Hello from Laguna Beach!

I crossed another item of my life’s bucket list this morning — I went running on the beach at the Pacific Ocean. (And yes, I stopped a stranger and asked her to take my picture.)

laguna beach run

My friend Trina and I had a frustrating travel day yesterday with our non-stop flight getting cancelled and having to rebook on a flight that connected through Charlotte and arrived five hours later than originally planned. Then after waiting for our bags and spending another 30 minutes waiting for our shuttle, which turned into the ride of our lives, careening at 85 mph down Pacific Coast Highway, we finally arrived at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel frazzled, exhausted, and desperately wishing for a do-over.

We missed an event at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel (I KNOW!!) and didn’t even get a chance to enjoy the view from our hotel room as it was too late to see much of anything when we arrived. We did enjoy a relaxing chat over some delicious room service before crashing for the night.

But today is a new day.

After a good night’s sleep wrapped in Egyptian cotton, I woke up this morning determined to forget that yesterday even happened and ready to experience everything this spectacular place has to offer. I couldn’t wait to get down to the beach. I don’t think I’ve ever been quite so excited to go running in my life.

Laguna Beach

(Yes! I ran THAT BEACH.)

I don’t have words to adequately describe the beauty of this place. It is absolutely breathtaking. I am dead serious when I say that I walked out onto the terrace this morning and almost started to cry at how utterly gorgeous it is. It’s entirely different from anything I’ve ever seen before.

Ritz Carlton Laguna Beach

Most of my travels have taken me up and down the East Coast. And while the East Coast certainly has its own brand of allure, the OC is simply stunning. Forget the decadent mansions and resorts — the magnificence of the ocean and the coastline rock me to my core. Only God, you know?

There was a yoga class taking place in this pavilion overlooking the ocean. I have never done yoga in my life, but I might just have to join them tomorrow morning!

Pavillion at Ritz Carlton

As I ran along the beach to Bob Dylan crooning above the sound of the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean, I felt like my life might just be complete.

I wasn’t the only one on the beach enjoying this glorious morning. I ran by young women power walking, old ladies jogging, young buff surfer guys, and one particularly adorable over gentleman who was shuffling along, slightly hunched over, wearing dark glasses, and clearly enjoying the morning as much as I was. As I passed him, he looked at me and smiled, almost as if he could recall his younger days when he might have run along this same beach.

I wonder what his story is. I wonder that about most strangers I pass on the beach. Are they just lucky enough to experience this once in a lifetime at a business conference, as I am?? Do they spend a week every summer here? It’s a public beach, so do they live here year round? What do they do? Do you ever wonder those things about strangers that you pass?

Back at the resort, I walked through the pool area to get to my room and stopped to take this picture.

Pool at Ritz Carlton

As soon as I finish this post and find my bathing suit, I plan to claim one of those chairs and remain there until I look like a lobster or registration starts later this afternoon — whichever comes first.

I know what you’re thinking. Working hard, or hardly working?

Yes, I’m having the time of my life. But once the conference starts tomorrow morning, it will be a whole different ballgame with two full days of conference sessions and networking with brands and bloggers. I’ve heard that the sessions at Mom 2.0 Summit are excellent, so I’m very eager to see what I can learn and take away.

My trip is sponsored by Kid Pointz — a site that I also write for. Without them, I would not be here so I want to make sure to give them a big shout out and thank you!!!!!