East LA Skyline

A Little Update

Happy Monday! I hope you all had excellent weekends! Mine was particularly enjoyable; I spent Saturday doing a little photoshoot with my sister and my fiancé which culminated with drinks and dinner at a local bar called The Morrison. Sunday I slept in and grabbed lunch at Red Lion before coming home to do some serious house cleaning. We went on an evening run and had a healthy dinner at home.

I have some exciting news to share with you all: you can now access my blog from quietgirlnoisycity.com! I decided it was about time to get myself a domain so that I can start working on self-hosting my website. For now the domain still redirects to Blogspot, but by the end of the year I’m planning to completely refresh my design with a new host.

I’m also planning to experiment a bit more with the type of content I post here. I’ve found a few topics that I really enjoy, but I’d like to expand a bit more on the subjects I blog about. If there are any types of posts in particular you enjoy more than others, let me know!

PS: New Updates to QGNC & A New Goal for October

Palm Trees

6 Reasons I Love Running

I love running. This hasn’t always been true; until about three years ago, I would never have considered myself a runner. When I was younger, I would have told you I hated running.

Once I decided to begin a career in editorial, however, and realized I’d be spending most of my working days in front of a computer screen, I decided I needed to start a regular exercise routine. Running was the wisest choice — it’s fairly inexpensive (I wouldn’t need much more than a pair of running shoes) and can be done virtually anywhere.

Over time I’ve learned to love running; there are many aspects I’ve learned to appreciate over the last three years since I began running for exercise. Today I want to share with you my top six reasons I love to run:

1. Time to Unplug.

It’s difficult to get away from technology these days. Running allows me a good chunk of time to get away from my computer screen and be present with the world around me.

2. Fresh Air.

I spend most of my day in an office, so going out for a run after work offers me a great opportunity to get outdoors and breathe in the fresh air (as well as get a little sunlight).

3. Get to Know My Neighborhood.

I like to mix up my running routines near my home so that I can become more familiar with the neighborhood I live in. I’ve found all kinds of nearby parks and business I never noticed from the car. Getting outside also allows me an opportunity to become more familiar with my neighbors.

4. Release Pent-Up Energy.

Since I don’t get a lot of opportunity to be active in my office, I sometimes have a lot of restless energy stored up. A good run helps me to relax and release some of this energy. It also helps to relieve tension and anxiety caused by stressful work days or dealing with traffic.

5. Spend Time with Eric.

Most days, I go running with my fiancĂ©. It’s nice to spend some time with him while out on a run; it allows us time to talk about all kinds of things without the distractions of home.

6. Time to Think.

Running allows me time to think and daydream. When I’m at home, I always feel like there’s something I should be doing, but when I’m out on a run, I have plenty of zone out without feeling guilty. It’s a great opportunity to work out problems or think about projects I want to try. Sometimes I even dream up ideas for this blog!

These are just some of my favorite things about running. What about you? Do you like to run? What are your reasons for running?

PS: Exercise Burnout: Lessons Learned & 10 Tips for a More Comfortable Run

Village Bakery & Cafe

L.A. Eats: Village Bakery

I love brunch. If I could partake in this wonderful breakfast/lunch hybrid every day of the week, I probably would. My full-time job hinders this, but I nevertheless take advantage of a tasty brunch when possible.

The Village Bakery and Cafe has become one of my favorite brunch spots in northeast Los Angeles. They offer an impressive selection of sandwiches, breakfast favorites, coffees, teas, and baked goods.

Village Bakery Menu

The menu also contains vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options, and all the food is prepared fresh from natural ingredients.

I’m a big fan of their scrambles; both the Village Scramble and the Mediterranean Scramble are delectable. The eggs are savory and always perfectly cooked — not runny or watery like you find at some restaurants. All the scrambles come with a side of yummy roasted potatoes and your choice of toast.

Scramble

The Mediterranean scramble I devoured on my last visit.

You can opt to have them made either with eggs or with tofu, so even vegetarians can enjoy the egg dishes offered here.

Grits

Eric tried these tasty grits — one of the daily specials!

Village Bakery also offers a large variety of baked goods, from breakfast pastries to breads to dessert selections. Many of the baked goods are gluten- or sugar-free and all of them (that I’ve tried thus far) are delicious. We’re always much too full for dessert, but that doesn’t stop us from grabbing a few cupcakes and pastries to take home!

Village Bakery is located on Los Feliz Boulevard in Atwater Village. They are open Monday through Friday from 8AM to 7PM and weekends from 8AM to 4PM. Their full menu is available all day (yes, that means you can have breakfast for dinner)!

Coffee & Water

Editor’s Note: This post has not been paid for or sponsored in any way, nor am I employed by Village Bakery. Any and all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own and no one else’s.

PS: Breakfast Recipe Round-Up & My New Favorite Restaurant

Quiet London Mews

How to Meet People While Traveling

Erstwhile Expeditions is an ongoing series in which I reflect on my past travel experiences. I recently wrote about my semester of studies in New York and my decision to move to London after college. In my last post, I questioned whether or not traveling requires a great amount of courage.

