Dec 31, 2008

25 Random Facts to Round out 2008


1. Born in/adopted from Andong, South Korea
2. I don't like bread or rice
3. My career goal is to be the CEO of a successful company
4. I believe in the power of self-fulfilling prophecies and optimism
5. In college, I was the student body president of my community college, student body president of my university, and Miss Kent 2006. I pursued all three to pay for my college tuition.
6. "No" is my favorite word
7. Reality TV (Real Housewives of OC, The Hills, Whose Wedding Is It Anyway, Real World) is an addiction that I proudly own.
8. My mentor lives in Corvallis
9. I have a hard time buying shoes because I wear a size five.
10. Smiling and asking, "Why do you want to know?" is my great way to avoid a question.
11. Beary is my stuffed animal from childhood.
12. I was almost expelled from high school
13. Big fan of the Mariners, Chargers and OSU Beavers
14. My first job out of college involved a supervisor who nearly pefectly replicated the mannerisms of Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada.
15. Finding true love is one of the most important things in the world to me
16. I am afraid of pigeons, walking over potholes/sidewalk grates/storm sewer covers and running out of gas
17. I love to cook and I love to eat even more
18. Family comes first, then friends, then happiness, then work.
19. My lucky numbers are 9 and 29
20. I cannot swim, tread water, snap my fingers, whistle or play any instrument
21. Cumulative GPA in all four years of college: 3.81.
22. Dream vacations are to Greece, South Korea, Maui, Japan, France, London and Spain
23. I've never smoked weed
24. Love wearing hoodies (non-zip, pullover kind)
25. Orange is my favorite color.

Dec 28, 2008

Cali Christmas


Christmas Eve:
We went to Jeremy's aunt's house. I met his cousins, aunts and uncles. There was plenty of holiday cheer, including outside Xmas lights that synchronized with holiday music! We hung out and ate lots of course. Ham, turkey, stuffing, creamed corn, cranberry bread, deviled eggs, banana pudding, chocolate bundt cake. Oh, don't forget the full bar too ;).

It is always fun hanging out with Jack & Grace (Jeremy's parents) because they are laid back, humorous and plain fun! I really felt included and part of their fam. We were there till a decent time that night but had to hit the hay early, since we were meeting at Disneyland at 8 a.m. the next morning!

Before we went to bed I got to play Santa and fill Jeremy's stocking. I got too much candy and it wouldn't all fit in! So I arranged it around it and called it a night.

Christmas Day:
Woke Jeremy up at 5:45a.m. I have to admit I was sleepy as heck. But lots of presents were waiting to be unwrapped! We opened presents. Highlights were the Hello Kitty Xmas ornament and diamond necklace Jeremy got me...and the "Bean" Tiffany necklace my parents got me. They've called me Bean since they adopted me from Korea. When I came off the plane in the blanket my dad said, "She looks just like a little bean." It was a sentimental and loving reminder that my family back home in WA was thinking of me. After we cleaned up the mountain of boxes and wrapping paper, we high-tailed it to Anaheim.

We were there for 10 hours! Along with Jeremy's parents, his sister and her boyfriend and his brother and his girlfriend came with too. The first ride of the day was Space Mountain (of course)...me and Jack were the most excited to ride. After we had churros for breakfast we went to the Matterhorn. It was fun... the first 30 seconds! We braked to a halt at the top b/c the ride broke! Disney people came and walked us down the ride, so we got to see the back set-up of the Matterhorn. They gave us a jump-the-line pass for any other ride, so we went to the Nemo Submarine ride. Then we went to Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Caribbean and Haunted Mansion. There was a holiday parade and we saw all the characters and Santa too! After dinner we went home totally tired out.

Dec 21, 2008

The Christmas 50

Below, fifty foods and drinks from around the world.

Instructions:
1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve tasted.
3) Place an *asterisk* after all the items you’ve cooked/prepared.
4) Optional: Cross out anything you never want to try, or add an exclamation mark after anything your really want to try.


