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So we’re down to the wire of this month and everything has surprisingly run a lot smoother than anticipated. I was still exhausted beyond compare despite my sleep in yesterday morning, in my hazy state I called one of the most important people in my life for a chat about her upcoming trip and the fact that we are meeting in New York.

You just never know where travel will take you and this excitement of meeting up with one of my oldest and most important friends is one of the most exciting parts of this trip that was half heartedly arranged just to see her. Chatting like we see each other every other week we squealed at the thought that we got to say “see you in a couple of weeks.”

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Summer suddenly evaporated out of London this week, one minute we were all basking in the warmth of the sun in shorts and the next minute we had gloves on and were shivering from the brisk wind that has made itself comfortable. And with that the weather whining continues for the British.

When people who don’t live here talk about British people the weather is an always raised subject, it’s a popular theme throughout life and the theme of that weather theme is always whining. “It always rains.” It doesn’t actually. “It’s too hot.” When the summer is a good one, there is no such thing as too hot. “There is a huge storm coming.” Probably not huge on the scale of 1 – 10, but ok, calm down.

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A little over a year ago I begin my first job and made my legitimate first friend here in London, a friendship that now involves movie quotes, long walks and dessert all things our Friday night involved.

Gemma and I stopped by the Marc Jacobs tweet pop up in Covent Garden for photos with Daisies and trying to win a handbag (obviously our selfies weren’t cool enough). Then Mexican and finally a walk to fit in dessert, the walk ended up being over 2 hours long and dessert ended up being an ice cream with all our favorite spots having waiting times we weren’t willing to hold out for.

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One of the first times the taste of chocolate and mint was laid on my palette was a box of after dinner mints a friends family had given my family – they had melted together and he gave them thinking us kids wouldn’t mind gouging them anyhow.

He was right! Grabbing a handful of chocolate with gooey mint center mixed onto our little palms was not a deference to the taste I had that made me yearn for more. Yes, whoever came up with putting these two flavors together is a genuis.

The cool dark mint to the thick earthy chocolate is a mix that has me salivating just at the thought of consuming it. And creme de menthe is a highly undervalued liqeur that before this recipe I’d only tried once and prior to that had never even heard about.

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August is the height of summer holidays and the kids enjoy their days of freedom with parents who have taken time off of work. Yes, August is the month where the heat really settles itself nicely into the air and makes you feel like summer could be here to stay, that is until fall winds take it away again for another year.

One of summers necessities to get through the long hot days are popsicles. And homemade ones couldn’t be simpler, especially if you are well planned and make them the night before. That way when it’s sweltering and the thought of moving, let alone mixing anything together is too much you can simply reach into the icebox and pull out some of these.

One of the best things about popsicles is the sheer beauty of how fast you can mix the ingredients together, pour them into a popsicle mold (or plastic cups if thats all you have), shove a stick in the center and place in the freezer and in a few hours you have a stick of frozen dessert in your hands.

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Robin Williams

I don’t feel I can share a recipe or pretend like everything is fine today when a person whom we fell in love with has passed away. Robin Williams was a cross dressing old English nanny to us. A professor with a weird jelly substance come to life. A teacher with wisdom about grasping each day fully. A doctor unafraid to make sick children laugh. A man caught in a game with a mind of it’s own.  A grown Peter Pan. A genie.

He filled our varied childhoods and lives with a depth of joy so much that he became like an ever changing uncle. He inately became apart of the fabric of our lives. Even when friends were mean or parents were divorcing, his movies, his presence came to represent a calm to my generation. If nothing else made sense the movies we had seen more times than we could count would tell us that with Robin Williams the world was ok, because he could still make us laugh.

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Last night while waiting for my Pad Thai to be laid down in front of me, I conversed over the excitement of expectation. How you must always have something to be excited about, somewhere exciting to visit when you live in London, otherwise the city will swallow you whole and you’ll be another soul wandering the streets speaking to yourself.

The expectation is more often than not sweeter than the experience itself, it’s the waiting, the knowing that what can be a distant experience can in one blink be before you and than you are setting off for an adventure you have waited so patiently for. The biding of time clicked by and the excitement reaches a pinnacle.

