Results: The Spring Project

The last day of spring has arrived and I cannot believe how quickly the time passed us by. In retrospect, Spring was kind to me. Afternoons perusing museums, feeling the lightness after a good spring cleaning, celebrating a milestone birthday, and enjoying a final cup of tea at my favorite spot were just a few of the highlights. I’m pretty happy to be leaving the “June gloom” behind and head toward pure summer sunshine. As I look back over my goals to celebrate the freshness of spring, which I cheesily dubbed The Spring Project – I see areas where I excelled and others, well, let’s just say there was room for improvement.


Results: The Spring Project


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closet purge

Goal: Out with the Old, in with New

Result: Pass

Spring cleaning went off without a hitch. My entire apartment got the complete scrub down (and that was a looooong day). I went through my DVD collection and traded in those purchases that at the time sounded good, but I knew I’d never watch again. And my wardrobe got a great sift through and my closets and drawers are now roomy and ready for all the great new purchases to come.


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an instagrammed memorable day – manhattan beach, ca

Goal: Be Outdoors

Result: Semi-Fail

This is an admitted semi-fail. I did hit gorgeous Balboa Lake, Manhattan Beach, and strolled many a boulevards on a Saturday afternoon (Rodeo counts even though I was eating ice cream at the time), but I didn’t take one hike the entire season. No bueno. 😦


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my first spring bouquet

Goal: Flower Friendly

Result: Pass

I’m happy to report that bright flowers were around me much of the season. I’m a huge believer (if you have the extra funds) to keep fresh flowers around your home when you can. Trader Joe’s is an excellent source to get this scented fix on the cheap. This tradition will continue well into summer!


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off to yoga

Goal: Fitness

Result: Fail

The long and short of it: I’m still really consistent with my yoga practice (and being mindful of my diet) but I’ve been terrible at making time to hit the gym to work on a more solid cardio and weightlifting routine. Something to work on this summer…I know, I know.


Goal: Fruit Inspired Recipes

Result: Fail

Yes, I’ve been eating a lot of fruit. No, I didn’t personally make any of these recipes. Total FAIL.

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1. Spring Fruit Pizza

2. Fruit Pizza

3. Strawberry Basil Moscato Lemonade

4. Peanut butter, Strawberries, Bananas and Granola Wrap

5. Sparkling White Peach Sangria


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Highlights

1-IMG_20130421_195717_856{An early birthday present.}

It has definitely been a more lively week than usual on my end. I’m trying to wrap up some loose ends at work before I take a much needed vacay the first week in May. The good news is that while it’s been busy, I always sort of revel in the challenge in the end. Somehow getting the things you need to get done are all the sweeter when you realize that if you just do it and push through, you can do anything. You just have to take the first step, then the next.

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Outside the office, I had a happy week. I met a friend at one of my favorite places to splurge every blue moon, Rock Sugar in Century City for dinner to kick-off my weekend last Friday night. While it was a fantastic Pan Asian feast, I think in the future I’ll skip dinner and head there for their delicious Lychee Blossom cocktail and their AMAZING warm coconut donuts served with a passion fruit dipping sauce. Yes, it is as good as it sounds and looks. Go!

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When thinking about small pleasures this week, a trip to the Hollywood Farmer’s Market on a sunny Sunday morning, then sitting on the Manhattan Beach Pier with my boyfriend gazing out at the ocean with an ice cream cone on that same afternoon come to mind and make me smile. And every time I head home, I smile even bigger when I see my new artwork hanging on my wall (pictured above). A few months back, I was with my boyfriend admiring it (because, hey – it’s “me” in a ball-gown and chic haircut starting out my window at the Hollywood Sign :)) and as an early birthday present he surprised me with it. What a guy, huh?

