Monday, May 31, 2010

Relaxing: Ur Doin' It Right

This long Memorial Day weekend was the perfect mix of playing, relaxing, and getting things done.

Friday night we bought some new sheets, had some ice cream at Maggie Moo's, and watched an episode of True Blood Season 1 on DVD. We get them through Netflix, so we're slowly making our way through season 1. I finished Sookie Stackhouse book #7 yesterday and now I'm on the first few pages of #8. Of course I stayed up very late reading and watching tv, which led to...

Having a hard time getting up at 5:45am to run with our running club on Saturday morning! I totally didn't want to go, but since it was the very last long run before the Rock N Roll Half Marathon this coming up Sunday 6/6, we decided we better show up. Besides, it was the last time we're running with West Coast Road Runners, since we won't be re-joining the club for the fall season. We made it to Mission Bay High School in time to start our run.

My group did a group cheer before heading off.

I caught good light!

Todd ran with the fast group because he'd been getting faster.

I ran the six miles with my legs feeling tired, especially my quads. They've been sore for a few weeks now. I am going to run the half marathon and then give my legs a good rest for a couple of weeks. And stretch like crazy, which I had been doing.

Location: Mission Bay
Distance: 6.01 miles (taper)
Time: 1:06:44
Avg pace: 11:05/mile
Calories: 604

Todd's group ran 8 miles (show-off!)

After the run, we came home and cleaned ourselves up. Then we headed over to Dejah and Roby's place to pick them up for lunch and wine tasting. They are wine connoisseurs and they are regulars at Saturday wine tasting at Vintage Wines. The cool thing about this wine tasting was that you can bring your own food! So we headed to Opera Patisserie, which Todd picked because it was close and got great reviews on Yelp. I got a seafood crepe with salmon, shrimp, baby scallops, and spinach. Todd got a basil chicken panini. They both come with yummy salads too.

Roby and Dejah at Vintage Wines.

Todd enjoying the awesome food and company.

We shared a tasting. It was 6-7 wines for $5.

So that was super-fun! I wouldn't mind doing that again. We came home around 2pm and I read books and lounged on the couch. Then around 5:15pm, we headed down to see my good friend Sally's new house. Turns out the exit to go to her house was exactly the same exit that we had driven in the morning to go running at Mission Bay. Two trips down to MB in the same day!

I totally forgot to take any photos of Sally's new house and our fabulous dinner at Bombay (in Hillcrest) with Sally. I'm bummed about that! Her house had a beachy vibe (and it's close to the beach). She had wood flooring put in and it looked great. After the grand tour, we left and had dinner at Bombay, our second-favorite Indian restaurant in San Diego. Todd saw a Groupon for $45 off dinner, and bought it for $20. We had a great time and the food was awesome. We ordered Chicken Makhani, Chicken Madras, and Eggplant Bhartha, along with garlic naan, mint naan, and jalapeno kulchas. The food and atmosphere were both amazing, as was the company and conversation.

On Sunday around lunch time, we headed down to the Hillcrest Farmer's Market (more driving!). Todd said since we live in the suburbs, it's worth it to drive to good food places and fun places. It's either that or pay way more to live closer to the food and fun places.

Todd had a sausage stuffed into a french baguette. I had a few bites and thought it was delicious, but since the sausage was stuffed with cheese, he didn't like it. Then he got a beef tamale while I stood in line for a panini sandwich made with prosciutto, mozzarella cheese, basil, and tomatoes. It was very good. Then we shopped at the stalls for veggies and bought carrots, green onions, salad greens, tomato, green beans, and broccoli. Then of course we had to pick up a black forest cake.

Today we did some housework in the morning. I finished up my project that's due tomorrow, which you will find out what it is on July 1st! :p Got it all finished, I'm so relieved. Then we headed to In-N-Out Burger, Barnes and Noble, Home Depot, and got ice cream cones at Baskin Robbins on the way home.

