Amazon Books is NOW OPEN at Westfield UTC. Honestly, I had no idea what to expect. At first I thought, kind of weird…Amazon opening up a physical store when most brick-and-mortar bookstores are almost non-existent. However, this might be my favorite new store, and a reason I might have to visit Westfield UTC at least once a week (I’ll tell you why…).

Amazon Prime members receive pricing in the store. That means no more visiting Barnes & Noble only to look on for cheaper prices, place an order and wait 2 days (I’m seriously guilty of doing this with the last book I read). Amazon Books = Instant gratification!


All of the books in the store all have 4 stars or above. The selection of books come from customer ratings, sales, popularity on Goodreads and Amazon curators’ assessments. They also have books based on suggestions just like the website (“Love this? You’ll like this!”) and staff picks.

And, every Tuesday they receive a shipment of new releases.


I found the store to be so well executed. You can check pricing with the scanners located around the store, and you can even pay with the app eliminating the need to pull out your credit card.

In the past couple of months I’ve become the ultimate book worm. I am seriously addicted to reading psychological thrillers. Even though I’m the biggest baby when it comes to scary movies, for some reason I love the suspense and thrill of how fast-paced these books move.


Just purchased (from the Amazon Books Store):

Find Her


Just finished last week:
I’m Thinking Of Ending Things — This book is more of a psychological horror. It’s so creepy because it reminds me of a scary movie that could actually very well be real. And it gives me so much anxiety because it’s written in staccato sentences. It was the type of book you just want to know what happens because you know something bad is going to happen, but you can’t read fast enough. I couldn’t quite figure out the ending so I started reading reviews and you either love this book and might even try re-reading it to understand it better, or absolutely hate it. I’m of the first sentiment and plan to give the book another go now knowing the outcome.

In A Dark, Dark Wood — I found this book to be a little predictable, but still enjoyed the predictability because my assumptions were correct. It was still captivating and a quick read (finished in one day/during my flights). Also, soon to be a movie.



Past reads and recommendations (order suggesting hierarchy of read):

  • Pretty Girls
  • All the Missing Girls
  • The Good Girl
  • The Woman in Cabin 10
  • The Girls

What’s the best book you’ve read recently?



San Diego Restaurant Week is back from September 25th through October 2nd!

This past Tuesday London and I ventured down to Prepkitchen La Jolla.  Now…Prepkitchen is a restaurant that I’m very familiar with. I remember when the La Jolla location first opened. Being a freshman in college, it was one of the first “farm-to-table” restaurants I tried in San Diego. And currently, working in Del Mar, I visit the Del Mar location a ton for lunch (and they also participate in all of our events). However, I don’t always get a chance to dine for dinner and that’s what I was the most excited for.

San Diego Restaurant Week is the perfect time to try a new restaurant, or visit a long-time favorite. It’s the perfect way to sample a variety of different menu options — whether new or old to you. Prepkitchen does SDRW right. Offering their whole menu, it’s the perfect way to try everything you’ve always wanted.

So…back to our meal. First off, the night was absolutely perfect. London kept exclaiming how she loved the weather— it was dark, wet and rainy, but the air was still warm. We arrived at PKLJ and were seated in the enclosed patio area. Immediately it felt like we had been transported back to Paris. The two of us, drinking a warming red wine, enjoying a romantic dinner — basically the definition of our study abroad time. Total European vibes, very cozy and casual.

We decided to make our San Diego Restaurant Week family-style, sharing everything and doubling the amount of items we got to try.


We started off with the Bacon Wrapped Dates— blue cheese & arugula. Like everyone always says, you can never go wrong with bacon. Especially when it’s wrapped around a warm date stuffed with soft and tangy blue cheese.


We also ordered the Heirloom Tomato & Burrata — heirloom & cherry tomatoes, basil, balsamic reduction & fleur du sel. Following the seasonally minded theme of the restaurant, the tomatoes were actually picked from their own farm.


