Santa Barbara Adventures

I've made up my mind. Starting today, I'm no longer a Los Angeles resident. Buh-bye Prius-driving hipsters that cut you off and then give you the finger! I'm done with all y'all because I'm moving up the coast to Santa Barbara.

Yes, I know. I need to work out the long term details (note to self: buy lottery ticket) but in the meantime I might just refuse to vacate my hotel.

And why should I leave? This room has got a super comfortable bed. The shower has fantastic water pressure and one of those awesome massaging shower heads. There's free breakfast, and when I walk outside, my hotel is somewhere in the picture you see above, so clearly, it's breathtakingly gorgeous. Thank you for borrowing money from China giving me a tax rebate check, U.S. Government!

Seriously though, I can't tell you how much I've been looking forward to this weekend. It feels really good to be here. I've blogged several times about how much I adore Santa Barbara, but as I drove up the coast this afternoon, I realized that this trip is the very first time I'm coming here just to relax. For the very first time, I'm not here primarily for a conference or for work. I'm just here to have a little getaway with la famille.

Although the beaches here are incredibly picturesque, I've never done more than stick my feet in the water. Truth be told, even when I go to the beach in LA, I never get in the water. Heck, I'm not even one to lounge around on a blanket in the sand. And it's all because I put on a swimsuit and say, "There is no way in hell that I am going out in public looking like a fat cow, especially when Halle Berry might jog by."

However, I decided at around 5 AM this morning that I'm over it and it's all because of my kids. I overheard them chatting in their room last night about how excited they were to come here and how they really wanted to go to the beach but probably wouldn't get to, "Because Mommy thinks she's too fat to go."

I felt really bad when I heard that because I try to be really positive about my body around them. They see me sweating like a maniac to that Jillan Michaels DVD and they know I go and run at the park almost every day. I don't say, "Mommy's exercising because she's fat." Nope, I tell them it's because exercising is what healthy people do and because I want to have more energy to keep up with them. Clearly though, my sons are no dummies and they know me better than I think they do.

With all this in mind, this morning I said, eff it, I'm going to the beach and instead of wearing shorts and a t-shirt, I'm gonna wear a swimsuit!

At first I tried to track down my old swimsuit but I seriously could not find it. The poor thing probably disintegrated from lack of use. Sooo, I had no choice but to take myself swimsuit shopping. EEK!

I don't have to tell you how traumatizing the lighting in the dressing room is. It makes you want to cut to the front of Hollywood liposuction line! But, I persevered through trying on about two dozen different swimsuits and I finally decided on a very cute RED number. I'm still shocked that I picked something that's not so-called "slimming" black, but I figured if I was going to go for it, I'd be damned if I was gonna do the stereotypical black swimsuit with slimming tummy panels that fits so tight you can barely breath.

In the morning the plan is to go check out the Santa Barbara Mission -- I'm pretty excited because I've never been to a California Mission and this one is old-school, founded in 1786! After that, we're heading to the Rose Cafe for lunch. Any die-hard Depeche Mode fan will certainly recognize this place. (Hint: look at your Exciter CD and then look at the back of this photo on the right side.)

Then, in the afternoon we're going to either Butterfly Beach or El Capitan Beach and my new red swimsuit will make it's debut! I already bought a trashy beach book to read and if the writing gets too tedious, I can work on my list of things I want.

Trust me, "I want to move to Santa Barbara," is going to be somewhere near the top!


Anonymous said…
There was a good episode of Oprah on today with Carson formerly of Queer Eye's newish show on Lifetime, "How to Look Good Naked". He had two women in two segments stand in their underwear and compared the size and shape of how 'horrible' they thought they looked with a row of women also in their undies so they could see their true range. Then he had them fitted for new bras and they went shopping, got hair and makeup done, etc. So by now they were feeling better about themselves and more realistic - and they weren't skinny by any means. Then they did a photo shoot naked [not totally] but it was a glamour shot. I highly recommend seeing the show now. I even felt like sprucing myself up after seeing it.
Jameil said…
i'm SO glad you bit the bullet and put on a bathing suit for your babies. they need to know mommy does NOT think she's fat. esp. because she's not. mommy's faB. act right!! my coworkers who are smaller than me are always talking about not wanting to wear bikinis and they drive me insane. love your bodies!!
Anonymous said…
Hurray for Santa Barbara! I think you should cast out all those "can't"s from your thinking. I've known a lot of people who moved there - on any income. It's all about the "can"s!