It was a great long weekend, but it's also the end of my not working on Mondays in May. Maybe with my vacation accruals I can take a couple of Mondays off in June as well!
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Friday, May 28, 2010

Flashback Friday

So I saw a tweet from Matt Warshauer today. Matt is the bass player for a band called the 2am Club. They are signed by RCA Records and MTV has been buzzing about them. They played live at MTV this week. Anyways, I went to check out their video for "Worry About You" and I saw Mattie's face in there!

How do I know Matt? That's why this post is called "Flashback Friday"!
Todd played in the band The Northstar Session with Matt for a couple of years.

Here they are playing in the 2005 Rock N Roll Marathon.

Yes, Todd has played in two RnR marathons and hasn't run one yet! But he will be running the half marathon in about a week.

Matt, Matt, and Todd at our 10th wedding anniversary dinner cruise.

Matt Warshauer is the middle one.

On tour in Austin, Texas.

Playing at the famous Belly Up:

Official band publicity shots, courtesy of Rebecca Waer.

You know that rockstars don't really smile, right? :D

You know that Todd loves to smile and laugh, right? It makes me chuckle to look at all these band publicity photos of him not smiling, ha ha!

So anyways, flash forward back to today. Matt's band 2am Club's single "Worry About You" can be found on "Now That's What I Call Music Vol. 34" here! It's track #18.

And here is the video. Look for Matt!
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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Pre-Summer Inspiration

I know some people consider summer to have arrived already.  It's not really the case around here.  We have a weather pattern called "May Gray" and "June Gloom", so we don't really get heated up until July.  However, since Memorial Day is coming up, my thoughts do turn to summer and I'm inspired to get outdoors more often and enjoy the warmth and sea breeze.

As you may know, Todd and I run the San Diego Rock N Roll Half Marathon on June 6th.  We have been training for it since January and we're pretty much ready to do it.  Todd is already planning his next big adventure:  a triathlon.  He purchased a really nice used tri-bike this week so that he could start training. 

He purchased the pedals last night and will be riding in a few days.

I was a bit jealous, but a triathlon really isn't my thing, since I fear swimming in open waters and I've never biked that far and that frequently before.  But I do want to join in the "breeze in my face" fun of riding a bike.  But not a racing bike or anything of that sort.  More like a retro, old-fashioned one-speeder.  So I started looking around for beach cruisers and found several that were super-cute.

Nirve Sunflower

Nirve Beach Blossom

Sixthreezero Women's BE

Urban Lady 3-Speed

They're all super-cute and look like so much fun to ride on. But they're more than I want to pay. So I ended up going very cheap, but I did buy one with really great colors that I like. I can't wait to show you when it's here! :)

I've been inspired a lot by colors lately.  I just love this site called Colourlovers.  There are color palettes and patterns galore.  Browsing it is so much fun!   I found this color palette that I really like.

I'm using it for an upcoming project in July that I can't talk about just yet.  I promise it'll be cool though, and I can't wait to tell you about it!
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Saturday, May 22, 2010

New Products + LDD 3rd Birthday Sale!

Little Dreamer Designs is celebrating its 3rd store birthday by having a 33% off sale from now until May 29th!  Everything in the store, including all my products, are 33% off.  You won't need a coupon code, just visit the store and click on any product to see the sale price.  Easy, convenient, and fun savings!

To help celebrate LDD's birthday, a bunch of us designers put together a coordinating product set called Simple Pleasures.  Here are my contributions to the big birthday collab.

Simple Pleasures Mini Kit

This kit contains fresh colors and a graphic, retro feel!

8 textured patterned and solid papers
3 paper flowers
1 leaf border
1 doodled frame
1 12" stitching
1 string
2 word art

Simple Pleasures Template Set

A template set for the Little Dreamer Designs 3rd birthday celebration!  Simple Pleasures contains two 12x12 .PSD layout templates in a fun geometric and retro style.  Add your own photos, papers, and embellishments to customize your page!

Thanks for checking it out!  And happy birthday Little Dreamers!

