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Happy Hour at Testa – Downtown Los Angeles

As I am now living in Downtown Los Angeles I have embraced the culture of Happy Hours. Both for food and drinks. I love going to new spots when the occasion lets us and my roommate Arielle is off work at 4. We decided to try out a new spot this time, testa. A modern small Italian restaurant in the middle of the South Park are of Downtown Los Angeles. We arrived around 6pm on a Friday night and the restaurant was surprisingly not busy at all. Only a few people were there enjoying the Happy Hour menu. I was only to assume that maybe many were ready to go home on a Friday night to prepare for a bigger evening later on.

The restaurant is small but the decor is everything I love. There is a mix of modern and industrial, art deco and retro. Some walls are just plain concrete, some has different shaped mirrors on them, and one is just a retro flower wallpaper. Its Instagram worthy in all the ways it can be. Seating varies from bar seats, to regular tables, outdoor tables and smaller boots. There is also a small section where there is a couch and coffee table for a more causal experience next to the bar.

As mentioned we were there just in time for happy hour, so that is what we decided to go with. We got three happy hour dishes to share as well as drinks form the Happy Hour menu. All beers are $2 off and the rest of the drinks ranges from $7-$10 including anything from craft cocktails to wine and sangria. I decided to go for a Paloma, a frisky but fresh tequila cocktail. We ordered in the Spring Salad ($10), the Chicken Sandwich ($10),  and the Grilled Burger ($10). The portions were perfect for sharing and the plating of everything was beautiful.

Spring salad $10 – Artichoke, Peas, Romaine, Pea tendrils, sweet pea dressing, goat cheese. 

The spring salad was fresh and light, the combination of the greens, the roots and then the sweet goat cheese was just perfectly blended. Would definitely come back just for this one. Its a light treat. 

Chicken Sandwich $10 – Chicken Tender, sourdough, coleslaw, jalapeños, cilantro. 

The chicken sandwich was OK. Not bad, but not something I would be craving at 9pm. The chicken itself was great, crispy but juicy. The slaw was overwhelming and I wish the chicken itself had more flavor to it. I did not taste any jalapeños or cilantro so I don’t know where they went. The sourdough was meh. I wish the bread for the chicken sandwich had been better. It tasted like it came on a slice of toast. Would probably not get again. 

 

Grilled Burger $10 – Beef patty, iceberg, tomato, onions, cheddar cheese and house sauce. 

We ordered the burger medium rare and the patty was perfectly cooked. the house sauce is delicious, a bit drippy, but delicious. I love that the birch bun it came on was grilled as well. It enhances the flavors and makes it taste a bi smokey. Would definitely recommend but also, get a side salad or some fries if you order this alone. 

We will definitely be back at testa for dinner some time, and I am excited to explore more of their menu. You can find the full happy hour menu by clicking here.

Spring with My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream

This post is sponsored by My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

If you know me you know that I love Japanese treats. Mochi Ice Cream is one of my absolute favorites as I love the combination of the rich cake and Ice Cream. If you guys haven’t checked out my past post with My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream you can check it out here. I just moved in to my new apartment and are still settling in. My new roommates love it when I bring home treats and My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream was no exception. I picked up a few of the original flavors – Vanilla, Ripe Strawberry, Sweet Mango and Green Tea.  If you’re not familiar, Mochi Ice Cream is a rice cake filled with ice cream. Besides from the flavors I brought home My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream is also available in Chocolate, Salted Caramel, Mint Chocolate Chip, and Cookies and Cream. It is the perfect snack for when your craving something but want something small for yourself or bite-sized to share. My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream is available at several stores. Follow My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream here on Instagram.

How to meet your health goals + Michelob ULTRA 95K SWEEPSTAKES

 Thank you Michelob ULTRA for sponsoring this post.

If you have been following me on my other social channels you know that I have worked for a healthier and more active lifestyle this year. During the past year I had not really been active at all. My eating habits were horrible and I barely slept. It is needless to say that overall, l my health as a whole was absolute crap. That combined with some major hormonal changes resulted in a weight gain that made me beyond uncomfortable with the way I felt and looked. 2018 was the year when I decide once and for all to actually do something about my lifestyle. And that started with some major changes for me and my health.

Not only did I have to go through changes with my heart. But I also transferred to a new school this semester and I knew that it might be a lot more schoolwork to handle. I had my mind set on the fact that even though school comes first. I have to make sure that my body and mind is in the right state so I can be as effective in school as possible. And that started with changing my way of living. Here are the goal that I set up for myself:

  • Get more sleep (8 hours a night on average is my goal).
  • Daily activity (light exercise) of 30 min minimum.
  • 10,000 steps per day minimum.
  • Workout at least 3 days a week.
  • Cook more at home and pick healthier choices when eating out.
  • Consistant eating.

