The Getaway to San Diego

17 Sep

San Diego in the early summer is the purest definition of decompressing I can think of. Astonishingly beautiful weather, tranquility, exceptional dining, and genuine friendship as my company, made for a much-needed reprieve from everyday life. I was trying to get away for my own peace of mind and to be a support and provide a pep talk.

He is a best friend, really. He has encouraged and supported my every move and has been a part of my every success and failure for more than 20 years. I don’t know if I would have accomplished as much if it weren’t for him, allowing himself to be used as a sounding board.

Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand Restaurant 2019

Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand Restaurant 2019

Fresh off the flight and headed directly to dinner at Juniper and Ivy, a San Diego Magazine Best Restaurant Award winner for the past five (5) years and a 2019 Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand Restaurant. It was quintessential San Diego upscale casual dining serving an ever-evolving menu, which means what is offered tonight might not be available tomorrow or ever again. A refreshing way to dine. 

As stated on the website, Juniper and Ivy is “Founded by Owner Michael Rosen and Top Chef All-Star, Richard Blais, with Executive Chef, Anthony Wells,” making for a great dining experience that evening. 

Juniper and Ivy menu

Juniper and Ivy menu

Small plates are lovely when you want to try multiple dishes without having to eat off the plates of others. There is a tact factor that is missed when reaching across the table and stabbing your fork into someone else’s food. We ordered and let the server bring it out at will. The yellowtail with shark sauce and tostada was delicate, as was the tuna crudo, The spot prawns were so good I had two plates. The shishito peppers were underwhelming and greasy and the BBQ Carrots were nothing to brag about; still, that did not ruin the experience. The food was creative and fun. I didn’t taste the sea urchin, mainly because I hate the texture of sea urchin, plus I have an allergy to the oil in the rind of any type of orange citrus fruit, and the dish is made with a tangerine.

Tuna Crudo ~ Rocky Sweet Melon, White Soy Ponzu, Purple Basil

Tuna Crudo ~ Rocky Sweet Melon, White Soy Ponzu, Purple Basil

Sea Urchin ~ Hibiscus Aguachile, Tangerine, Red Onion, Mojito Snow

Sea Urchin ~ Hibiscus Aguachile, Tangerine, Red Onion, Mojito Snow

Spot Prawns ~ Corn and Old Bay Butter, Lemon, Chives

Spot Prawns ~ Corn and Old Bay Butter, Lemon, Chives

Obviously a favorite. I had two.

Obviously a favorite. I had two.

BBQ Carrots ~ Mint Yogurt, Golden Raisins, Pickled Carrots, SoCal Za'atar

BBQ Carrots ~ Mint Yogurt, Golden Raisins, Pickled Carrots, SoCal Za’atar

What I like most is the seasonal progressive menu. What is served one night might not be offered the next, as so graciously provided by the friendly women seated at the table next to us celebrating a birthday. Meeting people and sharing dessert is easy since the seating for two is incredibly close together. Another intimate experience, having menus from the section above drop on your head, as I watched it happen several times to my new friend (a glass partition would fix that problem), good thing we were all in a celebratory mood or that could have ruined the vibe. Instead, we laughed it off.

Birthday Girl

Birthday Girl

Surprise Birthday Fudgesicle

Surprise Birthday Fudgesicle

 Coconut Cake ~ Macadamia Nut Brittle, Freeze Dried Pineapple, Frozen Lime Cream

Coconut Cake ~ Macadamia Nut Brittle, Freeze Dried Pineapple,
Frozen Lime Cream

The fudgesicle was divine and the coconut cake – super sweet and required an entire presentation to melt the white chocolate. Unfortunately, my video will not load. Trust me, it was impressive.The fudgesicle was diving and the coconut cake – super sweet and required an entire presentation to melt the white chocolate. Unfortunately, my video will no load. Trust me it was impressive.

Juniper and Ivy Fine Dining
2228 Kettner Boulevard
San Diego, California 92101

Life Happens. The Hiatus is Over.

13 Aug
Mother and Sister who have passed on from this life
Mother Patti & Sister Carri – the loss of these two women shaped me into
who I am at this very moment.

It’s been six years and eight months since my last post about the loss of my first cousin Robert. Soon after life took a turn for the worst with so much damage. It started with the death of multiple pets, and then my mother, 11 months later, my sister, and in between numerous friends. To say the grief was relentless is an understatement. I persevered and fast forward to now, I have decided to start writing again.

