new digs…

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home sweet home / Life

I’ve been settling into my new place since May and things are finally starting to feel at home now after all the furniture has been brought in and books and personal items have been arranged in their own place. The apartment is small, but I love that it is located near all of my favorite museums, running trails and restaurants and walking distance to parks and quaint neighborhoods. It’s also great to have family visit and I can take them to the Children’s Museum which is just down the block. Summer’s about to be over in a few weeks and another new school year to begin. I’ve been trying to enjoy as much time as I can at the new place cooking healthy and quick meals (parchment bags + salmon = two thumbs up!) or trying out local vegan ones around the neighborhood. Hopefully I can keep the momentum going when the school year begins and I just have a feeling it’s going to be a tough and busy one this year.

heat wave

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Potpourri

Summer has been unbearable with temperatures surpassing 100 degrees on certain days, but since moving to this new neighborhood, I’ve been trying to enjoy the pretty parks that are just a short walk away from the apartment…

flowering pear trees…

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photography

I found this hidden spot while scouting and hiking around a local¬† park awhile back but the area was too wet during the rainy season to explore. The weather right now is perfect as the ground is dry and the air is cold and crisp enough that everything around is quiet (even though there are plenty of joggers nearby), it feels almost as if I’m in my own secret garden. I was really drawn to this place because amongst all the piles of branches and fallen leaves are these two flowering pear trees that I really love. These type of trees not only bloom beautifully around Houston during this time of winter, but it also reminds me so much of my childhood when my sister and I would ride down our old apartment lane filled with these flowering pear trees. We’d pick them from the low hanging branches and fill our baskets up with them.

Temple at Midnight

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Houston / Life

New Years Eve is always fun, because my brother and sister and I like to spend the night going on our traditional midnight temple run, sometimes visiting more than one to celebrate Tet. This year, we went to an old one downtown where we ran into a couple of familiar faces, and enjoyed the traditional dragon dances. I love seeing all the beautiful, bright red and gold lanterns illuminating the night sky. Fresh lucky bamboo stalks and gladiolas are being passed out and the smell of tangerines and burning incense are overwhelming the senses.   The temple is always packed with people holding a bouquet of incense above their heads as we all make our way through the altars to make our prayers for a healthy, prosperous year to come. I love the sweet, floral smell of incense. It reminds me of my mom as she always lights one for our ancestors in the house during the evenings. Every year, the weather drops an extra few degrees in temperature when we go on our midnight temple runs, but I still enjoy spending these little moments with family, even more now with Olivia and little baby boy on the way. Olivia is still getting used to the dragons, but she really likes being outdoors. Can you spot her in the crowd?

Spring colors…

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home sweet home / Life

Happy New Year! The flowers are fresh, the fruits have been arranged, and the red envelopes have been hung onto the forsythia branches. Every year, I enjoy helping my mom out during the few days leading up to the eve of Tet getting the house decorated to welcome the new year. This year, we had such an overwhelming harvest of oranges, grapefruits and kumquats from the backyard, that the house has been filled with these beautiful hues of orange and yellows and the scent of citrus throughout. I really do love seeing all these vibrant and amazing spring colors around the house during this time of year.

Moon & Stars…

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Parties

A few weeks ago, I threw my sister a second baby shower to welcome their new baby boy. We kept things simple and invited our good friends to come and hang out with us at MKT Bar downtown to eat, catch up, and celebrate. For party favors, we had home made play dough (sprinkled with stardust, of course!) that was a pretty big hit with both the kids and adults.