On our first full day in Los Angeles we woke up bright and early (thanks Eastern time!) and headed off in search of breakfast burritos and the beach! We stayed in a cute little AirBnB just one block from Venice’s Muscle Beach and spent our mornings drinking coffee and watching the surfers before heading out for the day.
I tried my best to embrace the “windblown” look as the hair dryer in our AirBnB was broken. To add to my hair troubles, we were also renting a Mustang convertible for the week which was super fun to drive, but didn’t help my hair. Thankfully our hotel in San Diego had a hairdryer so my hair was back to normal in a few days!
On our last day in Aruba I swapped my bathing suit for some fun pink shorts for a walk on the beach and breakfast at a local restaurant, Hadicurari. I definitely did not want to leave as I knew there was 3 ft of snow waiting for me at home! However, I was grateful to spend a few more hours in the sun & sand before jetting off to Boston.
I could definitely classify myself as a beach bum. When on vacation (or even when visiting Plum Island’s beach at home) I can plop myself down on a beach chair or towel and be content for hours. This trip I packed along only a few beach essentials — two books, 30 SPF sunscreen, a hat, and a pool float for the lazy river!
I brought along Wild since I wanted to read the book before going to see the movie. I really loved Wild and ended up finishing the book while on the plane home, but I cannot imagine hiking the Pacific Crest Trail myself!
If you’ve been following me on Instagram (and if you’re not you should be!) you know that I spent last week in Costa Rica with my family! Its been a place on our “must visit” list for awhile now– my great grandfather was born in San Jose — and we finally made the trip happen this year. We stayed at the JW Marriott in Guanacaste, which is about an hour or so from Liberia — depending on how fast you can drive on dirt roads!
We did a whole lot of nothing on the trip, and it was perfect! We swam in the infinity pool, lounged in hammocks, searched for shells on the beach, drank fruity cocktails, and watched the sun set over the Pacific every night.
One day we got ambitious and ventured out on a tour of a coffee plantation to learn how Costa Rica harvests and produces their 100% Arabica coffee. We even got to see some traditional Costa Rican dancing as a “surprise” from our tour guide. The trip to the plantation was an experience all in itself — 2 hours of driving in a van on dirt roads with more potholes than I had ever seen in my entire life. We saw a lot of people riding dirt bikes and ATVs in the road — much better vehicle choices for the terrain!!
The coffee in Costa Rica is amazing — its such a small country compared to other coffee producers that they focus on quality and not quantity. Definitely a modern girl philosophy! And once we were on the tour it was easy to see why — I was so surprised to hear about how much work goes into picking the coffee beans — one 25 lb. basket only yields about 8 lbs. of finished coffee beans!
Our beach was so nice and secluded — there were hardly any other people were around! Doug and I took a long walk and I found so many unique shells on the beach that I had never seen before. I smuggled a few home and I may try to make a necklace out of them for next summer.
I shared most of my sunset photos on my Instagram page, but this one was from our last night and its just too pretty to not post here too. The colors were different every day — sometimes the sky was a bright orange like this night, and other nights were pink. If you want to go “off the grid” for a little bit I’d highly recommend Costa Rica, especially Guanacaste. Outside of the hotel property (which was about 10 mins off the main road anyway!) was so rural and had an easygoing, relaxed feel to it. After all, the country’s motto is “pura vida”!
The other night we got together for Doug’s grandmother’s birthday. She lives right on the beach so almost every trip up to her house ends with a nice walk along the water. The kids jump in the ocean and play touch football while the rest of us sit on the sand and take in the amazing view.
Gram and Meg make their blog debut! Meg is one of my blog’s biggest fans so its about time she finally posed for a picture!! And I have to give credit to her oldest daughter, Lidet, who did my gorgeous fishtail braid!