Thursday, September 30, 2010

coolest thing I've seen in awhile...

This has been on several blogs this week, but it is so worth repeating.

Licia Ronzulli, Italian MEP, attended the plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg with her newborn girl this week, in order to draw attention to women’s rights.

Licia is one of the most phit and phabulous mama's I've seen in awhile.

Mind-Body-Sole connection

Yay Abbey! She found this article on how walking improves the brain.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I left my heart in...

Wow, Jordan, you have outdone yourself.

Check out this amazing dinner party beneath the Golden Gate Bridge.
Meeting planners, event managers, hostess-with-the-mostess's -- take notes!

Jennifer Aniston’s workout secrets

Jennifer Aniston was featured in the September issue of Shape magazine. She looks insanely good. At 40 - heck, at any age - she looks insanely good.

She has a spinning bike, does yoga and eats incredibly clean. She swears by Smart Water (of course, she’s the spokesperson after all) and loves a recipe for a celery, zucchini and basil salad (or something) in The Family Chef cookbook.
Looks like there are plenty of healthy, yummy recipes in this cookbook; may add it to my library.

But about that bike Jennifer has at home...
I love Spinning. Was one of the first certified teachers in 1996. But I can't decide if I would actually ride one by myself. The group class is a killer-good workout, with the music and all, but there's something to be said for that peer-pressure.
What do you think? Would you ride a spinning bike if you had one at home?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Treadmill Fantasies

That’s right -- fantasies.

Sorry to disappoint, but they don’t involve sex.

As I’ve said before, I have a severe case of Cardio-Induced ADD, and I believe everyone has their brain as their biggest obstacle in exercise adherance.

Eight minutes, one second. Eight minutes, two seconds. I am so tired.

Not really. Just bored.

There is no scenery on the treadmill, so your mind is free (and again, bored). You don’t have to watch for stoplights, traffic, curbs, puddles or dog stuff you don’t want to step in.

So if my playlist is just right, I turn my brain from BORED to JAZZED!

How? Treadmill fantasies.

My top treadmill fantasies feature moi doing the following:

• Ballroom dancing, on Dancing with the Stars of course (with me in the place of Cheryl Burke).

• Me and Mr Right singing karaoke together and the whole bar cheering like mad. (Neither of us can sing, so this is an true fantasy.)

• On one occasion in a hotel fitness center, there was a weirdo staring at me. My fantasy that day was the stuff Charlie’s Angels is made up – I was a black belt and threw his slimy butt down the stairs. (There were no stairs, but I added them; you can do that in fantasies.)

• Teaching a cardio dance workshop a la Juliane Arney.

• Crossing the finish line at the NYC Marathon with my entire family and all my friends there. I’m running FAST and I’m sweaty but not limping or in tears like I probably would be if I ever did it for real.

• Me giving a speech at the United Nations (Angelina wasn’t available).

• Calling my husband from the car on the way to the state capitol to pick up my lottery winnings. Making plans with him about where to meet me (the airport), where we’ll go (Laguna Beach Ritz Carlton) and what to take (nothing, I’m buying everything new).

• Shaking hands with Regina Benjamin.

• Telling Oprah how I became so successful and why I’m giving all my money away a la Warren Buffet.

image via Landice Treadmills

Stress-less meals for weight loss

The key is to prepare AHEAD OF TIME.

Mark out two hours on a Saturday or Sunday to shop, prep and cook.

Buy 10 – 12 Glad or Ziploc containers ALL THE SAME SIZE. (Do not add stress to your life looking for the right lid for the container; get them all in the same size. Once a year, throw them all away and get new ones.)

Take a list with you to the grocery store and EAT BEFORE YOU LEAVE. Buy 6, 8 or 10 boneless chicken breasts, a few pieces of fish and ground turkey.

Back home in the kitchen, do the following: put the chicken and fish on baking sheets and put in the oven (sometimes Mr Right will grill them for me); put the ground turkey with some seasonings in a skillet; cook some brown rice or Barilla
Plus pasta or quinoa; and steam some veggies until they are half-done (the microwave will finish cooking them when you reheat them).

See my next post on my healthy meal prep on Sunday morning.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

two of the Phit-est chicks ever

This is our Phabulous Surgeon General, Dr. Regina Benjamin, posing with the uber-Phit and Phabulous Juliane Arney.

You must try Julz Cardio Dance DVDs. As Tina Turner says, Julz is Simply the Best.

Monday, September 20, 2010

perfect skirt

Athleta really nailed it with this Narsara skirt.

Soft, comfy and easy to dress up. I love the fold-over top and the fabric is wonderful.

