everyone please join me in welcoming to the blog...
my very own teapot!
thanks to my best friend, the teapot featured in today's blog is the real deal! normally i find my wacky teapot pictures on google, but today is different. not only is this a gorgeous teapot, but this gift is a tradition that has been passed down in sara's family. not the teapot itself, but the idea of seeking a present for someone that very specifically reminds you of that person. sara saw this teapot and of course thought of my blog, but the point behind it isn't just to brew up some of my delicious earl grey lavender iced tea. every time i have a prayer, or a hope, or a wish--i drop it into this teapot. it's almost like having my own personal little wishing fountain.
pretty awesome right?
and as for the next time i need to quickly round up a teapot picture, i'll have this amazing present pictured below from my aunt diane to turn to. now i have a whole book of teapots to choose from!
now that you've heard me say teapot sixteen times, let's begin!
1. i send you love and best dishes, from my kitchen to yours
since i've been home, the good meals have just been rolling out one after the other.
i don't know if you remember what my breakfasts looked like in hollywood...
but clearly, i don't like to change things up very much.
as for other yummy foods, i went to mellow mushroom last night with some old high school friends and had some delicious pizza. a few years ago, sara became an honorary slater--joining us in hawaii for a few weeks during the summer. one rainy day while my parents and sister were at the beach, we wandered around the small town of hanalei. one second we were trying on funny hats and picking up postcards, and the next second the terrential downpour sent us running into a small pizza restaurant. the timing couldn't have been more perfect. just as we burst through the door, they were taking a fresh hot pizza out of the oven. the man asked us if we'd like a slice of this hawaiian pizza--which had pepperoni, feta, tomatoes, and pineapple. obviously our answer was DUH and this has been my favorite pizza ever since.
needless to say...you can guess what i ordered at mellow mushroom.
2. the hood
it's been wonderful to be back on koupela drive again and like i said in my last blog, it feels like i never left. to tell you the truth, the fact that today marks less than a week from when i'm going back is starting to flip flop my stomach a little. it feels like i just got here, and suddenly i feel like all of these things and people that i love are slipping out of my reach.
i hate the expression time flies.
as for the neighborhood, everything here is exactly the same as when i left three months ago.
yes, this is our front yard.
3. don't judge a sock by its color
as for inside the house. it's a big mess of pj's, snacking, and a lot of movies.
and don't forget the fuzzy socks.
laying in bed watching tv the other night, my sister--head to toe in sweats with the hood wrapped around her face--mentioned how freezing she was. my mom immediately bounced off to find her some socks. sarah asked how many options i thought mom would bring back.
without hesitation: "three."
my mom shuffles back into the room: "i wasn't sure which kind you wanted, so i brought you three to choose from."
we thought THAT was the funny part. after my mom walked out, sarah looked down at her new socks and said, "these are the pinkest socks that ever existed." slightly embarassed, i lifted my foot out of the covers and presented MY socks--a pair my mom had given me a few years back, fuzzy and bright as ever.
"actually i believe these are the pinkest socks that ever existed."
highlight of the day:
the other day, i finally got my boondini's.
santa could have plopped through our chimney and i wouldn't have noticed.
yes, the rumors are true. tula and i hopped on our plane back to the east coast and headed home! i arrived in north carolina last wednesday night to two beaming parents--one very tired, and the other very awake and wearing pajamas and a winter coat.
i was also greeted by these smiling faces via picture message.
and then i was welcomed into the house by someone who looked very confused to see me.
once we were all settled in...
my furry brothers and i got a good night's sleep and then woke up to this!
three days before, i was laying on the beach...next thing i know, i'm searching for carrots to make a snowman! okay not really, but it was nice to see the winter wonderland outside. the snow didn't stick around for more than a day, but that didn't bother me because i had a very important mini-vacation ahead of me and i didn't want anything standing in my way.
i spent the next three and a half days with my very best friend doing all of our favorite things. eating spaghetti, watching movies, testing new frozen yogurt shops, ordering japanese food to-go, making walmart trips, reheating spaghetti, taking pictures, baking cookies, and visiting wilmington. we even had our very own christmas. along with tons of other thoughtful gifts--one of them being something very relevant to my blog which i can't WAIT to share!--sara made me an amazing slideshow. one second i had tears literally shooting out of my eyes, and then i was laughing so hard i scared all three of her cats. we spent our last day in wilmington, eating caramel apples and waffle cones, laughing until our cheeks hurt and enjoying every second together.
everything in the universe felt right again.
there are some people who simply just complete you, no matter how many miles stand in your way.
"you only meet your once in a lifetime friend, once in a lifetime." ~little rascals
after coming home from my amazing weekend in little river, i walked in the door to two of my favorite things.
