Monthly Archives: July 2013

Staying Under (or Does It Really Matter What I Eat?)

I’ve been having some battles with food lately. Nothing as bad as it’s been in the past, but it’s not as good as it’s been lately either.

I’m making crap choices with my food. I’m still logging them in to My Fitness Pal so I’m able to keep track of my calories, and that’s helping me a lot. When I’ve made bad choices, I’m still trying to stay under my calorie goal for the day. I’m not sure if this is a good plan or not, but it’s what’s happening and I figure I might as well share it.

I remember when I was in group therapy at the UCLA RFO program and we would discuss calorie goals. I remember the group leader saying that it doesn’t matter if you eat 1,200 calories of fruits and vegetables or 1,200 calories of Dove bars. It’s still 1,200 calories and if you are below your calorie goal for the day, you will lose weight.

And I’m totally aware that eating 1,200 (or whatever your calorie goal number is) calories of good food is better for you. You will be able to eat more, feel fuller, and have a more nutritious day.

But sometimes, all that practical reasoning doesn’t matter.

So on Monday, for example, I ate a relatively healthy breakfast (at 11am since I worked a late shift that day), but in my craziness of getting ready I forgot to pack my lunch. There aren’t a ton of healthy choices that I can get in my 30 minute lunch break (7-11 for fruit and yogurt is one of my best options), but I didn’t feel like doing that. So, I went through a drive-through. I got food that normal people eat on occasion and nothing too crazy. I didn’t get fries or a soda. And I planned it out so that I was still under my calorie goal for the day.

This meant that I couldn’t eat dinner when I got home from work, so my last meal of the day was at 3:30pm.

Was I hungry when I got home? Yes. Did I eat a small dinner? No.

I didn’t want to go over the calorie goal for the day. And in a twisted way, I wanted to punish myself for eating the crap food at lunch.

My plan did work a bit. I gained a portion of a pound, but I’m pretty sure that’s from the excess sodium in my lunch. It helped me feel more in control that I knew I was under my calorie goal.

Yes, I realize how crazy I must sound, but in the years that I got therapy for my eating disorder, I learned that I’m probably going to battle this my entire life. I’m going to have moments where I’m weak and eat things I shouldn’t. But part of winning the battle is how I react after. I didn’t give up for the day on Monday and eat more crap for dinner. I said that I was done with my meals and went to bed a little hungry. And the next morning, I was back on track with better eating.

That’s how I know I’m getting better.

Bloggers And Bellinis (or A Fabulous Brunch With Fabulous People)

I’ve attended several events that have been organized by Eventbrite (the amazing online ticketing service that I’ve used so many times!). I’ve always had an amazing time, so when I got an email inviting me to Bloggers And Bellinis, I RSVPed yes right away!

The brunch was held at 41 Ocean, which is a private club right by the Santa Monica Pier. This was my first time there, and since it is a bit hidden, I had to circle back to find it. Our brunch was held in the courtyard, and it was so pretty!


It was assigned seating at the brunch (it gave me a great opportunity to chat with bloggers I didn’t know). I loved the message that Leila, the marketing manager for Eventbrite, wrote on my place card!


We had a couple of options for our main course for brunch.


I chose the omelet. And of course, since it was brunch, there was champagne.


I spent a lot of time chatting with the three other bloggers at my table and getting advice from them on how to make my blog grow and be better (I’m hoping to have some improvements on here in the coming months!). I’ve found it tough to find supportive bloggers out there (people seem to not want to share information), but fortunately, I was seated with super supportive people!

Eventually, our food came.


There was also fruit, bacon, sausage, potatoes, and salad at the table (I forgot to take pictures of those). It was a really yummy and filling meal, and I had the best dessert at the table!


These are macarons from Napoleon’s Macarons! They were seriously so delicious! And they gave me a secret discount word to share with you all! If you want to try a 6 pack of macarons (and why wouldn’t you?), whisper “Bonjour Napoleon” and you will get 40% off of your 6 macarons (offer is good through August 27th)!

After the meal, Leila led all of us in a trivia game about Eventbrite.


I got 7 out of 10 questions right, so I knew a bunch, but sadly didn’t win (the winner got a $50 credit to attend any event on Eventbrite!).

