Monday, December 29, 2008

@$#!%!!!


To say i'm in a bad mood would be... an understatement. I've been in what you might call a "bad mood" for quite some time now (like.. maybe the last month?), and as the new year approaches, i really really want to do something about it. The thing is, i don't know what the hell my problem is. Nothing in my life is particularly bad, and sure there are annoyances here and there, but what else is new? Yet i feel more unable than ever to cope with remotely stressful or frustrating situations, and i always break down in petit fits of rage (imagine screaming and some throwing of things) and tears (bit fat ones... oh and sobbing). Like right now? I'm so OVER car shopping it's unreal.. car shopping AND dealing with my Father when it comes to car shopping. Was it my decision to get a new car RIGHT Now? No, it wasn't. I made the mature decision to wait awhile until I felt more financially comfortable. In the end, am I glad that i'm getting a new car (more importantly, one with a working CD player?)? Mais bien sur, who doesn't want a new car. But i hate, hate, HATE the process and just wish someone would tell me where to sign so i can get the whole thing over with.

Another thing, i can't find my bluetooth headset ANYMORE, and i have a feeling my mischievous (read: mother f*cking) pets got ahold of it, and it's now either in Lola's stomach or somewhere I'll never find it. WHY pets, WHY? Do I not give you everything you so desire? And while we're on the topic of pets, my darling little pup has decided that she's 1 month old again and has urinated and defecated all OVER my apartment. Why? Is she not going out at regular intervals? Of course she is! Clearly I must be giving her too much food and water b/c the skinny little mongrel can't seem to KEEP IT IN.

Do you see what i mean? I'm angry at my pets for doing normal pet things. I'm angry because I "have" to buy a new car. I'm angry because i have parents who care. I just want to go away to a quiet, serene and private place and figure out what the problem is because this cannot continue. This "mood" has affected my diet, my energy, my work ethic, my relationships, and my general... aura. I'm not a positive person to be around these days so I don't blame people for wanting to stay away. By the same token, I don't want to be around most people! (See above.)

Well a lack of sleep certainly won't help the situation, and since I have to wake up and work out with D tomorrow morning, i'm going to try to pass out. I'd bet a shot of tequila would help.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Team Edward


First and foremost I'd like to apologize for my pathetic lack of blogging. Adjusting to work life is WAY harder than i had anticipated... and i hate to admit it, but i'm still not there. In fact, i'm sort of hating the fact that my day-to-day has been reduced to a desk job. Don't get me wrong, i'm INCREDIBLY grateful that i have such a wonderful job in such a tough economy. Listening to Morning Edition on NPR every morning and getting my rather depressing NYTimes updates keeps me grateful. I am. Thankful. Very. BUT, part of me sort of wishes i could go back to college for a little bit. Even law school (post first year, that is). Because then, if i wanted to, i could sit on my couch with Lola and read the Twilight series over and over and over... And i could listen to the new Britney album as LOUD as i want. And i could google Zac Efron and download HSM songs. (Did i mention that i've become a tween lately? That's right. I love High School Musical, Britney (but let's be honest, i've ALWAYS loved Britney), and yes, i've jumped on the Twilight bandwagon.)

Breathe. I need to breathe. Twilight and the world of Bella Swan and Edward Cullen (and yes, OK, Jacob too) has sucked me in faster and harder than i thought possible. No WONDER everyone is in hysterics over this damn series. It's A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Stephenie Meyer, you are a GENIUS. Never before have i become so ridiculously emotionally attached to fictional characters. And i've always been a fast reader, but i've literally been swallowing these books whole. I read the first in the series, Twilight, over Thanksgiving weekend. New Moon I got through Sunday night. Eclipse I read Monday night, and yes, i just spent my lunch break driving to Target to get a copy of Breaking Dawn (one of the last 3!). I. Am. Obsessed. And i am Team Edward ALL the way. I want me an Edward Cullen more than anything right now, yes even more than real live human man. I think i've developed a penchant for very pale boys.. ahem men.

And no, i have not seen the movie. That's tomorrow night. I know i'll be disappointed but i don't care. I want as much Twilight as possible. And i'll probably see it again. And again. I have a problem.

Um, in other news, looks like i'll be getting a new car sooner than i thought. It's definitely not my choice (as i had made the very responsible decision to wait since i had a perfectly capable, PAID OFF car in my possession), but i gotta do it. Once upon a time i would've loved an excuse to buy a gorgeous new luxury vehicle, but the reality of debt and this financial crisis are taking its toll (yes, even on moi). So i'm looking into 1 or 2-year old cars... maybe an Acura TSX or TL, maybe a Lexus, maybe a 3-Series? I don't know. Maybe even a Prius if i can get my hands on a 2010. I'm so not looking forward to visiting car dealerships (and dealing with creepy, craptastic car salesmen), esp. since i have no Edward Cullen to ensure that i don't get taken advantage of. Notes to self: do your research and don't say "like". Emphasize the ATTORNEY occupation. Don't wear pink.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Lawyering, Weekend Plans, and My Latest Crush

Bonsoir, mes amies! Yes I can't help but be in a GREAT mood still as the knowledge that I never ever EVER have to take the TX BAR again continues to sink in... ahh it feels good. That being said, I gave approval for my business cards. Isn't that weird?? I have a secretary (aka legal administrative assistant) who comes into my office and asks for me to sign off on my business card design...? Life as a lawyer is new and strange and I haven't quite decided whether I like it. The good news is that my new furniture was installed Friday afternoon so now I can officially move into my digs. Still need to get my diplomas framed and some better lighting but... in time it'll start looking like Carolyn's office and not a law office. Trust moi. :-)

Since I didn't fully celebrate my BAR results, I think I'm going to make a quick trip to Houston this weekend to celebrate with my bestie - Pony! I haven't been to Houston in awhile, and we haven't gotten to spend any quality time together in SO long. I anticipate oodles of chatting, shopping, coffee sipping, and gossiping. It's what we do best. :-)

Oh and as for my latest crush, well it's Lindsay Price from Lipstick Jungle (also from Beverly Hills 90210 - the original). She's half-Korean, GORGEOUS, and yes i'm totally obsessed. I mean hello, can you blame me?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Le Bar

I PASSED!!!!!!!!

Phew... and now life can resume. :)

Thanks for all the sweet messages/support/love!!! You guys ROCK.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes, We Can!!



Wow words cannot express all the emotions I've felt in the past 24 hours, but can I just say, YAYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The reality of November 4, 2008 is truly starting to set in, and I can't help but smile. I love love LOVE that I'm lucky enough to witness such an historic election. I can't WAIT for the months and years to come.

In other news (like anything's more important??), my blogging has suffered due to my full-time job, haha. Working takes up A LOT of time - who knew?? It's going well, and I'm lucky to have the opportunities to get super involved this early on in my "career". My partner gives me a great deal of responsibility and some really good work, so I'm thankful. That being said, tomorrow is another big day for some of us Texans, as BAR results are supposed to come out. To say i've been a nervous WRECK of a human being would be the understatement of the year. Several times last week I felt like I was going to either burst into tears or vomit out of anxiety and fear. But a few nights ago I really started to examine my fear, and something kind of clicked. Of COURSE I passed. I worked my bum off studying for that stupid test, and I deserve to pass. And in the very very very small percent chance that I didn't? It's not the end of the world. It's not even the end of MY world. Life. Goes. On. It always does. Plus I had a theory that if Obama won the election, then that would mean I definitely passed the BAR. ;-)

I started my bootcamp last week, and I really like it! It's scary early in the morning (6 a.m. Tues/Thurs), but there's no way I would get myself to the gym after a day of work. Anyway i have it again tomorrow morning which means I need to get to bed ASAP. Wow, i feel old.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Live Your Life

I love the new T.I. feat. Rihanna song - "Live Your Life". Download now!

As for my life, you can see from the date of the last post that it's been quite busy. Work is off to a running start, and I'm happy to say that I've been quickly immersed into the world of client meetings, conference calls, billable hours, and lots and lots of documents. Things are particularly busy because the only other associate in my section is currently in Greece, on his two-week honeymoon. Good for him, bad for me as I am JUST STARTING OUT AND HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING. Luckily my partner is incredibly kind, helpful and most importantly, understanding. So my panic/stress levels have definitely gone down.

So yes, work is good, but adjusting to this new schedule of actually having to wake up before the sun rises has been tres difficult. The first few days I was so exhausted upon arrival to my messy, messy apartment that I barely had enough energy to eat and crawl into bed. Slowly things seem to be improving, and I've definitely learned that if I plan to workout, it has to be in the early a.m. (b/c there's no way in HELL i'm gonna hop on a treadmill after a long day at work). Good news is that I've signed up for my first bootcamp that starts October 28. Woo hoo! 6 a.m. in the morning... woo hoo!! That'll be... new.

