Wednesday, September 26, 2012

So, this summer just happened.

I've really fallen off the blog wagon. 

The thing about keeping a blog is that it requires quite a bit of dedicated spare time.

When life gets extraordinary, those spare hours of time just don't come around the way they normally do. 

Recently, my life has been extraordinary. 

And, after hours of trying to approach it from every angle, I just cannot sum up this summer on a blog. 

There, I said it. 

I am too lazy, too overwhelmed, and really just too negligent to even attempt at a proper chronicle of what it is like to get typhoid, spend a month in India, travel with around the great american south with the my true love, catch a breath in Orange County, then hop on over to Hawaii for an extra long weekend with my sister before landing back in a Los Angeles sorority mansion with 50 other girls. 


who does that?

My life is ludacris. 

I'm sure stories of Hawaii, Georgia, and especially India will seep out of me over time if I do manage to frequently keep a blog. But I just can't intentionally talk about it, it's too much.

For the record though, I want to move to the south.

And also, India was so insane that I get all squirmy and excited when I think about it. I think I found my drug. It went from being number one on my travel destination list, to being number one on my travel destination list.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

descanso gardens.

To kick off my birthday weekend, Cubs took me to Descansco Gardens for the first time. It was a truly wonderful afternoon- full of sunlight, roses, koi fish, and secret pathways. I highly recommend a visit for anyone looking to get out of the city for the afternoon.

The gardens were a prime location for picnicking, running after little kids, getting lost, and day dreaming. It's amazing how such a wonderful place is so tucked away that I never knew it existed before. 

And the matching was entirely unintentional. Really.

Owning up.

This post is dedicated to coming out of the Greek closet. I usually downplay this facet of my life, which isn't all that difficult to do because I'm not really hyper involved in it. But if I'm being honest with myself I have to admit that yes, Chi Omega has been a substantial part of my college experience.

As a transfer, I thought it was important to force myself out of the comfort zone that was my dorm room and make myself be social. I also held personal prejudices against sorority and fraternity kids, but knew that it would do me no good to cut myself off from such a thriving aspect of UCLA's student population. A part of me was also scared that if I didn't at least try to see what Greek Life was all about, I would regret it. So- I rushed.

I'm really quite picky about the people I choose to bring into my life and I wouldn't have joined a sorority unless I was sure that I wouldn't get hurt or regret doing it. Throughout the rush process (which is hell, by the way, and should really come with therapists to help so many poor girls deal with the social intensity of it all), I couldn't help but feel like Chi Omega was always a place of enduring positivity. The house was full of a hodge podge of beautiful, nerdy, sporty, active, confident and genuinely happy girls.

So I joined. And I endured the awkward moments of being in a room full of 'sisters' but only knowing about three names. I endured the weirdness of being a junior in a sea of excited and endearingly eager freshman. I endured the strange sensation of walking into a mansion that was supposedly my home without knowing anyone who came to answer the door. Cubs really worked to accept the fact that his girlfriend was a sorority girl and all the strange stereotypes such an identity produces- it was also hard form him to come to terms with how limited his involvement in my 'greek life' could be.

But slowly, I realized how easy going Chi Omega was. How simple it was to just exist as a member and be accepted for what I brought to the sisterhood. I met more friends, learned more names, and eventually acclimated to immense amount of estrogen that buzzed throughout the mansions big rooms during meal times and meetings. The sorority pushed me to take on so many incredible opportunities, (and in another long story)- Chi Omega was there for me in ways I could have never imagined. Cubby eventually got the swing of things too.

The biggest change that Chi Omega made in me was a loss of harsh prejudice and unwarranted judgements. My fear for frat parties has remained as intact as my distaste for bad beer- some things will never change. And though I still shudder when talking to professors, bosses or even doctors when my Greek identity is brought up, what matters is that I know my role in the community and am happy with it. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Alien Food.

Kale and peaches in a cup, otherwise known as Alien food. :)

I've been a fan of the green smoothie for years. It took Cub's masterful blending skills to get me to like kale in my smoothies, but we've combined spinach with  fruit since my brother was a manager at the Whole Foods smoothie bar so many years ago.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A mom date.

I've said it before but I'll say it again. In this phase of my life, mother-daughter alone time is the single most precious thing to me. It's rare and usually brief, but time with my mom always brings me back to my center.

I'm selfish to enjoy the fact that my mom is currently located in Orange County and I get to see her quite frequently these days. But she's so busy and I'm so busy that it seems to be a rare occasion where I just get to have an 'outing' with her. We're usually caught up in more serious matters, like getting passports, dentist appointments, work, family affairs, etc.. 

But last month something marvelous happened. I had an appointment to get my hair done in Downtown LA and I think she was afraid of me getting lost, so she decided to come with me. Long story short, we got to the salon an hour early and found ourselves just jonesing for a cup of coffee.

It just so happened that Bottega Louis was around the corner from the salon and I got to have an outing with my mother. 

