Monthly Archives: October 2015

[Oh, Snap] Weekend Wanderlust Along California’s Coastline

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“We do not “come into” this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean “waves,” the universe “peoples.” Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe.”
Alan W. Watts

When life seems overwhelming and bubbling over, it’s important to take some personal time and marinate in the purity of the moment. Whether its work or social life, the cure for emotional chaos and calamity is the warmth of the wilderness and the nurture of nature. This past weekend, I took a wonderful little trip up and down the California coast on the historic Pacific Coast Highway with Danny and a few of our friends, leisurely exploring nooks and crannies and enjoying each other’s company.  Danny and I had done the drive before a few years ago, but we always found ourselves wishing we had more time to explore tide pools, coves, caves and the great outdoors – so this time, we made a point being leisurely and letting it all soak in.

Constructed over the course of several decades, California’s Highway 1 began segmented construction in 1911 to connect coastal communities.  Commonly just referred to as The 1 or the PCH, depending on which leg of the journey you’re on, the route was completed through the Big Sur region in 1939 after securing funding from Roosevelt’s New Deal during the Great Depression. After cruising along the 101 into Santa Barbara, we jumped on the 1 in San Luis Obisbo and took a necessary lunch break in Morro Bay where its almost obligatory to get the clam chowder.

Our pit stop took us to the Otter Rock Cafe and man, oh man – was it ever delicious!  I had to get some clam chowder in a bread bowl and a Bloody Mary after the table over dished some elated dirt on them, and then some oysters on the half shell to top it all off.   Leaving Morro Bay, we set our sights on San Simeon’s Elephant Seal Vista Point. I’ve never seen so many of them – they’re loud, a little bit ridiculous looking, in my opinion they’re one of the few living remnants of God’s sense of humor.  There were literally hundreds of them lazing around various coastal beaches, from young pups to more mature seals.

After leaving San Simeon, we were off and away to Big Sur, Carmel and Monterey, winding the roads with wanderlust in our eyes and adventure in our veins.  We finally reached Monterey around dinner time and took a nice Uber into the Warf area and searched for a worth dinner spot.  After some searching, we found ourselves at Lallapalooza, and let me tell you – their specialty drinks are phenomenal; I had a Skytini with cucumber, mint and Hypnotiq and it was refreshingly fantastic.  With some bar hopping under our belt, we resigned ourselves to our hotel in Seaside for the night so we could get a roaring start to our Sunday funday.

My #1 objective for the weekend: find us some tidepools.  I don’t know about you guys. but growing up I loved searching through the tide pools for brightly colored creatures and slippery souls.  Sea urchins, starfish, hermit crabs, sea anemones  – you name it, if it’s in a tide pool I will undoubtedly think it’s awesome.  Our first stop on Sunday was at Del Monte Beach just outside of Seaside, then we were on the road again – more concerned about the journey than our final destination. After scouting a few beaches we found ourselves at Garrapata State Park, just a few notches south of Monterey. The park is host to wonderful hiking trails up and down the coast and on clear days it’s wonderful for dolphin watching – we even saw a pod!  For the more daring it’s just a hop, skip and a jump down to beach level, and more importantly – you guessed it –  tide pools!

On closer inspection, the tide pools evolved into technicolor colonies – so gorgeous!

Visually, there’s something so simple yet stunning about peach flowers against a bright blue sky and I can’t help but try and capture it. I actually took a really similar picture last time Danny and I came through the area, but it was just so delightful that I had to snap another.

One of my personal favorite things about hiking along the cliffs was seeing bits and pieces of old abalone, muscle and clam shells glistening and sparkling in the dirt.

After a leisurely, lovely stroll through the park we were off, off and away – but not without first losing my phone in the car, then finding it, the trunk almost coming open on the drive, rushing out to close it and flinging my phone into the sand….so that five minutes later I’d actually lost it and we had to do a major search along the roadside for the next fifteen minutes. Good news is that we found it, glistening in all it’s rose pink glory in the bright Autumn sky; never a dull moment when you’re with me, I promise. 😉  On our way up the coast we strolled through the area around Pfeiffer Beach near sunset and made a mental note to come back the next day and I’m so thrilled we did, there was so much wilderness to explore – including rocks that had been pulverized so much that a cave had been created in the middle of it, and there was a completely hidden cove with so many stacks of rocks – it was beautiful!

