What Would Kiki Wear – California Edition

Earlier this year, I traveled to DFW (Texas) for my brother and sister in law’s baby shower. They welcomed a healthy baby boy in early March. Fun fact: baby boy shares a birthday with our maternal grandpa, Bumpy! (IYKYK!) Ideally, we wanted to fly to Texas this summer to meet Baby but buying three plane tickets is a little expensive + my brother, SIL, and baby are flying to Ohio this summer for July 4th weekend and again in September for a wedding. So I’ll get to spend time with them a couple of times this year, which made me feel better about this decision. We found reallllly inexpensive rates to LAX through Spirit Airlines – Thurs night – Tues afternoon. I’ve never flown them before and flying with a toddler on low budget airline made me a little nervous due to their flight schedules (only about one flight a day so if anything happens – flight delays, miss connecting flight, etc…. you’re kind of stuck at the airport until the next flight/next day. Just my thoughts). Luckily these flights were direct both ways so I felt more comfortable booking and not being stranded in another state/another airport I’m unfamiliar with.

My uncle and aunt live in Long Beach, CA and will be retiring to Spain soon. We absolutely must visit them in Spain, too, but I haven’t been out to visit them in CA and they have the cutest bungalow house with the best backyard patio. Plus, enough space for the three of us to visit for a couple of days – we had to take advantage!

We didn’t have a lot of plans, we just wanted to see their CA lifestyle, tour Long Beach, visit some beaches, eat good food… and then my aunt brought up Disneyland for our toddler!! We were able to reserve tickets (everything is online now and it’s a little annoying that the ticket prices aren’t a flat rate. It’s based on day and projected volume. We planned to go on a Monday so the tickets were pretty much what you’d predict to pay).

So now that we had a couple of ideas for activities and events to do during our trip… time to pack!

I’ll admit that I am an overpacker! Through Spirit, we paid for one check on bag. ONE. BAG. This would need to fit my clothes/shoes/toiletry, Max, and Olivia’s items… so this was a challenge. I knew that Long Beach is known for being comfortable, casual, liveable… think skateboarders… For a casual outfit, I couldn’t resist color. I brought a short, flirty, oversized dress with a tropical print from the Jojo Fletcher x Resa collab vs a pink, floral, strapless midi dress for a more fitted look. The temps in LBC dropped from what apple weather was showing as we packed. Luckily I brought a jean jacket to pair with dresses because it was colder than I prepared for.

Not that we actually had plans for a “date night” since we traveled with our toddler, but a nice dinner out was a possibility. Maxi dresses can be dressed up or down and figured they are a safe choice. A bold print would mean minimal jewelry so packed these two options for our trip. The green tropical print is another Jojo Fletcher x Resa collab and the other dress is an Amazon find. The material is a thicker, sweater style fabric. Perfect for a cool California night.

What’s Long Beach without going to… the Beach?! But actually, I text my Aunt to ask if locals went to the beach or if that was too touristy. LOL. She said locals do go to the beach and she recommended Seal Beach for families (She also grew up going there). I have a hard time deciding between a colorful suit & coverup or sticking to the basic neutral…. What’s your vote?!

Last, but not least, what’s California without a trip to… DISNEYLAND?! This wasn’t the objective of our trip, but since we had a free week day, we decided to purchase a one day ticket to Disney. I’ve been to Disney World, but never Disneyland. I hesitated thinking Olivia would be too young, but she’s so into princesses right now, I really wanted her to experience this. We’ll save the Disney World plans for when she’s a little older, but DisneyLand is perfect for now because we aren’t planning on visiting the park for more than one day.Olivia’s favorite ride was The Little Mermaid. A lot of the rides were identical to Disney World. But such a fun experience!! We didn’t bring a stroller and planned to rent one, but when Olivia was ready for a nap, I searched on the app and the stroller rentals were alllll the way at the entrance. We were in Toon Town at the very back of the park. Ugh. So Max and I grabbed a snack, sat on a bench, and to my surprise, Olivia laid down on my lap and napped!! When she woke up, we were walking through Mickey’s house and he was saying Hi to her, haha. She actually still talks about this trip and asks to go back. So special.

What Would Kiki Wear to Spain

Hi friends! If you’re new here, I traveled to Spain in June to celebrate the beautiful wedding of my brother and sister-in-law!

Leading up to the wedding I think we were all complaining about traveling international and everything that entails but after the event, we were all healthy and safe and had THE. BEST. TIME! We quickly changed our tune and thankful for all of the planning they out into their wedding + accommodations.

