Thursday, February 27, 2014

How a Trip to LA reminds me that I have the best husband in the world

Let me first start off this post by saying that I have the best husband in the world. He doesn't read this blog, so I'll have to come up with a creative way to show it to him - but I just wanted to publicly proclaim it to the world. After I write this post, you'll be on Team Mr. Howard too - but I wanted to acknowledge that I KNOW how blessed I am.  

Before I can write about my weekend, I have to first say that this trip has been a long time coming. When my husband went to Canada for work on two separate occasions, I kept joking that the 17 cumulative days I spent by myself with three small children had earned me a stay in a hotel with room service and Mai Tais. I was joking, of course, but my husband responded by saying, "You SHOULD go take a weekend for yourself!" and so I did what any sane wife would do and quickly got on the computer and booked my flight before he could change his mind. 

I was all set to spend a weekend in L.A. several months ago and then, shockingly, my friend Jen's mom got very sick. After a scary few days, they found out she had acute lymphoblastic leukemia. I know I sent out an email to some of you asking to pray for her and I so appreciate those prayers!! They spent the next several months fighting. Fighting for her life. Fighting through chemo. Fighting through transplant surgery. Fighting to kick cancer's butt and she is now in remission! Hallelujah! So, it seemed like the perfect time to reschedule my trip!!

I left for LAX on Friday morning and was so excited to sit in the airport and read gossip magazines. It's a little crazy that sitting in the airport is considered a vacation. It's just a luxury I'm not used to. I know Jen and Brett thought I was crazy for being so excited, but there is rarely a time when I can just sit. 
On Friday, Brett met me at the airport and took me out for coffee. Jen had a meeting, so he wanted to take me to the beach (since I never get to see it) and then we went and had an amazing capri espresso at the North End Cafe in Manhattan Beach. The espresso had white chocolate, lemon, and steamed milk. It was like nothing I'd ever had before! But it was so good! Afterwards, Brett dropped me off at Jen's work and she and I headed out for a visit with her mom! It was SO nice to see her. I've been praying for her every day and asking Jen to give me updates every chance I get and it was just so nice to finally hug her in person. We went out to lunch and just spent time hanging out together.

That evening we drove back to Jen and Brett's house and got ready for dinner. We went to this little place called Okie Dokie sushi and it was so good! They had the most amazing sashimi salad that I am totally going to recreate for Mr. Howard. I just need to find a good salad dressing! After dinner, we came home and watched TV. Jen and Brett did a major remodel of their house and it looks AMAZING!
The next morning we woke up and went to the beach for breakfast. We had a paradise bowl in Manhattan Beach. It was this blended, almost sorbet-like texture, in the bottom of the bowl with acai, strawberries, peaches, and banana. And then on top of it was granola, chopped banana, and strawberries. Oh my goodness. It was so good! I felt like I was almost eating ice cream for breakfast! We came down to the beach and ate our breakfast with this view below! Ridiculous!
After breakfast, we came home and got ready to go to a Spa, called Terranea. Oh my goodness! If you are planning a trip to Southern California and want a resort to visit, you MUST go to Terranea. It was spectacular. Absolutely breathtaking. We brought magazines and books and spent the whole day in our robes in the Jacuzzi and treatments. I was supposed to bring my swimsuit, but I completely forgot - so I was a free spirit under my robe. Haha! I read the book Gone Girl, while I was there. I literally devoured it because it was SO good. If you're looking for a book club book, you have to read it!
Jen snapped this photo of me at the Jacuzzi reading.
We ate at a cafĂ© at the pool and had a mediterranean chicken pita and guacamole. And then we came back and did a whole lot more sitting and reading! Look how much of the book I had read by this point!
 Jen got me a "Skin Specifics" Facial, which felt AMAZING! The esthetician helped identify why my skin has been struggling lately (I thought it was because I had turned 30!) and gave me two things I can try. I've already noticed a difference with washing my face directly after I run (seems like a simple idea - but I hadn't thought of it!)! Have you ever had a facial? They are SOO relaxing! I love when they rub your shoulders and neck and chest. It always feels so heavenly. Can you see our view from the spa?
Is this view not spectacular? This was after our treatments!
I read and read...and talked...and read all afternoon...and then talked...and then read some more.
After our treatments, and lounging, and reading, and talking - we took showers, did our makeup, and got dressed up right around sunset.
We went to a restaurant at Terranea called Nelson's (I linked to it, if you want to pin it!). I wish I could have captured how beautiful it was. There are a million people who captured it on their real cameras, much better than my iPhone could have captured - so google it. Jen and I met her friends Kathryn and Scott there and we all had dinner and drinks! My beautiful best friend Jen:
I'm pretty sure this is the only photo Jen and I got together the entire weekend. I really am SO blessed in this friendship. I cannot imagine my life without her in it! Who knew that in 2005 when we met for a few minutes in sorority recruitment, that I'd have met my sister for life!
This was the view from the restaurant at sunset!
Can you believe it?
After dinner, we drove to Pinkberry and had dessert. Then Jen and I came home to Brett and watched TV.

This trip would already be amazing enough if it ended there, but it didn't!! We still had a whole other day together.

Do you see why I said you'd be Team Mr. Howard after this post? Isn't he amazing to encourage me to go spend a weekend with my best friend doing nothing but reading, laughing, lounging, and talking?!?  I am so blessed that he watched the kids without a single second thought. Everytime I called, he'd say, "things are so great! We miss you, but we're having a great time!" I never felt guilty or sad, because he was so encouraging for me to enjoy my time with my friends!


J Howard said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Yep I'm on team Mr. Howard!!!! Looks like an amazing trip, so happy you got to get away!!!

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