Whip Cream & Lies

If you’re not a Bachelor fan then you will not understand my title!

WoW! Time flys. I wrote this post like a week ago and never got to posting – so here it is a week late

March 6th-13th

Monday nights are always busy, but Monday nights are what get me through the day. I always head to Tammy and Ben’s house around 7:00 for games. This week we played Heads Up (which no one had ever played before!!) So glad I could pop all of their Heads up cherries. We played the sound it out version, which is actually harder than you think! They have cards such as garbage disposal, not just animals. It was very comical! We then played the Just for kids game when we were noise making out!

After Heads Up it was time for discussion about that weeks’ service. Before moving to Cali, I had never gone to church groups during the week (except for when I was in high school). I really enjoy extending my learning experience out of church and into group. It really brings everything full circle and it’s great learning about everyone else’s struggles and triumphs all the while growing my relationship with God. Our current series is titled “Confrontingly Human” a series on the Church as one body.

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Of course we can’t forget the last part of every Monday night – BACHELOR watch time! We love reading all the tweets while watching it – since we are west coast and watch it late pretty much all the rest of the US has already watched it and tweeted their opinions.

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Tuesday night Tammy and I went to Montague to check out a hip hop class. I have been missing dance so much and was so pumped to bust some moves. This dance studio is a drop in studio so you can go and check out one class and not be behind because they teach new combos every week. The song we danced to was jojo’s “too little too late” talk about throw back. The teacher had phenomenal moves. It was just the right challenge; hard, but after repetition I was able to get it. I definitely plan on making a regular appearance on Tuesday nights.

Thursday after school was out, a couple of the teachers had a Lularoe party. I had never been to one before, but I heard they had super comfy leggings so I decided to check it out. I’m sure glad I decided to go. Their leggings are beyond soft and comfy and very affordable! They have a lot of fun and funky patterns. I was a little hesitant at first because I usually just wear solids, but once I tried them on I was sold. I also fell in love with their long cardigans which they call the “Sarah”. I recommend checking out a party if you get the chance!

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After the party a couple of us headed to grab some food at Blue Sea. It was happy hour so we ordered a bunch of appetizers. We ordered crispy calamari (to die for!), soft shell crabs (not my fave), oysters (they are only $1 each during HH), yellowtail shooters, and Hamachi jalepeno. I also ordered a pomegranant mimosa. I could have ordered a whole pitcher it was so good. They used real pomegranant in it.

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We then headed to the local college for facials. I had never had a facial done before and so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I really enjoyed it though and definitely plan on doing them more often now!

Friday a group of us met Tammy at her work (Facebook) for happy hour and dinner – EVERYTHING IS FREEEEE. Can’t say no to that! I got their braised pork belly with sweet otatoe puree and strawberry rubarb, chicken taquitos, pasta primavera, and stir fry ramen. It’s a cafeteria style, so you get in line and pick what and how much you want.

After dinner we went to the Oculus room to play some virtual reality. I had played it once a couple weeks ago with Tammy, but some of the guys had never played it before. We discovered this game – bar fight which was absolutely hilarious. The guys got so into it we had to make sure they didn’t punch the computer screen. We had intended on only being there for an hour and then going to a couple movies, but ended up staying there till about 10pm we were having such a good time.

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[Pictured my lularoe Sarah and leggings!]

Saturday night we went to Total Wine and more to pick up Palm Breeze’s (Palmie Breezies as Ben called them when he couldn’t remember the name) that I had put on hold earlier that day – after much searching I FINALLY found a place that sold them – only a 30 minute drive away NBD. This store had about everything you could imagine. I didn’t want to leave. Not only did they have every alcohol, but all the cutest wine glasses, openers, etc.

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We decided to grab dinner at Blue Line pizza for some deep dish pizza. Tammy and I split the BBQ chicken deep dish. The BBQ chicken was amazing! We had planned on going to a movie this night, but by the time we were done eating it was already 10 (technically 11 with the time change) and we all had to get up early the next day for church so we decided to call it a night.

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Monday was the Bachelor FINALE and so we decided to have a party. Of course it was Corrine themed. We had all the necessities – cheese pasts, cucumber slices, whip cream and lies, champagne, cheese cubes, and the final rose. It was probably the worst season i’ve ever watched, but the company made for a great time every week.

