On Springtime (& Life Lately)

You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands. ~ Isaiah 55:12

Happy spring, my lovely readers and friends! Spring has officially sprung in Los Angeles and I am loving every minute of it. The flowers are blooming all around campus and I just cannot help but smile while walking around. Even though I may be kicking myself for saying this come August (when its 108 degrees, and not 80), I am so excited to be wearing dresses and shorts again. I love dressing for spring because I get to wear all my favorite clothes! As much as I love sweaters, boots, and scarves, flower-printed dresses and skirts bring me such joy. The verse I highlighted above, Isaiah 55:12, reminds me of the spring season because I love hiking and visiting the mountains during the springtime. I also think this verse is a great description of my life right now- you will go out in JOY and be led forth in PEACE– despite feeling uneasy about graduating in December and applying for various jobs and internships, I feel such joy and peace in this season of life. I find myself walking to class or to Starbucks or the library with a huge smile on my face and simply thanking God for all of the blessings he has been giving me lately. The springtime represents joy and peace to me because we also get to celebrate Easter and the Risen King! Hallelujah. Here are some pictures of what has been inspiring me lately:

tumblr hanna way tulips
photo courtesy of Julie Ter, http://juliterr.tumblr.com ~~this photo was taken at the Tulip Festival in Oregon. i didn’t know such a thing existed but now..it’s going on the bucket list. tulips are my favorite flower!
you have a heart of gold
photo courtesy of http://acompletelife.tumblr.com
flower crown
photo courtesy of http://nylonpinksy.tumblr.com
speak from the heart
photo courtesy of http://dear-abigail.tumblr.com

And here’s a bit of what I have been up to lately! Life has been crazy with work, school, and friendships but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I went home for spring break and had so much fun with my family. During the weekend after I got back to school, Lauren and I made a trip to see my brother, his girlfriend, and her sister and her boyfriend! It was a beautiful day and we had so much fun together. I can’t wait to visit again!

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pretty flowers at the Paper Crown/Rifle Paper Co. event.
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everyday God gives us a little bit of a blessing in the form of a sunset. this one turned out to be one of my favorites.
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this spot & these beautiful pink trees on campus make me so very happy. i love to spend my time here in between classes.
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my dad and i went show shoeing over spring break (my first time) and had so much fun! what a work out.
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tahoe, straight killin’ it.
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oh, tiny dancer- you beautiful thing.
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my beautiful sisters ❤

There are only five weeks left of school and to be honest, I’m almost entirely checked out. I have absolutely loved my classes this semester but I just cannot wait for summer! Even though I will be working and interning most of the time, I am so excited for this opportunity to stay in la for the summer and do some of the things I’ve always dreamed about. This is a pretty adultish big step and sometimes it seems scary and daunting, but I know it is the right move. I am so looking forward to adventuring around this city and getting to know more of this place I am calling home right now. Life, awaits!

Blessings,

Abby

P.S. My sweet friend, Hunter, has started a Kickstarter to print the first issue of her future magazine, Laurel Mag! We would love your prayer, support, and encouragement. Follow the link here to learn more about this vision and to donate! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/106641297/laurel-magazines-first-print-issue?ref=email

Favorite things to do in Los Angeles (so far)

Things to do in Los Angeles (1)So I’m going to brag about one of my favorite cities for a little bit. I know I have some readers who aren’t from the Los Angeles area and are interested in what there is to do around here- touristy things and non-touristy things! This is my third year here and I just love it. Los Angeles is the coolest city & it completely has my heart. I’m so happy I decided to go to school down south, because it truly has opened my world! I’ve always had a heart for adventure and LA is the place to live because you have access to so many different types of places. Listed below are some of my recommendations, but not all. I could list a hundred different places to eat, things to do, and sights to see but you can find all of those around the internet if you look hard enough! This list is geared mostly toward young adults, who are looking for cheap (or free) things to do! So here we go…

Coffee Shops & Restaurants:

  • Lavender & Honey
    • L&H is my favorite coffee shop in the LA area. It’s actually in Pasadena, in the cutest little neighborhood. It’s a beautiful space and they have the best plates of food. My favorite meal is the Honeybee Latte & the goat cheese toast, with honey and sprinkles of fresh lavender. The owners are as sweet as pie, and it’s a great place to do homework!
  • Copa Vida
    • This coffeeshop is another favorite place of mine to do homework. Copa Vida is in Pasadena as well, and it’s super trendy and fun. They have the coolest latte art. I also really like how they have “unplugged saturdays” when they turn the wifi off as a way of getting people to be more engaged and intentional!
  • Urth Cafe 
    • The first time I went to Urth Cafe was last weekend. Holy moly, me oh my. The ‘cafe glace’ is probably my favorite drink ever, hands down. It’s a vanilla milkshake with espresso poured over. The location in Pasadena is beautiful and I’m looking forward to my next visit!
  • The Ivy 
    • The Ivy is such a classic Los Angeles restaurant. It is super popular with the celebrity crowd- it’s pretty much a guarantee you’ll see a celeb during a visit. I went this past fall for the first time and loved it! Amazing food, amazing service. We used a gift card, which made it more affordable. Once I’m out of college and on a stable budget, I’ll definitely visit again!
  • Mi Piace 
    • Oh, Italian food. You are the way to my heart. This restaurant is in Pasadena as well (as you can probably tell, I ❤ Pasadena), but it actually feels like you are in New York! The building is so, so cool. Their Margherita Pizza is amazing!
  • Anaheim Packing District 
    • I’ve heard about this place for awhile now and I finally had the chance to check it out last weekend! It’s kind of the coolest place ever- trendy and fun and full of amazing foods. For dinner, I had the braised short rib poutine from The Kroft. Absolutely delicious. For dessert, I had a berry crepe from the Crepe Coop. I could’ve eaten five right then and there. For the sake of your taste buds, please visit this immediately. You’ll thank me later.