For our entrees we selected the Scottish Salmon — corn succotash, arugula & basil butter that was absolutely cooked to perfect, and the Porter Braised Short Ribs — potato puree, carrots, pearl onions, criminis & horseradish gremolata. The short ribs were so robust, yet delicate in the way the meat fell off the bone. It was the perfect comfort meal for the rainy sort of night.


For dessert, we ordered 2 of my favorite types of dessert — hot with cold.

The Warm Chocolate Budino was like a warm soft chocolate cake topped with gelato, whipped cream and crunchy little nibs.  And the Mixed Berry Bread Pudding was moist and decadent, brightened up by the slight acidity of the fruit, and topped with salted caramel and vanilla gelato…yum!

For only $35 per person for dinner, San Diego Restaurant Week at Prepkitchen is basically a steal– a lot (of really really good) food.

One of my favorite things about Prepkitchen (in addition to serving amazing food) is the service and hospitality. You are always treated like good friends and family, and if you’re a regular, even more so!

Whether new or old, this San Diego Restaurant Week I highly recommend visiting any 3 of the Prepkitchen locations (La Jolla, Del Mar and Little Italy)!

Prepkitchen La Jolla
7556 Fay Ave
La Jolla, CA 92037


Thank you to Prepkitchen for hosting me! As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.


Summer is definitely winding down, especially since the last 2 days, although still warm, were filled with “tropical” rain. Luckily, San Diego doesn’t cool down too much with the change of seasons, which always makes it acceptable to snack on a cold sweet treat.  And when that treat is also healthy, it makes you feel like you don’t have to give up your healthy lifestyle, and you can live life brighter.  I always crave what we call “paletas,” like these Outshine Fruit Bars. And unlike the ones London, Kendall and I sometimes find ourselves riding bikes to pick-up from the local liquor store, I much prefer these Outshine Fruit Bars because I know exactly what they’re made from — real fruit and fresh ingredients. No artificial colors, dyes, or flavors, thank you! These are best enjoyed with the perfect sunset :)


When I came across the Outshine Fruit Bars, I also realized that they make Simply Yogurt Bars too, which can be eaten like a fro-yo dessert, or if you’re like me and like to get a little weird…breakfast! Back in college I used to have this yogurt concoction that I would literally eat for any meal (breakfast, lunch or dinner). I would freeze my yogurts, and then either chisel them out, or wait until they thawed to the perfect consistency. Then I would top them with fresh (or frozen) fruit and some granola. Please note that any meal also meant when I was in a silent library, chiseling away at my frozen yogurt that I just had to eat.  However, I found it to be the perfect excuse to eat a healthy “dessert” anytime of the day. The Outshine Yogurt Bars make it a little easier because it’s already frozen yogurt with the perfect texture. No more loudly scraping on a frozen solid mass of block.  Just another way to live life brighter 😉 If you want to try it out, I added a little bit of soft-baked granola, semi-recreating my weirdo college treat!  Make sure to look up @OutshineSnacks on Instagram for more recipes and ideas on how to dress up/eat the bars.

Next time you’re at the store (– and not the liquor store…see where Outshine bars are available here), check out Outshine for healthy, sweet, and reliably delicious bars.


This summer has been a whirlwind and I can’t believe it’s already over.  I’m ready for fall weather, but not so much the shorter days.

August was filled with:





  • Camping trips — back to our secret spot we named “Olmec Lake” and a short trip down to Baja, Mexico



  • Reading — I finished both The Good Girl (it will throw you for a big twist) and Pretty Girls (one of the creepiest but captivating books I’ve read this summer!)


  • New workouts — including boxing with Deb!




