Sunday, October 31, 2004

What a beautiful day in the neighborhood

We took our first neighborhood bike ride today because it was too gorgeous out to resist. It's great being so close to the beach. We rode down to the bike path that goes from Santa Monica south to Redondo (maybe further? I have to look into that...) This was the first time I'd taken my lovely Paul Frank bike for a spin since we moved here. Once I learned the bike path etiquette, I had fun ringing my little "I love my bike" bell and saying, "On your left" as I passed. It was especially fun with the little kids who had bells, too, because then they'd ring their bell.

Brent's mom got us a crock pot and I made our first meal in it. We made a recipe I found online called Philippine Chicken, which included water, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic and a whole cut up chicken. I cooked it for 4 hours and served it over rice. It was very yummy, if I do say so myself, and I look forward to making more meals. I'm especially looking forward to making meals before I go to work to have it ready and waiting when I get home from work. Rock on!

It's really windy outside right now. It's creating weird creaks in our heater and shaking our window shades, but I'm enjoying it. I like crazy weather (rain, thunder, wind) if I'm not out in it. I like bundled up inside, all nice and cozy, while the world outside goes just a little haywire. Just a little - not a lot.

"Human subtelty will never devise an invention more beautiful, more simple or more direct than does Nature, because in her inventions, nothing is lacking and nothing is superfluous." - Leanardo DaVinci

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Shame on me

I'm a bad blogger. And I'm vowing to be better. I think about my blog at least once a day, but I often feel like I don't have anything compelling to say. When interesting things happen in my life, I think, "I can blog about that!" However, nothing too interesting is going on. I'll see what I can do, though.

Apparently I took the short bus to sewing class. I think I'm the furthest behind! People were starting to sew and I was still pinning and cutting! Granted, I'm making two pieces at once (top and bottom pajama pieces), but I'm certainly kicking myself for not starting off with something smaller...like a scrunchie. Or a coaster. Or a napkin. When/if I finish those pjs, I'm gonna wear them ALL THE TIME! To my wedding, to the upcoming workplace holiday party, to YOUR house! Watch out!

We're dressing up tomorrow for work. I'll try to take pics because I think my costume is fun. I'm trying to convince Brent to dress up as Napoleon Dynamite, but he won't do it. He has the "Vote for Pedro" shirt from the screening we went to and all he'd need to do is add a blond curly wig and glasses.

The upcoming elections are making me nervous. There was an article yesterday about the potential for a tie. It said, "A freak tie result in the U.S. presidential election could mean the House of Representatives would choose the next president, a scenario that would favor Republican incumbent Bush. But since the Senate would decide the vice presidency, Bush could end up with Democrat John Edwards." Apparently there's a 3.25% chance of a tie. Yikes.

I'm going to vote and wear my "I Voted" sticker proudly. You should, too. When else is it cool to wear stickers?

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." - Albert Einstein

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Rockin' steady

As I contemplate this week's concert binge, all I can say is amazing, simply amazing. Marc Broussard at the Roxy on Thursday night was freakin' AWESOME! Marc Broussard is a relatively little man, but has a HUGE voice!

Stacie and I met the lead singer and bass player from Blue Merle, the opening act. I really enjoyed their show. They're Counting Crows meets Coldplay meets Dave Matthews. One of the best parts of their performance was how much they seemed to be enjoying it. They said, "We just finished our first album! You ALL should do a first album because it feels GREAT!" I'd like to think I'm pretty enthusiastic about everything I do in my job, but if I could literally rock out while pitching the media, writing press releases and meeting with clients - well, that would be surreal. So definitely check out Blue Merle's site site and hear a few of their songs.

At Gavin's show at the House of Blues on Friday, he was fabulous, as always. I'd never been to a show with such a big group of friends (we were with a group of 9). It was cool to see how other people enjoy shows. Stacie and I were rocking out while others were soaking it in. Stacie also managed to get us VIP access to the third floor. Although it didn't get us better views of the stage, it still up-ed our cool factor. :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Sew, sew, suck your toe all the way to Mexico

Sewing is a sport. And I'm going to petition to get it added to the next Olympics. There is special equipment required: tracing wheel, seam ripper, bobbins, etc. There is a set of rules: the fabric has to face a certain way because of the grainline and because of the nap, be sure to put the pattern pieces near the fold, blah, blah, blah. And of course, there are the entertaining characters, much like the WWE (formerly known as the WWF). There's one woman who I'll just call Too-Much-Info Ingrid (TMII). By the end of the three-hour class, I knew WAY too much about her, as did the rest of the class.

