Strunk & White’s Reject Child:

August 16, 2010

Foodie-ing, Knott’s Berry Farm, and Portillo’s

Filed under: Food,Friends,Fun,theBF — Aubrie A. @ 4:30 am

This summer has been a foodie-ing adventure. BBQs, Providence, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, and home-cooked meals have definitely made this summer a happy eating experience.

First two pictures are from an Oaxacan restaurant called Guelaguetza Restaurant. W and I tried some grasshoppers because the owner told us to try them, a chicken tamale, and four different kinds of mole. Third picture is of the meatballs they have at Ikea. As you can tell, my piggy boyfriend had a whole plate of mac n cheese on the side. Fourth picture is of the yummy Thomas Kemper vanilla cream soda my boyfriend ordered at Tender Greens. (Since he liked it so much, I actually bought some from BevMo for him. Y’all should try it too! Four bottles for $4.99.) Fifth picture is of the roasted duck (egg) noodle soup I ordered at SanamLuang. The last picture is of the marinated Pacific cod I prepared for my boyfriend for dinner. It also has a garnish of peas, sweet corn, chopped potatoes, shallots, and pancetta sauteed in garlic and a little bit of butter.


BF and I were supposed to go to Vegas this past weekend for our friend Howard’s 30th birthday extravaganza but for personal (totally different) reasons we could not make it. Last minute, we decided to drop by Knott’s Berry Farm for a couple of hours for my friend Dan’s belated birthday casual get-together. We both had work but it was okay because we just got there later than everyone else. I took some pictures, as you can see. :)

I got to Knott’s around 5 p.m. (boyfriend got there around 7 p.m.) and by the time 8:30 p.m. rolled around, we decided to get some dinner at Portillo’s Hot Dog in Buena Park (right down the street from Knott’s Berry Farm). S left so the six of us had some chili dogs, polish dogs (1st picture), chili fries (2nd picture), and I had an Italian Beef sandwich (3rd picture). The birthday boy recommended this place because it’s as authentic as it can get if you want Chicago style dogs outside of Chicago. Mmm! I definitely recommend this place. Awesome food and interesting decor. We closed the place down and parted ways.

My foodie-ing adventure isn’t over yet. Hawaii is coming up! I can’t wait to post pictures of the great eats Oahu has to offer. I’ll update next time with something more substantial. Too tired to really write anything right now.

Have a great week everyone! Hope you had an awesome weekend. Ciao.

August 5, 2010

Physical Therapy Sess., Fourth of July, and The Huntington Library

Filed under: Food,Fun,theBF — Aubrie A. @ 2:00 am

Here’s an entry that’s been in my saved drafts folder for a month now. :) Oops!

So after finishing up my spinal decompression sessions back in February, I decided that I should seek the help of a Physical Therapist to make sure I’m working out the right way and to really fix this back problem once and for all. Well, let me rephrase that — my BOYFRIEND decided that I should seek the help of a PT. :) He’s been immensely helpful and encouraging with regards to my health, more so than I’ve been to myself. You’d think someone in the healthcare industry would have better sense than to let her body deteriorate :P but thank God for D because he’s really been making it an easy and fun process. :) I found a great physical therapist in Santa Monica who I’ve gone to see three times now. He’s wonderful and I can’t wait to improve with his help. I’ve never felt better! Time to take part in a triathlon. ;) Kidding.

7/4/2010 – Fourth of July was eventful, as my friends Howard and Nevin invited D and me to a BBQ! Nevin’s parents, who one a huge mansion in Hancock Park, were hosting (or were they out of town?) and we had the house to cook, drink, and goof around as much as we liked. Howard was on the grill and he cooked everything from steaks to hot dogs to burgers to fish. Many of our mutual friends were present (all of whom I’ve met through Howard) and we had a great time. I really appreciate hanging out with such a great group of fun, smart individuals! Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos because I was too focused on the food and company but did shoot one video of some of the fireworks display! Thanks Howard for taking care of the entertainment (and putting yourself at risk for lighting all 2389473284 of them. ;P)

7/10/2010 – My boyfriend and I went on a rather random date to the Huntington Library one Saturday. Considering I’m not working on Saturdays this summer, it provided for some great quality day time with my love. Considering the last time I went to HL was when I was in high school, I was excited to go on a picture-taking spree with my hot photographer so we could compare whose pictures are better. ;) Hey, he may have the years of experience under his belt but I have a “natural eye” for this type of stuff okay! :P


My camera ran out of battery 10 pictures in (yes, I’m stupid for neglecting to pack an extra battery) so we used my boyfriend’s nicer camera. You can’t see the quality because I’ve made the pictures so small but they’re gorgeous in full view. These are a mix of his and my pictures.

After a hot and adventurous day at the gardens, we decided to get some seafood goodies for dinner. We Yelped and located San Marino Seafood Market and man, am I glad we did! (And he wanted to have Vietnamese food!) Psh. :P Man, their clam chowder (I had white, boyfriend had red) were so delicious. I ordered oysters even though my boyfriend doesn’t like them, and an ahi tuna salad. Holy smokes is this place good. Everything was so fresh and tasty. D had a scallops plate and his mashed potatoes are heavenly. After dinner, we sat outside and had some Intelligentsia Coffee and talked. He and I can go just about anywhere and just talk for hours and hours. I love that!


Nomnomnom!

Write more later; must run to D’s place to help him settle into his new place now. :D Yay!

July 7, 2010

I find my boyfriend endlessly amusing.

Filed under: Love,Relationships,theBF — Aubrie A. @ 1:33 am

I’ve dated some interesting men in my past; a 6’7″ Taiwanese basketball player, a Japanese heir/socialite, and an out-of-the-closet foot-fetishist — all of these men made for very colorful, individual pieces in the mosaic that is my dating life.

However, in the end, they just couldn’t sustain my interest. I realized they either: 1) weren’t who I’d thought they were; 2) left it entirely up to me to entertain them or sustain the fun dynamic in our relationship; or 3) couldn’t stimulate me … uh, intellectually.

I am not someone who bores easily because I can amuse myself all day, every day. If my parents forced me to marry someone truly boring, I’m sure I’d make the best of it by making a fool out of myself — that’s just the kind of person I am. However, considering I do have a choice, I choose to be with someone who will not only challenge me intellectually but incite me to climb new heights.

D not only slays me with his quirk-tastic humor but his brain works like Wikipedia; I believe he is the smartest man I’ve dated up to date. I don’t know how someone can jam so much information in his brain the way he does; he can hold steady conversations on all things related to history, computers, politics (ESPECIALLY THIS!), religion, literature, health, film, authors, science, philosophy, etc. Renaissance Man, I’d like to call him.

Not only is his brain a veritable playground for random information on even the most obscure topics — he has a way of motivating me to learn new things as well!

I love how even though he and I see each other regularly (3-4 times/week), we still manage to have so much to share with one another on the phone, for hours at that. Every night! I find myself chuckling randomly at the fact that I am dating the most random guy I know. In any given night, our topics will traverse from the physical realm (current events, daily goings-on, etc.) to a metaphysical one (philosophical discussions, religion, etc.) with a blink of an eye.

Towards the final leg of our conversation once, he went from talking about how my face is “made up of so many little curves; it’s like a Disney character’s” to a discussion about birth-control methods and estradiol/progesterone – progestin talk, to a discussion on how to prevent and how not to treat DVT thrombosis, to the Marilyn Monroe Hormone (and how I used to be that gal).

Then we somehow started talking about our old relationships and how he wished he had met me back in college; we could’ve saved ourselves the trouble and heartache by getting together earlier and who knows — maybe we’d be married by now, he’d speculated. I told him I’m happy we have each other now because we were just kids back then. I mean, with the wisdom we’ve gained from our unique experiences, we’re truly ready to take on a more serious relationship. We’re more sure of what we want and need and we’re also more able to appreciate what we have with each other because hey, finding a person to have a great, balanced relationship with is NOT EASY! It took me 13 years, for crying out loud.

He, then, responded with something so very sweet:

“I know. But this life is too short and it would’ve been nice to have those few extra years with you.” :*) <turns to mush>

I love our sporadic daytime conversations and our sometimes three-hour long nightly conversations. I never thought I’d meet someone I can talk to about so many different things but now that I have, I’m never letting go! :P Muahahaha.

June 21, 2010

Junior High Dance @ Freak City, LA

Filed under: Friends,Fun — Aubrie A. @ 11:43 pm

For our friend Jiho’s birthday, we celebrated by going to a Junior High themed dance party held at Freak City (Hollywood, CA) by the World Dodgeball Society. I didn’t want to drag my DSLR to the club (which I should’ve done because that’s where all of the action took place!) but I did take a few while the boys got ready at Howard‘s house. (Update: I took some of the pictures from Howard and Chris’s cameras and posted them on here!) I got to roll with seven sexy men … oh what a lucky gal I am!

