Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Kitty Litter Salmon Tacos

Eat your heart out Rachel Ray ! Here come kitty letter salmon tacos! These were inspired by the kitty litter cake I made for Halloween. The end result of this taco dish looks much better.

Speaking of food, I thought I would list what "feeds" me in my home:

1. Johnny - my sweetheart. He feeds my soul so that I never have to hunger for love, attention, affection, or happiness.

2. Winnie - my kitten (no, I didn't eat her--yet...LOL although sometime I threaten to make her a Kung Pow Kitty dish). She was a kitty stranded in the alley and only a few months old when she made the move to Vegas with me last year.

3. This last one is tough...it's either my tech toys (Johnny will swear that's what I thrive on because my nose is always in it) or coffee, beef jerky, and sour candy--my favorite of all snacks!

In honor of my friend, Lalo, who has requested more visually appealing photos of the tacos post-makeover...I am revealing photos of the kitty litter salmon tacos in their glorious state (sigh)!!

What da ya think, eh? Better to look at the next you're eating subs? ;)

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Christmas in Seattle

Finals are over, the hectic schedule at work has dwindled down and campus resembled more of a ghost town than an academic institution as students slowly disappeared to venture home for the winter break.

Here we are at our layover in Reno on our way to Seattle for Christmas! We got up at the wee crack of dawn in order to catch our plane. The flight was worth braving in order to see my family--all of them in one place which is a rare occurence.

Seattle is just a different place. Not like L.A. or Las Vegas...it definitely has it's own personality. First of all, it is almost always wet--but that's what makes it so green and not like any other place. I've never lived in Seattle although I've pondered it at one point in my life. I had imagined myself living in a loft near towntown, bundled in a scarf and hanging out at the local coffee joint for kicks. I can't imagine myself doing that at this point in my life.

Like Johnny's dad, I'm solar powered. I need the sun and heat to keep going. Otherwise, I would just get depressed by the gloom and dampness. I don't think I could be happy anywhere geographically unless it was a place with little humidity, and lots of sun. Hawaii or Las Vegas.

So we've been in Seattle for several days now as the family members trickled in. First there was just us with my sister, her husband, and my nephew. Later the next day, my parents arrived with my brother, his wife, sister, and her fiance. We had taken bets on their estimated arrival time as my mom is notorious for being late--and I don't mean minutes late.

Once we had all the family members, then--and only then did it feel like Christmas as my sisters began to cook up a storm. Boy oh boy--the best Laotian food ever!! Pho, spring rolls, and other traditional foods. I ate my heart out and believe me, I'm not done yet. Pho is a strange thing. As simple as it is with noodles and beef stock--it is more than just soup. What's the saying, soup warms the heart and soul (or something like that)? Pho is the same in my family. It's about putting together the ingredients, flavoring the soup, and the conversations that accompany the meal.

As we eat our soup, my sisters and I sample from each bowl around the table, tasting the rainbow of flavor that differs from bowl to bowl. Every bowl is different and like mom says, "all different but all are good" and she's right. No two bowl taste the same because we specialize each bowl which starts out with just the basic beef stock and noodles.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Are You Dreamin' of a White Trash Christmas?

I hope everyone is having a happy holiday season, I can't believe we are less than a week away from Christmas--6 days to be exact. Now that finals are over, I finally had a chance to do some serious Christmas shopping. I must be a wuss because after the second bookstore, I was pooped and ready to go home! I didn't realize shopping was such hard work. How can those shopaholic find that fun. They must be a glutton for punishment...I think that's what it is.

Speaking of hard work, I went to my mother-in-law-to-be's house to bake Christmas cookies yesterday. We baked and baked and baked our hearts out. Fudge, English Toffee, sugar cookies, cupcakes..they were hopefuls to a department party but alas--I was half-baked (forgive the pun) from being in the kitchen for an extended period of time I couldn't make it to the toasting of our first cohorts of Ph.D. grads! Baking was SO MUCH fun but at the same time, so much work. I will have to post pics soon.

Afterwards, we had a yummy dinner of herb rubbed chicken, corn casserole, and fresh salad drizzled with rice vinegar and olive oil dressing. Maggie is such a good cook--I've never had a meal that was good because it was always absolutely delicious!!

Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing my family over the winter break and some R&R. My honeybun will finally get to meet my parents and brother and his wife I'm really going to take my sweet time and enjoy the break while it lasts...

You can enjoy the holiday too and watch this animated cartoon fromToonedin.com on a White Trash Christmas!

Monday, December 12, 2005

End of the Semester

Each semester I find myself making the same entry into my personal improvement journal 'study more in depth and prepare yourself for the rigorous week of finals but I never do. I wonder how I manage the grades that I do. Maybe that's the problem--I've always gotten good grades independent of my study efforst so why change? But this semester things are different...I'm not the least bit phased by finals week--and THAT is a great feeling!

Friday, December 02, 2005

'Tis that time of the year!

