Goodbye 2011. I probably won’t remember you in six months

Favorite songs of 2011:

1. The Wombats – Anti-D
2. Crystal Fighters – Xtatic Truth (Last Japan remix)
3. Bon Iver – Holocene
4. Dirty South & Thomas Gold – Alive (ft. Kate Elsworth)
5. The Vaccines – Post Break Up Sex

Obsession of the year: Probably Skins (UK) for a bit. A bit, being like, I absolutely had to watch a clip of Skins before going to work and at least before going to bed, otherwise my day would have been incomplete

Sad knowledge learned: Against my intuition, I think odors are much more magnified in cold weather than warm weather. It’s always the coldest days of the year where I REALLY smell Milpitas: Landfill City.

Where I want to be in a year from now: Having Christmas / NYE plans NOT in the bay area OR in Arcadia. Either in the process of moving to Seattle or figuring out something more fun to do with my life before I am tied down to a house in the Pacific Northwest. Rocking a hot bod.

Best purchase of the year: This song. $200. I like to think that because of me, she got onto this list

Highlight of the year: I don’t know why everyone seemed to think I had a MISERABLE time on my Peru vacation, but it will probably end up being the highlight of my year. The food, the freedom,  the two weeks of escape. At least, a year from now, I will use those two weeks in Peru as an anchor for what I did in 2011. “When was that? Oh yeah … that was the year I went to Peru in June … that must have happened in 2011.” So there, everyone, I DID have a wonderful vacation. Or maybe the other 49.5 weeks that I spend as an auditor just pales in comparison to sleeping in a damp, freezing tent and squatting in fields to take a dump.

Freezing. Damp. Awesome. Fun.

Biggest regret: Thinking I should leap for a handhold on the overhang on a V2 in the outside bouldering area of PG. I have yet to recover fully from my sprained ankle, and I think I will forever harbor deep seeded fears that if I exercise too hard, I will resprain it. I wish medical technology could advance to the point that I could just get a new ankle. And new eyes, for that matter.

Today in the news: Katy Perry and Russell Brand divorce.

Best thing that ever hit my senses:
– ears: Bon Iver concert. Greek Theater. Amazing how several hundred people all shut up and give Justin Vernon the awed silence that he deserves
– nose: some sort of citrusy hand soap that was at one of my client’s, and I intend to find out what it is and buy a lifetime supply of it
– eyes: downtown Seattle on the drive up from the Tacoma airport at around 11pm at night. Odd how it feels so … homey
– taste: about ten things came to my mind. ahi tuna salad from Scotts. mocha from Philz Coffee. creme bulee from my holiday party. blood orange sorbet from whole foods. woodchuck amber cider from bar louie. I’ll stop there.

Things I enjoyed doing during the year: Listening to c89.5 on Mondays and Thursday nights. Listening to xfm on the weekdays from the time I got into work until noon. Dropping music into my Spotify playlists. Looking for Seattle houses on zillow. Watching and rewatching episodes on hulu plus. Bouldering. Walking around Stanford shopping center. Laughing hysterically at work and distracting people when I got bored. Lying on Laura’s couch and falling asleep. Making mix cds before embarking on a long drive.

Goals for the new year:
Eat well. Eat less. Exercise more. Find more friend-making avenues in life. Stick to my daily schedule. Waste less time. Find more music. Appreciate the people in my life. Pick up a creative hobby. Use my surfboard. Hike some trails. Be less of a sadsack. Look awesome. Feel awesome.

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I’m supposed to be doing work but…

I have three clients to do work for. I woke up today at 7:30 and semi-finished one within three hours. It’s off with my manager now and based on my phone convo with him, I don’t have to do that much until we go out for fieldwork in March so, cross that off my list.

Two more to go. Unfortunately, these two are more difficult for me to just cross off the list.