1. Crystallised or candied fruits
2. Egg nog
3. Buche de Noel or Yule log
4. Rum balls
5. Bebinca
6. Roasted chestnuts
7. Cavallucci
8. Tourtière
9. Uszka
10. Port & Stilton
11. Hallaca
12. Roast goose
13. Lefse
14. Sugar plums
15. Romeritos
16. Pinnekjøtt
17. Hot toddy
18. Christmas cake*
19. Tamales*
20. Sorpotel
21. Panettone
22. Candy canes
23. Pasteles
24. Speculaas
25. Makowiec
26. Christmas pudding
27. Stollen
28. Figgy pudding
29. Lebkuchen
30. Turrón
31. Mince pies
32. Wassail bowls
33. Buñuelos
34. Pio Quinto
35. Marzipan fruits
36. Mulled wine
37. King cake
38. Christmas beach barbecue
39. Cola de mono
40. Lutefisk
41. Kutia
42. Pizzelle
43. Dominostein
44. Cranberry sauce*
45. Pfeffernüsse
46. Satsumas or clementines
47. Pumpkin pie*
48. Smalahove
49. Nut roast
50. Brandy butter

Nov 14, 2008

Gone Since November

I love me some Kanye. Especially when he makes a song that resonates in part of my past.

Awhile back I stayed when it was clearly time to leave. I felt adrift and dissed. When I moved on, he said he'd call when he wanted to be friends, but asked me to not call him till then. I went from a best friend to a stranger:

"In the night, I hear 'em talk,
the coldest story ever told
Somewhere far along this road,
She lost her soul to a young boy so heartless..
How could you be so heartless?
Ohhh.. How could you be so heartless?"

The optimistic part of me waited for a call. For a year. Life kept moving and I moved away, moved on with Jeremy and kept maturing and learning. I toughened up, took accountability for the time I spent in the situation, and took back power for myself:

"How could you be so,
cold as the winter wind when it breeze, yo
Just remember that you talkin' to me though
You know need to watch the way you talkin' to me, yo "

I have a more detached view of what really went down now. The hardest part of a bad relationship is that it can effect the way you love: your next partner, your friends, yourself. A blessing from a relationship like that is the accomplishment you feel after letting go of what happened and feeling powerless. People walk in and out, and maybe he will too. I'm done waiting though b/c I can't divert any more time to something I that isn't reciproacted in the least. Don't let people like that steal your shine!:

"Talkin', talkin', talkin', talk
Baby let's just knock it off
So I got something new to see
And you just gon' keep hatin' me
And we just gon' be enemies
I know you can't believe
I could just leave it wrong
And you can't make it right
I'm gon' take off tonight
Into the night... "

Nov 9, 2008

Our Anniversary Dinner @ Nobu L.A.


We picked Nobu for our 1-year anniversary dinner Friday night. The omakase is my go-to. Never fails to disappoint. We started with the cold dishes, transitioned to warm dishes, had soup and then dessert. Innovative, fresh, near-perfection portioning.



Three fresh oysters with maui salsa, mango salsa, and avocado puree w/ caviar. Mountain 'momo' (peach) finishes out the first course as a palate cleanser.



King mackarel sashimi with ponzu, cilantro, radish and jalapeno


Sashimi salad with white fish, toro, radish and sprouts


Lobster with brussel sprouts, mushrooms and ponzu butter reduction


Tazmanian salmon with hijiki seaweed and slivered apple


Miso soup with mushroom and clams


Kamameshi: Vanilla risotto w/ mochi pearls, soba popcorn and Okinawa yam ice cream

Nov 4, 2008

Remember, Remember, the Fourth of November

We're on the precipice of a huge change people! After work tonight I'll be at home watching the results come.

At 7:15 a.m. I drove past my local polling location and there were about 40 people standing in line on the sidewalk. A swell of excitement and pride hit me that not only is today possibly the start of dramatic change in the United States, but also that my community is out in force to cast their votes!

For me, Barack Obama offers hope and strategic plans for delivering change to our economy, global affairs involvement, and healthcare and education policy. Like so many others I talk to, I am ready to reach up and grab hold of the change offered to us by our future President.

The change we create today is profound. It leaves me wondering what we will say and what state our country will be in in another four years.

Oct 29, 2008

Missing: My Halloween Costume Spirit

Gasp.... I can't muster the energy/interest to buy a costume. Last year began my short-lived attempt at caring when I was Pocahontas. Sorry, but this year its back to standard.

