Monday, October 31, 2011

happy halloween!

fact of life - i am messy with EVERYTHING. even when i go through great pains to be organized and neat. oh well...

*1: prepare for chaos 

*2 attempt artistic skills beyond your grasp

*3 be pleasantly surprised when those skills actually work out okay!
 e's pumpkin :)

hope everyone carved pumpkins and has a great halloween! 


Sunday, October 30, 2011

twice baked

it has been awhile since i have done a (legit) food post...well, honestly it has been a long time since we cooked dinner rather than poured ourselves a bowl of cereal (which always tastes good!). i have been craving comfort food a lot lately. pancakes, muffins, scones, cookies, toast, loaves of bread...are you seeing the pattern here? so the other night when we were trying to find something yummy to make for dinner i thought "ah-ha! twice baked potatoes!"

however, some things have to be altered in order to be a meal...
1. i live with a vegetarian and while i, myself, am a carnivore, i respect that e is not. but a twice baked potato just isn't the same without bacon.
        answer: morning star fake bacon (actually one of my favorite foods out there).
2. i would like to not have a heart attack at the ripe ol' age of 24 but as far as i am concerned, cheese in itself is a food group.
        answer: a combo of 1tbsp of (shredded) nonfat mozzarella + 1tbsp cheddar + 1 tbsp shaved parmesan.
3. something else slightly healthy really should be added.
        answer: left over spinach lasagna mixture, which gave me more cheese in the form of ricotta.

1. go ahead and pick out the biggest russet potatoes in the sack and in order to save time, fork em really good and stick them in the microwave for 10 minutes, flipping after the first 5 minutes.
2. in the mean time, grate your cheeses, strain your spinach and fry up your fake bacon (it doesn't crumble as easy as the real stuff so go ahead and lean toward the more crispy end result).
3. once the potatoes are done, let cool for a minute or so (or you can be like me and just burn your fingers) and scoop out the middle of the potatoes and put it in a medium sized bowl.
4. combine 9/10ths of the cheese, spinach, ricotta(amount varying upon your tastes, i used about 1/3 cup) and crumble bacon with the potato centers.
5. mix well!
6. spoon back into potatoes and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and the remaining 1/10 of mozzarella and cheddar.
7. bake at 350 degrees until cheese is melted and you are satisfied. 
8. enjoy! very filling though i do recommend adding a salad/veggie side.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


while we have had some amazing day trips in the past two weeks, this weekend thus far has been dedicated to staying in sc. i felt like i lived on caffeine this week and while that is not too far out of the ordinary for me, it just didn't seem to be hitting the spot like it usually does - hence, another long week.

that does not mean that exciting things have not happened though. monday was dedicated to this, my bf, b, arrived home from her worldly travels and we got the chance to catch up in the same time zone, i have reached the halfway point in the quarter for school, i have officially started on my christmas shopping, and last night (friday) e and i went to the midnight showing of the rocky horror picture show with a live shadow cast put on by the ucsc theater group (we realized how we really are homebodies when we were forced to stay up to 12 just to make it to the theater and then till 3 to watch the whole performance. totally worth it though!)

as for the rest of the weekend, it will be dedicated to the kind of cleaning/organizing that really does take more than 1 day, (continuing to) rediscover old favorites in my closet, pumpkin carving and maybe a show tonight. hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

cranberry orange scones from aria bakery in my hometown sent to me by my mom...
i really do have the greatest mom ever!

grey, wool fedora that was a christmas gift from b two years ago - perfect for the fall!

a colorful scarf that i usually pull out in the cooler weather since it is a bit heavy and is perfect for taking my otherwise neutral (read: sometimes boring) outfit up a notch

new (thrifted) watch - really, i have become obsessed with them lately!

naturally the saturday weather is gorgeous (again) and calls for more summer-like dresses than tights and scarves. this favorite is a collection of vintage scarves sewn together and came from one of my ultimate favorite vintage stores hidden on the backstreets of santa barbara.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

front porch stoopin'

i had this friend at my previous school. his name was charles and he was from long beach. (side note: lb to where this school was, at the base of the foothills, was considerably far away) he wore hamburger print pajama bottoms to class... naturally, i thought that most of what he said was interesting. he told me that over the summer when he was home, he and his friends would sit on their front stoops all day. all day. they just hung out there. this concept went over my head seeing as if i sat on my front porch at the time, i would see the field in front of my house and little else.

well, i needed a break from hw today and despite my best efforts, my house/i have felt chilly all day so i decided to make a cup of tea and go sit on the front steps of my apartment in the sun. it was cold out there too, and the sun decided to quickly set over the houses and trees opposite me. sigh...

in other news, i am officially halfway through my quarter at the end of the week. so far i have had two papers, a few quizzes, and immense amounts of reading (which i really do love). thank god i chose literature for my major. also, if there is ever a trivia night where the topics revolve around marco polo or the inuit, i am there baby! hopefully the rest of the quarter just sails by since i have other things on my mind as well (read: holidaysholidaysholidays) and somewhere in there is lots of baking.

also, i would just like to say thank you, yes, to you. YOU. for taking whatever time you do and reading my blog. i can't tell you what it means to me. truly. thank you.
happy wednesday all!

