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Archive for January, 2013

Day 24: January 24, 2013

Most of my coworkers don’t drive to work because we have to pay for parking, the cheapest is $6/day (actually, people who drive everyday get the monthly deal, which is $80-90/month). We’re actually pretty lucky because if our office was on the other side of the freeway, and in the DTLA core, then parking can easily reach $200/month. Since most of us don’t drive to work our lunch options are limited to what we can reasonably walk to. In the off chance that someone does drive in, our lunch options expand mightily!

One of our favorite lunch spots is Papa Cristos, a fantastic Greek place (seriously, look at their Yelp Page) that has been around for decades (if you’re a fan of The Shield, then you’ll appreciate (or be terrified?) that it is located directly in Byz-Lat territory). I never fail to order the gyro sandwich, but am always tempted by the dessert counter. This time, however, temptation got the best of me and I added two “homemade” Baklavas to my order. My husband is always jealous when I tell him I had Papa Cristos for lunch so I brought the baklavas home so we could enjoy them after dinner (I’m such a good wife!):

Day 24/365

How I was able to keep working the rest of the afternoon without opening these tasty treats is a mystery, but they made it home unopened and they did not disappoint!

Day 25: January 25, 2013

I totally phoned this one in. The lighting was terrible and I was too lazy to get up and walk across the room to get my dslr, so instead I used my shitty digicam, which was within arms reach, but is absolutely terrible for taking quality photos in low lighting:

Day 25/365

Bailey likes to sleep under the coffee table when we’re watching TV. If we start paying attention to him, then he’ll stretch and roll around and basically look utterly adorable. This photo doesn’t do it justice. Believe him, he knows how cute he is.

Day 26: January 26, 2013

Bailey sure does enjoy laying on his back. I tried to frame him in a modest position so his kitty-bits weren’t fully exposed for the world to see.

Day 26/365

Day 27: January 27, 2013

I finally went on my first photo walk! It took me awhile to get over feeling so self-conscience for taking photos in public. I combined photography and exercise by taking photos along my favorite walk. It rained overnight, but cleared up mid-morning. It was still a bit overcast, but the sun was creeping through the clouds. You can check out Flickr to see  all of my photos during my walk to and from and all around Runyon Canyon. The photo I’m sharing for my 365 photos is of the Michael Jackson auditorium at the local elementary school.

Day 27/365

I felt it was appropriate for this photo to be in black and white. I remember walking by the day they put his name back on the building and thinking it was such a shame. Call me a Debby Downer and a music hater and yes, I realize he went to this school for a little bit, but I just don’t think we should be naming an elementary school auditorium after an alleged kiddy-diddler no matter what kind of contributions he made to the music industry. Just goes to show how much celebrity reigns supreme. *getting off my soap box now…*

Hope everyone had a good weekend. Can’t believe it’ll be February on Friday! I was just thinking earlier this week how long this month seemed, but now I’m beginning to think it flew by. Now I understand why earlier in the week my coworkers were sorta freaking out about some deadlines in early February….hmmm, it is just around the corner. Whoops! Maybe I should start being worried too about all the work I have…

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Day 21: January 21, 2013

Nothing spectacular for Day 21. Just Bailey playing with a shopping bag.

Day 21/365

Cats can be so smart, yet so simple.

Day 22: January 22, 2013

Last week I took a photo of Bailey’s mouse toy and Schnookie, of IPB Living, noted its fairly pristine condition. This time I took a photo of one of his most played-with cat toys.

Day 22/365

Bailey has beat the crap out of this toy. We have bought several different feather teaser cat toys from Petco and the Feline Flyer is by far the best one available in-store. The feathers are really stiff and flutter through the air very nicely. I wonder if the cat thinks it looks like a bird… The major downside to all teaser toys is the feather part is attached to the string by a ball and chain type connection and it ALWAYS breaks. I have bought at least 5 teaser toys from Petco in the past 6 months and they have all broken in the same manner, except for one where the rod actually broke. When I feel like mustering up another $7 for a cat toy that WILL break, then I’ll buy my beloved Bailey another Feline Flyer. Until then I’ll just continue throwing the feather around the room in hopes he’ll want to play fetch.

