Birthday Weekend in LA, an Ode to 25.

I’m only a few hours away before I wave my official goodbye to 25. I’ll remember 25 as being the year that taught me how to really toughen up, even though it took almost all year learning how to do so. I entered last year thinking that I had it all figured out within myself, but I’m learning that even though we may think that we’ve found ourselves, I think that it’ll always be a constant process because life is changing, and each experience we endure has an impact on who we are and sometimes on how we see ourselves. So, I did just that. And it wasn’t fun. It’s always uncomfortable when you have to face those parts about yourself that aren’t so shiny and presentable, and make an initiative to either accept it as who you are or do something to change it for your own happiness. I’ll go into that another time, when I’m not so sleepy after uploading all of these pics lol. 

 On the plus side, this past year I realized I’ve done and seen so much. I crossed off city after city on my list of places I’ve always wanted to travel to like San Francisco, Seattle, Hawaii, AND New York. All in one year. These trips always remind me of how thankful I am to be in a career that allows me the financial means to travel the way that I do, which is what I’ve always day dreamed about since I was young.  This year for my birthday, I wanted to take a trip to LA for the weekend with Jay. We like traveling to places we’ve never been to, but because we have a big, big trip coming up in a few months, we probably need to try and save for that and just go somewhere close. California is always a place close to my heart because it’s just so close to home, and I always feel a sense of peace when I can feel and know that the ocean is nearby. 

 Jay and I drove into California Thursday night, where we had dinner with his parents at a Korean place near their house. Korean food and I have such an ongoing love affair. AYCE korean bbq is good and all, but it was a nice surprise to know that this wasn't an AYCE BBQ place but a more traditional style Korean restaurant that I've been searching for since I was a kid. My parents used to take us to this restaurant called Hoban almost every week where the Kalbi ribs come at you already cooked, and sizzling. They closed Hoban years and years ago in Las Vegas, and my heart felt so happy to be eating at a place like this again with hot stone pots and sizzling plates of meat that turn heads when the waiter passes by. This is a spicy tofu soup with vegetable dumplings that I ate with rice.
Jay and I drove into California Thursday night, where we had dinner with his parents at a Korean place near their house. Korean food and I have such an ongoing love affair. AYCE korean bbq is good and all, but it was a nice surprise to know that this wasn’t an AYCE BBQ place but a more traditional style Korean restaurant that I’ve been searching for since I was a kid. My parents used to take us to this restaurant called Hoban almost every week where the Kalbi ribs come at you already cooked, and sizzling. They closed Hoban years and years ago in Las Vegas, and my heart felt so happy to be eating at a place like this again with hot stone pots and sizzling plates of meat that turn heads when the waiter passes by. This is a spicy tofu soup with vegetable dumplings that I ate with rice.
 The next morning we went to Disneyland wow!! You know, I feel like I'm in a constant debate within myself on whether it's weird to go to Disneyland as an adult, without kids. And honestly, at times it feels like I have outgrown Disneyland but like... it's Disneyland. I actually hadn't been here since I was probably 13, and two years ago I went as an adult with Jay's family and loved it so, so much. I felt like I was being transported back to all of those times I was a kid and I love Disney movies so... here we are again. Theme parking it. Eating all the sugary sweets. Absorbing all the fun. Dodging all of the happy, sweaty people. I know many of my readers have probably been to Disneyland and don't need a play by play on the stuff we did but I like to reminisce anyway.
The next morning we went to Disneyland wow!! You know, I feel like I’m in a constant debate within myself on whether it’s weird to go to Disneyland as an adult, without kids. And honestly, at times it feels like I have outgrown Disneyland but like… it’s Disneyland. I actually hadn’t been here since I was probably 13, and two years ago I went as an adult with Jay’s family and loved it so, so much. I felt like I was being transported back to all of those times I was a kid and I love Disney movies so… here we are again. Theme parking it. Eating all the sugary sweets. Absorbing all the fun. Dodging all of the happy, sweaty people. I know many of my readers have probably been to Disneyland and don’t need a play by play on the stuff we did but I like to reminisce anyway.
 I was starving to the point of Hangry after waiting 45 minutes for Carnation Cafe and I got a big cheeseburger that was really filling and I ate it so fast ._.
I was starving to the point of Hangry after waiting 45 minutes for Carnation Cafe and I got a big cheeseburger that was really filling and I ate it so fast ._.
 Finding Nemo underwater submarine ride that I've never been on.
Finding Nemo underwater submarine ride that I’ve never been on.
 Churrrrrros. Need to have a warm churro.
Churrrrrros. Need to have a warm churro.
 I loved that pink tree in the background. I'm so sad they are doing reconstruction so this is the only pic I have of that luminous, pink blossomed tree.
I loved that pink tree in the background. I’m so sad they are doing reconstruction so this is the only pic I have of that luminous, pink blossomed tree.
 Disneyland at night is really it's own kind of magic.
Disneyland at night is really it’s own kind of magic.

