LA Traffic

5 Insights from Driving in Los Angeles Traffic 

I’m not much of a driver, never really have been. When I got a job back in 2016 that necessitated a car, I got one of those too but it’s not my favorite activity. People in LA think they are fantastic drivers… but no….

Here are few things I’ve learned in my year of daily driving in LA rush hour traffic (yes, I’m subtracting the time I was in the hospital and after when I wasn’t driving):

  1. If someone leaves a big gap between their car and the one in front – 9 times out of 10, they are looking down at their lap and on the phone
  2. Don’t be an asshole – there is a good chance the cars around you will be close by for your entire commute, no matter how many fancy, tight lane changes you make
  3. There are a minimum of three wrecks on the 101 in any rush hour period – breathe and keep inching through the stupidity surrounding it
  4. Yelling at the cars around you doesn’t help the situation but sometimes it makes you feel better
  5. Singing along with the radio helps pass the time more quickly

The time it takes to navigate my way across Los Angeles every day. In 2016, the drive lasted 45 minutes but it 2017 the length of time has exploded and it can take up to 2 hours to get home. I’m not sure what has made the traffic worse, but it definitely is getting worse by the day. KPCC has a great list of the worst bottle necks in LA – you should check it out if you drive here or plan to drive here.

post work out goofy face

Jillian Michaels is My Hero

I’ve talked before about how working out is now a part of my daily life. Jillian Micheals is part of the reason why.  I normally don’t like the ladies who feature in work out DVDs, in general they focus too much on saying things like “you can do it, just keep pushing” and being overly cheery. That does not motivate me….

You probably know her from the Biggest Loser but I had barely heard of her before I bought the DVDs. I react positively to her tough love style but what I like about Jillian Michaels is that she encourages you to focus on WHY you are doing these exercises and how it will make you look and feel AFTER you’ve sweat yourself to the edge of collapse.  She also offers options in the work out to lessen the impact or stress on your body (if you need to), which was really helpful for me when I started.

I find her so much more inspiring that most women – I’ve read a couple of interviews with her and she seems to be really blunt, which I like, but also cares about people too.

It’s not about perfect, it’s about effort.

I’ve done both the beginner shred and the killer body videos. Check them out for a change in your routine, or get a routine if you don’t have one already.

MAC shadow palette

MAC Attack! I fixed my make up

One of the many things I’ve done to get things back to normal is sort my skin care and make up regimen. Skin care I’ll talk about later, I wanted to talk about my insanely awesome experience with MAC cosmetics.

Before I got sick, I was in rut. I had barely changed my make up since I moved to California (or maybe even before that). Super Boring!! You can see one of my last photos from before my illness in other places on this site.

So a few months ago, I decided to go all out and do a complete update. I’ve used some MAC products before (powder, eyeliner and mascara) but never had a full make over.

WOW! It was a GREAT experience and I HIGHLY recommend it!

I scheduled an appointment at a location with a private room for the makeup lessons (because I knew I’d need to take my wig off). I specifically requested that they do a “how to” so I could refresh my look with, not only new colors but techniques as well. The lady I worked with at the Beverly Hills location was AMAZING! (shout out to Koah!)

The whole thing was a big ding on my pocket book but I planned ahead, knowing that if I was going to update my whole look, I was going to spend a lot.

The appointment itself cost $90 for a 90 minute lesson. I had the “MAKEUP LESSON IN 90 MINUTES” session but I ended up there for over 2 hours, my make up artist and I were having so much fun and I booked at the end of the day.

You get a discount on the products you buy after the session so…

A post shared by malinda (@malindahlloyd) on

Yeah – I kinda went a little nuts.

Here I am post make over, in a “night” look:

Final Night Look
Image (c) L.M.Lloyd

aside from the base make up products, I splurged on a whole new set of eye shadow colors:

MAC shadow palette

The top center color is more black, and less purple, in real life. The shades are so pretty in person. The bottom row gets a major workout for my “work” look and after a few months, the bottom right is pretty close to being used up, since it’s the primary color I use.

