Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Oh Happy Day!


I adore City Girl's happiness lists so much that I'm going to do my own today, as I have beaucoup to be happy about. :)


1 ~ Got a pedi over lunch, and now my toes are a gorgeous shade of flirty fuchsia.

2 ~ I'm getting back on the SWIM bandwagon. Absolutely adore these ladies!

3 ~ Hit the gym yesterday after work, and tonight is Bollywood Bhangra! Yay for working out and feeling good about it.

4 ~ Starting my cash/envelope system budget this week (as prescribed by Pink Heels), and I'm weirdly excited about it! (Ask again how I feel later this week...)

5 ~ And last, but certainly not least, I booked my (absurdly cheap) tickets to DC last night for Kimberly's Hip and Tranquil Year Gala!!!!!! Kimberly said that we can even do some collaging at Beau's cabin afterwards, too! How fun is that?? I am beyond stoked. All you DCers, get ready because this little tomato is going to be in your 'hood from January 15-18, and I want to meet you ALL! :)


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dear Paris



Dear Paris,

I miss you. Like, a lot. I'm not sure when we'll meet again, ma cherie, but I hope it's soon. Until then, don't forget me. Don't forget me and my love for your wondrous streets, cheap falafel, gorgeous patisseries, famous flea markets, charming hommes, and oh yes, your insanely delicious bread.



{Photos: Sofia Coppola's Paris}

PM/AM Ritual

A few of us gals have a started a petit, informal morning ritual group called Abundant A.M.'s (cute name, huh?), and one gal mentioned how her morning routine is very much tied to her night before. So true, right? I've touched on this before, about how I was doing a fairly good job of creating an evening ritual despite my inability to create a morning one. I need to stick to that because if my evening is out of whack, my morning is guaranteed to be as well.

I've decided that the best way for moi to create a morning ritual that I'll stick to is to add one petit thing every week or so. There's less pressure that way, you know? It's like SARK's micromovements. I'm undecided as to what my petit thing will be for this week. 10 minutes morning pages/journaling? A few sun salutations? Taking Lola for a walk? Any suggestions?

Speaking of Lola, how cute is she? I just love that she uses a pillow for her head. Comme une personne!



Oh and as for 500 Days of Summer, it was a great flick! I have to admit that my expectations were insanely high, and I felt like I was waiting for a big something throughout the whole movie (naturally that big something never happened), BUT the movie was still good. Good and realistic and oui, un peu triste. And yes, Zooey Deschanel is ADORABLE!!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Austenite


I watched a super cute flick over the weekend (no, not 500 Days, although that was tres cute indeed) - The Jane Austen Book Club. I adored this movie for several reasons (among which is Hugh Dancy - YUM), and I must confess, I watched it twice! It's one of those great background movies to have playing while you clean the house, do laundry, etc. Actually all romantic comedy's are great background movies, which is why I own so many of them. :)

Anyhoo, the movie is about 6 people (5 women + the adorable Mr. Dancy) who start a Jane Austen book club. Each is responsible for leading a discussion on a different book. It got me thinking about Jane Austen and the fact that I am probably the only woman I know who hasn't read Pride & Prejudice (and therefore who isn't obsessed with it). I tried to read it once, but got supremely bored a few pages in. Since then I have yet to pick up another Austen novel.

But after seeing this movie, I think it might be time for me to give Jane another chance. There has to be a reason most women adore her books, right? Some of the novels that I'm considering are: Persuasion, Mansfield Park, and Sense & Sensibility. I really don't want to read P&P (esp since I know the story already), but figure I probably have to.

What do you guys think? Are you Jane Austen fans? Which book should I start with? Is it weird that I didn't love P&P??


