product review · things I'm loving

San Diego Map Art + A Gallery Wall

In our office, we have this one weird wall that’s been missing something. We try to keep the space creative and fun, which we hope will reflect in the work we do.

As Adam does most of his writing there, he has one wall full of whiteboards, bulletin boards with notes and quotes pinned, and posters from some of his favorite bands.

The wall opposite that has served as an often-rotating canvas, full of some of my photos from abroad and random assortment of other things we liked. Even after almost three years of living here, we never really put that much effort into that wall, though I’ve been wanting to do a funky and fun gallery wall for almost as long.

When Jennifer, with Modern Map Art, reached out to me about her San Diego art print, I was so excited! Finally, that wall would have a focal point and I could begin making something fun out of it.

When I visited the website, I loved how many options there were.

In addition, each of these beautiful maps is available in five different sizes: 8×10, 12×18, 16×20, 18×24 and 24×36. I talked with Adam and we decided to go with the blue and yellow one in 16×20. I wanted to make sure it was large enough to be a focal point on that wall, and I loved how bright and fun the colors were.

A little over a week after ordering, the map had arrived! It came in a large hard cardboard tube (which Maeby later stole because she thought it was a fun toy), and when I unrolled it, I was in love.

san diego map art

 

The bright blues and yellows did not disappoint and that night I got to work on our wall. I initially planned to order a frame (and still will in the coming weeks), but I was so excited to get this map up that for now, I have it hung with some white binder clips and push pins. It took me awhile to figure out what to put up there with it, but since I wanted the wall to be a culmination of things Adam and I love, I knew it would be a nice collection of photos, musical pieces, and other miscellaneous items.

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On the wall, we have:

  • Two canvas prints – One Adam’s friend did a loooooong time ago and one I made when I first moved here
  • Three framed photos – One of me and my teammates from college, one of two of our best friends, and one of Adam and his friends from when he first moved out here
  • A large print from my time abroad
  • A Beatles record – Adam’s favorite band of all time
  • A signed poster of another band Adam liked back in the day
  • My old license plate from the car I drove across country a little over three years ago (letters blocked out)

And, in the middle of it all: the San Diego map print!

There are still quite a bit of blank spaces and the wall is pretty big, so we plan to add to it as we can. For now, I love that this wall is a representation of us, regardless of the mixed media types, and that it fully captures the creative and colorful vibe we’ve been trying to convey in our office for a long time.

Most of all, I love that this map is a fun and beautiful cartographic representation of San Diego. Adam and I plan to move back to New England in the coming years. Life in San Diego is wonderful but New England, full of its cold weather and sarcasm, will always be home. This print will always be representative of our beginnings and my time in America’s Finest City, and we can take it with us wherever we go.

 

Disclosure: I received this product for free in exchange for an honest review on my blog. All opinions are my own.
dog things · throwback thursday · winter

Snow in San Diego?

Not quite…but kind of!

One thing that’s pretty cool about living here that I never experienced before is that you can leave your house, where it’s 80 degrees, and drive an hour east into the mountains, and there’s snow and it’s in the 30s or 40s.

Back in December, I heard that it snowed in the Laguna Mountain area (in San Diego county), so I grabbed Maeby and we made the drive east. A lot of the snow had already melted but there were still people out there sledding and it was very much worth heading out that way. Here are some highlights from our trip out there.

 

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It was during the week and as I mentioned, a lot of the snow had already melted, so it was an easy drive without traffic or any snow/ice on the roads. That being said, if you do choose to head out towards Laguna Mountain to go sledding or play in the snow on a weekend, I recommend getting up there early to avoid traffic. The best part about all of this though? Once you’re cold and/or done with the snow, it’s right back to warm, sunny weather.

dog things · fitness · photos

This Weekend in Photos: March 13-15 – Running, Volunteering and Jazzercise

Friday

Friday evening after a crazy work week, I met up with some friends for dinner and drinks at Eureka in UTC. It was great to catch up and spend some time with some of my favorite ladies, and everything we got was delicious. If you ever end up there, I highly recommend the truffle cheese fries. Yes – they are as good as they sound.