Day 23: January 23, 2013

As soon as I stepped outside this morning I immediately regretted not taking my small digicam with me to work today. I left at about 6:30am and the sky was a beautiful blue/purple hue with streaks of magenta. Ohhhhhhhh smog, you do such wondrous things to the sky! Sure enough, when I got to work I had the perfect view of the disgusting yellow layer of smog that had descended upon the LA Basin and it only seemed to get thicker as the day went on. The weather has been weird lately; LA had record high temps of 80 degrees on Monday and dare I say I might have allergies! But later this week we might get some rain and the high temp will drop to a brisk 70 degrees!

Instead of an awesome sky photo, I present to you another cat photo:

Day 23/365

He even looks adorable when he’s scratching his head! ohmygawd, I can’t stop taking pictures of him!

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I’m getting used to this photo a day thing! Surprisingly it hasn’t felt like a chore, which is something I was very worried about. I enjoy seeking out things to photograph and I absolutely cannot wait till I get a new phone that has a decent camera so I can document all these wonderful things around me; I’m too much of a weenie to pull out my dslr in a big crowd. I also don’t want to lug it around in my purse every day. I also always feel like I’m in such a hurry to get somewhere that I don’t feel like I can just stop for a minute and compose a nice photo. Ok, I admit it: I’m just full of lame excuses…

Day 17: January 17, 2013

I did not know what to photograph this day and I really did not want to resort to taking another photograph of my super amazing cat. So instead I took a photo of his toy mouse.

Day017 - Playing with my Cat's Toy

A friend of mine told me about these mice and I found a local pet store selling them for $1 a pop. I bought one and, of course, the little bugger got lost after a day of intense cat play and then I decided I was too cheap to go back and pay $1/mouse, so I bought a whole box on Amazon because somehow that made way more financial sense to me….

Day 18: January 18, 2013

I took a photo during the day of the view from my office on Day 8. I decided to take a similar photo, but in the evening.

Day018

The night photo really emphasizes the hellish rush hour traffic that truly highlights life in LA. Thankfully, I don’t *have* to deal with rush hour traffic (as long as I’m not lazy) since I can take public transportation to and from work. (Note: my camera’s timestamp is all wrong so it says I took this photo on Jan 17th at 11:55pm, but I assure you that I did in fact take this photo on January 18th and I sure as hell was not in the office at 11:55 pm. I think this was taken at 5:55pm.)

Day 19: January 19, 2013

This was my second attempt at making a green juice/smoothie.

Day019

Although my husband was quick to correct me that this is neither a juice nor a smoothie, so I guess I’ll just call it a green goopy drink. Since I don’t have a juicer, I’ve been trying my best to create a green drink in my POS blender, but I can’t blend it for too long otherwise the liquid begins to leak out the bottom. Obviously I need a new blender. Oh, you want to know how it tasted? Hmmm…..there is a lot of room for improvement, but I did drink 1/3 cup of almonds, 2 celery stalks, 1 orange, half of a banana, and 2 stalks of kale leaves…..so, there’s that.

Day 20: January 20, 2013

Lunch at Father’s Office, THE BEST BURGER IN TOWN!

Day020

Perhaps it is a good thing a burger and fries costs $15.00 because otherwise I would want to go every single weekend. There are plenty of other items on the menu, but I don’t know what they taste like because I have never strayed from ordering the burger and fries. This meal is heavenly. We decided to treat ourselves to a nice lunch because we finally took the huge jump and met with a realtor! Ack, we’re going to be so broke later this year (if things go as planned)!! Why am I so excited about having a soul-crushing mortgage?!

Note:  I took this photo on my husband’s iphone (in case you care about those type of deets.)

To everyone who has off from work on MLK Day: I hate you. I’ll be slaving away at work on Monday, but enjoying the lovely 80 degree weather we have been blessed with recently. I know it won’t last, so I won’t complain about how I wish we could experience some winter weather instead.

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Days 14-16. Guess what?? No cat photos in this post!!!! (Instead I made a photoset on Flickr of just cat photos…..)

Day 14: January 14, 2013
This photo a day thing isn’t too bad! Even my husband is encouraging me to stick with it and offered to make himself a drink so I could take a photograph of it. Although, now that I think about it, it is more likely that he used my photo project as an excuse to drink………he. used. me.

Here’s a photo of his 50/50 martini. However, you’ll notice that I focused on something else:

Day014

Yep, those are Battlestar Galactica coasters. I have no doubt that BSG fans are creaming their pants right now, but non-BSG fans (like myself) are thinking “blech, those are unsightly coasters!” (and you’d be damn right!)