Le Menu


I'm trying to plan my week's meals in advance on Sunday so that I don't end up spending a mini fortune on unhealthy take-out. Here are my dinner plans for this week:

Monday - Spicy corn on the cob, spinach sauteed with garlic, brown rice & seasoned black beans

Tuesday - Whole wheat cappellini avec fresh tomatoes, basil, olive oil & parmigiano reggiano, steamed asparagus

Wednesday - Korean ramen + Momma's kimchi, leftover asparagus

Thursday - Nachos! Made these last night and they were DELISH. Blue tortilla chips, shredded cheddar, shredded jalapeno jack, refried black beans, sliced jalapeno, and corn salsa. Served with guacamole and sour cream. (Especially delicious with a bottle of Mexican coke!)

Friday - Je ne sais pas!

This week is abnormal for me in that I don't have any dinner engagements. Normally I have something or another going on, but since last week was particularly crazy (stuff every night after work), I made it a point to clear out this week. I need some down time, yo.
What are y'all eating this week? Anything particularly scrumptious??

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Femme Rationale Current/Elliot Jeans GIVEAWAY!!

Not moi, but the fabulous Nina of Femme Rationale has an INCREDIBLE giveaway! Current/Elliot boyfriend jeans!! Click here to enter (up to 3 entries possible). Good luck (but not too much luck b/c i want to win - haha!)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Merci Pour Le Weekend!


This has been a nuts week, both good and bad, but thankfully it's over! Let the weekend festivities begin...


Friday: Going to see UP again tonight (b/c mon amie hasn't seen it and yes, it's that good that i'll go again!). Hopefully this won't happen again...


Saturday: Yoga, errands, laundry, and then seeing 500 Days of Summer!! I'm SOOO excited to see this darling indie flick. Adore Zooey Deschanel, but then again, who doesn't? I'll also be enjoying delicious food and drink b/c I'll be seeing it here! (P.S. The soundtrack rocks!)


Sunday: Hopefully a bed retreat aka oodles of reading, Pink Heels homework, journaling, SWIM-ing, etc. I'm way behind on my writing in general and since my Friday and Saturday are pretty booked, I'm reserving Sunday as my catch up in bed day. :)


What're y'all up to ce weekend?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Better

Merci beaucoup for all your kind messages re: my stolen phone. It has not been the best 24 hours. Last night I didn't fall asleep until something like 4:45 a.m. because my idiotic neighbors were yelling/laughing/etc. on their balcony from about 10 p.m. to, yes, 4:45 a.m. I even moved to the couch around 1:30 a.m. because it's a little farther away from the noise. Ugh. I'm so over apartment living and yet I don't foresee moving into a house anytime in the near future. Le sigh. Anyhoo, you better believe I called in a noise violation to management first thing today. I kid you not when I say I was 10 seconds away from grabbing my nonexistent gun and going apeshit on those obnoxious college kids.

Sooo, needless to say, I'm exhausted today. But I received good news upon my arrival to work - my (AWESOME) coworker agreed to sell me his Blackberry Bold for only $50. Amazing! IT is working on it now so hopefully I'll be good to go in no time.

Also? I finished all 1014 pages of World Without End over lunch so I am READY for tonight's book club. Bring. It. On.

Now if only I could be as happy as this chick...


{Photo credit}


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

JERK!!


GRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!! Even though today wasn't particularly great, I made it to Bollywood class (despite the random torrential downpour) and was excited to get dance-y and sweaty. I got to class early so I hung out in the room next to the Texas Union Ballroom (where the class is held). This room has oodles of couches/chairs, and I was sitting in a chair flipping through a magazine and playing with my phone. When I noticed people going in for class, I gathered my things and walked the 10 steps to the Ballroom. Immediately I checked my purse for my phone and realized I didn't have it so I walked back into the chair room. I saw this guy walk away, he had been sitting somewhat near me. As soon as he walked past me i thought, "That guy could've stolen my phone." Call it gut instinct because sure enough, my phone was nowhere to be found. I turned around to find the guy, ran down the hall and outside, but to no avail. That asshole was GONE.