And it's on sale!

my loot from J Crew

Let me just say that the J Crew crew are merchandising geniuses. An innocent walk past their store on my way to a lunch meeting led to an unplanned (and unbudgeted) shopping spree.

I LOVE to find trendy clothing that is office-acceptable and over-40 acceptable.

I love my new J Crew jackets in particular. Updated but classic enough for "big girl" meetings and travel. And they don't "bind" my arms the way suit jackets sometimes do.

Cardigans are my favorite fall wardrobe item, but I am having second thoughts on the "Burnished Olive" cardigan. It was a beautiful gold in the store and I was just smitten. Now I'm not sure, it looks a bit dull.

My favorite purchase was (as usual) the least practical one -- the gold flower pin. Can't wait to put it on a black cardigan over a funky t-shirt.


messy side braid

Shape magazine has an online story up now about the hair styles at Fashion Week.

Ilove the braids that are popular right now, but this "mess it up" trend just confuses me. When my hair is a mess, I am embarrassed to go anywhere. Why would I put effort into messing it up?

If you're going out with messy hair, shouldn't the benefit be that you had to do absolutely nothing?

major creativity boost in Salt Lake

These classes look wonderful!
Wouldn't you love to learn Illustrator and Party Planning in the same weekend?
Salt Lake a bit far to go right now. Maybe you'll come to Kansas City, Nicole?

image via

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Apples in season!

Apples are at their peak, and it will soon be time for my favorite: honeycrisps.

When the weather turns cold and you are craving that sweet, baked yummy {insert here: cookie, cinnamon roll, pie}, here's an alternative...

Get an apple slicer and cut your apple into wedges. It'll be one apple per serving so make as many as you like.
Line a muffin pan with aluminum foil (this step is only necessary if you hate cleaning pans like I do)
Place the sliced, cored apple wedges in one of the muffin "holes"
Stir up a quick mix of chopped walnuts, oatmeal, a tiny bit of Agave sweetner and a tablespoon of water. Cinnamon, nutmeg and all apple pie spices are nice additions. Put a couple tablespoons of the mixture on top of each sliced apple.
Bake at 350 degrees about 40 minutes. Less for crisper apples, more for softer.

Serve. Ice cream will kill the healthy part of this recipe, but it's better than ice cream with pie. :)

The house will smell amazing.

image via

Monday, September 13, 2010

more bad news for American's health status

If you're Phit, you may still be fat.


From Harris Poll:
For many Americans, fat is the new "norm."

In other words, we are being way too kind to ourselves.
  • 30% of overweight think they are fine
  • 70% of obese think they are just overweight
  • 39% of morbidly obese think they are just overweight not obese
For the record, "morbidly obese" means you are so fat you may die from it.

Read entire press release here.

curling iron guru -- circa 1984

This may be better than the Felicity Shagwell 'do.

Above: me and Carly, who is now an awesome Orange County photographer.

must get well for NYC

This photo is exactly what I feel like doing.

But instead, I am working. Plowing through email and meetings. And drinking EmergenC and sneaking away to use my neti-pot sinus rinse.

Because I am going to New York Wednesday and I WILL FEEL GOOD!

I've always said the neti-pot is amazing. I'm going to put it to the test the next 48 hours. Can it get me well for NYC?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Perfect Bride's wedding shoes

Best wedding shoes ever! My cousin Aimee wore rhinestone flip flops for her outdoor ceremony. Her kids wore purple Converse.

My two-year old thought her "wed" shoes were pretty special too.

Congratulations Jason & Aimee!

Four generations (me in the middle holding baby girl)

Friday, September 10, 2010

must reads for Friday

Must-reads today:

An Anthropologist's Take on Homemaking - the daughter of Margaret Mead, her home, her new book.

The small-mindedness of Fashion Week usually turns me off (which doesn't sync with my shopping habits or Vogue-reading), but Melisa is always funny and does a great job sharing photos and real-woman insight.

I love the Divine Twine in this give-away post.

What does it mean when I want some of the same things that the youngster bloggers do? Am I young-at-heart? Or do I just need to grow up? :)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Felicity Shagwell hair-do

I hate all that gunk in my hair.

Hairspray, mousse, "product." Yuck.

Otherwise, I just LOVE everything about these beehives and retro hair-do's.

image via Cup of Jo and Marvelous Kiddo

time to feel trendy

I feel trendy today because Emily is wearing my watch. Emily must be a good 20 years younger than me, is from LA and is gorgeous.

Sort of like if it were your first day of your sophmore year and the senior varsity cheerleader wears the same back-to-school shoes that you have.

image: Cupcakes & Cashmere

Friday, September 03, 2010

Post Juice Fast

So the Blue Print Cleanse went really well.

