Watch Project Runway this week, wear red, and take care of your heart

February 3, 2010 at 5:06 am (friends)

Watch Project Runway this Thursday for my buddy Stephanie the heathy heart American Heart Association spokesperson.  Or should I say spokesmodel.  Or if you watch already, say hi to her when you watch this week’s episode.  “If you don’t have Lifetime, they post episodes online on Saturday.”

You can catch a glimpse of her in the preview.

I can’t wait to see the whole episode!  I’m so excited.  And I’m so jealous, but I’ll eventually get over that.

And don’t forget to Go Red and learn more about how to keep your heart healthy.


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Too many cakes

November 30, 2009 at 4:22 pm (chocolate, cooking, dessert, food, friends, international, wedding)

How did our weekend of cake tasting go?  It was fun, and mostly quite tasty.  That was all expected.  But I didn’t expect to be so confused.

Here are the results.  If you want the names of any of the bakeries, let me know and I can tell you.

You can use it to mark time

One egg cake

One egg cake from Mark’s father – He makes this every year for Mark’s birthday.  It’s quite sweet.  Both Mark’s father and the cake, especially the frosting.  But that’s not for the wedding.  That was just bonus cake.


Wedding cake baker #1


Wedding cake baker #1 – We liked the design options and we like the cost.  The design consultant was really nice and we talked about a custom-ish design that combined various designs that they already do.  And since we sort of designed it ourselves, we’re a bit attached to it.  But the cakes were either too moist (chocolate) or too dry (swirl or white).  The fillings were good, but not great.  So this would be a good option, but not perfect.

Wedding cake baker #2

Wedding cake baker #2 – These cakes were considerably tastier.  The flavors are also more interesting and the slices look much prettier (if you ignore the saran wrap – we picked up the slices from the baker and ate them at my sis’s apartment).  This baker would be more expensive, and we’d have to use one of the basic designs unless we want to pay even more money for a custom design.

dry, not good flavor, frosting no good

Cupcake place #1

Cupcake place #1 – Not very good.  Not worth talking about

more like muffins with frosting

Cupcake place #2

Cupcake place #2 – Better.  But not what we’re looking for.  All the cupcake places would be cheaper, but probably more effort for us.

It would have been nice to try other non-wedding cake cake places, but there’s only so much cake you can eat in one weekend.

We’re probably leaning toward tastier but more expensive.  I hope that I don’t see any leftover cake next July!

Speaking of leftovers, Thanksgiving leftovers have been turned into a curry turkey pot pie.  It’s baking in the oven right now.  I used turkey, gravy, and leftover cranberries from a pear-cranberry-almond tart.  And I also used some of the extra onion soup.  The curry part is inspired by our visit to a cooking class that my sister teaches.  It’s a class for HS students at a charter school.  We stopped by and enjoyed some curry chicken and roti and some creamy pasta.  It’s a neat idea for a class.  Each student has to do a little research on a country.  Then they bring in a recipe from that country, often where their families are from, and they cook it together in class.

The curry chicken is stuffed inside the roti before it's all pan fried in butter!

It was all really tasty!

Before all our leftovers turned into a curry turkey pot pie, this is what it looked like:

flavored w/ rosemary, thyme, sage, apple cider


Dinner is served

Designing the pear tart

Look at how the pears are kinda rosy.  It's so pretty.  It's from soaking dried cranberries with the poached pears

The result of their hard work

The curry turkey pot pie is done!  Good timing!

Smells and tastes as good as it looks


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No gas at the gas stations, but I found some gas in Atlanta

September 30, 2008 at 5:34 pm (friends, politics, travel)

I just got back from Atlanta, the land of gas shortages.  And the land of really long and disorienting escalators.  For some reason their subway system is really far underground.  So are various parts of the airport.  So they have these really long escalators.  To make it even worse, they put tiles next to the escalators that aren’t lined up with the up and down as gravity sees it.  So in the middle of these escalator tunnels, you can’t see anything outside of the tunnel to orient yourself, and they have these confusing tiles.  So you don’t know which way is up.  And you don’t know if you’re going up or straight forward.  I would hold on to the railings to steady myself, but I recently heard about how someone witnessed a person rubbing body parts against the escalator railings in a subway station… you’ll have to find this person yourself and ask her for more details.

