Monday, January 31, 2011

Huh?

I've been seeing a lot of adorable Valentine's Day stuff across the blogs I like to read.  Mostly in the way of paper products--cards, stickers, all of that good stuff.  I was on Saks.com this weekend and clicked on their Valentine's Day gift compilation.  I usually shun those kinds of things.  The compilations are often cheesy, impersonal, or just overpriced.  This one fit that bill and more.  You have your usual array of stuff, and then, look for it...chocolate lava cakes??  On saks.com??  Why, why, why. 

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Dinner for Four

We had dinner with H's sister and BIL yesterday night for dinner at Wood Spoon in downtown.  When I heard it was Brazilian, I wasn't quite sure what to expect.  The only Brazilian food I've ever had was at those meat joints where people come around with long swords of various animal body parts.  Turns out Wood Spoon is totally different, with small, petite portions of yummy, food--a lot of it vegetarian.  I even had fish!  (Followed up with a very generous portion of after-dinner Yogurtland, of course.  I knew the healthy streak was too good to last for more than two hours).

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And because I was too busy chowing down to take pictures, here is what I currently crave.  Coffee and macarons.  Does life get any sweeter than this?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Culver City with Friends

To cap off our weekend, H and I had dinner with W&G.  W & I are old friends from school, and I haven't seen them since our wedding (during which I couldn't chat) so it was great to finally get a chance to catch up during their improptu trip west.  We met at Meet in Culver City, which I think we all generally enjoyed.  The food was okay and the creme brulee was delicious.  Best of all was getting to spend QT with old and new friends.  Also looking forward to exploring Culver City more!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Motherly Love

One of the cutest things we saw as we made our way along Coast Blvd was a grouping of sea lions sleeping/lazing on the rocky cliffs on the La Jolla shoreline.  I exclaimed when I saw them and this woman who was standing next to me with her family excitedly instructed me to look at the mother sea lion with her little baby.  She literally had her flipper (is that what they're called?  her "arm") over the baby, pulling it close as they both slept.  It reminded me of my mom (Hi, Mom!).  The baby sea lion then woke up and pestered its mom until the mom then woke up and was like "Go back to sleep!!!"  Moms of toddlers out there -- ringing any bells for ya?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Diego Part Deux

I last left off with us alighting from our kayaks.  We quickly changed clothes and headed over to Coast Boulevard Park.  I'd been once before, during my first trip to California in college, and remember thinking that it looked like some gorgeous scene from a movie.  It was just too beautiful to be real.  What a difference ten years makes.  I feel like I've seen so many incredible California vistas since then.  I wasn't swooning like I did back as a 20-yr old, but H and I still thought it was pretty remarkable...

I pondered deep thoughts (or, you know, I posed).

 



The lighting during the sunset was incredible.  These are straight out of our camera.  H got some great shots with the orange hues in the sky.  If you want to go, get the timing right like we were lucky enough to do this trip.  Go kayaking and do activities in the late morning/early afternoon and then head out to Coast Blvd Park around 3pm (if you're visiting in winter).  We got a good two hours to walk around and take photos in daylight, we saw the sunset brilliantly, and then left right afterward when it got dark/cold. 

One thing we saw during our walk were some of the cutest (and loudest) sea lions ever.  It was great to see them in nature.  They made the Fisherman Wharf sea lions in SF look like seasoned city dwellers.  Up next!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Diego

This blog is slowly turning into an ode to California.  Totally unintentional but how can it not?  This state is just so photogenic.  H and I took a day-trip to San Diego on Saturday.  Where but in CA can you go from skiing one weekend to kayaking in the beautiful ocean the next?

75 degrees, sunny skies, shorts, gelato.  It was heavenly.  

About to head out


 

 We rented a two-person, sit-a-top kayak and took to the Pacific.  Three dolphins, countless sea lion (including one that looked at us and blinked), an army of pelican, and two hours later, we felt like we had conquered the ocean!  Okay, I did.  Ha.  It was so much fun!  It was also scary.  We saw kelp forests that reached down into the depths.  We went farther out into the ocean than either of us had ever been out before.  And we almost got tipped over by a dolphin (or so I feared).  We were technically kayaking over an underwater canyon (gulp) so we couldn't see all that much into the water, which made it creepier.  No sea turtles this time (that was in Maui), but a lot more diversity.

This picture doesn't do it justice; there were over 30 pelican sitting in a line.
 Unfortunately, no pics of the dolphins.  We were too busy admiring them and the zoom on my point-and-shoot is woefully inadequate.

We made it!

We then changed clothes and headed out to the beautiful beach-side paths that we'd seen from our kayak.  That's where the real photo fun begins.  DSLR goodness + perfect San Diego sunset = amazing pictures.  Stay tuned!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Huh?

So...it's 1:50 a.m. and I'm still working.  I didn't post today because, you know, I was busy.  But then I randomly (okay, not so randomly, I'm "taking a break") checked my blog stats and I got way more hits today than I usually do.  On the day I don't post anything!  Color me confused.  Probably just a coincidence.  But it was enough of a something to spur me to post.  Anyhoo, not much to post about today other than RICO is complicated and who said doctors have the worst hours? I beg to differ, seeing as how H is snoring in the other room and I'm planning to get up at the same time as him!  No pity party here though; H generally works much longer than I do. 

This late at night, I get pretty hungry.  What I wouldn't give for this!  And Laduree to boot.  How did I miss you in Paris?!  So cliche these days but who cares.  I want a macaron!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Zero Waste

I read this interesting article in Sunset about this Northern Californian (but of course) woman who leads her family and home in a zero-waste lifestyle.  That means, bringing cloth bags to the grocery store, buying in bulk without packaging, composting, and EVERYTHING in between.  My knee-jerk reaction was that she was a crazy hippie.  But after I let it simmer for awhile, I started to get interested.  I'm positive that I can't do what she's doing (very few can), but I think we can all be less wasteful and more mindful of the waste we generate.

