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Everything Lauren Ate and Wore on Her First Trip (!) to L.A.

Plus, your FAQs about my first time meeting the team.
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Goodbye Atlanta, hello LA!

Goodbye Atlanta, hello LA!

Last month, I (finally!) hopped on a plane from Atlanta to Los Angeles, for what would be my very first time visiting California. I had absolutely no idea what to expect, and was overwhelmed by a whirlwind of emotions, but mainly excitement and nervousness. I always had a feeling I’d fall in love with LA, and well, I wasn’t wrong. As soon as I landed in sunny California and caught a Lyft from the airport to my hotel in Santa Monica, I ran up to my room and snapped a mirror selfie to capture my first moments of my weekend trip. In fact, I couldn’t stop snapping photos of my surroundings all weekend. I was in complete awe of the city and how beautiful it is. I mean, perfect blue skies, palm trees everywhere, beautiful architecture? It doesn’t get much better than that. 

Throughout my trip, I did my best to photograph every meal, and (almost) every outfit I wore. Unfortunately, I didn’t pack as smart as I had hoped, which I quickly realized when the temperature dropped in the evening and I didn’t have any sweaters or jackets on me. Luckily I packed one life saving ‘shacket’ that I had grabbed last-minute to wear on the plane, and it became part of my everyday looks. Below I’ve shared photos (mainly of my meals and outfits), and answered some questions that were left in the comments on the Shop Instagram during my trip—enjoy!

First snap in my hotel room in Santa Monica...let the adventures begin! 

First snap in my hotel room in Santa Monica...let the adventures begin! 

First meal in LA: Dinner with my cousins at Hama Sushi.

First meal in LA: Dinner with my cousins at Hama Sushi.

First full day exploring the city! Walking to get bagels for breakfast with my mom, before getting together with the team.

First full day exploring the city! Walking to get bagels for breakfast with my mom, before getting together with the team.

Here's said bagel. It was everything I needed and more. (from Bagel Nosh!).

Here's said bagel. It was everything I needed and more. (from Bagel Nosh!).

Ooooh baby. Not only was this the most wonderful day because I finally got to meet the team in person, but I also ate some of the most mouth-watering food. G's grilled chicken and ribs were on another level...and Emily's chocolate chip cookies were almost too good to be true.

Ooooh baby. Not only was this the most wonderful day because I finally got to meet the team in person, but I also ate some of the most mouth-watering food. G's grilled chicken and ribs were on another level...and Emily's chocolate chip cookies were almost too good to be true.

Snapped this shot of my incredibly photogenic avocado toast while sitting at Tartine with the marketing team and Leslie. Shoutout to Kelly for this recommendation...if you think it looks good, you can only imagine how it tasted. 

Snapped this shot of my incredibly photogenic avocado toast while sitting at Tartine with the marketing team and Leslie. Shoutout to Kelly for this recommendation...if you think it looks good, you can only imagine how it tasted. 

After spending all of Friday with the marketing team, my mom and I went out for some dinner. We had originally wanted to try Din Tai Fung per Jess' rec, but stumbled across this organic Mexican restaurant instead, Tocaya Organica. I will say I've never seen a burrito presented this way before, but it was delicious and perfectly complemented my spicy margarita. 

After spending all of Friday with the marketing team, my mom and I went out for some dinner. We had originally wanted to try Din Tai Fung per Jess' rec, but stumbled across this organic Mexican restaurant instead, Tocaya Organica. I will say I've never seen a burrito presented this way before, but it was delicious and perfectly complemented my spicy margarita. 

Saturday: My mom and I rented a car and took a road trip to San Diego - this was taken right when we got to a small beach town called Encinitas. Notice the shacket...thankful!

Saturday: My mom and I rented a car and took a road trip to San Diego - this was taken right when we got to a small beach town called Encinitas. Notice the shacket...thankful!

Saturday lunch at Pacific Beach!

Saturday lunch at Pacific Beach!

Obviously had to start with a delicious calamari appetizer. 

Obviously had to start with a delicious calamari appetizer. 

Okay this one's just embarrassing... My mom and I spent most of our last day driving to and from San Diego, that by the time we got back to LA we realized we never even got to see the Hollywood Sign. (Tourist move, I know.) I quickly Googled the best and easiest spot to see the sign, and maps sent us to the parking deck roof of Home Depot. If you squint and tilt your head ever-so-slightly, you miiiight be able to see what I was trying to get in the background. Again, shoutout to the shacket.

Okay this one's just embarrassing... My mom and I spent most of our last day driving to and from San Diego, that by the time we got back to LA we realized we never even got to see the Hollywood Sign. (Tourist move, I know.) I quickly Googled the best and easiest spot to see the sign, and maps sent us to the parking deck roof of Home Depot. If you squint and tilt your head ever-so-slightly, you miiiight be able to see what I was trying to get in the background. Again, shoutout to the shacket.

What better way to wrap up a weekend trip in LA than to walk to get a giant cone of ice cream from Cold Stone? It sounded pretty good to me. 

What better way to wrap up a weekend trip in LA than to walk to get a giant cone of ice cream from Cold Stone? It sounded pretty good to me. 

One happy gal. LA, I love you, and I'll be back very soon. 

One happy gal. LA, I love you, and I'll be back very soon. 

Now to answer some of your questions from Instagram!

1. Did it feel like Christmas morning meeting your team in person? Yes, it absolutely did. I remember how excited and anxious I felt while waiting for Kelly to pick me up to take me to Emily and G's house for the team party. Although I'd been working with everyone for about seven months, meeting in person just felt different. Like everything just clicked for me, if that makes sense. I already knew I loved everyone from our day-to-day encounters, but being able to have individual conversations in real life felt like something I'd been missing, and it was amazing to finally have that opportunity.  

2. Was this your first time in LA? What did you love/hate about your visit and where was your favorite restaurant? Yes, this was my first time in LA! If I had to narrow it down to what I loved the most, I'd definitely say being able to spend time with the team in person. They're really some of the best people I've ever met, and I felt so comfortable and at home with everyone. I'd probably have to say that I didn't enjoy the traffic. Of course the team had warned me beforehand about how awful LA traffic can be, but I sorta brushed it off because Atlanta's traffic is no walk in the park...buuut I will say, being stuck in traffic while trying to make it to the car rental place before it closed was pretty stressful. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to try all the restaurants I had been told to check out, but out of the ones I did go to, I'd say my favorite was Bagel Nosh lol. I'm a sucker for a bagel sandwich, and this one totally blew me away. It was also walking distance from my hotel which I loved. 

3. Favorite person, place, and thing you experienced in LA? I wish I could narrow this down, but I really can't. I got to know everyone on the team a lot better, and they were all my favorite people. :) My favorite place I experienced would probably be Emily and G's house. It was absolutely beautiful, with the most peaceful and relaxing backyard. One of my favorite memories from the trip was when we were all sitting around the table outside eating dinner, talking about topics that ranged from our celebrity crushes to which way we face in the shower lol. It was a really wonderful time. 

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