Monday, August 30, 2004

Fun celebrity sighting

Some of the best things about living in Los Angeles are the unexpected celebrity sightings. Today, for instance, Brent and I are driving home from lunch. Waiting at the National and Manning intersections, we see police motorcycles waiting for what looks like it's going to be a motorcade of some sort. As the cars drive past us (we're in the left turn lane), we see that it's not a political motorcade, but a movie filming. Imagine our excitement when it turns to be a Bentley driven by Bernie Mac! We think he was filming this upcoming movie. And this is actually our second Bernie Mac sighting. We saw him at Versailles, one of my favorite restaurants, a few years ago - after the Kings of Comedy movie but before his Bernie Mac Show fame. See! God IS running out of extras for my life! He's using celebrities now! :)

It's almost 1 a.m., by the way. My sleep cycle is all out of whack because we were painting until 2 a.m. on Friday night, as well as painting again and assembling furniture until 3 a.m. last night.

I have tomorrow off - thanks to my firm's summer vacation perk that allows each employee one extra day off a month for June, July and August. I plan to pick up more things we need for our new place, especially kitchen stuff. Target, here I come!

Friday, August 27, 2004

Casting call

I once heard a comedian joke about running into the same strangers around town and said, "Ya ever get that feeling that God is running out of extras in your life?" Recently, Brent and I felt that way. While shopping for furniture at Cost Plus on Westwood, we ran into a guy who looked just like Kevin Richardson from Backstreet Boys. This is how the conversation went:

Brent: Hey! I saw that guy the other day! Doesn't he look just like that guy from Backstreet Boys?

Me: Yeah, I thought the same thing, but it's not him.

Brent: Are you sure?

Me: Yup. I walked by and heard him speak. Absolutely not him. And I don't think that's his girlfriend. (She was a bit too plain to be the girlfriend of a BSB. Shallow of me? Yup.)

Brent: Ok, well that's just weird because I just saw him the other day.

So later that day, Brent and I are returning from getting our cars washed (separately). I'm waiting at an intersection and I HAD to call Brent!

Me: HEY! You'll never guess who just drove by me!!!

Brent: Who?

Me: The poor man's Kevin Richardson!!!

Brent: WHAT??? That's the second sighting TODAY! And collectively, our third this week!


Ok, so maybe that wasn't a very exciting re-enactment, but I'm just amazed that in a city as big as Los Angeles that you can run into the same person, especially one you don't know, that many times in a short period. That doesn't even happen to me when I'm in Visalia, a much smaller town.

I couldn't sleep this morning, so I've been up since 5:30 a.m. Therefore, let's blame the silliness of this post on that, shall we? :)

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Easy on the eyes

Brent said my blog was too bright and I felt it was time for a change, hence the new look. You like?

Tonight we were at our condo, cleaning counters, cabinets, bathroom, etc. It didn't really need it, but I thought it would be nice to have a fresh start. And I finally got to get some cleaning supplies from Target that I've been DYING to try! They are fabulous, great smelling (fun scents without chemical smells that often cause me to wheeze) and beautiful to look at. I got glass cleaner that smells like mint, an all-purpose spray in lavender, all-purpose wipes in lavender, a shower spray and cucumber dish soap. Much like the Fiji water bottle inspires me to drink water, these cleaners may very well inspire me to clean! Best part is they are non-toxic and biodegradable, naturally derived and never tested on animals. And they didn't dry out my skin at all! Yay! I'm probably going to try their other products for laundry, etc. Brent's right; I'm the world's biggest consumer. Marketing departments pray every night for people like me.

Monday, August 23, 2004

The Pony (tail) Express

Housing update: Funding has officially gone through! As of tomorrow afternoon, the place is OURS! Mua-ha-ha-ha. An evil laugh just felt appropriate there.

Raise your hand if you knew that changing the part of your hair could evoke such a change in how you feel you look. I've started wearing my ponytail with a side part instead of pulled all the way back. I've often admired how other people did that with their ponytails. With a side-parted ponytail, they looked so stylish, even in sweatpants. I've always had a hard time doing that, but with much practice, I think I've got it down. And the best part is that I can pull it back with my hair wet, so I don't have to spend a half-hour blow drying my hair. Three cheers for saving time!

"He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home." - Johann von Goethe

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Table for 16?

Last night we went to Noodle Planet in Westwood, one of our favorite places when we're in the mood for Asian. I had never really noticed how much stuff they leave on each of the tables. Take a look at this picture I took....

WTF? Posted by Hello

There are 14 items there! 14! They should change the name to Condiment Planet.