I just looked at all the pictures I’ve saved to my work laptop while I’ve been on vacation though. I think it’s pretty representative of how easily I am distracted with the idea of not having to do work…

LOL so random. Tom Hanks on a swing
I want to do this next year on my cards! I just need an inkpad...
I don't know where this is but I want to go there
Pic off Robin's blog. I often think "she must have found this on tumblr" before I realize that she is the original creator

OHHHH my god I just remembered about three things I have to do for one client. My brief hour of “this isn’t too bad, I’m going to take it easy” is now over

Weekend 51!!!: Christmas Time!!!

Listening to: She & Him – Baby It’s Cold Outside (my main 2011 Christmas song)

It’s 4am and I should be going to bed soon but I always think posts written half-deliriously and on an empty tank of fuel are sometimes the best.

It’s three days into my winter break and I am having a blast. So far I’ve made the most of each day and as long as I can feel like I’ve hit all the things I want to do in SoCal over break, while still accomplishing THREE FREAKING CLIENTS’ worth of work (FML) I will be very pleased.

I left the Bay Area on Thursday night, with Laura taking me to the airport after a day of my working from Amy’s home and then for about two hours in the office. My favorite place to work, besides a cafe, is probably Amy’s house. There are cats and there is not really food for me to eat so I don’t get distracted, and the lighting is good and it’s just very cozy.

As with every extended visit home, my first full day of vacation started with a trip to the dentist. I then spent about two hours in a Forever 21 and my reward was a $10 white top. I think after reading fashionofglee.com, I have begun to enjoy shopping in Forever because it’s easier for me to see how two or three ridiculous looking things may combine to make an ok outfit. Some of their things are also business casualable, so even more incentive to peruse the overstocked store! But, there is a very low rate of return for the amount of effort that goes into shopping at Forever.

On the flip side, I’ve lately become more and more inclined to buy more expensive things, and not even wait for a sale. I used to think it was CRAZY that anyone would ever buy something at a non-sale price. Now I realize why: I barely have time to go shopping and if I’m lucky enough to go shopping during a major sale, kudos to me. But I don’t have time to go around SHOPPING for DEALS. That, plus the fact that I don’t buy that many things in a year, makes me think it’s ok to pay for full-priced BR items. I’ve also started to think it is normal to shop at Nordstrom’s and that I couldn’t possibly deign to waste my time sifting through the Macy’s or JC Penny which is NOT GOOD. Because I do own several things I love from those department stores. And come to think of it, nothing I’ve ever gotten from Nordstrom’s was AMAZEBALLS. But, I can’t help it anymore. I think I’ve deceived myself into thinking I’ve moved up in the world.

One of my resolutions for the new year is to be more financially responsible, meaning 1) START TRACKING MY EXPENSES AGAIN (I stopped doing this after going to Peru and in August when I spent a ton on various plane tickets and  chose not to track my excessive spending) and 2) to STOP rationalizing purchases as well I deserve this. Because I don’t think I really deserve to buy myself something just because I happened to work or whatever. I think I have to move away from the idea of buying things to reward myself and towards the idea of buying things purely on a “well I need this and it’s a good deal so why not.”

That being said, Laura helped me buy that Crate & Barrel chair for 50% off over the weekend. Which means I just bought a $450 + tax chair. I’m already envisioning how to decorate my future Seattle bedroom so everything compliments the chair. I’m thinking, white carpet, blue walls with a white trim, and furniture that kind of looks like this, except NOT that because that is Pottery Barn and I can’t continue to buy $900 furniture pieces.

Future look of my bedroom furniture

Anyway.

Friday night I spent doing the one thing I have been dying to do in Socal for the past two months: GO SHOPPING IN THE GROVE! I went with Kim and it was everything I had hoped for! I love the idea of winter in socal because the nice, rich areas are pretty serious about the holiday decorations, yet the weather is nice enough to stroll around for several hours.

