I am back from LA with my dreams and my cardigans, and my heart is full after five days in the sun with friends.
Ever since visiting there just weeks after my mom died (and then, again after my birthday), I’ve held a special place in my heart for the city. So, the week before last, after feeling particularly rough again for a few weeks, I booked a flight there on a whim, and I’m so glad I did.
(Speaking of particularly rough, I am really proud of this article I wrote for Women’s Health on my experience with depression and hospitalization.)
In the 3.5 days I was there, I visited the beach three times. NOT MAD. Upon landing, I picked up my rental car (pro tip: I generally use the Delta portal so I can get miles for car rentalâ€”you get 500 just for booking and then 500 per day, but otherwise I use Priceline and get some awesome deals) and headed straight for the beach!
Hello from Hermosa beach!
Apparently I brought June Gloom with me, but I’m still not mad.
I kept talking about how I wanted to spend a lot of time at the beach while I was out there…and of course, forgot a bathing suit. I headed to Target, and I ended up getting the bikini top in this cutÂ (I joke to friends that I’m a “boobfluencer” because my links that do the best are for bras or bathing suit tops) and the bottom in this one.Â Just a heads-up that the top seems to run a bit bigâ€”I got my normal 36D and it was a little too big. I was fresh out of fucks and didn’t even try it on.
I sat in the sand and talked to an old friend on the phone for a long time, as I gazed out at the waves, feeling content and loved. For dinner, I met my dear friend Jordan Â at Love and Salt. The food wasn’t bad by any means, it was fine, but the company and the ambiance were better!
I’ve been a ClassPass user (on my own dime, nothing sponsored here) for quite a few years now, and one of my favorite things about the service is that when you travel to other cities, you can flex your membership and use it there. (This link gets both of us $40 off, if you’re a new member.) So, obviously I had to try a class! I had Santa Monica beach plans, so I tried Sweat Yoga. Omg. First of all, 11/10, would yoga again. The class is a sweaty beast with weights, similar to CorePower Yoga. There were several flow-on-your-owns, similar to Y7, which I don’t love, but overall I really enjoyed the class sequencing, and I got an amazing workout and was probably sweatier than I have ever been. NOT KIDDING.
Another day, another beach, and I met AmyÂ for some beach and catch-up time. Of COURSE the sun came out the second I left the beach. Oh well.
I asked Amy for a taco rec, and she told me Tocaya Organica was great, and she was not wrong! For dinner, I was staying with Jen, and her boss treated us for dinner at The Tower Bar, and we rolled home in food comas.
On Saturday, I did all the activities! I had not yet surfed in LA, so it was on the top of my list. I ended up going with Aloha BrothersÂ for my lesson, mainly for ease of booking online + price, and I was not disappointed…with them. Me? Let’s just say there’s plenty of room to improve in my surfing game. I think I’m just going to practice surfer get-ups in my living room.
But, as I said on Instagram, surfing is my favorite thing that I suck at. When IÂ do get up on that board, even if it’s only halfway, only for half a second, it’s so so worth all the falling down. (There’s also probably a life metaphor in there…)
And, I get beach hair, so it’s also worth it.
But why stop at surfing? MeggieÂ and I have talked FOR YEARS about playing tennis together, and it only took her moving 3000 miles away for us to finally make it happen.
We played with the Dial Jones Tennis Academy, and did a tennis boot camp which was a mix of tennis drills + bodyweight exercises. I’m so out of practice playing tennis (hello, NYC buds? anyone wanna play?) but it still brings me so much joy. (It was my first sport love before running.)Â After these two intense workouts in the sun, I collapsed on Jen’s couch for a while…
Before we drove up to the Malibu pier for dinner. We sat out there at the end, overlooking the water.
Sunday morning, we drove up to the adorable Ojai, and I fell in love with this OUTDOOR BOOKSTORE.Â May I move in?
And then I had brunch with my college friend, Shelley, and her MUFFIN OF A DOG, Lydia.Â We went to Plant Food + Wine, a delicious vegan spot on Abbot Kinney in Venice. It’s the kind of vegan that’s actually just vegetables, not a bunch of fake stuff pretending to be meat, and it was amazing.
We strolled Abbot Kinney afterwards, and you’d think Lydia was mayor of Venice for all the times she got stopped!
All in all, exactly the LA visit I needed to recharge my batteries and restore some peace in my life as I approach the year anniversary of losing my mom. Looking for more LA in NYC moments 🙂