Weekly Recap: Stone Harbor!

//MONDAY//

 

I woke up later than I expected (again…) at around 10, with coffee and doughnuts waiting downstairs. While I was sleeping, my boyfriend went to the beach, and then went back to the house before heading out with my mom and cousin to the bakery and the Wawa down the street. All this, before he woke my lazy butt up XD

After breakfast, we got ready and headed down to the beach. We had intended to stay for about an hour and then head back to meet my parents for lunch, but it was so windy at the beach again! We waded in the ocean for about five or ten minutes, but once we headed back and tried to lay down a blanket and sit, it felt like we were being sand-blasted! Needless to say, that “beach day” did not last long. We stayed for about five minutes more before heading back to the house for showers.

I got ready, and then our whole family headed out to a restaurant called Chill. It is a rooftop restaurant, so everyone was a little concerned about wind, but it ended up being pretty pleasant up on the rooftop! I had avocado toast and lentil soup. They were presented beautifully and I wish I had remembered to take a picture, but I was so hungry that I tore into my lunch without a second thought! It was a pleasant way to spend part of the afternoon, and since we had to wait a little longer than usual for our food, the restaurant sent us a dessert for us all to share, on the house! It was a s’mores dip, and it was dangerously good.

Nathaniel and I hunted down an ATM after lunch, and then shopped for a little bit. I got a couple pairs of sunglasses (which he treated me to because he’s such a sweetie), and he got some cheese from the Bread and Cheese Cupboard. We walked around a little bit more before returning back to the house for a nap. As you can probably already tell, this vacation in Stone Harbor is going to be a pretty lazy and laid back one! I’m okay with that.

We woke up for dinner, which was egg noodles with broccoli alfredo sauce, courtesy of my aunt! It was so delicious! After dinner, we tried to find baseball on TV, but instead, we settled for Last Man Standing, which is a family favorite! We all congregated inside, since a pretty wicked storm rolled in. Dark clouds were coming in pretty quickly, and as soon as the clouds came over us they started dumping rain. Pouring rain, wind, and lightning, and there was even a tornado warning at home! Even so, like most summer storms, it passed quickly and left us with just rain and sporadic lightning strikes.

After the worst of the storm had passed, Nathaniel had to leave to go home, which made me so sad! But I’m so glad that he was able to come for as long as he did 🙂 After he left, I just hung out with my family watching television, since we couldn’t go outside and go for an ice cream run (which has been postponed for tomorrow evening.)

//TUESDAY//

 

Today, the guys all went on their annual golf trip. So, us girls usually plan a fun trip for ourselves as a group, too! This year it was my mom, aunt, grandmother, and me, so we decided on something a little more low-key. We went down to Cape May and just walked around the promenade, exploring all of the little shops. It had been a few years since I had been there, so it was nice to refresh my memory and go and see what was new there! We had lunch at a place called Delaney Irish Pub and Grill for lunch, and they had a surprisingly large and daring menu (for a self-declared Irish pub). I ended up getting a tomato and mozzarella salad, which was beautifully presented and delicious. I nearly cleaned my plate.

We walked around a little bit more, and stopped to get some ice cream for my grandmother, who was craving some. I got a scoop of tiramisu ice cream, which was a little too sweet but was still pretty good. It was just fun to hang out with the women in my family.

After we got back from Cape May, I went on a short run. It was so hot out that once I got back to my house my grandmother took one look at my beet red face and exclaimed, “You’re really sweating, girl!” I changed out of my sweaty and sunscreen-y clothes and drove into Philly with my aunt and uncle to pick up my cousin Sarah from her apartment. She wasn’t able to come at the beginning of the week, so we were really excited to see each other! She didn’t know that I was coming, so I was able to surprise her 🙂 I even got to meet her little kitten, Margo, who is the cutest and tiniest cat I have ever met!

On the way back to the shore, we stopped at Wawa to get something to eat for dinner. I got a quesadilla that was much better than a lot I’ve gotten at bonafide restaurants before! Once we got back to the shore, Sarah and I walked around the downtown area… and I got some more ice cream. I couldn’t help myself (insert monkey-covering-eyes emoji here). But we had a lot of fun just walking and catching up, and we walked to the ocean and the bay to watch the water. It was straight to bed after we got back to the house at around 11!

//WEDNESDAY//

I went for a run after hanging out with my family at breakfast time. By the time I got back, Sarah and her friend Stephanie (who had arrived in the morning) had gone down to the beach, so I put on my swimsuit and joined them. I walked down to the beach with my dad, who wanted to track down my mom, who had been at the beach since early in the morning. It was a good thing I found her, since I had forgotten my beach tag back at the house! They’re pretty strict about the beach tags here. If you don’t have one, you can’t get on the beach, and that’s that. I found the girls, and we all sat in the sun together. Them tanning, me sitting and constantly spraying on my 100 SPF sunscreen. Once we got down to the water, it was so cold that we all screeched when the first tide came in and lapped at our toes. We got used to it after a while, but I’m always surprised at how chilly the water is, even in the dead of June.