Hurray for time in a wonderful place. I love the mission - so beautiful.
Felicity said…
I hope you have a nice time, Santa Barbara looks really good!
Jen said…
Enjoy! What a gorgeous place for a break.
Sundry said…
Yay! I'm glad you're getting a break and that you chose SB. What a great town.

And good luck with this goal!
Anonymous said…
Love love LOVE Santa Barbara ... You must take your family to Pallazio on State Street -- yummm ! -- and the used record store down the block.
Lola Gets said…
I too am glad that you got over your "body issues" and decided to get a suit and swim your butt off with your kids!

Ive always said that one sure remedy to bathing-suit body issues is going to a nude beach. After you see the poor slobs there, you wont have any problems with your own bod!

Have a great time. Santa Barbara is so beautiful!

I've only been inside one mission. It was located near Carmel, really interesting. It's was weird to see something that old in California.
1969 said…
Santa Barbara is gorgeous. Go for it, put your swimsuit on, get in the water and play with your kids.

You probably look just fine. :)
Ian Lidster said…
Santa Barbara is lovely. I have a cousin who lives there and he has never shown any impulse to leave.
velvet said…
Ooh, the horror that is bathing suit shopping! You brave woman. I'll bet that the red bathing suit was stunning. :-)
Liz Dwyer said…
I saw that show when it was on and it was pretty good. I would totally volunteer to be on it just to get the glamour shot!

Actually, I'd volunteer to be on Tim Gunn's Guide to Style before I'd volunteer to be on any other makeover show because he is awesome and nice and thoroughly knows his stuff!

I'm glad I did too. We had a good time together dodging waves. But I forgot how much salt water burns your legs if you've just shaved them. Ouch!

Very, very true. What can I do instead of what I can't do! It might not be possible for me to move there right now, but in the next five years, why not?

And I loved the mission! It was absolutely fascinating and so beautiful.

I did have a great time. It's beautiful there and I'm so glad I decided we needed a getaway because it was definitely worth it.

It is a perfectly gorgeous place. Glad I live so close to somewhere so lovely.

Isn't it a great town? I love how they don't allow billboards there. It's so nice to not be hit over the head every five secods with advertising.

I love it too! We did go to the used record store but we did dinner at Pascucci's instead of Pallazio. I'm crazy for the pumpkin ravioli at Pascucci's Maybe next time though.

Well, I don't know if I'd say I'm over my body issues. Getting there, but it's an ongoing battle. It's so hard to really feel confident when every media image we see is airbrushed, digitally altered and all that. And I imagine a nude beach would definitely cure some bathing suit body issues, but I don't know if I'd ever open my eyes once there!

It is weird to see something so old in Cali, isn't it? And it was amazing to see the beds they used to sleep on. Just a hard wooden slat!

I certainly did play in the water but I made sure to leave some time to fall asleep under my beach umbrella too! My sons were really funny. They kept doing a little dance and saying, "Ooh, mommy looks hot in her bikini!" They think every swimsuit is a bikini!

If I lived there I might never leave either. What a beautiful place to come home to.

It is total horror, isn't it? I'm definitely happy with the suit I chose. Still glad it's not black!
Lisa Blah Blah said…
Oooh, we have been discussing a family "staycation" in July where we take a week off but don't go anywhere. However, Santa Barbara isn't that far, and my best friend from back home lives there. You have me drooling...

I bet you rocked your bathing suit! Good for you for getting over your discomfort for your boys, and good for them for telling you you looked hot! Now let me tell you, girl, the only thing worse than shopping for a bathing suit is shopping for a bathing suit while you're pregnant. I may just wear a sack to the beach!

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