Once we got to Freak City, we took a look around and realized man, this place is creepy. It really felt like we’d stepped onto the set of the SAW movie series. Anyway, the party was a bit slow at first but around midnight, things started picking up. With the appearance of Hottub, an awesome crunk band, and the consumption of their spiked punch, everyone started having a really good time! At some point, D started battling with other dancers (of course) and I was a very proud girlfriend. There were women around me who were getting super *excited* and they were making it very obvious they wanted his attention but nope, he didn’t even bat an eyelash. A man who doesn’t have roving eyes? Yeah, he is one of a kind.


In some ways, I really do think Ivy Leaguers know how to party harder. Haha.


They all look so cute … esp. the one in green. ;)~

Thankfully, the flash on the camera provided some light but man, I don’t know how those fellas got around with those sunglasses on because it was SO dark in there! There were a lot of little crevices where people could go and “hang out” but honestly, how can you even think about “hanging out” at a place like this?

We all had a lot of fun and I have to admit there were a lot of epic pictures taken. ;)  After the party around 2:30 a.m., we decided to take on IHOP for some after-hour grub. I just had hot tea but man did the men chow down on some artery clogging goodness. Got home around 4:30 a.m. and knocked out because I had to wake up early for Father’s Day!

Will update again with pictures of the dodgeball game I’m going to tonight (Monday)!



:)

June 8, 2010

Sex and The City is bad for Women.

Filed under: Love,Rant,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 3:36 am

When I first started watching Sex and The City (hereinafter referred to as SATC) back in 2001, the college student in me was mesmerized by many aspects of the show such as: each character’s eccentric personality, the witty banters, and most importantly, the unique relationships formed with men whether casual or serious. I also loved the fact that this show centered on the friendships these women had with one another, and all of the gratuitous nudity, sex, and fashion were icing on the cake.

I mean, having watched Korean dramas during my most formative years, I grew up with this pre- and ill-conceived notion that if two guys weren’t fighting over me at once (extra points for battling with light sabers) or if one of them wasn’t my long lost brother, love just wasn’t there. I was tired of seeing the same story lines with the same love triangles and instead, I wanted a show that allowed me to be fairly noncommittal when it came to my emotions but engaged enough to stay committed each season. I thought this show did exactly that.

Well, at least that’s what I used to think. I’m now at the juicy, ripe age of 29, and I guess Father Time felt it was appropriate and necessary to lift the veil of ideality and show me the true face of reality. (And it’s not pretty.) After watching both movies, I realized: we now have a neurotic dating “guru” turned Mrs. Laissez-faire in a “sparkle”-lacking marriage; a sex-goddess turned desperate, mutant strain of upper east side menopausal; a once witty spitfire turned wise mom of one; and a confident lass turned frustrated mom-of-two with insecurities abound.

Sending the gals on a trip to beautiful Abu Dhabi on a lark is supposed to make us disregard this hasty revision? I will not be distracted by the decadence and tomfoolery! I understand characters need to evolve at some point blahblahblah but I feel like a forlorn mother watching her child go through the horrific, behavioral changes that accompany puberty. I know they can’t remain naïve girls of 35 forever but as I used to say to my overly eager boyfriends during my late teens, “Slow it down; you’re doing too much at once.”

(more…)

June 5, 2010

Oahu!

Filed under: Travel — Aubrie A. @ 3:52 am

D and I were supposed to go to Florence and Greece back in May but those plans fell through because the timing wasn’t right. :( Since fall is a bad time to go to Europe (and as a consequence we won’t be able to go until later on this year or maybe even next year), we decided to take a trip to Waikiki, Honolulu on the island of Oahu this Labor Day weekend (9/2-9/7/10). We were aching for a trip and couldn’t wait until later to go somewhere!

I can’t wait to relax by the beach, sip some beer, eat awesome local fare, and partake in some island activities like parasailing and luaus! I’ve been working out and eating healthy as usual but it’s time to pump up my workout so I’m super toned for this summer! Got to look hot next to my hot boyfriend. ;) I’m super excited!

May 27, 2010

Birthday Bonanza 2010

Filed under: Family,Food,Friends,Fun,Me — Aubrie A. @ 5:16 am

Last year, I wasn’t able to celebrate my 28th birthday because my back went out of commission. I was bedridden for three weeks, and it took me all summer to get comfortable and resume my normal activities without experiencing pain. Suffice it to say, my birthday was the last thing on my mind at that point.

Fast forward to this year. I wanted to do something to celebrate my last year in my twenties. (Where does the time go? I could’ve sworn I turned 21 just a few years ago. ;)) I didn’t go “crazy” to make up for my 28th, but I’d have to say that it was an eventful birthday indeed, and I’m so very fortunate to have spent it with my parents, one-of-a-kind boyfriend, and wonderful friends. :)

Click for more.

(more…)

May 17, 2010

Girls’ Day Out – Venice Boardwalk

Filed under: Friends,Fun — Aubrie A. @ 5:04 am

The girls and I haven’t really had much time for a “Girls-only” type of outing in a while so we decided to finally get to it! With everyone getting married and partnering up, it’s getting harder and harder for the ladies to get together for some girl-time.

Today, we decided to go check out the Venice Boardwalk because well, I thought the weather would be better. Although the sky was overcast, we had a great time! After a lengthy brunch at Rose Cafe & Market (a three-minute drive from the boardwalk), we drove around relentlessly for a parking spot.

We finally found a spot near the Venice Canal, where locals can canoe down a shallow bed of water. As we walked our way towards the boardwalk, we even stopped by an open house to check out a multi-million dollar Venice home that is up for sale. I’m getting one of those babies in the future.

Once we reached the boardwalk, we were met with the stench of body odor and rotting trash — thanks for the wonderful welcome, Venice! However, once we got past Muscle Beach, we were in the clear. We had a great time just walking around and people-watching, not to mention shopping and talking. We walked a great deal today (my poor feet are evidence of such) but no complaints as nothing gets your heart pounding like a solid 5 mile trek, in thong slippers at that. ;)

Here are some pictures I took while we were out and about. I really wanted to take more pictures (of unique individuals, artwork, and unique items for sale) but I didn’t want to offend anyone, and I was too busy trying to catch up with my girlfriends. They’re not really the picture taking types. ;) Considering D loves to take pictures, maybe I’ll go with him next time to get some decent shots!

All pictures were taken on auto as I didn’t want to waste time adjusting aperture according to each subject … so don’t expect any award-winning photography here. ;) Not that I’m even there yet considering I’m such a newb!

I had a great weekend. Considering my birthday is this Wednesday and I have many things planned throughout this week and weekend, I’m sure I’ll be updating next Sunday with the birthday wrap-up. Stay-tuned!

May 10, 2010

Punishing your Lover

Filed under: Love,Me,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 4:26 am

… and not in an S&M kind of way. bitter

A little background info: my father was and is the quintessential father-figure, and my step-mother’s practicality and purposeful indifference provided balance to my grandparents’ coddling. Although I didn’t grow up with a platinum spoon in my mouth, I grew up extremely rich in love.

Did I even think for a second I’d have issues with dating and relationships? Never.

Fast forward to me, age 17. Although I was super busy leading the fabulous life as a virgin hoochie with severe underlying nerd tendencies cool, I made sure to provide my then-boyfriend with all of the cliché folded-hearts, stars, and love letters he’d ever [not] want. Jealousy? What’s that? Possessiveness? Psh, that’s what the ugly-folk wear as an armor. Although he cheated on me with a friend in the end, I didn’t let that single experience taint my idealism.

I went out on a few dates in college but as expected, I was met with a slew of modern-day Lotharios. However, I somehow found myself settling down at the age of 19 with a guy I wound up dating for four years. That relationship was very healthy and we only parted ways because I realized we were much too different. I guess I can go as far as to say that that relationship really recharged my batteries and restored some faith that I, too, can have a normal relationship devoid of cheating and lying.

I won’t bore you with the sordid details of all of my past relationships. Suffice it to say, there were some good relationships, and there were some unpleasant ones. However, despite the letdowns and heartaches, I held steadfast to the belief that I should not let past experiences with a few “wrong” guys color my perception of love and relationships. I wanted to give myself a solid, unadulterated chance at love, at whatever cost.

It wasn’t until last year that I realized I had developed some underlying issues along the way. My perception of myself as a good, loving girlfriend was swiftly kicked in the butt as I groped through issues with jadedness and self-pity. The emotional shrapnel from my battles in the past had converged, and formed a mosaic that put to shame the picture I had of myself as a good girlfriend.

Why the drama? I had ended relations with a man who seemed great at the time but only after the fact did I realize he wasn’t who he’d seemed. In fact, he was the polar opposite. I carried a lot of bitter feelings after that relationship, for the first time ever. I had thought he was so different, so very different from the rest but he proved himself to be the same. I never thought I’d be one of those individuals who’d have baggage after a relationship; I was always the one who told my friends to have a tabula rasa from which to construct any healthy relationship. But damn my trusting heart. All of my past feelings of betrayal and hurt that I had [inadvertently] suppressed for so long had gotten caught at the bottleneck of my sanity, and once shaken, those feelings came bursting out …

… and all of the rancid content fell upon my current relationship.

It’s all so alien to me how I went from hating fights in my younger years to starting them in my older (and what seemed wiser) years. I went from being overly-considerate to demanding he understand MY perspective, regardless of whether or not he thought they were trivial. I went from being a great girlfriend — to one of questionable temperament.

