Girl time in OC

Last week, I visited my #fromURLtoIRL friend Tanja in Southern California and I had such a fantastic time!

Tanja, like me, is a German (dual) citizen and we’ve “immigrated” around the same time (2006/2007), however, I got my green card through marriage (as you know), but Tanja (and her husband Herbert) won the green card lottery!
We’ve been reading each others blogs for ages and finally did meet up for the first time in 2016. (Now I wonder, what tooks us so long?) We actually lived quite close to each other (she in Irvine, I in Westwood) for a while, but that was before we “knew” each other. What a huge bummer, because now I would give anything to live closer again.

Anyway, we met up once in 2016 when I was down in SoCal meeting up with another friend and then we met again in 2017, when Tanja and her Mom visited San Francisco and I joined them for the day.

And then we started talking about meeting up again sometime last year, but I kept delaying it (not because I didn’t want to, but because we had stuff going on with selling the house, etc.). I felt bad and hoped that Tanja didn’t think I wasn’t interested, because I WAS! So, when we started talking about it again earlier this year, I just decided to book a flight and see her for the weekend.

I was definitely in need of some girl time (always!) and I really wanted to meet Herbert and their three (really cute) dogs, too!


I flew down to Orange County early on Saturday morning to spend two nights with them. They have a beautiful house and yard, and they were really awesome hosts. They even took me to Aldi (because we still don’t have one in Northern California, much to my dismay).

We didn’t really make any plans in advance, but Herbert and Tanja definitely showed me around a little bit. It was beautiful weather, too, so we had to spend some time at the beach.

On Sunday, Tanja and I even worked out together. Tanja is one of my fitness buddies and I told her that I would love to join her for a class at her cycling studio when I come visit. No sooner said than done. She signed us up for the Sunday morning class and then I got my ass handed to me, because damn, cycling uses very different muscle groups than running. I was so sore. BUT, I also had a lot of fun. I definitely want to consider incorporating more cycling into my cross-training. I might (or might not) have checked out the cycling classes at my gym already.

After a shower and brunch, we played a game of (supersize) Jenga in the backyard. I didn’t know that this game was going to make you laugh so hard your tummy hurts.

(I lost, in case you can’t tell.)

Monday morning, we went on a walk with Herbert’s Social Dog Walking Group (Herbert is a professional dog trainer/walker) and that was so cool. See for yourself. I even got to walk one (and a half) of the dogs.




Then Tanja and I drove to Laguna Beach to hang out at the ocean for a little while. It was so awesome how comfortable we felt around each other and that we never ran out of things to talk about. 




What can I say? The weekend flew by way too fast and we got along in person so well that I wish I could have stayed longer.

We’ll definitely have to do that again soon!

  1. How wonderful! Good friends are priceless and the fact that you two get along so well is nice. Great post.

    1. Friends are the best :) Thank you.

  2. Loved (!) having you! You were such a fun and easy guest – you can come back anytime (Open invite – hint hint).
    BTW – I am not going to tell little Ms Emma that you counted her as half ….. you might lose a friend :)
    Hope to see you soon again friend!!!!

    1. Awww, I had such a good time. Wish we lived closer!!

  3. Looks like it was a fun weekend!

  4. Sounds like a fun weekend.
    California is so beautiful. I really want to come see it again.

    1. Come back! And let me know when you’re here ;)

  5. Omg, what a fun weekend! I love that you’ve maintained friendship for so many years and that you are able to work out together! I’ve been meaning to take a cycling class but am scared lol. Also supersize Jenga looks like fun!

    1. Don’t be scared. Cycling is fun!! And the good part is: everybody can ride to their ability!!

      I did not know that supersize jenga would be so much fun!

  6. I am so glad you got to have some girl time with a friend! YAY! And I’m giggling that you counted the little dog as half a dog. In comparison to the other dog you were walking, that makes sense! :) This looks like such a fun weekend. <3

    1. Haha. I swear, I am in love with Emma, who I counted as a “half dog”… LOL

  7. The best trips seem to have fewer plans, right? What a wonderful time you had – and the obvious takeaway is how incredible friends can be, even before we meet. I loved that you were still smiling after having your ass handed to you (in cycling and in supersized Jenga!)

    1. Yes, I continue to be amazed by the friendships of the Internet!! Haha, and it’s amazing how defeat can still make you feel amazing, am I right?

  8. Sounds like a really fun weekend away. I love when you just hit it off with a person and there are not awkward silences. I have several of those kind of relationships with friends I’ve met through blogging. I don’t get to see them as often as I used to now that I have a child but eventually I will hopefully get back to regular meet ups! The last friend we hosted was my friend Kyria. She lives in Oakland. We stayed with her back in 2016, she came for our wedding in 2017 and then we hosted her last September. She hit it off really well with my husband so now we both consider her a really good friend.

    I’m envious of your warm, sunny CA weather! We’ve had some nicer days here recently but it’s still pretty cold most days. I’m so glad we leave for Florida on Wednesday. We are going to miss a potential snow storm while we are gone!!

    1. It’s so fun to find people on the Internet that turn into lifelong real life friends! I am so happy that you have some of these people in your life, too :)

      Sending some sunshine your way… although I assume you’ll have plenty in FL :)

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