BABY SPRINKLE

Yesterday I was BLESSED to be the recipient of a BABY SPRINKLE! What is a “sprinkle” you ask? Well, it’s a celebration to help Mom welcome baby #2 or #3 and so on. Basically you’re not showering the Mother with gifts, but rather sprinkling her with a few items!!! So, since I am having my second child, I already have many baby items and wasn’t anticipating any “hoopla” to accompany the impending arrival of baby #2…however my dear friend Constance aka “The Crafty Reporter,” insisted that we needed to celebrate!

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Well, I was just so flattered and she really went all out to make this intimate gathering of my Miami “family” really special — I am SO THANKFUL! She crafted lots of handmade cuteness with the dessert table and decor….I am SO IN LOVE with her crocheted crowns for my “Little Prince.” If you want to see some of her other yarn by design creations you can visit her website for Huggabeans. She is so good at making the most adorable baby hats, blankets, etc… πŸ™‚


Every touch, from the printed menu’s, goodie bags, color scheme, fancy treats and all the extra attention to detail, really show and the sprinkle was nothing short of FABULOUS! Take a look at these photos of the “spread!”

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And — of course I can’t forget the lovely women who attended the sprinkle…THANK YOU for coming and sprinkling me and baby #2 with LOVE!!

FYI — The venue for my Sprinkle was City Hall the Restaurant in downtown Miami…and the food was extra YUMMY!

Now it’s countdown time til my “Little Prince” arrives!

 

COOKIES!!!

Who doesn’t love a good cookie, or two or three!?!? Well, I’m a self-proclaimed cookie monster and I wanted to post about “Cookies by Courtney.” Courtney is a wonderful chef who makes healthy food taste extremely good…AND she also bakes some of the best and most original cookie flavors around!

Courtney’s online cookie operation is based out of Atlanta, but she can ship her sweet treats anywhere! And — there are no added preservatives and no trans-fat or high fructose corn syrup. She’s conscious of the environment too, using biodegradable products to wrap and package these sweet treats! I know Courtney has been serving up the cookies from coast to coast..with a cookie clientele looking like a nice list of who’s who, especially in the NBA… BUT regardless of the other people who luv her baked goods, you’ve gotta take “bite” for yourself.

From RED VELVET to KEY LIME cookies…there’s also Buttery Toffee, Pumpkin Spice, etc… Can we say YUMMY!!!!???

P.S. With the Holiday season upon us, Courtney’s cookies are great for parties or GREAT gifts for the cookie monsters in you life! πŸ˜‰

ORDER ONLINE >>>> http://courtneyssweetsboutique.com/

OKC is OKAY with me, BUT…

All eyes will be on OKC this evening, well, the eyeballs belonging to NBA fans who are tuned into the 2012 season FINALS that tip off tonight. This is MUST SEE TV peeps!! πŸ™‚ Anyhoo, Oklahoma City isn’t exactly one of those top travel destinations that everyone flocks to..BUT I have actually been there twice and I like OKC. My first time visiting Oklahoma was when I was on ESPN’s Beg, Borrow and Deal, it was pretty much my “team’s” last stop before the other team beat us to the finish line – we were 2 teams racing across the country. The year was 2002, we had ended up by OU, and some friendly fraternity guys (who were ready to head home for the summer), helped us out and somehow we ended up at Mickey Mantle’s restaurant and then some nightclub! LOL

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Then, last year I went back to OKC for a work assignment with Chesapeake Energy, the same company who has the naming rights for Arena where the OKC Thunder play…and where the NBA Finals begin tonight versus my “hometown” Miami HEAT! So, all this to say that I like OKC, the city, the team and the company it’s teamed up with, Chesapeake. The segment I did for them was shot on the Chesapeake campus at their state of the art gym…very cool..and the entire company campus has a distinct university feel, on purpose by design. Click play below to see the segment I did at Chesapeake!

