Category Archives: EXPLORATION

#FridayFunday : Spa Day For The B-Day

June 9, 2017

It’s about that time to play catch-up!

For the past few months, I’ve been pretty busy at work that my social life appears to be non-existent.  I, honestly, do not remember when I last saw any of my friends, which doesn’t really matter because I’m just too tired to do anything anyways!  With my birthday having come around, making time to celebrate another year of my life was the last thing on my mind.  Having already been mentally, physically and emotionally drained from the past months or so of running around, I decided that for my birthday I’d like to do absolutely NOTHING.

Okay, I did do something, but it was somewhat close to being nothing.  All I did was soak in hot baths, smother myself in red clay and lounge by the pool with margaritas all-day.  It was the first time ever that I paid money to be lazy, and all I can say is that it was totally worth it.  My sister and I had spent most of the day at Glen Ivy Hot Springs, located in Corona.  How this place works is that you would pay a general admission fee of $68.00.  The only time you’d be able to pay $58.00 is when it’s your actual birthday, and you’re purchasing a service (i.e. massages, facials, etc).  Such services need to be booked 6-weeks in advance, and they are about $100.00 each for either 50 minutes to an hour.  Honestly, I’d skip the services because you can find something much cheaper around your local area, considering you live in the city, of course.

Although I was only able to relax for just a couple of hours (I can only take so much laziness), I did feel rejuvenated to begin another week of hustling.  Once my schedule opens-up, I would pay money again to do absolutely nothing…

Now, I can discuss about what it feels like to officially enter my mid-twenties, but I’ve already discussed here.  If you’ve rang in the Gemini season with someone or if you’re one yourself, let me know how you celebrated it by leaving a comment below!  Other than that, check out some of my highlights here from my birthday last month:

Yes, that is milk leaking from my breast in the picture…Just kidding!  I had just stepped-out of the pool, so my bathing suit is soaking my dress.

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#FridayFunday : What’s Poppin’ California?

April 7, 2017

Poppies that is!

Spring has definitely arrived in Southern California with flowers all in full bloom.  There’s no denying that the rain we had from this past winter had something to do with it.  Unlike most years that I remember, spring was like summer – dry and hot.  All we had for the spring season were allergies and withering plants.

To welcome the season, I had visited Antelope Valley California State Poppy Reserve, which is located in Lancaster.  From afar, you can see the hills are alive with such vibrant colors.  One of the colors that kept popping up out of the greenery are these neon-orange poppies, which is the official state flower of California.  It was such a beautiful sight to behold, and, unfortunately, none of the pictures that I had taken captured the essence of it.

If you are wondering where you’d be able to visit these poppies, click here to find a list of places that you can seek out.  Be prepared to get stuck in traffic when making a trip out to these locations on weekends.  Also, apparently, the poppies are only available until the end of the month.

One of the things that I want to note is that I tried VERY, VERY, VERY hard not to crush any of the flowers.  Killing the flowers is not worth the photograph, so I encourage all of you to stay within the dirt path.

Other than that, hope you all are enjoying this wonderful spring we’re having 🙂

If you got the chance to see these poppies, be sure to post a picture of your experience in the comments below!

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#TravelThursday : Just 4 Miles

January 19, 2017

As my sister and I made our way up to Mt. Baldy, we had encountered some back-to-back traffic – the same kind of traffic you get at 7am in the morning when you’re heading to DTLA.  Having accumulated almost two hours on the road, my sister and I were working our bladder muscles and our stomachs were beginning to eat itself.

While my sister and I were debating whether or not we should “pop-a-squat” or not, we were hitting our breaking points.  Okay, more me than my sister.  As I’ve mentioned before in a previous post, I have the worst patience.  As the road begins to narrow due to the cars parked alongside the road, my sister and I found ourselves at a standstill.  There was absolutely no way for us to move forward or even turnaround so, in other words, we were stuck.

People started getting out of their cars to see what the fuss was all about, and others tried to squeeze their way up the road.  There were some folks who had just given up, and settled with what snow they had.  Even though the sign says we have only 4 miles till we reach the top of the mountain, I had begun to question the worthiness of all of this — “Should we just stay here?  There’s some snow.”

Passionately, my sister exclaims, “No!  We didn’t make it this far not to reach the top!”  My sister has always been the more optimistic one, and it’s moments like these, where she pushes me to do more than what I believe I am capable of.  So, with two “hangry” women whose bladder was about to burst, we had inched our way through the mountain, and, finally, a sign appeared in bold letterings, “Welcome to Mt. Baldy Ski Lifts.”