Since we'll officially have our condo next week, I felt it was fine to start ordering my magazine subscriptions. I found this site, where I was able to order 4 subscriptions for $39 as part of a packaged deal! I ordered Glamour, Self, Shape, and Allure. I also ordered Real Simple from there, and Budget Living and Lucky from Amazon because I had a $25 gift certificate. I hope our mailbox is big enough.

I need to make a plea. I talked to a friend of mine who frequents my blog. To conceal his identity, let's just call him Mosh. He said he feels bad because he often wants to leave comments to my posts, but doesn't want to be the only one and seem stalker-ish. Now, I get a weekly report that shows how many people have viewed my blog and when. Last week I had 75 views! (Granted, I probably account for at least 14 of those views because I check my blog a couple times a day to see if folks are leaving comments. In addition, when I post a new entry, I check the site to make sure it worked.) Anyhow, there are about 50+ other views that aren't accounted for. So here's my plea: if you visit my site, let me know every now and then by leaving a comment. Just a simple shout out will suffice. A mere 'sup will make the world of difference. I have to admit that while I know I have friends who read this, I often feel like I'm blogging into space. Can you imagine having a one-sided conversation with a group of people and no response? Except, of course, for Mosh's. :) And thanks to all of you who regularly visit. To date, I've had 343 visits and 509 page view. Yay!

Friday, August 20, 2004

More Q&A

It's time for the Friday questions from Enjoy!

1. What city or part of Los Angeles do you live in now? I live near the Westside Pavillion now, but am moving into my condo in Santa Monica next week. Can't wait!
2. If you have lived somewhere else in the area, where was it? I used to live on Miracle Mile, near LACMA.
3. Besides where you live now, where else would you want to live in the area? Well, I think Santa Monica is going to be my new favorite area for quite a while.
4. Where would you not want to live? Not the Valley because it's too far and too hot, and nowhere with a lot of crime, like East LA.
5. How often do you venture out of your area? Occasionally.
6. Where do you usually go when you get out? We like dim sum at Empress Palace (sp) in Downtown LA. And we tend to visit the fun part of Sawtelle where the Giant Robot stores are.
7. How far do you work/school from where you live? Now I'm about 20 minutes from work. When I move, I'll probably be about 15.
8. Money is no object; Beach, the Hills, the City or Leave? Beach.

In other news, for those of you who have been following the soap opera that is our house-buying experience, we signed a HUGE stack of closing papers yesterday, did our final inspection, parted with a lot of money, and are expected to close escrow on Tuesday! YAY! We'll probably do some painting and furniture shopping next week, and officially move in next weekend. Yesterday during our final inspection, I had the urge to do a happy dance, so I did. Nothing like dancing a little jig in a new home.

Totally off topic, but why is it that I always seem to get the last cup of coffee at work, requiring that I make the next pot? Coincidence or highly eloborate plan from the rest of my co-workers? Hmmm....

Monday, August 16, 2004

Our house is a very, very, very fine house

My allergies are killin' me 'cuz Brent and I created a flurry of dust yesterday as we packed up our belongings. My two boxes of handbags and four boxes of shoes (that's four boxes filled with boxes of shoes, mind you) are eagerly awaiting their new home. While I was visiting my mom in Visalia this weekend, we cleaned out her closet and found a travel case that my dad bought for her when they first met. Among the contents were some handbags - a couple that my mom had made - and a few others that I'm excited to use because they're "vintage," aka "old." In a little pocket in the case was a card that my dad had given my mom with the SWEETEST love note I'd ever read. It made my mom and I tear up. My dad was such a romantic.

There's a very strong possibility that we're going to get to move into our condo this weekend, despite the short-comings of our mortgage broker. Don't know how it happened, but I'm not going to look a gift horse (or house) in the mouth. Yay! I'll keep ya posted...

Friday, August 13, 2004

Eight is enough

I found this site for people who live in Los Angeles and have blogs. The Web master just started offering these weekly "Eight is Enough" questions, which I thought would be fun to try and do. Here are the first two sets of questions and my answers:

Last week's questions
1. How long have you lived in Los Angeles? I've lived here since June 2000.
2. Were you born here? No, born in Albuquerque, NM; lived in Visalia, CA from about '79 to '95, and then attended college in San Luis Obispo until June 2000.
3. How long did you plan on staying here originally? Didn't have a plan of how long - at least for a few years.
4. How long do you plan on staying here now? At least another 5 years.
5. What keeps you here? Well, Brent lives here. And we just bought a great condo. I also need to be in a big city to do my job, at least for the time being, and I really love my job now. And there's always tons of fun stuff to do in LA! Where else can you go to watch movies on a pier or in a cemetary?
6. What makes you want to leave? Real estate prices! And I don't know if I'd want to raise my kids here - I've always imagined a more suburban-type of city - but Brent was raised here and he turned out great, so I suppose it depends on nurturing.
7. What is your biggest suprise about living here? Hmmm. Can't think of any captivating answers at the moment - sorry.
8. What is your biggest disappointment about living here? Nothing. I love it here. :)