My favorite part of planning was… the outfits. The wedding was postponed a year so I had a lot of time to shop and find exactly what I wanted for the different wedding events. I wanted to share the collages I created and put up on IG for votes. It was so fun to see what other people like/dislike and read their messages of advice. I’ve been continuing with the collages for other trips/events I’ve had this summer. Sorry for the delay on getting these posted but I’m going to work on getting those blog posts published over the next few weeks. Stay tuned! And let me know in the comments which outfits you like or didn’t like 🙂

Olivia’s Flower Girl Debut

Wow, I can’t believe it’s already been over a month since we came back from Spain! My brother and new sister-in-law finally got to celebrate their postponed wedding in Spain. I feel like, when they planned this, we were all throwing some negative energy for them and trying to talk them out of their decision… Then the pandemic and we thought they were even more crazy to postpone it vs planning it in another location (US specifically). But, now that the trip and wedding are over we all feel so thankful that they trusted themselves and stayed strong in their decision. It was BEAUTIFUL! To have so many of our family members in the same villa to celebrate love – it was so amazing!

Our girl was the one and only flower girl at their wedding. She’s two so postponing their wedding worked out in Olivia’s flower girl favor. Now she can walk herself down the aisle and do the flower girl “walk and drop” as we called it during practice. I was so nervous about her dress situation because ever since it arrived, Olivia has always said, “No, I don’t like it” and would run away. I ended up purchasing a backup dress – but even if she did wear the original dress, having a more comfortable dress to change into would be the best move.

The day of the wedding, my husband spent the day with my brother and my mom was with the bride-to-be. I got myself ready while Olivia napped so when I woke her up, I was dressed and ready to go. Then I pulled out her dress and to my surprise she said, “I’m a princess: and let me dress her without putting up any fight. Toddlers….

The wedding was absolutely gorgeous! It was Pinterest perfect (amazing job, Mariah!). The ceremony started and we gave Olivia her flower basket which she immediately wanted to dump out and play with the petals. The bridesmaids were already heading down the stairs and into the aisle while Olivia started a tantrum not getting to play with the petals. I ended up offering her a pacifier and we began our descent down the stairs – OMG there were so many stairs and I carried Olivia + my clutch in heels down the stairs toward the aisle. But that’s how she walked down the aisle – with this huge green pacifier! Ugh! BUT she did AMAZING! I didn’t walk with her, I let her do her thing and she smiled the WHOLE time! Walked and dropped the flowers while everyone cheered and clapped. I love that memory.

Immediately after her debut, she just wanted to sing and talk LOL but the officiant was beginning his speech so I was trying to quiet Olivia when the wedding coordinator swooped in with wedding props and that instantly did the trick! Olivia was happy, distracted, and quiet the rest of the beautiful ceremony.

I’d love to post more about our trip to Spain – let me know if that’s something you’re interested in! 🙂 xoxo

Willamette Valley Wine

Two words: Pinot Noir. Ever since we went to Napa two years ago searching for Pinot Noir, we kept hearing Willamette Valley. The wine in Napa is amazing and it’s been one of my favorite trips so far. But when we had an opportunity to travel to Oregon for a friends wedding, we extended our trip to spend time in Willamette valley.

We first did a quick google search on the best Pinot Noir in Willamette Valley. One of the top three places was near our final destination on the coast. So we decided that would be the winery we’d visit and assumed we’d need to call and make a reservation. Then we shut the computer lid and never made a winery reservation, Lol!

We left Portland on a Sunday and drove about 30 mins to Willamette. Whichever route we took, had us driving through small suburbs and it was crazy at one point to think our ETA to vineyards was 10 mins and we’re passing a Chik-fil-A right now. Again, basing this off my trip to Napa.

We arrived in McMinnville and parked at Domaine Drouhin which is the winery we chose online. But, of course, on a Sunday during a pandemic, they were completely booked! We knewww we should have called and pre-arranged a tasting, but we didn’t. Oops. They were also booked up the following day, which we would have had an opportunity to pass through again on our way back to Portland for our red eye flight. So, okay, they’re booked, but there’s several wineries nearby so we just drove to a neighboring winery. Butttt they were booked all day Sunday, too!

So, omg, I start to panic (dramatic, I know). We were literally driving around and wineries had their numbers listed at the entrance. Finally, we found one that could get us in for a tasting if we could be there in 5 mins. Well lucky us, we will just drive down your entrance and be there in .5 seconds.

The winery was cute – it’s where the picture in front of wine barrels was taken but in the cluster of everything, I’m not even sure where we stopped! We ordered a charcuterie board with our wine and once we finished up, decided to keep heading to the coast. I called a few more wineries that looked pretty to make an appointment for Monday. We landed at Domaine Serene for Monday. It was suuuuper fancy. The views were a lot prettier on the terrace. The wine was delicious (but the pours were smallll ;)).

This dress is the perfect winery dress. The gingham print says picnic in the park. The rouching and ruffles are extremely flattering and the ties are adjustable. Be careful, the ties are a little difficult to keep even and look perfect. I paired with these white braided heels that are actually very comfortable. I do think the outfit was a little dressy for Oregon – it would be perfect in Napa. Oregon is more neutral tones. But I make an entrance. I’m so happy we were able to experience a very small part of Willamette.

