Summer At The Cottage

George’s family has been going on vacations to a cottage in Georgian Bay, Canada, for more than 100 years. Can you believe that? It shows a crazy amount of commitment and love for the place.

His grandfather found Point Au Baril before a road existed to get up there. He eventually bought a place, and the family has been vacationing in this beautiful cottage for more than a century.

This summer, George took the kids and I joined them later. I stayed for two weeks. My kids stayed for 3 ½.

When we take the kids up there, I can see a small evolution in my their behavior: from city boys to fearless wild animals, catching frogs, fishing, jumping in the water, driving boats, and running around connected to nature and their surroundings. They become bold and daring.

Up there they have no screen time whatsoever, no electric light, lots of cousins to play with, and opportunities to be in the water. It is a beautiful thing to see. It also makes me wonder if we are doing it all wrong by living in a city with so much noise, traffic, and smog the rest of the year, but then I remember the parks, amazing, food, access to music, the boiling world culture, and the doubts are gone. LA is still my #1.

The main cottage  has been around for as long as George’s family has been going up there, so it is filled with memories and vintage beauties. Cottage life is serene and fun. It is a real treat to have this place that is so close but at the same time so faraway.

Here are some photos of our summer this husband IS product Kids love riding in the front of the boats. No matter how fast or jumpy the ride is. you believe this guy was swimming by himself? He is only 2! is the way to go…

Old recipes from grandma.

Hope your summer has been fun so far! We are getting ready to start school in a couple of weeks. Victor will be going to Kindergarten… say what? He is very excited. Max is starting preschool and he is not that excited. We will see.

Have a great day!

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Brunch at Gjusta – Venice, CA

Gjusta is a deli, bakery, and coffee shop in the heart of Venice. It has amazing food but it is pricey, although no more pricey than any other hot food spot in LA.

I would define Gjusta as a minimalist, tasteful, creative and mildly pretentious place… like almost every other restaurant around Abbot Kinney. I think this spot could be encapsulated in time as an example of what LA was trying to be in the 2010s.

Now that we have established these basic facts, let’s talk about the décor! I loved this place! The artisan style, big open kitchen, white marble tops, flowers, beautiful food, and open patio were a win, win for me.

The food was SOOOOO good. George and I had steak and eggs and my kids had a goat cheese quiche. Both these dishes were excellent, but the best one was the multigrain waffle. Gjusta has amazing pastries so you should try some if you head that way.

The patio in the back is beautiful and small so it gets filled up quickly. If you can avoid brunch or lunch time, please, do. It gets extremely crowded in there with huge lines and no spot to sit in. Luckily, We are morning people and I have small children, so we were ordering food by 7:30 am on a Sunday. A that time there were no lines, plenty of available tables, and the calming sunlight of the morning hours.

One interesting thing about this restaurant is that it has no sign outside. It is located in a big warehouse and it can be difficult to differentiate from any other building in the block if it wasn’t for the movement of people coming in and out of the place. Also, no more than one block away, you can find a large homeless camp, a sad reminder that not all of us have the income to spend $4 on a drip coffee.

Fran Camaj and Travis Lett, same people who created Gjelina, are behind Gjusta.

Address: 320 Sunset Ave, Venice, CA 90291
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Austin, Texas Is As Good As It Gets

jestcafe.coom-austin30I went to Austin last weekend for work and I really, really liked it. People always have amazing things to say about this city so I was afraid my expectations were too high, but they weren’t. This place did not disappoint.

We were lucky to be there when the university was on vacation and places were not crowded. The weather was perfect (I hear the summer is excruciatingly hot) and the whole trip was incredible. What surprised me the most about this city was how laid back everybody is. There is a lot less attitude than in LA. Also, people are really into decor! All the places we went to were beautifully decorated. South Congress, for example, has many corners with beautiful murals and cute restaurants. in Austin is off the hook! We went to so many amazing restaurants. My personal favorite was Launderette – if you happen to go there do not skip dessert, or I will personally scold you Josephine House was my favorite breakfast place. It was strange, because this restaurant is in the middle of a suburban area, with no other businesses around, so I didn’t know what to expect – well, it was heaven. The best part about eating out in Austin (aside from the food) was that we could get into all places without a reservation. I am so used to LA by now where everything is busy and crowded, that I really liked the break from stressing out about making reservations three days in advance.
jestcafe.coom-austin31 tried going to the Barton Springs but they were closed because of flooding… boohoo. Still I was able to snap this photo from far away. jestcafe.coom-austin37We decided to walk around the park instead. I had no idea Austin was so lush. you go to Texas, you NEED to go to a cowboy boots store and be very touristy by trying everything even if you are not interested in buying. It will make you feel cooler by osmosis.’s Tacos has the best cheese salsa for chips. The tacos were good but I wasn’t that impressed. I guess if it is good enough for Obama is good enough for me. jestcafe.coom-austin34 jestcafe.coom-austin32Café No Sé was gorgeous. Even if you are not hungry, go here for the decor and the ice cream. You can always fit some ice cream inside of a full stomach.’s, one of the most beautiful bars I have ever been to. Tall ceilings, vintage decor, and a big outdoor area made this one my favorite bar.

