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2012 remixed.

31 Dec

If you haven’t been able to tell by reading this blog, I love traditions. One thing I have done on this blog for awhile now is to recap my year via songs. [Check out 2010 and 2011 here!] I love music and I think it’s a great way to reminisce on the past year – plus I like re-reading these posts to remember everything that happened in that year! Before you check out my 2012 song selections, you should listen to DJ Earworm’s 2012 mash-up. Here’s mine:

January – Calvin Harris Feel So Close

I picked this song because it reminds me of the best winter break ever – where I checked out a ton of new restaurants, went on a bunch of LA hikes, went out, and explored LA. In January I also started second semester and reunited with some of my favorite AXOs,  celebrated my birthday with a dinner + drinks, and ran a half-marathon with one of my best law school friends, Blake, at the Rose Bowl, and battled running injuries off and on.

loving LA.

loving LA.

i'm not that old but i'm not that young.

i’m not that old but i’m not that young.

February  – Big Sean f/ Nicki Minaj – Dance

In February, I met my first real blog friend in person (Katherine of Left Coast Contessa). I also became re-obsessed with spin (indoor cycling) after almost a YEAR away and spent more time in the gym. Other than that, February was a pretty low-key month. I was briefly obsessed with this song due to the part when Nicki Minaj says “Islands of Waikikiiiiiiiiii.” I annoyed everyone repeating that for a few weeks.

view from my gym's parking lot.

view from my gym’s parking lot.

March – Flo Rida f/ Sia – Wild Ones

In March, I took a torts midterm, headed to Palm Springs with Whitney, Matt, and Jenn, and was able to fight off a knee injury to run three miles with my Dad during his marathon. During March I also went to my first Kings game, headed home to celebrate my brother’s 21st birthday, and studied a good amount.


palm springs bound.

palm springs bound.

April – Gotye – Somebody That I Used to Know (FatRat remix)

April was a pretty intense school month – I had a lot of assignments due and geared up for finals. I had a beach day with my law school bests, went to a couple of comedy shows, had an oral argument, and lived vicariously through my parents’ trip to Vegas. I also did the She Runs LA 10k, tried Pure Barre, and did  The Color Run with my friend Riley. At the end of the month I went to a  Bruce Springsteen concert!

blake, armita, me, and taylor all pretending we like each other. (aviva was our photographer.)

blake, armita, me, and taylor all pretending we like each other. (aviva was our photographer.)

post she runs la 10k.

post she runs la 10k.

post color run.

post color run.

baby we were born to run.

baby we were born to run.

May – The Naked & Famous – Young Blood (Tiësto & Hardwell Remix)

Like any month where finals occur, the majority of it is spent studying. I spent the first 2+ weeks studying for and taking my finals, punctuated by small study breaks with my law school budz – like the time we celebrated Cinco Day Drinko instead of studying for Torts. In May I officially FINISHED 1L buttttt then immediately spent a week on the write-on competition to join a law review or a journal.  I finally kick-started summer with kayaking with my mom, a hike with Taylor, and some solid vedge-time. I also discovered my love for SoulCycle in May.

Cinco Day Drinko

Cinco Day Drinko

law school bests celebrating the end of the year.

law school bests celebrating the end of the year.

kayaking in Ventura.

kayaking in Ventura.

it was love.

it was love.

June – Carly Rae Jepsen Call Me Maybe Mash-ups (Call Me Greyhound – Swedish House Mafia + Call Me Maybe v. 99 Problems)

June was officially summer. I kicked it off with a short trip to SD  with Jenn where I PR’d in the half-marathon (1:38:55), began my externship at the criminal courts building, did a little paddle boarding  (I still have a bruise on my hip),went to Dodger games, hiked, and spent a weekend in SF where Whitney, Kathleen, and I created the “cerveza cycle.”





my buddy/co-extern aaron and me.

my buddy/co-extern aaron and me.



...and drinking.

…and drinking.

