Taylor Swift might have regretted December, but I thought it was a pretty great month while it lasted. Here are some highlights:
This isn't any old buffet complete with fresh dinner rolls, Kahlua pork, and Spam Musubi...it's my mom's birthday party. She turned...a very significant age...and my dad and cousins decided to throw her a HUGE bash. They invited all of her close friends and our family. Most of the food is home-cooked, meaning that my dad actually cooked for my mom. This is a nice switch on our usual tradition. :)
The Famous Cookie Weekend. My friend, Caitlin, from elementary school has been hosting "Cookie Weekend" at her house for at least five years now. I didn't make any of these. I ate a lot and decorated even fewer. I'm no artist--so I just ate them to save myself the annoyance of taking pictures of half-decorated cookies.
This well-decorated gingerbread man and fish are Adriana's handiwork. I might have eaten them, too. I definitely didn't take any home with me. I ate enough for my whole family.
I met up with my friend, Lauren, for dinner in our neighborhood. Afterward, we went to this locally owned coffee shop that I didn't know existed around the corner from my house. Clearly, I'm no local! It has a really eclectic vibe with plush armchairs that don't look the same and a single employee making the drinks and collecting the cash. Solitary bookworms, noses pressed in worn paperbacks, gave the joint a pretty cool aura of San Francisco...yuppieness.
Do people still use the word "yuppie," or is the term, "hipster"? Whatever. All I know is that when we started talking loudly and obnoxiously in a way that only old friends who haven't seen each other in a while can, I felt hostile glares emanating from the other patrons who were miffed at being jolted from their literary reveries.
'Tis the season!
Ghirardelli Chocolate Fudge Brownies. From the box. Made by me! I can bake! Yay...I can mix and pour in addition to eating a whole lot.
Okay...so I wasn't going to blog about Dim Sum. I have it so often with family that I overlook it. It's like going to school; expected and sometimes hum-drum...but I can't do without it. Shu Mai and chicken feet typically find their way to our table, thanks to my family's booming voices. Egg custard, Singapore noodles, and a variety of other dishes whose English names escape my memory at the moment are also customary.
My family sits down for dim sum very often. It's a ritual that my grandfather appreciates even though I may not be so excited about it. It's a cultural thing I can't turn down. Plus, what keeps the grandparents happy keeps the parents happy, so I can't complain!
Weekend dinners at the house are also rituals that my family has come to expect. When my mom isn't hosting dinner, it's really weird. We don't know what to do with ourselves. It usually means everyone has dispersed for the evening to have dinner in smaller groups, and that's really unheard of. Luckily, this picture doesn't depict that! I'm not trying to boast about my cooking skills (mainly because they're limited). I'm trying to prove that I have some cooking skills.
One of my uncles always asks me, "What did you cook for us tonight?" My usual response is, "Nothing, but I set the table and will serve dessert." After being asked the same thing a million times, I'm hell-bent on documenting everything I cook so that he knows for sure that I'm not some lump hanging out in the kitchen while my mom, grandma, and older cousins do all the work.
SF's Largest Holiday Sugar Castle on display in a hotel in the Union Square area. I wonder if mini replicas of Harry, Ron, and Hermione can be found here?