Saturday, March 22, 2014

Debs Park 4 Mile Hill Challenge

Saturday morning fun! Rough fun that is. My coworker, Christine, signed us up for a 4 mile hill challenge, aka hike, at Debs Park for this morning. I was extremely hesitant because there was a mention of steep narrow trails. I have great fears that I will be that one lunatic who trips on the rocks on the trial and go stumbling down. Alas, that did not happen this morning. We both made it and I'm super glad that I said yes in joining her.

Ready to start!
I hate you, hill.
Top of the Hill.
Change in scenery.
We did it! Medals and all!
Interesting route we took. 
As much as I was scared of these hills, I was happy I conquered it! Now, off to the next one...

Monday, March 17, 2014

Scarred and Scared

If the Earth comes a rockin', don't come knockin'.

Let me begin by saying, the one and only thing I'm deathly afraid of is earthquakes. Living in Northridge during the epic Northridge earthquake has forever left me scarred and scared. I was only 8 years old when it happened, but 4:31AM on 1/17/1994 is embedded in my memory.

This morning, 5 minutes before my first alarm, I (and the rest of LA) was rudely awakened by an earthquake. The scale may sound small with only being a 4.4, but it was originally recorded as a 4.7. I'm not sure how you read the scale wrong and downgrade a quake, but it sure as hell felt like a 5.2 at my place. I basically reached out to get my flashlight and hid under the covers, as if that's something that would save me. I had an immediate panic attack and basically froze in place thereafter. If I was living at my parents house, I would have immediately screamed out "MOM" like I had when I was 8. I think, no matter how old I get, I will never get used to earthquakes. Each time it happens, I revert back to my childhood trauma and freeze. I will admit, that I basically started crying. I texted my friend, who's usually a sissy like me in these circumstances, but she was rather calm and immediately reassured me it was over. It didn't do the trick though. I stayed comatosed in bed for another hour and half.

Did you feel the quake?

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Sunday Funday: Fridamania

Frida Kahlo is one of my favorite painters. Other favorites include Warhol, Picasso, and Banksy. A few years ago, I got lucky to catch Frida's paintings at LACMA and absolutely loved it. Frida pretty much started the selfie with her self portraits.
Two Fridas, 1939.
When I heard that MOLAA was going to be showcasing her photos, I told myself I had to be there. Last night was the exhibit's sold out opening party, which I heard was fun. Today was the first day of the exhibit to the public as well as Fridamania Women's Day Festival and I was there for the taking. The site states ample parking, but the streets were packed with Frida fans and lookalikes. We found parking in the near by streets, but as Gareen said, "I believe we are in what they call the 'hood."

We patiently waited in a really long line in 90degree summer weather to enter the gallery. As soon as we entered, I received dirty looks and some scolding for taking pictures inside. Clearly, informing me once will not be enough. Of course I want to get a picture of that picture!
The exhibit is in sequence of photos of family and friends. It's as though someone found her photo albums and brought them out for us to see. The most painful to see were the ones after her injury. Frida was in an accident that had her in a full body cast for months. The pain she experienced was captured by friends and family to show her underlying strength to make it through.
With International Women's Day last week, the display of Frida's photos ignited a need for a Women's Day Festival. Who better to commemorate than this inspiring artist? World calls for Fridamania! There were dancers, food trucks, arts and crafts, drinks, and even a Frida lookalike contest, which let me tell you had a lot of participants. Makes me slightly regret not drawing on a unibrow and putting flowers in my hair, but alas Halloween will come soon enough.
Diego & Frida
Two Fridas. Lookalike Winners.
Fridamania Women's Day Festival was only for today, but Frida's photos will be on display till June 8th. If you're a fan of her work, I highly recommend making the drive to Long Beach and heading over to MOLAA to check it out. There are also many Frida related events scheduled so check out MOLAA's calendar for updates. The museum is open everyday and is free admission on Sundays.
Are you a fan of Frida? Will you be checking out her photos?

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Fab Finds: Tambourine

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me
In the jingle jangle morning, I'll come followin' you.

Bob Dylan got it right.

In my opinion, so did Louis Vuitton. I've never been mezmorised like others on the monogramed canvas designs, but this morning I had found myself in love with this bag called Tambourine and placed it in my cart. Both Ruelala and Hautelook had vintage Louis Vuitton events this morning and I couldn't help but just explore their reserves. I found this beaut on Ruelala and placed it in my cart. I gave myself a solid minute to think it over, as I've never had a LV bag or anything LV before. Do I want to be one of those girls? Wait, I'm not a girl; I'm an independent adult who has a career. I can choose to buy this for myself. Literally, a solid minute later, I went to finalize the purchase and BAM...sold out. Damn you, Ruelala. Damn you! Now, I'm going to stalk your site till it returns.

