Sometimes I think about my music listening history, from middle school days through this very moment, and I find it so fun to see how my taste has evolved. It’s even more fun to revisit old songs I used to play in a loop on my iPod (whoa, ancient) and realize I can still sing almost every word (prime example: the entire “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out” album).
I grew up on jazz and funk oldies with my mom. Fell in love with N*SYNC in elementary school. Danced to Bay Area hip hop in middle school. Turned emo in high school and went full on indie hipster in college. I’ve explored plenty of different genres, never disowning a “phase,” because they weren’t phases. Each genre represents a different part of my personality, a mood, a period of my life, and so on.
Lately, I bounce mostly between a lot of alt-R&B, indie rock, hip-hop and dark pop. What I’m listening to always depends on my mood, who I’m with and my environment. See below for a blend of what I’ve been listening to the last few weeks. I was fortunate to see three of the artists live in the past two weeks (Glass Animals, Paramore and Chance The Rapper). Honestly, still blown away by each experience.
What songs and artists have you been vibing with lately? Tell me all about them in the comments section!
I feel on track and in tune with my inner momentum. You see, I’ve been stuck on carousels for a while. Up and down. Round and round. Stuck in a feeling.
Stuck has become one of my least favorite words. I never want to feel that way. It’s an absurd way to live life because as a human I have this incredible power of better choices, change and movement. Let’s always be moving forward, upward, sideways, and never backward or nowhere.
The beauty of analyzing the past comes with epiphanies. The “ah-ha!” moments. The “wow, why the heck did i do/say that??” moments. I’m trying more diligently to put lessons I’ve learned to proper use. I’d like to let go of a lot, while still nurturing an open enough heart and mind to let people, feelings and ideas in.
New creative projects are in the works. Confidence in my authentic self is at an all time high. I’ve reached a new comfortable level of ambivert, which has me feeling so lifted I wake up with less anxiety and more excitement. With people or with just me, I am happy.
This is not to say I magically waved away all sinking feelings. But right now I feel balanced. Although often perceived as weakness, I accept my softness, my sensitivity. They can be assets, just as much as my ability to be strong-willed and tough. Resilience is a major key.
Honey, honey. I will rise.
After spending a week in Seattle for my team’s Create & Cultivate conference with speakers Mandy Moore, Issa Rae, Brooklyn Decker and more, I was in much need of r&r. I spent last week as a complete introvert, only seeing my coworkers and roommate Marie. Every evening after work, I made sure to do a whole lot of nothing (very rare for me), including binge watching all two seasons of Insecure and the same for Chewing Gum.
I expected a chill weekend at Jackie’s beautiful home in Atwater Village to take care of her pup Noah while she and her husband were out of town. Then the weekend became super social between catching up with friends, a show, back to back parties, etc. But luckily I still had plenty of time to stick with my duty of hanging with Noah and also relaxing and clearing my mind.
I write this while staying cozy in their living room, dreading having to leave soon. Jackie’s home was featured on Elle Decor, but I also wanted to share some snaps of my favorite spots!
I’m going to end my stay by cuddling with Noah and reading my latest book selection, “note to self” by connor franta.
Ojai sounds like a faraway land, but lucky enough for Los Angeles residents like myself it’s only a quick 80 mile trip north. Tucked away in the valley of the Topatopa Mountains in Ventura County, this peaceful town is a wonderful way to escape the fast-paced hustle of its nearby cities.
Every year my mom and I spend her birthday weekend exploring new places. Last year was Catalina Island, Oceanside and San Diego. 2015 was a cruise to Mexico. This year, Ojai was the little oasis we’d been eager to visit.
After reading several Ojai guides on Pinterest (by the way, such a great resource for travel tips), I made a bucket list for all the stops we could make within a morning and afternoon.
First was East Ojai Avenue, home to mom and pop shops, delicious eateries like AZU Restaurant and Ojai Vallery Brewery, art galleries and spanish-style buildings.
Moving away from the main road, we followed signs for the Ojai Makers Market. It wasn’t quite like the large fairs I’m used to (Renegade Craft Fair, Unique LA, etc). It was much more quaint, with a handful of vendors selling soaps, felt bags, photo prints and other knick knacks.
I picked up a bouquet of lavender for my apartment and my mom scored some locally made soaps.
On the way back to the main area of town, we stopped by an old gas station that was turned into a cute shop called Summer Camp. With a great amount of plants and home decor, I wish I could have transferred everything to my own home.
I had to make a stop at Ojai Rancho Inn as well, after seeing photos from my boss’ wedding. One day I’ll be cool enough to stay for a night and take a dip in their pool.
Because I was overwhelmed by the number of books available, I picked four random ones, 50 cents each, based on their titles and blank covers (oops, I judged some books by their colors and bindings). Either they’ll be good reads or fun decor pieces!
To end our trip, we stopped by the gorgeous Tipple and Ramble to have a glass of sparkling rosé and enjoy a few more relaxing moments before the drive back to LA. I legit fell asleep for a couple of minutes because of how chill the vibe was.
I’ll find my voice in the quiet.
Everything has been so loud, I lost myself somewhere in the shuffle. Somewhere behind rose-colored glasses. Somewhere in the darkness. Somewhere within you and them.
I lost myself when the anxieties of finding myself bewildered me.
So I’ll turn my volume down a bit. Your volume. Their volume. Let air fill and escape my lungs more slowly. Find paths for cycled thoughts. Live in moments, not chapters.
I’ll find my voice in the quiet.
Hey, hi, hello! After an unintentional hiatus, I’m back in action with the site’s new look and many brainstorms in process for what’s coming next here.
Over the last few months, I’ve felt stunted by being so swamped with work, conflicting thoughts and feelings. My growth at Create & Cultivate has been thrilling, but I know I also need a personal creative outlet for a balance. Especially now that I’ve made the decision to close the doors of my online clothing brand, Hours Lost.
I need a place to share my thoughts with the masses, as many of my oversharing millennial peers do. Tumblr was my first public platform before I started this blog in 2014, and I became hooked on Twitter and Instagram, utilizing them as microblogs.
I remember when the internet was still fairly new and our parents warned us to not talk to strangers on the internet. Now I chat with “internet friends” on the daily and have befriended a handful in real life! It’s odd to think back to the time when I didn’t have the internet available as a way to share and connect with, and learn from, people from different cities and walks of lives. I’m very much a community seeker, and online platforms have become great avenues for me to tap into a variety of inspiring circles.
With it being summer, my favorite season, I’m feeling very much in the mood to gather with people for not only summertime hangs, but also to work on new projects, whether the project is my own (this blog) or a friend’s. Stay tuned, readers xx
p.s. my bud Pink Skies released his debut song yesterday and it’s groovy as heck. listen: