Wanderlusting San Diego: Birthday Festivities
“God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.” ~ Voltaire
It’s My Birthday
Thanks to the time change, and the fact that even on vacay, I am an early morning riser, I awoke before it should be made legal. Despite the early hour on the West Coast, I was greeted by sweet messages from my amazingly kind friends and family, most who live on the East Coast and were well into starting their day.
I got up showered, and then set to the task of answering and returning phone calls while Sarah got ready. My heart was so full, and still is, by the amount of birthday love I received. I have the BEST people in my life and the sweet words, and birthday greetings, which included many from my blogging family, made my day and my month. I am still smiling. Thank you. Thank you. Thank YOU! I love you guys! <3
San Diego stole all my words and turned me into the most basic sounding blonde. Yet, I will happily take it, because to be blessed with one amazing meal within hours of our arrival is great? BUT two in less then twelve hours? Oh my avocado be still my taste buds, I am packing up and moving to San Diego!
Located right outside our door was Breakfast Republic. A place that unbeknownst to us, until we were drinking and chowing down is as well known for their over an hour waits, (and people wait!) as they are the yummy food. And oh taste buds is it yummy! We got there at the perfect time, because about thirty minutes later, people were lined up waiting for tables.
It wouldn’t be a birthday celebration without some celebratory spirits and as I had been craving Bloody Mary’s, I was excited to see that Breakfast Republic offered several different variations.
I decided to go all out and try the Jurassic Bloody Mary which had the best candied pork bacon I have ever had.
Actually this was the BEST bloody Mary I have ever had! I switched out the regular vodka for spicy habanero and lordy was it spicy and absolutely bloody perfect. (had too)
Both Sarah and I got the fennel sausage and asiago omelet with home fries. Breakfast Republic is Gluten Free friendly, and served the BEST GF toast with it. Once again it was the food of dreams and one of the best breakfasts I have ever had. San Diego was crushing, it in the food department!
Westfield Horton Mall and Horton Plaza
With a special, glamorous birthday evening planned, we had a low key day. We explored the Gaslamp area and even perused some shops. Sarah wanted a hat, and I was in need of some new sunnies.
Our first stop was the Westfield Horton Plaza which is a gorgeous outdoor shopping complex located right in Gaslamp.
Opened in 1985, it is a five story complex of colorful buildings, mismatched walkways, and tons of pizazz. The architecture alone had me drooling. It truly was an Instagrammers dream and we couldn’t help but take pictures amongst the colorful mosaics and the gorgeous historical Jessop’s Clock.
Alas we struck out shopping. Sarah and I found a hat and sunnies respectively, but neither of us wanted to dish out the moolah (just yet) for them. Responsible shoppers we are!
We then walked through the adjacent Horton Plaza. While it had been established in 1895, it had recently under gone major renovations and only just reopened in 2016.
It sits between the Mall and the glamorous U.S. Grant Hotel, creating a truly picturesque setting and causing my camera to work over time.
While I prefer to frequent local coffee shops on vacay, (unless it is Peet’s) I was obligated to break my rule because of my birthday drink freebie. I could NOT let my birthday cold brew go to waste!
Ready for a coffee pick me up in the early afternoon, we made our way to a Starbucks, that I could have seen myself hanging at if I was a San Diego native. A common theme I had noticed, was that many restaurants and coffee shops had patio seating which I loved. Gimme some of those Cali rays!
I ordered a Venti (go big or go home) vanilla sweet cream cold brew with extra sweet cream and was pleasantly surprised when I got my drink and it said Happy Birthday on the cup! Ughh Starbucks sure knows how to woo a birthday girl!
Blo Blow Dry Bar
After we got caffeinated, it was time for our blow outs. Because of our fancy birthday, dinner we wanted to get glammed up. Sarah had sold me on the amazingness that was blow-outs when we were in San Francisco, and the rest was blow out history.
While I have become obsessed with Dry Bar and their products, they were unfortunately booked so we decided to try Blo Blow Dry Bar which is a smaller chain compared to Dry Bar, but still the same blow out concept. It was small, but clean and the hairstylists were absolutely hysterical. They had us in stitches with their commentary and the time flew by. I had gone for beach waves and was happy with the result.
Afterwards, we stopped at CVS and grabbed a bottle of wine, before going back to the apartment to get ready for our special dinner.
What is your favorite breakfast spot? Have you gotten a blow out before?