“A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life”, Coco Chanel.

Oh, so so true! I know you’re probably used to seeing me in the same exact hair style – long blonde hair. I don’t die my hair and throughout the years I have tend to wear it pretty long, BUT it was not always the case.

A couple of weeks ago Herbal Essences approached me asking if I ever changed my hair (color or length) due to changes in my life – new school, new projects etc. And I was like ‘of course I did!’. It hasn’t happened recently – I guess my life has been pretty ‘stable’ – even though I travel a lot, I’m in a long term relationship, I have a home in LA, I’m pretty set on what I what from life and my career – which is probably why I don’t do much with my hair.

However, today I’m celebrating my 4th year anniversary of moving to America. I spent a year in LA a few years before that in 2010 and ever since then I dreamt about calling California a home. At that time, I was studying in Sydney, Australia with no potential of making my American dream come true.

Part of it was that I was in a long term relationship with an Aussie guy who didn’t want to leave the Down Under. He loved it. I lalso oved Sydney, but I honestly couldn’t not see myself getting old there. I felt like I was on standby all those years spent in Australia, waiting to go to the ‘right’ place, my place in the world.

Finally, I also realized that I didn’t want to be in that relationship anymore. It’s a long story, but ultimately my ex and I had very different outlooks on life. He thought that ‘you should always be careful’, that ‘you can’t really trust people’ or that ‘people are mean and are out there to get you’ kind of a thing. I felt like spending my hours, days and my life next to someone like this, will change me into a person I didn’t want to become. I think it’s super easy to be mean and suspicious and way harder to see the best in people. I also think whatever you think you people, you get. So if you think people are mean, they will be mean to you. Life is just so much more beautiful when you decide to see the good in people. Anyways, back to hair, lol!

The moment I moved to LA, I cut my beautiful super long hair I grew sailing across the Pacific by 15 inches! (see at the bottom of my post) Looking back, I don’t necessarily think I looked better, I wasn’t looking to look better, I wanted a change in my life, I was just bored with my hair, with my old me. I wanted to cut that old chapter of my life away for good, I didn’t want to be that old timid Aggie who put up with certain people and stuff for way too long.

This part weekend, I visited Venice Beach – one of the very first places I visited in LA when I came as a tourist and I did what I did during my very first visit – I went roller blading! I’m still as bad as I was back then, but it was a lot of fun and brought back so many memories.

Lastly, take a look at the Let Live In video from Herbal Essences and see the stories of a few incredible bad ass women who talk about changes in their life, it’s so empowering it got me a little teary!

I honestly think that if you feel stuck in life and you know something has to change but you don’t have courage to start – start by changing your hair. You will honestly feel like a different person – a braver, more confident version of yourself who will be ready to take on the new chapter of your life 😉

 

 

 

And here is  photo of my before and after transformation from 4 years ago 😉 I have also learned since then that how doing less makeup makes me look better (and younger lol!).

I’m curious to see what you think about my transformations and if you ever ‘cut’ your hair to start a new life.

I have heard so many things about Bangkok and watched probably (too) many movies than featured the capital of Thailand, I was very excited to be spending 3 days there as a part of ‘Women in Thailand’ campaign with the Tourism Board of Thailand.
Lisa (my bestie/travel buddy) has already been to Bangkok a few years before and it’s always awesome to travel with someone a little more familiar with the place.
In Bangkok we got split from other female journalists from our group (they went ahead to explore the food/shopping scene of Bangkok with Tippy our guide) and Lisa and I got a new guide/our new Thai bestie Peach. Peach was sooooo cute. Not only she was helping us take just the best photos, but she also would run up to be when Lisa was taking my photos and fix my hair/makeup, tell me I look beautiful etc. Haha! Peach was a terrible help when it came to ironing though. True story, but more on that later;-)
Below: one of the most favorite photos from the trip, captured by Peach the guide 😉

