Monday, March 31, 2008

Dating Cindy Crawford

Feeling lazy? Need that extra push? Go buy this workout DVD. My arms are so sore, putting on eyeshadow and mascara was a major accomplishment this morning. I'm planning on having a weekly date night with Cindy when Jota is at band practice or has a soccer game. No way I'm letting him see me flopping around the house doing lunges with kicks.

Speaking of the band, the boys played at Rusty's Surf Ranch on the Santa Monica Pier last night. Good times. I'm thinking Sunday Funday this summer is going to start at Big Dean's.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

An Egg-cellent Start to the Day!

My favorite (read: current) breakfast food

3 whole eggs + 1 carton of egg whites - I know they're healthy and all, but plain egg whites creep me out. I need some yellow color.

12 slices of turkey bacon - Again with the healthy stuff. We all know I LOVE bacon, but a girl can only take so much fat.

1 cup shredded cheese - cheddar, swiss, whatevs (full fat, I DO NOT skimp on cheese.)

1 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained *

1/4 cup of water

* substitute black beans, lentils, mushrooms (gross), anything you might put in an omelet or quiche.

Mix everything together, pour into greased muffin tins, and bake at 350. Not sure for how long, but keep checking until they're done. Cool, and then freeze/refrigerate for future use. I microwave frozen eggy cups for 30 second increments.

These are a great source of protein and fiber depending on the ingredients you use.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Little Ghetto by the Sea

 A year ago Jota and I moved from our cookie cutter, north of Pico, Santa Monica neighborhood, to beachy, artistic, and definitely eccentric, Venice Beach. A block west lies the beach, the Venice Canals are a block south, and just a few blocks east is Abbott Kinney Blvd, full of quirky little shops. Our quaint building is situated right on of the busiest intersections in the area for the summer. There's no sleeping in on a Saturday when a bike gang rolls up Venice Blvd at 8:00am.

My new hardwood floors lack shine and luster from years of sand being tracked inside, and I've all but given up trying to sweep up every last bit in the summer. While our shower has slightly better water pressure than my mom's house (read: a trickle), it's attached to a super deep claw foot tub, lovingly restored by our kooky landlord. Despite the kitchen reaching sweltering temperatures while I'm cooking, I've devised a pretty sweet cooling system using the oven vent, the back door, a baby gate, a swiveling fan, the front door, and both ceiling fans; allowing us to eat, play quarters, and sometimes sleep (Juan!) in our cozy breakfast nook. I wouldn't trade my new home for the world. Well, maybe for an additional 100 square feet, or a parking space.

However the neighbors, have got to go. Now, I don't mean Dave & Amanda, the other cute little couple from Maryland. Or Mykee and Jordan, with their little beagle mix Rainbow. Not even Saneechee (I spelled that phonetically), who is by far the coolest neighbor ever. I'm talking about the bums.

When Jota and I moved to Santa Monica from Maryland, we were shocked by the homeless population. But think about it...if you're going to be homeless, wouldn't you want to be where it's warm? These homeless people just go about their day, take their meals from the volunteers along Ocean Ave, shower down by the beach, and sleep on the sand.* Yes, you get the occasional nutjob that runs up and down the street screaming (or singing depending on the day), "Die bitch die!" No joke. But for the most part, the homeless in Santa Monica are a peaceful bunch.

Venice, is a bit different. They're younger, well dressed (ie clean North Face coats, Merrill hiking boots), beg you for money, weed, booze, and scream obscenities at you when you ignore their 'Will work for weed or sex' sign. They take off their shirts and play drunken fight club in the parking lot next to my house. They harass our neighborhood to no end, often resulting in police sirens and helicopter searches late into the night. They piss and shit behind our giant trash bins where my lovely neighbors who are lucky enough to have a parking space keep their car. So now we have to keep our trash locked in our common area. Our landlord had to cancel our recycling. There's no more room for another bin, because where would everyone put their bikes? And that is ridiculous. We are recycling fools.

Which is why when I checked the mail the other day, and noticed that one of these hooligans decided to stash his knapsack in the bushes by my house...I threw it away. In our garbage cans locked behind a 10 foot fence. I considered leaving a note along the lines of, "Don't leave your shit here", but decided that starting a turf war with the belligerent vagrants wasn't in my best interest.  

Those are Cheetos, Honey Bun, and Reeses wrappers left on my front stoop.  There were also Rice Krispies and Lay's wrappers in my shrubs.  I'm guessing someone scored their weed and got the munchies on my porch.  

*I know I am generalizing here, but I'm trying to paint a picture where there's a distinct difference between our experience in Santa Monica, and that of Venice.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The End Has Come

I'm officially over junk food. Read that again, slowly. Last night, Jota and I went out to dinner with our weekly roommate (Kusi) to Danny's Deli. Unable to just stick with a salad, I opted for the Philly cheese steak with carmelized onions. Wouldn't you? It was damn good, and yet so filling that I could only eat half of it. I'm thinking to myself, "Look at you, going out to eat dinner, and only indulging a little bit. Yeah that's right."

