This page includes inspirational photos, videos, and quotes that remind us of the good, beautiful, and truly incredible in/of/about humanity–and what we can accomplish when we set our mind to something. Enjoy!

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NOTE: PG-13 language rating.

“Every morning when I wake up, and I see there’s a whole new other day, I just go absolutely ape!” (Paris When It Sizzles)

Audrey Hepburn

About Yulia Zagoruychenko

About Project Trio

Don’t try this at home!


  1. The Story of My Life- From a Dream to RealityJonna Jinton (& Channel)
  2. Living With the Dark Winters in SwedenJonna Jinton
  3. Pacific Crest Trail: 10 Minute Thru-Hike, Homemade Wanderlust
  4. Yoga Demo in India with Kino Yoga, KinoYoga
  5. HAUSER and Señorita – Vivo per lei, HAUSER
  6. LXD Presents: “MATCHED” Starring Harry Shum Jr., jonmchu
  7. Beatboxing Flute Super Mario Brothers Theme, Project Trio
  8. The Evolution of Dance- 1950 to 2019, Ricardo Walker
  9. Old Movie Stars Dance to Uptown Funk, NerdFestUK
  10. Max Kozhevnikov and Yulia Zagoruychenko (2008), Systomaton
  11. Yulia & Riccardo Jive WSSDF 2009, Rydance Love
  12. Max & Yulia Rhythm Dancejcb3393
  13. Danny Gokey – Love God Love People, Danny Gokey
  14. James Vincent Mc Morrow – Higher LoveMike Davis
  15. MAD MAX Workout, Canadian Prepper
  16. Singin’ in the Rain (’52) – Gene Kelly, Turner Classic Movies
  17. George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker- Waltz of the Flowers, CMajorEntertainment
  18. Swing Time – Rogers and Astaire, PepsiPrime
  19. Riverdance at the Eurovision Song Contest 1994, Dublin, Riverdance
  20. SKAAR – Higher Ground, SKAAR Official
  21. PUMPED UP KICKS|DUBSTEP, Marquese Scott
  22. Holiness is Faithfulness, Danielle Rose
  23. En Pointe!, The Australian Ballet

Southern Spain- Andalucía

The unrelenting Spanish sun beat down on me as I wiped the sweat from my forehead for the umpteenth time, wondering what in the world 44*C was in Fahrenheit. [It turned out to be 110*F.] So this is why they have the siesta, I thought. My brother and I were the only ones walking around the city streets of Granada that afternoon, foolishly searching for tapas and a place to spend the night, when everything was very clearly closed. Scholar-me knew that the siesta existed, knew that it was a part of Spanish culture, but to live it was something entirely different. The “CERRADO” (closed) signs weren’t really necessary: heavy iron doors and gates prevented anyone from even looking inside.

Continue reading “Southern Spain- Andalucía”

Black Sands

Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, Iceland

THE SADNESS rolls over me in waves, intermittent pulses gradually washing away the shoreline. I reach down for a handful of the volcanic black sand, and marvel at its odd grainy texture. Farther on, the sand turns pebbly—small, smooth stones pepper the ground mosaic. It is difficult to grasp how this ash was once part of a mountain: hot vapor, rock fragments, lava, and gas have transformed it into a bewitchingly beautiful landscape.

And yet, I also understand completely. It isn’t merely a matter of transportation, that of moving from one place to another—magma inside to volcanic ash outside; but rather this activity of an internal explosion, a pregnancy of creation, a fiery process turned cooled product. These constant bursts are my ultimate composition and makeup at my deepest level. They are me.

I cannot move away from or flee the sadness, for it will remain a part of me always in varying forms–memories etched into basalt columns of the heart; but I can transform the ache into something beautiful. Drowsy numbness, Keats? Begone! As the sadness cools to ash, I feel stronger. Lighter.

Nearing the shoreline, white frothy ocean spray nearly knocks me down this time; but I respond gleefully now, jumping in the waves.

The day is a cold, smoky gray, but I am warm inside. Just like the mountain.

Winter in Brussels

The flakes fell fast and heavy, quickly transforming the city skyline into an incomprehensible, wintry blur. She stood still inside the moving tram, watching silently; there were no words in her mind; she was absorbing the scene into her being.

Icelanders called this, “window-weather” (gluggaveður)—beautiful from a distance, provided the distance was indoors, adjacent to a fireplace, and within arm’s length of a hot mug of cocoa, of course. 

To be fair, none of those were really true at the moment: the tram tilted and jerked from time to time; invited cold gusts in at every stop; and failed to provide beverages of any kind to its passengers. Yet, it felt cozy somehow, this unpredictable, shifting stream of strangers, strangers passing through the Narnia-like portal of window weather, strangers brave enough to touch another world. They were traveling souls; this was the common thread—an undeniable sense of camaraderie and understanding.

