Sunday, January 25, 2009

Congratulations to my cousin Tom!

I've received word that Tom got married in China on the 10th. For those wondering, the lucky young lady is Sarah. I remember when Tom introduced us to her on our visit to Taiwan and China two summers ago. Though I've only met her that one time, I knew she and Tom were a great match. So without further ado, I'd like to extend our congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Hu!

The bad news is that we couldn't attend the festivities. For one thing, the wedding was in a remote location. Getting to China on such short notice would have been difficult, not to mention last-minute flights generally aren't cheap. That said, I was definitely there in spirit. Here's to wishing the couple nothing but love and happiness as they begin their life together.

I'm a little sad that we weren't able to congratulate the Hus in person - like in the case of Anne's wedding last summer - but that doesn't make me any less happier for them.

In other news...

1. You can read my review of last week's dance here.

2. I'm considering switching to another blog platform. For a start, MySpace is full of bugs. I also hate the anti-spam "feature" that blocks certain links. It doesn't actually stop spammers and only makes things annoying for legitimate users. Another reason for the migration is that sites like WordPress and Blogger are more professional. Expect a decision in a few weeks.

Currently listening to: Billboard Top Hits: 1987

Saturday, January 17, 2009

one more semester to go

I've moved back to Berkeley for the spring semester. You're probably expecting another rant about how my break was too short, but I'm actually glad to be back this time. It's so nice to see my suitemates Bryan, Danny and Tyler again!

Holiday break in review

The holiday started out well as I got fairly good grades for the semester. Hard work certainly pays off. Just after the semester ended, my parents and I went to Tahoe to see the Nutcracker ballet. This was followed by an amazing Christmas Eve gathering at our family friend Carol's house.

However, the rest of the break was relatively uneventful. Our own New Year's Eve party was canceled because most of the guests couldn't come. On the other hand, the Shiehs had us over for dinner instead. I'm definitely not complaining about that. Though we did have a party on New Year's Day itself, there was nobody else my age. Damn generation gap. ^_^

Aunt Cynthia and my cousins came over on the 2nd to make bread with Mom and have lunch with us. While that was also pretty fun, they left shortly afterwards because Cathy was feeling stressed about her SATs. Speaking of which, I had to study for the GRE myself during most of my free time. Not exactly the most exciting thing in the world.

In any case, I'm thrilled to be back at Cal. The classes are going to be tough, but I only need six more to fulfill the graduation requirements. Oh yeah, and there's a dance tomorrow. :-)

Currently listening to: Pure Disco

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's Day party report

Today wasn't too bad as we had some family friends over. You may recall that our New Year's Eve party was canceled due to the lack of guests. However, Mom felt we should have a gathering after all and invited the Liangs, Chus and Guans over for dinner. :-)

A cool thing is that Fennah happens to be a travel editor for a well-known Chinese newspaper. As someone who loves to travel, I enjoyed hearing about the places she's visited. That's my dream job for sure. ^_^

Also worth mentioning is that Fennah gave me a box of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory truffles. I've always wanted to try their confections but could never bring myself to buy them. It's definitely nice to have generous friends. Thanks, Fennah!

The downside is that Emily and Stacey had other plans and didn't come. This was a little disappointing as there wasn't anybody else my age. On the other hand, my aunt Cynthia and cousins Connie and Cathy are coming over tomorrow to learn how to make bread and will be staying for lunch. I can't wait to see them again!

Currently listening to: '80s Gold

a quiet entrance into 2009

Just a while ago, I was writing about how awesome our 2007 New Year's Eve party was. It's hard to believe a whole year has passed. Where does time go?

New Year's Eve report

Yesterday was a mixed bag. The bad news is that most of our guests were unable to come. Mom didn't want to make all that food for just two more people and called off the party altogether. This was a let-down as I had been looking forward to the gathering for several weeks.

To make matters worse, my laptop got infected with viruses again. Getting rid of that shit was a major pain in the ass. That was definitely not how I wanted to spend New Year's Eve. Fuck the losers that write these things. >:(

On the other hand, canceling the party made New Year's Eve much less stressful. For those who have never hosted a party before, cooking all that food and cleaning up the house can be daunting. It was no doubt nice to get some rest before the New Year. They say every cloud has a silver lining. So true.

But what really made our day is that the Shieh family had us over for dinner. There was lots of good food as Aunt Cynthia is a great cook just like Mom. Though it was just our two families at first, Connie's friend Michelle came over later in the evening. The more the merrier!

I saw Saving Private Ryan on TV while the girls made chocolate toffee cookies. All of us then gathered to watch the Times Square ball drop. The cookies were soon ready - and they were absolutely delicious. Just because this was a quiet gathering and not a "party" party doesn't mean it wasn't fun.

However, Cynthia and Uncle Dong are both early sleepers. Therefore, my family left around 10 p.m. so they could get some rest. Considering that our own party was canceled, I'm grateful that the Shiehs invited us to theirs.

The other good news is that the Liangs and two other couples are having dinner with us this evening. Also worth mentioning is that my aunt and cousins are coming over on the 2nd to make bread with Mom and will be staying for lunch. I guess the New Year won't be so bad after all. :-)

2008 in review

The past year certainly had its highlights. For me, the best part of 2008 was our trip to Yellowstone and the Upper Midwest in May. That was extremely exciting as I had always wanted to visit Yellowstone a second time. The trip to Southern California in August was enjoyable as well.

The downer is that I had to miss out on Anne's wedding in Taiwan because of my summer physics class at Cal. The wedding was a big deal as Anne was my first cousin on Mom's side to get married. At least there are the anniversary parties to look forward to. ^_^

I'm proud to say that my New Year's resolutions for 2008 were overall a success. In addition to getting my driver's license, I did rather well last semester. Considering that Berkeley isn't exactly known for easy classes, receiving an "A" in Stat 157 gave me a major confidence boost. I'd say two out of three ain't bad.

For those curious, my goals for 2009 are to not stay up too late, kick a few bad habits, be more independent, be more confident around girls and make more "offline" friends. Yeah, maybe five is a bit ambitious. Haha.

All that having been said, I'd like to wish everyone an awesome new year. As Spock would say, "Live long and prosper."

Currently watching: Saving Private Ryan