Life in the End Times

Shin's gift to Annie on their One Year Anniversary

Practice Entertaining

Filed under: Extraordinary Days,Married Life — Annie at 11:52 pm on Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Sunday night Shin, Janice, and I went to Berkeland. By the time we left I had booked dinner with two couples for tonight at 7:30pm, (one of them with two kids). So the dinner prep actually began Monday after school with the cleaning. The cleaning went through Tuesday morning.. afternoon… I planned to shop beFORE tutoring at 4:00 but somehow things went awry… evecare went down so Shin stayed home to fix it. And his car was behind mine and I felt bad asking him to move it. And suddenty it was 3:50pm and I was on my way to Nasim’s house for violin and english tutoring.

(Btw.. I really like being a tutor. There is something very dignifying and nice about being a teacher too…like a modern governess. haha.. Nasim’s mom is Korean and her dad is Persian, so today I was standing at their dinner table where we do our english when her dad walked in. He didn’t look at me directly b/c he thought I was his wife!)

Anyhow… so as Shin was walking me out of the house to move the car I realized I left my phone inside. So last minute he gave me his phone. I took the shopping list with me and he was gonna call me to find out what to buy. But then that backfired, because AFTER the lesson I called him and he said, “I thought it’d be bad to call you during tutoring! It would make you look bad!” So I was upset for a few minutes saying, “well, if you didn’t wanna do the shopping then why didn’t you just tell me?!” And he said, “I was trying to be a better person by NOT getting you into trouble!” So then we resolved that.

And… he did LOTS of wonderful things after that… like, preheating the oven, and getting the water boiling for me while I ran to Trader Joes at 6:15pm for salad, salmon, and shrimp. They only had small packages of salmon and very expensive. So I rushed to Ralphs at 6:45pm and they had an AWESOME deal on fresh salmon. Which leads to a very funny story. When Shin and I were dating I invited Shin’s family over to Shin’s then new home to cook a Christmas dinner for them (ironically, I used almost exactly the same menu as tonight- not much improvement there hehe.) And when I went to the same Ralphs I got a sweet deal then too- except that time, the meat man was hitting on me and took a marker and marked all the salmon half off!!! I look back now and think, I was probably there on the day when they mark it down ANYWAY, and he was just trying to “woo” me. Shin half seriously accused me of winking at him… *eyeballs roll*.

7:00pm I got home with only 30 minutes to go before showtime. I had pre washed and cut most of the vegetables, but as time was ticking I was panicking and not knowing what to do next. So Shin cut and prepared the salmon in the casserole dish while I made spring rolls. And then the guests arrived… I was cooking till 8:00, and then past 8:00…

8:10 dinner was ready… and this was with the sisters help of scooping rice, and distributing soup and pouring water…

Overall, dinner turned out well. There were two bad things about tonight. One was proportions- I get so scared there won’t be enough food that I completely overestimate and make WAAAAY too much. Like the time I made pasta for the Bethel small group. Instead of pasta for 8 it could have fed 50! And secondly was the soup!! It turned out so bland and soggy-ish and just BLEH.
But anyhow, here was the menu in more descriptive form:

ASIAN THEME

APPETIZERS

Breaded garlic Cauliflower~ Steamed cauliflower sprinkled with breaded garlic and served with ponzu sauce

Shrimp Spring rolls~ stuffed with carrots, green onion, cilantro, rice noodles, lettuce and served with hoisin, peanut and pineapple juice sauce made by my expert sauce mixer: Shin
SIDES

Salad- ready-packed by Trader Joes with walnuts, cranberries and great dressing
White Rice

cabbage mushroom soup. This one turned out BAAAAAAD
MAIN DISH

Baked salmon~ covered with lemon, basted with teriyaki sauce, and topped beautifully (actually, last minute) with green onion garnish strips

VOILA!

Result was that we served dinner for two guests on the same night, both of whom generously invited us over shortly after we attended Berkeland, we have a fabulously clean kitchen counter and living room (I didn’t have time to get to the bedroom and study) and enough food for all day tommorow! And finally, a cooking trial to add to my experience and development as an expert housewife!

Thoughts About Family

Filed under: Married Life — Annie at 12:42 am on Sunday, August 21, 2005

Today I spent the day with my girl friend Anna in OC. We ate Lee’s Sandwiches, shared Mexico stories and went eye shopping at Fashion Island. Almost bought an i-skin or other ipod cover but didn’t like any of the designs. (c’mon all you mac designers! think of something better for the ipods!) And… also looked longingly at some gorgeous bcbg evening wear… (sigh). It led to an inspiration though. I told Shin he should create a promotion where shoppers can earn gift certificates to clothing stores, since beautiful skin and sexy dresses are complementary!

