Photo of the Day · Photography

Photo of the Day III

IMG_1108

It was a gorgeous day. I was bored so I decided to take a really long drive.  The fatass orange sun was setting and no matter how far I drove into the boonies, there was still shit in the way. What the hell was I expecting? This was the best I could get before the light was completely gone.

I brought my tripod along to photograph some stars but that shit took forever show up. I got impatient and went home. Once I drove up to my driveway, the sky was lit up with stars. Bitches.

Photography

Swaying Reeds

After finishing work on Thursday, there were these huge white clouds in the sky that I just had to photograph. But it was a windy day so I needed to rush home, grab my camera, and head off to my “go to”. Unfortunately, I wasn’t quick enough and the clouds had already moved on. The sky was clear again.

I stuck around and just started photographing anything. I hadn’t touched my camera since last year. I mainly photographed plants that were swaying in the wind.

_DSC0110_DSC0132_DSC0133

These are all I have done so far. I’m unsure if I want to put any more effort in editing the other photos. I’m not too happy with them.

I haven’t done any scanning lately either. I would like to pick that up again.

Life Updates · Random Rambles · Reading

Random Rambles III

Long time no blog! It’s been a little over a month since my last entry so here’s a life update.

I’ve applied to a few jobs. Well, technically just one, but I have a few applications I need to submit. There’s something wrong with the electronic system so I’m going to wait until Monday to fully submit the apps. At least I’m going somewhere instead of just laying around doing nothing. I also took a test that allowed me to obtain a typing certificate. I scored 72 GWPM (gross words per minute). Not bad. I seen some applications that required a certificate so I decided to take the test.

I splurged on a new printer last month because I wanted to try out some scanography. I already have a printer but it’s part of a printer. And the thing with that is that it won’t work unless there’s ink in the printer which is absolutely ridiculous. So I purchased a separate scanner. I bought an Epson V39. It’s working well. But I’m having problems with the constant streaks that appear on screen. No matter how much I clean the glass, there’s always streaks. Maybe my cloth is too wet? Or maybe I should unplug the device like all websites that I’ve been researched say to heehee. Here’s what I’ve done so far:

img004
I first made an attempt to scan my face but it was not pretty, so I ended up doing my hair instead.
img005
Leaves from a plant that’s right outside my bedroom window.
Lily petals
Lily petals from a cheap bouquet I purchased during Valentine’s.
Daisy_Noise_Sharpen_Instragram
A daisy from the same bouquet .

I’ve seen other examples of scanography that people have created and they’re so perfectly clear. I’m trying to figure out how to get there. Maybe lots of Photoshop? I still need to work on the cleaning part.

I’ve got a new list of books I wish to read:
– The Boy in Striped Pajamas
– 
The Five People You Meet in Heaven
– 419

I’ve already watch the film to The Boy in Striped Pajamas and it messed me up for a bit lol. My sister has read The Five People You Meet in Heaven and I assume it’s nice read since she never reads. I randomly came across 419 on a forum as a recommendation.

These past few days/weeks have been absolutely gorgeous so I decided to play Pokemon Go again. I haven’t touched it since last summer and I’m hooked! Anything to get me outside and active I’ll do. I usually go to the same park that I go to whenever I want some nature lol. Here’s two pictures that I posted on Instagram while I was Pokemon hunting:

IMG_0994
I don’t think these blossoms are there anymore.
IMG_1024
It was a really nice day.

I’ve been binge watching a lot of episodes of a South Korean variety TV show called 1 Night 2 Days aka 1N2D aka Ilback Il. It’s a cast of 6 celebrity men who go around South Korea and become tourists. They learn about the area, its history, and what it’s known for. They win games to try out local cuisines for lunch and dinner and losers usually face having to starve or sleep outside. It’s fun to watch and everyone has great chemistry.

Speaking of South Korea, there are two Youtubers that are South Korean based that I’ve been constantly watching: Joan Kim and CariCakez. Joan Kim is a Korean American that creates K-Beauty makeup videos and has a separate Youtube account for her daily vlogs. She was recently staying in SF for the past few weeks so her vlogs have been based in that general area. CariCakez is an American (I think she’s Irish?) who lives in Seoul and vlogs and shares some experiences she’s had while living there. She goes to a lot of cafes. A LOT. I don’t really care for cafes but she’s such a bright person and speaks very well.

