The Good Son by Christopher Andersen

Two Fridays ago I blogged about the book I was currently reading, “The Good Son,” by Christopher Andersen. Andersen has written a lot of celebrity biographies and I’ve read a few of his other books. I enjoy the way he writes and how he is so thorough in his story telling.

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This book details the relationship between John F. Kennedy Jr. and his famous mother Jackie Kennedy Onassis, and how it shaped his entire life. Jackie had to delicately balance the Kennedy legacy expectations for John and his sister Caroline, as well as allowing them to live their own lives.

Andersen has spoken with many close friends and colleagues of the Kennedys that share intimate stories about the family dynamic through the years. I would say though that I didn’t feel like there was a ton of new information or stories. Three people that were close friends of JFK Jr. (Billy Noonan, Rob Littell, and RoseMarie Terenzio) who all wrote books about their friendships, were quoted throughout the book. I’ve read all of their books but haven’t blogged about them all just yet. But some of the stories I had heard about before in other books or through the media.

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I will say though that it was nice to see the relationship evolve between Jackie and the children. She raised them so well and encouraged them to travel, and do adventurous things while also giving back to society and helping others.  It shaped a lot of their personalities and their future endeavors. Jackie also made a point of keeping her children away from some of the other Kennedy cousins who were more wild. She worried they would negatively influence them.

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I also found it heartbreaking that John was constantly living in his father’s shadow his whole life. The media was relentless in bringing up his father and his legacy. It also didn’t help that John’s birthday was just 3 days after his father’s brutal assassination, so that right about his birthday every year the media would bring it up.

Everyone describes John as so charming and it’s so sad and unthinkable that he was cut down in his prime, before he was able to enter politics or have children of his own.

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Day 11 San Fran to LA

I mentioned that before our trip I looked up a bunch of murals I wanted to see in each major city and since we were so busy the first go around in San Fran, so on our last day I wanted to squeeze in a few more murals.

In the morning we went with Jesse and G to breakfast at Simple Pleasures Cafe. She brought along Sequence for us to play over breakfast and it was so fun. We played boys against the girls and somehow the boys managed to win. We will get them next time! :)

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We walked in the Mission District in Balmy Alley and Clarion Alley, which are both full of fun street art.

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After 11 days, 3 states, 34 hours in the car, and 2,300 miles, we were back home with lots of amazing memories. Road trips are one of our favorites things to do.

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Day 10 Portland to San Fran

So after being on the road for a week and a half, it was time for us to head back so I could get back to work. We planned to drive from Fox Island to San Francisco which is 750 miles and about 12 hours without traffic. We thought we’d break up the long drive with a quick stop in Portland.

On the way up to Seattle we stopped in Portland and went to this gallery called Screaming Sky. There was a print there I was thinking about getting so I wanted to stop in and grabbed it. If you are in the Portland area I’d highly recommend going here. They have such cute prints, magnets, pins, cards, etc. And if you’re not in that area check out their website, you can shop online.

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IMG_20150310_122235Here is the print that I picked up. I added this gem to our gallery wall that I’ll have to blog about in the near future.

IMG_20150310_122344We stopped by Case Study Coffee Roaster on the way out because Dave loves his coffee and we still had a long way to go. It was super cute inside.

IMG_20150310_123038On the way back to the car we passed Cupcake Jones and I couldn’t resist. :) Who doesn’t love mini cupcakes?

IMG_20150310_123509That completed our stop in Portland and for the rest of the night we were in the car, singing, talking, and listening to podcasts all the way to San Fran where we met up with Jesse and G again.

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Friday Favorites – White Pants + Wonderful People Edition

Happy Friday friends! I’m linking up with the ladies at A Little Bit of Everything BlogGrace and Love Blog, and Momfessionals as usual!  :) Head on over to all their sites if you wanna join in the link ups!

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I’m also linking up with other blogging women at A.Liz AdventuresCarolina CharmHello! Happiness, and The Good Life Blog.

p-txt And last but not least The Farmer’s Wife and September Farm.