Last, but certainly not least, we caught a stunning sunset near Lafler Canyon – the cotton candy, sorbet skies are permanently etched in my mind and not in my phone because I found myself enjoying the moonrise too much to care – retrospectively, maybe I should’ve asked to stop but the memories will live on.

From start to finish, this past weekend was one for the books and a completely necessary deviation from the normal, routine of everyday life – an escape from the fast paced, high anxiety world that’s part of some weird reinforcement cycle that I’m most certainly an integral part of.  As a self proclaimed city kitty, this time away from the sheeple and masses reaffirmed to me that I’ve been overwhelmed with life, over-inundated with work, tasks and relationships and haven’t taken the proper time to reset myself, to meet myself at my core and be unshakable, to find solace in a moment without flustering over the past or fumbling into the future.  A weekend without cell phone reception, wrapped up in conversations that ranged from trivial and hilarious to insightful, inspiring and compelling. Before our journey, I felt a dark cloud over my head and an unshakable awkward, anxious feeling but after a weekend swept up in nature and seduced by the open sea air, I found myself calm and collected upon my return to Los Angeles – a change that was hopefully deeply imprinted upon me. Though to be fair, I could always use a good excuse to escape again.

 I can’t wait for our next weekend getaway and am already looking up fun routes to and from Oregon for Thanksgiving! When’s the last time you got away for the weekend and where did your wanderlust inspire you to wander to?

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[The Audiofiles] Ipman Releases Delightfully Dark Debut LP ‘Depatterning’ on The Glitch Mob’s Glass Air Imprint

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Prepare yourself for an auditory adventure into the throws of industrial synths, brooding tech house basslines and ominous undertones as Ipman presents his debut album ‘Depatterning‘. Releasing via The Glitch Mob’s Glass Air Records imprint and Tectonic Recordings, Depatterning‘ is the fantastic culmination of two dedicated years in the studio honing his unique and experimental sound that sits delightfully between UK Garage and Future Bass.

Originally hailing from a small rural English town, Ipman – better known as Jack Gibbons – has passionately curated an album that draws equal inspiration from rave culture as it does his personal technological advancements in instrumentation. The album was hand crafted by tech savvy Gibbons, down to the very instruments used: experimenting with both modular and granular synths and rewiring the drum machine.

“I like to create music by experimenting with new ideas and mechanics and letting tracks evolve, and this was no different. I had a pretty free reign and just tried new things and looked at the results.”
Ipman Through discordant bass and dissonant tones, Ipman’s record is a delightful deviation from predictable, four to the floor club bangers. One listen to ‘Depatterning‘ and you’ll be craving a 3am moment at a Warehouse party.

‘Depatterning’ Tracklisting
1. Regicide
2. Technicolour
3. Gravity
4. IPA
5. Last One In The In The
6. Y
7. O
8. U
9. Strong Ones

Depatterning is available for purchase or for listen via streaming in a menagerie of different mediums from Ipman’s website here; choose your auditory adventure whichever way you best see fit – iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Google Play and more!

For more on Glass Air Records, head to their website here

Get to know Ipman through his socials –
Website | Facebook | Soundcloud | Twitter

Originally Featured on The DJ List

[Oh Snap] Eagle Rockin’ and Eagle Walkin’ v8

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These past few weeks have left me in an emotional haze, like a Winter fog has eclipsed my mind while my body meets a stalemate, marinating in the quicksand. Thoughts seems to swirl in a thousand separate, cascading ways before reaching any remotely reasonable destination. It’s not you, it’s not life – it’s me; tt’s me and my idiosyncratic thoughts merging with my wayward anxieties.  This year has brought about a lot of change: all of it necessary, most of it good but on the whole I realized there’s a lot that I’m still processing.