In other news... I'm not running the 10 miles on the schedule with my running club today.  I strained my right thigh during a run on Wednesday.  It's still sore and I didn't want to risk injuring it further before my big race on June 6th.  I'll prob try to run 5-6 miles tomorrow and see how it goes.
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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Latest Cooking Adventures

I haven't blogged about the food that we've cooked in a while. Well, truth be told, I haven't been on the computer quite as much as before. I have been reading and sleeping more, which is a good thing for now! But I had been taking food photos, so I thought I would share a few today.

Greek Cod Cakes

These were seriously delicious! This was the second time that we've made them and they are so yummy! The texture is similar to crab cakes, but it's made with cod fish. Not fishy at all, and super yummy with the Greek sauce! Recipe link is above the photo.

Szechuan Style Tofu with Peanuts

We substituted the peanuts with toasted sliced almonds. This dish was also delicious. A little bit on the spicy side, so use the spice with caution if you don't like heat.

Chicken and Cashews

Substituted cashews with sliced almonds. I see a theme here, LOL. This was also quite delicious. The sliced almonds added a nice crunch.

Grilled Flank Steak with Avocado Relish

What could be wrong with steak and avocado relish? Delicious indeed!

Hope you've enjoyed the cooking post today. I have some new products coming out for Little Dreamer Designs 3rd birthday party this weekend! Here is a sneak peek at my stuff to be released on Saturday. Stay tuned for more info!
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Sunday, May 16, 2010

I'd Like A Dozen, Please

Yesterday we ran our longest run of the training season before our race on June 6th, the Rock N Roll San Diego Half Marathon.  If you follow a training schedule for a marathon or half marathon, you'll know that the last two weeks of training before the big race is a taper down. You run your longest distance training run three weeks before the race, then you taper down the next two weeks, so that on race day your legs are fresh! So only 10 miles next Saturday and 6 miles on 5/29.

Nevertheless, I was a little nervous about running 12 miles, since last week we only ran 9, and the week before was 10 miles. We ran from Carlsbad to Oceanside and back. I totally forgot to take any photos until about 5 miles into the run. It was super-cloudy too, which was great for running but not great for scenic photos.

The first two miles felt like a little bit of a struggle, which is always the case for me on a long run. It's like my brain and my body KNOW that I need to go 12 miles, so it's conserving energy or something. When I know I'm only running 3 miles, I go quite a bit faster even in the first mile. I got into a groove in the subsequent miles and that's when the endorphins kick in and you feel literally like you could go on running forever. But alas, that was not the case. I stopped by our West Coast Road Runners aid station at mile 4.3 and had some cold water and a raspberry flavored Clif Shot. It tasted gross! But whatever, I swallowed down the 100 calorie packet and it kept me going well for the next few miles.

Karen and another teammate.

At about 5.75 miles, I ran into Todd's group coming back. (They ran 13 miles, so their turnaround was 6.5 miles.)

I turned around at 6.07 miles, in the middle of nowhere. I thought there would be a landmark of some kind, but no. Those are the times when I'm glad I have my Garmin watch and I know I'd already gone over 6 miles. I stopped by the aid station at 7.7 miles again, and ate another shot (my own vanilla GU this time, which tasted much better!), some pretzels, and some more water. After I hit 10 miles, my legs started to feel tired and I struggled. The last two miles felt like forever, so I thought I was really off-pace and slow, but that was not the case. I kept pace and finished the 12 miles. I was so glad to finish though, it was hard.

Location: Carlsbad to Oceanside roundtrip
Distance: 12.14 miles
Time: 2:16:33
Avg pace: 11:15/mile (go me!)
Calories: 1199

I listened a lot to The Weepies during the run. Peppermint turned me on to them and I really love to listen to their harmonies BOTH during scrapping AND running. Isn't that weird?

After the run, Todd and I went to Beach City Cafe and ate a big breakfast. :D I mean, when you burn 1200 calories in one workout, I think it's okay to eat some, ha ha. Todd doesn't like breakfast food so he had a fish taco and a steak taco. I had a Florentine omelette (spinach and mushrooms) and fried potato wedges. Todd always steal my potato wedges, but it's an unspoken agreement that he eats half of my potatoes, LOL.