After a few hours, we headed back to the house at 1 for lunch. I took a shower, because my bathing suit bottoms (the ones that I featured in my Summer Favorites!) bled black dye all over my waist. I still love the suit, but they’ve done that twice, even after washing them. I’m pretty sure that it’s because of the sunscreen, but there’s no getting away from that. It’s not like I’m going to burn (and I definitely would) to prevent it from rubbing black dye all over me. That, and can you imagine the weird burn I would get from that suit, since it has all the criss-cross detailing?

After my shower, we all ate some lunch and headed upstairs to relax. The girls took naps, and I worked on my blog post, Exercising on Vacation? After dinner, we all walked downtown to the bookstore, and after we got there a torrential downpour started. we ran from shop to shop trying to keep dry on the way back to the house. I wasn’t complaining, we stopped in a Teavana-like shop where I shamelessly tried all three teas and had a second sample of my favorite one. But, I did make up for it by buying some tea, so I think we’re even.

//THURSDAY//

 

Today was an extremely laid back day. The rest of the girls in the family went to the beach but I wasn’t really feeling it for some reason. I decided to go for a run and relax at the house instead. I went to Green Cuisine to pick up lunch for those of us who were interested… and the food is really good, but way too overpriced, which I forget about every year. I worked on the blog and hung out with my family until dinner. My mom made her chicken divan (vegetarian style for me), which is a Stone Harbor tradition for our family. Sarah had gone back to Philly to go pick up her roommates to come down to the shore as well, and when they got back we all went to Kohr Brothers for ice cream. We walked around town some more after that, before going to the house to play Yahtzee. It lasted for an hour and a half, before one of Sarah’s friends finally got a Yahtzee to end the game. Then, we all went to bed.

//FRIDAY//

Today was our last full day at the house! It was a rainy and dreary morning. But the whole family still went to Uncle Bill’s Pancake house (our annual tradition), where I got the pecan waffle. It was pretty good, however, the coffee could have been stronger. But my taste buds are pretty much dead from my excessive espresso consumption so it was probably just fine XD After that we came back to the house, we relaxed for a bit before I went for a speed-walk with my dad around town, since the weather had cleared up. We walked for over 2 miles, and stopped at the Wawa near our house to pick up some cokes. We sat and talked for a while longer until the girls caught up with us on their way to the beach. I headed back to the house to get ready to join them, and my mom came with me on the walk to the beach. I must have brought the bad luck, because once I got there it was pretty windy on the beach, so we didn’t stay for very long. I wanted to try an acai bowl from Shore Juice, so we walked there next. It was overpriced but worth it, because it was divine.

Once we got back to the house, I finished working on my OOTW post, and we watched the Food Network for a little while. Once we all got hungry, the girls went out for pizza at Stone Harbor Pizza. We got two large pizzas to all share, and the vegetarian pick was the bruschetta pizza which was to die for. Seriously, if you’re in the area, I highly recommend! I hadn’t been to the restaurant in a really long time and they’ve really stepped up their game with renovations and menu changes. Also, quick tip: it tasted even better with ranch, if you are a ranch lover like we are!

We went back to the house again, and went down to the bay to watch the sunset with my grandmom. The bay is right down the street from us, so it’s a quick walk away. It was so bright and the colors were more subdued, but still pretty nonetheless. We had fun sitting together, and singing (cough*badly*cough) the national anthem. I’m not exactly sure why, but we serenaded the water anyway. That, and we took some cute pictures.

We got ready and then went out to play mini golf. It was just us girls, since the parents and grandparents were too tuckered to come. The golf course that we like is a three level course, and we go there every year, too. Usually it’s the entire family going, but this was fun, too. We played about halfway through, doing a livestream for part of it, until the power went out completely. We looked around, and the lights were out in the shops across the street. It was fine since we had flashlights on our phones, but it was still a little creepy. We played for a few more minutes until we were kicked out… Understandable, but still disappointing. We didn’t get a refund, but instead, we got vouchers to use for our game next year.

It was strange, because only about half of the shops downtown were closed. So, we walked around town a little bit more until we were all tired enough to go home. The power was out in our house, too, so my mom and grandmother had lit some candles. We all headed upstairs to get ready for bed (in the dark), until the power finally came on at about 11:30ish. I wasn’t especially tired, so I packed up all of my stuff after the power came back on, and watched an episode of The Hills.

//SATURDAY//

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We all woke up early since we had to be out of the house by 10 am. We packed the car up and were the last to leave, and before leaving town we stopped by 101st street’s gazebo to say goodbye to the ocean, which is a tradition that my family has. We always have to say goodbye to the ocean, and take some pictures as a family. Then, we just drove home and relaxed for the rest of the night.

//

xoxo

L

Weekly Recap: Coast to Coast

//MONDAY//

This morning, we decided to have a beach day! We went to Avila Beach, which is about forty minutes away from my aunt and uncle’s house. We got lucky and got a parking spot right in front of the beach. We went to a place called Hula Hut for lunch, and I just got a cheese quesadilla, which was delicious. We went to the beach and got a place on the sand. I just sat and watched the tide roll in and out on the sand, and I thought about how different west coast beaches are compared to east coast, and it occurred to me that in the space of one week, I’ll have dipped my toes in the ocean on both sides of the country, since I’ll be in Stone Harbor on Saturday night!