Aside from work and my attempts to work out, I've been busy shuttling Lola here and there and arranging her doggie schedule so that she's not stuck at home everyday. Between doggie daycare and her three (that's right - THREE) petsitters, I think she's acclimating just fine. Her growth still astounds me, in particular, her legs. Girl's got some model legs. Maybe one of her parents was a standard poodle??

Another thing of interest these days is The Austin Stone. The church is doing some EXCITING things, which include building projects (finally!) in the St. John neighborhood of East Austin (apparently, the poorest neighborhood in the city). The church's vision of using its influence, size and power to make an impact on the city, particularly the poorest communities in the city, is truly uplifting. It makes me proud to be a part of it. It's social justice in the best way possible. I love love LOVE it.

So much more to say, but not enough time to say it. Must get Lola out and then hit the sack... am attempting to make a 6 a.m. yoga class tomorrow morning. Much love, darlings.

xoxo,
C

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Exciting News, yo!


GOT A BLU RAY PLAYER!! GOT PLANET EARTH ON BLU RAY!!! CAN WATCH THE GREAT WHITE EAT THE SEAL (SEA LION?) WHENEVER I WANT, YO!!!!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

SCORE!

What a GREAT day! Went to Half-Price Books to sell and ended up finding some awesome treasures. A hardback 2-volume edition of Atlas Shrugged (one of my FAVES), two SARK books (Eat Mangoes Naked and Transformation Soup), and I managed to make some $. Well... it went towards my book purchase but still. Woo hoo! Now if only I could afford the Billy bookcases i need to hold all my treasures...\

Also, if you're an interior design enthusiast and you're not already a subscriber (although if you're an enthusiast, you really should be a subscriber), you MUST pick up the newest Domino magazine. It's a pretty rockin' issue. Lots of realistic ideas for small spaces. :-)

Feels Like Home

Back in Austin! Gosh I feel like a broken record these days, huh? Trip to DC was WONDERFUL, and of course, I can't wait to go back. Made a super short trip to the Big D to deliver my darling Muffin to S (her new mother... sniff) and to bring my big boy Puffin back to Chez Moi. Sigh. I swear he misses her... he was just snuggling up with me on the couch (a rarity with this one), and as he looked up into my eyes, I couldn't help but shed some tears. "I miss her too, buddy." Sigh. As much as I want to sugar coat it, the reality is that I gave up Muffin for Lola. Do I feel bad about that? Yes. But can I really give up Lola? No way! Becoming a dog owner has changed my life, so there is no regret in my decision to get her. There's also no regret in my decision to get Muffin. She tamed Puffin in a way I never could, and I feel that I gave her a great home and family for awhile. But sadly she and Lola just can't co-exist. Thank God S loves her and will love and adore her and give her all the attention she needs, and that I can no longer give.

On a brighter note, Sex and the City: The Movie has FINALLY come out on DVD, and it's on right now!! Crazy to think that I only saw it once in the theaters, but thank God movies go from the big screen to the stores in no time, huh? I anticipate beaucoup viewings in the next month. :-) Plus Carrie's new apartment design is serving as some serious inspiration for my sad little living room. The hot pink wall (aka TV wall) is just not cutting it, but I haven't found the perfect pieces for it yet. I desperately need storage but don't want a hideous, huge entertainment unit. And all the pieces I tend to like only come in dark brown, which is also not my style. I want white or metal, but those tend to be too open. Blah! It's times like these (well.. and many others) that I wish I could afford a designer to whip up a little something special to me...... Jonathan Adler? Tricia Guild? Hmm maybe I'll do a little online research. ;-) Bonsoir, mes amies!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

DC Love

Bonjour, friends! I apologize for the delay in blogging, but I've been quite busy during my visit to the Nation's capitol. I arrived in D.C. Wednesday afternoon and have been going nonstop. Lots of fun lunches and dinners, Mogwai concert at the 9:30 Club, house party in Columbia Heights, fun orange beers on rooftop bars, a Tarjay excursion, and of course, my wonderful day with Kimberly Wilson. I leave early tomorrow morning and am sad to go... I wish I could spend more time here. My host(ess)s have been wonderful, and I feel like I've really gotten a taste of life in DC. My heart belongs in Austin, but I'm curious to see what moving to another city for just a little while would be like. DC is an obvious choice as I wouldn't have to take another BAR exam, but I fear I'd rather be spending all my time at Tranquil Space rather than at the office. ;-)

Right now J and i are sitting at a darling little coffeeshop in Columbia Heights (his 'hood), and i'm contemplating a iced nonfat chai latte. The weather's been absolutely gorgeous and has even dipped below 60 in the evenings. Today's been a perfect Sunday. Slept in, got a delicious brunch in Adams Morgan, and are planning to spend a couple hours here (him working, me writing) before the Cowboys game. I'm sending him to the watching party solo - am in need of some QT for sure. Plus he has Planet Earth on Blu-Ray, and if you haven't seen it, OMG it's phenomenal. We watched the shallow seas episode yesterday, and my beloved great white made quite the appearance. It's MIND BLOWING - you'll swear it's fake. Love love loved it. Want to convince my Dad to give me his blu-ray and Planet Earth DVDs since he has yet to open either!

I plan on spending these precious hours doing some reflection and goal-setting. There's so much to think about and plan for right now, and the reality is that my vacation time is over, friends. In just two weeks I'll be joining the rest of Corporate America... and i'm not quite ready. So I intend to get myself as mentally ready for the transition as I can. My next week is quite busy - quick trip to Dallas to get my kitty, then Sister and Mom come to Austin (and i get my Lola back!!), then just one short week before I start training in Dallas. Lots to do before then!! Oh and i've also got about 5 books I want to finish before then, too. Ya know, priorities! ;-)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Life Update


So... to say Hurricane Ike is a disappointment would be the understatement of the world. There's been NO rain, NO whooshing, NO scary moments. Boo!!! I could be out and about shopping, eating, and being all kinds of productive if i wanted to. But no! I planned a day at home and damn it, i'm going to have it. So, true to form, i've languished lazily in bed, flipped on the Food Network, and lit my favorite lavender candle from Aveda. Lunch is in the oven, and after finishing Jen Lancaster's third memoir last night, i've decided i'm going to re-read "Such A Pretty Fat" today. Cause it was the first, and i wasn't aware of how much i was going to love her, so i'm SURE i'll enjoy the re-read. Good plan.

P.S. Not having regular A/C over the past few weeks, what between being in Europe and being at my parents' house (where the A/C doesn't dip below 79 degrees despite the 103 degree weather outside), i've gotten thin skin! I used to sleep with the A/C at 75 (nothing's better than a chilly room and a huge comforter), but now i freeze my bum off. I guess my Dad got his wish, and i've built up my "endurance". Yay for lower electric bills?

Friday, September 12, 2008

My Life In Lists

1. CSI - Why no one told me about CSI before is beyond me - this show ROCKS! I can't stop watching (to the point where I made an embarassing visit to Hollywood Video to rent some DVDs and let's be honest, i might be making another one before the Hurricane hits), and I promise it only KIND OF has something to do with the fact that George Eads is HOT HOT HOT. (That's Nick Stokes to you CSI fans, baybeeeee. Apparently he's 41 but still looks damn fine to me (sorry, i don't know why i have to talk like this when it comes to male celebrity crushes but i just have to, ok?), which totally supports my theory that my next boyfriend definitely needs to be older. Yum.

2. Jen Lancaster - Am equally obsessed with her. If Nick Stokes is my new male celebrity crush, then Jen Lancaster is my new female one. Her memoirs (Bitter Is the New Black, Bright Lights Big Ass, Such A Pretty Fat) are comic genius wrapped up in a blonde-highlighted, tan, Lacoste, ex-sorority girl pink and green plaid package. She's a RIOT, and I insist you go out and read her books immediately. She also has a blog - Jennsylvania - that's quite entertaining as well. Sadly, while there are many seasons of CSI to catch up, Jen's only written 3 books and surprise surprise, i'm already on the last. Sad day.

3. Ike - No he's not yet another crush, he's the Hurricane that's hit the Texas coast this weekend. I went to Central Market earlier to get some provisions - bottled water, ingredients for spaghetti bolognese, beer, wine, the necessities - and wow, people really are getting ready for this bad boy. I'm UBER psyched to be forced to nest in my apartment for an entire 24 hours with a huge storm brewin' outside. Already removed most of the crap on my porch, brought Sylvie in (my beautiful white/pink cruiser), and like i said, will probably hit up Hollywood Video for some more CSI later...

