September 1, 2012

Announcement: My story from Gold to Green.

Hey guys!

I'm going to transform the name of this blog into: Gold to green. I'm also changing the content of it. To tell you about why I'm doing this is because throughout my year in the U.S. I've changed a little bit and transformed my way of looking at life.

Funny story, I was talking to one of my friends and told him how my year in the U.S. was so far and I've told him this:
Before I came here I wasn't as health conscious and fit as I am now. I went out a lot, drank too much alcohol! Walked my feet off in really high! heels and I didn't really care about what I ate and consumed. I shopped a lot and spent so much money on clothes and accessories. I was kind of a shopping- addict, which I think still am :-D but now I would rather spend more money on good food or high quality ones. After the winter months with thanksgiving, my birthday and christmas I felt the need of starting to exercise and to start doing something with all my freetime I had. And of course I didn't want to come back from the U.S. and being a round girl ;-) In the U.S. you're always sitting in your car and you are not really able to ride with your bike to places. Instead in my small hometown in Germany I took my bike everywhere! 

That's why I started running in January/February 2012.
At the beginning it was really hard, but it became easier and easier with time and now it is so relieving for me and I just feel way better with it! I felt that a lot of things in working out and exercising I could transfer into real life. For example, if you feel like your body cannot run anymore I kept telling myself: Don't give up! Never ever give up, push harder! And I just reminded myself: How bad do you really want it? (It: finishing your run, achieving your goals). So I've started to practice self-discipline and consistency. And you know what? I've never felt as energetic as I do now!

I also started reading a lot about health, fitness and nutrition. And honestly I was really thinking about applying for a nutrition major but I've figured that it wouldn't be realistic since I'm really bad at biology and chemistry! :-) In addition my friend Frances introduced me into Yoga. I watched documentaries about 'being green' and just to be conscious about mother nature and what surrounds us every single day. Here I didn't go out that much anymore, I am enjoying cooking together with friends a lot more than going into a club. I didn't drink that much and I am still thinking of giving up alcohol at all. I don't smoke as well. It's just not good for your body and I don't like having a hangover the day after and not being able to do anything because your body has to recover. 

Now I love getting up early in the morning, time is precious and I just want to start the day early and be productive, active! I love being outside, jogging, biking, swimming! I wear less make- up now and it is just so much better for my skin! I feel FREE! I got to know myself and my body much better.

I love my new ME! 

During my stay in the U.S. I could focus on myself, this year was MY year, and actually every single day should be about you and your dreams, what you really want in life, it is YOURS. Life is too short to just sit there and wait for your luck! So get up and just do it!

After hearing this story, my friend was like: "That's interesting, that you became like this in the U.S.! Returning from the U.S. people would expect you to be more spoiled. And I don't know if we would get to know each other if you'd have stayed the same. You became 'gold to green'."

YES! I think so :-)
This here right now in the U.S. feels like a one-year dream which will end soon but I should stop thinking that way because I LIVE NOW! I BREATHE NOW AND THIS IS MY LIFE FOR RIGHT NOW! 

I am very thankful for my experience here and I would like to keep this blog alive, it could help me to remind myself to never stop learning, changing, growing and evolving.

GOLD: fashion, accessories, beauty
green: health, body, mind, soul, in general staying green and healthy (food, recipes etc.) 

So, let's spread the word out and share your love.

Peace and lots of love,

M ♥

August 31, 2012

Vegan in NYC

One of my friends asked me where I would like to spend my last night in the U.S.? 
I've told her that I would love to spend it in the city, but everything seemed very stressful with packing and getting myself ready to fly back home tuesdays. But anyway, I've decided to go! It's NYC, come on! :) It was a monday night and we went out for dinner in the West Village.
We wanted to try some vegan food and checked out Gobo
It was really good and I just love seaweed! So we've had the kale, seaweed, beet salad with toasted walnuts, the tempura shitake caps in mashed sweet potatoes & raisins and the roti canai with malaysian curry. Excellent food! And honestly I think it is much more challenging for a chef to cook and experiment with vegetables than it is with meat! 
For dessert we've had some healthy sweet treats :) Fruits covered in dark delicious chocolate at Forbidden fruit. 

I enjoyed my last night in the city and was thinking a lot about the past 13months...

A lot have changed and more will come.

Stay tuned,
heading back to good old Germany..


August 29, 2012

Last days in NYC

The last days in the U.S. were craaaazy! I've spent these days of course!! in New York City, driving back and forth from New Jersey. In the pictures above you can see that I was at the Williamsburg Waterfront with its Smorgasburg and Artists and Fleas Market again, I went to Chinatown and Soho to do a little bit of shopping, to spend the rest of my money :) I've visited some dear friends and had vietnamese lunch together and yes I went to the Afropunk festival in Brooklyn. I've got free hugs there, South African food (the bread bowl with chicken curry) and had the chance to see Janelle Monae live on stage!
I was really busy those days because I wanted to see everyone one more time before I leave this beautiful country!

