Sunday, October 31, 2010

October 31st!


I hope everyone has a fun and candy filled day! I'll make sure to post pictures of me in my Betty Boop costume tomorrow.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

One Lovely Blog Award

I am beyond excited, I received my first blogging award this week!! Ok, my sister has given me one, but I think she was just being nice since it was back when I first started this blog and barely had 20 posts. So, thank you very much to Rach at How Fickle is Woman for the award! I was very surprised to see my blog on your list. I just started reading her blog but so far I'm loving her post-college life adventures.

So now I have to pass this award along to 10 blogs. Wow, this is tough, I now follow over 50 blogs! Yikes! Please check out all these blogs when you get the chance. They are inspirational, funny, sarcastic, interesting, warm, fun and above all very honest blogs.

  1. Tonya @ Letters for Lucas
  2. M @ Misadventures of M: Dating & Other Shenanigans
  3. Rapunzel @ In Pursuit of my Inner Pin-Up
  4. Amanda @ Welcome to my life
  5. Delilah @ Unruly Helpmeet
  6. Carolyn @ This Talk Ain't Cheap
  7. Cat @ The Wandering American
  8. Mary Kate @ The Friendliest Flower
  9. Edith @ ..before I Die
  10. Sheila @ A Postcard a Day

Friday, October 29, 2010

The L.A. Effect

Right before I moved here, my sister sent me a magazine article from SELF called the "L.A. Effect". It's funny to look at it again today and see how and if I've been effected by all the LA fads. According to this article, here are the West Coast trends that make up the "L.A. Effect":
  • Bikram Yoga- For the record, I was in love with Bikram Yoga several months before I moved here. Then, when I got to LA, it just seemed like the trendy thing to do. Bikram himself brought this super hot form of yoga to Los Angeles in 1973. Thus, this city is the home to the Bikram World Headquarters. Up until a few months ago, it wasn't too far from me so I was eager to go frequently. Sadly, it moved further away and I have yet to check that studio out.
  • Raw Food- Interestingly, the very first raw food restaurant, "Eutropheon" opened in downtown LA in 1917. Now Angelenos get their no-cook fix from "Leaf Cuisine" and "Rawvolution". I have yet to check those places out but I'm sure that their are delicious. You really can't help but try eating better when you live in a city that seems obsessed with staying fit. Recently, I've opted to stay away from meat for a little bit. Let's see how long that lasts...
  • Delivery Meals- These became popular in the mid-'90's when celebs realized the convience of having meals sent to their home or on-set. Jenny Craig and NutriSystem are two common delivery meals. I have yet to sample any of these meals on wheels. For now I'll continue to enjoy making my own food or venture out to restaurants.
  • Ugg Boots and Miniskirts- Ok FYI, these are not only in LA, they were constantly seen on my college campus at The University of Arizona. Let me tell you, I absolutely despise this fashion trend. For one thing, it doesn't make any sense and secondly, it's just plain ugly! Seriously! Why on earth would your feet need all that material for warmth and not your legs? Please explain!
  • Luxury Dog Spas- I see these spas all over the city and it's yet another ridiculous splurge that celebrities and wealthy people alike invest into. Why on earth do your dogs need to soak in Jacuzzis and be fed gourmet food?! Can you say coddled? It seems like Hollywood stars often treat their critters better than they do people. At the Club Beverly Hills, pooches can practice yoga or even "work out" in a landscaped yard! Yikes! No thanks, when if I have my own dog, they will run around a yard and they'll eat dog food and maybe swim a pool on occasion.
  • No Frills Gyms- I am all about these "back to basics" facilities. I mean, who needs all that fancy equipment when all you really need is a couple weight lifting machines and a treadmill? Ha, there's even a gym in Frederick, Maryland called "Just a Gym"! Love that!
  • Stand-Up Paddle Surfing- Hawaiians have loved this since the '50's and '60's and was brought over to Southern California in the early 2000's. I haven't tried this before and I'm not sure if I would enjoy it. I still want to try surfing!! Anyone want to teach me?
  • Healthy Cocktails- The hip Viceroy Santa Monica has long served up organic drinks. Their speciality is the Green Bloody Mary, made with green tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley and other fresh veggies. Sounds delicious, right? Ha, talk about skipping the salad course and and moving right onto the bar! : ) This joint is on my to-do list for sure!
  • Airbrush Tans- These flawless faux tans caught on big-time when they became a must-have for Hollywood stars. Celebs are even traveling now with their own air-brushers! Whoa! I have actually done this once and it was kind of cool for a couple days and then it wore off so that was annoying. Plus, it got all over the clothes I was wearing that day.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Last Year's Halloween

For this week's Mama Kat's Writing Workshop, I selected to answer prompt #4.) "Link up and show us something you've created for Halloween, anything qualifies...costumes, recipes, crafts,
arty invites, treats, decorations etc."

So, here I am last year as the infamous LADY GAGA with my friend Dave who was friendly lion.

