"I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day. And I believe in miracles."
~ Audrey Hepburn


Can I have it? Can I?

My family and I are pretend-Asians. Evidence: we live in San Gabriel, CA.
Last year when I took Asian American Race Relations,
I was shocked at how much my professor knew about the city I grew up in.
Apparently, the San Gabriel Valley is one of the most well-known Asian ethnoburbs
--which is a suburban residential and business area with a significant
concentration of a particular ethnic minority population-- in the state.

I have been going to school in Santa Barbara for almost three years now
and I am going to be completely honest: the thing I miss most about San Gabriel is

A S I A N F O O D ! ! !

My God, Santa Barbara is definitely lacking in that area.
I mean, IV has Little Asia (blandest Asian food I've ever eaten),
some white-washed sushi places (the best one used to blast hip hop and
was run by an all black/hispanic staff; it is now closed), and
even some Pho places (not really a Pho kind of girl...).

I am constantly dreaming about:
Newport Seafood's flavorful kung pao chicken,

Tokyo Lobby's crunchy shrimp tempura,

President Thai's delicious pad see ew,

and Din Tai Fung's juicy pork dumplings.

But if you know me at all, you know that
my biggest Asian-food obsession is fried rice ♥

I love it. I don't know why, I just love it.
When you think about it, its just a simple side dish
but I think it always seemed magical/mysterious
to me because my family never made it. I remember I used to
get so excited when Señora Drew threw parties in my 10th grade
spanish class because that meant one of my
beloved classmates would be bringing fried rice
(shoutout to Han Phan, whose mother makes the
most delicious fried rice I have ever had, to date).

And that, my friends, is why I decided to accomplish goal
#001: Make fried rice
Did you notice that it is the first thing on my list? Haha :)
I noticed that I had the basic ingredients yesterday
so I looked up some simple recipes online and started cooking away!

Basically what I did is:
boiled and drained chopped carrots & peas,
sautéed some shrimp,
threw the veggies on top of the shrimp,
scrambled two eggs on top of that mixture,
added the rice to the mixture,
and then let it cook for a bit with some soy sauce.

The result was actually pretty good,
but not the standard of excellence I usually find in fried rice.
I don't think I "fried" it enough-- the texture was kind of off.
I also feel like I was missing some ingredient...

Anyway, this is a plea for help from all my
friends that have a tasty fried-rice recipe.

Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it?
Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it?
Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it?
(see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTFZyl7hfBw)

*Chris Tizzle and Kat Van, I'm looking at you...
facebook stalking tells me that you may know a
thing or two about making fried rice.

Can you help a sister out?


Feelin' Risky on Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day was last weekend and
I was feeling a little adventurous.
You know what that means...

#006: Order what the person
at the next table is having

Last saturday Bryan & I went to Nicks,
an American style restaurant right on the beach in Laguna.
I have always wanted to order what the person at
the next table is having (maybe because I love surprises?),
but I could never force myself to do it because
I would get nervous that the person would order something disgusting.
I decided that I had to find someone with impeccable
taste, which resulted in a very intense screening process.
And that is when this beautiful family walked into the restaurant:

You can't really tell from this creepy rapist picture I took,
but this was easily one of the most beautiful
families I had ever seen in my life. There were
four girls, ages (?) 8, 12, 16, and 18.
How were they so beautiful?! They looked like models!
Even the baby!

At first I was going to order what the oldest
daughter ordered, but I was afraid she was
going to order a burger or something lame.
I thought the mom might order something exciting
and sophisticated so I went with her, haha :)

Drum roll, please!

Mama ordered Pan Roasted Salmon with
Sautéed Spinach, Caper Mustard Beurre Blanc,
and Butter Chive Mashed Potatoes.

Not bad!

I was half afraid that she was going to
order a stick of celery with some fresh grapes on the side.
The salmon was amazing; I loved the buerre blanc
that was drizzled over it. Strangely enough,
the best thing on the plate was the spinach. It
was all buttery and had slivered almonds in it.
As Rachel Ray would say, YUM-O!

Bryan decided to get in on the fun
and ordered what the father ordered.

Papa got Red Wine Braised Boneless Short Ribs
with Firestick Onions, Roasted Vegetables,
Horseradish Cream, and Mashed Potatoes.

Believe me, the pictures do not do this food justice.
I need a good camera, dang it.

Overall, this was a pretty exciting experience.
It made going to a restaurant really interesting
and I am definitely going to do it again.


Disneyland on friday:


Uggghh I wished I lived closer to Disneyland!
I had beignets at the Tupelo Junction Cafe in downtown SB,
but they pale in comparison to the ones they serve at
Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney. GO! NOW!

Valentine's Day with Bryan:
After dinner, we sat on the beach and waited
for the next showtime of Valentine's Day (the movie).
Comments: Celebrities were extremely hot/beautiful.
The actors were way too famous/hot/beautiful to be believable characters.
The overabundance of celebrities made it impossible to have a believable plot.
But... it was cute? Haha, kind of?

Valentine's Day with family:
No pictures, but it was great...
Visited Dad at home, who had approximately
3 dozen Sprinkles cupcakes waiting for us :D
Went to din-dins with Mom & sissies at
Woodranch in Santa Anita. One word: bread.
The most perfect bread any restaurant has ever served
(close second: garlic balls at Palazzio in Santa Barbara).
And then! We went to go visit Des at her work.
My little baby is all grown up!!!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

In other news, lent starts tomorrow.
What are you giving up? I am giving up
baked goods.

Lord, help me.


Zip it, Lock it

I did something very exciting today!
I accomplished goal
#047: Send in a Postsecret

I am obsessed with Postsecret.
This website is part of an ongoing art project
by a man named Frank Warren.
People all over the country send him postcards
that they decorate with their secrets
and every sunday he posts new ones on his website.
I like this website because I enjoy reading
the honest, heart-warming (and oftentimes heart-breaking)
secrets that people send in.

I think the reason Postsecret is such a hit
is that people are able to relate to and identify with
the secrets that other people send in. Sometimes knowing
that another person in the world is experiencing the same
situation as you or just understands exactly how you feel
is a very powerful thing.

I have always wanted to send in a secret of mine,
but it is one of those things I kept pushing off for another time.
I've been jotting down my secrets on a sticky note
ever since I started the Day Zero Project in October.
Today I was in the mood for a little arts & crafts
(I just finished all my midterms & finally have time to unwind!)
so I finally got around to it. Actually, I sent in ten! Haha :)

I wish I could show you pictures of the cards
I am sending in because I worked so hard on
decorating them... But I suppose that would defeat the purpose.
I will tell you that my secrets are about:
family, boys, friends,
enemies, love, and random

I guess you'll have to read Postsecret every sunday
and decide for yourself if one of mine was posted
(because my lips are sealed).

Good luck :)


Sometimes I like to pretend...

that I am someone else. Particularly:

Meryl Streep in Its Complicated
- so beautiful, accomplished, and did I mention she owns a bakery?

Mandy Moore in Because I Said So
- sweet, silly, free-spirited, and she has her own catering service!

Maggie Gyllenhaal in Stranger than Fiction
- passionate, intelligent, and ... owns her own bakery, haha.

Cameron Diaz in The Holiday
- she owns her own movie editing company anddd she's adorable

Kate Winslet in The Holiday
- her cottage in Surrey is to die for and she is just my fave!
Like really.

Actually, I want to be Kate Winslet in ANYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!

That being said, I would also like to be Meryl Streep in anything!


the end ♥