Monday, July 27, 2009


It always suprises me how kids always ask me if I want to have kids. At least, they don't think I'm already pregnant! lol.

Miss J-: Do you have a son or daughter?
Me: Me? No. Not yet.
Miss J-: Do you want to have kids?
Me: Yes. Sometime.
Miss J-: I don't think I want kids.
Me: Why not?
Miss J-: It looks like it hurts.


Flower vs. Snowflake

This past Sunday, we actually spent most of it outside. First, we had a picnic in the park and lounged in the shade. Then, we walked around town. Lastly, we went to a Episcopalean church for a free concert. My hubster is a fan of gospel/hymns etc. I was melting in the church because all of the doors were closed and it had been quite hot outside. This is the conversation we had as I fanned myself with the bios of the performers:

Me: It's so hot in here. I'm like a flower.
Hubster: No, you're more like a snowflake.
Me: No, like a flower.
(few minutes later)
Me: Fine, I'm like a snowflake.
Hubster: Told you.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Friday, July 24, 2009

I've Missed His Face

(Taken Palm Springs 2008)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pretty Wings - Maxwell

I heart Maxwell. I've loved him since Fortunate. I'm so excited that his new album, BLACKsummers'night came out. It's supposedly the sleeper hit of the summer. Pretty Wings is a beautiful song, so I'm not all that surprised that it was such a hit.

I'm sooo happy he got rid of his fro.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Ben, Amos, Me, & the Kiddos

I'm in the middle of teaching summer school for a few weeks. Before I started summer school, my mentor teacher suggested that I might want to try doing a short novel with my kiddos. The emphasis on short because of the brevity of summer school. I couldn't do a neat literature unit due to the time constraints, but I did the next best thing. I decided to read Ben and Me as a read aloud. Each day we read about ten pages.

I had only seen the animated version of Ben and Me and had never read the story it was based on. Gosh, I should have totally read it all the way through before making this choice. The language is quite challenging. It's really formal colonial style English, which fits the setting of the story. To compensate and hopefully make the story more enjoyable, I decided to translate it as I read it aloud. This translation can get tricky. It might be working though. Half of my kiddos are enjoying it and respond to the questions with enthusiasm. As Nicole reminded me, that's a success! Thanks Nicole!

Summer Jams Not Preserves

One of my favorite things about summer is driving around. I guess some would say that's the So Cal girl that's still in me. While driving around, I need the perfect summer jams. Of course, each summer's list is different. For this summer, my list includes:
  • Akon ft. Kardinal Offishall & Colby O'Donis - Beautiful
  • Keri Hilson ft. Kanye West & Ne-Yo - Knock You Down
  • Bow Wow - You Can Get It All
  • Jay Sean ft. Lil Wayne - Down
  • Drake - Best I Ever Had
  • Flo Rida - Sugar
  • Craig David - Insomnia
  • Black Eyed Peas - I Gotta Feeling

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Oh Dear, Oh Dear...,0.jpg

My hubster and I haven't had cable since college. Instead, we've been hardcore Netflixers. Recently, my hubster introduced me to Hulu and I've been loving it. Thanks to Hulu I've totally become a fan of Chef Gordon Ramsay. It started with Hell's Kitchen then I moved onto Kitchen Nightmares. The dichotomy between the two shows is so interesting. In Hell's Kitchen, Ramsay definitely owns the role of the devilish boss. Then in Kitchen Nightmares, he's the freaking Dr. Phil of restauranteurs. He shows as much kindness as his on-tv persona allows, encouraging restaurant owners to stay movitated and rekindling a chef's passion in cooking.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Mystery Orchard

In preparation for our Seattle trip, we've been driving around looking for interesting scenic things to take pictures of. We stumbled across this orchard. Not quite sure what the fruit are, but the pictures turned out well.

They're not limes.

Back to the Wii Fit

I'm a bit of a gym-a-phobe. I think it's totally the awkwardness of trying to find a machine and waiting for it to open. Then once I'm on it, people start to hover and wait for their turn. Therefore, the Wii Fit has been the closest thing to exercise that I have gotten to after college. It may not be the best workout; hoowever, it gets me off my bum which is better than nothing. By the way, have you tried that advance step? It's pretty intense. I also love the game aspect of it. I'm quite competitive, so that keeps me motivated to beat my best score. Hopefully, it'll at least help me burn some of the poundage that I have mananged to accumulate over the past couple of months. *Fingers crossed*


Last night, we went to our first musical in the outdoor theatre one town over. The outdoor theatre is positively adorable. There's a grassy area out front where you can picnic before the show. As you walk in, they have cushions and blankets to rent. Last night's weather was practically perfect. It wasn't too chilly nor too hot. The musical we saw is called The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. The show was delightful and the songs were witty. The best parts of the dialogue had to be the sentences that the vice principal would give when the contestants would ask for a word to be used in a sentence. They even took volunteers from the audience to participate during the actual spelling bee. Chip Tolentino was our favorite character and we were sad to see him be dismissed from the bee. We're hoping to see a play next time rather than a musical.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Cheaper Chicken

I have always loved Father of the Bride (the one with Steve Martin), which of course where the quotation for this title comes from. This posting isn't about the Father of the Bride. Instead, it's about Monastery Stays. It's been featured on Budget Travel, CNN and The Guardian. My hubster and I have been trying to figure out a way to travel through Europe on the cheap without having to stay at hostels, so staying at a monastery might be our answer.

My hubster is a wee bit nervous. I think it's because he actually went to Catholic school. I think it might be a good way to travel. Most of the reviews have said that the rooms are really clean. The only minus is that there is a curfew set around 11pm at most monasteries. We're accustomed to curfews and deadlines since we've been on several cruises. I think it'll just take some research. We're hoping to at least try it once.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Darn You, Stand and Deliver!

Almost every year in high school, we would watch Stand and Deliver at the end of the year. It was one of those filler thingys that teachers do. It even got to the point my sophomore year that my teacher tried to suprise us by renaming it Sit and Receive. Clever, no?

Where is this story going? Well, I just started teaching summer school. For some reason, I totally felt the pressure to make it a good experience. (I blame all the years of watching Stand and Deliver.) To help the kiddos get a better grasp on concepts from the previous year, so then the next grade won't seem too bad. I wanted to really teach, so the kids wouldn't feel bummed out that they weren't spending all of their vacation at the beach. All this stress and worry led to a not-so-eventful first day. I looked around and realized that I need to be a bit more easygoing. All the teachers were saying how much easier it is. I won't change the world. They won't always be having fun. If a few kids have some fun, it'll be a good thing.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Oldie but Goodie: Love You Down INOJ

I Know I'm a Californian

There are small moments when I'm a total Californian. They usually happen while I'm traveling. They creep up on me in the form of a craving for a taco or burrito. I remember on my first trip to France that I was shocked that they had Chinese restaurants but no Mexican restaurants. It also happens when I complain that anything above 75 degrees is too hot and any thing below 70 degrees is too cold.

I know that I'm a Californian used to living along the coast when I miss the sight of the ocean. When we're traveling through the valley or anywhere where the beach isn't easily accessible, I often turn to my hubster and say, "I can't imagine not looking at the ocean every day." It's a lovely reminder that there's more to life than my own little life and all its complications.

Give up to grace. The ocean takes care of each wave 'til it gets to shore. You need more help than you know. - Rumi (1207-1273)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Once In Awhile...

Once in awhile, I get in a funk that can only be remedied by a rather large interesting book. It's kind of odd. I think it's one of those situations that I need to set a goal for myself and complete it in a reasonable amount of time. Sometimes, I finish the book and sometimes I don't. For instance, I finished the goliath of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay and loved it. A few years ago, I picked up One Hundred Years of Solitude then put it down for awhile and again picked it up months later. Last summer, I started Emma and didn't finish it because I had started it right as my program picked up. I hope to finish it, but it's not the right time. It's all about timing.

Again, I find myself jonesing for a good read. I've been researching it for quite sometime. I thought about reading East of Eden or Anna Karenina. Hesitations settled in when I remembered that I'm not the biggest fan of Steinbeck and I thought of all those Russian names that need to be remembered. Instead, I've settled on A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I'm going to get it tomorrow and start it. I'm uber excited.

Las Vegas: We're Goobers

On our way to Vegas, we stopped at the Mad Greek. Yep, we were enticed by those road signs. It was surprisingly delicious. My hubster had a delicious (possibly lamb?) gyro. I had a falafel pita. Yum!

The hubster patiently waiting for me to figure out the night settings for my camera.

Inside the Palazzo or leaving the Venetian?

Only he would think of this combo: his two favorite foods watermelon and shrimp. Us stuffing ourselves at the More buffet at Luxor.

Our lucky penny slot machine.

On our way to the Bellagio. Finally, got to take our own picture after my hubster had to take everyone else's picture.

In the Bellagio garden.

My hubster being a good sport.
I asked him take a picture with the bears.

Trying to cool off after a long hot walk. It was 105 degrees F.

Being a goober.

Las Vegas: It's In The Details

As previously mentioned, we totally don't do Vegas the way that most of our friends do. We like wander around the casinos and check out the decor, especially while we're waiting for our shows to start. Here are some of my favs from our last trip. A bunch of the pictures are my hubster's because he has proven to be quite the natural with the SLR. The casinos/hotels that they were taken at include the Venetian, Palazzo, and Wynn.

PES Not PEZ But Just As Sweet

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Catch Up: Huntington Part 2


My hubster thoughtfully reminded me yesterday that I should try to take pictures of fireworks before we went for our friend's BBQ. After being stuffed to the max, we caught the tail end of the fireworks show. Taking pictures of fireworks is pretty challenging. We took these using the sport/action mode and continuous shooting (6 shots).

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!

We just started to watch John Adams. We got into it after watching Rome and Tudors. My hubster was super adorable and said, "I guess it's good timing that we just started watching John Adams." Paul Giamatti is one of my favorite actors and he's great as John Adams. However, it's Laura Linney, who plays Abigail Adams, that steals the show. It's so rare to hear about respectable female figures in history. This depiction of Abigail Adams is amazing. She's intelligent and strong-willed. The mutual respect evident between both John and Abigail is refreshing. Of these three historical-based mini series, John Adams is my favorite so far.


To celebrate after my thesis defense, we went out for sushi. I got the Volcano Roll (a California Roll with baked cream cheese on top) and the Godzilla Roll (with yellow tail and tuna marinated in garlic). As I watched the chefs behind the sushi bar, I remembered my kiddo who had the sushi erasers. I had asked him if he liked sushi and what was his favorite kind. He told me his favorite was when his dad would bring home fresh tuna, slice it thin, and put soy sauce on top. His face lit up as he told me this story. Awww...I miss my big kids.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

A Tale as Old as Time...

For my end of the year gift, my mentor teacher got me The Alchemist and a journal. I wrote him a thank you email telling him that I loved The Alchemist and I needed a spare copy because I had no idea where my original copy is. Then, he responded saying that he originally meant to pick me up a copy of The Devil and Miss Prym. Of course, I got it. It's a bit darker than The Alchemist and By the River... However, it's really interesting. In the card that I got with my gift, my mentor teacher made a reference to the The Alchemist about the treasure being closer than I may think. Now, I'm totally curious why he originally wanted to get me The Devil and Miss Prym and what my card would have said.