Choosing good energy
me
eden20

Getting married is often harder than it needs to be. The reason you ask? My answer - the vendors. When you get married in the Bay Area (San Francisco), you can spend ALOT of money. Sadly some vendors don't offer service before or after they take your money. There are vendors that if you have to ask about pricing won't call you back and won't even send you information (for example Supperclub). Some vendors nickle and dime you - forcing you to use their caterer who doesn't carry insurance or provide plates or servingware (Terra and Mer). Some clothiers question your measurements and accuse you of lying about having work done (Dark Garden).

I've been incredibly fortunate to meet three vendors who want our day to be special and realize that not everyone who lives in SF is rich. Complicating our selection process is that we *just* decided on a date that many other couples want-10/10/10. We didn't choose it for the significance of the date. We chose it because it didn't conflict with a friend or family member's 2010 wedding date. One cake vendor berated me for not booking them 2 years in advance. I realized I didn't have to listen past no we're not available and hung up.

So the reason I'm blogging is not to complain about the wedding industry-we all know that vendors have their reasons to loathe bridezillas. My purpose is to highlight two businesses that have responded to my questions and wanted to work with us on our budget to create a special day. These businesses are our venue - Swedish American Hall - and our wedding cake baker - Cafe Gratitude. I'm very thankful that both have offered ideas to make our day a reflection of our personality, a day that we'll both remember, and a day that meets our budget. I'm especially appreciative of the service they offer, knowing that they aren't compelled to-there are other couples who would book them if I chose not to.

On our day - the start if the rest of our lives together - I want to be surrounded by people who are supporting us. So, if there's a choice between good energy or the "in" thing, I'll chose good energy every time.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.

Tags:

Dancing with My Dad
me
eden20
I remember the first time I danced with my dad. He didn't dance. We had an annual Father/Daughter Dance at my high school. My freshman year I didn't go, I didn't invite my dad. He didn't dance and I didn't want to embarrass him. The Monday following the dance one of his coworkers asked why we hadn't gone. My dad talked to my mom who then talked to me. I told her I knew he didn't dance so I didn't think he'd be interested in it. And with that my dad learned to dance. My mom finally got to dance with my dad as he practiced with her so that he could dance with me my sophomore year. When I was 15, I danced with my dad for the first time. I got to dance with him two more times in high school.

In college, my senior year at Santa Clara, I invited both my parents to Senior Parent Weekend. That night was even more special than the first time I got to dance with my dad. That night I saw my parents dance together for the first time. I was lucky enough to have a camera with me and captured that moment for ever.

The last time I danced with my dad was in 2000 and it almost didn't happen. It was so unplanned that neither of us planned the song - the DJ did. He twirled me around the dance floor with everyone watching and like every time I dance with my dad time stood still. He surprised me that night as he danced in a conga line and mimed YMCA with my mom, my sister and I.

Sometime ago I heard what I thought would be the perfect song to dance to with my dad - Cinderella by Steven Curtis Chapman. Every time I hear the song I think back to high school when my dad learned to dance for me.

This year I'm getting married. More than anything in the world I want to be able to dance with my dad. If he's having a good day - he has Parkinson's - it might be the last time I get to dance with my dad. I don't know how to not cry. Most Father/Daughter dance songs are corny - some though are too close to what I feel. Dance with My Father by Luthor Vandross takes on a different tone. More upbeat songs that hopefully wouldn't bring to the verge of tears are too fast - My Girl by The Temptations.

Today I heard Cinderella again. It's still what I think would be the perfect song for my dad and I. Tonight I remembered how happy I was when my dad waltzed with me. He made this nerdy kid truly feel a princess as he moved me across the floor. I still smile and laugh when I remember how we both did the Bunny Hop. I hope if we do dance that I can keep the tears in check - I wasn't able to when I heard Cinderella or since.

Pleats and Ruffles
me
eden20

I love pleats and ruffles. I love how they swish when you walk and how they flare out about you when you spin.

I especially like mermaid hemlines; even more when they're slightly raised in the front and your boots peek out.

I never really paid attention to clothes. I'd notice if someone was dressed nicely, but not the specifics of the clothes. Now I find myself looking at topstitching, French seams, etc. I've started a collection of electronic clippings with details that I like. I find myself rethinking outfits I created and looking to reinvent some. Worse than that is when looking through clothes racks I find myself thinking I can do better, why would I pay for that-the stitches are uneven. Maybe it's time to start taking my home ec skills to the next level.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.


