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SANTA MONICA: MY LAPTOP TRAVELS IN STYLE [ro bags]

By Nora Zelevansky / April 29th, 2011

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Yesterday, I became a woman.

But how is that possible, you might wonder, since my Bat Mitzvah was more than a few moons ago?  Didn't I get my child bearing hips that very "beshert" Saturday in November so many years ago?

Well, this is a different kind of development.  On this fine spring day, I bought my first true laptop bag.

Can you hear the bells chime?

Previously, when I had to carry my computer around, I used a sad giveaway backpack from some random StriVectin product launch luncheon.  That earned me audible snickers from my "best" friends.  (I haven't forgotten, girls!  You will feel my wrath!)

Then I moved onto using my beloved Leigh & Luca tote, which I managed to rip after adding too many hardcover books to the mix.  (Yes, I am the one person in America who still buys actual books).  I found myself sans functional carry on in the middle of the Miami airport.

Clearly, it was time for an investment in the real thing, instead of turning perfectly lovely totes into destroyed laptop bags.

I arrived at Fred Segal Santa Monica for a party celebrating the launch of Daily Candy LA Deals and suddenly remembered that – amidst gratis Stila makeover and O.P.I. manicure stations – sat design store Zero Minus Plus.  And I had a credit I'd been meaning to use.  Suddenly remembering that you have a store credit is like finding cash in the pocket of an old jacket or pair of jeans – genius!

Once I walked into the store it only took a moment for the above ro bag to seduce me.  In the past, most other computer bags had looked too masculine, corporate or, well, heinous, but this one – in bright green leather with sweet polka dotted lining and pockets galore – screamed my name.

Actually, so did the company's summer "Wave Bags" (LOVE! See below!), but I figured one bag was enough per day.

See, women, unlike girls, show self-control.  At least for now.

xo – N.

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P.S. This Wave Bag below is called the "Meg Tote" and I think my friend M. should buy it immediately!

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SD (AND BEYOND): SHAMELESS SELF PROMOTION [BEAUTY, FASHION, FITNESS ETC.]

By Nora Zelevansky / April 26th, 2011

Persephenie

Just wanted to post links to a few of my latest on-line stories, as they may be of interest (or at least, it may be of interest to me for you all to read, re-tweet, FB etc.).

Yeah.  I said it.

Impressed?  I'm working with my therapist to make my needs known.  And, by therapist, I mean facialist.

So, here goes:

Persephenie (formerly of natural perfume shop Blunda) just launched her inaugural beauty product line and, at the end of May, will launch her first signature fragrances.  Style.com

Chloe Sevigny and Michael C. Hall teamed up with Kiehl's to create special labels for a new white clay masque to raise money for charity!  Style.com

Maya Yogev (creator of Grai) just launched her new bag line, MK Totem.  Daily Candy

I'm clumsy.  Are you?  Read my essay on being athletically-challenged. MyDaily.com [AOL]

Take a hike – through Topanga Canyon!  Vital Juice LA

Get an ice cream manicure at The Painted Nail.  Vital Juice LA

Nursing a bruised ego.  Embarrassing moments from the workout room.  Vital Juice LA

Read away!

xo – N.

LA (THIRD STREET): Roasted Peeps Revealed!

By Nora Zelevansky / April 22nd, 2011

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I'll start out by apologizing: The above is obviously not an image of a roasted Peep.

The problem is that Peeps are cute and, once I started roasting one, it seemed a little twisted like I was melting a little smiling bird.  So, I decided to spare you all that and just describe the experience.

In a word: Awesome.  It turns out that roasted Peeps are just like elevated regular marshmallows.  The inside is all good and mushy like normal, but the sugary outside turns into this crispy shell a bit like the  top of creme brulee.

SIGN. ME. UP.

I totally recommend.  Jesus Christ, that's good.  (Get it?  Cause it's Easter.  Is that wrong?)

xo – N.

LA (THIRD STREET): EASTER CANDY INNOVATION [What happens when you roast a Peep?]

By Nora Zelevansky / April 21st, 2011

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Okay, so here I was seconds from telling you all about my most amazing find: Chocolate-covered Peeps at Joan's on Third.  I was going to talk about being a Cadbury Cream Egg devotee with an occasional penchant for Peeps (only when stale).

But, then, I went in search of an image for this post because, per usual, I ate the entire delicious package before I remembered to take a picture and I discovered that Peeps themselves have had the same brilliant thought as my local gourmet market (though surely in a less upscale incarnation).

The whole investigation provoked some serious contemplation: If Peeps could be successfully dipped in chocolate than how else could we innovate them?  Their website posits recipes for Peeps macaroons (for the Jews!) and rice crispy treats, but those seem just to entail tacking the yellow and pink marshmallows on at the end.

Let's get serious and ask the hard questions: What in fact happens if you roast a Peep?

The bad news is that I have no idea.  The good news is that I plan to find out tomorrow and then tell you all about it.  Because that's the spirit of Easter, you know?  It's all about sharing!  (Or, not really, but that's a good message too, right?)

xo – N.

SANTA MONICA (AND BEYOND): Tea for two and two for ME! [URTH CAFE’S NEWEST TREAT]

By Nora Zelevansky / April 18th, 2011

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Like any mostly sane person, I have been a dedicated Urth Cafe fan for as long as I've lived in or near LA.

When I left for college in California, my parents also moved to LA (sort of a coincidence and a long story).  But I still went home to NYC for holidays to see my friends.  Otherwise I worried my legs would atrophy from never walking.

ANYWAY, when I would return to the sunny left coast with my joints greased, my parents would pick me up at the airport and whisk me off to Urth Cafe.  That always felt like my official re-entry into my sanctified Cali world.

Even after all these years, I don't often stray from my Urth Salad order (feta cheese, hearts of palm, chickpeas, olives, a baguette on the side – what else does a girl need?), though sometimes I do add a sticky bun at the end for dessert.  SO chewy and wonderful!

But yesterday, I noticed that they'd added these boba teas to the menu.  Now, that in itself is not so special, since boba tapioca balls had a Pinkberry level moment in LA several years ago.  But at Urth Cafe, not only are they using good high-end ingredients, but you can opt for soy, rice or ALMOND (yay!!!) milk instead of regular in your blended boba drink.  In short, as a lactard, I can still drink these mofos.

I used to be able to get a soy version at Zen Zoo, but – alas – that place is no more.  (R.I.P.!)  This is even better anyway cause it's almond milk (or so I keep telling myself).

I have TOTALLY gotten on board for the almond milk trend, which is also having a Pinkberry level moment, as we speak.

At least until someone decides that too many almonds are toxic and cause wrinkles, dysentery and erectile dysfunction.

But for now I be chillin' with my boba in hand.

xo – N.