And yet he persisted. Being the good man he is, he held my hand as I unraveled the tangled mess in my head, and the cluster-fuck that was my heart. I know this all sounds so dramatic but I really couldn’t understand why things I’d normally let slide became such monstrosities. Why was I punishing someone I love so much? Why was I making him pay for the mistakes of past lovers?

I’ve since pushed aside those feelings of bitterness as I don’t need my failed relationship to color my otherwise clean slate. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I’m no different from those who hurt, those who bemoan falling into destructive relationships. I believe accepting that I’m no superhero-girlfriend has made me more open to changes. I know that being the man that he is, D deserves so much more than a has-been good girlfriend, and I refuse to let the better part of me die with the memories of old relationships.

I now understand that all of those times I’d dismissed a friend’s girlfriend or boyfriend for “having issues” I was being incredibly judgmental. It’s so easy for us to waive off a psycho or another, saying this or that person has issues because he or she didn’t deal with a particular situation in a favorable manner. Everyone goes through hardships in their lives and in no way was I an exception. People of all ages, religion, and color go through their own battles daily and they don’t deserve scrutiny and narrow-mindedness from others who may not be able to relate. I got off of my high-horse and faced reality, as I knew I needed to in order to get over this hump. And being at ground-level, looking squarely into the eyes of my beloved, I’ve realized — I’m only human, and so long as D and I face any and all obstacles with honesty, earnestness, and persistence, there isn’t anything we can’t accomplish together.

I’ll always strive to treat you with the utmost sincerity, love, and consideration, as you don’t deserve anything less. Thank you for being all that you are — an ear, a shoulder, a hand to hold, my support system … an awe-inspiring confluence of both lover and best friend. I am so blessed to have you in my life.

I love you.

May 3, 2010

In the works …

Filed under: Art,Fun — Aubrie A. @ 7:38 am

I have a few cards in progress (none of them completely done) so I decided to post a few up. I’ve always enjoyed drawing on cards but I’m pretty much a novice when it comes to creating cards. Hopefully with more practice, I’ll get better at this thing!


Very simple and mountain-man chic. Some of my cards will be very simple whereas some others will be intricate in detail.


Another simple, brown paper bag-esque style. Still need to decorate the inside of the card. This one won’t need an envelope as the last picture shows where you can put the addresses/stamp. The card will be folded within itself.

My heavily decorated purple card with a pull-out note. This one will go inside of an envelope. D preferred it without the big yellow heart but I just needed something to POP. Maybe I’ll make the heart smaller or use a muted color instead of the yellow.

Anyway, more to come soon! :)

April 28, 2010

Another pointless post with pictures!

Filed under: Art,Food,Me — Aubrie A. @ 9:44 am

These were taken with my DSLR (click for the full version). I’m not posting these because I think they represent any skill I may have; all of these can be taken by a novice (which I am) with a point-and-shoot. I just picked these pictures because they’re colorful and clear! ;) But I think during this process (of picture taking mania), you’ll find out quite a bit about me.

Colors, colors, and more colors!

1) My Omega-3 Gummi-Vitamins;
2) Tabs on one of my old nursing textbooks;
3) Stack of books I adore!

Getting back to my arts-n-crafts! Those little boxes are containers for thin mints/jellybeans or trinkets. They’re easy to make!
The card is what I just started working on; it’s about 20% done. I’ll be posting some pictures of my card-creations. ;)

My parents came back from Asia (Japan, China, and Korea) bearing many gifts.  However, two really stood out: my uncle sent a digital photo frame because he found out I’ve been getting into photography!  Nifty little sucker, that frame.  I can’t wait to upload 298374234 of my pictures and let those babies play! My parents brought these anchovy “chips” from Korea; they bought a big bag of ‘em at the open market. At first I just rolled my eyes because they looked disgusting but after trying one, I was hooked!  They taste a little spicy, too.

(Taken with my iPhone and MacBook.) I don’t know if everyone I’ve been hanging out with has noticed but I permed my hair.  I was anti-perm for so long but finally decided oh why not! I like it because it gives my hair volume. I really need to get rid of that orangey patch of hair, I know.  In the second picture, I’m covering my right cheek to minimize the look of my chipmunk cheeks (due to extra sodium ingestion these days). Also, I have a pimple on my right jawline. -_- (My bf thinks I’m totally trying to fake not having these bulbous cheeks o’mine by strategically placing my hair+hand over the side of my face but whatever … he’s the one who LIKES fatty cheeks!)

I’ll be back with more random pictures this week!

April 20, 2010

Sunday-Funday: Nikon D3000 Dslr Purchase

Filed under: Fun,Toys — Aubrie A. @ 10:19 am

I’ve been wanting to get a DSLR for a few months now and when I make up mind on what I want, I must have it. I did my due diligence before buying it, though, as my OCD kicks in and I can’t just make an impulsive purchase. Considering I’m new to this photography biz, I was open to choosing between a Nikon D40 and Nikon D3000. However, I liked the D3000 more in the end.

Read my review on Yelp for Samy’s Camera for more details about my purchase. ;) I love my camera!

D and I went to Larchmont afterwards for a light repast of wraps and smoothies. We sat around and he taught me how to use my camera! Considering he is a photographer on the side, he really knows his stuff. He’s also a wonderful, patient teacher! We took a few photos there but I don’t want to clutter this page with any more photos than I have to post up (and these are all so big!).

We decided to go to The Grove to watch How To Train A Dragon in 3D. This movie is funny, exciting, and extremely cute. I’m generally not a fan of those 3D glasses because wearing them gives me a headache (Avatar) but because I was so into the movie, I felt fine. I really recommend this to people of all ages! I think D liked it as well. Next movie up is Kick-Ass!

After the movie ended, we decided to walk around a bit although all of the stores were closed. I took a few photos of our surroundings. Click for a few photos!

(more…)

April 8, 2010

Ravioli Night

Filed under: Food — Aubrie A. @ 5:33 am

Having a sleep-over partner brings out the domestic side of me. Makes me want to cook, clean, grocery shop, and organize things all day. For fun! *Shakes head* Anyway, I knew D and I would get out late after work so I decided to cook dinner earlier in the day when I had a break. (All of the pictures were taken with my iPhone then jazzed up with the ShakeItPhoto app. to give it a Polaroid feel.

Everything is homemade! On the menu, two kinds of raviolis tonight:

  • Portobello mushroom raviolis in tomato sauce (mushrooms, onions, garlic, basil, crushed black pepper), shrimp, with parmesan cheese and parsley flakes sprinkled on top.

(more…)

March 31, 2010

Webcam Chat

Filed under: Me — Aubrie A. @ 8:43 am

Tonight I had my first webcam chat!

For a very long time, I didn’t have a webcam (I’d say a few years) but I’ve been able to view others during this time. Conversely, there have been times when someone could see me but I couldn’t see them. Never have I had a time when the both of us could see each other … until tonight!

I bought my Macbook in November but I’ve never used the webcam feature other than to snap a few photos a couple of months ago. I keep forgetting it’s there! And considering the only person I’d actually webcam with is someone I see 3-4 times a week, it never occurred to me to just have some fun with it.

D kept laughing because I kept focusing on how odd I look moving around on the webcam. Oh man were there some unflattering angles. ;) I know I sound like such a cavewoman but it’s been years!

I think this is an activity I’ll partake in more often. It’s nice to feel connected this way. :) I still don’t really understand the whole webchat-room phenomena but I’m sure I’ll get there soon. ;)

Here’s a picture I took after tonight’s webchat session. I was going to post a picture of our webcam screen but I think I’ll leave that out for now. ;) Not the best angle but I know my readers take me for who I am. :P

March 24, 2010

20 Ways ObamaCare Will Take Away Our Freedoms

Filed under: Politics — Aubrie A. @ 8:51 am

(InvestorsBusinessDaily)

By David Hogberg
Sun., March 21, ’10 3:24 PM ET

With House Democrats poised to pass the Senate health care bill with some reconciliation changes later today, it is worthwhile to take a comprehensive look at the freedoms we will lose.

Of course, the overhaul is supposed to provide us with security. But it will result in skyrocketing insurance costs and physicians leaving the field in droves, making it harder to afford and find medical care. We may be about to live Benjamin Franklin’s adage, “People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.”

The sections described below are taken from HR 3590 as agreed to by the Senate and from the reconciliation bill as displayed by the Rules Committee.

1. You are young and don’t want health insurance? You are starting up a small business and need to minimize expenses, and one way to do that is to forego health insurance? Tough. You have to pay $750 annually for the “privilege.” (Section 1501)

(more…)

March 13, 2010

Relationships are tricky

Filed under: Fun,Love — Aubrie A. @ 7:54 am

Human nature can be blamed for many things: our competitiveness, our need to possess, and our desire to mate. Oftentimes, it tests our drive, patience, and loyalty. Many people use human nature as a scapegoat to justify bad behavior but for me, that just doesn’t cut it.

When you’re single, you can talk to, flirt with, and hit on anyone you want (so long as that person is single, too). If you’re not single, whether you are in a happy relationship or not, you have the responsibility of putting your tongue back into your mouth and keeping your pants zipped. I know looking is well within relationship-jurisdiction here but acting on our more primitive, baser desires is irresponsible.

