5 Easy Hikes in the Bay Area

California, Travel

Seth and I love to get out and explore during the weekends – and of course give Bayla a chance to be free and roam around. We typically have activities planned in the evening so we like to get easy hikes & sightseeing in the morning. One of the great things about the Bay area, there are so many great hiking options – beach trails, marshlands, open space preserves, mountains, foothills – you name,  it is here!

1. Joseph D. Grant State Park

Just south of San Jose – we took the Dutch Flat Trail to the scenic overlook. Beautiful views of Silicon Valley and beyond.

DSC_0415     DSC_0439

DSC_0400

IMG_6089

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Castle Rock State Park

Located west of Saratoga in the Santa Cruz mountains – this spot is one not to miss! It has tons of Douglas-fir, and madrone forests intertwined with sandstone rock formations. Just amazing!

Processed with RookieIMG_4447

3. Fremont Older Open Space Preserve

We hiked to Hunter’s Point, a 3 mile loop through woods and grasslands and sweepings views of Silicon Valley at the top!

DSC_0727   DSC_0756

IMG_7851 IMG_7843

4. Coyote Ridge

This is an area of protected land between the Santa Cruz mountains and Sierra Nevada mountains near Anderson Lake. It is a major wildlife corridor, and home to the bay checkerspot butterfly and abundant amounts of wildflowers. My coworkers and I received a docent led hike from Santa Clara Open Space Authority and it was such a treat to see this stunning land.

IMG_6966

IMG_6935

 

 

5. Slacker Ridge

A easy hike in the gorgeous Marin Headlands  with breathtaking views of San Francisco, the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, and the Pacific Ocean. This peak is a few back from the main attraction of Battery Spencer, and is a hidden gem from the tourists. Seth and I were all alone on the mountain top just taking in the views. Bring layers – the hike up gets steep but the wind at the top is seriously fierce!
DSC_0223
  DSC_0230DSC_0271  DSC_0275

The Bay area is FULL of hiking options, anyone out there know of some really great spots?

Xo, Lucia

DSC_0251

Sea Change

California, Local, Travel, Uncategorized

Santa Cruz, California – A picturesque beach town located South on Silicon Valley  with a famous Boardwalk, bustling surfer culture and a hip music scene.

Seth, Bayla and I took a trip to Santa Cruz! We arrived Friday evening and walked a couple miles along the coast and saw the Boardwalk lights glistening on the ocean water in the distance, it was so beautiful. We let Bayla run on the beach, one of her favorite things to do.

DSC_0340     DSC_0391

DSC_0357

The sky was a beautiful orange, purple and pink mixture. California beach sunset are truly hard to beat! We grabbed dinner at Hula’s Island Grill and headed over to the Catalyst to see Sturgill Simpson – OH MY THAT VOICE! The show was incredible, I am sad I didn’t get any pictures!  Saturday morning, we walked on the beach and got to the Boardwalk as it was opening at 10am. We decided to take the skyline lift across the park, as soon as we got on and our feet were dangling 30ft above the ground, we were feeling pretty scared! We headed to the 5th oldest roller coaster in the United States, The Giant Dipper. It was an old rickety wooden roller coaster – but still fun. The look on excitement on Seth face as we rode the rides was totally adorable and heart melting.

IMG_7277    Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

 

We grabbed Bayla and headed to the beach – it’s so funny she knows the word ‘beach’ – Santa Cruz has an amazing beach area where dogs are allowed, Bayla had so much fun running with all the other mutts. We explored the beach and jumped around on slippery rocks.

IMG_7367     IMG_7377

IMG_7362     DSC_0651

 

We headed across town to Aldo’s Harbor for a DSC_0678fresh seafood lunch. We walked along harbor, there were giant jacks blocking the waves – they were so interesting looking! We laid out on the beach for a bit while Bayla chewed a stick. We packed up and headed home. Santa Cruz left me lusting for the laid back surfer beach life, luckily it is only 45 minutes away!

Xo, Lucia

DIY – Spring Wreath

California, Design, DIY

Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature  – Gerard De Nerval

IMG_7454

Coyote Ridge –  Staff Play Date

The poppies and cream puffs are in full bloom here in Northern California. We needed something to brighten up our front door. I was wanting to make a wreath – so I started brainstorming. I am inspired by the light, airy with hues of spring in California so I decided to get crafty and make nature-inspired paper flowers with spice dyed coffee filters.

Here is a simple DIY to a make a beautiful spring wreath!

IMG_7070    IMG_7449Grab some coffee filters, turmeric, smoked paprika and ground mustard. Pour each into a pot with 1.5 cups of water. Bring to a boil then take off burner and let cool. Dip or submerge a handful of coffee filters into each pot (you can mix dyes together to create an unique color) then hang up to dry. After they are dry; twist them into large (peony) and small (rose) shapes. Use floral wire to secure paper flowers to grapevine wreath.

IMG_7450  IMG_7452  IMG_7430

Using spices to dye these paper flowers give them an all natural earth tone appearance, proving that everything is nature is precious and interconnected. A bow made of fabrics like linen and burlap compliment the yellow and peach hues of the flowers and top of this natural DIY spring wreath.

IMG_7446         IMG_7451

P.S. – We took a weekend trip to Santa Cruz – stayed tuned for a peak into low key surfer beach life!

Xo, Lucia

Hello World!

California, Travel

Life is a whirlwind of sheer fate and coincidence and the winds have taken me from beautiful North Carolina to magical California.IMG_3739

There is so much to share about this wonderful place! I recently came across a quote,

“California take a lifetime to experience properly, that’s what makes California so great.”

Those words spoke so true to me.

I am here to share my journey of travel, food, style and DIY and everything in between.

 Processed with RookieSeth and I decided to pack our bags and see the world.

This is our story, follow along for a glimpse into the California life!

Xo, Lucia