Sunday, February 28, 2010

Dog Day!

Today I attended the annual
Bulldog Beauty Contest in Long Beach and I had a blast! My friend Mya, has Diggy, a 3 year old English Bulldog and they have entered him in the contest for the past 3 years. It was great to sit and enjoy the parade of all these little animals. Well, some are certainly smaller than others. Many bulldogs went au natural while Diggy and many others had on little costumes and had a full theme going on with their owners. I've never been much of a bulldog fan but after going to this event, I am a full fledged fan! They may drool endlessly but they are adorable and have so much personality in their little bodies, especially in those wrinkly little faces!

I love dogs and would love to have one but sadly, we can't have pets in this house. I do hope to own a dog one day when I have my own home and a nice big yard for them to run around.

"Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring--it was peace." - Milan Kundera

"I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive."
- Gilda Radner

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Theater Etiquette 101

Proper Theater Etiquette:
  • Remember that it is not a movie. The people on the stage can hear and see you. Your reactions fuel them. Your negative actions can also affect them. Although you may never see this reaction, because being performers, they are skilled at hiding them, you are affecting them. The performers and all those people behind the scenes have worked very hard to create an evening of entertainment for you. Please show them the respect they deserve.
  • This is not a concert either, these characters do not your sympathy-the actors are simply playing these roles.
  • Also remember that the people sitting near you did not come to hear your conversation with your buddy, either in the theatre or on the phone. They did not come to hear you rattle paper or your kid fuss. They came to enjoy the performance.
  • No cell phones: Don't let them ring or buzz during a performance. Do not speak on them during a performance. If you must take an emergency call, leave the auditorium and only begin speaking to your caller once you are away from the rest of the audience. Even your neat watch that chimes or beeps the hour is a distraction.
  • Coming and Going: Please do not enter or leave the auditorium during a performance unless it is an emergency. Please arrive before the performance begins. The time posted is the time the show actually starts... there are no commercials or previews! It is the option of the theatre to prevent audience members from entering the auditorium until intermission or at least a scene change.
  • Noises: You may not notice it, but candy or cough drop wrappers, whether unwrapped quickly or slowly, make a lot of noise! Please don't unwrap them during the performance. If you suspect you will need one, have a supply on hand already unwrapped.
  • Fidgeting: Please sit still. Ramming elbows into your neighbor or kicking the seat in front of you is highly annoying.
  • Sight Lines: Be aware that hats and large hairdos impede sight lines.
Well, I just got home from seeing "The Color Purple"at the beautiful Pantages Theater in Hollywood and I must say that I was very disappointed with the audience-specifically the group of obnoxious ladies sitting right behind Gina and I. They were absolutely ridiculous and felt the need to comment about anything and everything going on up on stage. Geez! How rude! Comments like, "You tell him girl", "Amen sister!", "Hell No!" and even singing along with some of the actors! Ugh! I've never been to a show and experienced this kind of rude behavior. I felt like I was at a concert or something. The people sitting next to us even complained to an usher but there wasn't much that they could do about it. Not only were these ladies being extremely rude to their fellow audience members but also to the performers. Damn, I'm still just so upset by this. It could have been so much more of an enjoyable theater experience if they has just shut up!

"The play was a great success, but the audience was a disaster." -Oscar Wilde

Despite all this activity, it was a great show and I was blown away by all the wonderful singing. These people have serious vocal chops! Fantasia played the lead character, Celie, and she has such a unique and amazing voice with lots of power behind it. She certainly found her calling in musical theater. It doesn't even seem like they are working, it seems like too much fun to be considered a job. I would love to be in musical theater. . . maybe in my next life.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Star Sightings and Bingo

