Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Squeeze Inn

I know I've been blogging a lot about food lately and less about dance but I think you'll like this one. 

Jay Leno once asked Guy Fieri (the awesome host of Food Network's Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives) what is the best hamburger in America?  Guy said that the best hamburger in America is in San Diego BUT the second best hamburger in America is in Sacramento, California at a place called the Squeeze Inn.  When our good friends, Brent and Marie, told us about this we immediately headed over to the tiny dive and got some highly coveted seats at the counter (there were only ten seats and we occupied five of them).

The atmosphere was awesome and the food was amazing.  The place was exactly how dives are portrayed in the show- small, loud, and run by a few trendy yet intense cooks at the grill.  If you ever go there you need to get the cheeseburger.  They melt the cheese right on the grill, making it crispy and oh so good.  The fries are spot on and the buns are brought in fresh everyday.


I don't know about you but I love it when cheese gets crispy.

 What's the best hamburger you ever ate?  If you ever are in Sac, let me know and we'll go to the Squeeze Inn together.




photo courtesy of yelp.com

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Little Prince Pop-Up Edition



Guess what?  The best book ever is now out in a pop up edition.  I love The Little Prince.  This book, at least the essence of it, has been with me through each stage in life.  I remember watching The Little Prince on television as a kid way before reading the book many years later (so indicative of my childhood- I love television).   I learned how to play the drums in a park in LA while sitting next to a Baobob tree.  I gave Chris an old copy from Beers Books when we first started dating, hoping he'd get the hint that I thought he was the bee's knees.   




Have you ever read The Little Prince (ou, Le Petit Prince pour les gents qui parles francais)?  What's your favorite quote (Qu'est-ce que c'est ton meilleur citer)? 


photo from amazon.com, video from you tube

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Cafe Lorraine



Dangerous Lorraines loves to do things a little different.  The program is entitled "Cafe Lorraine" and we use chairs, shoes, other randomly fun things in our choreography.  I'm excited and I hope to see you there!



This is Melisa.  She loves to layer her dance clothes and goof around.  Her satin stilettos are super cute at the club and will be used in the show.


Dangerous Lorraines Dance Theater will perform February 11-14th at CSUS.   Details to follow.

What's the weirdest dance performance you ever saw?  I heard of one where a woman peed on stage.  I will not be doing that at any time.

Other Dangerous Lorraines Links: Dangerous Lorraines Dance Theater, My Week in Dance, My Week in Dance

Monday, December 28, 2009

Fruits and Vegetables




My SIL cooked every meal for us these past five days.  They were all delicious and impressively there were fruits or vegetables in every dish.  In fact, I've had the most fruits and veggies in the last week than I have in the last two months.  No joke.  I am that lazy when it comes to eating those things.  And even though we ate homemade mac and cheese and cream cheese stuffed jalapenos wrapped in bacon, I feel great!  All those veggies really did something to my body and I like it.  Alas, I have decided to make a concerted effort to eat more of them. 



For Christmas breakfast we had spinach, gruyere, and roasted red bell pepper frittata a la Steph.  I made the sausage, apple, and onion hash.  Again, lots of greenery and crunch.  I made some toast because I just can't live without a carb.

I stopped by Trader Joe's on the way home and picked up a few items.  All from the produce section and all now nicely stored in my fridge.  I bought green beans, basil, cucumbers, broccoli, celery, tomatoes, and a lemon.  I'm thinking of making an orzo and green bean salad with prociutto. 

My goal is to have vegetables in at least one dish per day.  I know you should have fruits and veggies in every meal, and I will get there, but I am taking baby steps.  To be honest when I have a lot of rehearsals I live off of crackers and cookies.  Bad, I know, but so convenient.

These pictures from the Ferry Building in San Francisco always get me inspired to eat more fresh foods.  I love that place!







Do you have any good vegetable recipes?  What's your favorite vegetable?  I have always loved spinach and broccoli.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

I Felt Like Isadora Duncan in the Snow

When on vacation you must always stick to your exercise regimen.  So keep dancing.


 




 

 

Anyone exercise this past weekend?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

I Chose Blue!