July – Kirko Bangz “Drink in my Cup”

July started off with a bang with a Fourth of July 10k in the Palisades, followed up with a little rage-fest with my section budz. I also discovered electronic musician Sahy Uhns, celebrated my blog’s third birthday, and saw The Producers at The Hollywood Bowl.



sahy uhns.

sahy uhns.


August – Kanye West f/ Big Sean, Pusha T, and 2 Chainz “Mercy” 

In August, I saw The Hood Internet perform live, was inspired by various Olympic endeavors + caught up with friends from home, wrapped up my externship, went through On Campus Interviewing at Loyola, and traveled to Orange County with my mom for a few days where we saw Pageant of the Masters, paddle-boarded, and soaked up the sun. I also missed a one-night stint in Vegas due to a sudden onslaught of an illness, serving as a reminder that sometimes I need to listen to my body. I also celebrated Aviva’s birthday on the Sunset Strip and went back to school as a 2L.

The Hood Internet!

The Hood Internet!

paddle-boarding in Newport.

paddle-boarding in Newport.

September – Psy “Gangam Style”

In September, I ran my high school’s annual pancake breakfast race, hit up the SC/Cal game, and went to Monterey for my friend Angela’s wedding. I also started going to Trivia night at Barney’s Beanery in WeHO. When I wasn’t gallivanting around, I was busy with my course-load (Con Law, Law of Sales, Torts II, and Ethical Lawyering) as well as my extra-curricular activities of the Entertainment Law Review and the Wilhelm C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration team. #phew

OPXC alumni.

OPXC alumni.

in real life, we're friends.

in real life, we’re friends.

angela + adrian.

angela + adrian.

October – Adrian Lux “Teenage Crime” 

In October, I continued the trivia night tradition, played tourist in Hollywood, spent a weekend in San Francisco for the Nike Women’s 13.1, celebrated my friend Blake’s birthday in Manhattan Beach, and saw Adrian Lux perform live at the Exchange in DTLA. All in all, a fantastic month.



blake's b-day.

blake’s b-day.

we don't waste no precious time.

we don’t waste no precious time.

November – Zedd “Clarity” oh…and Morgan Page f/ Greg Laswell – Addicted 

I hit up another SC game (this time v. Oregon), saw Book of Mormon, and visited my parents at the newsroom of the Los Angeles Times on election night! I also ran two 5ks – the ‘Stache Dash in Costa Mesa with my roommate and her boyfriend, and the Conejo Valley Turkey Day Trot at Cal Lutheran University with my running buddy Hannes on Thanksgiving morning. I also enjoyed a long weekend at home for Thanksgiving that was punctuated by our annual “Blackout Wednesday” tradition.

jenn and me post-race.

jenn and me post-race.



happy Blackout Wednesday!

happy Blackout Wednesday!

December – I couldn’t pick just one: f/ Britney Spears “Scream & Shout” AND Bingo Players + Flo Rida “I Cry

I spent the overwhelming majority of December studying and taking finals. I finished on December 14th and then celebrated in Manhattan Beach. Celebrations continued with Loyola Bar Review, the Santa Monica Pub Crawl, and my friend’s Hawaiian Christmas party. My family and I spent Christmas Day in Las Vegas (#VegasChristmas) and the very last week of December has been soul(cycle)-filled.

christmas in the library.

christmas in the library.

loyola bar review.

loyola bar review.

SANTA Monica Pub Crawl.

SANTA Monica Pub Crawl.



I hope everyone has an exciting and fun NYE celebration and an even better jump-start to 2013! I’ll be posting my goals and resolutions for the new year tomorrow.

What was YOUR favorite song from 2012?


26 Dec

This was definitely one of the most memorable Christmases my family has ever had. I headed home on the 22nd and spent a few days catching up with old friends and spending quality time with the fam.

On the 21st, I headed to one of my law school friend’s parties in Santa Monica. The theme was “Hawaiian Christmas” so I trekked to the local Goodwill and picked up a shirt for $5 and a Santa hat at CVS (also for $5). I loved the theme – and brought Christmas and Hawaiian beer – and had fun catching up with some of my law school favs. We ended the night with a 1 am trip to Norm’s. My hamburger craving was duly satisfied.