Of course I'll have the candy on-hand for the ghosties and ghoulies that stop by the apartment. But, this year I will be blissfully relaxed on the sofa, watching scary movies with Jeremy. Snacks and drinks included too. Maybe I can make dressing up an every-other-year event....

Oct 13, 2008

Recession, Elections, Stock Market...

Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

-Frank Herbert

Oct 8, 2008

Be Your Own Four-Leaf Clover


...In life.
...In love.

"Luck is believeing you're lucky, that's all." - Marlon Brando

Oct 2, 2008

Am I a "geek" or a "nerd?"

In light of the "I'm a PC" campaign, my friend Aaron and me were IM'ing about the finite intricacies of what differentiates a "nerd" from a "geek." You hear 'nerd alert' and 'geeking out' in daily conversations right? But traditional negative stigmas aside, I realize that I like the idea of geeking out over something. That means a person is passionate enough about something to delve deep and truly care about knowing, doing or experiencing that thing.

So I researched around. One site says geeks are about knowledge acquisition. Learning all and everything they can to become as proficient as possible in their interest area. Their goal of knowing so much is to improve their productivity in the aforementioned topic of choice.

A nerd on the other hand, is more obsessed about the minutiae of their object or area of focus. They must know every piece of information there is to know, often times failing to consider whether any value lies in knowing it. Their depth of knowledge is closely associated with their own intelligence... so they take it quite seriously, both when regurgitating what they know to people around them, and also defending the everyday utility of the nerd subject.

In light of that information...which category do I fall into on the topic of food?
  • I spend my Wednesday lunch break at my desk because that's the day the New York Times' Dining sections posts their new articles
  • As a kid, my fav part of grocery shopping was the potential of free samples at the end of the Costco aisles
  • I'm usually so excited about a new product I buy from the store that I'll try a little bit of it before putting it in the cupboard when I get home
  • I can tell you the intricacies of the organic industry, what % of the food has to be certified organic to have the USDA label, and the controversial history of third-party certification
  • During the holidays I still volunteer to do all the shopping and fight the crowds for my parents because I think its fun
  • I collected menus in high school
  • I research menus online before I go to new restaurants
  • A 1:30 a.m. street cart hot dog w/ sauteed onions, sauerkraut, ketchup and cream cheese holds a place in my heart right along side a five-course tasting menu with accompanying paired wines
  • Though I'm petite at 5' and almost triple digits on the scale... I can put it away: five bowls at Olive Garden's Never Ending pasta event, seven plates of shrimp at Red Lobster's all-you-can-eat shrimp event, four baskets of riblets and fries at Applebees, and at least five plates at Todai.
  • To me, food is love.... preparing and sharing food are ways to show people you care about them.

Not sure what that makes me... either way, I own it :). Feel free to comment and let me know what classification you think all this info places me in!

SATC...and then there was one

Now that I have watched Sex & the City: The Movie three times, I can safely say I adore the movie. The almost-cried-count stands at three. I literally couldn't hold back a gasp when Big opened the double doors of the remodeled closet, or when Steve told Miranda what he did. Burst out laughing after Charlotte felt the effects of drinking the water. Wondered why there were so few NY restaurant/bar scenes but so many Skyy vodka product placements. In total, the story was as much as the writers could fit in. It delivered closure and I was happy at the ending credits. Alas, the movie can only ever be a temporary fix to my Sex & the City addiction. One is never enough :).

Fashion:
  • Mr. Big's suit in the penthouse tour scene... Dark grey suit, forest green shirt, moss satin tie. Tres chic.
  • Carrie's laid back look in the Starbucks interview scene
  • Samantha's ring
  • The Judith Leiber cupcake purse Lily takes to the doomed wedding. Sure, its $4,395, but come on, look at it.
  • Didn't like: the frumpy dresses all four wear at their first dinner out in Mexico
Entertaining Quotes:

"She's a smart girl... but she fell in love"

Women come to New York for "the two L's: Labels & Love"

Miranda: "Alright, I'm Jealous. You live in real estate heaven.. and I live in Brooklyn"

Carrie: "I heard that!"
Anthony: "I meant you to!"

