Archive | March, 2011

4th week in LA = check

23 Mar

this was supposed to be my last week in LA for this project. but life (and namely work) happens and i have two more weeks on my schedule coming up.

we caught up on all our old favorites: chaya, bottega louie, yojie, big man bakes

and we tried out a few new places, too.

all of my co-workers were raving about the edison. it’s a good walk and usually my feet hurt after work so i’ve managed to whine my way out of going. until this week.

it was once a power plant and they’ve kept the vintage vibe with a speakeasy feel. the servers and hostesses wear flapper costumes (but not in a kitschy halloween way, in a cool retro way). the give you a token for a 35 cent cocktail which is always helpful for a girl on per diem. loved it. one of the best bowls of mac n’ cheese i’ve ever had. my cocktail tasted very much like zima but i blame that on my choice — there were tons of yummy cocktail options.

andrew and i both had flights on the red-eye so we opted to rent a car so we could take our time leaving. we’ve planned for weeks to go to a recommended thai restaurant that boasts their very own thai elvis. sadly, thai elvis called in sick. and we had some extra time to kill, and heck we were in hollywood, so we drove to groughman’s chinese theater. as many times as i’ve been to LA i’ve always skipped out on the major tourist attractions.

 

my hands are smaller than hermoine’s!

 

for some reason they were giving out sundrops. we took them because they were free. now i know why. bleh.

and then we caught our flights. lax is getting a much-needed remodel and this sign tickled me.

 

total randomness

17 Mar

i found a few random photos on my camera and thought i would share.

random photo 1:

this is from a 5k that we ran in february. it was cold. it was hilly. i questioned running.

random photo 2:

this is an amazing watercolor of our beloved Chloe. i was completely puzzled by a package we got in the mail a few weeks ago. we didn’t know the sender and i called and asked alex if i could open it. it was a belated wedding gift. and a total surprise. we are in love and need to order one for conner stat.

random photo 3:

family photo from new year’s with the dogs.me with a glass of one of my favorites: rosa regale.

and on the music front, i’ve become obsessed with adele. i’ve listened to this song no less than 30 times this week. it will become your new shower anthem.

happy (almost) friday!

LA Week 3

17 Mar

week 3 we stayed in korea/viet-town because hotel prices were sky high downtown. it was the first time we’ve had a car which was wonderful for trying out new places but a pain to deal with LA traffic. it really does stink people.

so for a few nights we grabbed dinner at close/cheap places. the type of restaurants that don’t spend money on websites. but i had some great ramen and one of the best korean barbeque dinners i’ve ever tasted. i didn’t take any photos but i found a few online to give you an idea of what koren bbq entails. we had to get the “all you can eat” option. $17 is a STEAL in los angeles.

two nights we drove to neighboring pasadena. which was just beautiful. and we had a run in with scientologists. they really do exist. we spiced things up with indian at this place and curry at city thai.

to finish off our week we drove to santa monica just in time to catch the sunset. and of course had an impromptu photo shoot. and for some reason this dress makes me look like i weigh a million pounds. note to self, take dress to consign.

we had a great view at the lobster and then walked on the pier and play a few rounds of skee ball to kill some time before we faced more LA traffic.

extra princess goodness

14 Mar

due to some technical difficulties i was not able to upload any of the photos from my camera. here’s a little extra goodness, mostly to make you laugh.

pre-race posing:

post-race disney:

all i wanted was a turkey leg. and what princess wants, princess gets.

a bug’s life

our tour jeep broke down on our “safari.” we were stuck next to this mechanical elephant for a good thirty minutes before staff could come and fix our jeep.

harry potter world!!!

BUTTERBEER!!!!

in front of the hogwarts express

this is a race/mini vacation that i can’t wait to do again. :)

LA food week 2 review

7 Mar

one of the things i love about traveling is trying out new restaurants. i love researching and discovering new gems. After a fair amount of trips to LA we found ourselves visiting the same places over and over. we found places we loved to eat and we frequented them often.

 

but i decided to challenge my co-workers with a new restaurant challenge. we would not return to any place we’ve already eaten.

 

my co-workers were a little resistant. but in the end, i’m a bossy little thing and they let me have my way. :)

 

first up: vietnamese at blossom. i’ve been on a pho kick since i had the most amazing pho in hong kong. my pho was pretty decent, nothing special but cheap and simple.

 

night number two we opted for paparazzi filled “the grove/farmer’s market.” 1 co-worker needed an anniversary gift. i convinced him his wife needed a new handbag and proudly modeled a few for fun. The other co-worker didn’t have proper clothes for his onsite and needed to do a little clothes shopping.

 

the farmers market is a must see in los angeles. there are no less than 25 restaurants to checkout so it’s a great place for a group. no celeb sitings but it’s a staple for the rich and famous.