patience won in the end and the boots i posted here went on big-time sale :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

kinda a big deal

so i have had this project/event/adventure in the works for some time now and yesterday it finally all came to light.

oh...what is it? why, it was being a guest speaker on the art/doing of photojournalism for my good friend, eva's life academy digital photojournalism class.

okay, to fully understand how cool this is, i have to first tell you about eva. at the very core of it, she is amazing. no, actually that word doesn't cover it well enough. i mean this girl is AMAZING. the end. you know those people who are out there in the world, making an actual difference, putting themselves in positions to change the lives around them for the better, giving every bit of their soul to do so? yep. that's eva. she is a first year teacher and youth developer at a small public school in oakland, ca. is your jaw on the floor yet? it should be. she is also a coach, a young women's group leader, a proud and strong female and an incredible friend. like the title suggests, she is kinda a big deal. and the best part is that there is no soap box; not one in sight. she does this with the most sincerity and genuine heart and honestly, it blows me away.

so to get back to the story, a couple months ago i get an email from her asking if i would consider coming to her journalism class to present on the photo side of things. if i could show you how i reacted, i would. but let's just say that it was along the lines of a giant "guffaw, would i like to come present?!?!?! um, HELL YES!" to make a long story short, many emails, questions, photos and power point presentations later, i am standing in front of a group of amazing young women presenting on photos, climbing on tables, trying to make jokes and getting a sore throat from talking. it was fantastic. the highlights were definitely one girl saying at the end, "i want to take exciting pictures." and another girl staying after to ask about what kind of camera to buy. i can see why eva is so in love with these students. 

for those of you who are interested (and trust me, you should be) this is the link for the journalism class. they are accomplished and published writers - also kinda a big deal: Real Life Tribune

after, she took me out to a gorgeous restaurant overlooking a lake and we sat for almost 3 hours playing catch-up, talking about our mutual love for our pets, and just enjoying each others company. it was an incredible time.

naturally, given the chance to spiff myself up, i tried to dress the part of "professional guest speaker" but that facade may have been blown away once i crawled around on the tables...oh well. it went over well for the first part of the presentation.

1. i think blazers make most anything look more professional. especially when you score them at the 1/2 off thrift store for $1.50 and your good friend kels sews the buttons back on for you.
2. thank goodness high-waisted pants are a'plenty now. who ever thought that the lowrise look was flattering (guilty via high school years).
3. this belt is one of my favs - had it for years!
4. bib chain collar = :)
5. these shoes - bought em in ashland and can't get enough of them!

 and of course the photos of the gorgeous dinner location:
lake chalet in oakland, ca
candle lit dinner for two? how romantic! 

we discovered we have a mutual love for lemon drops

oh the city...

Friday, October 21, 2011

pt. 2 of 2

here are the fun photos from our adventure today!

so today we went first to fort ord, an abandoned military base in seaside that was built in 1917 and closed down in 1994. this sort of place is my dream adventure! i get overly excited by the oddities and end of taking so, so, so many photos.

i am obsessed with the phones.

from there we headed further south and stopped in pacific grove at asilomar state beach to enjoy the slightly different coastline and just enjoy the sunny but crisp fall weather.

we go, pt. 2

thank goodness it is friday! this week lasted forever. so it was a huge relief when i got past the 11 o'clock hour this morning. we decided to take off for the afternoon and have an adventure.  we headed south after heading north last week - here.

we have been here for half a year and this has truly been the first time we have explored either up or down the coast from our central spot. and central really is the key word there. we are so amazingly close to so many great places that we really should be taking more advantage of it.

(pt 2 of 2 - here are the other fun photos from the day)

lots of fun things going on with this. very casual but also very classic "me"
1. my most utilized & versatile jacket
2. ribbed white tank that never fails
3. thrifted cardigan!
4. my usual watch
5. black skinnies
6. and the most important aspect - motorcycle boots!!! 
do you love them? i love them! do you have some? you should. if you are like me, though, and shouldn't be spending $ then you can borrow mine.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

gettin' comfy

sometimes there are just days when things need to feel casual and comfortable. actually, those days should be everyday...still, it is not always achieved. how many times have i worn something somewhere only to think, nope, these pants are too tight (usually after lots of eating, which, let's be honest, is a lot of the time) or, i wish i would have brought along better shoes (most times when i think that wearing heels anywhere with an incline will be doable). so i think it is necessary to have something(s) in one's closet that is an all around comfy and easy solution to such occasions. also, something that negates the need for the following: snuggies, pajama jeans, pajama bottoms in public in general, slippers (also in the pajama family), i think if you just avoid wearing anything that possibly resembles pajamas out in public, you are golden.

example: after forcing myself out of workout clothes and into the shower, i needed to get dressed again for my late, wednesday night class in which we watch extraordinarily long films about the inuit culture/people. refusing to wear sweatpants in public does have its downfalls - ie here.
enter in my go-to: denim button down.

i only like my sleeves rolled up lately. no matter what. 

*thrifted demin shirt (i think the label says "fashion pilot" or something else equally fantastic)/forever skinnies/ bamboo flats

also, i got a bit tired of using my backyard as my background. so i sat on my living room floor. thank goodness for tripods.