Miscellaneous

Monday Musings 8.22.16

Another hectic week, busy, sweet, sad all mixed into one, with too much tiredness to explain. A quick overview: I went to the beach, got into Korean dramas, kept working on the hardwood, and am prepping for back to school. I go back on Saturday!


Current watchings…

Suits– I am watching the sixth season right now. Still unsure of what to think, though I do like the novelty of Mike’s situation in prison.

Oh My Venus – A friend recommended this to me and so far, I’m hooked! Oh my Venus is about a girl who gains weight as she gets older, so seeks out a personal trainer to help her lose the pounds. Eventually, they fall in love.


Current loves…

  • Winter melon
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Winter melon beginning to spring up as little fuzzy beans. They grow up to be around 20 or 30 pounds, so I hear. I’m pretty excited for what’s to come! 

  • Also love this article from Miss Moss regarding what to buy from ASOS. It turns out I love her style, also its so much nicer when other people filter out your favorite clothes for you 😉

Current pictures…

from the beach trip – Cape Henlopen 

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A quick photo across a bridge on the way to Cape Henlopen Park

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a panorama that doesn’t even capture the beauty at all of the ocean

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Love how bright and happy the umbrellas are 


Current intentions…

  • try and read some articles in the New York Times and keep up to date with the world
  • exercise around 30 minutes each day
  • spend around 30 minutes each day reading the Bible, praying, and doing devotionals

 

 

my mama makes chinese leek boxes (韭菜盒子)!

I attempted to look at the history behind Chinese leek boxes also known as Chinese chive pockets (as well as any combination of the two), but there wasn’t really much. I assume this is because that they are typically grouped together under the larger umbrella of “jiaozi” or dumpling.

Essentially, they are little pockets of dough filled with Chinese garlic chives, bits of egg, and occasionally some type of meat. They are pan fried and can be manipulated into any shape that you want. You make the dough, fold the filling into them, and simply fry them on a pan!

Some pictures below of the process 🙂

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a pot of flour, a bowl of dough,and the swift hands of my mother making the dough circles

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gently scooping the filling onto a dough piece

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a close up of the Chinese leek boxes precooked! 

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a close up of the filling, egg, shrimp, and chives

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the half-eaten finished product, crisp and slightly floury, juicy and full of flavor!

Monday Musings 8.1.16

And with that, we’re in August. I have one month left before I head back to school and it feels like summer has flown by. The tomatoes in my mother’s garden, however, have not taken notice, as they are just now beginning to ripen 🙂 Pretty little orange cherry tomatoes too! Other than that exciting news, its been the occasional hangout and more graduation parties. I’m looking forward to the end of my physics class and some time to enjoy myself at last.

Some randomness below 🙂


Reading…

HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD OMG OMG OMG OMG

My boyfriend preordered this book for me, and I just got it in the mail today. After looking at the reviews and steeling myself for what’s to come, I am so looking forward to reading it.

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Not reading necessarily, but I have been journalling lately in this absolutely beautiful notebook that someone gave me. Look how gorgeous!


Eating…

at Terrain at Styers again… so expensive!! I got the trout with spinach and my friends all got some variety of peach salad with mac and cheese. The location, however, is insanely beautiful.

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Enjoying…

these beautiful flowers! (at UDIMG_5239.JPG

and this cupcake! (at a grad partyIMG_5279.JPG

and more flowers! (courtesy of grad’s motherIMG_5280.JPG


Praying…

for healing in sickness

for safety in travel

for peace in the world

for passion for the pursuit of God


Watching…

Suits – because it’s interesting seeing Mike in prison and how he deals with it

How I Met Your Mother – for relationship advice

Modern Family – for laughs

Monday Musings 7.25.16

Hello! Happy Monday to you 🙂 Did you know lemon is good for mosquito bite soothing and whitening skin?

This week has been sort of slow, but honestly, that’s how I like it. I like having time to myself to relax and to realign my goals, to allow for rest in the midst of socialization and events. The most I did was on Saturday, where I went and painted for my church, then went to a grad party, then went to a dinner party. I put down a couple pictures below of the happenings as well as some of my favorites, so if you would like to see, continue to scroll 🙂


Loving…

Romans 8:26-28 (NIV) on prayer

26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.

