Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween to all of you across the blogsphere! Wishing you a safe and fun evening. I will be heading to a party tonight for some good food, great music, and awesome friends. Maybe I'll even win an award for Most Uncreative Costume.

I leave you with a picture I find appropriate.



Jasmin

Friday, October 30, 2009

I blame school for my lack of creativity

I bought my Halloween costume today...or I should say, it choose for me, being that there were no other decent costumes left. Since when did everything involving Halloween become all about how LITTLE material you can wear? It's annoying! I ended up buying cat ears and a tail...yes, a totally uncreative and boring costume, but at least I'll be warm, comfy, and covered up. Besides, I have grad school all weekend and don't have much time to hunt for a more creative costume. What are y'all going as?

I also thought I'd share a little on the true origins of Halloween below, courtesy of this website. Enjoy!

Halloween is far from being a pagan religious event and is actually a Christian celebration that's almost 1,300 years old.

"Halloween" is a name that means nothing by itself. It is a contraction of "All Hallows Eve," and it designates the vigil of All Hallows Day, more commonly known as All Saints Day. ("Hallow" as a noun is an old English word for saint). Saints Day, November 1, is a Holy Day of Obligation in the Catholic Church, and both the feast and the vigil have been celebrated since the early eighth century, when they were instituted by Pope Gregory III in Rome.

Despite rumors about the "pagan origins" of Halloween, there really are none. The first attempts to show some connection between the vigil of All Saints and the Celtic harvest festival of Samhain came over a thousand years after All Saints Day became a universal feast, and there's no evidence whatsoever that Gregory III was even aware of Samhain.

In Celtic peasant culture, however, elements of the harvest festival survived, even among Christians, just as the Christmas tree owes its origins to pre-Christian Germanic traditions without being a pagan ritual.

The Celtic elements included lighting bonfires, carving turnips (and, in America, pumpkins), and going from house to house, collecting treats, as carolers do at Christmas. But the "occult" aspects of Halloween--ghosts and demons--actually have their roots in Catholic belief. Christians believed that, at certain times of the year (Christmas is another), the veil separating earth from Purgatory, heaven, and even hell becomes more thin, and the souls in Purgatory (ghosts) and demons can be more readily seen. Thus the tradition of Halloween costumes owes as much, if not more, to Christian belief as to Celtic tradition.


Jasmin

Thursday, October 29, 2009

What's wrong with this picture?

I have to read about 25 health-related journal articles and complete my biostats problem sets in about 24 hours (between working, mind you), and instead I'm blogging. It's funny how grad school changes your previous tendencies. If I was an undergrad student right now, I'd be panicking and trying to get it all done, while stressing over the fact that I'm panicking and trying to get it all done so late. Instead, I'm avoiding doing all work since at this point there's no way I'm completing it all.

I hope this doesn't mean I'm burnt out already...it's only been a month, and I have another year-and-a-half to go. :\

On another note, I need some quick (and easy) Halloween costume ideas...preferably something I can slip on and off pretty easily. Last year I went as a cat, which was pretty easy to pull off...any suggestions? I don't have time to make a costume either, so something store bought is best.

Jasmin

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

LBD Love

So remember that brilliant idea I had a few days ago? So NOT happening this week...I am working extra hours instead since I am out for grad school later this week so every second I could be spending at the gym is instead spent at work. Next week, perhaps?

The good news is that I tried on the dress I'm wearing to the wedding I have next month in San Diego and...it fits! Hip hip hooray, it fits fine after all. I guess work and school stress do have some positive effects after all, huh?

There is nothing worse than wearing a dress to an event that is so tight that you can't eat anything bigger than a carrot stick the entire evening. Luckily, the one I'm wearing is comfy AND has breathing room. Below is the dress (Donna Ricco) that I'm wearing. I found it a few months ago at Nordstrom and it was the LAST one on the rack and fit perfectly! I guess that means it was meant to be. :)



Jasmin

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Velvety goodness

Is it just me, or are cupcakes the new "in" thing? Here in L.A. there is Sprinkles, while in N.Y.C. Crumbs is the hip cupcakery. And both are equally good, I might add.

