Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Travel the World for Cheap!!! / My Favorite Stay-at-Home-Night Idea

(First of all, TIME FLIES! Every day I think about my poor little bloggy. March's resolution will be to blog more and to blog more consistently!)

(Secondly, my writing has been all over the place. Schedule? What schedule? But, I am moving forward. I have to tell myself that baby steps are better than no steps at all! And, I started working on a map for my fantasy world... I forgot to take a picture... Maybe I'll post one tomorrow! But it really helped me to visualize where my characters are and how geography might affect their actions in the story. Note: If you are pursuing anything creative, I challenge you to use other creative sources for inspiration. Listen to music. Scour the internet for photos related to your subject. Look for dances, poems, and art pieces on your topic. Sometimes, it can be just what you need to get out of the rut and moving forward again!)

World Travel Made Cheap! 
(Must have a DVD player, and adventurous taste-buds...)

Okay. Here's my fabulous idea of the week (or month... Since I do this all the time). I love this idea because it's perfect for a date night, family night, or when you have people over. I'm pretty sure it will become a regular habit in my household. And I love this idea because it's cheap. And slightly dorky.

Step 1
Choose a type of food: American (yummy, but borrrring), Mexican (drool), Japanese (YEAH!), Chinese (yum), Italian (double drool), Indian (I say "YAY!"; my husband says "NAY!"), etc... I'm sure there are more... French? African? I don't know.

Step 2
Choose a recipe that you've never made before within said food group. My girlfriends and I chose sushi.

We didn't use the bananas in the sushi... But I'm pretty sure dessert sushi needs to be invented...

I love finding recipes online. I actually go to Google and type in "amazing [whatever recipe I'm looking for] recipe" and I usually get directed to (which is great, since almost everything has been rated, the directions are super easy to follow, and it's super duper easy to calculate the quantity of ingredients you will need based on how many servings you want!).

Step 3
Go to the library and choose several movies related to your theme...

Step 4
Search online for and play music related to your ethnic theme while you cook. (Have you ever tried "Japanese Popstars" radio? No? You should.) I like to use Pandora, but there are other great online radio stations too (RadioTuna is good). It is also recommended to dance while cooking.

Step 5
Camp out in front of the television, eat your food, and watch your movie(s)!

Homemade California rolls and Avocado rolls... Oh my goodness...!!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

My Name Isn't Sheena (But THIS Sheena ROCKS!)

A) My name is pronounced with a short 'e' sound. Like "Jenna". I will forever be correcting people since for some reason or other they always want to pronounce my name with a long 'e' sound...

B) I love it when I come across a true life story of someone making the most with what they've got. Especially when doing so results in others being blessed.

Meet Sheena Matheiken (I haven't actually met her, I just stumbled across her online... Maybe you've heard of her?). Sheena is the founder of The Uniform Project (U.P.) - a creative fundraising project with the goal of raising money to send needy and underprivileged children to school. Nearly two years ago Sheena garnered public attention by vowing to wear the same LBD (little black dress) every day for an entire year. And she came up with 365 different ways to wear the same dress - all by adding or subtracting versatile and creative accessories (all used, vintage, or donated).

Oh my goodness... She's so cute!

I love Sheena and her project for two reasons:
  1. This just goes to show that you DON'T need to go out and buy a dozen new outfits. All you need are accessories. And those accessories DON'T need to be new. Let's be resourceful and individual for crying out loud!
  2. Sheena's project gives greater purpose to fashion. If you're going to buy a new outfit then why not make a wise investment that A) is classic and will serve you well in multiple circumstances; and B) supports a noble cause!
If, like me, you are dying to get your own LBD (in Sheena's versatile design) then click here. You can also purchase other unique and versatile LBDs on the U.P. website as well. Not to mention the fact that you can get some serious fashion inspiration from all 365 looks that Sheena put together! (You can also head to U.P.'s homepage to subscribe so that you can see what this year's LBD is up to...)

And while you're at it, why not get some Toms shoes (for every pair you purchase a new pair of shoes is sent to a child in need!)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Things I Love (like Brad Womack-Inspired Workouts...)

After a couple weeks of feeling "off" I'm finally getting back into my routine. This morning I worked on my writing for 30-40 minutes and I ran 1 1/2 miles (at 6.5 miles per hour). My sweet husband made me breakfast for the second morning in a row.

Last week when I was feeling blue I started making a list of things I was thankful for... Just because it's SO easy for me to be swept up in things that I want instead of things that I already have.

So, in honor of Valentine's week here's a current list of things that I am in love with...

I love: my husband who randomly breaks out into song when he's around me (not real songs... his own theme songs... like he's a Disney musical character), my little 1,000 square foot house, my sweet family, my office with my Ikea furniture, running in the morning, blueberries, my future dog, and my new living room mirror from Home Goods...

