We are both moms to girls. MaryAnne is raising two wonderful but very different girls: her oldest is an artist and performer; whilst her younger girl is a tough athlete. My daughter is also an athlete, dabbling in the arts. I also have a little boy, and I think this conversation should, and must, include raising boys, but that will come in another post. And no, this is not a sermon or a guide.  I have lain awake in the dark to the glow of my laptop screen trying to find the elusive answers that everyone seems to be professing in so many articles about raising strong and powerful girls,  but….we are not there.  And I don’t have the answers.

raising girls

I have been thinking a lot lately about raising girls, as many of you out there probably are in light of all the sexual abuse scandals and the #metoo and #timesup movements; movements that are both heart breaking and inspiring,  I find myself uncomfortable with getting swept up in this wave of change. Yes, my passions swell and I so desperately want to see the changes for my children’s sake, and for all of our children’s sake. But my daughter has been navigating the swells and undertows of fifth grade, and it has been a rough year. It has sharpened my lens for seeing the social and school complicity in the culture of silence and antipathy. Change is hard.  Standing up and speaking out is hard.  Supporting those who do is even harder.   

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We love our neighbors to the south.  Our families love San Diego and visit often.  MaryAnne recently posted a fabulous overview of the Westin Hotel and nearby restaurants.  We will continue to add to this because San Diego is such an ideal getaway for us OC folks.  Also, I lived in San Diego for several years since I did my undergrad there, so I would love to share some of my favorite local hangouts!  

Best burger in San Diego:  Hodad’s.  Go there!  Seriously.  Although there are a couple of locations, including one in Pet Co Park (there are so many good food and drink options-and yes, we will definitely share a post of this fabulous ball park).  There is one in the East Village, an up and coming neighborhood just east of Gaslamp District and Horton Plaza.  However, my favorite spot for a Hodad’s burger experience is in Ocean Beach, or as the locals fondly call OB.  It is just south of Pacific Beach, which is the more popular beach frequented by lots of rowdy frat boys and tourists.  Don’t get me wrong, PB is a fun hangout and eating destination, but OB is my kind of beach town.  Many moons ago when I was a San Diego local, OB was the quieter, local beach community with that boho, hippy vibe.  Although it has gotten more populated with touristy bars and souvenir shops, it still retains a bit of that hippy charm. View Post

NAMM Show 2018 – NAMM aka music makers mecca, is an annual music convention held at the Anaheim Convention Center held every year. This year it was held on January 25-28 and was even bigger than last year. Tons of exhibitors were there, representing products from more than 7,000 brands.

NAMM Show 2018

(NAMM = National Association of Music Merchants)

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Did you know there is a great Hawaiian restaurant right here in Irvine? Da Luau in northeast Irvine is one of our favorite family owned local spots for a casual meal.  It’s conveniently located in the Cypress Village Center off of Jeffrey and Trabuco just off the 5 freeway, with plenty of parking.

Hawaiian Restaurant Irvine

Aloha!

Sweet Taste of the Island!

Da Luau is great for an early morning (ok, in my case, late morning) breakfast, after game get togethers, meeting spot for Dole Whip or shaved ice, or catering for your next birthday party.  The inside seating has a Hawaiian restaurant theme that is casual and comfortable and offers plenty of elbow room. View Post

Looking for the best wine bar in Orange County? Did you know that we love wine?  And wine bars?  If not, please see bio, or Instagram, or Facebook….  We have searched far and wide in our OC for that perfect vino watering hole – and we finally found it!  We were very diligent!  Well friends, welcome to Five Vines Wine Bar: our favorite wine bar in Orange County is located in the quaint Historic District of San Juan Capistrano.  

Best Wine Bar in Orange County - Five Vines

You have arrived!

Note to other wine bars:  dim those damn lights and cozy up the place! This is one of the cutest and most comfy spots to lounge and sip!

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