So I’ve been obesessed with Jessica Jung’s style lately. It’s so simple yet so chic! She’ll wear a simple t-shirt tucked into her skinny jeans and loafers and she makes it look so fashionable. But of course she wears nothing but expensive name brands. So I bought two pairs of loafers and I’m trying to find some nice button tops lol. It’s her body shape that makes it look so good as well.

Airport-Jessica-White-Top-Denim
I really like her shirt.

That’s all for now. Thank you for reading!

Random Rambles

Random Rambles II

I found a journal entry that I wrote on August 19, 2015 that I wanted to share:

“Long time no write! School is starting in less than 2 weeks! I can’t wait, but then I can. I have mixed feelings. 75% can’t wait, 25% can wait. I’m just tired of just going to work and then coming home. I hope I’m not like this after I graduate. That would be extremely SAD! I’m going to need to be on my toes at all time. All summer, I haven’t touched my camera. I will for sure go this Friday. I really want to try out my ND filters that I’ve just purchased.

I’ve been spending a lot of my money this summer and it’s not good! Especially since I barely have hours and I don’t accept the ones that are offered. I suck. I need to suck it up and just go to work. But I hate it! I didn’t want to be there for  5 years, but I’m going to admit defeat and stay there until I can get a state job which can allow me to move out + support my parents!”

How awful that what I didn’t want after graduation…came true! It’s been a year and a half since I wrote that and life hasn’t really changed. I need to get my shit together and work something out. I need to start something. I need to change something.

My browser was opened for two days with a job posting and job application open…and I didn’t finish filling it out. I’m a lazy piece of shit! And my sister was the one who sent that job posting to me.

A question that’s been on repeat in my mind for a few weeks now is: “Leslie, do you even take yourself seriously?” I guess not. I guess I don’t. What will it take to take myself seriously?

A few nights ago, I went out to meet some friends who I hadn’t seen in months. One friend ask, “Leslie, what do you love? What makes you happy?”

I said, “I don’t know. Honestly, I’ve been in a slum since I graduated.” (I just looked up what slum meant and I didn’t even use it correctly! It was completely the wrong word to use. WTF was I thinking?!)

Well, one thing I’m hoping to accomplish tonight or tomorrow morning (since it’s already 1AM) is make a completely, much need new résumé.

Adventures

December 30th – San Jose, Part II

Here’s part II. If you haven’t read the first part, here it is.

I woke up in the middle of the night because it got so hot in the room. I think it was around 2AM. Sleeping there was not fun at all. I could feel the springs in the bed and the pillows were so flat that I had to fold one pillow in half. Eventually I fell back asleep and woke up around 6AM. After that I was just in a light sleep until whenever…

I was Yelping like crazy trying find a place to eat for breakfast. We ended up at Bill’s Cafe, which has several locations around SJ.

Since I decided we should eat outside, we were immediately seated. It was a bit chilly though.

I ordered a meaty omelet with country styled potatoes and it came with a buttered English muffin. Melanie ordered eggs benedicts that was served on top of crab cakes. It was definitely the winner that morning.

img_0866
Meaty omelet with country style potatoes and an English muffin.

My potatoes were quite tasty. I’ve never had potatoes cooked like that before. The omelet was okay, but that’s just because I’m not a big fan of breakfast type meats. I don’t know why I chose to order it in the first place haha. I ended up just eating the cheese inside.

While we had breakfast, we discussed plans for the rest of the day. I wanted to drive to SF, but Melanie wasn’t enthusiastic about it so that was out of the picture. Plus I didn’t want to force Melanie to drive out there. We decided just to end SJ and head home, but stop by 85°c Bakery on the way home in Milpitas.

Before we left, we explored the area a bit. It’s a low-key downtown area. We were in another small town, not really in SJ anymore. We walked towards…I don’t know where, about 10 minutes, and headed back to the car.

img_0869
The area we explored.

