Monday, June 29, 2015


It's time to insert every cliche about time. Time is flying by and there's never enough time would probably be most appropriate here! Between work and friends and getting ready for grad school I am constantly running around. It's a good busy but it does mean I haven't had as much time for blogging.

This past week H had camp at the zoo. He had the time of his life but the zoo is quite a drive for us. With wonderful LA traffic I really couldn't drive back to the house in between drop off and pick up. I got into a nice little routine of walking around Griffith Park after drop off and then running errands, having lunch, and exploring the zoo. But it meant I didn't get much laundry, cooking, or grocery shopping done. I did bring a cooler one day and I went to the grocery store right before pick up. But I thrive on routine and it was tough having my car as a home base all week. Plus it was really really hot over there! H loved zoo camp so much that it really did make it all worth it. On Friday my sister brought my nephews to the zoo.

This guy is so sweet! He will be 18 months in July!
Trail in Griffith Park, photo taken on one of my morning walks

Since this is likely my last summer with H I really wanted to make it special. We went on lots of adventures/outings his first week of summer break (Getty, Discovery Cube, zoo, parks), then he had zoo camp, and now we are doing another week of Kate and H outings. It has been so much fun making new memories and spending time one on one. I can't believe I will no longer be working full time starting in August (Netflix here I come!).

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Nautical 4th of July/Summer party ideas

Looking for some party inspiration? Here is a roundup of some of my favorite nautical patriotic/red, white, and blue/4th of July parties! You can see more nautical party ideas on my Pinterest. I linked to each original post with a photo below (it was really hard to narrow it down to just one photo per party!). Clicking on a photo will also take you to the original source. Enjoy!

Monday, June 22, 2015

America's Happiest Seaside Towns

Coastal Living announced America's Happiest Seaside Towns for 2015. Do you agree with the list? Which spots would you add?
2014 winners | 2013 winners2012 winners

All images via Coastal Living

10. Corona del Mar, California:
"This Orange County enclave with stunning beaches, a village-like shopping district, and row after row of vintage cottages on streets named for flowers has always maintained a charmingly quiet sense of self as the quaint yet stylish cousin to neighboring Newport Beach"

9. Portsmouth, New Hampshire:
"One of the nation’s oldest cities, this thriving seaport on the Piscataqua River boasts remarkable riches and is still incredibly welcoming to visitors and new residents alike. Between the redbrick Federal and Georgian buildings downtown and the tidy Colonial homes that surround the city, Portsmouth could be an open-air museum. But there’s nothing stuffy about life here; with a population of 21,233, the city hops with places to eat and drink, shop and play."

8. Wellfleet, Massachusetts:
"Halfway up the forearm of Cape Cod’s famous, curling shape, Wellfleet has a quaint town center dotted with classically white-clapboard New England–style homes, sophisticated galleries, excellent restaurants, and a drive-in theater that is all-American fun. Add to that the natural gifts here: five beaches that face east to the wild Atlantic, four more that face west across peaceful Cape Cod Bay, and a string of pristine, freshwater “kettle ponds” that make for perfect kayaking."

7. Monterey, California:
"It begins with Monterey Bay, home to abundant marine life, including sea lions, harbor seals, pelicans, dolphins, and sea otters that bob and float near shore. Those marine riches inspired one of the city’s legacies—fishing—which still carries on from the end of Fisherman’s Wharf near the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium, with its 35,000 critters and plants. And it’s also reflected in Cannery Row, both immortalized by local author John Steinbeck and kept alive by restored packing and canning buildings now filled with lively shops and restaurants, which line the waterfront."

6. Tybee Island, Georgia:
"Savannah’s long-held secret is out: This tiny barrier island with cooling, salty breezes in the heat of summer is an ideal escape not only from the mainland, but also from a busier, noisier world. And for 3,044 residents, that retreat to white sands, green marshes, and the glint of dolphins offshore is the rhythm of daily life."

5. Ocean Springs, Mississippi:
"Lined with live oaks and old-fashioned, busy storefronts, downtown Ocean Springs hums with optimism. With no commercial development marring the shoreline, the town’s streets lead to a charming public beach with a fishing pier, a new public park, and glistening views out to the delicate and pristine Gulf Islands. "

4. Narragansett, Rhode Island:
"This town of 16,000 stretches out along the shore of Rhode Island’s Narragansett Bay like a sunbather at water’s edge, and the comparison couldn’t be more apt. Hitting its stride in the late 1800s as a summer getaway for overheated Bostonians and New Yorkers, Narragansett today remains a perfect escape—and playground."

3. Delray Beach, Florida:
"At the heart of this fun-loving city of 61,231 are two miles of gloriously white-sand public beach. Sky blue cabanas and loungers stand ready for rental—a bit of Côte d’Azur meets Old Florida. But there’s nothing snooty about Delray. Enjoying the influences of tony Palm Beach 24 miles to the north and urbane Miami 50 miles to the south, the city has quietly grown its own sense of culture, including lively nightlife that parties on weekends, an up-and-coming arts district, a world-class tennis facility, beautiful Japanese gardens, and a seashell museum."

2. Venice, Florida:
"Venice is a town with a big heart, and it has plenty of gorgeous, pearly-white beaches to spare (14 miles, in fact). Locals love Caspersen Beach, a 2-mile-long sandy playground with a short drop-off that draws ocean swimmers. Beachcombers flock to Venice Beach to seek shark teeth, for which the town is known.On shore, the pleasures of Venice are equally beautiful. The lushly landscaped avenues of the historic district, designed in the 1920s as an homage to the town’s Italian namesake, are lined with Italian Renaissance–style buildings sporting elegant arches and red tile roofs that are home to more than 100 boutiques, restaurants, and small businesses."

