Friday, February 27, 2015

Columbus to Thailand

One of my favorite parts of traveling is sharing my experiences with others. After four years, I have made the difficult decision to say goodbye to Whispering Sweet Nothings. Don't worry, I'm sticking around, just under new branding and a targeted travel niche. I do hope you join me on this journey!

With this new direction, I am starting a series featuring your own adventures. The world is bigger than we could ever possibly imagine, and it's scary to think we will never even scratch the surface in this lifetime. Even if we do travel to the same places, we see the world through different eyes, creating a unique experience. I am excited to kick off by featuring a fellow Columbus, Ohio native who spent time in my next destination. Thailand. 

Hi Everyone! My name is Miche (rhymes with quiche) - I blog over at Buttons and Birdcages. In November I took a trip to Southeast Asia and Thailand was one of the best places I visited. Thailand is an amazing and beautiful country. It is also a pretty big country with lots to offer. As I flipped through the pages of my travel book, it was really challenging to decide where to spend time. Fortunately, I loved pretty much everywhere I stopped, so I figured I would share a few of my favorite places.

Bangkok


The capital city and home to rooftop bars, incredible street food, and endless entertainment. My only regret is not spending enough time in this city, because, from what I did experience, was amazing. If you're in Bangkok you must, I repeat you MUST hit up a rooftop bar - extra points if you can get there at sunset - the view is breathtaking. Second thing you must do? Eat street food! Seriously, not only is it super affordable, it's authentic and very tasty :)



Phi Phi Island


We got here by way of Phuket. Most people love Phuket for it's party atmosphere and wild night life, but I was partial to Phi Phi. It's a tiny island, no cars or huge skyscrapers - basically island life at it's finest. And the views! Did I mention the views? You will feel like you're in a completely different world. Take a long-tail boat ride here, eat seafood by the water, and if you're feeling really adventurous find a man who goes by 'Spyder' (seriously), and have him take you rock climbing, you won't be disappointed, I promise.



Chiang Mai


My favorite Thailand experience. Chiang Mai is first and foremost, a beautiful city. The architecture is stunning, and there are Wats (temples) on what seems like every corner. Check out the night bazaar and really spend some time getting lost in there - there is a lot of junk, but every now and then you'll come across a few treasures.



Elephant Sanctuaries


If you have time, definitely try to visit an elephant sanctuary. It is very common for elephants to be abused and mistreated by their owners. And who's to blame for this? An influx of travelers looking to ride elephants. Visiting this sanctuary was better than and elephant riding experience. It was not only better because it's giving back and for a good cause, but you'll get to learn the elephants stories (plus you get to feed and bath them!)

Have you ever been to Thailand? I would love for you to share your experiences with me!

You can check out more from my travels on my blog, Buttons and Birdcages or connect with me on: Facebook //Instagram //BlogLovin // Twitter

<3 Miche


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A coral sea safari

Ah, the Great Barrier Reef, one of the majestic Seven Wonders of the Natural World. If scuba diving in this vibrant wonderland isn't already on your bucket list, then are you even human?
I was initially terrified to set foot in waters I had been warned that great white sharks and the deadly box jelly fish roamed wild. After squeezing into my form-fitting lycra suit required for safety from these creatures, I dove in head first, literally.
As the largest living structure on the globe, the Great Barrier Reef is ridiculously rich and diverse. Stretching 2300 kilometres, this beast is so large it can even be seen from outer space. A marine jungle, rich and bountiful, it offers insight into the grand design of our earth. The vivid sea of colors mesmerize at every turn. But don't take my word for it, take a look for yourself!


My family was lucky enough to do not one, but two day trips while in the sunny Cairns of Northern Queensland. First was to the edge of outer reef on the edge of Australia's Continental Shelf on a Quicksilver Catamaran Cruise. 

After departing from Port Douglas, we were spoiled silly with morning and afternoon teas, and a tropical smorgasbord lunch. Once we arrived at Agincourt Reef, we were provided snorkel equipment, coral viewing submarine rides, an underwater observatory and an enlightening talk with a marine biologist.