Le sigh. I keep telling myself that it's just a phone, and thank God it wasn't my purse or wallet or whatever. But this is the SECOND time my phone's been lost/stolen in the last 9 months. And what about phone karma?? Once, I found a cell phone in the park across the street from my apartment complex and went out of my way to call the people in the phone to find the owner. I mean, I'm a NICE person!! Why do my phones keep getting stolen??

Despite a SUPER fun class, I couldn't help but cry on the way home. Cry and think, "Why me?"

Honest Scrap


The fabulous Suz of 30 Before 30 (great idea! I'm making my own list, too and will share soon.) gave me the Honest Scrap Award! The rules for this award are as follows:

• List ten honest things about yourself that your blogging friends do not know about you.
• Give the award away to seven (or 10?) bloggers.
• Let the seven (or 10?) bloggers know they have received the award.
• Link back to the person who awarded you.

This is SUPER hard for moi for several reasons. First, you already know a lot about moi (prob more than you want to know!). Second, the things you don't know are the things that are the hardest to share, n'est ce pas? Nonetheless I'm going to try to tell you 10 things about myself that most of you don't know. Here I go!

1. I'm an insanely jealous person, and I compare my life to just about everyone else's, always ending up with the same conclusion: My life sucks. This is one of the main reasons I started seeing Dr. G!

2. I broke both of my ex-boyfriend's hearts, and I'm terrified that bad love/relationship karma is headed my way (or already in my way?).

3. Seeing poverty kills me, and it's one of the reasons I have yet to visit countries like India, despite really wanting to go. I just don't know if I could handle it.

4. I spent most of my post-adolescent years trying to make my boobs look/become bigger, and now I just wish they were smaller.

5. I still use my student ID at movie theaters and certain restaurants. :( Bad bad I know...

6. When walking down the street or sitting in a room, I keep a mental count of how many women are thinner than me. Isn't that awful on so many levels??

7. I used to struggle with eating disorders, and I am thrilled that part of my life is over. I may be heavier, but I absolutely REFUSE to "diet" ever again.

8. I don't really like liquor. Certain cocktails are fun, but I much prefer beer & wine.

9. I miss sausage, esp. my dad's spicy sausage patties eaten with delicious grits and a fried egg. Mmmm...

10. I regret the money I spent in law school. Not on law school (although... yeah), but just living/having fun/studying abroad/etc. I wish I knew then what I know now - debt SUCKS.


Now I'm going to break one of the rules and give this award to ALL my readers who also have blogs because I want to know 10 things about ALL of you! :)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Green Thumb

I pretty much kill everything (except bamboo - God bless bamboo), but I might be willing to take extra care if I could plant some gorgeous succulents in this amazing bullet planter. Didn't Laure do a fantastic job? Now she is a GREEN GODDESS.




Monday, July 20, 2009

FOOD, INC.



Last Friday I took myself on an Artist Date to see the much acclaimed Food, Inc., a documentary that basically informs us of what the heck we are eating. I wasn't particularly interested in watching the film for informational purposes (I've read a couple of Michael Pollan books and took a Food Safety class in law school), but to see if the film would/could appeal to the general public. It has occurred to me that an alarming number of bright, well-educated people don't want to know where their food comes from. Many of my friends said they were "too scared" to see Food, Inc. because they "like food too much." Um, HELLO, I like food, too! I LOVE food, actually. And loving food is even more incentive to go see this film.

As I predicted, I already knew 90% of what the film told me. I already know the horrors of the beef, poultry and dairy industries, and I know that 99% of the products in the supermarket are derived from corn. I know about the little boy Kevin who died from E. Coli (although seeing his mother talk about it was tres difficult), and I know that 5 giant multi-national corporations control the U.S. food industry. I also know that the government agencies that are supposed to protect us (USDA, FDA, etc.) are corrupt and that their leaders are paid (whether directly or indirectly) by these food giants to regulate in their favor.
Even though I knew all of this and had seen much more graphic images before (Food, Inc. is NOT graphic btw), the film hit me really, really hard. I kid you not when I say that I spent most of the movie crying, out of sadness and pain, anger and sheer frustration. My reasons for cutting out meat in the past were mostly dietary and also a little because I didn't agree with how our country produces its meat. But I never thought it was fundamentally wrong to kill and eat animals. For some reason, Food, Inc. made me see things differently.