(more…)

March 3, 2010

Palm Springs, 2/26 – 2/28

Filed under: Friends,Fun — Aubrie A. @ 10:59 pm

Bachelorette party weekend! The ten of us decided to head on over to Palm Springs, specifically the Desert Horizon Country Club, to stay at a beautiful home which belongs to one of the gal’s in-laws. I had a wonderful time and it was great to be able to bond with the gals!

First, we have a picture of the entrance, where it is pretty heavily guarded. In the second picture, we have the home, a frontal view, which also sits in a cul-de-sac.

Nothing too impressive at first but when we entered, we saw this (sorry, took these pics on a cloudy day):

Look at how gorgeous it is! The whole backyard overlooks the golf course.

(more…)

February 16, 2010

It’s been ages…

Filed under: Life,Love,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 10:29 am

… since I’ve met a man who gives so selflessly to make me happy. I’m really not too hard to please and it doesn’t take much but he goes above and beyond to make the both of us shine.

I just can’t put into words how much he’s grown to mean to me in such a short period of time. I can finally say this with 100% confidence: he’s someone I can _fully_ entrust – with my heart, my trust, and my love. Thank you for being such a bright source of light in my life.

I love you, babe.

February 8, 2010

The Bazaar by José Andrés at The SLS Hotel

Filed under: Food — Aubrie A. @ 4:44 am

Thursday, February 4, D was invited by his roommate, S, to try out The Bazaar by José Andrés at The SLS Hotel for dineLA week. D, knowing how much I enjoy great dining experiences (and food), invited me along with and I was very grateful! (Especially given the wait period to get a reservation is so long!)

If The Bazaar were a man, I’d demand aesthetic perfection, a flair for adventure, a unique personality, and expect him to be at my every beck and call. (Swear I’m not high-maintenance.)

I was surely taken by The Bazaar Thurs. night as he met every expectation. I was blown away by the interior as it provided a great deal of dark, warm colors (expresso, red, black), but juxtapositional to that, the cooly dressed patrons with matching attitudes certainly gave off a bit of the pretentious flair I had hoped for. Great use of lighting, flamboyant accents, and style – all of these factors made for a unique experience at The Bazaar.

Upon first entering, we saw this (Pictures: Bar Centro, Dining room.)

The six of us were seated near the kitchen and I loved it! (Pictures: To our left, then to our right.)

(more…)

February 7, 2010

Royal Rumble and Urth Caffe

Filed under: Food,Friends — Aubrie A. @ 11:27 pm

Personal updates from me are long overdue. There are so many events I want to write about (with pictures) but I’ll just stick to a few, as not to bombard you with my daily-happenings. :)

Sunday, January 31, Howard invited D and me to his Royal Rumble fiesta. Pizza, wings, beer, cupcakes (!), and a dozen people all rolled into one in Culver City on a Sunday afternoon = fun times.

I used to watch Wrestle Mania with my grandmother when I was in elementary school; however, I completely stopped soon thereafter because well, I thought I had outgrown it altogether. I was wrong.

Originally, I went over to Howard’s home to introduce him to D and to have fun (Howard and his friend/roommate Nevin are two hilarious guys!) but once the Royal Rumble started, I was pumped! When we first started watching, there were ten people there so we each picked 3 numbers for 30 total (which equals to the number of wrestlers in the Rumble). These numbers (mine were 3, 6, and 18) represented the wrestlers we represented. Whenever our wrestlers took someone out of the ring, we had to make someone (we picked) drink. If we got thrown out, we had to drink, and the person who threw us out got to pick another person to drink. I got Hobo Jesus (CM Punk), some girl, and HBK (Sean Michaels) and the two gentleman rocked! Suffice it to say I made quite a few people drink. ;) But in the end, Howard’s EDGE won the Rumble. :(

Nevin’s girlfriend Lenore brought over these beautiful (and delicious!) cupcakes from Sweet Lady Jane.

Overall, good food, good company, a blast into the past … we really enjoyed ourselves. Thanks, Howard, for throwing this party! And I’m glad you like D (he likes you, too). :) Remember: ABCD on Thursdays with me and D. ;)


Wednesday, February 3, I met up with my good friend Jane at Urth Caffe in Beverly Hills (made famous by the show, Entourage) for some ketchup-time. I meet up with her maybe twice a year (last time being Sept. of ’09) because of our schedules (and she’s married so I’m not going to drag her out whenever I miss her) so time spent with her is always cherished.

This was my first time at Urth Caffe so I had to go with the reviewers’ favorites. I picked out a medium Spanish Latte (extra strong) because people were raving about it on Yelp. I don’t like my coffee sweet or creamed out – I usually like it dark and earthy. However, this latte was delicious! I definitely suggest asking for the EXTRA STRONG variety when ordering as it’s clearly a winner in my book. (I even took one to-go, and believe you me I was SHAKING the whole day! But it was worth it.)

I also ordered the grilled chicken sandwich with cilantro and cheese-free pesto (half) with a small side salad. Although it was a half-order, it was huge! I didn’t think it’d taste all that great (I just ordered it because of the grilled chicken) but oh, was I wrong!

Look at that! Delicious, I say. ;)

It was great to finally catch up with one of my dearest friends. What more can a girl ask for on a sunny California, weekday afternoon? ;)

I love spending time with great people and these two meetings were long overdue. Here’s hoping this new year will bring more time to share with one another!

January 28, 2010

Independent Women Do Exist …

Filed under: Rant,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 4:58 am

… but are you man enough to handle it?

I read an entry someone wrote about whether or not independent women are just an illusion. (This is not a direct response to you, by the way, just my thoughts on the matter.) He mentions how some women start off seeming independent but sooner or later, as soon as emotional investment settles, that independence flies out of the window.

I can understand what he’s talking about because there are plenty of women (and men) out there who know what the opposite sex desires, and works to BE that ideal in order to reel in a mate. There are plenty of “independent” women out there who act so because they’re aware of the fact that many men prefer a woman who has her act together. They’ve all heard their male friends and boyfriends complain about their overly-clingy girlfriends and these women know better than to be that which men hate. So some play off of this veneer and try to ride it out as long as they can, hoping that with time and a little emotional investment, should their true side show up, that men will be a little forgiving.

But it doesn’t work that way, does it? Men feel fooled because they thought they’d gotten into a relationship with a woman who’d give them their time and space, all the while making them feel like a man ever so often. So what’s the deal? Like I’ve mentioned, it can be because the woman simply lost steam and no longer feels the need to put up this facade OR you’re doing something that makes her feel insecure, and as a result, become clingy.

Now I’m all about, “No one can make you feel negatively about yourself without your permission” so I think the latter reason is silly. But I also acknowledge that if a man is acting uninterested or very different from how HE first portrayed himself to be, it will undoubtedly make a female wonder what’s going on. I mean at this point, you’re both wondering, “Why the change?” This curiosity will manifest in either her asking you directly what’s going on, or her acting out in clingy ways (the more passive approach) so you two won’t have conflicts.

On the flip side, there are two types of men on the receiving end of this as well. There are some men out there who expressly state their desires to take care of a woman and will assume the role of “the man” and caretaker in the relationship. You also have men who can’t, in fact, handle an independent woman – no matter how vocal he is about wanting to be with one. Sometimes, they don’t even know what it’s like to deal with a TRULY independent woman because they’re probably used to women who flake out of being this way a few months into the relationship.

When I was in college, men seemed to like the fact that I’m an independent woman. They had been in relationships with stage 5 clingers over the years and just wanted to BE in a relationship without feeling like someone’s bodyguard/IT tech/toilet de-clogger/tire-changer, etc. So it was a great surprise to me to find that some of my habits didn’t sit too well with them. If another man acted inappropriately towards me, I ignored it, I didn’t call out to my boyfriend. If my computer needed fixing, I’d look up ways to fix it. If I needed my tire changed, I’d find a way to change it. If I got stuck on the freeway, I’d call a tow truck to get me out of there. Here I was being my regular ol’ independent self and what? You have a problem with it? Why? There’s such a thing as being “too independent”? Are we making things up now??

So basically, when you say you want an independent woman, you want someone who doesn’t call you all the time (but is THERE when you need her), lets you spend time with your friends without complaining, has a life of her own, has her act together, has her own money, but all of those things a “man” is supposed to get done … she should ask you? So in other words, you don’t want an independent woman but your own personal, finicky definition of an independent woman, right?

How are we supposed to discern what’s acceptable independent woman behavior? Do you give out a list before you start dating? I mean I was at a loss for words because here I was, taking care of my business, and I was considered being TOO independent. Would you like it if I was only independent in the ways you’d like me to be? Wouldn’t that be submitting to what you want, thereby making me a little less independent? What is it that you want?

My point is, there are women out there who front, there are women who are clingy and annoying … there are all different types of women out there. But in the end, men don’t always know what they want. They think they do but there’s always something to pick at in the end. If you want an independent woman and a woman claims she is such, look at her definition of what that entails. Because otherwise, you’re just asking for a woman who will be your definition of such and such, which makes me wonder why you’d want to date an independent woman to begin with.

