Sisterhood of the Traveling Bag: Stephanie

Finally, the bag was mine! It was my turn!!
Oh, where will we go? And what will we do?!

Maybe a margarita and chips will help make up our minds… 

A few days go on and I am still not sure what our story will be, I take a time out from thinkin' and head to the drive-in with friends and treats and blankets. Such a fun event and it never gets old! 

Still wondering what the purse’s adventures hold, Ruby and I take a weekend and head to Los Angeles for a Jenny Lewis concert. We have followed Jenny Lewis for years—so when we discovered her playing at the Wiltern in Los Angeles, Ruby treated me to a ticket and off we went.

Conveniently the Rose Bowl Flea Market was the next morning, so we were off for a day of boot and clothes shopping—when in Rome as they say. It got so hot and we were super hungry, so we jetted over to our favorite Cuban restaurant and had a cupcake for dessert. The purse is definitely getting the hang of this eating and playing business!
Since we were in town, and it was the last day of the play, Once, at the Pantages Theater, off the purse went (we had to take the purse). 

Then back home to take care of business. The purse and I headed out to a few appointments: a dentist appointment (that makes me crazy nervous!) and the best appointment of all. I accompanied one of my besties to a follow up appointment from surgery and was told she is 'cancer free'!!  Best news ever!!!

The next few weeks host a huge event for Ruby and I, she goes off to college! HUGE! Ruby and I have been pretty much Loreli and Rory from Gilmore Girls—late night talks, coffee, road trips, on and on and on. We both feel ready, although we could use a hand, so Kim accompanied us to on the move. She has been through this already and we both were so grateful she came! We arrived at her dorm, and transformed her area.

The next weekend, the Mister and I go for official drop off weekend of festivities and goodbyes. We all have talked about college for years, especially this past year (it’s been nothing but college talk)! We are so ready, having rehearsed all the goodbyes, so we parted surprisingly without tears. This is where she should be and Ruby is so ready.

What comes to mind is the saying “Life is what happens when you are busy making plans.” I didnt know what adventures this bag would have and amidst all my wondering, it was off having a great life alongside me!

Sisterhood of the traveling bag: Kendraaahhhhh

After oo-ing and awe-ing over this bag for weeks, we knew it was no ordinary purse. And in a stroke of inspiration, we found its purpose (rather, its purse-pose): to accompany us in our daily lives. It's a hand-stitched, black and tan leather bag, with a simple design and easy complements any outfit, day or night, and is hearty enough to go just about anywhere. For this year, we are passing it around through the Ruby crew, and documenting what adventures ensue. It is our version of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. So, without further adieu, we bring you The Sisterhood of the Traveling Bag!

Hello Ruby Rose readers! My name is Kendra Aronson, also called kendraaahhhhh around the shop to avoid any confusion with the original Kendra :) I wrote a blog post back in March about my vintage Central Coast pennant collection. How are y'all? It's so nice to be back; I've had quite a month! I got married the day after 4th of July and then took off for a 2.5 week trip to Baja with my husband Shea Somma. We drove from San Luis Obispo to Scorpion Bay, with our sweet dog Sadie, and I brought along the traveling bag of course! 

DAY 1: San Luis Obispo > Leucadia 
We crashed the first night at my parents house, my childhood home, in Leucadia. It's a quick 5-hour drive from San Luis Obispo. It's a funky little community with quirky characters, hole-in-wall taquerias, and beautiful beaches. 

If you are ever in town you must go to Pannikin. They have the best coffee, loose-leaf tea, pastries, and PIE. Oh my lord, their pie. I dream about it. 
 Belly full of pie and bag full of loose-leaf tea!

After your long morning at the Pannikin I suggest meandering down a half-block to Lou's Records to pick up some analog tunes. 
Then, take a drive down the 101 to soak up the sunshine and salty air. Say hello to Swami's while you are at it, an internationally known surf spot. Fun fact: there's even a shout-out in the Beach Boys Surfin U.S.A at 1:10 in the song.

DAY 2: Leucadia > El Rosario (stay: Baja Cactus)
For our first day of travel we journeyed to El Rosario allowing ample time to cross the international border. For those who are curious/interested in traveling with pets, traveling with a dog is easier than you think. We took our pup Sadie to the vet a month prior to leaving to get all her shots and you simply bring the paperwork with you when you cross the border. Piece of cake. We didn't have any problems with the Federales at the military checkpoints. In fact, when were questioned why we were traveling in Mexico we replied it was our luna de miel (Spanish for honeymoon) and they would crack big smiles and make sweet and sometimes sarcastic/silly remarks... we joked that every time we go down to Mexico we should plan on using this magical phrase!

DAY 3: El Rosario > Loreto

The entire drive we listened to heaps of podcasts, our favorites are: Stuff You Should Know, Freakanomics, and Radiolab. All super stimulating ear candy. What podcasts do you listen to on long drives?

Here we are taking off in Loreto in the early morning, I'm already dripping in sweat and Sadie was trying to help cool me off!

We stopped to get gas in Guerrero Negro and for a quick bite at this awesome fish taco truck. He just latched this thing to this truck, how genius is that?! These tacos were tasty. 

Did I mention we served tacos at our wedding?! HAHA we are taco fanatics :) Search the hashtag #tacotimeisallthetime on instagram to get an idea.