Love the Grove

Kim and I got some food at the Grove’s farmers market too. I got an oyster poboy at the New Orleans stand. DELICIOUS. In the eating area, there was a live band, the kind where couples would get up and dance by their seats. The atmosphere was just very festive and communal and ❤

Saturday … went shopping with my mom, then had a family xmas gathering where I began to START LIKING KIDSSS!!! My nieces and nephews are just soooooo cuteee!!! I think it’s adorable to see a little kid be so attached to their parents. It must feel pretty great when some little human being thinks you are the entire world.

After that and after heading home I ended up going out to Rowland Heights and meeting up with Li-Ting and Soo Jin for drinks at Ten Ren. Oddly, it was the first time I’ve ever gotten anything at a Ten Ren despite there being one in Arcadia. We only went there bc the Half & Half was closed. SAD! I am 3 stamps away from a free Half & Half drink!!! While there, we took pics with Soo Jin’s new poloraid camera which is CUTE and I kind of want one too! I’ll add it to my ever growing list of “Things I Want but do not really deserve and while may be able to pay for, should probably not buy in order to save up for a downpayment”

Cute lil poloraid!

SUNDAY. I woke up in a fit of panic about all the work I have to do. Unfortunately, I’ve planned things to do Monday and Tuesday so  I will continue to wake up in a frenzy until hopefully Thursday, assuming I am able to accomplish a lot on Wednesday. After waking up, I proceeded to cross off one of my MUST DO IN SOCALS, which was to READ. I am reading Caroline’s book The Lost Girls, which I started a long time ago, then stopped reading, then decided I had to wait a long enough time to forget what I had read before in order to restart it. I think I was able to read for about five hours straight and got through over half the book and it felt like a major accomplishment. I was all ready to finish the book, but then…

Movie at Frances L’s! We watched Beginners. I fell asleep for a few minutes in between and when I woke up, I could tell I had missed some sort of crucial character development because I was suddenly very confused as to why everyone became depressed in the movie. After that, we headed off to TMV Dinner…

Which I should probably write about but I’ll save for the next post because it’s 4:30 now and I REALLY WANT TO SLEEP!!!

Weekend 50: All around the Bay

Listening to: Angus and Julia Stone – And the Boys (ok. I only JUST realized that this song is different from Just a Boy. I burned Just a Boy onto my latest driving mix and have thought to myself, hmm I seem to like the song a lot more when I play it on Spotify but I don’t know why. Well now I know why. Because I was listening to two different songs!)

Exhausted. So so tired. But today was actually one of my more productive days of work, and probably one of my more enjoyable ones too. I woke up at 7am today and debated whether to work from home or go to the office. As I continued to lie in bed surfing the internet under my covers and watching my neighbors get into their cars and drive off, I decided I would work from home.

8am rolls around and I’m microwaving my Saturday leftovers from Brenda’s … getting ready to eat my breakfast with an episode of anything … when the power in my house shorts. I think it had something to do with the fact that we had a fridge, microwave, aquarium, 2 computers, 1 speaker, 1 heater, 1 washer, 1 dryer, and who knows what else running all at the same time. I had been in the middle of talking to Amy about whether I’d go work at her house or not, and now that I didn’t have power, I decided to go over.

I got there around 9am and the summary of it, I worked essentially from 9am to 11pm, but the first third of the day consisted of us working while watching Glee in the background. Amy made me a cup of mocha to start off my day. Around 1pm she made lunch: quinoa and chicken (this being the ONLY time I have ever liked eating quinoa; she cooked it with chicken broth). 3pm rolls around and we run out of Glee episodes, so Real Housewives goes up in the background. 5pm comes up and we take a break by driving to the office since Amy had to drop off an expense report. I hid out in her car because I couldn’t go up to the office in my sweatshirt and jeans. Then we had a Pinkberry break. Then back to her place; work for me but she had decided she was done for the day so she started making dinner: HOMEMADE PASTA. Like, straight from scratch flour that she kneaded and cut into little strips using her mixer. I was amazeeeeedddd at the sight of someone making their own pasta just for kicks. Around 11pm we started watching Contagion, which is exactly the kind of movie that puts me to sleep. Now it’s 1am and I’m back at home. Ideally I would pump out a little more work but I figure I will just go to the office early tomorrow.