This is just one of the many incidents that day, where I had almost deprived my sister and I from witnessing a beautiful sight.  This experience had reminded me to never give up so quickly, and to have a little faith.  As quoted by Nicholas Sparks (not a huge enough fan to even quote his work, but what he shared has some truth in it), “nothing that’s worthwhile is ever easy.” 

If you have the time this weekend and is in the SoCal area, make a stop to the mountains.  It’ll especially be great this weekend as fresh snow is expected to fall!  So, even though you’re just 4 miles away, and stuck in back-to-back traffic, the destination will be worth the trouble.

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#FridayFunday : Welcoming Fall

October 21, 2016

My life has gotten a lot slower and much quieter in the past few days.  There’s a chill in the air that brings about a sense of calm to oneself.  No doubt, fall is one of my favorite seasons – next to the California winters of course.  Now that we’re getting some decent breezes and clusters of clouds forming in the sky, it’s a perfect time to welcome the fall season with a visit to the Cal Poly Pumpkin Patch!

The Cal Poly Pumpkin Patch is open until October 30th (the day before Halloween) from 10am – 6pm on Sundays’ to Wednesdays’ and 10am – 8pm on Thursdays’ to Saturdays’.  There are no admissions or parking fees to enter the pumpkin patch, so you can just make your way to the field along the white fences.  Other attractions include a petting zoo and a corn maze.  There’s also a farmer’s market that sells homemade preserves and naturally grown fruits and vegetables.  If you’re craving a snack, there are various vendors selling toasted almonds, kettle corn and corn dogs (haven’t touched those since my “Hot Dog on a Stick” days).

Lately, my family and I have been dealing with a lot of shit.  It got to the point where we were at each other’s throats, so clearly we needed a break.  By taking a quick raincheck on reality, my family and I had ventured out into the beautiful, perfect day.  Our time spent at the pumpkin patch helped remind me of how blessed I am, and how I should be more grateful for what I already have, which was my family.  Honestly, it’s moments like these that I’m going to remember most.

Check out the highlights below!

Now, you’ve got just 2 weeks to get yourself a pumpkin so be sure to make a stop at the Cal Poly Pumpkin Patch before all the good ones are gone.  But, most importantly, be sure to bring along your family, a romantic partner(s) or even a friend to enjoy the festivities with.  There’s no better way to welcome the fall season than doing it with loved ones!

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#TravelThursday : It’s A Day-Cation For Me

August 25, 2016

The past few months have been non-stop hectic both work-wise and socially.  Since I wasn’t planning on taking a vacation this summer, I had found myself very tensed, weary and overwhelmed.  In other words, I was in dire need of a break.

If you’ve checked out my Instagram, you’ll notice that I had taken a little ferry ride-out to Avalon at Catalina Island.  My best friend and I had basically planned a “day-cation” for ourselves.

We had relaxed at the beach by Decanso Beach Club, which I was surprised to see other people my age.  I mean, I grew up thinking that Catalina Island was a place for seniors to retire — it probably is but as I was just informed by a random dude at a bar over the weekend, Catalina Island is actually a place for people to party now.

After we had roasted ourselves on the beach, my best friend and I went parasailing.  We were both 800 feet in the air, and the only sounds that we can make out was our laughter.  All the noise from the ground floor disappeared. If I was to ever go parasailing again, I would probably ask to do it on my own because it’s kind of a spiritual feeling when you’re up in the air like that.

Kayaking was the next activity on our list, where we were basically looking for fishes underwater.  I didn’t care much for it, but my best friend was seriously all into it.  Beware of the sharks!  So many of the passerby’s kept warning us about it, including the cute security patrol.  Turns out, there are baby sharks in the water, but they mostly come out at night.

Before returning to the dock, we had ice cream from Scoops Homemade Ice Cream, which you can find my review here and a taco joint that was tucked away from main street.  By the end of the day, my best friend and I was absolutely exhausted.

Take a look at some of the highlights of my “day-cation” below:

FYI, you can get a free roundtrip ferry ride to Avalon in Catalina Island on the day of your birthday, and you can get a discount on some of the activities as well.  Save yourself $72 plus dollars!

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#FridayFunday : Afternoon Tea Anyone?

March 25, 2016

It took me three months to finally deliver my final Christmas gift from 2015!

Last weekend, I took one of my dearest friends for high tea at a chic tea room in Pasadena.  The french decor of the Madeline Garden was enticing, even my friend walked in with a gasp.  We were the only ones in the Grand Room so we took advantage of the opportunity to hold a photoshoot.  For high tea (don’t ask me what the difference is between that and the afternoon tea because I really don’t know), we were served peach bellinis, cranberry scones with cream and jam, ginger yam soup, a pot of rose tea and, finally, the three-tiered stand filled with finger foods!