And — if you happen to be in OKC for the series, head to the Bricktown area for some eats, I ate at a spot called Crabtown..and yeah, I’ll definitely have to go back one of these days, just to eat crab there!! I also loved downtown’s Hilton Hotel Skirvin, where I stayed. It’s the cutest boutique feeling hotel, and did I mention their grilled cheese!?!? LOL

Now, as random as this post is…even though I kinda sorta really like OKC… I’m going on the record to say this series, these NBA FINALS belong to MIAMI!! Yes, the HEAT will bring it home to the 305!!! πŸ™‚ I’m wishing, hoping & praying to see the championship trophy in South Florida, with a HUGE parade and all the fanfare..BUT SERIOUSLY I FEEL it in my bones!!!! I have no doubt this will be a very competitive, exciting series… filled with drama, so as an NBA fan, thanks in advance. No offense Oklahoma, it’s just not your time, yet…

Today is….

Happy June! The first of this month is…the start of (Atlantic) hurricane season! I’ve been super fortunate the entire 6 years I have lived in Miami, I have yet to experience one….and HOPEFULLY I keep the streak going for 2012 too.

Apparently today is also National Doughnut Day…hmmm, hurricanes + doughnuts, the 2 go hand in hand, ya think??

What a perfect combo…just sayin’… j/k!! Any other ways to mark June 1st?? πŸ™‚

Chi-city

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I had the pleasure of visiting the Windy City this past weekend. I made the trip with T, since it’s his hometown and my Mom came from the Bay to join us! It was hard to leave the warm Miami sunshine…but albeit much cooler, it wasn’t horrible weather in Chicago!

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And — since Chitown is just a great mecca for food – I think I went home with an extra 10 pounds – we did the food circuit, eating at Valois, Harold’s Fried Chicken, Table 52, Giordanos and Ed Debevic’s…you can see I donned a “busser” hat while chowing down on my burger, fries and shake! The funny thing about that spot is I guess their “schtick” is to give customers attitude and sharp-tongued wit, so they kinda toss the straws at you, act impatient and talk back with plenty of sarcasm. Haha!! What was even more amusing to me is that my Mom would try to make comeback lines and give it to ’em…LOL It was nice to see her having a good time!

Another touristy thing we did was climb (on an elevator) 103 floors up over the skyline to the Chicago Skydeck in the Sears Tower! That was fun…they say on a perfectly clear day you can see four states.

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They also have these glass encased ledge/look out thingees…where I guess you can feel like you’re suspended in air…so if you don’t like heights…don’t look down!

Weekend LOVE

A great weekend in the Bay with some of my favorite folks! Friday my baby sister Alison graduated with her ABSN (Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing) from Samuel Merritt University!! It had been a grueling year with lots of sacrifice, but now she’s an RN!! Here I am placing a (graduation) lei on her before the ceremony!

Following her “pinning we had a dinner at Kincaid’s in Jack London Square – their crab and artichoke dip is our FAV!! Check out this photo of Alison giving a speech..she gets “emotional! hehe

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Here she is with her crew..they’ve been her close friends since she her age was a single digit! πŸ™‚

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What’s a celebration without some sweets? Ordered these “nurse” themed cupcakes from Marley’s Treats…

Alison’s proud fan club – Ade, me, T and my Dad!

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Saturday was the “We Believe vs. Dubs” charity reunion game (aka GS Warriors game) at SJSU…

Look out for EXCLUSIVE footage On The Flipside…coming soon… πŸ˜‰

Then after the game, it was a trip to V Bar at Santana Row to hang out with the homies!!

LOVE! LOVE! LOVE!

This is the “prom couples” picture! haha

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Then Sunday…a day at the Coliseum!!! Viva Los Raiders – was not happy about the L! grrr

#RedHotReporter – DAY 1 RECAP

Day 1 to London, I traveled to Washington-Dulles to meet up with my PR rep who was traveling with me (and T) to the UK. So, we set off early from Florida, before arriving at Dulles and we headed straight for the infamous Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse!

We had about a 4-5 hour layover, but let me tell you, the time flew by hanging out inside the very chic Clubhouse while waiting for the flight…the best part, the food! πŸ™‚ Uh, I sampled just about everything on the menu…Chicken Corn Chowder, Shrimp Cocktail, Italian Sausage Pasta, Berries and Cream dessert and a Lemon one as well… 0_O

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Soon enough, our “ride” arrived…

Once on flight we relaxed and even had a drink at “the bar!”