I played with my little cousins in the water edge. We played follow-the-leader, touch football, tag, and they played on the swings and flew a kite. It got so windy after about an hour and a half, so we decided to pack it up and go walk around the cute shops near the waterfront. I stopped into one of the shops and picked out a cute royal blue baseball cap, since I wear them all the time and I wanted a little momento from the day! We went to Beach-N-Yogurt for frozen yogurt, which was super yummy. I got raspberry and coconut flavored yogurt and put a bunch of fruit on top. I haven’t had frozen yogurt in so long, so it was perfect for such a warm and sunny summer day! We hung out more on the beach for a little while, and we found a little cove tucked behind the cliffs beside the ocean. It was just a pleasant little spot. The water was warmer, more still, and there wasn’t anywhere near as much wind. I didn’t want to leave!

We drove back to the house, and I took a quick shower before dinner. After my aunt got home from work, we watched the end of the basketball finals (everyone was so excited about Golden State winning!) and we all decided to go for a run/walk/bike out around the development. My aunt and I mostly just jogged, and we saw the sunset over the hills around the hiking trails, which was beautiful! The setting sun illuminated the hills and made them look golden!

Before heading to bed, we all played Sorry, which I had never actually played before! It was pretty fun and went quickly. I sang some hymns with my uncle as well, before the kids went to bed.

//TUESDAY//

While my aunt and uncle were at meetings or at work, I watched the boys in the late morning into the afternoon. Once my aunt got home, she took us to Target, and nice I was finished in there and she had some other errands to run in the other stores in the complex, I went over to Ulta. I got a couple things, like concealer (since I’m nearly out). I decided to try the Maybelline Age Rewind concealer that all of my favorite YouTubers seem to love. I decided to go for something new since my Fit Me concealer is okay, but hasn’t wowed me. I also decided to pick up an Essence brow mascara, since it was only about three dollars. Why not, right? And it turns out to be a really good little product! I tried it out once I got back to the house, and I like it so far.

//WEDNESDAY//

Today was a very exciting day! I covered most of the day’s adventures in my post To Sit Atop a Rock, but here are some more pictures that I didn’t include in that post! Also, my uncle took me to see the ocean one last time, before I had to leave!

//THURSDAY AND FRIDAY//

Thursday and Friday are a blur and run together in my mind. On Thursday morning, I went to Target and Ulta (again) with my aunt and cousins. The Ulta run was for me since I bought the wrong shade concealer for my skin tone on Tuesday. Then, we rushed back to the house for my aunt to get ready for work. Once she left, and we said goodbye, I looked after the boys until my uncle came home from work, and he took me to the airport. We had dinner there, at a restaurant right next to the airport called Spirit of Sa Luis. I had a quesadilla, which was really good, despite the fact that I was nervous for my flight!

I checked in after dinner and hung out with my uncle and little cousins before going through security. My uncle read us jokes off the internet, which ranged from funny to stupid to downright hilarious. After forty minutes, I had to go through security and wait for the plan inside. I said my goodbyes and gave hugs to mu uncle and two little cousins, which was so sad! I missed being home, but I loved the time that I spent with them, and I’m just so thankful that I got to spend the time that I did with them!

I waited for the plane for about another hour after getting through security. San Luis Obispo’s airport is tiny, with only one gate, so getting through security was pretty quick, thankfully! When I boarded the plane, my uncle and cousins were still there at the fence of the parking lot to wave goodbye to me. Once I got on the plane, I read Something Borrowed (not the best book ever, but a good plane read) until I landed in Phoenix at 9ish. I watched the sunset on the plane on the way to Phoenix, which was beautiful, but also showed the impending red-eye that I was not looking forward to… to say the least!

I had about a three-hour layover in Phoenix. By the time I boarded the Philly-bound jet, I was so exhausted I was about ready to cry. It was difficult to get comfortable, but I was about to “catch a wink” (as the pilot said it before takeoff). I woke up about an hour before we landed in Philly. The hour passed quickly (thank God), and I met my parents at the baggage claim! I was so so excited to see them. I missed them both so much while I was in California.

We drove back home, which, once I got there, made me feel like I never left in the first place. Then I showered and went to bed. It probably wasn’t the best decision for my jet-lag, but I was so tired that I think that it was necessary. I slept for hours… Until 4:30! Then I watched some Friends on Netflix before I had dinner (Burger King) with my parents.

It’s good to be home!

//SATURDAY//

Thanks to jet lag and my well-intentioned nap, I did not sleep at all. I read, watched movies, and wrote blog posts (you’re welcome) until about 7 in the morning.I fell asleep shortly after that, until about 11 before it was time for us to get ready to go to the shore! However, my mom had a lot she needed to do, so my dad and I went to Subway to pick up lunch. I got my usual sandwich and an orange juice… Because my body is either still adjusting to Pennsylvania stuffiness, or I got a slight cold on the plane. Or an almost-cold… It’s at the point right now where my throat feels funny, but it could go a good way or a bad way. Here’s to hoping for the good way, which is that this clears up so that I’m not sick at the beach!