4. Gym - No, i've not become a gym rat in the past week, but i have stepped up my efforts. This morning i managed to get into the gym for my "run" routine, and Wednesday i saw my beloved trainer, Deb, again. We're changing things up since clearly my body needs something different. The goal is to "shock" my bod so that it wants to shed this law school bulge FASTER. I've sort of stopped being uber depressed about the fact that i "let myself go" and have decided to be positive. My eating's definitely improved and considering i managed yoga, a workout w/ Deb, and some gym time this week, i'm feelin' good. Oh also finally bought and read "The Writing Diet" by Julia Cameron and LOVED IT. Go figure, that woman's genius.

5. Grooming - Is $34 WAY too much to spend on shampoo? I'm gonna go with yes... But people swear by this Kerastase stuff so I decided to plunk down the big bucks. With all this exercise (read sweating) i'm doing, i have to wash my hair daily, and it's getting uber dried out. So i did some research and decided that Kerastase Reflection Bain Chroma Riche is the way to go. (The fuschia packaging doesn't hurt either.) I've also finally visited my favorite spa, Milk and Honey, for a luxe pedicure (also costs obscene amounts of money but i don't plan on returning for at least 2 months... okay maybe 6 weeks), and tonight i'm getting my hair did. Woo hoo i love me some pretty time.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Barack the House

Back in Austin and THRILLED to be! It's not even that i've done much to "enjoy" the city since i've been back, but just being here makes me feel G-O-O-D. Um.. have not succeeded in unpacking my suitcase (leopard print, if you must know) but i have managed to make a trip to the Container Store and reorganize my bookcases (pink, if you must know). Actually i may have just made my apartment a bigger mess than it was, but you know, details. Had dinner with my college BFFEFEFEFEFEFF last night, and it was SO nice to catch up. Unbelievable that it's been 3 years since college, and that i'm finally entering the workforce. I'm pretty sure at one point we decided to make some new "goals", but i think the MTV Video Music Awards distracted us. (P.S. How GREAT did Britney look?? Okay seriously, don't judge me, but i love love love her and really really really hope this comeback is legit.)

As for today, well.. i've been far less productive. I did, however, manage to get my ass in the gym. Woo hoo!! Hit the elliptical, the treadmill, AND even spent some time stretching afterwards. Bam! I rock. Just watched the season premiere of Gossip Girl on my laptop (was in London and missed it!), and OMG it's just as delicious as i remembered. What is wrong with me? I love Britney Spears and Gossip Girl. I'm also 25 and going to be a "lawyer" in less than a month. Does that..work? I sure hope so!

Fully intended on getting out of the house to run some errands, but alas, Gossip Girl is on tonight! Tomorrow is the first of many days full of tres important appointments (hair, nails, training, massage, yoga, etc. - you know, the essentials) so i'm going to enjoy this day of nothing as much as i can. For those of you who don't have this much lazy time on your hands, be sure to squeeze in some ME time whenever you can! It's vital.

P.S. Can someone bring me dinner?

Friday, September 5, 2008

Highs and Lows

I'm feeling some sadness tonight... not sure what brought it on. Maybe that unemployment is at an all time high (6.1% and probably only going up..). I'm grateful that neither I nor my family feels the effects of this falling economy, but my heart goes out to the millions who do. Maybe it was catching a glimpse of the Republican Convention on the news and realizing the magnitude of this November's election. I'm already so emotionally charged about the whole thing - I can't imagine what these next couple of months will bring. I still remember the sadness of 2004, and i wasn't nearly as invested. Maybe it was the older gentleman eating solo next to us at dinner tonight. He seemed content, but I could just hear my heart breaking for him. Then he asked the server for a bag so that he could take chicken bones home to his cat, and that really killed me. Is that all he has to go home to? A cat? Thank God for pets but oh gosh, how it pains me to think that so many don't have the family and friends that i'm lucky to have. Anyway i'm just feeling a little down that's all. And feeling foolish for getting so "depressed" about my stupid little problems (like losing this law school bulge - bleh). I can't fix the problems of the world overnight, but this evening's sadness reminded me to carve some time out of each day to spend in prayer. I've been so fixated on creating a morning ritual of working out and journaling that i've forgotten what should be the most important part of my day, and that's some serious QT with God. It's one of the best places to start, n'est ce pas?

On A Lighter Note...

Starring: Lola Collete Park
Guest Starring: Sofie and Molly Szeto
















Thursday, September 4, 2008

Back to Reality

Hello, dear friends. I've safely made it back to the States, luggage and all, and am happily sipping a cup of Laduree tea (the melange!) while typing this post. Last night i had the best 12-hour night of sleep i could possibly have after 2 weeks of different beds, pillows, and yes, even a Parisien mouse. I am eager to crawl back into bed for another delicious night of sleep but first, i wanted to share something with you all. I purposely avoid the topic of politics on this blog. First, i don't feel qualified to discuss it. Second, i've learned there is a time and a place for political discussion, and i just don't feel that this is the right one. That being said, when something moves me, pisses me off, or is brought to my attention that i simply cannot ignore, i'm more than willing to muse. I came across this post by one of my favorite bloggers, Heather Armstrong. Her blog is dooce and is freaking HILARIOUS. Tonight she blogged about a not-so-hilarious subject, and i had to share...

"I am angry. I am infuriated. And I don't think I would be if Sarah Palin were a qualified or competent choice as McCain's running mate. But the fact, the reality is that she is not. And instead of demanding better from their party, instead of going, wait a minute, no, we deserve better than this, many Republicans are contorting themselves into a denial of reality. (please read this, it's a report from the AP, not some spooky liberal blog that wants to kill babies) And that right there is what has been going on for the last eight years.

And I am just so damn sick of it.

Any time I engage with one of my conservative friends or family members, or sometimes the conservative commenters on this website, it usually devolves into them screaming about WELFARE! and TAXES! and THE GOVERNMENT IS TAKING MY MONEY AND GIVING IT TO PEOPLE WHO DON'T WORK! And what they don't understand is that this is not the issue at all. What I and many of my more liberal friends want is to HELP people, not give them a free ride, but also not to ignore those who would benefit from us tossing them a life jacket.

Case in point: Because Leta was diagnosed with plagiocephaly when she was two months old, she cannot qualify for private insurance until she is thirteen years old. So the only insurance we can get her is high-risk insurance that costs us upwards of $300 a month. Just for her alone. And even then that insurance won't cover anything until she has reached a $3000 deductible. I am fortunate enough to have grown up in a white, middle class family who could afford to send me to college, as did my husband, and we have enough work experience to run a business that makes it so that we can afford this insurance for our daughter. We don't have to make the choice between buying food or insuring our daughter. We are really fucking lucky.

But what about the family who cannot afford that insurance for their child? The family who can barely make rent, and if they stretch the budget they can eat three meals a day all week, let's hope nothing bad happens to their kids because then they're screwed. Kids, go hug your father, he's off to one of his three jobs, none of which provide him insurance. And it's not because he's lazy or unwilling to work, it's that his family couldn't afford to send him to college, or he came from a family that didn't know they should encourage him to go to college because they were busy trying to survive. If giving up more of my paycheck could help get this family adequate healthcare, then PLEASE. TAKE MY FUCKING MONEY.

I get the feeling that people around the world are looking at this election as a gauge to see if America is finally ready to wake up and realize that we are not the only country on this planet. They are waiting to see if we are going to put yet another fundamentalist loon in charge of public and foreign policy, someone who doesn't think that global warming is in any way caused by humans, so screw the rest of you who live here on this planet, we need that cup of oil with breakfast in the morning.

To my readers who do not live in America, who are not American, please know that there are so many of us here who are disgusted with what we have let happen in the last eight years and are doing everything we can to ensure that it stops. We are just as scared as you are of those around us who have their fingers in their ears and are going LA LA LA LA LA in an attempt to convince themselves that their behavior and their policies are not in direct violation of the teachings of the God they think put them in power.

Vote Obama 08"


(original link: http://www.dooce.com/2008/09/04/and-boom)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Perfect Meal


I really can't say enough good things about afternoon tea. What a perfect meal to a day of shopping, n'est ce pas? Today M and i had tea at the new Connaught Hotel. What a jewel of a place! The service was impeccable (i never once had to pour my own tea), the sandwiches INCREDIBLE (normally tea sandwiches are just so-so, not so at the Connaught), and the desserts abundant. We had two plates full of treats and thought we were through. On the contrary... our server then led us to a big table with an array of delicious tarts. We got to pick one. Each. I got the tarte tatin (apple tart) and the apple couldn't have been sliced thinner. Perfection. M got a shortbread/pistachio cream/strawberry number. Yum. I can't recommend afternoon tea at the Connaught more - it's the best (so far..) London has to offer.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Back in Londy!

