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Buen Sabor – The “Liquid Salad”

Submitted by on May 20, 2009 - 3:21 pm

Gazpacho is often referred to as the “liquid salad.” It is a simple, healthy and delicious soup that is served cold and perfect for hot summer days. It’s an adaptation of the classic Spanish cold tomato soup and is made with the best of the season’s vegetables.

Here are the Ingredients:
* 21 oz. of tomato
* 2 cloves of garlic
* 2 onions
* 2 red and green peppers
* 1 cucumber (optional)
* 7 tablespoons of oil
* 2 tablespoons of vinegar
* 1 1/2 tablespoon of water
* Cumin (optional)

Preparation Time is 30min. For instructions see, Spain Recipes

Terrífico Tuesday-Not So Hidden Charms

Submitted by on May 19, 2009 - 3:02 pm

Today I want to feature my brother, John Cabán’s, band-Brother Hijinx. Brother HijinX has been performing live shows throughout the Northeast and the Caribbean engaging music lovers in their heady blend of psychedelic rock, funk, drum & bass, blues and dub, laced with inventive samples and atmospheric sonic dissonance to create their distinctive “Atmo-Dub-Funk”© sound.

Brother HijinX strikes the right chord every time and keeps crowds grooving and dancing in the aisles. The members have individually played, toured and/or recorded with such renowned artists as Art Neville, the late Bo Diddley, Richard Bona, Kenny Kirkland, Alana Davis, Me’Shell NdegeOcello, Govt. Mule, The Black Crowes, John Scofield, Brian Jackson, The Jungle Brothers, Michael Gregory, Richie Havens, Dana Fuchs, Jen Chapin, John Cruz, Dispatch and Michael Franti & Spearhead.

Additionally, band members have shared the stage with acts including Paul McCartney, Black Eyed Peas, Santana, Wu Tang Clan, Ben Harper, Taj Mahal, Marcus Miller, Kenny Garrett and Buddy Guy.

Seizing the opportunity to ride their funky wave of groovin’ vibes and good fortune Brother HijinX are splitting their time between touring and the recording studio.

Click here to go to the LBL Music Player (on the Main Page) and listen to my favorite track Not So Hidden Charms.

To purchase Brother Hijinx music head over to CD Baby or iTunes.

Maravilloso Monday-Children

Submitted by on May 18, 2009 - 2:51 pm

Children are the reward of life.
– Congolese Proverb

Today I want to honor children. Last night I spent the evening at the, much-awaited, East L.A.Classic Theatre (ECT) benefit, which raised money for ECT’s theatre and language programs in many L.A. publics schools. The event was a huge success with 800-900 people in attendance (including many celebrities). Several of my friends joined me in supporting this worthy cause. But what was most memorable about the evening were the children. A group of 30 children from Stevenson Middle School (who participate in ECT’s programs ) came out, in front of the stage, and introduced themselves. Two of the students stood up on stage and spoke about what they enjoyed about ECT and how it has positively impacted their lives. (Many of these children speak English as a second language and were very shy children, before entering ECT’s program). The programs offered to them by ECT have allowed the to soar, gain self-confidence and be introduced to the Arts (something that they might never have had exposure to had they not been invited to participate in ECT’s programs). These children were so beautiful, dressed in their Sunday best. They were nervous yet proud to be up in front of so many people. It was a wonderful sight to see. I so enjoy being a part of East L.A. Classic Theatre and knowing that in some small way I am helping a child flourish.

Fabuloso Friday – The Children’s Music Fund

Submitted by on May 15, 2009 - 6:00 pm

This is no ordinary organization… The Children’s Music Fund’s mission is to provide musical instruments and Music Therapy to children with chronic and life altering illness. They also support research on the effects of Music Therapy and how it heals. I found this organization very interesting because of how a simple instrument can change a person’s life. They say that channeling the brain’s energy to musical sounds takes the focus away from the pain.

For more information on how you can help, click here.

I hope you all have a fabulous and safe weekend!