Carrie: We get it Samantha....you love to "color."
Miranda: Me and Steve are "just going through a no-coloring phase"

Sep 8, 2008

Hanging with the Schupps

Scoop & Karen and were kind enough to visit our little Hermosa abode over Labor Day weekend. Indeed, their visit is the motivation to check out the many interesting/yummy restaurants listed in the posting below. Scoop is a part-time photographer extraordinaire and snapped quite a nice "couple" picture of Jeremy and I.

No In-n-Out Burger restaurants in Corvallis, OR so a visit there was a must!

Checking the surf & sand at Hermosa Beach

Sep 2, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend Eats

Bistro du Soleil in Playa Del Rey - Egg white scramble w/ ground turkey, cilantro and tomatoes. Whole wheat toast and strawberry jam. Potatoes and ketchup. Coffee.

In n Out in Manhattan Beach- Cheeseburger minus onions and diet coke.

STK in W.Hollywood - Strawberry shortcake cocktail. Organic romaine, goat cheese, heirloom tomato salad. Grey Goose & tonic w/extra lime. Petite filetmignon cooked medium-rare. Corn pudding. Broccolini. Banana bread pudding w/ caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream.

Ocean Diner in Hermosa Beach - Egg whites. Bacon. Diced red potatoes. Homemade pineapple mini muffins. Coffee.

Mediterraneo in Hermosa Beach- Tapas to share: hummus, chorizo bilbao, bruschetta napoletana, roasted dates, chicken brochettes, caprese, chicken caesar salad, "Big Wednesday" martini. Infused vodka cocktail.

The Counter in Santa Monica - 1/3lb medium-well hamburger w/ horseradish cheddar, grilled pineapple, grilled onions, dried cranberries and carmelized onion marmalade. Sweet potato fries and onion rings. Chocolate chip cookie.

Aug 29, 2008

Words from "The Best Rapper Alive"

"You can go to school but you can't buy class"

Aug 28, 2008

The Omnivore's Hundred

Below is a list of 100 things that http://www.verygoodtaste.co.uk/ thinks every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their life. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food - but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don’t worry if you haven’t, mind you; neither have I, though I’ll be sure to work on it. Don’t worry if you don’t recognize everything in the hundred, either; Live Search has the answers.
Here’s what you do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.

Shannon's Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

I have tried 75 of the 100 listed.

Aug 18, 2008

Slang of the Day

"Fabulicious" - Fabulously delicious

As in: "Red velvet cupcakes from Vanilla Bake Shop are fabulicious!"

Aug 17, 2008

Sanuk: Conscious Comfort, Sans Ugliness (Crocs)

Sometimes, on a sunny summer weekend, you need a shoe that is causal yet cute. And people, I am not talking about a clunky rubber foot sling with perforated holes. Ever heard of Sanuk brand? Six people comprise the company that crnaks out 135 different styles of sandals (http://www.sanuk.com/).
Sanuk is Thai for "happiness and balance." That sums up the feeling I had/the sandals' structure, after buying a pair from Spyder surfshop yesterday.


Company info/philosophy: "Barefoot untechnology" "It's a sandal not a shoe". Theses shoes pack a one-two punch, the lower construction of a sandal with a (patented) deconstructed shoe type of upper.

Picture: My Sidewalk Surfers are tan w/ silver thread interwoven throughout.

Aug 11, 2008

Four Degrees of Seperation

The "small world theory," hypothesizes we are just "six degrees of separation" between any one on Earth. In August 2008, a Microsoft research team concluded that any two people on average are distanced by just 6.6 degrees of separation, meaning that they could be linked by a string of seven or fewer acquaintances. ...A "degree of separation" is a measure of social distance between people. You are one degree away from everyone you know, two degrees away from everyone they know, and so on. (Source)

1. Shannon Hutchinson
2. Alison Adema (Bethany Christian Services)
3. Aaron (Conf Call Technology)
4. Suzy (Language Barrier)
5. My biological mom in South Korea


It turns out, thankfully, that I am less than six degrees from my biological mom. After I worked with my adoption agency to locate my mom's contact information, finding someone to translate a call has proved difficult. Luckily, two of my friends in San Fran & Washington were able to help me last week with the translation and confrence call.