After lunch, it took another couple of hours to gather our things and pack up the car. We left the house at around 3 in the afternoon. We were finally on the road to Stone Harbor! We tried a different way of going to the shore… Instead of using the Commodore Barry Bridge, we used Delaware Memorial Bridge. On the way, I read and did my makeup in the car. I really think that the change of pace was nice, and it felt like it took less time to get to the shore. After we got about 30 minutes away from the beach house, we met my grandparents for dinner at a diner along the way. By the time we finished and left for the house, it was 7:30, and my boyfriend and my aunt and uncle were waiting for us to let them into the house! Once we got there, it was unload, clean, and unpack. I hung out with my boyfriend for a little, and gave him something to eat. I was so exhausted that I wanted to fall asleep early… That jet lag is still messing with me! Hopefully tonight, I can fall asleep and nip it in the bud so that I’m not tired tomorrow.

//SUNDAY//

Today I woke up at about 9, hopefully resetting my sleep schedule. I did, however, wake up with a sore throat. So, I’m thinking that it is either a small cold or allergies, since my body is still getting to the Pennsylvania humidity. I’m leaning towards allergies since I felt better after taking some Sudafed.

I gave my dad his father’s day card, and ate breakfast with the family while everyone else gave gifts and cards to the dads in the family. After hanging out and talking, Nathaniel and I walked downtown to explore some of the shops. It’s interesting to see what’s new in town and what shops have closed, but there aren’t too many changes this year! After walking around town, we went back to the house and hung out, and eventually taking a nap. It was just your typical lazy Sunday, which was so relaxing.

After dinner, I walked to the beach with Nathaniel and my mom. It was too windy and cold on the beach to even put a toe in the water, so I just sat and watched the waves. My mom, a braver woman than I, went out for a swim and even went up to her waist. She was in the water for about ten minutes, which is longer than I would have lasted!

As I was watching the waves, I thought about the fact that on Monday I went to the beach on the West coast at Avila Beach, and now here I am on the East coast, at Stone Harbor! It’s kind of surreal, and I’m so thankful that I got to see so much of California with my family while I was there 🙂

//

I hope that everyone enjoyed reading about my adventures in California! I’m still planning on writing the Weekly Recaps, possibly for the rest of the summer! Or, at least when I’m traveling. So, next Monday, expect to see a week in the life at Stone Harbor!

XOXO

L

 

Weekly Recap: Cali Week Two!

// MONDAY//

Today was pretty laid back! I woke up a little later than I expected, and spent a little bit of time watching the new Tati Westbrook video in bed. Tati is one of my favorite beauty gurus EVER! She is so much fun, and super knowledgeable! I may or may not be watching one of her videos as I write this XD

I ran some errands with my uncle, which included a Target run. There’s that Ulta two doors down from the Target, and I was dying to go in, but I exercised EXTREME self-control and did not. Who wants to take bets and see how long it’ll take me to end up going back, even though I don’t have much money to spend? I’m here for another week and a half and that BECCA X Chrissy Teigen palette has been calling my name since last Wednesday.

We went to Paso Robles to a place called Touch of Paso for brunch, and I got french toast with strawberries and cream cheese. It looked so good I completely forgot to take a picture of it. It took about three seconds to tuck into that, let me tell you… So good! Then, after picking my cousin up from school, I spent the rest of the afternoon looking after him, and making a pasta dish for dinner.

//TUESDAY//

In the morning I woke up to an empty house, and I went for a run! When my aunt came home at lunchtime with my little cousin from kindergarten, we had lunch, then I ran to Trader Joes for some groceries for the house. I had a headache and wasn’t feeling good, so after coming back to the house, I rested for about an hour. I woke up a little before dinner, and soon after that it was time to put the kids to bed. Later on, I talked with my aunt and uncle over some creme brulee, which was so good!

//WEDNESDAY//

This morning, I woke up later than I expected. I rushed to get a shower, and went to my little cousin’s kindergarted class for their end of the school year party. They san some songs, and had a slideshow fromeverything that they did during the year, which was so adorable! I took Jackson home, and we had lunch. My aunt came home from work, and we got ready for a pool party that she was hosting for Jackson’s kindergarten class. Most of the kids came with their parents, and I just tried to help as much as I could, since there were so many people!

After the kiddos left, we went to pick Matt up from school. Afterward, I played connect four with Jackson before dinner. Then, we just watched AFV on YouTube before baths and bedtime.

//THURSDAY and FRIDAY//

Unfortunately, I didn’t do much on either of these days because I wasn’t feeling very well. Thursday was the last day of school for the kiddos, and they were so so excited! I went for a run, which was nice since I hadn’t been on a run for a day or two. That, and I did a couple work out videos, one by my Tone It Up girls, and an abs video by Rebecca Louise that was KILLER. I mean it. Killer, and I’m so sore.