Of course I wore this dress for both Sunday and Monday wine tastings 🙂 I originally saw this dress on Red Dress Boutique but it sold out before I could get my hands on it. I love the slimming rouching and ruffles of the dress. The ties on the shoulder make the dress adjustable, although, it’s harder to tie a pretty bow than you think, ha! I originally saw this dress on Red Dress Boutique but it was sold out before I could get my hands on it (linked on the LTK carousel above). I signed up for restock notifications but I found and purchased the exact dress from Avanti the label (Fourth or Fifth time I’ve mentioned this online boutique).

I’m so happy we had the opportunity to travel to Oregon and explore a small part of Willamette. I’d recommend to do your research and don’t forget to make a reservation to ensure you get into the wineries you want 🙂 xoxo

Ski Bunny 🐰

Welcome to the town of Breckenridge!  The town was still decorated with lights and Christmas decorations which was perfect for our trip!  As part of our Christmas presents, my parents bought my brother and I a ski trip!  We found amazing fares on Frontier airlines for $32 one way – the catch was, we left Cincinnati at 5:20am on Weds and left Denver at 7:20pm on Saturday.  We all chuckled at how we left for the airport at 2:30am and then returned home from the airport also at 2:30am – crazy how that worked out, right?!

With my dad being from Colorado, I’ve only been skiing in CO.  This was my 4th time and I was still pretty nervous.  The blue runs are probably equal to the black diamonds in Ohio! Even though it was cold in CO, it wasn’t very windy so, with all of my layers, I was able to stay warm while skiing all day. 

I fell a lot!  It wasn’t graceful and it wasn’t pretty, but it was fun!  I mean, my legs were twisted and pointing in ways they shouldn’t!  So thankful I didn’t report back to work on Monday in a body cast…

If you’re planning a trip to Breckenridge ever, the top 5 things to do (other than ski, duh):
1. SHOP – be a tourist and buy the Breck March (especially at the Glass Art Company)
2. Wait in line for Crêpes a La Cart – I know it’s cold, but they have a fire pit so if you’re in a group, you can trade off who waits in line and who stays warm by the fire
3. Ride the Gondola – It’s not heated, but it keeps out the cold air and seats 8 people.  Plus, it’s FREE
4.  Make dinner reservations (We wanted to try Canteen but it’s so small inside and we didn’t have a reservation so we left to find another place.  But every place was just as busy.  After an hour of walking outside and being tired and hungry, I think we all got a little cranky 🙁
5.  Rent a condo with a hot tub – that’s the perfect way to end a day of skiing, I promise!!

This isn’t a what would Kiki wear post, but I wanted to share my pictures from the trip!  I was bundled up under layers of sweaters, scarf, and pomp beanies!  But what better way to start the new year and motivate my to continue blogging than having one of my pictures reposted on Instagram?  The first photo above was reposted by Colorado Activities on their website and their Instagram (Colorado Activities). 

Seattle, Seafood, and Crop Tops

After returning from the East Coast, I waited exactly one week before heading to the west coast: Seattle, Washington.  Seattle is a city that has been at the top of my bucket list for years now.  Everything from the space needle to Pike Place and the gum wall to whale watching and hiking at Discovery Park.  All of these activities sounded great to me!

It was quite the impromptu trip, but I’m not one to pass up on an opportunity to travel!  I originally wasn’t even staying for 48 hours, but I got my flight changed and took a red eye back to Columbus giving me 12 extra hours to enjoy the city!

It sure was hard getting used to the time change.  My friend and I landed at 5pm Pacific Time and  I made it until 11pm – in my defense, it was 2am Eastern time and a Monday.

I packed 4 outfits total: A nice dress for nice dinner, an outfit to wear during my only full day, an outfit to wear out my 2nd night, and a travel outfit.  On my first full day in Seattle, we knocked out all tourist activities: Pike Place, Post Alley, coffee from the first Starbucks (had to shove some bows, but let’s face it,  the coffee just tastes better at the original starbucks!), drinks at Pike Brewing Company, dinner at the Crab Pot restaurant (check out their seafests), and Pier 57.

With this outfit, I experimented with a crop top and high waisted shorts!  I have always thought, as long as your belly button is covered, you’re wearing a crop top properly. If you’re belly button is peeking out, it then becomes a belly shirt.  I didn’t exactly follow my own rules because my belly button showed more than I wanted.  But these shorts have the cutest print and an elastic waistband which meant I could eat as much fresh salmon, kale, and beer as I wanted from Place Pigalle. Trust me, it is a good combo!  I left it plain on top because I wanted the focus to be on my shorts (and not my midriff).  I’ve been on a fedora kick ever since my beach vaca – hats keep the sun out of my face without giving me sunglass tan lines.  The weather was perfect – nothing but blue skies and I felt comfortable exploring Pike Place all day!

Shorts – Shop Hope’s
Shirt – Forever 21
Fedora – DSW
Purse Francesca’s
Sandals – Target
Nail polish – OPI; Cajun Shrimp