For the next few months, my post will be about what good things did happen over the last few years personally (like turning 49 this July – which is difficult to say out loud sometimes because I do not look or feel my age) and in my business TwoGirlsConsulting (2GC) which I am breathing life into once again with great new clients and direction.

Life is worth living and keeps getting better every day. Go on this journey with me, and let’s enjoy it together.

Thank you for understanding.



Loss Is Never Easy…

18 Nov

Robert and RenthyI am so sad today. It seems so sudden, but it’s not. Sudden because I live in Las Vegas and he in Oklahoma, making it hard to visit my father’s side of the family frequently. Flights from Vegas to Oklahoma on Southwest, on average are $700 round trip two weeks in advance (which I just don’t understand why getting OUT of Vegas cost a pretty penny, however, getting here is not nearly as much.) His health has gone down over the past year and, fortunately, the family has been able to prepare. We received a shocking call this morning.

Renthy, Uncle Chief, Robert JrMy dad is the oldest of many siblings with Robert Sr. being the second. It’s crazy how much they all look-alike. It’s also funny how differently we were raised. My cousins are from the country, sounding and behaving like it; we are true products of the West Coast and Vegas. They laughed at us a lot and we laughed at them right back, mainly because of how different we sounded when we all talked.  

248My mother, his mother, and my other aunt married brothers and were pregnant at the same time with their children. My sister Carri, then cousin Arlena, me, then my brother, cousin Renthy (Orenthal – yes, in honor of OJ Simpson. It was the 70s), and Cousin Freddie are all the same age. We were stair steps. We grew up so close. They would come to Vegas for a few days, then we would head to Los Angeles and Oakland to visit more family, go to Disneyland, Knotts Berry Farm, Sea World, Lion Country Safari, and the beach. Robert and his girlsWe would head back to Oklahoma for family reunions during the summer, only to be eaten alive by bugs. We were “deceived” about dinner being “chicken” when it was really rabbit, catfish, and frog legs caught earlier in the day by my dad and uncles to go along side some of the best BBQ I’ve ever eaten in my entire life coated with my Uncle Chief’s homemade BBQ sauce (he never did share the recipe.)

Which equates to a lot of the problem. Poor eating habits. I don’t ever recall eating a vegetable while in last daysOklahoma over the years. No salad, fruit, water… mainly, pop or something fried or grilled. My parents didn’t seem to mind because it was only for a short amount of time then back to our regular healthy West Coast diet and some form of exercise on a regular basis.

Paw Paw and Shuga FootMy point is to take better care of ourselves. He was too young to pass in such a way. Now he will miss his children’s graduations, weddings, and grandchildren –although he was lucky enough to meet one “little Miss Shuga Foot.” She is really going to miss out on how funny her Paw Paw was… I know I already do.


“Would You Help Me If You Knew I Was Being Abused?”

16 Oct

TwoGirlsConsulting LLC (2GC)

“In the end, I keep trying to remind myself and my team what counts is that….We did something and worked very, very hard for the WOMEN, CHILDREN, and PETS who rely on the Shade Tree. Not for the approval. We are all in this to please our maker, the universe, or sense of Karma, or whatever, and it for that reason is why this PSA exists.” ~ Firdosi Wharton-Ali

It began back in July during the start of Ramadan, it was also during this time I learned about Zakāt which means charity and is one of the Five Pillars of Islam. Charity is a huge deal in the Muslim culture and my friend and client Firdosi Wharton-Ali began a heartfelt campaign on Facebook to help raise money for The Shade Tree, a “501(c)3 non-profit organization providing safe shelter to homeless and abused women, children, and their pets in crisis…

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Why I haven’t been posting…

11 Jul


I haven’t posted in a while and it’s because I haven’t been feeling well. I am diagnosed with hypertension.  I am now on medication and waiting for test results to hopefully pinpoint a cause to my illness since the traditional sources do not apply (too much salt, overweight, lack of exercise, poor eating habits, etc.)

I will have a writeup soon on a couple of events I attended several weeks ago. Until I have an answer, my posts will be minimal.

Thank you for understanding!



8 Jul

The Google Doodle was a nice Happy Birthday surprise this morning. I didn’t even know they sent those to people with a Gmail or Google+ account. 

Google Doodle

Three Different Things To Do Fourth of July Week!

20 Jun

Here are three different events during Fourth of July Week and only one includes fireworks and a BBQ!

El Súper Clásico (The Super Classic)

Chiva Club America collageAre ready for some Fútbol? Club América versus Chivas de Guadalajara, the hottest rivalry in Mexican Liga MX team’s soccer, for the first time is coming to Las Vegas.

