Thursday, July 28, 2011


The iPhone rocks, and one of my favorite apps is Instagram. Or as I like to call it, Insta-awesome. It is so awesome because it has the ability to make every day normal pictures look amazing. So therefore I find myself taking pictures of random stuff I see throughout the day. As Ames from the Bachelorette would say, I am finding the extraordinary in the ordinary. Oh Ames, you and your magical sentences will be missed...

Anyhoo, I thought I would give you a crash course in some of my Summer activities through my Instagram pictures...
{Dad and I at the Dodgers game!}
{My loves.}
{Look at that smirk. This kid is going to be so smooth with the ladies}
{Some sweet shoes that I won thanks to Anna! Thanks for the Ruche gift card girl!!}
{An amazing Coffee Table that Nick's mom found at a garage sale for us. LOVE the 70's vibe}
{Self-portraits? I am awkward.}
{Sparkly top coat. Obsessed.}
{The face he was giving me when I was on the computer. Guilt tripping me into playing with him.}
{Sushi and Sake, followed by downtown adventures with one of the besties Kat (a.k.a Little)}
{Sunglasses+Coral Lip Gloss+Sparkly Nails=Summer Formula}
{Cruisin...don't worry I was parked!!}
{A sneak peek at my new place. Love.}
Seriously though, the iPhone is the best investment ever. I am addicted...I am also addicted to summer and sunshine. Is it just me, or has this summer flew by?

 Momma Mercado is coming down today, to help me move into my new place!! I am so excited for a bigger space, in a great neighborhood. Pictures to come, don't you worry.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Google+ and I are not on speaking terms.

So I finally got an invite to Google+, and was excited to check out what all the fuss was about. (p.s I still don't get it?) Anyways, on my profile page was all of my Picassa Web Albums, which is where I keep all of my images for this little blog of mine. Anyways, I didn't want my awkward blog images available to the Google+ crowd, so I started deleting them off my page. Little did I know that deleting them off my page meant I was deleting them from the Picassa website TOO!

So basically what that means is that in deleting my June, May, and April albums from Google+ meant that I was deleting THREE MONTHS of pictures from my blog as well. Excuse me while I scream, or punch Mr. Google in the face. 
{Google+ is going on the list.}
Thankfully Picnik (oh how I love thee Picnik) has backed up all my images. But now I must individually save these to Picassa again, and then individually upload them back to my blog. Three. Months. Of. Pictures. I want to cry. If anyone knows of a speedier way to do this I am ALL ears!!!

p.s. Thank you guys so much for your support of my post yesterday. It is nice to see that my readers have the same ideals and morals that I do! Love you all. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

Say No

The news of Amy Winehouse's death, while sad, is not the least bit surprising. Drugs and alcohol have been then downfall to many talented actors, musicians, etc. When something is readily available to you, whenever you want, it is that much harder to say no. 

It pains me to see this happen to people, famous or not, regularly. When I was in college, there were two people within the Greek community that died from drug and alcohol abuse. I am not scolding, or discrediting them at all, you live your life the way you please. And sometimes, horrible things happen to really good people. 

What worries me is that our generation seems to think that they are indestructible. I have never really had any "run-ins" or incidents with drugs, mostly because I am too much of a worrier. I have problems letting myself relax, which is bad in most facets of life, but it has prevented me from ever having a drug personality. In my mind, one night of craziness isn't worth my life. The rewards don't outweigh the risks to me. Yeah you could have a "fun" night on drugs, but you could also lose your life due to an infinite number of complications. So you have to ask yourself, is it worth it?

Our generation needs to start to realize that things like this that happened to Amy Winehouse, Jimi Hendrix, and Janice Joplin shouldn't be romanticized. No one is immortal. Drugs can and will kill you if you let them take control of your life. An addiction is a disease, and it all starts with one decision you make one time. You are not above the power that drugs can have on your life, this can happen to you too.

I know some of you might not want to hear my opinions on drugs, but it had to be said. Maybe, just maybe, somebody will read this and change their opinions. I am sorry if I offended. I will be back to perky/happy Kai tomorrow!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

World, meet Barry.

