Friday, July 30, 2010


There's something refreshing about not really having things. I wonder how minimalistic I could be.

Meanwhile, I'm kinda obsessed with CB2 and west elm. Wanna buy so much furniture I can't afford. Time to pull out the drafting board and start messing around with floor plans. I knew that interior design class would come in handy.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

warm fuzzies

I feel so fortunate to have so much love and support in my life.
My friends have always been my immediate support network, and it is easy to recognize the impact they have on my life on a daily basis, but it is really my family that I think of now. Even though I have been away from home - away from my siblings and my parents - for eight years, they always keep me grounded, and always come through for me. While I know that's the way it's "supposed" to be, I also recognize that not everyone is so fortunate. I am infinitely thankful that I can say I have this kind of love and support in my life.
The most basic things can make family so wonderful - like when you can see your parents still love one another.

(mom and dad)

It makes me so happy that in spite of distance, my sister is not just a sister, but a role model and best friend. And that my baby brother has grown up to be such a sweetheart (and such a baller!), taking care of me. And it is surprising, and yet so warming, to realize that over the years, my mom has become the person I most frequently pick up the phone to call.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Taking a break from packing up my life, I (rather appropriately) came across this article. Made me wonder if I could do it - go about my daily life with only six articles of clothing. I rotate through staples quite frequently, but they fall into categories of work clothes, dance clothes, bum/play clothes, and going out.. does it still count if I have six pieces of clothing in each category? No, that's totally cheating. But would be an interesting exercise.

A few things stood out to me:

1) Really, nobody noticed? I feel at least the people you see most days (coworkers, close friends) would eventually catch on.

2) "women, on average, own seven pairs of jeans but wear only four regularly... One in four women asked by the magazine said she owned 10 pairs or more." Okay fine I can believe the ratio. But is owning more than 10 pairs really so uncommon / outlandish? I think I own closer to 20. And probably wear about 4. Granted, the number actually worn has been on the decline, as I have recently found jeans to be more much more boring and restrictive - both physically and in terms of versatility - than other bottom-wear options.

3) And this is my favorite... "Addy, from Milwaukee, wrote that she had become so bored with her six items 'that I don’t even have a desire to get up in the morning,' and she complained of mood swings." HAHA! I love it. But secretly, it scares me, because I feel I might react the same way. Or I might feel completely liberated.

I don't quite feel compelled to try this myself, maybe because I feel my wardrobe size can be justified by savvy shopping and lots of hand-me-downs from my mom and sister. Plus I have trouble getting rid of stuff.

All of this will be good to keep in the back of my brain as I enter this next month with a limited wardrobe and limited access to all my stuff. Moving is such a pain, but sometimes the purge really is just so painfully good. Maybe I can think more clearly without all the clutter.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

slow down, you move too fast

I'm super slow getting to this, and now only know thanks to my Buzz feed, but this article almost made me cry.

I often wonder what I'm doing, feeling like a lemming, as I come and go from work always in a rush, hurrying past people on and off the T, usually distracted by my iPod or Blackberry. When did I become so stereotypically Financial District?

I'd like to think I would have noticed Joshua Bell if he had been playing at Park Street - in fact, I'm fairly certain I would have recognized that there was talent there. But not so sure I would have hung around to listen.

It's sad to be such a slave to the clock. When do we stop to smell the roses?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

sunshine, a/c, and dustbunnies

Nervously awaiting news on my potential new home. Trying to clean / pack / get rid of junk. How have I accumulated SO MUCH stuff in the past 2 years? I supposed I moved in with a lot, but really? Looking through my closet I realize how much my style has changed since college. People I don't see too often would comment on this from time to time but I never felt I looked very different. I guess I never felt I changed much, but in retrospect, perhaps I actually have.

I feel like I've been in a prolonged quarter-life crisis. It first reared its ugly head a few months after I started working about 3.5 years ago (where did the time go?!). The difficulties of adjusting to the "real world" and trying to be "grown up", trying to go out too much and work too much and feel energized and happy at the same time. How did I think it was possible? I suppose I still do it, but I think I have finally started to know my limits, and accept that some sacrifices are necessary.

Before I moved into my current apartment 2 years ago I considered buying a place. It seemed to make sense because who really wants to toss away thousands of green on rent, never to be seen again? It doesn't seem worth it for a place to call home that isn't really home. But then the reality of actually being in debt for the first time in my life scared me (yes, it's been a privileged life for me, thanks mom & dad). And the thought of feeling tied to Boston freaked me out even more. I didn't love it here and I thought if I owned something here, how would I ever leave?

Somehow it all seems okay now. I love Boston. And while this has been true for some time now, I've only recently felt okay saying it. Sometimes I still wonder if I'm settling because of the comfort, the familiarity of being here. But I'm not convinced that's all it is - I think I'm actually quite fond of the city. So now I'm looking at a few more years in this place. Yes, leaving will still be a possibility, because for me, figuring out what I want to be when I grow up is more important than where I want to be (I know I do not want to be in Wisconsin.. JK it wasn't thaaat bad!)