Here's the article in Sunset, and here's her blog.  Check it out!

And just because posts without pictures are boring, here's a picture of the scariest cloud H and I have ever seen.  Everything's bigger in the Midwest.  What does this have to do with a zero-waste lifestyle?  Oh, nothing.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

West Coast Ski

H and I went skiing this past weekend and we had a ton of fun.  I also learned a few things:
  • Skiing in California is unreal.  It was literally 70 degrees when we got to the mountain.  I saw people skiing in tank tops and t-shirts.  It was lovely but very different from what I'm used to--East Coast skiing is like a battle against the elements.  Ice, wind, snow, seriously chapped lips.
  • My husband is a way, WAY better skier than me and apparently, a lot faster too because every time we started off together, he'd somehow end up having to wait for me every few minutes until I moseyed along down at my speed of 1 mph.
  • Snowboarders are scary because they're constantly sitting EVERYWHERE.  At the top of hills, at the bottom, and everywhere in between.  I'm like "Get up already!"
  • I need to learn how to keep my skis from doing the "V."  
  • Women who ski well look awesome.  I saw a bunch of ladies sashaying down the hills in super cute snowgear and really nice slalom form and thought that they looked fabulous.
  • Names/labels matter, for good or for bad.  I did a bunch of blues and had nary a problem.  But on our last run of the day, the route we were going to take down to the base had closed so we had to take an alternate.  This one was blues with a smattering of black diamond along the way.  I've never done a black before.  Ever.  So, of course, I hyperventilated and was convinced that I'd have to walk halfway down the mountain in my boots.  Turns out I was fine once I accepted I was going to have to do it.  And it wasn't really any harder than the blues I'd been doing.  Lesson learned.
Some assorted pics below:
 
 
 

Monday, January 17, 2011

Black Swan (a review)

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We saw Black Swan a few days ago.  I wasn't planning to watch it, so of course, I had read the entire Wikepedia entry and knew exactly what happened beforehand.  It made the movie less suspenseful (duh) but it I still enjoyed it.  Takeaways:  the direction and cinematography were pretty good.  I knew right away that it wasn't going to be one of those typical Hollywood movies because of the way the movie felt, with Natalie Portman's head bobbing along as she walked to Lincoln Center.  I liked it. 

Speaking of Natalie Portman, she definitely looks like she's aged, which is not cool because she's around my age.  The camera loves her though and her face is all delicate, refined beauty, and angles.  Mila Kunis was a different sort of face, entirely, with bulging features--a "loud" face.  Maybe that was the point, since she's supposed to be Portman's antithesis and all.   

The ballet scenes were beautiful; the mom was super creepy and I couldn't figure out why she wanted to trash the entire cake; the director-guy was sketchy and gross but funny; I totally didn't recognize Wynona Ryder, and New York was the perfect backdrop--cold, dark, but cultured and full of beauty.  

Friday, January 14, 2011

Mood-making

I love candles.  I think it started in college when I got over my fear of lighting matches and I found that candles really relaxed me.  I've been known to surreptitiously light candles in my office.  With all of that paper, it's probably not a good idea.  But there's just something about having that little fire going that makes me feel all cozy while I crank away.

My candles of the moment are from Anthropologie and L'Occitane.  I want to try the Tocca ones too, but they may be a little too overpriced at $36 a pop. 

Collage by me; photos by Anthropologie

My other must-try candle is from the W Hotel Shop.  If you've ever stepped foot into a W Hotel, you know exactly what I'm talking about.  They always smell so lovely and fresh...they claim that it's the candles and not some sort of supplemental spray but I'm not totally convinced.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Food for Thought

Two articles from this past week have been showing up in my Inbox a lot.  Not surprising considering I have a lot of friends with Asian mothers and a lot of friends who are lawyers (or former lawyers).  Check them out:

"Why Chinese Mothers are Superior" 

"Is Law School a Losing Game?"

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Moody

Back when SoCal had torrential rainstorms in the days leading up to Christmas, I took some melancholy, moody photos.  Now that it's sunny and normal again, there's less of that.  Here are my favorites from those dark days...


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Proof that the blog-gods listen (or that my mom reads my blog)

Remember this post, where I coveted those cute shoes?  Last time I was home, my mom got me these beauties.  Not the same color, but just as lovely and timeless.  Thanks, Mom!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Back to the golden coast

I love looking forward to things so it bums me out when it's all over.  I'm especially bummed out when I leave my family because I always have such a good time with them, and this time was no exception.  I was happy, though, that H was on the other side of my plane ride!

I rediscovered my ability to walk/public transpo it everywhere and my hate for all things cold/dry.  The one picture I was able to get (because it was taken with her camera) is from Lai.  As always, we had a wonderful time, chatting over brunch then coffee.  We didn't want the time together to end!  I was so thankful to see her, Cuddles, and some of my HS friends as well.  Great times with my family plus fun times with my friends made this trip memorable.

Sitting as window displays at Starbucks, across the street from brunch, where we kept the party going.


Monday, January 3, 2011

Culture in LA?

Having grown up within NYC limits, I'm pretty snobby when it comes to museums.  But H took me to The Getty yesterday and I really enjoyed it.  It's a great space.  We're going to have go back when it's not raining because the grounds are supposed to be beautiful.  The art itself was just okay.  Nothing to write home about.  But the buildings are very pleasing, as well as the views.  Clean lines, minimalist, white, sandstone.  Very LA.  I wouldn't have been surprised if I turned the corner and stumbled on a Pilates studio or Botox clinic.

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