Ok, so I knew that it was only a matter of time before I saw my first celeb since moving to LA and last night it finally happened! And not just one, I saw two stars in the same place! Lucky me! I saw JC Chasez from N'SYNC (the cutest one in my opinion...well, after Justin Timberlake) and actress Annalynne McCord from Nip Tuck and the new 90210. Of course I was very excited to see them and it felt pretty cool knowing that I live in the same city as these guys. Yet, I do know that if I continue to have nights like these, I'll stop being starstruck and realize that celebs are just people with very visible jobs. However, if I should see my top two celebs, John Mayer and Beyonce, I cannot be held responsible for my actions! : )
Last night, all this went down at Hamburger Mary's in West Hollywood. It is a fabulously gay-friendly restaurant.
"Hamburger Mary's franchises are "open-air bar and grilles for open-minded people," where guests enjoy a flamboyant dining experience. Everyone is welcome at Hamburger Mary's, but our concept is unique in that we are the ONLY national franchise actively marketing to the gay community. When you walk into a Hamburger Mary's it's like walking into Mary's home, where you will be greeted with a warm smile and friendly (if somewhat saucy) service. Each restaurant may be unique in its eclectic d├ęcor, but they all provide the friendliest service and highest quality food."

In addition to all of that, Wednesday is their Legendary Bingo Night! So, a few new friends and I enjoyed several rousing games of Bingo. You pay $20 for 5 or so games and all the money raised goes to a charity of their choice. Last night it went to Team in Training and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. This of course got me thinking about asking them to consider my two events this year and holding fundraisers for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Walk and Project AIDS Los Angeles. Stay tuned for more of that exciting idea!

Ok, back to the Bingo and the coolest part of the night, I actually won a game!! This never happens to me! I never win anything ever! Check out my winnings: $20 Gift Certificate to Wahoo's Fish Tacos, $20 Gift card to Trader Joes and $10 Gift card to Starbucks! Awesome, right? I am so glad that I went out last night!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Half Marathon

So maybe I'm crazy but I'm considering running a half marathon in September. I've never been much of a runner but the few times that I have attempted it at the gym on the treadmill, I have enjoyed it. For those few brief moments when I'm really into it and the music is pumping in my ears and I manage to keep a pretty good rhythm, I love it. I love the way it makes me feel like my body can do anything it wants. It's really quite beautiful the way our bodies allow us to run, jump, skip, hop, walk, leap, and everything else. Running is kind of like body poetry. I have always looked up to runners and enjoyed watching them do what they love for hours on end. I guess I've always wanted to become one of them. Plus the calories burned is an awesome bonus too.
I also feel like I need to push myself to try something new and challenging every year. This would definitely be that for me. Right now, running a half anything seems almost impossible but I know that it's not and I know that if I really want to do this, then by golly I will. Wow, I've never used that expression before in my life but it felt necessary right there. : ) Accomplishing this half marathon will prove to myself that I can do absolutely anything that I put my mind to. Taking on anything after this will seem so easy after running this.
Well, this half marathon that I'm thinking of running takes place at Disneyland and the organization that I would be a part of is the National AIDS Marathon Training Program. They train you from the very beginning and even encourage people who have no running experience at all to join. So, not only would I be doing something amazing for my body and my overall health but I'll also be raising money and awareness to a deadly disease, AIDS. I cannot think of a sadder disease, it kills lovers all over the world.
"Why can’t fighting AIDS be fun? Mickey and the gang are waiting for you at the Happiest Race on Earth! You’ll find a little magic around every corner as you run through Sleeping Beauty’s Castle and high-five your favorite Disney Characters. This 13.1 mile course winds through Disneyland and the California Adventure Park, as well as parts of Anaheim including Angel Stadium. You’ll stay at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel and receive a free ticket to either one of the Disney Parks. The Disneyland Half Marathon takes place on Sunday, September 5th. Training begins May 1st."
Doesn't this sound appealing?
Well, I'm going to an informational meeting about this half-marathon tonight so I'll either be super excited and want to begin training right away or I'll be scared to death and not want to run ever again! Haha... We'll see. Stay tuned for my update!
"No war on the face of the Earth is more destructive than the AIDS pandemic."
-Colin Powell
The global HIV/AIDS epidemic is an unprecedented crisis that requires an unprecedented response. In particular it requires solidarity -- between the healthy and the sick, between rich and poor, and above all, between richer and poorer nations. We have 30 million orphans already. How many more do we have to get, to wake up?"-Kofi Annan

