Tag Archives: romance

Baby, It’s Warm Outside!

23 Dec


Happy Holidays, Live & Love in LA readers!

I have taken quite a long break from posting while redesigning my blog and making it through nursing school, so bear with me! For now, enjoy this hilarious video from last week’s Saturday Night Live episode hosted by Jimmy Fallon. My girlfriends and I were laughing out loud watching this at our big-girl sleepover this past weekend.


I hope you and your special someone have a warm, snuggly holiday! Xoxo -J


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The Last Love

9 Jul

I saw this video on Facebook this morning and wanted to share it with you readers! Albeit super cheesy, it gives us hope that there’s light at the end of the tunnel. No matter how many failed romances you’ve been through, you will find someone to be your last love– the one that really counts.

The Ex Collection

16 May


Whenever I visit my old room at my parents’ house I rummage through my bedroom drawers to take more and more clothes over to my new home with my boyfriend, Nathan. This afternoon, I came across my bottom drawer which I like to call “the ex boyfriend drawer”. I think a lot of girls have the same weird private collection of old memories from past relationships including pictures, birthday cards, concert tickets and movie stubs. Why do I keep all these things to remind myself of failure and heartbreak? I have no idea. But it’s just there… and has been for years.

I believe a part of me wanted to hold on to these things to remind myself of the good times with my exes. After a constant pattern of break-ups, I thought my dating life would always be tumultuous and unpredictable so why not hold on to the happy moments I once shared with these guys? It wasn’t until I met my current boyfriend that I felt I found someone worth throwing my past away– literally and figuratively.  Well, except the jewelry.

My "Ex Collection" of jewelry from Tiffany & Co.

My “Ex Collection” of jewelry from Tiffany & Co.

I still don’t know what to do with these nice rings/bracelets/necklaces as I would never wear them again—Can you imagine how my boyfriend would feel about me sporting a diamond promise ring from an ex?! But they do hold value and it would be foolish to just toss it out! I’m torn between keeping it for my future daughters to play with and selling them online on http://www.ExBoyfriendJewelry.com. I got a big kick out of watching a news segment on ABC’s Nightline which featured online websites dedicated for girls to sell jewelry from their exes. Genius idea!

The place that makes heartbreak a little less painful.

The place that makes heartbreak a little less painful.

It took me having to find someone I couldn’t even dream up to let go of my past. I can’t even say Nate is the man of my dreams because after years of dating in Los Angeles, I couldn’t imagine that guys like him (honest, loyal AND kind) even existed. Our relationship is not perfect by any means but I am able to speak so highly of him in my blog because of what being with him has taught me; that I deserve the best. Not only being treated the best by a man but treating myself with high regard. He inspired me to confront the fears and insecurities that resulted from failed relationships in order to be emancipated from the burden of always expecting the worst from men. Before I made the decision to let it all go, I was a prisoner of my past.

My only regret is that I did not realize this sooner and on my own. I allowed myself to not only hold on to physical things but the emotional pain from my past. Although I’m glad it finally happened, I wish it didn’t take me having to find a great guy to realize my worth. My hope for my readers, single and taken, is that this post gives you the courage to throw it all away, the emotional and physical baggage in your ex boyfriend drawer— except the jewelry! 😉

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10 Steps to Healthy Fighting in a Relationship

6 Mar

Nathan and I love to hang out with our married friends, Seth and Amanda. They’re such a fun, positive couple that we look up to and we make it a point to surround ourselves with their good vibes as much as we can. During our weekly date night dinners, Seth often asks me what my blog topic of the week will be and he suggested doing a piece on “healthy fighting”.

All couples fight. Let’s just get that out there. Fighting is not a sign of weakness in a relationship but the way you go about it can be. When you put two people together in any relationship- romantic or not- there are bound to be differing opinions. However, there are constructive ways to get to the bottom of the problem, figure out a solution, and move on.

I loved the idea of sharing some advice on ways to avoid long-term damage when arguing with your significant other. Now, I’m no marriage & family therapist but I’ve been in enough relationships to know what works and what doesn’t when it comes to fighting. As a boxing referee would say, let’s keep this a good, clean fight!


1. No hitting below the belt. Anything that could be considered a “low blow” needs to be avoided at all times (e.g. your partner’s insecurities, family, and past is off limits). People can say the nastiest things just to get their partner to hurt as much as they are hurting. This isn’t justified. Cut it out.

2. Don’t bring up old stuff. Couples have a tendency to talk about past fights they’ve had if it’s related to the current argument. All this does is open up old wounds and add fuel to the fire. Try to keep focus on the problem at hand and keep a DO NOT RESUSCITATE on old topics.

