Tag Archives: home life

Me and Los Angeles.

I have over a dozen posts sitting unposted and partially written in notepad files in my Dropbox.  Time for some fall cleaning.  Here is one of the more finished posts:

I listen to Camera Obscura because it puts me back on a train in England. Sheep. Little green hills. The feeling of going.

I left my heart in San Francisco, but found a new one in Los Angeles.

My Los Angeles is not the same as their Los Angeles.  I realized that one of the things I love most about this place is that it it is ultimately mine.  Even though I share it with others and our experiences intersect like circles from a Venn diagram, there is always that part of me that doesn’t touch anyone else.  Just me and LA.

I think I finally decided I was an LA resident when I flew back from my parents house with a carry on bag packed with the favorite books of my childhood.  A lot of my stuff is in a crawlspace at my parents’ house in a city I never really lived in.  It’s left there for the day I “settle down,” if there is ever such a thing.  There is still a lot in the crawlspace, but those books are the most valuable things from teenagedom, because they are conduits of ideas and places that I existed in at that point in time.

I finally became a grown up here.  I put nails in walls and hung pictures on them.  No more posters and scraps of paper taped on walls.  Though it took a juvenile move to get me here.

At the end of college I moved down to LA without a job and with only enough savings to pay for a few months of rent.  It was just as the recession got going, but I was unaware of economics and blindly and foolishly optimistic.

A quickly dwindling bank account added too much urgency to my job search, and the only position I could manage to get in a timely fashion was the exact same type of job I did in the summers between high school and college years.  I hoped working as a receptionist at the marketing company would be my foot in the door, but instead I got disillusioned by the size of egos.  The office was up in a high rise building, physically held up by steel and architectual engineering, but figuratively held up by inflated measurements of self worth.  Answering phones and serving coffee to Hollywood types was mentally unchallenging and it soon became clear that these were not my people and there wasn’t any other place for me at that company.

For sanity’s sake I enrolled in an MA program and planned to hold out at the company for just a bit longer so I could squirrel away extra money for school.  It was both fortunate and unfortunate that two months before I planned on quitting, the company laid off about a third of its workforce in order to do some downsizing and restructuring.  I was bummed not to have the extra cash in savings and to be robbed of my chance to quit on my own terms, but also relieved to not have to deal with the tedium anymore.  That summer I had the opportunity to reestablish my worth as a living human being, so in the end things all worked out.  I was relieved.

And like any relationship, my relationship with the city is fluid. I’m still not sure if it’s going to dump me in the next couple months, or if I want to work hard enough to fight to keep our relationship alive.  What is that saying about ships passing in the night?


As a postscript: Since I wrote this post I found out that I’ll probably be here for another year at least.  The romance continues.


In Food News.

Mr. H's chicken dinner

Winna winna, chicken dinna!  Yep, that was me last weekend.  Mr. H turned out a delicious meal.  It was a little heavy on the starch – the veggies spoke for themselves and don’t really need the rice company.  Aside from that, copy and paste this meal and I’m all over it again.  A simple white wine rosemary pan chicken with roasted potatoes and veggies pan cooked with the chicken.  I’m a fledgling vegetarian, though chicken cooked this delicious keeps me from fully going veggie.

Lemon and Almond Chocolate Meringues: not all that photogenic, but tastytasty!

I made meringues last weekend.  They’re not my prettiest specimens, but they tasted yummy.  The yellow/orange ones are lemon meringues and the others are almond chocolate meringues.  Viewed close up the sugar  in them reflected light and made them shimmer.

In other food news, I made snickerdoodle cookies at 11pm Wednesday night as my night class on Thursday after work requested some sort of heritage dish.  My people are mutts, through and through, so bringing a “heritage” dish to a school thing is always a challenge for me, particularly when my classmates are almost all first or second generation immigrants that have great food recipes passed down from their parents’ or their home country.  I made the joke the previous week that I should bring alcohol as a lot of my ancestors had been alcoholics, so it was part of my heritage.  No one seemed to see the humor in it, sigh.  I still think it’s funny!  Though I settled on snickerdoodles, which my Mom made a lot when I was a kid.


A typical scene at home (for one more week at least!)

Life has been a bit of a low-on-sleep but high-on-coffee blur lately.  Work has been going fabulously (the blog post I put up for the Library’s website has taken off – though I think it has more to do with the subject matter than the author, I’ll take the praise and run with it!)  School has just about one week left to go.  Burton Holmes is nearing completion, though Lupe Velez and Dolores Del Rio are struggling a bit.  It’s strange that the topic I switched to last minute (Holmes) is trumping the topic I thought would engage me the most (Velez and Del Rio)!  My goal tonight is to get a complete rough (roughroughrough) draft completed on the Velez/Del Rio front.

My new buddy - he's slightly forest greener in person

Something about the holidays has got me all spendy.  The hot water bottle mentioned in a previous post arrived earlier this week.  We’re already best buddies!  I haven’t given him a name yet, but I’m thinking about it.  It stays warm throughout the night.  It isn’t as good as having Mr. H around for cuddles, but it sure beats shivering through the night.  I haven’t used the space heater in the evening at all either, so win-win there.

Magazine Holders

I also splurged on these magazine holders.  My magazines were recently evicted from my bookshelf by a wave of books that took up residence in the vacated space.  It’s great having my academic/interest books all grouped together by topic (I’m an archivist for a reason!  Though don’t ask me if these magazine holders are acid free – I didn’t take it that far.), but it left nowhere for my homeless magazines.  I don’t have any space for a new bookshelf, so for the time being I’m sticking with these magazine holder guys.

And now I’m doing my best not to invest in this adorable half pint ice cream maker by Hamilton Beech (in pistachio!).  It got mixed reviews on Amazon (very polarized in fact), so I’m a bit torn.  I don’t expect a $30 ice cream maker to churn out Dreyer’s (aka Edy’s for those of you not on the West Coast), but I do want an ice cream maker that doesn’t get its blade stuck mid-churn (ice cream tragedy!).


Culver City and Los Angeles from Culver City Park

I returned to Los Angeles at the end of August and encountered a giant workload which has kept me from having any sort of time/motivation to update this blog. However, I haven’t forgotten it exists! I’d like to continue to record my professional and personal adventures as a young adult type person, now returned to the City of Angels (and maybe also do a little reflecting on the close of this summer’s work).

There are four general threads that currently run through my life at the moment:
(1) Finishing my final year of grad school
(2) Processing a collection at my wonderful new/old Western Museum workplace
(3) Repping for the City of Los Angeles’ SurveyLA project
(4) Being as involved as possible with the Los Angeles archival scene

My other non-official duties involve:
(1) Sweeping up copious amounts of dog hair at home (from my roommate’s adorable but super shedding pup)
(2) (attempting to) Feed myself somewhat nutritious homemade things (takes time, time, time! sigh)
(3) Find time for boyfriend and friends (Time?! What is this?)

First though, I’ve gotta finish up a historiography paper on immigration. Personally, I find the topic of “immigration” a little broad for a concise 8-10 pager, but that’s what the boss ordered, so I’ve gotta deliver. One paper coming right up!