Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Program Interrupted-Prodigal Blogger Part 2 Will Return In Next Post!

Yes my dear friends, if I posted more often, I would not be in the situation that I now find myself in...I must postpone my LA shoot stories til next post so that I am not behind to give you the update of last week in NYC...

First off, last week upon my return from the lovely west coast- I could do nothing but lay on the couch on Monday and Tuesday, I had to haul my tired self down to a shoot with my cousin. My friend, Carmindy- a fabulous makeup artist is coming out with her second beauty book and my cousin was booked as one of the "real" women alongside models. I was beyond exhausted, but my cousin was nervous and I wanted to be there for her. It went well and my cousin's such a natural in front of the camera, who knew? Her pictures were gorgeous and Carmindy had tons of great pics to choose from- can't wait to see when the book is out in October. I cast Carmindy's first beauty book which was beautiful, so I have no doubt that this next book will be even more amazing!
On Valentine's Day, Fcat had just come in on the red-eye from LA, so we just had an easy little dinner at our favorite Indian place, Agra. We also celebrated our 3rd anniversary which is the day before Valentine's Day. Easy dinner was about all we could handle, we were both beyond tired. Here's my yummy plate of Chana Masala (chickpea & potatoes) with all the necessary accoutrements like mango chutney and cilantro chutney...
My dear Fcat gave me the prettiest flowers and the best card- which I hearted a whole lot! My Fcat awoke the next day and asked for pancakes, lo and behold panckes with berries and chocolate chips appeared:
On Saturday, it was off to my BFF (hehehe, love that) JK's, apt in LIC. My new apt will be down the block from her if we ever get to close this year. We were in for a fun day of working on her wedding invitations. Thank goodness, I was able to talk my girl into simplifying her original plans or else we would have still been there now working on them. We were tying ribbons & hot-glue gunning like there was no tomorrow.

And JK had the right provisions at hand: fruit & yummy vegan cucumber sandwiches. She also made me a tasty Tofurky sausage & Veganrella cheese on toast earlier. Here's to JK and her vegan-friendly kitchen- yay!!

The nicest treat was sitting down and just chatting over the most delicious Green & Black's Maya Gold hot chocolate with soymilk. That hot cocoa was just exquisite- love that hint of orange, just like the Maya Gold bars, pure cocoa yum. I have not had hot cocoa in almost two years- I have a vegan anniversary coming up! And look at the cutest teacup & the gorgeous orange roses...Ah, JK was indeed the hostess with the most-est!

Speaking of anniversaries, I completely missed my one year Blog-versary which was end of January, I think. Hmm, will have to do a belated more meaningful post on that...I also missed Chinese New Year celebration at home- Happy Year of the Rat! I was born in a Rat Year. In Chinese astrology, rats are extremely social and quick-witted. The story goes that the way the little rat got to be the first animal sign of the zodiac was by climbing on top of the ox's head to get a ride across the river and getting to the finish line first in the race.

Even though I missed out on celebrating Chinese New Year at grandma's (which was fine for me because there is always a whole roast piglet, the size of a large baby and that always makes me sad- I always get really upset when people eat flesh, but especially pork because I love those sweet little pigs), I happened upon a celebration in Chinatown by chance on Sunday. One of my favorite vegan bloggers, Urban Vegan was in for the weekend and Fcat & I planned to have dim sum with her & her husband, Omniman at Vegetarian Dim Sum House on Pell Street. UV and I have decided that we have known each other in a past life because this is only our second meeting but I feel like I have known her forever. And our two Italian-American omni guys were in nonstop conversation where they even forgot to cross the street! Here are some of the "dim yum" as UV & Omniman have renamed it:

Our "happy family" picture:

And happy dragons dancing in the streets to chase away the bad demons of the past year to welcome in the shining new year!

Early this week, I went to check out a friend's fancy new restaurant in the trendy Meat-Packing District. The restaurant is called Bistro Bagatelle. The place is really done well- extremely elegant, but still a casual chic with a super-friendly host. The menu is French and is a bit expensive, but a really great setting if budgeting is not in your vocabulary.

