[LA Life] CERB and A Taste of Eagle Rock

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Do you ever feel like your entire life is one giant sign? Anxieties, troubles and tribulations tend to occur for me when I don’t pay attention to the motion of internal tides.

A few weeks before Danny and I left for Lightning in a Bottle, we haphazardly stumbled across one of the cutest sights I’d ever seen in the middle of Eagle Rock. We were on our Sunday stroll through the neighborhood, and for the past few weeks we’d talked about the strange and almost human-like mannequin in the middle of the road.  Approaching from the other side, we finally made out a sign – a sign for Know Reality Pie. We took one long look at the pie truck, parked delicately next to open grass and a pop-up cafe, and then nodded in agreement: this was it.

As we settled into our triple berry and richly flavored apple pies, we noticed that each and every person coming in was in some way, shape or form a young professional and we felt naturally compelled to strike up a conversation with all of them. From Kelly behind the counter pouring us morning mimosas, or the procession of puppies that galloped into and around us, we were enamored in conversation and instantly felt an urge to be something more within the community.  Slowly delighting our fresh drinks, we met a lovely lady named Sarah with a refreshing demeanor.  After a few minutes of talking about our start in the neighborhood, photography, social media and festivals, she got to telling us about Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful.  They’re a local, non-profit volunteer organization that focuses on creating a more sustainable environment within their community and as it turns out, they’re the ones responsible for the large, local push towards the reintegration of succulents and California landscaping around Eagle Rock that I’ve been enamored with.  They were about to host a CGhrc6OUgAEX0V3weekend event they were calling ‘A Taste of Eagle Rock’, featuring dozens of our fantastic local food joints, some local drinks and – hopefully – a great turnout from the town; they were looking for an event photographer, and it just so happened – I was engaged to one!  After we exchanged laughs and business cards, and enjoyed another drink or two, Danny and started on our way home and looked at each other with excitement coursing through our veins.  This is something we’ve been wanting for so long, and now – we were about to get it!

With things like Lightning in a Bottle around the corner and my lack of actual time to manage,  I’d only been in touch here and there.  But after Lightning in a Bottle (which I cannot wait to dish on!), curiosity caught the cat, and I asked how I could really help.  I inquired about their social media presence and as my luck has it – that’s exactly what they needed.  On top of the five accounts already in my Tweetdeck, it wasn’t exactly absurd to add just one more!

Sunday was the day, and let’s be honest – we didn’t get cold feet per-say – but they were at least lukewarm.  It was a stunning day out, and before the June Gloom and awkward midday showers started; bright, crystal blue skies sent down succulent rays of sunlight as we approached our final destination. We’d managed to meander to an area of the neighborhood that we frequently stroll through, camera in hand and a bounce in our step – the houses are sweeping, with plush yards encompassing them like moats. “This is where we’re going…?!” we both mused.

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Winding around the house were tables and EZ-ups, with pile upon pile of delicious, local eats and treats.  From Milkfarm and Public House Eagle Rock – two of the latest establishments to cruise onto Colorado Blvd – out the traditional grubberies Little Beast, Max City BBQ, Capri, Four Cafe, Spitz, Dave’s Grillin and Chillin’ and the delectable Caramia Gelato stand up to the national spots like Chipotle, Trader Joe’s and Jamba Juice, everyone was there and doling out their Sunday best.  We even got to do some Cider and Wine tasting thanks to Cider House 101!  Within the first 45 minutes over 200 people had shown up to grub down and chill out, and the property was a buzz with warm energy.

We showed up dazed, slightly confused, knowing only one person and absolutely hungry – we left with full bellies, happy hearts and a hope to really do some good within the community. There were so many familiar faces, from weekly walks and random restaurant romps.  Even though we didn’t make any new best friends – we feel committed to the mission of CERB and are beyond excited to be part of future endeavors. And I’m excited to say that I’ll be stepping into a bigger role, but for now – I’ll just be doing their social media 🙂

For more information about Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful and all the details on their next wonderful event, keep in contact through their websiteFacebook and Twitter.

All photography by Daniel Leist: Flickr FacebookWebsite  

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[Doing it Right] The Getty + Graffiti

Over the past few years, I’ve noticed a distinct change in my temperament and personality – sure, I’m still just as bouncy as I’ve ever but I’ve cultivated a need to take things a little slower on some weekends.  If life is about the journey and not the destination, why not stop and smell the roses – right? Well, this journey as an Angelino has been more than wonderful but – not now, but eventually – I’m going to leave this ‘City Kitty’ lifestyle of go-go-go attitudes, glitz and glamour for something a little tamer.  After five years, I’ve essentially exhausted all of my EDM outlets in this town – the clubs, the festivals , the underground, the rooftops, the pools.  Don’t get me wrong because I’m proud to say I’ve done it, but lately I’ve been itching for something more – something that inspires me to evolve.  As fun as it would be to live like this forever, everything in moderation (including moderation).  A place in the country-side, close enough to the city to enough its amenities – sports teams, museums, concerts – but far enough away so we go to sleep under the stars, instead of being put to bed by sirens.  So, until then I’ve made a vow to myself and to my close friends that we’re going to explore every creative outlet this town has to offer us.

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I’ve had the pleasure of visiting a handful of museums within the past year and a half – in southern California, I’ve been to the San Diego Natural History Museum, the LA Natural History Museum, the Getty Villa and the Crystal Bridges Museum in Arkansas.  This past weekend was a gorgeous one, and I had the pleasure of bringing my boyfriend and his housemate on their first adventure to the J Paul Getty Museum. I hadn’t been since my parents visited in 2010 so I was eager to go back and see what had changed.  On each side of our trip to the Getty, we adventured down Melrose and Fairfax to explore the graffiti and street art in my neighborhood.  Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, I’m sure you’ve seen my Oh, Snap series on Street Art – exploring the contemporary art of the area and contrasting it against the classical forms we saw during the day on Saturday was absolutely amazing and I thoroughly enjoyed the dichotomy between the two; hopefully y’all enjoyed these pictures as much as I enjoyed the experiences!