I’m not sure where this weekend will take me, but I know that I’ll be at the ArcLight opening night for the highly anticipated new film, Mud. Since this gorgeous weather is expected to continue over the next few days, the plan is to find some time to be outdoors (rocking my new maxi dress). And the soundtrack of my life lately that will certainly continue into the weekend has been the soundtrack from Celeste & Jesse Forever. I can’t. stop. listening to it.

Have an amazing final April weekend, guys! Things only get better from here! xx

The Spring Project

I love a good project! And it’s extra fun when there’s a focused theme surrounding it to help you get the most out of what you hope to accomplish. For me, there’s nothing more satisfying than making a list and crossing things off as you go. It’s so satisfying, in fact, that sometimes when making a list, I add things that I’ve already completed, just so I can have the feeling of crossing it off. (I can’t be the only person that does this? Bueller?)

You can see my recent holiday themed projects for Halloween and Christmas here and here to give you idea of how much I love goal-oriented ventures.

In celebration of the changing of seasons making its official appearance on Wednesday, The Spring Project is a short list of must-do’s that I’ve created to get the most out of the longer sunshine filled days and the renewing feeling that Spring inevitably brings.

I’ll report back as we make our way toward the heated depths of summer. Here’s to Spring and accomplishing your goals.


The Spring Project


// OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW //

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Of course, one of the first things to do is a little spring cleaning. My goal is to finally get into my closet and toss those things that need to go. Next up, to go through my DVD library, pull those “what was I thinking?” purchases and head to Amoeba for a trade-in. Am I EVER going to watch Crossroads again? Yes, I actually own that on DVD, but to my credit I was just a kid college student (in film school, no less!) 🙂


// BE OUTDOORS //

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Naturally, the perfect temperatures and near constant L.A. sunshine make for the perfect recipe to spend as much time outdoors as possible. This Spring trips to Lake Balboa, lounging on the beach, hiking in Griffith Park and to the Hollywood Sign are on the agenda during most weekends.


// FLOWER FRIENDLY //

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I love flowers, plants, any sort of perennial – and try to have their beauty around me as much as I can. Unfortunately, whenever I cut back on spending – this is one of the first things to go, though it’s something that I am always happy to see when I walk into my apartment or sit at my desk at work. Spring makes me want to see blooming vivid colors and inhale the sweet fragrance of flowers, a must have to enjoy the riches of the season and the one thing that I hope to have more of.


// FITNESS //

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There’s no excuse not to get back into a more consistent workout schedule and now that there’s extra sunshine after work, I’ll be more motivated to hit the gym (rather than the couch). Even more motivating, Spring means dresses and shorts as fashion staples. It’s time to shed those winter developed pounds that can be hidden under a sweater no longer. While I’m a big fan of yoga, I need to incorporate more cardio and weightlifting into the routine.


// FRUIT INSPIRED RECIPES //

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Thanks to Pinterest, I’ve been curating lots of yummy recipe ideas using fresh fruit. Here are just a few that I want to indulge in on a lazy sunny weekend afternoon.

1. Spring Fruit Pizza

2. Fruit Pizza

3. Strawberry Basil Moscato Lemonade

4. Peanut butter, Strawberries, Bananas and Granola Wrap

5. Sparkling White Peach Sangria


Highlights

It’s been a rough week where I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting – something I think we all need to do every once and awhile. Aside from the realization that it’s time to make some major changes, I had moments to smile about as well. After all, there’s always something to be grateful for. Here are a few of them.

Have a nice weekend. 🙂


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Purchasing my favorite loose leaf green tea from Jin Patisserie to take home to make a soothing cup anytime I want.


WATCH| downton abbey season one

1-2013-02-11_08-40-24_516Finally joined the Downton Abbey fan club. I sat on my couch for 2 days straight absorbing the complicated lives of a 20th Century British aristocratic family and their mischievous house staff.


VIEW| clear skies

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A few rainy days yielded fresh air and a clear, blue, beautiful L.A. sky which I happily appreciated on the way to yoga class.


DVD| celeste & jesse forever

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A very thoughtful gift that made me super happy – my favorite film of 2012, Celeste & Jesse Forever is now apart of my DVD collection!