Earlier I asked you what coat I should bring to my trip to the East Coast- red, blue, green, black, or black and white.  The response was overwhelming for red with many saying black would be a good default.  I left for the East coast at 5:30 AM and at 5:15 AM I was still in decision mode.  But in the end blue was the winner.  Here's why: 

 My blue coat is the warmest, is roomy enough for mass amounts of layers, and goes handsomely with my new brown boots.  Virginia is lovely in the day but cold when the sun goes down.  Yesterday we went to the National Mall, saw the monuments, visited the National Botanical Gardens (with trains!), and walked around the National Christmas Tree.







Don't worry, I've been stretching and doing Pilates like crazy since we got here.  And we walked for four hours straight, which completely justifies the extra ordinary eating I'm about to do right now.  Merry Christmas!


I told Chris he had to be my Cavalier.  His response?  "Cava-what?"


Thursday, December 24, 2009

French Toast in Virginia

Merry Christmas Eve!  Here's what I had for breakfast on the day before the best day ever.  Thanks to Steph for making us the wonderful food.  By the way, this is the only way I eat fruit (besides in a pie).




Any fun Christmas Eve foods you want to share? 

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dangerous Lorraines Dance Theater

Dangerous Lorraines Dance Theater is the Sacramento based dance company of which I am a member.  The name comes from the director's middle name and it's kind of her alias.  Her thinking was that everyone has a side to them that might be hidden, a little more interesting, and a lot more dangerous than what our first names represent.  This is my third year in the company and I love it more and more every rehearsal.  Our next performance is in February and I am so excited for it!

Here are some photos from our last rehearsal.  We are off until our Winter Intensive in January.  


 
Some company members waiting for the cue to start the next piece.  That studio was frigid and so we made sure to keep warm by layering.


 
Company directors Melissa Lorraine and Lorelei


 
Inertia and Hang practicing the "kinetic phrase"


 
Hang and Melisa


I look forward to DLDT rehearsals and I feel so fortunate to be dancing with such a talented group.

What dance companies do you dance in?  Okay, odd question.. but what's your middle name?  I found out when I was nine that I had a second middle name.  NINE!  And it wasn't even my parents who told me.  But I love middle names and I can't wait to find out yours.


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Biscuits

This morning for breakfast I had a sugar cookie in the shape of a tree.  It was perfect and I only wish I had time to down it with a glass of the egg nog in my fridge (Don't judge.  You know you want to do the same).  But I have a confession: I don't like giving out Christmas cookies as gifts.  Here's why: when I was young I gave someone Christmas cookies (Russian tea cakes, chocolate chip, biscottis, etc) and all they did was roll their eyes and say "More cookies?  Everyone gives out cookies."  I was young and impressionable so instead I now give out "Christmas Biscuits".  These biscuits have red bacon, green onions, and lots of cheese.  I have to say, I only give them out to a select few because I save the rest for me. 









What edible goodies do you bake for Christmas?  More importantly, what Christmas goods to you like to eat?

Monday, December 21, 2009

New Warm-Ups for the Winter

As the days get colder and my muscles get tighter I am convinced I need new warm ups.  After searching Discount Dance while watching Karate Kid II on television I found a few I liked.  What do you think?


Option 1:




Option 2:




Option 3:

 


What do you think?  Do I chose a soft, comfy type?  One that's more form fitting to show off my lines better?  Or one that's a mix of the two?  What kind of warm-ups do you wear?


Visit discountdance.com for more good stuff.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Portland, Oregon

When I was 17 and on my second tour, I was a little homesick.  One night as we were leaving the Pacific Northwest I looked out the window of the bus and saw the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.  Portland.  it was nighttime and in the distance I saw a mass of water lined with big beautiful boats and glimmering lights.  For some reason I was immediately comforted as I stared out at the beautiful cityscape, forgetting about any feelings of loneliness or discomfort.  Portland has had a special place in my heart ever since.




There's a place in Portland called Pine State Biscuits that sells all things biscuits.  Doesn't that just sound heavenly?  There's one dish called the Pine State Fried Club.  It has a "trio of fried grit cakes topped with fried chicken and spiced honey, pimento cheese and fried green tomato, and country ham and white cheddar."  I think I need to move to Portland!

