21 April 2017
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Our favorite Mexican state of Chiapas, how we love thee so. When it comes to food, this may not be such a go-to place as Oaxaca, but we love the bio-diversity of the state, it's people & culture oh so much. From mountains, highlands, canyons, to deep jungles, this state is home to one of the largest population of indigenous peoples in Mexico, mostly comprised of Mayan descendant Tzotzil & Tzeltzal groups. It's crazy how little many people including myself know about indigenous cultures in Mexico which comprise about 22% of the population & who's handicrafts are very much what the normal tourist identifies with as Mexico since it's mostly indigenous groups that all the coolest souvenirs are made by. In one way, being in Mexico, I think about how special it is that they still have a connection to their heritage in these indigenous groups that very steadfastly maintain their language, dress, culture & way of life as much of the world has severely decimated their own native populations. For example, Native Americans only make up 0.9% of the United States population... It's bittersweet though in Mexico as it is in the United States as the indigenous people of Mexico are predominantly poor & heavily marginalized. As we've traveled through most of Mexico in the past 3 months, we've been fortunate to meet & buy directly from these makers & from many collectives helping to support & educate these very important indigenous populations throughout Mexico. Chiapas in particular is a state that is dominated by the Indigenous population & also the most rebellious as it is home to the Zapatista movement which is an indigenous army that unites the many indigenous cultures standing as the resistance against the Mexican Government demanding work, land, housing, food, health, education, independence, liberty, democracy, justice and peace. As of now, the Government & Zapatista's have a peace treaty to mind each other where the government can govern Mexico proper & the indigenous people will govern themselves in the mountains.
The indigenous people of Mexico are one of the true treasures that we've experienced while here, though they aren't as friendly or open as the Mestizo Mexican but the indigenous people warrant their reclusivity as trust doesn't come so easily for them. I feel so fortunate nonetheless to be able to have worked with these people, see how they live & even share a few laughs as they don't just represent Mexico's roots, they truly represent the roots of the human civilization we know now & the fact that we know so little & feel so disconnected to them says a lot more about our education & human rights than it does about them.
We've come to fall in love with the dynamism & diversity of the indigenous art & craft in Mexico. The design, quality, thought, colors, pride, tradition of many of these goods are of some of the most beautiful arts in the world & in working with these people, we feel so lucky to be able to own such treasures, but like we're also helping keep these traditions & arts alive which in turn begins to support the livelihood & opportunities for these very misunderstood people. For tourism, there are much more manufactured & low quality trinkets produced at very low margins for these people to appease the market & it's often difficult to find & appreciate the quality & therefore price of the genuine high quality works. We've been lucky enough to stumble upon a few groups in Chiapas that maintain a very old tradition of rug making in a very high quality, hand-knotted, Persian style that takes months to create. Every part of the process from raising the sheep, to harvesting & spinning the wool, creating the natural dyes & weaving of intricate astrological & earthly wonder patterns is all done by hand. These are extremely luxurious rugs in the ornate & vibrant colors & designs that Chiapanecas, the traditional people of Chiapas, are known for. These rugs are the kind of pieces you will find in the museums of Anthropology when representing these Mayan indigenous groups for their craftsmanship & designs represent their history & beliefs of universal patterns. Every single one is truly a piece of art that any wall or floor would be uplifted to adorn & they feel like pieces of heaven under your feet. We're very excited that we've been able to create a 3rd collection of rugs that embody these gems & all come with a Chiapan talisman, or good luck charm. We hope you like them & can feel a bit of the history, vibrancy & beauty this culture has to offer through these pieces of the Colores Chiapanecas collection :)
Colores Chiapanecas Collection #3, Bad Bazaar
Handmade, hand-knotted, 100% wool, natural-dye, indigenous Mayan rugs <3
Whether you're getting pulled over in your native country or from driving abroad in a less legally structure country like Mexico, getting pulled over is no fun. Matter fact, every time that happens to me, whether or not I felt that I had actually done something wrong, my heart would pound wildly. However, despite this circumstance, you don't always have to give in to the idea that you're for sure going to get a ticket. For me, I've gotten away numerous a times in the US but it wasn't until Britt and I had gotten away 5 of the 6 times in Mexico did we realized we may have gotten a method to this madness. Therefore we would love to share with you our approach hoping that it'll help you handle those unfortunate circumstances better and perhaps as well in other unrelated but oh-so-similar circumstances in your life.
