Behind Home Plate

Home PlateOne of the joys of being in advertising is undeniably the perks that come with the job. Friday night I took clients to see the Dodgers take on the Padres and scored seats for us behind home plate. One player slid into home and it was so surreal to experience that up close. I had to bail before the fireworks but I heard those were as great as the game itself. I did manage to scarf down a Dodger Dog and Pretzel before I left though.

Dodger Seats

{pre-game activity}

Dodger seats

Stress Rescue

RescueI’ve been making new habits lately.  New habits of gratitude, new habits of mindfulness and slowing time that way.  I’ve been trying to be in the moment, finding joy in the moments because life is comprised of little moments.  There have been lots of heavy things swirling around my life in this season and I have not had a lot of time to stop and reflect on them.  So last week I took a day off.  I drove to Malibu to workout with my favorite instructor, Coach Neda, whose dance moves always make me forget I’m working out until I leave there drenched.  Next I stopped by Malibu Lagoon to smell the fresh, sea salt air and watch the waves break.  As I reached the lifeguard stand at the end of the trail, there was this rescue board propped up like it had been placed there just for me.  I was all alone on the beach, save a tourist couple.  I watched the waves breaking just above the board and thought about the waves of life that had been crashing so hard all around me lately.  I looked at the rescue board and smiled.  It was as if God was saying to me, “I see you. Don’t worry.  Help is on the way”.  And just like that a peace came over me and I remembered that God is trustworthy to see me through the storm.   Taking the time to stop and pray and reflect always rescues me from the stress of my sometimes overwhelming life.  I was so thankful to God for allowing me to see that reminder.

Malibu Lagoon

malibu lagoonMalibu LagoonMalibu LagoonMalibu Lagoon

Lolli and Pops

Lolli and PopsThe last thing I need in my life is more sugar, however, I am a sucker for a candy shoppe (no pun intended). Something magical happens whenever I step inside one, I become like Charlie wandering around Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, trying desperately to take it all in.  Last weekend we discovered Lolli and Pops, an adorable little sweet shoppe which opened in the Westfield Topanga Mall.  With just under two dozen locations nationwide, you can check to see if there’s one near you.  We decided to make this our place of rewards for good behavior going forward.

Lolli and PopsCharleston Chews

{My personal weakness- Strawberry Charleston Chew}

Lolli and Pops

{And various Dark Chocolate bars}

Lolli and PopsLolli and Pops

{Luke looked how I felt..}

Lolli and Pops

{Gummy Bear jars to fill with the candy of your choice}

Lolli and PopsLolli and Pops

Lolli and Pops

{Macarons and Truffles anyone?}

Lolli and Pops

{Free gummy bear samples}

Lolli and Pops

Reunion Birthday Surprise

Birthday SurpriseJeff’s closest childhood friend, Robert Weiner, is a renowned surfboard shaper, and was named Shaper of the Year in 2011 by Surfing magazine. The two of them got together this Summer so Jeff could have Robert shape a board for his nephew and they decided that a reunion was in order to celebrate all their old neighborhood friends. Robert hosted it at his home in Ventura and I worked with his wife on a surprise birthday celebration for Jeff. It was so great to see him so happy with all of his old friends. They all had so many stories of how God had spared them from death and changed their lives forever.  It was such a powerful evening hearing of God’s grace in the lives of all of these men.

The gang

{the guys Jeff grew up with in Granada Hills}


{Jeff brought old photos to reminisce with his friends}

Jeff's friends

{Jeff was the brunt of many of the jokes}


{Belly laughs}

W Dallas Victory

W Dallas VictoryLast week was my first time in Dallas in at least a decade. The last time I was there visiting friends, this time I was there meeting clients. Every time I come to the great state of Texas I fall more in love with it. The people are so friendly, the food is great and the pace overall is a comfortable setting between the overdrive of NYC and the southern drawl of Charlotte. I stayed at the W Dallas Victory, which is conveniently located and has large comfortable rooms. The service was excellent as well and they have an amazing rooftop plunge pool perfect for a morning or night swim.  Here’s a peek around.

W Dallas VictoryW Dallas Victory Lobby


W Dallas Lobby{Lobby lounge}

Cook Hall

{Cook Hall, W Dallas Victory Restaurant}

Cook Hall

{Classy pitchers}

W Dallas Victory

{cozy beds}

W Dallas Room

{Spacious rooms}

W Dallas Balcony

{Lovely balcony}

W Dallas View

{Balcony view}

W Dallas View

W Dallas Pool

{Rooftop Pool}

W Dallas Pool

{Pool deck}

W Dallas View

{Pool View}


DebbieI started this blog talking about God’s grace in my sister-in-law’s life. A week ago Friday she went to be with the Lord and even her death served as a reflection of Gods grace. It was her courage through cancer that shone brightest. Throughout it all she remained positive and was absolutely convinced she would be healed completely. Her faith carried her through and gave her the courage to see things with an eternal perspective. We had a simple family memorial dinner for her last week and told stories of how Debbie impacted us. I was struggling with my health five years ago, at the same time Debbie was diagnosed with cancer. She called me and texted me several times to encourage me and tell me she was praying for me. That encapsulated her faith and passion for others. It gives me so much hope and comfort knowing she is in the presence of our glorious Savior.