We stayed at St Regis Bangkok, one of the most elegant hotels I’ve even stayed at (and it was also my first time at St Regis chain). Lisa and I got a room on the 18th floor overlooking a gigantic golf course and the city. My 5 favorite things about staying at St Regis were:
1) the lobby smelled sooooo good! Like a field of lilies, every time I entered I got this awesome feeling of ‘aaaaaaa’ if you know what I mean
2) The breakfast buffet was huge and so stunning, we spent over an hour every morning tasting every single item 😉
3) There were fresh coconuts in the room waiting for us when we arrived
4) The location was super convient (we didn’t use the metro because we had our own car with a driver, but the metro station was just outside the hotel)
5) last but not least (or perhaps I should say – my most favorite thing) – every St Regis, including this one, offers free butler service. What that means is that there is a butler dedicated to your room who you can call or text (even if you’re not at the hotel). You can call your butler 24/7 whenever you feel like having some tea or coffee OR to unpack or pack your suitcase (you can text him to pack your suitcase, how awesome is that?!) or he can iron your stuff. Free of charge (but don’t forget about the tip!).
Below, bathroom in one of the executive suites of St Regis Bangkok (where Lady Gaga stayed 😉

 

Anyways, let me tell you a little more about our favorite spots in Bangkok. First of, the city is not as wild I as pictured it. It’s vibrant and busy, but because Lisa and I didn’t go out that much, Bangkok seemed very international and safe during the day 😃
  1. Maeklong Railway Market is about a 30 mins drive out of Bangkok, but so worth the trip. Can’t remember which movie I saw it in, but I didn’t think back then it was real. But it is! I also knew that you shouldn’t stay very close to the train so when I saw it approaching slowly in the distance I wasn’t too worried until I had to back up when the train got closer to us and there was nowhere to back up too! Both Lisa and I got really scared and started nervously sweating, but survived 😉 I unfortunately don’t have a photo – turned out we were standing too close to capture it, but this is a shot I found online from Tie Land to Thailand.

  1. The Floating Market is another 45 mins from the railway market. It was hands down among my favorite experiences I had in Thailand. Delicious, cheap food sold on boats and from boats felt like a very authentic Thai culture experience. Lisa and I ended up renting a boat for ourselves and took a floating tour around the market. One thing we both sucked at was remembering to keep our hands inside the boat at all times and never to hand on to the edges of the boat (which is what we constantly kept doing to lean out to look around/keep balance). Our toothless skipper probably got very tired from screaming ‘hands inside’ all the time.

 

3. The ‘Hangover’ Bar I asked my ‘stories’ tribe where I could find the best skyline bar in Bangkok and the answer was unanimous – The Sky Bar at Lebua Hotel (the exact same spot where they shot the Hangover II). We first went next door to Sirocco as it opened earlier than the Sky Bar and thats where we had $20 mocktails and watched the most incredible pre sunset. Right around sunset, we moved to the Sky bar which definitely THE best rooftop bar I have seen in my life. It’s very spectacular in person. We ordered the Hangovertini drink to share (which was green) for another $20 but it was so strong we couldn’t finish it 😔 Once it got dark, we headed to meet up with Tippy at who promised there will be some yummy green curry waiting to us. Best $2 ever spent 😃

 

4. The following night we went to check out another rooftop bar Vertigo at Banyan Tree Bangkok. It wasn’t as impressive as the Sky Bar and definitely not as elegant but it was still definitely worth a visit.

4. The unicorn cafe!!!! It’s so cute! Look at these smoothies are waffles!

5. Dinner at St Regis. I already mentioned about the breakfast at St Regis, but we also got to experience dinner there too. The dinner was a la carte with a buffet option which of course meant we ate way too much. My favorite was the Spicy lemongrass soup served in a fresh coconut which brought up a lot of flavors!

6. We only stopped at Flower Market Pak Klong Talac for an hour and it super cool to see so many flowers in our place. However, the train market and the floating definitely rank higher on my list. Below a photo from a flower museum.

On our final day, we went to the Gala dinner hosted by the Tourism Board of Thailand. It was hosted in this traditional Thai house and we were joined by Miss Universes from all around the world including Miss Australia, Miss Vietnam and Miss Thailand of course! I also got to run into my followers / other travel bloggers from other countries like Mynmar. It was a beautiful evening! Below a photo of the North America crew 😉

 

Have you been to Bangkok? What else would you add to the list?

Wow, I can’t imagine not writing my birthday blog post, mostly because I really wish I could invite everyone I know (including all of you – my followers/readers) t0 share this special day together but because I couldn’t at least I’ll get to share it with you here! I love celebrating birthdays, because it’s such a great break from our routine, forces us to appreciate life and family and friends.

I really wanted to spend my time with my family, who I don’t get to see very often because they live in Poland so we all ended up meeting in Athens (Michael and I flew in from Turkey, Michael’s mum straight from the US and my family from Poland). We spent a few days in Athens and arrived in Mykonos on Sept 20th, 4 days before my birthday.

