Mixers and Elixirs

Mixers and Elixirs


Being single in Houston, I like to go out and find fun and new events in the city. Mixers & Elixirs, hosted by the Houston Museum of Natural Science, is not a new event, but an old and popular event that was revived this year. This event is held throughout the museum with a live band and many cash bars open around throughout. To make it even better, there were amazing food trucks outside! Check it out – the next scheduled event is August 24th!

Enjoying the June event

Enjoying the June event

I’m not much of a chef. In fact, the only thing I’ve really perfected cooking in my lifetime is spaghetti, until now! I found an amazing recipe online and it was so delicious and easy I wanted to share! This ravioli paired with a little garlic bread and salad is simply to DIE for!

The great thing about this particular recipe is, if you don’t like or eat meat, you can use cheese-stuffed ravioli pockets and make it a vegetarian meal! How awesome is that?! Just a reminder, if cooking for a vegetarian, opt for a regular tomato sauce, rather than marinara. Only 3 ingredients and a 45 minutes to bake, how can you go wrong with this recipe? Oh, that’s right, you can’t.  Check it out!


You can purchase all of these ingredients at your local grocery store

1 bag (25 Oz. Bag) Frozen Ravioli

1 jar (26 Oz. Jar) Marinara Sauce

2 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Parmesan Cheese, For Sprinkling


Heat oven to 400°F. Spray bottom and sides of a 9×13 rectangular baking dish with cooking spray.

Spread 3/4 cup of the pasta sauce in baking dish. Arrange half of the frozen ravioli in a single layer over the sauce; top with half of the remaining pasta sauce and half of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers once, starting with ravioli. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil; bake uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes longer or until bubbly and hot in the center. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Baked Ravioli

Interning with Camden

Welcome to CA Amanda

Welcome to CA Amanda

Camden Internship program started like most other internships, with an interview. However, what was much different about this interview compared to others was that it was introduced to me as a “talent show”. The premise of the interview was to prepare a 2 minute long talent, to show the interviewers that I am able to fit the company culture as well as think outside of the box. This was an interesting concept seeing as though I had the interview routine down pat in and wasn’t expecting to do anything other than answer the typical interview questions. This experience immediately set Camden a part from the other companies I had interviewed for. Rather than singing or dancing or trying my hand at a gymnastics trick, I chose to do something that I learned to do before I was even able to write, use chopsticks. I had the interviewers time me to see how many cheerios I could move from one bowl to another. While this probably wasn’t my most impressive talent, it caught the interviewers’ eyes and 30 hours later I had an offer letter for the Camden Summer Internship Program in Irvine, California.

Amanda's place

Amanda’s place

Continue Reading »

There are plenty of free things to do in San Diego like hiking, biking, running, going to the beach but below I’m going to list 5 of my picks for free-ish things to do in San Diego.

1. Visit La Jolla Cove – There is so much to see and plenty of places to shop and eat. The best part, in my opinion, is Children’s Pool which is an enclosed beach that many Harbor Seals call home. You can watch them sunbathing and playing in the water from a great viewing point on the wall that encloses the beach and protects it from the waves.

Children's Pool photo from lajollatravelinformation.com

Children’s Pool photo from lajollatravelinformation.com

2. Have a bonfire on Fiesta Island – Fiesta Island is a neat island right Continue Reading »

As a Camden employee the perks seem to be endless. Working in the prominent neighborhood of Buckhead at our Camden Phipps and Camden Paces locations surely have their perks.  My meat-eating life was changed, when our team received a VIP invite to the Grand Opening of  wine and burger bar, Zinburger.

Tiny Delciousness

The Samburger, Chinese Chicken salad, and Zingria

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road trip



The summer is time for road trips and adventures!

 It’s crucial to make sure you’re prepared, you don’t want to be 2 hrs from a gas station without water or snacks, nor do you want to be without a pair of sunglasses when hiking that trail.

  1. A Pair of Sunglasses
  2. Wet Wipes
  3. Small Cooler for Water and Snacks
  4. First Aid Kit
  5. Pocket Knife
  6. Cash
  7. Travel Bag <— Who needs a bulky suitcase for a weekend getaway?
  8. Reusable Water Bottle
  9. Neck Pillow
  10. Car Charger

Now, head out on that open road and explore! Check out these 12 Best Weekend Getaways from US News.



A large dust storm rolled in early July 2014 through Phoenix. Photo courtesy of @Hikeaz vis Instagram.

If you have traveled through the southwest United States between June 15th and September 30th you may have experienced monsoon season. According to www.ArizonaExperience.org a monsoon is caused by warm air creating surface low pressure zones that in turn draw moist air from the oceans. Arizona winds usually come from the west, but shift to a southeasterly wind in the summer, bringing moisture, most often from the Gulfs of Mexico and California. The wind shift and increase in moisture combine with the surface low pressure from the desert heat to produce storms in a cycle of “bursts” (heavy rainfall) and “breaks” (reduced rainfall). Before the rain, the wind shift can trigger dust storms known as haboobs, which appear as loose swirling walls of dust several hundred feet high. The word monsoon is derived from the Arabic word mausin meaning “wind” or “season”.

I am originally from Colorado and had never experienced a weather pattern quite like a monsoon. One of my favorite parts of the monsoon season are all the amazing sunrises and sunsets you can capture. Besides the beautiful skies during monsoon season Arizonans also get relief from the heat due to all the rain received.



Here is a monsoon storm that I photographed in Tucson.

Even though I find monsoon season to be beautiful there are many dangers that come with the monsoon. When the winds pick up during a storm across the desert a dust storm usually begins to roll in. It can happen within minutes and does not always allow enough time to seek shelter. Fortunately a severe weather alert will most likely come through on your cell phone to give you a warning. If you are in an area that does not allow you to find shelter these are the recommended safety precautions to take according to the National Weather Service:

-If dense dust is observed blowing across or approaching a roadway, pull your vehicle off the pavement as far as possible, stop, turn off lights, set the emergency brake, take your foot off of the brake pedal to be sure the tail lights are not illuminated.

-Don’t enter the dust storm area if you can avoid it.

-If you can’t pull off the roadway, proceed at a speed suitable for visibility, turn on lights and sound horn occasionally. Use the painted center line to help guide you. Look for a safe place to pull off the roadway.

-Never stop on the traveled portion of the roadway.

-Turn off your headlights! In the past, motorists driving in dust storms have pulled off the roadway, leaving lights on. Vehicles approaching from the rear and using the advance car’s lights as a guide have inadvertently left the roadway and in some instances collided with the parked vehicle. Make sure all of your lights are off when you park off the roadway.

-During threatening weather listen to commercial radio or television or NOAA Weather Radio for Dust Storm Warnings. A Dust Storm (or Sand Storm) Warning means: Visibility of 1/2 mile or less due to blowing dust or sand, and wind speeds of 30 miles an hour or more.

Besides the potential danger monsoon season poses to motorist, it can also be dangerous for pets. Scottsdale Animal Healthcare’s Dr. Casuccio recently did an interview on ways to keep your pets safe during the monsoon season. Knowing the risks the storms can cause your pet may help save their lives. Click here to see what Dr. Casuccio has to say.

For all the ways to stay safe during monsoon season visit www.monsoonsafety.com .


The beauty of a dust storm captured by @Hikeraz via Instagram.


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