A New Toy

So you know how a lot of people claim they are “young at heart”? I’m pretty sure I’m the opposite. I’m an old lady in the body of a 29-year old (who looks like a 15 year old).

Some evidence? My newest toy:

An electric tea kettle! I’ve had this baby for less than 48 hours and I am SMITTEN! I have been gushing about it to everyone I come into contact with. So far, I have been met with less than enthusiastic responses. People just. don’t. get. it. I’ve been drinking green tea all day like it’s going out of style and instead of microwaving my mug and “burning” myself when the handle gets all hot (I’m impatient, I never wait for it to cool) I have hot water in an instant and no burning hands. I love it!

I need to get out more. Maybe join a bridge club?

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Puppy Love

I am not ashamed at all to admit that I spend a great deal of my disposable income on my dog.

That would be Valentino with his new (zebra print!) bed, new stuffed duck, new dog mat for his bowls so they don’t slide around and his favorite rope. What you don’t see is that on the table just out of sight are a pack of new rawhides, his favorite dog treats, a meaty bone and another squeaky toy.

But honestly, he deserves it. He is there to greet me every single time I come home, he sleeps at the foot of my bed, and he makes me laugh like nothing else does. This week he has been an especially great source of comfort. I’ve been anxious about something, so much so that I haven’t been sleeping and I’ve been making myself sick over it. I’m sure it’ll end up being fine, but I am a worrier. I don’t really see my boyfriend except for the weekends (he works a lot, plays sports several times a week, etc), so it’s me and the pup Monday-Friday, save the ocassional happy hour. And honestly, if it weren’t for him I’d be on the couch in my pajamas watching Bridget Jones and throwing a serious pity party. Instead, I’ve been eating some seriously good food, re-watching Downton Abbey (so good!), and enjoying a glass of wine….in my pajamas. And Valentino has been there every second. He’s kind of amazing.

Oh yah, before I forget – HAPPY BIRTHDAY LAUREN!!! Every hour spent with you is a joy!

Next time we go out I promise to wear make-up 😉

This And That

I like to think I live a pretty “balanced life.” For every Sunday morning spent curled up in bed, I spend the afternoon on a long walk or run on the beach. I count calories, but don’t “diet.” I read ‘The Hunger Games’ followed by ‘A Room With A View.’ You get the idea. And in case you don’t, here’s a visual depiction.

A handful of M&Ms (x10)…

Followed by a salad and grilled fish for dinner.

A late night spent in OB drinking beers, eating burgers, and playing pool…

Followed by a quiet day in Riverside, visiting Adam’s Mom.

And last but not least, Prosecco with a splash of raspberry…

Followed by taco flavored Doritos (pictured above, behind the Prosecco).

I could go on, but you get the idea.

I Love My Boyfriend And I Love Wine

And not necessarily always in that order…

This weekend, I spied with my little eye a keychain from a winery that my boyfriend’s mother had for her spare key. Nothing flashy, just a wine cork with a “thingy” drilled into it so you could attach a key ring to it. (“Thingy” is a technical term of art, in case you were wondering.)

I asked my boyfriend if he thought he would be able to make me one when we got home. He took a look at it, disappeared into his Mom’s garage and 5 minutes later I had my own!

Somebody just earned a backrub.

I know, it’s not anything special. But it makes me so happy. Sometimes, it really is the little things.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Teach Your Children Some Manners

Or you know, how to hold themselves accountable for their actions.

Last week, my only post was a rant-y, woe-is-me, post about a coffee-infused computer and being busy with work (I know, who isn’t?). Well, I’m happy to say I’m feeling much better. But now that my computer is in working order, let me elaborate quickly on my main debacle last week, because who doesn’t like reading about people’s small problems and complaints on the Internet? (answer: everybody)

Currently, I do a lot of consulting/independent contractor work in the legal/contract management field. So very often, I find myself working from home. Which, by the way, I LOVE. However, occasionally I do get stir-crazy and so I like to spend a few hours at a nearby coffee shop. Last week, during one of my coffee shop excursions, I found myself at the wrong end of a “hit and run” with my computer. And by that I mean, a young teenage boy ran into my table, spilled his iced coffee all over my laptop, and then bolted whilst shouting a quick “sorry, bro!” over his shoulder.

I wish I was exaggerating.

So of course, I panicked. I was in the middle of working on a fairly long and detailed Excel spreadsheet and had not uploaded my progress to my server in well over a week. Also, because I work as a consultant, and my computer truly is my livelihood, I instantly went to that “how am I going to work this week? What am I going to do? My life is over!” place. Luckily, that train of thought lasted about 30 seconds, and I remembered to unplug my computer and pop the battery out. I took a few deep breaths, texted my sister and boyfriend to complain/fill in the details, and gladly accepted the free latte and muffin the nice barrista offered me. What else are you going to do?

Two days later, computer was still not turning on. (I left it completely alone for 2 days, tipped it on its side, and left it in a cool, non-damp place to dry). I had resigned myself to the fact that I was going to be replacing my laptop. The laptop that I’ve had for at most, a few months. Luckily, the weekend came around and provided adequate distraction from my computer situation, and wouldn’t you know, on Sunday when I decided to give it one more try before heading out to Best Buy/Costco/etc to replace it, it turned on and looked no worse for the wear!

So as a result, my disaster that I almost let ruin my week, turned out to be a minor inconvenience in the end. However, if I ever see that little punk again…..well, I’ll probably do nothing. But I do hope at some point, he feels bad for what he did or in the future learns that running away is NOT THE CORRECT ANSWER.