Although not everything is easy, nor can be achieved overnight. It is all a trial and error process and different things work for different people. I have been trying different things. Changing things and sticking to the ones that have worked. I wanted to give som tips and insight into what I have done, what have worked and what you can try if you also need to improve some of these things in your life. I am pro for healthy lifestyle all the way, but I also understand that it is not as easy as it might seem.

Tackling my sleeping problems.

Sleep is 100% my biggest issue. Ever since my teens I have suffered from many sleepless nights and insomnia. I know a lot of people will tell you to take spelling pills. But for me thats not necessarily a remedy that works nor gives me the quality of sleep that I need. I want you to know that even though some of these things have worked for me, I am occasionally still having problems sleeping some nights.

My bed is for sleeping and nothing else.

As a college student it is easy to get stuck doing everything in your bed. I have been there. Especially during the times when you are sharing a room with someone else. Your bed becomes your space where you can watch your favorite movie on your laptop or find a quiet time to study. No more. My bed is now for sleeping and nothing else. I do allow myself to lay down and read before going to sleep. No electronics, no hanging out at the foot of the bed checking the phone during the day.

That creates a kind of calm when you finally do get to lay down in your bed and mentally prepares you for sleeping. If I feel like I have had a stressful day or have a lot on my mind for the next day I usually spray a lavender spray that I have to calm myself down. Some other things that I do is exercise more if I have a lot of energy that day, take relaxing bath and read books. My fitbit help me track my sleep and how I sleep. 

Achieving my daily activity goals and weekly exercises.

I have set my daily activity goals to 10,000 steps and at least 30 minutes of activity. Now that means that I have to be active for a time period which can include just light walks for 30 minutes. I do find myself a lot in front of my computer stationary during the days when I am not on campus. So what I try and do is take pause and go outside for a short walk. During this walk I can listen to music, watch my youtube videos or reply to emails. In other words I am doing what I would normally do, but I am doing it while walking. Instead of driving to the food store I will walk over there. And I try and do some small chores around the house daily.

Small things like that really makes a big difference. I also have a extremely nice gym at my university that is free for me to use. So I try and use it at least the three days that I am on campus. I even got my own locker there so I have no excuses not to go. The Michelob UTRA sweepstakes have actually helped me discovering new classes around my city as well. My Fitbit tracks my daily steps and activity for me so I can see my daily progress. 

Eating healthier.

Eating and cooking is actually really really hard if you don’t have the time or money to spend. Being a College student is already stressful as it is. And trying to squeeze in those meals and snacks daily can sometimes be really hard. Fortunately I go to a great school with an amazing campus. There are tons of food choices and many of them healthy and inexpensive. I often find it easy to go to the make your own salad bar for $5.

It is really the days when I am at home trying to get work and school stuff done that I struggle. With takeout and all the delivery options we have now it is easy to to spend $30 on a delivery meal. And it is also easy to forget the food in the fridge if you have been out doing some grocery shopping. So, what I do is that I only plan my food for about 2-3 days when I go grocery shopping. This way I don’t overbuy and know what I will be eating. Sure, it takes me a few extra trip to the store (more steps for me). But it ensures me that I won’t be buying food that then goes to waste.

If I know that I won’t have a lot of time cooking the next day I pick up an easy to make salad kit. Or something from the fresh food section that I can heat up. This may not be the most inexpensive option, but it is cheaper than ordering takeout and it makes sure that I actually do eat when time doesn’t allow me to cook.

Don’t forget to reward yourself.

This is something that is so, so important. If you put in the time and energy you will se results slowly. Meanwhile you cannot forget to relax a little bit and reward yourself for something good that you have done. Small steps is always the best way to change things. There is nothing wrong in enjoying a piece of chocolate, a day off, or a night out with drinks. As long as you don’t over consume and ruin your progress. That is why I am loving the Michelob ULTRA light beer with only 95 calories per bottle. And it still tastes just like regular beer.

Michelob ULTRA 95K Sweepstakes.

Michelob ULTRA are all for living a healthy lifestyle, but also about enjoying a cold beer without feeling any guilt. And that is why they are having this huge Sweepstakes where Michelob ULTRA has partnered up with different organizations to give away over 95,000 fitness experiences to help you stay on track with your fitness and health goals. To see the official rules and participate in the sweepstakes follow this link by clicking here.

Through the sweepstakes I got one month of free home workouts straight to an app in my phone. No purchase is necessary and all you have to do is follow this link and fill in your information.

