MIMM: Reuniting with Friends (NYE, Lake Hollywood, Griffith Observatory, & San Marcos)

It’s Monday and I’m linking up with Katie for “Marvelous in My Monday.” The start of the year has indeed been MARVELOUS and I’ve already worked on my 2015 goals.

  1. Read more. I finished a book to end 2014 and started 2 new books, Wild (which I actually started but never finished) and The Happiness Project.
  2. Cook more & have sit-down meals. I’ve shared meals with friends all week!
  3. Move more. Nature walks and hikes below!
  4. Sleep more. I have no clue when I fell asleep last night but it was very early then I came home to take a nap.
  5. Spend more time with family and friends. Again, everyday this week! I even swung by my family’s house to hang out.

New Year’s Eve

Lunched at The Pizza Lounge with Nate & Anna who stopped by on their way from Fresno to San Diego. Nate and I worked at the preschool together in 2010-2011. I’ve had the chance to see this awesome couple 3 times since I moved.

Played “Never Have I Ever” with this group to ring in the new year. I left at 11pm though because I wasn’t feeling great. :/

New Year’s Day

Drove to LA and walked to the Lake Hollywood Reservoir. They were closed for the holiday but we still got in some fresh air and a view of the reservoir.

Andrew lived on my floor in the dorms. He’s an assistant for a director in LA.

Denton has been Andrew’s roommate for almost 4 years!

Dinner at The Golden State: Sweet potato wedges and The Burger without cheese, without aioli, medium rare, which I ate without the bun.

January 2nd

Drove back to LA to hike around the Griffith Observatory. We were in awe and it was perfect for Evan who told us he decided to switch his major to astrophysics.

We went for a short hike/nature walk.

Christy & I. Evan was there too. We are former co-workers but we all still hang out.

My phone died but we had a late lunch/early dinner at Mustard Seed Cafe closeby. It was a cute little diner that transported out of LA. They still served breakfast but I got a turkey burger over greens. Then we got one of the best hot chocolates in the world at Demitasse Cafe: lavender hot chocolate.

January 3rd

I met up with Conor in San Marcos for a drink at Churchill’s Pub & GrilleIt ended up being lunch (beer battered fish & chips) and 3 drinks.

We rolled over to the Belching Beaver Brewery, had more drinks, and even made new friends.

Conor and I were history majors, wrote our history theses together, and had a “history family” that drank beer and would fall asleep on each other’s couches/floors.

January 4th

Slept most of the day then ran errands for food.


I’m back at work after 2 weeks off, but I’m going to continue with my goals in mind.

I’m making a list of things to do almost daily to be fulfilled in 2015. What are you doing daily to reach your goals?

Five Things Friday: Spice Up Your Life


When I was having some conversations, I used the phrase “spice it up.” Apparently, the phrase is dated and reminds everyone of the Spice Girls. Hey, it’s still one of my favorite Pandora stations.

1. I hardly ever go to a place more than once (except work, the grocery store, and home). I am spoiled here in Southern California with tons of restaurants and shops and I want to try them all.

When I do frequent a place, it has to be amazing. Around here, I have been to Zimzala (for drinks and the cute bartender) and Frostbites (for the best Italian ice and because my friend Christy loves it).

*I can and do eat the same thing every day at home.

2. I will almost always go with a flight: beer flights, bacon flights, ice cream flights… I can’t decide which is my favorite.

My cousin and I shared this ice cream from Salt & Straw: gooey brownie, almond brittle & chocolate ganache, malted & salted chocolate chip cookie dough, and Stumptown coffee & Compartes love nuts.

On the other hand, I have some staples.

3. I watch “Love Actually” every Christmas. Otherwise, I never watch the same movie or read the same book twice.

This year, I also watched “Home Alone” and “Elf.” There’s room for everyone on the nice list.

Another great one: National Lampoon’s “Christmas Vacation.”

4. I will never ever use a regular sized towel again. I have a Aztec-y towel and a luxurious beach towel turned shower towel that are just all encompassing. No need to ever be cold or have to run around the house half naked again.

5. Of all the expensive designer bags out there, Kate Spade is my favorite so when mom brought home this wallet, I had to have it. Thanks mom! It was really a gift from her sister though. 🙂

WIAW: Kaya Street Kitchen

About 7 years ago, at Christmas time, my then good friend invited me to dinner with some of her friends and one new friend from college. I don’t know the extent of their relationship and now to think of it, why would some guy drive over an hour just to have dinner with us?

Her male friend and his two friends were super cool though. We chatted about basketball and soon became Facebook friends. Over the years, one of them (the cutest one) and I kept in touch liked each other’s photos on social media. I followed him as he traveled through Asia and ate everything. It came to no surprise when I got an invite to his restaurant ONE BLOCK from The Grove and famous farmer’s market.

Kaya Street Kitchen serves Southeast Asian cuisine in a Chipotle-style line.

First, pick your base: coconut lime rice, brown basil rice, salad, roti tacos, or lettuce tacos. So many healthy, organic options.

Step 2: pick your protein.

Then it’s a mashup of veggie slaws, corn, and sauces.

Ta-da. My cousin and I came out with 3 roti tacos made with organic flour and shortening with lemongrass coconut steak and topped with sweet tamarind slaw, garlic kale, sambal corn, and sweet-soy glaze.

They were so delicious much more than I can say about the “famous” ice cream shop we went to next.

Kaya Street Kitchen
109 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 879-9288

Website | Instagram | Facebook | Yelp