Mele Kalikimaka!

Mele Kalikimaka!

one of the rare instances where I am not trying to choke Taylor and he is not pushing me into strangers and spilling their beer.

one of the rare instances where I am not trying to choke Taylor and he is not pushing me into strangers and spilling their beer.


Before I headed the the ‘burbs, my roommate Jenn surprised me with my Christmas gift. I had earlier given her a Garmin 10 (birthday + Christmas combined). She gave me this GORGEOUS dress (I have been ogling this style since Emily Maynard wore something similar on her season of The Bachelorette) and a book on eating Paleo. I have been interested in learning more about Paleo and trying to eat more cleanly. Perfect. Gift.


I headed home and went on a run, hung out with my family, etc. That evening, my mom and I headed to my good friend Angela’s parents’ home for a holiday party/post-Wedding get together. I was able to attend Angela’s wedding in September and it was so fun to catch up with her and see her parents. Her mom is QUITE the hostess – they had an amazing spread of Mexican fare and a whole table devoted to desserts (blogger FAIL – I didn’t nab a single photo of the night). Friends from high school and Angela’s family were all there, which was so nice. Angela and I were extremely close all through high school, and while we don’t get to see each other that often, I am always so amazed by how we quickly slip into conversations as if no time has passed. Such a fun night!

my family's tree.

my family’s tree.

The next day, I spent a little bit of time at a memorial service for the Grandma of my good friends Garrett and Jeff. It was a very sweet service. Grandma Dorothy was a HUGE Dodger fan so everyone was encouraged to wear Dodger gear. One of her favorite players, Andre Ethier, sent a personalized e-mail that was read aloud which was very touching. I got to speak with Grandma Dorothy a little bit over the years and she was always incredibly sweet and funny. I will always remember that she told me I looked beautiful at my senior prom. 🙂


I was also able to catch up with my good girlfriends – the night of the 23rd featured drinks at my FAVORITE local place – Ladyface Alehouse and Brasserie – for drinks with Hayley and Whitney. Love the vibe there. and the beer. I was also able to spend a couple of hours on Christmas Eve with my friend Lauren who is now in Texas for grad school. We don’t get to see each other that often, but it is always so nice spending some time with her when she’s in town. I was also able to run with my friend Hannes – he’s a beast though and my pace was embarrassing throughout our 5-miler.


the tree + beer at Ladyface.

My family and I had a low-key Christmas Eve dinner of tamales (our Christmas Eve tradition), homemade rice, and a delicious salad. My brother announced he had a “Christmas Eve gift” for everyone – and he handed us all a couple of scratchers. We all thought it was a great idea – and my Dad won $20!

$20 richer.

$20 richer.

After he won, he goes: “I want to go to Pechanga tomorrow…Or Vegas!” He said both of these things half-jokingly…but then we thought about it…and everyone was really up for the idea of spending Christmas Day in Las Vegas! So we booked a discounted room last minute at The Palazzo and I found tickets for a show. We decided to wake up early on Christmas Day and drive to Vegas. That meant we’d open our presents on Christmas Eve! So we took a little break and did our stockings – I got a lot of great things.


In lieu of our usual cinnamon bun interlude between stockings and presents, we just took a small break. Everyone gave and received some really thoughtful gifts – I got two amazing coffee table books, a really nice wallet and Longchamp purse, and a few other fun things. My parents know me scarily well.


We enjoyed our new presents and then prepared for our last-minute decision to have a #VegasChristmas. My brother and I were SO excited. I love Las Vegas – and so does basically everyone in my family. Sure, it’s a little tacky and glitzy, but that’s the charm in it. I love Vegas for it’s ironic fun. Such a fun Christmas surprise.

We got up and were out the door by 8 am, drove to Vegas sans traffic and checked in around 1 at The Palazzo.

mother and son, you know in Vegas for Christmas.

mother and son, you know… in Vegas for Christmas.

