Theatre Sunday

Kevin and I got away for a few hours to enjoy the theatre over the weekend. We went to watch the matinee showing of Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder at Ahmanson Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles.  I can totally see how this show won the 2014 Tony Award for the Best Musical — it’s dark but painfully hilarious, and if you’re a fan of Book of Mormon and other shows that’s not afraid to, you know, “go” there, you’ll probably enjoy this one too.

Before the show, we stopped at Pinot Grill, a restaurant that sits just outside Ahmanson, for a quick bite.  Kevin had the soup of the day (potato and celery soup which was delicious), along with quiche and I had a good old burger.


We love the threatre and although LA is not the West End or the Broadway, we are thankful that a good show like this one eventually make its way to the West Coast.  We are limited to what we can watch (I wish I can just to go the Theatre District and watch something new ever night) but this will definitely do.

Eau Rose

I recently started blogging using my iPhone, which brings a fair share of its pros and cons. The obvious pro is that I get to post things more frequently because of its convenience. The con, however, is that each post is shorter and somehow lacking substance.  I’m not a big fan of lengthy blog posts anyway but it’s still nice to be able to provide useful content to the beloved readers, like a recipe or a tutorial, which is a little difficult to do (at least for me) when I’m writing something during, say, a quick coffee break.

Anyway, I’m just rambling here.  I don’t have anything interesting to say at the moment, except to share my excitement over this rose-scented fragrance by Diptyque that I purchased the other day.

I actually only knew Diptype from the amazing candle collections but I came across its perfumes during my recent trip to Nordstrom. When I first sprayed Eau Rose on my wrist, I didn’t think much of it. But when I smelled it again on my drive home, I noticed how beautiful the scent transformed itself into — from a simple rose to a youthful, yet still sophisticated mixture of rose and lychee, with a little hint of musk. It was love at, well, second sight.

The minute I got home, I ordered the perfume, along with Hand Emulsion.

I still have my signature scent and this will not replace it, but it’s something I’ll be wearing when I’m feeling a bit playful during the upcoming summer months!

I’m curious to know — what’s your favorite scent?

Soap Making Magic

The temperature is rapidly rising and it’s beginning to feel like summer has officially arrived here in Southern California.

Warmer weather means more soap making at the Lavender and Olive household and I already have three batches of new creations curing in the wooden crates, waiting patiently until they’re ready to be loved and enjoyed, in about four weeks.

My latest batch is this all-natural Olive Oil soap with Eucalyptus, Lavender, Rosemary and Tea Tree scents.

And just for fun, I made this 30-second clip capturing how the oil and lye mixture turn into soap! I hope you enjoy watching the transformation! I’ll make a full, “how to” video tutorial soon!

Kumamoto Earthquake Releif

AAR Japan

There are many great places where you can donate to Japan’s Kumamoto Earthquake relief fund, including Yahoo Japan and Japanese Red Cross.

I donated through an organization called AAR Japan (Association for Aid and Relief, Japan). It’s a silly reason but I chose this organization because of its donation site’s ease of use. You don’t need to create an account and the entire process took me less than 3 minutes.

Go to
Click on the red “English” button on the upper right hand corner.

1. Enter the donation amount (in dollars)
2. Assign a destination. Type in “Kumamoto Earthquake.”
3. Hit the “Donate” button. You will be directed to a PayPal site … and voila! You’re done!

If you need any assistance with translating something from Japanese to English, or vice versa, please feel free to leave a comment on this post. I would love to help where I can!

Thank you for your generosity, as we come together to help those in need.

Sending Love to Japan

Today was a sad day for Japan. The Kumamoto Prefecture was struck by a 6.2 magnitude earthquake, which resulted in several casualties, with many sustaining injuries. Thousands have been displaced from their home to ensure safety. It was reported that this was the strongest quake since the Great Tohoku Earthquake that devastated the country in 2011.

I can’t help but to feel helpless during a natural disaster and other tragic event like this one, but I like to believe that even a small loving thought can set positivity in motion. I think tonight might be a good time to hug your family a little tighter or make that phone call to a friend you’ve been wanting to catch up with.

I’ll be praying for the safely of those who were affected by today’s event.


ReFa and Other Skincare Favorites


I usually pride myself as a practical and relatively level-headed shopper, and don’t (excuse the pun) buy into the hype behind the hottest “must haves,” EXCEPT when it comes to skincare items!  I can easily walk away from clothing and shoes, but it takes everything in me to say “no” to even what seems like the silliest gadget ever … like ReFa!

I do admit that ReFa, a Japanese face massager that supposedly emits microcurrent that stimulate circulation (I feel silly even trying to explain this so please read about it here for more detail  lol ), was a complete impulse purchase.  I saw one of my celebrity crushes pose with it one day on his Facebook page and I had to have one too!

But impulse buy or not, I’m extremely happy with the purchase!  I’m totally serious here. Of course, I won’t be able to see or feel the real improvement, if any, for good weeks or even months, but it feels incredible when I roll it all over my face (especially around the cheeks, jawline, and hairline) and neck.  I do it every chance I get and especially when I’m reading or surfing the Internet at night.

Another somewhat impulse purchase, but am completely satisfied with, is this facial steamer.  My BFF Maya introduced me to this and I fell in love after the first use!  You can totally feel your pores opening up from the hot steam and your skin feels super soft and moisturized immediately afterward.

And who can forget Clarisonic?  I purchased Mia 1 a few years ago and I’ve been in love with it since. I don’t use it as frequently as I once did because I feel like I need to be more gentle on my face as I age, but I still think this deep facial cleanser is pretty magical.

So, here they are — some of my favorite skincare companions.  I used to spend money on face masks, toners, moisturizer, etc., and although I still like to splurge on those items once in a while, I feel like it’s a better investment to spend money on devices that you can use over and over again.

Back to Reality

I fought the urge to go to Urth Caffe this morning and settled on a more appropriate 85 Degree Bakery in Old Town Pasadena, and enjoyed a cup of coffee with a small cranberry and cream cheese bread for breakfast today.

I saved about $20 compared to the mea culpa breakfast I had the other day. And that’s with additional goodies I picked up for my husband and my daughter!

I know this is hardly newsworthy but I just had to share my excitement with the world, or the 7 kind people that actually read my blog!