Restaurant Week in AZ…

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It’s a wonderful week in AZ! Here is one of MANY restaurants in Scottsdale that I tried this week during “restaurant week”…  Check out the menu below and you can see that it’s a very reasonable price for a three course meal!

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Another restaurant that was fabulous in the Phoenix/Arcadia area is called Crudo.

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My friends and I went here last weekend and enjoyed a fabulous three course meal for a mere $30 per person!  Check out these meals…

Albacore Crudo with green apples, black garlic and truffle oil

Albacore Crudo with green apples, black garlic and truffle oil

Market Fish with Roasted Carrots and Salsa Verde and Polenta

Market Fish with Roasted Carrots and Salsa Verde and Polenta

Gnocchi A La Testa Pork, Rapini

Gnocchi A La Testa Pork, Rapini

Olive Oil Cake with Berry Compote and Ricotta

Olive Oil Cake with Berry Compote and Ricotta

Salted Orange Caramel and Chocolate Budino

Salted Orange Caramel and Chocolate Budino

The best part about this particular restaurant is their zest and passion for freshly made drinks! YES! They have a mixologist behind the bar that mixes up amazing classic cocktails. My favorite being the KittyHawk! Yum.

A great time of the year… diving in to cuisine heaven!

#CuisineHeaven #GloryFood

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“My thoughts are…

“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.”

“That’s the thing about pain…it demands to be felt.”
– John Green, The Fault in Our Stars

Both of these stunning quotes come from a book I highly recommend, by John Green, The Fault in Our Stars. Of course if you do not like fiction novels than maybe this one isn’t for you. I read this book in two days and was immediately drawn into this novel where the writing is so captivating you feel as if you are a part of the characters lives and intimate moments. 

Enjoy this read. It puts trivial aspects in life into perspective.

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The Connoisseur of life…

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I consider myself at times to be a connoisseur… but of what? To be a connoisseur you must hold competent knowledge and understanding in something that you are truly informed of in order to make critical judgement on. For me… that leaves the arts. More specifically dance. Maybe one day I will expand and be more knowledgeable in travel, taste, and culture.  (Keyword being MORE.) I know I have been more places than most people, however, in comparison to people such as the stars who are continuously traveling and those who are outright guru’s in seeing and doing everything I am definitely on the bottom part of that ladder — and still climibing!

I wanted to introduce those who love the connoisseur lifestyle to a site I ran across this morning that truly caught my interest and poses a glimpse into what kind of website I would love to be a part of, or taylor a similar one to my own one day! The site is Gwyneth Paltrow’s own… GOOP.com. As it states on her site…Gwyneth started goop in the fall of 2008 to share all of life’s positives. From creating a delicious recipe to finding a perfect dress for spring, Gwyneth began curating the best of lifestyle to help her readers save time, simplify and feel inspired. Determined to publish a genuine and resourceful issue each week, for many, goop has become their most trusted girlfriend on the web.

This is my kind of website! Maybe I can start considering myself a connoisseur of spotting positive hotspot sites! Happy Website Reading!

#connoisseur #goop

Dreams…

Dreams do come true!

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I visited a coffee shop today – Village Coffee Roastery – it is the most phenomenal coffee place that let me tell you… They actually roast their own coffee beans! Yes, once a week they roast their own in-house. Of course, I am biased sharing the citizenship of the booming country Brazil, to me, they ultimately have the BEST coffee in the world at every place in every city.ha!

Moving forward, my mind is now filled with thoughts of my trip to Brazil… so back to my message… at this roastery they have unique stickers they give out to us ‘coffee lovers’ for the hot coffee lids to protect us from spilling any of that amazing-ness… And today… I found a sticker as I was fixing my Iced Americano…and it said a great motivational quote that I feel people should be reminded of everyday… “Dreams do come True!”
We all need to remember why we are living the life we live and how we have chosen to live it. Everyone has a dream (big or small) and those dreams can be turned into a reality if you work hard and continue to believe in yourself!

#walkintruth #dreambig

Lost Dog Wash Trail

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Today was a beautiful day for a hike. I wanted to share this picture of our vibrant desert and it’s luscious “OZ” like scenic picturesque fields! Here in the desert this is the closest we get to seeing something like a forest.
My friends and I took it slow up the McDowell Mountain-Lost Dog trail and made it to the top to see a beautiful view of the valley! I would put this hike at a level of EASY – it is great for all ages and even avid mountain bikers!
A mere 77 degrees currently in Scottsdale and so much beauty in March! It was a fabulous way to start my Saturday… I recommend this hike to everyone!
#hikingforhealth #arizonahikes

T-minus ZERO… remodel and The Bachelor…

Yes TWO totally different subjects… but two topics that commence and/or conclude today!

1. I can finally say with extreme excitement that ORONTCF – operation remodel of Nat and Tiffs Condo floors – has commenced! TODAY! Hoo-ray!  This is a 3-day remodel and the tile and carpet will be removed first, along with all the base boards. (Really hoping I won’t have to repaint my walls. AHHHH).  When I return to my humble abode… it will be in demo mode…aka..A MESS! Or as I put it earlier today a load of awesome crap. ha!  I do have to say the two men working in our place currently are  VERY EXPERIENCED however, some strapping young men was what I thought would be tearing apart our place! Such inspirations since they are semi-retired and still so HANDY!