Hi friends! I've safely made it to London and i must say, if you can pay the extra bucks to do so, go first class on the Eurostar. It's much quieter (i.e. emptier), you get served a pretty yummy meal, free booze, free newspapers, etc. I thoroughly enjoyed the journey. We arrived in London mid-afternoon, and the weather could not have been better. We quickly made our way (God bless the tube) to our darling boutique hotel on Queens Gate and proceeded to take a stroll through Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. Could not get over how beautiful the weather was, and apparently neither could Londonites. Everyone was strewn about the grass, stripped down, and soaking in the rare sunlight. After the park we made our way to Whole Foods on High Street Kensington, had some lunch (my body's been craving organic greens!!), shopped around, and then walked back to the hotel. That night we trekked to Brick Lane for some authentic Indian cuisine and found ourselves stuck in a tiny restaurant (but the best on Brick Lane!!) with a HUGE party of very drunk, VERY loud Brits. Oh my. Our food was delicious but our meal short - i could not stand the noise. Apparently at 25, i'm way too old for that stuff. (Note: the people at the table were at least my age or older.) After a very very long tube ride home, we finally collapsed into our Egyptian cotton sheets and went to bed. It's now Sunday, a rainy Sunday here in London (of course, the good weather couldn't possibly last for long in this city), and we had a small "continental" breakfast downstairs. Plans for the day include getting lost in Harrods and of course, afternoon tea at the Georgian restaurant in Harrods. Can't wait! Oh clotted cream, how i've missed thee.

Oh - did i mention that we had our little Ratatouille in our apartment in Paris? Uh huh... yup. Last night in Paris, i'm about 30 minutes into sleep when i hear M get up, turn on the light, and proclaim that a small trash can has been making some very mysterious noises. She picked it up, peered inside, then set it back down. Suddenly it started shaking all on its own. Sheer. Terror. Yup you guessed it! A mouse. I absolutely refused to look. Luckily M is much braver than i am and managed to throw the contents of the trash can (i.e. the mouse) out the window. Don't worry - it survived somehow. At first it just laid there on the concrete, but when we looked again, it was gone. Ew. EW EW EW. Needless to say, it took me a LONG time to go back to sleep after that little episode.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Au Revoir, Paris


This is my last night in Paris, and as always, it's bittersweet. On the one hand i can't wait to get to London. I never thought i'd utter such words, but the reality is, i adored living in London, and revisiting a place you once lived is totally different than just vacationing there. So i'm tres excited for a proper afternoon tea, for getting lost in Harrods again and again, for crazed shopping trips to TopShop, and for the smug satisfaction of knowing that no matter what happens in London, it'll be okay. Because i LIVED there, yo. So it's like, a home away from home. (Oh and um.. they speak English.) On the other hand, it's sad to leave my beloved Paris because i love it and i don't know when i'll be returning. This trip has been tres laid back - lots of walking around, popping into random shops, dining out at a bistro or just picking up Moroccan food from the market and enjoying it later, with a bottle of wine, in our apartment. Today was the ultimate indulgence - an afternoon at Laduree. We decided to visit the newest Saint German location and happily found ourselves a cozy corner banquette table. And there we sat for the next three hours... ordered salad and sandwiches, a fabulous puff pastry cream filled, strawberry glazed, pistachio delight of a dessert, and sipped tea (she got the Laduree Melange, i got the Marie Antoinette). We watched as diners next to us came and went. We got excellent service, which was a nice change from our terrible first night experience in Nice. It was lovely. When we finally pulled ourselves away we bought some tea to go and then slowly made our way back home.

Now we're in the park, M's reading, and i'm happy to be connected once again. Ping pongers are going at it in front of us, and there are even a few practicing Tai Chi on the grassy patch behind. It's a cool evening, and pretty sure M and i will probably be too cold to be sitting out here in our short sundresses. We've had a lovely visit here in Paris. And just so you don't think we were completely worthless, yesterday we visited the Musee d'Arts Decoratifs (museum of decorative objects, aka interior design of sorts), and it was wonderful.

Tomorrow we take the chunnel to London! There are a couple of rainy days in the forecast (shocker), but i'm keeping my fingers crossed for good weather all around. Bonsoir!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Bienvenue a Paris!

Hello dear friends, i've safely made it to my favorite city in the world - Paris! (P.S. M says hi... she's sitting next to me and asked, "Are you BLOGGING?? Tell them i say hi!") We had quite a morning/afternoon, which included forgetting train tickets at the hotel in Nice (when we were already in the cab on the way to the Gare) and leaving a wallet in the cab in Paris. And by "we" i mean M, hahaha. But it's all good now, as we've made it to Paris, have found our way to the petit apartment in the Marais in which we are staying, and have backup means of payment. Right now we are taking advantage of the free Paris wifi in the park across the street from our apartment (don't get the wifi IN the apt - damn!) and just made reservations for dinner tonight at a bistro in the 11th recommended by Clotilde Desoulier. I'm not one for Parisien food, but here's to hoping. ;-)

Hope to blog more, but you know how Paris is... We spent three nights here and then are off to London on Saturday. Whee!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Boinsoir!

Bonsoir, mes amies!! Yes i am in France and loving it, of course. We arrived in Nice early on Wednesday and after getting settled into our DARLING hotel (only 6 rooms and ours has a private veranda!), we hit the beach which was only a 5 minute walk away. The way the beach is set up in Nice is essentially a long strip that is divided between small areas of public beach (aka free) and small section of private beach, each with a different name/theme/restaurant (Hi Beach, Florida Beach, Le Voiler Plage, Blue Beach, etc.). Both Wednesday and Thursday morning were spent at the beach, soaking up the rays, and occasionally dipping into the ocean. Thursday we also took a day trip to Monaco/Monte Carlo to check out the casino and all that fuss. It's fairly overrated, if you ask us, and considering we weren't about to pay to get into the casino, we mostly just walked around and looked. That evening we were invited to a party on the beach by S. (Background: S is M's boyfriend's friend from college whose family has a house in Cap D'Antibes and who graciously invited us to stay for a few nights while we're in the South.) A party on the beach in the south of France? Sure! His parents were throwing it and it was mostly 100+ family and friends. Tons of delicious food, beaucoup du vin, and a LOT of dancing.. not to mention a ton of beautiful Lebanese women in some serious couture. It was all a bit out of my league (to say the least.. i mean how many families do you know with houses in the south of France?), but was definitely a good time. We crashed at S's that night and returned to Nice the following morning to check out of our hotel and enjoy our last meal before returning to Antibes.

We stayed in Antibes the next three nights and days were filled with lounging by S's oh-so-fabulous pool, getting served (uh huh..served) breakfast on the balcony, overlooking the Mediterranean, and making day trips to Juan les Pins and Cannes. Luckily we had access to a SMART car, which made our road trip to Cannes tres fun. Imagine 2 American gals in a smart convertible, windows and top down, blasting Madonna, singing, dancing, and oh yes enjoying the gorgeous ocean view! Loads of fun. Dinners involved copious amounts of wine, bread of course, and lots of seafood. I really dig the fresh cuisine of the South, so different from the heavy creams/sauces in Paris.

This morning we woke up early and caught our train from Cannes to Lyon. 4 hours of blissful train sleeping later, we arrived in Lyon. Lyon was kind of a last minute addition to the trip, in an effort to save money (staying in Saint Tropez is just so ridiculous) and out of curiosity as neither of us have been here. Suffice to say i know nothing of Lyon.. nothing. I imagined it as a less glam version of Paris, and that's fairly accurate. Today we just walked around, luckily our hotel is in a great location and close to a lot of the shops/cafes/etc. I don't think i'm a huge fan of Lyonnais food.. lots of weird meats like veal's head and tripe and blood sausage.. not my cup of tea. But tomorrow is essentially our last day, and we're going to try to hit up a few of the museums and enjoy a meal. Wednesday we are off to Paris!!

I've had a lovely trip so far and a pretty serious tan to prove it. During our time in the south i couldn't help but feel guilty for having the opportunity to enjoy such a lush and luxurious vacation while my parents are home working away. Being around the extremely wealthy is also interesting and i'll muse a bit on that later. But it's been a great time of reflection, and i'm happy to report that i've been journaling daily. I've finished a couple of books and am now reading "Marley and Me" which of course makes me miss my Lola Collette even more. Not even halfway through this trip and i'm already starting to miss my day-to-day in Austin. Funny how that works huh? I guess there's only so much playing one can do before tiring of it, haha. Paris and London should be fun though, as they are both cities i adore and cities FULL of an endless list of things to do. Hope to blog there later! Bonsoir, friends!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Bon Voyage!


