Monday, April 27, 2009

Has it really been almost 1.5 weeks since I last posted?? Usually this would mean that my life isn't boring.

Anyway, this weekend I did some spring cleaning and house errands. It was mostly stuff I wouldn't do often, such as cleaning the fridge coils, installing the AC unit, cleaning out the cleaning supplies closet, scrubbing the oven, scrubbing the bathtub ... etc.

So I realize that I can sum up the household personalities in a few words--
  • Yuling: sanitize
  • Tammy: organize
  • Jess: bake
That's pretty much all I wanted to say for now.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Interpret This

My dreams last night were utterly random. They made sense in a way, but still very random.

Some elements from last night:
  • shrimp in random tupperware,
  • kids on the street throwing a rock at a friend,
  • going to a conference on the wharf as a boondoggle/junket (which is what The Boy is doing right now in FL!!! jealous),
  • realizing my company doesn't know I went to the conference, thus creating a dilemma,
  • a hamster that freaked me out because of its scampering,
  • walking home in heels from The Boy's place, and
  • a homeless man sleeping the night at a cafe.
So, I also dream in color, which really isn't that uncommon. But my question today is ... do you TASTE food in dreams? 'Cause I tried eating the aforementioned shrimp, and it was RANCID.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Workin' the Fridge

This past Sunday, I went to Barnes and Noble with The Boy, and I spent practically the whole time there looking at this book. There were chapters on budgeting (duh) and saving money on big purchases (e.g. cars and houses). My attention, however, was caught by a whole chapter on saving money on food purchases--totally up my alley! The main take-aways, though? Firstly, cut down on the number of grocery trips (ideally to once a month ... wHAT?). Secondly, freeze. Literally, freeze everything ... even the milk! Well, at least it works for them. They spend $350 per month on food for 7 people. I spend almost that much on myself. Hm.

So, my fridge is packed, so I thought I might as well do my bi-weekly scourging of the fridge to see what can stay, what be used, and what should go. Apparently, my freezer revealed that I'm still very much a victim of buy-'n-forget. In other words: I bought, I froze, I forgot ... and I forgot much more than I thought I did. I had boneless chicken thighs, chicken quarters, chicken hearts, half of a frost bitten steak, flat iron steaks, pork chops, and some unknown (to me) cut of pork. Oh, and shrimp. Obviously, my desire to have better "husbandry" of my food purchases has "slightly" evaded me.

I decided yesterday that I had enough to cook with at home, and did my usual list-making of what I had:
  • meat (as described above)
  • salad lettuce
  • cabbage
  • mushrooms
  • red onion
  • mangos
  • rice stick noodles
  • mochi blocks
  • fresh noodles (called "vermicelli" but they were much more like udon)
  • quail eggs
I knew I wanted to use the chicken hearts and mango together in some sort of salad, and the pork and quail eggs together for a main dish. I ended up making the following:
  • salad, using: lettuce, mushrooms, mango, red onion and chicken hearts (with my usual dressing of rice vinegar, soy and sugar ... but with minced-but-more-like-pulverized red onion)
  • noodle soup, using: fresh noodles, cabbage, unknown cut of pork (sliced thin) and quail eggs
Both roomies and The Boy actually really really liked the salad. I did as well, and I'm sure I'll make it again. (I have another mango and chicken hearts left.)

Now for the rest of the meat!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

France > Yonne > Tonnerre

I finally found the town I visited during my exchange program! It took me a loonnggg time to remember or figure out the name of the town since I went when I was fresh out of junior high. I knew it started with a "T" and that it was in the l'Yonne province (because it sounds similar to "Lyon"). However, because my sister once worked in Torrance, all I could think was "To--rrance?" It was something similar. And now I've found it: Tonnerre.

Seeing pictures of the place through is so fantastic. I remember walking around an overgrown, mossy pool, walking through the town streets by myself, the view of the town from the Catholic church up on the hill, and field trips with the exchange group in a historic hospital while developing a crush on one of the guys.

I wrote a short script based on this trip for a screenwriting class, and it sums up my experience there pretty well (even though it had a small element of fiction in there). A few of the "awkward" scenes even elicited a good chuckle from the class, most of which was unfortunately something that actually happened!

I'm a bit tempted to re-visit someday, and maybe even seek out the family I stayed with while there. Anyone wanna come with?

Monday, April 6, 2009


Short recap, but nonetheless ...

Pillow fight on Saturday!
Note to self, handkerchief over mouth next time. Don't wanna think about how many other faces got slammed with the same pillow, and feathers flying into mouth ain't tasty.

Made lunch for Mosaic (again)!
Kalua pork is the easiest tasty thing you can make. You just gotta leave it in the slow cooker long enough for it to almost fall apart on its own.

Played Ultimate for the first time!
I tried playing once before, but it was for only 3 minutes so I don't count it. This time, I threw it to someone not on my team within the first minute of playing. Woops! Anyway, I kinda had fun.

Drinking (coffee flavored) soy milk!
This is actually the only way I'm willing to drink soy milk. I remember finding coffee flavored soy milk at the supermarkets back in CA, but I couldn't find any at the Stop & Shop here. Instead, I decided to make my own by doing what I think my sister does: mix instant coffee with a wee bit of hot water, then add vanilla flavored soy milk. The result is simple concoction that's almost like a soy latte--much better than a breve latte!




Wednesday, April 1, 2009

My Next "Ambitious" Undertaking

I signed up to bring lunch for church this Sunday, and I think I'll take care of it by myself 'cause it's (somehow) easier ... don't ask how, it just is. I practically made the past few lunches by myself anyway, and it does force me simplify the menu.

I plan on making ...
  • kalua pig (rub w/ red clay salt and liquid smoke, then leave in slow cooker--easy!)
  • rice and buns (to be bought for anyone inclined to treat the kalua pig like shredded pork)
  • stir fried cabbage (simple ... it's actually supposed to be mixed with the pig, but I'm keeping it separate for the vegetarians.)
  • macaroni salad (I'm obviously going for the Hawaiian theme here ... besides, I just need to cut, boil and mix.)
  • tofu "poke" (for the vegetarians and the wannabes. We'll have enough meat, as is.)
  • hurricane popcorn (to make on hand in case there's not enough food!)
See? Not so ambitious after all! Well, it'll be a lot of cutting, but the "cooking" is pretty hands off.

Now I'm craving hurricane popcorn ...

Success! People kept coming back for seconds of the kalua pork that I ended up having only cabbage and mac salad as leftovers for work. I'll have to make it again for The Boy and friends. I did, however, help a friend make it for a work lunch, and I shall have to ask her how it turned out.