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Thats all for now!

LA Part II

Sunday was a rough start because by now we were all going on only a few hours of sleep. We quickly got ready and headed to Au Fudge, Jessica Biel’s restaurant. I highly recommend this place if you are ever in the LA area. Not only is it adorable, but the menu is phenomenal and it’s kid friendly with au pair’s to watch your kids while you and your friends enjoy a meal.

I’ve always heard the rave about chicken and waffles, but never really understood it. When I asked our waiter what he recommended, he immediately said “our chicken and waffles”. So I decided to go for it and try it. I also got a bloody mary to kick off my day. The bloody mary was sub-par, but my chicken and waffles was beyond words. It was the perfect mixture of sweet and a little spicy. The chicken was crispy and the seasoning was perfect. Mackenzie ordered the Vegan Hash and Tammy ordered the Bacon Breakfast Sandwhich, both of which they enjoyed! For dessert we had to try one of their famous milkshakes – everything of which is homemade including the ice cream. This milkshake is beyond words so I’ll just show you a picture and let you decide for yourself!

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After our ginormous meal we decided we needed to walk it off and went for a hike at the famous Runyon Canyon Park. It was a little rough at the beginning with the food still settling, running on lack of sleep and lack of exercise over the past few days, but it was well worth it. The views were breathtaking and you could see over the entire city. Tammy told us that we were lucky because the sky is typically pretty smoggy, but it was very clear that day. We snapped a couple shots and headed back down to go home and change for our photo shoot we were about to go on.

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So if you don’t know, there are many great photo ops in LA. Here is the link to the famous walls where you can have your picture taken: http://localadventurer.com/best-instagram-spots-in-los-angeles/

 

My favorite was the pink wall. Be warned: there will probably be a line at every wall! At the pink wall there is even a security guard to make sure you don’t touch the wall with your feet. We had fun picking out different poses and pretending like we were professionals.

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We also made a quick stop in DASH – their prices weren’t too horrible surprisingly!

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Mackenzie and I were needing some coffee by now so we searched for the nearest coffee shop which happened to be just across the street, Alfred’s coffee. We walk in and the line is enormous – literally would have taken an hour! Luckily there was another Alfred’s just a couple blocks away. We get there and again another huge line, but we have no choice so we wait. While waiting in line we discovered that apparently this place is famous (hence the huge lines!) I tried my first bubble tea and Kombucha. The bubble tea was decent, but I really like the Kombucha. I’m learning so many new things out here in Cali.

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We then headed home to get ready for the night because we had reservations at PUMP for dinner! PUMP was absolutely gorgeous. It was a magical garden filled with trees, chandeliers, candles, flowers, and beautiful antiques.

I had the chicken Milanese which was served with Lisa’s homemade potato salad (I’m sure she slung it up at home that morning) and an arugula salad. I could have had seconds of everything if I had the room. Tammy and Mackenzie both had the Tiger Prawn and Farro salad. Tonight we weren’t as lucky and didn’t have any celeb sightings at PUMP.

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I had to get the Jalepeno margarita again and the girls go the famous Pumptini.

After PUMP we headed to Nightingale Plaza where we had gotten on the guest list. After a little wait we get into the club which at 10 was still dead! This club was NOT what we expected at all. It was super boujee and we felt a little awkward. I think Tammy said it best “I feel like I’m in an episode of Straight Outta Compton”. Apparently Drake’s dad was there and we were told that “he likes to party”. There were also girls in angel costumes strutting around dancing above us. We hung out for awhile and then decided to go to the Abby because we had so much fun there on Saturday night. The Abbey was packed again and just as fun! We even saw “Oliver” from How To Get Away With Murder.

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We also saw Scott Hoying (from Pentatonix). Apparently he was too cool to take any pictures with anyone though. He was in his own confined VIP area with one other person.

Once we got home Mackenzie thought ordering pizza was a great idea – I didn’t disagree. I was so tired that I fell asleep before the pizza got there, but amazingly woke up right when the pizza got there! We all dominated that pizza. Nothing like a little pizza at 2AM!

