Saturday, September 27, 2008

Exciting News, yo!


Thursday, September 25, 2008


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 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:

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.