It was a quick flight into London, and we hit the ground running, coming off of a red-eye flight from IAD to LHR! Now, for many people, a “red eye” isn’t the most ideal, but actually, flying on Virgin Atlantic Premium Economy was super comfortable and upon arrival at Heathrow, I was able to utilize their (VIP) Revivals Lounge, which is where I was able to shower and freshen up with all the amenities of a luxe hotel!

Our first stop of the day was Tampa Bay Buccaneers practice at the Pennyhill Park Hotel (and Spa) and after practice I had the opportunity to interview a few of the players.

I have fresh footage that I will be editing On The Flipside, but for now here’s the clip of me and the most veteran Buc, Ronde Barber, talking about the experience of being in London to play American Football!!

After hanging out with the Bucs, we headed over to “The Oval” aka the Surrey County Cricket Club where the Chicago Bears would be practicing. This venue is considered the Yankee Stadium of cricket, and as luck would have it, a few cricket players were on hand to demo the game, so a few of the Bears tried it out before their practice!

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Below a picture of Chicago Bears – Lance Briggs, Charles Tillman, Brian Urlacher and Matt Forte taking in the sights.

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Lance Briggs takes a swing at cricket…

I also snapped a photo with Coach Lovie Smith

And — I talked one on one with Charles Tillman! Here’s a snippet, more to come OTF.

After we wrapped at Bears practice we checked into the St. Martins Lane Hotel in central London! I can’t tell you how exciting it was to take a “breather,” as the 2 days of travel and attending events, actually felt like one LONG day, running on pure adrenaline, fighting the time change, etc..! BUT — did I mention the in-room cupcakes!?!? πŸ™‚

We had a free evening Friday, so T and I met up with my friend Christian (an Australian living in London), he took up to the Skylon restaurant for dinner overlooking the Thames, then we did a quick walking tour to see Big Ben and Parliament as well as Westminster Abbey and the London Eye, etc…

Tomorrow I will post my Day 2 RECAP…and stay tuned for NEW footage which will be On The Flipside soon!!

BEST Birthday Week 2011

I celebrated another year of my life last week…on both coasts! πŸ™‚ And, without a doubt, my 2011 birthday has been one of the best EVER. I guess it gets better with age!! hehe I began my week in Miami…where I was greeted by these chocolate covered goodies…

Then surprisingly my cousin Marie just happened to be on layover in the Magic City, so I got to see her on my way to my first pre-bday dinner.

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And then, me & my “favorite” headed to Makoto in Bal Harbour to meet up with my Deco Peeps!

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Here I am with the Deco crew – Eli, Odette and Samantha.

This is where I also got to make my first birthday wish…blowing out the candle on a decadent chocolate lava, fudge cake dessert..YUM!!

The following afternoon I had my pre-bday lunch #2 with my 305 girls…
(l-r) Constance, Rene, Dara (with baby D), Neki and me!

We feasted on a slice of Red Velvet Cheesecake courtesy of Cherisse…so GOOD it’s BAD! ha

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On my actually birthDAY I was in LA LA land…and I started my day with yummy banana pancakes at Vivian’s in Studio City…

Then for dinner I feasted on delicious crab and garlic noodles at Crustacean’s…this picture is actually of Tiffany’s Lobster and garlic noodles, it was more “visual” than my dish…but it was ALL delicious!!

And here I am with Tiffany and Abe who joined me for dinner… my bro the “Sneaker Sensei” gets the photo credit.

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When I got back to the Bay…the now (post) bday party continued with my 408 girls in downtown San Jose at the newly opened San Pedro Square Market…we had a nice pizza brunch on the patio at Pizza Bocca Lupo!

GOOD FRIENDS, GOOD FOOD, GOOD TIMES..what more could a girl ask for on her birthday!?!?

I’m so THANKFUL to be blessed with another year…surrounded by my loved ones!! πŸ™‚

Next year, I will start my birthday on an empty stomach…did you see all the food I just talked about!?!? lol