We got picked up by the Greek Villas crew who escorted us to Villa Thelma otherwise known as Villas Sunset, which is a part of Casa Del Mar Hotel in Mykonos. 16 people villa with a private infinity pool was such a dream!!!! I was so so happy to see my mum sunbathing and swimming in such a stunning infinity pool I was super close to tears the entire time 😭😭😭

 

The next day, my girls arrived. These were my favorite, closest travel ladies who I adore so much, I couldn’t imagine better company for my big day. I met Christine from Tour de Lust and Christina from The Bold Brunette on a press trip to Aruba where we were all invited and we immediately took off. I since saw Christina in Florida (that’s actually where I met Lisa from Lisa Homsy who came to the party too. I actually never met Raya from Raya Was Here but we chatted so much over DMs for months I really wanted to meet here so she came to Greece.

Now, let’s talk about the party! The theme was all white and I got these golden Greek-style crowns for everyone to wear, here is a closeup so you can see.

 

 

What I thought will be a small dinner for a few people turned out to be a party for 28! I had 10 people my family, my 5 girls, then last minute I found out that my girl crush Helen Owen and Zack Kalter are on the island and wanna come so they did with Naomi from @BookonIn who I knew over DMs before. They turned out to be super lovely!

Last but not least, there were 8 members of my Master Tribe. Master Tribe is a group I started for coaching future travel bloggers. I thought there wasn’t a course that would walk people through the travel blogging experience with guidance and all the feedback needed to grow. I ended up choosing 17 out of over 50 people who applied because I really truly believed in the potential of these 17 folks. Since April, I tried to share with them everything I know about photo editing, social media etc etc and luckily for me, 8 of my rock star ‘students’ were able to visit me in Greece.

Here is  photo of all of them and the girls. Please check out their beautiful feeds and I guarantee you’ll be in love with them as much as I am 😉 #superproud #besttribe

Below:

From the top left: Nikky from Nikky Riddy, Izabela from Regards Bella, Ania from Style of Wonders (she also did my hair for the party!), Christina, Ryan and his prettier half from Up for Adventure.

From the bottom left: Raya, Marta from Where Life is Great, Me, Christine, Kat from Her Beautiful Now, Lisa and her boyfriend James 😉

 

 

After dinner we went out to a club and were dancing till 4a at night!!! It was awesome.

Last but not least, I wanted to finish off my time in Greece in style and rented a private jet as a surprise for my family. When we showed up in Santorini and pulled up to a private jet, they couldn’t believe their eyes. It was the best feeling ever!

Here is what I said in my post about it:

“Wrapping up my time in Greece in style – just me and my family on a private jet drinking champagne 😉🛩🥂

I have to say I was hesitating a little about this post cause I was worried about your reaction. But then I remembered I am not talking to the whole Internet over here, I am talking to you, my followers! And you are nothing short of amazing.
::
I meet more and more of you on my travels and every time I realize that people that follow me are truly extraordinary. They might be doing different things in life, but my followers’ souls are of great leaders and they have potential for some grand things in life.
::
You also should know by now that I strive to live life to the fullest and that as a #TonyRobbins fan, I believe that the secret to living is giving and that there is no greater pleasure than surprising and spending money on those who you love. It’s been my dream forever to treat my family to something amazing!
::
I wanted to have the best birthday gift for my own 30th so I knew I have to give (instead of receive) something to those who I made me as successful as I am today. To my family and my ‘rock’ Michael.
::
So I rented a private jet for all of us as a surprise. And I never even expected I would fly in one ever in my life because as a family we could NEVER afford flying even commercial!
My family didn’t suspect anything until we got dropped off right in front of the jet with a flight attendant standing there to welcome us.
::
My mums face was so lit up (swipe left to see what I’m talking about!). It was the best feeling ever to see her this happy.😍😭
::
What is cheap? No. Did I get it for free? No!
But I was happy to pay for it from my own money earned from I love most of all – promoting traveling.
The idea of a real gift is that it actually costs you a lot of money, time and sacrifice of your own needs so it makes others happy.
::
Last but not least, I’m sharing this not to show off but to motivate you & ask you to come up with a fun surprise for someone you love this week – go do it! Spend money on making them happy – it’s the best feeling in the world!
With so much love!
Your Aggie

 

The last few months have been crazy busy. Up until this April, I travel a lot but it was more like – 3 weeks in Philippines, 2 weeks home, 1 week in Europe, 2-3 weeks home etc so I had my routine including daily walks at the beach etc.

