Holy Shit You Guys, It’s May Already…

MAMMA MIA, TIME FLIES!!!

Wow I really can’t get over the fact that so much time has passed already that I’ve been living in another country. I mean, I’ve been consciously aware of the fact that I’m not in America while I’ve been here, but when I actually stop and think about the fact that I legit live in another country – and how much I LOVE IT, it kind of blows my mind. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m pretty easily impressed, but I mean come on, I’m kind of proud of me.

~ok i’m done. moving on… ~

I just wanted to check in with my dear old bloggie, and I have news, so that’s fun! My news is that I ate fresh burrata in Puglia. I KNOW, YOU GUYS….SO EXCITING! Oh yeah, also, I went to Puglia for 4 days with my Italian roommate, Laura and my P.I.C., Lily. We drove around the southern part (the boot of Italy), saw stupidly pretty seawater/coastline and ate way too many taralli. Puglia is amazing – it’s full of olive trees that produce some of the best oive oil in Italy, rich cultural heritage sites and just happens to be where my Italian heritage tanti anni fa (many years ago) originates. I definitely recommend a visit to Puglia, if you’re looking for absolute beauty and some of the best food you’ll ever nom on. **Some things to know before you go: it’s the south, so infrastructure is really poor and/or non-existent, things like wi-fi are hard to find, most people don’t speak English and speak Italian with a very heavy accent, you need a car, unless you’re staying in only 1 or 2 towns, people do things on their own time (they are on super Italian time –meaning everything is later and slower than the actual time it’s supposed to happen), last but NOT least, it’s so worth it!

Before Puglia, two weeks prior I was actually in Spain for a week, visiting my friend, Rebecca. I went to Madrid and Valencia, both of which are amazing and deserve their own post. I think I’m going to work on posting travel tips and places I’ve been, this summer, when I have time and am back in America, reminiscing about Europe. In the meantime, i’ll give you all the trip highlights: Valencia – central market, incredibly cute town, bar crawl, drink (agua de valencia), bar crawl with randoms (pretending to bffs/making out with a cute german), randomly running into a wine and cheese festival. Madrid – THE METRO IS SO AMAZING, the Museo de Sofia Reina, parks, my sweet Spanish air bnb host and her homemade spanish tortillas, seeing Rebecca everyday :D.

Now, it’s May…HOLY SHIT! I have May, June and July (I leave July 29) left in my beloved Bologna. I’m freaking out a bit, because I know how fast the time will go and I still have so many things I want/need to do. I have my internship with the Human Right’s Night Film Festival that’ll be happening soon, so i’ll be busy. I have exams, which I need to start studying for, but have absolutely no voglia (desire) to do so. I need to start planning my trip to Sicily and to Sardegna, for when my mom comes. I need to do my laundry and exercise and live a healthy lifestyle — sheesh, so many things!!!!

If there’s anything I’ve learned while abroad, it’s that there’s no use in thinking about the short amount of time you have to do things (yes, 1 year is actually no time at all). Invece (instead), you have to just appreciate and enjoy every moment for what it is…carpe that effin diem, or whatever those cheesy posters that I secretly love so much say. In fact, that’s what I’ve been doing in Bologna – just appreciating how great the city is by always being out. Lily and I are always walking around, running into open-air markets, going for a stroll at Giardini Margherita, getting an aperitivo out with friends or just grabbing a bottle of wine and sitting in a piazza. Springtime in Bologna is amazing, everyone is always outside. Actually, tonight we wanted to go out for a bit, so we went to the last day of the liberation festival, conveniently located at the park next to our apartment and got melanzana alla parmigiana from the Sicilian stand. It was so nice; there were cute little tables on the grass, so we sat down and enjoyed our yummiez and were gifted a free cannolo, by the sweet man working the booth. Whilst enjoying our sweet treat, we caught the attention of a group of older Italian men chatting and drinking wine. It was obvious that they were looking to chat us up, so they started off with the standard “where are you from” question. They asked if we were Spanish and were delightfully surprised when we replied back that we’re Californiane. Soon enough, they asked if they could sit at our table for some chiacchierate (chitchat) and were picking our brains about old american comics and giving us a history lesson about Bologna and wars of the past. It was actually really fun to chitchat with the old geezers of Bologna, who were just being their naturally social, Italian selves. We said our goodbyes and headed home, after an unexpected eventful night of casual conversation and laughter in the park with locals. Bologna è così (Bologna’s like this): there’s always fun to be had, you just have to go out and find it.

So, yeah i’m going to be sad to leave my new found home, but I think at the end of the day, the message is the same – find your own fun. Go outside, meet people, chat, laugh, eat, drink and be merry. Nothing will be ever the same, when I get back to California, but now that i’ve learned the kind of lifestyle I like, I think I can recreate it just about anywhere I am.

Basta ragazzi (enough), i’m done with all the cheesy stuff. Thanks for reading. Here are a few pics of my Bolognese life. Hope you enjoy.

A presto,

S

xxxx

 

Fall Forward, Behind, Back or Whatever They Say…

Sometimes in life, you neglect things and focus your energy on other things, even if the things you’re neglecting are the things you like. This is my way of saying I like blogging, but I’ve neglected my poor little blog … Continue reading

OMG You Guys I exercised will power and it worked…who knew?

Something weird happened to me today, you guys…I listened to my body.

image

I listened to my subconscious instead of giving in to my inner evil spawn and I exercised mental will power. This may not seem like a big deal, but it totally is for me. I usually just give in to whatever my body wants and just shrug my shoulders and think “you can’t go against nature”. In reality it’s all a load of bull — it’s just the excuse I use to justify my decisions.

Anyway, after I ate dinner, I really wanted something sweet. But, sad story is that we didn’t have anything in our apartment. I was forced to wait it out until my roommate wanted to go to the market. The only thing I had remotely dessert-y was the fresh greek yogurt from the farmer’s market, which is super good, it’s just not sweet. But, I was like c’mon you can wait an hour and I’ll go get yummy stuff to put in it. So, I go to the market with my roommate and she bought ice cream and right as I was about to go soft and buy ice cream too, I remembered that fresh greek yogurt that my grandma bought me. And I was like NAH…Grandma greek yogurt trumps store-bought ice cream.

I got home feeling wonderfully superior and created a culinary masterpiece that I will call, Better-than-Bitching Out Greek Yogurt:

How to make: Slice up a couple strawberries and frozen dates. Toss the fruit into the greek yogurt and drizzle with honey and add a bit of granola or cereal. BAM, there it is.

It’s crazy good, hope y’all try it when you’re feeling adventurous 🙂

Cooking With What You Got: Pizza Eggs Edition

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love to cook. My style of cooking isn’t what some would consider as traditional. I don’t really think in terms of recipes, I think more along the lines of what do I have in the house and what can I make with it? This has lead me to some of my favorite dishes.

Here’s a taste of what goes through my mind when I’m hungry and decide to cook:

Hmm…I’m hungry, what do I feel like having? *Opens fridge*

Crap, all we have is eggs, greek yogurt, spinach, someone’s molding bread and a slice of pizza.

WAIT, I KNOW…I’ll have the pizza, duh, no brainer.

But, if I have that measly slice of pizza on it’s own I’m definitely going to be hungry in like an hour…

*Stands in front of fridge indecisively*

Ok, well eggs have protein, what if I scramble an egg with my pizza? Yep. That’s what I’m going to do!

*Cuts pizza into bite-sized pieces, tosses it into the pan with crushed red pepper. Cracks egg and scrambles with pizza bites.*

And that, boys and girls is how Pizza eggs were invented. I’m sure other people thought of this combo first, but I thought of it on my own, so I think that means I’m like innovative or whatever. No? Ok, well then…

Guess what, you can do add eggs to a bunch of things and it tastes amazing and keeps you full. I.e. Burrito Eggs, Pasta Eggs, Grilled Cheese Sandwich Eggs, Veggie Medley Eggs, you get it.

so-darn-easy-hell-yeahh

I drank the Kool-Aid.

