Thursday, August 18, 2016

Santa Monica, California ♥

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Earlier this month, Sean and I visited California. I went to San Diego when I was in college and fell in love with it. I was pretty certain that I was going to move there after I graduated from college and actually started looking for jobs and apartments. It wasn’t until a few weeks back in NY that I began sharing my plans and it finally dawned on me that the only way I was going to be able to see family and friends was through a plane ride every.single.time. Well, the excitement began to fizzle and long story short, I never managed to move there. Sean had never been and well, I wanted him to fall in love too. But Sean, as much as he loves Snoop Dog and Dr. Dre, he just didn’t have much of a desire to visit The Golden State.

He had other plans so in the end we decided to let fate make the decision for us. Haha, OK that sounds a bit extra. But I’m kinda serious. Sean had us each pick two places we wanted to go. I chose California as my number one and Puerto Rico as my number two. Sean chose New Orleans as his number one and Daytona Beach as his number two. He typed our choices on some site that would shuffle them and based on what it pulled up as number one, that is where we would go. We took it so seriously and actually closed our eyes and then at the same time opened it to see where we were going. Well, wouldn’t you know it? California was number one and Puerto Rico number two. Poor Sean, haha. But seriously it was so much fun doing it this way! Soon after our location was revealed we started booking our flight.

We were going to be in California for only five days but we wanted to see Santa Monica, San Diego and LA. (San Francisco is still on my list for the future!) We decided on Santa Monica for two days, San Diego for two days and LA for one day. I took so many pictures so I am going to try my best to do this quickly but knowing me you’ll probably get three posts of this trip. I apologize ahead of time. I do realize that travel posts aren’t the most favorite around here but since this is my online journal...

OK, we stayed at The Huntley in Santa Monica and what an absolutely stunning hotel. To top it off the view from our room was incredible. The whole time we were there I kept on commenting on how much I would love the people who did the décor to come to our house. It was just fabulous and I loved our stay there. Great service and they have an excellent brunch on the rooftop (The Penthouse Restaurant) that overlooks the ocean and it is just a beautiful place to enjoy your meal. At night, it turns into a night club and there’s great music and an awesome vibe (delicious drinks too!). We fell in love with Santa Monica and Sean kept on saying how much we should move there. It’s not going to happen but we can dream ;).

I don’t think I’ve shared this on the blog yet but for the month of July, Sean was in Richmond VA for work. He came home once during the month of July for our BBQ. One on one time was highly necessary so for this trip we decided to make no plans and just go with the flow. Completely different from when we went to Chicago. And I loved it. We did a lot of eating, walking around, beaching (I finished reading "The Girl on the Train" during beach time. If you liked Gone Girl, which I did, you'll like this one too!), dancing, making new friends that we actually took some numbers and just relaxed. It was so nice to kind of catch up and enjoy each other's company.

Here are some pictures of our time spent in Santa Monica. The below is a view from our room. Insert heart eyed emoji here.

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There were succulents everywhere which I loved because I have grown to become a succulent lover. I think it is because they make me believe that I have a green thumb when in truth they are just so hard to kill! Oh and the trees! Man, they were beautiful.

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We had dinner at T's Thai because we didn't want a real sit down experience. We wanted to be in and out. It's a very small restaurant with not much seating. Our dishes were very good but I've become a bit obsessed with iced Thai coffee and this one was not good because it was a little too sweet for my taste. I would recommend it if you need something quick and good.

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However, brunch the following day at The Penthouse Restaurant did not disappoint one bit!
I think the whole experience probably made the food taste 100x better.

Oh and Sean finally understands why I'm a obsessed with brunch. Took him long enough.

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After brunch we decided to head to Santa Monica Pier. I wasn't dressed appropriately and probably should have changed like Sean did ... Any who, the sand was so, so hot. I think hotter than any sand I've ever stepped on. I have to admit it was a shock when I allowed the water to get up to my ankles.

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Sean and I both got cookie monster ice cream cones. Way more than the both of us could handle but delicious!

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As much as we loved Santa Monica we were not that impressed with Santa Monica's beach. Both Sean and I thought it was smelly BUT the views made up for it! We much preferred San Diego's, Coronado Beach which I'll blog about in a future post. It's much cleaner and smells like what a beach should smell like. Clean salt water, white sand, gorgeous views.

We went to The Bungalow the night before when we were club/bar hopping and (once again I wanted my house decorated by whomever decorated it) I had to stop and get a picture. A group of three women were watching us and asked if we wanted them to take our picture. Of course, I jumped at the chance. It was the only picture we got of the two of us!

Too bad it looks like we're going to two different places ;).

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We also checked out The Misfit Bar while we were in Santa Monica and it was so much fun. The bartenders are dressed to the nines and the drinks are so good. They also serve food but we only went for drinks. Too bad I don't take pictures at night with my camera because I think those would be a lot more fun! If you ever have a chance to check out a few of these places, do it.

Oh and you best believe that I was the happiest camper when I finally was able to try In-N-Out Burger. I won't say that it is better than Shake Shack because my loyalties lie with NY but we went twice while we were in Cali if that tells you anything! :)

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San Diego post coming right up! more like in several days

Monday, August 15, 2016

Movies at the Park.

Several weekends ago I became aware that movies are held in the park during the summer. It is free of charge and you can bring your own food and drinks which includes alcoholic beverages. Cinthia and I brought snacks and each a bottle of wine and settled in to watch "The Intern" which we both actually watched in the theatre last year. We couldn't resist as we both love that movie.

It was also on this day that I realized how much of a big deal Pokémon Go is. SO many people were at the park staring down at their phones trying to catch Pokémon. It gave us some laughs but it was also a little worrisome although I can't really explain why.

Summer is quickly coming to an end although the weather may beg to differ so I hope to get at least one more movie in the park before the summer is over! If your area does this I highly recommend you try it. It's just a really fun way to enjoy a movie.

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I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and have a great week!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Summer bbq

I figured that I get this post up before summer is over. So sad to say, right? Although this summer has been so hot I do not want it to end just yet. I've been enjoying all the activities I've been able to do which include grilling, attending baseball games, enjoying live music outdoors, cozy warm nights spent on our deck drinking cold wine and of course dining outside. Run on sentence, like woah.

We threw a causal BBQ a few weekends ago. We cooked chicken, ribs, hot dogs and burgers on the grill. There was an abundance of blonde sangria (my favorite!) and beverages and a good time was had by all. Some friends that I hadn’t seen in over a year were in attendance and I was so happy. My girl friend Stacy brought her two kiddos and they spent the weekend with us and it was just a reminder of why we've chosen these individuals to remain in our lives. I met Norina and Jim's daughter for the first time which was awesome too! Many of them traveled long distances to get there and it meant so much to me. So if any of you are reading this (Jihae!), thanks for coming! I had grand plans to take pictures of everyone together and I started out strong by taking pictures before everyone got there. Well as soon as the party started those good intentions went out the window.

When I realized it much later Cinthia said well that means you were having too much of a good time. I replied saying that yes, I was having a good time BUT I still have a great time when I do take pictures because it’s just one of the things I love to do. Besides, right now it would be so nice to have updated pictures of all of us together. But yeah, maybe I’ll do better next year.

We’ve decided that we’ll throw a summer BBQ for all our friends & family every year because not seeing each other for such extended lengths of times makes no sense. Either way, I did get some pictures even if not the ones I really wanted.

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Bubbles for the kiddos that were there. They loved it! :)

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She loves it when we have guests.

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