  • Uncasked — a craft brew tasting event I went to with London at Westfield UTC 




  • Surprise Rosé Party — an intimate dinner that Jen and Tyler threw for my birthday that literally brought me to tears

Weekly Workout Recap (8/1-8/7):
Mon – CP Reformer Tone – Legs & Glutes @ Club Pilates + 5 mi
Tues -Mixed Level @ The Bar Method + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Wed – 6.5 mi w/SoCal Runner Gal
Thurs – Mixed Level @ The Bar Method + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Fri – Rest
Sat – Rest/hike
Sun – 2.5 mi run
Total Weekly Mileage: 14 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 5
2016 miles: 623 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (8/8-8/14):
Mon – 8 mi
Tues – Full Body @ Core40 + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Wed – CP Reformer Plus 2 @ Club Pilates + Mixed Level @ The Bar Method
Thurs – Rest
Fri – Rest
Sat – Rest
Sun – 8 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 16 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 4
2016 miles: 639 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (8/15-8/21):
Mon – Mixed Level @ The Bar Method + 6.5 mi
Tues – Full Body @ Core40 + Boxing
Wed – Rest
Thurs – Rest
Fri – Rest
Sat – WundaBar Pilates
Sun – 8 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 14.5 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 4
2016 miles: 653.5 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (8/22-8/28):
Mon – Full Body @ Core40
Tues – 8 mi
Wed – Rest
Thurs – 6 mi
Fri – Bootcamp @YogaSix
Sat – Rest
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 14 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 2
2016 miles: 667.5 mi



For London’s birthday party she asked me to bake her a cake.  After making this gluten-free coconut blue ombre layer cake, I feel pretty well-equipped for cake baking so I was all in.

Inspiration for the aesthetics originally came from this succulent cake post.  Then another request for “Drake on Cake,” so I decided to combine the two.  I was left to come up with the flavor myself, so after diving through the Internet, I decided to take a spin on a champagne cake — sparkling rosé cake with sparkling rosé buttercream.  And what better Drake quote than “24 Hour Champagne Diet” to adorn this cake?

The layers didn’t come out perfectly level, and at first glance it wasn’t my fondest cake, but with the final touches of the succulents and the actual taste of the cake, I was definitely satisfied (and so was everyone else! :)).


Sparkling Rosé Cake
2 packages white cake mix (I used Pillsbury)
2 cups sparkling rosé (I used Korbel)
1 cup vegetable oil
6 eggs

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and lightly flour four 8×1-1/2-inch round cake pans; set aside.
  2. Prepare cake mix according to package directions, except replace the water with an equal amount of champagne. Pour batter into prepared pans, spreading evenly.
  3. Bake according to package directions. Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely on racks.


Sparkling Rosé Buttercream
Adapted from Broma Bakery
1 1/2 cups champagne (eventually 4 tablespoons reduced)
3/4 cups salted butter, room temperature
3 1/2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar
1 cup raspberry jam

  1. Simmer 1½ cups of champagne in a small saucepan over low heat until it reduces.  Stir the pan every few minutes to prevent burning. You want to end up with around 4 tablespoons of rosé.
  2. To make the frosting, whip butter, cream cheese, and vanilla extract until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add in 4 tablespoons reduced rosé and powdered sugar, whipping for another 2 minutes.
  3. To to assemble the cake, place first layer of cake on cake stand, then spread a layer of the frosting, keeping it the thickest on the edges.
  4. Add 1/3 cup of raspberry jam in the center and spread in a circular fashion outwards.
  5. Repeat with second and third layer.
  6. For fourth layer, frost top of cake normally, then frost outside with remaining frosting. Use a cake spatula to scrape frosting from sides to create a sort of “naked” look.


Happy Bday London!



Sooo…since I’ve been MIA…here’s what’s up:

Lately I’ve been getting my house “dialed in” for ultimate relaxation, seeing lots of concerts, drinking free wine, reading, and watching tv (lol)…


The past couple of Friday nights have been spent at the track where Kevin and I saw Cold War Kids and then Fitz and the Tantrums.  On the last Saturday in July, London and I drove to Costa Mesa to see Earth, Wind and Fire at the OC Fair. We both LOVE EWF and were super excited to sing and groove to them live.