On Friday, I looked after my little cousins and one of their friends all morning. The boys trapped frogs and tadpoles, swam in the pool, biked and scootered… I was tired just watching them! That, and I watched The Sandlot for the first time with the youngest, Jackson, and I actually really liked it! Later on, I was supposed to go to a beach party for a couple of hours with my aunt and little cousins, but I just couldn’t do it. I rested and took a nice hot shower, which helped. Then, after dinner, I looked after the kiddos and put them to bed… Which is no easy task when they’re all hopped up on celebratory end-of-the-school-year root beer floats, let me tell you! I read. I sang. I wrestled. I tickled. I begged. It took me about thirty minutes, but after all that, and eventually the use of my stern grown-up voice, I got them to their respective rooms.

//SATURDAY//

I went out on the lake with my family and some of their friends today! My aunt and uncle have a ski boat, so we took it out to a lake about forty minutes away from their house called Lake Nacimiento. The lake was so gorgeous, and it was huge! There were so many little coves and fingers of the lake to explore, and little beaches here and there as well. Once we got the boat in the water, we took off towards somewhere to anchor for lunch and some swimming. My aunt drove the boat and I was so impressed that she did! It was so relaxing to sit back and watch the scenery go by, and to watch the wake behind us.

It took a couple of tries, but we found a good spot to have lunch. We actually beached the boat and had lunch and swam. It was a little too cold for me to swim, but I didn’t mind just eating and enjoying the lake. After lunch, we cleaned up the boat and set to sailing again. We did ski-training (which is like water skiing, but with an inflatable blow up thing instead of actual skis), wake-boarding, and tubing. Since I still wasn’t feeling 100%, I only took part in the tubing, but that was so much fun, too!

We left the lake at around dinnertime, and once we got back to the house I was so exhausted, as was everybody else! We had a low key dinner, and we watched the beginning of Rogue One afterward.

//SUNDAY//

I went to church with my aunt, uncle, and my cousins. The sermon was on Psalm 8 today, which I had never read or heard before! I enjoyed the message, and after picking up my one cousin from Sunday school, we went to Touch of Paso for lunch. I came prepared to take them out for a thank-you meal (to thank them for the trip), and so that’s where we decided to go! I had a waffle with strawberries, which was pretty good! I tried their fried zucchini, which was pretty kicking as well!

After lunch, I walked around Paso Robles with my aunt to do a little bit of shopping. My aunt made out pretty well with a cute blouse and a pair of shorts. I found a dress at Firefly that I was really tempted to get, but I decided not to get it at the last minute in order to save money for Grand Cayman and Stone Harbor. It was super cute, though!

We came back to the house to find that Tater (their dog) had gotten into a rose bush and cut the tip of her ear pretty badly. She was fine, but the wound was bleeding pretty profusely, and she was dripping all over the patio and the walkways in the yard. Later on, my aunt tried to bandage her up, and tape up her ear, but she just kept shaking it out, so we had to keep her outside, the poor thing!

My aunt and uncle had a family friend over for dinner, so we grilled fish and a portobello mushroom for me. We started a fire afterward, and made s’mores! I think I only have s’mores once or twice a year, so this was such a nice treat! After the family friend left, we watched more of Rogue One before I headed to bed.

//

Only one more Recap post in Cali… I can’t believe my trip to California is almost over! I leave on Thursday night and go through Phoenix again, where I take a red-eye to Philly (ughhh). I’m so excited to see my family again, and to go to Stone Harbor on that Saturday, but I’m really going to miss it here! I love California so much, and it has been such a great adventure 🙂

XOXO

L

Weekly Recap: Cali Week One!

Hello everyone!

So, for the last week, I’ve kept a little bit of a journal of what I’ve done while in California! I thought that it would be nice for me to look back on in the future, and that you guys might appreciate it too 🙂 I’ve only recorded Tuesday though Sunday, since Monday was a part of my Memorial day weekend post.

//TUESDAY//

Today I went with my Aunt to help volunteer at my little cousin’s kindergarten class! I helped some of the kids do reading and spelling worksheets, crafts, and I even got to read to his class! It brought back so many memories of my own from kindergarten… It’s so cool to see how my little cousins are moving through life and grade school, just like I did not that long ago (in the grand scheme of things, anyway… It feels like forever for me!). After that, we went home and had lunch, and after letting my food settle, I went for another run around the development. After picking up my other little cousin from school, I watched both of the boys while my aunt and uncle were both out. Before bed, I had a nice long chat with my uncle, just catching up.

//WEDNESDAY//

I woke up to an empty house, and had my coffee and yogurt for breakfast. Then I went to Target to pick up some things that I had forgotten at home (finally, a hairbrush that isn’t carry-on size!). The shopping center with the Target is super nice, and has a Ross and an Ulta right next door. I had never gone to Ulta before, so of course I had to go check it out! I drooled over some palettes I can’t even think about buying right now! Then I looked after both of the boys until dinner time.

