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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
619.269.9036
juniperandivy.com

“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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HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME

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

CARNEVALE with Sammy Hagar’s Tiki Party: Rockin with The Wabos and Chef Emeril Lagasse

13 Jun

Since Monday, May 27, The Venetian and The Palazzo Las Vegas has celebrated CARNEVALE in honor of the summer festivals of Italy. Guests are treated to experiences of entertainment, art and fashion, games, sports, music and wine through September 8.

This past weekend at The Venetian Pool, the properties hosted Sammy Hagar’s Tiki Party with Sammy Hagar and The Wabos rocking for an hour-and-a-half with hits like “I Can’t Drive 55” and “Right Now”, as Emeril Lagasse put his famous “BAM!” at the grill on slow-roasted Hawaiian pork on sweet Hawaiian rolls, BBQ baby back ribs, and New Orleans creole boiled fresh corn on the cob, just to name a few delicacies, for the more than 1,200 fans.

For a full list of more than 300 events visit venetian.com /carnevale or palazzo.com/carnevale.

 CARNEVALE

The Venetian Las Vegas
3355 S Las Vegas Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 414-1000

 The Palazzo Las Vegas
3325 S Las Vegas Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 607-7777

Through September 8, 2013

Sammy Hagar (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

Sammy Hagar (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

 

Emeril Lagasse with his team and their slow-roasted pig. (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

Emeril Lagasse with his team and their slow-roasted pig. (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

 

Slow-roasted Hawaiian pork on sweet Hawaiian rolls (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

Slow-roasted Hawaiian pork on sweet Hawaiian rolls (Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue)

 

The Venetian Photo Credit Tom Donoghue

Photo Credit Tom Donoghue

 

 

 

 

Beauty Queens + Miss USA 2013 Contestants = A Happy Birthday for Terry Fator

12 Jun

Terry Fator was all smiles as he celebrated his birthday with 51 contestants from the Miss USA Pageant at his Terry Fator: The Voice of Entertainment hit show at The Mirage Hotel & Casino. Taylor Makakoa, his wife, and Nana Meriwether, the reigning Miss USA, presented the ingenious entertainer with a birthday card signed by audience members and fans and colossal cake provided by The Mirage. Lucky audience members received a wonderful cupcake from local favorite Freed’s Bakery.

Photo credits: Cashman Photo and Patrick Prather, Miss Universe Organization.

Miss USA
LIVE from Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino
Sunday, June 16

9 p.m. EST on NBC

Current Miss USA Nana Meriwether, Terry Fator, Taylor Makakoa and the 51 Miss USA Contestants by Cashman Photo

Current Miss USA Nana Meriwether, Terry Fator, Taylor Makakoa and the 51 Miss USA Contestants by Cashman Photo

Miss USA Contestants at Terry Fator by Cashman Photo

Miss USA Contestants at Terry Fator by Cashman Photo

Miss USA Nana Meriwether, Terry Fator and Taylor Makakoa by Patrick Prather, Miss Universe Organization.

Miss USA Nana Meriwether, Terry Fator and Taylor Makakoa by Patrick Prather, Miss Universe Organization.

 

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Memorial Day Weekend

28 May

Friday, May 24 ~ THE JOINT
“KINGS OF THE MIC” Tour
LL Cool J, DJ Z-Trip, De La Soul, Ice Cube and Public Enemy.

Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

LL Cool J during Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint.
Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

 

 Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

Ice Cube during the Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint.
Photo credit: Scott Harrison

 

   Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

Public Enemy during Kings of the Mic Tour at The Joint.
Photo credit: Scott Harrison

Saturday, May 25 ~ PARADISE BEACH
Robbie Rivera’s Juicy Beach party with Felix Cartal and Seven Lions.

JUICY BEACH AFTER DARK
BODY ENGLISH NIGHTCLUB & AFTERHOURS
Los Angeles Laker Metta World Peace (formerly known as Ron Artest), DJs and producers Cartal and Lions, Donald Glaude and Steve Castro.

5.25.13 MeekMill hangs out  at REHAB in Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, credit Scott Harrison

MeekMill hangs out at REHAB.
Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

SUNDAY, MAY 26 at REHAB DAYCLUB
Hosted by and a live performance from Diddy with Lil Wayne and  Meek Mill joining him on stage.  Music was also provided by DJ Whoo Kid and resident DJs Richard Beynon, DJ Shift and DJ Wellman.

 “REHAB OFFICIAL AFTER PARTY” at VANITY NIGHTCLUB
Hosted by Diddy with celebrities Kevin Hart, Fabolous and Lil Wayne taking in the festivities.  Music was by DJ Whoo Kid and resident DJs
Richard Beynon
and DJ Shift.

Diddy celebrates Memorial Day Weekend at Rehab at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NVDiddy and Lil Wayne hang out  at REHAB.
Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

Diddy celebrates Memorial Day Weekend at Rehab at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

Diddy hosts and performs at REHAB.
Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

 

Image

Happy New Year!

1 Jan

 

"Sin City" Las Vegas  photo taken from Google.

“Sin City” Las Vegas photo of the Stratosphere Hotel, Casino & Tower fireworks taken from Google.

The most rewarding about the end of last year and start of this New Year was/is spending it with my mother and brother and waking up with my great-niece Brielle (she’s three) who made it to midnight to yell into the phone “Happy New Year Daddy!”

As kids, we were to be able to watch the fireworks from our parents upstairs bedroom window. Now the trees are mature and blocks any view. However, from the kitchen window we had a clear view of the Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower fireworks and a little of what was going on Downtown as well.

Brielle was very excited to see the fireworks through the window and on TV. The more she anticipated the next pop of color, the more enthusiastic she became and the tighter she squeezed as I held her.  It was magical.

Welcome 2013. It’s going to be a great year.

 

 

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