 

but the real winner this week was yojie. a japanese “fondue” restaurant we spotted on one of our morning runs. co-worker andrew did his homework and talked us into trying it out. and i loved every mouthful. think melting pot – the cheese. we even splurged for the red velvet fondue. you read that correctly: red. velvet. fondue. drool.

 

 

seriously, so much fun. and we just happened upon happy hour with $1 sake. who am i to turn down $1 sake?!

 

LA week 3 takes us to korea town. should make for some interesting/good treats.

guess where i’ve been?

3 Mar

diary of a disney princess

2 Mar

3:30 AM:

The alarm goes off. Shuffle around putting on gear and tutu of course. lauren dubs hers “the black swan” tutu.

4:00 AM:

Make our way to the rental car. Make friends with two other runners from Tampa that carpool with us. They’re two sweet moms from tampa that just started using the Jeff Galloway run/walk method. They’re wearing adorable sparkly skirts

4:30 AM:

Hit the equivalent of rush hour traffic in Atlanta. We’re only a mile a way but it takes us until 4:45 to get to the Epcot parking lot.

5:00 AM:

Park and stop at the massive row of porta potties. saw someone almost vomit. i almost lose my cookies, lauren breathes through her tutu. princesses should not have to use porta potties.

5:40:

Lauren and I hug goodbye as she is in corral D and i’m in corral B (after much deliberation i decide to “run” the race. i was motivated because i didn’t want to be in a corral with walkers).

5:53:

the fairy godmother announces the start of my wave with fireworks. i’m nervous but much happier due to the 65 degree weather.

6:15

i finally make it out of the cluster and find my groove. i’m feeling good.

6:53:

i run through cinderella’s castle. runners high!

7:30ish:

i just may beat my kiawah time. wahoo!

7:53:

it’s hot and i’m tired. my legs are really feeling the run and i have to call alex for inspiration.

 

7:55

 

pass a wonderful gospel choir. good lord, you know i needed you!

8:00.41:

finish! my new PR! 2:07.41. HOT DOG, I averaged 9:45 minute miles and cut 4 minutes off kiawah. now i stretch, call the supporters,  and wait for lauren.

lauren finishes with her goal time!

the race was so much fun! i promise more photos when i can upload my actual pre/post race photos. this includes an up, close, and personal look at my tutu.

la week one review

1 Mar

disney race review tomorrow. pinky swear.

 

we hit up a few of our regular happy hour deals at chaya, border grill, and of course my all time favorite bottega louie’s. outside of the amazing burrata pizza, they have a delectable pastry case. see this guy? it’s the soul mate of the one i ate in hong kong.

i very seldom partake in the actual drinking part of happy hour but love the super deals on food. did y’all know that it’s extremely affordable to eat at some of the best places during happy hour? if you think a place is out of budget check out that HH menu and you’ll likely be pleasantly surprised with the delish deals.

but we made a vow to try at least one new place this week (and get ready for this: all but one new place for next week). we’ve toyed with checking out one particular restaurant for a while and decided thursday night to venture out of our comfort zone and check it out. that it may or may not have been next to this cupcake place may have made that decision.

top chef season 2 winner ilan hall opened the gorbals a few months back and the reviews looked promising. the building’s location provided for an interesting cast of characters and i certainly did not feel “cool” or LA enough, but loved the food. in fact, my dining partner and i may have been the only people in pastels as i was in sunshine yellow cardigan and he a turquoise polo. we like to think we look east coast, not uncool. there’s a difference, i swear.

so we mosied on over for dinner but took a pit stop at big man bakes. we were offered nutella and caramel apple samples. loved the caramel apple, the nutella tasted too much like peanut butter for my liking. and i love nutella (just ask me about the nutella crepe i ate for breakfast) but i opted for 6 assorted minis and a full size caramel apple.

one little guy didn’t make it out of the store. :)

yum, right? i found out about the cupcake place on the foodnetwork’s throwdown with bobby flay. big man lost to bobby but i thought these little guys were pretty amazing.

i had to do a little negotiating to get andrew, my co-worker, to agree to the gorbals. it’s a funky menu. literally half of a pig head is a menu option. we weren’t feeling brains for dinner and went with recommendations from our waiter. apparently top chef has a funky background with a jewish parent and scottish parent and decided to combine both cultures through food. as in, bacon wrapped matzoh balls. quite tasty. we also sampled the broccoli with soy, vinegar, and chile. the squid ink mussells, bone marrow, and banh mi poutine. they change their menu weekly so something new and tasty is always on the menu.

ps – the top chef winner was cooking in the kitchen and i sorta stared at him. what can i say? i clam up with celebrity sitings. he looked like a totally normal dude. but he also looked like he had visited big man bakes a few times since the show. :)

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