3 Sep

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

With expansive city views and a building whose history dates back to the early 1900s, the iconic Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles makes a pretty scenic backdrop for an engagement shoot. Bride-to-be Alison’s vibrant pink dress and the couple’s infectious smiles completed the look (reminiscent of the perfect date, no?), captured by the ever-talented Luke + Katherine from Max and Friends. See for yourself…

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

So cute!

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

On the ring, from Alison: About two months prior to our engagement, I discovered that Kevin was interested in having a ring made for me. His mom knew of this, my mom knew of this, and therefore that bit of information ‘somehow’ leaked to me. I knew what type of ring I had been dreaming of, but also knew (or feared) that Kevin did not (despite my not so subtle hints!). That’s when I asked my mom to step in on my behalf, and guide my fiancée through the ring design process. Between her Pinterest account and mine, we had plenty of inspiration to choose from. I eventually found a beautiful design, and my mom and Kevin secretly (again, I knew) went to our local friend and jewelry designer to have a ring created. Very sneaky!

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Because she knew about the ring, and Kevin, wasn’t soo great with the whole “secret” aspect of a proposal, Alison was on her toes at all times, wondering when he’d pop the Q, especially when they planned a road trip to Arizona for Kevin’s college alumni weekend. After almost an entire trip without no proposal, she figured she was mistaken, until…

Kevin suggested that we take a helicopter ride with a few of his friends (Kevin has been a private corporate pilot for about 15 years). I was all for going up for a ride, until I set foot inside the helicopter. Once I was buckled in and heard the blades starting up, I instantly wanted to leave. I felt claustrophobic, nerves were tensing up and I discreetly expressed it to Kevin. He very sweetly insisted that I stay on for the ride, and luckily I did as the ride was as smooth and comfortable as could be. As my nerves settled and I was busy looking out the window for the perfect Instagram moment, Kevin had the pilot stop over a nice scenic area. He came up on the intercom and said a few words about himself and spoke about me too. And before I knew it, he pulled a beautiful diamond ring out of his pocket and he asked me to be his wife.  

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Engagement at Griffith Observatory | 100 Layer Cake

Some parting words, c/o Alison… I love that we got engaged in a special place, an unusual place. I love that Kevin caught me off guard. I love that we spent the rest of our trip and the drive home fantasizing about our happy future. I love that we are getting married soon and have yet another beautiful day of celebrating ahead of us!

So sweet! Congrats, you two!

Photography: Luke Griffin and Katherine Rose of Max and Friends | Venue: Griffith Observatory | Dress: Dolce Vita (similar color here) | Shoes: J. Crew

 
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2 Sep

Morning, all! Hope your Labor Days were filled with lots of sunshine and friends. We’ve sure got a healthy dose of both today with this beautiful story: After experiencing a broken engagement, Nabila finally realized that she needed a little time away to heal and help let go. After a quick two weeks of planning, she headed to Bali with 8 of her friends for the trip of a lifetime. Seriously, how cool is that?! Videographer Wade Koch was one of those lucky 8 and we’re sure happy he sent Nabila’s inspirational story our way…

Nabila agreed to share the deets of her amaze trip with us today, along with lots of travel tips for those of you thinking of doing a little jetsetting yourselves. Thanks to Hazmiljapilus Photography for all the pictures below.

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

For the first two days, the crew stayed in Kuta, a busy town brimming with both tourists + locals. Then it was off to more peaceful Uluwata for the next week. Nabila says, Airbnb was definitely a lifesaver. I knew that I didn’t want to stay in a hotel during this trip and I wanted to be somewhere that felt like home. We chose to stay in a three-bedroom villa in Uluwatu, Villa Bingin.  

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Some highlights of Uluwatu, from Nabila:

Uluwatu Temple. One of the 6 most important temples in Bali, it’s located at the southernmost point of Bali (Bukit Peninsula).

Kecak Dance. Held daily at sunset, it’s a performance of the Ramayana epic.

Uluwatu beaches. Nabila says, I remember going to one of many beautiful beaches in Uluwatu, Padang Padang beach. We arrived at this café right before sunset and it has the most breathtaking view of the ocean. I remember my friends and I just sitting there and not saying a word, just staring at the ocean, soaking it in and remembering how calm and peaceful everything is. At that moment I decided to let go of all my worries and just enjoy the moment that was in front of me. It was then I realized that I will be okay.

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

One of the highlights of the trip was definitely going cliff jumping with my friends. We didn’t even think about doing a cliff jump until Wade suggested it! We asked the locals and surprisingly nobody knew where it was. We searched high and low and did some research and we finally found out the nearest cliff-jumping place is in this remote island called Nusa Lembongan. Our driver, Ketut, arranged everything for us and drove us to the jetty and from there we hired a boat to bring us to Nusa Lembongan. The boat ride was approximately 30 minutes from mainland Bali. The island’s lack of commercial influences made me fall in love with it even more and for $5 you can jump from a limestone cliff (13 meter leap or 6 meter – depending how brave you are!) into the most amazingly blue waters you have ever seen. I don’t know if I will ever do it again, but it was definitely an amazing bonding experience between my friends and I. 

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

They then rented a 2 bedroom villa in the serene town of Ubud and woke up to amazing views of paddy fields, breakfast, and even a traditional Bali massage that only cost $10 for 1.5 hours. (Um, yes please!)

What to see in Ubud:

Monkey forest sanctuary. Visitors can feed the monkeys roaming around the temple.

THE Ketut Liyer. Nabila and her friends met Ketut Liyer, a traditional healer or “medicine man” (Eat Pray Love, anyone?) at the suggestion of their driver. He read each of their palms and gave advice on life, love, and health. Nabila’s reading: “Just let go of the past, and everything will be okay. Let go and you will be happy again.” Needless to say, I was quite taken aback with what he said, and my mind began to think about what I went through a few months ago. 

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more  - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Villa Sungai in Ubud

Traveling Bali | 100 Layer Cake | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/?p=77918

Traveling to Bali, I brought two things with me – a backpack and an open mind. Bali was indeed everything I imagined it to be and so much more. The sense of calmness that exudes from the beautiful quaint town and the gentle way of life from the Balinese people taught me to appreciate the beauty of simplicity. Most importantly, what this journey has taught me is to never underestimate my own strength as a person. I am definitely stronger than I often give myself credit for. For that reason, this trip will forever be etched in my heart and I will always feel homesick for Bali.

Thanks for taking us on your incredible journey Nabila! xo.

Photographer: Hazmiljapilus Photography / Videographer: Wade Koch

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