Absolutely no tummy aches, or other horrible stuff you sometimes hear about a "cleanse." As I mentioned though, it was more of a Juice Fast.

And kudos to Blue Print -- these juices were delicious.

Specifically here's what I drank on Wednesday:

9:30 am Green Juice (kale, romaine, spinach, lemon, parsley, cucumber, green apple)

11:30 am PAM - pineapple, apple, mint

1:45 pm Another green juice

around 4 Spicy Lemonade (lemon, cayenne pepper, agave sweetner)

around 6 CAM - Carrot, apple, beet. This was my favorite.

around 8:30 Cashew Milk. (filtered water, cashews, cinnamon, vanilla) This one was tough to get down. Tasted ok, but I'm not a milk drinker and, more significantly, I was FULL.

Amazing how the Blue Print one-day plan makes you stop craving stuff you shouldn't be eating.
The next day, I thought FREEDOM! I can eat!

But I really didn't want to. Got a green tea. Around 10am ate a pear. Around 2:00 some canteloupe. And I wasn't hungry.

The only "con" of Blue Print is the price tag. By the time I paid shipping to fed ex the stuff to me, it was $90.
The investment, however, is what saved me. It provided the ultimate accountability.

At 7:00 am on my way home from yoga, it was raining and I wanted to drive thru Starbucks SO BAD. But there were $90 worth of juice in the refridgerator. And if it'd been $30 spent on juice, I may have failed.

I'd recommend it!

Brazilian Blowout

So I did it.

I got a Brazilian Blowout from Sam at Michael Shae's Salon.

It was expensive and it took over two hours. And it was worth it!

Read what Shape magazine calls "getting Jennifer Aniston hair" here.

When Sam first recommended it, I blushed. "Can I wear that back to the office?"
I'm not the kind of gal that can afford two+ hours in a salon chair, so I wasn't sure. And I'd only had one haircut from Sam.

But I've been getting compliments all week. And this morning (four days later) I got up, brushed my hair. Was done. Shiny and smooth. I love it.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

More Food Porn

Why, why would anybody even look at this stuff when they are doing a juice fast?

Lobster Pot Pie.
Truffle Mac and Cheese.
Outrageous Brownies.

My quest for balance continues.

More Food Porn from Ina Garten.

Juice fast today

Today I am doing a juice fast. I was actually nervous last night.

I'm doing the shortest (one day), wimpiest version offered by Blue Print.

I got up at 4:45 and made it to yoga at 5:45. After class it was raining and I wanted to drive thru Starbucks SO BAD. It was only 7am and I wanted to drink something warm and milky and CHEW something.

My first bottle was green juice, made from Kale, Romaine, Spinach, Parsley, Green Apple and Lemon. Was pretty good.

Just finished bottle two, called PAM - pineapple, apple, mint.

No horrific tummy aches or any of that. This cleanse is just juice and not one of those intense "cleansing" processes.

Fingers crossed, but I think I might make it through the day.

Juice fast today

Today I'm doing a juice fast. I was actually nervous last night.

I woke up at 4:45 and made it to yoga at 5:45. I never eat breakfast on Wed until at least 10:00, and yet, at 7:00 am I was just dieing to chew something.

I'm doing one day of juices. The shortest, wimpiest program offered by Blue Print.

The first one was green. Kale, romaine, parsley, lemon, green apple, spinach. Was pretty good.

The second one was called PAM - pineapple, apple and mint. I don't do well with acid-y foods so we'll see how it goes. Hopefully no nasty canker sores.

Not hungry. And no tummy aches or other nonsense. Fingers crossed that I'll make it through the day.

On my way home from yoga it was raining and I wanted to drive thru Starbucks SO BAD. Other than that, I haven't had too tough a time avoiding real food.

I'm doing this as part of my health commitment in 2010. I've seen a Naturopath, gotten a series of acccupuncture, got a weekly massage for two months, have been walking 12 miles a week and exercising at least four days a week.

The crazy knots I get in my upper back muscles are sometimes excruciating. Many family members have fibromyalgia and I am doing every thing I can to prevent it!

(I was actually diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2002 and got a prescription for steriods. Threw them away. Denial isn't always a bad thing.)

For now, more water and green tea.

Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

This has been all around the web, and is still worth posting. I read it this morning to get me out of a slump and it worked.

Read the full text here of the Stanford Commencement address by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, delivered on June 12, 2005.

But I especially love the first of his three stories about his birth mother's request for him to have a college education...

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, its likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

His wonderful speech continues, and ends with:

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much.