SLO Stills

“Remember back when we were in college…?”

We can say that now.. when we take long weekends and vacation time to escape from our grown-up jobs. We’re those people who go back to the same restaurants in town and tell the waitress “this is our favorite little spot” (like she gives a shiz) then proceed to relive every memory we ever made in that location. Those people who talk about “voting on the rec center during freshman year then never getting to use it” and say things like “you don’t really appreciate it here until you leave.” Yeah- I think that means we’re OLD. SLO, on the other hand, is just as we left it…

xx, Victoria

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Weekend wanderlust.

I firmly believe weekends should be 3 days on the regular. Productivity would be higher (or so I tell myself), office moral would be higher (would make sense if you were working less?), and, most importantly, I’d have more free time to use doing everything or nothing. This weekend was a bit of both…

1. Date night. Which was supposed to be a fantastic dinner out with great food and cocktails and dessert. This was just as good (even better when you consider we got to watch Law and Order: SVU at the same time).

2. Shopping. Even though I knew I shouldn’t. Perfect Saturday pick-me-up.

3. Pancake Sunday. Enough said.

4. Jordan’s new puppy- Kaia. #puppysnatchertendancies

5. Trying new recipes in an attempt to impress Chef Rachel and really just impressing myself instead.

Hope your weekend was wonderful, too. Just another few days until we’re SLO bound for a self-imposed 3 day weekend. Do what you gotta do, right?

xx, Victoria

Fell. Fall. Falling.

It’s taken a while for California to catch up, but it FINALLY feels like fall- which really only means it’s now a tad too cold to wear tank tops and cut-offs. In any case- I’ll take it. The past 5 years I spent fall in SLO and I miss the wine tasting, apple picking and crisp weather dearly. Until we can make it back up that way to enjoy the season, I’ll soak up the best of fall in LA…

1. Layers. I can camouflage those extra lbs for at least 3 more months. (since I really am going to lose that 10 now…). Oh, and boots, boots and more boots! Sole Society’s are the best!


2. Soup. Especially when Adam makes it and I don’t have to do anything.


3. Snuggling with a good book, a board game ( shameless Scrabble player), a cup of comfort and joy tea, a glass bottle of wine, etc.


4. Baking- the only time of the year when it is 100% acceptable to bake every single day. Heaven on earth? I think so.


5. Ugly sweater parties. Cocktail parties. Holiday parties. PARTIES.

6. Family. Decorations. Christmas lights. And soon enough…pine trees!

…Did I mention I love the holidays? Let the countdown begin!

xx, Victoria

And now it’s time for Christmas.

So it’s September? Which basically means December in my book…so let’s start celebrating the holiday season already!

But for real…I can’t believe summer is over. Finished. Not to be seen for another 9 months or so. 3 weddings, a food fest, some weekend getaways, a new job, and a 3-year anniversary…summer 2012, I’d say you were a success.

Conveniently planned 3 years ago (yeah…right)- Adam and my anniversary generally comes right around Labor Day. Translation: the perfect excuse to do some weekend getaway-ing. Though our bucket list of must-visit locations is quite extensive, we opted for a quick trip to Palm Springs (it’s been an expensive summer, okay?).

It was hotter than hell (for real…115), so while we were actually in Palm Springs we did a lot of drinking. Which then lead to a lot of eating. Which in turn meant a lot of sleeping. Therefore, we limited our time baking in the desert.

Sunday we took the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway up to the San Jacinto Mountains National Monument: EPIC. If you go to Palm Springs DO THIS. The view from the top is killer, but what’s even better than that? It’s also a solid 30 degrees cooler than Palm Springs is…#winning. Bring snacks though…hiking makes you me real hungry (good thing my live-in-lover knows me so well and plans accordingly).

Throw in a stop at the outlets, some labor day sales, an awesome deal on a Kate Spade bag, and the perfect anniversary present from Adam and you’ve got a pretty solid view of my lovely weekend.

Annnnnd then came the realization that we have no “real” reason to celebrate for a few months. Cue the fall diet and exercise plan…Sean T, go easy on me.

xx, Victoria

Pinterest: a love-hate relationship

Pinterest is amazing. I think we can all agree on that. I start out looking for some culinary inspiration regarding what to make for dinner and 3 hours later I am pinning clothes for my unborn, not-even-a-thought-in-my-mind children. I find myself trying things I know will never work because Pinterest said it’s possible. I fall for “how-to” posts and think that even though for 23 years I haven’t had a creative-designer-DIYing bone in my body, somehow Pinterest has armed me with such skills. Though I am admittedly a fan, not everything about Pinterest is so peachy…

1- Who needs stores? You can make a face wash, shampoo, cleaning detergent, toothpaste, babyfood all by yourself.