I can’t finish this post without saying that the music scene is as good as they say. The weekend we were there, we found many festivals and bars with all kinds of music. Very cool.

Other places I liked in Austin were Coopers for barbecue, and the South Congress bridge at sunset, where you can see close to a million bats flying out to find food.


Thanks, Austin, you are awesome!


Also, a post about my trip to Chile, our trip to Costa Rica, and, the Huntington Gardens in Pasadena.


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Cemetery Of Punta Arenas, Chile.


As I mentioned in this post, I was in Chile last week. I visited my dad in Punta Arenas. He was sick so I wanted to spend some time with him.

Punta Arenas is a beautiful city, far away from the rest of the world. I feel so lucky to have been born and raised there, and going back is a reminder of how big the world is and how small our lives are (this sounds a little bit more depressing than I wanted it to sound), meaning that going back to our roots helps gaining perspective on what is important in life. I am lucky to have this place that reminds me not to take myself too seriously.

One of my favorite places in Punta Arenas is the cemetery. The most beautiful cemetery I have ever been in my life. It is almost 10 acres, and it was opened on 1894. It is filled with magic places and details. Most tombs are well taking care for, and some are very old.

Every time I visit Punta Arenas, I end up in the cemetery. You might think this is odd, but it is very peaceful and  filled with photo opportunities. For starters, it has many cone shape cypress trees that bring green to about everywhere you look, which is unusual for a cemetery this old. Also, it has many sculptures, buildings and decorations that are fun to photograph. Every corner of this place is magic and has some kind of surprise.

Growing up, my house was only one block away from the cemetery, so we used to visit all the time. It was the perfect place to go and have some adventures with friends. Very calm and safe… a small door to grief and hope.

Here are some photos in case you want to see. Have a great day!

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A Week In Chile – Santiago and Concepción

I am in Chile this week visiting my dad that is sick. I am heading to Punta Arenas to see him, the most southern city in the American continent – try to locate it on a map… should be fun.

I am traveling solo, no kids, and no husband. It feels weird and liberating. A 13 hrs flight is NOTHING when there are no children to take care of, don’t you think?

The original idea for this trip was to do a photographic project with my dad, but I don’t think we will be able to do it – a reminder of letting go of expectations – which is, for me, the lesson of 2016 so far.

My visits to Chile are always very busy. I have many things going on with family and friends, but this time around I am coming for a short time so I won’t be able to see a lot of people. It is funny, when I am down here it feels that I am living two lives instead of one. It is hard to believe I have been here for only some days because so many things have happened: I visited my sisters and my mom in Santiago and Concepción, I got the stomach flu (can you believe it!?), attended parties, ate empanadas, bought souvenirs, and flew to Punta Arenas.. Trying to fit everything in is the hardest part of coming to Chile.

Here are some photos of my days in Santiago and Concepción, in case you want to see. wouldn’t know, but bread is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G in Chile. If you ever come here you need to eat hallullas and marraquetas with butter or avocado. That is a chilean breakfast for you. I thought this chair was kind of cool. I liked the color needed to get some chilean handcrafts so I headed to the “Pueblito Los Dominicos” in This sign for the gentleman’s bathroom is so cool- bronze, vintage, Spanish… right up my alley. These planters are big and cheap. You can paint them in any color you want if you don’t like the terra-cotta – so much potential! Do you spot the plane’s shadow on those clouds? Every single house and building in downtown Concepción has something written on it – mainly poems or political Piano mom, my sisters and I. Sometimes I wonder if I was changed at the hospital when I was born, as I am twice their size and dark -but I was not. My dad and grandmother are proof of that.

Thanks for stopping by,

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