Saturday, May 1, 2010

Challenge #1: the yard

Amongst the many things I had never done, like jumping off plane, or deep sea diving, is mowing the yard. Not just my yard. ANY yard.

True. Until two weekends ago, after finding out how much the handyman charges, I promptly told the boy "$50 bucks! No way, I'll freakin' do it and you can pay me $50." So one sunny afternoon before he left, I got a 30 min crash course on how to use the lawn mower and the weed eater.

When my friends and co-workers found out what I signed myself up for, they offered up a bevy of advice:

"Mow it often, long grass gets much harder"
"Don't try to mow the yard when it rains, the clumps of grass will cause a clog"

some are better:
"We're just a phone call away"
"You can call the FRG (family readiness group)"

and my personal fav:
"I'll be glad to come over and show you what you're doing wrong"

The weather was cooperative this Saturday, the sun was shining longer than expected and the rain kept away, so after lunch I decided to try my luck on the mowing the yard and cleaning up the edge with the weed eater.

The backyard was no problemo. The front yard was another story. Steep slopes and heavy lawnmower definitely do not bode well for me. I mowed the top as much as I can, and then let the mower slide down the slope to finish up the side walk. My big challenge came when I had to push the mower back up the slope. It was getting warm, my arms were tired, and even though I backed up a good 4 feet to get a running start, I. Just. Couldn't. get the mower back up the slope.

Finally, I took the bag off the mower, and that made it light enough for the push uphill. Thank goodness I didn't have to use my "phone-a-friend" card.

Next is the weed eater. Using that thing is like using the chop sticks for me-I know how to use it but I'm not very good at it. I tried to use the weed eater to clean up the front yard, and in my haste I left patches of bald grass spots all over. It. was. pathetic. but funny at the same time.

Overall I gave myself a 7 / 10 for my first attempt. It was definitely good exercise for the hour I spent outside. I'll have to do rinse and repeat in 2 weeks. Maybe I'll better arm strength by then. Now moving on to the next challenge... cooking a meal for myself.

I broke a rule

We have this long standing rule in the house - no electronics in the master bedroom. Bedroom is a place of sanctuary, and should be calm, quiet, and free of electronic energy and buzzes. I'm sure all you feng-shui believers will agree with me on this one.

I broke the rule tonight. I am sitting on the boy's side of the bed with my laptop. Writing this very blog post. Hah.

I have not blogged in 9 months. I was running out of things to write about, and then twitter and facebook just took over.

Now with the boy gone for an extended period of time, I want to document all my trial and tribulations of living by myself again.

And thus the revival of Southern Fried Wonton.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Snap shots from Japanese fashion mag

While in Seattle couple weeks back I got a chance to stop at Kinokuniya (Japanese Bookstore). I remember back in my high school years I would go to Kinokuniya in Kuala Lumpur after school and pick up the latest copies of Non No.

Well years and decades had since passed and I have completely out grown Non no, but I did pick up another Japanese fashion mag Classy and am now savoring the pages.

Couple of things that caught my eye:

1. This breezy outfit, perfect for summer. It looks so effortless and the fringe clutch made the whole outfit so much better.

2. Three ways to style a white bermuda shorts. I love how the shorts are paired with heels and wedges and yet it does not look trashy. The safari top, wide white belt, and nude peep toes outfit is definitely my favorite. I also love the versatility of cuffing the shorts for a different look.

There is something about Japanese style that I absolutely love but can't quite describe it with adjectives. I actually tore out my Lucky Mag stickers and started tagging pages after pages of the Classy magazine.

There is a spread on a variety of white shirts which I will scan in a day or two.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Caprese Salad with a twist

Couple of weekends ago I was over at a friend's house and his SIL brought the most amazing salad. After devouring almost half of the salad, I finally broke down and asked her for the recipe.

Turned out it's one of those "oh a little bit of this, and a pinch of that", "mix everything together", "that's it", type of recipe.

Er, great.

I tried googling the salad based on the ingredients. None of the results matched what I was looking for. But from what I remember, there were only 5 ingredients. Plus, I was suppose to bring a dish to dtothek and designerish July 3rd BBQ, what better time to "test" out a new dish?

