Thursday, January 26, 2012

C'est pas la fin du Monde

Well, hello all!

First of all, I realize that I haven't posted since Christmas and New Year's... so I wish you all a very happy and prosperous New year's. I'm SO over resolutions so won't bug you about these... although 2012 is definitely bringing a LOT of changes for me! Since most French people will say "Bonne année, amour, santé, argent, travail"... I will let you know how I plan to make these happy this year!

Travail/Work: Going well. Big project will take up most of my social life in a few weeks for a month... Ah, 12 hour days, how I've missed you... NOT!! Sigh. But, if it makes our lives easier as of March 25th, that's exciting.

Argent/$$$: well, I don't have to pay $1400 a month for rent anymore, so that sure helps for a house downpayment and wedding to pay for.

Santé/Health: I plan to get healthy... just like every year... but this time, a little more's at stake and I can't just lose and gain 20 pounds like that anymore. Did you know that gaining/losing weight like that will hurt your liver? Anyway... basically, I gotta get my thyroid under control because my November results were a little alarming, and, well, to be blunt, if I don't get it under control and want to have children I'll have a prescription for the rest of my life. Sigh. Ok, That's motivation enough.

Amour / Love. Ah, ze love is in ze air... I'm planning Babe and I's wedding, found the venue, now just need to pick out the judge, flowers, DJ, invitations, and I think that's about it... how exciting! The only thing that sucks is for the next month I'll be so busy with work I want to take care of all of it now and I can't. It's ok, I'll make it work.

House hunting: yes, we visited our first house today in Cottonwood Heights... good first house... needs work... but my philosophy is I want to see a ton of homes so that when the right one comes along I know.

Babe's doing well in school with 20 credit hours and working in a lab as a Research Assistant. He's really busy but learning a lot and I'm really proud of him. He made the Dean's list with a great GPA last semester, and that's while missing 2 weeks of school while wandering through France. You go, babe.

So, for 2012, a lot of exciting things are happening in my life:

-Gettin' married!!
-Gettin' a house!!
-Possibly trying for a little bundle of joy!
-May become a certified Turbokick instructor!

Oh yeah. 2012, bring it on, you're going to be awesome. And it will not be the end of the world in December, Marsha told me because kdate is past December 21st, 2012. 'Nuf said.

Today I'm grateful for 2012 and the many wonderful things that will happen to this family. How will 2012 be a wonderfully grateful year for you?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Robe de Mariée

Just got home for what pretty much was the girliest day of my life, a really fun day, filled with emotions I've never felt before.

What was the plan today? Go visit 2 fancy bridal stores in Beverly Hills with 2 really good friends of mine. I knew it would be fun, and all about me... and it was... and more.

This was the very first time I'd been to a bridal store. Ok, well, I recall, when I was 14 years old, visiting my cousin during my summer vacation who was living in Nice at the time, and she worked in the bridal area of a department store. I came to work with her one day and hung out in the back. I can't recall if I actually tried on a dress or not, but I did put on a veil - and that made me feel really special for some reason. I mean, I was 14, no boyfriend (good thing), no intentions of getting married right away, but there was something about having that veil on my head... for once, I felt really pretty. I mean, really REALLY pretty. Who knew that a piece of lace could create such a boost in a teenager's self-esteem.

Fast forward 13 years later, my good friend (we'll call her R), said to me over dim sum in Chinatown last month: "You haven't bought your dress yet? Girl, you need to start shopping now, it takes months to order and about another month to hem/tailor."

Um... what? Here I am, engaged for 2.5 years, my wedding's in 9 months or so, and I really need to worry about the dress? I was planning to get this done maybe 2-3 months before the wedding to make sure the dress fits me (instead of me fitting the dress). But ladies (and gentlemen), apparently that is a big no-no, and you have to get the dress in advance. Ok... that means I get to start SHOPPING!!

