Monthly Archives: July 2015

Powering through Pickpockets and Playing Positive


As most of you know–because those of you that read this follow me on Social Media, {and let’s be honest– I am not shy when it comes to sharing things I experience} I recently went to Barcelona and Mallorca, Spain.

What some of you may or may not have known is that I was pickpocketed while there. Day 2, in fact. Boo.


And when I tell the story as I replace my cards, driver’s license, update cards on file for auto-pay, etc. I find that it is quite common (even though I knew this before I arrived) and well, things are things. They are replaceable. I am alive, I had a great trip, but thought I would share some travel tips with you all…and let my behavior be a lesson learned for you!

Day 2 of Barcelona: I had some tapas with my travel pal (at La Pepita, highly recommend) and we headed down into the Metro to the Barceloneta area to continue our fun night! So far so good. We had a wonderful bike tour that day (also highly recommend). The metro was hot (per usual) and crowded. Really crowded, which lead me to believe, as all the young people surrounded us that we were headed in the right direction at the right time (Barcelona parties late) as a ton of people got off at our stop. Up to the top of the metro and I reach into my bag only to find my whole wallet-GONE. My favorite wallet. GONE. Didn’t feel a thing. All my cards. GONE. My Euros. GONE. Oh no my Torchy’s Taco gift card was in there too. GONE. Driver’s license- GO—oh well, I hated that photo anyway and need to update my address.


Bri and I doing the Fat Tire Bike Tour (above) and La Pepita (below)


Now, I have traveled alone before and nothing like this has happened. But I have also had my phone stolen when in Rome with a friend. I think I have learned that when I am with my friends I am more relaxed, less observant of what could go wrong and more in the moment of what is going right :) This is not always a good thing. ha.

My friend reached into her bag–camera-GONE.

Yes, we both had crossover purses on us. Had them in the front of us. The snap on bag was broken. I did not feel a thing. The subway was super crowded so our hands were holding on to the bars above us, trying to remain stable vs being on our bags-as they should have been.

Let me tell you all the things I USUALLY do, {but did NOT do on this trip} 

Ash’s Safety Traveling Tips!

1. Make a copy or two of passport (put one in suitcase, one in carry on,  one in purse)

2. If you are bringing multiple cards out with you (I almost always take the one where I get travel rewards and no transaction fees while over seas) everywhere I go. Leave others in room, home or in another bag etc.

3. When you get cash out, don’t carry it all with you. Duh, I know. Then I usually fold up a little bit and stick it in the bottom of my suitcase as well (even when I am in the states and ESPECIALLY when I am in Vegas)

4. Have the phone numbers written down somewhere or in your phone that are on the back of all your cards along with any other emergency numbers you may need (and don’t store those in phone in case that is stolen)

5. Call your cards and tell them the places and dates you will be traveling.

6. In crowded areas and busy places where pick-pocketing is especially known, walk with your hands on your bag ladies! Always keep purse zipped up and closed. Wear nothing at your hip or back pockets fellas. You will even notice people wearing backpacks at their front-totally normal.


7. Although it can be difficult (advice from Paul, our tapas tour guide–also another thing I REALLY recommend): When you are out-pretend there is an imaginary hula hoop around you-don’t let anyone invade that personal space and when they do-be very cautious and weary. {That goes for you too, close talkers!}

All the above advice, is pretty much what I do when I travel alone. Nope, not this time. My whole wallet was gone with all my money I just exchanged at the airport a few days prior. Luckily I had taken out $200 and exchanged it for a friend and left that back at the room–which I could use for the next few days. (sorry Em).

crowded subway

After the discovery of it being gone, I sat down, turned on Data roaming (I had a travel plan), and started to Google each of my bank’s “theft lines” and cancelled all my cards. This was literally an 8min process and real simple. {side note Wells Fargo tried to sell me something after I cancelled my cards telling me I was eligible for some deal and I was like, “YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!” And ended that.} The next day I transferred money from my account to my Mom’s (luckily we have the same bank and it is easy to do online). I then found a Western Union (there is an app too by the way) and attempted to send myself money but you cannot do this from your own account unless you want to wait 4 days. This is why wifi is a must at hotels-so much easier to get stuff done at the end of a long day!


This hotel above had wifi. Downfall: it was only good from the lobby. So we met many people that way. ha. (also recommend!)

You may have noticed that I didn’t blast on social media that my wallet was stolen {wah}. Reason being is

1. I felt like an idiot and

2. I could already see the comments rolling in…”told you so,” “oh sorry that sucks, what jerks!” blah blah blah…

Soooo, instead of dwelling on the negative, it wasn’t the end of the world. I had my camera. I had some cash. I had a way of getting some cash. I wasn’t mugged or beat up or shanked. I still had my phone. Yep. I was going to live-so let’s focus on the positive: 6 more days of wonderful vacation left!





