May Cause Miracles

4.02.2017



All you need is love.

In the past whenever I heard that phrase, I had a very narrow interpretation of it: if you had a love in your life, romantic or otherwise, that was all you needed to be happy.

But this year, I started to look at love differently. I started to look at it as a life philosophy. I looked at as something I could inject into my life on my own, moment to moment. I started to view love as the absence of fear. And I arrived at that definition by doing a 42-Day Fear Detox designed by Gabrielle Bernstein in her book, May Cause Miracles.

Honestly? It's changing my life.

I completed the workshop in February and have spent the last two months building on the spiritual work that I began during that process. The lessons I learned in those 42 days have become so important to me, so eye-opening and so sacred, that I decided I wanted to share them here. Which, naturally I was afraid to do, because it's a bit different than the content I usually post. But ultimately? It abides by the same North Star I've always had for this blog: to write about things that make me happy.

And if it makes other people happy too? Even better.

Coachella 2017 Lineup Guide: Friday

3.30.2017


Caguamas at 7am, Spicy Pie for every meal, afternoon naps in the Mojave tent, twirling through sandstorms with my best friends...

These are a few of my favorite things.

And in exactly two weeks (two weeks?!), I will be setting up camp to enjoy all of it during my favorite weekend of the year: Coachella.

But Coachella involves a lot of prep work to be enjoyed properly. Campground shade should be designed to be both trendy and able to withstand the wind that somehow only rips through the campgrounds when literally everyone is inside the festival and can't take it down to protect it. Outfits need to be planned for style, extreme temperature changes, and the ability to survive a poop-smeared Porta Potty (hope you romper fans have a SheWee in your purse).

And then there's those 100+ music acts that you have to listen to in order to plan your days.

I know, right? Such a bummer having to listen to so many hours of good music. Let the #coachellaproblems hashtags begin.

Well I have good news! (Depending on how much you trust my musical taste.) As with Coachella years of yore, I'm listening to the whole lineup so you don't have to. But unlike previous attempts I'm not going to write about every single band, just the ones I'm planning to see, broken up day by day.

Which leads us to Friday's lineup...

Super Bloomin'

3.18.2017


Every year, we try to make it out to the Anza-Borrego desert at least once for a camping trip, usually at our favorite campground, Agua Caliente. But in all the years that we've headed out there, I've never once witnessed a Super Bloom.

In fact, I'd never even heard the term "Super Bloom" until last year, back when Death Valley exploded in a sea of color. This is because San Diego has been in a drought since I moved here almost 7 years ago. Now, after the wettest winter in years, we're finally out of the drought and we have our own desert wildflowers to prove it.

Thousands and thousands of them.

A Very Venice Valentine's

2.21.2017



In my life, three neighborhoods have immediately felt like home each time I've set foot in them: my current (and likely forever) neighborhood of Ocean Beach, here in San Diego, Hermosa Beach in Los Angeles, and Venice Beach, also in LA.

I love, love, love Venice Beach. So when I had the chance to spend a day up there last week for a work conference, I took advantage of it and spent the night. And since it was a few days after Valentine's Day, I decided to turn it into a romantic Valentine's Day date with myself, complete with a walk on the beach at sunset, a fancy meal and... turtle racing.

As it turns out? Venice loves me right back.

Gjelina

2.20.2017


Hi, my name is Bri and I'm a sucker for over-hyped restaurants in trendy neighborhoods. Especially restaurants that have so much hype it condones publishing a popular cookbook of their recipes.

Which is why I ended up dining at Gjelina when I was in Venice Beach last week... for the hype, for the sceney scene... 

Oh, and did I mention the delicious food?

Turtle Racing at Brennan's Pub

2.18.2017


I have jumped out of a plane. I've run the New York City marathon. And now I can finally cross another major life accomplishment off my bucket list... 

I have participated in a turtle race. 

The Music Box SD

2.14.2017


Over a decade ago, when I thought I was going to make my living by being a writer, I got paid to write about music. 

It wasn't often and it wasn't even the first thing I got paid to write about. No, the first thing was high school sports. The second thing was lifestyle pieces about dental lab technicians for a trade magazine (yeah). 

But the third thing? That was music, which also happened to be my "plan." As in, my career plan.

