When I was 23 years old, I met one of my dear friends Marlene Ruvalcaba. We were lucky girls that year because we got to work together at Intermix on Coast Village Road in Montecito CA. Intermix was the cool girl brand at the time and while working there we learned the ins and outs of running a retail business while simultaneously growing in our styling careers. Everyday was special at our store because we were just two women striving to deliver the best results for all of our clients. Hard work was not something we were afraid of. Over the course of the year, we became best friends. We talked about love, life and everything in between. A friendship like that is very rare and I was lucky to experience it firsthand. I look back on that time in my life and feel so grateful for the amount of memories we created in our little store (most of them involved us laughing). After a year of working together, Marlene decided to take the leap and move to Germany. I so admired her bravery to step out of her comfort zone and take on a whole new challenge in her life.
Recently, Marlene came home to Santa Barbara for three weeks over the holidays and we finally got to see each other after a year and a half of long-distance friendship. On one of the last weekends she was here, we decided to journey down the coast to spend a day in Malibu. We bundled up in warm coats (ironic for such a sunny beach town), took the drive down the PCH to enjoy a day of shopping at the Country Mart and enjoyed a delicious lunch at Malibu Farm. Of course our Intermix work bestie, Juan Bueno Rodriguez, joined us on this spontaneous adventure. It was a day of catching up for us- talking about past stories and running into old friends who worked in that area.
I was so happy to spend such a special day with her and after some back and forth conspiring we thought up a fun little collaboration. She has an incredible story to share and I have asked her to officially be a guest writer for my blog! She will be contributing a series of posts called "Letters From Marlene." Marlene is currently living in Zürich, Switzerland and has a graceful perspective on life advice that I believe you would all want to hear! I can't wait for you to read the stories and letters that she will be writing for us.