More often than not, due to gender and societal expectation, most men don’t know what it’s like to be with an actual, independent woman anyway. So before you use your herculean cry to call out to all of the independent woman out there, figure out if you’re man enough to handle it.

January 24, 2010

Happy Birthday

Filed under: Life — Aubrie A. @ 8:13 am

You won’t read this but I want to wish you a happy birthday.

I miss having you in my life.

January 22, 2010

A Quickie

Filed under: Update — Aubrie A. @ 7:50 am

Due to torrential rains, my back treatments, my lack of sleep (therefore lack of care for blogging), and overall busy-ness, I’ve been neglecting this site – although I have a great number of topics I’d like to discuss. I do want to write more regularly as I feel the spotty blogging has reduced me to a “Today-I-Had-Boba” type of blogging.

I do have a couple of entries coming up; one will cover what I hate about break-ups, and what I’ve learned about men over the years. Stay tuned for those!

Until then, please drive safely, take care of yourselves, and get to those resolutions! ;) I’m trying to stick to mine and I think I’m doing pretty well. ;)

Until next time, take care!

Quote of the day:

Me: so yeah, as we get older, we start setting ridiculous standards for perfection for the person we want to settle down with. but I think it’s just an excuse to keep ourselves from being disappointed.
BF: yeah, that’s why I just decided to settle for you.
Me: you make my heart flutter.

And you wonder how he won my heart? :)

January 14, 2010

Ex-Stalking

Filed under: Love Lost,Me,Rant,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 9:44 am

Why do people do it?

If you break up with a person on amicable terms and decide to remain friends, awesome. But if you break up and you know you’ll go back to being strangers once again, why stalk? When the two of you decided it wasn’t worth keeping the other as a friend, you relinquished any rights to know what is going on with that person. I mean, sure you can say that the time apart made you curious as to how he/she is doing but you can’t do that in the open? Pick up a phone perhaps? Send a quick, little email to ask, “What’s going on with you”? Are you ashamed to show the other person you care? Pride shouldn’t be an issue when it concerns someone you once cared about.

I don’t believe in ex-stalking. If I want to know how an ex is doing, I’ll contact him. Otherwise, it’s safe to say I don’t care to know or don’t see the point. If I suddenly become very curious as to how he is doing, I’ll pick up the phone and call or send a message via internet. There aren’t any reasons (well, atleast for me) to stalk his Facebook, blog, AIM, etc., hoping to find something I can find out by picking up the phone. By phone, I can possibly get more info!

A couple of days ago, a friend of mine who reads my blog asked if I’ve heard from my (most recent) ex-boyfriend. She then said, “Well, you’ve been writing all of these nice entries about your current boyfriend and negative things about your past relationships. Just thought maybe he’d respond to it in some way.”

Now why would he do that?

Maybe she and I operate very differently or I just assume everyone is like me because I believe my exes have forgotten about me as I’ve forgotten about them. I mean come on – it’s hard enough to keep up with your life let alone try to figure out how an ex is doing. I don’t assume my exes stalk me nor would I expect them to. I figure they’ll reach out if they want to know and they haven’t so what does that tell me? Strangers once again.

This blog is for me. I write how I feel, when I feel these emotions. I’m not a passive-aggressive person who writes something to get a rise out of anyone; if anything, I keep more of it in – out of respect. No matter how bitter I’d felt over a relationship, I usually keep that information to myself so I don’t have to speak ill of any particular one of them out in the open. My mistake if some of my entries make it seem like my exes are BAD people because they’re not; they were just bad for me. And some others? I’ll say it like it is that I don’t respect some others. Don’t you kids know by now that I’m extremely blunt?

Let’s leave our past in the past and focus more on our present. Show some dignity and reach out if you’re curious. Otherwise, let bygones be bygones. That’s what I’ve been doing and will continue to do.

January 11, 2010

New Beginnings

Filed under: Food,Fun,Life,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 10:00 am

I generally don’t like to write about my daily happenings because I tend to think those types of entries are rather boring but I really can’t get to sleep right now and reading is giving me a headache. So here I go.

With the start of the new year, I told myself I’d start making some positive changes:

  1. Get my back treated so I can get back to being active again;
  2. Study more, play more, work LESS;
  3. Try new activities and enjoy good food;
  4. Take pictures. I know I’m not really a picture person anymore but I’ll try;
  5. Work on bettering my personality, as I’d picked up some bad habits from previous relationships.

This past Thursday, BB surprised me with flowers – first sunflowers, now this. Does he know me or what? As he held them out, he said this was for new beginnings. He wanted to wish me well on my spinal decompression session (first session tomorrow, Monday) and start off our new beginnings on a beautiful note. Thank you. :)

(more…)

January 5, 2010

2009 in retrospect

Filed under: Life,Me — Aubrie A. @ 11:38 am

I’ll keep my thoughts on 2009 short, as I don’t really like to dwell on the past.

I’m incredibly thankful for the fact that my family and friends are healthy and happy. This is the most important thing I can ever hope for, more so than any form of personal success.

I’m also thankful for being able to make good money this year despite the recession, and having been able to afford the things I want and need, not to mention taking a trip I so needed in order to realign my priorities and decompress.

I got out of a long distance relationship with a good man that lasted more than a year, and had to come to the harsh realization that people aren’t always who they seem, and sometimes, our ideas about a person and expectations that are borne from such ideals exceed what actually is. Timing was certainly a big factor in the consideration of our break-up but I’d have to say that my decision was based solely on his inability to stay committed. Timing issues can be conquered whereas a “lack of focus” issue will not be ignored.

On the bright side, I also got into a relationship with an incredible man who truly has a heart made of gold. Although my exhausted heart thought it couldn’t handle yet another possible disappointment, he happened into my life at the right time. I had known him for quite a while but we were never more than just friends who talked on occasion. Well, that changed, and by December, we were officially dating.

With his urgings and support, I made December mine as I got another MRI, realized the seriousness of my condition, and finally took action. I went and got a consultation for spinal decompression and am well on my way to spinal recovery. I’ve been pain-free for months now and can’t be happier about my progress, both physically and mentally. If it hadn’t been for my boyfriend, my delusions of being invincible would’ve delayed any progress to be made. Thank you. :)

But aside all of the more “obvious” ways 2009 was better than 2008, I learned quite a bit about myself this year as well, more so than any of my past years as an adult combined.

I’ve learned that I have tonal issues; I sound pretentious, judgmental, and upset even when I’m actually not trying to be. I’m sure people have pointed this out in the past but it never really hit me until recently. Being in my current relationship for the short time that we have has made me realize it’s not about who is right or wrong or whether or not we have our facts straight but it’s about resolution. I’ve always been such a bitch about fairness and getting the facts settled but in the end, does it make either one of us any happier? A relationship doesn’t have to be fair all the time to make it a good one so long as we make it about the other person and their happiness. I don’t know how and when I became this person but it’s not who I am. I’m determined to change this about myself and I’m glad I have such an understanding partner to help me realize this goal. :)

And lastly, I feel I’ve regained a better part of me in 2009. I became a better girlfriend to my current boyfriend than I’ve been to any guy since I was 23; I’ve become a better granddaughter and daughter; and my connections with my girlfriends have been strengthened. Relationships-wise, this has been the best year up to date. :)

2009 was good to me. I am a lucky woman. :)

December 26, 2009

Christmas 2009

Filed under: Family,Food,Friends,Fun,Health,Life,Love,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 11:26 am

Christmas is one of my favorite holidays (a few others including Thanksgiving Day, New Year’s Day, and Valentine’s Day – well, for the giving/making part, not the getting part). This Christmas was one of my favorites! I can’t remember the last time I felt completely happy with how I spent the Christmas holiday.

I started very early, getting my Christmas tree in November, and starting my Christmas shopping in late October. :) Guess you can say I was super eager! I didn’t travel to an exotic island or go ice skating at the Rockefeller Center but it was the first time I was able to spend quality time with everyone who means so much to me.

Now on to some pictures:

(more…)

December 19, 2009

It’s the thought that counts?

Filed under: Family — Aubrie A. @ 8:03 am

I’m not very good at shopping for gifts. Well, for men, that is. I thought I was when I was younger because I would just throw a game console or a watch a boyfriend’s way and we were good to go. But with my dad … well, my dad is a whole other story. I’ve NEVER been able to get a gift right for him because he is one picky man. (In his defense, he’d always tell me NOT to get him a gift but I’d never listen.)

In high school, I bought for him:

  • a tie
  • a pair of shoes
  • a belt
  • a hankerchief
  • a shaving kit replete with an electric shaver, cream, titanium razor, and travel bag
  • a briefcase

… all to have them rejected because they weren’t the right size, color, texture, or style. I don’t think he ever kept one gift I’d given him. Instead, he’d return them and get something else in exchange.

As I got older, I was expected to have not only better taste but a higher $ limit. (My dad didn’t expect this, of course, but I felt the responsibility looming over my head.) I’d long surpassed those days of making minimum wage and given I was slowly nearing the triple-decade mark, I felt I needed to prove to my parents (as well as myself) that I could spend a good amount of money to buy them something worthy of attention.

