California Adventures




While my trip to California was short-lived, it was nothing but fun. Through turbulent plane rides and time changes, to walking myself to death and taking too many selfies… this trip was a once in a lifetime experience, and I am so glad that I went. Although the main purpose for traveling to California included presenting research at a pharmacy convention, I left little space for time to rest in the hotel room.



On our first day in California we basically adjusted to the time difference and became easily exhausted from the plane rides. I am a beginner at navigating airports but decided it’s better to start at some point in my life, so my roommate Lauren (who has never flown alone) flew together. I think we did pretty good making our way through all of the checkpoints and still enjoying time for celebrating before getting on the plane. The layover was in Las Vegas, which only lasted about 30 minutes… Basically we had time to run from one end of the airport to the other and drop a dollar in a slot machine to say we at least gambled in Vegas. After finally arriving in Orange County we luckily got a shuttle (and bypassed everyone in the reservation line), which was surprising. It was not surprising that as soon as my head hit the pillow that night, I was out cold.

Sunday was our one day without plans. So this basically meant Lauren and I wanted to shop and explore the area. Cabs and traffic seemed a little bit ridiculous, even coming from a Pittsburgh girl (I have never seen traffic so bad)… so we decided to just walk everywhere we went. We thought this was a good idea at the time, because it’s a workout and free transportation, but as I sit here right now my feet are STILL killing me. I may need better walking shoes.

So anyways, we shopped, we walked, we talked, we enjoyed numerous happy hours on this trip…. and we even got to swim (which seems extremely sad considering I am looking out the window at a dreary Pittsburgh with snow falling). I even found the Sephora in Downtown Disney… of course.


On our actual presentation day we were overwhelmed thinking the day we’ve prepared for is finally here. Let me just give you a little insight… I have spent almost a year working on this project, getting it approved by an Institutional Review Board (IRB), writing all of the documents, actually performing the methods, and getting the poster approved to present. UGH. Talk about a time consuming process. But it was all worth it, and sadly over within one hour. Although all of the hard works payoff was short-lived, we went out to celebrate – what else would we do?



For our last day in Orange County we went to Disneyland. I advise anyone that wants to go to this park to get either a 1 day, or 2 day hopper ticket. There was so much to do that we didn’t have time to see everything, especially all of the shows. But the tickets are pricey so we just went for the one day ticket in to both parks. Highlights of the park included the food (it was actually really good at ALL of the shops we went to in Disney), meeting the Marvel superheroes (of course I would love this), the laser water show at the end of the night, and just spending time in a happy atmosphere. After all, they do say it’s the happiest place on earth…




Just thought I would give you guys a recap on where I have been and how my trip went. Has anyone else traveled out that way for similar reasons? Lauren and I had so much fun, we are already trying to decide places to go for our next trip – that is NOT pharmacy related! Any ideas? 🙂


Travel Essentials


Sooo… it would make no sense to write a post on traveling essentials unless I was going to be traveling soon. The exciting thing is that… I am! I will be flying out tomorrow to California to present at a pharmacy convention (woo woo nerds… jk). BUT in all seriousness, there are a few things that you should always remember to take on the plane with you when you’re traveling…
1. Ziploc Bags

This may sound ridiculous because, why would you need Ziploc bags? But if you open any of your miniature (or full size if you check a bag) lotions, shampoos/conditioners, body washes, contact solutions, ETCCCCCC, they have a chance of spilling all over your precious cargo. No one wants that. NO ONE. So bring some Ziploc bags so those bottles can roll around and you don’t have to worry about them until you reach your destination or home. You can always clean up the mess then. 99% of the time my bottles never open or leak, but in that 0.01% chance that it will happen, I don’t want it to ruin any of my clothes or belongings.

2. Phone/Electronic Chargers

You will have time to charge your devices. So do it. Do not be caught without a charger… When you need to make that phone call, send the “I’m okay!” text message, or hit publish on the blog post… you want to make sure you have a charge to withstand the task. Plus once you get where you’re going you might need a phone for various reservations or checking in purposes… although I’d hope you wouldn’t wait until that last minute.


3. Disinfecting Wipes

Okay, so I don’t want to sound like a germaphobe, but really… when was the last time that seat you are sitting in was cleaned? When was the last time someone wiped down the eating tray you’re going to sit your stuff on, when was the last time someone disinfected the arm rests that you put your hands on? Because chances are you put your stuff down on those surfaces, or touch them and then touch your face and dirty EVERYTHING. I know I know, this sounds crazy… but people often get sick while traveling, and I would rather avoid this if at all possible. PLUS, I don’t want to touch my skin with dirty hands, which is inevitable… but if I can wipe off the apple juice some kid spilt or spit up when he sat in my seat the flight before, I’ll try to wipe it off. Point made.

4. Lip Balm

It is DRY on an airplane. Even in a car. Long rides/trips require hydration… But when we’re confined to small quarters or are in a constraint for our traveling, we probably aren’t drinking all the fluids we need. I know I hate getting up on planes, and I don’t like making many stops in the car when driving… so I try to avoid drinking too many beverages before/during a trip. Because of this my lips start drying out because the moisture is not present (licking your lips literally only makes this worse – so don’t do it!), so I need a balm/moisturizer to keep them soft until I can get to my destination and resume normal routines. Seriously, by having dry lips and biting them you’re damaging the protective layer of skin, so try to protect it while traveling… (Tinted balm is a two in one… I usually try to remember to bring one of those)

5. Moisturizer

Read what I said above about dry air and dehydration. Then think… UGH dry skin. The same thing applies here. Keep your skin hydrated. Use a moisturizer (just make sure you have a travel friendly size!!!).

6. Extra Personal Items

Lets be honest… there is a fear that luggage will be lost in the airport. Or else, I have this fear that my luggage will be lost in an airport. SOOOOO… I always make sure I have extra clothes (skivvies) to make it through the next day incase this happens. Call me crazy but… it happens.

7. Headphones

Pray that you do not get stuck next to the person that likes to chew their gum with their mouth open. But if you do get stuck next to them… you’ll be happy you have headphones. Hopefully you have something to plug them in to…

Of course we all over pack, or at least I do… but there will be plenty of other things essential to your particular trip. Mine include a bag of skincare products, a travel bag of makeup (I tried to not take EVERYTHING), and more outfits than I can count. Of course my trip is only five days, but I’ve packed for 10… Anyways, I think these things are essentials that everyone should remember on any type of trip. I’ll keep you posted on my trip to California, it’s my first time going… and I am so excited. Any last minute suggestions for my carry on bag? 🙂