Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I have no plans to eat anyone!

Today my new monitor came in. At work I was using my laptop for the longest time. About a week ago I told my boss I needed a bigger monitor as I was struggling with the laptop size screen. He ordered me a 21" monitor. I was expecting something mid-range, but - being a tech guy, my boss ordered me a top of the line model! Nice! So I'm very happy at work right now! I'm super excited about this monitor.

The weekend was fun. I drove my Mum up to LA on Sunday morning. We hit the Long Beach Markets. I found a cute vintage dress for $15 and a pair of art-deco earrings for $5. Not bad! After that we went to In'N'Out for lunch - my Mum really enjoyed it (whats not to enjoy?). After that we visited Griffith Park Observatory. There was no parking, it was packed. An older couple walked to their car. I stalked them, put my indicator on and waited. They took their merry time. No problem. Another car pulls up about 5 minutes later and puts on its indicator. I had my Mum tell them I was waiting first. They still didn't move. The old couple eventually left their spot, and the other car slid into the parking spot! Please note: I had been driving up and all around LA that day. It was a hot and humid day. I had a headache. So, keeping all that in mind... I got out of my car and knocked on the window of the rude car. The man rolled down his window. I politely told him I'd been waiting about 15 minutes and was there first. The man says "I've been waiting a long time!" "not as long as me sir, you need to move your car". It was pretty funny. I was nice about it, but at the same time in no mood to be walked over. My Mum laughed in disbelief at her headstrong daughter. Anyway, Mum got her view of the Hollywood sign and I felt good that I hadn't caved.

After our visit to Griffith Park Observatory we went to Aroma Cafe in Studio City for a refreshment and escape from the hot weather. I soon realised Aroma Cafe is where the beautiful people and the wannabe actors/writers go. Did I feel out of place? No, I drank it all in - along with my decaf iced coffee.

We then drove around Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive. I decided I couldn't miss the Renoir exhibition. Mum walked around the gardens at the La Brea Tar Pit while I indulged in 1.5 hours of beautiful artwork. I spent the extra money to have the audio tour. So interesting. I loved it. Renoir's pieces shown were from his later years when he was moving away from impressionism. Most impressionists are known for their landscapes, whereas Renoir focused on people. I was particularly moved by how "real" some of the paintings are. He captured people's expressions perfectly. Its as if you are sitting in the room with some of his subject matters. My favourite painting there was "Young Mother". Its not one of his most famous paintings, but it was in my top 5. I love the expression on the Mother's face. She looks besotted with her child and as though nothing else would be able to capture her attention. I had a couple of other favourites, one being "Two Young Girls at the Piano". The audio explanation of that painting was very interesting. There were about 60 of his paintings at the exhibition!

After the exhibition I found my Mum and took her to Lala's for dinner. Nighttime: we slept well in our hotel room. Then yesterday we slept in and went to Santa Monica for breakfast. In the afternoon we drove out to Pasadena and went to the Hungington Library/Gardens. It blew me away. I can't believe I've never been there before now! I loved every part of it. There are a set of gardens which are "Australian". As you walk in, you feel like you're in the Australian bush. I took a pepi leaf and a gum tree leaf. I was surrounded by these trees and bottle brushes. Each garden is quite big and I couldn't see any other gardens once in the Australian garden. A wave of emotion swept over me as I stood in the middle of the aussie garden. I felt like I was home while there. I started to cry and quickly slid my Ray Bans over my eyes and securely onto my nose. Mum didn't see, which I was grateful for. I wish I could take Anna there, or that we'd been there sooner.

Last night we got home and Daniel and I watched "Where the Wild Things Are" for the first time. I didn't think I'd like it. I was wrong. Its fabulous! Watch it, I know you'll love it.

And today I'm at work. I'm quite happy to be at work, catching up on things. Friday we leave for Yosemite. After that I'll be saving my vacation time back up for a trip to NYC in September!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I'm a shoe girl through-and-through. These are some that I'm loving at the moment:-

These shoes are darling, and would look lovely with my navy blue dresses!

These clogs aren't quite the *Alexa Chung* clogs we're seeing around, (which I'm not quite into). But they are close enough, and look more comfortable for walking. These would look great with my floral dresses!

The next two pairs of shoes are very 1940's looking. I'm in love. They would be beautiful paired with vintage dresses or skirt & blouse.

Watch this space!


