This is my nephew.
posing with statues on a road trip
Yes, I have my share of nephews. Well the youngest one (standing at the right on the photo) comes up to me.
"Aunt, how old are you?"
"Ohhhhhhh." He puts his hand to his gaping mouth in shock. Being eight, he probably remembers how old he was when he learned to count that high.
"Really old, huh?"
"Five more years, and you get to get married!" I stare at him while my cousins listening to the conversation guffaw at this remark.
But he's not done yet.
"Do you have a boyfriend, Aunt?"
"No, I don't." His eyes widen in horror.
"Then find one!"
With that, he runs off to play with my other nephews.
Does he think I'm going to be the proverbial old maid with a house full of cats? What do they teach these kids in school?
Daisy on 8/31/2007 05:53:00 PM
All Things New
Seriously, everything is new. Like the blog, for instance.
I've been working on a design for this blog for months but am so picky I only got it done now. :D Oh well, I expect not to change this design for years. Or at least six months or so.
Please let me know if it works on your browser, if you can! I've been testing it but I'm not completely sure it works.
I also have new hair.
Everytime I comb my hair lately, the comb stays there. Mom took that as A Sign I Need A Haircut, so she brought me to a nearby salon. I didn't know what I wanted --- just hair that's easier to comb through, apparently --- so I let the stylist know she could do anything she wanted.
I'm just blessed that she didn't dye my hair twelve different colors.
And if you've noticed, the borders on the pictures I've been putting up are new too. It just seemed pretty to look at so I'm now making all my pictures that way. :D
I wish this post were longer but my Mom's calling me about something. I'll update more later.
Daisy on 8/29/2007 06:41:00 PM
Happy Birthday, Me (Part 3 of III)
Hi, everyone. If you don't know what the part 3 of III is all about, you might like to read parts 1 & 2.
Then again, you don't really have to. :D
Anyway, for new readers, it's time to introduce Adam. And if you happen to click on that link, no, he doesn't always have all that face paint on him.
Adam is a good friend who I met through my fifth school --- I was about to transfer in while he was about to transfer out --- but was schoolmates with in my sixth school. If you did not get the logic of that last sentence, never mind.
After high school, he went off to become a computer programmer and Macromedia Flash wizard while I got into Chemical Engineering studies. And every time my birthday comes around, he invites me out for lunch.
The other people in that photo are my cousins and my sister, LOL. They happened to tag along and as Adam keeps saying "The more, the manier!"
We had a good Mongolian lunch in the mall, and just hung out for the afternoon. We went around looking for a present for me (courtesy of him, of course), and just caught up on what we'd been doing lately. It was fun.
Tiring too. I guess it was all the walking; I think I really lack exercise.
That was my amazing 20th birthday. I can't believe how it all turned out. I can't believe the friends and family who made all the effort to make things special. I can't believe how some people scrimped money just to give me a present (and no, I don't care how simple it was; I thank them all the same). And I thank God for it all: for bringing me this far, giving me real joy, and showing me glorifying Him is a great reason to live.
Yup, this series is over; I can finally take my shriveled hands off the keyboard.
For whoever read this far, thanks a lot!
Daisy on 8/23/2007 05:14:00 PM
Happy Birthday, Me (Part 2 of III)
If you don't know what the part II of III is all about, you might like to check Part 1 of this series of posts.
My parents decided to host a farewell dinner for our Chinese relatives last Sunday night. They were going back home, and we figured giving them a party (instead of me) would take the burden of gift-giving off my relations' backs.
They brought me gifts anyway.
The dinner was at a hotel with the best buffet around.
breads and cheeses
seafood you can steam
There was also some really great Japanese, Chinese, and Western cuisine selections.
It was the perfect recipe for gluttony.
Just a bit of what I ate.
So I never do eat that much on normal days. And I probably never will again because I'll be watching my cholesterol and blood sugar levels as I get older.
It was fun though. Especially with my foodie buddy / cousin / adopted younger brother, KD.
Anyway, we all laughed, talked, and ate as much as we could. Everything was pretty good.
And then I got another cake!
It made me very happy.
This cake was one of the best chocolate cakes I'd ever tasted. It was moist, not too sweet --- sweet being my primary complaint against every chocolate cake I've ever tried --- and looked pretty. It was also the right size considering how full I was when the unexpected cake arrived.