Friday, February 19, 2010

San Diego Weekend

I'm taking a break from the fast life of LA to spend the weekend in San Diego with my family. We've got a few fun things planned to do with Lucas so stay tuned for more adorable pictures.

He is finally in bed now so my sister and I are about to watch a movie. That's our fun and crazy Friday night! Woo hoo!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Location, Location, Location

Be warned, this post contains some bragging! My home is in an awesome location! Seriously, it couldn't be more central which means that I am not too far from really anything here in LA. I have already met several friends at their homes, bars, restaurants and salons and nothing has been further than 15 minutes away. I've heard from LA natives that this is a luxury so I'm certainly grateful. I knew there was a reason why I moved here! : )

The following places are very close to my house; Target, several grocery stores including Trader Joes, a post office, nail salon, my new hairdresser, two gyms, Bikram Yoga institute, a big mall-Westside Pavillion, etc... Not to mention how close I am to the fancy shmancy shopping area of Beverly Hills and the hip Sunset Strip in Hollywood.

One very cool place that is right around the corner from where I live is Mood. It's a fabric store that most designers go to for their material needs. If you've ever watched Project Runway, then you've seen the contestants rushing through this store. I got a manicure today at a nail salon right next door to it and I wanted to go inside but I had absolutely no reason. Hmm, what I can cover with fabric around here?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I ❤ Singing!

As I have already mentioned a few times in this blog, I love music. I especially enjoy dancing and singing along to music. Singing has always been one of my greatest passions in life. My first memories when I was little is of me singing along to the radio or one of my sister's tapes. Singing lifts me up when I'm feeling down and makes me feel better no matter what. Being in a choir was always the highlight of my life and up until recently I didn't realize how much I missed it.

There is something so powerful about singing with a group. It's actually kind of hard to explain to someone that hasn't ever experienced it. As a group, you somehow become this incredible single unit. You stop being able to pick out the individual voices but you hear the whole choir singing together. When there is amazing harmonizing going on, then it's just sheer beauty to listen to.

My best friends were usually always in choir with me too so those friendships became even stronger through this experience. I loved our high school choir, VOCE. My three best friends and boyfriend at the time were in it so it was seriously my favorite time of the day. When everyone else was bummed that we had to skip lunch to practice a song, I was secretly happy because that meant I got to do my favorite thing in the world AND be with my favorite people altogether. Basically it was my idea of heaven! : ) I was in a choir every year from 7th grade until my junior year in college. Of course I also entered many talent shows and performed with friends a lot.

Well, tonight (Wednesday night, that is) I drove all the way to Long Beach (I know, I'm crazy) to attend an all girls choir's practice. I found the choir online and they were an absolute pleasure to be around. I couldn't get over how warm and inviting they were to me. They even handed me their music sheets and got me up on the risers to practice right along with them. They are getting ready for an upcoming Californian choir competition on March 18th so they sounded very good. While I did really enjoy being with these woman, the drive is just too long for every Wednesday night and I will be checking out a few other choirs closer to where I live. I am still very glad that I went and got to hear the Long Beach Girls Choir.

Stay tuned for more developments on the choir of my choice!

These are some of my favorite singing quotes:

"Some days there won't be a song in your heart. Sing anyway." ~Emory Austin

"The singer has everything within him. The notes come out from his very life. They are not materials gathered from outside." ~Rabindranath Tagore

"You can cage the singer but not the song." ~Harry Belafonte

"So she poured out the liquid music of her voice to quench the thirst of his spirit." ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Art of Pureeing

For dinner tonight, I made myself pear, celery and spinach soup and it was delicious. I know it sounds kind of strange but this is what the recipe called for me to have. I don't mean to toot my own horn, but damn, it was amazing! It may not look good at all in this picture but don't judge a book by it's cover, right? Even my roommate Gina thought it tasted good.