Of  course, I say that every day and every day, I wake up early but decide to just lie in my bed and watch tv and get to work at 9:15.

So yes, that was my fantastic day of work. And this is exactly why I refuse to take PTO in the last weeks of December. There is barely anyone around to know if I’m at a client or at the office or on vacation. I still work pretty hard but somehow, since I’m working on my own terms of where and when and what will I be wearing, it doesn’t feel like work at all.

WEEKEND: I basically drove in giant circles around the Bay Area.

Saturday (left) Sunday (right)

SATURDAY: Was the Renegade craft fair!!! I went to the one in Chicago and lovvveeedddd it so I was really excited for this. Saturday morning I wake up at 8am and finally checked my phone at 8:30 which was when I found out that Kristen had taken me up on my request to eat brunch and come to Renegade with me. So I left home, picked her up. I told her if she didn’t research any other brunch places, we’d be going to Brenda’s which we had gone to two weekends before. We ended up going to Brenda’s.

Ok, I don’t know WHEN we got to Brenda’s last time. They open at 8am and I think we got there at 9am the first time. No wait at all. This time we got there at 10:30 and waited like 25 minutes. Blegh. SF.

I kind of want to just order beignets from Brenda’s next time and not even bother with a breakfast entree. MMM beignets. We got crabcake beignets which was deliciousss.

SF Hipsters

Then off to Renegade. I was very pleased to see that there was a pretty good turnout. FOR ONCE I am in the know of SF events! Go … me … I had had the impression that the vendors of Renegade just follow the fair. I now realize it’s more likely that the vendors there are  local to the city and Renegade is not so much a traveling circus of Etsy vendors. I loved Chicago’s fair way more. SF had more of a jewelery emphasis, I think, which kind of makes sense. Chicago had wayyy more posters which also makes sense. Plus, Chicago’s was outdoors on a street lined with restaurants and bars, which was just more fun. But I still really liked browsing the SF one.

Free photo booth! Cross that off my bucket list

After that … ah yes. Drove to Berkeley and met up with Amy, her husband and Julia for Wood Tavern. HAMBURGERS OMG YUM. I got some sort of pink grapefruit alcoholic drink and it was crazy good. OMG!!! I still have leftover fries. That will be my lunch tomorrow~ Also for lunch tomorrow, a lemon tart that Julia bought back for me from Dallas. LOL It’s not even a Texas-only restaurant. One of our clients is Corner Bakery Cafe and I was devastated to find out they don’t have those in the Bay Area. It’s actually on my list of places to hit up while I’m in socal.

COOL BREEZE

Domaine Charbay’s
Ruby Red Grapefruit Vodka
Fresh Grapefruit Juice
Splash Cranberry

If that means anything to you.

Burger. Amazeballs.

Amazingly only $11 on the mid-afternoon menu

Then we went to Ici’s. We took pictures together, which, YAY! I need to reinstate my PICTURES EVERY TIME WE MEET state of mind, because I have so little evidence of actually having a life the past year.

Friends!

SUNDAY

Woke up, toyed with the idea of going to the gym, went so far as to actually put on my gym clothes. About a minute later, I thought HA. No. And changed clothes and then drove up to Danville for champagne brunch with Marina, Kathy and Sarah ❤

I get to the restaurant, walk inside, and immediately text Kathy “omg this is the whitest place ever.” I later told Marina this and she was like “yeah … it’s a little too white, even for me.” This coming from someone who said “um, I don’t really want to go to Berkeley, can we go somewhere more yuppie?” when I suggested eating brunch at La Note.

Super fun! Endless mimosas and it was like a buffet breakfast. Sarah gave us all a super cute package of homemade cookies and I am eating them right now, at 1:30am. They are ridiculously good. She also gave us each an ornament, and this is my FIRST ornament that is MINE and it shall go into my “for my future Christmas tree in Seattle” box.

After that, I went back to Berkeley and hit all my favorite stops.

