Thursday, June 30, 2011


My tattoo "redo" is done!  Well, probably.  Chad (at Lady Luck Tattoo) thinks that he may need to do some touch up when it heals.  The green was pretty resilient in places and it didn't want to give way.  He's pretty meticulous.  I'm pretty sore.

It looks fantastic.



Pretty phenomenal difference, right?  The leaves are the obvious difference.  But, he deepened the color on everything.  I couldn't be happier.

By the way, we saw two (very different) movies on Tuesday night.  We saw Buck and Transformers: Dark of the Moon.  Buck was great (did you know he had to overcome crippling shyness at the beginning of his career?), though at times it was like watching a clinic, so I was surprised that Ian enjoyed it as much as he did.  It made us miss Bruce a lot.  There were some weekend cowboys there wearing Romeos and Levis and taking pictures of city folk stuff with their iPhones.  Pretty funny stuff.  Ian has a picture; I'll get it from him and post it.

I found Transformers to be really boring.  I'm not one to hate on action flicks, either.  Yes, the CGI has reached a pretty phenomenal point, but I just wasn't drawn into Shia, er... Sam's plight of feeling unappreciated enough to actually care about his character.  Don't get me started on the chick.  I don't even remember her name.  She was a warm body.

In short, go see Buck, rent TF3 if you're already a fan.

Good night!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Doin' Good

I went to the shelter to volunteer today for the first time in weeks.  It felt pretty great to be back.  I ran into the aid that helped us with Satchmo's adoption and she was stoked to hear he was doing well.  I'll have to bring her a picture of the two kitties together.

There were a lot of Youth Volunteers around socializing the cats and there wasn't a lot of public foot traffic, so I went to the back and did dishes for most of my time.

I did not wash all of those (most had already been washed), but I did put all of them through the sanitizer.

It took forever because it's really slow.  Each load takes about 7 minutes.  The one at the shop only takes a couple.

I also folded a small pile of small animal boxes.

Come to think of it,  I do basically the same tasks volunteering at the shelter as I do at the shop.  Ha.

Exciting Grocery Finds

McVities HobNob biscuits, tamarind liquid and Vegeta powder veggie "bouillon"



Mondays are not only long, but I usually far exceed my intended caloric intake on these days, too.  I got super hungry this afternoon, caved and bought a Clif Builder bar out of the vending machine.  I don't suggest them.

Here's a picture of Ian eating his taco pizza creation:

It's onions, olives, jalapenos green peppers, garlic and cheddar.  Then, once it's out of the oven, you top it with fresh lettuce and tomatoes.  He wants to put it on the menu with chorizo for those who are so inclined.

I hope it's clear in the morning so that we can have our run outside.

Alright.  Hay time.  Good night!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Yesterday's Hour by Hour

Grant's birthday party...  I'm trying to get better at this, but I still missed a couple of hours.

7am- Kitties.

8am- Kitty hair.  I lint roll our bed a few times a week and it's always at least 5 sheets.  Ick.

9am- Ouch.  I ate pavement on my run and tore my running pants.

10am... Clean.  I believe I was in the shower and then I probably put on clothes.

11am- Lies.  I did not have time to finish folding the laundry like I said I would.

12pm- Delicious... I ordered a bagel with vegan cream cheese and tomatoes from Seven Virtues and then headed to Rob's.

1pm- Transformers.

2pm- Lawn darts.

3pm- Party.

4pm- Presents.  Rob did his best to write down the gifters' names as the kids made a vulture circle around the gifts.

5pm- Clean up.

6pm- After party.  Ain't no party like an Audrey party.

7pm- Roll out.  Rob and Ian try to help the kids transform the... Transformers.

8pm- Mountain.  I tried, but driving took precedence.  

9pm- Eat.  We ate vegan Vietnamese at Vegetarian House.

10pm- Smoking.  This display was inside Safeway.

11pm- Feed us.

Then it was off to bed!  Hey, just like now!

Good night.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Please Hold...