We called 5p.m. PST, which is 9 a.m. in Korea. I was kind of holding my breath when Aaron dialed the number. I felt my stomach flipped when I heard her voice answer and Suzy started talking to her in Korean. I heard her voice get much more excited as she realized who Suzy was translating for. The distance seperating us was suddently relatively small hearing her voice over the phone. Suzy told her I was well, had graduated college, moved to California recently and had a successful job. She was glad because she wanted to ensure I was healthy, doing well and financially comfortable.

She said she really misses me and wants to see me. I am looking forward to traveling to meet her and my two older bros and older sister. There are so many years, questions and memories we both have to talk about. It's a blessing that I was able to find her at all. Many adoptees search and even visit Korea with no luck. Searching and finding is similar to the proverbial needle in the haystack. For me, the whole process was smooth. The last step in closing the loop is actually traveling to my hometown to meet her.
We are still figuring out if the October trip is feasible. Suzy’s mom is part of a Seattle org that takes adoptees on trips around Korea. Suzy and her mom would plan a day to go with me by train/bus to visit my mom and translate. What a great early birthday present, being able to coordinate a connection like that through technology.

Aug 8, 2008

Local Korean Go-to Spot



Where: Tofu Village in Gardena, CA

When: August 7th



Comments: Tofu Village is located in the Koreatown section of Gardena, in a strip of restaurants and bakeries that also looked worth trying. The service was very efficient and friendly too. The pork bulgogi was ideal level of almost-breaking-a-sweat spicy and the texture was ideal.

Other Dishes We Tried:


Traditional Bibimbap

Spicy Pork Bulgogi
Purple Rice
Traditional side dishes:
Radish, seaweed, bean sprout, potato, fried whole fish

Aug 5, 2008

Birthday in the Golden State

08.09.08
-
I am about to turn 24 years old! My first birthday in my new state of California.
Two months in, I don't regret my move one bit.
Since it's on a Saturday, I'll get to take the entire day relaxing and celebrating.
I also got a new cut/color to start my year of right...
-

Jul 22, 2008

Fall 2009 Trends

Structure:

-Thin textures in wool, plaid, lace, cashmere
-Pencil skirts hitting just above the knee
-High heels
-Ankle boots with dark tights
-Long, lean silhouettes

Hues:

-Soft colors
-White shirts (like Brooks Brothers) as base canvas for outfit
-Gold/silver mixes
-Fewer leggings

Accents:

-Bold statement necklaces
-Single large bracelets
-Rectangular structured purses
-Black leather gloves that hit short of the wrist

Jul 2, 2008

A Day at the Ballpark

Sunday I went to my first WWU Alumni event. They hosted a Mariner's vs. Padres' pre-funk at Hennesey's Tavern in San Diego's Gaslamp district. The young alumni met up a little bit earlier, at 10:15. 10:15, a little early to start drinking? Maybe. So Megan and I started off with mimosas haha.



The game was great, it was my first time at the Padres' stadium and my team (the MARINERS) won! There were a few hecklers since we cheered everytime they drove in a few runs. The typical, "Go back to Seattle with your fish markets and rainnnn." I just laughed and thought, "look at the scoreboard, you're losing!"


We were seated right behind first base so the view was good. Diana and Megan and I hung out pretty much the whole time. It was fun to meet some new friends through our alumni network.

Jun 27, 2008

All About Olives



I'm discovering more & more that I enjoy olives. We're not talking run of the mill, sliced black olives from Safeway. Not a nasty canned green olive with a foreign pimento wedged inside it. I mean whole, with slight slick of olive oil, pit intact olives. The past few weeks I've had various evenings out that included tapas of caprese, small bowls of olives and either a good glass of wine or a Ketel & tonic.

Simplistically briny, spicy, garlicky or even bitey when stuffed with blue cheese. I had a certain satisfaction from eating a larger green olive and pinging the little pit into the silver bowl that comes with the tapas dish.

More commonly, people are introduced to olives on pizza. Burned and shriveled, paired with equally unappetizing accoutrements that are over-cooked. That, or in a cheesy movie, where they are being stired around a martini glass by an international spy or some floozie attempting to be alluring.

Eating olives in their more organic state is a new experience, and worth trying if you're only foray so far has been when dining at Pizza Hut. Health note: olives are dense monounsaturated fat, vitamin E, iron and dietary fiber.