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THE NEW YOU

This week I posted about Andre Kajlich and his upcoming Race Across America (RAAM.) And he agreed to do an interview for my blog and I’m very excited about it! It will give you all a chance to get to know him better and hear his amazing stories from being an ultra endurance athlete. He’s such a nice guy and such a badass! :)

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THE NEW YOU(1)

I went to the outlet mall last weekend with my roommates and I found white pants from Aero that I love.

Fun fact, Aero was my second job I ever had back in college.

I remember I did a post a while ago about outfit ideas for white pants. Seeing a few pictures on Pinterest inspired me to take the plunge.

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THE NEW YOU(2)

Since I started my new job last week, I like to meal plan and have some snacks ready to go, it makes me feel like I’ve got my sh*t together hah!

This week I’ve been eating celery with peanut butter, bananas and peanut butter, strawberries, raspberries, carrots, pineapple, and barley with green onions, cheese, and garlic. I’m currently obsessed with barley from Trader Joe’s. It’s so good and so easy to make.

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I try to eat healthy most of the time but don’t be fooled. I still love to eating chocolate, ice cream, and cake pop on the regular!

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THE NEW YOU(3)

 

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I love this quote. I am lucky enough to have met some amazing people in my life. Life has an interesting way of bringing people into your lives and I am so grateful for them.

It is cool to sit back and think sometimes how much had to happened for you to be in that exact moment meeting someone instead of all the other people in the world.

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Every time I go to the mall I love going into Francesca’s. If you haven’t been there, they have really cute clothing, jewelry, home decor, and cute books and gifts. It’s so fun to walk in there, everything is so colorful and bright!

This necklace is just $24 and I’ve been eyeing it every time I go in the stores.pink

 

This pillow is $38 and is so cute. 

 

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This adorable white dress is $48.

 

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I’m telling you, they have everything and it’s quickly becoming one of my favorites stores.

Happy Friday everyone! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Can’t wait to read about your favorites in the link ups.  Next week I’ll wrap up our road trip, with two more days to cover.

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Day 9 Seattle & the Gum Wall

After we stayed at our friend’s place in Fox Island, we headed into Seattle to be tourists and look at some neighborhoods we are contemplating. But first up was breakfast and our friends recommend Portage Bay IMG_20150309_130645

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I had the yogurt and granola and Dave had the pancakes which comes with a selection of toppings that you help yourself to up at the kitchen bar.

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IMG_20150309_122708Once breakfast was done we head into a few neighborhoods and drove around. Our friends live in West Seattle and Ballard. We visited Hayes and Kate and saw their area and their adorable house. It really set the standard high for me for our next place in terms of what I’m looking for. I also realize I need to step up my decorating game because their place was so well put together.

I’ve been to Seattle three times, visited the gum wall twice, but never put my gum on the wall, so this time I did just that!

We brought our little friend (who still needs a name) to Pike’s Place with us and he posed for a few pictures. :)

IMG_20150309_135246I love fresh flowers and love that Pike’s Place has so many! I love tulips.

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IMG_20150309_140615Here are some pictures of the famous gum wall. Yes I know it’s gross, sticky, and has lots of germs but it’s such a fun tourist spot that I really enjoy.

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IMG_20150309_140723There are parts of the alley that are covered and other parts not so much.

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IMG_20150309_141036 And one more shot for the road :)

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After our tour of Seattle we went back to Jared and Marlee’s, Marlee and I went for a walk. Then we all ate dinner together and talked some more about us moving and the future.

We’ve known Jared and Marlee for about 5 years now and we’ve been through a lot together in good times and in bad. We’ve seen them in Chicago, Michigan, Colorado, Washington state, we worked in Washington DC with them visiting frequently, we all lived in LA together for a year, Dave and Jared have been to Afghanistan and Peru together for work, we’ve seen them get engaged, married and they just had their first kid. We love having them in our lives and are so grateful to have great friends and this will be another adventure to add to our list.

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Day 8 Skykomish River Cabin to Fox Island

I mentioned yesterday that we stayed in a cabin for two nights but I didn’t post pictures of the cabin because there were so many other pictures. So today I’m showing off the cabin.