I am particularly proud of that costume. It was the first time in awhile that I didn't just go and buy an already pre-made outfit. Yep, I actually went out and bought all the separate pieces and made the outift work altogether myself.

I also loved the disco stick that I made. All I used to make it was a LED flashlight, a ton of rhinestones and two clear plastic cups. Super simple. Gotta love glue guns! : )

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

From Australia to LA

One of the many really awesome things about living in such a popular big city is that people are always visiting it. Seriously, this month alone, I will have seen 7 different friends here! 4 of whom were just passing through LA for work or some other event! Crazy, right? There really is no need for me to go anywhere, everyone will eventually come to La La Land! : )

Tonight I met up with yet another friend, Dean. He lives in Australia and I haven't seen him since my friend Alyson and I traveled around Australia and met him two years ago! It was great to see him and catch up on our lives.

This is another huge example of why I think facebook is so awesome- it keeps everyone so connected to each other, whether they want to be or not. : ) It's especially useful when you have friends overseas and can't talk to them on the phone often, if at all.

Wordless Wednesdays/You-Tube Video #7

Ok, here it is, the next you-tube video from the creative minds of my roommate Gina and myself. This time, we had a special guest star! : ) This is our 8th you-tube video.

Enjoy! Please let me know what you think and if you have any other ideas for Gina and I. Thanks!

Lady Gaga...Can You Carve Pumpkins As Good As Gina, Leah and Danica?

Can you guess my costume?

Wanna know what I'm dressing up as this year for Halloween?! Well, I'm not going to tell ya but I will give you some hints and I would love to know your guesses!
Here are the hints:
  • red dress
  • black wig
  • white garter
  • big red lips
  • big eyelashes
That's all you are all getting! So, what do you think?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pumpkin Carving and Divination

This evening my roomie Gina, her friend Danica and I carved pumpkins at our place. What Halloween season wouldn't be complete with a little carving pumpkin action? I wasn't really in the serious carving pumpkin mood so I just carved a little one that I got a couple weeks ago at a pumpkin farm. Sadly, it was too small to carve a face into it so instead, I cut out little hearts all over it.

Gina and I also made another one of our fabulous you-tube videos but it hasn't been edited or uploaded yet. When it does, I'll be sure
to share it on here. To play catch up, here's the link to view our older ones:

So for our videos, we often look up information online and this time was no different, we looked up the history of Halloween. The following is something I learned but didn't bring up in the video:

"Some games traditionally played at Halloween are forms of divination. A traditional Scottish form of divining one's future spouse is to carve an apple in one long strip, then toss the peel over one's shoulder. The peel is believed to land in the shape of the first letter of the future spouse's name. Unmarried women were told that if they sat in a darkened room and gazed into a mirror on Halloween night, the face of their future husband would appear in the mirror. However, if they were destined to die before marriage, a skull would appear. The custom was widespread enough to be commemorated on greeting cards from the late 19th century and early 20th century."

Creepy, right?! Shall I try this on Halloween night this year? Hmmm.. Well, have you carved any pumpkins yet this year?

Time Travel?

Over a lunch date with two old friends from college this past weekend, we ending up discussing time travel for quite some time. What would be the one thing that we would go back and do over again and why?

Of course, my immediate thought was to go back to right before my parents died and warn them that their water heater was emitting carbon monoxide into their house. I think that for the rest of my life, I'll wish for a time travel machine to go back to that moment.

Now what if you couldn't change anything and it was just to go back in time and re-live it... Hmm, I probably would want to go back to college and just enjoy all those carefree fun days again. My spring break trip to Mexico my sophomore year in college to be exact was amazing. It is seriously one of the best trips of my life so far. I hope some of those friends that were there read my blog so they can see this.
: )

What would you go back to? Would you change anything?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Welcome New followers!!

Since I have so fabulously acquired so many new followers this week (THANK YOU!!), I thought it might be nice to give a little recap of what this blog is all about and a little information about moi!

Hi! My name is Leah and this blog is about my relatively new life here in Los Angeles, California. I moved here in January from Phoenix, Arizona. I wonder how much longer I can keep saying that I'm new here. I get at least a year, right? I am passionate about all things music so I talk about it a lot. I also love going to new restaurants, doing all the LA touristy type things, spending time with my friends and new roommates, reading, dancing, running, going to see movies and now BLOGGING has become one of my new favorite hobbies.

I started this blog right when I moved here and it has quickly turned into one of the most therapeutic things for me. It seriously is like free therapy. Never in a million years would I have guessed that I would have my own blog. I've never thought of myself as a writer but it's certainly fun for me now.

Why did I move to LA? Glad you asked. : ) I've been wanting to live here for a long time for a few reasons. The biggest one is that my sister and her family live in San Diego. She has a 16 month old son that I absolutely adore and just had to be closer to. I also want to work in the music industry and this is definitely the city for that business. Specifically, I would like to work in the A & R department at a record label, that is, the artist and repertoire department. So far, I haven't had any luck finding a job in the music biz but I'm still very hopeful. So in the meantime, I've been nannying and babysitting a lot. I also work as my roommate's assistant for her Pin Ups For Vets calendar project, traveling and attending events. Please check out the link, it's an amazing project doing wonderful things for VETS all over the world.

