i am a foodie (which is just a fancy word for piggy)

i don’t know if i should be embarrassed or flattered, but i am officially a regular at tender greens (http://www.tendergreensfood.com/).  at first, i thought the cashier made a lucky guess when he knew my name (i even asked if my name was in the computer system).  but let’s just state the obvious – i go there waaaay too much.  the cashier even said “hi michelle” when i walked in the door today.  i guess it’s a little embarrassing, but not embarrassing enough to stop me from ordering three things.  oink oink, right?

but this gets me to my point: i am a foodie (which basically means i am a very picky pig).  i don’t know if it’s because my job is stressful or because i’ve been having such a hard time finding a good wedding caterer, but i am more convinced than ever to become a caterer.  everyone’s been telling me how hard it is to start a business and how much it sucks to serve food to other people, blah blah blah.  but i must disagree.  making food for others is the best feeling ever!  and i’m sure it would feel even better to get paid to do it…

there are very few things that i genuinely love to do (and even less things that i’m good at).  besides rearranging furniture, quoting movies, and making things out of paper,  i got nothing!  but i did major in art… and i do love cooking… and food is just a work of art, right?  delicious little sculptures?  everyone thinks i’m crazy when i say this, but i really wish i could cater our wedding.  i know what you’re gonna say: “how could you possibly do that?  are you gonna cut the bruschetta tomatoes in your wedding dress on the morning of your wedding?”  my answer: “hell yes.”  i mean, i’m not actually going to cater my own wedding, but how impressed would you be if i pulled it off?

just to prove how serious i am about this whole career change, here are some appetizers i’ve made in the past for practice!

bruschetta – i can’t risk getting the balsamic vinegar on my dress:

cucumber and hummus (i made this for michelle’s bridal shower too!)

purple endive salad with grapes, walnuts, and gorgonzola cheese:

mini corn bites rolled in butter, lemon, and spices:

stuffed mushrooms (i didn’t try it cause i hate mushrooms), but it was fun to make:

deviled eggs with paprika (hann helped me make this one!)
corn and bean salad with lime juice (thank you rachael ray!)
tiny fruit salad with blueberries, cantaloupe, and watermelon:
umm.. what next?
Posted in dinners.desserts, wedding.planning | 4 Comments

in six months, we will be married

a few weeks ago, the lovely los angeles unified school district decided to change the academic calendar.  effective fall 2011, school will be starting in august instead of september.  assuming my contract gets renewed, i’ll only have a month of summer vacation… boo hoo, right?   so i guess we’re getting married in july!  july 23rd, to be exact.  :) luckily, things are falling into place so far.  we have a venue, a bridal party, a color scheme, and a caterer.  we’ve also met with a florist, photographer, and dj we really like.  whoo hoo!

here is a sneak peak of our wedding venue – small and cozy:

this is where we will be exchanging vows:

we chose black, white, and green as our wedding colors:

if we’re able to get green orchids, we’ll also throw a splash of maroon in:

most importantly, hann agreed to getting cupcakes from sprinkles… ah!

oh, and this blog has officially become a wedding blog, so brace yourself.  :)

Posted in wedding.planning | 6 Comments

only 24 more days until thanksgiving…

i know i’ve been m.i.a. for the past 2 months, but work has pretty much consumed my life.  my home-cooked meals have been replaced by mcdonald’s bags, and i haven’t had time to upload photos… but that doesn’t mean i haven’t been taking any!  and just because i’m at work for 12 hours a day doesn’t mean i can’t prepare for my favorite holiday: thanksgiving!  yup, just over 3 weeks till hann and i make that lovely thursday morning drive to the bay area.  our apartment even got dressed up for the occasion.

our apartment looks and smells like the holidays… yum:

we knew our mantel would come in handy someday:

basket of scented pinecones (totally unnecessary, but it smells nice):

our very first pumpkin from a pumpkin patch:

one of my students got me a candle for my birthday, and now i have a use for it:

the bunnies are being snuggly and adorable as always:

and for some reason, they feel the need to match each other:

oh, and we found bizarro maggie and mochi bunnies at the pumpkin patch:

as much as i love november, i’m dreading the end of daylight savings time.  that means i’ll be forced to leave work a little earlier to avoid the dark streets of south central (although it’s really not bad).  but hopefully that’ll give me some time to update my blog more often?  cause after all, there are a ton of other exciting things that have happened/are happening/will happen in the near future.

