Life of Late ~ 2.19.16

You know when your brain seems to be fried from staring at the same screen for hours on end?  How about if it’s fried and you haven’t even begun working yet?  Yep to both of those.  I’m trying to finish a final ad sales planner presentation and for every one slide that I work on, I seem to need 20 minutes break.  Fingers crossed it all goes as planned.  Well, thankfully it’s also Friday and since we had a last-minute client dinner last night, I was able to wiggle my way into work a few minutes after my normal 8:30 arrival.  Winning.

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^^ Running running, same idea, different day and different crowd.  This was from Tuesday’s intervals crowd.  I ran up through the slush and ice and was not at all impressed but after a total of 6 slow miles, I was glad to have a workout under my belt.

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^^ Also from Tuesday.  My attempt to finish the November Project homework – wear your buff or photograph your buff in your city in some creative way.  Cue anxiety trying to figure out how to top the most amazing pictures from tribes around the country and world.  Just search “NP_Homework” in Instagram and you will be impressed.

While it was fun to be away last weekend, I realized how much I love my city and my routine.  A low-key night tonight (really catching up on all that sleep that I lost this last week), a few training runs for next weekend’s Phoenix Half Marathon, possibly yoga, brunch squeezed in there, and volunteering on Sunday with New York Cares.

We also have to spruce up the kitchen in our apartment since one roommate left and she owned pretty much every single item in there.  Lindsay and I laughed because when we arrived back from North Carolina (coincidence that we were both there last weekend!) it looked like a scene out of the Grinch Who Stole Christmas.  Analogy credits to Linds!  Anyways, that means a trip to Bed, Bath, and Beyond and as long as I don’t get too overwhelmed, I’m all game.

The Blissful Balance ~ “Where to Eat in Phoenix” ~ OH MY GOODNESS GORGEOUS.  I want to go to all of these places.  Absolutely adore this post and so excited for Phoenix next weekend 🙂

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^^ I adore walking around my neighborhood and passing classics such as this Ukranian eatery. Veselka always seems to be packed and is known for its borscht & pierogi.  Thankfully I know it’s not going anywhere and luckily this cheap eatery is open 24 hours a day.

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APlus ~ “Strangers Wrote Their Biggest Regrets…They All Used The Same Three-Letter Word” ~ CLEAN SLATE

Skyscanner ~ “Travel Tips for Solo Female Travelers” ~ Hm.  Maybe I should take the plunge and take a solo trip.  But then I do love traveling with people.  I just also need my me time.

Puckermob ~ “30 Things You Never Thanked Your Grandma For” ~ Cue tears.  I’m blessed to have all four of my grandparents in my life but sometimes it’s tough being so far away as they get older.  Yes, all four of you guys are reading this and I love you 🙂

NYTimes ~ “At U.S. Olympic Trials, Two Marathoners Use Teamwork to Become Teammates” ~ Talk about amazing.

The Infatuation ~ “Llama Inn” ~ I just want to go because of the name.

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^^ When your friends sign up for races and see your picture on the website.  WOOHOO! Thanks Mom for sending me my jersey last year.  I’ll start signing autographs 😉

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Hey, hey a short post today!  Don’t worry, I’ll bombard you with photos after next weekend’s trip to Phoenix. Have a wonderful weekend all!

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Two Hands are Better Than One

When my flight from Charlotte, NC to NYC got me back earlier than expected, I was left with plenty of time to clean the apartment, catch up on recent episodes of Downton Abbey and the Bachelor, and explore another restaurant on my city bucket list.  If you haven’t noticed in the foodie world, avocado toast is on the rage and while I could have easily made a trip to the beloved Bluestone Lane or even Le Pain, I was in the mood to try something new.

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Plus, since I was going solo, I was sure to get a table faster, right?  Well, turns out that’s not always the case but I was bound and determined to check Two Hands, another Aussie inspired and run cafe, off of my list.

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two hands
164 Mott St, New York, NY 10013

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^^ Flat white, an Australian creation, makes for a delightful meal.

IMG_5424Torn between sweet and savory, I stuck to the avocado toast and added an over-easy egg on top.  If there ends up being a next time, I would definitely persuade my buddies to tag along just so we could order a few more dishes and test them all out.

IMG_8361 IMG_8359 ^^ You know when I said that I ate alone?  Well I happened to be sitting next to another solo diner and may have snagged this shot when she wasn’t looking.  Hey, it’s all for the blog right?  I’m sure restaurants are probably sick and tired of people whipping out their phones or cameras as food arrives.

IMG_8358 IMG_8351 ^^ Of course, if you are just looking for coffee on the go, walk in and head straight to the back to submit your order and skip the wait.

