CITY GUIDE: Inland Empire

Today’s City Guide is brought to you by Su Pak who currently lives in the Inland Empire! Enjoy!

I grew up in the Inland Empire (or what locals call the “IE”) 40 minutes east of Los Angeles. Some people may brush off the IE for LA and San Diego but the region has a lot of hidden treasures. The IE consists of Riverside and San Bernardino counties and a portion of Los Angeles county. First put on the map by the citrus fruit and agricultural industries and the famed Route 66, the Inland Empire has come a long way since I was growing up. Here are a few of my favorite places to frequent. It’s just a sample of all the great hidden treasures in the area but hopefully it gives everyone a taste of all the good times one can have in the Inland Empire.


A lot of people head to Pasadena for antiquing at the monthly Rose Bowl flea market but they may not realize that just a little southeast is almost an entire street dedicated to antiques called the Antique Row in Pomona, with antiquing almost as good if not better. Plus, every second Saturday you can enjoy the Art Walk with live music, free wine and art!


The charming city I call my hometown and the location of the Claremont Colleges (fun fact: also where the movie “Pearl Harbor” was filmed). The small quaint college town boasts a very active downtown village with a homey feel. A lot like many of the towns in the IE, there are festivals every season, a Farmers Market every Sunday and lots of unique shops. Claremont went through an expansion a few years ago and now it boasts a fun night life with a jazz lounge and new restaurants. I visit the Village frequently and stop by my favorite bakery Some Crust for one of the most amazing bear claws you’ve ever had and then make a second stop at the new French inspired Cocoa Bakery for even more sweet treats.


Some may consider Temecula part of San Diego county but it’s actually still part of the IE.  Temecula has over 35 wineries and other working farms. It’s a wine country right in our very own back yard with a hot balloon festival every year and a fantastic old western themed downtown with loads of boutiques, wine shops, restaurants and bars.

Palm Springs

One of my favorite weekend getaways is Palm Springs. It’s really transformed since I was a kid. The modern getaway is fun with lots of great mid-century furniture stores, museums and amazing hiking just around the corner.  But before I even get to Palm Springs I head to Shields Date Farm and grab a yummy date shake and sit back and watch the 15-minute documentary “Romance and Sex Life of the Date” in their small theater in the back.

Thanks again to Su Pak for showing us around the Inland Empire! Su Pak operates the blog IE Shine On. She writes about all the events, deals and good times happening in the Inland Empire and soon she will be launching the official site ”The Inland Empire Good Time Guide.”

Featured image by whatsjoeupto.


Today I’m 25. I’m not the kind of person that thinks in terms of age, years, or time in general. I’ve always felt older than my actual age but boy do I LOVE celebrating birthdays. I took today off work and am going to enjoy some treats like shopping, perhaps buying a pretty headboard, celebrating with friends, and gluten free peach pie (HECK YES).

#30DaysToSanity update: I’m failing miserably with my tabs but overall I’ve been able to enjoy myself a lot more. I’m going to be planting some herbs this weekend and I think I’ll be ordering some supplies to make my own jewelry today! It’s also been SO nice to pass along projects to other freelancers who have time. I’m always amazed at the talent out there and it humbles me.

Be back tomorrow with a lovely west coast city guide!

Current Happenings

Since I am extremely busy with freelance work right now WHILE simultaneously trying to relax this week in honor of my 25th birthday (it’s tomorrow…if you were wondering), my blog posts aren’t going to be epic. Today I thought I’d share some of the projects I’ve completed and other collaborations I’m excited to be a part of!

I just finished the blog design and development for Janine Renee! Check out Snapshots and Secrets (category graphics displayed above) yourself! It was so fun to work on! I also recently finished design for Start It Up Athens (website displayed below). It was a project I worked on through Cement Marketing. I rarely post design projects over here on Show + Tell but I thought I might sporadically and point you towards my portfolio if you want to see more!

I’m also excited to share some recent collaborations that I’m involved in:

I’ll be blogging over on Piece of Chic three times a month featuring amazing, stylish ladies in new and unique ways. My favorite part? There will be a feature shot entirely on 35mm film!

I’m blogging about four times a week over on the Weapons of Mass Creation Fest blog! I’m featuring interview with speakers and designers. Not only am I blown away by the amount of talent that will be at WMC Fest this year…but they’re all so NICE! Be sure to check out my posts and Nikki’s interviews with the musicians.

