Room / Life / Mess

Does anyone else agree that when your room is a mess, your life is a mess? They are one and the same to me.

My room right now looks like a friggin’ tornado hit it. A few glimpses of what’s going on inside, with the *actual* mess carefully hidden from the camera. 😉

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Calligraphy practice paper, nibs, and ink spread out all over my desk. Why is the learning curve so steep for me? I guess it would help if I practiced more than once a month… kinda like how I should have practiced piano growing up, or Korean, or guitar, or… (damn, I’m kind of a quitter, aren’t I).

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Christmas presents on the ground. If your name is Daisy (or Karin, or Tina), I have not seen you since before 12/2013. -_- This is a problem, and not just because you’re contributing to the clutter in my room.

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An unfinished 3-tiered cake. Made from diapers, obvi. (I would prefer it if this were a 3-tiered cake made out of… cake. And strawberries.)

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Random stacks of fabric, because my box of fabrics is officially overflowing. I always make sewing projects and end up with leftover fabric swatches, which are typically too small to make something substantial but too big to throw away without it feeling like a waste. Wait. I’ve got it. Time to make a quilt. I literally thought of that right now, so you just caught a #geniusmoment. *bows*

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I went to Joann’s yesterday and bought THE GILDED PAPER STACK. Which is 48 sheets of 12″x12″ cardstock paper. Because I love gold. And I love anything 50% off. The name is pretty deceiving, as you can see above that only about half the stack is actually gilded. Also, I currently have no use for this paper, as I have not scrapbooked or made a card in months, but this is not what I was thinking in the store as I mentally patted myself on the back for the find. I embellished that teal plate with gold dots, because I love gold. Wait, did I already say that?

Anyway.

In the time it took me to photograph and write this post, I could have probably cleaned my entire room. Eff.

Tinerd Made a List of Books

You guys. In light of my newfound resolve to read more (again), I’ve started my summer reading list. In case you’re looking to do some reading too, I wanted to share my initial picks. Friends, please continue to send your reccs over…!

  • The Maze Runner trilogy + prequel (The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials, The Death Cure, The Kill Order) by James Dashner
  • One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories by B.J. Novak
  • The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  • Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
  • Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  • Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Three of these books will have movie adaptations coming out sometime this/next year… in case you’re not into the reading thing. 😉 I actually just finished the first Maze Runner book and it reminded me of a darker version of The Hunger Games. Yikes. Took me half of the book to get hooked, but hooked I am, and I can’t wait to finish the series.

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I tried really hard to find a picture of me reading but alas, this is all I could find… -_- Circa 5/2009

Happy Reading!!

Read More Books

I read this NY Times opinion article the other day about the benefits of reading, where the author states, “Reading does things — to the brain, heart and spirit — that movies, television, video games and the rest of it cannot.”

Yes. Just yes.

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Growing up as an introvert with a sister who loved to read and no cable TV at home, I became a voracious reader. My parents encouraged me in elementary school by challenging me to read 100 books during summer breaks; when that became too easy, they challenged me with pages (10,000+ pages (!!) one summer, with every title written down in a notebook). In high school, a few friends and I started a book club, where we read books like The World According to Garp (John Irving) and The Virgin Suicides (Jeffrey Eugenides) and spent our lunches together discussing them. Yes, for fun.

‘Twas sad times when I hit college and grad school, because textbooks became more important than real books, and I pretty much stopped reading for pleasure. The release of Amazon’s Kindle was my saving grace, and for awhile, it was permanently attached to my hand as I caught up on lost time. These days, I go through periods of time when I’m obsessively reading, and periods of time when…. I’m not.

After reading that article, I feel re-inspired to tackle all of the unread books on my Kindle (and add to my ever-growing, never-ending list).

Friends, any recommendations of good books you’ve read recently? What should I read next? I’m open to all genres except romance/horror. 🙂

Chanel Leona

She’s here! Long-awaited Baby C of my dear friends Pri and Dan. I visited Chanel Leona Kim hours after she was born last Thursday– and a quick stop-by turned into a 4 hour visit. There was a code yellow (bomb threat) at the hospital due to a suspicious package found somewhere, so the hospital went into lockdown and everyone was stuck inside. Not that I was complaining… I mean, just look at this face…

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Omg. Just omg.

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I die.

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Pri was an absolute rockstar– she delivered without an epidural!

