Good morning everyone! I’ve been up since 3:45 Pacific time, and I probably could’ve done so much more than I have, but at least I’m getting a blog post out! We’ve been busy trying to put the finishing touches on our new tiny house, but I’m not a fix-it person like my husband, so it’s proving to be more of a challenge than I expected! Nevertheless we had a wonderful weekend trip to San Diego, which was the exact kick starter I needed to feel productive this week.
Living in SoCal is very different than living in the Bay Area, but I can tell you that it’s an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything. It’s amazing to see all the beauty and history and the excitement that exists here. And on weekends like this last one where I get to enjoy some of the beauty and the fun things that southern California has to offer, it can be easy to forget your troubles, even just temporarily.
If you ever wanted to take a trip, especially to escape this brisk winter weather most of the US is experiencing, I would highly suggest the San Diego area. There are endless amounts of things to do. The food is spectacular the shops and sights are numerous, and if you can get past the annoying traffic, (it exists all over Cali) it’s definitely worth your while.
We spent a majority of time relaxing at our family’s home during our visit, but on Saturday we got out and did some sightseeing. I got to go to some of the most beautiful places in San Diego, and it was so fun.
we started the morning off on our way to Old Town. The drive from the Murrieta area,where we were staying, was about an hour. But the drive was well worth it with the beautiful views of the California Hills. Our first stop was simply just to find a parking spot! Old Town is hopping; full of tourists and families on a Saturday. There is tons of shopping in the sweetest specialty shops, and fun street venders, accompanied by an endless list of restaurants and cafés. We drove our big Dodge 3500 pick up truck which doesn’t fit in parking garage very well so we had to go little bit further to find decent parking. If we were in a smaller vehicle though, it would’ve been much easier. But it was hardly boring searching for a parking spot. The architecture of the new and older homes in the area was gorgeous, and it was beautiful enough to keep us all entertained while searching a place to park.
Once we finally found a location we walked about half a mile to Café Coyote. I saw the line out front and was worried it would take us a few hours to get in. But we made it to the front in less than two minutes and we’re seated in about five. The cafe itself is huge and on the outskirts of the seating area there are several shops, including a candy store for children. You even get two free pieces of candy when you bring your kids menu to the candy counter.
They had the sweetest couple of older gentlemen who played mariachi style music for tips around the restaurant. They serenaded you if you had a particular song you would wanter to hear. They were such a delight to the atmosphere and made it feel so authentic.
As for the food, it was absolutely delicious and came out in a very timely manner. My sister-in-law ordered a bowl of the chicken tortilla soup, which looked heavenly! Omar got the California tacos, which had a total American flair to them with french fries included. Sami got a delicious cheese enchilada and stole some of the yummy guacamole off my plate to complete his meal. He finished every last bite. And I got the gluten-free carne asada tacos, which were more than filling for this pregnant mama. Carne asada has always been a weakness of mind since marrying Omar. It was accompanied by tortillas made fresh in house (you can even watch them make them at the front of the restaurant!) and a heaping portion of retried beans! Score!
Being gluten-free it was so nice to have a menu specifically set up for us with food allergy so we knew what food was OK and what was not. I did get some flour tortillas by mistake, but I just had to try a small bite. They were absolutely incredible. It made me so sad to not be able to eat them. But I requested the corn tortillas and they were piping hot and fresh when they arrived at the table.
After we finished lunch my sister-in-law and myself looked through some of the small stores located in the café, and I was so excited to find some beautiful hymalyan salt lamps for a very reasonable price along with some beautiful geodes and crystals. I am not into anything superstitious having to do with crystals, but I think they’re beautiful for decorating and they were all very reasonably priced.
After leaving the café we walked back towards the car and stopped in some of the sweet novelty shops with some beautiful handmade creations. I have become completely obsessed with the new llama and alpaca trend and they had some of the cutest alpaca fur ornaments for sale. Omar just laughed at my giddy self when I found them. They also had some really precious gourd crafts. Some creative individual had handcarved some of the sweetest little animals out of these gourds. They also had manger scenes of all shapes, colors, and sizes for sale on display that were carved into the side of different items. So cute! And of course they had all of the general items you would expect out of Hispanic the novelty shop!
When is leaving that location we saw a beautiful international tea shop, with coffees and teas from all over the world! There was a cute soap shop, and others specialty shops too along the path. Definitely the place you want to go if you want something original to take home with you.
Once leaving old town, We drove about 25 minutes to Coronado Island. It was a beautiful drive and the view of the bay was incredible! We got to see many of the smaller Navy ships along with the Mexican border and the giant condos that line the coast. Coronado is absolutely spectacular and you feel wealthy just driving into it! We parked on the street in front of some of the cutest boutiques I’ve ever seen! I was with Omar so there was no reason for me to go inside, and it all was probably too outside my price range anyway, it is Coronado after all! But it was still very cute! We walked about a half mile to Hotel Del Coronado where we walked around the beautiful exterior of that spectacular hotel! The beach was just feet from the back side of the hotel where a lovely patio restaurant was located. We continued to follow the path around until we came to Moo Time Creamery . A good ice cream shop will make a trip for me anytime. And this was great ice cream! I had no idea how large they’re serving sizes were, so I got the Turtle Time ice cream cup, and I could’ve split that between three or four people, and I know how to eat a lot of ice cream. . Instead of the normal vanilla and caramel ice cream combo, I opted for carmel and coffee with caramel and chocolate syrup with pecans separating the two layers and then topping that delicious delicacy with whip cream, some more caramel, some more pecans, and a cherry for good measure. I only made it about halfway through! It was so good but I just couldn’t do it and expect to walk home alive!
