The past few years have flown by a little too quickly for my liking. That’s why one of my resolutions this year is to try and slow down time. As some of our best scientists have still not figured out a way to actually do this (can we stop trying to cure cancer or discover more planets for A MINUTE and get on this please?), I will have to do it in the only way I know how: enjoying life’s little moments and embracing mindfulness. Taking advantage of a day or afternoon off. Eating a lot. Seriously though when I eat enough, my heart slows down, each minute drags on…I’m onto something here. Regardless, I think the past month has gone by much slower than the prior Januarys, and in order to ensure I remember all of these joyful moments created in years to come, I would like to document them here.
Things I Ate But Probably Shouldn’t Have:
1. Influx’s Breakfast Croissant: Melissa and I were having a panic day pretty early into the new year. We decided the best way to cure this one was to grab breakfast to-go, pick up a bottle (or two) of champagne, and watch Two-Night Stand in her apartment with the blinds drawn. I believe their croissants are made in house and are smothered with basil, tomato, and melted brie cheese. Top it with the generous portion of Dijon mustard provided? It is a perfect pick-me up. Or maybe that was the champagne. Either way, panic was eradicated.
2. Damon’s Cheesesteak: Damon loves food maybe a little more than I do which, I know, sounds impossible. After reading my hilarious and insightful cheesesteak blog (what? You missed it? Read it here! https://lazygirltrying.wordpress.com/2015/01/17/the-sandwich-chronicles-gaglione-brothers/), he was determined to make one to surpass the Gaglione Brothers’ and restore my faith in the power of the cheesesteak. I wasn’t going to argue. We got freshly baked bread, provolone cheese, thinly sliced rib eye, mushrooms, and onions. The end result was heavenly. The meat was perfectly seasoned, the mushrooms added a nice heartiness…and it all cost about as much as the one from Gaglione Brothers did. Home-cooking wins again!
3. Fogo de Chao: Since Damon and I didn’t get each other “experience gifts” this Christmas (something we can do together, i.e. kayak whale watching), we decided to treat ourselves to a nice evening out. For us, that means stuffing our faces full of Brazilian meats until we either throw up or get gout (I’m pretty sure I left with the latter). This was our second time at Fogo de Chao, and while I ate slightly less this time around, I still got my money’s worth. Not only do they have eight or so delicious varieties of meats that they pile on your plate non-stop, they also have a gorgeous salad bar, complete with cheeses, deli meats, and fancy vegetables. This year, I really relied on the artichoke hearts and fried plantains to break up the flavors of the meat and help me eat myself to a state Liz Lemon surely would be proud of. Leaving the restaurant, stomach protruding, hobbling down the street in an ungainly gait, stuffed to the brim with animal flesh and blood, I imagined that’s how King Henry VIII felt every day. (Sigh)…what a life.
4. Felix’s BBQ with Soul: My sister Katy works in a…troubled neighborhood, but sometimes those places hold little treasures. Located on the Four Corners of Death (yep, that’s a real thing), aka Imperial and Euclid just a few blocks from Katy’s school, Felix’s BBQ with Soul is one of those gems. It is exactly what it sounds like–a soul food restaurant, and an authentic one at that, which is incredibly hard to come by in San Diego. The owner is from the South and you can taste it in his food. We lucked out and went on a Sunday during their brunch. Not only were traditional breakfast foods available (eggs, breakfast potatoes, etc), but traditional southern fair as well. What I had is as follows: biscuits and sausage gravy, shrimp and grits, red beans and rice, collard greens, endless riblets, half of Katy’s endless fried catfish, mac n’ cheese, bacon, candied yams, and more collard greens. It was only $22 for the brunch, it came with a drink and dessert, and allowed me to try virtually everything on the menu. I do need to come back for their fried green tomatoes, gumbo, and a po’ boy for my sandwich exploration, but that will be for another time. Honestly, I kind of like that it’s in the most deadly location of San Diego; if not, it would be impossible to get a seat in there.
Things That I Bought That I Didn’t Have the Money For:
1. Urban Decay Anti-Aging Primer and Physicians Formula Bronze Booster: My sister got me the Naked 2 Palette for my birthday,
and it came with a sample of their eyeshadow primers. I never used a primer before that point, had always been skeptical of the necessity of one, but after using it for the first time, I knew there was no going back. There were four samples with the palette and only this month did they finally run out. I had a hard time choosing between Eden (one formulated particularly with matte shadows in mind), and the Anti-Aging one, but my fear of looking old and haggish got the better of me yet again, and I went with the latter. While at Ulta, I decided to pick up the Physicians Formula bronzer as I’d heard good things about, but had never tried. I had to buy a brush to apply it with since the one that comes in the package is thin and janky, but otherwise I’m very pleased.
2. Forever 21 “Haul:” I have been in desperate need of new work clothes since, oh, I first became employed back in 12th grade. The problem is, I hate business casual, do not feel like myself in it, and would rather put my money into clothes I actually want to wear and don’t totally kill my vibe. That’s why I currently love Forever 21. I found these black pants that are work-appropriate, but still feel like me. And get this–they’re only $8. RIGHT?! And those cardigans? $9! The camisoles? LITERALLY $2. I’m sure you can sense my elation. I grabbed a couple of each, a nail polish (because I’m me), a cute little cloth headband, adorable seashell socks, and a striped-cotton top for just under $60. All of these are work appropriate, but also Gina’s-life-appropriate and that’s what matters most. Thank God for sweatshop prices, amiright?
3. Biggie Smalls Sweatshirt: Janine and her husband were flooded out of their apartment on the first of the year, and very quickly found a new place. In order to celebrate this good fortune (and celebrate Corey’s birthday, I guess), they threw a 90’s-themed party. I went to Forever 21 in search of something velvet or crop-toppy, and left with this. Comfy, oversized, unique…something Mr. Smalls would have worn himself. It went over incredibly well at the party and adds a touch of style to my nightly Netflix binges.
Alright, that is it, my little ones. I ate, I bought, I conquered. Hopefully February will have as much in store.