Every time I saw a suffering chicken, cow, or pig, I thought of Lola. Maybe that's silly or overly dramatic, but really, how is it any different? Animals are animals, and just because we've chosen to domesticate some more than others does not mean each animal doesn't experience the same pain. Can you imagine seeing your beloved dog or cat or whatever pet in the kind of pain you see those chickens and pigs and cows in? It would kill you. And it pretty much killed me, and every excuse I had for sneaking a little bacon here or there into my mostly meat-free diet fell by the wayside. How can I eat meat knowing it was raised/treated/slaughtered that way?

After watching Food, Inc., I learned of the documentary Earthlings. Um, wow, if you can't handle animal cruelty, then don't even watch the preview because it has haunted me for days. I can't imagine seeing the entire movie, i just don't think I could sit through it, but wow, what an impact it must have on those who do see it. It actually made me want to go vegan, and believe me when I say, I've never wanted to go vegan in my entire life.

This post is not intended to be preach-y (and I'm sorry if it has been), and there really is only one message I have here: Go see films like Food, Inc. You have a right to know where your food comes from. And really, you should want to know. Ignorance is not bliss. As for moi, I'm not sure where I go from here. Cutting meat? Easy peasy. It's GONE. But what about my whole seafood thing? And what about veganism? Can I, in good conscience, be a vegetarian but still eat the by-products of the meat industry? I mean, I love me some goat cheese, I really do. What about leather? Can I give up my beloved Chloe bag, my many many shoes?? Augh, I don't know. I just don't know.

Happy Monday

Last week, the fabulous City Girl tagged me in her "6 Things That Make Me Happy" post. Since it's Monday (and Monday's aren't known for being particularly happy), I decided this would be a perfect time to create my list. :)

Sooooo voila 6 things that make me happy today:

1. Woke up this morning and went to the gym! Have not done this in a VERY long time.

2. I'm getting my hair highlighted tonight - yay for no more atrocious roots.

3. I have my 2nd career coaching session with Pink Heels tonight. (woot!)

4. I made this yummy spinach/zucchini/brown rice casserole last night and brought it for lunch today. Yay for saving money!

5. You :)

6. I have a very busy upcoming week, including more Bollywood Bhangra, 2 new book club meetings, and an in-office massage!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

It's Starting to Feel Like Summer

Summer is no longer what it used to be when I was a student (aka just one year ago). There's no summer break, no promise of endless days at the pool, no amazing tan. No, it's basically just like the rest of my year, except way WAY hotter.



But today, it finally started to feel a little like summer. I slept in, took an awesome yoga class (with an awesome teacher!), and then headed to the pool with friends. I laid out, I jumped in the pool, I sipped cocktails, I read magazines, and I had a blast. Afterwards I came home, showered, ate dinner and passed out clean and happy. (Post-swim meals + naps are the BEST, aren't they?) Woke up at 9, got ready, and headed out to a fun tapas/wine place with two fabulous ladies.

This is what summer should feel like.

Oh and speaking of summer, I can't WAIT til 500 Days of Summer opens in Austin!! I know a bunch of peeps went this weekend and loved it. Hooray!

And speaking of movies, I saw Food, Inc. on Friday night and will do a petit review as soon as I'm feeling up to it. In short, I loved it and think everyone should see it. It's well done. It also ignited something in moi that I've never felt before, and it's been difficult and painful. It's not that I didn't already know most of what the film told me, and it's not that it was uber graphic (esp. if you've seen Meet Your Meat or any other PETA-esque video), but it just really... hit me. Anyhoo, will discuss more later!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Morning Rituals, Sleep & Artist Dates

My July goals aren't going so well. I haven't lost a single pound (let alone 4), I have not gone near a treadmill (and it's way too damn hot to run outside, yes even in the morning/evening), I've done zero Rosetta Stone, and I am incapable of creating (not to mention sticking to) a Morning Ritual. Also? I'm tired.