Fans wanting
to be around all the action on and off the field can stay at host hotel The New Tropicana Las Vegas.

The renovated property is offering exclusive hotel stay packages:

  • The Club América Súper Clásico and the Chivas Súper Clásico packages ($795* each) and include admission for two for a meet-and-greet with select players of the fans favorite team, as well as a three-night stay for two in best-in-class accommodations, and two tickets for P1 seating to El Súper Clásico ($256 value). Only 50 of each package is available through June 28, 2013.  *Package prices include Club Deluxe accommodations; other rooms types available for additional pricing.
  • El Súper Clásico Package ($495*) features a three-night stay for two in best-in-class accommodations and two tickets for P1 seating to El Súper Clásico ($256 value).

Las Vegas is the first stop of the Chivas’ 2013 US Tour.

Tickets available at the Thomas & Mack Center Box Office, online at, at UNLVtickets Outlet Town Square Las Vegas Concierge, or by calling 866.388.3267 (toll-free) or 702.739.3267 (local).  Ticket prices are $28 (sold out), $38 (sold out), $48, $58, $78, $128. Tickets may be subject to additional fees.  Tickets are also available at Mariana’s and La Bonita Super Markets in Las Vegas.

Súper Clásico: Club América vs Chivas
Wednesday, July 3rd
Sam Boyd Stadium at 8pm
7000 E. Russell Rd.

4th with The Phil! Pops Concert

Fireworks and flagIt doesn’t get anymore patriotic than spending the Fourth of July at a park, listening to an amazing symphony in a beautiful setting, and BBQ.  The family fun begins at 4pm at Symphony Park with food vendors, music including jazz, Hawaiian, Cajun, and bluegrass, along with the famous Vegas heat (the high on this day is forecast at 112 degrees.) Around dusk, patrons who purchased a ticket to the Pops concert transition inside to Reynolds Hall. Those enjoying the outdoors will be treated to “God Bless America”, “Stars & Stripes Forever”, and “America the Beautiful” too as it plays through the outdoor speakers.

The Las Vegas Philharmonic is conducted by Matt Catingub with special guests Clint Holmes, Kristen Hertzenberg, drummer Steve Moretti and Miss Nevada’s Outstanding Teen 2012 Ellie Smith performing The Star-Spangled Banner.

Pops Concert in Reynolds Hall tickets are $25, $50, $75 & $125 VIP Packages. Symphony Park Family Fun Day $10 adults; $5 children 12 & under, and includes audio simulcast of the Pops Concert. All concert ticket purchases include admission to Symphony Park. Tickets available from The Smith Center Box Office, by phone at (702) 749-2000, or visit

Thursday, July 4th
BBQ and Bands at 4pm

Doors to Reynolds Hall Open at 6pm
Concert at 7:30pm
Fireworks at 9pm
The Smith Center for the Performing Arts
361 Symphony Park Avenue

UFC 162 Meet and Greet

Lagasse Stadium at Palazzo Las Vegas

Lagasse Stadium at Palazzo Las Vegas

Fans of UFC have the opportunity to mix and mingle with their favorite fighters, Bud Light Calendar Girls and industry superstars while noshing on passed hors d’œuvres created by chef Emeril Lagasse at Lagasse Stadium at The Palazzo. With 100+ HDTVs and a giant 9×16 foot screen, there isn’t a bad seat in the place, and the expansive patio has a great view of the Strip with plush seating.

Meet Heavyweight Daniel “DC” Cormier, Light Heavyweight Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis, Middleweight Luke Rockhold, former Interim Welterweight Champion Carlos “The Natural Born Killer” Condit, Welterweight Tyron Woodley; Lightweight Champions Benson “Smooth” Henderson, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, and Josh “The Punk” Thomson, Bantamweight Urijah “The California Kid” Faber and host of Best of Pride Fighting Championships Kenda Perez and Octagon girls Chrissy Hubbard and Vanessa Hanson.

General admission tickets include passed hors d’œuvres and viewing of Q&A session ($50); VIP tickets include passed hors d’œuvres, unlimited beer, well drinks, and champagne (8-9pm), commemorative program, meet and greet, and an opportunity to ask questions during the Q&A.

Tickets can be purchased at the Venetian and Palazzo Box Office, by phone 702.414.9000 and online.

Friday, July 5
8pm to midnight.
Doors open at 6pm
Lagasse’s Stadium
The Palazzo Resort Hotel Casino
3325 S. Las Vegas Blvd.

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