Road Trip.

The amazing thing about living in Southern California (the OC) is how you can go from beach time to the mountain w/snow in 1.5 hours. It is definitely one of the perks of living in socal vs. norcal (oh and Disneyland – did you know Minnie Mouse got her own star “finally” on the walk of fame?)

This past weekend’s adventure was renting a cabin in Lake Arrowhead to take the kids to the snow.  We prayed to the snow gods to give us snow in front of the cabin and it worked! Abigail had already seen snow and did all sorts of cool things snow related in Europe (dog sledding, ice fishing, reindeer sleigh riding to sleeping in a glass igloo) but Addison only got to see snow one other time in CA (which she hated). Its so different how these two are growing up so far but we truly do hope she will experience these unforgettable adventures in time once the 3rd babe is here and ready to travel.

Good times in Lake Arrowhead. Some tips!

  • Bring snow chains and read the manual on how to put them on prior to the trip or if your car even needs it.
  • Rented our cabin on AirBnb and loved it (message me if you would like the contact). It is perfect for 3 families very comfortably (one room has 2 sets of bunkbeds)
  • SnowDrift tubing park is overpriced and any adult that wants to go in has to pay $17/hr even if you’re clearly pregnant and just want to take a couple pictures.  Parking is $6 as well. The kids definitely tire quickly from walking up the steps with their tube so 1 hour is plenty of time! My suggestion would be to buy a sled and find a spot to go sledding…or clean out a trash can lid! =P

  • Lake Arrowhead Village is quaint and has an amazing view of the lake.  There is also some “amusement park” type games for kids too (e.g. go karts).
  • oh yea, I think I found the perfect mitts for littles under 5. They’re from North Face. They stay on well and can be velcro-ed tighter and looks warm! P.S. want to make sure you don’t lose them (these seem pretty hard to)?  Get ribbon and tie a knot to the hook of one glove and loop it through the arm of one sleeve, through the tag and then through the arm of the other sleeve to the other glove!

P.S. I can’t help but give a shoutout to Belly Bandit for their AH-MAZ-ING compression socks (new to their product line) and the BDA leggings. They were a godsend with the altitude and also keeping warm. The compression socks run to knee high and are too cute with 2 shades of grey and a beige color! For the BDA leggings, I was worried I would have to keep pulling up but I didn’t have that problem at all (this babe does sit higher up though). Both of these items are a #musthave for you pregnant mamas!! The socks are even cute enough to be worn not pregnant!! #checkitout

Cheers for now and thanks for reading! xx

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Mommy Daughter Trip

I’ve always said I wanted to have a special bond with my first born (lucky me, she’s a girl too!) and we do although she literally drives me bonkers day in and out. I can’t even imagine how it will be as she gets older. 😭

Abigail and I took our first mommy daughter trip to San Francisco a couple weeks back. I also had my closest high school friends and their daughters join us. How time flies, I can’t believe I’ve known them for at least half my life. We like to call ourselves “joy luck club” and I sure hope that happens with us growing old and sharing many more moments together.

My high school friends and I have been to SF many times, but this was the first sans boys and with one of our kids. Some highlights/tips of the short trip (Friday mid afternoon arrival – Sunday 3pm departure).

We stayed at the Holiday Inn & Suites Fisherman’s Wharf for the location and it was a great choice to catch the tourist action by the pier. Holiday Inn has also upped their game and reputation in my opinion. It was clean, free breakfast, good WiFi, and spacious rooms. Good choice and cost! Give it a try – you’ll be pleased.


We too the BART in from SFO and was traveling in with 5 people. It may be more cost efficient and quicker to take Uber into the city. Each ticket cost $8.95 to get to Embarcedero. It also said it was going to Fisherman’s Wharf but nope, much further away. We ended up taking an Uber to the hotel from the Embarcedero stop which costs $28 (the Uber estimate from SFO – hotel said $60 approx). Lesson learned but we got some nice views of the city and architecture and layout of the streets of SF. 😉

 Before dinner, we stopped at Boudin’s bakery and get their famous and delicious bread.

Some more treats for the first night 😋😋😋

📷: Cornology – Get the truffle parmesan popcorn! So tasty.

📷: Sotto Mare – definitely get the scallops! The sauce is so so yummy!!

📷: Sweet and friendly service at Naia but nothing to rave about.

Saturday was filled with exploring, seeing old friends, and of course eating some good grub. We got to see the sunbathing sea lions, Golden Gate Bridge in the distance, cable cars, and Farmer’s market in the Ferry Building is a must!

📷: Twinning in Old Navy flannel tops. It’s crazy how their personalities shine in this photo.

📷: Porchetta sandwiches right outside the ferry building is delish! You can’t miss it with the line. My friend from the JET programme.  That is definitely one program to remember with all the traveling adventures we had.