1) College Ave: Mrs Dalloway’s bookstore and the surrounding area. I would have had Ici’s if I hadn’t just been there the prior day.
2) Telegraph Ave: Rasputin. I didn’t buy anything but I find it really comforting to just flip through rows and rows of cds
3) 4th St: Holiday decorations! My favorite time of the year to visit Berkeley. The air is crisp and the lights on 4th st are just ridiculously cute.

You know my Monday.

Quote of the Day:
Me: How is the taiwan office different from the US one?
Amy: The taiwanese people actually audit really well. They know the company inside out, and their analytics are like, 100% thorough. It’s not like US, where everything’s just “appears reasonable” and I constantly say “this documentation doesn’t make sense” and some A1 goes “oh … I just rolled it forward from last year, I thought it applied. I guess I can go follow up.”

Other highlights of the past week … hmm … well I had oyster happy hour with Amy on Wed. Well. We thought it would be happy hour. It turns out it was full price that night. It had taken me a LONG time to walk to the Embarcadero though, even though the office is just 3 blocks away, because of my shit ankle. So we ended up just getting 12 oysters for $32. Kind of hurts to think about, but as Amy said “you know you’re pretty rich when you don’t wait for the happy hour.” I think this just means next time there’s an oyster happy hour I’ll have to eat more to compensate.

We were in SF that Wed for a training that ended at 12. Wed was another good work day. Amy and I went to get lunch and afterwards sat in a conference room to do work. Working in a conference room is way better than working in a cubicle … for obvious reasons. It was a really foggy day so I spent a good while just staring out the window, watching the fog totally enshroud the Bay Bridge. Then I went to get water and all of a sudden it just burned away! I think at 5pm sharp we headed out for our oyster happy hour. I think my best work memories will primarily be related to Amy and the adventures I have with her

That’s about it. Tomorrow I’ll go to the office because I have to ask some questions. I’m debating leaving in the middle of the day but I think that looks way worse than not showing up at all. Wednesday I have an inventory count. Thursday I’m definitely working from home. NO! I’m going to go to Philz. ❤ And I need to check if my Crate & Barrel chair is under $500 yet or not. I swear, if I actually buy that chair … no more nice things for like six months. Then night time … flying back home. Look forward to it!

Weekend 49: Productivity

Listening to: M83 – Midnight City (yes I know I’m a little late to the party. Shush.)

I have to stay awake anyway to listen to New Music Monday so I figured I might as well blog. My body feels incredibly sore right now and lately my little leg brace keeps making my left leg itch. I’m starting to get a lot of pent up energy and usually I’d drive to Palo Alto and go running, but that won’t be a viable option for several months. Sigh that’s depressing. I hope I can start hiking again around the time that the Bay turns green again.

I hate work again. I’ve pinpointed it to one particular client that I don’t enjoy doing the work for. Unfortunately, I’m not quite sure how I can go about trying to switch clients.

I had one PERFECT day last week. If I could make that one day my life’s norm, I think I’d be the model of work-life balance. Last Tuesday I …

Went to work at a leisurely 900-915 time
Five minutes after setting my laptop down, left work to grab coffee with two of my coworkers
Had a real lunch break at Specialtys
Left work at 5pm
Had happy hour at The Grill
Went home and read The Hunger Games
Went to the gym
Returned home, read a little more of The Hunger Games
Watched an episode of something
Checked my celebrity gossip
Fell asleep

Basically, the pinnacles of my happiness are: friends, food, exercise, tv and edification. Unfortunately, this day presented itself under very rare circumstances, the main one being that I didn’t have that much work to do. That happens about four days in the year.

