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California Diary | Venice Beach and Canals

Venice Beach, California
Venice Beach, Los Angles
Venice Beach Skate Park
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Venice Beach Skate Park
Venice Beach, California

Venice Beach is a place of extreme contrasts.

On the one hand, you have the beach itself: golden sand fringed with shady palm trees… plus a street full of medicinal marijuana stands, and some of the tackiest tourist tat you’ll ever see. It’s a fascinating place for a wander, and I particularly like the skate park, which I could stand and watch for hours: this time there was a little girl who couldn’t have been more than 8 or 9 doing the most amazing stuff  on her skateboard – it was so inspiring to watch her, and see all the grown-up skaters applaud her moves and high-five her afterwards.  I mean, when I was that age I could barely even ride my bike without falling off, and here was this little girl doing all this….  “skateboard stuff”….as if she’d been born on a board. I found it hard to resist shouting, “YOU GO, GURL!” or something equally lame, but I managed to restrict myself to simple cheers. (Oh, and then her little brother – who was, like, THREE or something – also got up and started skating down the steep sides of the park. I think they were the coolest kids I’ve ever seen, seriously…)

Er, it’s kinda weird that I’ve just written two paragraphs about someone else’s kids, isn’t it? Look, here is a seagull:

Larry the Seagull

His name is Larry. Don’t ask me how I know.

So, you have the skate park, and Muscle Beach, and this glorious jumble of colour and sound – music booming out from shops and sidewalk musicians, people trying to sell you something every few steps, er, marijuana dealers on every corner (It’s legal in California for ‘medical’ use). And then behind all of that there’s the canals that give the area its name, which are so different from the beach that it’s like stepping into another world.

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Venice canals, Venice Beach, California
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Venice Canals, Venice Beach, California
Venice Canals, Venice Beach, California
Venice Canals, Venice Beach, California
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The houses in this area are some of my favourite in the city (mind you, I seem to say that about pretty much everywhere I go, so…): they range in style from the super-modern to more traditional styles, and each one is totally unique, and mind-blowingly amazing. The canal network stretches a few blocks, and I had to give up taking photos, because it’s so incredibly picturesque you could be there all day.

“Imagine actually getting to live here!” I said to Terry at one point – well, at MANY points, actually. I could never in my wildest dreams afford it, obviously (and that’s probably for the best to be honest: I spotted a few crabs scuttling along the canal beds, so if I lived here I’d literally never sleep…), but wow, what a beautiful, beautiful place. If you’re ever in Venice Beach, walk along the “strip” for sure – it’s something you really have to see for yourself. But once you’re done with that, don’t forget to take a stroll along the canals, too: I promise you won’t regret it.

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WEARING:  Alice + Olivia skirt* (old); top c/o Dorothy Perkins; River Island flats; Michael Kors bag

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6 Comments
  • Chiarina
    September 25, 2015

    The canals look amazing, I love “water meets plants and trees”. But what actually had me stop and stare was the colour of your hair in the sun. My daughter (nearly 3) has bright red hair and I dearly hope it will look a bit like yours when she grows up…

  • merry
    September 25, 2015

    Love the canals. We go every few years. People who live by the canals put out bowls of fresh water for the ducks bc they say the water in the canals is salt water. Also love the fresh mango & other fruit cups you can buy on just about every corner. Thanks for a lovely post.

  • Lucy
    September 25, 2015

    Here in Colorado you need a card to purchase medical marijuana…you have to see a doctor and pay a few hundred dollars, and then you show your card to buy weed. Obviously, we have recreational sales now as well, but having a card means you get medical prices, which are lower (I think they’re taxed less or not at all?), and I believe the amount you can purchase is different.

    Just wanted to clarify, you can’t just walk in and say your back hurts lol. Although, I’ve heard that it’s pretty easy to get the card in the first place, as in, you CAN walk into the doctor’s office and say your back hurts, and they’ll give you a card 🙂

  • Harlow Darling
    September 26, 2015

    Venice Beach looks lovely – really different to what I was expecting, I expected it to look grungier for some reason? Probably because of movies I’ve seen that show that area. Also your hair looks brilliant in these photos, the colour is so different in the sun, so much more vibrant! You look beautiful, as always 🙂

    • Amber
      September 26, 2015

      It is very grungy, just not around the canals !

  • Julia
    September 27, 2015

    Lovely, lovely, lovely outfit. Perfect for a shiny day like that one, excellent for a place like Venice. Love it.

AD | Time for a quick game of “Where’s Amber?”⁣
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It’s another rainy Monday, so I’m throwing it back to our trip to @universalorlando ‘s amazing Volcano Bay water park last month. I’m a bit of a scaredy when it comes to water flumes, but this park had tons of stuff for pretty much everyone: plenty of rides for me, and an amazing splash pad for Max 👶In fact, I’d still be on The Fearless River right now if I possibly could be. Still, doing the laundry and turning the heating on will be just as good, right? Right?! 🌋 🏊‍♀️ .
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#universalorlando #volcanobay #waterpark #lazyriver #vacay #floridavacay

AD | Time for a...