So this year I decided to gift my parents -

(more…)

December 10, 2009

Women Cheat, too.

Filed under: Love Lost,Rant,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 10:01 am

I am sick and tired of all of this Tiger hoopla!

Senators J. Ensign and M. Sanford, Ex-Presidents J. Kennedy and W. Clinton, Athletes K. Bryant and A. Rodriguez – mere grains in a beach of immoral humans. Sparkly, expensive grains, but grains nonetheless.

For years, our media have flooded us with the news of yet another cheating, high-profile male. Many say that high-status men with a better education, higher income, and job status have busier sex lives so they’re bound to cheat. Some statistics support this assumption as well. I’m sure I can come up with a few reasons as to why high-profile men cheat so darn much but in the end, who cares?

Some may be of high-profile, but they’re definitely low-class. Simple as that.

Here are 5 Top Reasons why men have affairs:

  1. Varied Sex (Advice: DON’T MARRY SUCH A PRUDE!)
  2. Opportunity/Challenge
  3. Insecurity
  4. Seduction
  5. Loneliness

I believe with men, affairs aren’t always so deliberate but oftentimes borne from a marriage of tempting opportunity and dissatisfaction with their current, social disposition. Sometimes they do it to fill a void, whether emotional or well, physical. *slaps knee* They may have spontaneous, sporadic sex whenever the opportunity may arise, whether it’s a casual one-night stand, a weekend tryst, or an affair that lasts months or years.

BUT WHAT ABOUT WOMEN?  When was the last time you read about a high-profile female who cheated on her beau?


(more…)

December 9, 2009

Pecan Pie

Filed under: Food — Aubrie A. @ 10:23 am

The month of December always puts me in a baking mood. A few days ago I made cranberry bran muffins, then I made some raspberry dark chocolate brownies for my clients (I didn’t take a picture of any of these because I forgot), and tonight, I made pecan pie. BB likes pecan pie so I figured … why not! :)

The recipe is quite simple and anyone can bake this. It’s really not rocket science. (The dough for the crust I had to beat up because I don’t have a roller! I suggest making the dough yourself; those pre-made crusts are disgusting.) Because I have long nails, BB had to roll the dough up over the sides.

4 egg whites
1 whole egg
2/3 cup brown sugar (I only used half a cup)
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon of salt
teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup pecans-halves (I put in a half a cup more for that extra crunchy texture)
1 scoop of vanilla bean ice cream to put on top of the pie afterwards ;)

350 degrees for 20 minutes, then put foil over the pie and cook for another 20-25 min.

Going into the oven!

Fresh off of the cooling rack.

Haha look at BB’s beautiful crust. :P

I skimped on the sugar a bit because well, too much sugar isn’t good for you. But because so, it wasn’t as sweet but the ice cream helped to sweeten it up a bit.

Next up? I’m thinking Lemon Meringue and Banana Cream. Stay tuned!

(Real entry coming up next. ;P)

December 5, 2009

Sushi Gen, Downtown Los Angeles

Filed under: Food — Aubrie A. @ 4:30 am

Thursday, December 3rd, I had the honor of taking D to dinner at Sushi Gen for his 29th birthday. I had made reservations at a steak house two weeks prior to last night but he wanted to get sushi (he hadn’t had Sushi Gen in nearly a year!) so hey, whatever the birthday boy wants, right? :)

Enter through the gates of Heaven. (Photo taken from Yelp.com.)

We're not in this picture but we sat where those two guys are sitting. Our chef was the man who's second from the left. Not the friendliest but hey! The food was good. :) (Photo taken from Yelp.com.)

Luckily for us, because it was 9:00p.m. on a Thursday night, we didn’t have to wait AT all. I heard on the weekends, this place has a monster of a wait. Anyway, we were immediately seated at the bar, which means … faster food! We ordered our drinks and two bowls of clam miso soup. Mmm!

We ordered the following:

  • Salmon (3 orders of 2) = 6 pieces
  • Yellowtail (2 orders of 2) = 4 pieces
  • Unagi (2 orders of 2) = 4 pieces
  • Albacore (2 orders of 2) = 4 pieces
  • Spanish Mackerel (1 order of 2) – he ordered this.
  • Spicy Tuna Handroll (1 roll) – we shared this.
  • Toro (2 orders of 2) = 4 pieces

This was a lot of food considering we both had nearly two pieces of each kind.

I only took a picture of the albacore and toro (as shown below) because I forgot. I was too busy enjoying the food! I loved ALL of the fish; they were SO buttery in texture. Melt in your mouth like buttah baby.

Albacore

The outstanding, THICK piece of toro (sans rice). Mind you my polaroid app on my iPhone darkens the pictures a bit.

Towards the end, I just removed the rice altogether because it was so filling. I wanted to enjoy the fish. :)

The total bill came out to be $93.00 for the two of us. (We didn’t order any alcohol because he doesn’t drink.) D told me the toro is three times the price of the others we had but I’m assuming it couldn’t have cost me more than $25 for 4 pieces? I think that’s fairly cheap, still, as Nobu charges $10 per piece of toro.

I don’t know the pricing for each individual fish. I left a total of $112.00 before leaving. (For those of you who want to try out Sushi Gen, keep a note of the price.)

I give it 5 stars. I would definitely go back! :)

Afterwards, because we finished so early (in 30 minutes!), we went to a Korean Cafe called Yellow House. I frequent this cafe as it is very quaint/cute and their drink menu is pretty awesome. He had hot milk tea and I had the adlay tea. Luckily, we sat near a fire pit and they provided blankets for us (it was so cold last night!!). There, he popped the question. No, not THAT question but you know, a question. :) We chatted a good while then went back to my house where I showed him some baby pictures. (Haha now you know I got my round forehead from my dad!)

Happy 29th birthday! Hope you enjoyed my little surprise at your place the night prior and dinner the day of. Next year is the big 3-0!!!

Next two entries to come:

1) Bad Decisions

2) Women Cheat, too.

(Not necessarily in this order.)

December 2, 2009

What it takes.

Filed under: Life,Love Lost,Me,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 11:44 am

I never considered myself the marrying kind. Sure when I was a young girl I saw myself marrying at the age of 25. However, as my ambitions grew to prodigious proportions, I realized I just couldn’t imagine juggling wifely duties with, well, my life. And given my family has always been supportive of my choice to give the middle-finger salute to Father Time, I never felt the need to fret and run around desperately looking for a husband.

Since hitting my quarter-century mark, (3 1/2 years ago) I started thinking about holding down a serious relationship. I’ve dated three men since and have met their families and yes, there were talks of marriage (however one-sided most of the time). Now given I don’t just introduce any man to my parents, I had to bide my time and make sure they were “worthy”. In the end, except for one who met my father by chance, none met them by [my] choice. One was very close but in the end, it came down to lack of dedication. I felt like I did what I had to do in letting him go for his sake, but there wasn’t any fight in him to keep me in his life anyway.

Let me take you back to when this need for dedication first developed.

Back when I was 19, I got into a relationship with a boy who I wanted to be the BEST girlfriend for. And for four years, I was the best, most dedicated girlfriend ever. (He was also the first and last guy I introduced to my parents.) However, with several acts of indiscretion on his end and my faltering trust in his character, boy did that idealistic bubble pop. After that, I don’t remember ever being the girlfriend I should be, to anyone.

I guess a part of me felt I couldn’t be THAT vulnerable again, not just yet, until a guy showed me I could trust him. Sure I trusted them and I wasn’t jaded by any means but I didn’t give ALL of myself either. After that relationship ended, I went on dates but didn’t really DATE until my quarter-century mark. With these three men, I always knew I could be a far better girlfriend than I was at the time but I guess I didn’t try as hard because I needed something more. By no fault of their own, I’d somehow convinced myself that these men needed to prove their sincerity to me. I needed to see dedication.

Long distance, bad timing, cheating … these factors played a role in why the last three relationships didn’t work. I feel the chemistry might have been there but truth be told, I get along with just about anyone. Maybe I was asking for too much and I may have made rash decisions in letting them go but it’s easy for me to walk away from someone who’s clearly walked away from me (even though they didn’t walk away physically, their attitudes alone spoke volumes). Dedication begets dedication and so without it in our horizon, it was easy for me to walk away.

I know I have a lot to offer and have high standards for myself so equally, I’d expect to be with someone who has as much to bring to the table. Intelligence? Looks? Humor? Family values? Seriously, dime a dozen. But a man who’ll weather the storm with me, someone who I know will fight the good fight in order to sustain our relationship? That kind of dedication is what it takes to keep me.

November 22, 2009

Fairytale Romance

Filed under: Love,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 12:15 pm

I just finished watching Pretty Woman again for the second time ever. I remember the first time I watched this movie, I was a hopelessly idealistic girl of 16 years who couldn’t wait until she turned a few years older so she could be found by the man of her dreams.

