Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Hotel: Jumeirah Al Qasr

How's your Eid break? Some of the luckiest people got the time off for a week. When you're in the UAE, this is the only opportunity to book a holiday out of the country. Better grab it! But if your time is very limited or you're looking for ways to pare down expenses, opt for a staycation - which can be as relaxing and fun. You don't have to be in Maldives to enjoy the beach. Step into a hot bubble bath, grab a book and a glass of wine. Staycation isn't supposed to be just another day off. Give your body and mind the chance to recuperate.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

How to Switch Your Instagram to Business Profile

I've been waiting for Instagram to provide analysis in terms of follower growth and engagement ever since the ads roll out last year. As a digital marketer, I need to know how my campaigns are performing on a regular basis through social media metrics. Whether you own a business or personal blog, you should make the switch to keep track of your audience and figure out a content strategy to increase your reach.

Here's how you can change your Instagram account to a business profile:


Monday, September 5, 2016

Experience the Tropics at The Green Planet in Dubai

The Green Planet in Dubai opened to the public on Thursday, September 1. I never really heard anything about it until I saw a picture of a sloth on social media. One of my ultimate dream holidays is to fly off to Costa Rica and visit the sloth sanctuary. If there's such thing as a professional sloth cuddler, I would. A resident sloth at The Green Planet is the closest encounter I could have for now.

The Green Planet is Dubai's newest attraction located at City Walk. It's a giant bio-dome featuring over 3,000 exotic plants and animals where temperature and humidity level are regulated similar to a rainforest. Dubai brought a rainforest to the desert. Just let that sink in for a moment.


Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Basic SEO Every Blogger Should Know

If you're not familiar with SEO, it stands for Search Engine Optimization  a technique required to improve rankings and drive traffic from search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. Try to Google yourself. Do you see your website on the first page result? If not, you need to work on optimizing your personal brand. No one goes to the second page of Google unless you're desperate to find answers.

When you optimize your blog posts,  you're making your website more visible to people who are searching for specific keywords associated with your personal brand. If you use a common name like I did (Aletha Jane), you're going to have a tough time ranking it. It would be wise to use a name that's easy to remember. Let's say "A Day in the Life" or "The Wandering Geek" ... something that best resonates you. Next, secure your online turf with that brand name. The presence of your personal brand in the domain is a big SEO factor. Your domain name is the foundation of your online presence. Be unique.

SEO is a complex subject but don't worry, I'm here to help with the basics. No coding involved so you can breathe a sigh of relief now.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Learning to Love Your Body

I never considered myself athletic in high school, although I used to play for our volleyball varsity team. Not that I have a choice, really. I only did it for the extra curricular points. I absolutely had zero interest to run or catch a ball. I was this skinny girl with only an efficient metabolism to thank for. I couldn't care less what I looked like but I know one thing — I was not healthy. Did I mention I was a picky eater too? I may have been underweight back then.


Thursday, July 14, 2016

Why Women Should Always Empower Each Other

It's common to see how women are constantly pitted against each other by the media. The notion of woman vs. woman is not particularly new.

"Who wore it best?"

"She's way thinner than her."

We often read fabricated rivalries between women. How about stop trying to make Taylor Swift vs. Katy Perry happen? Enough with the Team Aniston and Team Jolie feud. All these ridiculous tabloid headlines will only initiate a fury strike among women. This destructive behavior perpetuates the worst aspect of our society — bullying.


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Travel: Mahé Island

"There's a mountain right next to the airport!" Gushed and amazed from the moment I stepped off the plane. With 115 islands scattered like jewels in the Indian Ocean, Mahé being the largest is considered as the gateway to Seychelles. Almost half of their total land area is preserved, still untouched by time. Driving around Mahé is probably one of the most leisurely activities you can do. Passing by houses perched on the side of a cliff and coastal scenery just beg you to take photos. Even at its busiest when most of the tourists converge, Mahé Island remains laid-back, a perfect tropical dream destination. No wonder Prince William and Kate Middleton chose Seychelles as their honeymoon hideaway.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Travel: La Digue and Praslin Island

The best way to discover Seychelles is to experience more than one island during your stay. We decided to add a full-day excursion in La Digue and Praslin Island to our itinerary. Organized tours can be helpful if you are not comfortable setting out on your own. There are a number of dedicated tour operators in Seychelles so it's necessary to do another round of research. Remember, Google is your friend!


Thursday, June 9, 2016

An Introvert's Guide to Blogging

Throughout my life, I was often labeled as the "shy" girl. Some would push me to be more outgoing like being quiet is a personality defect. The more I hear about this, the more I'm inclined to spend time alone and lead a less socialized life. Eventually, I learned to nurture what I am – an introvert.


Thursday, June 2, 2016

Travel: Seychelles

For my 31st birthday (I know, right?! Eeep.), there's no better place I could think of than a secluded escape to Seychelles. When you're falling off the calendar, you need it to be special and just go all out. It was my first visit to Africa so I've been trying to contain my excitement. I never publicly announce any of my travel plans out in the open. Not until things are certain, I just had to keep it low. Hello cultural immersion, meeting the locals and I say this in all caps, the FOOD! We've been planning since the beginning of the year and booked months in advance to have enough time ironing out the smallest details.


Monday, April 4, 2016

Photo Apps to Level Up Your Instagram Game

When it comes to taking a photograph, we try to impose our own stamp of uniqueness and originality. That's even harder to achieve today than it used to be after falling down the Instagram rabbit hole where everyone's an artist. Majority of the photos you see are pure eye-candy. Each image stands out in terms of composition, color and mood. But when you start segregating them, they all visually look the same. I guess no matter what skill level you're at in photography, we all draw inspiration from the works of others.


Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Beginner's Guide to Writing a Blog Post

Starting a blog can be a struggle for people who are not experienced writers. In my younger years, I remember writing just about anything without any remarkable content and a few grammar blunders. These common slip-ups can instantly drive readers away. Not to sound dispiriting but people don't waste time on a blog post they don't enjoy reading unless you're a celebrity. Sure you can write personal stories, but in the end, your topics should always be focused on the reader's interests.


Saturday, January 30, 2016

Travel: Musée du Louvre

We were off to a decent start in Paris by visiting Musée du Louvre. I booked this tour ahead through Flight Centre to avoid the mile long line at the pyramid. Our tour guide was the coolest with blue dyed hair peeking under her fedora hat, wearing structured trench coat paired with jeans and a casual backpack. Was it so wrong to be having initial thoughts on wishing her style would somehow rub off on me? These Parisians really do exude fashion chic and elegance. I remember her having a thick French accent but speaks softly and politely all throughout our ride to The Louvre. After only a few minutes, she had already walked us through the colorful history of Paris.


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Dubai Miracle Garden

I think there's nothing more calming and zen-inducing than spending your time in a garden of flowerbeds. If you want to cure any negative emotions, consider looking at an array of colorful flowers. I kid you not. Dubai is even the last place you would expect to find the world's largest natural garden. Who wouldn't be surprised though? We're talking about Dubai. Everything here is majestic. It's a "miracle" indeed for a desert city to be so much more vibrant.

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