Sunday, November 28, 2010

Is It Possible...

to go to two weddings in one day? I have found out the answer last weekend; YES. My family was invited to two weddings. One for my Cousin Spencer and one for my Cousin Ann.

At these individual weddings, I realized two things.
One: I want a short and to the point church service/ ceremony.
Two: I have very few cousins that are not married yet.

Spencer's Wedding ceremony was held at the Krikpatrick's Chapel in New Brunswick. I thought it was adorable that they decided to have their ceremony at Rutgers, where they met. I have only been to the chapel once before for Sharon's Choir Performance. It is a small warm inviting setting with red walls and mahagoney seats. My vocabulary is limited so I don't know how to describe the decor. But it was really nice and simple. I loved the color of the bridesmaid dresses, champagne. And like I clearly noted above, it was short. It was only twenty minutes. They said their vows and "I do"s and were pronouned husband and wife within half an hour. Nice and simple.
Lovely Bride and Handsome Groom
Grace and Spencer
Cousin Joyce and Me
Cousin Ann's reception was held in Flushing Queens. A nice venue with all the proper lighting effects you need for a party. Most of my cousin's were there so it was more fun. But like I mentioned earlier, I am running out of cousins that aren't married. One of my aunts came up to me and said, "So.. when is it going to be your turn?" I came up with the quickest come-back which was to say Cousin Tony , her son, is still first. The reality of it is I am getting to the age that this question is not really a silly one anymore. When they asked me when I was sixteen, it was more of a joke. With only a handful of cousins left, I can only say that someone else is first so many more times.
Lovely Bride and Handsome Groom
Ann and Chris
Cousin Queena and Me

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Day of Family

          I remember how Thanksgivings use to be. My aunts, uncles, cousins and family would go to Grandpa's huge  three story house in Queens (where my mom and aunts grew up and where my cousins probably use to play when they were little). On Thanksgiving Day, Grandpa would have cook up a great feast with all the essentials to a typical American Thanksgiving Dinner. We are a 100% Chinese, but we are also very immersed into the american culture. As Grandpa aged, we started eating out and then he sold the house. I was very sad that we no longer spent thanksgiving together. Old traditions fade, new ones emerge; all in all Thanksgiving still means FAMILY.
          This year, Mom is doing Thanksgiving and we are having some family over to celebrate with us. However, not everyone invited is blood related. I have learned that they don't have to have DNA similarities order to be considered family. 

I am thankful for my parents, my brother and my extended family. As annoying my parents may be, I know they mean well. With all the added stress my brother gives me, I still love him. As for my extended family members. They are playing a bigger role in my life: giving me advice, taking an interest in me and supporting me where no one else understands.
I am thankful for my "god" family: Godfather, Godmother and Godsister. They love me, spoil me and support me. I honestly don't need to say more because my love for them isn't any less than the love I have for my biological family.
I am thankful for my friends. Sometimes people you aren't related to are the ones that understand you the best. I am grateful that I have always had friends that believe in me, even when I do not believe in myself.
I am thankful for my new family at school: my roommate, my building mates, my classmates. I spend 95% of my time in Newark and I spend 100% of my time there with great people. 

Spend it with people you love and that love you.
Lastly, I am thankful for good health or none of these memories would be possible.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Back to Reality

11:08 am
At this time, I just remembered to change the time on my watch. We are having a lovely lunch with Kuohsin Chen at Flour Bakery. Dad and I had checked out super early today. We thought it would take us awhile to get to the bakery. It was only three minutes away from the hotel. So we were forty minutes early. When we first arrived, it was packed and had no seats available. This bakery wasn’t near any school in particular; who knew that is would be this pack at nine thirty in the morning. With a look around, we knew instantly it would have been a great place for Grams to take some shots. My pictures below will just have to do until she has the chance to go up there herself.

Their famous "sticky bun"

Hot Chocolate. I was too chicken to try the "Fiery Hot Chocolate"

Dad and Kuohsin

2:07 pm
We are about an hour and eight minutes away from Newark. I have taken a nap and pretty much just stared out the window for majority of the ride home. I should be doing some work. But I have always liked to just sit quietly and think. Now that I am slowly approaching closer and closer to real life again, I am being mindful of all things that I need to do once I return home. This weekend has given me some perspective on a few things I have been trying to figure out. I think these mini-trips help me remember who I am and what I want to do with my life. Now knowing that trips help me refocus, I am looking forward to my trips this winter break. 

Eat, Eat and Eat Some More

Today was another glorious "get fatter" day. We started today off with breakfast. When I saw the menu at the downstairs cafe with White Hot Chocolate, I knew immediately what I was having. Unfortunately, the barista heard me incorrectly and made me a White Chocolate Mocha. For those that do not know, I hate coffee. I don't ever go near it. But I drank some of it and let the cup keep my hands warm as we traveled to the JFK Library.

Dad is teaching me how we were going to use the T.
If you can handle the NYC subway, you can definitely handle the Boston underground rail system. A friendly transit worker explained to us how to purchase a Charlie Card. The cards remind me the Hong Kong's Octopus Card. There is a smart chip in the card and that is how the scanners read them. The Charlie card is going to be saved and used for my scrapbook layout. We rode the T and a shuttle to get to the Library. Now, when I think of library, I think of rows and rows of books. There were not as many books as I thought there would be. Dad explained to m later that it really was a museum. A historical museum entirely about John F. Kennedy. Not exactly my idea of fun when I go tour a city. But it was important to Dad that we went, so for the hour we were there, I chose to love history. It was unfortunate that we were only able to stay an hour. The travel time was longer than we anticipated  and we had lunch plans with Dad's former students at 12 pm; we had to cut our stay short.