August 25, 2012

(Ch)Eating in the city

This thursday I took the boys into the city and we wanted to eat all day! Also: how to eat cheap in Manhattan?! Yes, kind of a cheatday for working out so hard, haha! We went to so many different places and got really cheap food :-)
Sorry that I didn't take pictures of all of them, it went by too fast! But I will list the places we've been to!

This doesn't belong to the cheap- eats but to start the day right, we went to the worlds's first oatmeal bar/restaurant, they've just opened up seven weeks ago and after surfing on some food blogs I've found out about Oatmeals in NYC!
Here in the U.S. I've started eating so much oatmeal I've just had to go there!!!
I'm crazy about oatmeal and peanutbutter :-) 
The first two bowls are: parmesan and fig/gorgonzola and then cherry/chocolate chip and cheesecake/blackberry. I would go there again but I'd stick with sweet oatmeal, savory oatmeal is just too salty and heavy for me.

The boys and I also went to these places..

August 21, 2012

Oh, how I've missed you ♥

Yes! I am talking about lovely NYC. Indeed, I've missed it a little bit while I was on vacation.
So I've spent sunday there and the first thing I've done when I got off from the bus was going to Hell's Kitchen Flea and checking out their stuff. I've ended up leaving with a short skirt for 5$ :-)
After that I've met some friends and we headed to Central Park, had a picnic and spent the beautiful day there. I was in a good mood and was very happy to be in New York. 
In the evening I've met a dear friend of mine from Germany, as you can see she's also Vietnamese! Our parents are really good friends and now she's going to spend one year in the U.S, too. It was nice to see her after 13months and we were chatting in english instead of german! We've had dinner in K- town, the korean influenced part of the city.
The restaurant is called Food Gallery 32  and I've had a beef stew with tofu. Pretty good and pretty crowded! But so much variety and for an indecisive person like me it's hard to make a choice! 

Oh I've had so much fun that day!!! :-)
I'm looking forward to the next few days I'm going to spend in the city..

This is my last week in the U.S. now, 
time went by too fast..

August 19, 2012

Thanks for sharing

Repost of an amazing and inspiring person which I've met while traveling and yes her experience makes a difference! 

"Many have asked me how I can be away from home and traveling in developing countries for so long. The answer is simple. There're better things to offer outside our comfort zone. If you are dare to take a step out to see the wo
rld, you'll find how blinded we are to just stay in our 4x4 SUV, 10x10 living room, 32" monitor and 47" TV. What I learn most from this trip is how to trust people and learn how to build a real relationship with others. I talk to people face to face everyday. I'm not staring at my iphone checking messages around the clock. I accept people kindness and help. Having trust on people and accepting care and love from others is what we lack of today. We are civilized but we don't use our tongue to talk anymore. We live in the so called "best city" but we don't open doors to our neighbor anymore. We care but we don't show. We want to help but we're too busy. We see it but we ignore.
Travel is an experience but also an attitude. I'm not fear of bad experience but I'm afraid to live a shallow life! Thanks everyone along the way to teach me how to live a better life. Life is too precious so let's enjoy everyday, rain or shine!
God bless you all!
Let's keep reaching out to people around us and don't hesitate to offer what we have, more or less. Sometimes, your gift is bigger than you can imagine." 

Thank you Carla Chan,
take care and I hope our paths will cross again soon xx


August 17, 2012

Western Wonder- California

Week # 1
*San Francisco *Yosemite National Park *Las Vegas *Grand Canyon *Colorado River *Los Angeles
7- day camping and hiking tour: It started on a monday in San Francisco, but we've landed there the Saturday before and met with a friend of ours. So we've had some time ahead to do some sightseeing stuff: the Golden Gate Bridge, Chinatown, Baker Beach and the Fisherman's Wharf. 
On Monday we've got to know the group which consisted of the American tourguide, five Koreans, one Australian, one Norwegian, one Japanese, one English, two Germans and of course us :-) 
In one week we've spent so many hours of sitting in a van, but we drove through three states (Arizona, Nevada, California) and to different places which were just AMAZING! We've also had a group name: GRANOLA because we were eating many granola bars while hiking and driving :) 
I couldn't believe that the U.S. is that huge, the vast lands and beautiful sights! Camping and hiking in the national parks were a lot of fun (Yosemite, Grand Canyon, Colorado River) although it was pouring the night we've stayed at the Canyon. I loved it the most and took pictures of every single corner we've been! Hiking there and just standing IN the living Canyon was stunning for me! The two days in Vegas were great, too. The first night we've had a limo ride with the whole group and spent partying :) The second day Tabea and I have spent walking up and down the strip, we saw some free shows and it was just like a big playground for adults. Oh and pretty dry and hot in Nevada: 110°F!!! The last night with the group was at the Colorado River, we went swimming and had a nice BBQ altogether and then had to say goodbye the next day in Los Angeles. 

There are no pictures of L.A. and San Diego above because downtown L.A. with the star walk and Universal Studios wasn't as interesting for me. 