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I’m feeling a little stunned disbelief that July is over. The seventh month that had been so free of plans got gobbled up with new friends who have now since also returned to their Cali shores and there were too many late nights making memories with them than a reasonable, mature person would have. Of which I am obviously neither.

August will surely pass by even faster with so many plans and a trip back to America set for the end of the month. We shall see how this rollarcoaster rides. If the beginning of the month is anything to reckon with though, sleep will be a distant memory to everything that has to be done.

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Having the ability to take people around London spots I went to a few great spots and also tried a few new ones, so here is my July:

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This months DIY truly got messy and left me green faced (image proof below), all in the name of using food on your face to cleanse and freshen. With cooling cucumber and thick avocado in this mask, including cleansing honey and yogurt, you’ll likely have all ingredients in your refrigerator and you will feel cooler just lathering this onto your warm face.

Summer heat means sweating and layers of greasy sunscreen and when you have natural oil slick skin it can just feel like an oil rig needs to be set up right on your forehead. Especially living in densely populated cities where getting home can mean you get into a stifling tube or bus and then walk down a busy street with countless cars whizzing past.

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If we are the sum of our choices than my sum may be scattered people around the globe, many of whom I do not speak with nor contact nearly enough.

This was evident to me when I looked through some contacts and sent off emails this past weekend saying ‘it’s been a while since we’ve caught up.’ Only to discover the last email we shared was last year. It’s almost August and somehow we haven’t had any contact in 2014 at all.

This was further reiterated when I skyped one of my closest friends whom I have only skyped twice this year in LA, and this was after she’d met and spent time with my friends from Holland. Yes, this vast globe turns and with each adventure on the road we become ever more connected to the billions we share the planet with.

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When I visited Paris last November in the dreary, gray cold, the city felt like it was nearing a hibernation for winter as places like Luxembourg Gardens had barely a soul wandering in the swift chilly breeze and the Eiffel Tower’s lines were not as lengthy as I imagined they’d be for a landmark like it.

They were in what might be called a post summer slump and with good reason, cherry season was months away. I imagine Julia Child eating this dessert for the first time and ever so excited about its simplicity and elegance. The smoothness of this custard like dish and how she must have looked forward to cherry season more once she knew of this recipe.

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When you get towards your late twenties, certain things like going out for dinner at nine thirty in the evening or staying out until midnight on a Monday are not even registered thoughts because you know your job will be unbearable thanks to a lack of sleep the following morning.

Here in London it is peak tourist season and somehow thanks to my youthful life I manage to continue making friends who are passing through for a short time and all are in their early twenties who care more for life experiences than sleep and how you’ll feel in the morning (usually because they’re on vacation they get to sleep in).

So on Monday in unusual fashion I gave in to the peer pressure of staying on for a drink after dinner and before I knew it I was walking in the door of my apartment at midnight. Midnight on a Monday.

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Tori and I

Some friends come together by accident and some friends were born time and distance apart, always meant to have their lives intertwined. The latter is what I can say definitively about my friendship with Tori.

I had been praying for a friend for an eternity and somehow those prayers were answered with her, this gawky girl with chocolate colored skin whose laugh makes you smile even if the jokes aren’t funny. I was the awkward super pale girl with too many freckles to count and she somehow wanted to be my friend. It seems unfathomable, but our connection was very real from the get go.

From the outside we weren’t very similar; the only obvious similarity was our shyness. Her sporting ability made her stand out amongst her peers, whereas I only knew sport in the form of running over the hot black sand to the waves at summertime. Her ability to play music by ear and my inability to play a musical instrument didn’t matter because we were best friends and it just clicked.

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With London having a sweltering summer (between the usual rain days) and having recently finished reading ‘On the Road’ for the first time along with being addicted to Lana Del Rey’s song ‘Ride.’ I am craving getting into my own wheels and setting off for the beach.

After all, that is what summer is for, lazing and making memories with all the extra hours of light. Living in London makes this notion rather difficult, because firstly, I do not have a car and; secondly, I am terrified to get behind a wheel here. The drivers like to stalk crossing pedestrians and watching drivers battle over the tiny piece of ashpalt between the white lines would put any lover of driving off the notion here.

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  • July 21, 2014 - 09:14

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