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^^ Because who wouldn’t want s’more?  If you do happen to have a bit more room for dessert, this packed cookie or stuffed muffin might be well worth your while.  Maybe next go around…

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“Food for the body is not enough.  You need food for the soul”

Those New York Eats ~ Part 1

One of the best parts about living in New York is the wide array of food that surrounds you.  Here I am catching up on some of the clutch eats surrounding me in the city.  Many of these pictures have just been sitting around in a draft post (or realistically my iPhoto) waiting to be dropped into a lovely post such as this.  That being said, many of them are from months ago during the warmer days and non-whole30 experiment.  Still, plenty of fun to share 🙂

BREAKFAST

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 Joe Coffee
~ Lexington (UES) ~ Union Square ~ West Village ~ Chelsea ~ Columbia ~ Upper West ~
Iced cold brew latte w/ cherry scone (or a cinnamon chocolate chip scone)

Juicepress

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And if you are feeling a little too healthy with that vegan fresh pressed juice that could cost an arm and a leg, follow it up with some solid sugary fried dough 😉

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The Donut Pub
203 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011
(212) 929-0126

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LUNCH

IMG_4656^^ Famous bone broth from brodo down in the East Village.  I was on my way home from a run (and Juicepress adventure) and decided to take a plunge and test it out.  Ordering from the menu is simple – which type of mix-ins would you like in your broth?  I went for the “marco” or broth with tumeric and ginger since those have apparently good anti-inflammatory powers.  To be honest, it was tasty but I’m not sure if I could afford the $8ish 10oz snack every day.

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Grimaldi’s Pizza
1 Front St, Brooklyn, NY ~ (718) 858-4300
M-Th: 11:30-10:45 pm; Fri: 11:30-11:45 pm; Sat: 12:00-11:45 pm; Sun: 12:00-10:45 pm

Again, pairing all love of foods together.  Some claim Grimaldi’s is THE BEST.  I think to be fair, one would have to order all of the pizzas, line them up and do a taste test.  But, then it ruins the experience if one pie is better inside the restaurant versus takeout.  Anyways, for more pizza joints to check out, here is one versions of the “Most Amazing Slices in NYC“.

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Pure Thai Cookhouse
766 9th Avenue #2, New York, NY 10019 (52nd/9th)
(212) 581-0999

Thai is not always my jam, probably because I haven’t really had a solid Thai outing, until this.  Noodles with perfectly spiced chicken and a cold Thai tea make everything better. Don’t you agree?  It’s the power of food (and people) that make the world go around.

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DINNER

IMG_0436 IMG_0437 ^^ It might be smart to order mussels at a mussel bar buuuuut I don’t like them, so I went for the grab meat guacamole and spicy greens instead.

IMG_0439^^ Had I had extra space, I would have selected the “Deep Fried Whoopiee Pie” or even a medley of the “Flex Donuts” just because.

 Flex Mussels
174 E 82nd St ~ 154 W 13th St
~ Menu ~ Book a Table ~ Info ~

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^^ The Corner Deli, which guess what? ISN’T A DELI!  Officially recognized by the world wide web as a casual taqueria, the menu offers a good selection of authentic and delicious Mexican fare.

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IMG_7631IMG_7635^^ Quite possibly the worst food photography ever but that would because it was shot 1) indoors 2) at night and 3) with flash.  Food photography no-no’s.  BUT the food was delicious if that’s worth anything {fish taco, horchata, plantains, avocado salad – aka sliced avocado}

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Sooooooo if you made it to the end (even if you were skimming as I usually do…true story) CONGRATS!  More coming with of course a list of places that I would like to hit up in the next few months.

Who’s in?  Any recommendations?

breakfast at habitat, los angeles

recap for the week – sunday night red eye and rest of the week attempting to stay awake aka not too much happened this week.  so when in doubt, throw it back.  also I don’t feel like writing with capital letters today. sorry mom.

just over a month ago I flew home for a couple of friend’s wedding.  they have been dating since high school and are simply perfect for one another.  just too darn cute.  anyways, a trip home meant a trip to november project los angeles and since madre (what my sister and I like to call her) was taking the day off, it meant a trip to a new coffee joint. 🙂

IMG_3305we met up with the group at baxter street hill and ooooooo my, it was a doozy.  but check out that view. maybe not as good as the views in san fran, or so I see on social media, but it’ll do.  one of these days I’ll have to check sf out for myself. (funny because I was so darn close to sf all throughout college and of course the sf tribe started just as I left the bay in ’13)

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next up, cawfee.

habitat coffee
3708 N Eagle Rock Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90065
~ la eater ~ facebook ~ time out ~

IMG_3351 welcome to los angeles, the land of hipster coffee spots

IMG_3353IMG_3355 IMG_3354 why yes, that’s my favorite number.  it must have been my lucky day.