This is the front of the cabin, with the wrap around porch that backs up to the river.

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Here’s the outdoor fireplace that we didn’t get to take advantage of.

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I took a picture of the hot tub that we really enjoyed. There was a train track that was used pretty frequently while we were there. It was really cool to hear that while we were in the hot tub and we also loved hearing the river.

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The cabin was so cute and cozy.
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I didn’t take pictures of the bedrooms, but there were two. One master bedroom and another bedroom that had 3 beds. And there was a cute nook/loft area that could be reached by a ladder with another bed.

On our way out, we stopped by the Espresso Chalet that was super tiny and super cute.

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IMG_20150308_113944After this we stopped by Sultan Bakery again to get more cookies :)

IMG_20150308_121330From here we drove to our friend’s place on Fox Island. They have a gorgeous rental house that overlooks the water.

IMG_20150308_164201We went for a nice walk then ate dinner at our Jared and Marlee’s and caught up. We all used to live in LA by each other and it was fun to see them again in Washington. We love them.

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Day 7 Skykomish River

Yesterday I mentioned how Dave being in the film industry has introduced us to really great people. Hayes and Dave spent time in Alaska together on a film project and we met up with him in San Fran and again in Washington state. We rented a cabin on the Skykomish River for 2 nights. The first night was just the four of us: Dave and I, Hayes and his fiance Kate. They also brought along their awesome dog Boda.

The first night we were there, everyone went in the hot tub and I decided to opt out and write in my journal and watch the Parent Trap. What a classic movie. :) Then Kate came in and we got to talking and really bonded over a lot of things.

The next morning two more couple friends of ours met us at the cabin. Justin and Megan are our friends from Chicago and Denny and Sarah went to high school with us. Denny and Dave have been friends with kindergarden! And they grew up down the block from each other. We are loosely planning a move to Seattle this fall and these three couples would be the people we’d be hanging out with and going on adventures together.

When we were at the Chandelier Tree in Northern California we went into the gift shop and found this little guy, a money riding in a banana cart. We usually stick to buying postcards and the occasion sticker and avoid trinkets from our travels but this guy was too funny and random to pass up. I thought it’d be fun to take pictures with him at different locations. Here is his debut. We are working on a name for him and would love your suggestions! IMG_20150307_100645-EFFECTS

Once everyone got to the cabin we headed to this short hike. It was a beautiful sunny day out and perfect for hiking and catching up with new and old friends.

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 At the end of the hike was this tower that lead to an amazing view.

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I posted this picture on our Instagram. This picture is the view at the top of the Cascade Mountain range, which I had not heard much about but they are very grand and really beautiful. Dave and I look forward to spending more time in the Cascades in the future.

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 Here are the boys at different points of our hike.

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Justin was super excited about going to Sultan Bakery that was really delicious. And if you go there, get some cookies! They’re fantastic.

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When we got back to the cabin we went for a walk down the Skykomish River. It was really muddy but really fun. We built rock bridges to get across to a little island, played pig and horse by aiming at rocks, and had a lot of fun.

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Here’s Boda leading the way back to the cabin.

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 Here’s a nice close up of our little unnamed buddy and the gorgeous Cascades.

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That night we cooked burgers and brats and chatted about life. The girls also played card games and Boda has a serious case of FOMO (fear of missing out.) She was right there in the action :)

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Our friends weren’t able to stay the night, but after they left the 4 of us went to the hot tub and it was perfect weather for it. It was a really relaxing and fun filled two days of friends, food, hiking, and hot tubbing.

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Day 6 Lake Wenatchee, Washington

I started a new job this week so I’ve been a little busy and have been slacking on my blogging. But I’m back again and wanted to continue with our LA to Seattle road trip. Day 6 of our road trip brought us to Lake Wenatchee, Washington. Our friend Pablo was working on a documentary about Andre Kajlich, who is a double amputee and an ultra endurance athlete. And this June he will attempt to be the first solo hand-cyclist to cross the Race Across America (RAAM) finish line that includes a 3,000 mile, 12 day ride that climbs 170,000 feet, and crosses 12 states. 16193_10155333899605217_6489480879215349307_n Andre was kind enough to invite Dave and I to stay at his family’s cabin and the next day we filmed Andre training on his hand cycle. This is the view from his backyard deck. IMG_20150306_102537 Pablo and his sister Maria flew in from San Francisco and Dave and I drove from LA. It was really cool to meet up in Lake Wenatchee and to meet Andre and his wonderful wife Mariana. One of my favorite things about Dave working in the film industry is the amount we get to travel and the incredible people we get to meet.