On our way to the hotel, I saw lots of ads for all of the DJs that will be in Vegas for NYE. After hearing about one of my friend’s recent experience onstage with Diplo this week, it was all I could do not to squeal at the thought of seeing Kaskade, Afrojack, Steve Angello, deadMau5…or basically anyone in the EDM world from the 28th to the 31st. Not a whole lot of DJs are in town for Christmas…but it was fun to have a more family-centered time in Vegas.



So while I’d have to keep the DJing to another trip, we did Vegas right. We started with a late-ish lunch at Grand Lux.


And then set off to explore the strip. My brother has a HUGE obsession with Sublime, so we trekked to the Hard Rock Hotel to check out the Sublime display there. He was in fandom heaven.


I spotted one of my favorite musicians…well, not really…but I had to take a photo with this cut-out of one of my favorite MTV personalities…DJ PAULY D!

my main man,

my main man. 

I posted this photo to Twitter and tagged @DJPaulyD in it, just for kicks. He ended up re-tweeting it to all 4.2 million of his followers. Immediately, I’ve gotten a whole slew of random followers and tweets. The internet is so awesome – but I love that I sort of had an interaction with Pauly D. #BeatThatBeatUp #FistPumpPushUpChapstick #YAHBUDDY.

We got another set of drinks at that hotel, and then headed to the Bellagio for the fountain show. No trip to Vegas is complete without it!



We had a very nice Christmas dinner at Wolfgang Puck’s place at The Venetian, called Postrio. It was situated in the part of The Venetian designed to feel like it is in St. Mark’s Square. SUCH a fun Christmas dinner.




Very memorable.

After dinner, we headed to the theater at The Palazzo to see Mannheim Steamroller‘s show. I’ve been a fan of Mannheim Steamroller for as long as I can remember. My mom has one of their CDs and would always used to play it for us at Christmas. I love their electro/synth-y takes on Christmas classics. It was cool to hear their versions of “Deck the Halls” and “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” live.

That being said, the rest of the show was lackluster at best. It felt like an extremely low-rent production. Video clips from the mid-80s, disjointed circus routines set to slow Christmas songs, and dancers and performers who seemed disinterested. The music was cool, for the most part, but the terrible production values left all of us feeling like the show was pretty bad. I’m still glad we saw a show, though, and I’ve always like Mannheim Steamroller – it just felt like I was seeing an 8th grade production.

We were all pretty exhausted so we headed to bed shortly after (my brother took my usual place as the family booze-hound and indulged in one last beer before calling it a night). We got up this morning and headed home.

I had a delightfully unique Christmas and I hope everyone out there did as well!

What’s your favorite holiday tradition? 




11 Sep

…on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, I felt like pictures might speak louder than anything I could come up with. We all remember where we were on that day, how we found out, what we thought and felt. It was said at the time that this event would be in history books – that it was our generation’s JFK assassination or Pearl Harbor. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years.


source: A Cup of Jo (





imagine circle in central park (trip with my dad, summer 2008).


ground zero (summer 2008).


I’m making a point to watch some evening news highlights – it’s easy to let a day like this go by without giving it the reflection that it deserves.

How are you remembering today? 

my 7 links.

5 Jul

Thanks to Suzy Guese, I was nominated to participate in Tripbase’s Seven Links project, with the goal being to bring travel bloggers together to “share lessons learned and create a bank of long but not forgotten blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again.” I’m stoked to be a part of it.

Here are my 7 links:

1. my most beautiful post: christmas in madrid. I spent Christmas with my roommates in Madrid this past year and experienced the holiday in a new way, absorbing a different culture’s traditions on the holiday for a change. Christmas Day evening was marked by a stroll through Madrid’s take on Central Park, known as Parque del Buen Retiro. The combination of the lights, sunset, and Christmas spirit make this my most beautiful post.

christmas in retiro.

lights in the puerte de alcalá.