Hrm. Saturday was my Holiday Party which was pretty fun. It was at the SF Hyatt, and the lobby was AMAZZZINGGG but I failed to bring my camera. Well, it was easy enough to find a picture online. I feel like my table was probably one of the more fun tables. They assigned each partner to sit at a table, and I’m glad we didn’t get stuck with a tax partner or a partner that is harder to talk to. I got home pretty freaking exhausted. Earlier that day, I went to Palo Alto with Laura, shopped a little, then went to a cafe where I wrote Christmas cards. I clocked it: each card takes 20 minutes to write and that doesn’t even include drawing time. It’s a little depressing how much time I’ve spent writing cards, yet I’m only 1/3 done. 21 more to go.

Loveeedddd ittttt

I felt really unsatisfied because on Saturday I really wanted to buy something for myself but  didn’t see anything I wanted at the mall. Bah. Sunday, I cleaned my room (I love returning to a super clean room Sunday night, all fresh for the new week!) and then drove to Palo Alto. HAAA I ended up buying a $130 blazer from BR. I’m glad I resisted the Kate Spade flats but … I half can’t believe I bought a full-priced anything from BR. My mom would have a heart attack if she finds out. It is an awesome blazer, but I also feel like I don’t have anything that could nearly compliment its awesomeness, pants or shoe-wise.

Then I went to Philz Coffee to write some more cards. They have a REALLY insanely good mocha. Like, good top to bottom whereas most mochas get grossly sweet at the bottom. I realized on my drive home that I never freaking paid for my coffee! Thought process: oh man now I have a new cafe to go to. That drink was really good! And it wasn’t even that expensive, it was only … OH SHIT

So next time I go back (probably next week to write more cards), I’ll have to pay for my other cup of coffee.

I’m listening to the radio using these new speakers that Jessica gave to me. It makes my music experience SO MUCH GREATER! I can’t wait until one day I have my own little setup with like … vinyl player in the living room, surround sound Bose speakers in every room of my house hooked up to like … my itunes or something so that I can play the same song in the kitchen, the bathroom, my living room, without having to cart my laptop everywhere.

After the cafe closed, I went to Laura’s and organized her sister’s book and dvds HAHAAAAA most productive time ever. I felt pretty awesome.

Me: NO YOU can’t just PUT that there! You need to put them in a box!

Me: NO don’t throw that in the closet. Just put that and that in a box and then we can put the box in the closet

Me: If you put that up there it’s going to be REALLY hard to take down. Find a box

Jessica: What are these BOXES you keep talking about?! Where are you going to find boxes?!

Me: You guys don’t just keep boxes?!?! WHAT?! You guys need to start collecting them. Cereal boxes are the best ones

Falling asleep now and new music monday is over. Good night.

Just need a reason to stay awake

God. How is C89.5’s New Music Mondays so flawfree?

1. Childish Gambino – Heartbeat

2. Alesso – Raise Your Head

3. Chris Lake – Sundown

4. Steve Aoki ft. Rivers Cuomo – Earthquakey People

5. Angus & Julia Stone – Big Jet Plane (Adam G Prog remix)

I think the recent YouTube makeover is the only website revamping that I have ever thought “hmm … I like this more now”

I love this. I need to resist buying posters though. I already have more than I have frames for, and I don’t think any of them really complement one another.

I’m tempted to buy this but I am deterred by having to pay for shipping. HAHA I’m so used to having my few Amazon purchases qualify for free shipping (I rarely make online purchases but when I do, it’s usually TV DVDS in bulk). Also, I think if I buy this LP player, I will begin falling down a slippery slope of spending wayyyyy too much money on LPs, which are rather expensive.

My coworker sent me the e-books for the next two installment of the Hunger Games trilogy and I COULD NOT be MORE excited!!! To the point that it was VERY hard to not read them doing work today. It’s so good I don’t even mind the fact that I go home and essentially read a 544 pg PDF.

It’s now midnight so I should sleep now, but I couldn’t concentrate on reading when I was listening to ALL THAT GREAT MUSIC so I will read a little now and then sleep. So cold, my hand joints hurt.