85°C Bakery was located in another Asian plaza and that shit was just as packed as the other parking lots. We had to park in another plaza and walk 5 minutes to where the bakery was located. I purchased about $23 worth of pastries for my family. Luckily an 85°c Bakery is opening up in Sacramento, so I don’t have to do that type of shit anymore haha.

img_0873
$23 worth of pastries!

We decided to visit Melanie’s sister-in-law since she lives on the way back home. We spent the rest of the day there where I ate Sonics’ for the first time. I was feeling real shitty that evening and finally went home around 9PM. It felt GREAT to be back home in my comfy bed. And that concludes my two day vacation.

I wouldn’t mind going back to San Jose. But only for a day. Or just past by it. And I want to try out the Vietnamese food next time.

Adventures

December 29th – San Jose, Part I

Long time no post! I was extremely sick for a few weeks (strep throat) so I had no energy to get on the computer and post an entry. Now that I’m feeling a lot better, let’s get back on track.

This will be split into two parts.

I began planning a trip to San Jose when I was scheduled two days off from work. Coincidentally, Melanie had the same days off so we decided to go. Unfortunately, I developed a sore throat the morning before and it went downhill from there. While I was packing, I constantly reminded myself that we were only staying for one night so I didnt’t need to bring much. I ended up with a stuffed duffel bag.

We arrived in San Jose a little after 12PM and headed straight to Boiling Point. I constantly said that Boiling Point was going to be the first destination!

img_0831
Taiwanese Spicy

Melanie and I ordered the “Taiwanese Spicy” hot pot. And it was spicy! My nose was running and my tongue began to hurt. And it was honestly not the best I’ve tried. I’ve tried the “Japanese miso” hot pot that was bland and beef hot pot that I tried in LA was the best.  I really wish I ordered that one instead. It would have been worth the 30 minute wait.

After eating, I wanted to go to Paris Baguette, a Korean European bakery chain, that was a few doors down. I didn’t want to leave the plaza yet since it was a pain in the ass finding parking.

img_0830
Raspberry and cheese danish, regular croissant, and some kind of flaky vanilla custard pastry.

We left the Asian plaza after eating the pastries and headed downtown to try an ice cream place that Melanie had tried before. While we were driving, I noticed that San Jose’s building were dull compared to Sacramento’s. I know that Sacramento doesn’t have much, but at least its’ buildings all look different compared to San Jose’s. (Yes, some shade to SJ haha)

Downtown was surprising quiet. I thought a huge city like San Jose would have a bustling downtown. Maybe we were in the wrong part. Anyway, the ice cream place, Milk & Wood, was located inside a building where there were other little eateries. (As we discovered later on, San Jose has a lot of these type of buildings.)

img_0832
Mint Oreo topped with chocolate curls, Butterfinger crumbles, and sprinkles.

I forgot what Melanie ordered, but the total came out to be an even $10. Not bad, I guess. It wasn’t the greatest to be honest. Maybe a different flavor would have been better.

Since we had a lot of time left with the metered parking, we decided to explore downtown. I honestly have no idea where we went. We just started walking.

We stopped by this Japanese store called Muji. It sells a whole bunch of crap. Bean bag chairs, air diffusers, stationary, storage, clothes…all very expensive as well. But it was probably the most interesting part. After that, we decided to head back to the car.

img_0834
This was on the way back.

Next stop was San Pedro Square Market. We heard so much about it and its’ food selection.

img_0835

Unfortunately we weren’t hungry. Or the food didn’t seem appetizing at that time. We walked around twice. Melanie saw a park on the map nearby so we decided to walk over there. Nothing but the homeless. We walked back and further down the street where the San Pedro was located. A lot more eateries that looked pretty cool.

img_0840
We walked until we reached the beginning? We weren’t sure if the words were going to light up.
img_0842
Passed by this Old Spaghetti Factory with a gorgeous entrance.

We decided to call it a day in downtown. On the way back to the car, we regretfully saw bicycle rentals by the parking garage. And on the way to the freeway, there was a “Christmas at the Park” event taking place with a whole bunch of lit of Christmas objects. It was only a five minute drive away. We couldn’t believe we missed it. Oh well.

img_0844
On the way to our Airbnb.