Came home and went to Islands for dinner with Shin! Afterwards walked over to Barnes and Nobles where we started looking at pregnancy and baby books for the first time ever. My blood pressure dropped and my fascination was mixed with awe, disgust, fear, anticipation. Shin looked over at me with a gleam in his eye and said, “Too much knowledge can make you afraid”.
Yes, we are planning to start a family. But not quite yet. We want to be prepared and adjust to the idea first. To be precise, we’re going to start trying to conceive around March-ish. By then I will have just a few months before graduating. I worry about how school related stress may be potentially harmful… but then.. I dont stress enough about school… 😉 j/k Shin.
But it is definitely a wonderful exciting feeling to know that the game has started.. the ball has been launched and when it lands it will start rolling pretty rapidly.
I’m excited about certain things, like, teaching the baby how to sign language before he/she can speak… and just imagining certain moments of motherhood…optimistic things, like, pushing a stroller around the museum with a happy baby sleeping, or observing (although I’ll be thankful for a strong baby that cries alot too)
And then there are other things I worry about, like accidentally exposing the baby to chemicals-will it be safe to wear makeup? Our church building is old, so what about the danger of inhaling asbestos particles? Eeeeettttceeeettteeerrraaa…. I won’t go there just yet.
HAHA.. Shin must have been watching my facial expression because he just said aloud, “stop thinking about that….” ahhaa…. I’m so glad Shin is my friend. I told him we’ll have to focus on our friendship while I’m pregnant. So to our unborn baby… on this day, August 21, 2005… we’re waiting for you and desiring you…

Mochi Wars

Filed under: Creative Reflection — Annie at 11:29 pm on Thursday, August 18, 2005

On Wednesday, the day after Shin’s fiasco at the County Hospital we were driving on the 10 East to my school CSULA. On the freeway a Mochi delivery van passed me presumably on the way to making deliveries. IF any of you are Star Wars fans you might remember a certain theme song from Episode I The Phantom Menace. Its called “Dual of the Fates”.

Somehow at that moment, two synapsis’ in my brain became inseparably joined as I began to sing the operatic chorus of the song with the simple but delectable word: mochi.

“mochieee… mochIEEE… MOchi…!! MOOchiEE…!!!

I visualized the dramatic scene of hordes of creme and black cartons landing, their cardboard flaps opening, and the white platform emerging from the entrance. Then as each one dismounts one-by-one from each of the 6 white saucers. Troops of pink soldiers! Brown! Green! Yellow-orange! Each in protective, powdery uniforms amd carrying their weapons. They prepare now for the enemy to approach as the music builds in nervous anticipation.

Then out of the distance the enemy appears with a black cape of hair and a gaping pink and red mouth. Eyes are zombie-like yet focused and determined. Like a mad hunger or a powerful craving.. The battle ensues and the monster’s two arms reach down and with hot claws begin snatching them up and placing them in the terrifying precipice, now covered with white powder all its opening. At the height of the battle one hears the chorus of the desperate heros fending for their LIVES!!!
“MOCHI (GREEN TEA!!) MOCHI(STRAWBERRY!) MOchi(CHOCOLATE!) Mochi(MANGO!!!)”
Desperate! Their flesh disappears in a few short bites as they begin melting in her very fingers. In the background the sounds of sabers “RRrrkzshhhh” and blasters “PIEUU! PIEUU!”
Until atlast the monster cries out, “I ate em all! Sorry Shin!!”

Interview with Ca Label Prod

Filed under: Extraordinary Days — Annie at 11:27 pm on Tuesday, August 9, 2005

This morning was extraordinary. As Shin was leaving he told me “I’m praying for your job”. I had done a lot of searching online for jobs in previous months but usually unfruitfully b/c I didn’t have my portfolio and some prerequisites that I think I need. But this morning I started looking for art jobs online again. I saw one that I’ve seen continuously coming up this past month. It’s a company called California Label Products. In actuality I had driven by it many times on my way to meet my sister for lunch. She worked right there on Broadway street in Gardena. So I wrote a quick cover letter and attached my resume and felt pretty good about it. Maybe just 30 minutes later I got a call on my cell phone from the co. asking to set up an appointment! When they called I was pulling past artworks to create my portfolio finally. So I was about a quarter of the way started. It turned out that I got an appointment same day, and finished compiling my first portfolio! The interview went so-so. It lasted only 20 minutes but I’m hoping to get a call for a second interview with the art director! So all in all, I’m quite happy! Everything happened very speedily and I accomplished something completely unexpected today! Thank you God!! Might I add, I typed this while giving myself a nice mineral food soaking in the new basin I bought at the 99 cent depot tonight.