Give the gift of music with absolut Elyx

 

I am so excited to again be partnering up with Absolut Elyx for another fun post. It is the season of spending time with friends and family. And what better way to do so then with Absolut Elyx? Personally I love to spruce things up whether it is for a dinner party or if I’m just having some friends over for drinks. Absolut Elyx is a must have item in my bar. As I have mentioned before Absolut Elyx lies close to my heart with my Swedish Roots, and I am proud to say that I am Swedish, just like Absolut. Absolute Elyx is the world’s first single estate vodka, which is pretty impressing. The distillery uses a unique vintage copper column from 1921 to craft the vodka from the locally grown winter wheat.
I absolutely love how Absolut Elyx is so focused on the copper. From the beginning of making the vodka until the finished product, the copper aspect is always there. The bottle itself is beautiful just to display. Absolut Elyx also has a collection of copper vessels and bar tools which makes for some amazing looking drinks. This season they have released a limited edition music box which I was lucky enough to get my hands on. The music tin can be pre-ordered at reservebar and it is olyn $39 with a bottle of Absolut Elyx. Now you can also get a $1 shipping special. Be sure to check it out here as it makes for a fun and unexpected gift! Copper makes it better.

This holiday I will be spending time with friends and loved ones that are close by. Since most of my friends and family still live in Sweden, all my friends here has become my family. It is nice to still being able to have something from back home to enjoy, and to share. I also wanted to share one of my favorite drinks with you, which is the one pictured. The Raspberry Mule. It is probably one of the easiest and tastiest drinks to make. Recipe to follow.

RASPBERRY MULE
Ingredients:
3 Parts Absolut Elyx
1 Part Fresh Homemade Raspberry Cordial*
1 Part Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
Top Ginger Beer
Garnish: Fresh Raspberries
Method: Combine all ingredients in a copper mule cup (or glass) over crushed ice, top with ginger beer and garnish.

My Swedish Heritage with Absolut Elyx

 

Ever since I could remember, Absolut was always the number one vodka brand. Especially growing up in Sweden where it is made, the Absolut brand was a well-recognized brand. I am thrilled to partner up with Absolut Elyx today. The new luxury single estate copper crafted vodka from Absolut. Growing up and being from Sweden is something I am extremely proud of. We have a lot of history and culture that few other countries around the world know of. Absolut is our largest exporter of food in Sweden and probably the most well-known brand around the world when it comes to vodka.

What is really special about Absolut Elyx is that it is produced in the Southern Part of Sweden, Åhus to be exact, which is about 5 hours south-east of where I grew up. All of Absolut’s products are produced in the Southern part of Sweden but they have two different distilleries. The entire process, from growing the wheat to creating the vodka, takes place within a 15-mile radius. This allows for complete control from start to finish. Absolut has always been produced

Absolut Elyx is an example of how craftsmanship can create a luxury product. Each drop is created from a winter wheat grown on a single estate that ranges back all the way to the 1400s. The cold and dry winters combined with the long and warm summers is the ideal climate for growing this particular wheat. Entirely by hand Absolut Elyx is created in a vintage copper column from 1921. If you are interested in how it works or want to virtually take a tour of the distillery, you can check out Absolut Elyx website to learn everything!

Continuing with the copper theme, Absolut has created a line of copper stemware. I received the Copper Coupe Gift Set of two beautiful copper cocktail glasses. Among my favorites is also the pineapple which can serve as a decoration or a really fun way to serve your drinks. There are special gift sets as well perfect to give away to any friend. I have linked my favorite gift sets down below for you guys to browse. A touch of copper really makes it all so much more special.

Absolut is very proud of its heritage and the water that is used comes from their own private wells. But we all know that not everyone around the world is so lucky to have fresh water. Therefore, Absolut Elyx donates a week’s worth of clean water to those in need for every single bottle of Elyx sold in the USA. While Absolut Elyx is about the luxury and will bring you an amazing product, it is just as much about helping others. Copper makes it better!

 

Tequila Iced Tea Cooler recipe with Agavero Orange

Todays post is intended for adults of the ages 21+

Los Angeles has been crazy warm these past couple of weeks. What better than to cool down with an Iced Tea Tequila Cooler? The great thing about this is that you can use any tea and any fruit to create your own flavor. Today I will be making a Orange Iced Tea cooler using Agavero Orange tequila. If you want too you can also make a margarita version of this drink. Agavero Orange is the perfect compliment to a margarita, or in this case an ice tea cooler version of the margarita. This recipe is probably the most simple drink you have ever made. But, it is also extremely convenient on these hot summer days when you need something cool and refreshing without the hustle.

You will need: Iced tea of any flavor, fruits and/or fruit juice depending on what base you want, and lastly some Agavero Orange. Top off with some ice and mint. Now wasn’t that just the easiest thing you have ever made?