But to be serious, I suppose the real factors are who, where, and what, and then you make the when and the how happen. In other words, who you want to be with, where you want to be, what you want to be doing. Usually knowing one or two of the above forces the third to be flexible and then the rest falls into place. But what if you don't know any of the above? Where do you find direction???
It's slowly been sinking in that my best friend is married. MARRIED. Darling: So glad you found the who, but why does the where have to be so freakin' far?!

(my darling and her boo, may 2010)

Had an amazing dance day, but we'll save the gushing for another time. Back to waiting nervously by the phone, playing with dustbunnies and pretending to pack.

Friday, July 16, 2010

baklava is delicious

One of the hardest things about growing up - I think - is knowing when you are grown up. Remember being in primary school and thinking anyone who could drive was SO OLD? Somehow the older I get, the farther "grown up" seems. Maybe it becomes more of a personality thing than an age thing? Or maybe I'm in denial.

Sometimes these nights are just necessary when you forget about responsibility and just live.

I'm not old enough to worry about it yet. I can still run on 5 hours of sleep. Piece of cake.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

thoughts from the platinum fireplace suite

I have been meaning to post again, but finding a subject - a direction, a motivating factor - has been difficult. I have been seeking something I feel is relevant. Something that comes from a real place. Rather than continuing to doubt and delay, I finally just started writing because I guess the reality is that whatever is going on at this moment is what is relevant, right?

It turns out Appleton, Wisconsin has a lot of bars. And even out here, seafood can be good. When wrapped in bacon. And served over truffled wild mushroom risotto. No, for real, it was delicious.

It also seems some things are just too difficult to reconcile without facing head-on. People are complicated creatures (although when it comes down to it, really very simple) - but this makes it all the more frustrating when, try as I may, I just can't understand. Motivations, weaknesses, reasons, excuses. It all becomes muddled. How do you know when you are okay with things? And what does that even mean?

For a completely unrelated reason, these next few weeks could be quite telling of my next few years. It will be good to get home to Boston (is that really my home?) to get back to procrastinating packing. I think I'll sew instead.

Monday, July 5, 2010

there's always a beginning

I have toyed with the idea of starting a blog for quite some time, but never knew quite what the purpose or focus would be.

Last weekend as I drove away from the Farm and back towards the U.S., I wanted to capture my thoughts of the weekend. To reflect. And to remember. Clicking away on my Blackberry (I was a passenger, not driving), without really planning, I suppose I started...

I feel compelled once again to create something. I now realize that it is not relevant what my motivation is. It is of no consequence if nobody reads or if I decide later to take a different direction.

This most extraordinary weekend has made me realize there is nothing more true, more real than love. I don't mean mushy country song love or even romantic love. I mean love that puts a smile on your face, creates a feeling of fulfillment and purpose, or that just feels darn good.

Although I said I didn't mean romantic love, the two main events of the weekend revolve around exactly that. I traveled this weekend to Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario for my cousin's wedding. I will get back to the wedding in a moment - the second event was my sister getting engaged. I can't quite express the joy I felt first when she told me, and even more so when I saw the two of them the next morning. It was not a surprise, but somehow that kind of declaration of love was still inexplicably thrilling for me to witness and experience.

(the RING)

The wedding later that day was the source of many tears - happy ones. It was a beautiful ceremony in the cherry orchard at the Farm, a long time family property once owned by my late grandparents and now by my aunt and uncle. My dad's extended family was present, as well as about 20 Italian friends and family from the groom's side. As we sat under the cherry trees, Sarah made a grand entrance on the back of a tractor in a gorgeous and simple light blue dress to join Dario and their charming one year old daughter. The ceremony, spoken in both English and Italian, addressed the journey that is love. Between laughs and tears, they were wed.

(the grand entrance; the lovely couple; mom & baby Sophia Luce
2,3,4 by uncle Wei)

The rain held off as we had a lavish meal prepared by uncle (for 110 ppl!) and heard speeches from many, including my father remembering his wedding in the same orchard where Sarah was his flower girl.

(Mom & Dad at their wedding with Grannie & Papa, the Farm, 1981)

As the rain poured down on our tent over dinner, my uncles had their customary jam session with a surprise appearance of my mom on the cello (declared the first lady of Seoul). I finally had a chat with Sarah as the evening came to a close, and I found myself in awe of her for the millionth time in my life as she spoke of her upcoming relocation from Rome to Uganda to be the country coordinator for the UN's World Food Programme. She has never been to Uganda, but seems delighted at the idea of moving to a completely foreign country - not unusual for a woman who has lived in many exotic and developing countries such as Sierra Leone and Nepal, and has not remained in a single location for more than a few years since she was 14.

Looking around the tent I was struck once again (although not surprised, because I'm often aware) how international my extended family has become. We now have Italians to add to the existing additions from Korea, Singapore, China, England, and in the near future, Japan.

Looking around, I thought this is love.

As my trip came to an end a few hours ago, we convened at the Farm once again to eat leftovers (we love to eat, and we do it well), to have a last visit, and to say a final unplanned goodbye to my grandfather, who passed in 2002. The last of his ashes were saved for a time his 6 children could be together. As we scattered his ashes in the orchard, tears spilled once again as I remembered, and longed to remember more vividly, Grannie and Papa.

(Papa and his half-asian grandchildren)