So, there ya go. This is me thus far! I really really appreciate all the new followers that I've gotten recently. I love that people are stopping by my blog and actually reading my posts and commenting. Recently, I have found a lot of new fun blogs too so I know that there are a lot of interesting blogs out there. So, thank you so much for making mine one to follow. Reaching 50 followers was super neat!

Stay tuned for more of my adventures here in La La land!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The 'Concert High'

Before recorded music, concerts provided the only opportunity people would generally have to hear musicians play. I still LOVE going to concerts. Seriously, I LOVE them! I gladly would go to a concert once a week if I could.

Last night I saw the Australian band The Temper Trap, at one of LA's downtown hot venues, Club Nokia. This band is getting a lot of popularity due to the movie, "500 Days of Summer". Their song "Sweet Disposition" is in the film and it's fast becoming loved by all. I absolutely adore it! If you haven't listened to it before, I highly, highly recommend checking it out. Of course, by all means, listen to any of the band's songs. The lead singer, Dougy Mandagi, has a voice unlike any I've heard before. It's amazing.

So, like most people at concerts, at some point during the 2nd or 3rd song, I enter a state I like to call, the 'concert high'. The 'concert high' consists of a variety of things:
  • Ringing/Buzzing in your ears. Gotta love live blaring music!
  • A comfortable sway or dance move according to the music tempo.
  • Maybe even numb or sore feet from all the standing and dancing. I have learned the hard way to always wear comfortable flat shoes to concerts.
  • Glossy and somewhat dry eyes from all the smoke/fog machines up on stage.
  • Feeling slightly hot and sweaty but not really caring because the music is just that good.
  • A burning desire to rush home and write the next best song of the year for yourself.
  • A new found love, respect, adoration, admiration, passion, envy and perhaps even lust for all musicians. : )
  • Finally, a general awesome feeling that you and everyone else at that concert are enjoying amazing music altogether. It's a beautiful thing, right?
Anything that I missed? What do you love most about concerts? Do you get the 'concert high too'?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Healthier Curvy!

I've been reading a lot of blogs lately that are about women's experiences losing weight and their adventures in dieting and exercising. I commend these women for putting themselves out there. That takes courage. So, I'm going to follow in their example and talk a little about my quest for a better bod.

Honestly, I've never had the best self-esteem when it comes to my body. I've always felt that I would look and feel so much better about myself if I were to lose some weight. I know that I'm never going to be skinny and I'm totally fine with that. I'm curvy. I just want to be a healthier curvy. Does that make sense? We all have something that we want to improve about ourselves, this is mine.

Over the past few months, leading up to my Half Marathon over Labor Day weekend and continuing now, I've been super focused on becoming healthier and happier with my body. Thus, I've followed a serious work out regime at the gym. Of course, I have had days where I slacked off but for the most part, I've been good.

This month, in particular, I've stepped it up a notch. Last week I introduced the dreaded sit ups with your legs crossed up in the air into the mix. I hate them with a passion but my trainer (and by 'my trainer', I mean, she was my trainer for one day) told me that sit ups are great for an ab workout which is what I'm working really hard on. I've always worked out here and there but never with this kind of gusto and drive. Yep, that's right, I got gusto and drive now. Ha!

Of course all the training for my half marathon and now for the full marathon I'm doing in March are helping me along immensely. Knowing you have an upcoming athletic event really do wonders for your drive. Signing up for that Half Marathon and this Marathon were probably two of the smartest decisions I've ever made.

So, has all this hard work paid off so far? Yes, actually since I've moved to LA, drum roll please, I've lost a whopping.........20 pounds! I know, it's crazy! The odd thing is that the only time I can really tell is when I put on older clothes. That is the best feeling ever-throwing on an old shirt or a pair of jeans and practically swimming in them. It's so awesome! But I'm not done yet, I'm going to keep working out and training for the LA Marathon and hopefully this time next year, I'll be at my goal weight.

Something else interesting that I've been thinking about is whether or not living here in LA has been a factor in my quest to lose weight and I answer, yes. Of course LA is full of lots and lots of beautiful skinny people. I would have to be blind not to be affected by all of them. Yet the bottom line is that I want to be healthier for me and for no one else. I think that's the most important thing to remember in life.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Fill-Ins

Today I learned about a new post idea, so now introducing "Friday Fill-Ins". Feel free to use this on your blog as well. I learned about it from a new blog friend who I'm now following, Kt Moxie, May Bite If Provoked.