In the afternoon I rested a lot, I was tired from running. I finished Sookie Stackhouse book #4 and started book #5. Then my friend Sally called and said her and her friends are having dinner at Station Tavern and Burgers in South Park for her birthday, so I drove down there and met up with them.

Dinner was super-fun. I had met most of Sally's friends individually before last night. It was a fun bunch. My stomach was growling a little bit because our meetup time was 7pm, then we had to wait for everyone to arrive. Then we ordered drinks first. I'm not a drinker, so I sipped my ginger "beer" and tried a sip of Sally's brown ale beer. I was hungry though, so I was glad when we finally ordered food! I had thought Station was more of a restaurant, but it seemed that it was more like a bar with the restaurant as an afterthought. The menu was very limited (like, a half a slip of paper laminated sort of limited). However, what they had tasted very good! I had a cheeseburger and I wolfed it all down, so yummy. Sally talked about her new house and how she's excited for everyone to see it after the renovations are done and she's moved in. I'm excited to see too!

Here we are.

From left to right: Mauria, Seekey, me (taking the photo), Amy, Sally, Lara, and Michelle. The photo is grainy because I bumped up the ISO for a flash-less picture at night. I tried a flash pic but the flash blew out the people towards the camera and the people in the back were too dark.

Seekey secretly bought Sally a cake from across the street, and the waiter brought it after our meal.

I've known Sally since 7th grade, so yea, now we're the same age!

I'm glad I drove to a strange place to meet up with people I mostly didn't know, except for Sally. That's not my usual M.O. most of the time, but it's good to step out of my comfort zone sometimes. :D
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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New Shoes

Thank you my friends for your comments in the last post and on Facebook and Twitter. It seems that I'm not the only one who functions sub-optimally without enough sleep. I'm really going to try to get 8 hours of sleep for a while. That means a hard stop at 10pm to go get ready for bed time. I won't get as much done, but in the long run I'm sure I would be more productive with more sleep.

I hadn't blogged about our run at Lake Hodges last Saturday. It was a "backdown" week, so I only had to run 9 miles, Todd had to run 10. It was an unusually warm morning, which really sapped my energy. That and it was a hilly trail run with rocks, which tired me out. At the 4.5 mile turnaround, I really wanted to quit, but I had to get back. It was pretty grueling. I didn't bring my camera with me, because I brought my phone (which to me was more important on the trail), and my waist pouch isn't big enough for both my camera and my phone. So the following photos were taken by Todd.

We had to cross a small creek.

The views were pretty.

Todd and his group ran into me after I had turned around at 4.5 miles.

I made it back to the parking lot and waited about five minutes for Todd to arrive. We were both tired. The good thing though, was that nothing was sore the next day for me. My legs felt just fine and normal.

Location: Lake Hodges
Distance: 9.03 miles
Time: 1:43:51
Avg pace/mile: 11:30 (not bad for hilly and rocky trails + sun + heat)
Calories: 882

I ordered new shoes last week, because my shoes were getting a lot of mileage and I wanted to wear some relatively new shoes for the half marathon on June 6th. I've been wearing the same shoe model for four years now, so this is my 7th pair of these shoes.

I wore my new pair this morning for my 30 minute run out in my hilly neighborhood. They feel good right out of the box.

The old pair looks so dirty because of the trail run at Lake Hodges on Saturday. I've already put over 300 miles on the old pair, so it's time to ease in a new pair of running shoes. :)
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Tuesday, May 11, 2010


I feel lately that I have so many things on my to-do list that it's paralyzing. I feel like I can't do any one of them well. I'm exhausted from trying to do them all, and losing patience with myself.

I'm not sleeping enough and it's not a good feeling. My typical day looks like this.

7:00am - get out of bed
7:15am - exercise, if I'm doing it in the morning that day. Or check emails & forums.
8:00am - shower
9:00am - get to work
5:30pm - leave work
6:00pm - exercise, if doing it in the evening
7:00pm - dinner + shower
8:30pm - work on digi-scrap CT assignments, my own designs, blog, pay bills, general internet waste of time, read, watch TV, etc.

