Sunday, June 3, 2012

LA Bucket List

For Terry's birthday, I "gave" him the gift of an LA bucket list. The idea was that we have lived in this city for awhile now (eight years for Terry--though he grew up nearby, almost nine years for me), and we still have yet to take advantage of much that LA offers. Yes, we've done a LOT: Disneyland, beaches, museums, restaurants, bars, events. But there's still much to explore, and Terry truly loves Los Angeles. What better gift than the promise of seeing, doing, experiencing?

In April, we covered several "bucket list" stops and had a blast playing tourists in downtown LA. We stopped at Wurstkuche, Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, and Olvera Street.

In front of Disney Concert Hall

I also included lots of fun new-to-us LA treasures, like Getty Villa, Bar Marmont, Disney Concert Hall (actually attending a show), Hollywood Forever Cemetery, and lots more. We have been adding more to the list as we unintentionally stumble upon or remember things we want to do or hadn't heard of before. For example, Terry's parents offered us their tickets to see The Follies at the Ahmanson this week. We've been to this theater a few times, so it wasn't on our list, but we're excited to visit again! We also hadn't thought to see a show at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in downtown, but we noticed that the Bolshoi Ballet is showing Swan Lake. I've actually never seen a ballet (except The Nutcracker, which I only saw half of each year, because our dance studio got to perform with The Oakland Ballet and The San Francisco Ballet as Gingersnaps), and the Pavilion looks awesome.

Another unexpected stop along our adventure through LA combined sight seeing with working out--perfect! My parents heard about this set of stairs in Pacific Palisades from our friends Nick and Jocelyn and recommended we check it out, which we did yesterday. (For those in LA, it's located at the intersection of San Vicente and 4th--then just follow all the people.) Turns out these stairs are mighty popular with locals; we found dozens and dozens of people walking, jogging, sprinting, and carrying bikes (!) up the stairs. People also added push ups, crunches, stretching, lunges, jump rope, and more to their work outs. Fun!

Terry and I simply climbed each set (there are two) of stairs twice, plus we ran one of them one more time. It took about 35 minutes and gave us jello legs by the time we were done!

Impressive views from the top of the stairs

On our third climb up

To continue our Los Angeles adventures, I suggested that we check out Venice Beach today. First we had to tackle our four-mile run (perhaps we should have done it in Venice for fun scenery!), which went really well. We were both sore from our hamstrings and back workout and from climbing all those stairs yesterday! But we powered through and kept up a pace of about 6.8 mph.

Then we headed to Venice. We found parking and noticed we were right next to the Venice Canals, another stop on our list. If that isn't fate, I don't know what is. We took a lovely stroll around the canals, admiring the gorgeous homes and cute ducks.

It's so peaceful!

Happy tourists

Look at that gorgeous home!

Complete with gondolas.

Then we ventured over to the famous Venice Beach area, which includes Muscle Beach. The people watching was OUTRAGEOUS! I highly recommend this stretch of beach for a good laugh and a fantastic view.

The famous workout platform, which costs $10 per day!

Yes, that is happening.

Why don't we have rope climbing in PE class anymore?

It was a great afternoon. We would certainly go back to the beach and the canals, but Muscle Beach was a bit much for me. As in, a bit too much testosterone.

We spent the rest of the day doing some shopping at Costco, tackling a few loads of laundry, watching Midnight in Paris, getting some blog work done for me and some computer updates done for Terry, and getting through a few shows on the DVR. I'm off now to squeeze in some much-needed yoga (Day 1 for me of Courtney's June Yoga Challenge!), make dinner (fish tacos, anyone?), and bake some banana bread.

Oh, and I'll probably cuddle with this little dude.

Laundry day is Scout's favorite!

Hope you had a fantastic weekend! Monday is around the corner, so how are you going to fit healthy food and fitness into your week?


  1. What a cute idea! Sounds like a ton of fun! You should rank your favorite sights/activities when you're done!

    1. Awesome idea! I'm totally going to do that - thanks for the suggestion!