Birthday In Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills is a city in California’s Los Angeles County. Home to many Hollywood stars, it features the upscale shopping street of Rodeo Drive. The expansive Beverly Gardens Park has fountains and rose gardens, plus an illuminated Beverly Hills sign. Beverly Hills is the place in LA where celebrities and the fabulous local residents come to do their normal every day-to-day errands, what better way to celebrate my 31st birthday and “celebrity watch,” in their neck of the woods!!

Two weeks ago, the family and I took a trip to Los Angeles. Being a California native, born and raised in the Bay Area, SoCal has always been one of those locations you always want to visit once a year. Los Angeles has so many cities just within in 502 square miles alone! That’s a perimeter of the city of 342 miles!!!

Having done many trips within mine and my husbands lifetime, this would be the first for our children to remember the city of entertainment and cinema. Before this trip was made, I remembered my older son saying “I want to go to Hollywood mommy.” He said that for about a week straight. It was probably a commercial of Universal Studios Hollywood that got his attention. So, when it came to deciding where our summer road trip would be, it was no surprise that LA wasn’t a bad idea.

As always Airbnb is our go to for our travel accommodations. The online marketplace and hospitality service, enables travelers to lease or rent short-term lodging including vacation rentals, apartment rentals, or homestays. As mentioned before, the husband and I live through Airbnb on a monthly basis for business and for holiday.

Check out more of our Airbnb stays | HERE |

From San Francisco, Sonoma, Seattle, and Portland!

Los Angeles is a sprawling Southern California city and the center of the nation’s film and television industry. Near its iconic Hollywood sign, studios such as Paramount Pictures, Universal and Warner Brothers offer behind-the-scenes tours. On Hollywood Boulevard, TCL Chinese Theatre displays celebrities’ hand and footprints, the Walk of Fame honors thousands of leading light film stars and vendors selling maps to stars’ homes.

We stayed in Beverly Hills, as it was centrally located within the heart of LA. West Hollywood wasn’t to far, Pasadena, Santa Monica, and Venice Beach, to name a few. Just like any major large city, our stay was a cute apartment walking distance to Rodeo Drive, and easy access to Wilshire Blvd & Beverly Drive, which include many boutique shops and eateries.

 During our stays in different cities, the family and I love to stick with every day happenings, vs. the major touristy spots. BUT, with the exception of first timers for our children, (and since we were so close to many of these Hollywood things,) we did manage to take them to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood sign, and of course a family day trip to Universal Studios Hollywood, which was covered by CHASE SAPPHIRE RESERVE , giving us Elite travel benefits! Thanks CHASE!
Love to travel and dine? Check out Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card. This was our second trip using our points that covered a great amount of vacation! From Universal Studios, to our car rental! All FREE!!
| Click HERE | for more INFO!

After the checking out the happenings all throughout Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, and Universal City, the family decided to drive out towards Pasadena. Northeast of downtown Los Angeles, in the center, Old Pasadena is a shopping and dining district known for its Victorian and art deco buildings. The Rose Bowl is a sports stadium known for hosting the Rose Bowl Game, an annual college football clash, but besides the football, they also host the Pasadena Rose Bowl Flea Market!!!  To any flea market goer in California, or anywhere else, this is one flea market to check out in your lifetime. Unfortunately, we were a week to early.

But no worries! I was recommended to the Pasadena City College Flea | PCC Flea Market, which is open every Sunday! So, we packed our cooler, with fruit, water bottles, and sandwiches and called it a flea market/Pasadena day! Oh, the PCC Flea was filled with an eclectic array of crafts, apparel, antiques & other goodies! My husband even managed to fine tons of vinyl records, and my boys found some awesome HotWheels, gem stones, and Pokemon cards!!

When visiting Los Angeles, you have to check out the beaches. Of course, Southern California is known for their amazing beaches, so why not check one out. We brought the boys to Santa Monica beach. Leaving nothing but footprints, and time to kill, the family and I relaxed in the sand. Admiring the beach waves, listening to the laughter and screams coming from the roller-coasters off the pier. Summer was happening, and it was also my birthday. 6 days spent in Los Angeles. Hollywood, food, celebrities watching, people watching, coffee shops, boutiques and burgers, and playing frisbee under the Hollywood sign.

It was a perfect visit to LA. And I’d always come back for more. Thanks LA, good times.

 

30 On The 30th

My better half has finally entered his thirties!!! I find it incredible that I’ve been with him for half of his life!!!!!!!!! That’s 15 years people!!!! So I asked him what exactly did he want to do for his big 30. While others may want to celebrate BIG like Last Vegas, flying out somewhere exotic and having the time of their lives…..He just wanted a relaxed weekend getaway. Thank’s to Airbnb we were able to find a modern glam studio apartment within Santana Row, within the Silicon Valley. An outdoor shopping mall in San Jose, California and close by to Westfield Valley. Located along Stevens Creek Boulevard f the Winchester Mystery House is just to its west, across Winchester Boulevard.