Slow food for comfort
me
eden20

I've always loved Sushi since my grandfather introduced us. I especially enjoy getting to sit at the bar and watch the chefs. The precision with which their hands fly across the bamboo mats creating edible art soothes me.

My new favorite sushi place is Sushi Zone. It's just down the street from where I now live. It's small, the way a sushi place in Japan would be. The chefs and servers greet you with a smile and warmly welcome the regulars back. It's not a place you come to if you're in a hurry. It's a place where you come knowing you'll get great food and service, but where you'll sometimes (most times) wait.

Not everyone likes to wait or to start dinner at 5. At full capacity, Sushi Zone seats 16. First seating starts at 5. The server works her way through the guests in the order in which they come in. She'll advise you if there will be a long wait for food and ask if you have time. By the fourth order, the first table is getting their appetizers. The servers gladly explain dishes that look and smell amazing. Sometimes I change my order while I'm waiting. Tonight the third table was served their sushi at 5:41. The fourth seat at 5:42.

Today I've ordered Miso Soup, Baked Striped Sea Bass, Hirame Nigiri, Spicy Mango Salmon, and Yellowtail with Scallion. I ordered at 5:17. Beer came at 5:19. Soup came at 5:26.

I'm a slow eater. For this reason I really enjoy the speed of service at Sushi Zone. People are friendly-they explain the white board and seating policy. No one so far has told anyone that the wait's not worth it. We've been entertained by fellow diners. We've seen regulars.

Tonight Sushi Zone is a perfect place to escape and avoid the clock. Tonight I'm waiting for Cubes to touch down at SFO. So tonight I'll escape to a place where time stands still and ones senses are entertained.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.


Transferring Fragile Items to the New Place
me
eden20
This is the first move in where I haven't had Dish Pack boxes. The crazy move in 2006 with only 2 days notice from Gemello to a friend's condo due to the stairs and landings being demolished and rebuilt wouldn't have been possible without them. The only reason my dishes survived the 2007 move where "friends" convinced me they'd help was this packing. And the way that I pulled off a lowcost move from the South Bay to the City without any packing help and maintaining a social life, was being able to pack up the kitchen and china buffet in a night. The movers happiily moved and insured against broken dishes thanks to the Dish Pack boxes. I firmly believe that ANYONE moving a kitchen and/or dining room with china cabinet or buffet should have Dish Pack boxes.

Why? Well... I'm spoiled, I'm used to having an every day place setting for 8 and a special occasion 4-course, fully plated setting for 12 along with water glasses and wine glasses packed in under 2 hours. This equates to 7 Dish Pack boxes - 3 just for the coffee mugs, water glasses, and stemware. This time no Dish Pack boxes... so the movers won't insure against broken dishes unless they pack them - so long inexpensive move. We'll pack and move the dishes ourselves. How hard can it be? It was just 7 boxes.

Um.. famous last words. We should have bought 7 new Dish Pack boxes. Ever tried packing dishes/glassware so that you could move it yourself? Hint... it's heavy (at least for me) so no more than 8 plates and 8 bowls can be carried at a time.

Someone asked me what the potentially inspired or bad idea was. It was stuffing bubble wrap in a recycled, earth friendly grocery bag and wrapping dishes loosely with packing foam. Turns out it was an inspired idea (inspired because nothing broke). The only drawback... Well, have you ever tried moving dishes between apartments when you have a sports car? The photos show 1 load (roughly 20 minutes to load the car thanks to shopping cart and elevator at my old apartment, 30 minutes during commute to drive across town, 40 minutes to unload the car at the new place - no elevator or shopping cart and multiple trips instead of one).

Tags:

Random Acts of Kindness
me
eden20

I paused to hold the elevator door for a couple of strangers. I do this regularly. Tonight I too received a random act of kindness. This evening a stranger stopped me as I exited the elevator. He asked if I was headed to SF. When I responded yes, he said if possible I should take BART instead as an accident at Treasure Island was blocking 3 of 4 lanes. The stranger had nothing to gain by helping me and by doing so missed his train - we don't take the same train home (I take SF/24th and he takes SF/SF Airport).

I won't be able to move more stuff (kitchen breakables) from my SOMA apt to our place as planned. Instead I get an extra two plus hours I would have lost sitting in traffic. Tonight I'll work on our Roman costumes.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.


Quiet
me
eden20
Tonight I arrived at my studio to sort and pack. Maybe it's the fact that the apartment smells slightly of mildew (thanks to a leaking camelbak) or that @SpriteKat is at the new place (thanks to not being able to open windows when she's here).