Tentación Thursday-Slumdog Millionaire

Submitted by on May 14, 2009 - 10:30 am

There is a reason that this picture one the Oscar for movie of the year. As one reviewer said it’s “Epic. Touching. Horrifying. Romantic. Uplifting.” Lucky for us, Slumdog Millionaire is available on DVD. (A little known fact is that I lived in India when I was 12 years old. Therefore, I particulalry enjoyed being transported back to India, with all of its colors, sounds, moods and more). Slumdog Millionaire is about a Mumbai teen who grew up in the slums & becomes a contestant on the Indian version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?. He is arrested for cheating & while being interrogated events from his life history are shown which explain why he knows the answers. I was moved and inspired by this film. (I really enjoyed the music, too). If you haven’t seen Slumdog Millionaire, run, don’t walk, to the video store (or your netflix account), to rent it. If you are lucky you will be this week’s LBL member to win of the Tentación Thursday giveaway-the DVD Slumdog Millionaire.

Leave your comment below, for your chance to win the DVD Slumdog Millionaire.

Buen Sabor Wednesday-Cream Cheese Poppy Seed Cupcakes

Submitted by on May 13, 2009 - 10:30 am

I have been off of refined sugar for 13 days now and, surprisingly, it hasn’t been too hard. My energy is up, I haven’t had one headache, and overall I feel great! (Did I mention that my favorite old jeans kind of fit now?) For those of you that can’t give up sweets, all together, I thought that I’d give you a sweet made with unrefined (cane) sugar this week. I made these cupcakes yesterday and they are great! Click Here for the recipe.
(Remember that just because something is made with unrefined sugar, doesn’t mean that it’s fat-free. So please consume this, and all treats, in moderation).

Terrífico Tuesday-Help me choose a dress!

Submitted by on May 12, 2009 - 8:00 pm

As you all know, I’ve been on my Sugar-Free Challenge-in order to trim down a little. Things are going great! Well, I have an event to attend on Sunday evening, To Be Or Not To Be-Carlos Mencia, (to benefit East L.A. Classic Theatre). It will be a star-studded affair and I, too, would like to look like a star. So I have decided to treat myself to a new dress. I have narrowed my dress search down to 2 finalists and would love your opinion on which one to choose. Here are the contestants:

Dress #1

(The back of this dress is really cool. Click Here, to see it).

Dress #2

Please leave your vote, below. I will make my decision on Saturday morning, leaving me time to buy shoes.

Thank you so much.

Ana 🙂

P.S. It’s not too late to buy tickets to attend To Be Or Not To Be-Carlos Mencia. If you don’t live the the L.A. area you can still bid on items in the online auction. Win a trip to the set of Ugly Betty, in NYC, a gift basket full of my Pilates DVDs and more… Click here to go to the East L.A. Classic Theatre online auction.

Maravilloso Monday-True Wealth

Submitted by on May 11, 2009 - 10:30 am

A person’s true wealth is the good he or she does in the world.
– Mohammed

I am so thankful to be surrounded by people who do amazing and generous things. It is important to surround yourself with truly good people, ones that do nice things for others. That is part of the reason that I created La Buena Life, to showcase people doing good and to make you all feel good (and look good). Think about those the company that you keep. Do they do good and generous things for the world? Do you? We are only as good as the company we keep.

Have a wonderful week!

Ana Cabán

Fabuloso Friday – Lisa Elia Public Relations

Submitted by on May 8, 2009 - 4:00 pm

Today’s fab feature is Lisa Elia!

She is the “it” public relations Guru that is now sharing the secrets she has learned having been in the business for 23 years. She has come up with a “do-it-yourself” system to help companies get on their feet even without the funds to hire a PR company

Her upcoming event is a 16-Week Teleseminar Series called “Secrets of PR Success,” which begins on June 3. I recommend this program to everyone as it is beneficial for any business to have a clear publicity strategy. The conferences are also recorded in case you miss any of them and can be easily stored to refer back to at any given time.

For more information, please visit You can also find Lisa Elia on La Buena Life as she is a member with us. Feel free to add her and ask questions.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Tentación Thursday Giveaway! Safiya Coconut Lime Body Butter

Submitted by on May 7, 2009 - 5:26 pm

Beautiful, green and it feels good!