Sleep
Since discovering the ability to watch old episodes of Law & Order: CI on Netflix, I have not been getting my 8 hours of sleep. Y'all, this is why people banish the TV from the boudoir. But I have my laptop, which is basically a small TV that I watch way too closely. I think I need to banish the laptop from my bed, at least for a little while. But! Only during the week. Weekends are fair game. ;-)


Rituals
Why is it soo hard for me to create a morning ritual?? The only thing that's ritual-esque about my mornings is that I wake up and immediately start the coffee pot. Then I go brush my teeth, rinse my face, etc. while the coffee brews, and then I make myself a cup and bring it into the bathroom. And then I start getting ready, and I'm usually in a hurry b/c I've overslept (b/c I stayed up too late watching Law & Order). This is not a morning ritual, or at least not the kind I want.


I want sun salutations, I want moments of peace, I want to write my morning pages whilst sipping coffee and eating a healthy breakfast. Here's another problem - my breakfasts have gone to crap. Nothing sounds good, nothing tastes good, and confession: On Monday's and Wednesday's when I take Lola to daycare, I end up hitting up the McD's on the way to the office. No bueno, my friends. (But yumm aren't their hash browns DELISH?) What do you guys eat for a quick but nutritious breakfast?
Another thing I want to incorporate into my daily life is an evening ritual. I've sort of unknowingly created one over the past week. After dinner and tidying up, I grab my books, journals, laptop, stickers, pens, some some of drink and/or fruit, and Lola and head to my delicious bed. I essentially "set up shop" in bed and for the next 2 hours or so, I write and read and collage and color and yes, watch Law & Order. I'm going to work on this one, fine tune it because I really like having an evening ritual. Do any of you have one, whether intentionally or unintentionally? What are they? What about morning rituals?

Artist Dates
One of my July goals was to have weekly artist dates. I think I have lots of mini-artist dates, whether I call them that or not. Tonight my "artist date" includes watching Food, Inc., brushing up on my French (via Rosetta Stone), taking a long, hot, relaxing bath with epsom salts + lavender/eucalyptus essential oils, and reading. I'm already 400 pages into my book club book, World Without End by Ken Follett. I haven't read his first, but I'm going to after I finish this one! 600 more pages to go before next Thursday... I can do it!!

Tomorrow I am going to yoga and then hitting a hotel pool (with poolside service!) with some friends. PRAY for no rain!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Me Me Me!

The super sweet Rachel gave me this fun MeMe Blog Award earlier this week - merci, Rachel! The award is, as you might have guessed, all about moi - here are the rules:

1. Share seven tidbits about myself.

2. Share the award with seven blog friends!

Easy enough! Here are 7 tidbits about moi...

1. I was born and raised in Lafayette, LA - that's right, I'm a Cajun gal at heart!

2. I have a ginormous head, seriously. In high school this guy measured the circumference of the heads of everyone in our geometry class, and he told me that mine was the biggest by a lot. I've been paranoid about it ever since. (Oh and one-size-fits-all hats does NOT fit moi.)

3. Korean was my first language, but I'm barely conversational now. (I don't like this at all!)

4. I honestly thought I was going to marry both my exes. Ha. The idea of that now is high-larious. (And slightly terrifying...)

5. My favorite food is corn, and my favorite fruit is summery sweet watermelon (cut up in bite-size pieces and sans seeds).

