Category Archives: Day in the life

Shopping for beauty products … who knew it could be so shocking?

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Last week my brother and his family were in town. Yay!

My niece is 13 (isn’t she adorable?) and really, really, really into doing her nails. This is a girl after my own heart; I, too, cannot resist the glitter and glam of nail polish. I totally get her obsession. Painted toenails makes the world a happier place. That’s such a reasonable perspective. Thanks to my niece my toenails are currently painted emerald green, and I have to admit, I love ’em!

Anyway, on one of our outings we stopped by the local Ulta to check out their selection of nail polish, scrubs, body polishes, yummy smelling shampoos and hair doodads. And then we made the mistake of wandering over to the lip gloss aisle.

Holy moly …

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Phone photos

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Cleaning out one’s phone is a lot like cleaning out one’s purse: freaky.

You know how you find little bits of odds and ends, stray change, random sticky notes, a lone crumbly TUMS? That’s what my phone seems like to me.

I just downloaded the latest round of photos and came across a few that made me smile and chuckle, and even more that made me slap my forehead and admit, “Only I would take this photo.”

Here’s a peek.

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Happy Birthday little mama!

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Just a few months ago I was sorting some of my mom’s papers for her and came across something that listed her height. It read: “4 feet 9 inches”.

Whooops. I barked out a laugh. No way!

All these years I thought she was five feet tall, at least. First of all, she always wears heels (gee, wonder why) and secondly, she’s got a BIG personality, which makes her seem much, much taller.

Lastly, she’s “mom”, so no matter how much taller we are then she, she’s still taller. Know what I mean?

She’s an inspiration.

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She’s a terrific grandmother.

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An honored humanitarian.

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A doting life partner.

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And a wonderful friend.

We wish we could be with you to celebrate, but know that you being you, you’re out on the town, having a good time and living large (and tall!)

Mom: you’re the best. Happy, happy birthday!

Love,
Your kids (who you absolutely never ever drive bananas)

🙂

Milu

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This is my mom’s dog, Milu (pronounced Mee-Loooo).We have no idea what kind of dog he is, but he reminds me a little of a King Charles spaniel, maybe mixed with some Asian spaniel-type.

He’s the absolute sweetest little dude.

He’s so laid back and easy going; nothing much bothers him. He loves affection. And for sure he’s a family dog, happiest in the midst of his pack.

At the smallest invitation he’ll come lay his head against your leg or curl up next to your foot.

And he’s got the most adorable chocolately brown eyes that look at you with such love. He’s so cute!

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One, two, three, YO!

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This is what it looks like across the street from our house in Saigon. And when I say across the street, I mean 15 feet away. The streets in Vietnam are quite narrow.

This … is a cafe that runs alongside the river in front of our house.

Every day starting at lunchtime it’s full of young people, kids in their twenties. Kids who apparently don’t have jobs or school or places to be and things to do.

They come at lunch and stay until the wee hours of the night. At least it seems that way.

When the monsoon rains come they just keep laughing and drinking and eating and laughing …

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… and every ten minutes the air is punctuated with the chant, “One, two, three, YO!”

It’s the Vietnamese youth’s equivalent of “cheers” or “bottom’s up” or “down the hatch” or … you get my drift.

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If you have the misfortune of sleeping in the front of our house your dreams are guaranteed to be punctuated with the chant, “One, two, three, YO! One, two, three, YO!” and you will have the overwhelming urge to take a swig of beer.

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Now, any time I take a swig of anything—juice, water, tea—I hear in my head, “One, two, three, YO!”

 

Jack’s commute

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Jack has a super long commute. It’s a little over two hours one way. He takes the ferry into San Francisco, rides his bike to the train station and then takes the train down the peninsula to the South Bay, then rides his bike to work. It’s heinous.

But he’s a much happier person (trust me!) taking public transportation than when he was sitting in traffic day after day.

Why do we live so far away? Well, that’s a long story, suffice it to say that we have good reason and are just making lemonade at this point.

Here’s a lil’ peek at some shots he took last week on his commute.

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Pumpkins for the garden

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This little guy greets you at the gate that leads to our main vegetable garden—where there are more pumpkins nestled in patches here and there.

I made a similar Dia de los Muertos pumpkin for a good friend who has an amazing collection of dolls and figurines. I thought this pumpkin would go perfectly at his house.

It cracked me up so much that I ended up making another one for us and our garden. Now, when I walk out to the garden and see this fella it reminds me of our friend and makes me smile.

I also had the cutest little scarecrow in the pepper patch.

And look what happened to him!!

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Loving the bento

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My school schedule this semester requires that I bring my lunch to school with me or else brave the cafeteria. The campus cafeteria is a luring oasis of unhealthy, expensive food. A simple salad can rack up to $10 in no time. Plus, they have Ding Dongs there. And Ho-Ho’s. And bags of Doritos. Me likes the cafeteria. It’s the Las Vegas of campus, a place for sin.

The cafeteria is not a good habit to indulge on a daily basis.

In an attempt to stave off the lazy convenience of the cafeteria and inspire a consistent and healthy lunchtime habit I started making a bento box for lunch hoping that it would make my “bag lunch” a little more fun. After several months of bringing my bento I can tell you that, indeed, my “bag lunch” kicks the cafeteria’s patoot! I love busting out my little bento for lunch. I really look forward to it and get a kick every time I pop the top off my lunch box. Even my lab mates have taken to asking me, “Sooooo, what do we have today? Oooh. That looks good!”

It’s not that the food is so spectacular, usually I just have leftovers, but the presentation of a bento is so visually appealing that it makes ordinary grub look appetizing.

For those unfamiliar with the bento box, lemme ‘splain …

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