Holy crap.. i'm leaving for France tomorrow!!!!!!! As you can tell, i'm tres excited and just can't believe this magical moment is finally here. Today was spent running last minute errands, having lunch w/ dear Abby, and of course, running into M (my travel partner-in-crime) in the dressing rooms at Anthropologie. Ha! It was the funniest thing ever and took me a few seconds to figure out who it was approaching me and squealing! The salespeople at Anthro prob thought we were crazy b/c we kept saying, "We're going to France tomorrow!! TO FRANCE!" In other good news, actually FABULOUS news, M's boyfriend's friend has graciously invited us to stay at his family compound in Saint Tropez for 3 nights during our stay. Um... excuse moi? Yep, you heard it right! Three nights in a gorgeous family home in one of the most gorgeous places on earth? And for.. FREE? Be still, my heart! I canceled our Cannes hotel reservation immediately and secretly calculated the extra shopping $$ into my budget (teehee). Hooray for generous friends of friends!!

Now i'm snuggled into bed, just a few pages away from finishing Such A Pretty Fat (totally L-O-V-E-D it btw and want to read her other two memoirs immediately!), and will hopefully sleep better tonight. Took me forever to fall asleep last night b/c my darn lower back pain. I've somewhat remedied the situation tonight by slapping an icy hot patch on it. Love these suckers. (Yea i realize theyre prob not all that great for me...)

I fear i may have overpacked... shocking, i know. But i really was determined to travel light! As long as my lovely leopard print suitcase isn't overweight tomorrow, i'm gooood.

Ate really healthily today (for me, anyway) and am feeling good. It's amazing how much better you feel when you don't eat yourself into discomfort on a daily basis. Still the challenge of vacationing is scary. Particularly the "workout on your vacay" part. "Excuse me M while i do jump squats and weird plank balancing poses because if i don't, my trainer will hurt me AND i'll have made zero progress this week?" Hmm. Maybe M will do them w/ me? That might be fun...ny. Ah well, i've got my sneakers, running shorts, sports bras, and resistance bands packed so it's gonna happen damn it!

Still waiting for the lovely numbness of this icyhot patch to kick in... In the meantime i suppose i'll read and then drift into a delightful slumber full of beautiful, French dreams. Goodnight, friends.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Spiritual Cowgirl?

Bonjour from Rowlett, TX, home to my lovely parents and currently my 2 felines, Puffin and Muffin (soon to be only 1.. sniff). My drive from Austin to Dallas was surprisingly pleasant, and i caught up with an old hs/college friend on the phone. I also listened to an HTC podcast about being a "spiritual cowgirl". It was an interview with Sera Beak about her book - The Red Book: A Deliciously Unorthodox Approach to Igniting Your Divine Spirit. It's all about deep, bare, honest self-reflection and soul-searching and sounds absolutely fabulous. Of course it's too late for me to order it from amazon for my trip, and of COURSE the local Barnes & Noble doesn't carry it. But i can't wait to order it when i get back and dig in. You know, cause j'adore self-study. ;-)

Have been having a lovely chat w/ my mom about life and Ma Soeur's life. Told her all is well with the Park Sistas, albeit all of our Park women are just a little bit crazy, haha. We just made a trip to the Super Tarjay in the 'hood and got some essentials for my trip. Also picked up some reading material - Such A Pretty Fat: One Narcissist's Quest to Discover If Her Life Makes Her Ass Look Big by Jen Lancaster. I've always wanted to read her memoir Bitter is the New Black so I'm interested to check this one out. Will report later. The truth is i might actually finish the book before i leave...

Anyway all these books and all this talk about books and self-study motivates me to pursue my writing. I've always wanted to write a book, just wasn't sure about what, but i think i'm starting to get a picture. I used to want to write chick lit, as i am an avid fan, but i'm thinking more along the nonfiction route. Sark's new book Juicy Pens Thirsty Paper is all about writing, and i'm eager to pick that one up as well. I just love love Sark! And i just love HTC podcasts and all these fabulous women out there making it happen. It's so inspiring and refreshing, and I'm feeling energized and ready to tackle my next project(s) w/ gusto! Also perhaps while laying on a beautiful beach in Cannes? Mais bien sur!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Craft o Rama!!


Bonjour again, mes amies. I'm currently sitting at a fab little coffeeshop on south 1st called Summer Moon. I was introduced to this lil joint by my dear friend Judd (who has since left me for a kickass clerkship in D.C. - h8er!). I've had a lovely, Austin day, my favorite type.

Darling M woke me up with a phone call with some potentially great news. Turns out her boyfriend's friend from college, whose family is ridiculously wealthy, might let us crash at his oh so fab Saint Tropez family compound during our stay! This would cancel our hotel stay in Cannes, and i'd be um, perfectly fine with that. So keep your fingers crossed!

After that bit of good news and a "i can't believe we're going to France soon!!" phone call w/ M, i hung up and got dressed in my yoga togs for a noon power flow class at Breath and Body. What a great class! I forgot just how much i swear in a heated flow class, and even though it was only an hour, oh Lord, i was feeling quite nauseous by the end of it. Note to self: drink more H20. She ended the class by laying an icy colf, lavender-infused washcloth on my eyes/forehead while i was in savasana, and it couldn't have been more heavenly. I really love yoga studios who add that extra touch. Kimberly Wilson, for example, always ends her classes with some lavender aromatherapy spray (also while in savasana), and i just love it. After yoga i got showered and dressed and ready to spend my afternoon on an "artist date". There's a store on South Congress called Craft o Rama that i've driven past and been meaning to stop in. After some googling i discovered that it's a fabric/sewing/knitting shop. AND they carry Amy Butler! PARFAIT! Sadly their Amy Butler stock was limited but the place was just darling, and i'm definitely planning on taking a Sewing 101 class in September and a knitting class in the fall. I've been wanting to learn how to sew and knit for so long, and it seems like the perfect environment in which to try! I may be a domestic goddess in other aspects (cooking, cleaning, etc) but i have a feeling sewing/knitting might be a bit trickier pour moi. Still what a fun new skill to acquire, n'est-ce pas?

After hitting a couple more shops on South Congress (and scoring a FAB maxi dress at a fun new shop on SoCo, perfect for lounging in fabulous Cannes or Saint Tropez), i decided it was time for an iced soy latte and some computer/journal time. Happy day, eh? It's times like these that i wish i lived in South Austin. The vibe is just so cool and laid back and so... Austin. How great would it be to just wake up, walk down the street to Jo's and grab coffee and a croissant? Or brunch at SoCo Cafe? I love the Triangle and all its amenities, but they really should've done a better job at their restaurant selections. Love Flipnotics, my local (ok - more like 10 steps away from my patio!) coffeeshop and i love the breakfast migas at Galaxy Cafe, but the rest of the food is mediocre at best. Which Wich? Fish City Grill? (ICK) I want more Austin favor, independent mom and pop sandwich shops and such. I can't help but think that i live in one of the most Dallas-y residential neighborhoods of Austin, and didn't i want to get away from everything Dallas? I digress, but you get my drift. I'm definitely going to be considering another 'hood for my future home.

Tonight i am dining with a dear old friend from college who also just graduated from law school (U-Penn) and who i'm also visiting in DC in September. We're going to one of my Austin faves - El Chile Cantina - in east Austin (another potential future neighborhood..?). YuM! Until then i plan to chill out here and maybe make a pit stop at Whole Foods to buy some nontoxic sunblock for my trip. YAY FRANCE HERE I COME!! (Too bad my French has gone completely out the window... stupid bar exam!)

Bon weekend!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

La Dolce Vita






Bonjour, friends! Here are some pics from my recent getaway to the beautiful Bay area. Isn't my Lola bear so big?? She was so well-behaved in the city i couldn't believe it. Those are some pics in our hotel room at the Westin. She's quite good at "high five" (actually ten but whatever) and "shake". The pic of the two of us was at a lovely bistro at which we dined in the city that unfortunately had a rather unfriendly restaurant dog. She attacked my poor Lola, and it was the second time i've ever heard her squeal out of sheer terror. :-( Luckily she recovered quickly and spent the rest of the evening at my side on the lovely garden patio. :-)

I had an INCREDIBLE time with my sister and the dogs in California. In fact, it's the first trip i can remember that we didn't have a single fight.. unbelievable! I don't even think we got annoyed at each other, minus my occasional crankiness from low blood sugar (my sister doesn't seem to understand that i really DO need to eat every 3-4 hours!!). We spent most of Saturday and Sunday in the city and visited a number of darling shops and eateries. The picture of my sister in front of the storefront is The Bell Jar, a darling (slightly overpriced) shop in the Mission District where i got a cute French cahier notebook and vintage cent stamp that i've decided is going to be a "C". The weather was gorgeous, as evidenced by the park picture where Lola did a little romping, and we enjoyed our "heavenly" bed at the Westin. We did oodles of goal-setting (physical, professional, and spiritual), and i introduced her to morning pages. All in all, it was a fantastic weekend.