But I did have fun and I will go back. I may have to get a different pattern and fabric before the next class though because apparently I chose a difficult pattern with an even more difficult fabric. I may have to save the pajamas once I've built up my skills.

On a different note, here are some things I did today that you probably didn't:

1. Traveled 600 miles.
2. Traveled under the ocean.
3. Rode a nifty little invention in San Francisco called the Bart.
4. Cleaned your condo because Stacie is coming to visit.
5. Almost got the smackdown from airport security because the combo of your umbrella and cellphone in your bag looked suspicious.
6. Missed a flight.
7. Thought you wouldn't get home until 10 (instead of 6).
8. Got on a flight after all - home by 8.
9. Fell asleep on the plane (twice) and hoped you didn't snore, fart or talk in your sleep.
10. Ran out of interesting items to make a complete list of 10.

I'm tired. Going to bed to rest in anticipaton of Concert Binge 2004 - the Reunion Tour.

"Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." - Red Auerbach

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Celeb-rate good times - come on!

The celeb sightings continue! Today at dim sum Willem Dafoe walked right by our table! I was so excited, yet managed to contain myself. I love him! Maybe I'll see some more celebs at the upcoming concerts.

Brent just hung this huge mirror above our couch and it looks AWESOME! It's a really great addition. Good job, B!

I went to pick up supplies for my sewing class today. Didn't realize fabric was so freakin' expensive! I hope the pajamas I plan to make turn out ok.

And I'm back to my little Honda Del Sol. Switched the Jeep Grand Cherokee with my mom. I drove it today and felt like someone out of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids. I have a whole new perspective of my neighborhood since I'm so low to the ground.

Time for some haikus!

RAIN

It may rain tonight
Perhaps like it did last night
Gotta close windows!

LAUNDRY
Did laundry today
Dirty clothing piled up
Now they are so clean



Saturday, October 16, 2004

I Spy a Celeb at the Hardware Store

When Brent and I go out, I like to request from him some celebrity sightings. Not that he has any control over it, but it's certainly fun to ask. Today was a good celeb day. We went to the Bev Center to get a mirror from Z Gallerie. First Brent pointed out John Henson, who is actually a pretty minor celeb, if I must admit. But then we went to OSH and Brent pointed out an even better celeb sighting: ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Jimmy Smits!

I just woke up from a nap, and I'm still really tired. I feel like I could sleep another couple hours, but that's just going to throw off my sleep cycle. And my mom is going to be here in about an hour, so I should probably straighten up a bit.

"Life is like a beautiful melody, only the lyrics are messed up." - Anonymous



Thursday, October 14, 2004

My name is Nanette and I'm a concert addict

Props to Mimi/Christina for having extra tickets to Gavin's show next week. (Read here for my previous post about not getting tickets before it sold out.) I was able to talk Stacie into coming down for the show, as well as attending the Marc Broussard show the night before. Hee, hee. I'm an enabler. Stacie and I are co-dependent. AND WE LOVE IT!

Brent and I went grocery shopping, or to the "market," as he likes to call it. As part of the deluge of coupons sent to us for being new homeowners, we used our nine or so coupons for free stuff at Ralph's. It was like a mini-version of Supermarket Sweep. "Where's the Sara Lee mustard?!?!? WHERE IS IT?!?!?! What about the 9 oz. Glade spray?!?!? FIND IT!!!" I think Brent is going to start making me wear a blindfold when we go shopping because I gravitate toward things too easily. "Oooohhhh.....shiny!" "My mom NEVER let me have Goober peanut butter/jelly when I was a kid!"

Speaking of parental units, Mom is coming this weekend. We're heading to Versailles for yummy Cuban food on Saturday night and out for dim sum on Sunday. YUM! Maybe some shopping, too. :) I miss my mom. She's a wacky, older version of me. People gravitate toward her. It's amazing to watch.

"The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world."
- W.R. Wallace

Yum!

Brent and I hung out with a 12-foot man eating plant last night... sort of. We saw the stage musical of Little Shop of Horrors at the Ahmanson theater downtown. Very good (I love musicals), with a different ending than the movie. Boy, those people sure can sing!

