Dinner & a Show – Misuta Chows, Buffalo NY

IMG_7074

My sister is awesome and for my birthday in January, she gifted me with tickets for us to go see the 20th anniversary touring production of Rent when it came to Buffalo. For a long time, Rent was the only musical that I liked. I actually thought I hated musicals with Rent being the exception (yeah….that’s not true at all). But when I first saw Rent in High School (on video) I just fell in love. It’s such a wonderful story and I was so happy to be able to see it live (I’ve seen a smaller production when my sister’s college did the musical, and it was great there too)!!

Seeing Rent at Shea’s was the second time I’d seen a proper production of a musical. The first being when Hamilton came to town (and was everything I hoped and then some). I used to go to a lot of concerts, but I haven’t in a long time because unfortunately, all the flashing lights and the noise often meant every concert I attended came with a bonus migraine. I miss going out and experiencing live music, but I’ve found that musical theater is a wonderful alternative. I’m able to sit, it’s indoors (I swear I’ve been rained on at nearly every concert I’ve ever attended), there’s generally no massive exodus of traffic afterwards, and so far, there hasn’t been any insane flashing lights to trigger my cranky head.

The show itself was great. Somehow I behaved myself and didn’t sing along to every song, though trust me – I wanted to! The cast really did a great job and if the show is coming to your town, I highly recommend getting tickets. Even after seeing it here and there, and watching different versions of the show, it still gets me in the feels. Even all these years later – it’s still such a relevant and wonderful show.

My only real issue were the seats but that was part my body – I overdid it the day before and my back was in a REAL MOOD – and part the historical (read: uncomfortable) nature of the venue. I was in a lot of pain during the show and of course, I switched bags before leaving and didn’t have anything to take for it. As soon as the show was over though, walking started to help and I felt a lot better.

After the show we walked down to a restaurant we were both really wanting to check out: Misuta Chows. I’ve got to admit, the fact that Buffalo is now a place where there’s stuff to walk to on Main st. is sort of a crazy prospect. I mean, there’s always been something here and there, but the city is changing into something I never imagined.

Misuta Chows is part Japanese restaurant and part arcade/bar. The attention to detail in terms of design is excellent. It’s got the feel like you’re in some alleyway Japanese restaurant and despite feeling small, it doesn’t feel too cramped – more cozy. There’s a faux roof on the kitchen area with a little counter, and paper lanterns hang throughout the space. The noise level in the dining area wasn’t bad which I really appreciated. 80s tunes wafted in (also appreciated) and as we were seated at the counter facing the kitchen, it actually felt quite private. The lighting was also great  – I know, perhaps weird details to comment on, but some places are just too bright and too loud for me to deal with and this just felt right, so they get points for ambiance for sure. Also, the Maneki Neko banners on the roof over the kitchen space was adorable. Can I have that please??

 

IMG_7083

 

Upstairs is a second bar and an arcade, which you get to via a pink glittery Hello Kitty adorned stairway. Because, why not?? The arcade itself is a fun little space with a bunch of pinball machines and about a dozen older video game machines. The games are $0.50 a play, with the pinball machines costing $1.00 a play so they’re not the cheapest thing in the world, but it’s definitely a nice feature and one I can get down with. I think it’d be neat if they did something where you got a token or two to play when you ate there. That’d be a really nice little detail!

IMG_7076IMG_7077

In terms of the food, we started with two appetizers – the cucumber slices and the pork gyoza’s. Missy also got a drink – the “Hey Samurai” which she felt was really nothing like it’s description, and at their drink prices, that was a little bit disappointing. Being seated by the kitchen meant that our food was placed directly on the counter in front of us for us to grab which was nice in a way.

