Author: Celeste

Banana Chocolate Chip Cake

My little sister celebrated her 26th birthday (26th!!!) last Friday and I so wish I could have been there with her in Virginia, where she’s currently attending med school. But not so much because I wanted to spend time with her…mostly because I just wanted to devour the Banana Chocolate Chip Cake she made from The Baker Chick. :P True to form, my baking-obsessed sister—she used to intern at Sweet & Saucy Shop, the amazing Orange County bakery with hands down the best cupcakes, in my humble opinion—made her own birthday cake. And it also has a peanut butter frosting! She texted me photos of her creation just to torture me, of course. “The cake was really moist and a perfect combination of all three flavors—the bananas tasted delicious and the chocolate and peanut butter complemented it perfectly without being too overpowering,” she said about the recipe. “The mini chocolate chips were also super cute and anything with buttermilk is bound to be amazing.” Sigh. Now I have to add this recipe to my baking list. And did I …

73 Questions for SJP

Have you guys seen this Vogue interview with Sarah Jessica Parker? She powers through 73 questions fired off by a reporter at lightning speed and it’s so much fun to watch. I’m equally impressed by how the interviewer memorized (I imagine) all those questions and how quickly SJP answers them! Some of them would have stumped me for a bit for sure, such as “Can you write down your favorite word that starts and ends with the same vowel?” She thinks of a beautiful word in a flash! It’s also an unintentional mini-tour of her amazing apartment in NYC, a city she describes in the interview as “Symphonic, tiny, real.” She is quick with words, that one. {via Vogue America}

Filmmakers For A Day

Last Saturday, Stephen and I took a one-day course on 16mm filmmaking. I’ve always been fascinated by filmmaking and even wanted to major in it in college, but I was intimidated by the technical aspects of it and how unrealistic job prospects might be in the future—also, I have to admit, I was pretty into journalism back then and was sure my fate would be in the publishing world. But now, nearly 7 years out of college, I can’t stop thinking about the world of movie-making (helps to also live in Downtown LA and drive by a film set pretty much every day, which always gets my heart racing a bit). I’ve been reading up on independent filmmaking a lot but I think I just needed to start taking classes so this new pursuit/hobby/I-don’t-know-what-yet would feel a little more legitimate. Stephen is personally fond of documentary filmmaking and loves cameras, so we signed up for the class together at Echo Park Film Center and it ended up being an awesome day learning the art of …

Magical Butter Sauce

My friend Jessica—a major foodie and cooking queen—swears by this magical butter sauce to pour over any protein. Just melt some butter with balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and your choice of fruit preserve such as apricot or blackberry (her secret weapon is Mick’s Hot Raspberry Pepper Jelly straight from Seattle) and you’re golden. She particularly loves it with salmon, roasted chicken drumsticks, or roasted chicken thighs. Microwave it in 30-second intervals and if it’s too sweet, just add a little more balsamic vinegar, she says. I’m actually planning to bake some chicken tomorrow night for dinner so this sauce is exactly what I’ll finish it off with! Do you guys have any staple sauces you always turn to? As I’m starting to cook more, I’m really learning how valuable and life-saving a quick, delicious sauce can be! {via Tasty Kitchen}  

How You Glow

I’ve become slightly addicted to How You Glow, a lovely new website dedicated to all things healthy, healing, nourishing, and beautiful by Tara and Jessie. It’s both a lifestyle how-to guide and a behind-the-scenes look at a standard of living that I only wish I could emulate: days filled with fresh pressed juices and homemade smoothie bowls, garden yoga at what’s called the “How You Glow Treehouse”, and dress-up adventures at vintage boutiques. And Tara and Jessie get to essentially live and breathe this lifestyle 24/7—Tara is a natural foods chef and holistic nutritionist, and Jessie is a certified yoga instructor and art therapist.   Through their site, you get to come along on private yoga sessions with instructors such as May Che… …into the kitchen to make these vegan and gluten-free Raspberry Crumb Bars… …out and about town to profile equally fabulous women like Ali Kay and her backyard full of organic produce and fruit… …on a beauty date with braid extraordinaire Ashley Streicher… …and of course model amazing pieces for new online vintage …

San Diego!

Two weekends ago, specifically Saturday, February 22nd, Stephen and I took a little road trip down to San Diego to celebrate our 6-month anniversary—also known as a relationship milestone that only high schoolers recognize. Thanks to my dear friend Jackie for reminding me of that! We packed our suitcases into Stephen’s old red pick-up truck (I don’t think I’ve shared the fact that he drives an old red pick-up truck with you all…I say “old” affectionately because he’s had the truck since he was 15 and it was one of the many adorable details I loved learning about him when we first met) and drove straight to Balboa Park to start off our Saturday morning. The skies were hazy but the weather was warm enough, and the park looked beautiful. We wandered the grounds for a bit and checked out the California Bell Tower and the botanical gardens. There was even a South African carnivorous plant on display! Above, Stephen demonstrates what not to do around a carnivorous plant. Apparently, these plants live in jungles …

30×30

I’m pretty excited about today’s post because it’s all about my wonderful friend Supattra! I met her a few years ago through our mutual friend Mike, and ever since then, we’ve gotten chummy over dinners, happy hours, bar nights, and even a sumo wrestling competition! I love her for so many reasons: she’s always up for something fun; she seizes the everyday but isn’t afraid to admit her fears and mistakes; she’s lived abroad and went to Kenya last year (pictured throughout this blog); and it’s so easy to have hours-long conversations with her about life, relationships, ambitions, and all the complications of growing up and figuring out what on earth we’re here for. Our talks always leave me inspired. Anyway, a few weeks ago, Supattra was being her usual inspirational self again. ;) She reached out to a bunch of her friends and asked them to join her in completing a “30×30″ list she had created. It’s a list of 30 things she wants to do by the time she’s 30—and 30 still counts, …