I took one photo per hour today to share with you guys, but my phone is being weird with the network and not sending them to me.

I have to get up for work at o'dark thirty, so I've waited as long as I can for the connection to come through.  Tomorrow will be the day.  We'll get it figured out and I'll post all the photos from the day.  It was Grant's birthday party today!  Tomorrow he turns 6!

Holy crud, I can't believe how quickly a year passes.  Happy birthday, buddy!

Good night!

Friday, June 24, 2011


Blogger is being a little weird tonight. So, as you can probably tell, it's not allowing me to change the settings. It's also not remembering defaults.

Today was a decent day at work. All stats in line. I came home and went for a run, which concluded at the mailbox. I finally got a letter from Wells Fargo regarding my request for hardship forbearance. Big. Fat. No. "There must be 12 months between forbearances." That wasn't in the fine print of my application paperwork. Yes, I read it.

It's not that we're actually under financial hardship right now, but this loan is too expensive. Several months ago I called to see if we could reconfigure it and make the payments more manageable. Big. Fat. No. "Private loans serviced by Wells Fargo cannot be refinanced."

Dear Wells Fargo, I seem to remember the government handing you a $25,000,000,000 check, basically federalizing your company. But, of course, I'm reaching, as we all happily ignored the technicalities of what the bailouts meant for the public.

Nothing like a little red tape to ruin a perfectly good day. Now I'm just pissed about the government in general.

"Weapons, not food, not homes, not shoes, not need, just feed the war cannibal animal..."

Good night!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


We went to see The Trip tonight after work.  Ian is a big Coogan fan (I am, too), so he was pretty stoked about it.

From BBC:

It did not disappoint, though there was a greater "sad clown" aspect to it than I was expecting.  But, I guess that's the norm for Coogan, at least from what I've seen of him.

The cinema we went to only has one theater.  Next, it's Buck, which is a film based on Buck Brannaman, a natural horse trainer with a style much like Bruce's.  My mom and I went to a clinic of his in Olympia.  I left a rambling message on her phone after seeing a poster a few days ago because I felt like we knew (kind of) this guy, but I couldn't place him.

It's a little weird to see this, but, from what I hear, Buck is a good guy who really deserves all of this.  Unlike that one guy who wrote the "autobiography."  But, it should be good for business all around.  Hopefully.  

Ian and I will be seeing it on Tuesday, so I'll report back.  Good night!

The Social Network

We finally watched The Social Network tonight.  I found it completely nihilistic.  I don't necessarily mean that to be a bad thing.  But, as an audience member, it's weird to watch a bio pic in which the main character remains static.  I mean, there is literally no development at all.  I suppose that's truer to real life.  Not all of us evolve.

There's a lot of talk about what Facebook and other social networking has done to our society, namely our sense of self and the way we communicate.

After watching the film, I'm pretty willing to believe that subconsciously Mark Zuckerburg wanted to pass his social neurosis (preferring passive interaction and observation over active participation) on to the general population and even the playing field.  Maybe it was just the icing on the cake.

Roughly a year ago, Facebook hit 500 million members.

Netflix passed 20 million in February.

Facebook was launched in 2004.

Netflix launched in 1997.

Facebook has over 2,000 employees.

So does Netflix.

Facebook is free and is worth somewhere between $50 and $65 billion depending on who you ask.

Netflix has varying subscription prices, the lowest $4.99, and is worth about $2 billion.

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, 27

Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix, 50

(Hey, Andrea, Hastings served in the Peace Corps).

Anyway, that was incredibly random.  Good night!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Bus Day

I took the bus everywhere I went today.

I really hope there comes a day soon when that's not notable.

TriMet is awesome.  TriMet plus the Google Maps application on my phone makes anything possible.  I remember the days in Korea where we'd hop on a bus less than half sure of it's route or schedule.  It was fun at times, Jecheon isn't very big, but we often took cabs because the price was the same and you could guarantee (mostly) your destination.

It was nice to be out and about sans automobile.  I even got a little sunburnt.