Music. It is hard to put into words what music means to me. Growing up around my dad's extensive record collections, has given me a respect for music that I probably wouldn't have ever had. Music is powerful. Listening to a special song can take you right back to that memory, and make you feel exactly the same way all over again. Music understands you on happy days and sad, and always has a song to fit your mood. Music is many things, but to me, music is monumental.

Don't get me wrong, I sing my heart out to Britney Spears on the radio from time to time. But my true loves are those other artists, who pour their heart and soul into their words. The artists that sing for a reason, and the reason isn't to be on the next cover of People Magazine. No matter how talented you are, if you have no passion for your craft, it will come through in your sound. And no band has more passion and love for what they are doing than Barry. Have a listen, and see for yourself...

Find Gigs
I was lucky enough to meet Patrick Barry, one third of the band's trio, through my brother. Patrick and Shea have been friends for some time. In fact, Patrick sang Shea and Sarah's song, "Better Together", for the first dance of their wedding. Not only is Patrick exceedingly talented on the guitar, and has one heck of a voice, but he is a genuinely good person as well. He even charmed the heck out of my grandparents, which is saying a lot, because I am pretty sure men with full beards and hair halfway down their backs isn't Mimi and Papa's usual cup of tea. 

I have had the pleasure of knowing Patrick for the past couple years, and was thrilled to know that he was joining his two brothers, and starting a band named Barry. In their studio that they built themselves out of a barn in Western New York, they produce a unique folk rock sound that is unlike any other. But what I can see and hear more than anything else, is that music is something that is deep within each of them. This isn't a side hobby that they do to earn a few bucks, it is their life's work because they truly love what they do. 

Their new album is entitled Yawnin' in the Dawnin', and was released this last May. I was lucky enough to get a chance to ask these boys a few questions about their biggest passion, and their new collaborations with each other. I've got to say, they are pretty witty guys, who sure do know a thing or two about music. Nothing is more attractive than a funny guy, who can write songs about you...right girls?

What made you want to be a musician?  
Ben: Life was bad.  I was in an awful marriage and my kids were looking at me like I was a zombie.  Music starts as an escape.  We’re lovers of music, like most people, but we’re addicted to the creation process and the emotional and physical experience of live performance.  It’s our Zoloft.      

Brad: growing up with my brothers- Pat, Ben, and Navar. I could never see myself doing anything else. My only other aspiration was when I was four or five I had a dream of one day becoming a firehouse dog.

Pat: This probably seems like a joke, but Rivers Cuomo and Stephan Jenkins.  I grew up on Motown, oldies and then hip hop...but it wasn’t until my first rock show that I saw Weezer and met Rivers during the Pinkterton tour in Rochester in 97 that I fell in love with live music and alt rock.  Motorcycle Driveby still remains one of my favorite songs of all time, and the first time I saw Jenkins perform it live that same year, I realized the connection that music can have with the writer, performer and listener.  I went home, learned that song on guitar and realized that it was just something that I had to do.

How would you describe Barry’s sound?  
Ben: Stripped down and raw Americana

Brad: Folk/Americana meets it's Rock Cousin

Pat: A few brothers trying to stay in tune and keep a beat...on the verge of a fist fight.

What inspired the music in Yawnin’ in the Dawnin’?  
Ben: The way we live, it’s an honest output of what we believe in and care about, and our interaction with the world.  It’s been good to us and it’s been hard on us.  We’re regular ol’ hard working Americans, and these are our experiences; these are our songs.

Bradspontaneity, intuition, sweat, pressure, life.

Pat: The levee breaking.  Life was just too fast and seemingly exciting for me over the past 5 years that I just lost confidence in having something to say.  Cutting out the excuses and the things we can’t control left us in a room to explore what we actually liked.  Ben and I were in a band that worked hard to live up to a perception we built and I was just sick of that.  We locked ourselves in the barn this past winter, tried to stay warm and didn’t stop until we got the songs together.

What artists inspire you?  
Ben: Anybody who is able to work simply and produce huge works, whether they’re emotional or celebratory—if they have something to say, as long as it’s not full of pretense, we gladly listen.    

BradWhen I can feel that there is something more than a couple chords and some rhythm, I am inspired. It's that feeling that isn't really there, our ability to take other peoples experiences and emotions and welcome them as our own. That is what inspires me to join in and give others the escape that I've been running to my whole life.

