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weekend update with ei-nyung and seppo

February 6, 2005   

I guess we just don’t have the patter of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. I’ll live, I think.

We’ve really been on a cooking binge. Tonight, Seppo made a mushroom sausage risotto and bittersweet chocolate-dipped strawberries, and I made a butterflied chicken with a mushroom leek stuffing. The risotto is for later in the week, but we had the chicken and strawberries tonight. I’ve never butterflied chicken before, but DAMN, it made for a juicy, flavorful chicken with an ultra-crispy skin due to the much higher oven temperature that butterflying allows. I wish I had known the secret of brining + patting the skin dry + butterflying much earlier in life. Our subscription to Cook’s Illustrated has really been paying off.

My sister told me that she’s going to put her house up for sale (or possibly rent, depending on the market) a week after lunar new year. Lunar new year is February 9th this year! The mind boggles. I’m pretty excited, but trying not to get my hopes up too much in case things fall through. The plan, if things go the way we want, will be that she will move to the Atlanta house with the two kids soon afterwards, then her husband will come join her when he sells the factory. I’m amazed that they somehow got the in-laws to go along with this without a fight.

If my sister moves to the US, my life will change drastically in one way. We’ve already discussed that she and her husband will buy the Atlanta house from me — not right away, but in a couple of years after they are established. My sister wants to pay me rent starting right away, but I told her that I’d rather see her build up her savings a little first so that she and her hubby can be relatively stable before kicking in on the house. I think all of us are so used to living paycheck-to-paycheck that I’d really like them to be able to build up a little nest egg. And once they buy the house from me, or start paying me rent, I too can start back up on my savings, which I have been robbing from quite a bit lately. Then Seppo and I will be able to breathe a little easier.

It’s funny; it’s not like we are entirely broke or can’t go have a nice dinner once in a while or buy a dvd or video game or save up for a nice gift. We can do that easily. I think it’s just that having such a huge combined debt always makes us feel like any spare cash we have has to be thrown into our second mortgages, so we never have a comfortable amount of savings, which is more than a little scary. It’s also difficult to visualize a future where we can afford to have children or afford to not have roommates.

I think I can swing a trip over to see my mom and bros (and maybe my sister and her kids by then) in July, after attending a wedding in Philly at the end of June. My mom is going to consign her friend to make my wedding dress, so my homework is to try on a bunch of different styles and check out fabrics ahead of time so that when I go visit, I can get measured and pick out a design for her to make. We are planning for her to make it really early and maybe slightly big, then send it out here many many months in advance (I’m thinking like 3/4 a year), so that I can get it altered for a final fit locally, or possibly dump it altogether if it turns out weird or something. Heh. My mom called today, all worried that she won’t be able to be here long enough ahead of time before the wedding to help out, but I assured her that one week will be fine for her participation. I better tell her soon that Seppo’s mom plans to do the flowers, since my mom also had a florist shop for several years. The battle of the moms wouldn’t be such a fun event, I think.

I feel a little hectic at work, but I think I’m not too far behind. I worry a little that I’m out of my depth, but I think I always feel like this at this phase of any project, and I haven’t actually screwed anything up too badly yet, so I guess I’m ok.

We saw The House of Flying Daggers yesterday at the Parkway, with Colin, Joe T, Uyen, and Charles. It was a visually and aurally stunning movie. There were some elements that I think the general audience might find to be cheesy or overly dramatic, but I felt that they fit in perfectly with the emotionally wrenching tone of the story. They are entirely different movies, but I feel like this movie and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind share a lot in the way of hyper-visualization of inner emotional conflict and in the way that they were just simply beautiful to look at.

We just acquired a free blue/green leather couch in fairly good condition. It’s several years old but had been babied by the former owner, so it is in good shape. And it is oh-so-comfortable. I keep falling asleep on it. The best part is that dog hair doesn’t stick to it.


February 7, 2005 at 1:47 am

For the record, the chicken was *stunning*. Prior to this evening, my favorite chicken dish ever was the chicken at Aperto, and yeah, it’s probably still ahead by a hair. But it’s really darned close, and that was quite frankly, the best chicken I’ve ever had anywhere by a *longshot* prior. The skin on the chicken tonight was crispy, the meat was tender and juicy, the stuffing was a perfect complement. Awesome. Truly.

February 12, 2005 at 10:50 am

I know a certain someone *cough, cough* who knows the Bay Area bridal industry backwards and forward and can let you know all the bridal shops to run (not walk) to and the ones to stay far, far away from.

February 12, 2005 at 6:24 pm

Help! I must beg you to point the way. I seriously have no idea where to begin, even after a year of engagement already. Hahaha. Typical. I defer to the master.

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