Life’s A Beach & We Need A Weekend Getaway

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Panama City Beach via Google

Hi My Loves,

So I’m not at Coachella this weekend so I am thinking the adventures I can have or rather plan on having in the future because I’m a dreamer, that’s what we do.

The best thing about weekend getaways is  any of us can have them, no matter where we are in the world. So I found myself on HomeAway and boy, did my wanderlust soul have some fun

Let me tell you about my favorite beach spots and maybe you can start dreaming and planning, along with me

 Horseshoe Bay Beach, Bermuda 

Where soft pink sand and turquoise water meet, with countless secret little coves meant for two, this place is made for romance. This beautiful scenery makes this prefect for destination weddings. All you need is a beach chair and an appropriately named cocktail 

North Beach, Wollongong Australia  

I spent my summer vacations here.. It’s beautiful and not as busy as some other popular Australian beaches. Not only can you can have the typical beach fun on the spot of sand but it’s also great for a little soul searching. It’s the kind of place the opens your soul up. 

Panama City Beach, Florida Panhandle

This place has everything you may want no matter who you are. Both family friendly and party center for singles. Sugar white sand and more shades of blue then you knew could exist in one ocean. Some of the best food you could hope for with a strong influence from Louisiana. What more could you asked for

Start Dreaming

Anse Vata Beach, New Caledonia

New Caledonia is a remarkable South Pacific island to visit, with a little French sophistication. Anse Vata Beach is no expectation. It’s hustling and bustling with locals and tourists, but not over crowded. It is an amazing place to sit and have lunch while you watch the kite flyers in the distance as you take in island life  

Grace Bay, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands 

I like to call Grace Bay – your own little pocket of paradise, away from the troubles world but that’s not to say that boredom is going to creep in, oh no,  because there is  stand-up paddleboarding, scuba diving, stunning sunsets and  Caribbean charm, oh my! Anything you are in the mood for, Grace Bay can deliver, with a side of live music

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Turks & Caicos Islands via Pinterest

Now that you have your dream location. Let me help you when your beach essential

Before I do, let me sound like your Mama for five seconds. Let the first things you pack be that sunblock, sunglasses, a hat. Slip, Slop, Slap, my loves . After that maybe have a try of these

Baby Powder – This is one of my favorite beach day life hacks. Use it on your hands and feet. The powder removes the moisture and makes it easier to get rid of that sand. It will also saves you from cleaning your car when you get home.

A Blanket – Sounds strange right? But hear me out. Sure you can sit on a beach towel but if you have a lightweight blanket that is big enough for you and all your friends. You’re all together and can have more fun

Tunes – Never underestimate the power of music to bring people together. ‘Hey, hot surfer guy/girl. You like this band too. Wow, let’s go get a drink’ I’m telling music can change your life

A Mini Power Bank – While you’re chatting up the hotties on the sand or taking photographs of those memories you’re making. You don’t want to be stranded. It’s always a great idea to have a backup.

Snacks – I know how crazy this sounds because all those food huts and restaurants by the water are always so inviting but if you want to save a little cash, visit the grocery store first. Fruit, nuts, water, a treat for yourself, because you’re worth it. While you’re there, pick up some zip-lock bags to keep the sands away from your food. Lifesaver.

LAYLA

The best advice I can give you is, be in the moment and enjoy every moment. Weekends away are never long enough, enjoy it and have fun

Start planning your next adventure

xxLayla

Acceptance, Validation and Embrace Your Crazy

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A few months ago a trailer came out for a movie and I was like a kid at Christmas. There was a countdown to the release and with each passing day I got more and more excited. Since I live in a different time zone – when the trailer finally dropped – it was two o’clock in the afternoon and I was at my nine to five. I told myself that I could wait until I got home – I could watch it than

I couldn’t

I ended up watching, on my phone once I left the office, walking to the station. Wide eyed, blood pumping and a huge smile on my face.

And then I watched it again seconds later

I then shared it on Facebook because, well, I couldn’t be the only one to love this as much as I do.

A little while later I checked myself for getting so excited

I felt a little embarrassed – I could hear other people in my head say ‘It’s just a movie trailer, for Christ sake’

Then my friend messaged me with as much excitement about the movie as I had. We both completely geeked out about it together. I shouldn’t be surprised – we’re a lot like. In life but also Pop Culture wise. We fan girl with each other. When we adore an  actress, we pronounce her QUEEN.

Queen Lena. Queen Margot. Just plain Queen.