Does Christmas have a smell? Is it gingerbread cookies, hot cocoa, logs burning in the fireplace, or bourbon and eggnog? Is it your favorite home baked goodies, peppermint candy canes, or the crisp scent of snow and icicles? What if you live where it never snows?

To me, the smell of Christmas...is the scent of (inhaling deeply) evergreen trees!! Christmas begins with bringing home a freshly cut Douglas fir. That moment came for me when we proudly toted the tree into our home and it is finally standing elegantly in its rightful place in the family living room. Aahhh…the smell just permeats our home. There's nothing like it; a smell those evergreen car fresheners can't even come close to imitating.

I didn't always have the Christmas spirit. The beginning of years of my life were spent in Laos and I was raised by Buddhist parents. It wasn't until we moved to Thailand and attended a church of Christian faith that I was introduced to the concept of Christmas. However, it wasn't the pagan Christmas that I've celebrated since then but the Christian Christmas. I remember thinking that particular holiday event of exchanging gifts was very strange as I received socks, crackers, and soaps.

Upon coming to America, our sponsoring family shared with us the pagan Christmas but I had already knew that…(dare I say it?) Santa didn't exist (gasp)!! Or at least I thought so then. Plus, the house didn't have a chimney so how did Santa get the presents under the Christmas tree?? Even though Christmas was, initially spoiled for me--I can't say me no likey, likey!!

Since then I've learned that Christmas is more than a Santa and presents (cliché, I know). Christmas became more about traditions, family, sharing, good food, and giving. Christmas is a feeling I have…and the smell of the Christmas trees.

Oh...I definitely think it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas…I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!! It's definitely my favorite time of the year.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving

It's turkey day. I've been eagerly awaiting this day. Watching my diet, hitting the gym hard on the weekends--just so I can be a glutton today.

But I'm sick...sore scratchy throat, fever, body aches, dizziness, weakness, and the worst--without an appetite. Luckily it's not a bad case because I have so much to do this weekend. I think I could muster up an appetite. There's no way I'm going to miss the best feast of the year!!

Here's a Thanksgiving Poem for ya:

I was a young turkey, new to the coop,
My big brother Mike took me out on the stoop,
Then he sat me down, and he spoke real slow,
And he told me there was something that I had to know;

His look and his tone I will always remember,
When he told me of the horrors of..... Black November;
"Come about August, now listen to me,
Each day you'll get six meals instead of just three."

"And soon you'll be thick, where once you were thin,
and you'll grow a big rubbery thing under your chin;"
"And then one morning, when you're warm in your bed,
In'll burst the farmer's wife, and hack off your head;"

"Then she'll pluck out all your feathers so you're bald 'n pink,
And scoop out all your insides and leave ya lyin' in the sink;"
"And then comes the worst part" he said not bluffing,
"She'll spread your cheeks and pack your rear with stuffing."

Well, the rest of his words were too grim to repeat,
I sat on the stoop like a winged piece of meat,
And decided on the spot that to avoid being cooked,
I'd have to lay low and remain overlooked;

I began a new diet of nuts and granola,
High-roughage salads, juice and diet cola;
And as they ate pastries, chocolates and crepes,
I stayed in my room doing Jane Fonda tapes;
I maintained my weight of two pounds and a half,

And tried not to notice when the bigger birds laughed;
But 'twas I who was laughing, under my breath,
As they chomped and they chewed, ever closer to death;
And sure enough when Black November rolled around,
I was the last turkey left in the entire compound;

So now I'm a pet in the farmer's wife's lap;
I haven't a worry, so I eat and I nap;
She held me today, while sewing and humming,
And smiled at me and said "Christmas is coming..."

([Evil grin]...HA, ha, HA!!!)

Thursday, November 10, 2005

"Myth Buster"

The semester has really flown by as I find myself in the middle of November already. Thank goodness for the break tomorrow as we observe a day for all who served our country. 22 years ago I was fresh-off-the-boat and found myself in a foreign land where I expected to see red-headed 'fa-longs' (French). Would I have guessed then that I'd meet my sweetheart, living in Sin City, and getting married in several months?

So what's with the photo? I'm sitting in Econ and the instructor just mentioned that students were cheating by sending photos they took of their exams with their camera phone and getting replies with answers to the questions. I didn't think that was possible because the focus and image quality from camera phones are not that great and just wanted to test this "myth". Hmm...my conclusion is "stick with a pencil and calculator" to figure out your own answers.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Western Star Leather.com Unveiled

I'd like give a shout out to John and Maggie, my sweetheart's parents, who finally launched the website for their company Western Star Leather. As the name implies, they specialize in authenic old west gun leather, chaps, chinks, cuffs & much more! The results of their perserverance--endless hours in the shop, capturing detailed images of their workmanship, and collaborating with web designers, was unveiled today at www.WesternStarLeather.com.

Although having a website may be a new venture for the couple, these buckaroos already have several knotches on their belt for being entrepreneurs and business owners including over 15 years operating a one-stop shop for the horseman. The fruit of their endeavors has allowed them to semi-retire in Boulder City in order to live closer to their only son and soon to be daughter-in-law (yours truly) while doing what they love to do--making authentic, high quality cowboy gear and gun leather.

