Travel destination : Stinson beach, California.
This was one of my favorite travel destinations I went to this summer. I’m a travel enthusiast, so whenever I have a few days to spare, and willing adventurers I try to make the most of it. This hidden gem was an hour north of San Francisco. A group of 7 of us drove up in a van, and a scooter, swirling up and down the hills being breath taken by the natural beauty the whole ride. We explored around our cabin and found a natural hot springs that we took full advantage of. Whenever you have the chance, grab some friends, take off your shoes, jump in the ocean and adventure off into paradise. It was a great escape the frantic pace of everyday life.
Where to next….
Alas, a playground for adults! I was eager for summer vacation this year and decided to jump ahead and take my vacation a little early. I booked a ticket and was off to London, Berlin & Sweden for two weeks. While I was in Berlin I had the pleasure of exploring the OM-D Photographic playground group exhibition.
Upon entering the space, my friends and I were given two Olympus OM-D digital cameras with new SD cards to explore. With 4 floors exhibiting the work of 12 Artists, the amount of art was overwhelmingly fun!
The exhibition is designed as an interactive experience for both artists and visitors where you’re invited to discover the installations and artworks with all your senses , while forming and capturing your own ideas from and with the OM-D.
One of my favorite installations was from Sven Meyer & Kim Pörksen titled Sonic Water. They explore sound & visuals by enabling the viewer to interact with a small container of water positioned inside a speaker. As the sounds change, the camera located above the container provides instant feedback as projection.
“Depending on the frequency of the sound and the fluids added to the mix, new patterns are constantly regenerated. From chaos becomes order reflecting the harmonic laws of nature.”
Watch Sonic Water here
When it comes to Las Vegas, there are two men in my life: Steve and Ronald. Steve, as in Steve Wynn, is a big-deal iconic Las Vegas casino owner. Apparently he adopted a vegan diet in 2010 and now all of his restaurants (of which there are many) have a special vegan menu in addition to their main menu. I don’t know much about Mr. Wynn, I just know I would jump in front of a train for him. How could I not? Look at this!:
This beautiful creation is the vegan eggs benedict from Wynn’s restaurant Tableau. It was amazing. And the marble potatoes weren’t bad either. Additionally, the setting is lovely. I felt really fancy, which is the main reason I like going to Vegas anyway. I highly recommend Tableau, especially for brunch, but my favorite Wynn restaurant on my last trip was Sinatra. It’s Italian fine dining and, like always, there’s an impressive vegan menu:
Don’t be jealous! OK, you can be jealous.
But like I said, Wynn isn’t my only Vegas beau. There’s a handsom devil named Ronald who has always had my heart. OK, I’ve never met him. I don’t even know if there is a “Ronald,” the man, I just know Ronald’s donuts are the best vegan donuts in the country. Maybe the world!
I don’t know why more than half of the donuts at Ronald’s are vegan, I heard a rumor it was for religious reasons? But really, I do not care–as long as they keep making them! These are classic, old-school donuts; They aren’t caky like so many donuts these days. And they have giant donut twists! And bear claws! And apple fritter things! It’s basically heaven. No trip to Vegas is complete without getting a ton of donuts from Ronald’s. You will probably have to take a cab if you don’t have a car, but it’s worth it.
If you happen to find yourself in the area, you have to patronize the Wynn and Ronald establishments, or you will never be a complete person. It’s sad but true. But why wouldn’t you hit these spots? These two wonderful men are doing all they can to keep vegans plump and happy in the grownup amusement park that is Las Vegas!
You can ask anyone in the office, I’m a tad coffee obsessed. It all began when I didn’t understand coffee culture at all, so my curiosity put me to search to understand it. I talked with baristas, friends, and avid coffee drinkers about the art and different cultural implications that coffee plays in our lives. Sure it’s just a bean in a cup, though everyone has a story about it, and can relate to it somehow. Recently in our office, Inder bought an Nespresso machine which has been making our coffee area a communal spot in the morning. (Thank you!)