So off to Shnucks. (local grocery store for those out-of-towners).

I bought all the ingredients, chopped and mixed it all up. Brought it to the BBQ gathering, and "thank goodness" it was well received by friends. So without further ado here is recipe for the delicious Caprese Salad with a twist:

1 small container of sweet cherry tomatoes
1 container of basil - iirc it has a total of 8-10 basil leaves in it. Or if you can, pluck it from your own herb garden
1 er... roll? roll, of fresh mozzarella cheese
balsamic vinegar
extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper

Cut tomatoes length wise. Put in big salad bowl.
Chop up basil leaves. Put in big salad bowl with the tomatoes.
Cut up the cheese into little cubes. Put in big salad bowl. If your friends ask, tell them it's "tofu" or "potatoes". Haha.
Pour EVOO into big salad bowl and mix well.
Pour some balsamic vinegar into a saucepan. Put pan on stove top and turn on medium heat. The goal is to reduce the balsamic vinegar by half or 2/3 of the starting volume.
Pour reduced balsamic vinegar into big salad bowl. Bit by bit. Taste as you go in case the vinegar gets too overwhelming.
Mix well.
Sprinkle some kosher salt and grind fresh black pepper on salad.
Mix well.
Taste it.

I'll have to make this salad again this weekend and post up some pics to go with my super lame instructions. hah. But trust me, this is very easy and very very delish!

Friday, April 10, 2009


Props to Nordstrom STL for having a twitter account and is using it actively.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


My previous post did not make much sense. I was tired and was just trying to capture my thoughts before I zzzzzz...

Dentist appointment at 8 a.m.
Three cavities (I know, TMI)
Dentist tells me those are all baby teeth.
Does that explain why I am still so childish and juvenile?

To top it off, co-worker asks "Is "dentist appointment" what you kids are calling "hangovers" these days?"

If I could laugh without accidentally drooling, I would've LOLed.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

seeking: new "hobby"

Well, the news came down - paycut in effect.
The silver lining is - at least I still have a job.
I know - I am tired of saying that.
But really - I can't complain.

So even though I am in lust - with several Marc by Marc Jacobs purses and watches,
I am placing myself on a ban - a ban light to be specific.

Now I need a hobby - something to distract me from shopping esp when I am stressed or bored.
I want something cheap and good, educational and relaxing...

It is time to re-invest effort back into the things I love.

Sunday, March 22, 2009


old episode, but one of the funniest dialog I've heard on TV:

"... and then I have a Brabus Mercedes 550"
"Tom Cruise is a Brabus fan isn't he"
"I don't know."
"You not know?!"
"We attend different churches so I don't know... I'm at the one with Jesus baby"

Monday, March 16, 2009

Spring cleaning

I got bitten by the spring cleaning bug early this year, and compounded by the fact that I was really having shoes-overload problems.

So off to Target I went to get some shoe organizers and happened to stumble upon the Orla Kiely for Target kitchen hooks which I promptly picked up as well.

In order to add some sort of a hanging storage, I jammed the kitchen hooks in between the two piece of wood when I was assembling the shoe organizer.

The kitchen hooks worked out perfect for my belts, hat and light canvas bags. And I must say I am 99% please with the end result!

My only advice would be to not buy the shoe organizer from Target, but rather, go scour it somewhere else like Lowes or Home Depot. With the one I got, the "cubby holes" are small and they barely fit my 6.5 size shoes. If you have larger feet then the shoes may not fit in the cubby.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

St. Louis tops the chart again

Top 10 unhappiest American cities

1. Portland, Ore.
2. St. Louis
3. New Orleans
4. Detroit
5. Cleveland
6. Jacksonville, Fla.
7. Las Vegas
8. Nashville-Davidson, Tenn.
9. Cincinnati
10. Atlanta

Read the BusinessWeek slideshow here.

And to compare and contrast, check out this slideshow on the The World's Happiest Countries. Of course, US is no where on the list.