Here’s a picture of Dave and Pablo filming out of the back of the rented van. :)

IMG_20150306_120508 Lake Wenatchee has beautiful wooded roads with rolling hills and is a great training ground. IMG_20150306_124411 IMG_20150306_124906

The water was freezing, but wow was it beautiful to look at! IMG_20150306_102533

IMG_20150306_105708 It was a long day of filming and I was able to talk and get to know Andre and Mariana. They are both incredibly kind, inspiring, and warm people.

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Check out this amazing trailer Pablo put together!

If you want to follow along on Andre’s journey check on the documentary’s website here and follow Andre’s blog here. That night after they finished filming we headed to another cabin we rented with some friends that was on the Skykomish River.

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Friday Favorites: Yoga, Skirts, & Chocolate Edition

Happy Friday friends! Time to link up with the ladies at A Little Bit of Everything Blog, Grace and Love Blog, and Momfessionals as usual! :) Head on over to all their sites if you wanna join in the link ups!

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I’m also linking up with other blogging women at A.Liz Adventures, Carolina Charm, Hello! Happiness, and The Good Life Blog.

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And last but not least The Farmer’s Wife and September Farm.

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THE NEW YOU

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I heard about the new show Younger from ads and through some blogs and didn’t get around to watching it, but it was on my list. Then on Tuesday night it came on tv and I really got into it. It’s a show about a single mom who struggles to get back into the working world and pretends she’s 26 to a get a job and ends up making younger friends and dates a younger guy.

Yes, Hollywood is obsessed with aging and perfection and being younger, but this show is more about reliving your 20s, possibilities, and has funny cultural references.

The cast is fun and there are a few new actors I haven’t heard of.  I really like the chemistry between the main character and her current love interest. He’s really charming and they’re sweet together. It’s a fun show that I’m really excited to start watching!

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THE NEW YOU(1)

Locations-lululemon-logo-159ewlgSince we moved to Santa Monica in October of 2013 I wanted to do activities to keep busy and to meet people. My friend Jamie mentioned to me that Lululemon offers free yoga on the weekends. So I start going with her.

I also went because it was a nice way to stretch my muscles and strengthen my core for when I was training for my marathon. I ended up really enjoying yoga and now I like to go just for fun.

Lululemon offers free yoga in a lot of locations, so I’d highly suggest you check it out!

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And speaking of free yoga classes, Whole Foods actually offers free yoga too at certain locations. So check their website to see if your local one does too.

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THE NEW YOU(2)

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Since I always have my nose stuck in some book, I thought it’d be fun to share what books I’m reading on Friday Favorites. Right now I’m about two-thirds of the way done with The Good Son by Christopher Andersen. I’ve read a few of his other books and really enjoy the way he writes and goes into detail about his subjects. This book came out last year, so it’s nice to hear recent stories from lots of different sources.

To see other books I’ve read by him be sure to check out our Book Club page.

THE NEW YOU(3)

I love going to Target and browsing to see what they have on sale. I found these Ghirardelli milk chocolate spiced almonds and I had to try them. And let me tell you, they are fabulous!  I think they are my new favorite chocolate snack.

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I am going to a wedding in New York in early May so I went shopping yesterday to look for a dress. I went into Windsor and found this big, gorgeous, flowy, hot pink skirt. I love bright colors and had to try it on. I texted a few girlfriends to get their opinions and they all liked it too, so it helped me decide. Done and done!

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The skirt was $32.90 and the crop top is $19.90.

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Happy Friday friends, hope you all have a lovely weekend!

 

 

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