My sister’s barista boyfriend recommended a couple of cool coffee places to check out in LA so the next morning, Jay drove us to Maru Coffee near the Griffith Observatory area. I love coffee shop aesthetics so much. 

 Love these mugs.
Love these mugs.
 Many dog appearances will be on this post.
Many dog appearances will be on this post.
 Love minimal looks. Love those mugs. Love everything about this place.
Love minimal looks. Love those mugs. Love everything about this place.
 After our morning cup o' coffee and matcha, we headed to The Getty Museum because I've never been there before and seeing pictures of it always makes me want to go. This place is beeeeeautiful. We spent about 2 hours here just on our own, without any of the guided tours, and I feel like I could've spent all day there. I love museums, definitely more my pace. There are multiple buildings that have different pieces and displays. Jay and I just wandered wherever. I tried to go by the map, but I get so distracted by things. Basically we just winged it and still had a wonderful art experience.
After our morning cup o’ coffee and matcha, we headed to The Getty Museum because I’ve never been there before and seeing pictures of it always makes me want to go. This place is beeeeeautiful. We spent about 2 hours here just on our own, without any of the guided tours, and I feel like I could’ve spent all day there. I love museums, definitely more my pace. There are multiple buildings that have different pieces and displays. Jay and I just wandered wherever. I tried to go by the map, but I get so distracted by things. Basically we just winged it and still had a wonderful art experience.
 The garden area at the Getty. That tree tho.
The garden area at the Getty. That tree tho.
 Inside the Gift Shop.
Inside the Gift Shop.
 I wanted Jay to pose next to this guy but he wouldn't do it lol
I wanted Jay to pose next to this guy but he wouldn’t do it lol
 Mm mm, that Los Angeles View. I know I'm so squinty here but my glasses needed to hold up the hot mess that was my hair. Wind is not my friend.
Mm mm, that Los Angeles View. I know I’m so squinty here but my glasses needed to hold up the hot mess that was my hair. Wind is not my friend.
 I loved this exhibition of the different luxury home decor of 18th century Europe.
I loved this exhibition of the different luxury home decor of 18th century Europe.
 When there's a mirror, there is a selfie.
When there’s a mirror, there is a selfie.
 A collection of Marie Antoinette's most prized possessions from East Asia.
A collection of Marie Antoinette’s most prized possessions from East Asia.
 Michelangelo pieces. This room was crowded.
Michelangelo pieces. This room was crowded.
 Another pup! So many pups. After the Getty, we navigated our way towards the Santa Monica area to try Eately. I didn't even know it was located inside an outdoor mall. But I remember hearing about it and seeing it in New York.
Another pup! So many pups. After the Getty, we navigated our way towards the Santa Monica area to try Eately. I didn’t even know it was located inside an outdoor mall. But I remember hearing about it and seeing it in New York.
 Wish I could take bread smells home with me. Just the smells.
Wish I could take bread smells home with me. Just the smells.
 Cheese.
Cheese.
 Homemade pasta.
Homemade pasta.
 So Eately is basically this huge, three story market of Italian goods. There's a restaurant on the third floor called La Pizza and La Pasta and Jay and I ate there.
So Eately is basically this huge, three story market of Italian goods. There’s a restaurant on the third floor called La Pizza and La Pasta and Jay and I ate there.
 I could eat pizza for the rest of my life, I really could. Also pasta a close close second. Their dough and noodles are all homemade.
I could eat pizza for the rest of my life, I really could. Also pasta a close close second. Their dough and noodles are all homemade.
 I have taken so many pictures of me eating pizza in the last few years. Had to add to the collection.
I have taken so many pictures of me eating pizza in the last few years. Had to add to the collection.
 Ugh.
Ugh.
 They had a cannoli station on the first floor! Although it sounds promising, I actually didn't really like the pistachio one I got. The hazelnut cannoli was better, but for some reason the cannoli dough tasted different than what I'm used to. I wished it were a little sweeter. Not pictured though is the hazelnut gelato Jay and I got. That was a winner. Especially since Jay and I can go through Talenti Hazelnut gelato in like... a sitting.
They had a cannoli station on the first floor! Although it sounds promising, I actually didn’t really like the pistachio one I got. The hazelnut cannoli was better, but for some reason the cannoli dough tasted different than what I’m used to. I wished it were a little sweeter. Not pictured though is the hazelnut gelato Jay and I got. That was a winner. Especially since Jay and I can go through Talenti Hazelnut gelato in like… a sitting.
 Caught this nice view of LA as we were walking out of Eately.
Caught this nice view of LA as we were walking out of Eately.
 Had to make a LUSH stop. Jay bought me Lush things for my birthday too :') Such a keeper. I'm never letting him go.
Had to make a LUSH stop. Jay bought me Lush things for my birthday too :’) Such a keeper. I’m never letting him go.
The rest of these pictures are going to be our lil photoshoot in the light installation piece at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, aka “LACMA.” I’ve been here before during the day, but I wanted to see how the lights looked at night. It was so so pretty and we took lots of photos. Also, just a tip: don’t park in the parking garage unless it’s after 7pm when it’s free. Try to find parking on the side streets!
 ~ moody grl ~
~ moody grl ~
 when you see it.... you'll know. I was  cracking  up when I saw this photo.
when you see it…. you’ll know. I was cracking up when I saw this photo.
 Proud of Jay for learning how to use my camera and getting some nice shots of me too, hehe. I'm always behind the camera so I am kinda awkward when the camera is pointed at me.
Proud of Jay for learning how to use my camera and getting some nice shots of me too, hehe. I’m always behind the camera so I am kinda awkward when the camera is pointed at me.
 Trying to get some air but jumping high is not a talent of mine.
Trying to get some air but jumping high is not a talent of mine.