Pat: Whoever can raise the hair on my arms and make me shutter to the verge of tears. It happens all the time, and it’s always from an honest performer who shares themselves beyond the point of complete vulnerability.  That, ironically, takes a huge scoop of courage and confidence.  

What is your favorite song of the moment?  
Ben: Love Something Too Much is my fav by Barry and Tumbleweed Stew by Slaid Cleeves

Brad: Suburban War - Arcade Fire. I'm at that point in my life..

Pat: Solitary Man - Neil Diamond

When did you start playing music?  
Ben: MS and HS band, guitar in college

BradSometime in high school

Pat: I am told that I started singing as early as 3 years old.  I got a guitar as a high school graduation present and the harmonica a few months ago.

What's the best live show you've ever seen?  
Ben: Arcade Fire @ Bonnaroo, Rolling Stones @ Rich Stadium in Buffalo, Public Enemy, Blood Brothers
Brad: It was a combo - My Morning Jacket who I had just started listening to, and Arcade Fire @ Bonnaroo. They absolutely killed it!
Pat: Rolling Stones @ Rich Stadium.  60k people for one band.  My older brother took me and bought me a beer.  I was forever changed.

Which musicians do you identify with the most?  
Ben: Tom Petty, Jack White, The Avett Brothers, Tom Waits

BradThe Avett Brothers, Bob Dylan, Neil Young

Pat:  I probably identify the most with the thousands of other musicians out there trying to find a balance between art, practice, historical appreciation, marketing, business, acceptance and a day job.  It’s tough to prioritize without screwing up what makes what you do actually matter to someone other than your Mother.

What artist do you think you'd like to hang with? 
Ben:  Jack White, Eddie Vedder, Michael Stipe, Levon Helms, Rivers Cuomo

Brad: Ray Lamontagne

Pat: Glen Hansard

How does music affect your daily life?  
Ben: It’s a nagging bitch wife who gives me great sex after I dig a hole in the yard for the new septic. 

BradIt's the cramp I wake up with every morning and the love I go to bed with every night.  

Pat:  Each glance, interaction and experience is an opportunity to capture and share.  Creating art makes you aware of that fact, regardless of whether you do anything with it.  Music makes me cherish the days that I do...and loathe myself for the days I don’t.  

If you guys have any other questions about Barry, you can visit their Facebook and Website. Check them out, they are definitely worth the trip!

I feel a little bit like William Miller in Almost Famous, interviewing my first band. You know, without the whole touring the U.S. thing. Who knows, maybe Barry will take me with on their next World Tour? What do you say guys? Hint. Hint. 


Monday, July 18, 2011

Monday Shmonday

I have a serious case of The Mondays. I had an amazing weekend, and you know why? I did absolutely nothing, and it was glorious. Well, that isn't entirely true. Nick worked all weekend, which gave me plenty of time to catch up on shows that he hates to watch with me. The worst of which is...
Yes. I am not ashamed to admit that I am addicted to this dang show. The parents on there are straight up loco. Crazy Town: Population- them. Anyways, Nick refuses to watch it with me, for obvious reasons. So I take any opportunity I can to catch up on this wonderful trainwreck of a show.

Sleeping in, staying in pajamas, and lots of Todlers and Tiaras pretty much sums up my weekend. And if you ask me, I think that sounds like a pretty awesome weekend. Just sayin...

p.s. Do you guys like music??? Get excited, because this week I am introducing you to a FANTASTIC new band, with perhaps a giveaway as well?? Stay tuned!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Fill in the Blank Friday!

I am linking up with The Little Things We Do for this week's Fill in the Blank Friday. Made With Butter and Love reminded me I hadn't done this in a while, and it is a fun quick way for you guys to get to know me a bit better!
1.   I am a (morning, evening, middle of the day person)   I am a night owl, always have been. My mom told me even when I was a youngin', I would NEVER EVER sleep through the night. If I didn't work full-time, I would most likely be up until at least 2:00 a.m. every night.

2.  My favorite Pandora stations are    Glee Radio! Bon Jovi, Jay-Z, and Arcade Fire are pretty amazing too. Can you guys tell I have Musical ADD??

3.  3 of my "must-have" songs for a road trip playlist are     1. All Right Now- Free.   2. Missed the Boat-Modest Mouse.  3. Any Glee Song.