Finally, it was time to say goodbye to my fellow bloggers. I had a bunch of errands I wanted to get done over the weekend, and even though I wanted to stay at brunch all day, I knew I needed to head home.

On my way out, I got a fabulous gift bag.


And it was filled with some awesome goodies including things from Krave Jerky, KIND Bars, Cardio Barre, Uber (this link is good for a $10 credit!), and Pretzel Crisps.

This was such a wonderful event to go to, and I wanted to thank Leila for inviting me! I’m already looking forward to my next Eventbrite event!

Almost The End Of A Decade For Me (or The Birthday Countdown Has Begun)

My 30th birthday is in less than 2 weeks! I’m so excited to be turning 30 (and I say that with no sarcasm at all)!

You may recall how much I enjoyed my birthday last year. I had a bunch of little celebrations, which is how I’ve spent many of my past birthdays. It’s just easier to organize a couple of friends at a time and spread out the birthday fun.

This year will be a little different. I will still be doing some of my smaller birthday celebrations (like my free meals at Truxton’s, Benihana, and Marie Callendar’s), but I’m planning a big 30th birthday celebration too!

I figure you only turn 30 once (technically, I guess that is true with any age), so I might as well make this a party to remember!

I thought about a couple of places where I would like to have a party, but I kept thinking about how fun it would be at Bodega Wine Bar. I really love it there, and the food and drinks aren’t too horribly expensive.

When I looked at their reservation information, there was something that made me realize I might need a backup plan. If you have a reservation on a Friday or Saturday (my birthday happens to fall on a Friday this year), you must have a minimum bar charge on one tab. That’s pretty tough to do when most of my friends will be dropping in for part of the evening and will want to be able to pay for their own drinks on their own credit cards.

So I came up with a few backup locations before I called Bodega to see about having the minimum charge rule dropped (it can’t hurt to ask, right?).

I spoke with the manager, Charity, and I have to say that she was so incredibly nice! I was prepared to have to convince her to drop the minimum. But after I explained that it was my 30th birthday and how much I love the bar, it was all taken care of!

So now I get to look forward to an amazing birthday party in 11 more days! I think I have an outfit picked out (something I rented from Gwynnie Bee) and I’m most likely having the day after my birthday off at my day job (since we have to work a long shift on Sundays when we normally have a day off).

All in all, I think this plan is coming together very nicely and will be the perfect way to say goodbye to my 20’s and hello to my 30’s!

Signing Up For More Races (or Hoping To Make It To 10)

So I totally conquered my goal of 5 5Ks this year. In case you don’t remember the 5 that I did, here are the races (and links to the posts):

And now I’ve got an awesome collection of medals that look like this.


And I’m going to be adding to my collection soon! I’ve signed up for 5K #6, #7, and #8 and I’m hoping that some of you (at least those of you who are local) can come and join me for one of them!

As of right now (because I might be adding more races) 5K #6 will be the LA Cancer Challenge 5K. I’ve never done this race before, but it’s Halloween themed so I really like that! This race is on October 27th so I’ve got a while before the race to try to get my time down some more (and maybe add in another race or two).

The next race that I’m signed up for is the weSPARK 5K that is at Universal Studios. I’ve done this race before, and I’m excited to be doing it for the 3rd time! The first link that I’ve shared for this race will link you to my fundraising page. I’m hoping to raise $100 this year for the cause, so if you can donate even a dollar it will help me out! You can also register to do the race at the link as well.

And finally, I’ve signed up for the Santa Monica Venice Christmas Run. This one is in December, and I’m thinking it is most likely the last race that I will do in 2013. So hopefully this race will end up being #10 instead of #8. This is another race that I’ve never done before, but I’ve heard from friends that the course is very flat, so I’m happy about that.

I’m so excited to have 3 more races coming up this year! I’m on the lookout for the races that will help me get to 10 total, but I’m having some trouble. A lot are on days that I can’t do one (due to my work schedule). And there are a few that I really want to do, but there is a time limit for the 5K and I know that I’m not that fast yet.

Fortunately, as I register for more and more 5Ks, I get added to more and more email lists that let me know about more races. So hopefully something fun will be in my inbox in the future.

I hope that some of you can donate to the weSPARK 5K, as this is a fundraiser for an amazing organization! Also, please let me know if you are going to also do one of the 5Ks I’ve listed because I always love running into people I know at the race!