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Monday morning Mackenzie and I swung into Urth Caffe to grab a quick to-go breakfast and then we all headed to Warner Bros Studios for a tour! The WB tour was amazing and highly recommend it to everyone! There is so much that goes on behind the scenes that it doesn’t even seem real. We saw the sets where the upside down kiss from spiderman was filmed, the Gilmore girl’s, Hart of Dixie, Friends, and many more.

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Pretty Little Liar’s House

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Luke’s Diner

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My favorite part was the interactive part. We got to take a picture on the famous friends couch. Mackenzie and I even rode on broomsticks with Harry Potter. And lastly I even won an Oscar for my acting skills.

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Our last adventure was a stop at Olive and Thyme. It was another cute little café/shop. Their food was scrumptious. I even got a little treat that was to die for. The coolest part about stopping here was when we were leaving we sighted Katie Holmes across the street. Of course we had to cross over so that we could grab some paparazzi pictures.

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What a trip! Can’t wait for my next adventure – but I sure have been enjoying these lazier weekends the past few weeks! Only 5 more weeks left in California and then off to my next destination which is still unknown at this time.

Los Angeles Part I

Where do I even begin on my adventures in California?! I decided to share my adventures in LA first because it has been my favorite trip so far. I’m splitting it into two posts because we stuffed so many activities into a few short days.

Ever since I moved here in the beginning of January, I have been trying to see everything that I can before I move in mid April. A couple of weeks ago 2 friends of mine (Tammy and Mackenzie who I met through VIVE church here) were talking about how we wanted to visit LA. Spur of the moment, we made plans and got an AirBNB for a week later. Tammy lived in Orange County for about 5 years and is very familiar with LA so she was excited to plan all the awesome spots to take us to see. So on Feb 17th we packed Mackenzie’s car full and do I mean full! We all had at least 2 suitcases for only a 4 day weekend and Mack had a whole suitcase just for shoes! 😛

The drive of course could not go without a little excitement. Mack’s low tire pressure light came on so we pulled over to check it. 3 girls checking the tire pressure and filling the tires with air is a show in itself I’m sure. Tammy went into the gas station quick and all of a sudden Mack screams “OMG. I JUST SAW A PEACOCK”. I thought she was crazy. She pulls her car around and sure enough a dang peacock was chilling at the gas station. Mack gets her pictures and videos of the peacock just in time for Tammy to think we had bailed on her. Back on the road we got after all the excitement! After another few hours we finally made it to Beverly Hills to our AirBNB which happened to only be a block from Rodeo Drive! Once settled into our place we got ready to head to Saddle Ranch.

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Saddle Ranch was pretty chill and we grabbed a table so we could get a few appetizers since we hadn’t eaten dinner. We got a jalepeno macaroni and cheese and this ginormous cotton candy. We got two (one for Mack riding the mechanical bull). After spending time at Saddle Ranch we decided to head down to Hyde Sunset Kitchen and Cocktails after recommendations from people at Saddle Ranch.

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We arrive at Hyde and the bouncer asks us who we know. We all look at each other with blank stares and say that we have never been here before. The bouncer replies “Okay. Go on in.” and didn’t even check our IDs. We walk in and all of our eyes light up at the same time. This place was amazing! We go up to the bar to order drinks and Mack is freaking out “look to your right. OMG. Look at the bar to your right.” So Tammy and I turn our gaze and sure enough there is Amanda Stanton and Josh canoodling and ordering drinks together (for all my non-bachelor fans this couple had been broken up and there was no news of them being back together yet).

We grab our drinks and head to the dance floor only to realize we are standing next to the VIP table filled with bachelor contestants: Luke Pell, Chase McNary, Lace Morris, Jasmine G., and Christian Bishop. Apparently they were all in LA for a recording of Bachelor Family Feud. In case you were all wondering because I know you are – Yes, Chase is just as cute in person! We were fan girling hard the whole night. We didn’t ask anyone to take pictures because we were trying to act cool – so you’ll just have to take our word for it! We also spotted Aubrey O’day from Making the band and Danity Kane and DeAndre Hopkins who plays for the Texans.

