Wednesday, August 26, 2015

AMERICA'S NATIONAL PARK SERVICE TURNS 99



Yesterday marked the 99th birthday of America's National Park Service.  I've had some amazing adventures at many of these parks and I hope to be able to travel as many in my lifetime as I possibly can.  If you have time, visit a National Park, if not, watch Ken Burns' documentary The National Parks: America's Best Idea—it's an amazing way to learn about the parks from the comfort of your home.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

FRIENDS | Big Sur #OurBigBigLove and San Simeon State Park


When friends get married a magical thing happens—people come together in laughter, food, drink, experience, and love.

Some good friends of ours recently got married at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park on a perfect early summer day.  They were staying at the Big Sur Lodge, which is off the same road and rests, hidden, inside of the state park.  It was a small, beautiful wedding hidden in the oaks of the park near one of the many perfectly placed creeks.  All I can really say about a wedding like this is that it's like magic.

The night before, Jonathan and I drove up to San Simeon to camp at San Simeon State Park.  The campgrounds are on the other side of Highway 1, but there is a boardwalk that goes under the highway and leads to the beach, which is a few miles south of the one where the elephant seals go to to mate and molt.  We parked Ranger Russell, threw up some hammocks, roasted some killer kabobs, drank some pretty stellar Basecamp Brews from aluminum bottles designed for camping, and walked out to the beach to watch the sun set.  It was an early morning the next day, so we slept fairly early after that and decided that the next order of business for Russell is definitely curtains.  Getting ready for a wedding in a van is hard enough as it is—curtains would have helped a lot!

On our way up to Big Sur for the wedding we spotted the amazing San Simeon beach, which is a seasonal home to elephant seals.  Being on a time limit, we didn't make too many other stops, but witnesses that lovely wedding was worth the rush.  I'm so happy for the bride and groom and their amazing life together.


Friday, May 29, 2015

TUNES | Miley Cyrus



It may seem out of the ordinary for me to post something having to do with Miley Cyrus here.  I'm not sure I've posted much pop music at all.  It's not that I'm against it, it's just not my go-to unless I'm having a late-night dance off, or driving for a long distance.  Even then, I love slow driving songs for some reason.  But I am not above pop.  It has it's purpose and it serves it well. 

Anywho, this isn't pop ... so none of that rant really matters, does it?  What matters is that through her foundation, the Happy Hippie Foundation, Miley has put together these rad backyard sessions.  This one is the song Look What They've Done to My Song Ma, which was written by Melanie Safka who's performing here with Miley. 

More importantly is her foundation.  "The Happy Hippie Foundation is a nonprofit organization that rallies young people to fight injustice facing homeless youth, LGBT youth, and other vulnerable populations."  Head on over to check them out, and click to donate, here.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

CAMP VIBES | Barton Flats to Tranquility Base


A few weekends ago, we headed up to the mountains with some friends for a short camping adventure.  This was our first time taking Russell (the van) out to sleep-camp, and the weather was not really what we had expected for night.  We're taking him up to Big Sur next weekend for our friend's wedding, and hopefully making curtains at some point this week to cut down on the nighttime cold.  We'll see if that helps at all because man oh man were we cold that first night in the van!

After the first night camping, we woke up to the roar of a family in fully decked out tents setting up breakfast right next to us.  They had generators, random dubstep music blasting, and electric chain saws to cut down trees for wood, which a) wouldn't work because the wood has to dry, and b) is illegal.  It was a pretty ridiculous sight and we weren't up for dealing with them for an extended weekend, so we took our party 20 minutes further into the mountains to my parent's cabin where we could camp or stay inside that night.

We set up our chairs around a portable fire pit, roasted marshmallows, and listened to the sound of coyotes in the National Forest behind us.  It was quieter, more convenient, and cheaper than moving to another campsite.  Since my parent's are in the middle of redoing their kitchen in the cabin, we used our camp stove and the grill to cook all of our food.  It's also nice to have a fence around us so the dogs can go off leash, because somehow every time we take Turbo camping he wiggles out of his harness.

The weekend ended up being a success despite our quick relocation.  We hiked in the forest behind the cabin, made plenty of camp coffee with our AeroPress, lounged in hammocks wearing our Poler Napsacks, threw throwing-knives, and got some pretty awesome star shots thanks to our new MeFOTO RoadTrip Tripod.

Thanks for stopping by!  For a deeper look into our adventures, follow me on Instagram:
+ @cassandrayost

Friday, May 22, 2015

CREATURE FEATURE


I'm super excited to announce that I've been graciously featured over at my friend's amazing women's magazine, Lumen.  This is something she's been working long and hard on, so to be able to take part in this with her is just such an amazing opportunity.  Please, head on over to Lumenmag.net to check out my piece on The Art of Unplugging:

"More and more, people count on their phones for much of their livelihood: creating the perfect playlist to their lives, finding directions to wherever they’re going, keeping track of how many calories they’re consuming, maintaining some sort of connection to what used to be real life friendships, measuring their worth in steps walked per day.

When I unplug, I can breathe easier knowing that life is going on and that everything will be there for me to catch up on when I’m ready. 

Life becomes simple, it becomes important, it slows down, and it allows you to see that all that stuff online can wait, because what really matters is sitting right next to you on the couch."

For more info and super-rad writings, you can follow Lumen:

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

Friday, May 1, 2015

CLEANING UP

Lately, I've been in the mood to clean house, ritualize my life, and take care of myself more; mind and body, inside and out.


I've always had a strong desire to eat real foods from the earth, use products that don't have chemicals, and exercise almost daily in some way or another.  For a while there, I was even practicing yoga at home on a daily basis.  But life always gets in the way, and somehow those easier, faster options seem to show up on my doorstep ... via delivery ... in a bag that says "Thank You" on it.  So... I'm sort of obsessed with Thai food delivery, who can blame me?  

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Chapter 29 | LIFE

Grab yourself a cup of something hot & yummy, & get ready for a roller coaster of emotions, ramblings, rants, & digressions because this, folks, is about life after college ... when you drop out.

First thing's first: my name is Cassandra (Cal), I am 29, I went to a junior college for a semester after high school (when I was still 17), & decided to head to art school where I stayed for three years.  After art school, I dabbled back at the junior college part time until I finished with enough transfer credits to head off to a university but not get an Associates degree (because they're useless & I don't need to take physical education in college).  After making the Dean's List, I transferred to a university ... only to realize that 1. holy-hell it's expensive, & 2. I'm totally never going to use this degree.  The combination of these two points solidified my thoughts that, even though I was finally having fun at school (besides the random elective History/English/Astronomy courses at the junior college), the cost of this fun just wasn't worth the expense.  Taking those elective courses for free at the junior college was way more fulfilling to me due to the fact that parking was only $20 a semester, & that I could continue to do that as I pleased - learn things for free, without them being classes I was required to take.  That they weren't required somehow made them more fun for me.  I'm odd, I know.