Category Archives: Santa Barbara

My Birthday!!!

     Yesterday was my “holy-crap-I’m-actually-starting-to-feel-old” birthday! Since I’m getting so old, instead of going out and getting drunk (which I only did on my 21st birthday) I spent a leisurely morning at home before taking a relaxing day trip up the coast.
First though, a healthy breakfast! Chocolate-covered Entenmann’s donuts have been a staple for birthday breakfasts since I was seven! I balanced this out with a Monsta, to sustain the aged part of me.
We went to lunch at an Indian restaurant that we haven’t been to – Flavor of India. This was rated the top Indian restaurant in Santa Barbara for 2011.
TITLE: EARNED! Their buffet was SO GOOD!
We went to the botanic gardens to enjoy some peace and quiet – you know, because I’m old now.
Peaceful plants.
Pretty, peaceful plants.
Cute, peaceful plants.
Peaceful view.
BAD BEER. It takes a lot for me to not like a beer, but I tried these at a local brewpub and was NOT happy. The stout tasted like it had a toxic amount of Liquid Smoke in it, and the rest were flavorless or too sweet. I thought it was time to find some beer that was a guarantee.
I had to suffer through a torturous drive back down the coast.
It was really rough.
What mountain is this? Could it possibly be Ladyface?
The BEST place to spend a birthday!
My go-to: Blind Ambition. I know I said I’d try not to have any repeat beers this year, but it’s my birthday, so shaddup.
There are very few stouts that I truly enjoy, but Ladyface’s Russian Lullaby is amazing! This wasn’t mine, but I had a few sips so I could appreciate the silky smooth goodness topped with coffee grounds.
I ended the evening with a Chesebro IPA. One of these at ABV (alcohol by volume, in case you didn’t know) 9.5% and IBU (International bittering units) 100 is enough to leave me with a glowing, mellow feeling for a few hours. The Chesebro had a warm floral taste to it – perfect to end such a beautiful day with.
Happy birthday to me 🙂
Now I’m off to my first homebrewers meeting to have my beer tasted and judged.


Filed under birthday, Blind Ambition, botanic gardens, coastal drive, donuts, Entenmann's, Flavor of India, happy birthday to me, Indian Food, Ladyface, ocean view, old, Russian Lullaby, Santa Barbara

My Legs Hate Me

     Today I woke up at 5:45am and decided that a trip to go running on the beach was in order. My roommate and I hopped in his car and head up to Goleta, CA – him for kayaking and for me, some intensely therapeutic working out.

     We had to stop and fuel up before we embarked upon our insane day, so Starbucks was in order.

Yes, that is an Egg McMuffin ala the Bucks. I don’t care how many calories are in it. It was GOOD!
     We got to Goleta around 7am and were greeted by a THICK marine layer!
I could not see past 100 feet in front of me. Awesome!
Me realizing that I forgot my sweatshirt. Crap.
     After my roommate launched, I headed up to UCSB, my old college campus, and ran the route I used to run every morning.
Looking down the cliff at Campus Point. I used to surf right there! The ocean has eroded so much of the cliffs that it all looks completely different!
The trails were pretty slippery and it was misting heavily. I was drenched with marine layer two minutes into my run.
     I ran north on DP (Del Playa aka PARTY CENTRAL) and passed lots of beer pong tables, tons of new apartment buildings and a girl on the walk of shame, carrying her stilettos in one hand and wearing a dress that should not be shown in public. After I passed through IV (Isla Vista, the neighborhood where all the UCSB students live), I kept going north for another 45 minutes.
It was WET out!
Really, really wet.
I ran into a dead end by this beautiful little house tucked into the marsh preservation area and didn’t want to run on the road, so I circled around and headed back to campus.
     The UCSB library has eight floors. The UCSB library has a staircase. I totally killed myself sprinting up the eight flights. At the top I was shaky, out of breath and wanted more! I perused a few bookshelves to regain my lung-composure, then headed over to my old dorm, San Miguel (or as we called it at the time, San MiGhetto).
     San MiGhetto also has eight floors. And stairs. I sprinted up those, then wandered the halls and traced all the memories I’d made there. It was a very nostalgic day for me. San MiGhetto also has a little gym that just happened to be unlocked and not in use. Since sprinting up the stairs and running for 2 hours straight wasn’t enough, I went in and did some lat pulldowns and other arm weights. Wonderful, wonderful pain.
     I made my way back down to Sandspit Road, where we’d started, took off my shoes and walked barefoot on the beach enjoying the crashing surf and the chilly air.
It was a beautiful morning.
     Since my roommate and I had both spent three hours exercising nonstop, we decided that a trip to The Taj in Ventura for an indian buffet was in order.
I cleaned my plate and got dessert. I was ravenous!
     After indian, we headed over to the chocolate shop, Trufflehounds, to pick up some more deliciousness, then headed home. I showered off the salty sea air, sand and sweat, then proceeded to pass out in bed for a good hour and a half. I woke up just in time to head to work.
     Work went well, considering it’s retail. I had some Paciugo therapy, sold 240% of my goal and spent over an hour with two really fun customers who made the time go by quickly.
     I have a full shift tomorrey morning again. Getting back into the swing of things. It’s difficult after such a wonderful week on set, but I’m looking forward to some auditions I have next week. They make it much more bearable.
What’s the most intense workout you’ve ever done?