Yesterday at work, in honor of all the October birthdays, we had Halloween decorated cupcakes, so I was happily hyper the rest of the afternoon from the sugar rush. My favorite cupcake flavor is red velvet with creme cheese frosting, which is just what I had! I think my wedding cake (when the time comes) will be red velvet. :D



Jasmin

Monday, October 26, 2009

Eye scream for eye cream

I NEVER buy a new product before trying a wee little sample of it beforehand, but this weekend I caved and bought Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream, which promises to be "like a shot of espresso for tired eyes" by creating a brighter appearance instantly and reducing puffiness around and underneath the eye area.



I admit, the "shot of espresso" advertising tag-line caught my attention, but the fact that I also have dark circles added to my curiosity. Even though my dark circles are genetic, I am all for something that will depuff my eye area in the morning and make me look more alert, especially on days where I wake up at 5 am.

Per Origins, 86% saw a brighter appearance instantly, and 80% reported a reduction in puffiness. However, being that I am a biostats nerd this semester, I've learned that such statistics as reported in magazines are rarely accurate due to many reasons.

So, I will use this product starting tomorrow for 10 days and report back my results. Let the depuffing and the brightening begin! Dark circles, beware...you are quite possibly about to meet your match.

Jasmin

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Luck be a Lady tonight!

I saw the musical "Guys and Dolls" over the weekend, and it was amaaaaaaaaaaaaazing! I went into the show not knowing anything about it and was pleasantly surprised-- awesome music and really funny characters throughout. My favorite character was Adelaide...she is a woman with quite a lot of sass and spunk. I think I loved the play even more because the last time I saw one, it was dull, drab, and boring.

PLUS, our seats were in the very front row (a first for me), so I was able to sneak-a-peek over the banister to look at the orchestra playing in the pit below. They probably thought I was a weirdo for sticking my head in there a few times too many.

Have a great week everyone!

Jasmin

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Random Wednesday Happenings

As I was leaving work super late this evening, I saw THREE deer cross the parking lot. It was such a surprise! And then about a minute later, one little lone baby deer trotted by, frantically looking for the rest of the crew. It was so cute! I wish I had snapped a picture with my camera phone but it happened too quickly.

I then went and played doubles tennis for about two hours with ALL MEN...and I survived! I'm happy to report I did ok amidst all the guys and even held my own...and the best part--I didn't get pegged with any 100 mph male-infused testosterone serves. Sometimes the more crucial part of a game is escaping without any ball welts, and not winning the actual match. ;)

Jasmin

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Fat cells, beware!

Today I had a truly crazy idea (or so those who know me would say so): to wake up at 6 am weekdays to hit the gym for an hour, and then shower and head to work from there. Why? Because I'm working such long days that by the time I get home, finding an excuse to NOT workout is just too easy, and then I spend the rest of the night on my bum studying away. I think this will be a good thing, especially since I have wedding coming up in November..

I'm going to attempt this gym experiment next week...I'll post how it goes. I have a feeling it might not go so well...I am NOT a morning person in any sense. If I ruled the world, the work day would begin at noon at the earliest. My idea of torture (third only to eating sushi and being in the presence of creepy crawly things) is waking up early. It's like oil and water: waking up early and Jasmin don't mix well. And if there's no alarm clock to wake me up, stuff like this happens.

At least I'll have a valid excuse to consume more coffee. ;)

Jasmin

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Anything with truffles is good

I'm at Starbucks right now studying and I must tell you all...you MUST try Starbucks' Espresso Truffle drink. It's SO GOOD. I think it's going to become my new study companion.



Happy Sunday!

Jasmin

Saturday, October 17, 2009

For love of gym

I am so excited to spend my Saturday night going to the gym...is that weird? I haven't had a consistent workout schedule since grad school began so I'm super excited. Plus on weekends, the weights' area is not crazy crowded.