So R took care of everything and made an appointment at 1PM today to visit a fancy bridal store, then plan to visit another one a few blocks away who was having a store closing sale. This is in the Beverly / Rodeo drive area of Beverly Hills mind you, so totally shopping for fun. I'm sorry but I'm not spending $5k on a dress I will only wear one day. But hey, if we can get pampered... and my guests can sip champagne while they comment how gorgeous I look... well, I still call that an awesome Saturday afternoon :)

1PM: First store, first experience. Tried on maybe 8-9 dresses. All beautiful. Some fit my figure perfectly, others not so much. And then... there it was. A beautiful ball-gown style dress that fit me perfectly. I tried the veil, the shoes.... and as I stood on that pedestal, looking in the mirror and my friends looked really happy, I almost got a little teary-eyed. This is beautiful. I feel beautiful right now. I truly feel like if babe saw me walking down the aisle in this dress and veil, it would take his breath away and fall in love with me all over again. Man, I am such a girl and I need to stop watching all these chick flicks :)

But seriously, I walked around, took some pictures... did not buy the dress as it was not only outside my price range, but also only my first store, and I want my mom to be there... but for a moment there, I felt like a million bucks. I guess that's why ladies shell out the big bucks for a wedding dress. I just don't think I need to spend over $2,500 to feel good about myself when I can do it for much less. But boy did it feel good :)

Second store: although still high end, 70% off everything because the store closes December 31st, which means employees basically don't care anymore. No employees came to help me get into my dress, the carpet in the fitting rooms had big stains on them, the clamps were industrial sized and my friend had to clamp the dress... yeah, but the good news is, found cute dresses that are more reasonable. Nothing like the first store, but still pretty. Plus, my other friend tried on some dresses too and it was so great seeing her light up inside. She is very skinny and I have curvier hips, so it was cool to see how certain styles fitted her in a way they couldn't with me, and vice versa. Most dresses are pretty, it just depends who wears it.

Then we went to happy hour.... then Anthropologie... then R's house for dinner for cornflake crumb chicken (yum!) and Indian desserts. What a perfect day.

Sorry for the guys reading this, as this is definitely a chick's post... but I really wanted to write down this amazing feeling of euphoria, hope, happiness, and overall feeling beautiful, because it's true, I don't think I've ever felt this good about myself in a long, long time, and I want to read back on this someday and remember.

In other news...

I gave my apartment my 30 day notice 2 days ago, and plan to be packing all Thanksgiving long. Tomorrow is Sunday, and nothing really exciting planned except relax - wedding dress shopping is actually pretty exhausting!!

Today I'm grateful for having such great friends taking me to bridal stores, and for our friendship I've treasured these past 3 years, which I hope does not go away when I move back to SLC next month.

Peace out!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Mise a Jour

Aw man, I should really go to Zumba right now but I really don't feel like it. After all, I just showered 2 hours ago and washed my hair which now smells scrumptious, do I really want to waste it on a class that is a mix of modern day aerobics/middle Eastern/Salsa/ random dance moves?

Don't get me wrong, I like Zumba, but sometimes the routine calls for some "what on earth am I doing" kind of dance moves. Still it's a good workout. And a good place for me to shake my booty because I can't go to a club and do that anymore :)

So... what's new? Well, went to DC and Salt Lake, did costume volleyball, had my crazy week of stress at work which turned out I didn't have to, because our big project's been pushed back... good thing, yet bad thing because I did not have to work for 14 hours those first two days last week.

And I also spent my last birthday in SoCal, and I am now 27 years young, and I feel.... ok, not old, but just finally classified as an adult. I always categorized myself as a "young adult" the past few years, but now I feel like an "adult". Which is good! I feel like I'm finally being taken seriously :) but now the juicy details of the birthday party...

Nov 4th: Friday: get up and have 3 meetings at 9, 10 and 11 (greaaaaat), but at noon I wanted to treat myself, so got a panino at Corner Bakery because panini are the best invention since sliced bread. Then after work, I got a massage, then went to a French restaurant with 13 of my closest Cali friends... all said really kind words to me and wished me good luck in my move back, one of them even sang to me! Aww, gonna miss those guys...