Which way is up?  Is Mark standing straight on a moving walkway?  Or is he going down an escalator?

Which way is up? Is Mark standing straight on a moving walkway? Or is he going down an escalator? This is a photo from a trip to ATL a few years ago.

Other than these issues, I had a fun time.  That brings me to the second part of the title of this post.  I visited Rosa and Baron and their new outrageously smiley and adorable baby Braelynn.  (It’s okay to talk about gas when it’s coming from babies.  Farts and burps are cute when they are baby farts and baby burps.)

Da, for some reason, decided to call her Bubbly while she was still in utero.  It turns out that she was very prescient.  Or maybe she just realized that all babies have gas and make spit bubbles.

It doesn’t take very much to make this baby smile.  Waving a blanket in front of her face makes her ridiculously happy for an amazingly long time.  When she holds the blanket her self, she moves it to her face, makes snorting noises, and has a huge grin on her face and kicks her feet in excitement.  I’m not sure what’s she’s getting out of the snorting the blanket, but it is very stimulating for her.  Actually, this baby is continuously excited and doesn’t stop kicking her feet.  I wonder if she’ll wear herself out!

We also went to the aquarium.  I saw the big whale sharks and the big manta ray.  They’re BIG.  The tank is also big, but you don’t really get that feeling because you can’t see the whole tank at once.

Guess which one is the whale shark...

Guess which one is the whale shark...

Whale sharks apparently are filter feeders.  We watched a feeding… they look like vacuum cleaners and the water just gets sucked right into their wide flat mouths.  I couldn’t get a good photo because when they are feeding like this, they are also moving fast, and those photos came out very blurry.

It was all pretty mesmerizing, for adults and babies alike.

Okay, so maybe the huge football stadium-sized tank wasn't enough to keep Braelynn's attention for the whole time, but there were lots of people to watch also

There were other mesmerizing things at the aquarium, like the blinking lights on my camera.

Now I’m back in DC.

On an unrelated note, I hope I don’t get disenfranchised.  I had to reregister because I moved.  But I’m not sure that it went through.  But this is an important election year!  I’ll be registered in California, so my vote probably won’t matter much for the presidential election.  But there are other issues at stake:

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What Gary ate in San Francisco

June 25, 2008 at 9:56 pm (food, friends, san francisco)

Afghan bread – bolani – and spreads from the Alemany farmers’ market (and you can see the pomelos in the background).  We froze one bread for him to take back to Boston.  I hope it went through okay.


Oatmeal (steel cut) with peaches and Straus (yummy!) milk.  Whole milk!

oatmeal and straus

Gary is now a Burma Superstar!

burma superstar

And finally, he finished off a few scoops of Bi-Rite ice cream. Gary’s showing how sad he is that the ice cream is gone.

ice cream is finished - sad

Those were all the yummy things.  We also had an adventure with strawberries.  Gary doesn’t like berries, but I thought that maybe eating a strawberry fresh from California instead of nasty East Coast berries could change his mind.  But he’s more stubborn with berries than he is with oatmeal and mangos and peaches and flossing.  I sliced a bunch of strawberries and picked the most delicious one for him to try.  These weren’t the best strawberries I’ve ever had, but they were up there.  This is how much he enjoyed it:

strawberries - yuck?

You should appreciate my honesty.  I could have posted a photo like this one and then reported how Gary now loves strawberries:

strawberries - yay!

But he’s pretty sharp and he probably would have found out about my scam, if I had attempted it.

I don\'t think so

Thanks for visiting and keeping me on my toes!

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