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Carmel By the Sea and a major planning session

Last weekend I made a trip to Carmel by the Sea to meet my friend Gina.  She used to live in San Diego but moved a few years ago and we were missing each other and wanted a get together to catch up!  This was my first time visiting Carmel and I can’t believe I haven’t been there before.  A quick one hour flight from San Diego and it was the cutest little beach town!  I took a few pics with my phone to share with you all..

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

{Wearing my new favorite sweater from yesterday’s fashion post and wedge booties!  If you don’t have a pair of wedge booties they are perfect shoes for days you are doing more walking.  This pair is similar to mine, so cute and on sale!}

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

You can walk everywhere in the main area of Carmel by the Sea and it’s honestly the most charming, quaint little town!

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

All of the shops and restaurants and buildings look like they are straight out of a picture book.

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

I was in cottage heaven and felt like I was walking around a Hallmark movie set!

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

If there is fudge nearby.. I will find it. :)

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

But my favorite?  The shops with all things Christmas!

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

So much fun.  The restaurants were amazing too.  Beautiful outdoor dining where you can just eat and linger and talk.

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

Even the doors were adorable and I wish I would have taken more pics and captured it all even better but I honestly wanted to just live in the moment exploring such a fun new place and catching up with a close friend.

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

{Similar camo pjs}

Our room was just like the city.. cozy and quaint and Gina and I were so excited to head back to our room both nights we were there to just talk and catch up and to plan!  Yes.. you heard me right.  We are so nerdy that way, but it’s honestly one thing I love the most about Gina.  She is just like me and gets so excited about the same geeky things I do.  Before she moved we loved getting together to plan.  (I wrote a post all about one of our planning sessions here.)  Kenny was teasing me before I left for my trip when I was talking to her on the phone saying sarcastically..  “are you two planning your time to plan?”  

Why yes.. yes we are. :)

We pulled out our planners and I spread out on the floor and she spread out on the couch and we were so productive!  These are a few things we stayed up late discussing..

– our favorite planners/ways to plan (we both love our lists!)

– podcasts we love listening to, book we’ve read and loved, people we love following on IG

– systems to stay on top of laundry and housework

– routines we can set up that make things more efficient and easier at home (talked about things we each get “stuck” on and how to improve them)

– morning routines and how to make ours better

– how to make better use of the time we have to work on our business stuff so that we can be more present when our kids are home

– things we are doing now that can be deleted, done better or faster or turned over to someone else

Anyway.. you get the picture!  We seriously have the best conversations and crack up through them all because the funny thing is how we love to make lists and brainstorm ideas and make grand plans but the execution of it all seems to be the problem for both of us.  I sent her a text Monday morning after our trip that basically said “Well I’m off to a great start!  Kenny had to suddenly leave out of town, El got sick and is staying home from school and I ate Doritos that I found in the car for breakfast on my way driving Ad and Kole to school because we all had such a crazy morning.  Day one: morning routine out the window.”

Ha!  Life.  But I’m happy to say that I regrouped and today went much smoother. :)

Honestly I feel so much better after this weekend for two reasons.  One.. it’s always so good to step out of your routine (even if it’s just for one night!) and have a change of scenery and do something fun with a friend.  I can’t stress the importance of this enough!  It always makes such a huge difference for me with my overall happiness and mood.  And two.. talking with someone else about your challenges/struggles/plans/systems/dreams can make a world of difference.  Hearing advice from someone who isn’t in the thick of the day to day like you are is so refreshing and can make you see things in a new light.  We both walked away from the trip with so many fun new ideas to implement and feeling so good after spending time laughing, shopping, eating out and planning together.  It’s just nice to take a break and have fun isn’t it?  Life is too short to not enjoy it along the way.

I would love to hear what you’re working on or planning or struggling with or wanting more info. on in the comments!  I always love sharing things that are working for me around here if you’re interested.

Carmel by the Sea (Sunny Side Up)

Good-bye beautiful Carmel!  Two days with you was just what the Dr. ordered. :)

xoxo, Erin
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25 thoughts on “Carmel By the Sea and a major planning session

  1. What a lovely break you had. I’ve been to Carmel by the Sea, once, many years ago. I think I was still in junior high school. I remember it being just as you described. How wonderful that you were able to take such a great little break. And that you and your sweet friend got to go together and fill each other up! I smiled when I read that you were planning to plan. And how you talked in part about all things planning. I’d love to know what podcasts you enjoy listening to. And if you follow other planner people. Thanks so much Erin! You are a delight!