6. My best friend from law school is a Republican, a tres conservative Republican. I know I know, it freaks me out too, but she's such an incredible bestie that I can't help but love her to pieces anyway! ;-) (Love you, Pony! Tee hee)

7. I snore. Sorry, future husband!

And now, I pass on this award to the following fabulous bloggers:

- espace rose

- macaroni club

- Brunette on a Budget

- Leap of Faith

- little bits of splendor

- Tulips and Tea

- You and Me and Lucy





P.S. Merci beaucoup for all your comments/advice/tidbits re: my yoga rant. I love you guys!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Bollywood Bhangra, Baby

Course Description: Bollywood Bhangra Workout is an exciting blend of East meeting the West. It is a dance-inspired fitness program that incorporates many modern disciplines like cardio-salsa, hip-hop dance, bhangra and aerobics. The dance is an intense workout containing low impact steps collaborated with high-energy bollywood music.



Tonight was my first Bollywood Bhangra Workout class (as you know, if you follow me on Twitter - tee hee), and it was FANTASTIC. First off, the course description, while accurate, does not convey the intensity of the actual dance moves. Holy crap! Today was the "easy day" because we spent half the time talking and the other half just learning some of the basic moves. In the last 10-15 minutes or so, the instructor FINALLY put on some bhangra music, and we practiced our new moves! We were all sweaty and out of breath by the end of it, and i was PUMPED. Soooo fun, so energizing and so... Bollywood!!

The make-up of the class was interesting - all female and all Caucasian except for me, the teacher and another Indian chick. Ages ranged from all over, as did professions, and despite some people's obvious lack of coordination, everyone seemed to have a good time. The instructor (yes, she's Indian and teaches all kinds of Indian dance) told us that in each meeting, we will learn a bollywood/bhangra dance sequence to a song. That means i'll learn about 5 bollywood dance sequences to 5 different songs. YAY! That's exactly what I was hoping for. :)

The only bummer is that i don't get to wear pretty, colorful Indian outfits. Booooo.

Oh and my arms better be trim after this because holy crap, it is a helluva upper-body workout!


Yoga Musing Rant

Hi, my name is Carolyn, and I suck at yoga. Okay, I know that sentence is wrong on so many levels, but I can't help feeling that way. And it's frustrating!!

A little background: I started practicing yoga in the Spring of 2007. My practice was fairly regular that spring and summer, and I even attended Kimberly's yoga retreat in Costa Rica. Unfortunately, I did zero yoga while I was in London (aside from a yoga workshop with David and Sharon from Jivamukti Yoga at a Yoga Conference) and found it impossible to maintain a regular practice after returning to the States. Fast forward to now, the Summer of 2009, and me desperately trying to find my way back to the mat.

I've been pretty good for awhile, going to classes 1-2 times a week (which is waaaay better than before). I go to a variety of classes, but they are mostly flow-based. I like heated, i like not heated, i like intense and challenging, and sometimes i just want a 90-minute nap (aka Relaxation Yoga).

I also want loose hips. My hips are unbelievably tight, even more so now that the majority of my workday is spent sitting in a chair. I love love love hip-openers, but my hips? Well, they're not opening. And I find myself wondering, "Will I ever have the hips of a true yogi? Will I ever be able to do double pigeon? Will I EVER manage lotus pose??" I'm so far from that, my friends... so far.



[Photo: The beautiful (and loose-hipped) Kimberly Wilson]

Another thing I want? To have a headstand practice. The teacher at the (annoying) yoga class I attended last weekend said that headstand is the most perfect asana pose. (Have no idea as to the validity of that statement...) So we spent a good portion of time working on headstand. I cannot do headstand in the middle of the room, I have to do it against a wall. Although it's getting better, I still use momentum to kick up, I can only balance (aka remove my legs from the wall) for mere seconds, and I can't help but wonder, "WILL I EVER GET THIS?"


Ditto crow. And handstand? Omg, do NOT get me started on handstand. We "worked" on that in yesterday's class, and I thought I was going to cry. Something about putting all my weight on my hands terrifies moi, and I found myself deeply nostalgic of the days when I did headstands everyday like it was my job (aka grade school years). Where did that fearlessness go? (Btw we also tried forearm stand, which was admittedly easier than handstand, but still terrifying.)



Is this normal? Am I supposed to be feeling like this? Isn't all this worrying and frustration the opposite of yoga?