IMG_3357 IMG_3356hi mom! look at you in your november project shirt and santa clara hat  🙂

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^^ more of an up and close view of the muesli because why not.  silly me thought that all muesli was the same and I was imagining the milk (more likely cream) soaked oats from zinc down in corona del mar.  no, these were served high and dry with just a dollop of almond milk.  I ended up going to the coffee station and dowsing it in milk, which made it a tad bit better.  I also think it could have improved with a hefty portion of berries rather than orange and green apple pairing.

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IMG_3359 ^^ the true winner that morning was my mom’s quiche.  just look at the layers of savory goodness. breathtaking with a spot of burnt cheese on top and enough protein to take on the day.

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do good l.a. do good

when friends come to town

When friends come to town, you decided to check out all the restaurants and plays that you have had on your list for ages, but just haven’t gotten around to.  You walk all over Manhattan in search of nothing in particular, but just a means of catching up and seeing all the sights. This last weekend I had one of my good college friends, Alexis, fly out from California to spend some time soaking in the amazing east coast fall.  While she arrived in a storm (no literally, there were rainstorms and overcast skies for two days), the sun came out and we managed for two glorious days in the city.

Friday turned out to be surprisingly packed, so I had to scrap the leaving early on-time plan.  Since Alexis is always good at sampling different cuisine, I decided to take her to Jeepney, a Filipino joint in the East Village.  I had been there once before and really decided on it because they served Ube ice cream for dessert, which was one of Alexis’s favorite.

When we had arrived, the hostess said there was supposed to be a 90 minute wait for a table.  Since my hunger levels would have turned to hanger levels in that time frame, we opted for bar seating and may have had more fun in doing so.  There we could watch as the bartender whipped up drink after drink, topped with various orange peel and berry art.  I wasn’t in the mood to drink, but really should have at least asked about their virgin selection.  Those juice combinations would have tasted mighty fine.  Ah well, all the more reason to go back.

IMG_3466 ^^ One great thing about friends, especially good friends, is that they are generally open to ordering and splitting a couple different items.  This means sampling more of the cuisine at half the price and still leaving room for dessert.  Entree #1 Bicol Express {slow-roasted pork shoulder, coconut milk, sili, bagoong sauce, vigan longganisa, pickled chilies and baby bok choy} and a baby pot pie.  Double thumbs up for the bicol express with the savory sauce and tender meat.   I wasn’t as much of a fan of the pot pie or bao buns we sampled, but such is life.

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^^ The real reason we ate there.  Because it’s normal to center a meal around dessert.

On Saturday we slept in (try 9.5 hours of sleep!!! unheard of and evident that my body was still recovering from Monday’s red-eye), I went for a run, and then it was off to explore Manhattan.  I took her down to one of my favorite bagel shops (since Ess-A is no longer close by) Tompkin’s Square Bagels, where we drooled over the selection of sandwiches and spreads.

IMG_3471 ^^ Whole wheat everything w/ cream cheese + lox for her and whole wheat everything with blueberry cream cheese for me.  Deeeeelish and not to mention beyond filling.  Thank goodness we were banking on walking the rest of the day.

IMG_3470  No cookies were purchased on this venture, but it makes me smile when I see black-and-white cookies in every store.  Such a symbol of New York.  The rest of the day was honestly spent walking all around the city and if my FitBit were working and syncing properly with my phone, I would be able to tell you all the steps we took, miles we walked, and calories burned 😉

IMG_8191 IMG_8195 IMG_8201 ^^ Both of us agreed that the west village is where it is at, especially with the quaint looking brownstones and lovely fall leaves.  Alexis was just glad that she could wear a winter coat and dress up for cooler weather since cooler weather is rarely a thing in California.

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Who wants to even guess how much it would cost to live in one of these apartments?  Maybe my life savings?

IMG_8211^^ Since we had eaten our bagels around brunch time, we skipped out on a full lunch meal and decided to regroup, warm our hands, and charge my phone inside a Starbucks. This happened to be my FIRST red cup of the season (despite the changing temps, I have always gone for the good ‘ol iced cold brew) and don’t see what all the controversy is about.  Anyways, a new favorite combo >> skim peppermint mocha with only 2 pumps peppermint and make it extra hot 🙂

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Got to love me some Snoopy and Macy’s 🙂 Avoiding some of the chaos, we made our way through Herald Square (NOT my favorite place in town) and up to Bryant Park where the ice skating rink and holiday shops are already open for business.  Luckily for us we managed to take a picture right before the sun set, then continued to walk around and decide on a place for dinner.  Oh if we weren’t planning to go eat a full meal later, I would have taken to buying a snack or two from the vendors because the smells were so inviting.