Thankfully I was able to keep walking while eating this diabetic coma in a cup and the beach is the absolute perfect place to enjoy such a sweet treat. Sami wanted to try all of our choices and he cried so hard when it was time for him to be done. He has definitely inherited my sweet tooth... good thing we don’t have that stuff around the house too often!
We walked probably quarter-mile down the beach and it was the most relaxing walk I have ever taken. The sand was just the right consistency to make the walk lovely and not a difficult or messy trudge. We watched a couple taking wedding photos at Sunset while children (including mine) ran all about, enjoying what appeared to be an absolutely perfect Saturday.
I wish I would’ve taken more pictures, but sometimes you need to put the camera down and just take in such a special moment.
If you are looking for a good vacation to escape the chilly weather, San Diego did not disappoint! The weatherman did say that it was unseasonably warm, but even if the temperatures were slightly chillier it still would’ve been incredibly comfortable.
The rest of the weekend was just spent loving on family and watching a little football! Which makes for a very nice weekend for me! There was so much more that we could’ve done if we wanted but I’m so glad we chose just being together over going out again. I’m definitely looking forward to our next trip down to get to experience more beautiful San Diego and the surrounding areas!
For those of you in the south, enjoy the last of this cold weather. And yes I am being sarcastic... makes me so grateful to have moved to California when we did! Sure to drive safe if there’s any ice and snow! Maybe, just don’t drive it all. And don’t forget to wash your hands. This flu is crazy! We feel like quarantining our self and living in a bubble! I hope this ends soon.
Good morning everyone! It feels so good to be back on Gold & Charm. I have missed you all tremendously, but I’ve just felt like I needed to take a step back for my sanity’s sake, for my family sake, and for time’s sake. So much has transpired since my last blog post several months back, but much of it has been wonderful and exciting! I can’t wait to share all the wonderful updates with you.
I hope your Holiday season was absolutely beautiful full of family good food and most of all the reason for the season, Jesus! I feel like in all the hustle and bustle of what is normal in the holiday time we forget that He’s the only reason we have anything to celebrate in the first place.
We spent Thanksgiving in sunny San Diego, swimming in the pool and relaxing on the back patio of my brother-in-law’s in 90° weather. I did feel a little bit spoiled! And I didn’t forget the amazing tamales my mother-in-law made! It just added to the wonder of Thanksgiving and give me a lot more to be thankful for, and my belly agreed. Then Christmas day we spent traveling to LA, where Omar will be working for the next 6 months or so. Thankfully though, marrying into a Hispanic family, we celebrated Christmas on Christmas Eve so we didn’t miss any of the fun family festivities or celebrating with our amazing church family Sunday morning. I even surprised Omar, in front of the church, with a gender reveal of baby #2! Btw, it’s a BOY!
But before Thanksgiving and before Christmas, basically since the last time that I wrote anything on this blog, Omar and I took probably the biggest step of faith we’ve ever taken and we have often opted for a lifestyle that most people think is either crazy or incredible! I don’t blame them either way because it’s a little bit of both! We (Samuel and I) have decided to go on the road with Omar so he can travel more for work. We have moved into a 1997 vintage Airstream travel trailer and we now go on the road wherever he goes. I did not want to be home with my son expecting another baby by myself during the week only to see my husband for 36 hours out of seven days, just to say that we were ‘established’. I have never had a problem getting up and leaving (thanks to being a military brat) so choosing to be OK with this lifestyle was not even a second thought in my mind. We have some wonderful friends who wanted to invest in our life, and they gave us this 34 foot Excella 1000 to make our perminat home. I always dreamed of living tiny and on the road but never imagine that I’d actually be doing it and thriving in it.... with a toddler and being almost five months pregnant.
We we are in the midst of doing a bit of remodeling work just to fit the needs of our growing family, but it’s mostly cosmetic and we have chosen to keep quite a bit of the original style, setting the trend ourselves.
I’ll be honest, when it comes to personal style I haven’t worn a full face of Makeup since probably Christmas Eve, and I cannot even recall when I curled my hair last. Yay for messy buns and cute braids. Sometimes priorities have to change to get you to where you need to be. I am currently walking through that transition with about as much grace as a drunk camel. But Jesus still loves me, so I come out on top! Hey, at least my house is clean...cleanish, I mean.
During this season I do hope to blog more than I have been, but I cannot guarantee the fluidity of my postings, or tell you what days I’ll attempt to share. But I would love to hear from all of you the best moving advice you’ve ever received, as well as your favorite simple DIY house project! I’m not a crafty person so I need some serious inspiration to turn a house into a home! Please share your ideas in the comments. I would really love to hear them!
I hope your Thursday is way better than your Monday and almost as good as Friday! I look forward to sharing with you more very soon!
Golden State Livin'. Southern Charm. Jesus Lover. Wifey. Mommy. Style Enthusiast. Thrifter.
New York Native. Bama Life. Style/Beauty Consultant. Entrepreneur.