Arriving at last, she stepped out into the blizzard, cold rocketing through her body, fingers numb within seconds. Wo ist das Atomium? Where is the Atomium? Someone answered, but the words froze in transit. She squinted into the flying flakes. Surely it was close by. After all, a 102-meter high structure could not hide forever.

What was she doing? Window weather demanded an observer, someone on the inside. Buying a waffle and cocoa mit slagroom/with whipped cream (Dutch), she let the wintry scene sink into her mind and body from a sensible distance. Looking through the window once more, the massive iron crystal “magnified 165 billion times its size” stared back at her.

Maybe the point of gluggaveður was just that: when you stopped to look through the window instead of blindly charging out into a snowstorm, you had a clearer, less obstructed view of the world. Perhaps it was tinted—in that you hoped palm tree temperatures accompanied the large, wet flakes—but life always took on varying shades; that was what made it interesting.

The Atomium- Brussels, Belgium


The Camino de Santiago is a 500-mile hike across northern Spain. It takes about 30 days to complete on foot. You carry everything you need in a backpack, and follow the arrows and shells so you don’t get lost. Scroll down for photos of my adventures. For more details about the pilgrimage, see HERE.

PART 1: The first summer, I walked from St. Jean-Pied-de-Port, France, to Burgos, Spain (273km/169 miles). However, I could not finish the pilgrimage and had to fly back home that summer because my foot was ridiculously swollen and no longer fit inside my shoe.

PART 2: The second summer, I walked from Burgos to Santiago de Compostela, and then we took a bus to the ocean in Finisterre, Spain, or “The End of the World” (708 kilometers/439 miles). We also spent one day sightseeing in Lisbon, Portugal, where I ate percebes, or barnacles. So grateful to have been able to return and finish the Camino!

PART 1: St. Jean Pied-de-Port, France to Burgos, Spain

PART 2: Burgos, Spain to [Santiago de Compostela] to Finisterre, Spain


Highlights: Ice-skating at Rockefeller Center, Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, Central Park, chancing upon Mandarin speakers!, eating the best Avocado Benedict I’ve ever had (at Little Collins), five-hour NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the Waldorf-Astoria, and the Empire State Building.


Highlights: Ghent, dragons, Christmas Markets, roasted chestnuts, went via Metro to the Atomium–an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times–during a snowstorm with huge flakes, saw beautiful light and sound show in the Grand-Place de Bruxelles, heard Mongolian street band, ate a lot of gaufres, found the Musical Instrument Museum, signs all in Dutch but many speak French as well, hot chocolate because was freezing, bought Macaroons, went to Royal Palace of Brussels, and Gare Central.


Highlights: Blue Lagoon, Hallgrímskirkja, Jökulsárlón, Þingvellir National Park, Icelandic Symphony Orchestra at Harpa, Reykjavík Food Walk, Polyglot Conference (playlist), free walking tour, Northern Lights, Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, glacier hiking, geysers, waterfalls, troll and elf legends, volcanoes, lava fields, whale-watching, snowstorms, one-way tunnels, exploring around Reykjavík, fermented shark, Skyr, Pylsa með öllu (hotdog with everything), a six-day tour around the Ring Road, super jeeps, Sturlureykir Horse Farm, surviving a hurricane, and a million hours trying to pronounce Eyjafjallajökull, Akureyri, vatn, and most of the words in Icelandic. I absolutely adore this country! *National saying: “þetta reddast” (þ is pronounced as “th”), meaning: “Everything will all work out“.



Highlights: Saw Northern Lights from plane at eye level-wow!, Dublin Castle, absolutely loved the Chester Beatty Library, saw Trinity College, Book of Kells and Long Room, attended a beautiful Irish River Dance show, National Leprechaun Museum (myths), delicious breakfast at Avoca Café, visited St. Patrick’s Cathedral, took a day trip to visit Malahide Castle and Howth, went Salsa dancing, Fab Food Tour, saw street where Spice Girls filmed one of their videos, a five-day tour of Ireland, Ed Sheeran’s Pub, haunted Charleville Castle with swinging pendulum, Kylemore Abbey, Poulnabrone Dolmen, Leprechaun Wishing Well, Dún Chaoin, Dingle Peninsula, Blarney Castle and Blarney Stone, Dunguaire Castle, Cliffs of Moher, and met a lot of Spanish-speakers in the country, and had a lot of difficulty pronouncing “Go raibh maith agat” (thank you in Irish, lit. ‘may you have goodness’).