I joined the Carruth wine club so that’s where the “free” wine has been coming from. I’ve been going as London’s plus one for a while now, but after a run Kate and I sat down for a glass of wine and I was easily talked into joining the club. If you live anywhere near the winery/area, it’s an awesome deal! ($35 per month for a bottle each month, one glass for you and one glass for a guest each visit, and 20% off any purchases) #notsponned


Recently I’ve gotten back into reading. It’s been a while (probably since Mexico) that I’ve felt captured by a book. However, in the last 2 weeks I’ve found and read 2 great books — The Girls and All The Missing Girls. Both are great quick and engaging books (great “beach reads”). I’ve been taking my books to dinner, appointments, breakfast, and the beach. I’d highly recommend All The Missing Girls (finished in 3 days). If you like Gone Girl and Girl on the Train you’ll love this book. I like it even more because of the non-conventional way the story unfolds. You really feel like a detective. Any recommendations for my next book? (just put in an order for The Good Girl by Mary Kubica).

And I know several people have laughed at me for lumping “watching tv” in with being productive. But I honestly only watch a little before bed so for me it relates to decompressing and relaxing. After watching all episodes of Young & Hungry on Netflix (what became my guilty pleasure) I was kind of in a lull with shows. I started watching Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and it literally makes me LOL. Kevin and I also finished Stranger Things in the span of a weekend. TV Series are soooo good! I realized this because Stranger Things felt like a movie, but the 8 episodes/5+ hours of the show really allowed for you to create an affinity for the characters and for them to fully develop.  Hoping there will be a season 2…


So that’s what I’ve been up to. I’ve also been running (barely, like 1-2x per week) and still doing a ton of workout classes because right now I crave the challenge and diversity that the various workouts (pilates, barre, yoga, etc.) provide.

Weekly Workout Recap (7/18-7/24):
Mon – Rest
Tues – 5 mi + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Wed – Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Thurs – Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Fri – Barre @ Studio Barre
Sat – 7.5 mi
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 12.5 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 4
2016 miles: 603 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (7/25-7/31):
Mon – Mixed Level @ The Bar Method + 6 mi w/SoCal Runner Gal
Tues – Full Body @ Core40 + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Wed – Rock ’n Roll Vinyasa @ YogaSix
Thurs – CP Reformer Plus 1.5 @ Club Pilates + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Fri – Barre @ Studio Barre
Sat – Rest
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 6 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 7
2016 miles: 609 mi






Well, well, well…since I last updated, I’ve officially moved into my new little mermaid cottage. I’m absolutely loving my new location. It makes getting everywhere and doing summer activities so easy! Such as going to the beach, and biking to local breweries and favorite restaurants.





Fun events in the past month or so have included our big work event (Summer Solstice), visiting the fair to see Brian Wilson, attending a wedding, deck dinner parties and going to Opening Day at the races.

I also joined ClassPass a couple weeks ago and it’s been a little bit of an addiction…I finished my first 10 classes in a week and a half, and quickly moved onto a month unlimited. It’s been fun switching up my normal workout (aka only running) and challenging myself with strength training. I’m already feeling a big difference which I think makes it even more addicting!

Weekly Workout Recap (6/13-6/19):
Mon – 4.5 mi
Tues – Rest
Wed – 7 mi
Thurs – 6 mi
Fri – 8 mi
Sat – 10.5 mi
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 36 mi
2016 miles: 540.75 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (6/20-6/26):
Mon – 6 mi
Tues – 7 mi
Wed – Rest
Thurs – Rest
Fri – Rest
Sat – Rest
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 13 mi
2016 miles: 553.75 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (6/27-7/3):
Mon – Core40 Full Body + 7.75 mi
Tues – Core40 Full Body + Yoga Therapy @ Yoga Bound
Wed – 3 mi + Hot Yoga @ Yoga Tropics
Thurs – Rest
Fri – Hot Yoga @ Yoga Tropics
Sat – Pilates Reformer Essentials @ Center of Movement and Balance + Barre @ Studio Barre
Sun – 8 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 18.75 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 7
2016 miles: 572.5 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (7/4-7/10):
Mon – Rest
Tues – Mixed Level @ The Bar Method
Wed – Core40 Full Body + Rock and Roll Vinyasa @ YogaSix
Thurs – 6 mi
Fri – 6 mi
Sat – Rest
Sun – Hot Yoga @ Yoga Tropics
Total Weekly Mileage: 12 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 4
2016 miles: 584.5 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (7/11-7/17):
Mon – Core40 Full Body + Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Tues – Bootcamp @ YogaSix
Wed – Barre @ Studio Barre + Core40 Fully Body
Thurs – Rest
Fri – Rest
Sat – Rest
Sun – 6 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 6 mi
Number of cross-training workouts: 5
2016 miles: 590.5 mi



