Vacation Surprise!

Summer vacation… there is nothing better! Alex and I had barely been seeing each other due to how busy life was.So,we were so excited to have a week in Florida. We boarded the plane with our usual travel snack pack,essentially a picnic. ūüôā We also happen to have a bunch of free Southwest drink coupons! Best thing ever! We ordered cocktails and cheered to 7 days of white sand beaches and poolside living! We landed and was greeted by Alex’s mom. We were going to visit his grandparent and his mom had already arrived.

This is not your average¬†grandparent visit. We arrived at the estate and had homemade soup waiting for us. It was perfect. It was late but Alex and I were on West Coast time, so we decided to go for a midnight swim. Beers in hand and warm summer night and a perfectly heated pool, vacation had officially started! The next day, we decided to head to the beach club. This is where we met a cabana boy who set up an umbrella,chairs and a table for us and then took our drink order. Every beach needs this! Now I need to join a beach club. ūüėČ

 

 

The ocean was 80¬į ¬†and perfectly clear. I love the southwest Florida for its pool like ocean. San Diego, you have to battle the waves…. which is also fun.¬† Our evenings were filled with watching and tracking the ¬†weather. Alex and his mom love to track thunderstorms while in Florida lol.

A few more of Alex’s Family members came to visit and we had fabulous dinners all together. But after being together with Alex for 7 years, I am continuously asked why we aren’t married. I always say, “I am not the one that gets down on one knee.” I told Alex the next day (our last day) that we needed to come up with a script to tell people on why we aren’t married yet. He laughed at me and said,” we can do that later tonight.” He had seemed weird the past 24hrs, extra lovely but different also. That night we had reservations with the family at the Ritz Carlton on the beach. We all got ready and Alex was looking so handsome.

I was hearing some skinny black pants with a sheer white tank with a fringe bottom and a big white and gold floral statement necklace and some gold strappie sandals. . (I would make links but I scored all the pieces at little cheap stores like, Ross and some local little shops.)

The Ritz was beautiful and we ate a the tapas restaurant inside the Ritz. There was even a Spanish guitarist and a box drummer, it was beyond amazing. I ordered myself a raspberry mojito¬†and scanned the menu. Alex and I always share food, so I had to get his thoughts. ¬† He wanted the duck foie gras¬†and I did not! Good thing about small plates is you can order a lot and sample them all. I stuck with ¬†Crab cakes and Chicken and biscuits ūüôā ¬†Alex was loving his ¬†foie gras¬†and ended up dropping some on his shirt. He was so bothered by it and I didn’t understand why. I giggled at him,since normally I am the one always dropping stuff on myself.

After dinner I was ready for dessert! I was listing off all the delicious dishes and hoping I could try them all! Then all of a sudden the waitress walked up¬†and says there is a special for the night. I thought it was a complimentary “I’m sorry” since they messed up grandpa’s order. Well I was wrong!

As the plate was placed in front of me, I read the magical words ” Will You Marry Me?” I looked at Alex and said ” this is happening?!?!” He responded with a huge smile¬†” it’s happening, babe!” He got down on one knee and asked me to be his Wife!!! I said YES!!! I then broke out in tears and sipped champagne with Alex and ¬†of course called my mom to tell her we are getting marrrieeed.. It is still so wild to me. I kept telling Alex how we are officially \¬†adults because we are old enough to get married. We giggled like little kids hearing the word penis. lol. We are so excited for this next chapter and¬†¬†I feel¬†so lucky to have found my person at 20 and to continue riding this journey together!

Now for post on wedding planning … ūüôā

xo.. A

Bachelorette Weekend

 

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You reach that time in your life where all your friends begin getting engaged,married and having babies… and not necessarily in that order.¬† Well I am on the cusp of that. This past weekend I got to celebrate at my bachelorette party.¬† I grew up in a little town in Northern California and was lucky to have a group of girlfriends that are just a few years older than me that are now in the peak of EMB (engagement,marriage and babies)¬† The girls flew down¬† to Palm Springs from the Bay Area and I had a nice little 2 hour drive. I have lived in San Diego for almost 7 years and still had never made it to Palm Springs, I always feared the heat! I made sure to have my bikini’s ready because my intention were cocktails while lounging in the pool.

I drove in early Saturday to meet up with my girl B while the others were still flying in. B is from Palm Springs and she gave me a grand tour. First stop of the Riveria Hotel….OMG, it is fabulous!! The walls were mirrored and there were ginormous chandeliers and old Hollywood style furniture. I felt like Marylin Monroe..hehe¬† B took me around to 5 of the major hotels/ pool parties and everyone was themed… I love a good theme. I could go back to stay at different hotels each time just because each experience would be very different.

We ended our time with a beer poolside. I departed my lovely B, to go meet up with my Nor Cal ladies.

I was SOOO excited to see my girls, it had been too long. We are the friends that don’t keep in touch very well but once back together,it is like nothing has changed. We were all decked out in our Palm Springs tanks ready to kick the weekend off right!