My make up lesson was so thorough that the next day, I had no trouble getting my make up done. It took some time because I wasn’t used to the techniques, but I’ve whittled that time down significantly in the last few months.  Check it out:

first attempt at MAC technique

Have you ever tried their classes?

 

 

 

 

So much has happened…

what a differennce a year makes

Moofia! Tokidoki + Fred 62

Breakfast this weekend turned from trying a new place to happy, happy land when we arrived at Fred 62. They were overtaken by Tokidoki!! The food was really great but the service a little slow. We will definitely be going back for munching later, though.

It was a very Japanese style pop up restaurant with a Tokidoki set menu and swag for purchase.

I got a blind box toy and a t-shirt. Let’s just say, “breakfast was extra pricey today.” The t-shirt was $20 and the blind box toy, $8.

I also got a Fred 62 + Tokodoki sticker

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Tellogen Effluvium or How I Discovered the Fun of Wigs

Not sure what Tellogen Efluvium is? Hair loss – it’s a more medical term for your hair coming out after a significant shock to your system. It’s one side effect of a long term ICU stay AND s side effect of one of the life saving treatments I was on at Cedars-Sinai. You can guess from the title of this post that T.E. happened to me….

I know all the guys suffering from male pattern baldness are saying, “boo hoo to you.” but I had no idea what to expect.

I have A LOT of hair – it’s really fine by the strand but dense across my scalp. When I was in the hospital earlier this year, my hair was put up in a bun on my head and that bun didn’t come out for months. I had a big dread lock on top of my head by the time I was awake and aware of what was going on. I initially thought the hair falling out was a minor adjustment but I realized it wasn’t as the steady stream of strands came off my head. I lost more than half of my hair in the span of a month or two.

Below is the worst of the bald spots:

Before heading back to work full time, I had to decide – rock the “see through to my scalp” hair or give my head some cover until the hair grew out? I hate to admit it, but I couldn’t rock out with my scalp out. I had to cover it. In come the wigs….

I took a trip to Nigel’s Beauty Emporium and they were amazingly helpful. I never wore a wig for daily wear before, just a couple of hours here and there for costumes. They helped me pick a wig, showed me how to put it on correctly, and care for it.

I’m now, officially, addicted. Its so nice to be able to change my hair style in the blink of an eye. I’ve had a lot of fun playing around with different styles.

This is my favorite wig – I literally can’t leave the house without getting stopped by someone wanting the name of my hair dresser:

I’ve cut my hair in this style and am slowly growing it back out.

These are a couple I like quite a bit but are not my daily wear “work” hair:

I may post more about wigs and wig care resources I used to learn what to do.

post work out goofy face

How I almost died and learned to love exercise

I am a nerd, raised by nerds, who stares at computer screens all day for my livelihood. I am not an “exercise” person. I’ve always had the attitude that “stupid,” “sporty” people exercised and I was definitely not one of them. I don’t like sweating, I don’t like being tired and I definitely don’t like the “bimbo” stereotype of girls who exercise. Oh boy, did I get proven wrong by my own body.

2016 was a crappy year for a lot of people but for me it was literally the worst. Near the end of the year, I contracted Influenza and MRSA pneumonia. I fell asleep on Christmas Eve and woke up three weeks later, in 2017, plugged into machinery and confined to bed. I had been in a medically induced coma and had several surgeries – my lungs were not functioning on their own.

Once I was really awake, it dawned on me that I withered away – I had a hard time moving because I had no muscle left! I lost over FORTY pounds and had to gather my strength to walk, talk, and live again. It took every ounce of energy I had to move, every ounce of patience I could muster to stop myself from crying at every difficulty, and an even greater amount of rest to get myself well enough to go home.

