July 30, 2014

A Quick Trip to San Diego

Last Thursday I headed down to San Diego for a mini road trip & getaway. I went to college in San Diego so it is always nice to revisit my old stomping grounds. One of my very best friends still lives down there so I was able to stay and spend time with her. I was there 5 days but two of them were spent driving, so that really left me with the weekend to fit in all my favorite SD spots. 

While we did go out and have a dressed up, drinking night in the Gaslamp, most of the time there was spent relaxing and eating. Besides getting to spend time with the bestie, eating all my fave food was high on my priority list during my visit. 

You really can't go wrong with Mexican food in San Diego, it's everywhere and it is delicious. Sit downs to drive throu's, there is easily 100's of places to go. I ate several spots but my go to is El Indio, set just outside of downtown it is quick , easy and delicious. It has been featured on Diners, Drive Ins & Dives, and is a great spot for a tasty, affordable meal. I took my entire family here during graduation and they still talk about it today! Try the mordiditas, they are unique and scrumptious!

Another favorite of mine and a nice alternative to all the Mexican food is Sushi Deli. There are three locations, but I prefer the one in Claremont. There was always a crazy (worth it) wait, but now they have added a great back room and patio, which basically doubled their capacity. I'm sure there can still be a wait at times but the back patio was beautifully and breezy, grad a seat there if you can. Sushi Deli has an amazing and affordable selection of eats, plus a bar and a happy hour. They have traditional rolls but you should definitely try out there other more unique rolls!
Here we have the Fire Fire Roll and in the back the Pico de Gallo Roll. Not pictured; our third roll the Hot Hot Crunchy Roll. So delicious, def try a Hot roll, you wont regret it. 

Lastly I always seem to crave froyo when I'm in SD and luckily like Mexican food it is everywhere. So when the mood struck while hanging at the beach, I was only a short walk from my tasty treat! If your at La Jolla Shores beach, be sure to grad some froyo at Yogurt Your Way

Ocean Beach
Another amazing treat San Diego has to offer is it's many beaches! Depending on what your looking for you can find a beach that suits your needs. If you want to be naked hit up Black's Beach. If you want to take your dog and be a little more secluded head to Del Mar. If grabbing a drink or a lot of drinks then getting tattooed or pierced is your thing then head to Pacific Beach. 

Ocean Beach

La Jolla Shores
I however was in the mood for non of the above and instead went to Ocean Beach and La Jolla Shores during my visit. OB is similar to Santa Cruz, it is the mellower, hippier side of San Diego. The pier offers great views and there are lots of near by shops, bars and restaurants to keep you busy. 
La Jolla Shores is more of your classic beach. Lots of families and umbrellas. Beautiful surrounding area and a great place to spend the day soaking up the sun. If you get a chance I'd really recommend kayaking at the Shores. My friend worked for one of the rental companies and gave me an amazing tour of the shore and caves. There's a bunch of places to tour through and you can usually get a great deal via Living Social or Groupon. 

Hope you get a chance to visit SD for yourself!


Interweb Goodies

Happy Wednesday!
Image via Ici

I scream, you scream we all scream for ICE CREAM!! Check out these top spots for ice cream across the US! Three Twins is a local favorite of Kira's and Ici always has the best flavors and longest line!

Kira was just in San Diego but sadly did not get to go to Comic Con. You can however relive some of the best moments here and here!

Brainstorming is the best...right? Well according to Fast Company there may be a better way to get ideas.

Having confidence and keeping it may be an ongoing process, but here are a few tips to get you closer to a confident and more happy you!

And if the Comic Con link didn't tip you off that we're a bit nerdy, this will: THE MOCKING JAY TEASER TRAILER FINALLY CAME OUT! Only one minute long, but so exciting!

Have a great hump day and remember to smile!


July 28, 2014

Bay Area Bites: Comal

A couple of weeks ago my Mom and Aunt met me for dinner after work. We decided to head to Comal in Downtown Berkeley for a delicious meal!

Comal is literally steps from the Downtown Berkeley BART station so it's super easy to get to. They have a great ambiance to the restaurant which features a patio in the back!  

We started off with some amazing drinks - I got a SPF 2020 and my aunt got a margarita. My drink was perfectly fresh, and I love anything with St. Germain. My aunt commented that it was one of the best margs she has ever had. 

We sat in the patio and got chips, salsa (three kinds), guac, and spicy jicima and cucumbers to start. The jicama was fresh and spiced perfectly. The salsas were all so different with so much flavor! 

For our main course we decided on one of their dinner plates that you can split between 2-3 people. We got turkey mole (again with three different kinds!) which also came with rice, beans, greens, and hand-made tortillas. 

What I loved about Comal was the do-it-yourself attitude. The meal gave you options of what you wanted to create! I highly recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting the Bay Area! Even if it is just for a drink at the bar!