Many people are afraid to travel alone. It’s scary to think about traveling abroad for a few months or more without knowing anyone and having only yourself to rely on. Most people avoid long-term travel for this very reason.

The truth is, it’s actually extremely easy to meet people while traveling.

I mentioned in my post about courage and traveling that I am a shy person. I have social anxiety and it is difficult for me to carry on a conversation with a stranger. A lot of people use this as an excuse to remain within their comfort zones and socialize primarily with people they already know. I’m a firm believer, however, that you can’t grow as a person unless you step outside this comfort zone once in a while, no matter how scary it may seem.

So, with my shy personality, how did I manage to travel abroad for six months by myself?

I began by reminding myself that there were hundreds of thousands of people just like me; people who wanted the experience of living abroad and who were traveling alone. They wouldn’t know anyone either. These were people who, like me, would be looking for companionship in a new city.

The work-abroad program that I was traveling with had a short-term hostel for participants just arriving in London. We could stay in the hostel until we found jobs and more permanent living spaces. It was a perfect place to start meeting new people because everyone staying in the hostel had arrived in London within the past few weeks.

Taking the first step is the most difficult part, but it’s not as difficult as you think.

When I first arrived at my hostel, I was placed in a room with one other girl. She was quiet, and spent much of the first morning I was there sitting in her bed and reading. I quickly realized she wasn’t interested in doing much socializing, so I strayed out of my room to explore.

The hostel was a converted flat, so there were rooms of various sizes, a shared bathroom on each floor, a community kitchen, and a tiny living room. While there were a few people engaged in a television show in the living room, there weren’t many places to sit, and so I felt uncomfortable joining in. I obviously couldn’t burst in to any of the bedrooms to meet people, and certainly didn’t want to try and make friends in the bathroom. I was beginning to feel hungry as lunchtime was quickly approaching, and I decided the kitchen might be my best option.

A local grocery store was just across the street from my hostel, so I ventured out to purchase a few things to eat over the next few days. When I returned, the kitchen was empty, but I nevertheless began preparing myself lunch. Eventually, others began filtering in. I smiled and said hello as they made eye contact, trying to be friendly, despite the fact that I was extremely nervous.

Guess what happened? They were friendly right back! They began talking to me, asking if I’d just arrived and a natural conversation followed. All I had to do was go into the kitchen and make a sandwich!

If you pay attention, there are endless opportunities to meet new people.

The most exciting fact about my experience is that I didn’t have to do anything outside of my comfort zone to begin making friends. I simply found a place where people would naturally gather and used the space to do something I would normally do. There are many opportunities like this while traveling, you just have to look for them and be a little brave.

Be sure to read the next chapter of my travel series, in which I find my first overseas job!

Mess Hall Mug

L.A. Eats: Brunch at Mess Hall

A few weeks ago, after hiking to the Hollywood Sign on Mount Lee, Eric and I decided to stop at Mess Hall for their weekend brunch. We’ve been to the restaurant several times for dinner and loved it, and I’d been wanting to try their brunch for quite a while. This seemed like to perfect opportunity!

We were tired, a little dirty, and very hungry when we pulled into the valet parking off Los Feliz Boulevard. Luckily we arrived before the lunch crowd and were able to get a table immediately.

I ordered a big mug of coffee. We both ordered mimosas. Mess Hall serves coffee from Stumptown Coffee Roasters, which I had never tried before, but I enjoyed. I don’t put sweetener in my coffee, and I appreciated that the coffee was a little naturally sweet and not too bitter. The mimosas were perfectly bubbly, with the right combination of orange juice and champagne.

Eggs Benedict

To eat, I ordered the applewood smoked salmon benedict. Oh boy, it was good; and I don’t think it’s just because of how hungry I was. The salmon was nice and smoky, and not too salty. The eggs were light and fluffy. The english muffin was a little crunchy, making for a lovely texture combination.

The dish came with a side of fruit, and I was pleased to see it was a nice mixture of various melons, pineapple, strawberries, and grapes. Don’t you hate when your side of fruit is only melon and maybe one grape?

Omelette and Toast

Eric opted for the build-your-own omelette option. His meal was probably a little healthier than mine, but I find it difficult to turn down eggs benedict when it’s available. And I don’t regret ordering it! Not one little bit. His omelette also came with a side of fruit, as well as a side of wheat toast with butter and jam.

Damages

When we were finished, our waiter brought the bill and we assessed the damages. The prices are a little high for what you get, but not completely unreasonable. Overall, it was an enjoyable experience, and the perfect post-hike pick-me-up. I will certainly be returning to Mess Hall’s weekend brunch in the future!

Mess Hall is located on the corner of Los Feliz Boulevard and Hillhurst Avenue in Los Feliz. Their brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays between 10 AM and 3 PM. They are open for lunch on weekdays and dinner every day.

Mess Hall Sign

Editor’s Note: This post has not been paid for or sponsored in any way, nor am I employed by Mess Hall. Any and all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own and no one else’s.

PS: French Toast Brunch for Two & Village Bakery

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    Hello! I'm Erika, a quiet girl living in the noisy city of Los Angeles with my husband Eric and my cat Cookies. I enjoy exploring new places, going on adventures, eating delicious food, and taking lots of pictures! >> Read more















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