So, my wonderful parents got my money to me after I deposited it to them. Boom. Did this happen the next day? NO because it was Sunday and Spainards don’t do ANYTHING on Sunday-NOTHING is open (side note-if I could not grocery shop on Sunday I don’t know what I would do). So, come Monday in Mallorca I headed down to a post office and there was my money. Ahhh, so nice to have. Not that my travel partner couldn’t have kept lending me money, but I felt like a child asking for 10 euros here and there every time I wanted to buy something. And as Beyonce would say, “All my ladies who independent…throw yo hands up at me!

That’s all I have for now, hope you enjoyed and always happy to recommend travel tips and advice…In return, thinking South America for my next trip, open to ideas!

Things I am Hearting in June (The Rainy Summer Edition!)

Hello, hello! It is the last day of June, but honestly by the time I proofread, add photos and publish, it will be July…where does the time go?!

So, I wanted to share with you a few more things I am enjoying and hope you can benefit from my suggestions as well, in this Summer’s rendition of what I am currently hearting here in the ATX…


I don’t mean it in a transportation sense, but more so how I missed doing mobility stretches and have now added them back into my routine (when I can).

lacrosseball lats

When I did crossfit a few years ago we did mobility several times per week post or pre workout as part of our class (and many of us continued after class as well). I learned to work out some muscle soreness and knots and really enjoyed Trigger Points‘ foam rollers-especially along my IT band and around the knee after squats, in addition to using the lacrosse ball on my shoulders, lats and glutes,  etc.. Since it isn’t apart of the classes of the gym I now attend (CG Arena-what! what!), but more so what one would do on their own; I had not been doing mobility exercises anymore and I can certainly tell the difference! I have had hamstring pain for about a year or so now. The pain would go away, then return upon a workout after intense sprinting, heavy deadlifts, and anything “one-legged” with weights. No, it doesn’t help that I keep working out when I am supposed to be giving my body a rest, but I cannot go a long time without working out-I just can’t!! So I would modify in hopes of making things better. However, since adding back in hamstring stretches with the band, sitting on a lacrosse ball when I work on my laptop and taking a little bit of time after some of my workouts to roll out and pay attention to the pain, things have gotten better. Not completely cured (but again it is my fault for not staying off the leg and stretching longer) but I HIGHLY recommend checking out some mobility stretches if you are tight in certain areas or experience extreme soreness. My hamstring pain was not JUST a result of my hamstrings, but lower back, some stabilizing muscles, my piriformis, and the muscles above my hips (who knew!) remember they all work together, so stretch it all! You can even have a few cheap items at home-I prefer a large PVC pipe as your foam roller (pick up some from Home Depot). And LAX balls come in packs of 2 at Academy for about $6. I found many cool stretches on Pinterest, but Google and YouTube will aid in your search as well. Give it a try!

pvc and lax


I don’t think you could have paid me in Reese’s cups as a child to eat brussel sprouts, but nowadays so many restaurants have added them to their menu…(topped with parmesan and cooked with tasty sauces of course) that I cannot get enough of them. I am really digging so many restaurants lately having shared plates and fresh roasted garden vegetables roasted.

Here are a few of my favs around town…

East Side Kings’ Brussel Sprouts! You can barely see them, as they are covered by fresh ingredients like cabbage and cilantro etc. and even though I am a sissy when it comes to spice-I still eat these and power through–as they typically make my nose run, they are so hot!

ESK brussel sprouts

Launderette’s Brussel Sprouts (heavy on the cheese, but I didn’t mind, these are rich, but not too rich and fantastic)

launderette brussels2

Hightower’s brussel sprouts has a peanut butter taste to it vs standard soy/balsamic type sauce that I cannot get enough of with a little crunch as well.

hightower brussels

Fork and Vine’s Brussel Sprouts have that rich taste of crumbled blue cheese on top, but also the crunch of pistachios, this was also on their happy hour menu when I went, great for sharing.

forkandvine brussels2


So, I just bought Modern Romance since I will be seeing Aziz in a few weeks here in Austin at the Paramount. I have always enjoyed his stand up and little appearances in funny Seth Rogan/Judd Apatow movies, but his latest Netflix Original stand up in Madison Square Garden where he discusses the woes of dating, expectations and texting  among our generation–and reads aloud one of the audience member’s text conversations– is not only pretty damn funny, but spot on relatable. Plus it is nice to hear that this semi-celebrity goes through the same things as the rest of us! I haven’t even finished the book, but I will tell you it is an easy read thus far and quite engaging. I like the fact it is backed with scientific (yes, studies with humans, focus groups and mice!) that sort of dictate why we feel the way we do–and the games we don’t intentionally play, but are in our nature…and we sadly end up playing. It was nice to read a few of the situations and think, “YES! That has happened to me too! I am not alone.” I don’t think you have to be single to read this–It’s a great read for all, and may help you gain some perspective as well! In fact if you are married and thinking of divorcing, perhaps this book may change your mind about being single, ha.

aziz modern romance

(Molly sits patiently as I read this one before bed each night)