Day two was a trip to the tropical Green Island, a stunning coral cay on the inner reef with rainforests, surrounded by white sandy beaches & magnificent coral reefs and abundant marine life. We continued our adventures in snorkeling and scuba dive along with touring the reef on a glass-bottom boat. 
My parents and I ordered a seafood platter for "two" ($169) at Palm Cove Resort where we stayed. They brought out a massive serving of prawns, calamari, mussels, oysters, bacon-stuffed oysters, bugs (mini flathead lobsters), seafood risotto and scallops. Needless to say, there was still an entire meal left once we had stuffed ourselves to the brims. By far the best meal I've had in Australia to date!
Unfortunately we visited Cairns in January, during not only the hottest, stickiest month of the year, but also the worst for the deadly animals Australia is infamous for. We were advised not even to put our feet in the water at the shore, to avoid sea salt crocodiles and box jelly fish stings.



Monday, February 23, 2015

Operation Beautiful v.43

Button
 As expected, I received overwhelming interest in my Operation Beautiful project. Thus, the showcase will roll out three lovely ladies each Monday as long as I receive entries.

This project is to make you think, ponder, appreciate the simple things about yourself, that add up and make you truly beautiful. The smaller qualities that you adore about yourself, like your lips or eyes, that make you feel pretty on the worst of days.

This project is about your talents, your secret hidden abilities, your amazing personalities. Those quirks which make you, uniquely you. And, I sincerely hope that after you read through the finished product to discover how these other ladies feel about themselves, you can spend the rest of the day, sincerely feeling great about yourself.

If you feel vulnerable, insecure, or hesitant to send in an entry, don't be! We're in this together. It will hopefully make you realize a few things about yourself. This will by far be one of my favorite posts I'll ever do on this blog, and I won't even write it, you guys will. Take it away ladies!

I feel most beautiful when I'm chilling at home in my sweatpants, dancing to my favorite music, and laughing at my missteps.

My favorite physical feature is my...mile long legs! They're as strong as they are amazing!
Something non-physical that I love about myself is...my ability to speak power into women's lives and love into teens' hearts. I get to put a smile on someone's face every hour just by being honest with them. I do this every day, by personal choice, and it's the most beautiful thing I've ever done with my time.

I'm happiest when...I'm writing. Whether it be poetry, personal notes, my daily prayer, goals, it doesn't matter! Writing is in my bones and my spirit shines through them!

I feel most beautiful when...I am taking photos for my blog.

My favorite physical feature is my...Smile!

Something non-physical that I love about myself is...My dedication and work ethic. I always do more than I should and always try to help others out. As a nursing major, helping people is my favorite thing. 
I'm happiest when...I am dressed my best and surrounded by my amazing friends. 
I feel most beautiful whenI'm least expecting it. There's nothing like catching yourself in the mirror and liking what you see. Also, I always feel better about myself when I'm smiling.
My favorite physical feature is my... Eyes. They're naturally blue and I love them.
Something non-physical that I love about myself is...My ability to make people laugh. I love laughing, so making others laugh is really important to me.
I'm happiest when... I'm sharing dessert and a glass of wine with my best friend.

Interested on being featured in future rounds?

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Please be sure and thank the team of amazing bloggers who joined me to offer this phenomenal cash prize! I encourage you to hop over and take a peek into their paradise!
May good luck pursue you each day and night! Happy St. Patricks Day from all of us to you!

Giveaway is open worldwide to participants with a verified PayPal account.
Three entries will be drawn for $500 PayPal Cash to each of the three winners.
All entries will be verified. In the event an entry can not be verified participant chooses to forfeit that entry and another winner will be chosen.
Winner has 48 hours to respond to the winning email.
Giveaway will run from February 20, 12AM PDT Time to March 17, 11:59PM SDT.
Any taxes or fees associated with the winnings of this contest are the sole responsibility of the winner according to their county, state and/or country laws.
CASH prize is in US Dollars and will not be converted to any foreign currency.
Void where prohibited by law.