The April was when it all blew up. Aruba, 1 day home, Dubai, straight to Sri Lanka, straight to Maldives, the day I got home after a month of being home my sister came to visit me from Poland so we went to Palm Springs, San Fransisco and Tulum for a week. Then I was home for 6 days, went to Florida, Vegas, 10hrs home straight to Bermuda, 17 hrs home in LA, then onto Poland, France, Italy, 5 days home then Cambodia, Thailand, Bali, 4 days home then Vegas, two days home and then Hawaii.

You get the idea. haha. The only days I was home, I was so busy washing, editing videos, paying bills, doing beauty treatments (like hairdresser, nails, facial etc) I had zero time to go outside and enjoy the fact I live right by the beach, crazy!

So yesterday, despite the amount of work, an unpacked suitcase and a mess in the house, Michael and I went out to the beach like we used to – to play volleyball with friends, watch sunset and enjoy the last warm summer days. It was also a good excuse to test my new gift from Allbirds – their Wool Runners.

No need to stay I have a slight obsession about shoes and a lot of my followers often joke about that, but apart from loving shoes I am also very picky when choosing them and here’s why.

a) I barely ever get shoes I can wear right away without painfully breaking them in which kinds sucks.

b) I hate socks! I dare you to find a photo of me wearing socks, even in runners/boots I avoid them at all costs.

c) Since I hate socks and my feet rub easily, I tend to find it hard to find comfortable shoes.

The struggle is even more real when I want comfortable shoes that look great with a dress or shorts and not clunky so taking all of the above into the consideration Allbirds was ticking off all the requirements in theory (yay) so I was all up for a collaboration to see if they really are as good as they sound.

Outing to the beach was a great excuse, because the pier area with all the restaurants and volleyball courts are 10-16 mins from my house – doesn’t sound like a lot, but I can’t begin to tell you the number of times I wore some semi-comfortable shoes because I wanted to look good and couldn’t make back home without blisters. Allbirds passed the ‘walk to the pier’ test easy peasy.

Here are some more things I love about them:

  • They are made with natural New Zealand merino so they are actually meant to be worn without socks – that way they can absorb the moisture and your feet, you know… won’t smell haha!
  • I cannot even express how soft and comfy they feel. They are extremely light so it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing shoes at all.
  • I love that their curvy design, making my legs look long which I love haha.
  • I went for their Natural White color from the Classics, which look like million bucks in my opinion and I could dress them up with the blue dress for a sunset sail in Redondo Beach the other day – see my IG photo). I can already tell I’ll be ordering their lavender ones too ASAP (check them out here)

If you have any ideas of how to style them for my upcoming trip to Turkey and Greece, let me know 😉 And if you want to find more styles, go to Allbirds website.

****Although this is a sponsored post, I have a financial privilege to only recommend products I feel passionate about and would spend money on. Sometimes I send back products to companies which I thought looked good on their website, but wasn’t happy to use them/ would never recommend them to a friend. If you’re reading this post, it means I truly believed in the above mentioned product and feel excited and happy to share it with you.****

Omg, I’m so excited to tell you about Thailand I don’t know where to start.
The Tourism Authority of Thailand reached out to me about their yearly campaign Amazing Thailand Women’s Journey. Every year in August, Thailand celebrates women & tries to make it easier for foreign women (solo or not) to visit Thailand. Every August. women get expedited lines at the airport (‘pink lanes’), free SIM card, deals on taxis, accommodations tours – you name it.

You know me, I love the idea of encouraging women to travel more – it’s very empowering and soul healing for anyone but as a woman who traveled solo a lot and was in some dodgy situations myself, I understand why so many of women are hesitant to take off on their own. And today, I want to tell you that I had nothing to worry about as a woman in Thailand.

This was my second time in Thailand and every time I love it more and more. I never ever felt in danger or disrespected, treated less of a human – you name it. Women in Thailand have a strong position in the society and I really like the gender dynamics there. Since it was supposed to be an all girls trip, I couldn’t take Michael with me (sad face) but instead I took my friend Lisa (who’s also an influencer) and I’m glad I did, because traveling with girls is so much fun in its own way too!

I want to share with you my itinerary so you can get an idea of what 10 days in Thailand can look like. In this post, I will talk about Chiang Mai, in the next ones I will tell you more about Koh Samui and Bangkok.