IMG_7079

For our entree’s we both went with the Shio Ramen. I have wanted to try real ramen for years now, but I just haven’t found myself in a place to do so until now, so I was excited to finally try it. Overall it was pretty good. I LOOOOVED the soft boiled egg!! I would have liked more bamboo shoots/scallions as I felt that was a bit sparse, and I personally wasn’t a fan of the large pieces of pork due to all the fat. I’m not a fan of fat because the texture really bothers me, so that might be more a personal issue – but I was sort of anticipating thinner slices of pork. The broth itself was good, but definitely super salty as Shio ramen is meant to be. I’d really love to try a Tonkatsu ramen sometime!

In the grand scheme of things, Misuta Chows is a great little place and I think it’s a welcome addition to downtown Buffalo. I like that while it’s a place with two bars, it’s still a welcoming environment for people who don’t really drink (hi), although we were there early on a Saturday evening and I’m sure it’s likely a different atmosphere later at night.

If I found myself in the area and wanting a place to eat, I’d definitely keep Misuta Chows in mind. I’d love to see them expand their menu options!

 

Sunday Thoughts #1

onedayatatime

I stopped doing favorites posts for a few reasons. Some months I just didn’t have much to talk about. Sometimes my favorites were the same as past months and I didn’t want to be redundant. I didn’t really make a conscious decision to stop doing monthly favorites posts, they just sort of fizzled out. But aside from just sharing every little thing on Twitter, I’ve sort of missed having a regular place to share things I’ve been reading/watching/eating and just simply, enjoying.

So I thought I could start up something here on the blog – nothing fancy, and not exactly a favorites list per se. No rhyme or reason, and in all honesty, no consistency. I might do these weekly, monthly, or once and never again. We’ll just have to see. For now, let’s just get into what’s been on my mind lately:

source-3

SHRILL – My lovely sister recently signed up for a Hulu membership, and set me up with a Roku, and I’ve been LOVING IT!! I’m pretty upset with Netflix right now, so I’ve been seriously enjoying all that Hulu has to offer. When I first heard about Shrill, I was intrigued but I wasn’t sure if I’d ever watch because I really wasn’t down for signing up for yet another streaming platform. Missy’s timing couldn’t have been more perfect because I was able to watch this new show and I honestly loved it so so so much.

I’m not sure how to even put my love for this show into words. It really made me feel some shit. Happy for such a wonderful show. Sad for my own struggle with acceptance and body positivity. Ecstatic to see what I was seeing, in a TV show. See – I still can barely articulate my feelings. Just know that the show is great and you should seriously watch it. I hope Hulu gives us more.

I said that I’m mad at Netflix right now, and that’s because they decided to cancel One Day at a Time after three wonderful, glorious, beautiful, emotional, seasons. They claim it wasn’t getting enough views. I say claim because Netflix doesn’t share their data. I’m sorry, but call me a skeptic, but I don’t buy it. First off – you can get data on any network show easily. The fact that Netflix doesn’t share their data is just plain dumb, and it bothers me. How do we ever know the truth regarding their content? Great for them, but crap for writers/actors/viewers/anyone else.

Beyond that, even if the show wasn’t doing well ratings wise, I’d say that Netflix has themselves to blame. I only first heard about One Day at a Time because I was doing research for a paper I was writing and was talking about Norman Lear. I then ran across an article discussing how there was a remake of One Day at a Time. I was on Netflix all the time and never once did I ever see anything about this show. I watched immediately and fell in love, but ever since, I’ve been quite aware of how shit Netflix has been when it comes to promoting this show. So to say they weren’t getting ratings, I feel you can put all the blame on yourself, Netflix.

giphy

Because when they cancelled the show, #SaveODAAT was trending GLOBALLY for HOURS on twitter. Since the announcement tons of people have voiced their anger and sadness. People have come together to fight for the show to be picked up elsewhere, including Lin Manuel Miranda (how can you say no to him?!?) and fans of Brooklyn Nine Nine who successfully fought and found a new home for their show when it was cancelled (a show that is on my list to watch now that I’ve got Hulu).