This week's

1. Where is the last place you ate out? The Cheesecake Factory
2. How often do you eat out? Way too much.
3. Where is the place you eat most? Well, I go out for lunch quite a bit and lately it's been to Quizno's.
4. Where do you tell your friends that they "have to try"? Versailles!
5. What dish do they have to order when they get there? Either the roast pork, the garlic chicken, or the combo of both.
6. Where do you eat when money is not a concern? I like to try the fancy schmancy restaurants, like Spago and stuff, but those are VERY rare occasions.
7. Where do you eat when money is tight? Home, but as far as restaurants, maybe some sort of sandwich or pizza place.
8. What restaurant have you wanted to try but haven't been to yet? Bastide because our friend is a chef there

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Wish I had a witty title, but I don't

Quick housing update: Our escrow probably won't close on the 19th because our future Home Owner's Association hasn't provided an important document yet. Most likely we'll move in toward the end of this month, which isn't actually a bad thing because I read recently that the closer to the end of the month you move in, the less property taxes for the month you'll have to pay. And it gives us more time to pack. :) I started packing last weekend, which was nice because it freed up some room in the cramped room we're currently sharing. It's been surprisingly easy for me to throw stuff out, which bodes well for our future plan to live like "less is more."

Last night Brent and I, along with some of my co-workers attended this. Seeing Ghostbusters as an adult is quite a different experience than when I was younger. Like, I laughed quite a bit when Rick Moranis' character mentioned something about complaining to his tenants' association about allowing dogs, while he was being chased by a ghost/ghoul that looked like a giant dog with horns. One of my co-workers overheard some of the kids complaining about how the "special effects sucked," but that's because they have the luxury of matrix-type effects now. Ain't nothing wrong with seemingly fake ghosts and proton guns. :)

Here are a couple of my recent finds in the life I live as a consumer:
Poire phone cases - I ordered two of them recently and they're so cute! I got Flower Power and Pink Sugar. If I could learn to sew, perhaps I could make some for myself, but I'm lazy.

SmartWater Lemon-Cucumber flavor - This stuff is so yummy! I'm on my second bottle of the day! Last weekend I got a massage because my back was hurting, and one of my fav. things about Burke Williams is their lemon-cucumber spa water. Coincidentally, when I stopped at a nearby market to get lunch on the way home from the spa, I noticed this SmartWater and had to try it. Very yummy, but I'm sure it's much cheaper just to make it myself.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Sing, my Angel of Music!

I refuse to devote anymore of my precious (hee, hee) blog space to our asshat mortgage broker. The latest update is that we have the loans we need and are hoping for a smooth escrow closing. (As if...)

I shook my groove thang at hip-hop tonight. I'm a serious slacker! I haven't been to the gym in two weeks! Yikes! Let's hope that tonight is the start of something good.

And let it be known from here to Timbuk-three that I am officially excited about the movie release of Phantom of The Opera. I saw Chicago in the theater three times and can predict now that I will see POTO at least that many times. I've seen Phantom on Broadway three times and am now inspired to try to catch it again. I heard it's coming to LA. :)

"In sleep he sang to me. In dreams he came. That voice which calls to me and speaks my name. And do I dream again? For now I find the phantom of the opera is there, inside my mind." - Christine from Phantom of The Opera

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Princess of Bel Air

Pseudo celebrity sighting of yesterday: Melissa from the New Orleans Real World
Celebrity sighting of today, which I didn't see, but Brent and his brother did: Danny Devito and his wife, Rhea Perlman

Yesterday was Brent's dad's birthday, today was Brent's brother's birthday, and Tuesday is Brent's. We celebrated with brunch at Hotel Bel Air today. It was so delicious, but I stuffed myself to the point of almost illness.

We just returned from The Village. Very good and of course, with lots of twists.

As for the mortgage guy, well, he's still an ass, but we were able to buy a couple days time so our ass hat mortgage broker can get his act in gear. Hopefully we'll have it all wrapped in a pretty bow tomorrow, and at the latest, Tuesday. Keep praying to the Housing Gods that this all works out.