Ari’s Cali Edition

 

A Golden State of Mind…..

So the time has come to recap both of our magnificent trips to the golden state, California! I (Ari) have visited the cities of Sacramento and San Francisco before and my sister Gwen had never been. Both of us embarked on the journey to the west coast for some birthday celebrations and all around good times with friends. Below is a compiled list of some places I thought were worth checking out if you are ever in the Los Angeles area. Stay tuned for part two where Gwen covers San Diego and more!

Grub:

California foodies did not disappoint! Here were some eateries I thought were yummy.

  • Grand Central Market- This plaza is extremely popular for some famous eateries like Egg Slut and Ramen Hood but don’t count out any of the others! “ress brothers juicer”gives you the pick me up you need after the long flight to Cali from the east coast. “Saritas Pupuseria” and “Tacos Tumbras a Tomas” both give you a taste of the local latin flair for those who are money savvy and want the most bang for their buck!
  • In and Out– Need I say more?
  • Candela Taco Bar & Lounge- Located on La Brea avenue this place offers great food including specials and promotions like “margarita mondays, tango tuesdays and taco wednesdays. With live music and performances you cannot beat the authenticity and price of this special bar.
  • Cj’s Cafe– With its seemingly small exterior it might be easy to miss this cafe, but it could be hands down one of the yummiest casual spots yet! Cj’s serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and fresh juices!  The menu ranges from traditional american fare to mexican and beyond. The staff was extremely accommodating and friendly and the food was delicious. Try the huevos rancheros for breakfast and watermelon/ cantaloupe fresh juice the morning after a night out.

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Tourist Attractions

  • Lacma– Known for its popularity amongst bloggers, you can’t help but at least admire the instillation and relax with friends on a chilly evening amongst the lights.
  • Griffith Observatory-This free attraction is amazing for panoramic views of the city including the Hollywood Sign. You can also visit the planetarium and explore the exhibits during regular hours.
  • Venice Beach & Santa Monica Pier– These are must sees anytime you go to LA. They both represent the quintessential Cali lifestyle and leisure we all know and love, surf sand beach!
  • La City Hall Observation Deck– Although most may not know it, if you go to city hall and get a free visitors pass you can go to the top of the roof where they offer amazing views of the city from a different perspective. Its free and easy!

Night Life

  • Sunset Blvd- Bar hopping galore! “Fiesta Cantina” was a great spot to grab a drink. Not for the faint of heart, “Flaming Saddles” is a Gay bar catering to scantily clad men in tightey whitey underwear- yes please!
  • The Arglye Hollywood Nightclub- This swanky spot is perfect to get dressed up and sexy with your girls to dance the night away.img_7063

This was just a short list as I’m sure LA has so much more to offer. Stay tuned for my sisters secondary post on her favorite spots in other cities.

XOXO -ARI

 

 

 

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The Big Three O! 

 
Well my friends the day has come, the birthday with the massive stigma behind it, the one where you start questioning life and what is to become of it. 30. I know it’s only been about 24 hours since my birthday but I wanted to shed some light on the fear of getting older and some encouraging tips for anyone (no matter what age) who feels a certain way about the way life should and should not be. Lets see if I’ve gained a bit more wisdom in the last day.

Where you are in life shouldn’t impact who you want to be: Often times we can find ourselves feeling defeated before we even try. The whole “woe is me” mentality kicks in and we tend to look at the big picture and become fearful or doubtful instead of focusing on the small steps it takes to actually get there. So repeat after me : You’re never too old, too far behind or too inexperienced. Anyone can begin anywhere.

Happiness is truly up to you: The kind of day you have is completely in your hands and you alone have the power to change that. I myself find it very easy to sulk and moan about everything that’s going wrong but, how you react and your overall perspective on life will make or break any situation. I feel that waking up each morning with a fresh outlook can also make a huge difference. Whether you have a journal or declare it out loud, starting your day with an open and grateful heart will surely start you off in the right direction. Lastly, Enjoy the little things, they are what end up shaping your life.

Its ok to say no: This is a tough one for me, I am the ultimate people pleaser, I love to make everyone happy and it truly brings me joy to help others. These are all great qualities to have but not at the cost of your sanity and happiness. Repeat after me again: NO!

I haven’t figured things out yet: Lets just face this fact right now, it will take you almost your entire life to “figure things out”, the best any of us can do is to take each day as it comes. With a little humility, honesty and happiness, life can be a little simplier.

I am of a certain age but haven’t accomplished as much as (insert whomever here): Comparing your life to someone elses only makes it more difficult to focus on ourselves. Feeling unbalanced or stuck in a “rut”?  pin point out the problem and go from there. Then ask yourself if youre happy in that specific area and begin to take the steps needed to work on it. As written above try not to focus on the end goal so much and work on each baby step needed. We all know that prior to a baby walking it needs to be able to lift its head, roll over, sit up, crawl, pick itself up etc… and with each milestone there is always a celebration (if you have children or are around them you know what I am referring to) give yourself praises for accomplishing that one step, move on to the next one and “up the ante”.

I hope these were of help for those needing a little boost of encouragement. Not to contradict my “just say no” policy but I “said yes” to some pretty amazing things this year which in turn made me a much more happier, grateful and braver person. Here are some of them…

I said yes to moving to England for 6 months and had the most life changing experiences ever!

I said yes to a solo trip to Paris and it was the most magical time of my life!

I said yes to trying new foods (this might actually be a problem)

I said yes to meeting new people and put myself out there and in turn met some amazing new friends.

Today I say yes to embracing this new chapter of life. I encourage you to do the same! 

P.S I also said yes to roller skating in Brooklyn bridge park last night. Which resulted in tumbling to the ground. Oh the joys of being 30. (This was prior to falling when I thought I was cute)   

xx, Gwen