3. Don’t add bells and whistles. Overdramatizing the problem will only do damage. Don’t let your emotions get the best of you. Sticking to the facts and staying rational will help get your point across more effectively.

4. Constructive words only. If there’s nothing you can say at the moment to make the situation better, don’t say anything at all. Don’t confront your partner until you’re in the mindset to resolve the problem with words that aren’t hurtful.

5. Think up a game plan. We’ve all been in those never-ending arguments that go on for so long that we forget what the original argument was even about. Cut the fat. After both parties’ feelings are heard, skip the back-and-forth and set up a plan of action to avoid this fight in the future. Without coming to an agreement, you’re bound to repeat the past.


6. Less talking, more listening. I think most people should do more of this in every relationship in their lives. We’re all so quick to defend ourselves and have our feelings be heard. However, you’ll be surprised how much you really learn about people when you actively listen.

7. If you have to, walk away. If you have a hot temper and can’t imagine actually doing #1-6, then walk away and use this as #1. Not all arguments need to be settled right then and there. In fact, cooling off for a few minutes is probably the smartest thing to do. Confrontation isn’t good when emotions are running high.

8. Say sorry—and mean it. Knowing when to apologize and admitting fault is like an art form, difficult to master and admired when accomplished. Letting down your pride and saying sorry can be just the thing that’s needed to end an argument. Nobody’s perfect and nobody should be expected to be. Important note: Like fighting, apologizing is NOT a sign of weakness. Quite the opposite, in fact.


9. Accept an apology. Don’t beat a dead horse. If your partner is showing remorse and you know they are genuinely sorry, be able to forgive them. As hard as it is to forgive someone who has hurt you, it is necessary in living a happy life.

10. Let go and let love. Holding on to hurt feelings is such a burden on a relationship. In past relationships, I’ve held on to my exes mistakes in fear of it happening again. It’s almost as if I held on to keep my guard up so when it happened again I could say, “I knew it all along.” Although when you truly love someone, I believe vulnerability is unavoidable. In order to feel true love is to surrender to its fears and come to the realization that when you’ve found the right one, there’s nothing to fear.


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Heart Day Hangover: For The Single & Taken Girls

17 Feb


Valentine’s Day can mean different things to different people. You either love it or hate it, and chances are these feelings are directly proportionate to your positive or negative perception– and NOT your current relationship status, as most would assume.

I am so excited to introduce to you loyal readers someone I consider a dear friend and fellow blogger, Rachel! Words can’t express how positive, confident and resilient she is. Her weekly happy mantras on her health & fitness blog, http://www.TheLoveFitLife.com, keep me going when I’m having a downer of a day. I know you’ll enjoy her healthy eating and workout tips just as much as her SINGLE GIRL perspective on Valentine’s Day.

This week’s post gives you the best of both worlds of being single or taken during this high-pressure, love-obsessed holiday. We hope you can relate to one of us and just know you’re not alone. After all, that is what my blog’s ultimate goal is. Us women need a place to laugh, cry, or simply feel relief that we’re not the only ones going through this roller coaster world of dating in L.A.

So, without further ado, The Heart Day Hangover…..


JOYCE (the happily taken):

Valentine’s Day is the typical Hallmark holiday that becomes solely about gift-giving and wallet-emptying. But what is the real meaning? Love– all different types of love.

It’s technically a celebration of the early Christian Saint Valentinus who continued to perform weddings even after marriage was forbidden under the Roman Empire. Due to this story and what society has blown it up to be, most people view this day exclusively for romantic couples. However, I see Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to remind all the people you hold close to your heart that they are loved. Sure, I hear the bitter remark, “you should show your boyfriend you love him everyday”—and I do! I show him, my friends and my family that I love them all the time but who can really get enough love affirmations? Does anyone ever get tired of hearing how loved they are?

My boyfriend, Nathan, and I have lived together for several months now and things couldn’t be better. We’re one of those couples that are still in anticipation of the other coming home. I look forward to waking up to him every morning, writing love notes in his lunch bag almost every day, and feeling safe as he is the last thing I see before I fall asleep every night. I know, we’re one of those couples that make people nauseous. Although, as you’ve read in my previous posts… I wasn’t always this lucky. I’ve had to kiss one too many toads to find my prince. So Valentine’s Day is a fine day to tell him how grateful I am to have him but also to remind myself of the journey it took to find him. The importance of pausing from my busy life to do something out-of-the-ordinary for someone who has touched my life the way Nate has is essential and something he very much deserves.