Good news! We took Max to hospital this morning, and saw two different surgeons, who agreed there was no need to go ahead with the surgery as his lip is healing really well on its own 😅  He’ll definitely have a scar, unfortunately, but that would’ve been the case whether he’d had the surgery or not, and if it turns out to be worse than anticipated, we’ll have the option to have it corrected under local anaesthetic when he’s older. ⁣
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I’m still really upset that this happened in the first place, obviously, but so relieved that we don’t have to put him through a general anaesthetic, and just incredibly grateful that it wasn’t anything worse. I know some parents have to deal with much more serious stuff than this, and my heart goes out to you all: it’s been a rough couple of days, and I’m really grateful to everyone who took the time to comment on yesterday’s post - your stories were so comforting when I was panicking yesterday ❤️ ⁣
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(Old photo, obviously: every time Max sees the selfie camera, he thinks it’s going to be one of those filters where you open your mouth and something happens 😂)⁣
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#pbloggers #mummybloggers #mummybloggersuk #ukmumblog #mumblogsuk #mumblogs #mamablog #ukparentbloggers #parentbloggersuk #ukparentingblog #parentingbloggers #motherhoodblogger #motherhoodblog #ukblogger #ukofficialblogger #happyblogger #mummyblog #bloggerclubuk #instamum

Good news! We took Max...

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve just spent the morning in Accident & Emergency with Max, who fell on the path outside the house and split his lip open 😥 ⁣
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They tried to stitch it up at A&E, but it was totally impossible with him awake, so they’ve booked him in to have it done under general anaesthetic tomorrow ... Max is absolutely fine: the bleeding stopped quickly, he doesn’t seem to be in pain, and is just his normal, happy little self. I, on the other hand, am a complete wreck: the plastic surgeon he saw today reckons if we don’t have it fixed, his lip will be crooked when it heals, but I’m absolutely *terrified* of the thought of my baby having to have a GA. ⁣
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If you’re a long-time follower, you might know that I have a full-blown phobia of general anaesthetic (I literally had an elective c-section in order to eliminate the possibility of an emergency one, which might have had to be done under GA), so I just can’t get my head to accept that it’s safe and he’ll be fine 😥 ⁣
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Positive stories and advice very welcome: I’m just so terrified, I can’t even imagine how to get through the next 24 hours 😥😥😥

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve...

#throwbackthursday to last week, when I needed a sunhat and SPF 50 to leave the house, rather than the current raincoat and wellies situation. Can you tell the post-holiday blues are still in full swing over here? 🌧 .
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#whatiwear #30plusblogs #everydaystyle #realoutfitgram  #scottishbloggers #fashionblogger  #fashionblog #fashionstyle #whatimwearing #stylegram  #outfitoftheday #personalstyle #todayiamwearing #styleinspiration 
#stylediaries #styleblogger #over30style

#throwbackthursday to last week, when...

I posted this on Stories over the weekend, but he looked so cute in it I figured it deserved a spot on the grid, too! This is Max all ready for his friend Eleah’s 1st birthday party on Saturday: despite the jetlag and his continuing obsession with doors of all kinds (He had an entire soft play at his disposal, but he mostly just wanted to open and close the gate into it...) he had an absolute ball, and spent the whole drive home shouting, “HAPPY! HAPPY!” Thanks to @thestirlingstyle for a great party 🥳 🎈 🎉 . (Oh, and that’s his hairbrush in his hand - boy likes to look his best 😉)
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#littlepiecesofchildhood #cameramama #chikdhoodeveryday #childofig #celebrate_childhood #babieswithstyle #ootdkids #fashionbaby #trendykids

I posted this on Stories...

We’re back home in not-so-sunny Scotland, but my feed is still stuck in Florida... New post is up on the blog (direct link in Stories..), talking about how we’ve been dealing with toddler jetlag, and why I always hate coming home after a trip...
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#myunicornlife #lifecolorfully #liveauthentic  #ABMlifeissweet #ABMhappylife #ABMlifeiscolorful #howyouglow #makeyousmilestyle #thegoodlist #thecolorwallproject #colorsplash #colorworld #colorsplurge #lovecolors #jj_colorlove #gf_colour #huntgramcolor #jj_colorful #tv_colors #pocketcolors #sunnypicchallenge #colorhunters #colorgram #colorfulllife #colorinspiration #brightcolors #colormyworld #colorinspiration #womeninframe #ihavethisthingforwalls

We’re back home in not-so-sunny...

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