Before the show, we had the world's BEST cheeseburger from Pinot Grill. While we were eating it, before the show, during intermission and after the show, we couldn't stop talking about what a great burger it was. The sad thing about it is that it was simply fresh ingredients that made it taste so yummy. We'll definitely be going back, even without another show to see.

"Our lives are not in the lap of the gods, but in the lap of our cooks." - Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living

Monday, October 11, 2004

Warm it up, Kris. I'm about to. Warm it up, Kris, 'cuz that's what I was born to do!

The condo is officially warmed! Thanks to all our friends who helped us celebrate Saturday night. (And a tip for condo/apartment dwellers: let your neighbors know you're having a get-together so they don't freak out about peeps coming in and out of the complex. We let our neighbors know and they were appreciative.)

As a result of all the fabulous wine we got as gifts, Brent and I must start to actually learn about wine. I was thinking about getting Wine for Dummies , but I literally (and literary - HA!) have at least 9 books to read before I can buy other books. Maybe I can find a Saturday class about wine.

Speaking of classes, don't know if I've already mentioned this on here, but I'm taking a sewing class that starts next week! I'm so excited! Maybe I'll ask Santa for a nice sewing machine if it turns out to be a hobby I can actually stick with.

I've found these checks, but I still have a couple packs to go before I need new ones. Maybe all the checks I've been writing for our mortgages and utilities will deplete my supply so I can justify getting the Hello Kitty ones. They're SOOOO cute!

By the way, if you have a wishlist on Amazon.com, I'd love to know. I'm sure it'll make things easier come Christmas time! I have one, which I haven't added to in a while. Just go to Amazon and search for my full name.

Don't know if you noticed the counter on the bottom of my site. I put it up in September. Thought I'd share these interesting stats about my blog:

50% of my viewers are first time viewers. The others are returning visitors.
My busiest time is 1 p.m.
My busiest day is Monday.
My total page views since Sept. 8 are 602.
I've had 20 page views today, including 12 unique visitors and 6 first time visitors.

Not too shabby, if I do say so myself.

i wanna publish zines
and rage against machines
i wanna pierce my tongue
it doesn't hurt, it feels fine

- Harvey Danger, Flagpole Sitta




Thursday, October 07, 2004

Muwa-ha-ha


Evil Nanners Posted by Hello

Thought I'd add this photo to my profile. And if you know me, I don't do anything normal if I don't have to. Evil Nanners is fun, isn't she? This photo is from last year, shortly after Brent was "Evil Brent" for Halloween. His version of "dressing up in costume" was wearing a mustache with his normal clothes. The next day I tried the mustache on and voila! Evil Nanners!

For all my out-of-town readers, this Saturday at 6 p.m., send your karma to LA for our condo-warming party. I'm sad you can't be there, but you CAN be there in spirit!

Time for my occasional music/household product/television programming plugs:

Since I'm so excited for the upcoming Marc Broussard concert at the Roxy, I'd like to recommend his latest CD, Carencro. It's great. Y'all should get ready...to rock steady.


Swiffer Dusters
are fabulous! I got some the other day and just ran around dusting stuff. Lots of fun....seriously! "Swiffer Dusters have the trapping power of Swiffer® in a fluffy, go-anywhere form. Swiffer Dusters use thousands of soft, fluffy fibers that can change shape." Gotta love FLUFFY! OOOH! Just saw on the site that it can be made to puff up! I'm gonna have to try that!

As for my take on tv:

Still watching Lost. At least once an episode I get chills.

Wife Swap is like a train wreck: you don't wanna look, but you have to!

"TV is chewing gum for the eyes." - Frank Lloyd Wright






Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Confessions of a teenage drama watcher

I admit it, I watched Laguna Beach on MTV, a reality show that's promoting itself as the "real Orange County." It follows around these Laguna Beach teens and documents the drama that is their life. What a harsh life, being able to throw a formal party in a hotel room at $700 a night, thanks to mom and dad, I'm sure. Ok, I'm not jealous, I'm not bitter. Just a little amazed. I can't make any promises, but I'm going to try my best to stay away from this "reality" show.

