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Street Fashion: Hollywood and Highland

31 July 2013

Earlier this month when my Uncle Timmy was in town, my dad, Uncle Timmy and I went down to the Hollywood/Highland Centre on a busy Saturday morning to photograph some of the street scene. It is always amazing to me to walk down Hollywood or Highland and remember that we are one of the biggest tourist draws in the country. Los Angeles is home to so many different ethnicities, religions, etc., and so the pickings were excellent from the tourist staying at the local hostel to the homeless man on the corner.

Neon Biker


A Map to the Stars' Homes. Seriously?

Check out that mustache!

Street Promoter

J-walking tourists headed to the local hostel

That was a fun first try at street photography. Let me know of any places you enjoy photographing.


Joy Michelle

SYTYCD: Chemistry

30 July 2013

For those of you who don't know, So You Think You Can Dance is my favorite reality show. I love getting to watch the contestants branch out and try different genres (especially paso doble) and the connection between partners as they work together during the first 5 weeks of competition.
This season my favorites are: Malece, Fick-shun/Amy, and Curtis/Hayley.
I was saddened to see my 2nd favorite pair split up tonight when Curtis (who had suffered a shoulder injury) was eliminated. They had a great connection as friends on the show and their chemistry during their routines was undeniable. Did anyone notice last week how cute they were talking about the chemistry "date" and Hayley's day's facial reactions? Lol. Only on live television.

I pray and hope for a swift recovery for Curtis would definitely rank them as a favorite couple along with Katie/Joshua, Kherrington/Twitch and Ade/Melissa. Hayley is definitely someone to keep watch.
My other favorite couple on the show, Amy and Fik-Shun, were the highlight of the evening with their brilliant chemistry and charisma. I could easily replay their hip-hop routine without getting bored. And bravo Amy for a terrific and professional recovery when she slipped on the napkin.
They are undoubtedly the couple to beat!
All that to say that if you aren't already watching Fox's SYTYCD, get your DVRs set because it is good all-around fun entertainment.

Joy Michelle

A Foodie's Paradise of a Weekend

29 July 2013

This weekend, I was fortunate enough to celebrate two great occasions at two fantastic locations. 

First, on Friday morning, I took my beautiful bestie and her darling little one for a belated birthday breakfast at Jinky's in Thousand Oaks.

besties @ the recent memorial day picnic
It is a fantastic location for breakfast with big and comfy booths, which is always a bonus in my book.  The location was also extra spacious in comparison to their Agoura Hills and Studio City locations where you are nearly sitting on the couple next to you so props.  And of course their menu is sinful.  For example, Jinky's signature pancake flavors include: Banana-Macadamia Nuts, Pumpkin, Berry Happy, and for those willing to risk a heart-attack (I have not been so inclined) there are the Red Velvet Pancakes. (I cannot even imagine.)

After debating over the pages of mouth-watering options, L ordered the Banana Nutella Crepes and I ordered the Belgium Waffle with Strawberries. L also ordered off the kid menu a French Toast plate with bacon. All 3 dishes were delightful. My waffle (see photo below) was perfectly moist and flavorful. L's crepes looked fabulous and tasted great but for future reference the portion of Nutella is quite liberal. Lol. R's French toast looked yummy and based on the amount of times R kept asking for more bacon, that was a success, too.
My Belgium Waffle with Strawberries @ Jinky's

Seriously, who does not love a good hearty breakfast combined with excellent conversation? It is truly the perfect recipe for a good weekend starter.

* * *

Fast forward to Sunday evening and I went out with my mum and dad for a belated Gotcha Day celebration. I am proud to say I have been part of the Austin family for 29 years now! Proud and honored!

I was craving a good burger so we decided on dinner at Unami Burger at the Lakes in Westlake Village. We chose to brave the breeze and sat down outside on the patio with a great view of the lake's fountain while sipping our water, iced tea and soda. (FYI - the sodas are bottled and therefore no free refills.)

Since it was our first time at the restaurant, we asked our waitress for her recommendation and unanimously ordered three Truffle Burgers. Boy was I not disappointed.

The house-made truffle cheese and truffle glaze were sinful. Like I said, this was a foodie's paradise of a weekend. The cheese melted in my mouth, the patty was extremely moist and juicy (I ordered mine medium-well and it was equivalent to a standard restaurant's medium), the bun worth every single carbohydrate (not kidding!), and the glaze was perfectly rich and complimentary of the burger. I even used the leftover glaze to dip my fries. Yum. Yum.
My Truffle Burger @ Unami Burger

After savoring every bite of my Truffle Burger, I was craving a little something more and was tempted by the ice cream offerings. I had never tried such flavors as Salted Chocolate and Brown Butter Pecan and after a minute's hesitation (who was I kidding?) I ordered a scoop of L.A. Creamery's Brown Butter Pecan in a waffle cone.
My Brown Butter Pecan Ice Cream in a waffle cone
Being such a literalist, I was almost disappointed the ice cream was not brown in color. Lol. Apart from that minor disappointment, I was in seventh heaven. My mum, dad and I all agreed that this was some of the creamiest, softest, and tastiest ice cream we'd ever had. Yum. Yum. And the cinnamon flavor of the waffle cone? Well it perfectly complimented the butter pecan flavor.

Extremely satisfied, dad paid the check (thank you!!) and we headed off into the sunset. <3

Would I go back to Jinky's or Unami? Definitely. Jinky's also serves lunch and dinner and I hear that their chili is to-die-for. Unami Burger is a bit pricy for your every day hamburger or salad but I would certainly return for a special occasion and definitely have some more of that Truffle Burger and L.A. Creamery ice cream. 

Try it for yourself and let me know what you think! Also, where are some of your favorite celebration eateries?

Okay it's Monday and that means back to eating healthy and counting those nasty carbohydrates. 

Hope your weekend was as delightful as mine.

Joy Michelle

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