It's odd to be in this space without her following me around and talking. In prior moves I've shuttled her back and forth with me and enjoyed her "help" - the emptying of boxes I'd just filled, the toppling of piles I'd just sorted, etc. I didn't realize until now how much I enjoy the company of my pesky troublemaker.
Tags:

Psst don't tell mom!
me
eden20

The humans are away ... again! Well they say the mice will play while the cat's away. Little do they - my humans - know that the cat will scheme while the humans are away. :)

So ... finally they're listening to me and have gotten me an indoor race track and 8 accessible windows on two streets with screens! Oh the sights! Oh the smells! This kitty will soon be in heaven.

Too bad all it took was an almost tumble out the fourth story window.

Oh got to go-Buddy the Beagle is nosing at the door and I must flirt.

Meow!
@SpriteKat

Posted via LiveJournal.app.

Tags:

Parting with Clutter
me
eden20
I'm rapidly becoming a fan of  less is more. Too many containers/places to store things - especially when not organized - can lead one on many a wild goose chase as evidenced yesterday morning when I couldn't find some of the clothes I'd laundered and put away since Burning Man.

I have an entertainment cabinet/storage system that fills my living room (and currently contains some of the clothes I can never find). I could break this into two pieces and fill two of the walls in the living room of the new place. This provides lots of vertical space on which books and knickknacks can be placed.

Instead I'm thinking of only putting up 2 of the 4 sections (one desktop and a smaller section) in the bonus room and having one bookcase (Cubes') in the living room. The idea of 1 wall with a bookcase and the other two hung with art seems more comforting and appealing. To  make this happen, I'm again culling my library (which has shrunk dramatically over the last couple of moves). The only drawback of this idea is where to place the stereo/DVD player as it might be too deep for Cubes' bookcase.
Tags:

Moving - Cleaning, Containerizing, and Packing
me
eden20

Thanks to the surprise inspection at my old apartment - which was a search for an intermittent water leak that ocassionally causes electrical shorts - almost all of the clothes and bedding for Burning Man has been cleaned and repacked. Cooking gear as well as the cooler still needs a vinegar bath to remove the playa and food needs to be moved to the pantry. But in all I can see an end to the cleaning in the near future. Once cleaned I know where most of the crates will be stowed - in the new apartment in the living room closet above where Sprite is going to have her hidey hole. One packing/tetris chore thought out and almost completed.

The next task involves getting the kitchen under control. Yesterday Cubes and I showed our new place to my mom - she loved it. Cubes and I have a budget so I can't simply go out and get the random odds and ends from Container Store as I encounter a storage challenge. This constraint - new to my moves - adds complexity and demands some forethought and careful analysis of my current storage/container situation. A rough inventory of all the containers/baskets/bins has been made. Now a rough list of what must be organized along with a prioritzation of that organization must be created. First organization priority is the kitchen (as is always the case with me). So my mom and I spent some time in the new kitchen figuring out where utensils and plates and more would be stored.

We have 1 large drawer. Of course that will be used for silverware so that leaves the challenge of where measuring cups and spoons go. To that end containers that have been repurposed this last move to act as a sandwich meat and cheese drawer in my fridge will stack in a cabinet and house baking tools (pie weights, custard tins, cookie cutters, etc.). This strategy makes moving easier as the current drawers with their dividers will migrate to the containers and the containers will be plopped into the kitchen at the new place. No need to worry about items shifting or getting temporarily misplaced. (The same strategy works with the pots and pans and the pot rack.) The bins will go near the flours (bread, self-rising, pastry, cake, wheat, and of course regular) and baking pans in the deep cabinet to the right of the oven (where I originally thought the Thai staples and woks would go).

We have two somewhat narrow cabinets to either side of the range. Based on how one of the cabinet doors open (it opens away from the stove making it difficult to quickly grab spices when cooking) it'll house the jams, agave sweeteners, cocoa, and coffee along with the baking powder, baking soda, and cornstarch. The cabinet to the left will house pastas and rice-Thai noodles will no longer be separated by cuisine.

There's still more to work out but I think I have enough containers to cover the kitchen, pantry, and linen. Why does this matter to me? I hate not knowing where things are especially when I'm stressed. When I'm stressed I retreat to the kitchen. So in the kitchen everything must be rasonably laid out and accessible so that I can focus on creation and execution rather than fruitless tine consuming searches for misplaced items. Once the kitchen feels "safe" I'll feel at home and can think of the first meal we'll serve (it will of couse include my chocolate torte - hence why the baking items must be set up). I'm looking forward to the dreams about meals to be cooked. My current dreams involve boxes, baskets, lazy susans, and piles of kitchen items.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.


?

Log in