July 24, 2014

Fashion Fridays: Finding Your Style

Happy Friday!! Kira is enjoying some time in San Diego this weekend and Ashley is super excited about her cousin's bridal shower on Saturday that she's been planning!

This Fashion Fridays isn't about a particular style - it's about refining your own style. We have been talking a lot recently about how we want simplify our looks and dress a little more "grownup". Our styles have changed a lot over the years (we both went through a super preppy phase!) and I think we are both feeling like we have found our looks.

So it's super exciting when you have found the look and an idea of how you want to dress moving forward but how do you come to this conclusion? And how will you afford a whole new wardrobe? And how do you prioritize your purchases?

We have both found that we have been gaining a lot of inspiration from other bloggers, magazines, and especially Pinterest. We will look at our Pinterest fashion boards (Ashley's and Kira's) and take note of the trends throughout. We are both leaning more towards classics with a twist. Ashley is a little bit more feminine and romantic while Kira has more of a bold/geometric/pattern vibe. Looking at your Pinterest board as a whole will give you a really good idea of what you gravitate towards.

So once you have realized that you want a change and there are certain things that you want to purchase (or many things) how will you change up your look without going totally broke in the process? Shop the sales and shop the basics. Always start with basics, little black dress, new top, basic jacket. Once you have the basics down then it will be easier to add in your new fun elements. That fabulous printed jacket is to-die-for but will you wear it that often? And will you be able to wear it with everything? Mix and matching is key when shopping on a budget for a new wardrobe. Also, shop the sales for those fun unique items. The sales rack can be a great place to find those quirky items in your closet, and since they don't cost too much it won't be that bad if you only wear it a few times.

And lastly, make a list. Like really - sit down and write down all of the items of your dream closet. You can begin to form outfits in your mind and it will keep you focused on the items that you really want vs. the things that are on trend. Ashley did this and it really helped her when out shopping, she could look at a list as a reminder of things that she knew would make an impact on her wardrobe. She kept it on her phone and crossed things off as she purchased them.

What are some of your tips when trying out a new style or shopping?


July 23, 2014

Interweb Goodies

Hump day treats for all!

Check out The Capital's latest fashion trends here! #OnePanem #UNITY

Get great drinks and take a trip back in time with these amazing Speakeasy's across the US!

Ashley loves the Olsen's and weddings, so it is safe to say that she is in love with this wedding dress the two designed.

Nature vs Concrete: check out these beautiful photos of trees fighting back.

When photos of fashion aren't cutting it, look to these amazing fashion quotes for inspiration.


July 21, 2014

Make A WISH!

A night out on the town with AKA Blog

On Friday night we went out to celebrate our friend Amy's birthday! We were really excited to try out a new place, WISH, in SOMA (South of Market) in San Francisco.

While parking wasn't easy the night was a lot of fun! WISH is a great place to go for a few specialty cocktails. Everything was perfectly made, nothing too strong - but you knew that you were getting you money's worth. They had a fun DJ playing some more 'clubby' dance songs that were fun to jam to.

Our favorite drinks of the night - Little Italy and Ginger Mojito. They were both delish!!

Another great thing about the location is that there are a lot of other bars in the area so things stay open late. We ended up grabbing some late night snacks before heading back to Amy's place to watch some Ja'mie before falling asleep!

We both loved our outfits that night, but sadly didn't get any good quality pics of them - so look for some fun outfit posts soon!

If you live in the Bay Area - what are some of your favorite places to go out?


Amazing Apps: Lumosity

There are a zillion apps out there and more come out everyday, there are some however that are more amazing than others. 

Lumosity is one of these amazing apps.

If your not familiar with Lumosity it is a great brain training app. Brain training you say, how could that be!? Well I'm not actually sure how it works but I can tell you that it is fun and easy to use. The app gives you a few games to play each day and keeps track of your progress. Some of the games involve math while others involve memory and spatial reasoning.

The app is free to download and gives you a variety of games to play and tracks your progress in each game, as well as tracks a few overall stats. If you want to take full advantage of Lumosity then you will have to purchase a subscription. This can be for a few months or an entire year. I didn't feel like a subscription was necessary so I stuck with the freebie version.

I try to play everyday but that does not always happen. I do however see improvement in my sharpness and ability with the games. Little by little you get better, it is a nice break in the day or a great way to get yourself going in the morning.

All Images via Lumosity
Is there any learning apps you use?


July 18, 2014

Fashion Fridays: Foreign Exchange Show!

Happy Friday! This weekend I am going to see one of my fave groups, Foreign Exchange! I am so excited to get to see them again and to spend some quality time with my brother (he's moving to NYC soon)!