To be honest, I was never particularly interested in visiting northern Thailand only because I thought of Thailand as the land of beaches and ocean, so why go inland? If it wasn’t for this trip, I would not plan to go there, but boy, I would miss out big time. Chiang Mai was awesome!

Lisa and I got picked up by Tippie, our guide – a sweet lady in her 50s who always couldn’t believe how obsessed we are with taking photos 😃 For the first few days, I stayed at the Akyra Manor Hotel, one of the best designed hotel I’ve seen. It was very modern, had a giant outdoor bathtub right in the middle of your suite & a glass pool on the roof (epic photo to follow).

The following day we kicked off our trip with a two hour massage at Oasis Spa – I don’t think I ever had a massage this long but that was only the beginning of my massage overdose on this trip haha. For lunch we were supposed to try the traditional Northern Thai soup called Khao Soi (it’s a curry soup base with rice noodles). Up until that moment, I thought nothing will ever come close to my green curry obsession in my life, but I was wrong. KHAO SOI is THE BEST. Tippie took us to a small local market (hole in a wall kinda place you would never run into as a normal tourist). The soup was only 40 baht (a little over one US dollar) but it changed my life forever (I was devouring the soup at the table looking up restaurants in LA that serve the soup). So so good. If you ever run into a Northern Thai restaurant, do yourself a favor and try it! 😉

After lunch, we went to visit a few temples with my favorite one being the silver temple (no women allowed inside, but that’s okay, because we went to a few other temples later on).

That afternoon, we met up with Acyra Chiang Mai executive chef Phubase Chuprakong who took us shopping to a local market for some ingredients to make dinner with that evening. I saw soooo many fruit and veggies I have never seen in my life! So fun.

After we got back to the hotel, we went upstairs to try some super fancy drinks & I have to say it was one of the best moments in the entire trip. There were 7 of us – Lisa and I, Anita & Ilona (two magazine writers from Canada), Tippy our guide, Apple – a TAT representative & a hotel marketing manager (also a woman) and we were just laughing, sipping super fancy cocktails & having a really fun girls’ time. That night chef Phubase cooked a feast for us, but the best part was of course the green curry. I dare to say it was one of the best green curries I had in my life & chef was kind enough to share the recipe with me (posted all the way at the bottom of this post).

The next day, we moved from Acyra to Anantara & had yet another massage session. The bed was heated & soft as a cloud, I felt very relaxed. Our room at Anantara was huuuuge & I love that they serve Green curry for breakfast haha:-)

In the afternoon we drove out to the footsteps of Doi Suthep visit Naenna Studio. Naenna Studio (http://www.studio-naenna.com/products.html) is ran by an English lady called Patricia who employs women from local tribes to create beautiful sustainable clothing. I’m not so much into fabrics, but I was very inspired to meet someone as visionary as Patricia. The studio uses eco-textile and is totally faire trade – meaning that women get paid well for their work (textile industry is among the most corrupted and exploiting one in the world – think of all major multi-billion dollar clothing companies using sweatshops to make their products). It was very eye opening to see the entire process and realize how much it depends on me (buyer) when it comes to conditions textile workers live and work in.

That evening we had the most wonderful dinner at Villa Mahabhirom (which means ‘a place of great pleasure’ in Thai) – a hotel which is made up with old Thai villas shipped from all over Thailand. Lisa and I loved the design so much, we came back to the villa the following day to take some of these photos.

On our last day in Chiang Mai, we visited Patara Elephant Park. As a huge animal lover, ex vegan and now pescatarian, I always always check on elephants parks to make sure they don’t abuse/torture the animals. I also strongly encourage you to never ride elephants & do your own research about parks you visit. In Patara, I didn’t see any pokers or sticks or chains so to the best of my knowledge, elephants seemed happy, however checking on current reviews of every animal place is so important. If in doubt, it’s always good to look for elephant sanctuaries, not parks.

Just take a look at these beautiful creatures. Best day ever.

And then green curry recipe 😉

150 gr meat
50 gr apple eggplant
20 gr big red chilli
2 tbs fish sauce
2 tsp palm sugar
100 gr coconut mlik
20 gr chicken stock or veg stock
sweet basil
kaffir lime leaf

green chilli paste
10 N fresh green chilli
1 tsp black pepper seed
1 tsp coriander seed
1 tsp cummin seed
1 tsp salt
1 tsp galangal
1 tsp lemongrass
1 tsp kaffir lime skin
1 tsp coriander root
1 tbs garlic
1 tbs shallot
1 tsp shrimp paste