Psalm 121:1-2 (NIV) on strength

A song of ascents.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
    where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth.


Pics of the week…

I only have one pic of the week because I only went outside to do something interesting once 😛  A ton of the Polaroid pics that we took at my friend Angela’s graduation party.

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BUT I REALLY LIKE THIS OLD PIC, SO HERE IT IS ALSO…

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Watching…

The Incredibles and Brooklyn!

Decided to watch The Incredibles with some friends over at my house because I hadn’t seen it in quite a while. Watching it this time, so many years later, I was struck by both how it seemed to weave in some incredibly tough topics such as marriage issues and the threat towards children and also produce such an engaging and heartwarming story.

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Brooklyn, as well, was SO good. I watched it for the first time last week and to be honest, was a bit skeptical at first because I’m not a huge fan of period drama styles. But Saoirse Ronan blew me away and I loved the main character’s relationship with her man so much and brought me so many emotions and gah, so good. THIS PICTURE GIVES ME ALL THE FEELS (Would definitely recommend)

*pic taken from here*


Praying …

Sigh, so many prayer requests in my head that it is beginning to get difficult to keep track of them

  • praying for Jason and his relationship with Christ and his family
  • praying for Julie, for passion for God and for pride
  • praying for Hong, for pride and for compassion
  • praying for Natalie, for deeper understanding and truth in knowledge
  • praying for the English Ministry church and all its requests
  • praying for my family
  • praying for the world and for peace and love amidst all this violence

Enjoying…

Grad Parties! I had one last week, which I shared about, and I had another one this Saturday too. There was so much food and cute Polaroids and helium balloons 🙂 Some pics below…

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the one on the right is too exposed 😦 

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look at the giant balloon! 

 

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with the graduated girl 🙂 ❤ you angela 


Playing…

Was unsure about whether or not to include this, but why not… I confess I have been playing Pokemon Go quite addictively. Really nice for when you want to walk around and explore places and a great bonding experience, which also works when you are busy and you shouldn’t be playing games and you physically cannot play Pokemon Go because you are in the same place! Good job, Nintendo. You did good this time 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Pizza by Elizabeth’s

Last Tuesday, I went on the cutest date with a friend to Pizza by Elizabeth’s for the first time. I had heard of it so many times before since it is one of the most Instagrammed eateries in Delaware, but I do have to say it definitely exceeded my expectations. The service was fantastic, the area was decorated in such a unique picturesque way, and the small touches of embellishment were seriously the cherry on top. A couple of pictures below 🙂
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* Edit, picture is below and not above… I decided to change it for orientation purposes. IMG_5149.JPG

Pizza by Elizabeth’s

3801 Kennett Pike, Wilmington, DE 19807

 

Monday Musings 7.18.16

Hi hi hi sorry sorry sorry what’s up what’s up what’s up?!!

Goodness, I took a 2 week break from posting and it feels so weird coming back and pretending like nothing has happened. But many things have happened. And I have been thinking quite a lot about this blog. Thus, I thought why not combine this and make Mondays a scheduled time for me to talk about random things going on in my life? This would be sort of like weekly favorites, but also including random happenings or pretty pictures that I took during the week. And yes, I suppose Monday Musings does not fit super well but the alliteration! Gosh the alliteration, I’ll deal with the slight misnomer 😉

Anyways, to the juice…


Reading …

the sacred search – gary thomas

all about marriage and dating from a Christian perspective

crazy love – francis chan

what does it mean to be loved by God?

I’m reading the first one with a little accountability group. It’s cute and fun and I have never done something like this before, especially with girls in three different time zones, which is wild. I’m reading Crazy Love by myself and journaling. It’s been highly recommended and a huge Christian bestseller so I have huge expectations for it and am excited to get through it all. What’s interesting about these two books are that they were both gifted to me by two women that I admire so much in the Christian community. And especially Crazy Love, I had just been thinking about how much I wanted the book and that same day, she said that she wanted to give it away because she and her husband had finished reading it. Nuts right?