2. my most popular post: an A- in 100 Montaditos. This post chronicles the culmination of my “Cien Montaditos Challenge” where I tried to make my way through all 100 sandwiches offered at the Spanish mini-sandwich chain, Cervecería 100 Montaditos. I ended up trying 91/100 while I was in Spain for 9 months and in this post I highlight my favorite and least favorite montaditos, as well as my favorite locations of the chain. This post is probably popular because the sandwiches are so insanely good.

montadito heaven.

me, 100 montaditos menu, and Plaza Santa Ana.

the ópera location.

3. my most controversial post: corrida de toros. The controversial nature of this post makes sense – last October, I went to a bullfight at Madrid’s ring at Las Ventas. I had a good time at the corrida – it was definitely a lavish, cultural experience and more artful (in my opinion) than brutal. While I only went to one during my time abroad, I’d recommend the bullfight experience. I received some harsh feedback on this one – I respect animal rights’ groups and my non-meat eating friends’ beliefs, but it was important to me to check this out.

las ventas.

the corrida.

toreros + the bull.

4. my most helpful post: destination: BCN. Barcelona is my favorite city on earth, and I’ve passed this guide around to every visitor I’ve known who has gone there – insisting they visit Gaudí’s masterpieces, eat at my favorite restaurant (La Rita), and check out the bars, sights, and quirky oddities that make BCN so magical for me. My Dad has forwarded this post to his colleagues who have traveled to Barcelona, and my roommate in Madrid followed my recommendations to the letter  – and then she made her two sisters do the same! I’m a big guidebook fan, but if you’re going to Barcelona this post will get you started for sure.

park guell.

at the magic fountain with my friend becca back in the study abroad days.

my obsessions in a photo.

5. A post whose success surprised you: be my guest. This post was essentially a “thank you” to everyone who visited me in Madrid this last year. I didn’t think people would be that interested in seeing random photos of my friends, but it was surprisingly popular. It was a fun way for me to remember the past year.

brian giving an "abrazo" to a bartender who felt compelled to give us endless free chupitos de tequila.

my roommate alia, me, and my college friend krisse in mallorca.

my uncle and i outside madrid's Mercado de San Miguel.

a post that didn’t get the attention it deserved: wwrsd: what would rick steves do? I wrote this post after reflecting upon my 2009 Spring Break trip to Berlin, Prague, Vienna, and Rome and how my friends and I swore by Rick’s guidance and triangle-based rating system. I also explained how much I enjoyed the talk I attended featuring Rick Steves at my alma mater, UC Berkeley, in 2010. While I know not everyone loves Rick Steves, I always enjoyed this post because I mention many different travel-related themes and how the travel guru himself influenced my travels and travel philosophy.

following Rick's advice to a Bamraxler in Vienna.

meeting Rick in October 2010.

7. the post I am most proud of: run it. I wrote this post for June 1 of this year, also known as National Running Day! In it, I describe my years-long obsession with running, how I got to be a runner, and why it is important to me. While not necessarily travel-related, running has punctuated every trip I’ve ever taken: from my family’s vacation years ago to Maui, to my first run in Europe in Lucerne, Switzerland in 2006, to running the Madrid Half Marathon in 2011.

running xc senior year with my friends and teammates angela + kelsey.


post half-marathon with my spectators, tina + alia.

my nominations.  To keep the project going, here are three bloggers I’d like to see contribute their own 7 links!

Anywhere There’s An Airport

Kaley…& Más 

Love & Paella

If you’d like to be nominated, leave me a comment! I have two spots left!

mash-up twenty-ten.

30 Dec

I love a good mash-up. remix, or even a solid playlist. I feel like the best sort of ¨year in review¨ post should include the song or album that I associate with that month (if you can’t read any further, at least listen to this). That being said, here’s the mash-up of how 2010 went for me:

January – ¨Tik Tok¨ by Ke$ha I know, an utterly terrible (but undeniably infectious) song. I picked this song to sum up January for me because it is a solid ¨Vegas¨ anthem, and I went there twice in January. The first trip was the kick-off for 2010 and took some major convincing from my guy friends from high school, but it was an epic trip with lots of funny stories from 4-am run-ins outside of the hotel, being in the same club as Jay-Z, guidos, and countless inside jokes. Three weeks later I headed back to Sin City with my sorority and probably overdid the references to The Hangover and Ke$ha – we started the party in the Oakland airport and caused a scene because our flight was delayed 5 hours, stumbled upon an Estelle concert at Aria, and formed a wolfpack. My 22nd Birthday was also in January, and although we celebrated in San Francisco it was basically Vegas Part 3.