Lately, I've been using the blender to puree food in lots of my recipes. I really enjoy it. It completely transforms the food and makes it so you can taste a lot of different ingredients in one single spoonful. I highly recommend experimenting with a blender when you are in the kitchen.

"Tis an ill cook that cannot lick his own fingers". -William Shakespeare

Lucas's First Pool Experience!

My sister and her husband took Lucas to a pool this past weekend in Palm Desert. This was the first time that he has been in one so that was a lot of fun for them. My sister told me that he didn't cry or seem scared at all so that's a good sign. I love pools and swimming so I hope that Lucas will learn enjoy the water like I do. We live super close to the beach so it's only a matter of time before we head there. : )

Workin' on my fitness

Since moving here I've gone to the gym and had a serious workout just about everyday. I met with a trainer the second week I moved here and she basically kicked my ass! I thought my heart was going to jump out of my chest the entire time! She showed me exactly what I should be doing to maximize my time there. It was such an intense workout that later that night I was so nauseous that I threw up! Needless to say I could barely move the whole next day. I was in so much pain!

Despite all that, I picked myself up and went to the gym two days later to follow my trainer's routine that she prepared for me. I am proud to say that I think I did pretty well and am now losing more calories on the elliptical that I ever did at the gym back in Phoenix.

Losing weight will always be on-going battle for me. It's certainly not something that comes easily to me. I have to work at it everyday. I am happy now that my skinny jeans are no longer my skinny jeans- they are too big to be called that now! Yay! : ) I know that losing weight is all about balancing proper exercise with a healthy diet. If you can burn more calories working out then you consume everyday then you should be able to lose weight. So they say. But we all know that it's much easier said then done. When it comes down to it, I just want to be happy and healthy.

Something that really helps me at the gym is having an amazing playlist booming in my ears on my ipod. I have several playlists in fact that I switch out. Lady Gaga's music is awesome to work out. It's very upbeat and fun and I usually never get sick of her songs. I think she is an incredible musician who is definitely bringing back the art of performing back to music. It's become more of an art form for Lady Gaga. Anyway, I love her and enjoy her music so much especially on the elliptical machine. Check out my sister's blog for more information on this mega talented singer.

"I always loved rock and pop and theater. When I discovered Queen and David Bowie is when it really came together for me, and I realized I could do all three." -Lady Gaga

Monday, February 15, 2010

To go red or not to go red, that is the question...

I am a brunette but up until this past October, I've been coloring my hair red. I had been doing it since 9th grade! Yes, I know that's an awfully long time and I am sure that my hair is a lot unhealthier now because of it. Unfortunately, it is very thin and dry and I always seem to have split ends. But red hair made me happy and isn't that what life is all about? Why not change the things that make you unhappy?

I remember going back home to the states the summer after 8th grade and feeling slightly nervous about starting high school in the fall. I wanted to return to school with a completely new look. I wanted to no longer wear glasses and I wanted cool and different hair. Presto, I got that!

I went to the eye doctor with my mom and spent the next two hours in their figuring out how to put contacts in my eyes. That was quite the traumatic experience. After that we headed to the salon. I knew exactly what I wanted-red hair! Surprisingly, there are a lot of reds out there. Picking a red that wasn't too orange or too dark was a little dilemma but not impossible. After a little deliberation on my part, I got the red hair that I'd been craving forever. I was instantly in love with it! It was especially beautiful in the sun. Oh wow, this is making me nostalgic... : (

Well, as you can tell, I miss my red hair. A lot! I really miss how unique it made me feel. I mean, I certainly don't run around bumping into red heads all the time. Now when I do, I'm just jealous of them and their awesome radiant hair. I chose to take a break from coloring my hair for a few reasons. I wanted to give my hair a rest and let it gain some of it's youthful glow again. I wanted to stop spending so much money every month getting it colored. I also was curious as to what my original color was after all these years of dyeing it. Sadly, I had kind of forgotten. Many of my friends and sister encouraged me to get back to my 'roots' too.