Unfortunately at 5:30 this morning, my tummy was telling me, "Bitch, don't you ever eat that junk again! You think I'm angry now? Eat the rest of that sandwich for lunch today and I'll really let you know how I feel."

I left the house this morning with my excellent eggy cups (recipe and photos eventually) and no lunch in tow. Determined to get back on the healthy track, I offered to order in from California Vegan for a few girls on my team. Forty minutes later, I sign for the check, and bound to the kitchen to divvy up the goods. Pad see eew and soy chicken satay for me, veggies for the unadventurous, and wait...FOUR orders of pad thai?! I call them back up and explain, "I think there was a mistake. See when I asked for 'a full order of pad thai', I think you thought I said four orders of pad thai."

"Uh, that what you order. I repeat back 'four order pad thai', and you say yes".

"Yes, you're right. I understand that. But you see I thought you said 'full order pad thai'. Which is why I agreed with you."

"So what is problem?"

"The problem is I have three extra orders of pad thai, which normally wouldn't be a problem if they had shrimp and not soy fish in them, meaning no one else is going to eat them. I need you to take them back because my boss is breathing down my neck for spending $90 on lunch from a strip mall."

"Ok, you bring back and we refund."

I felt shitty, shitty, shitty. You know they just threw that food away. And the poor woman who took my order was all worried about her boss finding out that she made a mistake. I tried to explain there was no fault on either of us, it was simply a misunderstanding. A misunderstanding that required them to refund me $30. And this is why I hate being an assistant in LA.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

You Can't Drink All Day if You Don't Start in the Morning

Jota and I are old balls. For the first time in all my drinking years, I did nothing for St Patty's Day. Didn't call in sick to work, didn't slam an Irish Car Bomb, didn't chug green beer, and certainly didn't wear my "Irish Whiskey Makes Me Frisky" shirt.

I actually ended up at the gym, worked my tushie off (seriously, it's getting smaller), and then came home to make dinner. Debated meeting up with Kel and Da at Finn McCool's on Main Street, but upon hearing the line was around the block, decided it was not meant to be.

The next time St Patty's Day falls on a weekend is 2012. I will be 30. Yikes.

Kusi is in town again. Why did that kid move to Boulder? He should have stayed here, and commuted there. Just stole your joke J.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Because I'm bored and hungover

Sipping on some Sunkist with crushed ice! And making a picture essay. Enjoi!

1. What is your relationship status?

2. Who is your celebrity crush?
Paul Blackthorne

3. Who is your favorite band?

4. What is your favorite movie?
breakfast at tiffanys

5. What kind of pet do you have?

6. Where do you live?
Venice Beach
It looks so clean from far away.

7. What do you do at work?

8. What do you look like?
Hungover Again

9. What do you drive?
beach cruiser!!

10. What’s your favorite TV show?
gossip girl

11. Describe yourself.
Im bossy

12. What’s your name?
Jamie Lynn Spears

13. What’s your favorite candy?
peanut butter cup

Family Dinner

Starting this past Christmas, Kel and Da decided that we should try and do family dinner every once in a few. Say food and I'm there! So of course I showed up to Hanukkah rip roaring drunk. It was Em's fault I swear. Thankfully I redeemed myself at New Year's dinner, keeping my wine consumption to a minimum.

Since our previous two dinners were at Casa de BK Broilers, I opted to host in our small abode sometime in Feb. Noticing that there seemed to be a theme for each meal, I pronounced mine to be cheese and bacon. If you know me, you know that cheese and bacon are like their own food group. And I wonder why I need to lose a few lbs?

The Menu:
Bacon Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Parmesan

Four Cheese Macaroni with Pancetta (gruyere, cheddar, gouda, and fontina)

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta

Beef Tenderloin with a Red Wine Sauce (no bacon or cheese here, unfortunately)

Chocolate Bread Pudding with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (not here either, boo)

I think we all unbuttoned our pants at the table that night.

Now don't go thinking this is a typical dinner in the Jota household. We usually stick with chicken or fish with a veggie. Maybe a rice or potato, but that's not too often.

Last night we hosted again, and in honor of St. Patty's Day and my Irish roots, Jota helped me make dinner. What I mean is, he turned the crock pot on.

The Menu:
Fruit and Cheese Platter - including strawberries, grapes, starfruit, brie, chevre, and gouda.

Corned Beef with Cabbage and Potatoes

Brown Sugar Glazed Carrots

Spinach Salad with Grape Tomatoes, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinaigrette

Four Leaf Clover Sugar Cookies (Jota's mom sends us sugar cookies for every holiday. We got bunny and tulip shaped ones too.)

Afterwards, we jetted across the street to Cougar, I mean James Beach. From Urban Cougar...

