha. My bookshelf looks like a store shelf, and my desk is filled with matching letter sets. I especially like stationery and planners in other languages.

    This style of post- Month in Review- is really fun to read. I hope you’ll continue doing these!

    By the way, you might enjoy this book: Think Outside the Country ( It’s about adapting business for non-English markets, so it has a lot of interesting odds and ends about languages and countries all around the world. I found it at the library. Might be a good fit with what you’re reading now.

    1. Hehe yes, we’ll build our own stationery empire – with matreshka notebooks being the hit of the season 😜
      Thank you so much for the support! It’s been really fun writing about August (even though it doesn’t look like I’ve done much, lol!) – can’t wait to see how September will turn out. And thank you so much for the book suggestion, I’m adding it to my list. I remember we had a class in university that was really similar, i.e. how to tailor our business model for global markets. We chose India and it was so fun to learn about customs there. Thank you! ❤️

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