Travel

Local Vacation

Vacation doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to go away. It’s really in the eye of the beholder, you see?

Here’s a collage of my 2009 Thanksgiving weekend as an example:

botero_1

Entertained by Botero’s exaggerated, colorful figures @ Bowers Museum

Turkey1

Helped roast 1,000 turkeys until 1 in the morning (3 am for the hubby and his friends; Thanks again for your help- You know who you are!) for a Thanksgiving Outreach Program (yay! our turkeys are on the news!)

IMG_0540

A bike ride in the hood (it’s so nice to live in a place surrounded by nature; did I tell you that we saw a coyote during our usual evening walk a few weeks ago? and it was like half a mile from where we live? crazy, I know. Then again, I see rabbits all the time in the parking lot at work.)

Hondaya

Had some great authentic Japanese food at a neighborhood Izakaya

octopus

Octopus in ponzu/wasabi sauce or something. It looks kind of gross but trust me, it’s very refreshing. A great Tsuki dashi.

hondaya2

Grilled Black Cod- mmm… melts in your mouth

Hondaya2

Tako Yaki- one of my favorites. I order these whenever I see them on a menu. I even considered buying a takoyaki grill at one point. LOL

Honda Ya
556 El Camino Real
TustinCA 92780

Hiking1

hiking2

Hiking in Laguna… well, it was more like half-hiking since I didn’t get to finish the route. I don’t think hiking likes me too much. bleh.

Then, there were two family gatherings at two different places located 2 hours from each other, 4 hours at a sauna, New Moon (uhh yeah, can someone please put a shirt back on the 16 yr-old boy? It’s just not right, it’s not…), 3 hours at Starbucks strategizing on world domination, experimenting a new curry recipe, and about 5 movies in two languages.

Btw, check out this movie called Mary and Max- a claymated film about an unlikely friendship between an 8 year old growing up in Australia and an old man living in New York City with a mental disorder. Much better than New Moon (uh oh, my cousin is going to kill me for saying this).

mary_and_max

All in all, I feel like I did so much over the weekend that it almost feels like I went on a mini vacation although I never really left home.

Rejuvenated and refreshed- bring it on!

The City of Dreaming Spires

When I was in Oxford couple years ago for a study abroad, I remember being completely blown away by the beauty of architecture and the town’s history. I don’t think my mind ever departed from the initial euphoric state that it was severely struck with during the two weeks I was there. Will definitely be revisited.

Oxford2

Oxford1

oxford3

Oxford, The City of Dreaming Spires, is famous the world over for its University and place in history. For over 800 years, it has been a home to royalty and scholars, and since the 9th century an established town, although people are known to have lived in the area for thousands of years.

Visit Oxford

Grass is Greener Here.

11hr work days are totally overrated.

Daydreaming about…

sector83255303

Maui 2007

Nourishing my weary body with dreamy Hawaiian cuisine such as:

sector83161927
@ Mama’s Fish House, Maui

Then to cool down a bit…

sector81887047

Surrounded by something like this:

sector83125191

Then again, I’m thankful that God has blessed California with same beautiful palm trees and sunny weather… and the beaches, mountains, cuisines from all around the world, and even snow!

Paradigm shift is in a serious need here- to stop thinking that grass is greener on the other side, because you know what? My grass is as green as it can ever be! :)

A Breath of Fresh Air

Another beautiful sunny day in Southern California… decided to head South for some fresh San Diego air-

IMG_0031

I’m in love with cardigans these days- a great one goes with just about anything! Oh, and there’s my Bally bag again… hahaha

IMG_0016

Gray Cardigan: Zara

Black Dress: H&M (Can’t remember… liked it so much that I got another one in gray, in thicker material)

Fishnet stockings: DKNY @ Marshall’s

Bracelet: Club Monaco

Necklace & Earrings: From a friend’s store

Suede Ankle Boots (not shown): About five years old, from a random store in NYC… I was sad b/c I ended up replacing them with flats after realizing how much walking I’d be doing upon arriving at Balboa Park.

IMG_0063

San Diego Museum of Art

A mesmerizing encounter with “Picasso, Miro, Calder”… Interesting how artistically influential one can be to another.

Thought this little guy was quite cute despite my batrachophobia…

IMG_0093

Btw, I’m loving my new sheets that I got from Crate & Barrel the other day at a ridiculously discounted price. I find myself looking forward to going to bed these days. <33

IMG_0003

Need a perfume… Any recommendations? Donations are also welcome. :)

Seattle ’09

 

Seattle Withdrawal: Initiated

IMG_0007_2 IMG_0127 IMG_0004 IMG_0067IMG_0083 IMG_0143 IMG_0113 IMG_0007 IMG_0190 IMG_0188 IMG_0047 IMG_0048 IMG_0039 IMG_0049 IMG_0221 IMG_0201IMG_0068 IMG_0077 IMG_0212 IMG_0204IMG_0051_2 IMG_0039 IMG_0091 IMG_0208 IMG_0150 IMG_0122 IMG_0046 IMG_0216

Olympic Structure Park. Stella. SAM. Space Needle. Pike Place Market. Umi. Harbor City Seafood. Light Rail.China Town. Pioneer Square. Le Pichet. Vivace. Zeitgeist. Elliot’s Oysters. Vanilla Latte. Hazelnut Latte. Roman Cappuccino. Starbucks. Architecture.

Caffeinated in Seattle

IMG_0071

Vitamin D consumption at Olympic Sculpture Garden

IMG_0153

obviously I’m enjoying my stay in this sleepless city…

SAM (Seattle Art Museum) offered another inspirational opportunity for me to rediscover my passion for art- note that I said, ‘passion’, not ‘talent’:

IMG_0021IMG_0006IMG_0004

ok… enough of my doodling.

In any case, coffee indeed is ART in Seattle:

IMG_0177

Can you smell it?!

Had Foi Gras for both breakfast and lunch (I know, how often does that happen?)… now having a Hazelnut Latte at Zeitgeist in Pioneer Square. There must had been a game at the stadium around the corner. Ran into a bunch of people in football jerseys- can you tell that I’m a huge football fan? :P

Cafes are awesome here- the ambiance, wifi, and of course the Coffee tastes like heaven- fyi, I’m not a coffee drinker… Just thought I’d miss out big time if I left Seattle without trying what they are known for- but who would’ve expected that I would be having 2 cups of espresso-based coffee everyday?! Anyhow, Pike Place Market was quite an experience with those flying salmons and live crawfish and all… but more than anything, an unexpected encounter with a pretty little bracelet made my day.