4.  My favorite pattern is STRIPES, fo sho. I literally have to stop myself from buying stripes at any store when I go shopping. I am instantly drawn to the pattern whenever I go shopping, and before I know it, my whole dressing room is full of stripes.

5.  My favorite perfume is    love Michael Kors Daisy. But I don't have any perfume these days...I usually wear Nick's cologne because I love the way it smells. Is that odd?

6.  Rules are necessary but meant to be bent a little bit? Like 65 mph speed limit obviously means at least 75 mph, right? I always try and make my own rules, and do things my own way a bit. 

7.  My most overused phrase or punctuation is  oohh that is a toughy. I will say personally my most overused phrase is "literally" and "super awkward". Nick wants to kill me every time I say "literally", one time we got into a whole new fight because he said I said it too much while we were arguing about something else. Haha oopsies!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wear it to Work!

Hey Hey Hey!

Last weekend was BOTH my parents retirement party back in good ole' Bakersfield. I had an amazing time dancing the night away with my family and friends. Don't worry, there will be pictures, and video (yes, video) of the party to come...

Oh, and I am sitting on pins and needles over here. The landlord of the apartment that we L-O-V-E said he would let us know by last Friday if we got the place or not. So, of course Friday rolls around and I e-mail him, and he tells me that he actually is going out of town for the weekend, and won't know until Tuesday. TUESDAY! How I have survived all weekend without pulling my hair out is beyond me. Luckily, today is Tuesday, so I am just waiting for an email, a call, heck a freaking smoke signal. Anything!!!!

While I wait, here is a little Wear it to Work for ya!

This outfit reminds me a little bit of Clark Kent. I may or may not be wearing a SuperMan outfit underneath this, you will never know. But really tough, I love my Ray Ban glasses. They have the power to make me feel so chic, which I never thought glasses could do. Not only that, but they are pretty helpful in making me see too! Looks like my glasses are the one's with the super-powers.

 Even though I am wearing one of my favorite new blouses (hello! H&M for $19.00!!!), I can't help to think that my hair makes me look like a lion here? Do you guys see it too, or am I just being ridiculous? Either way, this lion's mane of mine is quite hard to tame sometimes. Sometimes I curl it, and it decides it doesn't want to be curled anymore. Rude. Anyways this is when I just go with it and say "Oh yeah, I was going for loose curls today. Thanks"

 Buns. I love buns. Sticky Buns. Hamburger Buns. And of course my favorite, the top bun. Many a days the top bun has come to the rescue of my morning routine. In this case, I was trying a new curling technique, and it turned my hair into a crazy frizzy mess. (Seriously. Think Bride of Frankenstein.) Luckily, I just swoop my hair up in a top bun, and nobody knows the difference.

NEWS UPDATE: I found my Sea Spray Bottle!!!! It was hiding out at my brother's apartment in Irvine. Sneaky little thing. But it is back in it's rightful home, which means I can return to being extremely lazy at styling my hair. Messy hair is still in right?

 This is what I liked to call my "Escaped Convict" look. If escaped convicts straightened their hair, and wore glasses, which I am pretty sure they do. Look it up. This is a t-shirt my momma left with me on accident. I am not entirely sure if she remembers I have it, or if she wants it back? I am sure she will read this and let me know to return said shirt immediately, or else. So I guess me and my shirt are on the run like convicts after all....

 You know those days where you do something to you hair, and it turns out exactly how you wanted it? That was this day! I looked in the mirror in pure shock to see my hair curled perfectly. I made sure not to make any sudden movements, in fear that the curls would realize they were too perfect, and find a way to straighten themselves out. Also, don't you love my crochet top? Another fabulous H&M find. I am pretty sure it is the perfect top for Summer...and therefore will be wearing it every day.

Okay. This is kind of the reverse of the story above. My mom stole this top from me a long time ago, and since then I have had an empty hole in my heart from the sadness. So when I went home last weekend, I may have stolen it back. Sorry, mom, you can have it back....soon? Seriously though, it is the best purchase I have ever had at Forever 21, so I am willing to fight for it if I have to!!!