Happy weekend everyone!

Jasmin

Friday, October 16, 2009

ICKY

Dear Pesky Little Pincher Bug Who Crawled Across My Dashboard While Driving:

I do NOT appreciate how you crawl across my dashboard while I'm driving home from the gym. Not only does your disgusting sight make me scream like a little girl, but trying to keep you far away from me while trying to drive at the same time is extremely dangerous. If I catch you crawling across my windshield again, I will be forced to pull over, gulp down a tablespoon of bravery, and squash you like the dead bug you should be.

Sincerely,

Jasmin, aka frazzled driver

P.S. You are ugly.

Jasmin

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Freebies + Friday = Super TGIF

Hello lovelies! Happy Friday at last, and what better way to celebrate than with FREE coffee! For all you west coast bloggers, Coffee Bean is offering free coffee this Friday, October 16th. I'll certainly make good use of this, since my entire evening tomorrow will be consumed with studying at a Coffee Bean, most likely. See below for details. Have a great weekend everyone!



Don't miss our Pumpkin Party on Friday, October 16th, 2009, from 4pm – 7pm! Join us for a complimentary 12 oz Pumpkin Latte or Pumpkin Ice Blended® drink* to celebrate the season; sip your favorite fall flavor! We’re serving up our Pumpkin Latte or Pumpkin Ice Blended® FREE!

*No substitutions. Limit one complimentary drink per customer. Terms and Conditions apply. This offer is valid at all company-owned locations in Southern California, Texas and Arizona . Store hours may vary slightly per location. Check with your local store for more details.


Jasmin

Monday, October 12, 2009

Weekend Recap

Hello bloggers! How was everyones weekend? Mine was quite busy, with a few speed bumps.

As y'all know, I have never quite been a morning person. I'd rather listen to Fran Drescher talk for 10 hours straight than wake up early. Yet for my job, there are plenty of days where I am up by 5 am to be in to work by 6:30 am. Friday was one of those days-- except instead of getting to work at 6:30 am as I was supposed to, I got to work 3 hours late because my lovely self forgot to hit the save button on my phone's alarm clock. The result? I slept until 8:15 am until I awoke in a panic. I literally got dressed in under 10 minutes (a record, I must say) before I darted out the door like a frantic chicken with its head cut off. I was mortified...I missed giving the entire presentation I was scheduled for and it ruined my whole day.

Luckily, the rest of my weekend was jam packed so I quickly forgot about my horrid Friday. Here are some weekend highlights!

Thursday - attended the Kings vs. the Minnesota Wild hockey game at the Staples Center. I not only called what they would score (6 goals), but I also didn't freeze for once in the rink. The L.A. Live area was insanely packed that night; all the L.A. sport teams were playing on the same night: Lakers, Kings, and Dodgers.

The highlight of the King's game was not the game itself or the Popcornopolis, but rather the "Sumo Ice Wrestling" at half-time. As the name implies, two audience members were chosen to knock each other down while on the ice and dressed in sumo costumes. Let's just say some people will do anything for prize-- to the point where one of the contestants hit his head on the ice and had to be taken away on a stretcher. Below is a snapshot of the sumo wrestlers. If you look closely enough, you'll see one of them being helped up by staff. I think the creators of the show "Jackass" came up with this sumo idea.



Friday - attended a birthday party at the famed Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood, which is rumored to have haunted rooms. We ate at 25 Degrees, the burger restaurant there whose name refers to the difference in temperature between a rare burger and a well-done one. I usually take pictures of my food, but the burger looked so tasty when it arrived that I forgot all about that and scarfed it down. Below is a picture from Yelp instead.



After dinner, we sat poolside and enjoyed drinks. Go visit sometime! If nothing else, you'll enjoy the hotel's historic look and feel.



