midWest

Happy 2017

Well I am finally back in Cali for a couple of weeks! Sorry if you have been wondering what happened to me out here. 😉 I was back in Indiana for 5 weeks from Thanksgiving through Christmas and now finally getting settled back into life here in Turlock!  Being home was a wonderful time of catching up with family and friends.  I am grateful to have been able to stay there that long and not miss out on The Most Wonderful Time of the Year. Grant was able to fly to Indiana over Christmas and then we both headed back to Cali the 27th!

We celebrated our Christmas last week when we were back in Turlock.  I didn’t decorate for Christmas out here since I was gone for the entire month but I do want to show you the adorable decor that I came back to!! 😂 #acharliebrownchristmas  #loveitimg_0647

For New Year’s Weekend we celebrated in Los Angeles and Pasadena!  Growing up my family tradition on New Year’s Day was to watch the Rose Parade and Rose Bowl game on tv.  I always thought it would be so much fun to actually go to the parade!  So this year with living in Cali we decided to make that happen. 🙂  The parade was on Monday, January 2nd this year since New Year’s day fell on a Sunday.  So this gave us a long weekend to sight-see in the area.

We started our trip on Saturday morning and were able to get in at a good time for New Year’s Eve.  We drove along Muholland Drive which is supposed to be a great view of the city except for when it’s raining and foggy. #itwasstillfun
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We even had time to grab lunch at one of the famous diners, known for their burgers! #carneystrain  Probably wouldn’t hurry back there anytime soon but it was definitely an experience!fullsizeoutput_c1c

With Cali being 3 hours ahead of NYC for the New Year’s count down & ball drop, the west coast has 2 celebrations.  One at 9pm and then again at Midnight!  We found a location on Marina Del Rey (near Venice Beach) that had fireworks for both celebrations.  We decided to go to the early viewing so we found a restaurant on the water that allowed for a nice view! We hadn’t made reservations so basically we went early enough to get a good seat. #3hourmeal
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For those of you who haven’t been, Los Angeles is beautiful! I loved the views, shopping, palm trees, housing–pretty much everything about the city. (Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Hollywood, Sunset Strip etc are all included in that) Sunday was a day filled with sightseeing!  We started our late morning with brunch at this adorable restaurant called The Churchill.  This place was hopping with locals and the food was delectable!  We even had a great seat by the fire-place.  fullsizeoutput_c1f

After breakfast we went to The Grove.  This place was just as cute as I had pictured it!  I love going to iconic places that I have seen on tv or movies. This is one of those!  Each year the Dancing With the Stars (DWTS) winter finale takes place here. It’s also just a beautiful shopping area that you should definitely go visit!

We also found CBS Television City right beside The Grove, this is one of the 2 locations where DWTS is actually aired throughout the season. #lifegoaltobeondwts 😉fullsizeoutput_b63

Some of our other adventures were going to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art to see the lamp poles!

We drove down El Rodeo Drive and through Beverly Hills!  #onpoint We ventured down to Hollywood Ave where we saw many iconic places such as the El Capitan Theatre (where Jimmy Kimmel is aired), Dolby Theatre (Academy Awards), TCL Chinese Theatre (best known for Studio Premiers), Capitol Records Building (first record label on the West Coast), and of course the Hollywood Walk of Fame (all of those stars on the sidewalk).

We had dinner at Yamashiro.  This place was beautiful! It is known for the best view of the city.  I would agree!! It was offset on a hill all by itself and the view was stunning! Not to forget about the sushi, it was great too but we were definitely focused on the view!img_0703fullsizeoutput_c35img_0704
We ended our evening watching a movie in the Arclight theater, because when you are in Hollywood and don’t watch a movie it’s like being in China and not seeing The Great Wall.  (Ok maybe not that drastic but you get the point!)  A perk of being in Hollywood before a movie is actually out in theaters is that you can watch it before everyone else. We watched Hidden Figures which didn’t come out until the 6th, but was already showing at least a week in advance!  Oh and you should definitely go see it!!

I am finally back to the whole reason we came to the LA area for the weekend and that is the Rose Parade! We purchased tickets so that we would have reserved seating in the grandstands at the parade and not have to wait outside the evening before just to get a spot to see the parade.  The recommended time of arrival was still 2 hours prior to the start of the parade for those with reserved seating.  Several streets would be blocked off and parking wasn’t going to be easy to find, so they wanted you to have time to get to your location.

Well lets just say Grant and I are known for sleeping over for things!  We tend not to hear alarms or one says they will set an alarm and then forgets to etc.  So in order to make it to our location before the parade started at 8 am (which we were going to be sitting at the beginning of the parade so needed to be there on time) we planned to leave our hotel at 5:30 am.  This didn’t give us much extra time, but enough!  So we set our alarms and sure enough we woke up to a random phone call (Grant still doesn’t know who it was) at 6:45 am.  #woof  We never heard his alarms and for some reason my alarm was frozen so we never could have heard that!  We scurried around and made it out of there by 7:00 am.  Not too bad considering the fact that we even had to pack things up because checkout was that morning as well!  We tried getting as close to the parade route as possible but we had no idea where we were going to park because we forgot to bring cash! We obviously did not plan ahead.  We ended up finding a lot that would accept card and whipped it in there!  It was officially 7:35 am and we still had a good 1.5 miles to walk to our location!  I was skeptical that we were going to make it, not to mention I think my bladder was going to burst from practically running to our seats! #pregoproblems But we ended up making it to our seats with a couple of minutes to spare. 😅

The parade began with the stealth bomber fly over!

And then the beautiful floats filled with roses, this was such a neat experience!


We even got to see someone famous! #typennington img_0725img_0726
Happy New Year from Pasadena!!
img_0733fullsizeoutput_c44Before we ended our time in Pasadena we had to do one last thing…go see the home from the Father of the Bride movies! Growing up my family always watched these movies and I guess it just fits that we were in Pasadena so we had to check it out!!  #getoutoftownimg_0740

Thanks for following another fun adventure, excited to see what God has in-store for 2017!

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