practical mental health wellness



your weekly followup

Traveling to tidy your thoughts is a great form of self-care. My new series: how to be a tourist in your own city duals as a travel checklist for both local & out-of-state readers for each respective city. I document: 1) cultural experiences, 2) local food scene, 3) accommodations, & 4) unique activities that promote self-care and emotional wellness. See the recap below on how to tour: New Orleans, Louisiana; laissez les bon temps rouler.

Travel Essentials

  1. MyBKR- I'm at a point in my life where I'm so over excess and things. I drink alot of water and really am obsessed with the BKR glass jug. They come in various sizes and make perfect traveling mates for refillable hydration. My 1L jug was practically my best friend in the New Orleans heat/humidity + it's definitely a top traveling essential. #staythirsty 
  2. Computer- I've yet to break down and get an iPad. Additionally, I'm still experimenting with my photography workflow, camera storage, and figuring out what process works best for me. So because I was gone for about 3 weeks, I knew I needed space to store the massive jpeg files. There's a computer compartment with padding in my OG bag so it worked out quite nicely. 
  3. BuJo- I've already expressed my obsession with analog system writing here and my trip to New Orleans was no exception to use of the bullet journal. It made for a great travel journal, allowed me to check-in with myself along the way and take notes of places + things. 
  4. Filters- Camera accessories that don't weigh a ton are great to pack. 
  5. Reading Material- The quickest way for me to fall asleep is to read.
  6. Face Mask- A large portion of this trip was spent on the road, so I like to cheat the time and apply a face mask here and there throughout the drive to make sure I keep up with my routine. I l'm a disciple of the Fresh product line and this mask is extremely great for travel because it's not messy or temperature sensitive. 
  7. Green Products- Little by little I'm transitioning to all natural products head to toe and my teeth are no exception. I really enjoy David's natural toothpaste. I used it a few weeks prior to this trip and it's now an essential. There was a lot of travel and motion on this trip (quick, get up and go), and not to mention eating, so I needed a product that wasn't finicky and could do the job. I appreciated that this is a non-foaming or overly sugary or sticky product and the included metal key roller made it a great item for this trip. (I know, I'm particular, but! when you're traveling between different climates the worst thing in the world is exploding products in your luggage). 
  8. Hand Balm- Enough said. Salve is an essential. Offish converted.
  9. Refresher Spray- Great to combat the heat and humidity and light enough to keep in my day bag. It's such a treat for the unforgiving crescent city weather.
  10. Trainers- Dress em' up, dress em' down. Tons of walking in New Orleans, so you'll need to be comfortable. 
  11. Utility Bag- Listen. Like MyBKR, the Lo & Sons OG bag deserves a post on it's own which, I will write up after a few more uses so I can be a true authority. What I can tell you now is that this bag is perfect if you're a traveler like me who hates checking bags (I never check bags) and just needs one solid piece of luggage for the main essentials. It comes in a few different colors and lining; there is also a smaller version. There are so many zippers and compartments, it held everything pictured and a change of clothes, gah. This bag owes me nothing.


For this trip I stayed at The Soniat House which is located directly in the French Quarter. It's about a 5 minute walk to the French Market and an 8 minute walk to Cafe Du Monde, #insane. I have a full write up on my stay which you can read here, but as you can tell The Soniat House proudly boasts small luxury and does not disappoint. Walking in truly feels magical and I wandered around the property like the Mary in The Secret Garden. It truly was a relaxing experience and ultimate self-care-cation.


I probably could've bypassed this section, because a lot of What To Do in New Orleans, is eating. However there are a few must see's before you leave the crescent city. Above is a nice recap, but click here to get a bit more information. Whatever you do, don't leave without seeing how pralines are made (biased) and ride a streetcar; do it for the photo. 

Additional Must Do

The French Market | 1008 N. Peters St.

Head down to the French Market to get a taste of all things New Orleans. Located in a back end of the French Quarter, this can be your one-stop, has-it-all spot. Offering space for fresh produce, handmade goods and crafts, and an overflow of goods in the crescent city, wander through the French Market and see what you can find, that you didn't know you needed hashtag: story of my life.

Frenchman Street

I’ve never seen two of the same buildings in new orleans. The frenchman street live music scene is fantastic. It’s renowned for its jazz bands and solo artists, and boasts a vibe of it’s own. Head to Frenchman Street for fun any night of the week and check out the Frenchmen Art Market while you're there; save yourself from a crazy amount of traffic. If you've got the time, check out the Praline Connection on Frenchman Street for solid eats.

Jackson Square | 700 Decatur St

Jackson Square holds a view of the oldest cathedral in the United States (The St. Louis Cathedral). If you're touristing around, you'll be sure to see the featured statue of Army General and 7th president: Andrew Jackson, sitting alongside the Mississippi River. Music, local art, (and magic) are all around Jackson Square. It's a great space to explore, sit, and reflect. 

River Walk | 500 Port of New Orleans

Home to several stores and restaurants that sits atop the Mighty Mississippi River. The riverwalk stretches from the end of Canal Street up to the New Orleans Convention Center. It is connected to the adjacent Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel, stroll along and say hello to the Steamboat Natchez. 


New Orleans will outlast your stomach every. single. time. Here are a few eatery highlights in visual form. Honestly, just plan your own food tour because you need to try everything. Must eat when you're in the city: PRA-lines | Chicory Coffee | Beignets | Étouffée | Boudin | Something Banana’s Foster | Muffaltta | Gumbo | Po’ Boy | Boiled Crawdaddies | Jambalaya | Oysters | SnoBall | Alligator | Red Beans + Rice | Turtle Soup | BBQ Shrimp

Why New Orleans?

New Orleans is not only visually stunning but it has the power to invoke this feeling of time standing still. It makes you slow down and savor your surroundings for as long as you can. Much of the sickness we have today is stress related. So I encourage you to pack a bag and be a tourist in this fabulous city. Find a brass tune and dig in!

+all photos by yourweeklyfollowup

+Many thanks to follow your NOLA and Davids for their support in this blog. 

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured here are my own