Ian and I met up after he got off from Oasis and had dinner.  We went to Sushi Land, which turned out to be painfully average.  They did have mini red bean sesame donuts, however; you win some, you lose some.

After dinner we were walking around in the Pearl District and we passed by a very interesting Starbucks (actually, it was called Starbucks Reserve).  It had all of the normal Starbucks menu items, but it also served beer and wine along with some appetizer and lunch offerings.

Ian and I ordered the seasonal wine, which was a single origin prosecco.  It was drier than I expected, but very good.

Apparently, Starbucks is trying to make some of their neighborhood shops more idiosyncratic and diverse.  This one is one of only three that serve the (mostly local) beer and wine.  The original Starbucks Reserve is in Seattle, naturally.

I also hopped into a little artisan shop today and bought myself a couple of new pairs of earrings.  I want real feather earrings, but I can't bring myself to support the practice when I know the origins of the feathers could be (and probably are) shady.

Well, I'm working tomorrow in order to have Saturday off for Grant's sixth birthday party (!!!); good night!

Fronday Long-day

Mondays make me crazy:

-Netflix 7am-6pm
-drive 40 minutes in rush hour traffic (it's only about 13 miles)
-Oasis 7pm-11:30pm

Phew.  By the end of the night, I barely know where I am.  I can be found just staring at the sanitizer waiting to take dishes out of it.

A group of kids came in to do a review of the shop.  They're starting a zine that's dedicated to pizza.  I don't know much else about it.  Ian is convinced that they were thinking that they'd get it for free because they were doing a review.  I told him that no one thinks that.  Paying for a meal is a part of the review process. The kids seemed to like the food, so if I ever get a hold of a copy of the hypothetical zine, I hope to see a favorable feature.

I'm super tired, so I'm going to hit the hay.

Good night, guys!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Future Table Details

I am so excited to be getting our table made.  Finally!

We commissioned it through Royal Oak Metal Craft.  They are also building us three chairs and a bench to match.  The set is costing us a small fortune (okay, not really, if you look at the cost of high end dining room sets) and it will weigh a ton, making it very difficult to move.  Who cares, right?  It will look fabulous.  Just don't try to scoot your chair up to the table.

I hope the chairs aren't that heavy.

It will all be under way as soon as we talk with the wood guy.

That's the table from restoration hardware.  The bench will simply be a miniaturized version (no casters, of course).  The chairs will have metal frames and backs (with simple oval cut outs in diminishing size) and wooden seats.  All the wood will be laid in to protect the edges, as it's very old.

This table is a big deal.  It means so many things:

-more cooking
-actually inviting people over (maybe even meeting our neighbors)
-less square footage wasted in our apartment
-a housewarming party (can you call it that when you've lived in a place for 9 months?)

Oh, the relief I will feel.

Is there one thing in your home that you feel if you accomplished would make your life immensely better?

P.S. Happy Father's Day!

Saturday, June 18, 2011


I headed back to work today after 5 days off.  It was not a great day.

I so badly want a writing job, a job that applies to my skills.

To be honest, I don't have a lot to say tonight.  I'm kind of in a crummy place.  I didn't get a lot of sleep last night.  Perhaps I am just a grump.

Here is an old photo of Ian playing with Ava:


Wall Plans

Phew.  The apartment is de-cluttered and the rest of the decorating and finalizing can begin.  The main things coming up for the apartment are: 1) the dining room table (we finally commissioned it, it will look a lot like this one from Restoration Hardware, with chairs and a bench to match)  2) painting!  3) framing and hanging photography and art (luckily, my brother works for Larson Juhl)  4) acquire house plants

Here's what the apartment looks like right now, complete with  bare eggshell walls:

(living room) Full bookcase.  It's too dark to tell, but there isn't a bunch of crap sitting on the chest next to the t.v. anymore.  Yay!

(living room) Plants on the shelf, art below it and on the other wall.  I have a simple collage frame to go in that spot above the heater.