Jun 18, 2008

Summer in my new state

We had a picnic @ Salt Creek Beach to celebrate Father's Day with Jeremy's family in San Juan Capistrano. Grace made some very good homemade fried chicken and it was such a relaxing day with the sound of the surf and lots of happy people all around us.







One bummer I experienced today was (almost) filling up my gas tank. $4.62/gallon means that I spend $50 and still didnt top off Pearl's (my 2008 Corolla) tank. I heard gas is hovering around $4.35 in Washington and I'm a bit jealous.

Jun 11, 2008

Perspective-setting Point of View

"It's not the load that breaks you down, it's the way you carry it."

- Lena Horne (1917 - )American actress and singer

Jun 8, 2008

A Comparision Chart: Seattle vs. Hermosa Beach

One of my favorite things about my new apt is that it's 6 blocks from the Hermosa Beach Pier. Jeremy and I walk down there at night quite a bit. Being able to sit in the sand and watch the water ebb & flow is an amazing perk of living here. The consistently calming simplicity of the ocean makes me content. Our first day here, I unpacked my boxes and we walked to the beach and sat awhile. Having Jeremy here and face-to-face while we just sat under the sun was my version of the perfect Saturday. We also walked to the store and got groceries, which seems like a boring errand, but one I don't take for granted since I've been in LDRs of some sort for the last 3+ years. So little things like that repeatedly remind me how blessed I am to have the chance to build a new chapter of life in a new city. We came back to the pier later that night and had dinner w/friends at Paradise Sushi.

I've lived in Hermosa Beach, CA for a week now. I've observed a few distinct differences in the areas. In general, SoCal is more of a fit for me than Seattle. It's surprising to realize because Seattle is one of my favorite cities. Living here has made me happier and more focused on what I want to do and who I want to be. On a lighter note, here are some differences I've seen so far.

Seattle vs. Hermosa:
-I drove 70mph maximum on I-405 vs 80 mph here and still getting passed
-Seeing a plethora of Evergreen trees vs palm trees in SoCal
-Groceries from Safeway vs Von's
-Falling asleep w/ a blanket to stay warm vs sleeping w/ a breeze coming though the window
-Guessing the weather vs walking out the door everyday to at least 65 degrees
-Cheering on the worst MLB team in the league vs NBA Playoff participants
-Starbucks vs Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
-Clean, crisp air vs a bit of smog and haze above the city skyline
-Forever 21 vs H&M
-Mariners/Seahawks vs Padres/Chargers
-Talking to my bf on the phone vs walking to the beach together
-

May 29, 2008

Seriously though...

Six months in the making - I'm moving to California Saturday.

Come visit me - Work is in Santa Monica. Home is in Hermosa Beach.

Personal challenge for 2008 - Move to a new city and start my career.
Mission accomplished.

Apr 28, 2008

Good quote for a bad day.

“Everything we shut our eyes to, everything we run away from, everything we deny, denigrate or despise, serves to defeat us in the end. What seems nasty, painful, evil, can become a source of beauty, joy, and strength, if faced with an open mind.”

Henry Miller
American Writer (1891-1980)

Apr 17, 2008

Alzheimer's FTL

Over the course of the last decade, my mom has watched Alzheimer's disease take its course and rob her of her best friend. My grandma is in the final degenerative stage, so my mom and dad are back in Michigan this week. Along with saying goodbye to her mom, she must also silently face the frightening probablility of succumbing to the same memory-robbing situation, as the disease tends to be genetic.

My grandma cannot talk, swallow or perform basic motor skills anymore. It's a sad reminder that people spout off about repeatedly: be grateful for the people you care about. Live in the now, rather than 'when I have time.' Make the time. Say out it loud, today, tell them how much they mean to you.

Apr 15, 2008

...

We share our green-a-rific, sustainable (LEED-certified gold I might add) office building with Group Health. My office has many modern aesthetics and I really enjoy te space.

Today, I finally managed to remember my covert-operation goal of sneaking my camera phone into the bathroom in order to snap the picture below.