Filed under beach, Goleta, Indian Food, library, running, Santa Barbara, stairs, Starbucks, trufflehounds, UCSB, Workout

Happy Birthday, Dad!

     Happy birthday to my pops!!! We had a jam-packed schedule today, and I was lucky enough to be able to sleep in, then woke up to this:

My mom made the monsters! No idea exactly what’s in these, but I know they were green and delicious! Thanks, mom!
     My dad had a little work to do before we headed out, but my mom and I were able to pry him away to give him his presents.
I think he’s pretty happy with his new iPad! My mom got him that – I bought him shirts, ’cause I’m poor.
     With my crazy metabolism, I got hungry around 10am and heated up a little whole wheat pasta. I also had a honey stick to keep up the blood sugar. I’m obsessed with honey sticks!
     We left the house around 11:30am and made our way up to Santa Barbara. There was some consideration about stopping at The Taj in Ventura, but instead we passed right on by and went to The Taj in Santa Barbara. A very dramatic difference, I know.
Mango Lassi followed by chicken curry, veggie korma, saag and some fried potato thingies.
A second serving of chana masala and veggie korma, buttery-carrots-dessert (I really should learn the name for that), sugary doughnut and shiny garlic naan.
     This gigantic meal left us all in a lot of wonderful pain, so we wandered State Street on foot for awhile and checked out some of the local stores. Lush is a new discovery that’s always fun for the girls out there! My dad wasn’t a fan, but was sweet enough to let us stop in for a few minutes.
     For his birthday, my dad decided he wanted to go kayaking! He’s been searching for one to purchase to help with his ocean-fishing habit and wanted to give a different style a try. We went to the harbor in Santa Barbara and stopped by Paddle Sports for a trial. 
Kathy helped us out – such a helpful, sweet woman.
So many colors! And he’s off!
This was a Hobie Mirage Revolution that has a pedal-system. It slices through the water at crazy speeds, and if you decide to be a purist, you can pluck the paddle from the side and get your upper body workout as well. Have you ever tried a pedal-kayak? Do you have a preference?
     My mom and I watched him cruising in the open ocean for about half an hour, then retired to Brophy Bros. to split a beer and enjoy the harbor views.
We split an Anchor Steam. I wasn’t a big fan of this one – it was pretty bitter, but it sure tasted good enough for a warm, breezy day spent on the ocean!
     My dad test drove another kayak for an hour, then returned to shore tired and ready to refuel. This called for Dargan’s!
I’ve been trying new beers lately. This one is a simple Firestone Double Barrel Ale, which I’d never had before. It was all right. Nothing to write home about, or try again.
My pops had his favorite – A Black Velvet: Half Strongbow cider, half Guinness.
     We also split massive quantities of food. My dad had the big workout, but his appetite afterwards was contagious.

We had spicy chicken skewers with curry sauce and peanut sauce and Irish potato skins.
Next came seared ahi tuna with a sesame dressing and spring greens. I had a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. YUM to the ahi tuna, MEH to the beer.
     The highlight of the meal came last: Irish Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding with Irish Cream! 
A La Mode! This was the most amazing dessert I’ve ever had, and I’ve had a LOT of desserts in my lifetime, so this is saying something! 
The bread was soft and chewy with swirls of cinnamon and dense chocolate chips strewn throughout. Irish cream was drizzled over the top and blended with the chocolate sauce. The ice cream slowly melted and was absorbed by the sticky-sweet bread. I freaked out. I may have cried tears of joy.
     We walked around Ventura for a little, visited the used book store again, then headed back home. Firefly, one of the most amazing/cancelled shows ever is now playing on DVD as my dad plays with his new iPad and a cool breeze whispers through the open windows. I love being home with my family :).
     Tomorrow we’ll start with a breakfast/brunch at Coogie’s Beach Cafe in Malibu, and a lovely drive along the coast. I am so blessed to have such an amazing family and to be able to spend so much time with them! I hope you all have equally incredible Friday nights. 
Give your parents a hug – physical or emotional. It’s all good.


Filed under Bread pudding, Dargan's, green monster, irish pub, kayak, ocean, Santa Barbara