 For concerts I good for a cool and comfy vibe. I wanna look put together but feel like I can stand and dance for hours if need be, here's what I put together to wear to the show.

The best part of this outfit is easily the pants. They are amazing. Love the color, love the zebras, another great Buffalo Exchange find!

The Shirt is long and has pockets! It can really go with anything and be easily dressed up or down. I originally bought it to wear to Kanye's show last year but ended up wearing something else. It's a great basic and was a great price at Marshall's

The shoes were another steal at Payless. My other black flats died on my trip to NOLA earlier this year and I was able to quickly replace them with this pair. Not quite as great as the last pair but they will do for now.

And my jacket is from Old Navy

Me pretending to be a model, I'm actually incredibly awkward in front of the camera but Ash and I are working on it! Fake it til you make it right!

Have an amazing Friday and a great weekend!


July 17, 2014

Ciao Bella


I have been feeling rather nostalgic recently, three summers ago I was enjoying my time in beautiful Italy while I was studying abroad.
Strolling the streets

My study abroad adventure was short and sweet, but still made a huge impact on me. During July of 2011 I lived in Rome, studied Renaissance Art and Food & Wine of Italy. Yes, those were my classes.

My beautiful Rome-mates; Amy, Tricia, Katie, Veronika, and Alicia

I lived with 5 other fabulous ladies, including my college bestie Amy, in a great apartment in North-East Rome close to Piazza Bologna. When we weren't in classes we were going to the beach, exploring ruins, eating gelato, shopping in local shops, and enjoying time together. We had a balcony that looked over the street, a washer that flooded our kitchen at least 10 times, and neighbors who always laughed at our crazy antics.
Exploring Pompeii

Capri is a dream

I was lucky enough to travel though out the country with my program. A day trip to Florence was complete with a train ride through Tuscany, shopping for leather goods in boutiques, a long extended lunch, and a trip to Galleria dell'Accademia to see Michaelangelo's The David. I also spent a weekend in Pompeii, Sorrento, and Capri. Pompeii is a true wonder that everyone must see and Capri is my favorite place in Earth. Our whole program decided to rent a boat and sail around the island -  swimming through the grottos is something I will never forget.

Colazione Italiano

In my classes I spent my days in a dream-like state. In my art class we took field trips to the Vatican and Villa Borghese. We explored old churches, walked the streets to see all the spectacular architecture, all while still being marveled that this was a class! I took a food and wine class where our field trips were not quite as glamorous, however we did have an unforgettable class. Each session I would learn about a different region of Italy and the different foods and wines that come from that area. My professor, Greg, was incredibly knowledgable and made the class super entertaining. Each session we had two dishes from the region cooked by Claudia, an ex-ballerina chef extrodinaire who has blue hair and wore Gucci! In addition to our classes, I became very close with two of the people who worked at my program, Andrea and Michela, they are both so full of life and I miss them dearly!

ti amo!!

My study abroad life was a dream, not only for the reasons already stated, but for the lightness that was felt in the romantic laid-back city. Every day was a fantasy, strolling the piazzas at night, consuming a fresh made cappuccino, or conversing with someone on the metro; every day way spent with much ease.

Ashley's Italy Tips

Rome will forever have my heart

- Converse with everyone, Italian is such a beautiful language
- Go to the Trevi Fountain at night
- Check out the price on a monthly bus/train pass - it will probably end up saving you a ton of $$
- Stroll throughout Capri with friends and wander into hotel gardens
- Purchase a floppy hat in Pompeii
- Eat arancini from Mizzica in Piazza Bologna
- Have a photoshoot with at The Colosseum at night
- Divulge in da domani a dieta gelato from Gelarte (translation: I will diet tomorrow)
- Pack many maxi dresses, midi skirts, and scarves as you need to have your knees and shoulders covered to enter many churches
- Go to the top of St. Peter's Basilica
- Plan a day to do nothing other than eat a long lunch and walk around!


July 15, 2014

Interweb Goodies

Wednesday is here! 

What little girl didn't dream of one day living in a castle. Ahh...If only we cold live in (or at least visit) all of these castles.

Summer is the perfect time to try one of these frozen desserts from Food&Wine.

The new cool thing... concerts in people's living rooms. We're signing up!

An interesting look on how some of the most creative people from history spent their time.

And lastly introducing Keaton Row. A great website where you can shop lookbooks from personal stylists and even become a stylist yourself. Ashley's friend Tracy just signed up and she's loving it. This has side hustle written all over it!

Have a happy Wednesday and don't forget to follow us on our Twitter and Instagram journeys too!


July 14, 2014

Summertime TV

Summer is great for many reasons, while TV can be enjoyable all year long, during the summer it can be extra fun. There is something about summer TV that ups the guilty pleasure factor. I'm sure this is intentional as there is only a small window of time to get you hooked before the season is over.