The wolfpack at the (not real) Caesar's Palace


February – What You Know About Little Secrets by The White Panda (Passion Pit vs. TI) Basically the only things I remember from February are going to class and Berkeley’s Bear’s Lair pub on Fridays for “Beat the Clock” like it was my job. My roommate at the time, Kathleen, introduced me to The White Panda and I particularly love this song for two reasons: 1. I love mash-ups and 2. I REALLY love Passion Pit.

my favorite place on campus (not a joke)

March – Alejandro by Lady Gaga March was punctuated by midterms, term papers, and the demise of my Toshiba laptop. Helloooo Macbook Pro. I can´t remember everything I did in March which probably means I spent a good amount of it doing really nerdy things, but some highlights include a trip to the Sonoma County wine country with some of my best friends, and a memorable trip to Orange County with my mom. I also did some cost-benefit analysis when a postion as an assistant at a local law office presented itself, but I ended up holding out until May when I would hear from the program through the Spanish government. Alejandro is the song for March because A. I like Lady Gaga  and B. Alejandro is an extremely Spanish name.

April – Bedrock  by Young Money The beginning of April was one of my most fun months of college – trips to the city for nights in the Marina, a Giants game, and a weekend at the W hotel for my friend Amanda’s birthday. I was obsessed with this song (cue some inside jokes here) during April, and found the line “I’m at the W/but I won’t meet you in the lobby” to be undeniably appropriate. It was in April that I had my final sorority events, my last college lecture (during which we analyzed a Lady Gaga video, Go Bears) and got to know the Berkeley bars as well as possible. I also wrote a paper psychoanalyzing the “wolfpack” scene from The Hangover and can still get a laugh out of some of the “arguments” I made.

May – Young Forever by Jay-Z f/ Mr. Hudson The carefree levity of April came to an abrupt end when, at the end of the month, one of my best friends lost her girlfriend, who I was just starting to get to know. Alysia’s tragic death, coupled with our college graduation was undoubtedly an emotional and hard time, and Jay-Z´s ¨Young Forever¨ is what I associate with it. Also in May, I moved home to my family’s house and began working as a Marketing Assistant at Lenmar Enterprises, Inc. I will always remember this month and get the occasional chill when this song comes on.





June – Cooler than Me by Mike Posner June was busy and fun – I adjusted to working full time for Lenmar, took day trips with my mom and Whitney to the Getty Museum and Malibu, respectively, and I spent a lot of time driving around the Conejo Valley singing along to this song. I spent portions of June stressing over Spain logistics (everything ended up working out, haha) and hanging out with friends from high school. I also added a second little job into the mix – doing some travel blogging and marketing for I Wish Gap Year. Finally, one of my favorite June memories was developing an obsession with Agoura Hills’ Ladyface Alehouse. I am literally anticipating tasting their IPA again next summer.

July – Brian Eno by MGMTThis song has yet to be a mainstream hit, but I’ve loved it since I first heard it in April when MGMT released their latest album, and I’ll always associate it with 2010. In July, my Dad and I spent a few days in NY and DC checking out law schools (for me) and working (for him). I also dealt with an insane bureaucratic mess that involved 3 trips to the Spanish Consulate on Wilshire Blvd. in Los Angeles and a bunch of pointless background checks. The highlights of July included delicious Mexican food with various friends in LA and having almost all of my friends and family over for a bbq.