1. a homecooked meal
and my sister!
usually our communication is through a phone seeing as we live in two different states, so you can imagine how special it is to be able to see her in person. she was a little sleepy, confused, and cold seeing as she had just flown in from hawaii that day, but the homecooked meals and reruns of friends are beginning to kick in.
zoro was really happy to see sarah...
i've assigned him to keep her bed warm during the day.
he's doing a really good job so far.
aside from seeing my family--and the dentist of course--i've also gotten to see some of my old friends.
mr. nacho and i met up with our friend crosson to celebrate her taking the physician's assistant exam. one of our other good friends, lauren, just graduated from law school and is studying for the bar.
my friends are doctor and lawyers.
...well, there's always hot dog eating contests.
crosson really enjoyed her present: a mug with the canadian flag on it.
i still have lots more family time to have, lots more homecooked meals to eat, lots more nights out with friends to see (including those who aren't in town yet!), and lots more of my favorite east coast foods to check off of my list.
my very first day, my mom asked if it felt weird for me to be home. the truth is that it feels like i never left. it's as if beachwood and all of the hollywood craziness was just a dream, or a memory. i've only been there for three months so to me, it makes sense that being home still feels completely normal. california may be where i live, but raleigh will always be home to me. and no matter how long i live on the west coast, the second i step back into north carolina, everything will always fall into place. don't get me wrong, i'm absolutely enjoying my time in california. it's the first time in my life i'm growing up and becoming independent. i may be twenty five, but i still have a lot more to learn and i can't wait to keep coming back here with more stories. i'm meant to be out there, but boy does it feel good to be back home.
i knew there was a reason i was going to like california.
after seeing that the forecast called for 80 degree weather and sunshine, i immediately hopped off of my couch and threw on the first bathing suit i could find. i decided that with weather like this, i was obligated to take advantage of living thirty minutes away from the beach. as i spritzed on my coconut tanning oil and laid in the warm sun, i chatted with sara back on the east coast. she had just walked out of walmart, and as soon as i heard the cold air whoosh through the phone, she screamed as if she had just seen a squirel driving a mini-van.
clearly, the beach was a good decision.
the only bad part about being in such a public place is the crowds of people that i seem to draw in. no matter how big my sunglasses are, i guess there will always be a line waiting for an autograph...
apparently i wasn't the only person to ever think of going to the beach on a beautiful day.
not like this is hard to believe, but my most important updates from the last few days are food-related. although i drove to santa monica (two days in a row) for the sunshine, i also was in search of the perfect sandwich. once again, not like that's hard to believe.
so for all the sandwiches, waffles, frozen yogurt and other goodies...click here!
in the midst of eating the last of all the perishable food in my apartment, it has occured to me how excited i am for all of my favorite east coast foods. for weeks now i've been on the hunt for cheese dip--which is something that you find at EVERY mexican restaurant on the right side of the country. it's gooey, it always drips onto the table, it's completely the opposite of authentic mexican food, and it's one of my favorite things in the world. seriously. i can eat an entire order of it by myself.
so you can imagine my surprise when i found out that no one here carries my beloved queso dip. because california is so close to mexico, every mexican restaurant in the city (even the holes in the wall) are all in competition with each other to be the most "authentic" that they can be. this means that my favorite americanized classics are nowhere to be found. so today i dedicate this blog specifically to cheese dip (las margaritas' cheese dip to be even more specific), but the general theme is east coast foods that i just can't wait to get my hands on. most of the pictures are from me, but a few had to be borrowed from the internet.
and here's to you cheese dip:
nothing better than starting an important day with one of these.
sometimes they're even complimentary:
i love you too breakfast sandwich!
speaking of love...
i need a cookout tray and milkshake ASAP. i dream about those corndogs.
ever had a babycakes cupcake?
i believe that these could actually create world peace. i'm in the process of trying to figure out how to duplicate my best friend so that one version of her can live here and make freshly baked cupcakes each morning.
cheesecake from nina's ristorante in north raleigh.
taking a bite of this is like playing in a field of sunflowers and puppies.
just seeing boondini's kind of makes my heart skip a beat. i believe this will be one of my first meals back home, which says a lot because clearly i didn't narrow down my options very well.
grilled jumbo buffalo wings from carolina ale house make you forget about every over-fried, under-sauced, crappy wing you've ever had.
it's kind of a spiritual experience.
speaking of spiritual experiences...
there's a reason i got assigned the nickname fanny pancakes.
i wish i could take credit for this picture of the cheese fries with roasted garlic ranch from raleigh times.
but i will eat an entire plate of them at 2 AM and then take credit for that.
basically, i'm just ready to eat my way through north and south carolina.
and i'm willing to share.
i had some great food experiences today, but i'll be posting those tomorrow along with a review of what i'll be eating in the morning. don't worry, it's not another omelet. tomorrow, i'll be dining with a friend for breakfast at a place called syrup in downtown LA. this place is known for their coffee drinks, sweet grilled cheese sandwiches, and most importantly...waffles. click on the link to browse some amazing photos. and click here to check out their insane menu.