It was so fun to watch my best friend in awe of every little detail of the experience from the scones to the little tea cups.  This is the reason why I don’t give out “materialistic” things as gifts anymore!  I’d much rather invest my money in an adventure, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

Hope you enjoyed your Christmas present my dear!

Of course I couldn’t leave without a full-body shot!


To check out my review of the Madeline Garden Bistro & Venue, click here.

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#TravelThursday : Howdy Ya’ll !

January 28, 2016

If you follow my Instagram page, you already know that I was down south this past weekend.

My friends and I spontaneously booked a trip to Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas — a place I thought was pretty random, especially for a girl like me.  But, to my friend, it’s a place she had once called home.  In Fort Worth, we checked out the Stockyards — a rodeo show that features bull riding, tie down roping, team roping, barrel racing, bronc racing and break away roping.  Here, I definitely saw plenty of men and women dressed in their cowboy hats and boots.  It felt as if it was Halloween again!  In Dallas, we took a tour of the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, where John F. Kennedy was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald in 1963.  It felt disheartening to stand in the same place where our former president was cruelly assassinated, but also inspiring to know that this human being accomplished so many great things before his death, such as establishing the Peace Corps.  For the rest of our stay, we spent most of the time grubbing — we had a bbq, crab boil and Mexican cuisine.  I’m kind of drooling here…   

There are three prominent characteristics that I want to point out during my stay in Texas:

  1. Endless amount of land.  You know that saying, “you can run, but you can’t hide?”  Well, it applies here in Texas.  There are so much space, it makes sense that everything is 30 minutes away from each other.  The homes are definitely bigger — they have a huge front yard, drive way and back yard (you can literally build another house with all that land).  I even saw a full playground set in the yard, where kids were running around.  It was like watching a Hallmark film!  So, if you’re looking to settle down with a family and all, Texas would be the place!
  2. An unfamiliar sense of politeness.  The people aren’t in a hurry like that in LA or NYC, so the Texans actually take the time to say, “Excuse me Ma’am,” while tipping their hats.  On top of that, it’s not weird to be smiling at someone while making eye contact without it meaning “Come hither.”  Although we did get some looks here and there, it was not enough to make me feel uncomfortable like some places I’ve been to.
  3. Conservative and patriotic.  It wasn’t until I was at the rodeo that I realized I was surrounded by devoted Christians,  who had a great deal of pride for their country.  Compared to Los Angeles, the people are pretty much liberal when it comes to religion and politics so talking about atheism at a dinner table would just bring conflict.

My friends thought I wouldn’t like Texas, but I’d have to say, I didn’t think the whole southern, country lifestyle was bad at all!  I’m actually hoping to plan another trip down there, but in a different city this time.  Honestly, I wouldn’t mind spending a week down south.

Check below to see some of my highlights of the trip!

Hope you liked my brief glimpse into what Texas is like, and if you ever get the chance, you should definitely try to head south for a week or two.  There are definitely a lot of things I wanted to see, but had no time to do such as line dancing and horseback riding.  I guess, that’s another reason to head back then!

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#FridayFunday : Mountaintops + Ocean Views

January 22, 2016

At an impulse, my best friends and I have decided to do a little weekend getaway so if you’d like to see where I’m headed, visit my Instagram for all the deets!

If you aren’t getting away this weekend, there are plenty of things you can do in your own backyard!  One of the great activities that Los Angeles has to offer is a vast array of mountaintops for you and your friends to reach.

If you checked out my Instagram feed, it’s apparent that I am an avid hiker.  My friend, however, is not.  Since she is undergoing a new phase in her life, I thought I’d introduce a new experience to her.  We headed up to Corral Canyon Park, a 2.5 mile loop in Malibu that took approximately 2 hours to finish.  The hiking trail is just right off of the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH/1 Hwy), next door to The Malibu Seafood Fresh Fish Market.  There is also a $5.00 parking fee for the visit.  Once you reach the top of the mountain, you’ll get a view of the beach and the highway — something you’d get out of a picture, but way better.  If you ever plan to visit this trail, plan to wear long sleeves and pants because you’ll have plants brushing against you.  The difficulty of the hike from 1 to 5 — a 5 rating being “difficult” — I’d give it a 1 so it’s not rigorous at all.  My favorite hiking trails are the ones with an ocean view, where I’m surrounded by greenery, not just dirt and dead trees.  In Los Angeles, the winter season is the perfect time to go on a hike.