My journey to healthy habits with Kiwami Greens

Small changes in my life is always a big step towards something bigger. That is why I am so excited to talk to you about Kiwami Greens. Before jumping into the product I have to say that when it comes to greens I have tried it all. Hemp powder, super greens, all that stuff. And I think that no matter what I mix it in, it tastes awful. So yes I was a little bit skeptic about trying yet another green healthy powder. But, I was pleasantly surprised!

Kiwami Greens contains of Aojuri. A Japanese Green drink mixture that is super healthy for you. It is usually made of Kale and/or barley. Kiwami Greens contains of Young Barley leaf, Ashitaba, and it is combined with matcha and Sencha. Anything matcha and I will love it. It is basically a mixture of all the greens that you need to boost your healthier life. 

I love to mix my Kiwami Greens into a fruit smoothie or my morning yoghurt. It blends extremely well in any drink or yogurt which makes it so easy to add to my daily diet. One box contains 30 individually packs so you can easily carry it with you if you are on the go or traveling.

One morning I made a super fresh smoothie for breakfast. Containing fresh mango, bananas and avocado mixed with a little bit of green juice. I also added my Kiwami Greens to it and it blended perfectly. The Mango made it naturally sweet and the avocado added some texture. I love that I can taste the matcha but not the usual greens that tastes bitter. This is truly one of few healthy additions I would add to a lot of my food and drinks.

Kiwami Greens are offering 10% off your first purchase if you use code SUMMER10.

A San Diego Weekend Getaway

Me and a friend decided to take a last minute weekend trip down to San Diego. California living definitely has its perks. Your next adventure is just a couple of hours away. From Los Angeles to downtown San Diego on a Friday night it only took us 2 hours to get there.

San Diego is such a charming city. Tons of things to do and go see. During this trip we decided to stay in the Gaslamp quarter. We made it a real girls weekend and enjoyed ourselves every second of the trip. First night we got in kind of late so we decided to grab pizza from around the corner and stay in at the hotel to plan out our next two days.Saturday morning started out early and we had looked up a good breakfast place the night before. It was a cute cafe downtown just a couple block from the hotel where we were staying. I can’t say that the mimosa flights didn’t lure me there. The Cafe we went to is called Cafe 21 and it is a super cute place with a lot of different food choices. They have both outside and inside seating and wasn’t too crowded for being a Saturday morning. I decided to get the bread pudding french toast. It was delicious! A mimosa flight with 6 different mimosas was also shared between me and my friend.Cafe 21 San Diego Bread Pudding French Toast

After breakfast we decided to walk around the area and explore for a bit. There were tons o shops and malls within walking distance. The architecture of the buildings reminded me of Europe a lot. Something that Los Angeles definitely lack of. We even checked out how much it costed to live here and looked up some apartments online. The apartments in San Diego look so nice and is totally what I would go for. You can check out some of the best places to live in San Diego here.

Honestly, most of the weekend was spent drinking drinks and eating good food. Exploring the Gaslamp Quarter and just hanging out with m girl friend. We tried out the nightlife vaguely but felt like it wasn’t really our cup of tea. Saturday night we grabbed thai food at one of the few food places that actually was still serving food after 12am and went back to the hotel room to rest up for the next day. On our ride back home to Los Angeles we stopped by La Jolla to go see the sea lions and grab some gelato. It was a great stop to take on the way. La Jolla is only about 20 minutes away from Downtown San Diego and also such a nice getaway place. I would love to stay there some time! 

Taste the world with S.Pellegrino

 I haven’t been cooking for a while and been kind of bound to takeout food. So, I recently decided to go back and do some cooking. So, I wanted to share my Taste of the world recipe together with S.Pellegrino with you. From spending my past years being a student on a strict budget I learned how to not only save money but also perfect the few dishes I could live with eating several times a week. Thanks to my Asian heritage I also learned a lot of tricks and tips to cooking.

Pad Thai is a favorite for many people. And it is surprisingly easy to make. Now, keep in mind that there isn’t really a right or wrong way to make it. In Thailand different parts of the country makes it in different ways. I prefer to not make it too saucy and top it off with crushed peanuts and some lime.

You need just a few ingredients. Pad Thai Noodles. Oyster Sauce. Sauté Sauce. Salt, pepper and the meat of your choice. I also like to add cabbage into my Pad Thai. You boil the noodles soft before you free it in a pan together with the meat, the sauces and the veggies. And it only takes about 30 minutes from start to finish including cleaning up. I always use the whole package of noodles and end up having about 8 meals prepared. 

S.Pellegrino wants you tot waste more of the world and have been hosting several tasting events. If your interested in learning more about these or want to check out some of their top restaurants in cities around the US (LA and NY primarily) click here.

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