 (dining room) It's going to be fun hauling that wood over to the metal shop.  Luckily, they had someone they could recommend to do the wood work.  Living in an apartment makes even simple sanding and cutting down pretty difficult.

(dining room)  Sad corner.  I'm not sure whether I want a hutch for that spot (hard to find) or if I'm just going to stick a plant in it.  Obviously, those walls need art.  The walls will be powder green in this room.

(living room)  This is the accent wall.  I'm going to paint it blue.  Rob and Danie got us that awesome map.  You scratch off places as you travel to them.

The guest room is still a catch all, but at least it's inhabitable now.

(bedroom)  Our bedroom needs color and art on the walls.  Badly.

That picture frame on Ian's night stand has a cut out from our crazy Korean wall paper in it (you can see the wall in the background of many of the photos in the Jecheon blog, it was pink with huge white flowers).

So, things are happening!  But, I have to work in the morning, so I'd better sleep.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Little Things

Our bookshelves have been purged and cleansed.

I really need a camera...

Our apartment should soon look like a place where adults dwell.  By the way, bookends are surprisingly difficult to locate.  I asked someone on the floor at Target if they had any and he responded with something like, "Geez, that's not really common anymore."  What? I'm pretty sure people still have bookshelves, even if they've all gone Kindle.  Bookstores have them, but they're ornate and pricey.  I found ours at Ikea for about two bucks a pair.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Clutter Be Gone!

Ian and I are trying to clear out our apartment of unwanted stuff.  We try to live by a simple rule: if you don't use it for a year, you probably don't need it.

We've lived in our apartment for 9 months and we're still not really moved.  Bare walls and clutter.  It's not a comfortable space to say the least.  Finally, that's changing.  In the coming weeks, when everything is up to snuff, I will post pictures of it.  

Update on the kitties: when they're not biting each other's faces and throats, they're getting along famously.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sweet Potato Enchiladas Recipe

Mom asked for my enchilada recipe, so here it is!  It's super easy.


3 large sweet potatoes
10 large corn tortillas
1 bag of baby spinach
1 pack of tempeh
1 cup of cashew cheese
1 can of mild enchilada sauce
olive oil
chili powder

Oil a baking sheet. Chop the sweet potatoes into 1 inch pieces and coat with olive oil, salt chili powder and cumin.  Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes.  Steam the tempeh (cut it or tear it depending on what for texture you would like) 10 minutes while the potatoes bake.  Steaming them will eliminate the bitterness tempeh sometimes has.  Spread each tortilla with cashew cheese and fill with the potatoes, spinach and tempeh.  Wrap and place in a baking pan.  Once you've filled the pan, coat with enchilada sauce.  Bake for 10-15 minutes (covered in foil to keep it moist) when you want to eat them!

My cherry sorbet is way more impressive.  I have some sad looking cherries in the fridge, so I'll probably make some soon and post pictures, too.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Loving Hut in Portland!

A few weeks ago Ian and I were driving down SW Jefferson (doing something for Oasis, but I don't remember what) and out the passenger window, what did a see?

A Loving Hut.  A LOVING HUT.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the international chain of vegan restaurants, go here, here, here and here.

Really do follow those links, it's fascinating stuff, albeit a little off putting.

Ian and I first discovered Loving Hut on our first trip to Seoul.  I remember that we looked around for one of the restaurants (which I had found via HappyCow), but then gave up.  That might have been a different trip entirely.  In fact, that might have been Busan.  I don't have a reliable memory.  We'll just say it was Seoul.

We eventually found the restaurant and it became a stand by for us when we were in the city.  We never made it over to the buffet, which I hear beats any of the "menued" locations.

We knew that there were a couple in the US (I actually only thought they were in California, but the website showed me otherwise), but we didn't expect to drive by one in our city.  It was a little surreal, since we associate Loving Hut with Korea.

The Loving Hut on SW Jefferson is in it's soft opening, so we decided to go there for lunch today.  We were so impressed.  