📷: Look, my 3rd is already here. #iwish

📷: Yummy dessert shop – Miette Patisserie

📷: A with her godfather who has this cool scooter for his hurt foot. They love their Uppababy too!

Dinner was definitely not something to even note along with their service but we had some fun company that Abigail remembers very well that Aunt Jennifer is so much fun!

Dessert at the Baked Bear topped the charts with a warm brownie topped with ice cream and heath bar bits. #amazing

We ended the night with the oldest (8 years old) doing story time with her buddies. P.S. my children’s board books are all 50% off on www.ajangsley.com 📚 They come with some surprises in there as a well so it’s a perfect gift! Also, I’ll be donating twice as much this holiday season to the charity listed in each respective book. Collect all 8 of my alphabet books! xx

📷: twinning pajamas from Hanna Anderson

Quick Sunday brunch at the pier and sandwiches from Boudin’s (yes, again – I LOVE THAT PLACE!) before heading to our last stop – Lombard Street.

They’re in #dotdotsmile dresses. Super soft and perfect for twirling in.

Last funny of the trip I want to remember was our little threat they would be sent to “timeout island” if they didn’t listen to us. Guess where that is!

#goodtimes and the perfect mommy daughter trip. I lost BUT #jetblue found my sunnies and that literally made my day getting it in the mail a couple weeks later. Surprised and so incredibly thankful for Jetblue! #shoutout

Cheers for now and thanks for reading. Hope you’re all enjoying the holidays. This will be the last flying trip until baby #3 makes its debut.

Take Me Back to Santorini.

The perfect end to our Greece holiday was definitely here. If you’re going for your honeymoon, romantic getaway, or babymoon like us, stay in Oia.

📷: View of Oia in the distance.

📷: A little light #lovebooksbyAJ reading before heading out.

We couldn’t have asked for a better boutique hotel to stay at for the last two nights in Greece. It’s called Ikies traditional houses. I will say it took a bit to convince the staff to let us stay there as I didn’t read the “terms & conditions” – no children under 13 years old allowed. Oops!

📷: Boatman’s house studio

Travel recommended product: Daylong sunscreen. Don’t we hate rubbing it in with our wiggling toddlers? This one goes on quickly and easily. LOVE.

We also chose to rent a car to drive around Santorini as it’s gorgeous, peaceful, and really quite the landscape. I would definitely recommend doing this.

📷: Bunch of restaurants along here with a great view. You can walk down from the cliff but it is a lot of steps!

📷: Sunset view with #nofilter

As always, thanks for reading.  Cheers for now!

G is for Great Greece. 

Part 2: Delphi & Meteora

Simply amazing. Pictures don’t do these two cities justice especially Meteora and the majestic monasteries sitting atop these cliffs dating back to the 1300s.

Delphi

📷: On the drive to Delphi

📷: Cute little town of Delphi

Travel Recommended Product:

  • Bobble is our go to bottle for Abigail as it has a filter and doesn’t leak. Although, after looking at it’s website, I don’t see the small bottle that Abigail uses listed anymore (18.5 oz is what they have which may be a little heavy for a 2 year old). #bobble help!

📷: Our guide at the Delphi Ruins


📷: Finally warmed up a bit to not wear a jacket (end of April).

  


Product LOVE:

  • This girl has to take off the bracelets while eating. We love our pineapple bracelet from Zopihi.  They have the cutest children’s jewelry designed in Austin, inspired by Maui.  The best thing about their products are they are lead, cadium, and phthalates free. Mums – go check them out!


Meteora


📷: Crazy wind makes a crazy #mombun


  

📷: The Meteora – one of the largest and most important complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Greece, second only to the Mount Athos. More info, check out wikipedia


📷: Along the drive in the mountains there were these stands – I wonder exactly what the significance is. Anyone know?

Travel recommended product:

  • We are in love with our passport holder from Up & Away. It’s easy to hold the passports together with up to a family of 5, putting your cards in one spot, and some cash as well. If you travel as much as us, you can also stick extra landing cards in there! And, I can’t forget that you can choose from a variety of colors and patterns for the interior and exterior – keeping the jet setting family in style!  LOVE – make these a perfect Mother’s Day present. *hint, hint.

📷: The town of Meteora. We ate at the Gardenia (pictured left) which was just OK, but as always friendly service.

Product LOVE:

  • My little loves her Mini Melissa shoes – she thinks she’s walking the catwalk!  Definitely be prepared for how quickly they will get scuffed up.  Cool thing – they have this baby powder smell. No stinky feet for her!

📷: We stayed at the Grand Meteora Hotel which was nice that it is new with a gorgeous view of the rocks. However, if you’re looking for strong wi-fi or pool after your hike around Meteora, this definitely isn’t the place for you.

  • Tip: I always read and write reviews from trip advisor.  I’ve found them generally pretty accurate for the hotels. Food wise – it’s definitely a hit or miss. 



📷: view from our balcony

Cheers for now!