Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2nd half of 2010

i cannot believe it's been 6 months already.  indeed the 2nd half of 2010 has served me well.  my cousins finally visited us this summer.  LA>Vegas>SF was a lot of fun.  i'm so happy that they celebrated my sister's 30th with her.  as always they are in our thoughts and we can't wait to see them again.  i'm sure i will be in london in 2011 for a chau wedding.

4th quarter really stuck out as our dine about town adventure in SF.
-sotto mare for my surprised bday dinner organized by my sweetie, seafood was yummy but not to die for, the scallop entree impressed me
-wayfare tavern for sweetie's bday dinner for two.  this is the former rubicon's space.  the overall experience was good but not great.  fried chicken was tender, learned about brining chicken with buttermilk.  bday boy liked his beef short rib.  $10 valet is ridiculous but hey it's SF.
-michael mina courtesy of crosslink!  the maine lobster pot pie was delicious!  the winner for appetizer was the hamachi crudo.  come here if you feel like throwing away a couple of benjamins.
-chapeau! for TY's holiday dinner.  this is officially one of our favorite restaurants in SF.  i normally don't like french food (not sure if i do yet) but this french bistro really blew me away.  we generally ordered items that you could probably find at any high end californian restaurant and skipped the escargot (was it even on the menu?).  the best filet mignon and pork loin we've both had.  the profiterole dessert was divine.

i wouldn't do 2010 justice if i didn't mention hawaii.  i finally visited hawaii, big island to be exact.  we did some uber fun activities like snorkeling and tried ziplining for the very first time.  the rainforests were sooo beautiful.  we saw the milky way, it does exist!  i am going to be 100% honest and say that i did not love hawaii.  it is too quiet and remote for me.  i understand that people go there to relax and do nothing but for me  i feel like i can do that at home, why travel so far?

we got a lot of visitors in town the past week.  the highlight was T's sister getting engaged during her stay with us.  i'm so happy that we were a part of the engagement planning.  congrats Pris & Rich!  before i go, also congrats to Hugh & Jamie for giving birth to baby Carter at 6pm today.  I can't wait to meet him in a couple of days!

Happy New Year Everyone!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Happy 7th of July!

Hello readers!  I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July celebration.  We sure did!  After two days of cleaning and a day long of cooking, we are delighted to say that our party was a success!  Everyone liked our food and entertainment (taboo until 2am!). 

I'm so glad that the work week is almost over.  I haven't seen my girlfriends in over a month so it'll be really nice to see them finally this weekend.  My crazy friends are going to take on the pho challenge at Pho Garden.  They need to finish 2 lbs of beef and 2 lbs of noodle to be crowned winners.  That is a lot of unnecessary mess to digest!  I hope at least one of them beat the challenge or that's $22 and a recognizable loser!  haha...

We are finally going to Hawaii!!!  Bad news: it's not until another 6 months.  Good news: airfare only cost us $128 for the two of us!  Even better, $300 for 4 nights at the Hilton Waikoloa Village!  We'll be there with Shelly/Chester.  We are basically tagging along as they planned the daily itinerary already.

I have a feeling there'll be more exciting news to come for the second half of 2010.  Stay tuned my friends...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

london > barcelona > frankfurt

so my europe itinerary has changed.  i'm skipping paris because of convenience.  frankfurt will be a connecting destination.  the best part about going to europe nowadays is that the EURO is weakening daily!

london - my gracious cousin has taken a day off to spend with me.  it's always touching to see my family that i see only once a year.

barcelona - gaudi, picasso and dali.  i'm in art heaven. 

frankfurt - hmmm...the trading capital of Europe?  let's see how it stacks up to NY.

11 more days!!!

Monday, April 26, 2010

another annual europe trip!

i'm so excited to announce that i'm going to europe again! this time the destinations are: london->paris->barcelona. thomas will be working in paris so we thought it would be a great opportunity for us to make a personal trip out of it!

it'll be my first time to barcelona or spain so i'm really anxious to see what it has to offer. i was so impressed with italy last year and i hope spain will not disappoint as well. since i am such an architecture junkie, i'm looking forward to all of gaudi's work. i wish i had more spending money to purchase a higher quality camera so i can capture the vibrant colors of his work.

it'll be my first time to paris with thomas and we're going to do a walking tour of the "city of lights". eiffel tower is a must! i'd love to see le sacre coeur too since i missed it the last two times. i hope this trip will relieve me of my distaste for paris.

london is an obligatory trip to see family, 'nough said.

counting down, 3 more weeks!!!