One of my favorite travel memories was from a trip to Hawaii, waking up from camping atop a volcanic mountain, and started our day searching for coffee. The desolate roads weren’t looking too hopeful, until we stumbled across a small coffee sign. We drove up to realize that it was a coffee plant but looked closed. As our car turned around, we nearly hit a dog who came running out of nowhere, so I got out, and was heckled down by a lovely lady in a house coat yelling “ how do you like your coffee”. I approached her, and she welcomed us into her home. We later found out that her husband and her grow their own beans and open up their home to travellers like ourselves into her home as a little coffee shop. Myself being coffee obsessed I ended up speaking with her for a good hour as she taught me on the different beans, and gave me a lengthy background life story on how she ended up in Hawaii. I’ve got to say, it was one of the best cups I’ve had!
I took this photo in death valley, on a trip driving from San Francisco to Nevada. This was my favorite stop along the way.
I’ve been a long time fan of Matt & Nat , and now that I work here with a team of individuals who are open minded inspires me every day. With our mantra being living beautifully, how could I not want to wake up every morning to go to work? Positivity is what we pride ourselves at the office, no bad vibes, or negativity allowed! It makes the work environment all the better. : ) I was talking with Dina earlier this week and she sparked my inspiration as we were chatting on what living beautifully means to both of us.
For myself, I could describe living beautifully as my favorite symbol: a paper plane.
Stay light, bright & explore the unknown. It reminds me to never take life too seriously but enjoy every moment. I love to travel, explore & meet people. If I could, I would sit at the window stoop of a different café with a book & coffee and be inspired by the people walking by every day. Difference is what triggers my curiosity.
Here are a few shots of some places, and people I’ve met along the way who have taught me to stay positive, be yourself and continue to live beautifully.
I guess I’m a hopeless romantic but how cute are they?! I met them whilst traveling in Hawaii, hoping one day to be just as cute as they were : )
Along the beach in Hawaii, I sat to have a chat and make lei necklaces with this lovely inspiring woman Ailana.
What does living beautifully mean to you?
Happy Monday everyone : )
Last week I got my first glimpse of snow when I landed in Calgary and I have to admit, it was kind of refreshing ! I love the heat and humidity probably more than most people so this summer in Montreal was a real treat. However, I totally appreciate being able to experience all 4 seasons and don’t know if I’m ready to trade that in yet…..
My highlight of Calgary (besides our blowout event at Twisted Goods of course!) was having lunch at the coup downtown (missed the weekend waffles, damn!). Surrounded by skater shops and cute boutiques such as Kricket’s in the Mission (spent an hour reading their fridge magnets), it was a hood that I had no problem schlepping around in the snow….
I had no idea what to expect when arriving in Saskatoon at 1 am. Started the next morning with a nice little tour along the South Saskatchewan River with Danny Mysak, the genius behind Spare Parts. I forgot how nice it is to be in a small city where there is still pristine real estate along the river and the skyline is not filled with skyscrapers. I remarked to Danny about the bridges along the river reminding me of Paris. I guess The Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie may have been on to something when he famously referred to Saskatoon as the “Paris of the Prairies.” In 2010, Saskatoon emerged as a leading centre of culture and learning. It does get pretty cold but all the reason to be more snuggly, Saskatoon is considered one of the most romantic cities in Canada, ooh la la!
Our tour ended at the spanking new Spare Parts Offices in downtown, always nice to witness an area that’s on the brink of becoming something much more….
Our evening event at SP saw the biggest turnout we’ve ever seen and was filled with vegan sushi, cupcakes and DJ Gaff, mmmmm, vegan cupcakes……
Seems like Saskatoon is on the move….new airport coming up, shortage of cabs (even at 4.45 am!), sold out hotels and a whole bunch of young folks coming back home after having gone away to the ‘big’ cities. Looking forward to seeing even more of her next time around !