Tuesday, July 15, 2014

This week's obsession: argan oil

We've been in California for a few weeks now and while it's been wonderful for my tan, I'm afraid my hair will tell you a different story. 

Relaxing poolside (read: overexposure to chlorine) and that fierce and often unforgiving California sun are frying my locks. My hair feels crunchy and the highlighted parts resemble hay. Definitely not a good look.

"You need this," my cousin Cindy said as she handed me a small bottle of organic argan oil. I've been using this for a week and I love it. My hair feels soft and it looks so much healthier. And I've been slathering it on my skin, too. 

Argan oil has been enjoying a lot of attention in recent years. Originating in southwestern Morocco, the oil comes from the nut of the argan tree (which is endangered and under protection under UNESCO). The tree's specific growing area and the painstaking techniques used by local Berber women to extract the oil from the argan kernels make argan oil one of the rarest in the world. 

A little goes a long way. I use a small handful (about 1 tbsp) and comb it through my hair with my fingers (the key is to use it on dry hair). Put on a shower cap and let the oil work its magic for 30 minutes. Then shampoo and style as usual. You'll notice a difference right away.

Try it and let me know what you think!            

10 beauty tricks with argan oil. (Mind Body Green) 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Sather Gate, UC Berkeley

Two decades ago I walked through these gates for the first time, a wide-eyed freshman full of hope and anticipating an adventure. Glad some things haven't changed.

Go Bears!

Remember the Naked Guy? I went to school with him but didn't realize his sad fate. (The New York Times)

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Golden Gate

Caden's view of the Golden Gate Bridge from Land's End. "How do you feel?" I ask. "Glorious!" he says.

Six interesting facts about the Golden Gate Bridge. (History Channel)

Friday, July 11, 2014


You'll find the best ramen in LA at this little hole in the wall in Little Tokyo. I've had a lot of ramen in my lifetime and can say without a doubt that Daikokuya is super oishii. I mean, look at that photo of the husband and son. It's a sort of, "Hurry up and take the picture so I can start chowing down on this bowl of steaming ramen" kind of look. 

You'll probably have to wait in line for a table no matter what time of day but it's totally worth it. The noodles are always a perfect al dente, the broth is full of wonderful flavor (never bland and not too salty) and the slices of pork are just heavenly. Slurp!!

Using ramen to gain insight into Japanese culture. (The Japan Times)

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Legoland California

In the Big Apple (er, Legoland California) with my boy. 

Miniland USA is my favorite part of Legoland. Did you know it took 20 million LEGO bricks to construct iconic landmarks like the Las Vegas Strip, New Orleans' French Quarter, the Space Needle in Seattle and the Golden Gate Bridge? Totally amazing. 

The early history of LEGO. (Mental Floss)