//THURSDAY//

Today was especially eventful! I went to a nearby town called Paso Robles with my aunt, and I explored the downtown area while she got her hair cut. First, I went to a coffee shop called Kruezburg Coffee Company, got a large americano and a veggie omelette. The omelette was good, but the americano was AH-MAZING. So, so good! Then I walked around town, and explored some of the shops right around the town square. Paso has a quaint little town square, and most of the boutiques are local businesses. A lot of the boutiques had funny sayings written on blackboards and set out on the sidewalk. I took pictures of some of my favorites and put them on my Insta Story.

I went into some of the cute little boutiques there, and most of them were SUPER expensive (like $360 dollars for a pair of pink mules that I could easily find at H&M expensive). But, there was one store that I went into that has super cute clothes at a fairly reasonable price, called Firefly! I got this off-the-shoulder patterned blouse on sale and I’m so excited about wearing it, or possibly styling it for a future blog post 🙂 That, and I got a cute, dainty pearl choker, too! I think the two pieces will go nicely together.

Then, after my aunt picked me up, we went to go pick up my little cousin from school, and we drove in the opposite direction, to San Luis Obispo. There, we went to lunch at a place called Luna Red. This restaurant was really cool because it had windows looking right out over a creek. That, and their tomato and tofu tacos were super delicious.

My aunt had another appointment to go to, so my cousin and I finished lunch, and went to an ice cream place called Cowboy Cookies & Ice Cream. I had oatmeal and chocolate chip ice cream. Little known fact about me, I LOVE oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, but they’re always super hard to fnd. So, this really hit the spot. My little cousin enjoyed it, too.

Then, we visited the Mission there in San Luis, which was beautiful. I didn’t get to see the santuary because we were short on time and my little cousin wasn’t too interested (he was more focused on his intent on going to a store with geodes and rocks), but I enjoyed what I got to see! We walked through some of the grounds and the museum section.

After visiting the rock store where Jackson drooled over colorful geodes, my aunt picked us up and we headed home. My aunt had to go to work after that, so I spent the rest of the day watching the kiddos.

//FRIDAY//

This morning, I went with my little cousin’s kindergarten class on a field trip to Cayucus Beach. My aunt drove me and one of her friends to the beach, and before going on our way we stopped at Starbucks, her treat, which was so thoughtful of her. I ended up getting an iced green tea, which was nice and refreshing to sip on while we winded our way through the mountains towards the beach. The drive was beautiful and very scenic, with rolling hills and mountains, with little peeks of ocean and lakes. Once we got to the beach, it was a little bananas since it was all of the kindergarten classes from that school, but it was so much fun to watch the kiddos run around and play in the sand (since they weren’t allowed to play in the water (not even “one toe,” lol). It was pretty chilly there at the beach, but the ocean was still beautiful as always. It was my first time in five years, seeing the pacific ocean, and I forgot how rocky the beaches were. It was a little foggy, but I got to see some of Morro Rock in the distance.

After we eventually left the beach, we drove back home for lunch. I had this fantastic salad from Trader Joe’s with roasted butternut squash, red quinoa, goat cheese (goat cheese is my fave!!), and some veggie burger that I added. It. Was. Amazing. Lancaster needs to step up their game and get a Trader Joe’s because I don’t think I can go through this life without that salad in it XD

//SATURDAY//

In the morning, I went to the farmers’ market in town with the family, which was so much fun! They have it all year round, and the produce is always so beautiful. I’ve gone before when I visited them last, but I forgot how big it was and how inexpensive produce was! I’m so jealous of Californians and their produce, honestly! I got the best cold brew coffee there too… which is surprising since I usually don’t like iced coffee!

I went to lunch with my aunt at a place called Fig in town, right across the street from the market. When I met her there, my aunt surprised me with a bouquet of flowers, to celebrate the fact that I found out that I had made the Dean’s List earlier that morning! I thought that was so sweet and thoughtful of her and my uncle 🙂 Fig is the cutest little place! I tried a breakfast wrap with lentils, eggs, and Moroccan spice, which was so good! It was fun to chat and catch up with her, while eating on the front porch of this beautiful wrap-around porch on the Victorian house that they made into the restaurant.

I went hiking with my uncle and my little cousins at Reservoir Canyon, which was strenuous and more challenging than I was expecting, but all in all an exciting and rewarding hike! It took about four hours in total to complete the entire hike, but that was also because my little cousins wanted to stop and explore some creeks and a waterfall on multiple occasions. At the top, there is a swing and a big, shady tree that we sat under, while we took in the incredible view of the rolling hills and mountains. The mountain scene was gorgeous, and I thought that it was so cool that someone put a swing at the top of the hike! My cousins had done the hike before and knew about it, so I think that it was good that we had something to look forward to at the end of a challenging hike.

I was so exhausted afterwards, that when we stopped on the way back home at a grocery store, I stayed behind in the truck to rest and close my eyes for five minutes. Then, we had In N’ Out, which I was super excited about because I had never been before! I looked them up online beforehand to see if they had any vegetarian options and found that they had a veggie burger. When we it it, I thought that it was funny because they didn’t use an actual veggie burger patty, just tomatoes, lettuce, onions, cheese, and their special dressing. I still enjoyed it and the fries, but that is definitely not what I was expecting, lol!

