Last week was a lot of firsts for me. First trip sans kids. First time away from my kids for more than 24 hours. And first sisters trip with both of my sisters. (I’ve travelled several times with each of my sisters separately but somehow we’ve never managed to all travel together.)
Since my younger sister lives in Los Angeles and my older sister had never been, we figured southern California would be the perfect spot for a quick getaway. We spent half of our time in LA and rented a house in the desert near Joshua Tree for the other half. (Joshua Tree was also a first for me, as was reading a book for the first time since having Isabelle more than three years ago. Not that I finished it, but getting through more than half a book should count for something, right? :P)
The trip was oh so good for my soul. It was amazing spending some quality time with my sisters, something we haven’t done in years. And also amazing to not be a mom for a few days. I honestly didn’t miss my kids at all (which sounds terrible but is true). It was a very weird feeling leaving them (a mixture of sadness, excitement, and probably mainly exhaustion) but, once we were at the airport, that feeling went away. Don’t get my wrong, I loved coming back home and the extra Nicky snuggles made my mama heart oh so happy (he’s not much of a snuggler usually) but, I’m not going to lie, having some uninterrupted me time was so very needed and I would’ve stayed another 5 days if I could have. (Speaking of another 5 days, we’re definitely making a sisters trip a new yearly tradition.)
Venice Beach was our first stop. We had a delicious brunch at Rose Cafe (I had the burrito and it was to die for! the salads are also super yummy), strolled through the canals, hung out at the beach, and watched the skate boarders at the skatepark (incl. one little boy who couldn’t have been older than 4? So amazing.)
Visiting the Venice canals is a must if you’re in the area! All the little houses are so picture perfect and, if you’re in the market for a vacation home, you can snatch one up right now for a cool 3.65 million (#nbd). A little tidbit for ya: the canals are actually man-made – they were built in 1905 by Abbot Kinney as part of his “Venice in America” plan.
Next stop was to the Santa Monica Pier. I’ve been to the pier four times now (on four separate trips) and still haven’t managed to go on any of the rides but they sure are fun to look at lol. Iced coffees by the beach were more our cup of tea (er, coffee). Plus way less crowded.
We got super lucky our second night in LA with a gorgeous, cloudly sunset over downtown.
We spent an afternoon in Malibu at my absolute favourite beach, El Matador. Definitely one of the most beautiful beaches around, with sea caves and giant rocks scattered across the beach. (We may or may not have devoured an entire pumpkin pie without any cutlery whatsoever. We’re classy like that.)
Driving back back from Malibu along the Pacific Coast Highway at golden hour: doesn’t get much more perfect than that. After a quick stop in Santa Monica (we had sushi and shopping plans but ended up being too tired for both), we drove back downtown and grabbed some takeout Poke instead. (It’s a raw fish salad that comes from Hawaii and is seriously oh so good!)
We spent our last day relaxing at my sister’s loft and grabbed some sushi at Kazunori (sister restaurant to Sugarfish). For the sushi lovers visiting Los Angeles in the near future – you MUST try one of these two places. Their sushi is to die for! So fresh and so tasty. At Kazunori they do mainly hand rolls which I normally don’t like but these were absolutely amazing. The fish was still cold, the rice still hot, and the seaweed still crisp. (Still drooling over the crab roll.)
On our way to the airport we took a quick detour to the Griffith Observatory to get a quick snap of the Hollywood sign and (smoggy) Los Angeles. We then drove through the Hollywood Hills to ogle at the gorgeous houses and over to West Hollywood to grab a coffee at Verve (my sister says it’s, hands down, the best coffee shop in all of LA).
Check out the second half of our trip photos (in the California desert) here!
[ All photos taken with with a Sony A6300 and f/1.8 20mm lens. ]