Seriously... I love mirrors... This gorgeous beveled and engraved beauty was half off!

I also love Octavia tea and chocolate gelato from Graham's 318... Plus smooches from my love....

I also love watching all 6 hours of the BBC's Pride and Prejudice miniseries (NO one does Mr. Darcy like Colin Firth... *sigh*). (By the way... one of my Valentine's Day hi-lights was eating vegetarian chili dogs while watching P&P... Oh yeah... AND trying Turkish Delight for the first time in my life... Oh Edmund, now I understand!)

I also love this fantastic and ridiculous Bachelor Workout that I found. Next week when your honey (or your guilty self) drags you to the TV to admire laugh at Brad Womack's wooing skills you can at least burn some calories. (Basically, you do things like: "5 tricep dips for any variation on the term ' myself,' 5 squats every time Brad going to therapy is mentioned, 5 squats every time Brad kisses a lady10 curls every time a girl cries, 30 second of mountain climbers every time a pool or hot tub is used..." (Tip: I firmly believe that this routine can be adapted for any guilty TV pleasure...)

Make the most with what you have this week. Maybe it's just doing some extra crunches during a TV show. Maybe it's choosing to set the alarm early so you can get up and conquer some goals. Maybe it's taking a moment to appreciate little things you are thankful for! (like white Valentine's roses... and the fact that both my husband and I wanted white because they would "look best" in our house and red would have clashed... I love that we are so like minded - even when it's silly little things! We both seriously thought about the flowers matching our house when he picked them out with me at Trader Joe's... We are dorks! :)) 
I love white roses... :)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I'm in a funk. Family drama and an out of whack schedule are wrecking havoc on my lil' system-loving self!!!

My precious morning writing ritual has been set on the back burner for a week. I've got half a dozen articles for work due tomorrow and I didn't get to work out today. I officially want to hide in a hermit hole.

I'm starting to realize that when life throws me curve balls I need to be able to roll with the punches (oops mixed metaphors! my bad) AND continue to prioritize my dreams. I'm still trying to figure out how to work enough hours to pay the bills and save, spend time at the gym each day, have enough 'me' time so that I don't go insane, have time to read and study, AND have enough time to write my story. Not to mention prioritizing time with my husband.

I know that not every week will be perfect. And I know that I need to get over this ridiculous habit of internally moping every time my schedule gets messed with. It's like I'm a little kid sitting in the mud with my arms crossed. HELLO SELF!!! Pouting is not gonna bring eternal satisfaction!

Not that I recommend going on a killing rampage (because revenge really isn't as sweet as it's cracked up to be), but Beatrix Kiddo sure was on to something when went off to kill Bill. If she can wiggle her big toe and reclaim her status as a deadly assassin after years of being comatose then surely I can pick myself up and move past my state of self-loathing and self-pity.

A time when I literally and figuratively felt on top of the world...

"There is no way to success in our art but to take off your coat, grind paint, and work like a digger on the railroad, all day and every day." Ralph Waldo Emerson 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Darn Those Two-faced Omega Fatty Acids!

One of the companies I blog for is a health supply company (; if you wanna read blogs that I write for them then go to the blog). Today, my topic was to write about the difference between Omega 3's and Omega 6's. I must say, as I did my research I was surprised! I guess I assumed that all Omega fatty acids were good-for-you fats. Boy, was I wrong. Omega 3's and Omega 6's are different and it's super important to understand the differences. Here's what I learned:

Omega 3’s...
  • ...are a type of essential fatty acid (that the body cannot produce on its own).
  • ...are primarily found in flax seed, fish, and walnuts.
  • …help to reduce stress, prevent diseases, enable healthy pregnancies and deliveries, reduce obesity, fight cancer, alleviate diabetes, prevent arthritis, reduce inflammation, strengthen hair and nails, and rejuvenates skin.
  • ...are essential for health and well-being. We can never have too many Omega 3’s in our body.
Omega 6’s...
  • ...are a type of essential fatty acid (that the body cannot produce on its own).
  • ...are primarily found in poultry, eggs, nuts, avocados, and vegetable oils.
  • …are essential for health, but can be detrimental in high quantities. Too much of Omega 6 can cancel out the Omega 3 benefits and can lead to diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis.
The optimum ratio of Omega 6’s to Omega 3’s should be about 4:1 or lower. Most western diets have a ratio of about 10:1 and in some instances a ratio of up to 30:1.

So what can we do?

First of all, beware of food packaging that advertises “Omega fatty acids” without specifying that the fatty acids are actually Omega 3’s. Secondly, be mindful of incorporating Omega 3’s into your diet and limit your consumption of too many Omega 6’s.