Sept: 21 Days

Since moving to North Carolina, I've been staying home and nesting all day. If I'm not working, I'm sprawled out on the couch for hours, with minimal social interaction. Terrible, I know. I've been justifying it be telling myself "work hard for three days and relax for four."  It was nice for the first three months but now I'm feeling sluggish, lazy, lonely, and put on a little extra lb's. Needless to say, I need a change, a permanent change. 

Various studies say that it takes 21 days to make/break a habit. Inspired by Juley, I have decided take on the challenge (I don't mean the ALS one). I'm taking the necessary steps to lead a healthier, happier, and more active life. 

  • Read 2 books: Since graduating, I went to reading over 100 pages a night to "what's a book?" I feel like a drone sitting infront of the TV. There is the occasional documentary that I will watch but it's mainly trash TV, thank you to Real Housewives of [insert city], which gives me NO educational nutrients. Two books is a good goal to ease back into reading. 
  • Exercise: The extra 20 lbs I've put on is too much baggage for me. I want to get back in the routine of being fit and feeling strong. The goal is to workout three times a week. 
  • Clean: When your environment is uncluttered, I believe your mind is too. This is for my sanity and sanitation sake. You can never be too clean... or at least I can't be. I wish I was a little more OCD about those things but hopefully I will be after 21 days. I'm devoting to clean at least 10 minutes before bed. 
  • Blog consistency: I have so many ideas to do and a vision to take this blog. Also this is supposed to be my outlet. So I need to blog consistently to keep a track of myself. Twice a week. 
  • Be Kind to Myself: Making a big move from California to North Carolina, not knowing anyone, starting a new job, living on my own for the first time, all these things are big changes that are not easy to do. We are our own worst critic. Things do not come instantaneously but gradually with time and experience. I need to be nicer to myself about everything.
It's only 21 days. Any advice to make these resolutions stick? 


Refreshing Kiss Cocktail

In attempt to write consistently on the blog, I will present weekly cocktail-inspired posts. This week's drink is inspired by Valentine's day! Whether you are single or taken, the Refreshing Kiss Cocktail is a great drink to sip on or gobble down like I did. This drink tastes how a kiss should be: a mix of emotions, invigorating, minty, sweet, smooth, and leaves you wanting more. See the recipe at the bottom and tips are within the post. Let me know how this drink turned out and any other drink requests. Enjoy!


NWM 2013 // The Committment

 For my 2013 New Year's resolution, I set my sites on doing something that I would normally not do and challenge myself. I signed up for the Nike's Women's Half Marathon.  I usually talk a big game about doing something and always have the luxury of backing down, if need be. In this instance, once I submitted and paid my registration for the race, it's like I signed my name in blood. There is no backing down now and no refund. I am going to do this. Come October, I will be ready!

Now the only problem I have is staying committed. Like I said before, it is so easy to make excuses and to even back down. I figure if I post it here, I will require me to stay on track. Now that I am done with vacation and school doesn't start for another month, I will be focusing on running regularly and eating right. Thankfully, Pinterest has some great tips, recipes, and schedules to follow. I will keep you posted on what works for me and what doesn't. 


Vegas Pt. 2 - Activities!

After being in Vegas for 6 days, it started to feel like home. There were many things I got to do and crossed off my list but I still feel like I missed out on so much while I was there. Here are some of the things I did on my stay.

For the 'first timers':

Gambling and Drinking (Anywhere):
As a 21 year old, I finally have the privilege to gamble and drink. I am not much of a gambler but I am willing to have a few drinks. Fat Tuesday was the big hit between my friends and I. They are refreshing alcoholic slushies, perfect for the desert sun. I had one almost every day. They are a must and are located in various hotels across the strip!

TAO Beach (The Venetian):
I am happy that we went to a pool party with the heat but TAO was very disappointing. The actual TAO pool looks like a kiddy pool with a bunch of guido-looking guys and maybe two girls in the water. We got in, got our drinks (free for ladies during a specific time), and then left to go to the bigger pool a few feet away. Bacardi had their own cabana on the side that would show you lessons how to make daiquiris, pina colada, and mojitos for free! Next time we'll got to Wet Republic.

Marquee (The Cosmopolitan):
MARQUEE WAS AWESOME! They have three floors with three different types of music. The atmosphere is out of this world and there is a bar everywhere you need one. The only negative is when my feet where barking there was no where to sit. If you sat at a cabana, you were automatically ushered out of it. So I suggest you buy bottle service if you want to sit, otherwise where heels that allow you to dance all night. 

