LA Reunion

Hi lovelies! I hope that you are having a fantastic week and are looking ahead to Friday and some fun weekend plans! Today, I have to give a very special birthday shoutout to my brother Brooks who is turning 29! You’ve seen Brooks on the blog before but what you don’t know is how close we are- we talk almost every day and meet for lunch about once a week, sometimes more! We are so lucky to work mere blocks from each other and I love getting to see him so regularly. He is so supportive and caring and I have spent the last 25 years looking up to him! Happy Birthday dear brother!

Brooks and me on my 24th birthday

And now for another catch-up installment! A few weeks ago I went to LA for my school’s alumni weekend. No, it wasn’t an official “reunion” but it was a time for me to reunite with all of my college girlfriends. We try and see each other semi-regularly but with all of our busy schedules sometimes it is hard to coordinate. For our weekend we stayed at the gorgeous Belamar hotel in Manhattan Beach. The location was perfect (and near some of my favorite college haunts) and the amenities were great.

On our first night there, we got settled in the hotel and went got dressed up and went to Primativo for dinner. It was my first time there and it is the cutest wine bar/restaurant. We sat outside in the garden area that is dimly lit with twinkly lights and candles, making it the perfect atmosphere for us to get some catching up in! We had a few bottles of wine and a little bit of everything on the menu! Everything was fantastic but our favorite dish was the Coq Au Vin “Blanc”- Slow Roasted Mary’s Farm Chicken, olive oil poached potatoes, market vegetables, herb jus Bourgogne Blanc, France. I’ve had Coq au Vin before but never with white wine and the sauce was incredible- I literally wanted to drink it and since I was still having bread then, I used the delicious crusty bread to soak it up as a classier option 😉 After our amazing dinner (and a few pictures of course) we went to a few bars in Venice and Santa Monica and then piled in a cab to go back to MB.

The next day we woke up and started the day at Marmalade Cafe for brunch before our Alumni Bar Crawl. We had their peach mimosas with champagne, peach nector and orange juice but because my friends know how much I hate peaches, mine was just a classic mimosa. The girls really enjoyed the peach nector though in theirs! For my meal, I had a short stack of their Seven Grain Almond Granola pancakes topped with strawberries. They were good but so dense that I could only finish one!

After our delicious breakfast we headed over to the bar crawl. It was fun seeing people from the past but of course my favorite part was just hanging out with the girls. Although we were having fun (and of course, taking lots of pictures) a few of us were feeling tired so we decided to get frozen yogurt and head back to the hotel to take a nap, which felt glorious!

When we woke up went to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants from college, La Sirena.  They have the best mexican food and I am pretty much obsessed with their margaritas, chips and burritos. I never order a burrito at Mexican restaurants, but theirs is better than any that I’ve had before! My best friend and I split one like the old days and it was delicious! From there we headed over to Dry Bar to get blow outs before we went out that night! I opted for the Cosmo-Tai which has volume on top and loose curls throughout the hair. After my last experience at a blow out bar, I made sure to tell her to use lots of product because curls typically do not hold. They did ultimately fall, but I was pleased with how it looked with a little wave. After that we went back to the hotel and got ready and went to a friends house before going out. Of course we spent this time taking more pictures. Can you tell yet that it was a picture heavy weekend?

The next morning we got up to go to brunch at The Strand, a new restaurant in Manhattan Beach. This place has recently had a major renovation (LA friends you might remember it as the bar Beaches!) and has a gorgeous view overlooking the water. We had a wonderful time catching up and of course, couldn’t help ourselves from going down to the beach for a few pics as well. From there, we blasted some of our favorite college songs and drove along the PCH with the windows down. It felt just like college. We ended up at LMU and it was so crazy to be on campus again! I haven’t been back since graduation and I can’t even express  how weird it was because while it looked the same, I felt so different this time around and things in my life have changed so much. It was kind of bizarre. I didn’t stay for too long at the Alumni BBQ because I was meeting up with my sorority little-sis and then going to the airport, but we did take the time to recreate our college graduation pictures.

All in all, it was such an amazing weekend and I had such a blast with my girlfriends!