Tuesday, February 14, 2012

City of Angels recap

Glad to be back and refreshed after a short but sweet mini vacay on the west coast.  I touched down in unseasonably cool Los Angeles on Thursday night after an easy flight on Southwest.  Started and finished the book The Descendants (phenoms!) which made the trip fly (pun intended).  That night, we opted to stay in and have a major reunion session with her couch and our sweatpants!

On Friday, we were up early and hit the streets for some serious fun!  Starting with breakfast at the Literati Cafe.  Loved the vibe in this place, super fresh and fast food.  We went with a breakfast quesadilla (why have I never tried this?!) and a plate of fresh fruit and yogurt.  Even the dining room was fresh and bright (check out my shadow):

Fueled and ready to go, we drove to Venice Beach for some exploring.  If you've never been, VB is a pretty funky/hippy area, so different from stereotypical LA.  Make sure to check out the canals... beautiful!  My favorite pictures are definitely from this stop.

Apparently this is where I forgot about my camera completely and lived in the moment.  We visited her grandma's restaurant for lunch, then did some major retail damage at various locations, including the famed Rodeo Drive.

Dinner that night was at my favorite upscale place in LA, Yamashiro, that has the best sushi.  Hey, we even had a minor celebrity sighting, one of the minor guys from Glee.  Our dining experience was capped off with one of the best desserts I've ever eaten: s'mores brownie!  Warm brownie, toasted marshmallow topping, chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream and homemade graham cracker.  YUM!

Movies, chatting, wedding excitement, and lots of couch time took up the rest of our evening.  Saturday morning I introduced Rach to the green monster smoothie (she's obsessed!), and we hit the trails for a jam-packed day.  Since it was a little too cool and overcast to hike, we drove up into the Hollywood hills to Griffith Observatory.

We caught a show at the planetarium and played with some space toys.  Outside, the view is normally amazing -- I'm told you can see the ocean when it's clear -- but it was especially freaky and foreboding that day.  End of the world much?

That afternoon we headed to an area called Larchmont Village for lunch and to peruse some independent shops and boutiques.  Bricks & Scones had a totally friendly hipster vibe (laptops and bulky glasses everywhere!) and fantastic lunch fare.  Panini, soup, and fruit, yes please!

Doesn't it look like a secret garden?  Loved that about it.  A special thanks to Rachel's friend Becca for the suggestion.  If you're in the LA area and want to get off the beaten path, head here.

We met up with some friends for happy hour at a bar that had -- get this -- bookshelves full of board games.  Genius!  Our competitive drives worked up an appetite and we had a mad craving for pizza.  A few stops at "hot" pizza spots proved that everyone else had the same craving, cough 45 minute waits just to sit at the bar.  So we headed back to her neighborhood and scored slices for $3.50 that were juuuuuust as good and in our mouths much faster, too.

Our very last stop in LA?  Yogurtland... obvs.  PB&J fro-yo, be still my heart!  Better watch your back, Razzy. 

Our last night was spent like the first, curled up on the couch and just enjoying each other's company.  A lovely trip with a lovely woman!  Wishing you a lovely Valentine's Day with your lovely self :o)

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