August 18, 2014

Making spring rolls with the Madre.

First of all, let me start by saying that there is a lady in the house next to ours who likes to practice classical singing every once in a while. Except it sounds eerily like somebody "oooooo"-ing like a ghost..and it freaks me out.


Every so often, I am invited into the kitchen to help make dinner at home. This doesn't happen too frequently as my family firmly believes that I am incapable of doing anything that involves cooking. They won't let me hold a knife, deal with anything that's hot, or do anything remotely dangerous. This means that when I am invited into the kitchen, I'm determined to show everyone that I am a responsible young adult. I can cook!

Not really though. I can assemble ingredients that are pre-chopped by my madre into little rolls (though I still managed to burn my hand, so there's that).

These little bad boys are so easy to make. We picked lettuce from our backyard, cooked up some beef and shrimp, got mung bean sprouts, cilantro and chopped up carrots and cucumbers. You plop them onto rice paper (dipped in hot water), then roll. So easy.

I'll also admit that these photos are from two separate instances in which we made spring rolls. I have no shame. I do what I want!

You can also make your own sauce, with my madre wonderfully did. It's delicious. I'd tell you how she made it, but I have no idea...

And the best part is that you're pretty much eating healthy (minus the rice paper) because they're all vegetables! It's a triple win, in my book. Healthy, delicious, easy to make. 

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August 11, 2014

Greetings from Eugene, Oregon.

Last weekend, my family and I took a trip up to Eugene, OR to take my sister to law school. It's such a cool thing for me to say. Oh, yeah, my sister is in law school! She's going to get her law degree! My sister is big news!

Though that's not new. She's always been a big deal -- from teaching in a third world country to backpacking her way through her travels, she's always been doing something big. So law school is just the next step for her. 

Needless to say, I'm a proud and happy little sister.

Anyway! My parents and I took her up there over the weekend and had ourselves a little Oregon adventure. We didn't get to do too much, since she was moving into her apartment there and we had to take care of all the little things, but we some fun regardless (despite the fact that I was a little sick as well!). On the drive up, we passed through an area that had such dense smoke that it seemed like fog.

Their facilities are so well kept...the surrounding area to the school is really lush and there are tons of little rivers and creeks! I thought it was all so very cool.

And, as we were in Oregon after all, we found out way to Voodoo Doughnut. While we didn't get the famed maple bacon doughnut, we did get the Voodoo Dozen and got an array of cereal crusted, Oreo crumbled, lemon jelly filled doughnuts that made my little heart sing. 

I had such a good time there, but I'm glad to be home. I've been craving just time to relax and enjoy lazing around a little bit. But..I'm excited for the next adventure. Where to?

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August 5, 2014

Adventures in the Windy City (part two)

While I was in Chicago, I really wanted to check out some of the museums while I was in the area, so we decided to go to the Shedd Aquarium. Mostly because it was the cheapest of the museums while still being pretty interesting (two words: shark tank). 

Let me tell you, I've gone to quite a few aquariums in my life, but I have never touched a fish before. Not even in the touch pools where you can touch stingrays. This time? I dangerously (or, really, I was afraid for nothing) dipped my hand into the waters to feel a sturgeon glide against my fingertips, and it was awesome. I childishly squealed every time it came up to allow dozens of hands pet its back.

It's the little things in life -- the simple joys. 

They had a big noodle outside of the aquarium which I didn't really understand, but totally went to take a photo with. Given the number of people that were there, it was impossible to get a photo of the entire thing..but it was awesome. 

 I also went by the lake and watched the sunset. So humid! I almost fought a seagull that wouldn't leave me alone.

To finish it off, I had another hot dog. It's only right, right? The rest of my time in Chicago was split between introducing someone to the amazing world of Korean food, getting the most amazing concrete ice cream thing, and crying over the fact that the Cubs were playing a home game and I didn't have tickets to it.

I would have loved to go to a Cubs game. Or any game. Next time, for sure. All in all, Chicago was a blast. I had so much fun, and I can't wait to go back for more eats!

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