It wasn’t easy but with the help of physical therapists, nurses, and my husband – I got up, I got walking and I got better. After three months, I was released from the hospital but I wasn’t done pushing myself. Believe me, I tried to get away with the minimal amount of working out at first but really soon realized that if I didn’t move my body everyday, I’d slide backwards and would end up in the hospital again.

I started out very slowly, walking as much as I could, practicing standing up, climbing the stairs. Yes, I was so weak that I had to practice standing up. I moved up to exercising with no weights – going through the motions with my arms and legs. I moved up to filled water bottles and then five-pound weights. I got on my bicycle again. At first I tootled around my parking lot and then biked a little farther and a little farther. As soon as I could bike a mile, I started biking up the biggest hill in my neighborhood – a few hundred feet of elevation in under a mile. I started to notice real muscles forming.

I also started to notice I had really bad mood swings some days and realized that when I tried to take days off from my exercise routines, I would end up moody, sad or angry every time. It was like clock work, I’d take a day off and the next day, the swings would come in to ruin my day.

I biked up the hill every night, taking shorter and shorter breaks until I only had to stop for traffic lights. Once I made it up that hill with no breaks, which I had a hard time doing even before I got sick, I knew I was ready to be harder on myself. So I picked up some workout DVDs; I usually hate the happy bimbos in those things but by a happy accident, I FINALLY found an instructor that didn’t make me want to smash my television screen in. I’ve worked out almost everyday since I put in the first DVD.

After only having use of less than 20% of my lung capacity when I went into the hospital on Christmas day 2016 to a normal capacity of 70% in Mid July 2017, I say the working out has serious results.

I hated working out before because I never worked hard enough or long enough to feel good afterwards. It’s finally happened, I broke through the pain and soreness and don’t feel horrible working out anymore, only sweaty and tired. I’ve learned to live with sweaty and tired.

I love the results of working out – feeling and looking better. I always thought you sporty people were nuts and now, I’m one of you.

Medical Bracelet

Hello again

I spent a couple of months in the hospital unconscious or barely conscious, starting Christmas day 2016 until Mid March 2017. I know there are posts from online after that, but chalk it up to the glory of publishing automation.

I’ve just recently been able to get back to normal life so online posting took a little hiatus. I’m not sure I’ll be able to talk about my hospital experiences anytime soon – it’s too recent and horrible to talk about yet.

I will say – don’t skip the flu shot every year.

A brief history of goth

Oh holy smokes! As an old school Siouxsie Sioux era goth, I laughed and laughed and laughed as I watched. Revel in your history, Gloomy Ones….

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FPitchfork%2Fvideos%2F10154578472321000%2F&show_text=0&width=560

Even if you aren’t a current or former Goth, It’s still a pretty cute video.

The music in me….

Many years ago, I was an audio engineer for a small anime company. I recorded all the actors giving their lines and set them up to play over the Japanese audio. What I learned in the studio was I enjoyed working with audio and pretty soon I found digital audio programs that allowed me to start generating music. I did a few pieces for some corporate videos and the music for a fashion show along with entries to a few music contest.

I let it go shortly after moving to Los Angeles, for many reasons but mostly because I was travelling almost 3 hours a day to and from work for the first year. I then started working at Disney and that job, essentially, took over my life for the next eight years. It’s not as sad as it sounds – I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED working there and worked my ass off to match my passion for entertainment.

In the last few years as music has become more and more highly produced as well as digitally created – everything from the instruments to even the singer’s sometimes, like Hatsuni Miku, and I’ve been inspired again.

I picked up a synthesizer a few weeks ago and have started mucking about with a few different audio production programs. We’ll see how it all goes.

I used to post my work on AcidPlanet.com back in the but it’s been long abandoned since Acid has been owned by multiple companies over the years. I only have a few of my original songs on my computer and I had to pull them from very old back up CDs. If I can find a reasonable place to post them, I’ll update this post.