Fun fact: Halloween is my favorite holiday. I love the thought of creatively dressing up (my personal favorite costumes in my past: Medusa and Mother Earth), pumpkin everything and a general excuse to go out and party. This year, however, I opted to stay in for the first time in years. Sure, I wore a costume to work, but I quickly retired it after 5 PM in exchange for yoga pants and a messy bun. Instead of dancing and drinking the night away, I hung out with three of my best friends, chowing down on pumpkin chili, cornbread, pumpkin rice krispie treats and chocolate (we got all the remaining candy candy from the lack of trick or treaters...I was not mad about it). While this was so untraditional for me, my heart felt so full after. I got to be creative, still dressed up, and most importantly, hung out with people I loved (and felt fantastic the next day!). Sometimes, a change of pace and a new tradition isn't bad.
Aside from rethinking traditions and routines, here's what else I'm feeling:
1. Parakeet Cafe
I was introduced to Parakeet Cafe via Instagram - dozens of photos of avocado toast and latte art. Looked like my dream. So, last week, I headed to Sparkcycle and continued the morning with breakfast at Parakeet with my friend Katrina. And...dun, dun, dun...my dream became reality! The tiny organic cafe was the cutest spot in La Jolla - neon lights, bird wallpaper, white and pink decor. We sat out on the patio, and I enjoyed a few cups of coffee and their Morning Bowl (berries, quinoa, oats). Delicious.
2. The Salt House
Last night, I finished The Salt House, a new book I picked up at the library. Honestly, the book took me awhile to get into at first, but after a few chapters, I was hooked. The Salt House details the story of a family's response to tragedy and the way both loss and hope impact every single relationship. It was real and heartbreaking and raw...and I was truthfully sad when the book ended.
3. Wonderland Ocean Pub
Last week, I headed to Wonderland Ocean Pub to watch Game 7 (go Astros!). Wonderland is one of my favorite spots in San Diego - a solid menu (I love their Fisherman's Stew!) and an even better draft list full of local beer. Did I mention the bar looks over the Pacific? Bonus: their brunch game is on point (those mimosas, though)...and they really feed into my love of tacos all the time with a Taco Wednesday deal.
On Halloween, I stayed the night at my friend Ericka's in Encinitas - because sometimes you never get too old for a sleepover. The following morning, we woke up at the crack of dawn and walked to Pannikin, one of my favorite coffee spots, and then headed along the coast for a stroll. When she peeled off for work, I got a coffee refill and took my journal to Moonlight Beach and sat and wrote. It was the perfect morning in a corner of San Diego I love. The vibe, the beaches, the people...it's really what I pictured when I thought "San Diego" before moving. I would 100% move up to the North County beach town in a heartbeat.
5. Massage 2 You
I have definitely written about Gretchen before, but I can't sing her praises enough. Gretchen runs her business - Massage 2 You - as a mobile massage business. She brings the table, oil, music, lotion to you so you can have a massage without leaving the comfort of your home. Beyond that being super conducive to a busy schedule, her massages blow any others that I've received out of the water. I had another massage from her last night after tweaking my neck and I finally feel like I can move my head for the first time in days! #treatyoself
6. Sunset Hikes
On Saturday evening, I laced up my trail shoes and headed to Cowles Mountain for a sunset/full moon hike and meditation organized by the local lululemon. While I was hesitant to go (read: tired and introverted and too shy to go alone), I was thrilled I did. The views were gorgeous; I seriously need more sunset hikes...I usually do sunrise. Best of all, I felt so present during the meditation (cold wind and all); who knows if it was the energy of the Taurus moon or what, but I was into meditation for once. Plus, I got to connect with a few friends I hadn't seen in awhile.
7. The Balanced Blonde Podcast
What would a list of mine be without a podcast recommendation? I recently started following a blog - The Balanced Blonde (I'm late to the game, I'm sure) - that I'm obsessed with. It's all wellness, happiness and health. My jam. I started listening to TBB's podcast - Soul on Fire - last week. The podcast features interviews to discuss blogging, wellness, friendship, nutrition, you name it...and it really feels like you're sitting down with a friend for a cup of coffee. Perfect listen while I'm at work.
Breakfast is my favorite meal - if you have not noticed. Want to know my favorite spots for breakfast without breaking the (nutrition) in San Diego? Check out my latest article on Fitt. And now I'm hungry...
9. Cleaning & Purging
I don't know what got into me, but on Saturday, I very willingly cleaned out my entire apartment. Eight bags to Goodwill, ten bags of trash, hours of vacuuming every crevice later...it feels so clean and home-y and wonderful and spacious. Decluttering and minimizing, for the win.
10. This Is Us
This weekend, I was finally in San Diego! So, I started catching up on my regular TV shows, including This Is Us. The show follows the Pearson family through multiple generations...in a very real way. This season has touched on one of the main character's struggle with anxiety, and it's really nice to see something I've struggled so hard with represented in mainstream media. Be warned though: this show will give you some major feels.