Monday, March 22, 2010

dad is in china

dad has arrived to nanning, china at 9am california time today. he won't be back until april 19th. i wish i could telecommute from elk grove and spend every night with mom. mom, i will be home in 4 days to have dinner with you!

this past weekend thomas and i visited napa valley together for the first time. we visited these sites in chronological order: petrified forest, sterling vineyard, castello di amorosa, rutherford grill, v. sattui, downtown st. helena and back to rutherford grill. i am beginning to understand the whole buzz about wine knowledge but i still think they're all creative grape juice. one thing for sure is that i used to dislike all red wine but now i can appreciate a nice glass of cabernet sauvignon. the next time i'm in the area, i'd like to visit chateau montelena, ca'toga and robert louis stevenson state park.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

dad gone for a month

i found out that my dad is going to asia with 30 of his village buddies from mid march to mid april. my poor mom will be all alone in that massive house. :( with the exception of march 6 weekend, i'll be spending every weekend of march at home to keep mom companied.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

what 2010 brings

i mentioned that i was injured in my last blog. as of a week ago, i had healed (so i thought). i immediately went jogging on the treadmill for 3 miles and felt pretty good. needless to say, the hip and knee pains crept back the very next day. i've learned that when some things are broken, it can't be mended. no more running in 2010.

2010 also brings weddings to the table:
-feb 20: peter's in foster city, guest
-april 10: chris and shar's in san francisco, bridesmaid
-june 6: gladys' in seattle, guest
-sept 5: vong's in sacramento, guest

i don't consider myself as someone who has a lot of friends but through life you do come by a number of people. i feel honored everytime i am invited to a wedding. if i consider you a friend, i will attend. there was only one occasion where i was invited and didn't attend. thinking back, that was the right decision.

every year i try to visit my family in london. however, this year they're coming to me! the dates are still unconfirmed but i'm really excited. it'll be their first time to california/las vegas, most first time to america! i plan to take two weeks off to show them around. should be good times.

i only have 3 weeks of vacation but managed to roll over some from previous years. i intend to visit paris (again) in march when thomas is there for work. it's always a new experience when you travel to a familiar destination but with different company. the last couple of times when i was in paris i was with family. my family in general don't like to visit museums or scope out ancient artifacts. thomas and i, on the other hand, do appreciate them. it'll be a quick 4 day vacation but we plan to visit: le lourve, eiffel tower (duh), notre dame, sacred coeur, saint sulprice (to see the meridian line that i learned in Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code) and versailles (to see the great chateau de versailles). can't wait!

next week is chinese new year, year of the tiger. i will be in sacramento with family. thomas will be in So. Cali with his family. valentine's day happened to fall on the same weekend but since we will not be together, we celebrated today. we started the day at cha cha cha. forgot how good their cuban food was. the paella wasn't as good as fresca's but their cajun shrimp and mussels made up for it. we walked off our meal along the infamous haight/asbury streets. can you say 420? there was a store with the advertisement "puff puff pass", how funny. we made our last stop in the city at katsura garden, japantown. i love that place, the japanese owner is so sweet. we picked up a small potted orchid for our ledge. there are two stems so they naturally look like antennas atop our tv! haha...

tomorrow thomas is cooking his delicious chicken noodle soup topped with my bro's homemade wonton. yummy!!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

happy new year 2010!

happy new year everyone! updates since my last blog:

-finished the macau half marathon in a disappointing 2:45. needless to say, i didn't make it on the records and did not get a finisher's medal. my biggest complaint about the entire event was that i was not permitted to cross the finish line. i still feel like i didn't finish the race. after the race i was in total pain. my hips, knees, ankles, you name it felt like they were gonna give up. after more than a month now i still feel the pain in my hips. i've officially retired from running. i say that now but i might register for the nike women's half marathon to take place on oct 17, 2010 in SF. my cousin from london said she'll run it with me if we are selected through random lottery. i'll let fate decide if i shall run again.

-hong kong was fun. not my favorite vacation destination but it was my first time to Asia and i was with my siblings. i felt like king there because i was considered "above average" in the financial ladder. i thought everything was a steal! $10 for a sweater dress! also discovered G2000 where i can get a full work attire for under $50 USD! dim sum was out of this world. peking duck was a disappointment though, you can get the same quality in berkeley, ca. hong kong people are still rude but we met a few nice ones.

(congrats to ying and tim on their recent engagement! i couldn't attend their engagement party because I was still in Asia)

-christmas was nice at home with my family in elk grove. i also got to see my family in london via cam so that was very nice. i can't wait until our next cam session on chinese new year. another highlight was seeing my friends at van and samson's new place. it's always comforting to see my friends make the first plunge into moving in with the significant other. i wish them all the best.

-thomas' family visited us in turns so we spent a good few days with his parents and sisters in mid dec and his bro + wife on new years. we went to a friend's house party and crashed in her living room. met a really sweet gay couple. i love when total strangers can have a good time together.

-i recently hosted a post holiday dinner at my place and it went better than expected. i was so touched that friends from all over came by. we finally watched amara and scott's wedding videos and pics. man the videos were mad C-H-E-E-S-Y but they gave us some good laughs. what i really liked about that night was that all of the bf's were bonding. awwwww...ended the night watching food, inc. never looking at beef the same way!!!

-for 2010 i vow to eat healthier and exercise more. today is jan 13 and i've only exercised 3 times this year. thomas bought me jillian michaels' workout dvds. the kickboxing set was very much like tae-bo. it wasn't really challenging for me. i've only watched the "front" strength training dvd and yet to participate. i have the "back" too and i'm going to watch that now.

wishing everyone a fruitful 2010!