1. The sky is cloudy with a threat of rain and wind, so I'm feeling cold and pissed that I moved to Los Angeles for this. It's been rainy and overcast ALL WEEK! : (

2. My bed is comforting to me.

3. I always thought I'd be married with at least one child by now. Boy, was I wrong!

4. I couldn't believe how much I could see in the dark house and then I went outside to look at the full moon.

5. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to babysitting a sweet 17 little girl named Hannah, tomorrow my plans include a 9 mile training run in the morning, a lunch in Anaheim with two friends I haven't seen in forever, then a Temper Trap concert at night and Sunday, I want to sleep in, bake a little and figure out my Halloween costume.

Is it FOBO, FOMO or something else entirely?

I was waiting for some more responses from my friends but it appears that this is all I'm gonna get so here we go.

So I've been hearing a lot about commitment issues from my friends lately so I thought it would be an interesting topic to discuss here on my blog. Whether it's big or little events, dates, small get-togethers, dinners, parties or anything else, it appears that we CAN'T COMMIT. At least my generation doesn't seem to be able to commit. What is the deal?! I wanted to know what my friends thought so I asked a few of them for their opinions on this strange dilemma.
Here's exactly what I asked:
So, what is the deal with my generation (most of yours) and our lack of commitment?! I don't mean relationships but more our commitment to go on dates, dinners, parties and all other sort of get-togethers? Is it 'Fear of Better Offer (FOBO)? Or the Fear of Missing Out? (FOMO) Fun abbreviations, huh? : )

Here's some of the best responses:
-I'm always like "let's just wait and see". We end up doing it most of the time, but I hate feeling tied down to it.

-"I think the lack of commitment in our generations might come from the evolution of social relationships. In our parents era, it was the 'right', 'normal' thing to do, to go to dinners at friends houses, parties, and other organized social events. I think our generation doesn't feel that same social pressure or need to organize our life so much. I also think it avoids the chance of really disappointing people. I want the freedom on a Friday night after a bad day at work to sit on the couch, eat pizza with by best girlfriends and blow off any sort of big social gathering. If I've committed to that social gathering I have the guilt for not going, and the worry that I just hurt their feelings/made them mad by not going. If I don't commit, then I can avoid all of that!"

-"In my opinion, the problem is not so much fear of xyz but rather an issue of apathy. Many of our younger generation lack a work ethic, which trickles over into other aspects of their lives. In a recent poll, more kids wanted to be “famous” when they grew up rather than any other (and actually real) career. We are inundated with an onslaught of music videos, TV programs and faux-celebs depicting how easy it is to get something without actually working for it, so many start to believe that is the reality when it is not."

-"People are lame, and over-book themselves. What's more upsetting is the time you DON'T plan for yourself! As in EVERYONE else is in control of your time and your sense of obligation. I can sort of relate to this topic from the point of view of the person who gets bailed on. I think that I'm pretty true to my word. If I RSVP that I'll be there, I'll be there. I think it's just rude and discourteous to back out on something you've committed to. People are counting on you to be there. Maybe there was a set amount of food prepared or maybe it's just that your company is really anticipated! Whatever the reason, if you say you'll be there, you should be there. I do think that you hit it on the head with the FOBO and FOMO. People like to keep their options open...and to that extent I am sometimes guilty. I do like to keep my options open, and therefore I'm often on the later side to RSVP. But, once I've committed I'll stick to it (unless of course there's an emergency--illness etc.)"

What do you think about these responses? Have you had experience with commitment phobia lately? Do your friends bail out at the last minute or do they not RSVP at all?

For more on FOMO, check out this interesting website.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Learning Disability?!

This week's Mama Kat's writing assignment that I chose is 1.) In what way were you labeled as a child and how did it affect you?

There's no denying it, I am terrible at math. I always have been and I'm sure that I always will be.

There was a time when my parents and teachers didn't understand why I was so awful with numbers. They simply refused to admit that I just wasn't going to grow up to be the next math wizard. Sadly, I was one of those kids who couldn't add or subtract without using my fingers and toes for help. Then, when multiplication was dropped in my lap, it was an even rougher battle. I remember walking around my house chanting out the 6, 7, 8, 9 times tables and it still not sticking in my head. My mom would call out, "One more lap around the house Leah until you know them by heart!" It was torture! And then we got to ugly, ugly division... forget about that! I was a lost cause indeed.

Finally in 7th grade, my teacher asked my parents if I could be tested to see what was really wrong with my skills. My teacher wanted to know what was the root of my problems. I actually overheard this conversation and it tore me a apart. My mom never knew that. I think they all thought I had some kind of a learning disability. The phrase 'learning disability' sounded awful to me and for some reason, it made me think I was dumb. It also made me feel weak and less smart than all my friends. For one a girl who already wore huge glasses and in middle school, that is the worst feeling ever.

So at the time, my dad was kind of obsessed with student learning styles. For example; should you be studying in plenty of light or a dim room, studying in a cold or a hot room, seeing materials as opposed to hearing it explained. Anyway, my dad thought that I should be given all these tests too to see if I've just been studying and working in the wrong environment for my needs. Turns out, not so much. We did learn that I can't just have things told to me, I need to visually see things. I also can't have music or anything else playing in the background when I'm studying. Honestly, though, I knew all this before those tests.