Note that:
a) some still need instrutions to flush a toilet properly (or is to remember at all?)
b) observation that the Sloan company produces water-saving flush options
c) observation that Sloan has officially endoctrinated the term "Number 2" in bathrooms across the nation as an alternate to "solid waste"
d) confirmation you need to flush 'down' for that option

Apr 14, 2008

Asian-Americans in Leadership Roles

"Asian Americans currently occupy 1.5 percent of corporate board seats among Fortune 500 companies, up from 1.2 percent in 2005, according to the 2007 Corporate Board Report Card by the Committee of 100, an Asian-American corporate-advocacy organization." - Diversity Inc.

Full & entertaining Weekend w/ Jeremy in-town

Friday:
Work from home
Dinner w/ the Fab 5 @ the BDH (Barbie Dream House) aka Sara's new casa
Met up w/ friends @ Ruth Chris downtown

Saturday:
Morning run
Massage appointment
Lunch & shopping @ Kent Station
Dinner @ Icon Grill
Shopping
Met up w/friends @ O'Asian
2 a.m. snack @ Sea Garden Restaurant

Sunday:
Lunch in Bellevue
Back to the Airport :(
Clean house/run errands for parent's trip
Late-afternoon long-run around Kent
Do nails & read

Apr 8, 2008

Observations: March 8th

7:15 a.m. on I-5 North:
Woman in maroon Suburban smoking with the windows up

Until 10 a.m.:
Jamba Juice stores nationwide handing out free "granola toppers" that contain 40+ grams of sugar (daily reccomended value is 60g) as part of their 21-day breakfast challenge promotion.

Noon:
Found a handy "100 Ways to Cut 100 Calories" table, subdivided by breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack or dining out.

Apr 7, 2008

Super Weekend

Friday::
Ran about 4 miles around rural Kent at sunset. Mixed terrain of pavement, grass and gravel. Temp was high 40s. Minimal soreness the next day, runner's high to the max upon finishing the run.

Saturday::
Shopping spree... finally found a nice store that sells 00 Petite pants. No more unintentional sagging of dress pants/city shorts like I'm a thug or something ;P.
Came home and made roasted parmesean balsalmic cauliflower and grilled chicken breasts for parents for dinner.

Sunday::
Brunch w/ my C+F alums. Talked shop, caught up on gossip, figured out how to extract one of them from the abyss of the agency that's left. Eggs benedict was solid; lemony hollandaise sauce and none-too-greasy homefries. Met up with Tiff at the end of the day for coffee.. again more catching up and saw a heavy hail storm out the cafe window.

...And Monday started off @ our new Microsoft office in Downtown (Westlake/Lake Union area) this morning and a breeze of a drive. What more can I ask for :) ?

Apr 4, 2008

Ponder

The limits of the mind are often mistaken to be the limits of the world.
-Immanuel Kant

Apr 3, 2008

Seattle "Springtime"

This is my last spring in Seattle for the forseeable future. I'm taking advantage of my last weeks here with early morning runs around the neighboorhood and attending as many M's games as possible. Man I will miss my Mariners down in SoCal!! The Chargers might be able to fill the large absence of Ichiro, Yuniesky and others...but I highly doubt it. Wednesday's night was icy cold but very awesome. Marco (GRCC & FASA alum/homie) and I went to the game and scored very close, row 33, seats on the 3rd base line. Seeing Jose Lopez hit the 3-run BOMB in the bottom of the 5th was crazy, the stadium was loud w/ cheering.


Mar 27, 2008

Style Lookbook: Spring & Fall 2008

Accessories: Ippolita 2-diamond bangle


Resort 2008: Carolina Herrera


Clutch: Prada's Violet pochette



Carry-all: Gucci "Joy" Collection


Fall 2008 Ready-to-Wear: Balenciaga Heels


Fall 2008 Ready-to-Wear: Salvatore Ferragamo

Mar 19, 2008

Moving, moving, moving....

***Update***

End of March: Move from North Seattle to either sublet or Kent
April 4th: Move to Lake Union Microsoft office
Mid-May: Move from WA to SoCal
Mid-May: Move from Lake Union to L.A. Microsoft office.

Eww... that means I should start packing like...oh....two weeks ago? Oh well, I'm sipping some dry riesling for now.

Mar 11, 2008

Oh Microsoft...