Week # 2
*San Diego *Venice Beach *Santa Monica *San Jose

The second week Tabea and I tried out couchsurfing. So it was our first time but everything worked out perfectly! We've spent two nights in San Diego and three nights in Venice. 
San Diego was nice and very spanish influenced but not so thrilling. We took buses to travel around so it wasn't too expensive. 
Venice was just AWESOME! I loved it there! When we first arrived on a tuesday, I've noticed a lot of good looking people, some yoga places and nice shops. At the beach and on the famous Ocean boardwalk were a lot of surfers, skaters, beach bikers and artists. We checked out the famous canals with beautiful homes and boats. And we've discovered so many painted walls while strolling through Venice!!! I love the beautiful buddha above! We've got sunburned from the pacific ocean and did a little bit of shopping as well. We walked to Santa Monica with its Pier and went to a concert series on our last night there. And that was just like a huge picnic or festival with lots of people and good music. Did I mention that you can get a license in California to smoke weed legally? :-D 
I just fell in love with that place, I was thinking: either lovely New York or Venice, people there are very health conscious, eco-friendly and everyone just smiles and looks fit! It's definitely the sun, the palms and hey! living at the ocean!!! :)
Tabea and I left friday and took a bus for 7hours to get back to northern california. Our friend picked us up in San Jose because we were planning to take our return flight on saturday morning but it got cancelled. Instead we've spent the day together with our friend, which was also great! We went out for lunch saturday. The last picture shows some hummus and falafel at an Israeli restaurant. We also hit a fruit market in San Jose and then finally took the plane back home that night. 

I arrived back home on sunday. 

To sum it all up: I have had a wonderful time!!! The westcoast is totally different from the east but I loved it out there. My highlights were the Grand Canyon and Venice! I still have to admit that I did miss the city a little bit, maybe because I'm more familiar with it and I just don't like to be a tourist :-D 

Thank you to my friends and to the people 
I've got to meet and share stories,
will never forget it! 

Take care and much love,


August 15, 2012

Back on the east coast

Hello my dearest!

I'm back from the west and just wanted to let you know that a huge california post with a lot of pictures will come soon! I just needed some time to get myself organized and find some peace back here. I went to my yoga session this morning and it was good to take deep breaths and to be aware of what's happening right now. A lot will change.. Well, today in two weeks I'm leaving the U.S., not for good but for a while.

Hope you're doing alright and enjoying your vacations!

Much love,


July 28, 2012

Travel journal

Back from the city, I've finished packing and now it's already midnight! I need to get up in 5hrs to get to the airport and yes I'm tired! I'd love to watch the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games 2012 in London, but I think I need some sleep. Will I be able to sleep? I'm so excited!!! :)

I will definitely take my travel journal with me because I think it is the best way to capture special moments in life, in your travels and I do this every day :-)
In addition I'd say that having a journal you'll become more mindful, you're able to look back and really be aware of what you've did or what you're doing at that moment.
I started really early having a diary, but with a lot of (long) breaks when I was younger. Sometimes you just forget or you're too lazy to write something down, but now being in the U.S. I just HAVE TO write down the experiences I've made, the adventures I've been to, the people I've met and all the funny stories I can tell in the future! It's just really nice to read about the old days and you can see how you've grown or became wiser. And sometimes YOU just forget what have happened during a year and then it's good to look up the stories in your journal ;-)

Why don't you start a journal if you haven't started yet?

Take good care, safe travels and come back with a refreshed mind, body and soul.

Lots of love, inspiration and 

enjoy your vacation!

I'll meet you back here in 2 weeks with lots of pictures! ♥

Again and again NYC!

and I just can't get enough! :)
Yes, I was in the city today! One day before I'm leaving for my two- week california trip! I took the boys of my hostfamily into the city and we've did a bunch of cool stuff, for teenagers I guess.
No I'm just kidding! It was a lot of fun to hang around with them and being the tourguide, haha :-D
Me, the tourguide! And no, you wouldn't see all these touristy things with me although I still need to check some places out, for example I haven't been to Ellis Island or I haven't been on the Empire either.. Let's see if I can make it before I leave.

So, we went to Momofuku's noodle bar for lunch. We've had the pork and shrimp buns as an appetizer and different ramen noodles. It was delicious! I loved the pork buns :-)
Afterwards we checked out Questlove's Hoodie Shop. Really nice hoodies, but kind of expensive though. But you can still go there and check out the interior design, a lot of fun! I like hoodies, they are comfortable! But that's a different topic, another time..
The boys couldn't help and needed to go to Economy Candy on Rivington close to Chinatown, there was so much trash! :-D It was my first time in that store and it looked so packed! Full of candy, they've had everything! Of course also chocolate from good old Germany! A paradise for kids and a nightmare for their teeth! We were walking towards Chinatown, Little Italy and Soho and the kids wanted to get more candy! What about cupcakes this time? :-D They've got mini cupcakes from Baked by Melissa and they've said: OMG! They were SO GOOD! I'm sorry guys, I cannot give you good reviews on candy or cupcakes because I'm trying to stay away from everything- sugar! :-D