Where are your dream places to live?  Paris?  New York?  Sacramento?  I've always wanted to live in New York just so I can dance with all the up and coming companies out there.  And the food.  Oh, the food!



photo from www.pinestatebiscuits.com

Saturday, December 19, 2009

My Week in Dance...

Consists of the most awesome frozen yogurt ever because I no longer have to wear a silver unitard in front of hundreds of people.  Exhale...and.... inhale the yogurt.



My favorite toppings are waffle cone pieces, strawberries, and Reese's peanut butter cup pieces.  Oh, and a few sprinkles for fun.



What frozen yogurt toppings do you like?  My usual motto is the more chocolate the merrier but with frozen yogurt I let all the food groups come out.  Also, what frozen yogurt shops do you frequent?  Any Pinkberry lovers out there?

Friday, December 18, 2009

Beard Papa's


(The Bearded Papa himself)

Have you heard of Beard Papa's?  It's a bakery that makes amazing cream puffs.  Before seeing a show in San Francisco I popped in this heavenly place and ordered an original cream puff.  I wish I got two.



Have you ever had a Beard Papa cream puff?  Here's a link to their homepage.  Here's another link that shows you how to make your own (thanks, Cora!).  Also, my sister doesn't like cream puffs (gasp!) so I want to know if there are any more people like her out there in the blogosphere.




Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Most Wonderful Bed


(Our bed in Manti.  I love this picture!)

When Chris and I were frist married I had trouble sleeping.  At first we didn't have a mattress so we slept on the floor.  Because Chris has a bad back we eventually got the firmest mattress we could find that, although uncomfortable, at least prevented any more back pain.  A year after our wedding, my in-laws got Chris and I a room at a bed and breakfast in Manti that had the most beautiful, plush bed I had ever seen.  For the first time in a year I woke up well rested and happy.  Our little trip was so fun but the highlight was that wonderful bed.  I love a good bed!


Isn't that a beautiful bed?  Is your bed firm or soft?  Decked out or minimalistic?  I've always dreamed of having a bed just like the picture above with four posts lace taspestries.  Sigh.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Musician's Life


My good friend, Sunny Knable, is a musician in New York City and has just acquired his first piano.  Due to the typical nature of New York real estate his tiny apartment is not a place for a baby grand.  But I think it's fun and very romantic to tell people you literally sleep with your art.  I admire Sunny and his devotion, love, and passion for his art and, hence, his life. 


As a girl I used to sleep with a pointe shoe under my pillow because I was told it would bring good luck.  Anything out of the ordinary in your bedroom?

PS... Sunny and I have high hopes of collaborating one day.  If you look him up on YouTube you can hear many of his works.   Or just click here.

photo courtesy of Sunny Knable

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Black and Ivory and Brown All Over



My piano lessons began when I was merely four years old.  Throughout the years I took lessons, got tested on my theory, and played so many recitals that by the time I gave up piano for ballet I was more relieved than sad.  I rarely play at all now.  Except for Christmastime.  I love playing Christmas music on the piano because I think it's simply the best music ever.  With a glittering tree next to me and rain pattering outside, I could play Christmas carols all day long.






Have you ever taken piano lessons?  What's your favorite Christmas song?

Monday, December 14, 2009

A Fun Gift

A little bit ago I did a post about En Pointe Photography and the amazing Susan Yee.  Well, lucky for all of us she's come out with a new calendar filled with all her amazing photography.  It's on sale at Etsy for only $13.50.  Here are a few pictures from her blog








Click here for my previous post about En Pointe Photography.
Find Susan's blog here and her Etsy shop here.


I think these would be a great stocking stuffer or gift idea for a friend.  And I love the packaging!  So cute!  Don't you love photography?  It kinda brightens your day, huh?   

Sunday, December 13, 2009

My Week in Dance



My week in dance was so busy I didn't have time to write about it.  So really, I had the best week ever if I'm dancing that much!  I'm bummed the show is done but excited to perform again in February.  We got our rehearsal schedule for the DLDT Winter Intensive and I'm so excited for long rehearsals, learning new choreography, and growing as a dancer.  If anything, this company pushes me to the limit and beyond. 