There you have it, my take on office style. If you have any pictures of you at the office, send them my way! Maybe you will be featured in the next Wear it to Work!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thursday, July 7, 2011

On the Hunt

I am on the hunt. I have spent the last three days looking at countless apartments. To be honest it is all starting to become a blur of granite countertops and square footage. This time is exhausting and exciting all at the same time. All I want is to just have the keys to a gorgeous place handed to me, and be able to breathe a sigh of relief.
I have found a place that I LOVE, and let me tell you it is incredibly hard not to get my hopes up. I don't want to be disappointed if I don't get it, but I just love it so. We are still looking, but my mind is still on this dream apartment...

The good news is I have become a Apartment hunting machine. I walk into these places fully equipped with a notepad, a pen, and series of questions to ask each landlord. These people are either thankful that there is an organized women interested in their apartment, or are scared of my thoroughness. Be afraid, be very afraid. 

Apartment Hunting Kai is on the prowl!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Weekend Wonderment

As a person that works full-time, I have learned to take full advantage of my weekends. If by chance I find myself in a three day weekend, I make sure to squeeze as much fun into three days as I possibly can...

Starting with some quality Nick and Hudson time. Nothing makes me happier then sitting in my room with Nick, and playing with our Goober McGroober. My two men together always find a way to make me smile. Even though I might have a busy weekend ahead of me, filled with all sorts of activities, I make sure to stop and enjoy what I have right in front of me. Because what I have here, is pretty great...
{My two men.}
The time we spend together now is even more important now that Nick has started working on the weekends. I make sure to take in every kiss, every look, and every smile just that much more. I mean, look at those eyes...a girl could just get lost...

The great thing about Nick and I's relationship is that we know how important it is to spend time with our friends. Neither of us cares one bit if the other calls a respective "Girl's Night" or "Guy Time". If you want my advice (you are going to get it either way), letting your significant other have their time with their friends is they key to a healthy relationship. Not only does it show complete trust in the other person, but it let's your girlfriend or boyfriend know that you respect them and their needs. But hey, I'm no expert.

So off I went on Friday to have some much needed girl time! Two of my best friends just moved to Pacific Beach, which has made it extremely impossible to come up with excuses to not join them on a night on the town. 
{Bakersfield unite!}
{Yes. That is my friend Kristina in the background who decided to Photobomb}

After a night of adventures and laughs, I was off to Irvine for the night to visit my brother and his wife, and of course my little baby Nephew. 
{By the way...fedoras are the greatest invention ever! I will not be doing my hair for the rest of the summer. That is all.}

Every time I see Parker, I am amazed by how much he has changed. Even if has only been two weeks, I swear he always looks so different. It amazes me how much they grow in such a short period of time, and I can't wait for him to keep on getting bigger! I am so filled with joy every time I get to hold him, even if he is crying or spitting up on me. That kid can spit up on my all he wants, I will still think he is the cutest thing alive.
{I mean. C'mon.}
And I had my first big accomplishment too! I got him to fall asleep, all by myself. This was so exciting for me because I have never really been around babies before, and therefore don't have a lot of experience in the area. But when he fell asleep on my shoulder, i felt so loved and so proud of myself as an auntie. He loves me, he really does! 

I don't have a picture of him asleep on my just yet, but I am sure I will. But of course once I got him to fall asleep, my brother's friend (a.k.a. Uncle Michael) stole him from me just in time for a photo-opp.
{I will let it slide because the picture is so gosh darn cute!}

Nick and I rounded up the weekend with a nice 4th of July BBQ, just us two. It was mellow, and exactly what I wanted to do for the day. We ate a lot, enjoyed the sunshine, laughed, and played a few video games (yes I am a nerd). I love celebrating holiday with Nick, and starting our own traditions. This year we started a new tradition of going to the beach to watch the 1st Annual La Jolla Fireworks Show. 
{Lounging on our random Lion blanket}
    The beach was packed, but we didn't mind! It was kind of fun to have the whole community out having a good time together. I loved seeing all of the kids with sparklers, and all the marshmallows being roasted. It made me want to make sure that one day we have traditions like this for our kids.
{a tid bit of the show}
Overall the weekend was filled with family and friends, and the people that are most important to me. I am okay with running around like a chicken with my head cut off during the week, if it means that weekends are full of times like these.
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