Sunday, January 22, 2012

New Photo 365 Blog!

I visited Portland over New Years (which I absolutely loved by the way) and was inspired by a photo album I found at Urban Outfitters. It's called Photo A Day- Your Year In Photos. I decided right then that I had to take this challenge. The challenge of taking a photo a day for the whole year. And how awesome was it that it was actually January 1st when I found the album!?

A few of my friends wanted to get in on this challenge too. So we decided to find an online source to show each other our pictures easily. I suggested blogger since I'm familiar with it and it's pretty user friendly. Alas, I have a new blog featuring the photos I'm taking each day. I decided to take all of the pictures with my iPhone since I know I will not be carrying a camera for 365 days out of the year. I'm a little OCD about all of the pictures being similar so I decided to use the phone for all of the pictures so they are all the same size and quality.

You should check it out! And maybe take the challenge yourself. We are only 21 days into the year! You can catch up! :)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Favorite word of the day...

A strong, innate desire to rove or travel about.

Yes please!


Took the day off of work to go see a taping of The Ellen Show in Burbank. (Fun!) We had some downtime between when we picked up our "first come first serve" tickets and when the show actually started.

My friend and I are huge Audrey Hepburn fans so we decided to go on a hunt for her star. My friend had seen it before but I had not. Luckily she sort of remembered where it's located. It's a little bit of a walk from Hollywood and Highland which is where we started but we found it! It is located near my new favorite building, the Redbury @ Hollywood and Vine. This building is so interesting. Check out their website here. It is so beautiful and I wish I could just go in and take tons of pictures. However, I don't think it's one of those places where you can just roam around snapping picture without going un-noticed (or getting tackled by security). Haha.

Here are a few pics from the day.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Almost confirmed...

Might be surprising my goddaughter with a trip to NYC for her 13th Birthday in October!! Logistics still need to be planned out but I think it's a go!

So excited. She will absolutely die of excitement. Can't. Wait.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Wine & Knomes

Decided to drive out to Temecula today. It's approximately 1 hour 20 minutes from my place in Orange County. It's a nice day getaway. You can either take the 91 to the 15 south or if you are in South OC like me, you can just take the Ortega Highway (Highway 74) which goes directly over the mountains and into Lake Elsinore. Then from there, hop on the 15 south for about 8 more miles and you are there. The Ortega Highway is a windy road going through Cleveland National Forest but it's got less traffic and is a little more direct depending on where you are coming from. I happen to live down the street from the entrance so it's perfect for me.

Most of the wineries are off of the main road Rancho California Road. We decided to have lunch in Old Town Temecula which reminded me of Knott's Berry Farm for some reason. haha. There are a few restaurants, antique stores, candy store, etc. Then we headed to our first winery.

We chose Briar Rose Winery. The original land owner worked for Disney and had built a replica of Snow White's cottage on the land for his wife. The cottage is still there and is actually the wine tasting room. It's so cute. This winery is a little different than most of the others in the area. They actually serve you at small tables in the cottage. It's not the normal counter kind of winery. They also say they require reservations however, if it's slow enough there isn't a problem coming in as a "walk-in" without a reservation. The white wines were amazing. So yum. They were light and sweet. I loved the Estate Viognier, Gewerztraminer and the Citronier. This winery is a must visit. Cozy, whimsical and best of all great wine!

The other winery we chose was South Coast Winery. This is one of my favorite wineries in Temecula. I go there each time. They have tons of great whites, sparkling wine and I even liked some of the reds! They have a large tasting room and a large selection of wines. You get 5 wine coupons ($15 fee) plus you get to keep the glass. You can pick from about 50 types of wine and sparkling wines. I love their Ruby Cuvee sparkling wine and also their Spumante Diamonte sparkling wine. I also love their 2009 Gewurztraminer and the Riesling. There are tons that I have not tried yet either. I really want to try the sparkling Gewurztraminer!
We only had time for the 2 wineries this time. I am looking forward to going back in the spring time when the grapes start growing. Or in the fall when they harvest. It's such a pretty area with the rolling vineyards.
Back to the real world tomorrow. Getting ready for a busy few months. Good thing I have a nice new bottle of wine to pop open in case of work stress... :-)
Super Secret wine tip: Yes, Sparkling Wine is what we normally would call "champagne". However, you are not allowed to call it champagne unless it's actually from Champagne, France! So, if you are wine tasting, it will be called Sparkling Wine. Not Champagne.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas!

And all that Jazz....

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday weekend!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Business Trip

Got an email from my boss that the big boss wanted her to sign me up for a training class. A training class that I had actually already heard about and was thinking about asking them if I could go. This training class just happens to be in Seattle! Woo hoo! Boss asked me to come to her office to sign me up. As she's looking at it she says, "It's in Seattle? Nice!". I replied, "I know! That's why I was so excited when you asked me to go." haha.

So, I'm signed up for my first ever business conference and kind of excited about it. I wish it were in Boston since I have not really explored that city but I did love Seattle so I'm excited anyway.

The only thing is that the conference is not until May. That is a long time from now. Gives me something to look forward to.

Loving the Rain!

It does not rain in Southern California very often. So the fact that it's been raining since yesterday morning and is supposed to rain until Wednesday is crazy! I am loving it. Although it is making me quite lazy.