Like most things else in life, to do anything, first we think you gotta believe that it's possible; ATTITUDE is important. I suppose you can also say it's the law of attraction which I'm a firm believer in but I also care to be practical with my approaches. The other side is, if you don't believe it, you won't see it so all opportunities that may lead to it will not be exercised. So first off, believe that you can get away with a ticket, regardless of the circumstances, and right away you will increase your chances.
The next step is to ask how. HOW CAN I GET AWAY WITH A TICKET?? Asking this question is crucial because it allows your mental faculties to go to work to find out and everyone's answers will not be the same. For me, I simply put myself in the shoes of the police officer and asked myself, who would I not give a ticket to if I were to pull someone over for an infraction. And the answers were quite simple... Family, friends, and people I like.
Not always having a strong perspective early on in life, I wasn't fortunate to get away with these tickets until just about 10 years ago when I took it upon myself to question the meaning of life and what I can do to fully succeed in it the way I would like to--since most people view ''success'' differently. But that's information for another blog since I find millions of people everywhere can relate to that loaded topic. When realizing that I wouldn't ticket the people that embodied that kinda RELATABLE energy, I simply took it upon myself to treat these officers that pull me over as a person I liked, a friend, and even as far as a family member. If you're not a fan of people or don't know how to extract and share that kinda warm feeling and energies toward someone you've never met, no worries because these things can always be learned. Continually ask those questions and you'll find lots of answers to relate more with people. The more you can see what they find important and relatable, the higher your chances are of being likeable and hence forgiven for such things as a speeding ticket.
HUMILITY-- BE VULNERABLE, BE REAL.
Now with that perspective, once the officer approaches my car, I no longer embody the level of fear that I once did prior to this perspective. Once the cop comes near, immediately I would say, ''Hey what's up brother; I'm sorry about that and especially for wasting your time.'' My comment would be filled with a somewhat submissive or neutral energy at most, hardly ever that hot shot or overly confident kinda vibe. RIGHT AWAY, the rapport has been established as opposed to being complete strangers.
Then, the officer would follow up with something to the extent of whether I'm aware of what i did. Oh man, this follow up comment is what allowed me to achieve things that many people couldn't couldn't achieve without the same awareness and it involves something I've read that many people find an important key to success; humility. What I would tell the police officer was that I wasn't exactly paying attention because of some level of unsettling insecurity that distracted me from what I was doing. Either I had an argument with my significant other that left me unsettled or the thought of a close relative's death, or cuz i currently have this boiling anxiety that i don't know how to overcome, or whatever reason you feel they can really relate to in the deepest form. Personally, I feel every human beings possess similar insecurities and likely can relate to those serious issues that I've mentioned above if you possess the humility to share it.
In the face of humility, what I've observed is that our fellow humans have a tendency to look after one another, helping each other especially when someone's obviously in need of it and courageous enough to admit it to you. In those situations with the police, when you put yourself in a position of needing rescue, keeping it real so-to-speak to one of your inner deeper insecurities, the police will tap into his human spirit, which I believe is more prominent than the police morale, and want to truly ''rescue'' you to lift your spirit and one big way of doing this is to let you get away with the ticket. In a big nutshell, that's one method on how we've been able to away with as many tickets as we have. BE LIKEABLE, BE SUBMISSIVE, BE RELATABLE... BE REAL.
''TAP INTO THEIR NOBLER SELF'' --DALE CARNEGIE
Another approach that I find effective is something I'd learn from Dale Carnegie in his legendary book, HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE. Some where in the book, Dale wrote that people all want to see themselves as a noble person so if you were to put them at a higher standard, they'll be inclined to live up to it. Just a few months ago in Mexico, we were pulled over near Ciudad de Mexico for not having a permit to drive during a NO CIRCULAR day, an effort supposedly aimed at reducing pollution. Even though it made sense to me that we deserved the ticket because we hadn't fully done our research before entering the area, I also felt that it was unfair because these laws weren't posted anywhere. Britt is the avid OCD planner in our relationship and even she had missed that one.
When the officer explained to us the reasoning behind the ticket, I had mentioned to him that it was unfair because... then said passionately to the officer in Spansh, ''To me, people of Mexico are people of the world and people of honor.'' Inherently, I believe the officers here are used to the corruption and if you don't remind them of the higher morale that existed within them, discretely, they can often forget about it. After a bit of chatting back and forth trying to understand each other, the officer told us we can go. I wasn't sure if he was just tire to speaking to us or perhaps what I had said had an impact on his decision but as soon as we were driving away, the police officer uttered to us, ''People of Mexico are people of honor.'' Hence, I'm compelled to believe that it works.