"James Beach is a cougar landmark on the west side of Los Angeles. All wet-behind-the-ears cougar hunters would be well served to cut their teeth at this cougar institution. James Beach specializes in the Cadillac cougars that are on the fulcrum of becoming Trans-Ams. The crowd is usually solid and the after-parties are flowing. With an outdoor deck the Trans-Ams can be observed in their natural environment: cigarette in hand, mini-skirt, a tan that is 4 years shy of leather and a nose for partying. If all else fails, James Beach has the best French fries in the city and, oh yeah, my friend Daryl lives right around the corner."

Now, I don't know who Daryl is, but evidently he's practically my neighbor. Da was immediately pounced on by a manther, telling her, "You're the hottest bar in this bar." He then showed off his bling bracelet, and sulked away once she pointed out that it was CZ.

And that's pretty much where the story stops. Well, it's where it all gets too fuzzy for me to even try and re-tell. But we had fun. Lots of it. And we're doing Edward Forty Hands tonight. Liz is going to be the official pant unzipper-er.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I heart...

  • Washington Post Wednesdays - I'm a bit obsessed with Miss Manners.

  • Snuggling in the morning with Jota and Duff.

  • Snuggling anytime with Jota and Duff.

  • Summers in Venice.

  • Winters in Venice.

  • All the times in Venice.

  • When people come to visit. Kusi's in town tomorrow night and then Byn in 3 weeks!

  • Listening to Jota talk about the band and playing bass.

  • Theme parties!

  • Discovering that I actually enjoy exercising, and sweating isn't that bad. (Jota, you did not just read that.)

  • That it takes more time for me to put my makeup on than it does for me to do my hair.

  • Day light savings. No more walking Duff in the dark after work!

  • Maryland crab cakes, crab dip, crab saute, crab imperial...Just call me Bubba, or Bubb-ette I guess.
  • Yuengling. Someone send me a case please.

  • Vacations. This girl seriously needs one.

  • Meeting new people.

  • My new kickball team.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Baby Barker

Went with Em to her sonogram, and heard little doo. You'll have to ask to hear my impression of the heartbeat, but I can try to describe. Think of a cheesy club beat, you know "mmmbbbb chee, mmmbbbb cheee, mmmbbbb cheee." Add in a little "whoosie" before each "mmmbbbbb" and you get a "whoos mmmbbbb chee, whoos mmmbbb chee, whoo mmmbbbb chee." No? I'll have to do it for you.

Her doctor also said that he'd buy dinner if I'm in the delivery room. Em is going to want tuna. So I guess that means we're getting sammiches from Bayside.

Unintentional Venice Bar Crawl

Went out to sushi with Kusi, Doug, Lauren and Jota. Did my first sake bomb. Saw Suge Knight. Took a pic of his car for fear of being shot if caught taking a picture of him. Had long debate with boys on whether or not it was actually Suge Knight.

Girls: "Dude, that's totally Suge."

Boys: "Are you sure? Wait, let me Google Images him."

Girls: "Look at the beard! It's him! It's him!"

Boys: "Don't point, he might see you! But seriously thought, don't you think he'd be more jacked? He just got out of prison."

Girls: "Whatevs, we're telling everyone we saw him."

Moved on to Cabo Cantina where we proceeded to take over a table on the balcony with the fire pit. Ordered two rounds of tequila shots, and ended up playing speed quarters for a good hour with our plastic shot glasses. Got tab, realized that when you tell waitress, "Bring us a round of tequila" she will upgrade you to Patron without even asking. Sure it was smooth going down, but I would have been fine with rail. Guess I know to specify next time. However, Jota tells me Cabo only serves Patron! WTF kind of mexican bar is that?

Stumbled out of Cabo, only to dart across Washington to the world famous Hinano. Split a pitcher, met up with the Barkers, decided to move on. Popped into Nick's Market next door to grab some road beers for the walk to Townhouse. Tapped the Rockies. Practically died laughing while watching Kusi race Lauren, and then Jota down Speedway. He pulled his hammy. Sorry Kus!

Amazingly gained entrance into Townhouse, only to leave with Jota after finishing my beer. I hear the kids rallied on to Nicki's.

Inner Monologue - It's 7am, and who's at my door? Fuck! Forgot Kusi was coming over to watch the Arsenal game. Will just stay in bed and let Jota entertain him. Oh, and now Barker's here? Shit! Where are my clothes?


Wait, am I still drunk? Am definitely still drunk. Was texting with Bee Gold last night? At 4am? Chicago time right? No? LA time? What was I doing up at 4am? Did I have more beers? Must check recycling to see once I need more coffee.

Went to see The Other Boleyn Girl with Em. Good movie, would be better with more sex. Really just need more naked Eric Bana. Would it have killed them to include a shot of his ass?

Gave Jota a mohawk.

Went to Texas Loosey's for Liz's birthday dinner. Had yummy pulled pork with mac n' cheese. Got a cute little drink called a 'Kick Ass' that came in a cute little boot. Have three boots at home now! Moved on to The Rustic Lite for karaoke. Watched the boys do a humorous rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody. Went home early because really, I went out a bit too hard the night before.

Chilled. Went shopping with Jota. Grilled out at Kusi's crib. Missed out on volleyball and croquet because of stupid traffic.