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Chelsea: A Happy Hour at Tank House

Story time, guys. Every day on my lunch hour, I take myself on a walk. Usually to get a tea at one of the myriad Starbucks locations within walking distance from my office, but occasionally I just walk for the sake of walking and seeing what I can see. One day, I decided to deviate from my usual route and meandered around for a while. As I came out of Peet’s Coffee, mango sunrise tea in hand, I see across the street (cue angelic chorus)….a huge meat smoker.

What you may not know about me (yet) is that Southern barbecue is my jam. In spite of being California, born and bred, deep down in my little soul, I know that I belong somewhere in the Deep South where I can eat my weight in smoked meat any old time I want. Keeping that in mind, seeing that smoker on my walk had my interest piqued. I decided to cross the street and check it out.

Jullie: California Vibes

My family's Disneyland annual passes expired last month, and though we ultimately decided not to renew, we were at least able to get in one more trip to The Happiest Place On Earth! My parents are also Disney Vacation Club members (as mentioned in a couple of previous posts), so they were able to book a room at the Grand Californian Hotel! We loaded up the car, picked up my cousin Samantha (again, mentioned plenty of times in previous posts :P), and made the oh-so-familiar drive down to Anaheim...and we had a couple of fun stops along the way! I'll be using a combo of photos and video clips from my Snapchat throughout these posts, so here's a quick preview of what I'll be talking about in Part 1:

Jullie: Cooking with Mom | Korean-Style BBQ Shortribs

Back when the blog was still known as “Mangoes & Palm Trees”, my mom and I got together a few times for a Cooking with Mom series. Each recipe was our take on a different Filipino classic. All comfort foods. And readers really loved these dishes! (The crispy pork belly and garlic fried rice is still the blog's top-viewed recipe ever.) Now that the blog...and our style of cooking...have gotten a bit of a revamp, I’ve been wanting to bring mama back for more collaborations! :D

This time around, we're tackling one of our absolute favorites for grilling: Korean-style shortribs! My family and I love going out for some Korean food, and so often at family BBQ's, shortribs make an appearance. My mom and I, however, wanted to come up with a lighter twist on this hearty dish. So today's recipe was inspired by Judy Joo, host of the Cooking Channel’s Korean Food Made Simple, and her version of "kalbi.". 

Jullie & Chelsea: Taste Test Tuesday | Kombucha

Happy Taste Test Tuesday! Jullie here, with this week's edition all about kombucha! A long time ago, I gave this unique beverage a try…and to be perfectly honest…I didn’t like it. So I didn’t go near the stuff ever again. 2016, however, has been a year all about trying new and healthier things, and I figured…kombucha deserves a second chance.

Jullie: Carmel-By-The-Sea

Back in July, my cousin Samantha sent out a group text to all of the Aquino cousins. Get ready for a beach day in August, baby! :D As all of the RSVP’s started to pour in (the group text was LIT)…I started to get really excited for another big family party! It's always a blast when we all get together, and I was definitely interested in exploring the picturesque Carmel-By-The-Sea. :)

Jullie: Simply Snap Meals Volume 2

Here’s another roundup of quick and easy recipes! So easy that I can make them while holding a phone in my hand and posting on Snapchat… ;) These are all dishes that I got a lot of feedback on and got a few questions on, so I wanted to post them here on the blog. I love hearing from everyone, so if you ever have a question or comment, always feel free to send a message over! There are also a couple of product reviews mixed in here…just a few thoughts on some new faves, so make sure to check everything out. :)

You can also check out the first Simply Snap Meals post here!

Jullie & Chelsea: Cocoa Parlor

Hey, guys! Chelsea here with a fun little brand spotlight for you! If you read our Taste Test Tuesday post from a couple of weeks ago, then you know that we raved about the Simple Pleasure bar from Cocoa Parlor. We're back this week because Cocoa Parlor was sweet enough (get it, sweet) to send us a package of their own so we could try some of their other flavors!

Jullie & Chelsea: Poke Bowls

Happy Friday, everyone! Jullie here, and I am ecstatic to share the latest recipe that Chelsea and I whipped up together...

Fact: Chelsea and I would be perfectly happy plowing our way through bowls and bowls of poke. Also a fact: Poke bowls are suuuper easy to make at home! This dish has been long associated with the Hawaiian islands, but in recent years, poke-centric joints have been popping up all along the West Coast—some even offering modern, fusion twists. We’ve checked out places like North Shore in Huntington Beach and Fish Face in Downtown Sacramento, so it was about time we made our own versions, right in our very own kitchen! Here’s how we did it!

Jullie: Wanderer Bracelets | PT 2

Wander. Explore. Adventure. All keywords in my vocabulary. So when Chelsea told me about Wanderer Bracelets? Interest. Instantly. Piqued. The next step was to browse for a bit on their website…and I definitely got caught up in all the goodies available in their shop! (You know it’s meant to be when you immediately want to add everything to your cart!)

Chelsea explains the history of the bracelets and how Wanderer got its start in her post. It’s all great information to know--to appreciate where these little pieces of ‘jewelry’ come from--so make sure to check it out! Chelsea and I both admire their business model and their philosophy. Locally-sourced, all-natural materials. Carved and weaved by village artisans. All done with sustainability and providing job opportunities for a whole community in mind!

Chelsea: Wanderer Bracelets

I discovered Wanderer Bracelets in the same place that I discover most of the coolest things I know about: Instagram. They kept popping up on my feed as a sponsored post and finally, I gave in and clicked. And boy, did I love what I saw!