Many people loves friends or just being around people with positive and uplifting energy. About 7 years ago, while my twin brother and I were driving his then girlfriend and Brittanny, of whom I was beginning to date, we were pulled over by a police officer for not having an outdated registration. Not only that, being relatively irresponsible during those years of our lives, the officer also discovered that we didn't have our car insurance paperwork as well as our driver's license. Instead of feeling guilty, we acted normal and were talking about it like silly friends and somewhat laughed it off together. Because we sincerely appreciated him like a friend, he treated us exactly like a friend, he had felt really great about helping us out. Police are a lot more normal than we give them credit for and like all normal people, we just want to be loved and appreciated.
In another example, Britt, her cousin Janelle, and I were pulled over for slowly running a stop sign where there were no signs of traffic because we do not care to put anyone in a position of danger. When her cousin got a bit nervous, we quickly told her not to worry and that we were not going to get a ticket. NO MORE than 8 minutes after the friendly exchange, we were excused.
More examples on the power of humility. STORY NUMBER 1
I was at a huge water park music festival with Britt about 6 years ago and was in a huge crowd of people swarming to get in the VIP area. Apparently, it got too full so the entire staff was kindly ushering the crowd away from the area. People tried to throw money at the security to no avail but not having any kinda money that'll persuade the guy, I decided to keep it real and told one of the 20 security officers, ''hey brother, i'm fuckin broke as hell but would like to get my lady through. Any way you could help me out?'' Without any hesitation, he let me through. do excuse my ''fuckin'' language since i chose that specific word to relate in the moment. i'll write another blog soon about how i believe languages and guns are only surface problems to a stronger underlying problem in our society. Hence, getting rid of it will only spark new weapons but does not change the purpose/problems for it's use to wreak havoc.
The psychological energy behind this exchange to me was so powerful and even though i felt that it would be effective, i still was surprised and wanted to exchange further by asking him, ''why'd you decide to let me through?'' He quickly responded, ''cuz you kept it real.''
On another level, I felt that he allowed me to go through because 1, I related with him. I know that a lot of people have problems and insecurities, including me, about having enough money and even feeling ''broke'' a lot of the times. It's not a good feeling but the moment you hear someone out of the blue relate to those feelings, it makes you feel uplifted that you're not alone in that insecurity. We were ONE in that present moment and I sincerely felt that he was looking after me as if I was him, hence I believe I was able to get through where no one out of the hundreds were able to.
STORY NUMBER 2-- I'm gonna keep this one shortER.
One evening while in NYC with Britt and a group of friends, most of us wanted to go into a venue but were denied at the door because of our attire. After walking away in defeat for a moment, I decided to give the seemingly rigid well-dressed bouncer a second try. When I approached him, I simply submitted into a lower brother position because I felt that every body has a soft spot and wants to be a bigger brother to some one. In other words, everyone desires to be of value and a bigger brother often provides that kinda important feeling. Hence I told him that we're outta town and that if he could be an older brother and help me out as to where my crowd can go. At that point, he went into bigger brother role and assisted us in getting into the venue.
THE WRAP UP
LEARN TO REALLY LOVE PEOPLE is the morale here. Once you do, finding out what's important to them and how to relate to those feelings will be easy. And once you can super relate to others, naturally they'll want to reflect that energy to ya in the way they know how. To police officers, that reflected energy are often in the form of a TICKET waiver.
I hope the experiences and thoughts above will serve you well and if there's anything you can help me further expand my perspective on the subject, it'll be greatly appreciated because I'm always seeking to learn to expand my awareness of this beautifully infinite universe. ALSO, I in no way claim that the above approaches will work for you but rather they are a firm belief as to how they work from my perspective. If you don't already have an approach, what's the harm in giving it a try and please let us know how it goes for ya so we can learn from it together. THANK YOUUUUUU.
Daniel n Brittanny
Prior, we had written about how you can transport your pet via a Ferry from the Baja sliver of Mexico to its mainland and from that sprung this blog that'll tell you more about the TMC experience in general and what you'll need to know in preparation for the ferry.
