Saturday, February 20, 2016

San Diego

It feels as though an age has passed since I last made a post.

Life has been a blur. Busy work weeks sliding into one another, the rush of a schedule-packed day colliding with the quietly blissful weekends. 

Winter has come and gone along the west coast, with just a few weeks of 40 to 50 degree mornings. Now the days are brilliantly sunny and warm, the few deciduous trees are in bloom, and bare legs are back in style.

It may be February in California but the gods of summer have not relinquished their hold on this sunshine state. 

To celebrate a brief reprieve in a few very busy, sickness suffering, and lonely weeks Justin and I took a day trip to San Diego. We are about and hour and a half from this lovely city and I thought I would share the fabulous and brief taste we got to experience.

I feel like I have transported across continents. It used to be Justin and I took day trips from Louisville to Nashville or Cincinnati to get a taste of something different. Now our day trips take us from the endless hustle and traffic of Los Angeles to the gorgeously lush and characterful streets of San Diego.

We started our day in Little Italy, where we lunched at the chic and funky restaurant Ironside. 

We had fully anticipated dining on authentic Italian flavor, but the facade of Ironside was too appealing to pass it by. The exterior is distressed wood with succulents draped from rustic planters. Inside, scenes from the Great Gatsby flick through your mind as the mint and marble bar, mirrored tables, art deco lamps, and brass mermaids wave at you from across the room. It was fabulous. Craft cocktails, buttery lobster rolls, and the bright fresh flavors of seviche offered a schmorgesborg of flavor to the tastebuds. It was so delicious Justin and I briefly debated if we would return there for dinner as well. 

After lunch, already feeling as though the trip had delivered, we walked the steep hills of the city to Balboa Park. 

Balboa Park is an oasis of flora, architectural delights, culture, and history in southern California. It is more than 1400 acres of greenery housing 15 museums, gardens, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo. Just walking through the Spanish-Renaissance inspired archways made me feel as though I stepped into a different era. Justin and I ambled past hundreds of rose bushes, giant tree-like cacti, and into the cool interior of the botanical gardens. Jazz musicians and street artists alike entertained and serenaded pedestrians and tourists.

Justin and I arrived too late in the day to do justice a trip to the San Diego Zoo, but we did visit the San Diego Museum of Art. It has been entirely too long since I visited an art museum. Walking through the expertly lit and pristine hallways sent me back to memories of Musee D'Orsay and the Louvre. I studied studio art in undergrad and have a deep abiding love affair with a variety of French, Dutch, and Italian painters.

With our eyes and hearts full, Justin I wandered through the urban landscape down to waterfront park to watch the sun begin to set into the harbor. We watched little children chase kites through the green lawns and a couple pose in wedding attire by sparking fountains. 

We did have the flavor of Italy for dinner, sipping wine over pasta dishes and sipping foamy cappuccinos before gearing up for the drive back to LA. LA doesn't quite feel like home; it is too chaotic and wild a beast to be familiar so soon. But it was nice to roll onto our street and see the little blue house and all my flowers waving cheerily upon our return. 

Today I planted my very first vegetable garden. I have been eagerly anticipating this day since we first moved into our house. It is tiny but I hope to grow a variety of herbs, peppers, jalapeƱos, tomatoes, squash, onions, and zucchini. I will keep you posted on the progress!

In other news, I have been a sewing machine. I am thinking about doing a blog post that features like 8 dresses in quick succession. Stay tuned folks.


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