Weekend 48: So … close … to the end of the year

I think my weekend can be summed up by saying … I woke up Sunday morning feeling like my Saturday had been rather fulfilling and I had done many things I enjoy doing that are productive to my well-being, and I did them in good company. I am going to bed Sunday night thinking that, while my room is much cleaner than before, the cleaning process could have been done in about two hours and I squandered my other twelve awake hours. So once again, I shall head into the start of my workweek feeling like I’ve wasted another weekend.

Friday at work we had one of those fluffier trainings that is ostensibly to better ourselves but is actually meant to retain employees and boost morale. It sort of worked … midway through the training I was feeling pumped up about my career and was actually thinking “YES! How can I further devote myself to my career so that it can help ME reap more benefits?!” Then the training wore on and my enthusiasm was dulled. But my greatest takeaways from that training was from an “energizing” training meant to help us figure out how we best keep our energies up during the workday. I realized that my “energizing” activities are working out and eating out with friends, whereas my “depleting” activities are watching tv and reading books.

Which makes me think, I really have to cut down on watching unnecessary tv shows and constantly checking gossip sites. It’s such a waste of time and while I’m not going to cut it completely out, I think I need to enforce only checking the sites once a day, maybe in the morning when I wake up. If I hadn’t kept refreshing the same stupid sites over and over this Sunday, I would have been able to get so much more done.

Friday night, I drove up to SF for a meal at Fresca’s, a Peruvian restaurant, with Soo Jin, Janie and Laura. The food did not remind me of the food I ate in Peru at all, but I don’t care much for authenticity, as long as it tastes good, and it tasted good. Sometimes when I look at pictures of Peru, I realize with sadness that I will never be able to eat those things again. It’s not like the feeling of missing something in LA … or even something I ate in New Orleans or Pittsburgh. I can conceivably revisit other states, even if it’s just for a quick (and expensive) food refresher. But I’m definitely not going back to Peru, not because I wouldn’t want to but because there are so many other countries I’d have to visit before I start making return trips. 😦

We all stayed in Janie / Soo Jin’s apartment that night, which was a first in a long while. Back in my last semester of college, I spent nearly every weekend sleeping over at Soo Jin’s, going to some club/bar and then eating brunch at 2pm the next day. I ended up reading a little bit of The Hunger Games on Janie’s Kindle and WAS HOOKED. I’d link it but I think anyone reading this blog who would even be interested in The Hunger Games has either already read it or knows about it. It seems incredibly dark for a young adult. I haven’t read young adult books in a while … I imagine when I read them growing up, I thought the dark themes were a norm or maybe I didn’t understand the full significance of certain things. But now that I’m older, I’m constantly thinking “omg I can’t believe young kids are reading this sort of material!” Perhaps it’s completely normal for kids to be exposed to awful things, but as we get older we don’t give them as much credit as we should in terms of how much they can handle.

I pretty much woke up super early that Saturday morning so I could read as much of the Hunger Games before I had to leave the apt. I got to 50% of the book, which is not bad considering I rarely focus so intently on a book nowadays. It’s an AMAZING BOOK though and I adore Jennifer Lawrence so I am now super excited to see the film, along with millions of other fangirls.

I left to pick up Kristen so we could brunch at Brenda’s, which is my default “favorite SF brunch place” only because it is the only SF brunch place where I can actually remember thinking “wow this food is amazing!” I have been to many SF brunch places and all of them are delicious, but all of them are also very, very similar and I cannot really distinguish between one $14 plate of eggs over another. I ended up ordering all the wrong foods that brunch (Apple beignets and granola pancakes when I REALLY should have gotten the beignet platter and the hangtown fry) and I continued to let Kristen know this about 10 times during the day. I really am a wonderful eating companion.

Amazingly, even though we got to the restaurant around 10:15, which I thought was prime brunching time, we were seated immediately and made it out of the restaurant within 57 minutes! Which meant unlike the LAST time I went to Brenda’s, we did not have to move the car three times. Woot!