So, there are obviously plenty of positives to stop coloring my hair. But do I really want to? Will this brown hair make me happy? I don't know yet. I'm still blow drying and flat-ironing my hair, so I am not going completely natural with it. There was even a time in October when I seriously thought about going BLOND! I got a lot of feedback about it but in the end I figured that a long blond wig would suffice for Halloween. I was Lady Gaga. I do really enjoy being a blond and just on Saturday night, I enjoyed wearing another blond wig. Do blonds really have more fun? Hmm...

Now that I live in LA, I feel like I'm surrounded by people changing themselves. It seems to me that anything and everything can be physically altered if you were willing to pay a price. People are getting plastic surgery to tighten this or that, tummy tucks, breast lifts and enlargements, chemical peels, Botox, waxing galore, bedazzling their nether regions, (Yep, Swati told me about this last night) fake tanning and of course coloring their hair. I wouldn't be human if I didn't admit that I've thought about doing a few of these things. Definitely bedazzling my lady parts is a top priority..NOT! Wow! Why would anyone ever do that?? It's just plain odd to me. No, but in all seriousness, I have considered a few things. But then am I still being 'me'? Will that make me just another fake Californian girl? Or did I already enter that world when I started dying my hair years ago? I don't know.

So, what to do.. To go red or not to go red, that is the question. I guess time will tell. For now, I'll keep using my fancy oil and leave in conditioner to save my hair from the afterlife.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentines Day

So according to Wikipedia, Valentines Day is the annual holiday held on February 14th celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. Well, while I may not currently have a boyfriend, I have many intimate companions also known as very close friends and family so today I celebrate them and our lasting friendships.
Happy Valentines Day to you all!

"But did you know that the origin of Valentine's Day, or Saint Valentine's Day, comes from the life and death of a Christian martyr? According to author Martha Zimmerman, the date traditionally celebrated as St. Valentine's Day finds it origin in the Roman festival of romance called Lupercalia, when the gods Juno and Pan were honored. It was a fertility festival or a lover's holiday looking forward to the return of Spring. In the fifth century, in an attempt to abolish the pagan festival, Pope Gelasius changed Lupercalia and its February 15 date to February 14 and called it Saint Valentine's Day. Even though the names and the date were changed, the emphasis continued to be on love."

For more on this, check out the Meaning of Valentines Day.

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return."

Taking it back to the 50's and 60's!

Anyone that knows me, knows that I love dressing up. I love Halloween for that reason alone. I mean, come on, I was Lady Gaga last year, red bodysuit, disco stick and all! Theme parties are my absolute favorite. I've had the most fun at these kinds of parties. People really let loose and for one night, they can become someone else and really get into the mind of a different character.

My favorite Halloween ever was my senior year in college. My best girlfriends and I dressed up as each other for a night. It was hilarious! We all were bored with our costumes from the night before but didn't want to go out and spend money on another outfit. So we wrote each of our names down on a piece of paper and put them into a hat and one at a time, we drew names. We were all very creative and totally got into it, even imitating each other's personalities throughout the night. I'll never forget that fun night!

So anyway, after our wonderful dinner last night, Gina, Swati and I got all dressed up in late 50's and 60's style clothes for a Mad Men themed birthday party. The birthday girl was Rebekah, her parents taught with my parents overseas many years ago in Pakistan and then again in Myanmar. We got re-connected thanks to facebook and have been more in touch since I moved here. She lives not too far away in Santa Monica.