Then suddenly it's past midnight and I'm exhausted, feeling like I got nothing done.

I definitely need more sleep. My friend Tracey tried sleeping more for three weeks, and it did wonders for her mentally and physically. It's gotta be a priority for me. Functioning on this level is not acceptable. I need to make some changes.
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Friday, May 7, 2010

Apprentice Round 4 Mini Kit Freebie

Helloooooo!  I've been busy this week with work.  It feels like the week went by really fast!  I've also been preoccupied.  My sister had surgery today.  She is okay, but I tend to worry so it's been a tough couple of days.  I actually have lots of food photos and recipes to share, but it will have to wait another day, because I'm so tired from this work week.  Plus tomorrow morning I run nine miles, so I want to go to sleep soon.

So, without further ado, this is the mini kit I created for you for the Little Dreamer Designs Apprentice Program Round 4. :)

Renewal Mini Kit


Please leave a comment at Little Dreamer Designs if you download. I appreciate it very much! Also check out the other 10 finalists' mini kits and leave them some love!
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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Sunday Market

On Sunday Todd and I made our first trip to the farmers market in Hillcrest this spring. I don't know why we don't go more often. The farmers markets around here run year-round. The Hillcrest one is well-known as a good one. We tend to go about an hour before closing, so we can get discounted prices, LOL. Last summer when we were there, we got this HUGE clamshell container of super-big and sweet blackberries for half price because it was almost closing time. There are bargains to be had!

We were super-hungry when we got there at 1pm. So we looked for food right away. I was in line at the Thai place when I saw the woman in front of me had this yummy-lookin' sausage stuffed into a french baguette. How brilliant! I shook off all pride and embarrassment and was all, "hey, where did you get that sausage?!" She first pointed me in the general direction, but then graciously walked me all the way to the sausage booth. Mmm... it was some sort of slow-aged prime meat sausage or something. I decided to give it a try and forked over my $6. I watched the man dig into the baguette with a small tong to remove some inside breading. He made a long hole into the bread. Then he stuffed some sauerkraut and mustard in there. Lastly, the sausage went in. I was excited to try it!

Well, it did not disappoint! I was most impressed by the innovative way they stuffed it into the bread though. So clever!

Todd found some carne asada tacos and scarfed them up so fast that I didn't get a photo of them.  He was still hungry though, so off he went to the Argentinian Empanada place.

He got two chickens and a beef one.

Unfortunately, they looked better than they tasted. He wasn't super-impressed.

Next we found that our favorite bakery, Bread and Cie, had a booth there. So of course Todd had to buy his favorite brownie in San Diego. I forgot to photo it. :(

We walked around with our grocery bags and bought a bunch of fresh vegetables: carrots, green beans, tomatoes, and asparagus. I'm bummed to find out I also have no photos of them.

Finally, Todd stopped by a dessert booth and got this delightful neopolitan dessert. It's got flaky dough with real cream in between, and raspberry sauce. We shared it and it was more than yummy, LOL.

It was fun at the farmers market. We need to go more often! Next time we'll try the Little Italy one, I hear it's really good!
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Monday, May 3, 2010

Sale is Still On Today

Just popping in to let you know that the sale at both Listgirl Designs and Little Dreamer Designs is still on today!  So if you missed the sale this weekend, you can still pick a few things up.

Listgirl Designs:
Use coupon code 5V6K9K75 for 40% off your entire purchase. 

Little Dreamer Designs:  25% off storewide sale
Use coupon code LGtweetNSD for an extra 15% off my items in the store.

Both sales end tonight, so take advantage while you can!  :)

I wanted to show you my latest set of templates and layouts I did using them.

Template Set #12:  Niddy Griddy

Birthday Weekend

Everything by Designs by Lili @ The Lilypad: Cloud 9 (collab with Lauren Reid), Fun and Funky Alphas, Painted Words.

The Way To My Heart

Everything from Funky Kitchen May Grab Bag by Dysfunction Design @ The Digichick.
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