Our LA Story


Some things have been going on in the past couple of weeks, stuff I won’t talk about here, but that is why I have been lax in my blog postings as of late.

So our anniversary weekend away in LA was fun. We got to act like tourists, and take pictures and be goofy. And try new restaurants and visit a few cupcake shops. We went to Crumbs, Buttercakes Bakery and Vanilla Bake Shop. Crumbs is located in one of my favorite urban areas of LA, Larchmont. I could move there in a heartbeat. It’s just lovely.

Cupcake shops in LA

We stayed at a nice hotel called the Intercontinental in Century City. It wasn’t a touristy hotel but it was pretty centrally located to all the places we wanted to go. And they had free car service within a mile and there was lots to do within a mile. I really wanted to stay at The Georgian in Santa Monica but we made reservations too late and they were already booked. We drove by it though and be still my heart it was gorgeous. Look at that retro sign! Love it!

We spent most of our first day in Santa Monica. Walked along the 3rd Street Promenade, sampled some delicious organic strawberries at the Farmers Market, did some shopping and had lunch at Jack n’ Jills. It was delicious but warning -they charge $2.50 for soda and they hand you a CAN. I couldn’t believe I had paid $2.50 for a can of soda. Doh! Lesson learned… or so you think. More on that later. After lunch, we walked over to Penzey’s Spices which was a dream! I bought some terrific Vietnamese Cassia Cinnamon, Cake Spice, Dutch Process Cocoa and Hot Cocoa mix. It is the best cinnamon I have ever tasted and smelled. Sweet and spicy, absolutely perfect. I cannot wait to make some cinnamon roles with it.

We ended our day with our anniversary dinner at a little italian restaurant called Cafe Bella Roma. We had homemade gnocchi and it was delicious! Soft pillows in a creamy pesto sauce.

Anniversary Dinner at Cafe Bella Roma

The next day, we headed out to the Beverly Hills Farmers market and picked up some pastries from RockenWagner, saw Amy Poehler and headed to Peets Coffee on Sunset to grab an iced coffee before we hit the road to find the Hollywood Sign.

Beverly Hills Farmers Market

Finding that sign was an adventure. But we did, eventually. While we were driving around trying to find the sign, we saw Brian Dunkleman from Season 1 of American Idol.

Hollywood Sign/Reservoir

Then we were off to Graumans Chinese Theater.

My creation

I’ve lived in So Cal for 32 yrs and I’ve never been here. It was so crowded! And flippin hot that day. But still fun. I took some pictures of the handprints. These were my fav:

My creation
(Bing, Doris, Marilyn, Paul & Joanne)
Can you tell I like old movies?

We were getting hungry for lunch so we headed over to The Bowery for a burger. It was AWESOME. Perfectly cooked on an english muffin. Def go with the works on this one. And they serve their sweet potato fries with homemade ranch. It was so good! I want to make my own ranch dressing now.

Lunch at the Bowery

After we grabbed lunch, we headed over to Johnny Cupcakes on the advice of fellow cupcake baker Kari from Retro Bakery. It was a pretty cool shop. It was set up like a bakery but instead of cupcakes and cakes, there were tshirts, stickers, buttons and jewerly filling the pastry cases. One wall was lined with retro oven doors that would open and shut automatically. When they would ope, a burst of steam would come out. It was really cool. A neat concept for even a real bakery I think.

Johnny cupcakes mosaic

And we spent our last evening visiting Muscle Beach/Santa Monica Pier.

Santa Monica Pier

My creation

Now that I’ve been there, I probably won’t go back again. It wasn’t what I was expecting I guess. Very crowded, full of tourists. Kinda dirty. Lots of people peddling their talents like putting your name on a grain of rice and drawing a caricature of you. Not really my thing. But at least now I can say that I’ve been!

We must have walked miles and miles during this vacation. As well as spent a lot of time in the car and I still don’t feel like we’ve seen everything. I definitely wouldn’t mind another mini vacation to LA to explore some other areas. I’d love just to walk around and take pictures, especially in some of the older neighborhoods.

As we headed back home the next morning, we made a pit stop at the Farmers Market for some donuts from Bob’s.

LA Original Farmers Market LA Original Farmers Market

LA Farmers Market

As we sat there, eating our donuts and drinking coffee, Jeff Garlin walked by. The Farmers Market had amazing food stalls and shops. If you like food, definitely take a road trip to the Farmers Market. And it’s up against The Grove (where we saw Hal Sparks) which has more shops. It’s a really pretty outdoor mall.

So that’s our 5 yr anniversary vacation at-a-glance. Time flies by! I still feel like we just got married.

Santa Monica Pier

Thank you for all your happy wishes!

  1. Next time you want to go and stay at the Georgian let us know.
    This looks like so much fun. I love that area of Santa Monica. I'll have to try some of the places your mentioned.

  2. Thanks! I took so many pics. It was hard to narrow it down.

  3. Awesome anniversary trip!! Lovely recap and photos.

    I'm praying that all gets 100% better for you.

  4. Great pictures of your trip! Love the ons of the farmer's market especially.

    Hope everything is okay.


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