First things first, bikinis on!  I am currently obsessed with my itsy bitsy Victoria Secret bottoms.
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We all made our way to the pool as Lisa made up some amazing ¬†MoscowMules…. mmmm… so refreshing and so delicious… and little dangerous.¬† I made sure to bring out my little surprise for the bride before we got too deep into the weekend. I made an awesome Bachelorette weekend survival kit, it was a hit and every single item was used! (detailed post on it later)

It was about 100 degrees but wasn’t as bad as¬† I had thought, as long as you were in the water. The house was amazing, it had a modern yet retro vibe with bright teal and orange accents. The pool had a little shallow area for lounging with an umbrella in the middle… it was perfect!!

We had reservations at 8pm and it was seven¬†and we all were still wet and in our bikinis by the pool. The crazy time-keeper that I am made sure to make a small announcement that it was CRUNCH time. lol.¬† Some of the best times are the times getting ready as girls together. ¬†The shouting of what do I wear, who has gloss, help me curl my hair….¬† all the great¬†madness that getting ready involves.
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The bride had an awesome tiger H&M skirt and a new bride tank to pair with it. I convinced her it was necessary to tie up her shirt. With some mid drift showing and her tiger skirt flowing, we were ready for dinner.
The restaurant LuLu’s looked like it came straight out of Miami. All white with big chandeliers. From the looks of it we were in for a treat. Well we were wrong. The tuna crevice was great but other than that nothing was impressive. From non-existant plating to the obviously frozen lobster, it all was a major disappointment. It would have been a great place for a drink and an app, just because of the decor and location.
After a fun but not delicious dinner we decided to not hit the bars and to instead get back in our bikinis and enjoy cocktails by the pool while listening to our 2003/2004 mix CD’S….it was pretty epic.

Vacation Rental—>

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It was my kind of bachelorette party, just enough of everything! We all left tanner and a little hungover , and we all want to do it again!!

 

New York City & Conneticut Holiday Adventure.

This gallery contains 154 photos.

A little back tracking to this past Christmas.. who doesn‚Äôt want to feel a little Christmas cheer in May ūüėČ I went on a 3 week North East adventure with my boyfriend, Alex. My family and I wanted to have … Continue reading

My New York City Love Affair

The Top of  Rockafeller

The Top of Rockefeller

I have a love affair and it is with the one and only , NEW YORK CITY, The Big Apple, The City, Manhattan, whatever you call it, I know, I fell in love with it instantly. From the moment I walked up the stairs and set my eyes on the city that stole my heart. I was barely 14 years old and took the train in from Princeton. We were visiting my mom and I’s best friends (Which were mother and daughter) Rebecca, my mom’s friend had a whole day and evening planned even a¬† Broadway play and dinner at the Blue Ribbon Bakery ( AMAZING) . I walked up the steps out of the station and the hustle of the street and the smell of¬† the cars engulfed me. We worked our way around the city weaving our way through¬† the streets and taxis. The New York sidewalks are like freeways, no holding up traffic and no stopping unless VERY necessary. My little feet were moving as my chubby cheeks were sore from smiling. I could feel New York and that was the first time I ever felt a city, and it was electrifying. New York was the launching pad of my love affair with fashion.

At my ripe age of 14 my priorities and must see’s were very different but oh so important ūüėȬ† This was in 2000 and at that moment TRL was the rage for ALL teens. I was eager to see where the MTV filmed . I pictured this grand building, a moment…. and then there it was, a corner window with colored printer paper on the bottom that read “TRL” my brows dropped and my bubble of expectation popped. It was my first experience of TV in person. I laughed at myself for the idea I had and what it actually was. I walked toward Broadway with the group while constantly cranking my disposable camera to catch every bit of the city I could, which embarrassed my mom. lol

As the others were busy at the box office handling tickets for Kiss Me Kate, I had my eyes on a whole new world,street vendors!!! I saw beautiful purses, every design and color you could want and as I noticed the price tags of my favorites; I realized I wasn’t going to buy a $50 purse at 14. Then I saw a woman negotiating the price of the purse…She was straight haggling and my eyes got wide. I pulled my favorite purse down and asked how much, he said $50. I quickly offered him $20… yeah, I was bold for my first time. He laughed and responded with an absolutely not and how he could not do such a price. My smart Ass 14 year self decided that I needed to let him know he wasn’t my only option and proceeded to tell him I would go find the same purse from the next guy and I did’t need him. As I began to walk away, he hollers for me and shouts “fine,fine I’ll do $25, you take!”¬† I was thrilled, I made my first deal on New York City streets. My mom wasn’t surprised by me and made the typical¬† “you are just like your father” comment. I was gleaming with joy that I just snagged a look a like designer bag, that was the start of my love of purses and just street vendors in general. My mom had to take my wallet at times, so I would stop giving every homeless person money and trying to haggle any and every amazing new york item I could get my hands on.