Saturday Morning - Watched my beloved Bruins lose...so badly, in fact, that I left during the 3rd quarter after the Oregon Ducks scored 3 touchdowns in a row. To make matters worse, I sat in the student section (grad and undergrad sit in the same area) and it was so annoyingly LOUD. I left there feeling like I'd been at a 3 hour concert. Maybe I'm becoming a grandma or getting old or something of that nature, but I was so annoyed. Note to self: bring earplugs to the next game.




Saturday Night -
Attended a girlfriend's Bachelorette party at Saddle Ranch on Sunset. The main "highlight" is the bull riding they have there-- people take turns riding the mechanical bull while trying to stay on. Why drunk people attempt to do this is beyond me.



Sunday is where the fun stopped-- I worked on my biostats midterm for 3 hours. :(

Have a great week everyone!

Jasmin

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Va-va-va-Via!

Hello my coffee-drinking followers! I'm going to try and be more proactive about blogging despite the fact my life is lacking a social competent (and normal sleep hours) at the moment.

With that said, today I blog about an exciting topic: COFFEE! Yes, you should have known that was coming.

I used to be a coffee snob in the sense that I would only drink lattes, and never drip coffee, but lately due to time constraints and lack of energy, I've dabbled into drip coffee. I know, the horror, the horror. Most drip coffee, especially at the office, is a disgrace to the mighty bean, but I hear there may be relief in sight.

Introducing Starbucks' new Via Ready Brew coffee! My brother received a few samples and told me that it's pretty darn good! Apparently it's coffee for those on the go (how fitting for my life right now, huh?) and is almost instant to make. The coffee is so finely ground that you simply add the entire packet to hot water, and voila, instant coffee that's supposed to be good. It comes in Columbian and Italian Roast flavors.

Has anyone tried Via? I'm wondering if it's worth sampling. Perhaps I will pick some up next week on my way to work. Stay tuned for a review.

Jasmin

Insert sad face here

Midterms + Full Time Work + Overtime + Lack of Sleep = Stressed Jasmin.

I do not recommend replicating the above formula.

Grad school has begun, and it is insanity. I am on the dreaded quarter system within a professional program so it is even more accelerated...three full days worth of class that we have in a row are the equivalent to a month. How those in my program who are married with children manage is beyond me. I don't have anyone else to take care of other than myself and I feel like I'm a wee little fish swimming around in the big scary grad school ocean. I think biostats just might do me in.

I promise my next post (when the time should come) will not be one where I whine from start to finish.

Jasmin

Saturday, October 3, 2009

That. Is. Crazy.

I always knew the U.S. was in debt...but I didn't know how much. This is truly frightening...AND it's a bit addicting to just sit and stare at the screen, watching the numbers continue to increase EVERY second. I think I stared at the screen for a good 3 minutes, then instant messaged someone the link, and then sent it to all my friends. It will take a good many years before we start seeing green numbers.

What's crazy to me is that we loan smaller countries money to bail them out (not that doing such is necessarily wrong), when we have huge debt ourselves. I don't get it. Guess that's why I majored in finance in college and not econ.

For a glimpse into the state of U.S. finances, click here to access the U.S. Debt Clock.

Jasmin

Friday, October 2, 2009

A free thing is a good thing

Hello, my coffee-loving followers. For those who have a Peet's Coffee near you, I bring thee good news!

You can enjoy a FREE beverage when you buy one for a friend (in other words, buy one, get one free) between now and Sunday, October 11th. All you have to do is print the coupon that can be found here. Or, even better, you can show the coupon on your mobile device, so here ya go:



Enjoy!

Jasmin

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It Ain't Easy Being Cheesy

Because I am insanely tired from work (I've been working super long days since I'm out Thursday and Friday for school this week), I will leave you with a new-found discovery that I simply must share:



Yes, blog peeps, these are the adult version of Cheetos: similar in taste but lighter, natural, and contain no preservatives. Take that, Chester Cheetah.

Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for those that end up eating an entire bag in one sitting. Yes, they're that good. Also, do not misspell 'Cheesy' as 'Cheesey' while trying to google the right spelling. Not good. Trust me on this one.

Jasmin
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