Then the after-party and my friend's house, B made me a cake and R bought a tiramisu, and we all enjoyed each other's company! Got home around 1am, packed, went to bed around 2, then woke up at 5 to go to the airport to DC. Yeah, a long day :)

In DC I found the most amazing bakery... "Paul, Maison de Qualité" - which turns out is a known chain in France - and holy cow, they made all the French pastries and breads imaginable! Quiches, fougasses, chaussons aux pommes, chaussons au raisins, pain au chocolat... even the BEST hot dog ever: hot dog in a French baguette with béchamel sauce and melted gruyere, toasted to perfection delivering that prefect crunch from the bread and juicyness from the franckfurter. I truly, truly enjoyed that. But hey, I also enjoyed company with Mom & B, walking to the capital, Smithsonian, found a great French restaurant (ok, last post about food, I swear) and then the conference which was great to see people I talk to / email often and got to see in person, as well as my boss' boss' boss' boss' boss' boss.

Sigh... it's happening, I just gave my 30 day notice today for my apartment, and I've decided what to do on the rental truck... maybe... so ridiculously expensive. But whatever, a girls' gotta do what a girl's gotta do. Thanksgiving will be spent packing and packing and finalizing stuff, hopefully I'll get invited somewhere for Thanksgiving this year. If not, no biggie... I love Thanksgiving but not as much as Christmas. Now if I had to spend Christmas alone, or wake up in an empty house, that would truly be depressing for me.

Oh, and Saturday, I'm going wedding dress shopping with my 2 girlfriends!! Yay. We were going to go to fancy Beverly Hills stores for fun, but I really don't want to fall in love with a $7,000 dress that I can't afford (even if I did, I wouldn't spend it) and find the David's bridal $500 dresses subpar.

Today I'm grateful for Babe's parents, who let me stay in their home while I was in Salt Lake the past few days. My future mommy in law even made me snacks while I worked, like apple slices and cheddar cheese.. yum!!

Wishing everyone a great evening and weekend coming up!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Holy Moly it's been a year!

Well, it's been a year since I've posted... and so much has happened, so much has changed... the only thing that hasn't changed though, is that I'm still happy as ever.

Since October 2011, let's see... a little recap:

*Had the most memorable Halloween 2010 ever, walking on Santa Monica Blvd in West Hollywood admiring costumes and hanging out with friends. Also, Costume volleyball! Which I will play again tomorrow...

*January to May I have to say was quite a blur!

*May: I get a new job. Same company, same discipline, but I work from home... which means I can move back to my home town!!

*May - August: Babe came to live with me during summer semester break. It was hard at first, with little arguments here and there because I'm so set in my ways... but we got along just fine and during that time, realized more than ever how much we enjoy being in each other's company. Since this summer, being away from him has been especially hard because I got used to living with him. I miss him more. Not that I didn't miss him before, but I was very much Miss Independent before, and now I need him more than ever.

*Sometime this summer: Mom & B moved into their new home which looks beautiful!!

*August: My dad, stepmom, brother and sister came to visit from France! First time in the US for most, they met Babe, discovered LA, Vegas, Grand Canyon, Cali Coast including San Fran... and we had so much fun together. I love them so much and wish I could see them more often. I'm glad they enjoyed their trip here.

*September: Babe and I go to France together... his first time! Saw where I grew up, met family, ate incredible cheese and other foods, hung out on beautiful beaches and French Riviera towns, and spent an incredible week in Paris just walking around and enjoying the sights, the smells, the tastes... not to mention, the best Hot dog EVER!! Hot dog in a French baguette with spicy dijon mustard, overlooking the Eiffel Tower on top of the Trocadero... priceless. Well, actually like 3 something euros, but the view... priceless :D

*October: planning month. Finally (pretty much) set a wedding date for July 21st next summer, just other little things to plan out... and also planning my move back to SL. Lots of planning to come... Oh, and just learned my future sister in law is engaged too, and getting married May 2012. Wedding dress shopping together maybe? Sounds like uber girl fun!

