Stuff Your Face: Poppy + Rose

If I had two daughters I’d totally want to name one Poppy since I already have a Rose.  Floral themed offspring names, SO cute!  This may be one of the reasons we ventured to downtown to check out Poppy + Rose (not really).  The other, more important reason was the fried chicken (really).

IMG_5525.JPG

Poppy + Rose is aptly named since it is located in the middle of Los Angeles’ flower district, right next to the Flower Mart.  On Saturdays there’s a small farmer’s market out front which makes parking a little difficult.  The meters in the neighborhood are a whopping $4 per hour and 2 hour max.  The restaurant website says they validate structure parking, but I was not into trying to find where that particular lot was. We ended up parking on a nearby rooftop lot for $5 (beware: many lots advertise a $5 rate but add conditions like ‘not on Saturdays or for special events’).

IMG_5529.JPG

flowers everywhere

What we ordered:

Two Egg Breakfast Plate $9.50

Buttermilk Fried Chicken + Waffle $13

Plain Bagel + Cream Cheese $4

Two Coffees $5

Fresh Squeezed OJ $3.50

For about $40 we had a great meal.  Well, two of us did.  One of us just snacked on puffs and tried escaping her high chair the whole time.

IMG_5527.JPGIMG_5528.JPG

Couldn’t resist a close up of the super crispy batter.  How can you go wrong with fried chicken first thing in the morning? Added bonus: they make their own hot sauce that is delicious on these fried birds.

While the food wasn’t out of this world, and the location is a bit tricky for us Valley kids to get to, it was a nice place to spend a Saturday morning with our little family.  This place is no fuss, you order when you walk in and there’s plenty of seating + high chairs.  The service is great (we got a few refills on coffee without even having to ask), and the crowd is not pretentious hipster so you can definitely take your loud little ones without feeling like you’re intruding.

Because lord knows, the only moment of peace we got during breakfast was this photograph of flowers being still:

IMG_5473.JPG

Poppy + Rose
765 Wall St
Los Angeles, CA90014

(213) 995-7799

 

 

Coffee Klatch: Bonavita Coffee Maker

After 12 Valentine’s Days together, the usual jewelry and flowers kind of gets predictable.  So this year we opted for a mutual gift that we could both enjoy for years to come–a new coffee maker.  IMG_5288.JPG

You read that right.  We got each other a Bonavita coffee maker.  This is perfect for us since we are a) always tired and b) LOVE a good brew.  There was nothing wrong with our old one, we just wanted a bit of an upgrade.  It was definitely a treat yo’self type of purchase.  In my opinion, there’s no better way to give gifts.  Gifts are all about what you want, not what you need.

Because S is such a logical man, he created a taste test for us the first time we used it.  He brewed the exact same coffee in our old and new machine and poured them for me to decide which one I preferred.  Let me just say, that I could hardly tell the difference and when pushed to make a choice, I chose the old coffee maker.  (fail)  Obviously I’m not as sophisticated of a coffee drinker as I think I am.

While I love the new machine, there are a couple drawbacks that I’ll share with you if you’re considering a Bonavita for yourself. 1) the lid to the pot is really hard to assemble.  2) it’s difficult to get the last ounce or two out of the pot as it catches on the curve of the pot and doesn’t pour out easily.  Other than those two things, it looks great and pours a delicious cup of joe.

Next on our coffee crazed shopping list: an automatic burr grinder.

 

Getting Fit the Lazy Way

 

IMG_4794Sweatpants are for lounging around the house and sneakers are for making you look sporty, not running outdoors.  Am I right? Is there such a thing as getting fit AND being lazy?  The hubs and I are attempting to prove that there is.  We’ve both put on, and kept on, a significant amount of weight since R came along (about 10-15 lbs each).

It’s been a long journey of just getting to this point for myself.  After gaining 45 lbs with the pregnancy, the first 30 lbs required a lot of exercise and careful eating (can anyone say Whole 30?).  I was super motivated to do it, but then I got to these last 15 lbs.  My motivation dwindled because I didn’t feel as huge, I just felt a little bigger.  I could hide my pooch with loose clothing, and I bought bigger jeans with REAL buttons.  This was just the new me–until I started seeing the number on the scale start to rise again.

We were so used to being exhausted from new parenthood, that as soon as baby went to bed at 7pm, we would get into our jammies, whip out the snacks and start bingeing on our favorite shows until 11pm.  That’s 4 hours of being couch potatoes. Nightly! After 6 months of this we started to feel kind of gross.

Here’s where the problem lies, we are both so lazy that neither of us wants to go to the gym or go on a real diet.  We made a plan that works for us, and we are committing to it for 30 days.  I’ll let you know next month if our Lazy Plan works.  I’ve detailed the rules below in case you’re interested in joining this little experiment.

Get Fit the Lazy Way

  • cut the lattes (drink plain coffee instead)
  • cut the snacks at night (no replacement for this one)
  • half your dinner and lunch portions (at this point it means eating a normal sized meal since we were overeating)
  • do this 30 day workout challenge by Melissa Bender (it’s free and doesn’t require any equipment)
  • weigh yourself once a week to motivate yourself

We are one week in and I’ve already lost 4 lbs.  I am pretty sure my weight fluctuates by 4 lbs on the daily, but I’m gonna take it! 3 more weeks to go!