REQUIRED DOCUMENTS FOR YOUR VEHICLE TO BE ON THE FERRY
First off, the moment you consider a ferry to cross into the Mexican mainland either via Baja Ferry or TMC, be sure to have your vehicle registration to prove ownership of your vehicle to be allowed to get the vehicle ''import permit.'' Yes, you'll need one to have your car legally on the mainland
What you'll also need to get the import permit is to also have your FMM TOURIST VISA, that same thing they give you whenever you fly internationally into any country. Technically, ONLY the person that the vehicle is registered under needs the FMM to get the import permit. You can get the FMM at the immigration office at any border entry point. It'll cost about $25 for each FMM since you're traversing by land instead of flying into the mainland. If you'd already driven far down into Baja, the other only place we know of that you can get the FMM form is in Cabo San Lucas.
sample FMM Tourist Visa we downloaded from Google images
The import permit costs $69usd plus a $400usd deposit and allows you up to 6 months stay on the mainland, of which you can extend/renew at the border. Ohhh, and the building you would need to go to to get the Import permit is called BANJERCITO. To receive the deposit back, you'll need to stop by any Banjercita office near any border entry point before crossing back into the US. Other than needing the import permit for the car to go on the ferry into the mainland, it is also a legal requirement along the way when the mainland authorities stop you at military checkpoints.
ABOUT THE TMC FERRY
TMC is a working ferry for the nation's business purposes transporting supplies and other cargo as opposed to the alternative BAJA FERRY that caters to the comfort of tourism so there won't be any sleeping cabins available and majority of the people on board are trucker men; fortunately nice people. There is a moderate size sitting room lounge with a TV that some people slumber in but most that we saw slept in their vehicle. Overall cleanliness is very acceptable especially given the liberty to bring your pet without w/out a kennel.
While on board, despite what people say, the inclusive Mexican meals were actually authentic and good.
The FERRY TICKET
The ferry company considers your type of vehicle and the number of passengers ''cargo'' so the weight/type of the vehicle will slightly impact the price of your ticket. All in all, it shouldn't cost you as much as the Baja Ferry alternative where you can't have your pet out of the kennel, assuming you're taking one like us. The trip was overnight and about 14-18 hours depending on loading efficiency. To check out the updated prices, you can visit their website at www.ferrytmc.com. Costed the 3 of us 4,747 pesos or roughly $250usd at that time.
When you're at the website and selecting your port of departure & arrival, keep in mind that LA PAZ translate to the word "PEACE" so select that option if you're going from or into La Paz. I feel quite retarded after realizing that but hey, who would think that Google Chrome would translate the name of a City in its English equivalent, something we soon realized Mexico does quite often.
We had used this website for planning purposes and due to uncertainties, such as the type of operator ticket we're supposed to get, we had decided to purchased the ticket at the port's ticket office instead. There are 2 ports over on the mainland you can select to arrive at: Mazatlan and Topolobampo. We considered taking the less expensive Topolo' port and drive a few hours along the coast southward to reach our intended Mazatlan destination but with some information from people saying that the route isn't that scenic and due to the cost of tolls along the road, you wouldn't save much anyway so we had waived that option and ferried straight into Mazatlan.
After sorting out your desired ferry schedule, plan to arrive at least 2 hours ahead to give yourself time to process the car paperwork and to purchase the ticket at a different building. It shouldn't take too long given that all the aforementioned paperwork are in order.
OUR unplanned EXPERIENCE
Needing and getting the FMM was something we had to learn the hard way. Since we had not gotten it at the border, we were told by almost everyone we got into contact with in La Paz that the only way to get it is at the border where we came from and we'd have to either drive back or catch a flight.
Being that our car was registered under Britt's name, only she needed the FMM for the import permit so we reluctantly bought her a quick round-day-trip flight to TJ. Shortly after that TJ trip, we later found out that YOU ACTUALLY CAN GET THE FMM @ CABO SAN LUCAS an hour drive south of La Paz like we've mentioned above! The cost is also $25USD at the CSL airport. Obviously, we were slightly annoyed when we later found out from a traveling friend that we had met on the 2nd day of this Mexico expedition but we soon got over it because these were all supposed to be a part of the experience as we had aimed to develop a more chill and 'everything is going to work out beautifully' mentally along our travels. Another thing to note is that because Mexico's communication infrastructure among all the governing offices were relatively outdated, the airports, port, and immigration employees are often limited to the information local to them.
a. After getting the import permit, the ferry ticket, and finally weighing in the car, we had an hour to kill so we parked at a random spot--you could no longer drive out of the port at that point--and walked across the street around the top corner for a Michelada.
b. Do request to be parked on the upper deck of the Ferry to avoid the intensely loud engine noise below. We've been told it'll help with the sleep factor.
c. Be prepared for a long trip and having pillows, if room permits, would be very helpful.
d. Meals have a time window so the kitchen will be closed if you don't get there on time. They'll let you know the time period that it'll be served.
e. TMC FERRY and BAJA FERRIES share the same port in case you didn't know and it's about a pleasant 20 minutes drive from the end of the malecon on the way towards its 2 most popular beaches, Balandra and El Tecolote.