I have the perfect summer giveaway product today.
Safiya coconut lime body butter!!! It’s a luxuriously rich and filled with antioxidants. It’s made with all natural, eco-friendly products which makes it all the better for your skin.
I’ve used it all week and what’s great about it is that it doesn’t weigh your skin down or leave it greasy – which is good for those hot summer days when you want to look moisturized and not sweat it right off. The texture is light and made with a mix of organic green tea extract, mango and shea butter. Oh – and did I mention it smells like paradise?

Well, I have an extra one for one lucky La Buena Life member to win. Be sure to leave a comment below to enter the contest.

Buen Sabor Wednesday – Raspberry Mango Sundae

Submitted by on - 5:26 pm

Yummy Summer Treats!
The Raspberry Mango Sundae is a great low fat treat for the summer AND it’s fast and simple to make.
Since I started my Sugar-Free Challenge, I’ll be altering this recipe to cut-out all refined sugars. See how I do this in my latest Sugar Alternatives Video – BUT in the meantime, I will be freezing some grapes for my afternoon snack. You can never go wrong with natural fruits!

Terrífico Tuesday-Bajo y Piano

Submitted by on May 5, 2009 - 10:30 am

I was jogging with my baby the other day and listening to this song, by Cuban/Irish singer Javier Garcia, (who was raised in Spain, Ireland and Miami. Go figure!) He classifies his music as Latin, Reggae, Funk. Whatever you call it, this song makes me want to move.

Enjoy, Bajo y Piano on the LBL Music Player (on the main page).

Maravilloso Monday-Mistakes

Submitted by on May 4, 2009 - 10:00 am

Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.
Oscar Wilde

And all this time I thought that I had so much life experience. Well, I guess I am just a fool that has made A LOT of mistakes. (At least I have learned from them). 🙂 Tee hee!

Have a wonderful week!!!


Fabuloso Friday-Born to Act Players

Submitted by on May 1, 2009 - 10:30 am

This week I am featuring a very interesting theater group called Born To Act Players. The Born to Act Players is a unique theater company comprised of professional performers with and without disabilities. The concept came about when two young men with Down syndrome became friends. Both young men loved acting and they realized one’s mother was an actor and a drama coach and the other’s worked as a representative for professional talent with disabilities. In 1996, in a small studio space in North Hollywood, California, a handful of young people with Down syndrome began meeting weekly to memorize lines and play theater games.

Today Mary Rings, mother and professional actor, is still teaching weekly. Many studio spaces later, the Born to Act Players have found a home at Los Angeles Valley College.
Many members of the company are working actors, both those with disabilities and those without. Some of their credits include “ER,” “The Guardian,” “CSI,” “Family Law,” “Any Day Now,” and many more.

Parents of the Born to Act Players say their children have developed important life skills while participating in the program. Rings teaches cast members body awareness, to stay focused and in the moment, how to exercise their voices, and improvisational skills. Students learn full plays, one acts, and monologues by famous authors, from Woody Allen to Shakespeare. Musical training includes singing and dancing, both choreographed and interpretive. Students participate in productions and showcases presented twice a year at Valley College.

For more information on the Born to Act Players Click Here.

Tentación Thursday-Wisteria Lane Flower Shop

Submitted by on April 30, 2009 - 10:30 am

Continuing on the theme of Hawaii (or the tropics) I thought that I would feature LBL member Sherene Hulugalle’s flower shop, Wisteria Lane. Wisteria Lane Flower Shop’s quest for a sustainable future for nature is the best business practice that they can imagine. Their flowers are grown in a manner that is gentle on the Earth and safeguards the well-being of farm workers, wildlife and the ecology using the best certified sustainable practices including Organic and Veriflora.

I particularly like that Wisteria Lane Flower Shop gives back to the community. Proceeds from the sale of their Eco friendly designs are used to support non-profit organizations dedicated to education, social justice, environmental conservation and protection, such as Heal the Bay, Doctors without Borders & Friends of the World Food Program.

When our son was born Sherene sent us the most beautiful arrangement. And this week 1 (one) lucky LBL member will win an arrangement, designed by Sherene. Leave a comment below this post and you may be the lucky winner of a Wisteria Lane Flower Shop arrangement.