Sterile and simple, just like we remember.  No worries, Supreme Master TV is prominently featured, just like in Korea.   Here are a couple of posts that feature Loving Hut from Everybody Jecheon:  1, 2.

Since they are still in their soft opening, they gave us free sweet and sour soup to try.  I'm not usually a fan of sweet and sour because it's usually too much of one of the flavors.  But, I really enjoyed this.

"Ham salad."  Ian and I shared this as an appetizer.  Lettuce, crispy vermicelli noodles and soy ham.  The whole thing was seasoned with an awesome salty, vegetable seasoning that reminded me of this broth powder we used on basically everything in Korea.

Carrot cake.  It was super moist, dense and literally full of carrots.  It had raisins in it, but it was so good I didn't mind.

I didn't get any photos of our main dishes.  I was too caught up in everything.  Ian ordered a sweet and sour stir fry dish (which I can't remember the cute name for) and I got "Golden Beauty," fried protein covered in a dried lemongrass and chili mixture.  We shared both dishes.  I think the "Golden Beauty" was better, but I'm just not stoked about stir fry dishes that feature pineapple.

We'll definitely be back, the food rocks, even if the organization behind the curtain is a little questionable.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Dear McDonald's marketing executives,

If you're going to put a period at the end of a statement, please capitalize the first letter.

photos sourced from Google images

Your disgusting company is destroying the health of our nation; leave our literacy alone.

Thank you,
An overtired, concerned citizen


I get cranky when I've been up for 17 hours.

In other news, does anyone have any tips on keeping cats from being too rough with each other?  We're not home when it happens, but Ava's other eye is swollen now and I've seen them play fight so I know that Satchmo has a pension for biting eyeballs.  I'm concerned about any potential damage down the road, but I don't know what to do.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Spicy Cashew Cheese

Last Tuesday we went over to Rob's for dinner.  I brought sweet potato enchiladas with cashew cheese in them.  I had never made the "cheese" before, so I was a little nervous, but it was for naught.

I didn't use an actual recipe and it can definitely be improved upon, but I think it was ridiculously fantastic for something I basically just made up and threw together.

The most important ingredient is raw cashews (sorry it's blurry, I need a real camera).  They aren't cheap, but you can buy them in bulk.

Throw them in a blender and add:
- a generous amount of nutritional yeast
- nut milk
-green chilis
Blend until it's the consistency of thick hummus.

That's it.  I'm going to experiment with ingredients like white vinegar, olive oil, silken tofu and other spices.  I'm hoping to make a few viable varieties.  

Ian, a big fan of dairy cheese, is all over this stuff.  I think it would be rad on a grilled sandwich with tomatoes or thinned and put over wheat pasta.  Let me know if you try it out.

Friday, June 10, 2011


Cliches about life: 

-It's a roller coaster.  
-It has ups and downs.
-It's like a box of chocolates.

Basically, sometimes it's exciting and amazingly super fantastic.  Other times, like now, it's completely blase.

Why doesn't Blogger allow me to put the accent over those e's?

I'm in a rut (another cliche).  I've been feeling pretty down about writing, which actually and a little ironically, keeps me from writing.  So, my goal is to write a post each day, even if it's tiny and rambling.

Challenges are temporarily on hold, this month I'm supposed to be driving 80 miles or less each week.  I just can't take the max to Hillsboro and make it by 7.  I'd have to get up before 4am.  It's pretty disheartening, but on days that I don't work, I'm using TriMet more and driving less.  I love walking and taking public transit.  For some weird reason, it makes me feel closer to where I want to be.  And I feel pretty far away from there right now.

I'm going to keep working on the Korean story and send it to Arches (my alma mater's magazine) to see if they'll publish me.  I will post another draft within the next few days.  I've applied to an internship working one on one with a vegan writer/blogger.  I think we'd make a rad team, so I hope I hear back from him/her.

I also experimented in making some raw cashew cheese, so I'll post a picture of that tomorrow or something. It is pretty delicious.