Also, I got a sick haircut/balayage. 

Friends, if you need your hair done and you live in LA... Lacey is your girl. Just ask me and I'll give you her number. She's a long time friend of my sister and well, she's a gem.

Birthday Princess

Birthday parties are on definitely on my top ten list of the greatest great things. I mean, birthdays really are just so silly... nothing tangible happens on a birthday. But there is something so sweet about celebrating life and the lives of people that we cherish.

With that being said, Tessa is just getting older! And again, we surprised her. This time though, she came to us! I had her friends come up to Westwood to help prep my apartment for a girls night in, and then we all waited in CPK to surprise her when she came to 'pick me up before heading home' from the airport on the night her flight got in from Portland.

Tessa's friends are so cool and sweet, they brought most adorable party hats and a scrumptious cake to add to the desert table. I also brought Lauren along, because Tess loves her and I basically look for any excuse to make my best friend come up to LA. Overall, I'd say the night was perfect.

The next day, Tess and I had a beautiful breakfast on the patio and then road tripped to the Malibu Sand Hill and to Venice Beach.

Sister time has a magic to it that can be just surreal. :)

A casual hike.

My family is very comfortable in the outdoors. We raft, surf, backpack, repel, climb, and in general function pretty normally without running water, toilets, or stationary shelter. But for some reason on this beautiful March morning, my brother Joel and I were just not up for anything that would require physical exertion. I was tired and ready to relax with some tea and maybe pampering with friends and Joel had gotten not more than an hour of sleep from his late hometown galavant the night before. (We were on spring break... let's be honest.)

But family time is just so precious.

And when a full carload of masons pulled up to Lauren's spa on PCH in Carona del Mar, I couldn't help but feel a tad bit giddy about just spending the day with them. When I got in the car I asked siri (my new friend, shout out to her because she's aweeesomeee!) to find me 'the top of the world in Laguna Beach' and before long we found ourselves embarking on what must be the most casual hike I've ever. 'Hiking' was pretty much an excuse to just hang out and sing silly songs and have silly conversations with the greatest people around.

After, we went to Udupi Palace in Little India. Not only did we feast, but we did a little sari and idli shopping too, naturally.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cabin Madness

Only finals week could get me to finally edit this. Procrastination is such a sneaky little thing.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

What Happens in the Cabin Stays in the Cabin

Well, not really. 

I'll have a short video of cabin adventures edited soon, our cabin happenings clearly aren't anybody's secret. The shaky little video clips I managed to take won't do justice to the sheer silliness and hilarity of the trip, but thats what makes memories so valuable! 

Until then, here are all of my photos from this winter's trip to Big Bear, which of course, was a complete success. 

Instead of captioning all these photos, I'm just going to sparknotes the special parts of the trip.

The Characters: 
Lauren, my love you like a sister, sister.
Tessa, my actual flesh and blood sister whom I love to the universe next door and back. 
The Kitty Lights boys, the members of an insanely good electronic pop band that is just now making it big in the States (also known as Cubs, his best friend Ryan, and Carter.)
Wade, appeared in the second half of the trip for dinner, our midnight sled sesh, and pictionary. He mysteriously disappeared in the morning only to appear in the final chapter with his brother Cole (okay it wasn't that mysterious, he just went snowboarding.)
Cole, Wade's fun older brother.

Major Symbols:
The Cabin. 
A homelike and beloved symbol of all things Big Bear. (It was pretty sweet, actually. By far bigger than our house in California and fully equipped with attachable snowshoes, a basket full of mittens, a few extra jackets, plenty of boardgames, shovels, sleds, flatscreen TVs, a game room, so many beds, sunscreen... you name it.)
The (Epic) Sled Ride. 
After 2 hours of overenthusiastic shoveling, the sled ride revealed how giddy Southern California beach kids can get over even the simplest snow related activity. It provided endless entertainment and excitement ...and screaming. Also, the realization that snow turns to ice during the night and that ice means reallyreallyfast sledding meant that the sledding fun continued on into the wee hours of the morning (note: my pajama and galoshes attire.)
The Frozen Lake. 
Another cause for extreme fascination and excitement. Also a key photo-op. 
A reoccurring symbol in Mason stories, mealtime in Big Bear was just as delicious as it was heartwarming. The two premier chefs of the trip were Tessa and Cubby. 
Give the boys their IPAs and pour the girls some mimosas and you've got quite a jolly group of people.
Billiards, Pictionary, Poker, Chess, Mexican Horseshoe. They were all fun, like, really fun. 
Ryan's Hair.
Have you ever watched a guy try to put hair into a bun? Oh, it's pretty funny. 
The Village.
Obviously more of a highlight for the girls of the trip, but we all enjoyed browsing through the adorable little town center together. 
The Music of Kitty Lights.
As a soundtrack of the entire trip Kitty Lights set the tone for all the epic times that were had. 

Until next time, Big Bear!