2- I can get beach-looking waves by adding VODKA to my hair product? Yeah okay…I’ll give that a go (trust me, not true).

3- Designer wedding dresses are out. You can make you dream gown out of TP and newspaper (add the glitter, of course)!

4- Though eventually you’re going to move out of your rental, glue everything to the walls. Tubberware, ribbon rolls, jars…all in the name of organization.

5- Trying to lose weight? Screw it and make these chocolate-peanut butter fudge graham cracker cookies with cream cheese frosting and sprinkles instead. Top that off with a specialty blueberry pink-lemonade cocktail and the 25 different kinds of pizza you should make this year. (I love pizza.)

6- You can view the above-named treats right next to a pic of the fittest woman alive wearing nothing but feather earnings? #motivation? Nah… #igiveup.

7- Hundreds of people pin fitness pics and motivational quotes, which makes me feel guilty because still all I want to do is eat everything from #5.

8- Old, dirty, should-be-tossed out crap cannot be refinished to look brand new. It’s usually still just crap.

…and 100 more.

xx- Victoria

That time my sister got married.

It finally happened: we lost a Zabel to married life (though it was a long time coming). My sister got hitched on Saturday to Mr. Wayne Shaw and it was absolutely perfect. The dress fit, she looked stunning, everyone showed up, I cried, we all danced, I didn’t throw up, Katie and I were the best MOH’s ever…all in all I’d say it was a big, flipping success. Only downside? In all the wedding bliss and celebration I ate myself into many a food coma (and might or might not have just finished a hefty slab of wedding cake). What can I say…when I’m happy, I celebrate with food!

I love you Mr. and Mrs. Zabel Shaw…couldn’t be happier for you two!

Until the next wedding…

xx- Victoria

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And I’ve been on a diet for years because…

I like to eat. I can admit it. All the health articles, nutrition lectures and medical advice in the world will never change that. I also like food you aren’t supposed to eat. Like the Grilled Cheese Food Truck and deep-fried sausage and cheese balls and Nutella covered waffles…

Fortunately, I usually keep a pretty good handle on my love of unhealthy food. Consumption of the above named treats is fairly rare not because I don’t want [insert fatty food here], but because it’s already hard to look at myself naked…I need not make it any more difficult.

Thus, food and drink tasting events are my ultimate splurge because I can revel in uninhibited and shameless appreciation of what I’ll call a dieters “don’t eat” list. And, being that I currently have a strange love for food trucks, the LA Street Food Fest was my match made in heaven. $45 and a growling belly were all I needed to taste unlimited amounts of food last weekend…and, taste I did. Tacos, french fries, grilled cheese, sliders, ice cream, churros, donuts… Though at the time it was glorious, it was not glorious being in actual physical pain from over consumption (yes, this is what the bible would call gluttony). Food coma for hours. When I recovered enough to roll myself to the car I was pretty sure I’d never eat again….

But then I thought, “who starts a diet on a Sunday?”…not this lady! So I topped the weekend off with a bottomless champagne brunch Sunday (which I justified because I was catching up with the lovely Rachel VanHorn, who I hadn’t seen in 5 years).

And now, here I am, writing this from the gym. In the heat of my weekend-binging-bender last weekend I lost track of my goal: looking good in my bridesmaid dress in less than 2 weeks. Well shit, detox plan…let’s dance.

xx, Victoria

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Amesome. Not Awesome.

I finally came to the realization: being a grown up SUCKS sometimes. Other times, it’s flipping rad. Here’s why:

Awesome:

  • Having the freedom to do literally whatever I want.
  • Being able to opening live in sin 🙂
  • Making my own money. Not having to answer to anyone when I spend that money.
  • Being employed post-graduation.
  • Getting a job in the field I studied…that I like.
  • Keeping the house as orderly (or disorderly) as I we please.
  • Making epic vacation plans to exactly  where I want to go.

Not Awesome:

  • Not being able to afford above named vacation plans.
  • Paying car insurance.
  • Rent.
  • Medical bills.
  • Lack of summer vacation. Lack of free time.
  • Having to wash all the dishes by hand.
  • Limited closet space. An abundance of Adam’s ish.
  • Working late. Really late.