One more thing - a word on teachers. The last few classes I've attended have straight up annoyed me, namely, the instructors annoyed me. First, they were substitutes (aka not the teachers listed on the schedule), which irritated me to begin with. After all, I pick (and PAY) for my yoga classes based on the type of class and the instructor teaching it. Who doesn't? And then, there were other things. Annoying voice, going too fast, going too slow, not enough of this and too much of that. Um, who am I to judge?? I'm no yoga teacher, I've never done yoga training. Sure some teachers are better than others, but again, WHO am I to judge? I always end up feeling tres guilty for all the mean thoughts that run through my mind during class. Again, I ask, is this normal? Am I a terrible person? A terrible yogi?

Boo I just wish I had a Tranquil Space gosh darn it!!!



Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Amy Butler Journal

Dear Winner (aka "C"),

Please email me by Friday with your mailing info!! If I don't hear from you by then, I'll have to draw another winner. The journal is dying for some words and love!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Happy Girl


I'm in a great mood tonight, mes amies! A GREAT mood. And here's why...

- I was busy at work today (for the first time in a LONG time) so the day flew by. Plus i found the answer (which always helps) and got another assignment that should keep me busy tomorrow!

- My apartment is CLEAN! After weeks of muttering "I've got to deep-clean this filthy place", I finally set aside last Sunday to do some serious cleaning. I'm talking microfiber dusting, grout-scrubbing avec toothbrush, disinfecting any and everything cleaning. It felt good!

- SWIM - Love these ladies, love the idea, love the support, love it all!

- I joined 2 book clubs. :)

- My Bollywood Bhangra class starts on Wednesday - hollllaaa!

- My college BFFEFEFEFF and i are planning a weekend resort getaway, which as you know, is EXACTLY what i need.

- And last, but certainly not least, i had a FABULOUS first coaching session with Pink Heels tonight. I feel inspired, rejuvenated, supported and excited beyond belief. Merci beaucoup, Jennifer!!

What's making you happy these days?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Congrats to C!!

Congratulations to C (comment #5) who won the Amy Butler journal!! Please email me your mailing information to moi at carolyn.park@gmail.com. :)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Giveaway Part Deux

Bonjour, mes amies! I hope you're having a fantabulous Saturday just as i am. I've already laid poolside, started a new book (a BIG book!), gone to yoga, and run some errands. I'm about to head out to see Food, Inc. with mon ami Matty, but before i leave, i wanted to announce my 2nd giveaway!




Voila a darling Amy Butler notebook/journal. It's got the prettiest pages, y'all (even tho you can't tell from the crappy pictures)! I'm a notebook fanatic, and this one is definitely a gem. To enter to win, simply leave a comment below telling me about your dream vacay (i know i know, it's torturous but i can't stop myself). I'll pick a winner late tomorrow night so enter NOW!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Beachy Keen

Good morning, mes amies! TGIF, no? This week has felt super long (and fairly unproductive) for moi so i welcome this weekend with open arms. My weekend has recently opened up (dear friend can't make it down due to car troubles), so the possibilities are endless (and the To Do's numerous). I'm also a little out of it ce matin. Last night i came home in a sparkling wine-induced haze and proceeded to pass out around 8:30 p.m. (makeup, clothes and all). Then i woke up at 4:30 to go to the bathroom and realized that my apartment had no power. After calling the City of Austin (decidedly UNhelpful), i had to leave a msg for our 24-hour maintenance guy who apparently had only been home for a couple of hours since dealing with an A/C emergency. Feeling sorry for him (he's been uber nice to moi), i decided to investigate the problem myself and let him go back to sleep. He told me where the braker (sp?) boxes were, and i flipped my switch back ON. Voila! POWER! Yay. My A/C ran full blast for the rest of the morning.