Then I had very real moments as a teen, that was a true learning lesson. One of my early visits to¬† New York was 2 months after 9/11. My mom’s best friend that I mentioned earlier was in the building and was able to make it out. I will never forget sitting in world history while living in Georgia and hearing the announcement. At that age, I didn’t understand the real implications, the meaning of the building or even who or why they were attacked. We went to pay our respects at Ground Zero, it had only been 2 months and all the rubble was still there, there was workers and chain link fences everywhere. It was unreal, how two building so massive that took over the skyline, was just¬† rubble. As we walked through the pathways there was several American flags and banners with messages for the lives lost that day and the hero’s that helped. I couldn’t imagine what Rebecca was seeing or feeling, she was in it, she saw and heard the terror.¬† That day will live with me forever, we visited ground zero every year after and watch it turn from rubble and a place of loss¬† to now a beautiful place of remembrance and triumph.

The Sphere is a large metallic sculpture by German sculptor Fritz Koenig, once stood in  between the World Trade Center towers in Manhattan. After being recovered from the rubble of the Twin Towers.It maintained structurally intact, it had been visibly damaged. 6 Months later the sculpture  was relocated to Battery Park and formally rededicated with an eternal flame as a memorial to the victims of 9/11.

The Sphere: by German sculptor Fritz Koenig, once stood in between the World Trade Center towers .After being recovered from the rubble of the Twin Towers. 6 Months later the sculpture was relocated to Battery Park and formally rededicated with an eternal flame as a memorial to the victims of 9/11.

New York was my playground,a discovery around every corner. At the time living  in Georgia, and by no means was Georgia on the same  fashion  scale as NYC.  scuffed baseball hats and Birkenstocks were the trend in GA ( shout out toe berks coming back)  and there was no H&M in Georgia or even in California when I moved back my junior year of high school.

My discovery of SOHO was magical, the only time I saw famous people in NYC was in SOHO. They happened to be my all time favorites, Lauren Graham from my¬† favorite show Gilmore Girls and my¬† Marc Jacobs moments… as we crossed the street we caught eyes, he probably didn’t realize it, BUT I DID. He was handsome and only in true Marc Jacobs fashion, he was rocking a kilt and sneakers.¬† I thought¬† I was soo cool in my knock off oversize Chanel sunglasses, which I still¬† I have to this day. Big sunnies were not popular and when I went back to school feeling glamorous, everyone else thought I looked like a¬† bug. Little did they know, they all would be rocking large sunglasses,2 years later. One of the many times my New York hit, failed in my little town.¬† As a teenager… well I still do, I saved all my money just so I could shop my way through New York.¬† I remember searching for H&M stores¬† and they were only in NYC and Europe, they didn’t even have an online shop. I still have my first H&M purchase, a soft black turtle neck sweater. ūüôā

New York moments,like seeing¬† Hair Spray, the year it won 8 Tonys‘. I felt jubilant¬† during the performance, it was electrifying, it was much different from my first play, Kiss Me Kate. Just another reason to love New York.

Then the not so high brow events of being¬† 18 and going to my first New York bar and feeling so cool that I was even drinking a beer… oh the highlights of life at that age. ūüôā¬† My more High Brow moment was¬† during the same trip, I had recently finished my first modern history course and I desperately wanted to go to the MoMA. My mom took any and all learning opportunities she could for me, so¬† as admired the¬† paintings, taken back that I was seeing the real deal, the paintings that I just learned about. I was just a few inched from the art work that is known around the world. The even better highlight…. I saw Jake Gyllenhaal with his mom… yep, we were both there with our moms, it like we were practically there together. hehe, or so I wished.

Some of my MOMA favorites:I don’t know if I was technically allowed to take these photos.

 

picasso

Rene Magritte’s ‚ÄúThe False Mirror‚Ä̬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† ¬† ¬† Picasso’s¬† “Guernica”

Water Lillies

Monet’s Waterlilies

I began visiting New York because of a family friends but then, my dreams came true… well as¬† close as I was going to get at 14.. My older brother, ten-year my senior, was moving to Manhattan!! I then spent every Christmas in Manhattan and felt like I was in the Christmas movies, that¬† I still obsessively watch .Everything from the lights intrinsically¬† strung¬† around every tree that lined the streets, the snow flakes that dance to music on the Cartier building, the smell and oh the delicious taste of hot roasted nuts. The city captivates your every sense. I loved walking the Upper East side and admiring the architecture and the mysterious apartments behind all the little windows you see. As a teen, I felt so independent and free being able to walk to the store or catch the train, I admired and envied the other teens that grew up living the New York life. They just seemed so much cooler, more mature and for the most part way more fashionable….because they were and are. lol . My favorite Christmases were the ones in my brothers 1 bedroom new york apartment with his little tree and eating dinner at the coffee table all together. Those are the memories I will cherish forever.

lit trees     

¬† After 12 years, my brother moved from the beautiful city of Manhattan to Florida, with a growing family they needed room and lot more sun. I protested, knowing it would slim my opportunities at visiting New York but thankfully a friend of mine and his babe are living in adorable Astoria and I seized the chance to visit….

xo- A

NEW YORK II…. to be continued….