Well, the roomies and I seriously got into this theme. Because of Gina's project, Pin Ups for Vets, she has tons of wigs and accessories from different eras so I definitely took advantage and wore one of her great blonde wigs and an awesome red hat. I also wore short black gloves, had on bright red lipstick, a pearl necklace, clip on earrings and a black clutch purse. I had bought the dress earlier in the week at that vintage store. So, I was head to toe decked out in this decade. We looked fabulous!

We had a fun time at the party and then proceeded to go to a couple nearby bars after the party ended. We were quite entertaining wherever we went and got lots of stares but we didn't mind because we looked awesome! We even told a few people that we had just felt like dressing up and that there was no specific reason! : ) I look forward to more theme parties in our future!

To see our entire photo shoot, opps, I mean party pictures, check out my facebook page. : )

Bon Appetite!

I really enjoy cooking, that is, I enjoy following recipes and trying out new dishes. I just love the processes that food goes through before it is ready to eat. I think that food that has to go through a few steps is the most fun to make.

When I lived alone in Phoenix, I would usually cook one night a week and I would make a ton so there would be leftovers all week long. I made lots of pasta, salads, casseroles, chicken, turkey, shrimp and my personal favorite desserts. I love baking! Cakes, banana bread, cookies, cupcakes are among my specialities. My chocolate chip and pecan banana bread is amazing! I guess this is something that I get from my mom. She was always baking and her chocolate chip cookies were ridiculously amazing!

There are certainly a number of great things about having roommates but one of them (and I never thought about this before) is getting to cook for others and not just for yourself. So last night in honor of Valentines Day I decided to cook a couple things for my roommates for dinner. Well, Gina prepared the main course, Tilapia fish and I made an appetizer, breaded and fried zucchini slices and a side dish, carrot and orange soup. Then of course for dessert I had to bake an almond and chocolate cake. I forgot to take a picture of the food when it was all ready so this one taken today of the leftovers will have to do. However, you should know that it really doesn't do the dishes justice at all! I will definitely be making them meals more often! Perhaps my favorite orange french toast tomorrow morning for breakfast.... ? : )

"There is no spectacle on earth more appealing than that of a beautiful woman in the act of cooking dinner for someone she loves." -Thomas Wolfe

"Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all." -Harriet Van Horne

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Family Night

Tonight, well, technically last night, (it's almost 1am) I went over to my high school friend Belinda's home to watch the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics. Sadly, they started very late and I never got to see them since I already had later dinner plans after. It was still so nice to visit with her and her boyfriend. Then our other high school friends Mya and her boyfriend Paul came too. That is the three of us in the picture. I know I look like a giant compared to them but I had on heels! : )

I can't describe what it's like being around people that knew the 'me' that lived overseas. It's not like I'm a different person now... it's just that they really understand me and where I'm coming from. They also knew my parents and were around them all the time. There is something so comforting being around that. I am so grateful that they invite me to get-togethers and want to show me around LA. They are certainly my new LA family.

After I left this party I went to my college friend, Jason's home in Brentwood. It was barely a 10 minute drive away from Belinda's home in West LA. That was awesome! I have yet to drive very far to get anywhere! So I met Jason my sophomore year at UofA and we stayed pretty good friends and hung out most weekends for awhile. Towards the end of college, we didn't see so much of each other and then when I graduated, he still had one more year left. He has been living in LA about a year now so that is really nice having someone around who knows the area fairly well. Anyway, he invited me over to his home for a home-cooked Persian dinner. He lives with his parents and his mom is a great cook. His two brothers and sister in-law also came to dinner. So, I got to meet the whole family! While it was delicious food, I mostly enjoyed the family dynamics around the dinner table and the humor of it all. They obviously are all very close and friendly with each other. It made me miss my parents a lot and our dinner table conversations. I hope to be invited again for family dinner night. : )

This is one of my favorite quotes about family:

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one." -Jane Howard

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure

Tonight, I met my friend Courtney for dinner. We met last year crewing for the 3 Day Breast Cancer Walk. We were assigned to the same team so we got to know each other pretty well in just one weekend. I am so happy that we've stayed in touch since the event. She actually just moved to the LA area too so it's awesome to have another new person here to hang out with.