About ten relatives tried a bit of it and agreed the cake was scrumptious. Or maybe they're only agreeing with me since it's my birthday cake; I don't know.
I was then embarrassed by a group of singers who serenaded me as I ate.
Not that they weren't good, mind you. They sang some of my favorites. I guess I'm just not used to all the attention.
We spent the rest of the night goofing off with my cousins.
Chrissy's always the life of the party.
The dinner ended, and my cousins trooped home with us to have a sleepover for my birthday. I know, I know, I'm 20 years old. Why am I still having sleepovers?
Well, a college friend told me that my inner child is still 10 years old, and 10-year-olds do have sleepovers. Besides, they're fun!
We played, talked, watched a comedy series, and beat each other at video games deep into the night.
My cousins are sitting on each other.
I think Jonny sat on KD to try to distract him from winning. Since KD and Reese (our dog) did a victory dance a few minutes later, it obviously didn't work.
And so that was my birthday. So far.
The last part of this series will show up tomorrow. Thanks for reading this far!
Daisy on 8/22/2007 06:15:00 PM
Happy Birthday, Me (Part 1 of III)
That's right, folks. Part I of III. I celebrated my birthday last Friday until Monday yesterday instead of the actual Saturday it was supposed to be.
I thought you guys wouldn't be up to reading all that in one post though. Rather, I'm not up to typing all that in one post. But yes, I'll keep it as short as possible.
To begin, my 20th birthday was amazing.
A surprisingly large number of people remembered and greeted me. Maybe becoming 20 years old is a huge milestone (not as large as 40 or 50 but you never know). Either way, everyone remembered. Even a guy I'd only spent about two afternoons with a few months back (and have never spoken to again) and my old Kazakh penpal.
And to think I almost forgot my birthday was coming up.
Anyway, my college friends decided to hang around with me and celebrate a day before the actual birthday. We went to a little Japanese restaurant with little serving sizes.
the serving sizes
We were hungry so we ordered a lot.
The food was delicious: the california makis were flavorful, and our dishes were all good. The tempura was a little flaky (too much flour, I think), and the dumplings' sauce was a little too sweet. It wasn't bad though. Maybe this was also because of the company.
We were feeling remarkably full when Joni suddenly told me to close my eyes. They then surprised me with a cute chocolate mousse with five candles! It was fun. And embarrassing.
Especially the part where they made me wear the party hat.
They gave me a thick bookmark-looking card they made with all their touching birthday messages, and a cute doll with rosy cheeks and a pretty smile.
I would have cried if I was the crying type. But I'm not.
the sliced cake
Thanks loads, friends. I didn't see that coming.
That awesome lunch got me a bit more excited for whatever would happen on my actual birthday.
Well, a three-hour lunch with my parents, my uncle, and my father's business associates came next. We went to a Chinese restaurant with really fresh seafood. So fresh that I actually took the time to peel a plateful of shrimp and eat the guts inside. I'm generally too lazy to eat unpeeled shrimp, and I used to be allergic to it so that's saying something.
We talked about the usual things --- business, old college days, some people we all knew, and the like --- and ate until our stomachs started to weigh as much as a few heavy bricks. Then being gluttons for punishment, we headed to a nearby bakery.
Where I got another birthday cake. I was so surprised that I did not get any pictures of it. Suffice to say it was an apple pie (OK, not really a cake) with vanilla ice cream and a lone candle on top.
We also ordered a few other pastries and shared the calories so we would feel better about all this eating.
My uncle digs into his mango tart.
Again, I really enjoyed it. I was also touched at how my parents really wanted to spend time with me even though they were busy (which is why I ended up at that business lunch). I'm really glad they made the effort.
I guess that's it for now. Part II will follow by tomorrow.
Hope you enjoyed the weekend as much as I did, dear Reader.
Daisy on 8/21/2007 01:47:00 PM
A Family Night Out
And the midterm exams are OVERRRRRRR! *claps hands like a four-year-old* Now I can focus on other things!
Like eating out with my family for instance. We haven't eaten out together (meaning Dad, Mom, my sister, and me) for a long time.
It started with the four of us getting in the car, leaving our house, and then stopping to think about where we were actually going. We always get into situations like these; I don't know if all the indecision is based on people afraid to mention where they want to eat or just indifferent about the whole food thing.
Psychological analyses aside, we went to a good Japanese restaurant. And when I say good, I mean good. (Like the italics make any difference.) Not your neighborhood Japanese fastfood joint with frozen sushi and low-grade tempura, but a pretty authentic one with fragrant green tea.
Not that we're food snobs, by the way. My family isn't very picky; we'll go anywhere we enjoy be it cheap native grub where we eat without utensils or the nearest McDonalds.
Anyway, here are the major players of the night.
their children with the waitress in the corner
We started out with the complimentary appetizer: pickled cucumbers. My Mom's favorite but something my Dad and my sister wouldn't touch. I ended up eating their share LOL.
My Dad ordered a humongous bowl of noodles, and insisted this was not breaking his diet. My Mom, ever the eater, got some fried tofu in sauce, tempura, and even grilled salmon. Oh, and we all shared the rice.
Fried rice, to be exact. It's what this particular restaurant seemed known for. It was quite good: fragrant with really soft rice grains, chewy meat, and whatnot.
I got my favorite too. Raw fish.
succulent salmon sashimi
OK, so raw fish isn't everyone's idea of good food. My Mom won't touch it, and my aunt starts reciting health statistics on bacteria and other pathogens when I eat it. And I do agree with them. Maybe. But when fresh, high-quality sashimi is at my reach, yes, I'll eat it. I love how the fish is a little chewy with the subtle flavor of whatever it is (salmon, in this case) when it's cooked, and the smooth slide of it down my throat.
Most people eat this with a little wasabi (green seasoning) and soy sauce to blot out the fishiness. I prefer to pop the thing in my mouth without any of those condiments. I could eat all the pieces by myself. I did eat all the pieces by myself.
The family caught up with what we were doing lately: jobs, schools, amorous stalkers (in my sister's case), and other things. We laughed about stuff that happened and basically just talked. We haven't hung around together like that since... I'm not even sure when the last time was.
Talking like we did meant I forgot to take photos of some of the other food we had. Forgive me for that, dear Reader. I did take pictures of the empty dishes.
We inhaled a lot of green tea then started looking for dessert. My Dad popped into the bakery next door and announced they had coffee. This mattered to the rest of the family --- I am the lone tea drinker. --- so we headed there.
So what did I order? Hot milk. All of you can laugh; the waitress did. I don't know what I was thinking. And there was a lot of milk too; I didn't feel so good after finishing the whole thing. Or maybe I was just getting overly full.
We talked some more and took pictures of each other on our cellphone cameras. My Dad has a talent for getting shots of himself without seeing the viewfinder.
My sister was getting sleepy so we decided to go home after that. But it was a good way to spend the evening, and I'm not only talking about the food.
Daisy on 8/17/2007 07:53:00 AM
Studies, Sketches, Spaghetti, & Smiles
It's a stupid title, I know. The fact that all the topics of this post started with "S" just tickled my strange sense of the ridiculous.
My Mother is smiling.
My brain feels pretty fried from studying the whole weekend; it's crammed with drawings of industrial machinery, chemical formulas, and little useless tidbits I've picked up from the internet. OK, so that last one mentioned probably came from the occasional web surfing during my free time.
I'm tired but the exams aren't over yet. It's Intramurals week next week though (read: NO CLASS), so I'll get to draw even more then. An idea for my new blog design has finally popped up in my brain in detail but there's no time to draw it. Boo.
Oh well, I'll keep studying and praying I'll remember what I studied when I need it. But some of the stuff I'm studying is pretty interesting. And that's pretty cool; at least I'm not putting stuff I don't like in my head.
And yet another new sketch, ladies and gentlemen.
It's all pencilwork this time, and based on a photo of a smiling lady I saw in a book. It took a bit of work and lots of erasures but I think it turned out okay. (Thank God.) I can't believe I had this drawing in me. See it here.
I haven't put up photos of food I've been eating much lately. So here's a memorable meal. OK, it's real easy to cook (cooked spaghetti and olive oil, anyone?) but the way the spices and shrimp jazz the dish up was pretty tasty.
I can still remember it. Sigh.
Oh yes, before I forget...
Reese (our Shih Tzu) says hello. He's so cute when he smiles like that.
Daisy on 8/13/2007 10:40:00 PM
The Colored Rat, Etc.
The sketch is finished! See the whole thing on my DeviantArt account.
Hope it looks better than before I started coloring it.
I'm pretty tired, actually. I guess it's from all the studying. My sister and I are also feeling sick today; I think it's something we ate.
Oh well, just happy for the bit of free time I have right now. I don't have tests tomorrow so I'm hoping I can work more on the new blog design I want to put up here.
Anyway, I was reading through my archives and I can't believe some of the stuff I wrote. They just made me laugh (in a good way). It's fun to look back on everything I've written and gone through. All I can say is God's been good to me.
Some of my favorite posts are on the surgery our family performed, weird bits of my personality, & my last birthday :D
People seem to like Vietnamese Food Trip parts 1 and 2. At least that's what a lot of you guys come here to read.
I also found some more serious posts like finding out about my mild back problems & my sister's best friend dying. Apparently, I am occasionally serious. :)
Just looking back, I guess. And that was not required reading, people. :)
Daisy on 8/09/2007 07:04:00 PM
Rats On The Brain
Out of the blue, my sister and mother suggested watching the last show of Ratatouille in the mall last Monday. It was a very spur-of-the-moment thing. And it was great.
Maybe not the best movie I've seen, but much better than what I've seen in a long time.
Or maybe it's just because it's about food and cooking. Most everyone who knows me (or visits my blog) know I love topics like that.
The animation was good. The rats (Remy and company) were extremely cute! The settings were very well-drawn; I sometimes forgot I was watching an animated film.
The plot was also very original. I mean, who'd think of bringing out a movie on a rat who wanted to become a chef in a restaurant? And then teaming up with a chef who can't cook to follow his dreams?
Disney and Pixar did, apparently.
Anyway, I enjoyed it a lot and I'll probably be getting the DVD when it's out. There are movie stills and a complete spoiler-filled synopsis of the plot here.
Unsurprisingly, I seem to have Ratatouille on the brain this week. I started sketching a rat cooking in a kitchen. I'm adding some shadows and extra stuff to it. I'll post it here and in my DeviantArt account when it's finished.
For now, here's the sketch without any colors.
I wish I could work on it non-stop but midterms are coming up next week. So I'll have to put it on hold again.
Studying first so I can do the rest of the things I want to do. :)
Well, I just wanted to make a quick update. I have to head to my grandmother's house now. Bye!
Daisy on 8/05/2007 06:29:00 PM
Lunch, Zits, & Midterms
I think that plate of chorizo (native sausage), scrambled egg, and newly-cooked rice was the perfect treat for lunch after stressful classes.
Not that I binge when I am emotionally unstable, but good food does cheer me up when my schoolwork seems shot in the foot.
Especially today. I was so behind everyone else in lab class; they were moving to a new part of the experiment --- some were actually finished --- while I was still calculating and redoing the same part of the procedure. I was so stressed out that my hands shook while writing and using my calculator. But God's always good, and I finally got the solutions right after the three-hour period. I'm still behind, and have to make up for it during my free time though.
I'm just relieved that part of the experiment (which I've been doing for six hours) is done.
On a happier note, check out this comic panel. It really made me laugh.
Zits is one of my favorite comic strips. I've been reading it since I started high school.
Midterms are coming next week. I'm looking forward to it. I mean, sure, I have a ton to study, but nothing beats the truckload of free time I get next week. I have no class next Monday, morning classes on Tuesday, only three hours of class next Thursday, and only an hour of class on either Wednesday or Friday. Life is good.
I'll actually have time to do other things I want to do: draw, read my Bible more, catch up on a good biography, and maybe make a blog design. I've actually been trying to revamp my blog, but I'm still going over exactly how I want the new design to look like. Pretty picky, I guess, but I figure the new design will last for months. I'd like to have something I could really be proud of.
I've also been studying more advanced HTML codes lately. Maybe something I've learned will show up in future designs. :)
Oh, I almost forgot. I mentioned a Don Moen concert I'd gone to in my last post.
Well, it was pretty cool. I'm sorry I don't have any pictures to show for it. I did take some but they didn't look all that good.
Anyway, the audience danced, cried, clapped, and sung along to all the songs. We had a great time though some parts were a little slow. It was a little disappointing though how he left immediately after the show. Maybe he was pretty tired from jetlag or something. They're going to have a lot of shows to do after all.
I guess that's about it. I'm getting sleepy. Until next time then!
Daisy on 8/01/2007 09:49:00 PM