After settling down in Sacramento, we were desperately due for a weekend getaway away from our home, and the children. Our focus has been heavily set on the kids the past 3 months, as they transitioned into their new schools, and started little league. (Oh! Did I forget to mention, I volunteered myself as team parent! Which I think was a big deal on my end. Transitioning into a home, and balancing out 11 families.) The man, knew we were in need for some distressing from out life in Sacramento, and so we headed straight back to the Bay Area, dropped off our children to the parentals in the East Bay, and were off to Santa Clara.

airbnb

*2016 UPDATE*

Check out more posts here on our Airbnb stays

HERE.

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Morning View from our Airbnb, Santana Row, Santa Clara, CA

His birthday eve dinner was spent at El Jardin Tequila Bar & Restaurant, located at the southend of Santana Row. Upon our arrival, a Spanish band started to play. I couldn’t think of any other way to enjoy our Friday night together. It reminded me how wonderful it is to get one on one time with your significant other. Perfect atmosphere, location, and weekend away from the kids, rejuvenates us as a couple, and makes us as a couple appreciate each other more.

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Address:

El Jardin Tequila Bar & Restaurant

368 Santana Row

San Jose, ca 95128

(West San Jose) 

I created this cool little “what we got” at the bar. let me know what you think. I think it’s pretty cool, if only Yelp did something like this within their posts.

ELJARDIN1

 Are you turing 30 this year? Were you born in 1986 like us? Comment below and share with me how you celebrated or plan on celebrating your 30th!!!

And…… Happy 30th birthday Derrick. You are the not only my friend, boyfriend, baby daddy, or partner. You are my best friend. You are always there for me, supporting me, encouraging me , listening to me. You are so essential to me that I cannot imagine my world without you.

Happy birthday

New Mom Gift Basket & New Mom Friends

New Mom Gift

New Mom Gift by tiffanystidings featuring acrylic drinkware

Are you looking for something special to give to a new mom? Here’s a great ‘New Mom,’ gift basket guide I created that would hit a home run for the mom! Trust me, after having two kids of my own, I would’ve cried if a pal had given me a gift like this!

Gift Basket Items:

In no particular order, and not all above are mentioned here are a few staples I think would be perfect for the new mom. Hope your mom pal would find these useful too!

– Baby wipes (for the rest of her life, she will forever need babywipes.)

This is true, coming from a mother of 4 & 8 year old who are WAY beyond the diaper stage. Baby wipes are ALWAYS needed.

– Journal, Pen & Pencils

A mother always have constant things on her mind. What’s for dinner? Do we even have that in the fridge, do we have to do a grocery run? Do we have diapers? When was the last time I fed my baby, which breast did I last fed the baby with? How long was her nursing?

Having a journal or notebook on hand will help any mother. At whatever age her child is at.

– Nursing Cover

Wherever and whenever, a nursing mother should be able to nurse wherever she is. Depending on how comfortable you are with this, some mothers nurse even while shopping. Having a simple nursing cover and sling will make this job much easier instead of closing yourself in – in a public restroom, or fitting room.

– Simple MakeUp

Limp Balm and BB Cream is basically all you need. As a mother, I see no need to glam myself up just to take my son to his gymnastics class. I honestly feel like, I have no time for makeup, as well as it would be wasted time to apply makeup – as I can just spend time with my children.

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Earlier this week, I had met my god sister after 2 months of her giving birth to her son. We met at our usual breakfast spot and I greeted her in the parking-lot with a similar gift like above all purchased at Target. My god sister is my first closest friend within my small circle of girlfriends to finally have a child. For many years (8 to be exact), I’ve been patiently waiting for my close friends to get pregnant. During the 8 years of not having my close friends to vibe with about parenting, I’ve found other outlets of finding my mom friends, through playgroups, tiny-tots, little league, and local mommy meet ups. But sometimes it isn’t that easy.

Here’s a Momfession by Rachel Hollis from The Chic Site

“It isn’t always easy to find other mom friends, even when you join every mommy and me group in your town. Don’t lose hope, your tribe is out there, you just haven’t found them yet.”

AuggieN

Meet my godson Augustus (Auggie)

Isn’t he handsome?! He is so attentive, kind, and willing to have anyone hold him. I could cuddle with him all night when I get the chance to babysit him!

Do you have any new mom friends? Were you alone for a period of time being the only mom with your circle of friends? Tell me about it! Comment below! I’d love to hear your stories!