A few things I like to show and comment on. 

Time has changed, you needed to be 21 to vote back in the day. The age requirement now is 18; I am 22 and I still don't vote.

You thought your hand writting was bad!? Try reading that.

I have this book in the 13th edition. I haven't cracked it open yet.

Met up with more of Dad's students. I got to see Munchkins! Jerry!

We had lunch at a nice restaurant in Havard Square area called Russell House Tavern. I had The Benedict. and of course I polished off my plate. We walked about 200 feet into Havard; I took two pictures and then we walked out. Dad wanted to go to the Havard bookstore; he immediately saw two history books to buy after looking through the first floor. We didn't dare go to the second floor because he was worried he would find more to buy. I found a few books that I may have an interest in reading. If there only were more hours in a day, maybe I would get around to reading books that have nothing to do with my classes. After lunch, we went to Newbury Street. We walked through it pretty quickly because everything was just out of my price range.

This t-shirt made me smile. If it wasn't pink, I probably would have gotten it.

Dinner. Small restaurant, big meal.
I made the reservation to Trattoria di Monica last night for 7:30 pm. We arrived a little bit early. I surely was in for a surprise. When I walked into the restuarant, it was practically a hole in the wall. A maximum space to hold 80 people. They had packed reservations from floor to ceiling. After looking at the menu, I was looking forward to having risotto. I ended up ordering...
Tomato Soup

Squid ink risotto with clams

I also had gelatto for dessert in a smal gellato place call Gigi Gellato. We returned back to the hotel after that because I was pretty tired from all the walking today. Want to hear something ridiculous? I asked if there was a fridge in our room to put my leftovers in. The hotel staff told me it would cost $15 for them to bring me a fridge. I decided to just put the food by the window for a night thinking it would be okay. Guess what I found in the room?! A fridge.

It has been such a long day, but I wanted to post this entry before I went to bed. Don't forget to set your clocks back everybody. Enjoy your extra hour of daylight. Another day of brunch awaits me. Goodnight.

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Start of a Gluttonous Weekend

Before dinner tonight, Dad and I went to the Malls that were connected to the Sheraton across the street. I might have found a coat I wanted to buy at a store that I have never seen before called 343. Around 6:30 pm we met up with Jen for dinner. On our way to the restaurant, I was busy trying to take pictures. I stopped in the middle of the street trying to get some shots in; we passed a band playing on the street. I had to take a picture.

As we continued would have never guessed what I spotted. I have already asked Dad if we can go tomorrow. I am starting to think the Anthropologie stores are attracted to me. I see them everywhere I go.

 Dinner Time
Award Winning New England Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl

Pan Seared Sea Bass with Lobster Ravioli

The Coolest Thing in the Room: a Big Ship

I love hot chocolate. When I saw "Speacialty Hot Cocoa Drinks" I got super excited. Only to my dismay, the special-ness to the drinks was the alcohol that was in it. Super disappointing.

My Go-to Dessert: The Classic Creme Brulee

I haven't seen Jen in probably four years. I am so glad she is doing well and that she was able to come have dinner with us tonight. 

Above are the quick shots we took outside the restuarant. Below is a shot I took on the walk back from dropping Jen off at the T station. I thought it was a pretty site.

Don't say Yankees...

11:14 am

It is officially 11:14 am as it is stated on Lucy, Dad’s Midnight blue Lexus. Dad and I are being rerouted through Ardsley, New York because we accidently stayed on 87. Lucy has decided to lead us to the Boston Hilton by taking as many local streets as possible. As we are slightly frustrated driving through this random time, we maintain a bright outlook on this cold rainy day. The trees are changing colors beautifully and we are still making time on our way up to Massachusetts.

11:21 am

Next stop White Plans. Dad still has a sense of humor that he would mention how we are passing a Mall -White Plains Galleria. We passed by major malls on the way up, saw an IKEA and across the street was Garden State Plaza. Later we saw Palisades Mall and then Dad mentioned that we might be able to go to Woodbury on the way home on Sunday. Finally we have rerouted and are heading back to Interstate 287. Unfortunately Lucy is telling us that it will now take 4 hours to get to Boston. When we started in Newark at 10 am this morning it also said 4 hours.

1:56 pm

Stopped for lunch, but we went to a place I never thought I would ever go. We had McDonald’s. Unheard of! It was our only choice after we picked the rest stop. With only about an hour and ten minutes away from Boston, and about four hours from dinner, it was best to have something small. Tonight we are going to have dinner with one of Dad’s former students. But I actually know her because we took Concert Choir together. Dinner is at Atlantic Fish Company tonight with Jen Krudyla.

3:10 pm

So we have arrived in BOSTON! I am so excited; I haven’t been here in who knows how long. I am sitting in the lobby waiting for Dad to come check us in. He is currently parking the car right now. The Hilton is pretty nice; it is next to the Sheraton that Dad says they stay at for the conference up here in the Spring. On the way to the hotel, I saw Boston University. And then we passed Fenway Stadium for the Red Sox. I don’t know too much about baseball, just that I was warned to not mention Yankees.

On the road, I wish the colors turned out better inthe picutre. The trees were so pretty and the sun finally peaked out.

View from our room.

I get the bed by the window! Yippy!

New Experiences

I will be trying something new with my blog. In Dad’s words, I feel it is slightly one dimensional. I really want to also blog about my travels. Especially with my mini Europe trip over winter break. So I will start off with this Boston trip that I am on with my Godfather this weekend. We have lots of meals lined up which is the important aspect to this trip. Dad is meeting up with a bunch of his former students. I am just as excited because get to put a face to the name. Adding my travels to this blog still follows my theme being addicted to good Memories.