Caffeine Free

5c7305f89084b8af0f01c60db736dc08

 

This is generally how I feel 80% of the time.  I wasn’t always this way.  Three years ago I went to Starbucks as a treat every other week or so.  The past four months I’ve been getting more than one cup of coffee, daily.  In fact, the other day I went to Trader Joe’s and saw their pumpkin flavored coffees and had to wipe the drool off my face.  This is when I had to admit to myself that I am an addict.

I’m not too keen on being dependent on any substance.  And, I’ve been reading all these articles that say caffeine and alcohol intake may affect IVF cycles, blah blah.  I decided that I should try to quit my coffee habit for the next few months at least.  Today is day two.  I’ve noticed that I’m in a pretty crap mood, but I’m not sure if it’s from the lack of caffeine or the abundance of tooth pain I’ve been having (tmj?).  So, because I am a person who loves routine (a.k.a. having tendencies towards addictions), I had to replace coffee with something.  I choose herbal tea and morning smoothies.  (the problem with exchanging coffee for smoothies is the cleanup is not an even exchange.  I just may burn out on this smoothie making business.)

Here are the winners so far:

1.  Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend Herbal Tea  Let’s just say apple, cinnamon, and hibiscus = warming goodness.  Plus there’s a fox on the box.

photo

 

 

2.  Pumpkin Smoothies  There are a few great recipes out there.  There’s a Superfood Pumpkin Smoothie from Little Leopard Blog, and a plain ole Pumpkin Pie Smoothie from Fannetastic Food.   I sorta made a blend between these two recipes.  It was pretty yummy.

I also tried making a green smoothie that had cucumbers, ginger, coconut water, green apples, and spinach.  I loved the flavor, but the consistency was a bit weird.  In fact, S refused to drink it (he is neither a fan of ginger nor gritty drinks you must chew).  I gotta figure that out.

So, that’s my latest.  Exciting, I know.  Check back in about a week, and I’ll let you know if this addiction stuck.

Coffee Klatch: Caffe Ladro

Caffe Ladro of Capitol Hill

Caffe Ladro of Capitol Hill

I have to say, Capitol Hill has quite the collection of characters.  Take the purple and green guy sittin with the old dude for example.  Talk about an odd pair.  This guy was covered in tattoos and had really big chains on with that outfit.  I couldn’t pinpoint what look he was going for, but I couldn’t help but wonder if he was a Carnie.

Anyway…back to the coffee.  Caffe Ladro is one of those places that gets served in various restaurants around town, like Stumptown, Caffe Vita, and Starbucks.  Just like every authentic coffee house here, their drink menu is pretty limited.  I ordered a short latte with rice milk.  It was definitely yummy! It wasn’t as bitter as Starbucks, definitely not as strong as Caffe Vita.  It was a nice mellow drink for a midday treat.

It’s only a few doors down from Victrola (same block).  This can be hard for an indecisive  consumer like myself.  But I think I’ve figured if I want a nice pour over (hipster coffee) I’ll go to Victrola, and if I want a mellow latte (normal people coffee) I’ll head to Caffe Ladro.

Coffee Klatch: Victrola

This morning I wanted to start my day with a nice, hot cup o joe. I have been dying to try Victrola coffee roasters. Lo and behold I drove right past one and immediately started hunting for parking.

This guy wasn't moving fast enough for me to get a picture without him in it.

This guy wasn’t moving fast enough for me to get a picture without him in it.

The edgy art work, crowded tables, macs everywhere made me feel I’d been transported to LA (Apple country). This place was a little more trendy than some of the others. It went beyond the normal milk substitutes. It went all the way to hemp milk. It went all the way to kombucha on tap! I however, went for the daily pour over which set me back $4.60 and 15 minutes. When I got my brew it was pretty tasty. It tasted a lot like a few Intelligentsia roasts I’ve had.

While it was a great cup of coffee, I still have another favorite…

The Coffee Klatch: Uptown Espresso

One of my absolute favorite things about Seattle is the coffee culture.  I’m relatively new to the coffee world.  I refused to drink it up until my mid twenties, but now just the idea of a good cup of coffee makes me giddy.  For me, there’s a romantic notion attached to this drink.  It brings to mind cafes in Paris, a respite from a busy day, a decadent pick me up, a great conversation, a stroll in the park with a loved one and a latte.  It’s all of these things, along with a little kick for that extra pep in your step.  Mmmmm….I could use a latte right about now.

My mission during my year in this city is to find the best locally roasted beans in town.  This is quite a task.  There is literally a cafe on every block! Lucky for me, many of them serve the same beans.  Phew! So far I’ve tried a few of the famous roasters.  But today, my focus is Uptown Espresso  “Home of the Velvet Foam”.  They’re famous for their Caffe Generra (a mocha latte with their signature velvet foam and fresh orange zest sprinkled on top.)  But as you know, I’m on a mission and I didn’t want all that sweet stuff messing up my judgment, so I got a good ole latte.  It took me a while to decide to go dairy or almond milk (another beautiful thing here is that every cafe has almond milk, rice milk, or soy as a dairy substitute–so enlightened).  I went with the regular milk latte, and it was pretty creamy and delicious.  All in all a good latte, but not my favorite roast so far.

imageYou should try it for yourself, they have 8 locations in Seattle.  Maybe get that special mocha latte.