But for the next two weeks I'm resting my torn muscle, letting my feet heal, and trying out yoga.  Eek!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Another Excuse to Stay Inside



I love games. I love getting a group of people together to gather around a board, deck of cards, etc. and just play for hours. I love the conversations that come up, sense of civil competition, and consumption of good food. And the laughter. I love the laughter that comes with playing games.


Risk is one of my favorites as is Settlers of Cataan, Gin Rummy, Yahtzee, and Cranium. Chips and salsa, popcorn, chocolate chip cookies and hot chocolate are a must.



Do you like playing games?  What are your favorites?

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Secret Garden

After searching many years for the movie, I finally found the Secret Garden Heather and I loved as kids. When I say loved I mean watched multuple times in a row and memorized every single line. I know there are multiple versions but please tell me if you've seen this one because I've met very few who have.




Maybe it's the cold weather or frost on the ground but I've been thinking a lot about gardens lately. Thornless roses and secret gardens are top on my list. I love gardens and hope to one day have one.




Me at the National Cathedral Garden in Washington DC. Obviously not so secret since there are people in the background. But, I was super excited to explore this beautiful garden. The fact that they had an old wooden bench made this garden exceptionally wonderful.




Do you have a garden? Have you seen this version of the Secret Garden? What's your favorite flower? Hillary from Matthew and Hillary doesn't like roses but loves daisies.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Signature Scent

A woman's perfume tells more about her than her handwriting. - Christian Dior
 

When I was eighteen and working at a high end restaurant I decided I needed a perfume to help me feel more mature, sophisticated, and confident to fit in with the haute clientale.  So on my lunch break I walked across the street and visited the perfume counter at Macy's.  Buying this perfume was the ultimate mark of womanhood.  No more metal Gap $10 bottles or Bath and Body Works Country Apple- this was the real thing.  Sophistication.  Elegance.



The first place I walked up to was the Chanel counter.  I fell in love with the scent Allure when I was 16 and have since longed to wear it.  The guy at the counter (who wore an impeccably tailored black suit) spritzed the heavenly scent on my arm and suggested I come back in five minutes to see how it settled on me.  Five minutes later I came back and he said "No.  It doesn't work on you.  Sorry."



Discouraged, I stumbled upon a scent by Nina Ricci called Premier Jour.  The lady spritzed some on my other arm and, almost out of time, I walked back to the restaurant to start my second shift.  Back at the restaurant I asked everyone what they thought of my potential scent.  Since the majority of the cooks and waitstaff were male they were very eager to give opinions.  They all gave enthusiastic thumbs up (and oohs and smiles) to Premier Jour.  After my shift I walked back to Macy's and purchased the beloved fragrance with my hard earned wages, excited to start my elegantly impowered journey with this new scent.

Eight years later I still wear it, although not everyday.  I love the quotation by David Leavitt: "Childhood smells of perfume and brownies."  Maybe when I have daughters they will wear the same perfume.  Maybe they'll find their own scent.  Either way I hope they find one that they love and that gives them a little more confidence in their femininity.  Whenever I wear my signature scent I always get compliments from random people and, more importantly, an Oooh, you smell nice from Chris  What more could a girl want?



Aren't perfumes the ultimate beauty accessory?  Do you have a signature scent?  Are there some scents you absolutely love?



Photos courtesy of  bathandbodyworks.com, saksfifth.com and amazon.com

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Winter Walks





When Chris and I were dating and living in Utah we went on walks almost every night. The majority of our walks happened in the cold (I saw snow capped mountains in September. SEPTEMBER!) but that did not stop our nightly walks. We would bundle up, choose a path, and walk for hours. Looking back I can't believe we went on walks in twenty degree weather, with snow on the ground and icicles on the trees. I can't imagine doing the same today but I will forever remember our special winter walks.



Provo, circa 2003 right outside of Chris' apartment.


Do you and your loved one take winter walks?  Or would you rather snuggle up with hot cocoa on the couch? 

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas Letters


After five failed attempts, Christopher and I are determined to write (and send out) Christmas letters.  Do you send out Christmas letters?  And if you do how do you decide who gets them?  What kind of picture do you send out: funny or normal?  And seriously: are email Christmas letters a no-no?


stationary from papyrus.com