Fast forward 12 years and I found myself tearing up when Richard Gere’s character shows up at her hotel apartment in a similar yet modernized fashion she describes her dream man to show up. Now, I didn’t tear up because the story is so moving or because of the realization of beauty found in the hope this movie embeds in all women looking to be swept off of their feet by their millionaire dream man; I don’t find the characters to be anything more than two-dimensional escapists, the storyline itself is completely unrealistic, and the tone is devoid of any kind of sincerity or depth.

I teared up because regardless of how superficial the theme seems, that last scene when Edward decides to forgo his jaded-commitmentphobe-bachelor ways to rescue her, that moment is so real to me. Because whether or not this fairytale ending ever happens in actuality, this sentiment – this passion he feels towards her that overrides all doubt, his issues with commitment, and their situational differences – was borne from the beating, pulsing inner-workings of one who truly believes in the magic of a fairytale romance.

The mere existence of these fairytale moments — however fleeting or rare – represents chance, something we, in our later stages of life, forget or refuse to grant ourselves. Because it’s safer to resort to comfortableness. To settle for what’s right and practical rather than to risk for something ideal. Or because we no longer have any reason left in us to believe.

I’ve always wanted a man who’d not just be my checklist-perfect individual (which I’ve long discarded) but someone who’d give me this reason to believe – someone who’d help me realize there’s fight in me to achieve this fairytale romance, something I had lost in my teens. Having been so painfully realistic and practical for all of my adult years thus far, I’m incredibly grateful to God for making me realize this individual who is capable of bringing out this fight in me is currently in my life.

Sure I wasn’t found by a knight with a white horse but I feel swept off of my feet just the same. :)

November 17, 2009

Ralph

Filed under: Life — Aubrie A. @ 3:44 am

Today, I went into El Pollo Loco to get two pieces of chicken to stave off my 6 o’clock hunger pain. I was greeted by Ralph, a 20-something year old Hispanic male who was born with a bilateral complete cleft lip. Now a cleft lip is a congenital deformity that occurs due to abnormal facial development during gestation. His bilateral complete cleft lip looks something like this:

In Ralph’s case, although the fissure is no longer there, it’s quite noticeable as he still has a lot of scarring.

As an aside: Having worked in the NICU setting, I’ve seen numerous babies (premies) with this deformity;  I even fell in love with a cute little baby boy who I got to spend some time with while he was recuperating in the incubator. Having a cleft lip and palate is not something to be looked at with disgust or wonder — actually, no deformity should be looked at with such. I remember staring at that baby’s face, cooing and cawing because he was so beautiful. A cleft lip doesn’t make a person ugly; the viewer whose thoughts are ugly makes that person look ugly in their own mind. God’s creations, in all of their glory – with deformities and flaws – are beautiful.

Anyway, I bring this up because when I walked in to El Pollo Loco, this man, Ralph, greeted me with the warmest smile I had seen in days. He held his head high and smiled confidently; this smile and his energy were so contagious, I couldn’t help but smile back! After I ordered and he got my name, he asked me if I had seen 2012. When I answered no, he told me to go watch it because it was so good and then he went on about how his boyfriend was so paranoid about the world ending afterwards. I couldn’t help but laugh and tease him for being sucked into this trap and he told me that regardless of the trappings, I must watch it and prepare!!! Because … well, you just never know. ;)

When it was my turn to pick up the food, he yelled out my name in a sing-songy manner, whereas with the other customers, he yelled out their numbers. That was nice. I spoke with him some more, we exchanged farewell pleasantries, and I left, waving goodbye.

After having this exchange with Ralph, I couldn’t help but reflect a little bit. I’m sure many people will feel more inclined to look away for fear of not wanting to stare and make Ralph feel bad, or interact with him in a formal, straight way. I was not friendly with Ralph because I felt sorry for him; I was friendly with him because his personality was luminous. For someone who, I’m sure, had to face many stares and jokes growing up, he was more positive in those few minutes with me than I bet a lot of people are in their lifetime.

People like Ralph inspire me. They aren’t ashamed of their flaws but accept them, and move forward in life with a positive energy in tow. So the next time you are feeling downtrodden for something you know you can overcome with some time and effort, think about those brave individuals out there who have issues they may not be able to resolve, ever. Instead of focusing on your problem(s), focus on your attitude. In the grand scheme of things, I don’t think there’s really anything we can’t handle.

Thanks Ralph. I hope I made your day, just as you’ve made mine. :)

November 16, 2009

Advocacy of the Heart

Filed under: Life,Love,Me,Rant,Work — Aubrie A. @ 9:15 am

Recently, I’ve found that many I know have stepped into the field of medicine, with high hopes of making good money and finding stability during this economic recession. I felt I had to re-post this entry I wrote on my old Xanga site a while back to remind these individuals that although money and great benefits are wonderful, we can’t forget it’s an honor to care for those in need, not a right we exercise by getting the licensure needed.

***

Providing healthcare and advocacy to patients is not a right one waves just because he/she has the education and licensure to do so. It’s a privilege. So the money and benefits are good. The prestige makes you feel assured of your intelligence and accomplishments. The power you yield in possibly saving one’s life or bringing a life into this world makes you feel like God. But what good are all of these if you don’t have Compassion?

The healthcare industry should have some kind of a cut-off point where their employees have to show they’re not robots who spew out medical-drivel they’ve been programmed to, always knowing when or how to save, how to treat, how to be God — but simply, when or how to be an ear, a shoulder, a comforting hand or an acknowledging look. It’s important to cultivate rapport with the patients you have as well as to provide them with the best possible care you and the hospital can afford.

As my loved ones continue to frequent hospitals for tests on top of tests on top of tests, I can’t help but wonder if they’re truly receiving proper treatment from the hospital employees. Being at the other end of the hospital door, I see how the individuals I work with treat our patients and it’s definitely not satisfactory. Names aren’t asked but read on wrist tags. Intensity of pain is often overlooked due to suspicion of addiction to narcotics. Doctors and Nurses butt heads because their assessment of the care the patient may deserve and need aren’t aligned. Now, this isn’t to say one group is right over another; however, it’s safe to provide that self-righteousness and pride in the workplace lead to an unraveling of professional solidarity.

Think about your loved ones. If you do not know anyone who is currently being treated at a hospital, just imagine having them there. Imagine them being treated by caregivers who are callous and indifferent to the sufferings he or she is facing. Imagine the caregivers impatience, agitation and laziness towards providing care for your loved one. There’s no one to talk to, no one to hear them, no one to empathize and tell them everything will be okay. Or, imagine you had to go into the hospital. Sure your family members are there to provide you with emotional support and hope but what about the times they cannot be there? You push the call light only to have your assigned nurse come in to converse with you in a terse, agitated manner. You want someone to listen to what you’re going through, to tell you that you’ll get well soon and that you’ll be able to frequent lovely Korean clubbing establishments to pimp it like you used to. But your nurse is too busy looking through the Victoria’s Secret catalogs to see what she could wear on her next date with Doctor McGropey. The Doctors and Residents make sweeps through your room and they’re in and out in seconds. So you lay there, in that cold and somber room, with interactions as impersonal as some of the dates I’ve gone on in the past year or two.

For these patients, especially those who may need long-term care, the minute hand may drag along to its last point without the possibility for a return. Gluttonous death may soon start to take sanctuary in between every bone, in the joints, in between their atrophying musculature; it may start to pump it’s poison through their veins, recycling through their already worn heart; every ragged expiration and inspiration of breath may soon be saturated with its insidious intent. Whether or not this is observably true or just in their mind, it’s important they’re cared for so that these thoughts do not invade their space to begin with.

Incase you don’t know, in the hospital, time hangs. It weaves in and out of consciousness much like our patients and languidly drifts from times of wake and sleep. If you’re a patient who is living with dying, these last few weeks, months or years at the hospital, being kept alive by machines and tubes, can be dreadful. Who can make their experience as a patient a bit more uplifting? We can. Yes, Doctors and Nurses, I’m talking to you. When treating those who are ill, it’s not only important to treat them with devices, gadgets and the latest and greatest medication, but also with great, palliative care, in an emotional sense.

We need to understand the basis of human care, not just in the hospital but everywhere. If this consideration is not given, how can we expect it in return? I feel that with the uprising of the cost of living (having to hustle to keep our standard of living above water), coupled with intrinsic human motivation and ambition, somewhere along that line we’ve lost sight of how to co-exist. We co-exist to help one another, not hurt. To love one another, not hate. To bring each other up, not push each other down. To lend a helping hand, not rob each other. We were all dealt the same hand: the minute we started living was the minute we started to die. Having the same, inescapable end result, why can’t we just spend that time together helping each other grow to the best of our abilities?

I know when I step foot into that hospital, there’s no way I’m leaving without promoting education and longevity of health, ensuring the emergence of hope on the patient’s end (as well as my own), cultivating and cultivating so that we can all reap the benefits of our burgeoning relationship as well as providing them with medical care. I’m here to make sure that the standard of living for all of my fathers, my grandfathers, my mothers, my grandmothers, siblings and friends laying on those hospital beds, are at their peak . . . because I don’t believe they deserve anything less than that.