For me, being an adult wins out…I don’t really want to go back in time. That is, unless, my dad is offering to pay my rent again (Dad?…)

xx-Victoria

Summer vacation and weekend warrior-ing

The last few days have been as close to being back in college and having summer break as I will ever get again. I got a new job (!!) that starts tomorrow, and was given the option of taking Tuesday-Friday off from my previous job last week. Though my bank account is sorely upset, that was an offer I was not prepared to pass up. So for the last 7 days I have been laying at the beach, sleeping in, being lazy, and doing whatever I feel (or don’t feel) like doing. It has been GLORIOUS. Even better, Adam took Friday off of work so we got to experience the perplexing “LA lifestyle” of brunching and having coffee during prime hours on a workday. Someone please teach me how to make a living out of that because I am GREAT at it.

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On this idyllic day off I ran a few errands with my live-in-lover, one of which was going to surf shops to “see what they have.” We walked out of one with ANOTHER surf board for Adam, making the grand total in our baby apartment 3. When I asked why 3 was necessary he informed me “it’s like shoes.” I would like to point out this is not a valid argument. Not because the point is off the mark, but rather because this is the excuse Adam uses for EVERYTHING. Why is the storage unit filled to the brim with your crap? It’s like shoes. Why is the hall/coat closet filled with 5 plastic crates, a saw, 2 helmets, a bike pump, and unusable bike parts? It’s like shoes. You get the point.

Friday also marked the day of an infamous Victoria meltdown due to the disarray and clutter in our home. In addition to the storage units and closet being filled, the top of the wall-to-wall units was covered with ish and Adams nice, shiny, new computer has been sitting on our dining room table for weeks. It was all too overwhelming and it had to stop. So I freaked out, yelled a bit and made Adam promise he would clean out his “hobby” bins and either find or build a desk for his computer (this desk, I might add, has been in the “drawing phase” for WEEKS).

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Saturday while Adam surfed (which he better do all the effing time now that there are 3 boards begging to be used) I got up and went through my clothes. Clothes, shoes and bags…these are the only things Adam ever uses as ammunition when we are fighting about space, so I figured I better beat him to the punch and organize on my end before the bickering started. This was also part of my master-plan to kick start the cleaning and organizing so that it wouldn’t get overlooked (like it has been for the last 5 months or so). After [not enough] organizing and a break at the beach we headed to Adam’s mecca: The Home Depot.

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I am not opposed to working outdoors, getting dirty (if forewarned), and DIYing. I understand Home Depot is a means to an end: if I want a desk, we need to get the supplies to build it. I do not, however, enjoy spending my Saturday night there. I especially don’t like making a task longer and more drawn out than need be (I pride myself on efficiency). Adam, however, does not see the same value in doing it right the first (and only) time. We frequently buy more supplies than needed (literally, we get a box of screws EVERY SINGLE time we go), mis-measure and subsequently buy incorrect materials and browse the aisles with no real purpose (other than to grab more unnecessary supplies).

Generally I pay no real attention when project planning…usually I am along for the ride and am completely content supervising and project managing. Recently, however, I have started adding some input in the hopes of expediting the process (note: doing it right the first time). Before leaving Home Depot Saturday I was assured that, though my input was noted, we did in fact have all the supplies we needed and each item was the right one. We got everything up into the treehouse, I fell asleep, and we woke up early Sunday for pancakes and projects!

The first words out of Adam’s mouth on Sunday were conveniently the words I did not want to start the day with: I need to go back to Home Depot. Why? Yep, you guessed it…incorrect measuring and wrong materials. Perfect. Add another snafu involving the fore mentioned screws and you can imagine how I was feeling about this project. Luckily, the issues stopped there and a few hours later we had a desk! We even fancied it up a bit with stain (ballin’) and now we are just waiting for it to dry. Organization will be mine!

Check back soon for pics of the finished desk. In the meantime…

xx- Victoria

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LA is pretty cool, too…

I cannot believe I was in New York 1 year ago…the last 12 months have flown by! I absolutely loved summer in NYC, and was completely floored by all the summer activities and events there (many of them free!). Rather than spend the next 3 months reminiscing and wishing I could move to the East Coast, I took to the ever-trusty ‘GOOGLE’ and vowed to find just as many things to do in good ole’ sunny California. Check out my summer 2012 bucket list…and let me know if you have any additional recommendations!

1: LA Street Food Fest: in case you hadn’t caught on yet, I love to eat…and I currently have an odd fascination with food trucks. This event was made for me.

2: Chinatown Summer Nights: An event with food, film and culture? Okay, Los Angeles, I’m in.

3: Movies in the Park: Just like Bryant Park in NYC! I love this kind of thing…and I love it even more when the venue is walking distance to home. Wine for everyone!

4: Rooftop bar in Venice: When it’s sunny and warm is there anything better than getting tipsy overlooking the ocean? The answer: not really.

5: Venice Beach Music Festival:Will we fit in at this event? Absolutely not. Do I care? Not at all.

xx- Victoria