There are connections that have disintegrated, but then there are friendships that have been borne of that same radioactive relationship rubble. Job dissatisfaction isn’t uncommon, but then again balancing two careers on equal but opposite ends of the entertainment industry is. Life goes full circle, yes, but what no one relays is those circles are concentric. Like rungs around a tree, the golden ratio and the Fibonacci sequence –  life builds, blossoms and builds again.  I’ve found that a basic level of routine is inspiring, and nature is indisputably nurture. With the change in seasons, I’ve found myself waking up earlier and roused to leave the comfort of my home.

There’s something about witnessing the sunshine ebbing and flowing between clouds as scattered rain cleans the air and the feeling of freshly fallen leaves crisply crunching beneath my weathered sandals that grounds me back within the moment.  No anxiety around the unforeseen future, no fear of the fleeting past – just a grasp on the breadth and depth of each moment.  I find comfort within the confines of creativity, both wrapping my world in wordplay and taking pictures of the nuanced wonder that I’ve discovered lately.

Even though I’ve lived in Eagle Rock for a year and a half, this was the first time I’d actually noticed this little sign right off of the 210 – and we finally found a hike that takes us up to the actual Eagle Rock! (But, more on that later)

In the past year, I’ve seen a drastic shift from traditional lawns to Desert landscaping that takes our current drought into consideration. This is one of my favorite lawns, and somehow the sun always seems to halo on me.

Just call me the cat whisperer, and this one was a beauty!


      Something to leave you with, because I just finished reading through ‘You Are Here‘ by Tinch Nhat Hanh and this part has truly stuck with me for the past week. If you’re looking for a good, quick read – I highly suggest it!

“When you look at the surface of the ocean, you can see waves coming up and going down. You can describe these waves in terms of high or low, big or small, more vigorous, more beautiful or less beautiful. You can describe a wave in terms of beginning and end, birth and death. That can be compared to the historical dimension. In the historical dimension, we are concerned with birth and death, more powerful, less powerful, more beautiful, less beautiful, beginning and end and so on.

Looking deeply, we can also see that the waves are at the same time water. A wave may like to seek its own true nature. The wave might suffer from fear, from complexes. A wave may say, “I am not as big as the other waves,” “I am oppressed,” “I am not as beautiful as the other waves,” “I have been born and I have to die.” The wave may suffer from these things, these ideas. But if the wave bends down and touches her true nature she will realize that she is water. Then her fear and complexes will disappear.

Water is free from the birth and death of a wave. Water is free from high and low, more beautiful and less beautiful. You can talk in terms of more beautiful and less beautiful, high or low, only in terms of waves. As far as water is concerned, all these concepts are invalid.

Our true nature is the nature of no birth and no death. We do not have to go anywhere in order to touch our true nature. The wave does not have to look for water because she is water. We do not have to look for God, we do not have to look for our ultimate dimension or nirvana, because we are nirvana, we are God.

You are what you area looking for. You are already what you want to become.

[The Audiofiles] Celebrate 3 Years of House, Techno and Love as the Dirtybird Crew Heads to Desert Hearts

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In the past year, the Desert Hearts team has taken the dance music world by storm. Between a record label that’s more interested in creating a melodic mood than making money, an iconic club event that catalyzed into this year’s “Summer of Love Tour” and appearances at major festivals across the West Coast from Lightning in a Bottle to Symbiosis, the Dirtybird Campout to Transmit Festival, there’s simply no stopping this rag-tag team of musical merrymakers. This November, they’ll be returning to their stomping grounds in Southern California for the Desert Hearts 3 Year Anniversary Festival from November 5th through the 9th. and everyone wants to get in on the fun.

In addition to Desert Hearts residents Mikey Lion, Lee Reynolds, Marbs, Porkchop and Deep Jesus – joining in on the Fall fun are international stars and homegrown favorites including Dirtybird Record’s Claude VonStroke and J.Phlip, the legendary Doc Martin, Andreas Henneberg, Kate Simko, jozif, David Scuba, Dance Spirit, Tara Brooks and more.

Desert Hearts is truly one stage, one vibe and one sound – but beyond that, Desert Hearts is one dancing, breathing, living and loving organism that feels like home the second you enter. This November, come marinate in the music with over 100 hours of House, Techno and Love and revel in a weekend off the grid with other sonic souls and kindred spirits.