Activities:

  • Laguna Beach, Santa Monica
    • I’ve been to tons of beaches in my life. In fact, I grew up on a beach. So I feel like I am pretty picky when it comes to great beaches. Laguna Beach & Santa Monica are my two favorites down here- they are beautiful, clean, and have the best sand. They both also have great shopping & restaurants near by as well! My friends and I love going to the beach whenever we have a day off from school.
  • Disneyland 
    • Since I’m a five year old at heart, Disneyland should be at the top of this whole list. Now that I’ve lived in LA, I’ve been to Disneyland more times than I can remember. It’s basically my second home. Abby + Disney food + fun rides= sweet, sweet happiness. I’ll be posting a guide on “how to make the most of your time at Disneyland” very soon!
  • The Getty Museum, Norton Simon Museum
    • I love museums. To my surprise, Los Angeles really does boast some amazing museums! Norton Simon is free for students, and has free parking as well. So if that isn’t a huge bonus, I don’t know what is! The Getty is beautiful, I love the views of the ocean! Parking is pretty expensive, but admission is free. My friends and I brought homework and it was a perfect all-day adventure.
  • The Hollywood Bowl
    • Two years, I saw Mumford & Sons at the Hollywood Bowl. And yes, it was one of the best night of my life. I love M&F, but the venue made the night that much better. I’m always on the lookout for upcoming concerts at the Bowl because I just can’t wait to go back. My church actually hosts their Easter services at the Bowl, so I can’t wait till April!
  • The Troubadour 
    • The Troubadour is a great concert venue in West Hollywood. It’s a little place, but that is what makes it great. We saw Penny & Sparrow there, and it was truly a great night. The place also has some amazing history- Elton John performed there for his first US show and Neil Diamond recorded his first live album at the Troubadour.
  • Old Town Pasadena 
    • So as noted previously, I really love Pasadena. It’s a cute little city and seems to be getting more and more popular! I’m so thankful I live close by and can take advantage of what the city has to offer! If I’m ever bored, I usually head to Pasadena because I know I will have a great time.
  • Larchmont Village 
    • My roommate Lauren found this adorable place and it’s quickly become one of our favorite places around LA! The surrounding neighborhood has beautiful houses that we love driving around, and we love the coffeeshop Bricks & Scones right in the village! They also have a farmer’s market on Sundays that we can’t wait to visit as well.

On my Bucket List:

To be completely honest, there are so many cool things to do, eat, and see in LA and I haven’t even touched them all in this list. There really is something for everyone!  Where are your favorite places in the city? Share you hidden treasures below!

Blessings,

Abby

Shaw’s Cove (and everything I learned in just three amazing days)

World’s longest blog post title, right? Last weekend was one for the books. It was good the soul. It was needed in so many ways. But just a warning, there are TONS of pictures coming your way. Just you wait.

My roommates and I started off Friday night by listening to music on the record player and dressing up in our best and most cutest outfits. Once we got to the Farmers Market, we went straight to sample all of the good food and couldn’t keep our eyes off every dog that walked by. That night was fun. My roommates are pretty great (and crazy pretty and i just love them so much).

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Saturday was a lovely day with Steven. Who am I kidding, any day with him is amazing! We went out to lunch, went shopping, and went to church. Shopping was a blast and I wish I could just live in Pottery Barn, instead of gazing longingly at its beautifulness. Both Steven and I got a few new things and most of all, learned that we l-o-v-e shopping together. And could spend way more money that we probably should. ‘Tis the life.

So Sunday roles around and Jess invited Lauren and I to visit her grandparents in Laguna Beach and see their brand new Golden Retriever puppy. So…obviously I went. Beach + puppies= happy abby. (and because I love my friends and going on adventures).

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Jess’s grandparents are inspiring. They love each other well and it was so apparent during our time with them. We spent a good two hours around the dinner table, overlooking the ocean, talking about anything and everything. We had intelligent, thoughtful conversation. We joked about life and how people take things too seriously. We reminisced about the sweetness of our pasts and talked about our dreams for the future. I left their house feeling so taken care of and thought after. Jess, Lauren, and I are closer because of it. It was truly beautiful. A night that I’ll be sure to talk about many times again.

Blessings,

Abby