Friday, January 24, 2014

Where to Eat (L.A. Edition)

If you find yourself in the Greater Los Angeles area on business or pleasure, you'll need to eat eventually. No really, even Malibu Barbie and Ken have to stop and grab some food from time to time. Sometimes, they even take Skipper out for a burger. Poor Skipper, ever-the-adolescent. It's just not fair that Barbie got all that gorgeous blond hair and those long legs and those big...oh never mind.

What were we talking about? Oh yes, food.

Pete and I got some fantastic recommendations from friends and business associates. May I highly recommend:

For breakfast, lunch or brunch:

Another Broken Egg - Burbank (

Great food, gorgeous mugs 

This was awesome! Homemade granola, blueberry quinoa, coconut milk, honey, fruit.

Located directly across from City Hall on Olive Avenue in downtown Burbank. 

And for all of our Tallahassee friends (Go 'Noles!), you lucky ducks have Another Broken Egg located by you! It's a cute little place overlooking a gorgeous pond.

For lunch or casual patio style dinner-

So fresh! So, so fresh! The Salsa Verde is drinkable :-). Like straight up drinkable. I may or may not be banned from the salsa bar at Poquito Mas in Studio City. 

The lady in the picture below is smiling because:

A. She is happy
B. I am leaving
C. There is still Salsa Verde left.
D. All of the above

For dinner-

Oh, where do I begin? I know...

Osteria Mozza -(
This place is a pasta lover's paradise! I'm at a loss for words except Yum, Al dente, stuffed, yum, freaking yum!

The pasta tasting option was a perfect way to experience the chef's wares. And there was this fresh mozzarella imported from heaven with this rustic garlic infused magical bread... Oh my gall bladder!

Next, is Rock N' Fish in Manhattan Beach, CA ( 

The food was super good. Kale Ceasar salad with polenta croutons! Awesome!

This place is so fun and rustically elegant. Right up the hill from the beach. All brick, dark wood, wrought iron. Perfect beach dining. There's another Rock N' Fish in Laguana Beach and L.A..

Ready for some Elvis, black sequined sombreros, piƱata chandeliers, and oodles of velvet? Then, La Velvet Margarita Cantina ( is your place!

I mean really, who wouldn't be smitten with an establishment that serves your eyes, ears and heart with healthy portions of Elvis on the big screen? Elvis in Acapulco, cliff diving, tan, in a bathing suit, tan, Elvis...

Did I mention that the food is off the chain good? They know how to do mole sauce (even if I can't get my computer keyboard to add the proper accent mark). Ole! (Again, with the lack of accent.)

Here is my hunka, hunka burning love! 

Finally, the grand finale...Cleo ( Ah, Cleo! This little gem is located in The Redbury Hotel. 

It was recommended to me by Laura Tremaine, from The Hollywood Housewife blog (, Thank you, Laura! You picked a winner!

Ah, where to begin? The wood oven roasted brussel sprouts (that I am still dreaming of and I hate brussel sprouts) the baba ganoush, the beet salad with those lovely candied nuts, all amazing! For dessert, and Pete's birthday "cake", there was toffee pudding. The earth stood still whilst we ate it! Love you, Cleo! 
And for our Miami friends, you are in luck! Cleo is in your area!

So, there you have it! A tiny guide to some awesome L.A. eats! Enjoy!

Oh, please share your dining adventures with me. I would love to hear about your favorite food finds! 

Hugs and extra hips to ya! 


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Scenes from Manhattan Beach, CA

Mahattan Beach, CA is a divine seaside town.  Beautiful beach, surfer's paradise, fantastic dining. Top that off with a breathtaking sunset and then sugar it up a bit more with a perfect moonrise. 



Friday, January 10, 2014

What's In a Name?

It's late as I write this.  Pete just left for 17 days of business travel tonight.  I feel asleep around 9 PM as I was helping Little Monkey to go to sleep himself (i.e., I feel asleep reading to him ;-)).  Then, I woke up around 11 PM to make sure that everyone else had arrived in bed on time.  I have not been able to fall back to sleep.  I have a lot on my mind.  Today, I heard about a family (friends of friends) that lost their 21 year old son in 2012.  Two days ago, the father of that 21 year old died suddenly.  I can not even imagine what his sweet wife is enduring right now.  My heart aches for her and I don't even know her or anyone in her family.  To lose a child and a husband...

News of this kind always reminds to spend every second of every day being grateful for the time that I have right now with my family.  Tomorrow is not a guarantee.  The time for cultivating love is now.  I want to spend every chance that I can being present with those that I love.  Giving them my full attention.  Showing them that they are important.  Instilling in them that family is important.  I want our kids to know that the bonds we have as a family, The Lehman Family, are their roots, their foundation, their springboard for all other significant human relationships. It all starts here.  Our family shares a common faith.  We have experienced joys and sorrows together.  We serve and encourage each other.  We play together, work together, learn together and love together.  I want our  family name, Lehman, to be more than just a name.  I want it to be our identity.  Our legacy.