Now you may be asking what is the 3 Day? Well, first of all shame on you for not knowing! It was my entire life for awhile there, what with all the training walks and fundraising that I was doing. It is quite the commitment!

Here's what you need to know:
  • You walk 60 miles over the course of three days (a weekend) with thousands of other women and men. Net proceeds from the Komen 3-Day for the Cure are invested in breast cancer research and community programs.
  • You must raise at least $2,300 in donations. But of course this amount can increased based on your fundraising efforts. Pretty soon, I'll be sending out my fundraising email to begin raising money for this year's walk. Thanks to everyone that have donated money to me in the past. I couldn't have done this walk without each and every one of you. XOXO
  • You may either walk the 60 miles or crew it. I walked it in 2008 with my sister in San Diego and I chose to crew last year in Phoenix. This year I'll be walking again with my sister in San Francisco.
  • It is the hardest thing that I have ever done in my life. You think walking, no big deal, right? But oh no, 60 miles is no picnic! Just take a look at all my ailments when I walked: numerous blisters all over my feet (even on the bottoms and between toes), severe "3 Day Rash" all over feet and ankles, bad sunburn on my arms, painful calf muscles, and the list goes on with a few embarrassing ones...
  • It is the most rewarding experience of my life. Seeing women currently going through chemo walking next to you just takes your breath away. These are incredibly strong people. You walk for them.
  • I am so happy that I did this with my sister and that we are taking it on again this year. She was really my motivator throughout the walk. We shared many tears and laughs. Just imagine her and I outside in a small pink tent and me not being able to move without crying! That's quite an image, huh?!
One person is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes in the United States. That's why I'm walking so far. To do something bold about breast cancer. For more information check out the 3 Day website.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

All things vintage

So being in LA has made me take a closer look at my clothes. I'm not very happy with the general theme and my basic style. I think that it could be much more fun and hip. Of course I do have a few pieces that are awesome but not enough. Now that I live here in LA, why not go in that direction now?

I have a new found love for all things vintage.

Today I braved the vintage store, Hubba Hubba, which doesn't have the most friendliest of reviews on but does boast a great supply of fabulous vintage clothes. That is all very accurate. Without going into too much detail, the sales woman in the shop was very helpful while also being slightly pushy and a tad forceful. But all in all, I enjoyed this shopping experience and left with some incredible vintage 60's era style dresses and a small black clutch.

Why 60's era clothes? Well, on Saturday, my roommates and I are going to a "Mad Men" themed party and we are supposed to dress up in 60's era clothes for it. We are very excited about it and it should be lots of fun. Don't worry friends, I'll post the best pictures on Sunday!

"Everything I buy is vintage and smells funny. Maybe that's why I don't have a boyfriend." -Lucy Liu

"It is easily overlooked that what is now called vintage was once brand new." -Tony Visconti

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

8 months old

Lucas turned 8 months on Saturday and I just had to share this picture of him on here today. He is such a happy baby! For more adorable pictures and info on this little man, check out my sister's blog, Letters for Lucas. It is such a sweet blog and I am sure that you will quickly fall in love with her and him.

I am so lucky because my sister sends me a picture on her phone of Lucas every single day! Sometimes even more than one and occasionally, I'll get a video of him giggling. Those are my favorite and I can't help but teary eyed over them. Nothing in this world makes me quite as happy as this guy. Lucas has my heart!

I actually got something from Lucas for Valentines Day. Today I received a Valentine Bouquet from him but not the kind that you think. It's way cooler than that! Its a little piece of paper and this is what it says, "this handmade valentine is embedded with tiny wildflower seeds that will sprout when planted." Isn't that the neatest thing ever? I absolutely love it! Talk about watching our love grow! Huh?! I've recently gotten into gardening so this is perfect for me. I look forward to planting it and watching it grow.