Brent and I went to a wedding this weekend, with a traditional Chinese dinner reception. Never thought I'd try jellyfish. Tasted like cold noodles. Afterwards, we went dancing at a club in San Francisco. I haven't been dancing in forever and I miss it dearly. I used to go practically once a week in college. Granted, I was 19-21, with a lot more stamina and apparently a lot more tolerance for stupid people. Why ya gotta bump into me? I was dancing here first.

As an update to my mom's trip to the Philippines, well, she hated it. She actually cut her trip short because it was so freakin' hot and humid. And she couldn't stand all the traffic and the way people drive. She said they don't pay attention to the lines on the road. (She's coming to visit me in LA next weekend, home of crazy traffic. Ironic, huh?)

Mike: Look, we're gonna spend half the night driving around the Hills looking for this one party and you're going to say it sucks and we're all gonna leave and then we're gonna go look for this other party. But all the parties and all the bars, they all suck. I spend half the night talking to some girl who's looking around the room to see if there's somebody else who's more important she should be talking to. And it's like I'm supposed to be all happy 'cause she's wearing a backpack, you know? - Swingers (1996)

Friday, October 01, 2004

LA Music Scene

Two posts in one day! I just couldn't pass up the chance to answer this week's "8 is Enough" from LAblogs.com.

1. What's the best venue in Los Angeles for live music, and why?
This is a hard one because I like smaller venues like the HOB that tend to be general admission, but I tend to be distracted by the jackasses pushing to get to the front or the girl dancing next to me who keeps whipping her hair around and hitting me. (Not my concert buddies, mind you, but the crazy drunk girl I inevitably end up next to). This happened last week at the Troubador when I saw Maroon 5, where I was literally three people from the stage, but those three people kept holding their cameras above them to take pictures.
I like the larger venues with assigned seats (like Universal Amphitheater and the Greek) but only if I have really good seats.
2. What's the worst? Staples and Dodger Stadium if I have bad seats. Outdoor venues can be bad because people tend to smoke (cigarettes and some Mary Jane), which is really gross.
3. Where do you go most often to catch a gig, and how often? I've probably seen the most shows at HOB on Sunset. There I've seen Jurassic 5, Maroon 5 (a couple times) and Gavin DeGraw (with and without Maroon 5).
4. What L.A. band, DJ or performer would you walk over burning hot coals to hear? Probably Maroon 5. I've seen them 7 or 8 times, and even joined the fan club to get better tickets.
5. What's that playing on your MP3 player/car stereo, home audio system or tinny computer speakers right now? I sound like a big ol' dork, but right now it's Maroon 5. In my car I have been going back and forth between 106.7 (KROQ) and the new hip-hop channel, 93.5.
6. Who's the most overrated musical act in Los Angeles? Don't know.
7. Who's the most brilliant? Maroon 5. :)
8. Who are the three greatest Los Angeles bands/DJs/musicians of the past 50 years - and why? Uhhhh..... well, STP is technically Orange County, but they're close enough so I'll say them, Maroon 5, and.... I'm at a loss for the third. I'd say No Doubt but they're from OC, too.

LAX and me: BFF 4-eva

Tonight Brent and I are going to Northern California for a wedding this weekend. This will be my third flight within a week - technically my 5th, if you count coming and going. Not bad for a girl who has always been the least-traveled person in her circle of friends. I thought last night was the perfect time to get some "real" luggage. I went to Marshalls and as soon as I started browsing their rolling carryons, all my luggage expertise from my retail time at Leather Loft in college started flowing. Examples include:

- It's better if the extending handle is covered by some fabric and zipper to ensure that it doesn't get caught on stuff or banged up if you ever have to check it.
- The piece should lean back a bit while it's empty because once you pack it full of stuff, it'll lean forward. If it starts straight up, it'll probably fall forward once it's full.
- A great feature is the zipper that allows a piece to increase in size - it's perfect for when you take a trip and end up with some souveniers for your journey. There's more roon in your bag!
- Look for high numbers of denier (based on a standard mass per length of 1 gram per 9,000 meters of yarn). It's like a thread count for luggage. 120 is bad. 600 is great!
- When unzipping luggage, pull the zippper pull away from the luggage. It makes going around the corners of the piece a lot easier.
- Look for luggage that has wheels like rollerblades. They make it easier to maneuver the crowds at the airport, as compared to the thicker, chunkier wheels you may find.

And you thought buying luggage was boring.

"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell