Friday, September 28, 2012


My niece recently picked out a small gift for me for no reason other than to show how much she loves me and Sunny.  My sister said she picked out the cute little frame below all by herself and then chose her favorite photo of Sunny to put inside.  She also included this adorable card that she wrote all by herself!  Baby Imo is a term my niece and nephew call me, which is a play on the Korean words for younger aunt.  They came up with it when they first started talking and it's stuck since.  I love it!
Everything about this cutes me out.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Catbird Jewelry Love!

Catbird recently had a stacking rings sale and so of course I had to pick up a few lovely pieces.  I am obsessed with dainty stacking rings recently so this sale was perfectly timed!
I picked up the dark side of the moon ring, a heart ring, and a first knuckle ring in rose gold.  Love all of them!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Essie's Cascade Cool

Here are a couple photos I took ages ago of Essie's Cascade Cool, from its summer 2012 collection.  It's a beautiful and fun cool pink.  Pretty good application.  This is two coats, with base and top coats.  This was one of my favorites from the collection because I have a hard time finding pink polishes with my skin color.  It's a bit Barbie-ish but I think that's part of why I love it!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Loved The MZ Wallace Sample Sale

I've been a fan of MZ Wallace bags since my friend first introduced me to them a couple years ago.  While leather bags are beautiful, they can often be too heavy for my taste.  And I love how MZ Wallace bags all have so many zippered sections which makes it so easy to store and keep track of things.  Since moving out of NY I sadly resigned myself to never being able to attend their annual sample sale.  But luckily MZ Wallace has started doing their sample sales online!  It was a mad dash to put things into my cart before they disappeared (and man they were going so fast!), but I managed to score a light blue Zoe bag. 
Sunny's not so impressed.

I also picked up this cute purple studded makeup pouch.  I'm not sure what I'll use it for yet.  Maybe makeup, maybe something else.
And a crossbody Paige bag in night storm.
I can't get enough of these lovely MZ Wallace bags!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Slow and Steady...and Torturous

I have a love/hate relationship with running, especially in the summer.  I continued to do my long runs outside through June, taking advantage of any cooler weekend day.  And by cooler, I mean like in the 80s and not in the 90s or 100s.  I'm so ready for fall!  

On my last outdoor run of the mid-summer, I enjoyed the scenery.
And was surprised to see some baby deer along the path!  They were super cute.  Where's their mother??
So once August rolled around, I moved my runs mostly to indoors.  I have a love/hate relationship with the treadmill too.  On the one hand, I love running in an air-conditioned room and having control over my pace.  On the other hand, it can be super boring.
Unfortunately, on my last outdoor run I also suffered from a severe leg cramp/spasm that seized up my entire calf and caused me to stumble to the side, sitting and massaging my calf that looked like it was transforming through a variety of geometrical shapes.  That was so not fun.  Since I already have calf and Achilles issues, I got some more compression gear.  I am loving the compression sleeves because I hate wearing socks and having my feet covered.
Aren't my large calves and flip flop tan lines so sexy?  I'm just glad to have flip flop tan lines instead of sneaker tan lines.  

Sunny wasn't so impressed.  She thinks the color is too bright so she promptly started shedding all over them. And oh man pug hairs worm their way in through the fabric, making them really hard to get off.  Sigh.
Elevating my feet after my runs also helps.  I also like to enjoy the view.
Luckily, I feel much better now and am happy to see the temperatures dipping a bit.  I did my first long run outside with my sister in DC and was disappointed to find how much conditioning I lost by moving my run indoors!  Running outside is a lot rougher and it didn't help that that day was pretty warm and extremely humid.  The view was beautiful, especially with the pool filled in.
But I ended up having my first running fall that day.  Luckily I was going so slowly (like seriously slow and shuffling) that I just fell flat on the ground and didn't skid anything.  My water bottle also protected one of my hands so I just ended up with one scratched up hand and one bruised knee.  That knee has been bothering me a bit lately, feeling a little tight, but it could've been a lot worse.  My mom and my sister have had a few really really bad and scary falls when running, so I'm just grateful it wasn't any worse!

I'm getting a bit nervous because I have a few races coming up (my first since the one 5k I did as a teenager) and my long runs have been really rough!  But last Sunday I had a surprisingly decent long run where I increased my speed and distance and didn't feel busted afterwards!  It also helped that the weather was much cooler and drier.  I actually kinda enjoyed the run, instead of just feeling agony.

So I'll keep on shuffling outside and hope for the best!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Essie's All Tied Up

Oh man I've had some polish photos sitting around for a while, waiting for me to post them!  Oops!  Here's Essie's All Tied Up from its summer 2012 collection.  I was a bit confused by this polish because it didn't seem exactly summery.  It's a beautiful dusty rose with some gold shimmer, but definitely not my taste.  It looked a bit grandmotherly on me.  It's also a bit of a pain to remove because of the shimmer, but application was pretty smooth.  Two coats, with base and upper coats.  

Anyways, here are some photos of the polish with my helpful model, Sunny.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Me Want Fooooood!

Lately I've been cooking a lot more in an effort to eat a healthier and more varied diet.  I get obsessed with certain foods for a while but then once I'm done with it, I need something very different to surprise my taste buds.  On my sister's suggestion, I got the two Six O'Clock Scramble cookbooks which have a ton of great recipes.  I definitely have to be thoughtful about portions since most of the recipes are geared for families and I'm cooking for one, but luckily I love leftovers because it means less cooking.  And I also add a lot more spices because I like my food spicy and strong flavored, and a lot of the recipes in the cookbooks are meant to be kid-friendly.  So here's a few of my recent meals that I've cooked up!

Rosemary-lemon pork chops with yogurt feta sauce (p. 101, newer book), french roll with cheese, and a side of green beans, tomatoes, and goat cheese.  I love the pork chops with the yogurt sauce!  The yogurt sauce seems a bit strong and yogurty if eaten alone but combined with the seasoned pork, it makes such a great combination.
Summer bean salad with turkey sausage (p. 160, newer book).  I use Trader Joe's jalapeno chicken sausage instead of regular turkey sausage to add a bit more of a spice kick.  I also douse it in Tabasco Sauce, because I luh-luh-love Tabasco Sauce.  This tastes a lot yummier than it looks in the photo!  Plus, it's easy to make ahead of time and refrigerate for future meals.
Texas black bean casserole (p. 76, old book).  This was really yummy but didn't feel like a real meal.  It was more like a fancier and heartier dip for chips.
Light tuna casserole with zucchini and tomatoes (p. 132, newer book).  This was good but definitely tastes like a lighter version of a tuna casserole.  Great if you love tomatoes and zucchini.
Do you see the little begging lurker?
Couscous and savory vegetable casserole with feta (p. 64, old book).  This is super tasty and a nice vegetarian option to switch things up a bit.  I love anything that uses artichoke hearts and Israeli couscous (much bigger than regular couscous and, in my opinion, better).
As soon as I finish cooking a casserole I divvy it up into tupperwares.
Potato and goat cheese Spanish tortilla (p. 109, old book).  This is one of my favorite recipes but my sister is not a fan of it.  I've had this kind of dish at Spanish restaurants before and love it.  I definitely add more things to it like mushrooms and sundried tomatoes, and salt and pepper it generously.  My sister thinks it tastes bland, but I love it because it combines so many things I love - eggs, potatoes, and goat cheese!
Fresh tomato and basil quiche (p. 209, old book).  This is one of my sister's favorite recipes and she makes it pretty regularly.  I didn't love it as much.  I'm not a big crust person and so I felt like that was wasted on me.  But it's tasty and easy to make.
Asian pasta salad with ginger-soy dressing (p. 66, old book).  Since I don't love carrots (actually I really hate them for the most part), I use Trader Joe's broccoli slaw instead of shredded carrots.  The slaw has a bit of carrots, but I can't really taste them.  Another good vegetarian option.  I also like to add peas to this.  This can taste a bit bland but I think it's because I use low sodium soy sauce.  If I sprinkle more salt on, this is really yummy, but I guess that kinda negates my getting low sodium soy sauce.  Oh wells.
Baked "fries."  For a while I was obsessed with making these baked potato "fries."  OBSESSED.  The instructions are at the back of the old Six O'Clock Scramble book in the potato section of the sides index.  I made them almost every day!  I used the Trader Joe's olive oil spray to not go overboard with the oil, and I topped it with a ton of seasonings.  My favorite combo was salt, pepper, rosemary, oregano, and garlic powder.  When my sister from LA came to visit this summer she was loving these too and every night we made a huge batch.  They of course don't taste exactly like good ol greasy yummy fries, but they're way better for you and hit the fries craving.
And now for a few non-Six O'Clock Scramble things I've cooked up!

Chicken/tuna waldorf salad.  I always love the chicken waldorf salad sandwiches my sister used to make (recipe here) and was craving them recently.  I like this recipe because it's so flavorful but I made quite a few tweaks - used low fat mayo, used canned chicken (and double the amount), and used sandwich thins (since croissants are delicious but sooo bad for you!).  I topped this with a slice of light havarti cheese, sliced tomatoes and sliced Persian cucumbers (love those).
Chocolate mug cake.  For a while I was obsessed with mug cakes.  I guess I was going through a sweets craving!  I don't recall the recipes for these but you can google them to find a bunch.  The first one I made was chocolate cake using coke instead of oil and eggs.  It's not as yummy as real cake but it was pretty good! 
Mug coffee cake.  The second one I made was a coffee cake which uses real butter and is very good!  I got the recipe from here (mug coffee cake recipe).  It's definitely an occasional splurge for me, not regular!  I also usually halve the recipe since I really only want a taste and don't need much (sweets I don't need too much, but chips, fries, and other salty snacks, forget about it!).
Banana "ice cream."  I also tried out some banana "ice cream," which I made with a bit of unsweetened cocoa powder and peanut butter.  The "ice cream" is basically just frozen bananas that you run through the food processor until they get creamy.  I then refroze it to get an icier texture.  This does not taste like ice cream at all except for in texture.  So it's a good alternative if you love bananas, but for me it doesn't quite hit my ice cream craving.  I did like eating this as a cool pre-run snack since I usually eat a banana before my long runs but often don't like the texture of it in the early morning.  I'm torn between the two options for freezing bananas.  Most people peel and slice the bananas before freezing which makes it a lot easier.  But I kept the peels on the first time since I didn't know any better, but found that it helps prevent freezer burn.  It's a pain to peel and cut afterwards but found that if I let the bananas sit out for a bit and then cut it with a knife I run under warm water, it's not too bad.
And here are a bunch of fun baked goods that my sister made recently for her kids' birthday parties.

Fish cupcakes!
Turtle cupcakes!  The body is made of a bunch of cupcakes that she then iced over and designed as per her kids' specifications.  What you can't see and that I only discovered later was both the turtles have cute little licorice tails.
Butterfly cupcakes!
Kimchi.  And this one was made by my mom.  One of my favorite things that she makes is homemade kimchi.  It tastes sooo much fresher and lighter because there's less salt and no msg.  It's almost like a salad!  And the juice that comes with the kimchi makes for some excellent bibimbap.  Sometimes I could just drink the juice with a spoon, it's that good and light!
And I didn't cook these but these were courtesy of some of the yummy lunch trucks in the DC area.  Pho and a chocolate espresso cookie!  Surprisingly yummy!  The pho comes with a bag filled with bean sprouts, basil leaves, sliced jalapenos, and lime wedges, just like you'd get in a restaurant!  I got the one with bbq chicken since I was told their chicken is delicious.

Summer Sunny Months

I know, I know, long time no post!  I keep forgetting to update this blog because I post all my photos now through Instagram onto Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.  And really, my blog posts are just vehicles for my photos.  But I will try to be better about updating this blog at least a bit more frequently than I have this past summer.  So as my first post back in a couple months, here are some photos of Sunny as a welcome back.  Warning, there are a lot of pug photos below so if you aren't into that then you can stop reading here.  But honestly, if you've been reading my blog then you can't be surprised and must love pugs!

Over the past couple months Sunny and I did a lot of things, but mostly we just napped.
YAWN!  All these nap photos are making me sleepy!
Sunny's tongue gets more and more ridiculous.  And I love it.
Except when it tries to attack me.
Yes these are two different photos from two different times.  Her tongue is just that large and crazy, so this is a regular occurrence.  I fear it.

Sunny practiced modeling her side wrinkle, which is currently my favorite wrinkle of hers. 
Sunny went all Goldilocks on her beds.  This one was too squishy.
This one was too big.
But this one was juuuust riiiiight!  Until I moved because I had to pee and my hip was achy.
Sunny got a lot of belly rubs.
And we had a lot of fun times at my parents' house.  Mostly because they love her and feed her a ton of treats.
Sunny "helped" me in the kitchen with all my recent cooking.
Sunny spent a lot of time reflecting on the pug life and having some deep thoughts (mainly about food).
Sunny also practiced her modeling poses.
And we had some fun with her pug toys.
And I gave Sunny a few baths, which she HATED.  I got plenty of sad looks and stink eye from the little stinker both pre-bath...
and post-bath.
Sunny acted as an excellent muse for my pug drawings.  You can see more at my other blog, Bah Humpug
My sister sent me an adorable pug key cover, which Sunny helped to model. 
And Sunny continued her deep love for sucking all the fur off her toys.  I think some are going to be due for retirement soon.
And we had a lot of laughs along the way!
Phew, that was a long post.  Hope you enjoyed all of our photos and we wish you pugs and kisses!