16 hours of ferry time can be quite tiring
We hope this information have helped you plan for your travels and feel free to reach out if you have questions via the messages below, instagram (@ilovebad), or facebook (ilovebad organics). Have super fun in Mexico and try not to get stopped by the police so many times like we did; 6 times thus far to be exact!!
Daniel & Brittanny
14 April 2017
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I woke up this morning w/ britt sharing with me her experiences on the "on the road in Mexico" facebook page (ilovebad) helping some people out with their desire to transport their pets and vehicle through the sea of cortez without needing to lock them in a crate. This is quite awesome because just a lil over 3 months ago, we were in the same situation as we had sold most things we owned (except our online business inventory--lotsa organic hemp goodies!) to venture through most of Mexico via our lil nissan juke SUV+ thule cargo box... and of course, MAX, our now 20+2lbs of tacos = 22 lbs PUG child.
our amazing mini awd adventure car + medium thule cargo box
alongside the coast of Campeche en route to Merida
During the time we were prepping for this trip, we couldn't find any information whatsoever online on how we could ferry our pug without putting him in a crate, despite many people seemingly having taken their pets. Most of the information we saw were people resorting to the crate method via the BAJA FERRIES (actual name of the ferry), which we were sooo declined to do.
view of our car and other freight from the dining level
if you allow it, the boat ride can be quite enchanting
Anyhow, getting straight to the point, eventually, after days of digging and believing something would surface--law of attraction if you will, we had found a little bit of information about a lady taking a different ferry which allowed her dog to sleep in the car with her. The name of the ferry was TMC Ferry and we didn't even know existed because it it's primary purpose is for cargo and not tourist, albeit you're allowed to take it should you choose to skip certain amenities.
With that tip, we soon landed upon their website @ http://www.ferrytmc.com/ and though we didn't see much information regarding the transportation of animals, we also didn't see any restrictions so went with it and after getting all our documents together for the ferry, which is a blog of its own, we were successfully able to transport Max without any problem on the aforementioned ferry line. A couple of the crew members were really fond of Max so it made the experience a bit more fun.
our delicious dinner on the TMC Ferry
One other thing. You can roam about freely on board which is pretty dope cuz it allows for Max's pooping session even though we did our best to not feed him anything half a day prior so that it would limit his chances to have to 1 or 2 on board. As you may suspect, 2 is a lot easier to clean up after than 1 so you can keep that in mind to better plan for em. Also, the ship is quite huge so your furry child may have a bit of privacy should emergencies become unavoidable. Max did have to 2 but it was quite easy to pick up after with a subsequent disinfectant cleaning. heh
16 hours of ferry time can be quite tiring
We hope this information was helpful in your efforts to get your furry child over to or back from the mainland of Mexico via the ferry. If you happen to have any other questions or concerns regarding this process, feel free to reach out to us below, instagram (@ilovebad), or on facebook (ilovebad organics).
If all is in order, we'd like to wish you all the best and for more information on our TMC Ferry experience, please click here.
Daniel & Brittanny
As we cruise through all of the sites, sounds, smells & feels of Mexico, you experience a sensory overload of this very rich & ancient culture which is nothing like we and most Americans we know would think of Mexico. Mexican roots run so deep, the Mayan & Aztec civilizations are some of the most popular indigenous civilizations known to the area & they are still ever present all over Mexico today! Today's Mexican culture has gone through much conquest & revolution which now comprises the indigenous people, Mestizos or a people of mixed European descent, & many a in between.
Between the culturally rich & diverse heritage of these people & the land, Mexico has been a thrilling experience to say the least. We've driven from the farthest North West coast to it's most Southern East tips & have learned more than we could have imagined about Mexico. It would truly be difficult to pick a favorite aspect of our Mexican experience thus far between the culture, the people, the nature, the art, the food, the music & just all the feelings, but for the creature of habit in me, my obsession will always be the art. Art is so rich in this culture that Mexico's most prolific artists Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera are the face of Mexico's largest monetary bill, the 500 peso. They both incorporated their own artistic styles & visions with indigenous subjects, style & inspirations. It's really special to be in a country whose history is so old & rich & still get to experience the descendants, art, food & culture of these indigenous people today.