 ...til then.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014


Today is Ash Wednesday, also the first day of lent. This year, I've decided to give up something I have been having way too much of lately... candy and soda. Last year, I gave up soda and survived. When you're a mass consumer of soda, the first few days of going cold turkey are painful. I had a massive headache by lunch time. I had to give up candy, well, because working in a confectionary division, there's candy everywhere. It's always top of mind because that's our job. 2PM had become my average sugar time. My one exception to my candy withdrawal is if I have a work related taste test on my projects only. I mean, how can I believe the cost implications to a flavor or ingredient change if I don't taste it and understand it? Yes, if you didn't know... tasting candy is part of my job. Be jealous.

Here's to 40 days without my daily loves.

Is it Easter yet?

What are you giving up for lent?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Fab Finds: Sweet

I may have visited Valerie Confections for a treat once in their location in Echo Park on a Sunday Funday, but I became an instant fan. When I saw that Valerie Gordon, the owner, had a cookbook out for her famous desserts, it was immediately on my wish list. My patience didn't last long. With my birthday and Christmas already passed, I knew I didn't want to wait any longer. I ordered the book last week and it arrived today. I love to bake and I, oddly enough, haven't really baked in months, at least not baked anything new. I'm so incredibly eager to start baking again and with one of the many amazing recipes from Valerie.

Who's birthday is coming up?
Hazelnut, Blue Cheese, and Date Scones
Golden Butter Cake with Berries and Mascarpone Frosting
Single Malt Scotch Truffles
I'm so excited!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

Yesterday may have been the highest rated Oscars ever, but it was also the 110th birthday of Dr. Seuss. His books are an American childhood staple, a timeless treasure. I may have been born in the states, but I didn't read my first Dr. Seuss book till I was an adult. I feel like there are so many great life lessons to take that it's relevant at any age. It's hard to have something appeal to such a wide audience. Take a read at this Huffington Post article  on the lessons you can learn as an adult.
There's a manager in my office that gave his direct reports the book Oh, The Places You'll Go with a personalized note inside as a gift for when they would move on to another bigger and better role within the company. When I had heard this I thought, "Wow, what an awesome and thoughtful gift." When I become a people manager, I hope to remember that gesture and follow in a similar path. I love the idea of a book as opposed to a card, and that's saying a lot since I LOVE CARDS. I did after all work at Papyrus for 2 years after I graduated from high school.
Speaking of that book, I love the image and message so much so I painted the book cover on a canvas as a baby shower gift for my coworker a year ago. I had never painted something like that before but I think it had turned out great. It currently hangs in his son's room. His son, Ben, also celebrated his 1st birthday yesterday! What a cute coincidence, huh? I thought so. I'm excited to be babysitting him soon!
I hope to one day have children and read them all of the Dr. Seuss books. Maybe even have themed rooms or parties; who knows? I may change my mind by then or not. I just know that I'm a fan of the characters, stories, and life lessons. Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss! Thank you for everything!

What's your favorite Dr. Seuss story?

Sunday Funday: 2014 Oscars

Last night was the night. Ellen Degeneres was an awesome host. The opening monologue was fun and light. I love the jabs at J. Law and her constant lack of balance. The Oscar Selfie... brilliant. Ellen broke Twitter and the record for most retweets.

In case you didn't hear, Southern California had the worst storm in years, and by storm I mean rain. Heaven forbid it rains here; people completely forget how to act and drive. The world didn't end but a lot of people chose to stay in than go out. Due to the lack of confirmed attendance and my limited planning time, I chose to keep things easy and simple. A few appetizers and side dishes and spiked lemonade later, no one even noticed that the food wasn't themed. We were all too busy keeping up with the winners and speeches.
Spiked Strawberry Lemonade
Bourbon Meatballs
 Here are my favorite moments of the night:
  • Oscar Selfie. Brilliant!
    • Samsung donated a dollar for every retweet of that photo. 3 million retweets later, Ellen is donating half of that to St Jude Children's Hospital & and the other half to the Humane Society.
    • Lupito Nyong's brother is crazy famous now. Photobombing a celebrity group selfie was a genius once in a life time opportunity. Who is this guy you ask? A freshman in college. #livinginadream
      I urge you to reTweet
  • Unplanned Free Local Business Promotion with Big Mama's & Papa's Pizzeria. The delivery guy, Edgar, had no idea what was going on. He owns the small local franchise chain in LA with his brother. Oh you know, a typical night delivering pizza. TMZ was at their Hollywood location waiting for him to return from Dolby Theater. Ellen had him on the show today and gave him what she promised him... a $1000 tip. I say, forget the tip, I bet their phone has been ringing nonstop since last night. Free advertizing! They've probably had a million media impressions since airing live. I heard that an advertising spot during the Oscars was around $1.9MM. That's almost as expensive as a spot during the Superbowl!
  • Lupito Nyong was not only an Oscar winner for her first movie appearance, but she was probably the best dressed person in the place.
  • Jared Leto. Oooh... the prettiest man won! His speech was amazing. Lupito's speech was great too, but Jared had me hooked. And how adorable was his date, aka MOM?! 30 Seconds to Mars fans couldn't be happier.
Jared Leto. Love him.