  2. Having a friend that understands the need for (and obsession with) planning… that would be a dream come true for me ;-) Glad you had such a good time.
    I would love to hear how you plan your blog posts and everything blog related. I usually get to a point where I’m blogging daily (and enjoying it) for a while but then something else comes up and I feel overwhelmed and let the blog go. If persistence is the way to grow a blog, I know why I’m failing…

    1. It really is so fun having a friend who shares that passion Maggie. Wish you could just come with us! ;) I feel like the way you struggle with blog planning is how I struggle with IG stories! I’m consistent and enjoy it for a while and then radio silence for days. Ha. Consistency is key for sure but I know how hard it can be! I’ll try to share some blog planning tips I’ve picked up at some point! I’m always tweaking my system and trying to make it better but some things I’ve done for years that work well for me. xo

  3. I’m same way with planning, I love to do it but the execution isn’t always there. My husband is the complete opposite and likes to do everything last minute – I find that so stressful! All of your bullet points of the things you discussed would be great blog posts!

    1. Thank you Amanda! I was thinking that same thing (good blog material!) but I wanted to make sure they are topics everyone wants to hear more about! Execution.. the struggle is real! ;) xo

  4. Hi Erin, you mention systems to stay on top of laundry and housework, more efficient routines, and better time management. Can you do a blog post (or share what you’ve done already) for all of these? Doritos and other snacks for breakfast happen on occasion. We ALL have those mornings-lol! My routines have been out of whack recently due to holidays and now that they are done, I want to settle again, but with two young kids, it’s hard. What do you suggest? Thank you so much for everything! Carmel by the Sea is absolutely adorable and I hope you had the best weekend catching up and sightseeing!

    1. Thank you so much Stacey! I’m so happy to hear you want to hear more about those topics! I’ll definitely share more on efficient routines and time management! Topics I love discussing. :) xo

  5. Oh! I find this soooo inspirational! I need to see if I can get my bestie to do this with me! I’m sure I won’t be the only one asking-but which planner is that on the bed (the photo with the camo pj’s)? A passion planner? Some other brand? I LOVE finding new planners. : ) Thanks!

    1. Hi Rachel! Right!? It really is so much fun having a planning session with a friend! Yes! That’s a passion planner.. I’ve used it on and off this year and really like it! I just wish it came in a cute cover! It’s kind of boring on the outside. :) I’m going to do a post in Nov or Dec about my favorite planners so watch for that! :) xo

  6. My hubby and I went there and Santa Cruz last year. Had dinner at the table right behind you and your friend. Porta Bella, the lobster ravioli & white wine. It was insanely delicious. Love Carmel and the beach.

  7. Your trip sounds fun, Erin! I bet you would love Leavenworth, WA. It’s a quaint, little German themed town and they have cute little shops and a Christmas store! I myself haven’t been to San Diego except for a stop over from a cruise. I’ve been to Carmel a long time ago, but is that the same as Carmel by The Beach? I’m thinking a trip to San Diego next year would be fun. What fun things are in store in San Diego?

    What I’m working on is trying to get my exercise and eating on point. I got sick after a trip and I’m still easing my way into it. What doesn’t help is how it’s still dark at my usual wake up time and the bed is so cozy and warm. I’m not a morning person anyway so this getting up early to work out is a challenge. I try to get it out of the way before heading to work, otherwise 99% of the time I will never do it once I get home.

    1. Debbie getting up and exercising first thing is key for me too! It just doesn’t happen otherwise. The struggle with getting out of bed is real! I bet I would love Leavenworth too! So happy to hear about another fun spot to put on my bucket list. SO many fun things to do in San Diego. That could easily be a post! :) xo

  8. I thought Hallmark movie set as soon as I started scrolling. I bet it’s beautiful at Christmas. Planning is my love language. How fun to just getaway and be able to plan with a friend and I’m sure it did the soul good XO

    1. Mine too Cathy! Very good for the soul for sure. :) I would love to see Carmel at Christmas. So excited for the Hallmark movies this year! xo

  9. I’m leaving in am to fly to Florida for a week with my best friend from WA state. We make a point to see each other once a yr, at least. I’m in Louisiana so we really are across the country from each other. Cannot tell you how excited I am to see her and renew our love for each other AND find peace away from the craziness of home. Sleep late, eat, drink way too much and laugh. A lot!!!
    What would our world be like without girlfriends? I don’t wanna know!

  10. Ooh I do love to plan! I’m all for learning to be more efficient with laundry and house chores, and would love to hear your ideas. I’d love to get more ideas for managing a home business plus the daily tasks of a mom/wife, etc. The one thing I am good at is working out – it gets done first thing in the morning after the kiddos leave or it doesn’t happen at all.

    1. Same here Jen! If it doesn’t happen first thing a workout never happens. You are doing great just to have that one nailed down! I’ll definitely share more ideas on all of those things soon! Enjoy your weekend! xo

  11. Okay…this trip sounds like a dream! Fun times with a special friend in a lovely place discussing the best topics!! I am so glad you had a wonderful getaway. :)

  12. Hi Erin!
    I would love for you to do a post on how you control and process all of the papers that come into a busy household. What is your system/schedule for that and any other tips/habits/secrets would be so appreciated!!


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