This summer I haven't been watching much but there are a few shows that I love and a few that have caught my guilty pleasure attention.

Shows I Love:

Wilfred: Great inappropriate comedy. In this show Elijah Wood becomes best friends with his neighbors dog, who he sees as a grown man in a dog suit. The show follows them around in their day to day life as Wilfred (the dog) guides them into all kinds of trouble. Each show begins with the title, along with a quote. This serves as the theme of the show. Previous themes have been guilt, loyalty and consequences. Each episode while ridiculous also has a moral or a lesson leaned based on these themes.

Louie: I love this show. It is not 100% a summer show but it did finally return after a very long hiatus in May. Louie follows the life and times of comedian Louis CK. The show is fictional but draws many parallels from the comedians real life. This show is amazing, it is thoughtful and introspective. It covers a broad range of topics from adolescence to adulthood and of course is all told with Louis CK's hilarious point of view.

*Bonus* both Louie and Wilfred's past seasons are on Netflix!

Guilty Pleasure Shows:

Under The Dome: This show is loosely based on Stephen King's novel of the same name. In this show the town of Chester's Mill gets trapped under a large dome. The residents have no idea where the dome is from and more importantly why it is there. Each episode is a day in the dome, so while the show began last summer, the residents have only been trapped for about 2 weeks. The show is a little ridiculous but its also interesting and mysterious, plus Hank from Breaking Bad aka Dean Norris is a main character so you get to see him again!

All Images via Google
Extant: Halle Berry goes to space by herself and ends up preggers! If that doesn't scream summer sensationalism I don't know what does. This show just started so not much to report as of yet but it has guilty pleasure ridiculousness written all over it!

What are you watching this summer?


July 13, 2014

The Importance of a List

Summer is here, and it is great!


A few weeks ago my roommate and I were lounging around the house on a hot summer night making big plans to spend the evening with Seth Cohen and the 4th season of The OC. We decided to make a fro-yo run before we got trapped in all of the Newport Beach drama.

While we sat outside and enjoyed our frosty treat, we decided that there were a lot of things that we wanted to do this summer. We joked around saying that we should write these things down so we don't forget.

 And that's what we did. And let me tell you - it works!

We have been crossing things off our list, making plans so the summer doesn't just slip by. We also decided we can keep adding to it and make it a year-round thing. We made rules such as "No staying in two nights in a row on a weekend" and "If we are just super tired then we invite people to our place and make a fun night of it" We wrote it up and placed it on a bulletin board in our kitchen, so it is staring at us all the time.

Here is a sample of a few things:

- Go to reverse Happy Hour at a few of our favorite spots, T-Rex and Fonda to name a couple.
- $5 movies on Tuesdays (at a few of our local movie theaters)
- Hikes
- Go to my cabin (and Reno!)
- Get tattoos
- Seafood adventure (we are super fortunate to live in such a great seafood area - we are thinking Tomlaes Bay to get oysters)
- Outdoor concerts (which we checked off this past weekend at Jazz and Blues by the Bay)
- Bowling nights
- Baseball games - go A's!!!

Zydeco Flames this past Friday at Jazz and Blues by the Bay. 

It has been fun to refer to the list on days/nights when we have nothing to do and it has pushed us to get outside of our comfort zone to try new things! 

What's on your summer list?


July 11, 2014

Fashion Fridays: Statement Jewlery

Happy Friday!! This week has flown by and here we are at Friday again. This week we choose to focus on our favorite statement pieces.

 Kira gave Ashley this ring with Ashley;s favorite catch phrase "ja'dore" on it. 

This is one of Kira's favorite necklaces. She picked it up at an amazing jewelry trade show in Chicago last year while visiting family. It is simple and because it is black and gold it can easily be worn with many outfits. Sometimes she will even add another, simpler gold chain on while wearing this for a more dramatic look.

This is the same necklace as above, just flipped backward. Kira loves gold and recently realized she could simply turn the necklace around for a new all gold look.
One of Ashley's old co-workers gave her these fab boho-esque earrings. They go perfect with maxis!

Kira loves elephants! These earrings always remind her of Ms. Frizzle from the magic school bus.

Ashley purchased this lion necklace from Sway specifically for the Kanye's Yeezus concert.

Ashley loves this blue-green statement necklace. It really goes with everything!

This great little gold bow is a great mix of masculine and feminine. Kira also bought this from Sway.

Layering your bracelets always makes a statement! Load up on different colors and textures for a great
 "arm party"

Kira got this zebra bangle as a birthday gift. It is so cute and always fun to wear. 

Kira picked this necklace up while traveling and loves to throw it on over a simple sweater.

How do you wear your statement pieces? Have a beautiful weekend!