We ordered a french fries and a basket of crudite that came with a trio of dips, the only one that was vegan was the tapenade, which suited me just fine. They served radishes in their crudite which I had just finished mentioning to my dinner companion that the only time I encountered raw radishes in a restaurant was in St. Tropez (yes, I was quite the jet-setter many moons ago) and I was just reiterating this to the owner and he said "St. Tropez" before I could finish my sentence. Guess it's a St. Tropez thing...
I also had the blood orange & asparagus salad and they also prepared a plate of more
asparagus, baby bok choy & string beans as my entree- perfectly cooked, but they left out the garlic, salt & pepper...I had so much asparagus that evening- why does asparagus affect the smell of urine so?

My absolute favorite, the sorbet. Hands down the best sorbet that I have ever tasted, it was simply divine. There was mandarin orange, blood orange and apple cranberry. We hearted it so much, see?
Next post for sure, I will resume my crazy LA shoot week...


VeggieGirl said...

hooray for more blogging!! I always enjoy your posts, so this is QUITE exciting news :0)

so nice that you got you spend time with dynise/urban vegan again - I can't wait to come to NYC soon!

Melody Polakow said...

You live such a busy and exciting life!

How great that you and UV get to hang out and enjoy good food.. and that your men get along.

Nice to see a post from you.

Theresa said...

Hey, I'm a rat, too! I think we're just the *best* zodiac year :)

It looks like your V-day was fabulous, as was the meeting with UV!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Hello Love! I hope you've recovered from LA & I look forward to your future post about it!
I've worked on What Not to Wear & had to replicate Carmindy's makeup for the reveal portion of the show. :)
It sounds like a nice Valentine's Day & I think I need to come have Dim Sum with you soon! xo.

Jesse said...

Thanks for telling us about your adventures! Asparagus makes your pee smell because when it is broken down in your body, it produces sulphur byproducts and ammonia. They say that only 40% of the population or so can smell it, though!

Urban Vegan said...

Oh, what an exciting life you lead, VKO, my past-life buddy. Your cousin looks gorgeous--not really like a "real" woman, but more like a model-type.

And all the food, wonderful sure get around.

It was so wonderful to hook up with you, Fcat and the dragon brigade. Hope to see you again soon. Come to Philly!


Clementine & Mandarin said...

Has it only been almost two years since going vegan? I feel like you were always a vegan. Okay, so I'm exaggerating, but longer than two years. My how time flies.

This post makes me miss Agra. I haven't been there in a long a** time. mmmmm.....malai kofta. You and I need to make an Agra date, buddy! Your pancakes look oh so yummy, do you use real choc chips or carob chips?

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

I love reading your long posts :o). Your busy life in NYC looks like so much fun. And I like that last sorbet picture-- it kinda looks like a heart.

Vegyogini said...

Carmindy is so talented; I've always wanted her to do my make-up since I never wear any. What a wonderful post full of vegan goodies. :)

the little one said...

It was fun to read both yours and Urban Vegan's description of your meet-up. It's so nice when you meet people you automatically click with.

Gnewvegan said...

I think it is so great that you and Urban vegan got to spend time together. I also read about it on her blog. Is the Mayo chocolate vegan?

SKO said...

Ooh, B. looks super-cute at her shoot! :D Can't wait to see pics.

And the little ribbons for JK's wedding are should have taken a pic of the actual invite...

I miss Agra...and the pancakes look pretty good, even though I don't like pancakes.

Also vegan dim sum with Fcat + UV and her husband was also too cute.

This post is too cute! Call me for LolCattime.

Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

Oh fun. How cool. The dragon is amazing!

I always love your posts.

bazu said...

I've missed visiting your blog, VKO! It's always so jam-packed with exciting stuff. Your friend JK sounds really cool, just judging by her food! Is she getting married in LIC? I got married on the waterfront there... and how cool you got to hang out with UV again- you two are the best, and how cool your omni-men get along so well.
Some time soon, when you are a little less busy and stressed, we will have to plan another get-together- it's been so long! {hugs}

Vegan_Noodle said...

So glad you caught us up (almost) with life in the fast lane! You sound so busy!
So wish we had a vegan dim sum place here... it's all pork and shrimp and god know what else. Hoping to make it up to NYC someday!!

Ashasarala said...

Wow... busy girl!

Happy New Year! This is my year, too. I think it's supposed to be a good year for the rat, no?

Sounds like you had a sweet and relaxing Valentine's this year. And JK really IS an awesome hostess! Everything looked set up so perfectly.

I know what you mean about knowing someone for such a short time but feeling like you knew them forever. It's a great feeling to be able to click with someone else so fast!

I am looking forward to more on your LA shoot. :)

Allie B said...

You've been tagged, check out my blog for details!

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