here are some updates/things i didn’t get to post about:

  • happy belated bday to michelle (09/13), mom (10/01), and chris (10/28)
  • happy labor day, happy halloween, and happy almost veteran’s day!
  • go phillies?  am i too late?  stupid giants…
  • we’re very close to setting a date (not surprisingly, it might be in november)
  • i’m 7-1 in my fantasy football league!  who would’ve thought?!

that’s all for now.  more photos coming soon!  in less than 2 months, i swear.  :)

Posted in being.a.teacher, holiday.projects, maggie.and.mochi | 3 Comments

i may have 28 kids, but i still have time to be in love

i can’t believe it was just a year and a half ago that I did nothing but sleep in and eat yogurtland for lunch everyday.  the only thing on my list of “things to do” was to move my car every thursday and friday for street cleaning.  now, i don’t even know when street cleaning takes place because i wake up before any of the signs take effect.  yes, work has consumed my life.

this is how I know I spend too much time at work:

  • i have been putting in 11 hour days.  you read correctly… 11 hours.  and that doesn’t include the commute time.  next time someone says teachers don’t work enough hours, i’m gonna punch them in the face.
  • both my pinky toes are now giant blisters.  i’ve worn sandals and flats my entire life, and my feet just don’t work well with closed-toed shoes and heels.  i mean, no one is making me wear wedges, but i have to be a little bit taller than my students in order to exert some authority, don’t i?
  • i ate mcdonald’s in my car while driving home from work.  i don’t normally stop my car in south central to get fast food, but it was an emergency.  apparently a peanutbutter and jelly sandwich just isn’t filling enough for adults… especially since i still cut off my crusts.
  • i tried to open my apartment door with my classroom key yesterday… they don’t even look alike!  but i have spent more time opening and closing my classroom door than i have my own apartment door.  sad.
  • i ran out of toothpaste.  this may seem insignificant, but it was really quite devastating.  i no longer have the time and luxury to stroll out of bed at 2pm and spend the afternoon at target.  i had to bust out with the travel toothpaste, and it’s just not the same.

hopefully my time means something to my 28 students (they are all such sweet kids)!  if anything, i think they really enjoy doing projects with me and hanging out in our classroom.  below is a before and after photo of the classroom (disclaimer: still not done decorating).

first day of classroom set-up:

after the first week of class:

i know the two photos may not look all that different, but it took a lot of time to clean, rearrange furniture, and move 3 carloads of stuff into my classroom.  it’s not on par with my own expectations yet, but i’ve just been too exhausted.  lucky for me, hann has been super sweet and supportive all week.

he even surprised me with these on my first day of work:

and that’s after he surprised me with this the day before:

the bunnies were surprised too.  or maybe they thought i had carrots:

yup, we’re engaged and we’re pretty excited.  yay!  for details on the ring/events leading up to the proposal/location of the proposal/my answer, read my next blog post. :)

Posted in being.a.teacher, maggie.and.mochi | 6 Comments

oh, if only every week could be vacation week…

we’ve actually been back from vacation for a while, but it’s taken this long to unpack, clean, and upload photos.  we actually visited all the places we wanted to visit, saw all the people we wanted to see, ate all the food we wanted to eat, and stuck to our original schedule!  although it was exhausting, we had a great time.  look for the other 700 photos in an upcoming facebook album!

a weekend of poker, bananagrams, pool, bbq, and good friends… big bear was an awesome start to our vacation:

photographing on the way up to carson city/tahoe – a more interesting drive than the 5:

2-year anniversary dessert in carson city – vanilla ice cream covered in bran, deep-fried, and drizzled in caramel… yum:

sand harbor was so beautiful!  i admit i was skeptical when i looked at the website photos, but they were fairly accurate:

if you’re ever in lake tahoe, go kayaking!  the water is so clean and pretty during summer:

when i was younger, my family used to always go to the dinner buffet at el dorado hotel (this was my “healthy” plate… 1 of 3):

we cleaned up at circus circus!  sadly, the circus does eventually close:

after getting a thai dinner with the girls, we went wine-tasting in napa with the family.  the napa grapes are so colorful (and they make delicious wine):

believe it or not, we actually made it all the way down to san diego!  sea world was definitely worth the extra driving:

the flamingo pond smelled soooo bad.  like, almost vomited in my mouth bad.  but they did look very graceful:

the mochi whale!  i can’t believe you can train dolphins and orcas to do this stuff:

Posted in dinners.desserts, exciting.travels | 1 Comment

a week of family, friends, trees, and general merriment

i’ve rather enjoyed bumming around for the last two months, but hann hasn’t had the luxury.  apparently phd students don’t get to sleep in until 2pm everyday… sad.  fortunately, hann has the week off and we’re taking FULL advantage of it!  we’re driving through the california forests, driving back down the coast, and ending up in seaworld.  and thanks to our awesome friends and family, our lodging is free!  well, with the exception of our $39 stay in reno, nevada (i insisted that we stay at circus circus so i can play the chicken in the pot game).

in case you want to track us (mom), a tentative route of our trip:

here is a more detailed itinerary:

  • saturday morning – drive up to big bear to hang out at mike’s cabin with our buddies
  • saturday and sunday – poker (of course) and the usual shenanigans
  • monday morning – drive up to tahoe, stopping by to photograph the pretty trees
  • monday night – stay in carson city (thanks to hann’s mom’s marriott points!)
  • tuesday morning – kayaking in lake tahoe’s sand harbor
  • tuesday afternoon – drive to reno and play chicken in the pot until circus circus closes (wait, does it close?  my mom always told me we had to leave cause it was closing, but now i’m not so sure if that’s true….)
  • wednesday – drive up to the bay area to see my parents and my sister (who gets back  from korea tomorrow!)
  • thursday – go wine-tasting in napa with the whole family :)
  • thursday night – dinner/dessert with christina and elisa <3
  • friday – drive to santa cruz and either go sailing or spend time at all the coastal places (monterey, carmel, big sur)
  • friday night – stay in paso robles (thanks to my mom’s points!)
  • saturday – drive down to santa barbara and play at the beach
  • saturday night – stop by home to say hello to the bunnies
  • sunday – seaworld!!!

that’s where we’ll be for the next several days!  so please don’t break into our apartment… unless you have permission to break in and feed the bunnies, in which case we gave you a key.  thanks in advance to john and michelle/jamie!  hopefully i’ll have some more interesting content for my next post, but here are some random food photos before i go:

veggie spaghetti with parsley/basil garlic bread:

our favorite – baked salmon with cous cous:

hann and i often disagree on toppings, so i made him his own pizza:

and many other mini pizzas – bbq chicken, pesto chicken, veggie:

broccoli pasta with wheel and penne pastas:

mini carrot cupcakes & cream cheese frosting (all made from scratch!):

and some more cupcakes (and a loaf cake) for the road:

have a good week!  :)

Posted in being.a.teacher, dinners.desserts | 4 Comments

welcome to our coloring book… and apartment!

when i started this blog a couple months ago, my intention was to post photos of summer projects.  the largest of those projects: painting our apartment (hence the title welcome to my coloring book).  however, you may have noticed that the majority of my posts have been devoted to posting photos of food and bunnies.  oops.  but i am proud to announce that we have (almost) finished painting our apartment!  other than the bedroom, every wall now has color.  :)

this is our front door and my dear artforum magazine covers:

a view of our living room – it’s not quite this shadowy in person:

we even painted the mantel above the fireplace!

the ceiling came with spotlights, which is ideal for lighting my painting:

we bought pinkish paint for the kitchen, but changed our minds:

the alice in wonderland closet – it looks small, but it’s very tall inside:

the hallway (we like to put artwork under the light fixtures):

this is the first color we decided on… i insisted on using orange somewhere:

yay, color.  love it.

Posted in apartment.decor | 4 Comments