*November: Super busy month ahead. B's 60th birthday, Traveling to DC, SLC, lots of 12 hour work days I'm sure, and packing / selling furniture and such. Hopefully I will only work 10 hours on my birthday coming up NEXT Friday!!! :)

Future: move into Mom's house to save some dough, save enough money to buy a house by summer 2012, get married, start a family with my wonderful future hubby... oh my, this is too much excitement!!! And the top reasons for my euphoric feeling of happiness.

Ah... I'm sure I missed quite a few things, but one thing's for sure, it's that love is in the air and that's what I'm grateful for today. I love my man, I love my family, people are getting engaged left and right, Babe's sister is getting married, my brother's found a great girl and we all really like her and she makes him a better man, and the best part is... I feel loved by everyone close to me as well.

Wishing you all a fantastic weekend... thanks for reading and I encourage you to think of one thing you're grateful for today!!! :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Bien Dans Sa Peau

So, I don't know what's up with me lately... but I've been smiling constantly. I mean, CONSTANTLY, chuckling and smiling at whatever I think of. I'm just happy... maybe it's the fact that I have energy again and have lost about 7 lbs in a few weeks already? Who knows. But I feel.... great. Just fantastic. I seriously can't recall being this happy. I really can't.

Work's been good and not too busy (slowing down at least, busy season is finally coming to a stop...) which is good, because my regimen is now gym 5x a week for an hour each. This Saturday, I'm walking for CMN in the Torch Relay with my company, then I need to do an hour of cardio, then play volleyball for 3-4 hours. After that, it's Happy Hour in Venice Beach for my Greek buddy's birthday! I'll be looking forward to that Shirley Temple, I'm sure, after such an exhausting day...

I also can't wait to celebrate my birthday in less than a month. We plan to go to a tapas place in Long Beach with live entertainment, then who knows? Something fun I'm sure, planned by my friends :)

I'm grateful for being happy... and sure hope this lasts.

Have a great night everybody.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Allez, Courage!

Oh boy, what a day. First, yesterday I finally had the talk with my boss... "you've been coming in a little later lately, around 8am... and you really should be setting up inventories at 7:30" No problem. I just needed her to tell me. I'm now back to work at 7:30. That means also maybe I'll get to leave at 5 instead of 6. She was very nice, it wasn't a concerning talk or anything. Just needed to happen. I need to give up my snooze button in the mornings.

Also - I'm proud of myself. I felt a little crappy today (girl issues), and I absolutely, in no way felt like going to the gym and wanted to blow the homework my trainer gave me. But hey, I put on my workout clothes, and went... and did all my exercises. I also didn't give up when I couldn't figure out how to adjust the machine... It took me 4 minutes and 23 seconds but I did it.

That felt good.

I'm on the path to become even happier by working out... The trainer complimented me on how strong my core is. Yay for the core. Who knows, maybe I'll have a 2-pack by my birthday? And I'm not talking beer here... :)

Today I'm grateful that I had the courage not to give up on my exercises. Way to go, me.

Tomorrow I'm going to see the screening of "Life as we know it", which looks super cute... and you have to admit, Josh Duhamel is super hot.

Thursday night I'm cooking for my friends - French onion soup and Spaghetti a la Carbonara. Ah, the joys of cooking...

Have a great night!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Heureuse @ home

Wow... it's been so long and so much has happened since May!

I have to apologize for not posting sooner, but I blame this on my addiction to Facebook (well, I really have no one else to blame but me). Man, good thing I never started Farmville or one of these idiotic FB games.

So much has happened... in summary:

-France was awesome. I love my family and miss them very much.
-Babe and I celebrated 9 years together.
-Got bit on my nose by my friend's dog.
-My uncle Charles died of a heart attack.
-My best friend since 6th grade is expecting a baby girl.
-Renewed my gym membership and started kickboxing again.
-Has become the West Hollywood queen.
-Went to Disneyland for the first time since 1992.
-My cousins in Orange County had a beautiful baby girl.
-Tried Sea Urchin at a sushi place (gross... but at least I tried it).
-Started introducing a little bit of wine into my life.
-Had the best, most memorable times with my mom and bro over Sangria and Tapas.

and so much more...