Enjoying …

homemade macarons from a graduation party!

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walks and flowers at the university of delaware

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ice cream and all its processes (Woodside Farm and Udairy Creamery  are the best!)

(LOL only managed to get some cows but no ice cream) IMG_5142.JPG


Watching…

finding dory , central intelligence, legend of tarzan, alice through the looking glass

I have been watching so many movies this summer. Such a great way to hang out. Got to say, I think I liked Finding Dory and Legend of Tarzan the most. Finding Dory because I felt like the movie was just supposed to be liked. Obviously, it was super well known because of Finding Nemo, but they really brought out the acceptance of disabilities aspect and also the humor factor so much in this one that I really loved it. I also enjoyed Legend of Tarzan, but that may just have been because I think Margot Robbie is a beautiful woman and Alexander Skarsgard a handsome man.


Random pics that I love …

At the Container Store that just opened at Christiana Mall in DE

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and flowers always 🙂

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Have a good rest of the week 🙂 ❤

 

 

 

my mama makes… zongzi!

My mother has always loved watching cooking videos on the Internet. Each time, they inspire her to try something new and fun, usually enlisting me to help her with the activity. This time, it was Chinese zongzi!

Zongzi are typically made in celebration of the Duanwu Festival in Chinese culture, a popular belief being that it is in commemoration of the death of Qu Yuan, who committed suicide due to grief when his hometown was conquered. Villagers threw packets of rice in the waters where he died so that fish would not eat his body.

The ones that me and my mother made today are tetrahedral shaped and of two types: sweet and salty. The salty ones had a combination of dried shrimp, pork, Chinese black mushrooms, dried scallops, and sticky rice. The sweet ones were made with mung beans and sticky rice. We wrap each of the zongzi up with soaked bamboo leaves and tie it with string. After we finish making them, we boil them for a couple hours, cut the string, and can eat them in the leaves. 🙂 A couple of pictures below of the process.

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A happy 19 to me

Last week, I celebrated my 19th birthday. I have always been pretty low key about birthdays, so what we planned to do – dinner and a movie – ended up being eating at home and seeing a movie on Netflix – just as nice 🙂 Anyways, I’m happy I got to spend so much time with family and hear from friends I hadn’t heard from in quite a while. Not that you can do much at 19, but it’s crazy that the years have passed so quickly, and in a blink, I have reached my last year of being a teenager. Here are just a couple photos below 🙂

My boyfriend sent me this basket of Edible Arrangements as he was off at Duke doing research and couldn’t make it. My mother went wild with the pictures… I thought this one looked nice and captured quite impressively the cute 19 made out of pineapples in the middle. IMG_4898.JPG

For myself, I recently found out about Thredup, which is a website that sells used clothes very cheaply. You can choose to buy from them or to sell them your own used clothes (though I hear bad reviews about the selling part). I browsed and purchased three shirts from the website and it came in the cutest packaging right in time for my birthday! Needless to say, I am really pleased with my purchase and for those who do a lot of online shopping, you would feel right at home. IMG_0639IMG_0640FullSizeRender 3.jpg

A while back, a friend also got me these two ridiculously cute items from Mochi Things – the first is a set of pretty colored highlighters and the other a Japanese weekly planner. I am an absolute sucker for stationary and am pretty excited to use it. I decided to include them in this post just because they looked quite pretty haha. The shorts in the picture below is from Ann Taylor that my mother got me. IMG_4904.JPGIMG_4905.JPG

My brother has a couple of key stores he goes to when he gets gifts for me and my birthday was no different. The two mugs (one is from Christmas) are both from Anthropologie and the cute little black and white box is from South Moon Under. I love them all so very much and at the rate he’s going, I will have quite the accumulation of mugs 😉 IMG_0695.jpgIMG_4861.JPG

I’m really grateful for the life that I live. I’m thankful for God and I am thankful for family, for the opportunities that I have been given to reach the place that I am now, more so than any physical present that I received. 19 is a new year for me and I am excited for what it brings. My hope for myself is to stay motivated and to stay true to myself, to work harder to understand others and show compassion and love in ways that I can, and to transition into greater maturity and understanding of the world and pursue a deeper love for God.