I still can’t believe that I’m this excited to do 5Ks when only a year ago I was stressed about doing 2 or 3 in a year!

More Mentoring (or This Is Exactly What I Needed)

Yesterday was the second meeting of my Women In Film Mentoring Circle. The meeting was held again at UTA (which has the most gorgeous building in Beverly Hills).

For this meeting, only about half of my fellow mentees could attend, so there was a lot of personal attention. And our mentors arranged for a special guest to be there who is an agent as well as a manager.

While it’s great to be around like-minded people who aren’t looking at you like they are trying to figure out what they could gain, there’s just so much about this meeting that was exactly what I needed at this point in time.

I’m still pretty pissed about the car accident. Right before going to the meeting, I had my phone interview with the adjuster from the other driver’s insurance company. I felt like I had to defend myself a lot, but fortunately the adjuster seemed to almost side with me more than with her own customer. It just put me in a downer mood.

But the first thing that we did in our meeting today was to go over what we’ve accomplished since our last meeting. And even though I feel like I’m gotten nothing done, when forced to figure out what to share, I’ve realized that I’m made some great steps (including getting some clips from the scenes I shot up on my online casting profiles).

Also, it’s nice to hear that I’m not the only one struggling. Lots of people don’t like to share when they are having a tough time. Everything is sunshine and rainbows with them. It’s similar to how some actors like to hide the fact that they have a day job and want people to think that all they do is acting. I don’t understand why others hide these things. It’s so isolating and knowing that you aren’t the only one frustrated really helps make it seem more bearable.

I got some great advice from the mentors, guest, and my fellow mentees at the meeting. The other mentees and I are really trying to help each other out however we can. One offered to help me edit a demo reel when I’ve got more clips together. Another is going to help me with some stuff on here. It’s nice to have that sort of support. The only other place I’ve felt that was at The Actors’ Network, and since TAN is online only now, some of that is gone.

So after leaving the meeting, I really felt like I had some great steps to take to help my career. I have a plan for right now, and I know exactly where I can ask for help if I need it. And hopefully at the next meeting, I won’t struggle to find accomplishments to share but instead will struggle to edit down all of the accomplishments that have come my way.

Are You Freaking Kidding Me?!?!?!?! (or It Feels Like “Groundhog Day”)

Remember me wishing that car accidents wouldn’t be an annual thing? How about not wishing that car accidents would be a weekly thing?

Yup. I got into another accident. And before you think of me as a horrible driver, the accident last week involved someone backing up into me. So unless I could see the future, it was pretty hard to avoid that one (and it was not my fault at all).

This time, I was trying to merge lanes and a driver sped up to avoid letting me in. So I ended up tapping the rear bumper of their car. Sadly, my car got most of the damage. It’s not bad, but it’s not pretty.


The woman from the other car insisted on getting the police involved, but the officer didn’t write up a report.

I planned on handling this outside of insurance. The other driver had a small scratch on her rear bumper, so I figured it couldn’t be too expensive to fix (it was a car similar to mine, not super fancy). But when she called me later that day to tell me how much it was, the estimate from the only shop she was willing to go to was over $1,000. I would also have to pay for her rental car, which almost doubled the cost she quoted me. She also mentioned possibly needing new tires after the accident and getting her lawyer involved.

All of this was a little too much for me to handle on my own, so I’m going through my insurance now (that’s what they are there for, right?). I eventually want to get my car fixed, but my deductible is $500 so I need to save up for that. I think I can save it up by the time I go to the wedding, so if I get my car fixed then, I won’t need to worry about a rental car (my insurance will only pay 80% of the rental fee).

The only funny thing about this entire incident was when I was talking with the police officer. I mentioned how any minute, my boss would be driving by (the accident occurred on the freeway off ramp closest to my work) and he would most likely be laughing at me. And as soon as I said that, my boss drove by, and yes, he was laughing (in his defense, he says he wasn’t laughing at me but just smiling nervously).

I’m hoping that this accident is the last bit of bad luck that I have for a while. I feel like I’m due for some happy things now.

Working On Figuring It Out (or I Wish This Was Easier)

I was starting to get into a good flow with my food. I’ve been making much more stuff at home and remembering to take it with me to work for lunch. And this was great for a while.