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I’m gonna be the BEST.AUNTIE.EVER! So excited to watch her grow. ❤

Tina Made a Baby Blanket

I have 4 friends and 1 boss who are simultaneously pregnant so my life has been filled with lots of baby-talk these days.  Yikes. I’m gonna be the world’s best aunt. Anyway, I promised my friend Pri that I would make her a baby blanket to match with her nursery, but I’d been procrastinating like crazy. And then I found out last weekend that she was starting to dilate, so that was obviously reason enough to sit down and make it. :X

I used this simple tutorial and I’m happy with the way it turned out! It fakes mitered corners without compromising the look of the final product. (Note that in the pictures in the original tutorial, the corners of the blanket look a bit stretched/sharp..? I was able to square them off pretty easily though so it shouldn’t be an issue if you’re careful.)

Materials:

  • 36″x36″ cotton fabric
  • 41″x41″ some type of fluffy fabric (I used a super soft polyester)
  • matching thread

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Kind of in love with this neon coral fabric (from Joann’s), which matches beautifully with the sprinkle crib sheets and changing pad cover from Joy’s Land of Nod line that Pri bought a few weeks ago.

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Cameo by Patrick the Pup

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I was able to give the blanket to Pri on Monday and she loved it. Yay! Her husband even wrapped himself in it (trust me, it’s soft) and asked if I could make it in a bigger size. 😉

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Baby C loved it too! 🙂 A quick (fuzzy) iPhone pic from Monday evening. So happy we got to talk over dinner and dessert– which will probably be a rare occasion from here on out.

Pri is actually in labor RIGHT NOW (I’m writing this Wed 11pm, though this post will be published in a few hours), so everyone send a quick prayer her way!

Night Out: House of Blues

I can’t remember the last time I’ve gone out on a weeknight. Like, out-out. When did I get so old? But last Wednesday gave me the best reason to go out ever– a few of my friends from college played at the House of Blues in Hollywood! They were part of the “and Friends” of “Jeevo and Friends”– Byron on viola and James on vocals.

They freakin’ killed it.

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Jeevo (third from right) is a singer-songwriter-rapper who also went to UCLA. Bruins doin’ werk. 😉 James, a friend from my freshman dorm days in Dykstra Hall, pictured far right. [Sorry for the yucky iPhone pictures…]

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Byron, another Dykstra homie, now married to my dear friend Meesh, pictured second from right, awkwardly cradling his viola.

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Post-show. Friends for 10.5 years and counting…!

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And here’s a throwback from 9 years ago, when James and Byron performed with Jeevo at UCLA’s Spring Sing back in 2005. They pretty much look the same. Some of us girls made them that poster, signed “love, your biggest fans”– we still are!. PS- Spring Sing is an annual music competition that started in 1945 (!), and past performers include Maroon 5 and Sara Bareilles (pre-fame). Yeee.

What a fun night! I was so proud of J & B and it was so good to be surrounded by old friends. Such a rich history of friendship we are cultivating. Lurve.

Tina Made Blackberry Vinaigrette

I f-ing love salad. Not because it’s healthy or good for me or because I’m supposed to, but I genuinely think it’s delicious. EXCEPT when the dressing sucks. So maybe I don’t really love salad, I love salad dressing. Shrug.

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I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time getting proportions right when I’m making dressing. It’s always too oily or too tangy or too something. I keep adding the “missing” ingredient until I end up with 2 cups of mediocrity. -_- So. Here’s a foolproof vinaigrette dressing recipe (that I should follow more often). I used blackberry balsamic from Beyond the Olive, which pretty much guaranteed it would be delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup blackberry balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 clove chopped garlic

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Enjoy, herbivores.

Saddlerock Ranch

Last Saturday, I joined the Love & Splendor team for another freelance wedding gig at Chateau Le Dome of Saddlerock Ranch (part of Malibu Family Wines). ‘Twas the most gorgeous venue EVER, nestled on a hilltop surrounded by rolling vineyards everywhere.

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The Chateau itself is a dome-shaped stone house (see next picture). It’s available for bridal parties to get ready, but the ceremony and reception sites are outdoors.

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Dance floor + reception tables, all ready to go

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Panoramic views of the vineyards

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Michelle (right) acted as lead coordinator for this wedding, but Angel (founder of L&S), stopped by with her darling Olive (hidden in our hair and shadows haha) and brought us delicious lunch from Urbane Cafe.

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The stone path leads down from the Chateau (and reception area) to the beautiful cocktail hour + ceremony site.

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Picture taken post-ceremony. Earlier in the day, Michelle and I put up that white draping on the oak tree arch (a permanent structure), and the florist added those beautiful arrangements. I sprinkled (and then picked up) five bags of white rose petals along the edges of the aisle.

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The bride and groom had a cute frame available as a photo op, which Michelle and I obviously took advantage of when we had a free moment. 😉

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The venue has these gorgeous white lights hanging from its many trees. At night, it looks like a total dream.

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Another one, later in the night! Too pretty.

Saddlerock Ranch– love at first sight (site)? 😉 Hope to be back here soon! Thanks for having me, L&S!