A Day Trip to DC, A Very Nice Weekend + Lessons I’ve Learned From (Dog) Parenting

Hello friends! Diary-style post here. Just thought I’d do a recap of the recent week/weekend for no reason other than I feel like it. Hope you enjoy!


Thursday I went to DC to attend the 2019 Planet Forward Summit. Like all things Planet Forward, it was amazing and inspiring and thought-provoking. I was only able to attend one of the two days this year (due to Millie logistics / not having the cash monies for a hotel after traveling weekly all semester) but I was happy I got to go to at least one of the two days.

There were some great speakers and break out sessions and I left feeling really re-inspired. This entire year has been a weird creative funk space for me due to my grad school applications/traveling weekly around the countries, plus some companies I used to work for sort of dissolving, and my new jobs requiring me to write a ton of academic-like stuff, and then of course, a crazy rigorous academic year, all of which managed to zap a bulk of my energy.

Anyways, all that to say, it was great to feel that inspired spark again. I also got to see a lot of the friends I made in Alaska and California and see the staff, which was the cherry on top of a cherry-blossom-season kind of day.


Planet Forward is one of the best (actually probably the best) organizations I’ve created content for. A lot of media places use and abuse and exploit creators, or, in my experience, push them to do things for views or hype that aren’t necessarily science-based.

Planet Forward is entirely the opposite. They really want to help make you a better content creator and guide students kindly and compassionately towards becoming better versions of themselves: Planet Forward also rewards hard work with awesome travel opportunities. Anyways, I can’t speak positively enough about the organization and loved the conference!

And it was such a nice day in DC. I only wish I could have stayed longer! DC is a great city and the summit was a great conference to attend. Next year!


Friday I worked on actual work and school work pretty much all day and ran some errands. I’m in the home stretch with lots of giant projects and papers and presentations going on this month. Large projects or long papers can be frustrating to me because they require so much grunt work before you can get started. Not that this is a bad thing, but sometimes when you spend all day digging through scientific literature to come up with a paper topic and outline, it can be a bit frustrating because it looks and feels like you got nothing done, even though this is an essential and unavoidable part of the process.


Anyways, between work and homework, I managed to get really stressed out on Friday, and sailed into the weekend feeing a tad overwhelmed. So it goes. At least I have a cute study buddy at my side.



Saturday a bunch of my MPH friends came out to visit me in jersey city! How lucky am I that they all made the trek. We mostly just chilled by the waterfront, walked around historic downtown, then hung out in my apartment.

And of course, stopped for ice cream. It was 67 and sunny after all! I wasn’t going to deny my dog the joy of a cool creamy ice cream cone. I’m not a monster.

My friend brought her adorable newly adopted 3-legged rescue pup and another friend brought her puffy princess and completely adorable 10-year-old Pomeranian. Puppy pawty time!

Millie was really pepped up yesterday (lots of excitement) and wasn’t on her best behavior. Actually, she was pretty darn naughty. One of the key things I’ve learned from being a dog mom is that creatures of all species can be messy and imperfect and make you upset but you can love them anyway. I think that’s called unconditional love, or whatever.

I also keep in mind that Millie is half Jack Russel. Jacks have oodles of energy and are incredibly protective, loyal, and food motivated. She’s also half dachshund. Dachshunds are known to be stubborn and act as if they rule the universe (which honestly, don’t they).

Some of her misbehaviors, I believe, are rooted in these breed traits. In the same way it was extremely difficult for me to not talk or get out of my seat growing up in elementary school due to my raging ADHD, Millie has a temperament that she sometimes can’t fully control. And yes, we have worked on training together, and sure, we could do more, but I also try to let her be her most genuine authentic version of herself. I know she’ll never be that chill, perfectly behaved dog that sits in one spot. She’s Millie. Sweet, but sassy, full of energy, bold, and completely unaware of how small she is. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Oh the patience and understanding you gain from parenting!

It was a relaxing afternoon and I’m so thankful they came to explore.

After they left I made dinner and worked on a paper and made brownies because I am extremely fun.


Today consisted of doing some barre3 online (they have a 15-day free trial for their online streaming library!), hitting up ShopRite for some groceries, doing a couple loads of laundry, and plowing through a ton of work and homework.


Millie and I also took a break to go to the park, where she tried to get me to buy her another Mr. Softee cone, and was very unpleased by the fact that I did not have cash.


As another study/work break, tested a recipe, which came out a total fail, but I have confidence that it will be delicious next time around! Failure is part of the process.


I am planning to share the vegan banana cream pie very soon! I didn’t really take many photos when I was making it since I wasn’t planning to share it, but due to the requests, I may just share with a couple of photos.

Now it’s dinner then more homework time (woof). I’m also trying to figure out my June/July plans…such an odd amount of time to have off! Suggestions are welcome.

Did you like this diary/recap style post? I personally love reading these kinds of blog posts so I thought I’d try integrating them more now that I’m trying to blog 3ish times a week this month.

As always, I welcome comments, requests, or feedback.  Holler in the comments below, on InstagramTwitter, or YouTube.


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