Smiles

Birthday Love

Last Friday on my birthday, two of my girlfriends treated me out to a cute little British Tea room in San Francisco, called LoveJoy’s Tea Room. Located right along Church St. in Noe Valley, this is a perfect place for a girls day out! Their scones and sandwiches are delightful. Their cute little tea sandwiches and scones are neatly arranged and displayed on plated tiers, served with delicious butter and jam that add that perfect touch to your toasty fresh scone. Warm scones, tasty tea sandwiches and a bottomless pot of tea await you at LoveJoy’s.

LoveJoy

As we were hosted to our reserved spot, located right at the front bench window, the seats were decorated with a number of various vintage pillows and cushions;I noticed a bouquet of flowers sitting on our table. Instinctively, before enjoying the beautiful bouquet I searched for a card, or any tag. FarmGirlFlowers, of San Francisco is were it was delivered from, and ordered by my younger brother! As I’m tearing up enjoying the beautiful gift arrangement of wildflowers, peonies, pink/lavender calla lilies, roses, and cabbage life blooms – I could only send positive energy and vibes to people all around me. The energy was definitely real. I was completely touched by the beautiful burlap wrapped gift.

To my brother Justin, if you’re reading this. Thank you so much for the special delivery. It really put a huge smile on my face.

Tea Table

Below, we ordered 3 variations of the Queen’s Tea (Tea Service). It includes your choice of two sandwiches,served with cabbage salad in a caraway cream dressing, organic spring greens, a scone with preserves and devon cream, a crumpet with meyer lemon curd, fresh fruit, a petit four and tea tea biscuit.

 

Tier

Shared between the three of us, we were table to try 6 of their sandwiches, which were: the classic cucumber & cream cheese, chicken-apple-walnut salad, smoked turkey & dijon, cream cheese & green apple, salmon mousse (which I didn’t try- due to sea food allergies), and the Bay shrimp & mayonnaise chicken asparagus. All were absolutely delicious!!

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Our selection of teas were Earl Grey, China Rose Petal and  Passion Fruit. Each of us had out own tea pot served to us, as well as a cute tea cup placed on two saucers, a provided strainer, milk and cream.

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As my friends and I enjoyed our afternoon tea, we discussed upcoming plans for the weekend. Since, I’ve been living and breathing fitness and working out – the girls agreed to join me for a Sunday morning hike. We ended our late afternoon enjoying the sweet treats on chocolate bon bons, and adoring the cute quaint decor of the tea room, we topped it with photos taken at every corner of the tea room, and outside too! Literally, the tea room is filled with tea pots, lace vintage doilies, porcelain figurines, and amazing soft prints and textures complimented with distressed mix matched furniture.

As simple as the my birthday was spent, I couldn’t have spent it any other way! Short, sweet, and surrounded by good vibes, a good atmosphere, a delightful food and tea. It doesn’t take much for me to smile, and its the littlest details that make me swoon.

LoveJoys

Thank you all who wished me a Happy Birthday! Turning 29 definitely as made me realize all you need is love and joy to keep on smiling. I look forward to the new year at a new age, and pushing into my 30s!!!!

Smiles

29 and Feeling GREAT!!

The last year of my twenties is finally here. I’ve prepared myself the last couple months for this. I’ve grown from the beginning of February until now. With a huge leap of faith,  having trust in myself, and will power; all has definitely gotten me through so many metal and physical challenges the last few months. From creating my little segment of my Journey To 30, I’ve decided to document the last few years of my 20s. As I’ve mentioned early on the past months, 28 wasn’t so great. From being unhappy my myself mentally and physically – I’ve decided to step out of that darkness I once was in. I want to create a woman I am proud of, and be proud of.

I’ve realized over the course of the last few months, you can have whatever you want in life. It just takes the right timing, the right mindset, and the willingness to risk it all. Put in your all, you can have whatever you want. Seriously, the hard work pays of. Stepping into my last year of my twenties was perfectly timed as I’ve ended my last contract with my trainer. The warm-up is over, and the true test begins. The real challenge awaits, and only I can conquer it. While soaking up every bit of knowledge my trainer has provided for me, I’ve decided to continue my health fitness journey without him (which was really hard), and achieve my goal weight on my own. So far, I’m doing great!!!

All with the proper nutrition, sticking with my fitness regimen, putting in my miles every single day, and surrounding myself with like minded positive people is all I need. I’ve found my balance with myself, household chores, being patient with the children, and having healthy direct communication with my boyfriend as well as my friends and family. With all of this aligned, I can only point fingers to all the hard work and effort I had put in with being healthy and fit. When you put in the hard work, everything comes clear and balanced. No joke. It’s pretty amazing how it all falls into place.

Turning 29 hasn’t scared me a bit. I may be 29, but I feel like I’m in a 23 year olds body!!!

Cheers to the last year of my twenties!!

Smiles