Until I got to my two half days of work where there isn’t a lunch scheduled. Somehow, that got me all mixed up. I forgot to eat lunch those days and was so starving my dinnertime that I didn’t make the best choices for myself.

It’s tough on those days because I’m trying to get so much stuff done. On Fridays, I work from 9-1, so I have a good portion of my day free and like to try to get some errands done. This past Friday I left work in Santa Monica, drove to West LA to go to OSH, drove to the far side of Culver City to return some things I ordered online, then went home. By the time I got home, it was almost 4pm and I didn’t want to eat a super late lunch or a super early dinner.

And yes, I’m aware that the smart thing for me to do would be to go and get some lunch before running errands or bringing something with me that I can eat on the run. But I don’t think of doing that when I’m rushing out to work for my early shift that day (also, I don’t get home until after 9pm the night before so I’m rushing around from the time I get home the night before until I leave the next morning). I also don’t want to spend a lot of time eating lunch because I really want to maximize those hours I have (and I’m working on figuring out how to fit in a spin class too).

I had a similar problem on Sunday, which is my one day off. I got up at my usual 7am (it really is better if you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day) and was cleaning my house and running errands as soon as I woke up. And at 2pm, I realized that I hadn’t eaten anything yet and had to time out when to have lunch and dinner.

It’s tough to schedule out my meals when everything else isn’t crazy scheduled. I never know when I’m going to be doing my errands, and sometimes if I’m not hungry, I don’t want to force myself to eat.

I’m hoping that I start to figure out how to plan on my unscheduled days soon. Even though I’m eating great 4 days a week, those other 3 can really go wrong and screw up all my hard work!

More Cute Workout Clothes (or Why Can’t More Companies Be Like Old Navy?)

I’ve mentioned my love for Old Navy clothes in the past. For a while, I’ve worn Old Navy workout capris and tank tops to various exercise events. The clothes fit me, they aren’t too expensive, and sometimes I find something awesome like this shirt.


But most of the tops I’ve been wearing to workout in were not designed to be workout clothes. They get stretched out and don’t wick away any sweat (so I leave class feeling like my shirt was shrink-wrapped onto me).

Many of the women in spin class wear cute tops from stores like Lululemon. I’ve looked on their website, and most of their shirts don’t come bigger than a size 12. I won’t be wearing a size 12 anytime soon, and even when I do, I don’t know if I want to support a clothing company that doesn’t celebrate women of all shapes and sizes that workout.

So I’ve been on the hunt for real workout tops that come in my size. And guess where I found them?

Yup. At Old Navy.

(I’m seriously not paid by Old Navy to say any of this. But if they want to give me a gift card to support my shopping habit at their store, I wouldn’t turn it down)

In their Active section, they now carry tops that remind me of things I saw at Lululemon and other fancy stores like that. I purchased two different tops, both which had shelf bras in them. And I got them recently delivered to my house.

My review: I love these tops! The shelf bra isn’t the most supportive for someone like me, but it’s nice to have. I could see myself wearing these for walks without having to wear a sports bra underneath. I’m not sure about wearing them alone to spin class, but I might be gutsy enough to try it out this week.

I feel like it’s important to feel comfortable and beautiful while working out. And you don’t have to dress up to feel beautiful. I have friends who feel amazing when they workout in tank tops and sweat pants and that’s great! It’s just not me. I want to feel cute and stylish (but I’m not so crazy that I want to do my hair or wear any makeup when I’m working out).

I highly encourage you all to check out some of the workout clothes by Old Navy. I don’t get a kickback or anything. I just want to show support for a company that supports my body type. I am slightly peeved that they don’t carry any plus sized regular clothing in their stores (those are online only), but the largest size of the regular clothes is pretty much plus size.

If I have the courage to wear my new top to spin class, I’ll make sure to report back!

TV Prep Time (or Here Are Some Helpful Links About Scheduling Your Viewing)

I can’t believe how fast the summer is flying by! I remember when I was younger and my mom would tell me that time goes by faster the older you get. It’s true.

TV networks are starting to get ready for the fall tv season. And if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that I’m a little OCD when it comes to my prep work for the new shows.

I noticed that the website where I get my fall tv schedules have put up some of their information already, and I thought I’d share the links and some helpful tips on how to use them. And if you aren’t an actor, as long as you enjoy watching some tv shows, you might find this helpful as well!