I seriously hope that some network comes through and saves this show. We need more of these characters and their stories. We need the diversity and the representation. Shame on Netflix – a company that keeps triggering shows like 13 Reasons Why and cancels shows like ODAAT which beautifully, and honestly tackled mental health in a way I have never seen done before. CBS could pick up the show since they had the original. NBC saved Brooklyn Nine Nine, so I could see them saving the day again. I personally think One Day at a Time would fit wonderfully into a comedy block on ABC with Speechless (which is yet another show I’ve started watching and have fallen for hard, so please – #RenewSpeechless). One Day at a Time is honestly a show that I would follow and watch anywhere. If you haven’t seen the show yet, get on Netflix and watch the first three seasons!! Trust me, it’s beyond worth it.

I recently ordered some goodies from this wonderful Etsy shop called Hand Over Your Fairy Cakes and thank you brain fog because I totally forgot about it until it showed up in my mail box one day. Not only was it adorably packaged with confetti and sweets – but my pins and stickers are even better than I imagined. I love how bright and happy her designs are, in combination with the messages they display! I can’t wait to put the pins on my bag. The hard part is going to be deciding where to slap the stickers!

B7A143D0-2043-4B0F-A762-BED4D2A12579

 

I recently read this article about some of the issues with AirPods and I only feel more vindicated in my hatred of this product. I’m sorry, but I will NEVER pay over $100 for a pair of headphones that I will definitely lose somewhere. Beyond that, I think they look stupid and apparently their battery life is shit. My corded headphones? They have infinite battery life. 😉

Lastly, while I’ve been incredibly stressed and overwhelmed by grad school this semester, I’ve been finding comfort in two things recently: The Goldbergs (thank you again, Hulu), and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

giphy-1

I started watching The Goldbergs in reruns on TV Land because Hallmark has lost their mind and ruined their sitcom schedule (perhaps now that they broke up with Aunt Becky they could fix their schedule? I bet they’ve got space to fill…). At first I honestly wasn’t sure what I thought of the show, but it warmed up on me and now I’m really enjoying watching from the beginning. I’m only in season 2 now, but it’s really good. I am forever impressed by shows that are set in a specific time period and their attention to details in order to make that aspect believable. The Goldbergs is an excellent example of that. I’m loving the 80s vibes of this show.

When I first heard about Nintendo’s new system I was super intrigued. So of course, when it was released, I ran right out and got it. ….yeah, no. I’m nothing if not consistent, and that consistency includes being super late to the party with new tech. I picked up a Nintendo Switch last week, along with Stardew Valley and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I played a bit of Stardew and I basically gave up because I was having trouble doing things in the game and it was pissing me off (help?!). Zelda however, I’m LOVING!!! It’s such a gorgeous game and I love the flexibility and freedom which is always something that I’m drawn to in a game. I’ve only just begun to play the game so I’m not too far into it but I’m really, really, enjoying it. It’s been the perfect escape after working on giant papers for school. I also love the fact that when I feel like crap, the Switch is the perfect system for playing in bed. I’m a huge simmer, but there’s been plenty of times where it’s just too uncomfortable to sit at my desk to play. The Switch feels like the system I’ve been missing.

If you’ve got any game recs for me, please let me know! I’m eagerly waiting for Animal Crossing to be released for switch, but beyond that I’m not sure what games I should be looking into.

Alright, I’ve definitely rambled on long enough. Feel free to tell me what you’ve been enjoying lately in the comments. What have you been reading/watching/playing?

It’s Just Another Manic Monday – Building a Ladder

source

It’s Monday – the start of a new week. I don’t know why, but I feel so much extra pressure on Mondays. Like how productive I am today, sets the tone for the rest of the week. Today I’ve been semi-productive and considering that I didn’t sleep well last night, and I woke up with such horrible joint pain, I’m going to consider that a win. Today I am trying to #BuildALadder  – a term created by one of my favorite Youtubers, Martina (of Simon & Martina / Eat Your Kimchi). Martina has EDS and understands that the reality of chronic illnesses means that some days are better than others. Sometimes, you need to try harder to accomplish what you need to, or accept that you’re going to have to find victory in the small things, change plans, or adapt to however you might be feeling that day.