In a Moment

Last night I was sitting home, reading some things my Australian friends had said about me just before my wedding. Things that made me smile and miss them very much. I was thinking about how I miss my close-close friends.

Today my friend Maureen visited me at work to drop off a present from a close friend in New York (my sweet Aussie friend Anna). The present meant more than words can... Maureen and Anna had chosen the gift together. I absolutely love the gift, it fits perfectly. Its a little dress from Anthropologie - and is very cute. Exciting huh?! I'm mostly touched by all the thought that went into that. I took a walk to Starbucks and couldn't stop thinking about it, I huge smile on my face. I felt pretty lucky. It made my californian day.

I discovered Ben & Jerry's the other day. I had it for the first time ever! (I know... I've been living in the US for 3 years, and **just** had Ben & Jerry's...?!!). I was holding off, knowing it would be addictive, not sure of the effect discovering it would have. I had the "Everything but the kitchen sink" tub, and yes - I demolished *almost* the whole tub. It was insane good. Crazy good. Wanting-to-scream it was so good. While this is a great discovery, it also poses a lot of problems. Next time I'm upset... guess what I'll grab! My friend Ciara tells me when she's upset she'll go to the store, buy a tub of Ben & Jerry's and eat the tub. I suggested we call each other up to share that tub. **

** For the Australian readers, please note, a tub of Ben & Jerry's isn't all that huge. Not like a 2L tub of icecream. A side note, you should come to America, not just to see me, but to have every flavour of Ben & Jerry's until find your holy grail tub.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Strange Day

Today I felt my first earthquake. There have been small ones since I've lived here. But this is the first one I've noticed. Usually we sleep through them. The last one which hit Julian woke Daniel up at 2am. That was a few weeks back, and was only a small earthquake.

Today was the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in Mexico. I was sitting in my living room, sorting through a cabinet, and suddenly I felt dizzy... everything seemed to be spinning. I thought I was going to be sick and stood up to see if that helped. Lo and behold, our windows were shaking, our building was shaking. It was an earthquake. We ran downstairs with our disaster preparedness kit. You're meant to stay inside, under a table. But our table is next to our window - no good. I figure I don't want to be inside when an earthquake happens. We're on the second storey in our apartments, and I worry it will crash down, and we'll end up in a pile of rubble. Is that me worrying or what...?! Only last week we finally received our disaster preparedness kit in the mail. I'm so glad we spent the money and got one. We have been being advised to get one for quite some time. I bit the bullet and did it. Today we were glad for it! (just in case!). The earthquake was a very strange experience. I felt odd for hours after it. Dizzy and misplaced. It freaked me out.

That aside, it was a great day. Daniel and I slept in then went out for breakfast. We both ordered pancakes which were gi-normous! I'll post pictures of them another day. After a nice breakfast out together we walked through the village, then came home and did housework all day. It was nice to spend the day together, even if it was doing housework :) I felt like we accomplished a lot today. Tonight we were meant to go salsa dancing with friends, but were too tired. We stayed home instead playing a boardgame and listening to jazz music.

I don't know if I mentioned it on my blog, but I've had chronic shoulder pain for 2-3 months now. I had an MRI on it, to rule out a tear. Thankfully it wasn't a tear! I'm very glad about that! My doctor sent me to physical therapy and its been diagnosed as tendonitis. The tendonitis is secondary to the real problem which is hypermobility. Its kind of boring, so I won't explain what hypermobility is. Its a condition that is causing the tendonitis - which is inflammation of the tendons in the shoulder - thats the pain I'm getting. So, basically I have to go to physical therapy for a couple of months, do exercises/weights/stretches/icing my shoulder every single night (for a couple of months) until I've strengthened my shoulders up. I'm fine with it. Besides, I might get those buff arms I always wanted :) I'm just so happy that I'm starting to feel relief from the shoulder. The constant pain is/has been doing my head in.

Daniel and I went to a 20th wedding anniversary party last night for good friends. The couple are so lovely, still in love and still get a kick out of each other. I love that. They're fun to be around. It was a mexican fiesta with catered mexican food and spanish/mexican music which we danced to later in the evening. Much fun was had.

Friday night I went to Jill's house for a chilled evening chatting, eating pizza and playing Rock Band.

My Mum arrives Wednesday night from England. Very excited. Its been 1.5 years since I last saw her. Let the festivities begin.