First of all, here’s the link to a print out of the tv lineups for networks shows in the fall.

How is this helpful? First of all, you can use it to see if any of the shows you watch regularly have changed time slots. You can also see if there is anything that you aren’t able to record (I can only record 2 shows at once on my DVR, so if I like to watch 3 that air at the same time I have to watch one on Hulu).

For actors trying to do your research, you can plan out when you can watch certain new shows (since you should be trying to watch at least one or two episodes of everything on tv). I use this to plan what shows to watch and take notes on each day of the week. Unless I’m personally super excited for a new tv show (it happens plenty), I will schedule time to watch a show the day or two after it airs. That way I’m not staying up super late to catch a new show and take notes. Sometimes when taking notes, I will watch a show all the way through once, make some quick notes, and then go back to the beginning and watch it again for more detailed notes (like character family relations). I don’t always do this, but for some dramas, it’s hard to get everything I need in one viewing.

The second link is for the premier date schedule for all tv shows. You might recognize the grid from this picture in a previous blog post.


I always print out this schedule and keep it near my tv. This shows when each show is coming back for the fall. So even if there are 6 new shows I need to watch on a Monday, perhaps only one or two are premiering in a particular week. When I have this printed out, I highlight the premier dates of all the new shows that I need to watch. I’ll either print out a second sheet to highlight the shows that I already watch (and just am antsy to start watching again), or I’ll sometimes highlight it in another color.

Using both of these sheets, I can coordinate my DVR (and Hulu if necessary) so that I’m ready for the new tv season. The only change that I’m making this year is to digitally record all of my notes. In the past, I’ve used notebooks and hand-wrote everything. This year, I’m creating notebooks in Evernote to track and organize all of it. I’m not sure if I’ll like it more than handwriting (something about writing it down and not typing it seems to make me remember it more), but I’m willing to test it out!

I hope that for all of you actors, this helps you get more prepared for the fall tv season! If you have any questions about anything, please ask. I’m more than happy to share my knowledge with fellow actors. I don’t believe that we are really ever competing against anyone but ourselves in the audition room.

And for you non-actors reading this, I hope that you now know when all of your shows are coming back, and maybe you’ve learned something too!

Now I’m off to print and highlight the heck out of those pages!

One Year (or Actually One Year And A Couple Of Days)

I can’t believe that I actually missed the 1 year anniversary of me starting this blog! July 16, 2012 was my very first post.

In my defense, I didn’t mean to miss the anniversary, but life has been crazy lately! And for some reason, I had July 19th stuck in my head.

But here’s to me writing faithfully on here for an entire year! Holy moly!

Honestly, when I started the blog, I didn’t know how long I’d do it. I thought maybe a few people would read it (like my parents), but I didn’t think anything beyond that.

One year (and a few days) later, I have over 10,000 views from over 80 different countries!

I can see what search terms people use to stumble upon my blog, and two of the most common are Dirty Shirley and Stripper Penguin. I’m not sure what that says about the last year of my life, but I think it’s pretty awesome.

Since I started this, I’ve gotten a better control on my eating disorder. I think that coming clean was one of the best things I could have done for myself. And in the last year, I’ve lost just over 20 pounds! That may seem like not much (or a ton) to you, but to me it’s steady progress. I’m hoping to keep this trend up for the next year.

Finally, something that this blog has done for me that I haven’t shared yet. Before I had to write something fun on here every weekday, I lived a relatively boring life. Many days when I’d get home from work, I’d just crash on my couch or read until it was time to go to bed and do it all again. Having the pressure of coming up with posts every day has forced me to be more social and to step outside of my comfort zone a lot more. I’ve attended events that I wouldn’t have done before, and I’ll try crazy things just because I know that they will make an awesome post.

I hope that I’m able to keep all of this up for another year (and more years after that). In the next year, I have lots of big events! I’m turning 30 in less than a month (I’m getting old!) and my brother’s wedding is about 7 weeks away! And I’m sure there will be lots more to share that I don’t even know about yet!

But for now, here’s to the last 367 days! Thanks for following me on my journey so far, and I hope you stay with me to see where things go!

And to celebrate, I’m going to be enjoying this split of champagne with my dinner tonight!