Adventurers in Downtown LA

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You know I love adventure. I love big cities. I love little towns. I love the countryside.  I love the sea side. I even sometimes love the ugly downtrodden side! I just love getting out and exploring the world.

Of course getting out of Orange County is a huge big deal because I am kind of bored of my safe little neighborhood. I love it here but I also love to get out of it and when I do, my eyes are so big taking everything in.

Naturally, I love having a travel agent friend (aka Teresa). I mean, how could I not? I want to download her brain and snag some insider tips on travel! Who wouldn’t?! But she’s also super nice and one of my very best friends.

We have a lot of common interests but exploring LA (and specifically points of interest from the tv show Bosch) is definitely one of them. So when she was going to meet a mutual friend and client in LA to discuss travel, I hopped on the chance to tag along. Woo hoo!

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We went super early of course so we could sneak in some sight-seeing before her lunch meeting. We explored the Bradbury Building—a favorite of mine ever since I spotted it on 500 Days of Summer.

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Have you ever seen such a beautiful building? It’s like a giant iced cake of design in a Victorian bird-cage like atrium. Does that even make sense? You get it. We didn’t have time to brush up on all the history but I do plan to find out the story behind this building and it’s famous namesake architect.

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After that we hopped on Angel’s flight because if you watch Bosch it’s a major key landmark and why not. It’s better than walking up a steep hill in the hot, hot sun.

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Then a block or two later we met up with our friend (and Teresa’s client), Christine, (You might recognize her as Bug’s old elementary school principal!) for lunch at Bottega Louis.

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Wow. This place. It’s so pristine and perfect. It felt like a fancy hotel lobby with perfect lighting in Paris. Except we weren’t. It’s an Italian restaurant in LA.

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Macarons and pretty treats for days. Huge white walls reaching expansive bright white ceilings with decorative crown molding…

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Cooks and servers, waiters and bakers…everyone on their toes being polite with Disney-trained smiles and good attitudes. You definitely get what you pay for here. Primo primo!

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I was smitten with the crazy flower-bomb bouquets and the white walls. A perfect backdrop for a movie if I ever decided to make one. See that guy on the right? He totally caught me taking his picture. I never made eye-contact though so I’m hoping he’s thinking I was taking a close-up of the bottle and blurring him behind. We both just pretended it never happened. He ate a whole pizza and drank a beer by himself and then left, walking by with a gold-handled cane. I would love to know his back-story.

Our lunch lasted for hours and nobody pushed us to leave. It really was like being in Paris.  But guess what the best part of our three hour lunch was?

Christine talked me and Teresa into visiting Italy (for a week) with her next month. YESSSS!!!!  Of course we had to go home and talk it over with our families but she planted the seed and we fell for it hook, line and sinker. Can you believe it? It will be a bit of a stretch but I’ve landed a few jobs and I think I can swing it. The tickets are bought and I cannot wait to be blogging from ITALY! I will be sharing everything with you of course!

Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Please drop me a line with all your recommendations. We plan to hit Milan, Florence and Venice.

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After that fun-packed lunch, we weren’t ready to stop talking yet so we walked through the Biltmore hotel next-door and continued our Italy discussion.

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The Biltmore is also a Bosch landmark so Teresa was happy to get her travel agent research in. She’s putting together a tour for other Bosch fans. What a fun job she has.

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We both have fun jobs and I have to admit I know how lucky we are to be freelancers who can take our jobs on the road with us. and take three hour plus lunches (!). I don’t know that I’ll be doing any crafts in Italy but I do think I could get a book idea out of it. Little Hoo in Italy perhaps? Wouldn’t that be a fun travel series?

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After the Biltmore we walked through the downtown market, got some ice latte’s and a small treat. We talked and talked and talked some more until we had to come back to the reality that we had to go home and we had to sit in some serious traffic. Ugh. The only bad part about visiting LA: traffic. Next time we’re going to take the train!

Little Hoo Goes to School is out in hardback!

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My second hardback is out and I’m so excited!

I’ve always wanted to create hardback books ever since I was a little girl. That was my dream: to be an artist or an author and it came true! Not that I’m crazy successful at it or anything but it really is funny how you can set your sights on something when you are little and it will stick with you better than goals you set out to accomplish when you were in high school or college. (I kinda made a detour through journalism, which funny enough helps me with my blog-content creation.)

So anyway, yes Little Hoo Goes to School is available in hardback for schools and libraries and my blog readers who know where to go: MY SHOP on Etsy! Yes, I will be shipping them out personally so that means I can autograph your book or stick a little greeting in your package if you like!

You can also buy the paperback and e-book version on amazon.

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Pretty cool, right? I love a hardback book. They just feel better in your hands. They are a bit more pricey but if you are a collector of books or you have kids who like to chew on books (cough cough) you’ll see the value. If not, kindle it! :)

Please tell all your friends who might have school-aged kids going to school for the first time or teachers or librarians or grandmas who like to buy books…etc etc..whatever. Tell everyone!

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Like all my Little Hoo books, Little Hoo is anxious. This time he’s anxious about going to school. He worries about making friends and that his teacher might be scary. He worries that he’ll miss his mom and his stuffed owl. He even worries that he might get hungry! (You’ll have to make a point of noticing him missing an egg salad pickle sandwich.)

If you have an anxious kid at home you know the story. I really hope it helps anxious kids because as you know, they are close to my heart. I was a super anxious kid myself and still suffer from it pretty badly from time to time but making books like this makes me happy. Hope you like it too!