I’ve been asked to be involved with Influence – The Conference in Indianapolis this fall! I can’t wait to share more. For now, visit the site and be on the look out for more details.

So that’s essentially what I’m up to when I’m not here blogging, at my day job, or working with my other 8+ freelance clients! Selfishly, I wish some of my awesome freelance projects would be over just so that I can share them but I must be patient and put in the work. I hope your having a fabulous Tuesday! Check back tomorrow for a birthday post + an update on my #30DaysToSanity challenge!

That Moment When You’re Really Proud

This weekend we went to Indianapolis and I got the privilege to watch Adam run his third half marathon. Indianapolis hosts the largest half marathon in the nation (35,000 participants!) and it was so incredibly fun. I know that I can get really selfish, “focused,” and distracted sometimes so it was really wonderful to get away from work, computers, daily life and really focus on someone else (well, the most important person really). Indianapolis is a gorgeous city and the view from our hotel room was awesome the night before the race AND at 6am the next morning. We all celebrated afterwards with pizza and family. I’m entering this week really thankful. I hope you are too.

*All photos taken on my iPhone/VSCO CAM 

Indie & Chic Giveaway

This week’s giveaway comes from Indie & Chic! Samantha started her shop back in 2008 and I was excited when she approached me about hosting a giveaway! To enter to win her bobby pins, earrings and ring (above), you can do the following (each one lands you a separate entry):

This giveaway is open to those in the US/Canada. It will be open until Thursday, May 10th at 11:59pm EST! The winner will be announced on Friday morning. Good luck!

Things I’m Afraid To Tell You

I was sincerely moved yesterday after stumbling across Creature Comforts’ post titled, “Things I’m Afraid To Tell You” (a post inspired by Jess Constable). I read her post followed by the many brave souls who really opened up and shared a lot. I decided that I wanted to follow their example and post my own today. Not because I love jumping on every bandwagon but the more I thought about it…I realized that I am no better than any one else and I truly long to be real with everyone I encounter. I spoke with Jess last night about this series of posts sweeping the blog world and we agree that it’s easy to blog about purses, travel and interior decor because then it’s harder to get hurt. Hurtful comments, judgmental assumptions and negative attitudes are too prevalent on the internet. My list of fears are a mix of serious & lightheartedness. Thanks for reading.

I’m a slob. Straight up. I don’t make my bed. I don’t like cleaning the bathroom unless I have to. I don’t even really like to shower (and avoid it if possible). Oh and I don’t have a dishwasher so…yeah.

I don’t miss people. That sounds so cold hearted but it’s true. In my adult life, I have only missed one person and that’s Adam (whenever I travel or am away from him). Everyone else? I do alright moving forward. This is a blessing and a curse. While I don’t have to deal with much heartache, I think I can slowly destroy friendships because of this.

I think Ryan Gosling is repulsive. It’s true. Simple as that.

I’m often afraid I’ll place work before the things that really matter to me. I have this thing where I know work isn’t my top priority but my actions tend to reflect otherwise. I’ve been having a difficult time lately trying to find balance and HATE the phrase, “This is temporary. It’ll be worth it in the end.” I could die tomorrow. Why would I want to “push through” an entire year of my life just for something that might happen.

I’m afraid I’ll work for myself full time next year and completely fail. The projects are coming in steadily now and my ultimate fear is that I’ll quit my day job and that will all stop.

My biggest fear is that I’ll be arrested and found guilty for a crime that I didn’t commit. Yeah, I’m weird. But that would SUCK.

So that’s me (a very small glimpse of me). What are you afraid to tell?

Two Announcements

I have two announcements this morning! I want to announce the winner of the April Photo Challenge. Your lovely judge, Kara, has made her decision and I’m happy to announce that Joel is the winner! His Week 3 submission (below) is the winning shot. He will receive the amazing Debbie Carlos postcards as his prize. I am especially impressed because Joel shot film the entire month! Love it. Congrats, Joel and I’ll be contacting you soon so I can send you your prize.

My second announcement is the winner of the ZOMGIMBORED giveaway! I’m happy to announce that Rhianon H won! She’ll be receiving a tee and two posters from April sponsor Jim Viola. Congrats!