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2. WHO WILL IT BE?!  Catherine or Lindsay… if you watch the Bachelor on ABC than you know what I am referring to… YES it’s finale night. The night where Sean chooses who he wants to spend forever with…or in most circumstances the next few months. ha. Hoping for the best tonight for whomever he chooses. Here’s my prediction for this reality-TV love…

He SHOULD choose Linsday… but he WILL choose Catherine. WE will see how this plays out.  Who do you think is the final pick!?

#Finalenight #Whowillitbe

When the employees know you at Home Depot…

 My remodeling items...In the holding area... my garage.

My remodeling items…In the holding area… my garage.

T-minus 3 days til – ORONATC – commences.

Here’s my intriguing story for the day…

Not sure if this is a cool concept or not. Let me set-up this scenario for you. I have been into this DIY Home Depot about 5 or 6 times in the last 2 weeks.  Yes I have spoken with a few employees – one of which considers me to be the most patient woman he’s ever met. EVER. (Probably because most people are rude and can’t stand waiting more than 2 freaking minutes to get helped.) I walk in today, buy the Black Jack underlayment necessary for the cushion under laminate hardwood and the thresholds needed. As I am checking out at the register, I hear, “Hey, how’s it going!? How did the paint workout for you?” – Home Depot Employee. Yes there it was. I am known at Home Depot. ha! Go me.

Now, let me get to the update of where I am at in my remodel. I have painted the main wall in our condo and that in itself was a workout. ONE WALL. I have emptied and cleared out most cabinets and furniture that will need to be moved during this 3-day installation. I am super ready for this process and CANNOT WAIT (huge caps) for this horrific carpet and tile to be removed. Still minor little things to wrap up but that I will do this weekend.

Here is the brand and color of the laminate wood floors that I chose! Soon to be a new addition in the Varty home.  I still need a new sectional sofa…any thoughts?

Maraba Hickory

#remodel #tminus3days

Before… as in OLD…

Before as in OLD...

Here are the BEFORE photos… a.k.a… the above ugliness is what has been currently haunting my eyes the last couple years and I cannot wait to be rid of it! I feel as if a house warming party will be necessary after this remodel is finished! Let me update you!

It’s happening! I have to say I am ever so excited for this remodel to begin! I had a very successful last few days of planning and found a beautiful laminate wood flooring named Maraba Hickory at Home Depot the DIY home store! As I shuffled through the aisle today I also learned that the price on this flooring went down today (two days ago it was priced at $1.50 per sq. ft) and today it’s $1.39! What a wonderful price change on the one color I wanted! Woooo! I have officially ordered the amount needed and can pick it up this weekend. I ended up purchasing my load (35 cases) at the Mesa Riverview Home Depot as the one closest to me didn’t have the full amount of cases that I needed in the estimate I was given from my installer.

March 11-13 will be the end of this mess pictured above and I will have much more exciting AFTER pictures to share! I will also be painting one of my living room walls this weekend — another necessary project and am excited to get this done too! Changes are upon me this month of March! Shall I say MARCH MADNESS!?

Now, to find a new Sofa sectional… hmmm…

#LoveRemodeling #NewChanges #MarchMadness

My Remodeling… step-by-step…

Brazilian Cherry Floors is where I'm leaning...

My Future Floors…at least this is what I’m imagining!

I’ve decided to take on a new project and will be updating my blog with a step-by-step and ‘Do’s and Dont’s’ recap of my dealings with the remodel of my main living quarters!

I currently live in a beautifully gated condominium complex, 2BD 2BR and have enjoyed 4 years here with my sister as my roommate. I have decided it’s 2013 and it’s time for a change! Also, I absolutely despise the carpet in the living and dining room and cannot wait to have it ripped up and have laminate wood floors installed! Along with this dreadful carpet, I also will be ripping out the ceramic tile in the kitchen. Pictures of this beautiful Before and After changes will come later!

I am very excited to share this remodel experience with you all and hope that with this I can help anyone who is also looking to remodel as well! I am in the beginning stages and will be having an installer come to measure within the next week so I can than move forward in picking out the laminate wood floors for my place at Floor & Decor in Arizona (recommended by the installer as a more reasonable option with much more selection than most flooring companies).

Just in my beginning research… DON’T assume that all companies DO ALL THE WORK for you. HA! I will be picking out my own wood, ordering the amount of sq ft. needed and then will have to have it picked up and brought to my place when the install process begins!

That’s it for now. Wish me luck.

#Remodel #NewProjects #2013

A Beauty and a Beast…

This quote PUMPS me UP…and is a quote that encompasses everything I’m about. I like to believe that by training hard and pushing my own limits this brings out my inner and shapes my outer beauty. You must love yourself before you can love others. Another one of the many quotes I follow.

So, go train. Do something for you. Bust your ‘bootay’ and don’t give up. Hard work = positive results. Change is omnipresent and something only we ourselves can manifest. You will see great results and learn about yourself if you just try and push past your norm! Get at it today!

#foreverstrong #foreverbeautiful