I would say our first night was a success – Oh wait. Don’t speak too soon. So we take an Uber home and walk up to our apartment and the door to the entrance is locked. The entrance doors were always supposed to be unlocked our host had told us. So we try our room key. It doesn’t work. We try the extra room key. It doesn’t work. We freak our for about another minute until I take another look inside and realize it wasn’t our apartment complex. We were one complex over! So we hop over to our actual apartment and the door WAS unlocked! Close call! Lights out for these girls!

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We wake up Saturday morning and get ready for the day. Our first stop is Urth Café which was packed. Apparently a lot of actors/actresses like to eat here as well. It was a little misty out, but sat outside under an umbrella and enjoyed our delicious brunch and coffees. I tried Tammy’s Matcha Latte for the first time and it was absolutely wonderful! They have awesome options for those of you who are vegetarian. I tried the Mexican Omelet which was served with baked bread and a mixed green salad which was to die for. Tammy had The Rustic Poached and Mackenzie tried the Salmon Scramble. To say the least all of the food was delicious.

We then walked around Rodeo Drive and checked out some shops and hotels. Not sure who designs the retail for these stores or who actually buys it, but the merchandise was ridiculously awful and expensive (well not my taste at least). It was cool to check out the stores though. We had fun walking through the fancy hotels and pretending like we were actually staying there. We also stopped at Kyle’s store (from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills). There was some cute clothing in there, but wayyy out of this girl’s price range!

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We then hoped in the car with our tour guide, Tammy and headed to see The Prince of Bel Air’s house and then headed to the Hollywood sign where we took a ridiculous amount of pictures and boomerangs (we aren’t tourists at all).

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Our last stop for the day was the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I had heard my Celeb crush, Adam Levine, had just gotten his Hollywood star earlier that week and so of course I had to get a picture with it! They were actually setting up for the Oscars while we were down there which were the following weekend – too bad we couldn’t have a come a week later!

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Although we were exhausted we still had a long night ahead of us so we headed home to get ready. We originally had planned on doing dinner at this cute little place called The Bungalow, but realized by the time we got ready and waited for a table and for dinner that we would have used up a lot of the night, so instead we just headed straight for SUR! For those of you who don’t know what SUR is, it’s Lisa Vanderpump’s restaurant which is the focus of the show Vanderpump Rules. We were hopeful that we would see some of the bartenders/waitresses from the show. Although we didn’t see any of the bartenders/waitresses we did see the manager Peter, Lisa, Giggy, Ken, and Guillermo. They were all super nice and friendly!

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We had tried to make reservations at SUR before our trip, but it was completely booked so we decided just to go for drinks and appetizers.

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A group of married couples let us sit with them so that we could order appetizers. We ordered the goat cheese balls (yes, they are as amazing as everyone says they are on the show), ahi tuna, and sliders. I also tried their jalepeno margarita and they were amazing as well! Not too spicy, but not too sweet. The prices are decently priced which we were not mad about!

After we had our share of SUR we decided to head to The Abby which is a gay nightclub. Everyone said that it is a good dance club and a lot of fun. We headed straight for the dance floor once we got to The Abby and danced our booties off. We had so much fun! The night was not done yet. We then headed to Avalon which felt just like a club straight out of Vegas. We got there around 1:30 and it was still packed. It stays open until 7AM! They stop serving alcohol at 2 and then start serving again at 4. (No mom, we did not stay there until 7!)

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We were all a little hungry after the bars since we had only eaten small appetizers so we headed to Mel’s Drive In. I ordered a Patty melt and sweet potato fries which I dominated and might have stolen most of Mackenzie’s strawberry milkshake 😛 After indulging in a late night meal we went home and found the right apartment complex this time!

Stay tuned for my next post about the rest of our trip! 🙂

‘Tis the Season

Here’s my first blog post! I’ve been working on one about my trip to LA, but that one is taking me awhile because of all our adventures in the short time we were there so I decided to write a little reflection post first.

With Lent right around the cor….oh wait. It’s here. Yesterday as I was working out at the gym I was contemplating what I was going to give up so here’s what I came up with.