Purchase Tickets Here | More Info Here

For more on Desert Hearts, head to their socials:
Website | Facebook | |Soundcloud

Miss the Spring Festival? Catch up with my Desert Hearts Recap Here!

[LA Life] CERB Brings Their Fall Plant Sale to Eagle Rock City Hall on 11/7

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Known throughout the community for their eco-friendly initiatives and local landscape beautification projects, the Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful (CERB) is delighted to host their annual Fall plant sale on Saturday November 7th, 2015 at Eagle Rock City Hall.

From 9AM to 4PM, CERB invites the community to an informative fair focused on drought resistant  landscaping. With current drought restrictions, native plants and succulents can reduce residential water footprints by 60-90% while preserving resources such as soil, fertilizer and pesticides.  

Featuring a wide assortment of California natives and succulents, many plants featured at the Fall Plant Sale are locally sourced and harvested in Eagle Rock by CERB volunteers, students at Occidental College and members of the community.  A post-Halloween treat for the whole family, the plant fair features a Kids Zone full of children friendly activities as well as a variety of food trucks and other local entertainment.  All proceeds of the Fall Plant Sale will go to Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful to assist their local efforts of neighborhood maintenance and support their annual projects.  

Event Details:
Saturday, 11/7/15 from 9am to 4pm
Eagle Rock City Hall
2035 Colorado Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90041

Since 2001, CERB has cemented its status as a local resource while working towards lasting change throughout the neighborhood.  Yearly events for CERB include neighborhood events such as A Taste of Eagle Rock, the maintenance of the Eagle Rock Canyon Hiking Trails and the promotion of drought resistant landscaping through active work on major street medians like Colorado and Eagle Rock Boulevard.

Join the Facebook event here and invite the neighbors.

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For more on CERB and their Fall Plant Sale, connect on social media:  

Website | Facebook | Twitter

About Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful

The Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful was established in 2001 by longtime Eagle Rock residents John Stillion and Esther Monk.  With almost two decades of service in the neighborhood, CERB has evolved into an esteemed non-profit organization fueled by local volunteers and resources for a homegrown effort in reducing fiscal dependence of city-funded maintenance programs. Curated within the community to discourage the removal of native trees, preserve local open space and inspire cohesive drought tolerant landscaping, CERB is devoted to leaving a lasting legacy through both action and awareness.

[The Audiofiles] Stars Align as Symbiosis Plots a Path for 2017’s Total Solar Eclipse

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After a wonderful weekend wrapped in wanderlust and swimming in synchronicity at Symbiosis Gathering’s 10 Year Re:Union, Symbiosis Gathering has their sights set on Oregon in 2017 and without a doubt – you’ll want to join in on the fun. Though it’s almost two years away, it’s not without good reason – on August 21st 2017 the next Total Solar Eclipse will take a path across the West Coast for the first time since 1979. To celebrate the celestial occasion, Symbiosis Gathering has teamed up with the Global Eclipse Gathering for the event of the century. Beyond the date and general location, information is limited but interest has definitely been piqued.

Referred to as the Great American Eclipse, the Eclipse begins in North West Oregon with the coastal town of Newport directly in the ring of fire. As the Eclipse moves through Oregon it goes directly over my parents’ town of Corvallis, Oregon which I’m beyond thrilled about – but for a completely different reason! Last year when Danny proposed to me at Shambhala, we were so starry eyed that we put off finding a date for a long time.  Six months ago, when we first discovered that the ring of fire of the eclipse would be shadowing my parents house – we couldn’t help ourselves, even though it was a Monday – we knew that had to be our wedding date.  Our stars had aligned, and what better symbolism than the sun and moon moving in tandem as the landscape when we say I do?   And now, the fact we could continue the celebration with a community of conscious individuals is honestly my cherry on the ice cream sundae.

After it leaves Oregon, the eclipse traverses the greater United States through Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and finally South Carolina.   For a detailed look at the path of the Eclipse, Eclipse.org has you covered with a detailed view on a location by location basis.  There won’t be another until 2024, so lay your plans now – you won’t want to miss out!

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Only 689 days, and I’m completely counting!

For more on Symbiosis’ Eclipse Event, head to their website or Facebook Event.

For more on Symbiosis Events, check out their social media profiles:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram