Tag Archives: Los Angeles

Getting In The Mood

14 Nov

Furs, black patent pumps, full-bodied reds, something smooth on the radio and spicy on my plate.  Holiday season, I’m all yours!  (You totally thought I was going somewhere else didn’t you… Lot of growing up to do.)

This will be my second Christmas here in Los Angeles, and to be honest there’s not a lot I miss from Toronto winters.  Friends and family back home ask;

“Does it even feel like Christmas?”  “Don’t you miss the snow?”

Let me pause a moment and consider my answer while I sip this chardonnay on a patio while wearing a light blazer and sunglasses…

Nope.  Definitely doesn’t feel like Christmas.  All the trees, lights and music actually put me in the Easter spirit.  I was genuinely confused when I saw Santa at the mall.  I called him a fake, ripped off his beard, pushed him into an Ed Hardy sales clerk and told him to put on his bunny costume.  I may have gotten arrested by a mall cop.

As for the snow,  I don’t do cold.  I have horrible circulation that leaves me with pale-ass skin and frigid appendages.  I can’t even touch small animals or infants after September without the risk of frostbite.   I don’t look good in hats, I hate the fact that hands are completely useless while wearing mittens, and my idea of a ski trip involves a hot tub, massage and a glass of merlot. Most winter mornings, I wake up and consider death a more pleasurable experience than facing another day that measures anywhere near freezing.  And once we hit below freezing on the ol’ thermostat, I’m pretty sure my soul leaves my body in attempts to hurl itself in front of oncoming traffic.

Winter comes – I die inside.

Needless to say, adjusting to winter in California has been life-changing.  I don’t need Seasonal Depression Disorder to get me in the mood.  I need to hear carols sung by crooners, to drink wine before noon, and light candles while making breakfast.  I need to wear fur to dinner, paint my nails black and do copious amounts of baking, adding cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves to absolutely everything.  May the celebration begin!   Nothing wrong with a personal sized apple crisp and glass of red wine for dinner.  Yes, for dinner.  Very satisfying.

Apple Crisp

4 medium apples, sliced
3/4c  brown sugar
1/2c.  flour (I use half rice flour, half sorghum flour to keep it GF)
1/2c. quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats (GF oats available)
1/3c. butter or dairy free alternative
3/4tsp.  ground cinnamon
3/4tsp.  ground nutmeg
1/4tsp. cloves

Heat oven to 375ºF. Grease bottom and sides of 8-inch pan. Arrange apples on bottom of pan. In medium bowl, stir remaining ingredients until well mixed. Sprinkle over apples. Bake about 30 minutes or until topping is golden brown and apples are tender when pierced with a fork.

Easy Peasy!


10 Things That Scare Us

31 Oct
1. Horror movies that involve demon possession of children.  (Jenn)

Especially now that I have a child living in my house.  Late one night when Lola was a baby, my husband was out-of-town and I was downstairs, alone, watching Pet Cemetery.  As I realized the small child in the movie was possessed, I heard a noise upstairs – I looked at my baby’s video monitor, and at that moment, Lola opened her eyes, sat up, and stared right at the camera! Even creepier, the camera has night vision so she was green and her eyes were black and glowing!!! AHHHHHHHH!

2. Cat Hair (Nic)

To me, cat hair is kinda like a bad rash.  It’s itchy, it migrates, and it always ends up getting in to places it shouldn’t.  I’m getting hives just thinking about it!  And no matter how fierce the outfit, sprinkle a little cat hair on it, and you may as well be wearing a Snuggie to a cocktail party.  Cats don’t scare me, it’s just what they leave behind that gives me the chills.

3. Undercooked Chicken (Jenn)

I am always examining chicken, asking people, “Does that look a bit pink to you?”  I‘ve never had food poisoning from chicken, so I’m not sure why I am so weird about it. I just am. Let’s move on to number four, shall we?

4. Vibram Five Finger Running Sock (Nic)

I’m all for working with your body’s natural mechanics, but the Five Finger Running Socks, scare the shit outta me!  First of all, they’re toes, not fingers.  The fact that we can’t keep that straight, is scary enough.  Secondly, when wearing them, you look like some kind of human-sloth inbred.  Makes me think you can do things with your toes, that you shouldn’t be able to do.

5.  Fat free, dairy free coffee creamer. (Jenn)

Coffee cream consists of two elements: dairy and fat. So if you aren’t either of those….what ARE you?  The answer is: mostly vegetable oil and corn syrup. Powdered coffee creamer has also been used to whiten clothes, clean dry erase boards and when you ignite it, it makes beautiful, pleasant smelling, fireballs.

6. Food past it’s expiry. (Nic)

Even if it’s only an hour passed the recommended expiry date, I can’t eat it. No matter what.  The expired food immediately tastes sour, forms a pungent odor, and an offensive texture.  I simultaneously develop a serious gag reflex, and consume nothing but rice cakes for the rest of the day.

7. Parents who say “Good job!” to their children every five seconds. (Jenn)

I seriously want to tell them to shut it. And I AM a parent! Don’t say “Good job” when your child goes down the slide. That’s not a JOB! It’s recreational fun! Over-praising your children for activities that take minimal effort may result in your child growing up to be a huge douche-bag.

8. Bees (Nic)

Don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of bees, and know the world wouln’t continue to exist, blah, blah, blah…  However, I have yet to be stung by a bee, so it is not uncommon to hear me yell such phrases as, “Watch your skin!” or “Is it in my hair,” at random passer-byers.  Or to see me jump out of my car, at the intersection of Hollywood Bld. and Highland, spastically remove my shirt and then beating it against the pavement, screaming “Die bee, Die!”  Thankfully it was a red light.  And the tourists loved it. PS. Jenn does not respect this fear. She says “bees are very smart and good, wasps are A-holes.”

9. How much I love Neil Diamond. (Jenn)

When I was a young kid and didn’t know any “official dance moves”, my brother and I used to run in circles around the living room when my mom put “ Sweet Caroline” on the turntable. To this day, hearing a Neil Diamond song puts a smile on my face, and song in my heart.

10. How much I love Phil Collins  (Nic)

As an adult, I do know some official dance moves, yet I still prefer to run in circles around my living room, while listening to Phil Collins or Genesis on my itunes – always making sure to include a wildly impressive air drum solo to ‘In The Air Tonight.’

Jazzed Up!

26 Sep

As the weather turns cooler (seriously, it was like 75 yesterday) and the sun sets sooner, there’s a little voice inside you that says “Go enjoy the outdoors while you still can, sucka fools!”

Our version of “being outdoorsy” is NOT hiking some remote location where you get your arm pinned under a boulder and end up drinking your own urine for survival. Although, that can be a good time…

We prefer walking 4 blocks to LACMA (the Los Angeles County Museum of Art), pinning down some tacos for under 5 bucks, and drinking wine for our survival. No need for rescue helicopters here…unless Jenn has too much chardonnay…again.

Below we are doing something local Angelinos rarely do: walking. Don’t these pictures look like a sexier urban version of “Sister Wives?” That’s our friend Jen in the stripes walking behind Nic.(Yes ANOTHER person named Jen) She’s one of the sweetest, prettiest girls we know. She has a baby inside her. It will probably be the sweetest prettiest baby we’ll know.

During the end-of-summer/fall season, LACMA hosts live outdoor jazz concerts on Friday nights at the Grand Entrance of the museum complex. The museum is itself a work of art, comprised of modern and art deco architecture built within Hancock Park – home to the La Brea Tar Pits – where a whole bunch of fossils have been dug up. By the way: trapped in hot tar = bad way to go. If I were a Mastedon (and sometimes I feel like one right before my period) and I knew the asteroid was coming, I would rather take a boatload of Advil PM and call it an era. The tar pits are still hot, and bubbling. And sometimes at the corner of 6th and Fairfax it smells like farts from the sulfur. In fact we refer to 6th and Fairfax as “the corner of fart and egg salad.

Lola in the stroller and Sofie the dog watch as we eat tacos and discuss the problems of the world. I wonder if Jenn’s husband knows how dangerous it is to wear a shirt with a target on it while Jenn has PMS?

Brandon can’t believe the veggie taco tonight is green beans! Karl (on the right) can’t believe Brandon is so exited about green beans. And check out the man-camel toe to the left of Brandon. Wow! Those jeans are right up in there! We should have done a “jean intervention” with both of these people.

Jenn’s daughter Lola has a deep rooted love for jazz.  Basically, she can’t help but dance as soon as she hears it. She will also dance with her stuffed dog and maintain eye contact with him while they dance – out of respect.  So, with apologies to my Mom and Dad for the ridiculous amounts of money they wasted on my dancing career, but I was out-shone by a baby.  Clearly I’ve been a little over confident in my abilities to pull focus.  Maybe I should get my boobs done?

Then the sun finally set, we recycled our plates, and strolled home. Not a whiff of fart in the air. Except for actual farts from the tacos.

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