Ragnar is our Bae (yes, we sometimes/not all the time, use Bae – deal with it)

It was only then that I felt okay. I felt accepted and validated. My friend hadn’t meant to do this but nevertheless, she did.

When you have those moments, when the people in your life not only embrace your type of crazy but encourage it. It not only makes you thankful for those people but also sadly makes you take a look at the ones that don’t

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You start to re-evaluate your time spend and things said

I don’t know if that’s because of the age we’re at, if it’s maturity or it’s just learning  the difference. Maybe it your capacity to put up with things you don’t like diminishes as you get older.

It whatever it maybe, it makes you thankful

Always spend more time with, talking to and associating with the ones that embrace your crazy. Embrace you at your good and bad – even if they don’t quite understand it.

It’s great if we have a difference of opinion but embrace the differences too

So yes, when this movie finally gets released on that fateful Thursday – I have the day of work on the Friday – just to see it.

I’ll see it, I’ll embrace, I’ll enjoy it and then I will move on because it is just a movie after all but I can enjoy the excitement until then

Because that is who I am

xxLayla 

Lets Face It – Carrie and Other Cows

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Carrie Bradshaw was a bitch, lets face it

It wasn’t Adien’s fault that she burnt her leg on the oven, when he brought her up to his cabin for the weekend and it wasn’t Aiden’s fault when she didn’t save her work and she blame him when her computer broke down

It’s writer/author 101 – save your work and back it up. Some of us even save it on our computers, megabyte and carry a usb around in our handbags, just in case my place burns down. Ok fine, only I do that but I’m paranoid. I can admit it.

It wasn’t Carrie’s friend’s fault that someone else stole her expensive shoes at a party

And Honey – if a guy calls you Cookie – no matter what you think the relationship to him is – he wants to do you.

And Big didn’t want to put his name on the engagement card, big woop – pun intended

Don’t get me wrong I loved the show and whenever I’m home and it’s on tv I’ll watch it . I enjoy  it but sometimes I do have a problem with it.

I was watching on Saturday  and it was the episode when  Carrie finds out that Big and Natasha got married. She spent the whole episode feeling insecure and bitching about Natasha – in poor Natasha’s defense, it wasn’t her fault that she met Big in Paris. During the episode, I was struck by a line when Carrie said

Are there women in New York who are just there to make us feel bad about ourselves?

The short answer is no. Eleanor Roosevelt said ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent’ and I have never heard something more true in my life

Natasha and the rest of the woman you think are making you feel bad – aren’t actually doing that – The only person doing that to you sweetheart, is yourself

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When it comes down to it. When you string all the drama queen events together. Carrie Bradshaw was a pretty unlikable character – if you don’t want your boyfriends dog who lives in your apartment  not to chew your seven hundred dollar shoes – don’t put then on the floor

So if Carrie was so unlikable – why did we tune in every week?

We loved to watch her to see what she would do next and she had redeemable qualities. Deep down underneath the mega drama queen antics and wrong turns she was a good person just trying to find her way

We had sympathy for her.  We wanted her to get to Paris and we wanted her to have her happy ending – whatever that may be.

She was endearing – when Charlotte lost her baby, Carrie was the first one there to hold her hand. When Miranda’s mother died, she was there and when Samantha’s boyfriend was in a terrible play – she was front row center

Carrie had a heart but she was also human and sometimes humans are unlikable

I had been writing a WIP for a long time and was up to my third draft when I realized the story didn’t work. The people who was reading it pointed out that the guy was so in love with her and so sweet that it made my heroine unlikable because she would push him away and why would he keep coming back. My answer was always – well, he loves her. I thought that was enough.

I thought by making the scars of past relationships and her fear being the enemy of the story was enough.

The truth was that it wasn’t. I had made the guy good to be true and I made her cold and confusing

After three drafts I couldn’t make their story  work and as much as it killed me to let that story go but I didn’t know who to make her more likable and to tell you the truth it was pretty melodramatic in places

I am the first draft had a secret husband and a secret child – Oh my

I am still secretly working on it in my head. I refused to let these two go to fictional heaven – they just have to bubble in my cauldron for a little while longer.

The thing is it’s tricky. Your characters can’t be too likable – all cupcakes and unicorns but they also can’t be too dark either. So we find ourselves is a Goldie Locks situation. Not too hot and not too cold

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The only thing we can do is  put on our Manolo Blahnik’s and keep writing.  Figure it out along the way.

Because when we do get it right – it is worth

Unlikable characters or not

xxLayla

Weekend Wonders

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Hi My Loves,

You made it to the  weekend, don’t you feel better knowing you have two days of your own to do whatever you wish. Make sure even if you’re super busy, to do something for yourself. Time to yourself even if its a bubble bath at one o’clock in the morning when the rest of the house is asleep. Have a quiet moment and shake off the world for a little while.