August – My Sick UncleThis mash-up symbolizes August for me because it blends the cool, summery, LA-vibe of the (500) Days of Summer soundtrack with the zany and creative antics of Lil Wayne. August was great: I went to a Real Madrid/LA Galaxy game with some of my best friends and spent the whole day tail-gating, spent a few days in Toronto on a business trip for Lenmar (!), went to the Oak Park Farmer’s Market as many weekends as I could, went wine tasting in Malibu with some friends, and squeezed in visits to the Hollywood Bowl and Westwood as well.


Toronto's CN Tower


September – We No Speak Americano by Yolanda Be Cool Not only was this song associated with Jersey Shore (my most guilty pleasure) but it was also all over Madrid when I arrived half-way through the month. I’d hear it in clubs, bars, and even at the gym. September was busy and fun – I ended one job, said goodbye to my friends with a party that was a little too fun, and moved to Madrid! I met my roommates, went to orientation, showed my friends AK and Andrea around the city, and started settling in.


back in action.


October – Stereo LoveThis song quickly became a Madrid mainstay and it was in October when I first heard it. In October, I started my job at Colegio Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo, spent a day in Segovia, went to a bullfight and showed my friend Brian around the city, was a ladybug for Halloween, and planned some trips. Oh, and I wrote my law school personal statement and submitted some applications. All in all, a terrific month.

November – Girl Talk ¨All Day¨It’s as if Gregg Gillis (the genius behind “Girl Talk”) knew I used his music as a metaphor in my personal statement for law school, because half-way through the month he released his third album “All Day.” I could go on and on about him (and will if you want), but this song in particular is my very favorite off the new album, and it represents November perfectly. I finished law school apps completely, visited college friends in Lyon, France and checked out Córdoba in Andalucia, and spent my first Thanksgiving a fuera de los Estados Unidos. Oh, and Madrid got it’s first snowfall!

December – Don Omar – Danza Kuduro f/ Lucenzo I chose this song because it took me until December to make a concentrated effort to speak more Spanish – I started listening to some podcasts, read “El Mago de Oz” en espanol, and arranged to meet up with a Spanish speaker aka an “intercambio” once a week. All of these decisions have proven helpful, even if I feel like a buffoon on occasion. I traveled to Porto, Portugal at the beginning of the month, experienced the madness of Christmas in Madrid (both in the city center as well at my school), hit up Salamanca for a night, and celebrated Christmas with my roommates.


Sol at Christmas (the tree was designed by a Spanish designer I like, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada)


2010 was a great year, and I’m looking forward to the exciting excursions and experiences 2011 will bring. First up is celebrating NYE with my mom in Madrid and quick trips to Bilbao, San Sebastian, and Granada. Happy New Year from Madrid!

westwood story.

4 Aug

I love Westwood. It’s sort of hard to explain why I like it so much, but every time I go there I have a good time (well, maybe not every time. I guess I blocked out those LSAT classes…or worse – I convinced myself I liked them!)

Over the years, I’ve had dinner at Enzo’s and Napa Valley Grille,  made the rounds at Maloney’s and Brew Co., made a 2 am fast food run or two to In-N-Out and Taco Bell, and have spent some QT with most of my best friends there.

While LA can be overwhelming, Westwood is impeccably walkable. While I think spending an extended amount of time there might drive me crazy, I can’t complain anytime someone suggests to meet up for dinner, hit up Diddy Reise, or go to the UCLA bars.

What are your favorite places in Westwood? Bars/restuarants/shops?? Let me know!

bird’s eye view.

21 Jul

I’ve recently started reading more travel blogs, and one in particular (Adventurous Kate) featured this post last week, showcasing 6 European cities from above. The photos were stunning, and it made me reminisce about some of the cities (European and North American) I’ve seen from a bird’s eye view...

Los Angeles, California from the Getty Museum

London, England from the London Eye

Berkeley and Oakland, California from the Campanile (Sather Tower) at the University of California, Berkeley

Paris, France from the Eiffel Tower

Seattle, Washington from the Space Needle

Seville, Spain from the Cathedral

Lisbon, Portugal from outside my hostel

Barcelona, Spain from the spires of La Sagrada Familia

What’s the coolest bird’s eye view you’ve ever seen?