Day 15: January 15, 2013
Normally our apartment stays pretty warm throughout the year and we have never in the 4+ years of living here have used our wall heater. But lately it has been a bit chilly in LA and the indoor temp finally fell below 65 degrees so we brought out ‘Steeley’, the super amazing portable oil-filled radiator heater! (Yes, I gave the heater a nickname.)

Day015

We bought Steeley when we lived in Long Beach because it got cold down there! Contributing to the frigid temps was the fact we lived in a 1910s-era Craftsman bungalow that had absolutely no insulation. My grandmother recommended buying an oil-filled radiator because it is affordable, portable, safer than a typical space heater, and can heat a room fairly effectively. Additionally I have recently discovered it is kitty-friendly. The only downside is that it uses electricity so if you use it all day long, then your electric bill will skyrocket! I told my husband he can only turn it on if the indoor temp is below 70 degrees. (Note: I am fully aware that I am cheap, but I am not being mean. He has told me on several occasions that his ideal temperature is 65 degrees, but I have learned this winter that apparently that only applies to summer.)

Day 16: January 16, 2013

A photo of my current favorite cookbook.

Day016

No, I am not a vegetarian. I sorta tried to “be” vegetarian for about a week, but I got tired of trying to figure out how to get enough protein. I love soup, but ugh, lentils really make you bloated…I mainly bought this cookbook because I want to eat more vegetables, but I needed more ideas on how to cook them. One of the things that I really like about this cookbook is that Mark Bittman provides a ton of suggestions for how to alter a recipe into different flavor profiles. For instance, I think there are at least 4 different versions of a Tomato Soup recipe. When I first got the cookbook I actually had the thought “I’m going to make every single recipe in here!“……and then I flipped through it and realized that is never going to happen. But I love that I can buy almost any vegetable and then find 10 different ways to make it.

Looking forward to Thursday; word on the street is the temp might reach the upper 70s!!! wooohooo!

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Days 10-13….these were some chilly days in LA! Laugh all you want non-SoCal people, but it was cold here and I did not want to go outside.

Day 10: January 10, 2013

Mad Housewife….she seemed like a good idea at the time. So, I started a food blog {finally} and will eventually review this el cheapo wine. Spoiler Alert: I do not recommend it.

Day 10/365 - Mad Housewife Wine

Day 11: January 11, 2013

Another cat photo…what can I say. I love taking photos of my sweet, psychotic Bailey:

Day 11/365

Day 12: January 12, 2013

This is a T-Rex tea infuser!!! 🙂

Day 12/365

I bought this little trinket as a stocking stuffer for my husband. I found it at Sur La Table and thought he would get a kick out of it. It’s fun to use and have sitting in your mug, but it is a pain in the behind to clean! The holes are a bit big so some of the smaller tea leaves float into your tea, but since they usually settle to the bottom it isn’t that big of an issue.

Day 13: January 13, 2013

Bailey’s feeding station:

Day 13/365

A close friend of mine gave me the awesome bowl and placemat. Funny story: Bailey freaked out when I first used the placemat. I’m not sure why he was so weirded out, but he didn’t want to go near his food bowl. Of course, his love for food was too overwhelming and he eventually got past his fears.

Oh Sunday, you’ve been fun. Definitely not looking forward to your bastard cousin, Monday.

Have a good week, everyone!

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Day 7: January 7, 2013

I had grand plans to take an outdoor photo for Day 7, but unfortunately that didn’t happen. Instead, I took this photo:

Day 7/365

Bob’s Red Mill has invaded my grocery store! YES!!!!

Look at all that Bob’s Red Mill!!!!! WHAT?!?!?! I stopped by Ralphs (aka, Kroger, the big chain grocery store in my area) and only walked down the baking aisle to get to the back of the store. I just happened to glance to my left and I think my jaw dropped when I saw bags upon bags upon bags of different Bob’s Red Mill baking products! WHEN DID THIS GET HERE!?!?

I was in Ralphs on Christmas Even to get baking flour and I DO NOT remember seeing this. In the past I have only been able to find Unsweeted Shredded Coconut and possibly one or two other items. I usually have to go to Fresh & Easy to buy Gluten-Free Baking Flour (because it’s way cheaper than at Whole Foods) and then hop on over to Whole Foods to get the crazy stuff like Flaxseed Meal (I still don’t know why I bought this) and Xantham Gum. I can’t remember how much Whole Foods charges for all these things, but I am 99.999999% certain that Ralphs is cheaper. I can’t wait to start experimenting with different baked goods! I was seriously way too excited about this discovery! It definitely made my day….until I decided to buy Mint Chocolate Its-It for dessert. THAT made my day.