Rant over. Hope everyone had a safe weekend and if you are into that kind of thing, drank plenty of green beer.

p.s. I’m not completely heartless and I understand that accidents happen, and honestly, I wouldn’t expect a child to buy me a new computer – just a proper apology would have sufficed. Also, don’t call me “bro.”

Egads!

Friday. Good Lord you came just in time! This week has been quite the week. (I think my favorite part would be the coffee-infused hit and run committed against my laptop…it was not pretty).

It hasn’t all been bad, but it has been exhausting. Let’s just say I am going to thoroughly enjoy a strong beverage or two tonight.

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Cheers!

La Vita e Bella

Ever since I started reading ‘A Room With a View‘, I’ve been waxing nostalgic about my time spent in Florence, Italy. In 2006 during the summer between my first and second year of law school, I decided to forego the typical summer clerkship and instead I studied art and international law in Florence. Best. decision. of. my. law. school. career.

And although it wasn’t my first time in Italy, or Europe for that matter, I had some of the most wonderful experiences of my life in those short few weeks.

The Arno river, with the Ponte Vecchio in the past

Can you blame a girl for wanting to go back? The wine, the food, the PEOPLE! It was a magical summer. I think I fell in love no less than 4 times that summer. Italian men? Fuggedaboutit! And even though San Diego is great and I love it with all my heart, summers in Italy put our little beach town to shame. Yah, I said it.

That last picture ? That would be the view from my apartment.  The apartment that cost me less than half of what I have ever paid rent for in San Diego. I was literally steps away from the Arno. Not to mention that said apartment was about 100 yds from a fantastic little Irish pub – the James Joyce (you can’t get more Irish than that!) and a stone’s through from the Piazza Michelangelo.

To be honest, I don’t know how I got any studying in (I actually got some pretty great grades). I think I can truly thank this little exercise in living la vita bella in sparking my love for simple, unprocessed, good food. Okay, that’s a lie, my mother was the BEST cook growing up and I was extremely spoiled…how many 8 yearolds do you know that bring homemade biscotti in their lunches? But this was the first time I embraced it on my own, without my dear mother’s guiding hand.

That spread above would be an example of a typical night’s worth of gli antipasti (the appetizers). Most fortunately for me, my roommate and neighbors all shared my love and enthusiasm for food (my roommate John was known to walk around town with 1/2 a Kilo of prosciutto [that’s about a 1lb] to snack on…). And although we loved our occasional nights out, our favorite past-time was inviting all of friends over for a dinner party with whatever we had grabbed at the market on the way home from class. I should mention class was only held from 8-11 AM leaving us with plenty of time to explore the city (and shop! The Zara’s in Florence? AMAZING!).

Hungry yet?

Between all of us, we could put back some serious food.

My face might be mostly obscured in the above photo (I’m the gal on the right side) but do not fear – my plate and tummy were always full! It’s a miracle I didn’t come back to the state weighing 200 lbs. Seriously. I may be 5 feet tall, but I can eat with the best of them!

We even had professors join in (above center, in brown) on some of our dinners! You haven’t had a party until you’ve partied with a professor of law. Seriously. She brought  handle of Jack Daniels to dinner.

I wish I could say the above bottles were the accumulation of several week’s worth of imbibing…but I think we all know it wasn’t. Hours. We’re talking hours, folks.

I think I better stop for now as I am *this* close to packing a bag and heading to the airport. But lest you think my time in Florence was all booze and food (there was a lot), I did a great deal of traveling and museum-gawking. Perhaps for another post?

Alas, for now I’m stuck in La Jolla (heehee)….but I’m determined to make it back soon. It’s been a good 6 years since I’ve been to Italy and the itch to go back is getting unbearably strong.

I want to know, where is the place that makes your heart sing? I’m always looking for an excuse to travel….

On Animal Behavior

I’m no dog whisperer, but I do enjoy learning about dogs. Especially the dearest dog of all, my Valentino. Now, I’ll be the first to admit he’s a bit quirky. It’s most likely the result of spending so much time with me. Go figure.

For the most part, his behavior falls into line with that of normal canine behavior. For example, he doesn’t eat out of his bowl. Instead he takes a huge mouthful of kibble and runs to a corner of the house and eats it there. I’m constantly finding little piles of kibble hidden behind curtains or under pillow cushions. This is actually very similar to how wolves act in the wild and it’s pretty harmless, so I let him do it. Besides, I wouldn’t really know how to stop it.

But his newest thing? He’s started decorating his kennel.

That would be his kennel (which he loves!) , with is newly acquired red balloon and dark green throw pillow. I’ve removed both objects twice today and they keep popping back in. He’s determined to, as my sister said, make a house a home. It’s a little strange. And dare I say, adorable? Please Note: he does not attempt to play or pop the balloon. He just likes to look at it (?).

Anyone else have some funny animals?

 

Currently

Just another Wednesday night.

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Unpictured? Big glass of red.

Reluctantly Healthy

I love, LOVE, Judy Greer. I think she steals just about every scene she is in. I especially enjoyed her character Kitty, the insane ex-assistant/mistress to George Bluth Sr., on Arrested Development (aka the greatest sitcom to ever air).

Anyway, in my constant quest to find shortcuts to healthy living, I happened upon a weekly web series she does for Yahoo called ‘Reluctantly Healthy.’ I think the title is brilliant, and I 100% relate to it. I would much rather eat salty french fries than a kale salad, but I realize that french fries aren’t going to provide me with the nutrients that my body requires AND that I always feel much better after a nice meal full of unprocessed, fresh food. I am reluctantly healthy.

Isn’t she adorable? Check out more of her videos here.

What are YOUR healthy shortcuts?