I did drag myself out of my house for some Christmas shopping and errands. Other than that, I have had hot cocoa, read some of my book, watched a movie, had a fire in the fireplace, had my Christmas tree lights on, made a yummy hazelnut latte, napped and played on the computer. All while listening to the pitter patter of the rain outside my windows. Loving it!

Now my latte and the fact that I napped have kicked in and now I'm wide awake at 11pm! Ooops. Tomorrow, I bake with one of my best friends and possibly visit my parents and their new Boxer, Rocky. Love this weekend!

I'm savering my days off since I know my January is going to be quite busy with work. I'm taking full advantage!

How LA LIVE does Christmas....

The Campus is currently decked out with a tiny ice skating rink, lots of wintery Christmas lights, a lit up metal tree and tons of (sponsered) decorations. :-)

I believe it's $10 to ice skate if you are interested.

The pictures are not very good. I was in a hurry and using my cell phone. Maybe I'll try to get a better one soon.

Stop by and visit some time...

Did you hear that they are thinking about tearing down part of the convention center (which is connected to LA LIVE) and building a football stadium? I can not even imagine. If the traffic is bad now...oh gosh. You already have UCI near by and LA LIVE, Nokia Theatre & Staples Center all right there. We'll see what happens. The good thing is that slowly LA is being cleaned up. 1 block at a time. Hopefully it gets better and better.

Happy Holidays!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Chi-Town. The Windy City. Chicago.

Whatever you wanna call it. It is a beautiful city. I so loved it there. Well except for the wind!

I didn't really know a whole lot about the city prior to going. I knew some of the main points that I wanted to see/do. The Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), Millenium Park, The Bean, Pizza, Wrigley Field, Michigan Ave, etc. What I really wanted to do was to just walk the city. I love exploring new cities. Especially by foot and subway. I guess I'm just a wanderer.

I have a friend that lives there that emailed me a lovely list of specific places to go. Restaurants, pubs and sites. We ended up at a bunch of the places she suggested.

My friend Jenn and I met up at Chicago O'Hare (which is a huge place to meet up with someone. just saying.). We both flew from California but we flew from separate airports. We each wanted to earn points on different airlines. We're nerds like that. So I flew out of LAX and her from Orange County. We got to Chicago within 10 minutes of each other. Perfect!

Taxi'd it to the hotel and then it was off to explore.

Ok. So let's talk about the deep dish pizza. The first night, we went to Pizzeria Due. We ordered our deep dish pizzas (which take about 40min to bake. Just fyi). I had no idea that the crust would actually be kind of like pie crust. And I hate pie crust! So ew. I didn't love it. However, the middle was good. Our concierge gave us her suggestion for pizza which was Pizano's. Pizano's was actually on my list from my friend. It also showed up in some of the magazines in the hotel. Apparently it's Oprah's favorite thin crust pizza. Pizano's was sooooo good. I loved it. I did have the thin crust though. I wasn't ready to try deep dish again. :-)

Overall, the city was great. I found it to be clean. Or maybe it was the rain. I noticed that trash is not piled up in front of stores along the street like in NYC. Chicago must use their alleys. :-) I loved the contrast between the city architechture and the river running between. Our weather kept changing so we got to experience all of that. It even hailed at one point which threw me off. I thought the wind was throwing dirt in my face. I was really grossed out. Then I looked at my jacket and noticed it was actually baby hail! You know I'm from Orange County when I'm thinking hail is dirt! Sorry, never have experienced hail before. haha.

I LOVED the pubs and restaurants there. Very old fashioned. Laid back but very nice. Not dive bar like. I think I would definitely drink more if I lived there. I really enjoyed the atmosphere.

Well, enough of my babble. Here are the pics from the trip. This was the first time I've used my new SLR camera on a trip. The pictures came out nice. I'm happy!

Self explanatory but this is the Chicago Riverwalk.

City scape

See what I mean about the city and water contrast? I love it!

I thought this looked like one of those Christmas villages. :-)

This was a church with an open courtyard. It was kind of creepy but cool! A nice find.

The courtyard

Millenium Park. Look at the colors!

The Bean in Millenium Park. Way too much fun.

Accidental extreme close up self portrait in the Bean.
Us in the Bean
I love the fall colors!

The EL. (Elevated Subway)


Me. My face was freezing. haha.

103rd Floor of the Willis Tower on 'The Ledge' which is basically like a plexiglass box that jets out so it looks down on the city. Scary. But so cool. Willis Tower is the 2nd tallest building in the world!

The ChristkindleMarket. A German Christmas market we found. They served hot cocoa, spiced wine and hot cider. They sold traditional German products/ornaments and food. We were also there for the official lighting of the Christmas Tree by the Mayor that night.

I loved these subway entrances along the street.

The tree lighting ceremony at the ChristkindleMarket. Fireworks included! Nice, free Christmassy event.

It was seriously like a Fa la la la Lifetime movie. I loved it!

TRAVEL TIP: When I check in at the hotel, I usually grab some of the magazines and maps that the concierge have. They are city specific and usually have subway and street maps that you can tear out and take with you. Some of them also have calendars of what is going on during your stay. They're free. Grab them and use them!!
Travel Girl's Chicago read:
Deception Point by Dan Brown (It was really good by the way. Read it.)
Travel Girl's Chicago playlist:
The XX's
Maroon 5 (a few of their new songs.)
Taylor Swift's new album (did you hear the song about John Mayer? omg. Awesome. Google it!)
Thanks for reading travel peeps!
Until next time...