  1. I am going to go to the gym at least 5 days a week. Ever since my accident it has been hard to get back on the workout train. Prior to my accident I was going regularly; lifting and running. I want to get back into that habit and starting a habit is the hardest part of the battle. I am determined to get back to where I was over 6 months ago. I am planning on going to the gym in the morning so that I can get it out of my way and have the evening to adventure, hike, or just to have time to myself. Shout out to my mom for agreeing to call me in the morning, 4:30 my time; 6:30 her time, to make sure that I get up and go to the gym! What would we do without moms?
  2. I am going to read at least 1 “fun” book. I love reading for fun, but rarely do so. On the trek out here I was able to read, because my dad did a lot of the driving (You the real MVP). I think reading is not only good for the soul, but also for the mind. I also think this will help me decrease the amount of time I spend watching Netflix and my Roku at night because let’s be real it’s a ridiculous amount of time.
  3. Sweets only one day of the week. Let’s be honest. I have a HUGE sweet tooth and have a difficult time turning down a good dessert (as you will note later in this post). By limiting myself to only having one day a week that I can have sweets, I’m hoping to increase my self-control and save my “cheat” day for something that I really want.
  4. Improve my prayer life. After moving to Cali, I became a lot closer to God and also started attending Church on a regular basis. Prayer not only is a time to ask God to help with the problems in your life, but also to thank him for the good things and to grow in your relationship with God. I want to continue growing my relationship with God by not only praying more frequently, but praying with more intent.

 

On another note – this last weekend was a much needed chill weekend (not that I didn’t have plenty of time to chill on my week winter break I just had as well). Saturday night Tammy and Ben took me to my first Golden State Warriors game. It was so much fun! We went to Drake’s Brewing Company to grab a few drinks and dinner before the game. The atmosphere was neat and rustic. I tried their Demon Duck of Doom, a Saison, which was pretty good. For dinner I ordered their Porkbelly Sandwhich which had a hoison mayo, napa cabbage slaw, onion, and pickled zucchini. It was delicious! They have different choices of fries and I chose their spicy fries – probably won’t order them again and wished I would have went with the garlic fries instead.

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The atmosphere at the game was unbelievable. I now know why they call it the (R)oracle. Unfortunately, Durante wasn’t playing because of a bruised hand (come on it can’t be that bad, right?) Stephen and Klay (or should I say the Splash brothers) did not disappoint. They were sinking shots left and right. Although the Nets kept up surprisingly well, the warriors pulled through and won it.

Sunday I went to the 9:30 service at VIVE and the message was great. “Our God is an Awesome God” was one of the opening praise songs which was by far my favorite song that we sang in youth choir growing up. The message was about how God works in seasons for example you could be in a “single” season or a “stressful” season and how God is working in our seasons and that he will bring the right thing at the right time. Sometimes our “season” can feel stagnant, but it is actually when God is positioning us for what is coming. God makes something useful out of our “useless” seasons. You can check out the whole message on podcast “A Season of Suddenly” VIVE CHURCH with Adam Smallcombe.

After church Tammy, Ben, and myself went to Aquis for brunch (which none of us knew they actually served brunch food). I ordered their Monterey Scramble – organic polenta, sweet potato, edamame and cheese enchiladas with scrambled eggs, tomato-basil sauce, roasted corn organic brown rice, avocado, corn-jicama salsa and feta cheese – AMAZING! Tammy and Ben ordered a brunch special which they both loved. Ben also ordered their flourless chocolate cake which of course we all shared and I may have eaten more than my share 😛 We walked around Willow Glen and checked out some stores and then the rest of my Sunday was “mental prepare for going back to work” mode after a 9 day break.

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Monday was an easy first day back after 9 days. After work I met up with one of my best friends from high school, Caleb Northrup, who was in town for work. We went to Sino which is a family style dim sum & Chinese-inspired restaurant. Two of Caleb’s coworker’s were with us and we ordered wayyyy too much food. After dinner Caleb and I went for drinks at Straights which we later found out is a sister bar to Sino. I would recommend both of these places to anyone – great food, drinks, and atmosphere. Catching up with Caleb was so much fun and I didn’t want the night to end. Unfortunately some of us had to work the next day.

Welllll I hope you all enjoyed my first post – no judgements. I’m doing this out of pure fun, for a little therapeutic release, and for family and friends to keep up. Happy Hump day!