Here are some tips and tricks to help kick-start or renew your passion for fitness and healthy living.  Starting the summer off right…all summer sixteen.

Try out different classes — I know I’m super late to the bandwagon, BUT I recently signed up for Class Pass after 3 months of NO cross-training, but now I am hooked. It made me realize how many different studios are in the area, plus I like how the app is laid out and makes everything super easy to find and book a class (this is not an #ad).  Plus, booking a class and having a cancellation fee = inevitable dedication.


Find complimentary workouts — If you’re looking to try something new, there are a lot of fitness retailers that offer complimentary workouts. For example, Athleta at Westfield UTC has local instructors from studios such as Yoga Tropics, Barre3 and the Rush come on a weekly basis to offer free workouts. It’s a great way to try new teachers and different workouts all for free! If you’re shopping at Westfield UTC or just in the area, pop-in for a workout, or check out their calendar here.

Attend a workout festivalThe Dailey Method, a line of barre studios that offers a focused and effective workout, just hosted their second annual outdoor barre festival called Daileyfest. This free festival brought together fitness, meditation and the heath and wellness community for a one day action packed yet thoughtful festival. They also introduced their newest workout — Dailey Fusion, combining traditional barre with bursts of intervals. If you missed out, you can try this new class (and The Dailey Method) at the Carlsbad, San Diego and Rancho Bernardo studios.


Drink the juice — remember when I lived in Little Italy and had access to the best Farmers’ Market including my favorite juice, OH! Juice? We’ll they recently opened a tasting room in Carlsbad, bringing the OH! Juice up to North County (and closer to me). The new tasting room allows for you to try juices before you buy them, and also see the process of how they create their cold-press juices. It’s all part of their mission to educate consumers on the importance of choosing an organic and healthy lifestyle for long-lasting and sustainable health. Definitely a must do if you’re up this way.  The OH! Juice Tasting room is located at 5631 Palmer Way, Suite A, Carlsbad, CA 92010.



This #Skindependence campaign is sponsored by Well at Walgreens, but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Dri-Fit isn’t only for running tops and workout pants. Just like you don’t want your workout wear to get soaked with sweat or cause chafing, Well at Walgreens pads utilize the same type of technology – the Dri-Fit™ system – to wick away moisture and eliminate friction. This line at Walgreens now has a variety of pads to empower you to regain your #Skindependence.


During my last period, I took the 7-Day challenge and tried out the Well at Walgreens feminine care products to really put them to the test. My plethora of pads included the Well at Walgreens Ultra Thin Pads featuring the Dri-Fit™ system, Well at Walgreens Long Super Ultra Thin Pads featuring the Dri-Fit™ system, Well at Walgreens Overnight Ultra Thin Pads featuring the Dri-Fit™ system and Well at Walgreens Regular Pantiliners featuring the Dri-Fit™ system.

One of my biggest fears about trying out these pads was just that…wearing a pad. I have no Mean Girls confession to make of a heavy flow and a wide-set vagina. It’s just, it’s been a while since I’ve worn a “sanitary napkin.” I’d even go as far to say AGES.

The last time I can recall wearing a pad ended up being one of the most traumatic experiences of my teenage life. I was at the stage where I had embarrassingly already started my period before all of my friends. At this point in time, my mom didn’t allow me to wear tampons so I was strictly a pad girl. It was a summer afternoon and everyone went swimming. I had my underwear secretly set up with a fresh pad for when I returned so I didn’t have to awkwardly go to the bathroom with a pad in hand. Well this completely backfired when I walked into a room of a completely shredded fresh pad on the floor. My friend’s dog (as dogs do) sniffed out the vagina of my underwear and ate out my feminine hygienic product.