DAY 4: Loreto > Scorpion Bay (stay: Scorpion Bay hotel)

After a long 4 days of road travel (approx 30 hours) we arrived at our destination: Scorpion Bay. We posted up at the Scorpion Bay Hotel for a whole week. As you can tell from the map we went the long way - that's because the south road is better paved and well worth the extra trek. Our days consisted of waking up without an alarm, moseying up to the common area to enjoy a buffet brekky, reading in bed or in the hammock, eating tacos for lunch, going to the beach to (a) surf (b) paipo (c) surfmat or (d) read, then going home to lounge more, then off to eat more tacos for dinner, then to bed super early. Repeat 7x. It was the easiest lifestyle EVER. I've never taken such a lounge-y vacation in my entire life! The traveling bag throughly enjoyed itself too :)

Sadie lady, myself, and the traveling bag outside an ocean-front taqueria. We chowed on some fish tacos here before hitting up the beach. 

Here is my beach set-up: my radical vintage beach chair c/o of Ruby Rose, the traveling bag which held my Fuji Film instax camera and sunnies, a gifted woven basket from one of my bridesmaids that held my towel, sunscreen, my ideas notebook, and my daily reads. 

The traveling bag and I outside our favorite fish taco joint in town. Templeton Feed & Grain, represent. 
Shea opted for a ballena of Pacifico and I opted for a Michelada - it's a spicy beer cocktail, beer + lime + chili powder + tomato juice / hot sauce. Mmmmmm.

At every place we ate they brought aaaaaall the fixins to your table. It was a beautiful build-your-own spread that we want to emulate soon when we host a taco party! 

Our last night in Scorpion Bay really dazzled us with this sunset! The whole week we had amazing sunsets (in the east, not the west) but this one really left us in awe. 

Next stop: Scorpion Bay > Abreojos (stay: Campo Rene)

 We headed to Abreojos for 2 nights, again taking the south road because it's paved and the route was familiar at this point. We could have taken the north road through the salt flats which is doable but we didn't want to risk getting stuck, especially considering it was our honeymoon :) Perhaps next time we will be more adventurous. 
The traveling bag and I en route to Campo Rene in warning: what I'm about to show you is not for the faint of heart. We took a drive to nearby beach in Abre and I noticed something in the water...all I could tell was that it was a large sea mammal. We decided to investigate. It was a belly-up dead sea turtle, Shea flipped it over and we both screamed in shock. It was something out of a sci-fi movie. Oh man was it a gnarrrrly sad sight to see. So I did what anyone would do in this situation: I took a photo with the traveling bag. You're welcome. 

Return Trip: Abreojos > Leucadia

We ended up coming back a day early because the swell was tiny and we were itching to come to SLO :) We took a roadside pitstop to explore this cool unfinished dome structure on the long 17-hour drive home to Leucadia.

Thanks for indulging me and stay tuned for the next sisterhood of the traveling bag adventure!

Collections: Night Lamps

This week I was asked to share one of my collections and had a hard time making my decision. Should I show my collection of vintage lingerie, edwardian dresses, white ceramic woodland creatures, ray bradbury books, random cross-stitched/embroidered pictures, vintage which point I realized that perhaps I, collect too many things. Well, rather than come to terms with that notion I decided to just go with my night light collection...a collection I didn't even realize I had until asked to share on the blog.

So here you have it. My night lights, or night lamps...I'm not sure what to call them exactly. Nightlights always make me think of things plugged directly into the wall, and these are a bit brighter than those little glimmerers, so I call these night lamps. Not bright enough to light the room but bright enough to make it cozy.

This collection is the culmination of a wish and a gift. The wish was something I possessed ever since "While You Were Sleeping" came out in 1995 and ever so briefly showed me the wonder of a light-up globe (It's in a tiny little scene in the very beginning of the movie). Well that did me in and for YEARS I pined for such a beauty but to no avail. I never came across one in all my thrifting adventures. 

Fast forward 11 years to my first wedding anniversary when several girlfriends gave my husband and me a perfectly lit sea urchin. Over the years, through multiple moves and being in the same house as a clumsy me and a growing bebe, it has shattered several times and I've faithfully (and imperfectly as you can see) glued that little darling back together again. (There's a metaphor in there somewhere, I'm sure.)

So, how did a single sea urchin light and a teenage dream of a lit up globe turn into a collection? First, I started working at Ruby Rose over a year ago and was lucky enough to go with Stephanie and Stacy on my first adventure to the Alameda Flea market. There I found the answer to my glowy-world dreams and toted that baby home as gleeful as can be.

Since then I found another sea urchin, (Castaways in Morro Bay) 

the frog (Revolve in Morro Bay) the snail (random antique store in Fresno) 

the rabbit (Anthropologie CLEARANCE!!! in Fresno) 

the salt rock (Sedona, AZ) 

and the shell lamp (Achievement House, behind Cuesta)

So there you have it, most of this acquisition wasn't thought out. I saw it, it glowed, I liked it! 

Well, I've been thinking about it and I believe I found the metaphor. Life is imperfect. Life cracks, chips, and even wounds us sometimes. But Life and we ourselves can still be a light to warm those around us. Perhaps we give off more light the more cracks we have in us. We can let the lines and shattered spots leave us fragile or we can let the broken parts of our lives make us more compassionate and understanding and careful and kind to those around us. We may be small lights, but we can be lovely lights. 

- Kendra G. - The Body Electric