48 hours in a pandemic-era Las Vegas

*Writer’s note: My trip to Vegas happened back in November of 2020, before the recent travel restrictions and dramatic surges in COVID-19 cases. We don’t run into anyone. No hapless tourists in baggy cargo shorts leaving their rooms to test their luck with the slot machines. No boisterous laughter echoing off the walls. Just the…

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Roundup: My fashion trend predictions for 2021

Happy New Year! You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been laying low (or completely absent) for the past two weeks. Personal reasons — extra shifts at work and the passing of a very close family friend — came in the way of my blogging time, and I had to make sure that I took the necessary…

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Roundup: A size-free gift guide for that fashion-forward person in your life

If you have a fashion-forward friend you don’t know what to get, then you might find this size-free guide useful. I’m not talking about casual Topshop shoppers here. I’m talking about that super in-the-know friend or partner who gushes about Maryam Nassir Zadeh and always points out a Shrimps bag when she sees one.

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Amboy, CA: The lion-dogs that guard the desert (Part Two)

Preserving this imperiled piece of history isn’t easy. What was once Amboy’s blessing — its remote location, which made it an oasis for travelers needing to make a pit stop for some gas and a bite — has become its curse.

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Roundup: Dying for tie-dye + hair update!

For many, tie-dye brings about so much nostalgic memories of poolside afternoons, lava lamps and jelly sandals. But in 2020, tie-dye is all grown up. Now, it screams “fashion” instead of “tourist.”

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Amboy, CA: The lion-dogs that guard the desert (Part One)

No one knows how the lion-dog traveled to the Mojave Desert, or who brought it there. No one knows why, for a few months, she disappeared and came back again. And yet, there she stands at six foot tall, one paw patting the head of her cub. Her tooth is chipped, knocked off by a bullet from when a traveler thought it a target and shot up the statue with a high-powered gun.

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Roundup: Indecisive? The best two-tone boots for this fall

This riff on color-blocking fell into style last year, with fashion week cool kids touting divided, half-this, half-that garments for all the street-style photographers to capture. And there’s a reason why the trend photographs so well — it adds a visual oddness to an otherwise plain outfit. Add a pair of two-tone boots to an…

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Roundup: These fashionable prescription glasses are a true spectacle

In my quest for cute eyewear, I found so many fashionable pairs that I’d be remiss not to share my findings. Tiny cat-eye frames that mirror the elongated, dramatic sunglasses trend that became an obsession of many, many celebrities. Geometric frames that give us a taste of life a few decades into the future.

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Santa Paula, CA: At this haunted historic inn, spirits abound

I feel a chill cross my back, as I climb the floral carpeted staircase to the third floor. I feel another one as I cross a sitting area and make a left into the hotel’s corridor. The hallway is dim. The dark, burgundy walls are illuminated by tired daylight shining through the window of what seems like a little reading nook. (It’s the perfect weather outside for something like this — gray, damp, dreary.) Under my foot, the floor sinks and creaks with every step I take, breaking the silence. Squeak, croak, pop.

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Fresno, CA: The hidden genius of the Forestiere Underground Gardens

Above ground, the October sun is at its zenith, and the mercury hovers in the mid-90s in what feels like an endless epilogue of an exhaustingly hot summer. Down here, however, it’s 10 degrees cooler And that’s exactly why a man by the name of Baldassare Forestiere spent 40 years of life building this — this crazy, peculiar underground complex of patios, grottoes and gardens, all connected through passageways he dug by himself.

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