After several weeks of numerous other tests, they finally concluded that basically numbers in general terrify me. Um, I could have certainly told them that without all those lame and scary tests. Ugh, I hated those things. Just knowing that they were 'tests' was enough to freak me out and not perform well on them. The tests also showed that I needed more time than most to complete math tests. I also made sure that my teacher understood that getting up in front of the class to answer math problems on the front board was absolute torture and if I could be excused from that hell from now on. Thankfully, she took mercy on me and I never had to get in front of my math class again. I was also given a little extra time to finish math tests which I was grateful for.

So, I might not have been exactly labeled with a learning disability but just the possibility that everyone thought that I might have one was enough to make me realize that we all have our strengths and weaknesses. Just don't ever ask me to calculate anything for you without my trusty calculator/an hour of your time. : )

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

It was time for a BlackBerry!

Yes, today I joined the rest of the world and got a blackberry. Woo hoo! Yes, let's all make fun of me and welcome me to the 21st century. : ) I know that it was time for me to mature phone-wise. So it's called the BlackBerry Curve 3G and my number is... haha, just kidding. I certainly don't need my number out there in the blog worId. I kind of wanted to get the iphone but I'm not willing to spend the money to break my contract with Verizon Wireless yet. They are supposedly getting the iphone in July so I'll just wait for that. So far I love this phone! It's a lot more complicated then my last phones but I'm sure I'll get the hang of it eventually.

It's really strange being able to see new emails coming in and of course being able to check in with Facebook from a phone. I still say that nothing beats doing all that internet stuff on a big computer screen but it will come in handy when I'm not at home.

However, despite how convenient and fun this phone is, I will not, I repeat, I will not become one of those people obsessed with their phones and can never stop checking them. I know way too many people like that and it annoys the crap out of me. There are way too many other important things in life than our phones! Right?!

Have you moved over to the BlackBerry/iphone world? Why or why not?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

What to be for Halloween??

Ok, I'm starting to get a little annoyed that everyone already knows not only what they are going to be for Halloween but also what they are going to do next weekend. I still have not picked my outfit or decided with my friends what we are going to do. This is my first Halloween in LA so I want to go all out and really see what this city is like on one of my favorite holidays.

I don't know whether to be something cute, sexy, scary, funny, interesting or just plain dumb this year. I LOVE dressing up so I will definitely be in costume this Halloween. Got any ideas? I have a few but nothing is really sticking out to me yet. I even thought about being Lady Gaga again this year since I still have the outfit. But that's no fun, I want to be something new.... I also don't want to spend a ton of money so that narrows things down a little bit. Perhaps, I'll go online and see what those costume stores online have in stock. I do really hate waiting till the last minute to figure it out so I am hoping that I have my costume all planned out by this weekend.

Wish me luck and please feel free to send me your ideas! Any and all are totally welcome!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Update on the filming...

Yep, there is officially some serious filming going on in front of my house and they will be here for another week and a half! At first, I thought, hey, that's kinda cool, my street and neighborhood will be in a movie, but now it's starting to get annoying.

For starters, the crew isn't nice at all and they don't even smile when we walk past them! Geesh! They are infringing on our home not the other way around! Secondly, their trailers and cars take up the entire space right in front of our house so parking has been pretty annoying and a bit difficult to find. Lastly, they begin working bright and early at about 6AM every morning and don't stop till 8ish at night. Next week, they are going to start working at 3AM! UGH! Yes, they did have the courtesy to put a note on our gate last week to let us know their schedule.

I'm not sure if I should tell you what the movie is called that they are filming but I will tell you that one pretty famous actor is in it. Perhaps, we'll catch him right outside our front door one of these days. Don't worry, I'll be sure to blog all about it.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


This morning my roommate Gina and I walked in the 26th Annual AIDS WALK Los Angeles. It was a short 10k which is nothing at all compared to the 60 miles I walked just three short weeks ago for breast cancer. Yet, it was still nonetheless for an amazing and important cause.

The following is a short article about the walk from KTLA:

Thousands toughed it through the streets of West Hollywood in the rain Sunday morning all to be a part of the 26th Annual AIDS Walk.
The 6.2 mile walk kicked off at 10:00 a.m. Sunday in West Hollywood Park where an estimated 30,000 supporters, including several celebrities and politicians, gathered to raise money.
About 60,000 people in Los Angeles are affected by HIV and AIDS, and more than 33 million suffer from the pandemic worldwide.

This year's AIDS Walk comes just days after the announcement of a $52 million budget cut to California's HIV/AIDS care and prevention programs.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa spoke at the event, reminding participants to keep up hope despite the lack of public funding dedicated to the cause.
"When I was in the leg in 1995 we were leading the country in AIDS programs," Villaraigosa said, "It is demoralizing but that's why we walk today."
The walk is expected to bring in $3 million to help low-income Angelenos living with HIV and AIDS.
In the walk's 26 years, it has established itself as one of the biggest fundraisers for AIDS in the nation, bringing in a total of $66 million."