The best part of the hike is the reward that you would give yourself right after  — for me, that’s food!  My friend and I went to the Malibu Farm, where it has a restaurant in the front and a cafe at the end of the pier.  The Malibu Farm is all about the local, organic and healthy lifestyle, which you can check out my review here.

If you are ever in the area, here are some of the most popular hiking trails in SoCal: Eaton Canyon, Hermit Falls and Crystal Cove State Park (my favorite place to hike by far).

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#FridayFunday : It’s All Grand At The Grand Ave Arts

October 30, 2015

Days like these are always the best!

I spent the past weekend being a tourist, exploring parts and bits of Downtown LA that I call my home.  There was actually an event on Grand Ave called the Grand Ave Arts: All Access — an event where the arts opened their doors to the public with free tours, admissions, performances, screenings, and more!

The most popular of them all was The Broad, which recently opened this past year.  The Broad was offering architectural tours of the building, lobby, and an exhibit on the third floor.  Unfortunately, I was unable to go that day, but I did reserve tickets for next month so I’ll just wait then.  There is a separate line for walk-ins, but I suggest getting there early since the line builds up!

My friend and I ended up checking out The Museum of Contemporary Art, where they offered free general admission.  This wasn’t my first visit to the MOCA, and I have to say, I like the exhibit this time around.  One of the pieces I admired was a light bulb that extended to the outlet on the other side of the wall.  I’ve interpreted the work as a symbol of people’s willingness to do anything for an outlet…

We also took a look at the Disney Concert Hall, where we saw a screening of John Williamson being honored.  John Williamson is known for creating the theme songs to Jaws and Star Wars, including the “Imperial March.”  I’m hoping to catch a performance there one day!

But, before all this exploration, my friend and I grabbed lunch at the Grand Central Market.  The Grand Central Market is like the Chelsea Market in New York and the Anaheim Packing District in Orange County.  We waited forty-five minutes for Eggslut, which was the biggest fad this past summer.  You can read all about my review here!

Across the market is the Bradbury Building — it’s been used in movies like 500 Days of Summer.  My friend and I actually caught ourselves in the middle of a performance by The Industry.  There were musicians, dancers, and singers walking through the staircase, making an eerie yet alluring sound.  I just love stumbling into things like this!

Days like these help you become aware of the present moment.  It allows you to fully observe with what’s going on around you, leading to newfound discoveries.  Exploring new places, including my own backyard, is exciting to me, and I’m sure it is to you too so share some of your memories where you’ve explored your own backyard!



Before I close for the weekend, I just want to wish you all a spectacular, spooky time!


Happy Halloweve!



– Lori

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#FridayFunday : An Evening With Sofar Sounds + Local Artists

October 2, 2015

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Sofar Sounds (Songs From A Room), it is a global network that began in London of 2010.  The two creators who founded Sofar Sounds was disappointed with their experiences in local gigs, where people weren’t appreciating the music in front of them.  So, they started hosting live performances in their living rooms, welcoming friends and family to join them.  Today, Sofar Sounds host gigs in all kinds of different spaces all around the world, most of which are in someone’s living room.  This is a great opportunity for artists to get their name out there and for professionals to find the next big act!

My cousin and I went this past weekend, and it was hosted at a home in Beverly Hills.  The performance was held at a rooftop patio, where the sun was beginning to set down.  The artists that performed are Street Joy, Big Harp, and The Parlour Suite — all local bands from Los Angeles, CA.

Street Joy // An alternative rock band that consist of Jason DeMayo and Scott Zimmerman.  There’s a song called “Moon,” that has a great melody and lyrics — you can take a listen here.

Big Harp // A rock band that consists of Chris Senseney (lead vocalist and guitarist), Stefanie Drootin-Senseney (back-up vocalist and bass player), and Daniel Ocanto (drums).  Check out the song, “Numbers” here — it’s one of the many great songs they played from their set list.

The Parlour Suite // An electronic pop duo consisting of Joel Roberts (vocalist and guitarist) and Inga Roberts (vocalist and keyboard).  You can check out their album, Vibes, here.

If you and your friends are looking for something to do, visit Sofar Sounds and sign-up for a list of upcoming gigs.  It’s great fun for music-lovers, and all you need to do is submit a payment to get reserved tickets for any of their gigs!  It typically lasts for two hours, and you can always bring a picnic basket for the get-together.  It’s a great opportunity to spend a weekend night with your friends and family while discovering new talents.


Have a great weekend!

– Lori

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