Day 8: January 8, 2013
A view from my “office” window.

Day 8/365

“Hi Staples Center! Hi Freeway!”

I put office in quotation marks because I really sit in a cubicle that is adjacent to a floor-to-ceiling window (**not to brag or anything**), but it feels like a real office because it is kind of secluded from the rest of my coworkers so I have a lot of privacy. Not gonna lie, this view is pretty awesome. First of all, “Hello, Staples Center!” When the Kings have a home game, I can see the LA Kings banner draped across the front of Staples Center.

The freeway is also fun to look at. We can see accidents that back up traffic for miles (see photo above), crazies that threaten to jump off a bridge onto the freeway, high-speed car chases, motorcades, military helos that fly by and shake the building, etc. This spot had a decent view of the space shuttle that flew over LA and, on a good air quality day, we can *just* see the ocean (if we squint hard enough).

In case you are wondering, the photos from Days 7 and 8 were taken with my Sony DSC-T200 digicam (I do not recommend it…..but who the heck buys compact digital cameras anyway) and then touched up in PicMonkey using AutoAdjust.

Day 9: January 9, 2013

My external flash arrived!! Woohoo!!! It’s a Canon 430EX II. After I ordered it and was waiting for it to arrive I kept thinking what a frivolous purchase it was for an amateur photog. Just as I was beginning to regret buying it, the flash arrive and OMFG  I really love it! Here’s a SOOC shot of my kitty!

Day 9/365

If we had more cats, Bailey would definitely be their King.

Sure, the photo is a bit overexposed, but that’s because I’m still trying to figure out what exposure compensation to use for my flash. I think I have it set to +2/3 and I bounced the flash at a 60 degree angle. But, seriously….I love this external flash! Even when I set my camera’s light setting to Tungsten and manually shoot to capture a correct exposure I still have to do a white balance adjustment to get the coloring right. All because the lighting in my apartment is absolutely terrible.

Because I’m so excited I am going to add one more photo of my cat. Look, even Bailey is excited! He’s practically dancing!

Feeding the cat

And now you know where I store my Swiffer, broom, and spare fan….

Today’s Hump Day! Only 2 more days till the weekend!!

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6 continuous days of photos. I’m almost at a week. If I take a photo tomorrow, then I’ll consider it a streak.

First up is January 5, 2013 and, yes, it is a cat photo.
01-05-2013_Bailey
I love trying to get  close-up photos of my cat, especially when his eyes are super big. Only his eyes are in focus because I had to shoot wide open (and at 1600 ISO) in order to get an appropriate shutter speed and exposure and I set the focus on his eyes. My external flash can’t arrive soon enough…

Today’s photo, January 6, 2013, is of a zipper pouch I made a couple months ago.

01-06-2013_Zipper-Pouch

One day I had an urge to actually make something as opposed to just reading about everyone else’s wonderful sewing projects in my Google Reader. I decided to make a zipper pouch since it looked somewhat easy and I had enough scraps to make one. I used Ayumi’s zipper pouch tutorial and scraps of Tula Pink’s Prince Charming collection. By the way, Ayumi has the most amazing tutorials on her blog, Pink Penguin. There are plenty of other zipper pouch tutorials on the interwebs (here, let me Google that for you), but I think her tutorials are far superior to others you will find.

I have a couple more photos of this pouch on Flickr if you’re interested. I like how the bottom seam turned out, which was a total surprise accident. The wristlet part is a bit longer than I would like, but better that I can fit my hand through it than not. I’m actually sorta embarrassed to carry this around because the colors are so bright and I typically only carry black bags (along with my black boots, black pants, and black jacket…). I’m sure my coworkers, who are 90% male, think I’m weird when I carry it, but whatever I need to embrace my me-made projects especially ones that I’m proud of and I really do like this pouch.

One last note on this 365 photos project. My husband just saw the title of this blog post and asked if I was doing a photo a day. He quickly asked if all photos were of our cat. Hmph….no! And they won’t, dear readers, they won’t. Maybe tomorrow I’ll carry my shitty old digicam with me to work and get some shots of my commute to work or from my “office” window.  Next month my phone contract is up so I’ll finally be upgrading to a smartphone (or as they say in Canada, SUPERphone! haha!!), which will probably help in the “take a photo outside” goal.

Hope everyone had a happy weekend!

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