The only negative aspect of the walk were the awful few people rioting the event. It really infuriates and tears me a part inside that there are still people in today's world that still do not accept homosexuality. I mean, WTF, it's 2010!! I just do not understand people that cannot accept love in all it's forms. Plus, this walk was about saving lives. Thankfully, there weren't many of these ignorant people on the course and no violence came of it. Actually, all the walkers did as they passed by these groups was flip them off. So at one point, all Gina and I could see was a sea of F-U's in the air. Quite the perfect response if you ask me. : )

All in all, it was a wonderful event and I am so proud of Gina and I for getting up this cold and wet morning and being a part of such a great event.

Top 5 best dinners of my life!

Last night I had an AMAZING dinner at Mastro's Steakhouse in Beverly Hills. It is one of LA's renown steak restaurants with a few other locations here in California and also in Arizona and Nevada. Mastro's boasts excellent service and incredible steaks of course. Well, they certainly delivered in every way. Seriously, it's on my list of the top 5 best dinners!!

Our waiter quickly arrived to take drink orders and was very friendly and laid-back. He joked around with us throughout the night which caught me a little off guard. Usually at places like this, the staff acts kind of 'hoighty-toighty' which can be intimidating. It was refreshing to see how casual the waiters were with their customers given the type of establishment we were at. It definitely lightened the mood of the dark room. Actually it was so dark in the dining area that we were give a small flashlight to see the menu. Romantic, eh?

Apparently, the appetizers were amazing-raw oysters. I don't care for raw oyst
ers so I missed out on those. Together the 6 of us chose 4 sides that we shared and then we all picked our own meat entrees. Our sides were seriously out of this world: creamed spinach, Gorgonzola mac and cheese, brussel sprouts and the incredibly delicious and our table's favorite dish of the night, black truffle gnocchi. This gnocchi dish had crab meat, Parmesan, breadcrumbs and white truffle oil in it. I really couldn't taste the crab meat. This side was mouthwatering. I urge you all to try this STAT! The picture below doesn't do it justice at all. Oh geez, I really want some right now!

For my entree, I ordered the 8oz. petite filet. It was sooo good. It's rich juicy flavors literally melted in my mouth.
I just discovered that all their steaks are marinated in a 15-ingredient rub and cooked w/ butter. I think that I can go as far as saying that it is perhaps the best steak I have eaten in my life. It was a simple and elegant steak…the way it should be. I really cannot rave about this meal enough!
This wasn't my modest 8oz. petite filet but my friend's entree which I'm not sure exactly which one it was. I'll have to ask. He loved it and seriously looked like he was in heaven as he ate it. : )

By the time the dessert menu was passed around, we were all completely stuffed but our waiter urged us to share just one thing. He recommend Mastro's Signature Warm Butter Cake. We happily obliged. In a word it was, delightful. It was served with a side of freshly made whipped cream. Yum. This butter cake was a warm, smooth, rich dessert. It was strangely light and fluffy yet dense at the same time. Turns out, they use cream cheese as a secret ingredient to give the butter cake its texture. It was the perfect size for the 6 of us to share.

Despite how superb this dinner was, it was also superbly pricey so I definitely won't be making it a habit to eat dinner hear often. I read the following on a food blogger's website, "Mastro’s is a great steakhouse with fabulous service and even better food. A dinner here, though, will put a nice fat dent in your wallet. But it’s well worth it, I think." I couldn't agree more.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Saturday 6

The Rules:

1.) You MUST take our amazing Saturday Six button and place it in your Saturday Six post!
2.) You MUST link back to ALL the hosts blogs in your Saturday Six post! Not just to my blog, or just to Ashlee's & not even just to Ange's Blog -- You have to link to ALL of the hosts blogs in the post, it's just good manners!
3.) You MUST link up an ACTUAL Saturday Six post where you are actually participating in The Saturday Six. So please do NOT link up your giveaways or just link up your blog when you're not going to actually participate! Again, it's just good manners!
4.) You MUST play the game correctly.

So here we go, I'm linking back up to the funny and real blog, Oh, Fuck It. I would like to link to the other hosts blogs but I don't see those right now.. Will add them later if I figure that out.

This weeks questions are:

1. Worst movie ever your opinion?
Hmm, I have seen a few bad ones... I really hated "Maid in Manhattan", "From Justin to Kelly", and I am sure there are more but I can't think of them now.

2. A stranger you encounter has toilet paper hanging from their pants..or spinach in their teeth...insert any embarrassing item here..Do you tell them?
Yes, definitely, yes! In fact, I've told many girls in bar bathrooms that they had toilet paper stuck to their shoes. Just think, would you want someone to tell you? Karma does exist.

3. Tell us ONE thing that annoys you. Yes, just one.
When people talk on the phone when I'm driving them around. Ugh! It's just rude. I totally understand picking up the phone and chatting for a minute or two but more than that is inconsiderate.