Qualities of a successful blog

As I mentioned previously, I have been thinking a lot towards what it means to have a successful blog. Even though I have a blog myself, the primary purpose of my WordPress account for the majority of the time is to read through and look at an assortment of the different types of blogs that I follow. I contemplated the blogs that I enjoyed immensely and thought critically why there were others that did not capture my interest. I essentially came up with a list of things that I would consider highly important qualities of a successful blog, the word successful being defined in this post as having lots of followers and traffic (though it can be defined in many other ways as well – such as one’s own happiness or how much knowledge can be spread). I know for sure that I don’t possess many of these qualities, but because I have them listed down concretely now, I do keep them in mind more when I write and post and thought that they would bring good insight and perspective to other bloggers out there 🙂

  1. Photo Quality
    1. I think it’s so important that if you have pictures on your blog that they are ones of high quality. All of the more famous bloggers I follow all have professional photographers who follow them around everywhere. Obviously, this isn’t possible for everyone. But I have a Canon t2i and learned how to Photoshop and edit myself, so if you try, you can definitely do it. Even if that’s too time consuming for you, a quick iPhone picture and a nice VSCO filter works just as well! Choose your pictures carefully and thoughtfully and always have your audience in mind.
  2. Uniqueness
    1. Although there are the classic home and lifestyle bloggers and the motivational speech writers, the more popular ones possess their own unique flair that draws readers to it rather than say the other five bazillion fashion bloggers on WordPress.  This can be anything – for ex. Happily Grey, a fashion blog I follow, always has a specific style of photography, a type of mood – or A Beautiful Mess, which is everything bright and happy and overflowing. I also admire Seams for a Desire for writing in both English and Spanish so she can also appeal to readers in English-speaking countries. Find your own niche and present it so others may see that you are someone unique in the midst of the sameness.
  3. Presence
    1. Along with uniqueness is the idea of presence. This idea is much more abstract, and I doubt that I can concretely say what steps can be taken to achieve it. Presence, as best as I can say, is when bloggers do an amazing job conveying their self through their blog that devoted followers end up following less for content than for emotional attachment to the person. For example, I really enjoy reading Love Taza’s blog and Oh Dear Drea yet I am nowhere like them in any way – a mother of three and a passionate vegan?! The reason is because I am drawn to their selves, their faces, their lives. I suppose one way to achieve this is through writing – really attempt to convey who you are as a person, your values, your personality, etc. This is perhaps the best way of showing the type of human being you are.
  4. Consistency
    1. Presence can also be helped along by consistency of posting. More popular blogs always have a set schedule of posting or post at least three or four times a week. When people see your blog post on reader over and over again every day, they are bound to become more familiar towards you or at least your picture. It also looks more professional for your blog if readers don’t have to guess when you will post and rather know approximately when you will be.
  5. Improvement
    1. Finally, improvement. I put this last because it isn’t really necessary, but I think that the very very best blogs that I follow have dramatic signs of improvement from their original content. I’m talking big names such as Nicole Warne of Gary Pepper Girl or Chriselle Lim of Chriselle Factor. These people started off as simply fashion bloggers, people just like us looking to do something as a hobby or pursue a passion of theirs, but because they constantly sought to put their whole hearts into it, deliver the best all around quality, they have become the big names that they are (given quite a bit of luck as well). For example, I read an interview about Gary Pepper Girl and how she used to put money towards traveling to crazy places just so that she could find a good photography spot. Now, I look at her work and gasp at every article of clothing she wears and read eagerly every editorial she puts up. She has been invited to Cannes, is on the best of Forbes in Asia, and has shot with many magazines including Vogue. In short, if you want a so-called “successful” blog, don’t just settle for what you have – always think about improving your blog – maybe for yourself, but also for your readers because I think they deserve it for their faithfulness and trust in you and your work as a blogger. This improvement doesn’t have to be as dramatic as Nicole Warne’s but can be achieved through small things such as photo quality or consistency in posting or presence and things like that. It just takes one small step for a more successful blog! 🙂