southern california

California Road Trip: Part One

To say that we had a busy summer would be the understatement of the year. In September we got some unexpected news that suddenly freed up our schedules and left us feeling a little blue. So what did we do? What we do best- we planned a road trip. Lauren and I have driven all over the country together looking for home. When we found where we wanted to plant ourselves it was a little bittersweet- the search was over. And the search was a little bit fun. It was me and her (and our car) against the world that year that we spent searching. We learned a lot about each other... and a lot about ourselves. So we decided to take up the road again- at least for a week or so. We flew to LA and plotted out stopping points to Laguna Beach, Joshua Tree, Carmel by the Sea, San Fransisco and Grass Valley. 

First Stop: Laguna


Laguna is incredibly important to me. My grandfather started going to Diver's Cove as a teenager to scuba dive. He took my grandma there on their honeymoon at the ripe age of 19. He continued to visit with his children in tow, then eventually his grandchildren. We grew up taking day trips from our dry, dusty homes in the High Desert to the protected cove, the teeming tide pools, the deep aquamarine waters. As soon as I started driving I took friends to this special spot almost immediately. My first kiss with my high school sweetheart happened up on that jetty in prom attire. We'd found ourselves lost on the way to Prom, but suddenly I recognized a road and my heart lead us here, just in time for sunset. It felt like I was coming full circle to bring my wife to this place that holds so many of my sweetest memories. 


To keep costs down and to maximize our time away from home, we stayed with friends and family along the way. Philip and Oscar are two of our sweet Brooklyn friends that (sadly for us) have permanently moved to Los Angeles. But also lucky for us, they have a gorgeous home that they so sweetly opened up to us in Highland Park. It was such a joy to see this city as an adult. 


Second Stop: Joshua Tree

Oh Joshua Tree, you dusty, dirty little town, I think I love you. We stayed in this really modern, cool Airbnb for three nights and it was something else. First of all, this place is off the grid. It's run completely by solar power and has some super cool amenities that include an outdoor shower and a second "bedroom" that has an open roof to the sky- for stargazing, naturally. We hung out with my very sweet soul friend, Panda Landa. I took their picture and wrote a little post. You can find it here. 

SarahShalenePhotography_JoshuaTree-1 copy.jpg

Stay tuned for Part Two: Monterey, Carmel, and Grass Valley.