Everyone around us was pretty occupied with their own photoshoots, so we had to settle for selfies. I love this guy so much and everything he does to make me happy. 

After LACMA, we drove back from the city and had dinner at Jay’s parents’ house. We left that night because Jay had to work the next night and wanted to get some sleep so he could watch the Superbowl on Sunday. Another “firsts” to note: I drove to Vegas from Cali for the first time because Jay was actually too sleepy to drive. I remember my mom told me a story about how my dad had her drive home from Cali at night and she developed a fear of driving long distances at night ever since. Tried my best not to think of that because I’m not a great driver, but I had my tunes on and sang loudly to my favorite karaoke songs ( Time After Time, lots of Disney, All Or Nothing by O-Town, Just Once, etc etc ) to help me stay up and make the drive go by faster. We survived! I was v proud of myself. #ConqueringFears2k18.
 I hate to play favorites, but Lilo is my favorite Perrenoud dog. She is such a good mama pup and makes these whiney noises when she comes up to you to pet her belly. She is literally the sweetest and I love her. My love of daschunds grows deeper every time I visit Jay's family.  It is exactly 57 minutes until I am 26! sa;dkasja;s exciting. Year 25, thank you for all of your lessons. Thank you for all of the tough times so that I can once again learn how to be strong. Thank you for all of the memories made, all of the laughs that turned into holding onto tables to catch my breath, for all of the people in my life that make each day easier and more bearable, for all of the sentimental moments that made me press my hands against my face to absorb all of its beauty. For still having bartenders card me which means I still look youthful. I am thankful for it all.
I hate to play favorites, but Lilo is my favorite Perrenoud dog. She is such a good mama pup and makes these whiney noises when she comes up to you to pet her belly. She is literally the sweetest and I love her. My love of daschunds grows deeper every time I visit Jay’s family. It is exactly 57 minutes until I am 26! sa;dkasja;s exciting. Year 25, thank you for all of your lessons. Thank you for all of the tough times so that I can once again learn how to be strong. Thank you for all of the memories made, all of the laughs that turned into holding onto tables to catch my breath, for all of the people in my life that make each day easier and more bearable, for all of the sentimental moments that made me press my hands against my face to absorb all of its beauty. For still having bartenders card me which means I still look youthful. I am thankful for it all.

4 thoughts on “Birthday Weekend in LA, an Ode to 25.”

  1. You have a flaw for words and story-telling Cynthia ! You’ve found an avid fan here 🙂 Keep posting and take us to places 🙂

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  2. You are amazing and I love to read about your adventures….I love that you guys traveled to so many places in one year! Sounds like another couple I know!! (Hehe). I am your biggest fan ❤️

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  3. When I went to the Getty I thought to myself, "This is Cynthia’s aesthetic," so I am glad you went there :3 We still need to take a Cali road trip ❤

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