IMG_8216 IMG_8217 ^^ I still don’t know what that delectable concoction is/was but I will make it my goal to get someone to go back to Bryant Park with me and split one before the holiday season is over.

IMG_8220^^ Not the best quality photo buuuuuut we ate ETHIOPIAN FOOD!  I have never been to an Ethiopian restaurant and was actually baffled at the selection on the menu.  I let Alexis do the deciding and we ended up with a meat combo and veggie combo, all atop this spongey pancake.  They don’t even provide utensils and the trick is to use the pancake in order to scoop up the toppings.

So.darn.tasty and I have to say, it’s pretty cool to explore the different cuisines in the city.  After all, that is something NYC is known for and I tend to stick to my Chipotle and Bareburger.  Once we had digested a bit more, we set off in search of the musical theatre by Lincoln Center.

IMG_8222Though this is a true classic, I had never seen it, not even the movie, so this was quite the treat!  We had picked up tickets at the TKTS booth by South Street (lower Manhattan) so the tickets were 50% off and right near the orchestra!  Originally we had tried to see “An American in Paris”, but all the Saturday tickets had been sold.  Anyways, who knew they had broadway productions outside of Times Square and at Lincoln Center?  (Don’t answer that.  That may have just been me…)

IMG_3472 Since we were watching the musical at Lincoln Center, we decided to drop by Magnolia’s to complete a day of eats with a little sweet banana pudding.  Because when in Rome New York, right? I probably should stop using that excuse since I live here and work right by a Magnolias.  Or not.

“Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity.” – Khalil Gibran

Some Spring Loving ~ 3.6.15

Apparently today is “The National Day of Unplugging Challenge“.  Do you think you could unplug for 24 hours?  Scary, right?  It’s probably doable since I still work on a computer, which enables access to Facebook, email, etc.  Maybe that’s cheating since I’m not fully unplugging from technology, but it’s just about all I can do at work.  The reason I find myself checking all these forms of media is to keep in the know.  I’m a nosy person, I know and admit that about myself.  Even my grandma dubbed me “Nosy Rosy” when I was younger.  So I like to know what’s happening, what the night’s or weekend plans are, any deals going on, and so on.  But let’s give it a shot, shall we?  Should turn out better than my “Lent diet”. Right, spoiler alert – the “no coffee, no sweets” was an epic fail.

~ Best Cafe Coffee Shops in New York City ~ Rolling off the broken Lent promise, let’s chat about the best hipster and hole-in-the-wall java joints.  I have only been to Joe and Stumptown here in NYC, but know from my Pasadena and Santa Barbara background that Intelligentsia is also out of this world.  What’s left to test out?

– El Rey –
100 Stanton St
– Fair Folks & A Goat –
(just by the name it’s a winner…noted for a clutch iced brew)
96 W Houston St
– Ninth Street Espresso Uptown –
(iced coffee on tap…yes please)
109 E 56th St
– Petite Shell –
1269 Lexington Ave

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~ Lessons from a Sommelier ~ Before we go all out and start popping bottles and dancing on tables (do not challenge me because when in the right mood, I may say “challenge accepted”.  Trust me, I’ll be the perfect date for weddings 😉 ), maybe we should learn a little bit more about the bubbly beverage.  Yes?  No?  Carry on my friends, carry on.

~ What the Color of Your Clothes Say About You ~ Curious if that color combo is making you feel down?  Yes – bleh or blah or just off.  Well my new friend Tory from Hot Chick Pea has it all figured out!  Check out her thoughts or sign up for weekly meditation here for a brighter today and tomorrow 🙂 You won’t regret it, I promise.

~ Buying Running Shoes? How about taking advice from the Today Show segment with the one and only Coach John from NYRR/November Project.

~ The Magic Text Message ~ What if I told you that you could get anything with just a simple text message?  Well first off, that sounds super sketchy because it can entail anything legal or illegal but let’s stick with legal.  It does solve a problem for those on the outskirts of cities and could be a potential goldmine business plan.  It also plays to the lazy card, but what’s new?

~ Happy Birthday YouTube ~ Some top moments cultivated by Pure Wow.  Special note to the Evolution of Dance.  Who knows?  Maybe you can bring some of those groovy moves out to the bar.  Then again, I’m pretty sure I have found myself dancing (more along the lines of the wedding entrance video) and turned most guys away because of those moves. So, take my advice and don’t. 😉 (~3:50? defffffinitely guilty)

Also, I just so happened to pull a white elephant gift at Christmas that was a fox sining this little ditty and could not stop cracking up.  I’m not sure if my grandpa knew what the song was from (some random YouTube video) or just a hilarious toy.  Either way, my night was made.

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>> two months until my birthday (and a whole bunch of other NP peeps too!). It’s never to early to start the countdown, right? <<