On Monday, my actual birthday (yay 25!!), i had a petit incident in which i managed to lock myself out of the house after working out on their elliptical machine in the garage. Sooo my sister had to come let me back in (she had to work that day). I took a long afternoon siesta with the dogs, and then Jenn actually got off work early and we hit up Santana Row - a gorgeous, upscale outdoor shopping mall in San Jose. We went to Paper Source, my absolute FAVORITE paper store (rumor has it there's now one in Dallas's Northpark mall!), and she bought me a lovely Cavallini & Co. alphabet stamp set. I was inspired by a little store called Stumasa in the city. All of the shop's price tags and even their eco-friendly business card (cardboard!) were made with simple brown paper and vintage stamping. The stamps weren't cheap, but Ma Soeur is QUITE generous. ;-) I also got a fun little stamp that says "Shit", which i intend to use for sympathy cards, haha. I forgot how much i love stamps and the creative uses for them. Nothing like a fabulous paper store to inspire me! After another shop stop at H&M, we picked up my brother-in-law and then went to dinner at Los Altos Grill, formerly known as Bandera, which has THE BEST skillet cornbread you'll ever taste. We had a fun birthday dinner and finished it off with asian-style frozen yogurt w/ mochi for dessert. What a perfect birthday celebration!

I'm back in Austin now and have been busy with hotel reservations and train tickets and this and that for THE Bar Trip. I'm happy to say that all of our lodging reservations have been made, we have train tickets to/from our cities (Nice, Cannes, Lyon, Paris, and London), and i am SO ready to go. I felt like this day would never come!! I'm heading to Dallas on Sunday and then depart from DFW on Tuesday for a LONG day and night of travel. But it's all worth it for beautiful, gorgeous France and of course, our beloved Londy.

I always suffer a little post-sister depression after every visit to California, and this time was certainly no exception. But the trip definitely inspired me to make the most of this petit break between the bar and work, and i'm savoring every moment. Lots of sleeping, journaling, cleaning, organizing, packing, letter-writing, and of course, blogging! I'm debating whether or not to bring my laptop to France, and so far i'm thinking no... but I would like to keep up with blogging so maybe i'll just have to frequent les internet cafes while i'm there. In the meantime i hope you enjoy the pix and are having a lovely, albeit hot, summer!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

California, Here We Come

Wheee!!! Lola and i leave in just a few hours for beautiful, 75-degree Northern California!! The weather is San Fran is just ridic... highs in the 60s?? Oh be still, my heart! I'm just finishing my packing (excessive, as always) and trying to figure out what to eat for lunch. Thanks SO much to all the supportive comments on the previous post. I think it's incredible the kind of support i receive from my "blog friends" and reading them just made my day. So thanks again, loves. :-)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Life Post-Bar

Hello, dear friends. I've been super lazy getting back on the blog train, as you can see, but i just wanted to say that life post-bar is just as sweet as it sounds. Unfortunately for me, life's challenges never cease. The morning after the last day of the Bar, i slept in, reveled in that glowing feeling that i'm only waking up b/c i WANT to, not b/c i HAVE to, and then strolled into the living room to turn on my macbook and start planning my Bar Trip. Huh. My screen was frozen when i got to it... weird. I just rebooted. Oh. And then. It refused to reboot, simply defaulted to a blank screen with a flashing file folder in the center, with a big question mark in the middle. NEVER a good sign. Don't panic, just reboot once more. No dice. So i proceeded to make an appt with the Apple store (of course nothing was available that day) and then pulled out my "ancient" Dell laptop. Ugh PC's... i abhor them, although my hard drive never crashed when i had a PC. Did some online research to discover that flashing file folder with question mark is a bad sign. Great. Talked to Jenny who experienced a hard drive failure some months ago, and she confirmed. Still i remained optimistic. Took my laptop to Apple the next day and sure enough, the moment i said the words "flashing file folder" and saw the look on her face, i knew it was all over. Sigh. Well what are my options? I was three weeks out of warranty but lucky for me, Apple does have some semblance of customer service (unlike Dell) and she said they'd cover a new hard drive. BUT if i wanted to recover any of my data (umm... thousands and thousands of songs and pictures documenting the last 7 years of my life? yes please!) i'd have to take it to a third party before delivering it to Apple. Because they keep the bad hard drive. Of course, let's make this as drawn out as possible. Worse yet, it was Saturday which meant that i couldn't even contact this third party data recovery specialist until Monday. UGH. By the time Monday morning arrived, i was feeling optimistic. Sure i'd have to pay about $400 to recover my hard drive, but it's worth it, and i guess this is how people learn that you really must BACK UP. Have i learned nothing from Sex and the City? So I breathed, rebooted, and presented my macbook to the guy with a smile that asked, "please please good sir, fix this so i can get on with my post-bar festivities". A few hours later he called. Bad news.... can't recover... did everything we could... just can't. I felt like someone died, and then i realized someone DID die. My music? My pictures? That's my life! Sad to say that the music is the part that really killed me, more so than the pictures. After hanging up, I proceeded to curl myself into a ball on the couch and cry. I mourned for most the afternoon. It was not pretty. Pas amusant.

So here i am, typing on a practically new macbook (macbook 1.2), still mourning the loss of my first (macbook 1.1). I know this was the best possible time for such a disaster to occur, and i am thankful that it didn't happen in the midst of finals or pre-bar exam. I don't think i was emotionally stable enough to handle any sort of disaster. But it still sucks. So i've been busy dealing with that whole situation and getting ready for my birthday trip to California. I leave tomorrow!! I'm very much looking forward to a weekend in San Francisco with my dearest sister and our two pups. I hope to accomplish a lot of journal writing, book reading, self-reflecting and goal setting during this trip. Did i mention that my 25th birthday is on Monday? TWENTY-FIVE YEARS OLD!!! I know it's still so young, it's just hard to believe. Dear Quarter Life Crisis, i'm so not ready for you.

Oh and um, did i mention that i'm totally depressed b/c i'm fat, and i completely blame law school for that unfortunate state of being? Yeah. Now that the Bar is over and school is over, i am finally facing the music. And it ain't good. I worked out with Deb for the first time in a month on Monday and got a brutal wake up call. No matter how much i work out and get in shape physically, nothing's going to happen to my body until i change my diet. Yuck. DIET. I hate that word and the leading role it used to play in my life. So the reality is... i can either choose to eat for pleasure and experiment and enjoy this and that and be fat b/c that's just how my body enjoys being OR i can eat for fuel, make some sacrifices and set some limits and hopefully shed some of this grossness. This is not an easy choice, but how i've been feeling these days leaves me no option. i'm not ready to give up on my body so i guess eating for pleasure is part of the past. That's not to say that i'm going to count calories and eat nothing but kale and bland grilled chicken. But my body refuses to become smaller, even if i'm eating what's considered "normal" to a lay person. Blah i am so not looking forward to this, and my bitterness at those who can still eat macaroni and cheese and ice cream and stay slim is rearing its ugly head. You mean i have to kick my ass in the gym AND eat a lettuce-based diet in order to achieve my former figure? Shit.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

One Breakfast Taco Too Many


Bonjour, mes amies! I'm in high spirits today and have no idea why.. especially considering the fact that one week from today I will be sitting in a tres uncomfortable plastic chair in the loathed Crockett Center, starting Day #1 of the BAR exam. I know i've said it before but.. 3 days, really?!?!? Is that NECESSARY??? Anyway, i woke up early for the first time in weeks and managed to shower, dress, and drop Miss Lola off at the vet before arriving here at school. (poor darling is getting spayed today!) I have a long day ahead of me here (and probably @ a coffeeshop later), and it's nice to not have to worry about Lola and going home to walk/feed her. My mother is officially over having the cats, which is fine b/c after all, they are MY cats and MY responsibility. My post-bar goals include a massive decluttering/organizing/overhaul of my apartment, and that will include making space for 2 cats and 1 dog to live comfortably avec moi. It can be done!