I love the idea because it’s a good way for me to remind myself that every day cannot be perfect. I might have twenty things written down on my to-do list for a particular day, and chronic illness might have other plans. To me, it’s about adapting to my reality – which is often fluid and that means I can’t always plan ahead. The idea of building a ladder helps to remind myself that every day is different and we have to find our victories where we can!

source-1

You might see that we haven’t been posting very often lately. It’s primarily because we’re both in Grad School and we’ve had rather challenging semesters so far. For me, the biggest challenge has been my health. Trying to manage school demands in a body that doesn’t always seem to get the memo can be frustrating. There are days where the nerve/joint pain is so bad that typing is just too difficult. Or a migraine keeps me from getting anything done. Chronic fatigue and insomnia often mean that even the little things can be big challenges. When I can’t be as productive as I want (or need) to be, it frustrates me. It amplifies my anxiety as I start to worry if I’ll meet deadlines or ever get it all done. I worry that I’m not doing enough. I worry that I’ll never be able to.

I’m not writing this to try and make anyone feel sorry for me. I do my best to #BuildALadder and get through every day. But I wanted to explain why things might be a lot more quiet on the blog until the semester is over. I’m also writing this because going forward, I want to be more honest here with my reality.

I’ve always been a fan of the internet. I read blogs, I watch YouTube, and I’m on Instagram and Twitter way too much. But something that I find frustrating is the lengths to which people will go to try and make their lives seem completely perfect. I don’t find it relatable. I want real content – I don’t want people that only ever show the good stuff, while glossing over the harder bits. I can understand the appeal, but for me personally, I find that content like that ends up making me feel shitty. It makes me feel like I’ll never compare or stack up – that I’m just not good enough. I roll my eyes when I watch a YouTube video and someone is saying how they worry that their content is “too boring” because they showed real life bits. Life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows!! That’s okay!! More and more, I find myself drawn to people who have more of a balance between the nice stuff, and the “real” stuff. Those vlogs that you worry are too boring?? They’re probably my favorite!

My point (yes, I think I have one) is that I want to talk about my real life more on this blog. We started this site as a way to write about the different interests that we both have, and we enjoy doing that. But I want to expand our focus a bit more to include other things – real life things that matter to us just as much. In all honesty, it sort of frightens me to be transparent and talk about things like chronic illness – it makes me feel a bit vulnerable. But my life isn’t just books and TV – there’s a whole lot of other stuff in there too.

So long story short – be patient with us. We’re still around, just super busy right now. When this semester is over, we have a bunch of posts planned and we can’t wait to dive back in! For me, writing is a creative outlet that keeps me sane. I miss having the time to do it on my own terms! In the meantime, feel free to follow us on social media –

Tina – TWITTER, INSTAGRAM

Missy – TWITTER, INSTAGRAM

Oh, and if you like anything you’ve read here on our blog, you can always Buy Us a Coffee! 😉

and one more thing…. #SAVEODAAT!!!

source-2

 

 

TBRs, Reading Goals, and Why I’m quitting it all.

*waves white flag*

I give up.

I give up, and I’m completely okay with it.

I enjoy feeling like I’m a part of something. I love nerding out with a fandom, or engaging with a niche community that shares a similar interest. I’ll admit that as someone who works and goes to school from home, and who lives with chronic illness, I don’t often feel a part of much. The internet is my savior in that respect. I’ve always had a love for reading, and between blogs, Youtube and Instagram, I’ve been exposed to the massive and crazy world of Book bloggers, Booktube and Bookstagram. Their passion has often left me feeling equal parts inspired and inadequate. It’s what has inspired me to try and reach a higher reading goal and to make monthly TBRs. I thought I wanted to be a bigger part of that community.

Until I realized that I don’t.