We so often take for granted when special people come into our lives. After months and years of seeing the same face and getting into a routine, it’s difficult to realize that everything is temporary in this lifetime. It’s also even more amazing to think some people go their entire lives not finding true love. Therefore, it is important that in this precious life, we are reminded not only on this holiday but every day that you can’t say those three little words enough. So, whether it be a sweet note on the bathroom mirror, a bouquet of long-stem roses or putting on extremely uncomfortable lingerie that gives you a constant wedgie (I mean, I’m not speaking from personal experience, of course…hehe), do what you can to make your special someone’s heart skip a beat.

Furthermore, Valentine’s Day wasn’t only a special day for Nathan and I but it was also a fun-filled day for my family and friends. I put together a surprise lunch at my house for my family and my puppy while the boyfriend was at work, I sent out cards to my girlfriends and their kids, then Nate and I went on a dinner date to Ink Restaurant on Melrose Ave. with two of our closest friends and even met the owner/chef Michael Voltaggio (as seen on the reality TV show, Top Chef).

Valentine' Day isn't just romantic love. Here's a peek of a surprise luncheon I put together for my family at my house

Valentine’s Day isn’t just about romantic love. Here’s a peek of a surprise luncheon I put together for my family at my house.

Dining at Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Dining at Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Chef Michael Voltaggio of Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Chef Michael Voltaggio of Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Post-dinner shot outside of Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Post-dinner shot outside of Ink Restaurant in Los Angeles

Whether you’re taken or single, V-Day can simply be an excuse to get out of your daily routine to stop and tell people, “I love you and I appreciate all you do.” Think outside the box—a father is really the main man in a girl’s life, a mentor is someone who would love to be thanked, a co-worker who is stressed out might really need to read in a cheesy card that they are special. Make Valentine’s Day a day of uplifting the people you love most—taken or not.


RACHEL (the blissfully single):

I find it so fascinating that Valentine’s Day is such a heated subject. It’s one of those abstract days, probably created by some marketing genius that takes over the town and consumes everyone in its path. Even the people doing nothing special on Valentine’s Day will make sure others know that Valentine’s Day is no big deal and it’s just another day. My favorite example of this phenomenon this year was, of course, my ex boyfriend (how fitting) and longtime friend (yes, we’re really still friends) Thomas Teasley’s Facebook check-in at L.A. Fitness that read “Everybody is like it’s valentines day. I’m like it’s arms and cardio day.” Literally laughed out loud…. Thank you, Tommy and proud of you for getting fit when most were going the fat route 🙂


Every year when this stressful week approaches and the infamous day arrives, there seems to be a general consensus that women love it, men hate it, people in relationships must celebrate it and the singles hate life and are jealous of it. Fuck that consensus.

I’m a woman and until last year, I hated it…
I was in a long term relationship and didn’t really celebrate it…
I’m single now, loving life and enjoying Valentine’s Day more than I ever have before!

The Love Shop

So, here we are. My 2nd Valentine’s Day single has been successfully completed and I’ve decided it’s my preference…. for the time being at least. Last year, for my 1st single V-Day, I gave myself everything I wanted, which my ex argued year after year was a sell out and refused to take part in since he “showed me his love everyday” (I always fall for a man that makes me laugh). I ate a wonderful dinner, bought myself roses, put on sexy lingerie that I felt smoking hot in, lit some candles, sipped wine while cuddling up to watch a movie and munch on chocolate. No stress, no sadness, no secretly wishing a man had stepped up and swept me off my feet. It…. was…. FANTASTIC!  This year, for my 2nd single V-Day, I embraced the opportunity that a day like this presents… Celebrating the power of love by loving yourself, loving the people you care about, remembering the incredible love you’ve had in the past and smiling. I sent some nice text messages to past loves who crossed my mind, ate an entire (small) box of Godiva chocolates (of course), went to a great lunch with all my co-workers, hit the town to catch up with some friends and went to bed early thinking about how happy I am to be me – right here, right now.

Not everyone allows Valentine’s Day to be an organic expression of love though. It seems that many make it into a complicated puzzle that’s impossible to solve. I know men often feel like there’s so much pressure to perform, but ultimately, it’s just about showing someone they’re special and loved (and sorry but most people DON’T actually do that on a regular basis, so yea you should probably jump on the bandwagon and use this day to your advantage). Yes, most women want and would LOVE flowers…. even poor cheapskates can buy $7-12 flower bouquets at Trader Joe’s. Yes, most women want to connect in some way…. even if it’s just talking over dinner and being held tightly. Yes, all women and all people in general want to know that others care about them…. period. How you choose to express that doesn’t have to cost a fortune and doesn’t have to be a picture perfect romance scene out of a chick flick movie (although those options are welcome). Be creative, be yourself and never be afraid to say…



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