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xxLayla

Music For The Week Ahead

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  • Runaway by Grace Potter and The Nocturnals
  • Bel Air by Lana del Rey
  • Goodnite (Live) by Melody Gardot
  • The Words by Christina Perri
  • Over The Hill & Far Away by Led Zeppelin
  • Broken Glass by Jack Savoretti
  • What Is It About Men (Live At North Sea) by Amy Winehouse
  • Turn On The Radio & Dance by Kellie Pickler
  • Dakota by Stereophonics
  • Out Of Goodbyes by Maroon 5 feat Lady Antebellum
  • Orange County Suite by The Doors
  • What A Difference A Day Makes by Dinah Washington
  • I Had Me A Girl by The Civil Wars
  • Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones
  • Saturday Smile by Gin Wigmore

xxLayla

Tip Your Waitress & Try The Veal

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Hi My Loves,

I’ve always ever since I was little, I mean really little I’ve always wanted to live in different places, a lot of places. I’ve always had my wanderlust soul. I’ve always secretly wanted to be a gypsy – though when I was little I thought that if I was a gypsy I could dress like Esmeralda. A part of me still wants that because how good did she look

So this week I did a little research – The west coast has been speaking to me lately. Los Angeles and San Diego – let’s start there. What’s the harm. I don’t want anything  forever, A month in each place, I’ll be moving around a lot. Rent a place and I’ll just be a waitress of something – easy

My friend Kylie is a waitress overseas. She is the most beautiful ray of light with bright purple hair and a heart the size of the planet. A waitress  is something I have never been, on account of I dislike most people. Well, okay I don’t most dislike people but sometimes the world puzzles and irritates me. Especially rude, ungrateful people – which servers, waitresses, bar staff always come up against.

That’s why I always go out of my way to be nice to servers because  they are human, I may well be the only nice person they have encountered that day and well, I’m not an Asshole

Working customer service in one of only two services centres in the state, for an extremely large company was enough. At least when I was on the phone  I could roll my eyes while keeping my voice happy and inviting, all whist thinking of ways I could make the person on the phone stop  talking  – normal they weren’t pleasant ways, because sometimes people are horrible

I mean on Tuesday I was waiting in line to order my second coffee of the day and I was listening  to two women ask the lady between the counter how many calories were in everything in the display case and what date everything had been made. Even the Mud Cake – I mean, hmm let me think, calories, Mud Cake – hmm – a lot

 

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I mean – seriously

As it turns out. Dreams don’t cost anything but reality hurts like a bitch.

Echo Park Rent: 2700 a month – 675 a week

San Diego Rent: 2600 a month for a nice house – 650 a week

Waitress salary before tax. Without tips

$401 a week.

Cue the Apocalypse Now theme song  as the reality napalm descend on my Wanderlust dreams

 

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I mean we know they don’t get paid much but geez, wow and holy shit with the no money. They have to worry about each penny, while having a smile on their face as people treat them like the help

Servers do not get paid enough to put up with your ‘my Iced, Half Caff, Ristretto, Venti, 4-Pump, Sugar Free, Cinnamon, Dolce Soy Skinny Latte – wasn’t at the right temperature’ attitude.

Ain’t no one got time for that.

We all go through it. The poor years. We’re saving up for things. A house, school fees, day care, three kids and one income, retirement. Wanting to become a traveling gypsy  We skimp, we save, we go without. Mac n cheese becomes your best friend and so do the extra few pounds on your ass because of the Mac n cheese becoming your best friend. We do it. We get through it and sometimes if we are lucky, we fall into a comfortable life

If you are in this comfortable life at this present time or you’re not and you feel like being an amazing person. Can I ask one thing of you? Not always but sometimes

Remember the tip jar on the counter.

You know the five or ten in your pocket or that is going to weigh down your wallet or handbag.

Put it in the tip jar.

It may be five cents but it might make a huge difference in someone’s day

Also

Don’t be a dick to your server

Actually

Don’t act like a dick anywhere

For the love of god

xxLayla

Weekend Wonders

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Hi My Loves,

It has a been an interesting week of job offers. Boundaries about to be push and anxiety but that’s okay because life is a verb, not a cushion or a cage and we are meant to grow. So lets do it. Also my friend and I was talking about getting tattoos at SWSX this weekend. Thankfully we live in Sydney and are too far away from Austin, but it would have been epic.

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xxLayla