Our Airbnb was located basically on top of a hill. I just rented a room inside a house, nothing fancy. But the house did have a grand chandelier just inside the entrance. Our room was upstairs with a designated private bathroom that was just across the hall. As we settled in, I found out the room came with Netflix so we decided to watch Fuller House since Melanie wanted to watch the second season.

Before heading the SJ, I watched a vlog on Youtube and the girl went to a place called Soyful and I wanted to try it out. Luckily there was one 10 minutes away and there was a ton of restaurants, nearly all Vietnamese, nearby it so we headed out that.

That whole area was PACKED. Melanie had to park across the street at a Target. As we walked through the whole shopping plaza, each restaurant was packed. There was a fast food Thai restaurant that had some seats opened, so that was dinner that night.

img_0845
Some kind of stir fried chicken and curry. Fast food Thai is never really that great.

I ordered a two entree combo plate while Melanie ordered stir fried noodles. It was okay. Edible. The stir fried chicken was a little too sweet. Shouldn’t expect much from an express Thai restaurant. We then headed to Soyful to try it out. That shit was packed too. With a lot of young people.

img_0846
I ordered the combination with 50% sweetness. I’m not sure what’s in it. A whole bunch of crap. And I should have gotten it at 100%. I think it would have been fantastic.

Since we parked at a Target, we decided to go in. And it was HUGE. And busy. All I bought was a small calendar that’s posted on a clipboard. It turned out to be only $0.90. I could have just saved my money and not purchase it because I barely glance at it. now

We decided to call it a night after that. It was getting late (9PMish? lol) and I was feeling pretty stuffed up since I was sick. I felt kind of bad. If I wasn’t sick, we could have done something during the night.

Here’s part II.

Holidays

Christmas 2016

Prep work for Christmas began a week before starting with chocolate chip cookies and Christmas colored M&M cookies.  I had arranged to bake a lot since I planned to give cookies to my friends (it didn’t happen) so I needed to prep the dough to bake two days before Christmas.

img_0807
Raw M&M cookies.
img_0808
After being baked, cooling on a rack.
img_0812
Finished chocolate chip and M&M cookies.

I had to bake at my sister’s house since her oven has two racks. Mine only has one so it would take forever to finish baking everything (it took three hours at my sister’s).

After I came home from work on Christmas Eve, I needed to go to the store to buy ingredients for my last minute decision to make chili.  The store was super busy as expected, but I didn’t mind the wait.  Once I got home, I had to get started on my lotus cookies.

img_0816
Deep fried cookies made of rice flour, coconut milk, eggs, a little water, and a shit ton of sugar. I posted this on Instagram and got A LOT of likes.

I woke up on Christmas day around 9AM. I had to help prep other foods with my mom before I could began with my chili.

img_0817
Before
img_0818
After

I looked at numerous recipes for chili and they were all very similar. Some called for tons of different spices while other called for only two or three. I pretty much combined all the recipes. My ingredients were: 2lb lean ground beef, two cans of dark kidney beans, a can of cannellini beans, three cans of diced tomatoes, a can of tomato sauce, a small can of tomato paste, a can of beef broth, two green bell peppers, onions, garlic, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, dried oregano, salt & pepper. I feel like I’m leaving out some more spices, but honestly I just kind of threw everything in there. And it turned out great! I was really surprised it turned out well. I was afraid it was going to be too tomato-y. I had crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, and cheese for toppings.

img_0819
The menu: Pineapple, boiled chicken (Hmong style), fried tilapia with with a tomato and onion sauce, sticky rice + regular rice, chili, and a spinach & strawberry salad.
img_0820
Menu continued: BBQed tri tip and roasted prime rib.

After eating, everything went by really fast. We opened presents (I got Dolce&Gabanna’s Light Blue and a robe), the little kids opened presents, celebrated my sister’s birthday, and then everyone left. My sister and I slowly began to clean up and that was pretty much it for that day.

From my friends’ portion of Christmas, I got Dolce&Gabanna’s Light Blue in a roller ball form, argan oil by Josie Maran, and bobby bins.

(I began this post a little after 11PM and wanted to finish before the year technically ended, but I’m currently sick and got tired half way. This post is going to abruptly end.)

Happy new year, to you all!