Being in Mexico you can experience both a modern Mexican culture or experience the indigenous culture & groups that maintain so much of their ancestors' legacies. There are hundreds of indigenous groups that descend from the Mayans & Aztecs with different language, food, dress & appearance than the modern day Mexican whom is a mixed race with European descent & speaks Spanish in Mexico today.
One of my favorite indigenous arts are rugs handmade in tradition by the indigenous Tzotzil people in one of my favorite states of Mexico, Chiapas. Another favorite are the handmade rugs weaved by the Zapotecas indigenous group in the state of Oaxaca.
Tzotzil rugs both hand-knotted & handmade in San Andrés Larráinzar, Chiapas. As a quality hand made rug enthusiast, we were dazzled to have stumbled upon a collection of rugs of a quality and design that we felt were second to none, in comparison to the authentic Persian, Chinese, Morrocan rugs that I so appreciate and love. The group of Tzotzil rug makers that spends countless hours hand-knotting them are no more than 20 people producing less than 50 pieces per month. To say the least, these rugs are quite rare and we are continually aiming to make the ones we find most beautiful available on our etsy store at www.badbazaar.etsy.com
Though we've only broken even due to the relatively high cost they're selling it at, we are still pretty excited that we were able to capture and express more of the hidden gems of Mexico to share with our reality.
We drove the entire day guided by a Tzotzil native to find this small community of rug artisans that were hidden in the mountains of Chiapas. Since our guide and majority of the locals didn't know exactly where these group of rug makers were, we for a while thought they no longer existed or that we weren't fortunate enough to find them.
Tzotzil Hand-knotted Rug. My absolute favorite.
Zapotec rugs hand-dyed & handmade in Teotitlan de Valle, Oaxaca:
Valle de Teotitlan
We've--and our pug max--been on the road in Mexico for just over 3 months now, halting our growing business just before we left along with most everything else in our lives. I'd consider our lives & work as pretty damn fortunate being that we felt free in that we got to work for ourselves & serve the most amazing & special of customers through i love bad organics. Further, we are surrounded by awesome family & friends & lived in a city we loved, Long Beach. We fell into our lives & business by chance & choice, but nonetheless felt very settled at maybe too early in our lives--daniel being 36 and me 28--which is something we always thought or were told we wanted. However, to be a bit more sure that this is truly what we wanted, we decided to exercise detachment to our existing lives by selling all of our things to explore / experience different inspirations road tripping through Mexico for 6 months!
The things we've got to see, experience & learn thus far are not what we expected at all, but it's truly been worth every moment of the good, beautiful, stressful, lost & bad. There's been so many ups & downs, it's truly just life, but parallel, in Mexico, so like same same but different. Sometimes different is just what the doctor ordered, not better or worse, just different. It allows us to see things different, be different, experience different, think different & when we come back home in July, hopefully we'll approach life a little different too; rejuvenated and even more purposeful. =) If you ever desire to step away from the same repetitive life for the sake of change and re-appreciation of all the beautiful things you've come to take for granted, we highly recommend it so feel free to ask below if there's anything we can help you with in.
bajia de concepcion, baja --mexico
balandra, la paz
isla ispiritu santos
malecon, la paz
our adventure vehicle the 2013 nissan juke -- coast of campeche
the color cemetary at sayulita, nayarit
the cenote at Hacienda Lorenzo, Valladolid
the hidden mayan ruins in palenque
hierve de aqua, oaxaca
iglesia de san ignacio in baja mexico
guanajuato city in the state of guanajuato
san miguel de allende
teotituacan cerca de ciudad de mexico
Currently: in Mexico City as of 7 April 2017. 3 left months to go <3
We began this business just trying to make something we needed, a breathable blanket, out of super soft fabric with our newly founded soulmate of textiles, hemp. As we've grown over the last 6 years in this "bad" business both individually & as a team, this desire to help fill the natural & holistic needs of our customers & ourselves has grown into a series of not only products, but lifestyle habits. In the desire to make something to the best of our abilities & values in terms of being clean, modern, useful, versatile, healthy, comfortable, ethical & honest (which we can't say we were or are perfect at) we somehow began to shine a light on & transform our lives to something we cared a lot about & suddenly had to be accountable for since we made a business out of it, an integrative organicly balanced lifestyle that includes the good & the bad while living consciously of it. What was our hobby, became our business whilst becoming our lifestyle. With our website & this blog we had hoped to share anything we possibly found helpful in terms of health & happiness because though this may not always be enough, this is the largest & sometimes only driving force behind our business. We are beginning to realize that we're not obsessed with business or these products as we are about wanting to serve people's organic needs, & these products do their best when that is our focus. So living a happy & balanced lifestyle has kinda become what this business has become for us & the products just comfortably caress our bodies throughout this process :)
The number one thing we've found ourselves subconsciously posting about through this blog is all kinds of adventures & tips... And we have a feeling soon this may be the only kind of content you'll be finding here as we plan to hit the road for 6 months come 2017 ;). Apparently travel has become one of our favorite ways to water our health & happiness. So here's a little look into some radical places we found ourselves this Summer '16 & how, what, where you'd want to know if ya want to go :) Our first stop will be back to the oh so magical-Big Sur.