EAT| breakfast for dinner

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Sometimes you just need a movie, a magazine, and breakfast for dinner to make an ordinary Monday night, something special.


VALENTINE’S DAY| gift

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A little something I gave to my valentine.


Highlights: Sprinkles of Joy

All That Glitters is a blog I developed to celebrate life, even if it’s in the smallest of daily pleasures and happenings, and to always find the sunshine. What I’ve come to like about writing these posts is that I’ll stop, notice something, think “this is a highlight!”, try to capture the moment visually, and in that brief minute my perspective changes. Since I write these posts at least once a week, it also forces me to always keep my eyes open to the positive around me to find my “Highlights.”

I didn’t want to end on an unhappy note right before Christmas after yesterday’s entry, so I’ll share a few special moments that did bring sprinkles of joy during trying times:

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{Every time I look over at my Christmas tree.}

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{Meeting a friend for a glass of sangria during happy hour at Pink Taco. I couldn’t get over her strawberry margarita served in a pineapple shell! It made me smile. My sangria was great but came in a mason jar. :)}

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{Getting lost in Breaking Dawn: Part 2 for a few hours on a rainy Friday night in Century City. Pretty cheesy flick (as they all are), but I’m a fan of the books and like to see the films.}

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{One last evening spent at The Grove to get some hot chocolate and much-needed Holiday cheer.}

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{On a particularity chaotic morning, I can’t tell you how amazing it was to stop in to Jamba Juice and treat myself to a large orange juice. Nothing beats fresh squeezed.}

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{The best gift wrapped present I’ve gotten so far.This sweet box of Godiva chocolates from a work colleague. Loved the leafy detailing.}

All the very best for a happy and safe Holiday season! 🙂

Girl’s Night Out (in the Shade)

Location: 1221 North Valley Drive, Manhattan Beach

Labor Day weekend officially kicked-off with a much-needed girl’s night out! Thanks to my successful girl night in the night before, I was excited and beyond ready to blow off some steam. I’m always up for trying new places and/or hot spots around LA.The night’s venue at a friend’s suggestion: Zinc Lounge at Shade Hotel in Manhattan Beach.

I walked into the well-designed ultra blue lit location, looking forward to catching-up with a new circle of friends of mine. In many ways Zinc didn’t disappoint. The drinks were fabulous, the DJ kept us smiling, and as the night progressed the lounge got darker and the music louder. I didn’t order any food, but some of the other girls did and you couldn’t ask for better presentation.  A special highlight? I had my first sub zero martini. It’s a cocktail served in a glass made of ice. I went with the “Honey Money.” Ingredients: ketel one, strawberries, honey syrup, and lemonade. Très sexy!

However, as the night wore on, the DJ lost his touch (and actually played “Sexual Healing” at one point?) and I began to realize that Zinc wouldn’t be somewhere I would frequent very often, but wouldn’t mind meeting a friend for a quick drink or to have dinner. The vibe in Manhattan Beach, as opposed to say, Hollywood, is super relaxed (and I mean relaxed). While many of the ladies brought out the high heels and sexy party dresses, the men looked like they just got back from golfing. Understandably, it was a hotel lounge and Shade caters to a wealthy, older crowd (of which I’m neither). Think “Real Housewives” of (enter any city here). We even had a spotting from a real “Real Housewives” cast member in Adrienne Maloof’s soon to be ex, Dr. Paul Nassif.

Either way, it was a fun night filled with chatting, dancing, and lots of laughter. I even did the running man in heels when the DJ had the audacity to put on “Poison” by Bell, Biv, DeVoe. Hello 1990! It felt great to put on a dress, my favorite purple booties and breakout the more dramatic eyeliner. As always, and regardless of the venue or even the people around you (sun visors, polo shirts and all), it’s about the people you’re with and I couldn’t have asked for better company as we spent a night out in the Shade.