I dragged Kristen to my optometrist so I could pick up my awesome new glasses. The main comment I expect from everyone will be “these look exactly like your old glasses.” Well I like these more so I do not care. As long as they look good on me. They are Kate Spade glasses. Despite not being a  thin, super pale white girl, I LOVE Kate Spade stuff. I do not really own anything from Kate Spade besides these glasses, but for whatever reason, I love going into the store and I am way more likely to buy something from there as opposed to J Crew, which is another store where I have the “well this looks super cute but it doesn’t look that great on an Asian” problem.

We then went shopping around Walnut Creek, and for some time would hang out with Naomi as well. I think, as a crippled person for the time being, I may prefer Palo Alto over Walnut Creek because Walnut Creek is just SOOO HUGE! I am sad that I can’t walk for long periods this Christmas season though. The Dub C looks like an awesome place to walk around at night, I imagine there are lights strung up and holiday decorations that will light up.

Then Kristen and I went to Berkeley … drove to Willard Park and just relaxed on the grass which was awesome and much needed. Kristen told me I would soon become a hilarious, bitter old lady. I only wish I could remember verbatim what she said because I laughed a lot. I also started writing Christmas cards! 4 down … 31+ more to go …

We meant to go to a cafe afterwards but I made poor choices on streets to drive on and driving aimlessly made us realize how hungry we were so, off to Brazil Cafe! YUMMMMMM! So delish. THEN back to Elmwood Cafe. I stopped at the next-door bookstore and impulsively bought The Hunger Games. THAT’S HOW GOOD IT IS! I so rarely buy books. I mainly bought it because an employee was saying how she reread it recently and she said it was just as good the second time. So then we sat in Elmwood Cafe (my favorrriteeee cafe in Berkeley – I really need to take a picture of its cute interior!) and read, Kristen read Bossypants, I read Hunger Games. Somehow 3.5 hours passed without our realizing it, which feels AWESOME. Reading always seems to make the time pass by so slowly, but not that day. We somehow finished both our books within minutes of each other, another sign of perfection that day. HAHA

I”m now reading Breakfast with Socrates: An Extraordinary (Philosophical) Journey Through Your Ordinary Day, which I only got because the concept seemed interesting and the cover was yellow. I didn’t expect to make it past the introduction but it is surprisingly a good read. Kristen’s constantly laughing at Bossypants made me want to go home and read my own copy. I also woke up this Sunday and decided I’d finally watch the Google Talks with Tina Fey, which THEN led me to this HILARIOUS SNL skit. And I am not the greatest fan of SNL. I think this video may have been one of the main contributors to my time wasting today, since I rewatched it about six different times

It is very hilarious to watch and at the same time, rather odd because this was back when Lindsay Lohan was still poised to become the next big Hollywood actress and … it’s weird how GOOD she is! To think that at one point, she was the one trying to hold a skit together …

This morning my one accomplishment was cleaning my room. What a mess. I even organized a portion of my closet. If I happen to die prior to moving out of this South Bay residence, someone who has read this entry will have to do the following:

Go to the closet in my room. Within it you will find a large Crate & Barrel box. Within this box contains some of my most prized possessions. All unused and in pristine condition. I would like to be buried with the items you will find therein. Three ceramic baking dishes, two ceramic berry containers, and one airtight water bottle. These were all items I had been waiting to put to use in my future Seattle home. They will now go with me to the grave.

I went to Crate & Barrel to return something and … this chair that I LOVEEEEEEEE and have loved from first sight is on sale. I am waiting until it is on sale for … $350. And then I will buy it. I can’t believe I would consider buying a chair for $350, and it only fits one person. But right now, I’m thinking “that chair is super cute AND also crazy comfortable, and I do not plan on having children so one day I will have so much money I won’t even know what to do with it!”

It's originially $899 so really, I'm being quite thrifty ...

There were other thoughts I had wanted to blog about but can’t remember anymore. I had intended to sleep at 10pm. Then I decided 11pm. Now it’s midnight and I didn’t even read any more out of my book. OHHHH SUNDAY. Starting now, I’m going to cut out all the stupid, time wasting, unproductive, depleting, useless things out of my life.