Treated myself to two delicious breakfast tacos this morning. If you're not from Austin, you may not be aware of what a breakfast taco entails. It's a bit of an Austin specialty i've come to realize, but is tres easy to make yourself. Bacon, egg, and cheese in a tortilla... not hard! My faves include the aforementioned bacon/egg/cheese combo, as well as a migas-style. I had one of each this morning, and that was one too many... i'm stuffed! But at least that'll keep me full for awhile. Hate thinking about what to eat when in study-mode - takes too much time.

One of the reasons for my good mood is that after Momma Park's short but sweet visit Sunday, i did a little centering and realized that i CAN have peace of mind about this exam. Regardless of what happens, i know that things will be FINE. Isn't that the story of my life after all? 3 miserable years of law school and less than stellar grades and yet still i somehow landed a great job here in Austin? It's truly a blessing, and i thank God everyday for giving me this seemingly undeserved opportunity. Besides, i've actually studied and worked for this exam, so at least i'll know that i put in my effort. If things don't work out, they don't work out. And life goes on! I've lived with far too much FEAR, and honestly, i think it's just a waste of my time. (And yours, probably!)

Mmkay MUST start working, but i'll leave you with this hilarious e-card my BFF Judd (also studying for the BAR) sent me yesterday. Definitely laughed out loud in the library! http://www.someecards.com/viewcard/1463a0267ca30926f810d7ce1e15414a

xoxo darlings,
C

Friday, July 11, 2008

Acceptance


Nuff said.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th aka Pity Party for One


Bonjour, friends. I hope everyone's having a lovely 4th of July... BBQ-ing, hanging by the pool or if you're lucky, the lake, watching fireworks w/ loved ones.. My 4th hasn't started in the best way. I woke up feeling ICKY - there's just no other word for it. Took Lola out and then headed straight back to bed in the hopes that a couple more hours of sleep would help. It didn't. Had to cancel my personal training session and then spent the next 4 hours either on daybed in the salon (fancy word for my living room!) or in my comfy bed. Lola was snuggled up right next to me the entire time. Ugh quel pity party. Since then i've managed to get up, take miss Lola out again, and eat. Now i'm finishing up my paper so i can be DONE with summer school and can focus on Le Bar. Planning to do a makeup Bankruptcy lecture tonight if i can stomach it (literally, my tummy is not happy these days). Also hope to soak in a nice bath... Wish i could do something creative to cheer myself up, but i feel guilty not studying. So it's either resting, in the attempt to feel better so i can get more work done later, or being achey and doing work anyway. Sigh.

I do hope your 4th is better than mine. Only 3 1/2 more weeks of this!!!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

muppin is bad cat!

This is the email to which i woke up. It's from my dear mother... (Muppin = Muffin, my female cat):

Hi miyun !

are you study right now?
i want to call you , i don't want to interrupt your study so am sending email.
guess what muppin did just while a ago.
i was lying down couch try to relax , watch t.v. with a little blanket over my body,
and muppin jump over top of mommy try to lay down, and little later i felt wet.
you know what she did, she pee on me.
don't laugh!!!!!
goodnight...
love mom.


WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT CAT?!?!?!?!?!??!?!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Life is Good

Bonjour, friends. It's a lovely Sunday afternoon, and i'm taking a petit break from my BAR studying to muse a bit on some good things in life right now. First, my dear friend and Paris flea market partner-in-crime, Claudia of The Paris Apartment, has touched my heart once again. A little while ago I sent her a box of vintage French perfume label stickers that i found at Paper Place. When we were at the flea markets last September, she searched hi and low for some authentic vintage perfume labels, and so when i saw them i couldn't NOT get them for her. Anyway she was so sweet to give me a shout-out on her blog! It still THRILLS me to see my name on the blogs of these incredible women (Claudia, Kimberly..) b/c i just can't believe i actually KNOW them. Like have MET them and spent time with them. They're just so awesome! Anyway, here's the post - The Paris Apartment (Scroll to the bottom and ALSO check out her fabulous studded console table! Major lust.)

Speaking of furniture, i haven't done much at all with my apartment in the past month. This is a dramatic shift from the days of yore when i rearranged pretty much daily. And since i managed to make my bed this morning for the first time in quite awhile, i thought i'd give you a little glimpse into my bedroom transformation. I decided to "Anthropologize" my bedroom awhile back and the progress has been slow but still headed in the right direction. The duvet cover is from the Shabby Chic line @ Target, the LOVE pillow covers from LUSH design in the UK, and that's my crappy $9.99 lamp from IKEA stuck in the left corner (b/c i don't have the heart to throw it out... yet.). On the right wall is a fabric-covered bulletin board filled with cards and other correspondence from dear friends and family. I love to look at it when i go to bed at night and remember just how lucky i am to receive so much LOVE.


And here are some pics from my home office turned creative sanctuary. It's the most recent transformation in my apartment, and i just LOVE it. It's packed (literally) with creative posters, crafts, art supplies, stationary, books, scrapbooks, journals, etc. It's crazy and overwhelming and i LOVE IT!


Thursday, June 26, 2008

My Life Lately


Bon matin, dear friends and readers! I know it's been awhile since i've had a "real" blog post, but you know, life is crazy busy. Still i've managed to wake myself up enough this morning to put some real time and effort into this one... Lately i've been finding myself needing an exorbitant amount of sleep (for moi, anyway). Normally i can do quite well with around 7 hours of sleep per night. (In hs, it was more like 5 1/2!), and so my normal schedule involves me going to be around midnight and waking up at 7. But goodness me, the other night i was so exhausted that i fell asleep at 10 and then woke up at 8! 10 hours?? That's a bit much for me, as i was tired the rest of the day. Last night, however, i went to bed at 11 and struggled to wake up at 7. Goodness. Sleep does get in the way, doesn't it? But it's so delicious. And i cannot tell you how glorious it is to be able to put your head on the pillow and be asleep within minutes. Having had so many issues with insomnia and inability to fall asleep before 7 a.m. (uh huh... not fun), it's SO nice to know that my sleeping is predictable, albeit a bit excessive. It's kind of nice that Bar/Bri has put me on such a schedule, as it's great preparation for my working life.

Speaking of Bar/Bri, it still sucks. But today is a treat b/c Pony and i are going to watch the lecture online in the comfort of Chez Moi! We're going to get coffee and breakfast from Flipnotics and then cozy up on the couch and let the dogs run free (you'll recall that Pony has a darling little Yorkie named Beau). We went to dinner last night at San Paolo's, a Brazilian restaurant mere minutes from the law school. It was surprisingly cute and delicious! Definitely heavy food, but I thought I made pretty decent decisions and stuck to acceptable portion sizes. More importantly we had great conversation, and it made me realize, quite sadly, how much i'm going to miss her. I struggle with spending time with her, as she's in a relatively new relationship (you know how that goes), and we both have busy schedules. But last night reminded me why we are best friends, despite being different in almost EVERY way possible. (She's Republican, just bought a diesel SUV, has no qualms w/ fake tanning and smoking, and purposely spit her gum out on the grass just to tick me off.) The thing about Pony is, she truly believes in me. She never doubts me or my interests or my abilities, and even if they're a world away from her own interests, she's totally supportive. And she genuinely loves me. So even though her attitude towards the environment, welfare, etc. is far from my ideal, i still can't help but love her for being who she is to me. I mean that's what real friends are, n'est ce pas?

So i've been working on my positive thinking and have been listening to The Secret CD's... it's a little cheese, but has some excellent points. Really really simple points too that people just need to be reminded of from time to time. For example, if you love and respect yourself, you will attract people who love and respect you. I don't know many people who would deny that, but how often do i think/talk about how much i hate myself? MMhmmm... the power of positive thinking is powerful, friends. It really is.

In other news, it looks like I'm going to be spending my 25th birthday in Lake Tahoe with my darling sister, her hubby, and our two pups Sofie and Lola. Also, i'm going to be leaving Miss Lola with the Szetos for a month while i travel to Southern France, Paris, London, and D.C. I will miss her TERRIBLY but i know if i leave her with my sister, she'll be WELL taken care of. Plus Sofie and Lola just adore each other! If, however, i get Lola back and she's a barker, i will be sure to have some "words" with Ma Soeur!

