today was a good day

today i didn't even have to use my AK. well, good evening i should say. my day started out eh but ended up much better.

reason #1 - i came home and did not have to worry about studying, wedding planning, creating a portfolio, or some other such non-work work for the first time in over a year. these blissful, free evenings will be short-lived, though, as they'll soon be filled with a science-y class. blah! i may rock at standardized tests, but science...not so much. i didn't get my mom's genes there (her whole side of the family has done up to post-doctoral work in some sort of science). and then i need to start and finish a side job i promised a friend's parents i'd do a long, long time ago. and then there may be big changes after that. whew.

reason #2 - #1 led me to get all ambitious and attempt use some ginger and green onions before they went bad. in my cooking. from scratch. on a weeknight. don't ask why i even bother buying produce. i tried blu's/cooking light's mapo tofu recipe.

i love cooking light. thanks to skims, who introduced me to its wonderful recipes in college. like the one time we had time to cook together in those 3 years (she was a year ahead).

i also luuuuuuuuuuuuuurve tofu. my grandmothers thought i was the cutest little tofu-eater. i'd eat it raw, lightly pan-fried and dipped in a soy sauce/sesame oil/rice vinegar/red paper flakes/garlic mixture, in soondooboo (spicy tofu casserole/stew), cold and seasoned in a ponzu sauce + mooh/daikon (bigass asian radish), etc. i even had an aol 3.0 screenname involving the words "tofu" and "yuja" (woman/girl/female, in korean). hey, i was in a fob-ulous stage at the time.

mapo tofu was also one of my favorite dishes to order at the joonghwa (koreanized chinese food) restaurants we frequented while growing up. i grew up either eating it only at restaurants or adding tofu to this [scroll all the way down to "mabo tofu sauce"] pre-made sauce. i never knew it was so easy to make from stuff we almost always had on hand in our house. cee gave the blu/cooking light recipe her stamp of approval, and she's actually chinese, not a wanna-be like me. so i dove in. i prepped, i cooked, we ate, and i cleaned up in just over an hour. awesome! too bad i got home at my usual 8 pm or so. :( . luckily, the bear enjoyed it so much that he said it was worth the wait. i also did not make a huge mess, make any dish-killing mistakes, and cleaned while i cooked. these are really big accomplishments for me.

bear: this tastes chinese.
me: that's because it is chinese. haven't you ever had it?
bear: maybe. it's not a usual bear order.
me: [wordy tater's other comments about her history with tofu edited out here]. you're the one that's half chinese!

#3 - trader joe's organic iced tea lemonade, aka perfectly-proportioned-and-mixed-arnold-palmer in a plastic bottle, as a nightcap.

#4 - it's my late dad's birthday. i'm usually a bit melancholy on this day, but for some reason, i was blessed with really good memories today. i even reflected a bit on his epitaph, "he loved and served," in a pensive yet joy-filled way randomly and throughout the day. long story short, he wrote it himself by coincidence divine intervention mere months before he passed away totally unexpectedly and just a month before his 44th birthday. he heard someone else's epitaph on the radio, and he told my mom very casually that he hoped he would be remembered as,"he loved and served." his hope was that one day, his tombstone would bear that inscription. it is so true of him and sums up everything he was/is so poignantly. would he be proud of me and my brother today? yes. would he like the bear? definitely. what kind of legacy would he want me to leave/do i want to leave so that my tombstone can bear something similarly selfless and God-glorifying? i just had great peace and assurance within, today, that he is proud, he is looking after us, and he is praying for us even now (he was also a man of much and strong prayer). he would have been 62 today.


  1. Damn you. Like I wrote on Nanners' blog, I think I have something in both of my eyes.


  2. i liked this post. especially the way you started it. one of my favorite songs :)

  3. Happy birthday to your late father. I'm sure he is very proud of you.

    I also have a break from school stuff, and I am so happy.

  4. you need a header for posts like this "tears ahead. grab kleenex now!"

    such a beautiful tribute to your dad. i'm so glad that you were able to have good memories today and remember him the way he would have wanted.

    and a big huge congrats on dinner! it sounds delish :)

  5. That's a long time to be without your dad. I'm very sorry. It sounds like you did some very nice reflecting today

  6. I got a little teary-eyed (at work, no less) reading your post.

  7. what an amazing way to be remembered. tears in my eyes. I am sure he is very proud of you :)

  8. such a beautiful entry. he is definitely very proud of you, I just know it.

  9. i'm sorry your dad left you too soon. but i'm glad that you are graced with wonderful memories. do you ever wonder when you are struck by them if he's sort of talking to you? i do.

  10. You know I'm right there with ya, Tater. And that's a wonderful way to remember him today.

  11. Tater I totally got teary on the memory of your father.

    He sounds like an amazing man.

    You were so lucky to be his little girl!

  12. I like good days. And I like what you said about your father. :)


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