Climbing down the cliffs to Jade Cove - yeah, Big Sur is well-known for it's beaches filled with rocks of Jade 💚
The oh-so-photogenic, McWay Falls
Bitches love Bixby Bridge!
Kirk Creek Campgroud
For those of you who have never been, because anyone who has already understands the unique glory of this magical place, Big Sur is about 85 miles of windy, rocky coastline between Carmel & San Simeon. You know the minute you enter Big Sur, 1. because you'll have absolutely no cell phone service at all ever mm mmm no, 2. the undeveloped & minimally populated coastline becomes a long, plunging, mystical, rocky cliffside of which you will wind up, down, side to side amidst deep blue to turquoise waters with redwood wilderness on your other side.
From what I remember, there are about 2 gas stations, 2-3 convenience stores, a count-on-one-hand few restaurants & hotels & airbnbs to be had in this 85 mile-ish stretch of preserved land & state park camps. We've only tent camped in Big Sur on the south end with Kirk Creek being our most favorite campground as it is on the ocean side of the highway with nice grassy camps, one of the best views & it's own little hike down to a little beach. Only catch, seriously intelligent raccoons & no running water... So go find yourself on one of the nearby waterfall hikes & get yourself the greatest shower the world has to offer & get yourself a flashlight for that really not great kind of terrible campground bathroom....
Being on the south end, we did a full drive to the north end up to the infamous photo stop, Bixby Bridge. The drive through Big Sur whichever direction you are heading is worth the trip & also pretty sketchy, so go slow. It's hard to explain why you'd drive 85 miles of coastline where the cliffs meet the ocean & how bio-diverse/earth-mazing that would be because I can't describe it, but it's legit, you'll love it. There's so many stops along the way with Big Sur Bakery, Nepenthe Restaurant, Pfeiffer Burns State Park & McWay Falls just being a few stops, but there are many radical day & multi-day hikes deeper into the park.
If you're staying in the South End, ya gotta spend a day at Sand Dollar Beach after a little treasure hunting at the nearby Jade Cove, hike & cool off at Limekiln or Salmon Creek Falls :)
I don't think there's a true limit to how many times you can visit Big Sur & if it's something you've considered, well yah, it's gonna be more than you expect :)
22 June 2016
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We've had quite a bit of love for this country of Mexico for some time now with frequent visits to our Southern neighbor in Baja housing some of our favorite cities like Tijuana, Rosarito, Valle de Guadalupe, Ensenada & mountainous regions that roll just East (see previous blog posts for travel tips on these areas). Not to mention the other luxurious beach towns we've had the opportunity to visit like Cabo San Lucas & Cancun. After hearing so much about the ever so booming metropolis of Mexico City for some years now, we decided to venture into the heart of Mexico & 365km North West (or an hour flight) as well as to a little bustling colonial town called, Guanajuato, where we left our hearts & appetites... for now :).
Bienvenidos a Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico City; where you can eat, dance & eat until 6 in the morning, every morning. 3rd largest city in the world w/ about 23 million people. <3
This most recent trip in mid-June was a super quick 5 day getaway to two cities in the wondrous viva Mexico! With 2 days in each city and a good but bearable amount of traveling in between, we really felt like we did quite a lot without trying too hard and we're excited to share them with you hoping to encourage others that are skeptical of what Mexico has to offer, especially with the unrealistic fear of this place known to be maimed by media everywhere in the US and perhaps other parts of the world. Believe us when we say that there's so little to fear relative to what you think you know. We've seen no crime of the sort or even came close to seeing anything scary or even sketchy.