My France May trip was an absolute blast. As expected, right before I landed, as I gaze up at these typical clouds of Paris and slight rain... I can't help but shed a tear of joy of mixed emotions. My French experience starts before I get off the plane, as I glance at my neighbor reading "Le Parisien" newspaper, I finish my delicious croissant, and I hear some French people arguing. Ah, I am home...

But the thing is... what I've been asking myself lately.... what, and where is home?

I love France and my family there. I feel happy and sad when I go back. Happy because it is my country of birth and where I spent my first 12 years. Happy because I get to see my dad and siblings (who are now 15 BTW holy crap!!!) and other family. Happy because as I walk on the beaches of Le Lavandou, have homemade paella by grandpa Gigi, run my bike in the Paris 'burbs to get an evening baguette... I feel those childhood memories, back in those times when I was happy and did not have a care in the world. I feel sad because.... well, I love my dad so much, because he's my dad... and my brother and sister... and I love being with them... but I nearly don't spend enough time with them. They are growing up so fast, and I feel sad that I am not a part of their daily lives (now they are on FB so it might help...) Once every two years though is when I should go back... at a MINIMUM. And I would love to go next year actually. I'd really like to plan on it (maybe even with Babe).

Salt Lake, UT? Yeah, it's also considered home.... but that's my safe spot. My spot to be with family and get married, pop out kids and start a family with a home and a white picket fence and raise children in a very safe area. The American dream. And as of a few months ago, when I was unhappy and stressed at my job and was hoping to get laid off or something, all I wanted was to go back to SL and go back to that safe place. Well, things have changed...

I think it may have started with this dream I had, which really got to me. I dreamed that I moved back to Salt Lake and got a $10/hr desk job. Still with the company. The job was very uncomplicated. In a way, it was what I wanted to go back to Salt Lake for and do after living the daily stresses of my work. But in the dream, I was MISERABLE. Thinking, the whole time, "why on EARTH would I leave L.A. for this? Leave all the great friendships I've made? The beach? West Hollywood? (haha)".

And then I went dancing in gay clubs in West Hollywood (WeHo). It is SO much fun, and perfect fun too. I get to shake my booty to top 40 songs but no guys are hitting on me (I've yet to be hit on by a girl though, should I be self-conscious? haha! That's totally fine!!). Plus, I get to hang out with my favorite gay guy friend from volleyball, who has become my BFF and can talk to about almost anything.

Home is... many different places. Different places which arouse different emotions. Basically I still expect France to be home as where I get to be a kid again... and Salt Lake to where I can raise a family... and then there's good old Los Angeles... which I have now realized, is really, truly, NOW MORE THAN EVER, my current home. The place where a girl in her mid 20's should be and have the time of her life.

So now... for the first time in a while, I can truly say... that...




So happy.

Really, really happy.

I wake up everyday with a smile on my face, because of how great my life is. My job's doing better, although I still have challenges, I embrace them and finally enjoy learning new things. I have some of the greatest friends in the world. And I have truly the best of both worlds. Babe and I still love each other after 9 amazing years, and when he comes out we have the best time together. And then when he's gone... I get to go out and have fun with my friends, doing what a single girl in her mid 20's would do, all while staying loyal to my man.

Life.... is SWEET.

And don't get me wrong, I still see Salt Lake as the ideal place for my future and raising a family... but now, I just don't want to go back just yet. I can easily see myself living in SoCal at least another 2 years.

This has been quite a lot for today... I actually have to go hit the gym right now because my personal trainer gave me homework (I haven't had homework since 2007! Haha!) and then it's beach volleyball time. I want to write on this blog more often because I feel happier when I do, expressing my emotions.

I hope everyone is doing well... I would love to hear how you are doing also (most of you I catch up with on the bookface) but I wish you all, lots of happiness.... and a fabulous Sunday!!!