Saturday

I woke up early and took Maeby to Mission Bay Park for a nice and easy run.

misson bay san diego park

mission bay sd

It was quiet when we first started, but within ten minutes, the path got kind of crowded due to a St. Patrick’s Day race happening at the park. Maeby did so well though, despite the crowds and the noise, and we finished our short run all smiles.

dog enjoying sunshine

Saturday afternoon, I volunteered with a local dog rescue.

Per my new year’s resolutions, so far this year, I have spent a good amount of time determining what makes me happy, and finding a way to do more of that. Knowing that all of these dogs are in foster care and if I can help get one adopted, it means another dog somewhere gets to leave the shelter, is incredibly rewarding. It doesn’t hurt that I literally just pet and play with dogs for a few hours. I started volunteering every Saturday about a month ago, and it’s the highlight of my week.

dog named toast

second chance dog rescue

second chance dog san diego

second chance animal rescue san diego

All of these dogs are available for adoption (and they’re all so, so sweet!), so if you or someone you know might be interested in making a new best friend, please let me know. And if it’s not one of the dogs pictured here, we have many more of all breeds and sizes, so again, feel free to reach out if you’re in the San Diego area and are interested.

san diego night sky

Saturday evening, after running a few errands, I caught a beautiful sunset on my way home, and spent the rest of my evening taking it easy with Adam, watching bad reality TV and Tina Fey’s new show, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Sunday

I tried out a new-to-me exercise studio in the college area (La Mesa, right near SDSU).

la mesa jazzercize

I had never tried Jazzercise before, and I’m sure my perception of it was similar to what your perception probably is…but real talk? It was SO much fun. I’ll be sharing a full review of my experience in a few days, but if you’re in the San Diego area, definitely give this studio a try, and if you’re not, try and find a studio near you. It was such an energized and fun class, and I would totally recommend this studio to any of my friends.

The workout was definitely a good way to start out my day, especially since later in the afternoon, a few of our friends came over to watch some hockey and barbecue.

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I also wanted to note that I’ve shared this post through Running ‘N’ Reading’s Weekend Update! As always, thanks for hosting!

How was your weekend and what was the highlight of it?

life · photos · travels

This Weekend in Photos: January 23-26 – Ventura + Santa Barbara

santa barbara palm trees

Adam and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary this past weekend, and decided to head up to Santa Barbara for a couple of nights.

Before deciding on where we’d go away for the weekend, I was actually in touch with Rachel, from My Two Pitties, who told me she’d be down in Southern California to visit her family. She let me know she’d be in Ventura, and since I’ve been dying to meet her and her two adorable pit bulls, and take Maeby to explore other parts of California, I knew I wanted to meet up with her. Finding out that Adam and I would be able to get a great rate on the Fess Parker Doubletree Hilton Resort through my work confirmed that we would be heading up to Santa Barbara on Saturday afternoon, stopping in Ventura on the way to tire Maeby out, and leaving on Monday.

Saturday

ventura dogs on beach

ventura dogs beach

dogs on beach ventura

dog running on beach in ventura

We met up at a beach for humans (shh, don’t tell anyone), and it was absolutely gorgeous. The weather was perfect, the waves were huge, and it was great meeting Rachel! Kaya and Norman, the two pitties pictured above with Maeby, are exactly as Rachel described them. Kaya was overly-fixated on her tennis ball, and Norman was just the sweetest thing ever. He and Maeby chased each other around, while Kaya buried her tennis ball in the sand. It was so great meeting someone who loves their dogs as much as we love Maeby, and Adam was happy to have someone to talk about movies with.

After rinsing Maeby off, we said our goodbyes and made the short drive up to our hotel in Santa Barbara.

