Thursday, September 29, 2011

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Some days are all about the shoes.

A song that gives a pick me up in the morning better than any coffee I know. The most beautiful voices I know, but never again.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

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My Saturdays through Mondays are always hectic, work plus weekend activities, meeting up with friends, and A LOT of driving. So comes Tuesday morning, I usually make myself coffee, eat a piece of toast, and messing around with the camera without feeling guilty about wasting any time.

Friday, September 23, 2011

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Last night I had a craving for sweets, particularly, pie. So I made a trip to my nearest chain supermarket and bought a whole lemon meringue pie. Before I even had a chance to taste it, I already knew it wouldn't be good, the inside looked plasticky and it smelt like high fructose corn syrup. I braved myself and had one bite and threw away the rest of slice on my plate. Disappointed and had no time for another trip, I settled for no desert. It is the one thing I couldn't turn up in my kitchen, I can fry, roast, poach, bake, steam just about any kind of common home made meal but I can't make a dessert. There were a lucky few times in the past when I got to eat homemade fresh pies( my mom don't make them, keep in mind pie is not really an Asian thing), and they were a different animal altogether. It was fresh, warm, delicious and in this time of year, full of autumnal charm.  It could be a project for the weekend to bake a pie of some sort, but for now I dug into my library and thought I'd share this great baking book with you. The Golden Book of Desserts is the most beautiful dessert book I've seen, not just because I'm partial to a golden cover on a dessert book, but all the finished dishes are beautifully presented, and there are a great varieties of desserts to choose from, it's definitely my inspiration of the day!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

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Trying to concentrate on practicing the piano,

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with some lovely practicing companion.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

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In my house, drinking coffee is serious business!
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I don't think I've ever shown a picture of our finished dining room, so here it is. This picture was taken in May and I've since added some vintage china to the cabinets, but everything else stayed the same.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

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Celebrating two years since the day we met. Time flies, it's hard to believe!

Monday, September 19, 2011

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For my birthday a couple of months ago I got this Huntington gas grill. You would think it's a gift really for my husband but he's not interested in BBQ at all and I am. Finally this weekend I decided to buy a propane tank and give it a try.  The result was some very easy and delicious food.  We also sat out in the backyard to have dinner for the first time, it was incredibly relaxing and the weather was nice. The backyard is not "done," but we are doing a little bit at a time. Eventually it will become a nice place, hopefully!

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I bought my designated beach bag over the weekend, it's a huge straw bag that I'm going get a lot of mileage out of going to and from the beach:)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

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A little container garden is slowly happening.

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The smell of fresh coffee bean is amazing! I can't practice the piano in the morning unless I have some coffee with me. 

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I'm addicted to ceramic mice!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

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Here's an perfect example of my horrible perfectionist tendency. I finished my bird cage and it looked fine, except that, there were a few spots that were not spray painted with the same shade of pink as other spots. I tried to spray more paint but the overall color became a shade darker, a shade or two darker! And it made me cringe and gave me a grieve headache! I still can't believe I did this but I stripped off all the paint (OF A BIRD CAGE!!!)with chemicals and repainted the whole thing just so it would look like the light pink that I had imagined it in my head. I didn't know to wear protective clothes except eye goggles, so a lot of the particles of acid got on my skin and burned like hell, but after several days of wrestling with it I got the upper hand. I stripped the new and old paint, applied a white primer and repainted carefully a thin layer of candy pink. So I got what I wanted, but lesson learned: stop being so stupid! Sometimes, good enough is really good enough!!!
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The weather is finally cool enough to wear some real clothes this week. I bought the Saint James shirt and Repetto flats a while ago but never wore it. Somehow I always tuck the clothes away for a long time before I can feel like they are "mine" to wear.

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This time of year is also great to pick up some outdoor furniture for cheap. I added a outdoor table that goes with my trellis and white cast iron chairs, and also this little bench for the front porch, all for about 1/3 of the original price.  I imagine that one day I will have a container garden on the front porch. It already is starting to look nice. Every evening when I go out to water my flowers, I'm tempted to sit down and enjoy a little moment alone in my garden and watch the quiet street and sleepy houses.

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A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I went out to the beach. When we came back home, there was a little paper bag packed with fresh figs left at our door by the neighbors. It made me think how nice it would be to have fresh figs ourselves. We have a sizable backyard that can park 6 cars, but not a whole lot of dirt space. I've already got four fruit trees and there's not a lot of room left for another one. So I decided that this one is just going to be a container tree for a few years, if it gets too big, I will give it to my parents and let them have it in their backyard!

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Friday, September 9, 2011

Thursday, September 8, 2011

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Complete!

A work in progress...

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Once in a while I check out my local Salvation Army store to see what's "new." A couple of days ago I was in the shop and spotted this ginormous wrought iron bird cage. It was full of rust and kind of expensive for $30. I wondered out of the store with a $5 milk glass lamp that's in perfect condition, but somehow went back to it to have a second look. Just as I took out my cellphone to get ready for a picture, a man walked pass by me and said, "Don't take pictures, just TAKE IT." I have to say he startled me a little bit because I thought for a second there was no picture allowed in the shop. I asked "so you think this is a good buy?" He told me that a bird cage of this size would cost considerably more at a antique shop or a iron yard, plus it was all handmade and seems like from the 70s. As he was talking to me, another lady who had been listening to our conversation approached the bird cage and wanted to grab it if I didn't, so I was sold.

Now please don't ask me how I got this monster in and out of my car. This summer, my poor little four door sedan has been doing the job of a pick up truck, moving furniture, appliances, electronics, apple trees, plants, and now a old bird cage. I had been working on getting it cleaned with a rust remover today in near 100 degree heat, and then applied a layer of Rustoleum spray paint. It's a project that's so easy that even I could do it. Later I will have a picture for the finished product, but I think it's looking better already. I love love love vintage wrought iron furniture or decoration, it's kind of my thing, but truth be told, they are hard to find these days! This fits the bill perfectly, plus now I will have a story to go along with it!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

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This past week was all about summer fun. We celebrated my husband's birthday with a little picnic on the beach, tried out some new restaurants in town, planted another apple tree ( the first one died), tried new recipes at home, and did quite a bit of gardening. Speaking of which,

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I have been reading 52 Weeks in the California Garden by Robert Smaus. It is a amazing gardening book filled with useful and practical advice. I love how everything is set on a schedule so that you know when to do what exactly, it takes a lot of the confusion out of gardening. And fun facts like you can actually plant cool weather vegetables in the fall in Southern California just makes my day!

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