My first day "blue" (as a full-time employee) was Monday. I joined my team and started working in the Redmond office this afternoon. The 1.5 days of training I've done preceding that were amazing! Very energetic and informed presenters. Basically letting us know we were hired b/c we are capable and that our new team is here to empower us to bring new ideas/work into the org. My badge picture also turned out cute which is crucial since it's the photo on the ID badge MS employees have to wear everyday of their lives lol... I know I'm a dork... sue me ;P.

Loving my job/life right now!!!

Mar 2, 2008

Centered

There is a certain comfort in the knowledge that "life is filled with disappointment." If you anticipate the sorrow life is sure to bring to you, the joys and small gifts of happiness are accentuated that much further. I don't think preemptive warning should spark fear either. Sadness has taught me lessons and pushed me forward in developing into more of who I am.

I have had a few disturbing interactions w/ people close to me this past week. One confirmed that I am still learning to read people's true intentions. The other served as a sad, poignant reminder that even people close to me are shine stealers who, at times, have trouble rising above their own misery to celebrate the happiness of others.

"When we strive to become better than what we are, everything around us becomes better, too." Paulo Coelho

Feb 26, 2008

Update: Valentine's @ Morton's

Just a quick pic to share:

Feb 21, 2008

You Don't Have to "Settle"

Don't just live the life you were given... make the life you want to live.

Feb 19, 2008

Valentine's Day Weekend

Hoorah for Jeremy getting to visit me for Valentine's Day! He was here the whole weekend. Super nice to go around the city and be a couple. We visited the Seattle Art Museum and went to Morton's on Thursday. He got me the nicest present too (below)! No one has ever gotten me such a nice Vday present, and it was even color-themed. We also ran around the city, visited our parents, caught up with friends, J got a tattoo and we visited Tiff in Bellevue for a very good late night happy hour.

S.w.a.e reunion... w/ key lime martini and frozen lemonade. <3 S & J <3 Adorable Coach wristlet

Feb 15, 2008

Sitting on my bed Wednesday...

...working from home, out with the flu.
My phone buzzed on the bed next to me and I glanced down to the caller ID. It was a number I didn't know and my stomach jumped. I knew instinctively this was "the call." So I looked at the clock, 12:16 p.m. I took a deep breath and answered. The next two minutes were from my new manager, Shelli, telling me HR was currently assembling an offer for me.

I got the job w/ the Santa Monica OSG Team.

Applying for a full-time position with Microsoft in Southern California was my yearly goal that I mentioned in my 11/27/07 and 1/15/08 blogs. A three-month proceess that taught me more about persistence, preparation and myself. There are a large number of friends, mentors and family that helped me during this process and they rock so much!!

That call made my day, week, month. I now have the job I dreamed about, in a new city that promises sun and new growth experiences. My private life will also undergo changes; Jeremy and I will now be a face-to-face couple, the thousands of miles between will be no longer. Multiple educational, financial and travel opportunities are now within reach as well.

I feel so blessed.

Feb 13, 2008

Yes, I've been m.i.a.

The majority of my company has been Vick's VaporRub, Miso Soup, Emergen C and Green Tea. Fever, headache, cough, etc.... the common flu virus. I'm on the mend today, just in time for Valentine's Day.

I had full-on "goose-cough" going on in the office yesterday, no amount of Ricola or Halls could supress it either. Hoping my co-workers don't hate me too much. If it's any consolation to them my back & shoulders hurt from coughing so much. On the way home there was pouring down rain but a beatiful sunset on I-90:

Feb 4, 2008

Some Women Choose to Make Their Life Story Happen

Go forward in life with a twinkle in your eye and a smile on your face,
but with great and strong purpose in your heart.
Love life and look for its opportunities. . . .
-Gordon B. Hinckley

I've wanted new personally and professionally-related experiences since late last Fall. Life felt stale. Since then, a few new blessings have come into my life. I've successfully let go of a toxic friendship, still leaving the door open for work much further down the road. My days are happier and my close friends all notice the difference too. Basically, acting out of courage rather than fear has enabled me to have some pretty amazing experiences. Tempering the good with the negative and light-heartedness with ambition to move ahead.

Super Bowl Commentary:
*Too bad the Patriots' defensive line couldn't offer Brady more coverage.
*Best 1st quarter commercial: Diet Pepsi Max
*Best Halftime commercial: Dortios
*Best 3rd quarter commercial: Will Ferrel/Bud Lite