We swam in the pool after dinner, which was so refreshing after a long hiking day. At the end of the night, I was so exhausted that it felt so good to crawl into bed.

//SUNDAY//

I went to church with my aunt and my little cousins, and I enjoyed the service very much. We looked at the first Psalm, which I liked because I love the Psalms. I always find them so comforting. Then, my aunt left for work and I watched by little cousins for the remainder of the afternoon until my uncle came home from work for dinner. My cousin Matthew came up with the idea to put up a lemonade stand, so we cut up some lemons, threw them in sugar water, and set up camp. We were on a main road near their house and sold lemonade to about ten people, which was pretty successful for the boys, at 50 cents a cup. Some of the people were super generous as well, and gave them double or triple what they were asking, which I thought was so sweet.

Afterward, they went swimming and I watched them to make sure no one got hurt, and even though I didn’t swim, I still got pretty wet thanks to the super-soakers XD

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I really enjoyed chronicling everything that I was doing this past week, so I think that I’m going to keep doing this instead of Weekend Recaps while I’m on vacation this summer! I love that I can share all that I’m doing, and I’m so grateful that I get to be out in Cali with my family!

I hope that you all had a great week, too! If you want, comment down below and share about your weeks, too! I would love to read it 🙂

XOXO
L

Memorial Day Weekend Craziness!

Hello, everyone! Happy Summer!

I hope that everyone had a fun beginning to their summers, especially since most colleges are finished with their semesters, and high schools are beginning to end the school year as well! My Memorial Day weekend was pretty crazy, but the good kind, of course!

//SATURDAY//

Since I was traveling all day Sunday, Saturday pretty laid back. I spent most of my time with my parents, and packing up in preparation for my flight. I got to choose the final meal at home, so we had taco night, of course! Then we just watched Friends and Murdoch Mysteries on Netflix.

Packing up for my trip was pretty daunting, since I am spending two and a half weeks with my Aunt and Uncle in California. I packed up my biggest suitcase and carry on, as well as my new tote bag for my personal item. This is the first of many trips for me this summer, so I am planning on posting more travel content, which I’m so excited about!!

//SUNDAY//

Then, on Sunday, before heading to the airport, we met my boyfriend for some breakfast. It was so sweet of him to meet us, so that I could see him before I left! We had planned on going to a Friendly’s in a town that’s a good middle ground between both of our towns since we live about an hour and a half away from each other, but once we got there it was closed! So, we went for McDonalds instead XD I didn’t end up eating an awful lot since I was really nervous about traveling on an airplane by myself for the first time.

Once I got to the Philadelphia Airport, it wasn’t nearly as crowded as I thought t would be! There wasn’t a line for the check-in desk, as well as for security, which was amazing! My first fight was from Philly to Phoenix, which (other than an extremely intoxicated girl who I swear must have been a year or two younger than me) was pretty peaceful! I slept for most of it, and listened to Crash on my Couch podcasts when I wasn’t (and some when I was, haha!). Then I had an hour layover in Phoenix before boarding a plane to San Luis Obispo!

After landing in Cali, I reunited with my family there, which was so much fun! I got to see their new house and their yard, which has a beautiful pool as well. I also met their dog Tater, who is a beautiful chocolate lab and my new best (doggie) friend. We all had dinner together, and played Apples to Apples, before I took a shower and fell into bed. I swear, I was so exhausted that I must have fell asleep right as my head hit the pillow (which, if you know me, you know this NEVER happens to me!).

//MONDAY//

Memorial Day!! I hope you all had a very happy holiday, and I would like to thank all of the veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we could all live in freedom, and have those wonderful beginning of the summer barbecues! Monday was my first full day in Cali, so that meant that it was JAM PACKED full of activity! My uncle was off of work, and we woke up bright and early for breakfast (coffee, coffee, coffee). Then we played a Pennsylvania Dutch board game called Der Shnickle Fritz, which is basically like checkers but more complicated and much more fun!

After that, we went to a trail near their house to ride dirt bikes and motorcycles, which was fun (albeit very dusty, haha!). Then, breakfast at a place called Joe’s, which had the best Chilequiles.  Then, back home, where I took a run around the development and ome of the trails nearby, whih was soo beautiful!! I swear, I took so many pictures, I would run 5 feet on the trail and then stop to take another picture!

After that I went swimming with my cousins, since it was in the 80’s and the 90’s, which meant that it was so refreshing to hop in the pool after a long run like I had!

To finish the day, we had a barbeque in celebration of Memorial Day. All in all, it was a relaxing night after a very busy day. I passed out early again… I’m thinking that this is going to be the running theme during this trip! But hey, I’m okay with that 🙂

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend! Happy Summer!!

XOXO

L

P.S. Want to see more pictures from all of my adventures this summer? Check out my Instagram!

December Baby

Hello everyone!

 After my birthday I decided to take a week off from blogging, just to recoup from the residual finals week stress. After my last final on Friday, I loaded up my car and headed home. We just had pizza for dinner, but the next day on Saturday morning we went to a cafe in the city for chai and crepes for lunch.