1. Southport, North Carolina:
"Putting proof to the dictum that “small is beautiful,” this tiny (2.2-square-mile) harbor town at the outlet of the Cape Fear River with only 3,060 residents wins big on Southern beauty and charm. Everyone’s your neighbor here, and most of the town’s residents walk, bike, or drive golf carts down Southport’s oak tree–lined streets to enjoy a morning coffee at Port City Java, browse antiques shops and galleries, and head to the waterfront for a table—and delicious fish tacos—on the pier of Fishy Fishy Café."

Friday, June 19, 2015

Headed to The Beach

Long Beach that is! Choosing a graduate school was really really tough. I made a pretty lengthy pro con list (tuition, location, cost of living, faculty, internships, etc). I decided I wanted to stay in California so that narrowed down my options from three to two. I then visited both schools. There were things I really liked about the other school but I think Cal State Long Beach will be the best fit. I registered and paid for classes (!) already. I know that I will no longer be working full time once classes start. Otherwise there's still a lot to figure out. The biggest things I'm thinking about right now: where I will live (commute or move) and what to do about my job (part time or leave).

For now I am enjoying my summer with H. He graduated pre-k this month and we've been going on outings almost every day- The Discovery Cube, zoo, Getty. It is absolutely bittersweet that my time as a full time nanny is ending. But I am excited to go back to school and begin my next adventure.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Summer of Shorts

I am officially declaring this my summer of shorts! I went through my shorts this weekend and wow, I have quite the collection. If there is a nautical critter short I have it! My plan is to wear a different pair each day/not repeat this summer (weather permitting). I've donated a few pairs already and hopefully as I go through my closet I can narrow it down a little more. This may be the last summer I can get away with wearing shorts to work. Definitely a nanny perk! I am going to share my outfits on Instagram and do a roundup on the blog too.

Here are some new favorites from Old Navy. I picked up the pink seashell print and blue scenic print (almost exactly like the Lilly Pulitzer print from a few years ago) pairs.

Nautical by Nature | Old Navy shorts summer 2015

this post contains affiliate links

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Pretty Little Liars The Complete Fifth Season!

Season five of Pretty Little Liars is now available! Own it on DVD and Digital HD. Warner Brothers sent me a copy and I started binge watching over the weekend. My DVR was actually at 0% full for the first time since I got it (!) so it was nice to have something fun to watch. Want more PLL? Read about my visit to the set in this post.

Source: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

Season five begins in the moments following the epic season four finale, in which Ezra was shot (I still don't know how A jumped from the rooftop-must be a gymnast ;) Alison is alive and back in Rosewood, and everyone is affected by her return — but is she the same Alison after being on the run? Caleb returns, but he, too, is changed (after being stuck in Ravenswood-I wish that hadn't been canceled!).

Source: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

Source: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

Plus, how does Mona fit into everything and what is Melissa hiding? With more questions than ever (yes, that is possible!) and other familiar faces back in Rosewood, there are now five pretty little liars trying to piece together who has been tormenting them. It is another season of emotion, intrigue and nail-biting suspense (I can only watch during the day if I am alone, I get too scared at night!), with many must-see moments, including the series’ landmark 100th episode. The DVD has special features including Pretty Little Liars: The Guys are Back! (this show has a very good looking cast!), deleted scenes, Christmas in Rosewood: Designing the Ice Ball, and more.

Source: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

One nautical dress three ways

I thought it would be fun to share a few different looks featuring the same nautical striped dress from J.Crew Factory (striped pleated ponte dress with zip-back, $88). I have a previous version of the dress and it is one of my favorites. It is an easy dress to dress down or dress up depending on what you wear it with/add.

Look 1: Adding a blazer definitely dresses things up. With espadrille wedges this look is fun for a summer night (date night, engagement party, happy hour) or add a more formal heel for work/office.

Look 2: Picnic in the park, brunch with friends, this is a little dressier than look 3 but still casual.

Look 3: Ready for the beach/pool/lake! Wear your bathing suit under the dress or toss it into your bag and you are set. I have these flip flops (two pairs!) and love them.

this post contains affiliate links

Monday, June 8, 2015

Nautical kitchen gadgets

Time to update the kitchen for summer! Anchors, lobsters, and whales oh my!

Nautical by Nature | Nautical kitchen gadgets

Anchored measuring spoons, Anthropologie, $24 | Lobster trivet, Crate and Barrel, $15 | Fete along swimmingly bottle opener, Modcloth, $15
Whale juicer, Pottery Barn, $8 | Anchor tea infuser, Sur la Table, $8 | Seahorse salt and pepper shakers, Pottery Barn, $24
Zoku fish pop molds, Sur la Table, $20 | Anchor ice cube tray, West Elm, $29 | Would if I cold ice mold, Modcloth, $12

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Kauai trip recap

Kilauea Lighthouse

I am back from my work trip to Kauai! This trip was bittersweet as it is likely my last big trip with this family but I think we went out with a bang! Kauai will always have a special place in my heart- it was the first big trip I took with H (back in 2011 when he was one).

I LIVED in this coverup from Boden (toweling tunic dress). I decided to order it in blue too when I got home!

Adventuring with this guy is the best! Found a "secret" cove. He's wearing his Mini Boden coverup too (shark toweling throw on)

Anchors aweigh!

Obsessed with this book by my favorite Fug Girls

Final dinner at Hanalei Dolphin

There was a wedding on the beach of our hotel one of the days

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