Check back in a bit for another post before the weekend!

CITY GUIDE: Little Rock

Today’s CITY GUIDE is brought to you by Mallory Nickels of Little Rock, Arkansas!

Rosalia’s Family Bakery is one of Little Rock’s hidden gems. A Brazilian bakery which sprung from a Brazilian restaurant next door, it’s a place people are constantly popping in and out of. It’s got authentic Brazilian coffee, daily homemade breads, and an ever changing array of American and Brazilian pastry favorites from macarons to pao de queijo to cookies and cupcakes. It’s the absolute perfect place to start a leisurely Little Rock morning.

Hillcrest is one of Little Rock’s most beloved neighborhoods with homes aging back to the 1920s. One monthly event everyone looks forward to is First Thursday Shop ‘N Sip. Kavanaugh Blvd. runs right through the middle of Hillcrest and is lined with amazing restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques and antique shops. The first Thursday of each month they all stay open late, street music pops up out of nowhere and people wander up and down the street sipping wine, shopping and generally enjoying liveliness!

When the weather is nice, there’s no better place to spend an afternoon in Little Rock than on the deck at Ciao Baci whether you’re looking for drinks, appetizers, a full meal or just dessert. The atmosphere is just perfect and the menu matches. I personally can’t go without devouring the cheese board and the tabletop s’mores are as delicious as they are fun.

White Water Tavernis a local dive bar that always showcases the best live music in all of Little Rock.  Acts range from the local bands Amasa Hines and Velvet Kente to regionally and nationally renowned acts.  Up the narrow staircase and directly above the stage there are pool tables and spaces for people to chat. Out back is a patio area for fresh air and mingling. (White Water Tavern photos taken by Cody Riggan.)

A huge thanks to Mallory for sharing all her favorite spots in Little Rock! Be sure to visit her blog & follow her on Twitter!

Featured image by duluoz cats.

Colorful Haze

Last Wednesday, I shared that I was taking a step back to re-evaluate and prioritize. I’ve only messed up a few times but other than that it’s been working really well. This week I’m starting Sarah’s #30DaysToSanity challenge for the month of May. I’ve made a few tweaks but it includes the following:

  • No more digital multi-tasking. Take in one article at a time. Focus on one project at a time. Plus, it helps when logging hours.
  • Adopt the 5 blog rule. I’m choosing 5 blogs to read in May. Essentially, my Google Reader is going to hit high numbers. That’s okay.
  • Stop working by 10pm, daily. That doesn’t mean I work 7am-10pm. I allow myself to cook, workout, meet friends.
  • Making creativity + physical activity a daily practice. I’m most excited about this.
  • Try three new things. Mine include: Take a class to learn something new, plant my own herbs, and make my own jewelry.

I’ll be using Wednesdays in May to update you on this challenge! Here We Go posts will resume in June (get ready for lots of information, video tutorials, and helpful downloads!). Also, you should notice that my May sponsor are now on the sidebar! I scaled back this month and chose to only bring on 5 sponsors total (one more coming soon). Happy May!

All photos above taken on my Pentax K1000, Kodak Porta film. Processed in Photoshop. I’m having fun with color lately.

#snapaphoto April Photo Challenge: Week 4

The #snapaphoto challenge is officially over! How crazy. April went so fast! Wait…don’t I say that EVERY month? Anyways, here are Week 4’s submissions. I just want to clarify that while my photo LOOKS like a candid, I promise I asked her if I could take her picture. The conversation went like this:

Me (nervous): Hi! I was wondering if I could take your picture? *SILENCE*

Lady: What?

Me: Can I take your picture?

Lady: Do I have to look at the camera?

Me: Ummm, nope! *CLICK* Thanks!

Lady: Thanks for asking!

Exciting, huh? To all you participants…how did your experience unfold? Were you nervous? Did you get rejected beforehand? I seriously was really nervous. I only mustered up the courage to go up and ask the woman working at Stauf’s (coffeeshop) because I had to get going to pick up my dog from the groomer. My favorite shot was Jon’s. So much character in his subject AND background. Lovely. Which portrait is your favorite?

Thank you to ALL who participated over the last month. If you’re late to the party, you can look back on Week 1, Week 2, and Week 3. The winner of this challenge will be announced on Friday morning after your lovely judge, Kara, chooses her favorite!