February 25, 2012

Saturday

Today is Saturday. It’s a little gray for LA and all I can do is sit in my bed and daydream through endless clicks on beautiful blogs and online inspiration. I’m tired… and I feel like today should just be one of those days. You know the kind to which I am referring: the quiet, slow, take a moment to breathe and eat a grilled cheese kind of day.

Philip and I moved into our new place last weekend and have yet to unpack another ten [big] boxes or so. The desk and sofa are still in shrink-wrap and our clothes are in neat little piles in the closet and against the bedroom wall (no dresser either). So today won’t be one of those days that I have described above.

We’ve actually got to clean, unpack and make a trip to Ikea before the sun sets.

 

But it’s only 8am… and it’s fun to dream.

xx LP


February 13, 2012

{DIY} Valentine’s Day

Remember those 2x3 cards printed with Disney Princesses, Tonka Trucks and Powder Puff girls? There was often a cherry-flavored, heart-shaped lollipop attached to the aforementioned with a little piece of Scotch tape. These flimsy, little treasures were collected in cereal boxes covered with construction paper or miniature red and pink mailboxes from the dollar store. I’m referring to the valentines of our childhood my friends, the ones we scribbled on, stickered and traded with our classmates, teachers and loved ones. Even though I am “technically” a grown-up (by the way, what constitutes being grown-up?), I still covet those little cards in the holiday section of the drug store and get nostalgic when I spy the long cellophane-wrapped strips of lollipops hanging from the metals rungs of a store shelf.

 

I absolutely love Valentine’s Day. I don’t love it for the “girly” reasons you might think: receiving flowers, jewelry and expensive dinners (although, all are indeed welcome!). Rather I adore this holiday for the simple reason that it celebrates love, itself. It’s an opportunity to reach out to family, friends, co-workers, and tell them the things that often go unsaid. It’s the perfect time to express your fondness, appreciation and of course love, for all of those important people in your life. I have to stand against the bitter naysayers who label the 14th of February as a mere “Hallmark Holiday.” It is so much more than that! Which brings me back to those little cards I mentioned above…


 

I love sending and receiving valentines. And I love it when they are handmade, with various papers, glitter, ribbon, paint- I’ve used it all! This year though, I drew miniature illustrations with pencils and markers and mounted them on solid and polka-dotted pink cardstock. I also incorporated either some ribbon or red thread where necessary… I am sending them out to friends and family all over the place {world}. I hope that you are inspired to make some too… I promise they will make whomever you choose to give them to, feel loved and appreciated.


 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

xx LP


February 5, 2012

Goals, Food and the Getty Villa

Over the course of the past few weeks if not months, I have spent a lot of time reading, listening, and discovering. It has been a period of re-examining and re-evaluation. My goal is to try to be more introspective while at the same time remaining open everyday, and not just when I’ve come up against a roadblock or *ahem challenge. I will always be a work in progress, but I think this could be a very good way for me to live.  

With that said, I am feeling refreshed and excited as of late, and here’s why:

- I’ve got new ideas for my blog, that I am finally going to [make] time to execute

- I’ve discovered more fantastic and beautiful blogs for inspiration; you can click below to see a few:

o   Designlovefest

o   Garance Doré

o   Cupcakes and Cashmere

o   Food52


- Philip and I are [finally] moving to downtown LA! (I get to decorate; pictures to follow!)

- I received Julia Child’s cookbook as a gift and I am tackling French recipes; i.e. I am learning how to actually cook!

- I am [trying] to build a stronger, more dynamic portfolio

- In LA I’ll finally be in close proximity to these places:

o   Bottega Louie

o   H.D.Buttercup (yes!)

o  Artisan House

(My dad came to visit this weekend and we made a fabulous dinner on Saturday: rack of lamb marinated in red wine with fresh rosemary; served with  tzatziki, taboule salad, farm-fresh broccoli rabe sautéed in olive oil and garlic, and an arugula salad with lemon juice and heirloom tomatoes. Click below to see more pictures of our fun weekend!)

xx LP


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January 30, 2012

Sweet, Sweet Sunday Morning

Is there anything better than leisurely waking on the weekend, without an alarm clock and with beautiful sunshine streaming through the blinds?

I am assuming there’s nothing better, because while I would like to be someone who can sleep in, I am no longer that type. Rather, I am typically up at 6 am with a to-do list at the forefront of my mind and far too much energy to stay put. I like to think my inability to sleep just allows me extra time for baking, reading and general running around. While that isn’t always the case, it did prove to be true this morning, when I used some of my spare time to bake up these Cinnamon-Sugar Donuts (baked not fried).

 

I was inspired by the recipe I found on this blog a while back, and had been waiting for another opportunity to take a shot at making donuts. I am proud to say that with a few of my own adjustments and additions to the recipe, they turned out really well. The dough was cakey but not dry, and the spicy cinnamon flavor was on-point. I should also mention that making them was extremely easy! They are such a fun and different thing to make if you’ve got weekend guests (or just a hungry boyfriend!). 

xx LP

Click below for the recipe and enjoy!

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January 16, 2012

Finding Calm in Coffee & Croissants

 

When I arrived in Orange County, I was of course awed by the sparkling stretches of Pacific coastline and as one might expect, enamored with the always-dependable, pleasant climate. However, beautiful beaches and sunny skies do not a perfect world make. (I heard that gasp.) I should correct myself: those things can and should create someone’s perfect world, but personally, I desire something more specific to root me to a time and place. Wherever I choose to exist, I need to find my own little piece of home, where the noise and distractions of everyday life dissolve and I can just be, preferably with a coffee and something to read. 

When I arrived in Orange County, I noticed something right away: below the fluffy clouds and towering palms, crawl seemingly endless rows of gargantuan gated neighborhoods and stucco-covered apartment homes, punctuated by over-sized strip malls and grids of parking space; “suburban sprawl,” anyone? The positive side to this is that you can pretty much browse, rent or buy whatever your heart desires. The negative side though, is that after a while, all things start to look the same. I say this without any ill will, because really, I am aware that where I am living is a very, very nice place to be living. What I am trying to articulate is that to enjoy this place (specifically, Newport Beach) or any place, it is essential that I find a space in which I feel connected to my life and myself.

First I will tell you what the place is not: it is not big, loud or popular with the young crowd and it is definitely not attached to a strip mall. It is quiet, clean and reliable. I say reliable, because I see the staff turning on lights and unlocking doors before 6 a.m. when it is still dark out and I’m awake, on my way to work out. I appreciate that. The same perfect pastries are baked fresh everyday and I can always count on a perfect espresso or coffee, every time I drop in.

My place might be your place too, which I am okay with. I like to sit at the petite, square tables and observe locals, to see what newspaper they are reading or what story they might be sharing over juice with their child. I can share. If you don’t like my place I am okay with that too, I would just prefer that you keep it to yourself. I don’t regard the act of tarnishing someone else’s experience, with too much approval. Zinc is a market and café nestled among small storefronts in the downtown of Corona Del Mar. The business has other locations, but this one is my favorite.

Click below to keep reading…

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