Back 2 my sparkling wine-induced haze. Yesterday post-work i met up with my darling friend C whom i haven't seen in ages for drinks & tapas at Fino - an Austin gem i had only visited once before. Away from the hustle & bustle (and lack of parking) of downtown Austin, Fino provides a chic alternative to my normal happy hour hotspots, and WOW, their happy hour rocks! Half-off sparkling wine and delish tapas for only $2-3 per pop - yum. C and i are fairly new friends and met through my former trainer/friend Deb (who has since moved 2 Zurich - i miss you, D!!). We sat at Fino for hours and hours, sipping bubbly, munching on yummy bbq pork sliders (exception 2 no meat), marconas almonds (delish), and fried goat cheese, and chatting about everything under the sun. Don't you love those kinds of friend dates? LOVE. We made pool plans for next weekend (she's off to her parents' lakehouse this wknd - jealous!), and i already can't wait!

Speaking of pools and lakes, i have been DYING to get near some water! This is not the norm for moi, as i've never grown up doing water activities or hitting up the beach. My parents just aren't water people (they're golf people, in case you're wondering - BORING). And when i do go on vacation, i prefer visiting major cities (NYC, San Fran, Paris, London, Rome, etc.) over going to a beach resort in Hawaii or Mexico. I always wanted to do/walk/see rather than lay around and sip cocktails. That, my friends, has changed completely since starting a full-time job. I ache for beach time. I crave it. I dream of beaches and giant pools (swimming in the ocean kind of freaks me out) and luscious tans and poolside service. Funjet.com is offering some stellar 3-4 night deals to Mexico from Austin, and i am dying to take advantage. Anyone with me??



Thursday, July 9, 2009

Beauty


I am loving this post over at wishstudio about embracing beauty. I strive to surround myself with beautiful things, people, words, images, etc. all the time and everywhere i go. Et vous?
When i went to London to study abroad, i lived in a HORRIFIC narrow and long dorm room. The carpets were foul, the walls dispicable, and the furniture was, well, dorm furniture. I wasn't having any of it. As soon as i got into the city, i set out to find affordable ways to make my room as Carolyn-esque as possible. I covered my sad twin size bed in brought-from-home Hello Kitty sheets and a fluffy duvet. I covered the wall in beautiful and thick wrapping paper purchased from Paper Place? (i'm not sure that's the name, but the one on Tottenham Court Road was FANTASTIC and mere minutes from our flat), found cheap rugs to cover the stained carpet (and made sure to wear slippers at all times), tied and draped colorful pashminas purchased from Paris all over the furniture. I even decorated my door with a fun collage (my roomies made fun of moi, but secretly thought it was darling i'm sure!) I lit candles and incense daily (and set off the fire alarm a couple times... oops). I also made sure to bring stuff from home that would warm up the space - picture frames, colorful pens and markers, art, etc. Even though my suitcases were stuffed to the brim and impossible to drag all over Paris and London, it was all well worth it. And even though i only lived in that room for 3 1/2 months or so, making it mine was so incredibly vital to my happiness and well-being. (I wish i had pics, but sadly, my hard drive crashed last summer, and i lost most of my study abroad pics. Boo.)



People often label me "ridiculous" and "over-the-top" and "excessive." I do not deny being all those things, but that's just moi. And truthfully, i love that about me. I don't settle for ugly notebooks! I cover them, add sparkle and shine, and make them mine. Ditto my office (borderline inappropriate 4 a lawyer, but whatevs!), my apartment (pink, purple and yellow walls), and my wardrobe (skirt today is a combo of 2 shades of pink, blue, yellow, green orange, black, white, red, and cream). Color and sparkle and embellishment of every kind = beauty, for moi. What does beauty mean for you? It could be a soothing neutral palette of soft creams and beiges and pale pale blues. It could be a monochromatic palette of shades of green. It could be ANYTHING, as long as you find it beautiful. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - isn't that great??



I encourage you to surround yourself with beauty, even if you don't think you have the time, money, or ability. Little things make all the difference in the world, and i guarantee you will be a happier person.

{all images from Paul Massey photography}


 
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