|San Francisco, California|
1. California Knows How to Party. Well, I'm back from my trip to California and I'm certainly going to miss that view right there. Mom and I took the BART (think the LIRR of San Francisco) into the city a lot and we always passed this beautiful section of S.F on the way in. Nestled in the hills, these colorful icebox houses were picturesque as can be and I'll always keep the mental snapshot tucked away as one of my 'happy places.' Overall the trip was fantastic and included many 'firsts' for me - my first trip to Napa Valley, first time running a half marathon on the West Coast, first time to Muir Woods to see the Redwood Forest and visit the town of Sausalito! The weather was amazing (a heat wave the first few days boasted temperatures in the high 80's!), our itinerary was chock full of wonderful touristy stuff, and I did what I came to do: complete my 4th half marathon. You can check out my account of the race, 'A diva [half marathon] vignette here.
2. May Faves. I was so inspired with the warm weather in Cali, that my entire 'Rachel's May Faves' picks center around fun in the sun. You can check out the list here, which includes beachy items like a fun flamingo bathing suit, adorable Victoria Secret beach towel, ridiculously cute iPhone covers, summery candle scents you NEED in your life, a beachy backpack, among other fabulous items I've selected.
3. Honey Bee Bath Bombs. While wandering around Cali, Mom and I stumbled into a Lush Cosmetics in the Union Square area of San Francisco. Lush is our downfall - her and I in there together = not good news. When offered a 'soft hand treatment' of course we obliged - we didn't want to be rude!!! :) That soft hand treatment opened a can of worms - now that our hands were nice and soft we wanted to make good use of them, so we wandered around the store touching [and smelling!] everything. Needless to say, Mom left with $60 worth of sea salt scrub among other hand products and I wandered over to the Bath Bomb section which is my absolute weakness. I fell in love with 'Honey Bee' bath bombs and left with a few. You guys, if you haven't tried a bath bomb yet, you're missing out on LIFE (says the bath connoisseur herself).
4. Pom Teas. A friend introduced me to these POM Antioxidant Super Tea's a few weeks ago and I'm kind of obsessed with them. Really delicious. I've tried them all, but my favorite is definitely the peach, even though I've kind of been on a lychee kick of late. Try them!
5. Marie Digby. I really love Marie Digby - I don't know how I discovered her on iTunes but I think she might have been in my recommended music section (thanks for profiling me iTunes!). Anyways, I bought her album and took it with me to the U.K for 10 days and played it over and over and over again. I think this is the first time I can say I like every single song on an album. "Unfold" and "Beauty in Walking Away" are probably my favorites, but I can honestly say I never find myself hitting 'skip'. C'mon - how often do you find a good album, but there are always those one or two songs that irk you....they don't belong on the otherwise perfect album. Nope, none of those here...I like them all. If you're interested, this is the [old- 2008] album, but she definitely has much newer stuff out if you like her sound. Anyways I was on YouTube last night looking for one of her songs and found this video she posted on her song making process. I just found it so interesting- so I wanted to share it. She's adorable - I just love her!
6. Couture de Minnie. I don't go to Ulta that often, but the other day I got a coupon in the mail so I decided to browse online and see if anything caught my eye to warrant a visit to the store. How cute is this O.P.I 'Couture de Minnie' nail polish line? I love Minnie Mouse - she is my alter ego. I think I need this. Make that a definite.
7. Treadmill Aerobics. The other day I was at L.A Fitness and couldn't take my eyes off this chick on the treadmill. At the time, she looked really bizarre and I thought she was just a little eccentric with the movements she was doing on the treadmill. Then I noticed there was sort of a method to the madness, that she was rotating the same dance-like routine on the treadmill. I couldn't stop staring. Apparently - this is a 'thing' called 'Treadmill Aerobics'. Have you heard of it? Its really strange to watch if you're seeing it for the first time, but check out this video. I'm kind of curious about it now.
8. Aqua Fresca. While in Cali, I saw Aqua Fresca everywhere and enjoyed my first taste of it. What is it? Basically deliciously flavor-infused water: think Vitamin Water, but on a healthier scale. I was at a Mexican restaurant on Cinco de Mayo, but couldn't celebrate with a margarita because it was the day before my race and I was abstaining from alcohol. Instead I opted for a pineapple aqua fresca and it was so refreshing and delicious! Here is a recipe for it from one of my favorite blogs 'How Sweet It Is', served two ways: Watermelon and Mango! Aqua Fresca
9. Amanda Knox is a phony. Last night, I caught the Amanda Knox interview - why does this girl not go away? I can't even believe this interview was televised - we let a killer walk free, she needs air time on top of a book deal?Seriously, go into hiding - we don't want to see you, hear from you, or watch your phony crocodile tears. Aren't you NOT supposed to do an interview if you STILL don't have good answers to original questions asked about the murder? She did not change my mind at all - she had the same lame answers about her whereabouts, strange behavior following the murder, and downright lack of empathy. During the interview she sounded like a parrot - repeating the same phrase over and over and over again "They don't have evidence that puts me at the crime scene" - WHO SAYS THIS? I'll tell you who says this, a killer who got off on lack of evidence. In fact, even the interviewer picked up on this wording and at one point says: "You're so focused on admissable evidence, but we never hear you say 'I'm innocent of this crime.' See the difference?" She just sat there like a deer in headlights because she didn't know what to say. I flipped off the TV at that point - enjoy your freedom Amanda, you're not fooling anyone. We're all held accountable for our actions in the end. You might have scammed a jury, but we all stand accountable before our Maker eventually. Now where's that DVR'ed Nashville episode...
10. Haunting similarities. Speaking of news, I can't believe what's going on in the news right now with these 3 women being held captive for over 10 years. It's just crazy to me: this was a normal suburban street, not a rural farm in the middle of nowhere. How did this happen? Why this is so haunting is because I've been reading 'Room' by Emma Donahue in which a woman is kidnapped, held captive in a secret room and repeatedly raped, gives birth to a son [whom she names Jack] from one of those sexual assaults, and their story of survival. Reading this book has been disturbing to say the least, since kidnapping is one of my biggest fears, next to home intrusion. When I got off the plane, I learned of this breaking story and felt like I was reliving the book since there were so many eery similarities. I'm glad those girls were found and can now begin the healing process. Note to my parents: If I ever go missing, please don't give up looking for me. Very scary, but a brutal dose of reality.
Until next week...