Don’t get me wrong. There are great people within the online book world. There are important conversations being had and brilliant books that I’ve discovered through it. But there are negatives too. I find myself frequently feeling pressure to read more and to read faster. I find myself wanting to consume books simply for the sake of consuming it. Read-a-thons and TBR lists aren’t about savoring the books we enjoy, they’re about consumption and reaching impressive reading goals. Sure, some people simply read a lot, and read fast. I’m just not one of them. So I find myself feeling such pressure to try and keep up. I thought that trying to reach specific goals, and attempting to read a certain number of books every month would help me to prioritize reading as self-care, but through this I’ve learned how easy it is to turn something you might have once found enjoyable and therapeutic, into something that feels like a chore, and that is stress-inducing.

I don’t want the book community to destroy my love for reading.

I found that the pressure I put on myself to try and read longer/faster/more, was making me feel guilty for engaging in other things I enjoyed doing – like watching TV. I also found that I would feel like what I was reading wasn’t good enough. There’s a lot of discussion in the book community right now about what kind of content we are reading. While I get it, I found it left me feeling like I shouldn’t even be talking about the books I was reading or wanted to read, because maybe they weren’t valuable?

I can recognize the power and value of the online book community, but I have to say that trying to engage in it, has left me nearly hating an activity I have loved my entire life. When I was little, I was always getting in trouble for reading in the dark. I was heckled and harassed during school because I read during lunch… or on the bus…or during free periods. So I hoped that this online community would help me find cohorts who I could share my love of reading with. But the reality is that there is a dark side to everything. I’m not saying that everyone who participates in this community is bad – not at all! I’m just acknowledging that there are issues.

So I’m done. I want to find my way back to loving reading again. Reading truly for pleasure and fulfillment. Reading for myself. Maybe I’ll share it here, maybe I won’t. But done are the TBR’s and the reading goals. I think its the only way to save this relationship.

In a 90s Kinda World, I’m Glad I’ve Got My (DVDs): Physical Media in a Digital Age

I’m a creature of habit. In most scenarios, I don’t like change. Change taunts my anxiety and makes me feel threatened, uncomfortable, and like I have lost whatever control or trust that I might have had. I love a good routine and dependability. Knowing that I can trust a certain aspect of my environment to be consistent is incredibly valuable to me. When I turn on the television at night, I take comfort in seeing The Golden Girls, or Frasier on my screen. Not only are they funny and entertaining, but they’ve become reliable aspects of my routine. I enjoy watching my sitcom reruns, but more than that, they keep me company late at night when I often struggle to find comfort, or sleep.

I’ve always had a pretty dysfunctional relationship with sleep – I remember as a kid closing my eyes and thinking, OK, if I fall asleep right now, I can get five hours of sleep before I have to get up for school. I got in trouble for reading in bed by the light coming through my window, or seeping in my room from another You’ll ruin your eyes!, my mom would scream. Check mate mom – I’ve worn glasses for years (though, I DON’T wear them for reading). I used to love going to sleepovers at my maternal grandmother’s house because she was a night owl. We’d watch I Love Lucy together, or The Golden Girls. We’d head to the grocery store at midnight, cruising around and stopping for DIY sandwiches in the car made from the deli and fresh bread we had bought. Sometimes I wonder if I’m not as much an insomniac as much as someone who just isn’t meant to ascribe to normal sleeping patterns. I’ve come to realize it’s sort of a family thing – my aunt, mother, and sister are all night owls. The difference being for them, is that they can all fall asleep quickly. Me on the other hand, not so much.

Which brings me back to my beloved sitcoms. I welcome their company every night because they’re so familiar. Often times, I find myself lying awake not simply due to insomnia, but because of painsomnia. My joints, nerve pain, or some other discomfort like to keep me awake at night. So having Rose Nylund, Roz Doyle, or even Lucy and Ethel to hang out with me is a nice comfort. But come October, I find myself at a loss because Hallmark likes to go crazy for Christmas and removes their overnight sitcom reruns in favor of their Christmas movies. So I surf around looking for other sitcoms to take comfort in. Luckily there isn’t much of a shortage, and I am grateful that multiple channels air them. During Christmaspalooza, I’m often watching The King of Queens, Friends, Everybody Loves Raymond, The New Adventures of Old Christine and others.