When my coworker set up our hotel room, she notified them it was our anniversary. Right after we got to our room, we heard a knock on the door and were given some champagne! It was such a nice surprise, but the card was addressed to Mr. and Mrs. [my last name], since the reservation was under my name, and you know, we’re not married, so it made us laugh.

fess parker anniversary champagne

Adam and I took it easy before dinner, and Maeby fell asleep sitting up. I guess her time at the beach wore her out!

dog sleeping sitting up

We grabbed dinner at Julienne. As much as Adam and I wanted to take pictures of our food, we kept forgetting to because we were so excited to eat when each course came out (we did a four-course menu for $55 a person – such a good deal). Hands down, it was the best meal either of us have ever had.

Sunday

Maeby and I started our day off with a run along the beach, down to the harbor.

santa barbara running

santa barbara harbor

dog running path santa barbara

It was already pretty warm out, but I really enjoyed how beautiful it was. I know Maeby enjoyed our run too – there were a lot of people and other dogs out walking and running.

In the afternoon, Adam and I grabbed a couple of appetizers and drinks at Santa Barbara FisHouse (so good!) and walked down Stearns Wharf.

stearns wharf santa barbara

santa barbara seagulls

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santa barbara panorama

santa barbara bird

We spent the rest of our afternoon just taking it easy, and at night, Adam and I had dinner at Finch and Fork. While most of the reviews were for brunch, the dinner menu looked really good and we weren’t disappointed. Definitely another place worth trying if you’re visiting Santa Barbara!

Monday

Took Maeby for a walk along the beach before heading out…

santa barbara sunrise

…and arrived home in the early afternoon. Maeby’s PetBox was waiting for her, and she capped off her long weekend away with new toys and treats.

dog toys petbox

It’s back to work and back to reality tomorrow, but it was so, so nice to have a weekend away.

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I also wanted to note that I’ve shared this post through Running ‘N’ Reading’s Weekend Update! As always, thanks for hosting!

How was your weekend? If you could have a weekend away anywhere right now, where would you go?

photos

The Weekend in Photos: January 9-11 – Night Running, Barre3 UTC and Cowles Mountain

I’m excited to be sharing my weekend in photos through the Weekend Update Link-Up with Running ‘n’ Reading!

It was my first full week back at work since mid-December, and it was a stressful one. There was so much to get caught up on and I had my annual review (which went really well!), so I was ready for the weekend when it rolled around.

Friday

night run san diego

My first run in awhile, but I had a nice 4-mile night run with Maeby. We ran down to the canyon by our house and back up a gnarly hill, but it was a perfect way to wrap up a crazy work week.

Saturday

cowles san diego review

cowles view

dogs cowles san diego

cowles mountain san diego view

Took a barre class in the morning, as part of the Barre3 challenge I’m currently taking, and then met up with my friend Addi (a friend from college who lives out here now) for a hike at Cowles Mountain with Maeby. I’ve hiked this before when my friend Caitlin came to visit, but hadn’t done it since. Saturday afternoon was in the 60s and sunny – basically, it was the perfect day to get out and moving.

Sunday

barre3 utc

Another morning class at Barre3. After Saturday’s hike, it was pretty tough, but as always, a great workout.

rain in san diego

Unfortunately, it rained all day Sunday, so I spent the afternoon indoors. After running errands and grabbing breakfast with Adam, my friend (who just got a dog) came by for some dog playtime and a little bit of training.

The rest of the day was spent reading and taking it easy…which, let’s be honest, rainy days are perfect for.

And with that, I’m ready for another crazy work week. It’s already Tuesday, meaning we’re not too far away from the weekend!

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How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun?

 

los angeles · photos

New Year’s Eve in Los Angeles

Adam and I, and our friends Myles and Kayla, drove up to LA on Wednesday afternoon. We got up there before all the traffic and early enough to take it easy and nap before a fun night. Our friend Mike hosted a party, and we ended up spending most of our night there, and then watched the ball drop at a different party in West Hollywood. It was a fun night and I’m excited to see what 2015 brings.

Happy New Year, everyone!

new years eve 1

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new years eve 2

new years eve 7

new years eve 3

new years eve 4

new years eve 5