Buen Sabor Wednesday-Whole Wheat Hawaiian Pizza

Submitted by on - 5:51 am

As you can see there is a Hawaiian theme going on this week, at La Buena Life. It’s in celebration of my husband’s Polynesian restaurant’s (Trader Vic’s L.A.) opening. So, here is a healthier recipe for Hawaiian Pizza. Click here for the recipe. It’s made with a whole wheat crust. Remember that you can always make the pizza with reduced fat mozzarella, too.

¡Buen provecho!

Terrífico Tuesday-The Hukilau Song

Submitted by on April 28, 2009 - 10:30 am

In honor of the opening of my husband’s new restaurant, Trader Vic’s L.A., I am sharing my new favorite song (and current ring tone), The Hukilau Song performed by Don Ho. My 6 degrees of separation from Don Ho comes from a visit to Waikiki about a year and a half ago. My Husband, John, and I were attending the cd release party of family friend John Cruz’s latest album, One of These Days. It was a small gathering of mostly friends and family. A pretty Hawaiian woman was walking around handing out beautiful party invitations to everyone there. (I can only imagine that she was related to Don Ho because the party was to take place at the Don Ho residence). However, as luck would have it the party was to take place the day after we were headed back to L.A. Needless to say, we never got to see Don Ho’s home. 🙁 We still like to tell the story, so flattered that we were even invited.

Enjoy The Hukilau Song (on the LBL Music Player).

Maravilloso Monday-The Road to Success

Submitted by on April 27, 2009 - 10:30 am

The road to success is lined with many tempting parking spaces.
– Traditional Proverb

From personal experience, I can wholeheartedly agree with the quote above. It is much simpler to take the easy road (in this case, just park your car) than to forge ahead, against all the odds, the chatter in your head and the doubtful comments around you. This week is a very important and exciting week in my home. My husband, LBL member John Valencia, is opening a beautiful, new restaurant at the famous L.A. Live Complex, in downtown Los Angeles. Opening Trader Vic’s L.A. has been a longtime dream of John’s and I am so proud of him for defying the doubters and going for it (even in this less than perfect economy). His dream was clear as a bell. He kept his focus, and worked hard for the past year and a half, paying tireless attention to every detail. (He never parked). The outcome is a Polynesian oasis in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. One that you will no doubt read about.

So here’s to success, against the odds!!!
(Click Here to learn more about Trader Vic’s L.A. or Here to book your table. Also, check out the video of the Blessing of Trader Vic’s on the LBL Here).

Fabuloso Friday-Greenwala

Submitted by on April 24, 2009 - 10:30 am

This week I have to feature Greenwala, the brainchild of LBL member, and my friend, Rajeev Kapur. What started as a blog with an eco-knowledge game,which plants a tree for you, if you win (check out Treewala) has now blossomed into a full-fledged and super cool website with products, channels, social network and more.

The Greenwala community is made of people who help others live a greener lifestyle by sharing their knowledge, green experiences and actions with friends, family and the world. Greenwala members can read expert articles, post comments and blogs, join or start groups, find new friends and shop.

Click here to visit Greenwala, browse the site or join the community. Have fun! And don’t forget to check out todays’ video (that I, originally, found on Greenwala’s Lifestyle TV channel).

Tentación Thursday-The Body Patisserie Tiramisu Body Glace

Submitted by on April 23, 2009 - 10:30 am

So, I think I’ve got it. I have solved my dilemma of craving dessert right before bed. It’s by indulging in the delicious and organic body products by The Body Patisserie. I tried the Tiramisu Body Glace. It’s scrumptious! I followed the directions on the bottle, which stated that I should use directly after shower on wet skin and let air dry. And I was instantly transported to a Parisian Patisserie. (A welcome break from my bathroom). To my surprise the Tiramisu Body Glace (which is basically an oil) is clear. (I was expecting a chocolaty-brown color). This is because The Body Patisserie products are paraben & dye free. In addition to being an ultra moisturizing oil (for even my sensitive skin) The Body Patisserie Body Glace can also be used as a massage oil, or added to bath water. What a great way to enjoy your dessert-totally guilt free!

Click Here to visit The Body Patisserie. In celebration of Mother’s Day, enjoy a 25% discount on all gift sets. As always, 1 (one) lucky LBL member will win their own bottle of of The Body Patisserie Tiramisu Body Glace. Leave a comment below, for your chance to win!

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