So, here are some questions for anyone reading.  How do you cultivate love in your family? How have you built your family's identity?  What legacy are you creating for the next generation?

I love hearing from you.  It makes me think.  You have great insights.  Sometimes I "borrow" your ideas.  Well, maybe more than sometimes.  Because, hey, we can all use encouragement!



Thursday, January 2, 2014

"Blurred Lines" by the Artist Formerly Known as and Still Known as Melissa

Blurred Lines (to the tune of Blurred lines)

Everybody get up!  Everybody get up! 

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Christmas has come and gone, Rung in the New Year too!

Thought that the holidays were over, and all that eating too.

Maybe, I'm going crazy!, Maybe, I'm going blind!  Maybe, I'm out of my mind!

So now, there's college football.  A National Championship too!

You better watch out Auburn! The 'Noles are coming for you!

One thing I want to know, I really, really do.

When do we end this party and say we're really through?

Maybe, I'm gaining some weigh!  Maybe, a pound or so!  Maybe, I don't want to know!

I really, really hate these blurred lines.  
These never-ending holiday food lines!
You know you want it!  You know you want it!
I'm getting worried for my behind!

I really need to be a good girl!  

But there's been egg nog, I've ate like a hog!

And I just want to be a good girl!

Buffets fantastic!  I can't get past it!

Okay, now we were close, but here comes the Super Bowl.

Hot wings, nachos, and soda.  I'm feeling really gross. 

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

February holds so much promise.  Oh, yes it's really true.

It's time to clean up our acts and say were really through. 

But wait! There's something lurking outside my home's front door.

Ding, dong!  The Girl Scouts are here!  They have cookie's galore!

And I've been trying to be a good girl! 

Thin Mints!  Fantastic!  Somoas!  Blasted! 

I really, really hate these blurred lines!
Just lock the door and close all the blinds!
You know you want it!  You know you want it!
I'm getting worried for my behind!

Everybody get up!  Everybody get up! 

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

Hey! Hey! Hey!



Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Forty Funk!

I had nightmares about turning forty.  Straight up, wake up in the middle of the night, sweaty, panicky nightmares!  I just could not kick this impending sense of doom that settled over me about six months before my 40th birthday.  I couldn't help thinking that somehow 40 was a dirty word.  A big, fat, 5 letter nasty word.  The F-bomb!  Forty!

The day I turned forty, Pete threw me a huge surprise birthday party complete with a steel drum band and a house full of my favorite people.  We had so much fun!  However, after the party was over and the last of the confetti was swept away, the funk set in again.  I call it the Forty Funk.

Here are the symptoms of the Forty Funk:

1.  Indecisive.  Wishy washy.  Scatterbrained.  ADHD, HDAD,  "Where am I? ", "Who am I?"

2.  Acne.  Say WHAAAAAT? Yep, like full on awkward teeny-bopper, get out the Sea Breeze and three tubes of Extra Strength Clerasil acne.

3.  Insecure.  "Why are they looking at me?", "Do they like me?", "They hate me!", "This outfit makes my butt look big."  "This outfit makes my butt look big too!" "Wait, is my butt big?"

4.  Unsure.  "What should I do with the rest of my life?", "Is it all down hill from here?", "What am I good at anyway?"

5.  Emotional.  Happy, terrified, happy, angry, totally freaking out, excited, depressed, and happy again in a span of 5 minutes.  Or maybe 4 minutes.

So basically, I went through a second puberty the year I turned forty.  Yep, instead of the middle school puberty blues, I had the middle-aged puberty blues. I was an air-headed,  awkward, acne- laden, angry adolescent adult.  At times, it seemed that the only thing that defined my "adulthood" was my lack of head gear and AquaNet hairspray.

But, you know what?  Just like with the first puberty, something happened on the other side of the second puberty.  I changed.  It took awhile and I have not arrived, but somehow by the grace of God and medicated Stridex facial pads, I have overcome the Forty Funk.

And now, being forty-something has taken on a whole new life.  I feel more confident and able to make decisions with a clear mind.  I treat others the way that I want to be treated and do not worry about what others are thinking about me. I feel more stable emotionally and realize that joy comes from within no matter what is happening externally.  And while I still have a lot to learn, I am excited about the journey.

Oh, and I have also discovered Spanx.  So, that takes care of the booty dilemma.  Because, all's well that ends well.  Wink! Wink!

Can anyone else out there relate to the second puberty?  Throw on your Member's Only jacket, grab that Bonnie Bell lipgloss, and let's chat.  Comments on our FB Page or here on the blog are open.