Pass the naan please!

I love trying new food and this past weekend I really got into Indian food. For her mom's 60th surprise birthday party at our house on Saturday, Swati ordered a complete Indian smorgasbord from the restaurant called, Gate of India. It's voted best Indian restaurant in Hollywood. Now I've had Indian food but nothing like this before-it was incredible! I found myself actually enjoying spicy food which is very rare for me. Usually it's not so much a party in my mouth but this food was so yummy and flavorful that I didn't mind the spicyness at all. We had yummy samosas that came with two great dipping sauces, a fresh vegetable salad, a delicious spinach dish, amazing flavored chicken and plenty of rice and naan. I am happy that we've still got lots of leftovers filling our fridge!

I found this article interesting and fitting for this post, it's from

Here's a scene you've probably encountered: You're out with a group of friends and new acquaintances for dim sum, thinking about how great the shrimp dumplings look -- what a great hangover food, this is gonna be ace! -- when the cute blond gal across the table decides to just order for everyone because, heck, she picked up a little Mandarin on summer vacation. Then, the chicken feet come out, followed by tripe, and things begin to look pretty grim. You like what you know, what tastes good, what's reliable.

Don't get labeled a wuss

First the bad news: Your reluctance to try strange, even unsettling foods makes you look like a baby. Sure, the recession ushered in the designer burger and brick oven pizza back into popularity in some of the country's trendiest restaurants, but that doesn't give you the green light to skip the weird stuff when it's on the menu, even if that means eating a bird’s nest or a whale anus. The truth hurts, and yeah, it might hurt your intestines for an hour or two, but you’ll live.

The first and most fundamental reason to try new foods is the thrill of the unknown. When it comes to eating, it's basically a low-risk and high-reward scenario: The worst that happens is you eat something disgusting and feel like you may vomit; more likely, you enjoy something new and share an adventure
with your friends. You also build up a tolerance for surprise and sensory shock -- you prepare yourself for that unexpected situation when you don't have the luxury to choose what you eat, like on an exotic vacation or if your plane crashes.

The food poisoning argument

Don't bother with the food poisoning argument -- it's a total cop-out. Foodborne illness is typically a result of unhygienic conditions or improper handling, which is more likely to occur in a fast food joint where employees don't have a stake in the cuisine than in a family-owned hole-in-the-wall in Chinatown. What we’re saying is, the chances of getting sick from steer testicles are probably no greater than eating your average cut of steak. Besides, if you're a strapping AM reader who exercises and takes care of himself, a minor case of food poisoning will make you violently ill for a few days and you'll be tougher for it.

It's time to grow up

Being flexible and adventurous in what you eat is a mark of maturity and adaptability. Children are particular about what they eat and might lie about having allergies to foods they don't like; a man doesn’t do that. And think about the older men you know: They start to get set in their ways as time goes on, sticking to the same routines and eating the same things. That may be you one day, so embrace your prime years by saying yes to everything. (And not just food. Say yes to going out with people you don't know, to places you've never been and to trying things you’ve been told are lame or dangerous.) Women -- the kind of women you want -- are attracted to guys with a sense of adventure, so, don't wait for somebody else to suggest the kidney special.

New Food is just the beginning

It's not just about the food. The risks you take at the dinner table are extensions of the way you live. If you're uncomfortable trying new foods -- if you're not excited at the prospect, even -- then it probably says something about your sense of adventure and comfort with danger. We all had that buddy in college who ate a heaping spoonful of mayo (the kind that didn't need refrigeration) on a dare. Don't be that guy: It's not about doing something crazy at the drop of a hat. However, real men aren't afraid to put their gastronomical comfort on the line to try something new. Plus, you can always celebrate the conquest with shots.