Shortly after that I’m pretty sure I made the plea to my mom to switch to tampons. Since making this transition, I’ve never turned back. And I’ve continued to maintain this perception that pads are bulky and inhibiting…like your “area” can’t breath. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the Well at Walgreens products, especially the Dri-Fit™ system. It left me feeling fresh and not like I was sitting in a diaper. And this time around I’ve learned my lesson to not pre-set my panties with a pad 😉

Normally my comfort zone is a popular branded plastic applicator tampon, whose name kind of rhymes with “Spandex Twirl”…it’s a product I trust and gravitate towards during that time of the month. However, after trying out these pads, I have a couple of more options to add to my repertoire. I’d say the pantiliners were light and easy for back-up/extra protection on those almost nonexistent days. And the overnight pads were great for night because I didn’t even have to think about the ominous TSS/wearing a tampon to bed. Now I feel comfortable switching it up and grabbing Well at Walgreens feminine care products featuring the Dri-Fit™ systems – especially now that I know, and have experienced, their high quality and affordable price.

couponPLUS, shopping for that T.O.M. at Walgreens means T.O.M. treats 😛

Click here for a coupon to get $1.50 off your next purchase of Well at Walgreens fem. care products featuring the Dri-Fit™ system.  Good for any ONE (1) Well at Walgreens Brand Ultra Thin or Maxi Pads with Dri-Fit™ (excludes 20ct. liners).


Want to try them for yourself? Enter the #Skindependence Sweepstakes for a chance to win each item I’ve featured above as well as some other fun goodies to help you feel comfortable during your T.O.M. >> Well at Walgreens #Skindependence

Bonus! Join in on the conversation via Twitter on July 7th for another chance to win the featured Well at Walgreens Feminine Care products featuring Dri-Fit™ system, a Walgreens gift card and other prizes! Stay tuned for full details.



Or a month in review…since I last updated, I ate Cardiff Crack at a Padres game with my mom and brother, went on an epic camping trip, had a lazy Memorial Day weekend including running (but not the Mountains 2 Beach Marathon I was supposed to run…), brunching, bowling, watching movies (like 180 degrees South and Damnation), and drinking beeeers.  I moved out of my apartment, and have been homeless for the past 2 weeks (except not because my pseudo-family graciously took me in), read #GirlBoss (better late than never?), visited the new Tasting Room Del Mar, went to Kelli’s happy bridal shower, drank rose with London at various restaurants, ate mashed potato pizza at Urbn (numerous times), and saw The Nice Guys, twice.








Weekly Workout Recap (5/15-5/21):
Sun – Rest
Mon – 6.5 mi
Tues – Rest
Wed – Rest
Thurs – 4 mi
Fri – Rest
Sat – 14 mile Skyline Trail
Total Weekly Mileage: 10.5 mi
2016 miles: 435 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (5/22-5/29):
Sun – 10 mile San Jacinto Peak Trail to Tramway
Mon – Rest
Tues – Rest
Wed – 7.25 mi
Thurs – 4.5 mi
Fri – Rest
Sat – 5 mi
Sun – Rest
Total Weekly Mileage: 16.75 mi
2016 miles: 451.75 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (5/30-6/5):
Mon – 4.5 mi
Tues – 6 mi
Wed – Rest
Thurs – 3.5 mi
Fri – Rest
Sat – 8 mi
Sun – 6.75 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 28.75 mi
2016 miles: 480.5 mi

Weekly Workout Recap (6/6-6/12):
Mon – 7 mi
Tues – 6 mi
Wed – Rest
Thurs – Rest
Fri – 5 mi
Sat – Rest
Sun – 6.25 mi
Total Weekly Mileage: 24.25 mi
2016 miles: 504.75 mi



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