La Costa Resort

La Costa ResortMy favorite place to stay in San Diego is La Costa Resort and Spa. I had the pleasure to stay there last weekend for a quick trip and it’s the perfect place to practice slowing life down. I really tried to focus on the beauty around me and to be present to be thankful and enjoy my surroundings. These are the moments of gratitude I captured during my stay.

La Costa Palm Trees

{Early morning light through the palms}

Bird on a bench

{Feathered breakfast guests}

Balcony views

{Spanish tile roofs}

Sunken tubs

{Sunken tub}


{trees that look like art}

jacuzzi bubbles

{muscle soothing jets}

Blue skies

{Clear blue skies. #nofilter}


{slowing of time in a hammock}

Physical Time

PhysicalLuke is playing flag football at school this semester. It’s his first time playing sports at school so it was time for a physical. We visited his pediatrician and not surprisingly he was in the 95th percentile for height and 90th for weight. His doctor thinks he will be a linebacker. When we finished the exam, the doctor asked Luke if there were any other questions he had for him and Luke said “yes, what sports do you think I should play?”. The recommendation? Tennis. Luke reaction “I hate tennis. I play table tennis and I’m terrible at it”. Kids.

Eye testHearing test

{Hearing test}

Hearing test

{what-do-ya-know he has perfect hearing! Perfectly no excuses for not listening now!}


{Perfect blood pressure}


{Clean bill of health. Cause for celebration- which meant Subway for lunch, his favorite}

Joni and Friends

Joni Eareckson TadaIt is incredibly humbling to meet one of your childhood heroes. Last week I met one of mine, Joni Eareckson Tada. I first heard of Joni’s story when I was 13 years old and my church showcased the movie about her life, “Joni”. When she was seventeen she dove off of a lake dock and hit a rock and was instantly paralyzed. Her story resonated with me so personally because I lived on a lake in New Hampshire and jumping off the dock was our town’s pastime. I kept imagining that her story could have happened to me.  What would I do if I couldn’t use my arms and legs at 17?  Luckily that wasn’t where it ended.  Joni, an accomplished artist, became determined to use her talents despite her condition and began to paint beautiful artwork with a paintbrush between her teeth.  This led to speaking engagements which led to books which led to a platform for Joni to become an international advocate for people with disabilities.  Through it all, it was her faith in Jesus that kept her going.  So many times she had wanted to end her life in the days following her accident, but she decided to scour the Bible for answers instead. In it she found true life, hope and freedom.   I received a tour of her International Disability Center, Joni and Friends, in Agoura Hills, California.  I was beyond blessed, never having imagined in my wildest dreams at 13 that I’d be standing in her facility hearing her story first hand.  God’s grace to me, which I’m sharing with you!

Joni and FriendsJoni and FriendsFloating Chapel

{Floating Chapel in the lobby of the facility}

Floating Chapel

{We sang a hymn inside and the acoustics make even my singing voice sound ok}

Joni and Friends{Scriptures fill the walls, hallways and even the floating chapel}

Joni and FriendsWheelchairs Joni and Friends

{Wheels for the World, One of the ministries of Joni and Friends, delivers wheelchairs to disabled in developing countries along with the hope of the Gospel.  The program takes old wheelchairs and sends them to be restored, then ships them worldwide.  The people who restore them? Prison inmates. This program offers hope and purpose to the hopeless from beginning to end}

Joni radio program

{Joni does a daily radio program that broadcasts all over the world}

World Map

{World Map of pins on all the places the Joni radio show is broadcast}

Joni library

{the library at Joni and Friends is stocked with inspirational reads, including the 50 books Joni has authored}

Joni Studio

{Joni showed us her art studio which is adjacent to her office, where she still finds time to paint masterpieces with her teeth}

Joni inspiration

{This was the first piece of art given to Joni by a friend after her accident. It represents that we may try to put all the pieces back together after a tragedy but we will never have all the pieces of the puzzle this side of heaven. Some things will remain a mystery until we meet Jesus face to face}


{Joni told us that daily she struggles with pain even today. So many days she has yearned for the monotonous routine to be over. When asked how she does it, she said that she doesn’t.  She can do all things through Christ who gives her strength. I was so blessed to meet this amazing woman and inspired to do more with my hands and feet}


Kaaboo Music Festival

KaabooThis weekend marked the inaugural year for the Kaaboo Music Festival at Del Mar Fairgrounds.  Billed as the “Music Festival for Grownups” it sought to set itself apart from typical musical festivals by offering luxury indoor air-conditioned dining experiences and real flushing toilets, which I personally found a particularly good selling-point.  The VIP cabanas were equipped with working chandeliers and cozy couches and a boardwalk lined the perimeter of the dirt concert floor, saving the well-heeled from having to salvage their favorite footwear. AOL was a sponsor of the event so I attended with clients and friends on Friday night where we took in No Doubt with great nostalgia.  Gwen hasn’t changed a bit since my college years. Love her!
No DoubtGwen Stefani
Foster the People{Foster the People}

VIP Cabanas

{VIP Cabanas}

Main StageFriendsKaaboo