See back then, I was obsessed with Chuck Klosterman and I watched "Almost Famous" like once a week so I had a very romantic take on what it meant to venture into music journalism. In reality, it was both more and less cool than that: for me, it meant going to album release parties in New York City and interviewing my favorite musicians on conference calls from my car and even hanging out on the occasional tour bus. 

It was an exciting, anything-could-happen time, even when it didn't pay much or often or at all. Honestly, I was just happy that my art could live in the shadows of the art of my heroes. I liked the proximity of my creativity to theirs, no matter how irrelevant that proximity was.  

And today, though it happens less frequently and though I no longer get or want to get paid for it, I still jump at the chance to write about music and musicians from time to time. And now that I'm in my 30s, it's ideal for those times to also involve comfy seating, craft cocktails and healthy snacks. 

Because, 30s, amiright?

Miracle in the Desert

2.04.2017



The absolute best part about finishing my MBA this past December was getting my weekends back. Not just the time... but the feeling of freedom, the unpredictability, the infinite possibilities that accompanied no longer having looming homework deadlines or the suffocating guilt that I wasn't working on homework during every spare minute I had outside of my full-time job.

Infinite possibilities. Meaning that I could wake up on any given Saturday morning and decide to go on an adventure. So I did.

During the first weekend of January, my friend Makena and I wrangled the dogs into my car, stopped for some coffee in OB and hit the road to explore the Salton Sea.

I Love LA: 100 Things To Do In Los Angeles

1.29.2017



This is how you know I wasn't born in San Diego: I love LA.

Every time I admit this to a true San Diegan, their response is usually a variation of "Ugh, why???" Which I totally understand because after growing up outside of Manhattan and having lived there for two years, I have the same response when people tell me they heart New York City.

But I really can't help it: I love Los Angeles. I fell in love with that city the moment I got off the plane at LAX. And while I know now that I would never want to live there, it does make for a pretty nice weekend getaway. Which is why for the past two years I've planned at least one weekend per year up there when I tackle a new bunch of items on my LA Bucket List.

This year I thought I'd sit down and actually write that list so that it no longer exists solely in my head. Partly to have a fun way to keep track of my adventures as I complete them and partly to get suggestions from Angelenos on what I'm missing.

Though I don't think I missed much. After all, I did manage to come up with 100 things to check off my list...

Stay Nasty, San Diego

1.24.2017


I think one thing is clear now: San Diego cares a lot more than we get credit for.

The long-standing stereotype about San Diegans is that we're all a bunch of aloof, apathetic, carefree beach bums. We flake out on commitments or show up "whenever." Our offices are a place for flip flops and dogs, not suits and high heels. Our sports teams are terrible because we aren't good fans, we don't get argumentative unless it's about coffee, craft beer, brunch or tacos, and we aren't very engaged politically.

That's the rumor anyway. The turnout at the San Diego Women's March on Saturday told a different story.

Rose Bowl Flea Market

1.08.2017


Sunday mornings are a great excuse to lay in bed and scroll through Instagram for hours longer than you normally would. But it's even better if it's it the second Sunday of the month... because then you can stalk all the hauls from the Rose Bowl Flea Market. 

I am obsessed with the amazing stuff that people find at this flea market and I have been for years. The envy is real and if I had a bigger house and millions of dollars I would go every month. Hands down, that's not even a question. Which is why I kind of avoided it for a long time... the temptation is just too much. 

After all, the Rose Bowl Flea Market is actually the greatest flea market on Earth. 

What I Read Last Year

1.02.2017



If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.

Every year I make a goal of reading/listening to 50 Books in the upcoming year. And every year I come up short by oh, I don't know? About 40 books or so?

I managed to get to 11 in both 2013 and 2014. I hit a record high of 16 last year (though I never wrote about my last 3 books of 2015: Dear Mr. You by Mary Louise Parker, Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling, and Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert). But this year?

This year I only managed to squeeze in 10 books. Which actually is kind of impressive considering how little free time I had between my new job and finishing my MBA. It was fairly non-fiction heavy, with only two (fantastic) novels making it into the mix, but ultimately it ended up being a pretty solid list.

Good Riddens, 2016

1.01.2017


This post has had some harsher titles in drafts. Let's just say F bombs were involved.

I usually love writing these recaps each year, but this one was hard. 2016 started out mildly shitty and ended really shitty. And it was shitty for a lot of what happened in the middle too.

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