4. What's your biggest beef about the opposite sex in general?
I think that most of the time, men just don't get women. They don't really understand what we are going through when it comes to anything at all in life. Men may pretend to get it but they really don't. That's the worst, just admit you have no idea how bad these cramps are, etc.....

5. Would you donate your eggs/sperm to an infertile couple?
Wow, this is tough. I think so. If I could help a infertile couple start a family and I was one of their only options, then I really think I would. How amazing would it feel to know that you helped make their dreams comes true?

6. What's the last book you read?

"The Abortionist's Daughter" by Elisabeth Hyde. It was very good so I highly recommend it!

Friday, October 15, 2010

3 Years Ago Today

Three years ago today my parents died. For that I will always dread this month and this week in particular. Today is going to be rough.

I've talked about them a lot in my blog but I can't recall if I ever explained what exactly happened to them. I got the call around 1 a.m. They were found in their bedroom in their house in Tunis, Tunisia. After a couple of days of thorough investigation in and around their home, the cause of death was determined to be carbon monoxide poisoning. It was the water heater. I cannot begin to describe what it was like coming face-to-face with that machine. I wanted to tear it from the wall and smash it to pieces.

For those of you that don't know, carbon monoxide is an odorless and colorless gas. Surprisingly, it is the second leading cause of poisoning deaths in the country. Carbon monoxide poisoning claims nearly 500 lives and another 15,000 require emergency room treatment per year.

After they died, I sent emails out to everyone I knew encouraging them to check the detectors in their homes and their families’ homes. I know that many went out immediately and purchased them for themselves and their loved ones. Now, I continue to talk openly about this in hopes of encouraging others to install carbon monoxide detectors in their homes. When I moved to LA, I immediately got one for my house.

More and more lately, I'm starting to really miss being a 'daughter'. I miss saying, "Mom, can you help me with this?" Or "Dad, what do you think I should do?" I simply miss calling out "Mom" and "Dad". I miss hearing my mom talk to me about my dad and referring to him as "Daddy". It was really cute and sweet. I miss that advice that only a parent can give a daughter. I can't help but wonder, am I still a 'daughter'? Does that role still exist for me? I certainly don't feel like it anymore. Perhaps being a sister, an aunt, a niece and a friend should be enough but it just isn't. I just want to be my parents daughter. I want to overhear them talking to people about their 'daughter', Leah. No one says my name or will say my name quite like them.

I know it's only natural but right after they died, I instantly felt younger than I've felt in a very long time. The independent nature that I'd acquired somewhat in college quickly fell away and I found myself longing to be held, to be cared for, to be tucked in at night and to be told that everything was going to be alright. These are all the things that my parents would do for me. Suddenly, I knew that I was never going to feel as protected as they made me feel and that tore me apart.

3 years may seem like a lot of time but honestly, the hole in my heart is still as empty and painful as the day I found out 3 years ago. I doubt that will ever go away. This may sound odd but there is a small part of me that hopes that hole never heals. I don't want to ever get past their deaths. What would that mean if that were to happen one day? I know that when I fall in love and have children, it certainly will be filled but I hope that I'm never 'ok' that they are gone.

I am incredibly grateful to my sister for always being there for me. She is right there with me through the tears, the sad dreams, the phone calls and for sad days like today. We will be spending the day together as we've promised to do from now on. I certainly can't imagine going through it alone.

I don't want this to be a sad post but more of a reminder to you to cherish your loved ones. Cherish your parents. Cherish your siblings. Cherish your friends. Tell each and every one of them how much they mean to you. If I had one more day to spend with my parents, that's all I would do.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

"Only in LA"

Yep, I got another one already! Well, technically, this happens in New York all the time too but whatever.. I'm still using it for my "Only in LA" series.

This morning I awoke to find brand new "No Parking" signs on my street. They are simple ones just telling us not to park on that side of the street. I am told they are filming signs and that soon, once they narrow down the exact location for filming, new signs like the one on the left will be posted. Pretty cool, huh?

Well, it is neat until it starts annoying me that I can't find parking anywhere. Let's hope they don't shoot a lame commercial and it's a cool new movie featuring let's say.. Bradley Cooper or perhaps a new music video by Beyonce. Now let me go move my car! : )

Stay tuned!

Premiere of "Only in LA" Series

Welcome to the premiere of my "Only in LA" series. From time to time, I will blog about things that I see and hear here in my city. Feel free to steal this blog idea and change it to fit your own city.
So, here we go...

"Only in LA" will you overhear conversations like this one:

Aspiring Actor's Gym Buddy- "So, how's work going? Anything new come into the agency?"

Aspiring Actor- "Yeah, actually today this guy walked into the agency and said he just finished a horror script and he wrote it with me in mind as the lead!

Aspiring Actor's Gym Buddy- "Very cool. Who is the writer? Anyone I know?"

Sadly, I wasn't able to catch the rest of this conversation as they were walking into the gym and I was leaving it and I really couldn't walk any slower than I already was without appearing a tad creepy. I already felt like a huge eavesdropper but in my defense, they were talking really loud!