TIP: When traveling, we sensed that people are very similar in most places of the world. The universal language seems to be energy and when you're respectful to all those you encounter with smiles and perhaps a slight bow of the head if your ego allows you, then you will inevitably get respect in return. <3
Frida & Diego's Casa Azul can not be missed. Housing some of her most famous works, personal collections & I mean come on, you're in her freaking HOME! <3 Daniel & I still don't know what we did wrong or right as we are very intermediate beginner coming to Spanish. So the line at the Museo Frida Kahlo is like always an hour long, but there's a shorter line for tours. Long story short with very little understanding of what we did wrong or right as I had mentioned before, the line for tours was only 10 minutes & the tickets were 10 pesos cheaper?!.... So anyway that totally worked out because we were about to leave when we got there and was told the line was an hour & I would have been heartbroken. But anyway, no guarantees, but try this if you're ever visiting the Casa Azul!
We stayed on Calle Sangre de Cristo & at the end of the street is an amazing roundabout of vendors that's all locals, I don't know what the area is called.... but you can buy household supplies to fresh produce to ice cream & toys for the kids to some bomb ass street food like this Senora's TLACOYOS & GORDITAS her masa is to die for! & she also loves watching telenovelas while her wood burning grill/oven thang do their thang. & Daniel may or may not have ventured into some intestine tacos at the stand across the way... #authentic
For the budget conscious individuals or groups, this overall trip costed us 5 days and about $2000. Conversion at the time of our travels is about $18 pesos per USD.
Santa Ana, Ca ---> Mexico City $300 round trip per person. SouthWest
Mexico City ---> Guanajuato (leon airport) $200 R/T per person. AeroMexico
Mexico City: 2 nights for $90 each = $180 ( La Condesa, host Alejandra )
Guanajuato: 2 nights for $120 each = $240 ( Casa Antiqua de..., host Nayelli )
$400 USD in Mexico City
$200 USD in Guanajuato (GTO)
We totally felt like we spent more money in Guanajuato so have concluded that we must've somehow dropped cash during our travels in Mexico City. Everything is so inexpensive!! Overall, I'd say $2,000 seems about right. Not bad for such a memorable experience for us and we soooo can't wait to return in December to visit Guanajuato again and rent a vehicle to drive 4 hours over to their neighboring state of Jalisco. We hear Guadalajara is quite the spectacle as well and when that time comes, our Spanish will hopefully have improve lots since we're dedicating 1 day out of the week to speak only Spanish. This is crucial to us because it'll allow us to further relate to most of the folks there that do not speak English.
Welp, that about sums up our trip and we hope that it sheds a bit of light into this exotic country that most of us are unaware of due to its Mexican stigma. If you have any questions that we can help answer, please feel free to reach out to us because we care to help those looking to expand their awareness for life through traveling!
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08 June 2016
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Over the weekend, we had the pleasure of visiting a farm animal sanctuary in Acton, California (Los Angeles County) where we got to hang out with some of their incredibly adorable rescued farm animals. In addition, we were reminded of the inhumane practices in the animal farming industry and how much we care to raise awareness for abused animals. Hence, we're very thankful to have discovered an amazing organization in FARM SANCTUARY to contribute towards the 30 years they've spent rescuing these animals, advocating their rights, along with educating the public on how this industry really works.
Additionally, the sanctuary cares to educate the public about the myths that animals are needed in our human diet to survive therefore they also care to promote Veganism. Though we are not Vegans just yet, we do agree with their principles and hope to continually shift towards a diet value that's more aligned with our animal-friendly lifestyle! It's sooo not easy because we love food and love what we're used to as much as anyone else... but for the deep love & developing connection w/ animals, it's so worth it for us.
Below are some photos of the animals at the Southern California Farm Sanctuary and if you're ever around the LA area, you most definitely should pay a visit! It's the perfect fun for a date and if you have kids, even better! The tour is only for an hour and is only open to the public on Saturdays & Sundays. For more information, click here.
Pigs sleeps about 18 hrs out of their days!
We also learned that "cage free" isn't exactly what you think it is. Chickens kept out of small cages are trapped in very tight open spaces by the thousands which is really no different than small cages by the dozen. =(
This place reminds me of the Museum of Tolerance, but for animals. <3
Above is our super chill tour guide, Breezy. She's quite good at what she does!
If you'd like to be a voice for the farm animals, do remember to donate to their cause by clicking here!