The Boston Marathon

Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 10.32.15 PMLiving in Boston this year has definitely been a challenge for me. As a native Californian who is used to 50-80 degree weather, 108 inches of snow really put a damper on my attitude towards the city. To be honest, I even considered transferring for a little bit.

But yesterday was Patriots’ Day, also known as Marathon Monday. It’s one day every year that Boston comes together to support thousands of marathon runners who are running for hundreds of different causes. In recent years, it has also become a day to celebrate the resiliency and strength of this city. I don’t know why, but something about Marathon Monday gets to me every year (I hate running). Last year, I volunteered at Mile 25, handing water to the runners. This year, I guess I got into the spirit and ran down Boylston from Newbury Street to the finish line (on the sidewalks, of course)! Watching the wheelchair contestants, military, elite and recreational runners cross that blue and yellow finish line gave me chills, and experiencing Boston’s love and community made me feel #BostonStrong.

Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 10.26.10 PMMy big, my little and I got together at 8am on a Monday to power up with brunch before the marathon.

Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 10.49.32 PMI wanted to proudly show off the Filipino flag, but the wind just would not agree with me. 

xo, FMB

A Blue Surprise

blue4Tee: Forever 21 | Pants: J.Crew (on sale!) | Blazer: H&M | Flats: Payless | Necklace: Bauble Bar | Watch: Michael Kors | Bracelet: Trend Tribe | Hair: Camille Albane Salon

After months of contemplating, I decided that my hair needed a spring refresh — and more than just a haircut. I had never colored my hair before, so a subtle balayage was a big deal. To top that, I’ve been going to the same stylist in California for seven years (Hi, Phuong!), so finding a stylist in Boston was another big step for me. I saw reviews for Drew at Camille Albane and decided to take the risk. Two hours later, I was so happy with the results! It makes me feel so *~edgy~*

xo, FMB


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Live Colorfully

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Ever since I was in middle school, I had always been taught to record everything in a planner — important dates, tests, homework, etc. Even with Google Calendar, iCal, and every app that exists, I still prefer physically writing things down, crossing things out, and checking off lists. Call me old-fashioned, but it’s just what works for me.

This Kate Spade agenda has to be my favorite planner to date. It has a calendar for each month as well as a space for each week where you can write the day’s activities. For me, the calendar is a huge plus, because I live on deadlines and love seeing things big-picture. Additionally, each month comes with a nice Kate Spade-esque quote or advice on how to “Live colorfully.”

Food Obsessions: Noosa Yoghurt

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Photo Courtesy of Amateur Gastronomer 

Anyone that knows me knows that I love food. Anyone that knows me well knows that I’m also the laziest person when it comes to preparing food. Living in an off-campus apartment in college with no dining plan, I usually reach for the easiest and quickest food options. Greek yogurt is one of my favorite options because it comes in a ton of flavors, fills me up quickly, and is relatively cheap.

Enter: Noosa yoghurt, my newest obsession. It’s an Australian yogurt made in Colorado, and it tastes absolutely delicious.

So, it’s not Greek yogurt? Apparently the Australians made Greek-style yogurt and infuse it with honey in the process, resulting in a sweeter tang and velvety texture. It has the same amount of protein as Greek yogurt though!

Favorite flavors? I haven’t tried one that I haven’t liked! I’ve tried lemon, strawberry rhubarb, and blueberry. Noosa has 13 flavors, so I still have a long way to go!

Where can I buy it? Whole Foods usually carries Noosa, but I would check and call first (I may or may not have traveled 45 minutes to find out that they didn’t have it). Costco actually has a special 12 4oz-pack for $13, which is a total steal! The pack includes Lemon, Strawberry Rhubarb, and Blueberry.

Have you tried Noosa? Do you have a weird food obsession too? Let me know in the comments!

xo, FMB

Spring Break Adventures: Indian Springs Spa, Calistoga

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 12.37.47 AMTop: Marshall’s | Shorts: J. Crew | Sandals (not pictured): Target

(Written while back in Boston, begging for warmth and procrastinating on homework)

Here’s to remembering sunnier, happier days, such as the one spent in Calistoga. While on spring break, my friends wanted to visit Wine Country. With only one of them being 21, I figured a spa would be a fun way to spend the day in addition to seeing all the gorgeous vineyards.

My friends and I drove up to Indian Springs in Calistoga for mud baths and pool time. We all had pretty mixed opinions, so I’ll go through the highlights.

Mud Baths: 

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 1.30.45 AMDefinitely an interesting experience. The mud is a lot more dense than you’d expect. It’s actually so dense that you don’t really sink into it. You lay over the mud, and then the spa attendant layers piles of mud on top of you. You can also opt to get some mud on your face (to be honest, I regret opting out of that…the effects of the mud bath reminded me of a Glam Glow mask).

PSA: mud gets everywhere (all crevices included).

The Pool

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 12.31.44 AMWhile not all of us loved the mud baths, we all loved the pool. The main pool is a huge pool that goes from 2 ft to 8 ft deep and is heated to 92 degrees. The spa also provides free pool loungers and noodles, which we all loved (I fell asleep on one).

Buddha Pond

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 12.33.09 AMThis was probably one of our favorite parts of Indian Springs. It’s a relaxing pond hidden behind the spa area. With lush greenery, bridges, statues and art, it was a perfect backdrop for an impromptu photoshoot. There was also a fireplace and lounging area where they had free almonds and orange slices.

BOTTOM LINE

We all enjoyed the day spa experience. For just the mud bath process, I thought the prices were a little steep. But because of the service and all day access to the rest of Indian Springs’ amenities, I would say pricing is reasonable and competitive to the rest of Calistoga/Napa Valley. While I enjoyed the mud bath, I don’t think I would do it again. Next time, I would probably try one of the massages.

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xo, FMB

Spring Break Fashion: Beach Vibes

Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 11.21.22 PMTop: Marshall’s | Shorts: Gap (similar) | Cardigan: Nordstrom BP (similar) | Sunglasses: Ray-Ban | Flip flops: Rainbow

I’ve been enjoying my time under the warm sun these past few days, and clearly, my most recent wardrobe choices reflect it. While I did pack four pairs of shoes with me for this trip, I haven’t worn much else other than my Rainbow flip flops. I bought them over five years ago and they’re still going strong! (Except in these pictures, where they’re on my hands more often than my feet…couldn’t resist running into the water!)

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Spring Break Adventures: Mission Peak

For spring break this year, a few of my friends decided to come home to California with me. While we originally thought of going to Montreal, after this past winter in Boston, I could not be happier to be home in sunny California.

I’ve been taking my friends to all the essential food places (In-N-Out, authentic Mexican food), so we decided to burn those extra calories with a hike up Mission Peak. It was 6 miles total. Although we were exhausted when we got to the top, seeing the Bay Area from over 2500 ft. elevation was pretty awesome.

Some tips for first time hikers:

Go on a weekday, if you can. It gets really crowded and you’ll have to wait to take a picture with the totem pole, and some areas of the trail only have enough room for one person to go through.

– Water. duh.

– Bring your camera! There’s so many beautiful views from this trail and you’ll want to capture every moment.

– A good sense of humor goes a long way, especially when you’re with friends. Other hikers are very friendly too. It’s as though there’s a sense of camaraderie among “Mission-Peakers”

– Dress in layers in the winter/spring, wear close to nothing in the summer. Either way, you’ll get hot; it’s just a matter of how hot/if you’ll be able to cool down.

Enjoy!

xo, FMB
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