Christmas has come and gone, and generally, the start of January means that Hallmark goes back to their regularly scheduled programming. This year? Not quite. They’ve changed the schedule, eliminating shows, extending some and reducing others. This creature of comfort was not happy. But I’m not writing this just to bitch about how a television network messed up my routine (although, they did and I’m not gonna lie – I’m bitter about it), I’m writing this because it got me to thinking about a larger issue that has been on my mind a lot recently: digital vs. physical media.

Read More »

Dealing With Chronic Migraines: What Helps

I have struggled with headaches and migraines for years now. Really, when I try to think back, it’s hard to recall a time when I didn’t experience them. I remember enduring headaches when I was young, many of which might have been migraines, but I simply didn’t know how to identify them. I’ve never had a doctor officially diagnose me as someone who suffers from migraines. I once had a doctor offer me medications that I knew wouldn’t work for me personally, but beyond that I’ve had many doctors discount my experiences and the pain of living with chronic migraines. “It’s because you’re a woman.” … “You need to lay off the caffeine.” … “Try getting more sleep.” …  “Oh you’d know if it was a migraine!”  – These were some of the responses I’ve gotten from doctors over the years. But that was generally where the conversation ended.

Migraines run in my family. I really don’t need a doctor to tell me whether or not I’m actually suffering from them because at this point, I know. Rather, I needed a doctor who would listen to me and help me find ways to manage them. That hasn’t happened, and between that and other issues I’ve dealt with in recent years, I’m currently without a doctor. Finding a doctor that not only, is accepting new patients and my insurance is one thing. Finding a doctor who will listen to me is a whole different story. So in all honesty, I’ve taken a break from that search because it was really starting to drain me after a few bad experiences. It’s actually an issue I’d like to explore more, because I KNOW that I’m not alone, but more on that in the future.

Now that I’ve given a bit of context, let me get into the whole point of writing this post. I’ve been meaning to do so for awhile, but ironically, as I sit here on day three of a migraine, I decided to just sit down and do it. Over the years, I’ve found myself suffering with more frequent migraines than in the past. Over the course of dealing with them, I have tried so many different things to try and combat them. Many, many, things that did not help, but there were some things that did, and I’ve wanted to share them with you. Of course, migraines are a tricky jerk. What might help one person, might do nothing for someone else. Also, it’s important to remember that I’m not a doctor or a medical expert, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Now, the key thing I want to mention before I share these things is that while these are all in my tool box for enduring a migraine, none of these (with a few small exceptions) are really geared toward stopping them fully. I wish I could give you that solution – I really do.

Read More »

Urban Decay On The Run Palette Swatches + Review

 

This aint a beauty blog. I think that much is clear if you browse through our past published content. However, one of us (hi) is drawn to the glitz and glam of the beauty world just a bit. Honestly, if it’s shiny or sparkly, I’m likely to want it! Perhaps it’s the 80s/90s gal in me? I will say though, that despite my love for makeup, it isn’t something I wear every single day. I’m pretty low maintenance when it comes to stuff like that, and I’ve tried to find a balance since it’s so easy for me to buy more products than I will actually use. There was definitely a time (or two) where I’d want to snatch it all up regardless of whether I’d make good use of it or not. Now, I try to be more mindful in my beauty purchases.

Sometimes I go makeup free out of laziness or because I’m just not in the mood, and other times it might be because I’m not feeling that great and it just feels like one more use of my energy that I can avoid. But I also find that on days where I might feel like garbage, taking a few minutes to do something like slap on some eye shadow or mascara, can actually lift my spirits. I feel like its a way for me to defy my body when its fighting against me. I realize that might sound crazy to some, but if my joints are flaring or my stomach is causing me grief, a little glitter can make me smile – it can make me feel more HUMAN!!

Read More »