Stay tuned for more "Only in LA"!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wordless Wednesdays

I took this picture in New Mexico a few weeks ago and I just love it.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Please Help Pin-Ups for Vets!

Here is a letter that my roommate Gina sent out to all her Pin-Ups for Vets supporters:

Dear Pin-Ups For Vets Supporters,

I need your help. I'm in the running for a $50,000 Pepsi Refresh grant that will allow me to make a Veterans and Military Hospital Tour across the USA to visit our hospitalized Vets bedside, to bring them cheer & appreciation gifts.
You can vote once a day! Visit and click on the link near the waving flags at the top of my homepage. OR text 103020 to Pepsi (73774) everyday.

I need your help! Would you be so kind as to send this email to your contact lists, blog about it, talk about it at the water cooler and force your co-workers to vote, tell your local grocery store checker as you're paying for your 2% milk and cage-free eggs, write it on your deposit slips at the bank so the tellers see it, pass out flyers at your VFW and American Legion Post meetings, mount a bullhorn to the top of your car and sing about it as you drive through your local town center, put a bumper sticker on your car, Facebook it, Tweet it, MySpace it, write the link in face paint on your forehead at the next homecoming game, set your phone alarms to go off so you remember to vote everyday!

And...what do you get for all of this work? If Pin-Ups For Vets wins this grant, you will have made Veterans across the USA very happy, and let them know they are appreciated! Currently I'm in 166th place out of 495. Let's move this project up where it belongs--#1 spot.

Thank you so much for helping me!

There you have it guys, now go out and please, please vote for Pin-Ups for Vets!!

Tasty Tuesday

One of the many great things about living in a big city like LA is all the exposure you get to cultures of all over the world. I love being able to hop in my car and escape to a whole new country for awhile in one of these somewhat exotic neighborhoods. There's Little Ethiopia, Korea Town, Little Tokyo and so so many others.

Last Sunday my friend Tracy and I decided to take a trip to Little Ethiopia.
We both LOVE Ethiopian food so we were in heaven. We headed over to Fairfax to eat at Messob. It has been rated the best Ethiopian restaurant in Little Ethiopia plus one of my roommates recommended it so we had to go there. I was very happy with the food and vowed to return very soon.

I found the following quote and thought it described the area so well. ''There's a block-long section of South Fairfax Avenue that transports passersby to a distant land. In Little Ethiopia, the lively conversations are in Amharic and the pungent smells are from spices uncommon to most American palates. Be ready to pass the injera bread.... "

Something else amazing that I ate this past weekend with Tracy was this delicious carrot and pecan cake. It was seriously the best thing I've tasted in forever!! It was at a nice restaurant next to the Kodak Theater in Hollywood so I don't have the recipe. If anyone has a recipe for carrot and pecan cake, then PLEASE send it my way! Thanks!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Weekend Picture Recap

I had a wonderful weekend here in LA with my close friend from college, Tracy. It went by way too fast and I was incredibly sad to see her leave this afternoon. I cannot wait for the day till we live at least on the same coast! I think that this weekend was a wonderful combination of planned outings and events mixed in with down time and relaxing in my living room. Right, Tracy?! Haha!

Here are a few of the highlights:

We spent a few hours hanging out on the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica before taking her to the airport. We also walked over to the Santa Monica Pier. She had never been over there before plus it's a perfect spot for pictures. We decided that I must go there on a date in the near future! : )

My roommate Sw
ati had a speak-easy themed fund-raiser cocktail party for her work, Zocalo Public Square on Saturday night so we attended that fully dressed the part. It was fun to get all dressed up with Tracy (I made her wear a long blond wig, which she loved) and be at a classy event. The picture in the middle is courtesy of Zocalo Public Square.

Since New Y
ork isn't exactly known for it's sunny skies, we spent Saturday laying out at the beach. Sadly, Tracy didn't get to wear her swimsuit at all this summer in NY so she was super excited to wear one here. I cannot tell you how amazing it was just to lay out with her and simply talk. It was great beach weather for us and I am happy to report that I DID NOT GET BURNT! I was all about my 100 SPF sunscreen!!

During the day on Friday, I did my best to give Tracy a tour of Hollywood. I got us a hotel room at the W so we were able to park there and just walk up and down Hollywood Blvd. Of course we had to get a cheesy pic in front of the "Hollywood" sign. This was one of the best views we found. We also took several pictures in front of a few stars with our fave celebs names on them.

Then on Friday
night, we met up with a few new and old friends for dinner at Velvet Margarita just a couple blocks from our hotel. It was a lovely night full of great conversation and delicious Mexican food.

On Sunday, my sister drove to LA with Lucas so Tracy could finally him. We spent time at Griffith Park lounging in the grass and enjoying the train museum at Travel Town. Lucas absolutely adores trains so he was in heaven there. It was such a sweet day and I loved getting to spend it with three of my favorite people in the world!