For the adventurous:

The Roller Coaster (New York-New York):
There is almost no wait for this roller coaster. It was so a very unexpected ride. The first big drop was the scariest for me. You clearly were high above the Vegas strip and it slowly lowered into the steep dip. Like a flash, it quickly entered all the twists and turns. Great ride! {P.S. the camera is located at the little dippers midway through the ride.}

Top of the Stratosphere (Stratosphere):
We stayed at the Stratosphere Hotel our last night so, we were about to go to the observatory deck for free. Depending how adventurous you feel, you can get on one of the three rides, jump out of the 80th floor on a decelerator, or simply enjoy the view from the top. By this time everyone was broke so we simply admired Vegas from the top of the Stratosphere.

Cirque Du Soleil: Mystere (Treasure Island):
In tradition Vegas fashion, you must see one of their amazing shows. I wanted to watch Celine Dion but I was out voted and we watched Cirque du Soleil. I was the only one who had watch one before so, I enjoyed watching everyone's eyes light up with the show. The Mystere was mind blowing as all Cirque du Soleil shows are, but this one has no concept or theme behind it. It felt disconnected but bewildering nonetheless.

Zip Line (Fremont Street):
Zip lining down Fremont Street was at the top of my list and it did not disappoint. My boyfriend and his friend (who is 6'1" and scared of heights, ironic?) were nervous upon reaching to the top of the tower to jump off. I was very proud that they both did it. As for the zip line, it was so thrilling and there is so much energy being under the mosaic of lights and the energy of the crowd below you. I was just sad it was so short. This is a must!

For the '(I lost all my money) broke':

Conservatory and Botanical Gardens (Bellagio):
If you are on a budget, there are plenty of things to see that are free. The gardens are a beautiful display and they change every season. It is also a good opportunity to take pictures.

Fountains of Bellagio (Bellagio):
This is one of my favorites. It's great to watch in the day time but ten fold better at night. They have shows every 15 minutes. I literally stood in front of these fountains memorized for almost an hour just watching the dancing water. I was upset that we couldn't see Celine Dion in concert but I was satisfied after I saw the fountains playing to "My Heart Will Go On."

Volcano (The Mirage):
The volcano was on our list of things to do but on a whim we saw it erupt. That fire was HOT!! It was a striking with its massive fire balls shooting high into the sky. Very 'cool' to see if you get the chance to see it.

Welcome to Las Vegas Sign (South of Mandalay Bay):
If you drive to Vegas, I highly suggest that you stop and take a picture at the welcome sign. It might be cheesy to some but I feel an obligation to take a picture with the welcome sign. It is as if the sign is welcoming you with open arms, just as the city is. 

Vegas, you were wonderful and beautiful. I will see you soon!


Vegas Pt. 1 - Food

I have been back from Las Vegas for about a week. It took me that long to recover but, I am finally getting back into the swing of things. This is going to be the food portion of my first Vegas trip. I spent 6 days in Vegas with 10 people, 2 hotels, memorable stories, and great pictures. I can't wait to go back. 

Bouchon (The Venetian) - Bouchon is hands-down one of the best restaurants where we ate. Chef Thomas Keller did not disappoint. I shared my breakfast, Bouchon French Toast, with my boyfriend who had the Les Oeufs. Both were fantastic and I also recommend the Hibiscus Champagne Cocktail with an edible hibiscus flower at the bottom of the flute. Everything was delicious and I have been craving Bouchon.
Earl of Sandwich (Planet Hollywood) - Here in the Bay Area we have a similar sandwich place called Ike's Sandwich, which people rave about. I would rather have Earl's any day over Ike's. Earl's are simple sandwiches done well. It was so good that I bought an extra sandwich to eat as late night munchies. I regret not going back there to get another. Even my boyfriend, who does not like sandwiches, loved their pizza sandwich. Stop by Earl's to at least get a sandwich and stick it in your purse as a snack. People will be begging you for a bite. 
Seredipity3 (Caesar's Palace) - I was so excited to hear there is a Serendipity3 in Las Vegas because my boyfriend and I had gone to the original in New York last December. After a night of shenanigans, we arrived at Serendpity3 around 1am. We found out that the restaurant was closed but it's walk-thru window was still open. I recommend getting your pick of the Frozen Hot Chocolate.  

Heart Attack Grill (Fremont Street) - What an experience! As we walked into the restaurant, you were quickly greeted by a "doctor." He would help you get seated by helping you put on your medical gown and wristband. Once seated, your nurse would ask you what bypass burger you want. I had a butterfat alcoholic milkshake which was very effective yet you can barely taste the alcohol. You can also get half liquor jello injections which are potent. This place had a great ambiance but it's a once in a while thing because the calorie intake would give you a heart attack! I apologize for no food image; we ate there late at night and ate quickly. 
SushiSamba (The Palazzo) -  This Japanese, Brazilian, Peruvian cuisine is a surprisingly scrumptious marriage. One of the best places that we ate at as well. In the image above, we had a crispy taquitos served with spicy aji panca sauce and fresh lime. Everything was delicious and went well together. They also fulfilled my sushi fix with the Carnaval sushi roll. 

Next post, I'll let you know about what I did in Vegas!