November 8, 2009

Disheartenment

Filed under: Life — Aubrie A. @ 5:30 am

broken-heart

Disheartenment is finding out someone you had trusted to always do the right thing wasn’t very honorable in the end. Changes your perspective on many things; you question their word up until this point, their intention, and whether you know how to pick the right people to get involved with. Hearing it directly is always great instead of finding out from a second or third-degree source.

It’s not easy trusting people nowadays. Genuinely good people are hard to come by.

November 6, 2009

Full Frontal

Filed under: Me — Aubrie A. @ 10:21 am

So I received my MacBook on Tuesday and have been having a blast playing with it ever since. I love this laptop! Other than getting my work done and catching up on a few things, I did get to play with the Photo Booth, which is the webcam + effects feature. I love the mirror-effect (shown below) because well, I’m a little creepy sometimes (hm, just a little?) and I like seeing myself distorted in odd ways. Call me strange, Strange Kim.

Here is a pic of me de-noised and contrast adjusted. The de-noise feature gives me that softer, cartoonish look. I’m totally ignorant when it comes to photoshopping but iPhoto’s simple editing options made it easy for me to make these slight adjustments.
Photo on 2009-11-05 at 21.20 #2

Frontal.

I never used to like taking frontal pictures of myself because I grew up thinking my front view wasn’t that attractive. I’ve heard from people that I have a nice side view but I never really thought my front view was that great. I also grew up thinking my nose is bulbous and its bridge nonexistent so you can imagine all of the different angles I’d take pictures in to minimize the pug-look.

Other than the nose issue, I remember always thinking I was so homey-looking. I wanted higher cheekbones, bigger eyes, and fuller lips. It didn’t help that my family would always compare me to my birth-mother, who used to be a cosmetics model in Korea. They would always ponder (LOUDLY) if I would ever grow up to look like her. “Please don’t look like your father,” they’d always tell me. My father is not a bad-looking man but they really wanted me to look like my mother. Well, I haven’t seen my mother in nearly 15 years so I can’t tell you if I really do look like her or not but in the end, it really doesn’t matter to me.

I’m more comfortable in my skin now and am happy with who I am and what I look like. I’m sure there are improvements that can be made but overall, I really wouldn’t change a thing. Even if someone were to give me an unlimited sum of money to get plastic surgery, anything I’d want, I would refuse. I’m happy to be me … a unique individual inside and out. ;)

Do you have (or have you ever had) a complex over your looks? If so, over what? How did you overcome it, or have you?

November 5, 2009

Five Stages of Grief

Filed under: Love Lost,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 10:16 am

In nursing school, we learned quite a bit about Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and her concept of the Five Stages of Grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. We were taught to understand these stages so we can help the family of patients cope with their loved ones passing on.

I think these same five stages can be applied to the break-up process as well, specifically if you’ve been the one who was let go. At first you are in denial that you’ve been let go or in denial of the fact that the relationship has actually ended. Then you turn to anger as you lash out with verbal ammo that had been stored up for who knows how long. With nothing to lose, you start firing without aim or purpose. Afterwards, you may start bargaining, saying you’ll be better next time around if only the other will give you one more chance. Once rejected, you’ll start to feel depressed because the relationship is now completely over and there’s no hope of going back to that time of absolute bliss. In the end, you finally accept this fact, and move on with hope for a better future.

Simple enough, right? Grief is grief … whether you’re having to part with a loved one in passing, or living.

I bring this up because it seems a lot of my friends are suffering through break-ups right now; some have been let go while others have made the bold decision to leave a bad relationship once and for all. For those of you who were let go (AHEM D.J.), please don’t fret and dwell over this occurrence. Who cares if your ex-boyfriend or girlfriend messages you saying they miss you or how they’ll always remember you and love you. They broke up with you. For every day they are missing you, it’s another day they are consciously CHOOSING not to be in your life. I truly believe that if two people really want to be together, they will find a way to stay. Any reason not to be together is just an excuse to move on because the feelings are no longer there, or their resolve isn’t as strong. (Yes, I’m very aware there are exceptions to this. I’m not always so black or white. :P)

________________________________________________________________

Thanksgiving is coming up and I’m super excited to host it at my place this year. I will be making a lot of traditional Korean foods and inviting my family over for dinner. I think I will be incorporating an American-style of cooking as well by preparing a turkey (not a whole one) along with some pumpkin tarts for dessert.

I’m also looking forward to Christmas! I’m going to be shopping for a small tree sometime next weekend and will start decorating my place to make it look like a magical castle. :P I can’t wait to start looking for special cards and gifts for my loved ones. I’ve already started to make a list! Many things to look forward to to cap this year off.

Be strong, all. I know that this can also feel like the loneliest part of the year especially if you don’t have a significant other but remain positive. This, too, shall pass. :) Before you know it, you will be in the arms of an even better-suited beau or inamorata!

Ciao.

November 1, 2009

On Cheating

Filed under: Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 1:34 am

Cheating. Seems so easy nowadays to get away with it. With the advent of the worldwide web, we can have multiple interests at one time, fueled by clicking through provocative pictures, late night chats, and an exchange of flirty messages via email. It’s disheartening to think that at any given point, any one of us can be replaced with someone far more interesting, far more hot, and far more intelligent — or at least that’s what they seem like on their Facebook profile. Even the shy ones can scour the net for hotties with bodies and spark up a conversation … with a simple emoticon at that. The web has become a veritable playground for roving eyes and hearts, and so we ease in to a world where substitutes are readily available and our hearts become a shared space.

(more…)

October 22, 2009

Idealism

Filed under: Life,Love,Love Lost,Me,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 10:33 am

After years of dating men who have a propensity to cheat, lie, and be manipulative in more ways than five, accumulated experiences with these men had severely eroded my idealistic stance on relationships. Or … so I thought.

(more…)

October 7, 2009

Ruminations of a wanderlust mind

Filed under: Life,Me — Aubrie A. @ 8:40 pm

I have the tendency to overanalyze things. I push my thoughts and boundaries to the limit, and oftentimes, I push others just to stir the water. “I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places am always fastening upon you, arousing and persuading and reproaching you.” – Socrates. I test, I query, I prod, and I engage. I never have a problem questioning your logic or asking you to make a better point. I try not to come off as such a blunt asshole but sure enough, if I walk and talk like one…

I love to voice my thoughts but the most important aspects will always remain unspoken. I don’t think just because you have an opinion, everyone needs to hear it all the time. I don’t talk for the sake of talking, nor do I like to hear the sound of my own voice, but you’ll probably think otherwise. I make short stories long, and I wouldn’t be able to give you an abbreviated version of anything unless my life depended on it. I’m unusually verbose, and although I try not to come off as such a pretentious word-nazi using jargon you mainly come across in antiquated pieces of literature, I come out of every conversation sounding like one anyway.

I’m not a girly girl by any means but I’ve long shed my overalls and baseball caps. I’ve learned to like pink, stopped burning my bras, and have come to terms with my emotional side, without compromising my rational side. I’m unforgivably independent but I cannot deny the part of me that would like to lean on someone every now and then. I don’t care for flowers but I like having the door opened for me. I don’t expect trips to the moon but thoughtful gestures you find to be consistent with who you are will get me every time. I may not ask for much but it doesn’t mean I don’t think I deserve more. It’s really just to make your life easier because I’ll probably drive you crazy in other ways (see first paragraph).

Pride takes a trunkseat to the backseat of love, but ultimately, fairness/principle takes the driver’s seat. A relationship based purely on love, cotton candy, and puppy dogs isn’t a realistic one; each should be ruled with an ironclad fist, dictating fairness/principle. Isn’t that why we set certain boundaries to begin with?

Contrary to my own belief, my idealism, despite years of abuse, had never died; it’s just waiting to make an appearance for someone who’ll help make it shine.

September 21, 2009

My Pillar

Filed under: Life,Me,Relationships — Aubrie A. @ 8:21 am

Shrine+of+Our+Lady+of+Sorrows,+in+Starkenberg,+Missouri,+USA+-+crutches

I love my father and I know he would give up his life for me but he wasn’t really the most accepting or appreciative parent one could have. Sure he always tries to understand my position and opens his heart and mind to me but I never felt (and still don’t feel) I’m good enough for him. Never did he give me affirmations but he would be so quick to think up “improvements” I’d need to make. If I got an A on a test or report card, he’d never tell me I did a great job but remind me to get the same results next time. Having to grow up competing against my own shadow, one which had been conjured by my father’s hopes and ideals, left me feeling alone during my most formative years.

My grandparents came to live with us in America when I was nine. My grandmother soon took on the role of always defending and accepting me for me, no matter how much I’d stray from her perfect ideal of what a grand-daughter should be. I was a defensive, smart-mouthed, sensitive child but in her eyes, I was a child to be loved, comforted, appreciated, and accepted for who I am. And so I was.

She had so tightly secured this role in my life for so long that I felt incredibly lost after her passing early last year. Sure we all need to find this sense of security within ourselves but the acceptance and unconditional love of another provides for a sturdy pillar to rest our self-security on. Who wouldn’t want that? Who doesn’t need that?

I don’t know when or if ever I’ll feel the way she used to make me feel from another… comforted, accepted, and appreciated but I feel at this time, I couldn’t be on a lonelier path.

Next Page »

The Rubric Theme Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.