Can i just take this time to discuss briefly how much i adore my dog?? I never understood dog people, but now that i am one (and yes, i really AM a dog person now) i totally get it. She is my BABY, my CHILD, my FAMILY. I can't even begin to express the emotions i feel when i look into her CUTE lil face, esp. when she cocks her head (too cute!). I love that she knows our routine now. I love when i wake up and look down to my left and see her creamy fluffy goodness asleep next to my bed (it's only a matter of time before i throw her into bed w/ moi!). I love how she insists on accompanying me to EVERY trip to the bathroom (TMI? sorry... but i pee a lot!). I love that every time i walk in the door, she wakes up, bounds to me, and covers me with kisses. I love how good she's getting at pottying at the right times and places. I love that she's not a tiny purse dog and not my accessory but my dog, my pet, who i can walk and run with and hold onto (ya know.. without killing). I just love everything about her. Right now, for example, she's curled up in her bed right at my feet. Looking adorable and so sweet and just the tiniest bit scruffy. Love love LOVE it. Ok i'm done now.

Have a good one, kids. :-)

Monday, June 23, 2008

The SEED Manifesto

Love Lynne Franks, and although i haven't made it completely through the SEED Handbook, i love this Manifesto. I want a huge poster of it made and plastered on my wall!

SEED Manifesto
*

I …………, affirm that I will


Constantly plants seeds as well as pick the blooms

Keep the space and time to stay in tune with my higher self

Never let go of the big vision

Put my values, including integrity, compassion and love, at the centre of my enterprise

Remember the three R’s: respect for self, respect for others, responsibility for all my actions

Believe in myself so others will too

Keep humour and laughter as vital ingredients of my business plan

Get up early in the morning

Not neglect my personal relationships, loved ones, and friends in any way

Manifest abundance in all areas of my life

Keep clutter to a minimum

Recognize my gifts and delegate the rest

Look at difficult situations from all perspectives

Welcome in mentors and mentor others in return

Light candles every day and surround myself with fresh flowers

Give people more than they expect

Talk slowly but think quickly

When I lose, don’t lose the lesson

Know my industry

Keep improving my technology skills

Smile when picking up the phone

Remember my body is my most important tool – stretch, exercise, breathe, go for a walk, dance

Every day try and read a poem, listen to an inspiring piece of music, look at a wonderful painting or go into nature

Drink six to eight glasses of pure water every day

Listen as well as talk

Learn the rules then break some

Know there is nothing more sexy than confidence

Remember that no-one, not even I am perfect, but I’m doing the best I can



SIGNED ……

DATE ……

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Cheap Picture Post


Just got back from a WONDERFUL weekend in Dallas. Death Cab For Cutie ROCKED in concert last night!!! Anyway here are some fun pics from Stella (Deb's adorable little pug) birthday party on Friday. Jenn, Lola, Sofie, and I were all in attendance. :-)

http://asianbodacious.shutterfly.com/action/

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Home

"Home" is one of my faaave Dixie Chicks songs. It's beautiful and truly resonates with me, as i often ponder what makes a house a true "home". And although i adore my little Pink Palace, Chez Carolyn, one of the most colorful, happiest places on earth, sometimes it doesn't really feel quite like a home. Is it the lack of other humans? (it's currently bursting at the seams with 2 kitties and 1 puppy!) Maybe... i guess i always associate a home with family. For example, i'm currently sitting at the dining table of a true HOME. Filled with gorgeous pics of adorable kids, moms, dads, cousins, grandmas... original artwork (e.g. coloring of "Red Ranger" on the wall to my right) and a little kids table full of yesterday's art projects. Does a home require kids? No not necessarily, but my idea of home has always involved cute, cuddly children (preferably 2 girls and 1 boy). I really admire the woman who runs this household. Not only is she raising 2 incredible kids, she also manages to keep her house warm and welcoming, clean but still comfortable. There's evidence of kids but it's not overrun with Barbies and toy trucks. Her kitchen is immaculate (don't know HOW she keeps those counters clear), too! The wife of a law school peer of mine, i got to know her and her kids when i was in London last semester and played babysitter abroad. LOVE the kids and LOVE her. She is also embarking on the artistic journey via Kimberly Wilson's Online Creativity Circle, and she's gonna be my study buddy. :-) Can't wait to share our insights and discoveries.

Gosh. Sitting here with my planner pad open and lists upon lists of To Do's, i realize that i could never keep my days straight sans planner. This week is particularly busy (and short) since Ma Soeur is coming Wed. night, and we are leaving for Dallas to see the 'Rents on Friday. Having a lasik consultation tomorrow (fingers crossed!!), squeezing in 2 training sessions w/ Deb before Dallas, meeting with a professor RE my research paper, AND i have my follow-up mentoring session w/ Kimberly on Wednesday!! Can't wait to hear her voice and chat about time management and how on earth she lives her crazy busy life SANS caffeine. Will post any tips!

I hope you've all had a relaxing weekend. This has been a lovely Sunday off, and though i'm tres dreading tomorrow morning, i am looking forward to my sister and her own maltipoo Sofie coming on Wed., so at least i have something to look forward to. Bon nuit, friends!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Survivor

Today was awful, literally awful. But i survived and don't have it do it again (a double Saturday, that is) for a very long time. What a busy day... got home with just enough time to watch Lola VERY deliberately pee under my bed (in my CARPETED bedroom - ew don't you just HATE carpet?), scream and then clean it, shower, take a quick and unfulfilling nap, and then get ready to head downtown for drinks @ 219 West for my darling J's birthday. A few mini corndogs, some french fries, 2 bites of german chocolate cheesecake, and 1 mango mohito later (wow that sounds like a lot more food than it was..) i sang some happy birthday, posed for some pics, and was on my way back home. It's not even midnight, and i'm close to death. Tomorrow is my ONE day off, but it's already packed. Meeting Deb (my kickass trainer!) for yoga in the morning, then need to do some cleaning and studying, then babysitting my fave Murphy kids and getting in some more studying after putting them to bed, then home... then wake up for another Monday morning. Le Sigh.

But my darling Lola, my poor sweet Lola who spent most of today alone was so good (despite the aforementioned tinkle accident). She's been such a doll lately and pretty well-behaved despite being only 4 months old.

Here I Go


I feel like i'm heading in for battle... about to endure eight, count them EIGHT, hours of Bar-Bri hell. Oi vey... how did i get here? In the morning is Secured Transactions (blehhh) and in the afternoon is Crim. Law. Oh Lord. Having to study for/take the BAR after graduating law school is the cruelest joke EVER.

P.S. The pic above is of a fantastic book that one of the women from the HTC Retreat i attended in June brought to share. Super fun and you can get a "used" one off amazon for practically nothing!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I Bark for Barack



I am tinkled pink this morning, as all over the news and my personal choice, CNN, is the face of Barack Obama - the (almost) official Democratic Presidential nomination. AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! I just can't believe this is really happening! Last night Obama made history, and to be perfectly honest, i just can't believe the American people actually made it happen. I've said throughout this entire race that we really couldn't go wrong with either candidate. I fully respect H. Clinton, and of course, couldn't be more thrilled to support a female Presidential candidate. But I firmly believe that Obama is a better candidate and most importantly, a genuine one. When was the last time we could think that, say that? People are calling him the next John F. Kennedy. I hope he continues to make history. I, for one, cannot WAIT for election season.

P.S. Is it just me or is John McCain, like, super creepy? Pardon my French but he's a huge prick, and if he's elected, i fear for the worst..

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Woo hoo!!


CNN has just informed me that GM (General Motors) is making big changes - changes that involve shutting down big truck and SUV production and increasing smaller, more fuel-efficient, crossover cars. Yay!! It's about friggin time. This is the one thing i love about high gas prices. It really forces everyone, yes even the annoying hummer-driving peeps, to reevaluate.

On another note, it sounds like Mr. Obama is gonna get on the ticket, and it ALSO sounds like Clinton is open to get on the Barack bandwagon to help elect a democratic candidate. Ooh i get goosebumps just thinking about it. What a kickass election season it's been and gonna be.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Grateful Diary

In the midst of all this chaos, i'd like to take a moment and just say that today i am grateful for...

1. NPR, particularly All Things Considered,

2. The Whole Foods paradise in Austin on South Lamar. It might be the happiest place on earth,

3. My Mommy and her cute daily emails (she just learned how to use the internet!),

4. My little zoo - Puffin, Muffin, and my darling pup Lola,

5. Loooooong summer days in TX, when the sun doesn't go down until 9 p.m.,

6. Fromage d'affinois - creamy, delicious, and the perfect lazy appetizer (available at Whole Foods, Central Market, and Wheatsville Coop!),

7. Yoga for the sake of yoga (aka not of that Bikram, hot yoga, "i'm doing this to burn 800 calories" yoga),

8. The fact i can (or at least i think i can) pull off hot pink highlights in my hair,

9. Iced coffee,

10. And last but not least, Kimberly Wilson. I wouldn't be where i am or who i am had i not stumbled across her blog, Hip Tranquil Chick, a year and a half ago.