Sunday, July 26, 2015

Cover It Up

This is my first official weekend in Los Angeles.

I have spent a big chunk of time unpacking the house, hanging pictures, and stocking staple groceries like coffee…eggs…nutella…
You get the idea. The important stuff.

Additionally, my older sis Tori kindly offered to drive in from Phoenix to help me unpack. It is about a five hour drive from Phoenix to the area of Long Beach, but took a bit longer because some parts of the freeway had been damaged by mudslides from the rain this past week. Tori arrived Thursday night around 1:00 AM with her sweet pup Joseph in tow.

It would have been terribly ungracious of me as a host if Tori didn't get to spend at least one afternoon on the beach. Therefore, Saturday afternoon Tori, Justin, and I drove up Highway 1 to El Matador Beach in Malibu.

Tori wore the beach cover-up I made last month while dreaming about this relocation. I wore a beach cover-up that I made about 2 years ago when I first learned how to sew. It is laughable how much improved my skills are!

The cover-up Tori is wearing is made of a white cotton-blend that I bought at Hancock's Fabrics. I used Simplicity 1161 to create the top. It is heavily modified. I created larger shoulder draping, added pin striping to the front, and added a pocketed skirt to the top to create a dress. The back has a large open V because I am obsessed with open back dresses. 

My cover-up is actually made from the fabric of a maxi hippie-esque skirt I bought years ago. I added pin-striping to the front, straps, darted the back, and added criss-cross ties to the sides. It is super comfortable, falls below my boobs if I shrug my shoulders, and has dangerously see-through qualities. In other words, it can only be worn over bathing suits.

El Matador Beach is a magical place. It sits right below a rocky cliff tangled with cacti and succulents. The beach's terrain is soft sand speckled with a multitude of rocks the color of brick, lavender, sea green, and obsidian. Along shoreline sea caves and tide pools dot the surface and sea grass tangles around your feet. 

El Matador seems like a popular spot for photographers and I counted more than 3 swimsuit shoots going on with models draping themselves across the rocky shoreline like PG-13 rated scenes from A Little Mermaid.  While my marathon-powered thighs have definitely seen their share of In N Out burgers and ice-cream sundays, it didn't stop me from prancing around the rocks with Justin and Tori for this little photo shoot.

All in all, it was lovely afternoon and an excellent way to begin my So-Cal life. 

Swimsuit cover-ups: made by me, sunglasses: Francesa's, hat: e-bay, sail-boat swimsuit: Victoria's Secret

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

On the road

It has been a few months since I last posted.
So much has happened.

Where to begin?

At the end of May my husband Justin was offered and accepted a position as first officer at Compass Airlines. He had hoped, planned, and worked for this opportunity and we knew it would bring a ton of change. One of those changes, the biggest, would mean our moving to Los Angeles, CA.

We are only 12 days into July but time has flown. The days involved frantic job searching on my part, stomach churning indecision and anticipation, frenzied Zillow searches for housing, and exhausting phone interviews.

Those 12 days saw me accepting a new job, our packing up the Uhaul and trailer, and moving all our things to the bright, vibrant city of LA.

Our good friend Miguel had no idea what he was signing up for when he said yes to helping us move. The drive from Kentucky to California took 3 days, 36 hours, and more gasoline and cups of coffee than I care to admit. My eyes are still tired, Miguel is officially an angel from heaven, and my right buttox will never be the same. 

Day 1: KY > IN > MO > OK > TX
Day 1 started at 7:30 AM and didn't end until 2:00 when we finally pulled over in Amarillo, TX. Amarillo is a tiny postage stamp of a city, build around the highway for stragglers like us. We arrived, stumbling dazedly from the cars, so sleepy that even the dinky lobby at the Red Roof Inn looked promising. We got a solid six hours of sleep, drank some slightly disreputable-looking coffee, and began day 2.

Day 2: TX > NM > AZ

New Mexico

Fuel stop outside Flagstaff, AZ

Sunset in AZ

We stayed the night with my older sister who lives outside Phoenix, AZ. Phoenix was 95 degrees when we pulled in her driveway around 9:30 PM. The temperature was surprisingly comfortable without the added heat of the sun. We parked the trailer in her rock and desert grass font yard, admiring the glittering stars in the clear Arizona night. Tori proved to be the hostess with mostest, showering us in blueberries, triple peppercorn bacon, and hazelnut coffee before we hit the road for the third and final day.

Day 3: AZ > CA

Oh California. What can be said that every songwriter ever hasn't already penned? Glorious mountains, idyllic beaches, and throngs of interesting and beautiful people. Justin and I feel giddy calling our tiny slice of LA home. 

We spent most of our 2 days in Los Angeles moving into our home but took a breaks to treat Miguel to cruises in the Santa Monica Mountains and a brief soiree at Seal Beach.  

Seal Beach 

Santa Monica Mountains

I feel like the whole week was a dream. From the stunning vistas on the road to the Neverland-like feel of SoCal, it was an incredible journey to this new place I call home. 

A **MASSIVE** thanks to Miguel for being a trooper and partner in crime on this trip. We couldn't have done it without you! Thanks to Tori as well for hosting us and introducing me to triple peppercorn bacon. 

See you guys in LA.