I live in California. Even more specifically Southern California. It’s no secret that the humans of SoCal have a reputation for being a health-conscious bunch. With our abundance of juicing bars and yoga studios, we’ve grown to be an interesting breed. I have mixed feelings about the people of SoCal. I think it’s a little bit narcissistic to stretch in front of a mirror and that it’s downright ridiculous to substitute solid food for a green-liquid alternative. But, I’m not a pessimistic grump and I do think that there is something to be said about trying to live a healthy lifestyle. 

 

I mentioned that part about green-juice above for a reason. I did some research on the whole juicing thing, because for some reason that’s fun for me. What I found out was that the kooks in SoCal might be on to something. Turns out that green juice can actually taste good, who’d of thunk it?! And like everything in life, this whole green juice thing in moderation can really help you sneak in some extra nutrients in and give your immune system an extra boost.

 

So what I’m trying to say is: Ladies and gentlemen, I drank the koolaid. And by that I mean, green juice, I drank the green juice. And now, I know why everyone is metaphorically writing home about it. It tasted good. Like really good. It’s weird I know, I was surprised too. I was so ready to hate it and think that it was all a scam. Truth is, I actually wanted more.

I’m sure you’re now entranced by my mystical green juice story and want nothing more than for me to give up the recipe! What? No one is reading this? Ok, well here you go internet, here is my magical recipe.

Shelby’s Mysteriously Good-Tasting Green Juice

Serves

3 oz of Spinach

1 apple

1 orange or 1 blood orange, either one is delicious

A 1-2 inch piece of fresh ginger

1 big carrot or 5-7 baby carrots

Ok, so I don’t have a fancy juicer. I have a pretty high powered blender. It’s a Vitamix that blends nicely. You can use either, if you only have a blender, chop your ingredients before you throw them into the blender to help your blender out. Once everything is blended and it looks like green baby food (don’t get discouraged, this is not an aesthetically pleasing drink), you can pour it over ice and add a splash of water or orange juice to your glass, if you’re feeling crazy.

In case you want some literature on juicing other than my semi-ok description of juicing, here are some links:

–  Green Juice: drink your way to 5 a Day- theguardian.com

–  Green Juice Health Benefits – Shape.com

 

Foodie or Food Monger?

I’ve realized that when it comes to food, I’m a little obsessive. I’ve been spoiled by being exposed to so much good food in my lifetime that has given me ridiculously high standards for someone of my age and income or there lack of (I’m a student).

Will eat for food

Will eat for food (Photo credit: altemark)

I’m lucky to go to a school that celebrates cultural and has tons of cultural food. Today I went to the Hare Krishna buffet outside the student Food Co-op. This has been a long standing tradition at UCSD; every Wednesday from 11am-2ishpm there is a buffet of Vegetarian Indian Food that the Hare Krishnas from Pacific Beach bring to campus. For $5 you can fill a plate or container as much as you want. It’s really delicious and there is SO much food.

Days like this are good. I respected my body by filling it with healthy substantial meals. But, there are some days that my body is just like, “hey girl, I know you’re trynna be healthy, but I don’t give a damn. EAT ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING YOU FIND.” I hate those days. Not only because I feel absolutely awful after eating too much, but I feel bad for not enjoying and appreciating my food. There are so many people who don’t have access to the great food I do or have eating disorders that give them an awful relationship with food.

I’m trying my best to remember to be a food appreciator and not a food monger. Some days it’s hard (i.e. when there are pistachios in the house, i can seriously eat a whole bag), but I think it’s worth thinking about it before you get way too into your food.

Speaking about getting way too into your food, watch this hilarious sketch from Portlandia about a pasta obsession.

Happy Halloween!

DIY Halloween: Jack'o'lantern

DIY Halloween: Jack’o’lantern (Photo credit: wildjinjer)

Check out my latest article for UCSD’s The Guardian. I shed some light on tips for throwing your own DIY Halloween party. Follow this link for the article on page 6 of Lifestyle.

Thanks! I hope you have a spooktacular Halloween 🙂

Stereotypical girl Halloween costume...whatevs

Stereotypical girl Halloween costume…whatevs