After that we went to New Jersey for my grandmother’s annual Tree Trim party on Sunday. Every year most of my extended family gets together at my grandmother’s house to eat together and deck my grandparents’ gigantic tree. This year we also took some family portraits, courtesy of my father’s cousin. Since the party is always a big to-do, on Saturday night just my dad’s family with my aunt, uncle, and cousins, had dinner just the ten of us. It is always so nice to see my family, especially those who I haven’t seen since last year. For the party, I wore this beautiful velvet dress from Target.

After we left New Jersey, I was finally able to settle in at home. Since I’m home for a month long break, I brought practically my entire dorm back with me. After I unpacked, I also decorated my room for Christmas. This is a tradition of my own, I decorate my room and my door as well. I have my little two foot tree that I deck with my little stash of ornaments. I have my stockings that I hung over my window and my little nativity scene that I finally found all of the figures for this past summer. I didn’t do very much the rest of the week. However, I did go to visit my boyfriend for a couple of days. He is the absolute sweetest, and when he met me with a bouquet of roses on the train platform for my birthday. We just hung out and watched Bob’s Burgers, which is our current Netflix obsession. Once I got back home, the rest of the week was spent watching the Gilmore Girls revival.

On Christmas Eve, I went to my other grandparent’s house. My aunt and uncle’s family came in from California and we ate dinner with them, my grandparents, and my other aunt’s family. I ended up wearing a dress that was a present from Sarah and a gray cardigan from JC Penney.

After dinner and our gift exchange we all went to church together for the evening Christmas Eve service. My grandparents’ church is beautiful, with a large wall sized organ and high, vaulted ceilings. It;s decorated with wreaths, Christmas trees, and poinsettias.

On Christmas morning I woke up relatively early (for me, anyway!). I exchanged gifts with my parents, and we watched the Yule Log while we did so. I ended up getting the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them screenplay by JK Rowling and I spent the majority of the day reading it. Then we had our steak and vegetarian chicken dinner (steak for my parents and the veggie chicken for me of course). During dinner we watched the Charlie Brown Movie and The Family Stone. All around, it was a relaxing and peaceful holiday.

I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas! I can’t quite believe that 2016 is coming to an end so soon. I must admit that while 2016 was a pretty good year for me, on the world scale it was pretty rough. I hope that for all of our sakes, 2017 treats us all much better.

XOXO

L

Early Birthdays and Spontaneous Adventures

Hello Everyone!

After a string of uneventful weekends, this weekend was so much fun… And right before finals, too! Who would have thought?

After work, I met some friends for dinner because I was famished after not eating much for most of the day. Then, I went with a friend to pick up pizza for the end-of-the-semester Creative Writing Club pizza party. Then, right after the club meeting, my friend Missy and I went to a dance showcase at my school. The biggest club at our school is the dance club, and they are the best because anyone can get involved and do a dance. They prepare for months for the showcase every semester, and there are multiple dances that perform. I had never been to one of their showcases before, so I was really excited. I loved watching everyone’s dances, and there was a familiar face in nearly every dance. It was evident that everyone worked really hard, and you could tell everyone was having fun with it, too!

It was a cold night, but Missy and I braved the cold… In my car. It still counts.

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After the showcase, we drove around and listened to old music we love and screamed the lyrics at the top of our lungs. It turned out to be a huge destresser, and it also made for a pretty funny Snap story.

On Saturday night, since we’re all leaving for Christmas break on different days, my friends took me out to dinner for my birthday. My birthday is next Friday, but since I have a final on that day, I was looking forward to this little celebration so much! We went to a diner right in town, and the food was pretty good! Then we came back to the dorm and had some ice cream cake, and they sang “Happy Birthday.” After that we watched an episode of Bob’s Burgers. It was such a lovely time with my best friends!

Later that night, and by later I mean at about 11, I was talking to my parents on the phone. I was thinking about going home on Sunday, but my parents were baking cookies and my dad mentioned (*bribed me with*) the cookies and the possibility of coming home that night. Victoria heard me talking about cookies on the phone. As a spur-of-the-moment decision, we decided to take a road trip back to my house. We ate cookies with my parents and we all talked until about 2 in the morning with Christmas music playing all the while.

The next morning when we woke up, we went into a doughnut place in town that we had been to before, and got a half a dozen for breakfast. Victoria and I both got an Oreo doughnut, and it was divine. Especially with coffee.

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We studied for most of the afternoon, and then after having dinner with my parents we had to head back to campus. The spontaneous trip was so much fun and unexpected, for some reason it got me into the Christmas spirit even more. Maybe it was driving past all those Christmas decorations on they way there and back, maybe it was just being home. Now, even more so, I’m ready for finals to be over and to go back home. Only five more days.

Also, before I sign off, today is my one year anniversary with my blog here on WordPress! I had blogged before on Blogger, but a year ago I decided that I needed a bigger change, and I’m glad that I did! However, my old Blogger is still up. The link is in my “About Me” if you really want to read some embarrassing old posts from my Freshman year of high school.

And on that note, I’ll say goodbye and good luck to all those students out there who are taking finals this week, too! We can do it, only five (or less if you’re lucky) days left!

XOXO

L