John and Maggie are truly two of the most hard working, dedicated, loving, honest and giving people I know and it shows in everything they do. Those who choose Western Star Leather over other brands should be rest assured that they will have the best of the best with a touch of the authenic old west! My hat's off to you both, John and Maggie!!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A Hell-of-a Halloween


So we're a bunch of glutton for punishment because we started our partying for Halloween early. This year, it was at our wonderful hosts Shawn & Fawn's home in Henderson. We also had another reason good to celebrate being that it was the couples anniversary. Just look at the beautiful Hillbilly bride in the middle of the photo.

This year, Johnny and I went as devils--Mr. and Mrs. Satan to the members of the party although I think this "costume" is more of accurate depiction of my real nature when I'm behind the wheel.

As soon as we turned the corner to Shawn & Fawn's house, a rock settled in our stomach as we saw flashing lights and the coroner's truck in front of their house. Only to realize it was part of their Halloween decor as we soon saw a corpse coming out of the lawn, goblins hanging from trees, and the ultimate grim reaper awaiting our arrival. It was only appropriate, given our attire, that the welcoming party made us feel right at home.

Once inside, it felt like we certainly had gone to hell. The walking dead were dancing with the wicked witch of the west to the tune of Michael Jackson's Thriller. I was more taken aback by the awesome work Shawn & Fawn did to the house. There was not a single painting or figurine in the house that did not have to do with this pagan day.

Alas, inside the kitchen was a spread of feast for the dead. We made Kitty Litter Cake, the recipe is courtesy of Annejelynn. Though it was initially met with grimace, the cake later won fans after they discovered it actually tasted much better than it looked. The best part were the little tootsie rolls "dumps" which were carefully formed by Johnny. He liked eating them too!

The funniest thing happened as I recognized a face in the crowd who happened to be someone I use to work with at the junior college I attended in CA. It was Will!! A mutual had told me he had moved here to Vegas but I never thought I would run into him at a party a block away from where I live. What a small world, huh?

We had so much fun--the food was yummy, drinks were plenty and thirst-quenching, and great company of people. Co-workers of Johnny, good friends, and the hosts--who are two of the nicest, caring, and generous people we know. I didn't get a chance to take as much photos as I would've liked but got enough to remember the evening by. Photos not posted here are on my Kodak Gallery album.

The rest of my weekend was spent cleaning up the HUGE mess I made in the kitchen. It looked like there was an explosion in there, I'm surprised there was enough left from my baking to actually form a cake...LOL!! That's plenty of baking for the entire academic year than I am capable of doing. Heck, it's a wonder the cake was actually edible!!

Maybe next year, I might have better luck with the crowd if I bring Devil's Food Cake (from the grocery store). Until then, I think I'll stick to being just plain old "me"--horns and tail tucked in.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

What's Up?

Johnny has taken up in-line skating and you can see him in all black to the right of the goalie as he charges after the puck. He's on the Bad Apples team and this was the last game of the season. I love their logo, a skull with a rotten apple dripping juices down its head.

Johnny absolutely loves the thrill and fast pace of the sport and I have a feeling I will be at the rink weekly to watch him play and cheer on the team.

As for me, I went shopping for wedding items yesterday with my sweet mother-in-law, Maggie. We accomplished so much during our day together but neither of us expected to find the gown for my wedding that day. After trying on several dresses, I knew when I had slipped that elegant, figure hugging gown with beautifully detailed embroidery that THAT was THE GOWN. It was a perfect fit--like it was made for me. Sadly, I will not be able to post pictures as it is a surprise to Johnny which he will only see the day I walk down the aisle to the tune of Kaulana Kawaihea to say, "I do".

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Sam's Town

Here I am at Sam's Town watching some water wilderness show with animatronic creatures. Several ladies (I consider them practically my family) whom I use to work with at the junior college in CA came to town to visit and were staying at Sam's Town.

We had a hay day shopping at the outlet mall one day and as if that wasn't enough, they hit the other outlet AND the Fashion Show. I had to drop out of the race since I was quickly running out of energy and my wallet was underweight =)

They stayed for several days for a training to learn part of the administration of a grant that I had helped write. We worked SO hard for it over so many months--and if finally paid off. Valley College was finally one of the recipients of the Treo grant and we hope it will continue for many years after.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Muah ha ha! They're ALIVE!!!

Right now I'm feelin' like Dr. Frankenstein--or more appropriately, Mae Clarke as I awaken my sleeping iMac's, Elvis and Elfie. Finally I can reap the rewards of hours of setting up furniture, hooking up wires and cables, and arranging big and small electronics in what is to be my office in our new home.

At last, we are together again after months of separation from my ePals and no better place than our roomy new domain!! What joy it is to hear the synchronism of all of my eToys humming in unison.

Posing for you is Elvis, dawning a racy animal print and the new addition to the family, It (I haven't name It yet...). That's because It is running Windows and, therefore, not as accepted by the veterans Elvis and Elfie.

Well, good work for now. Must jump in the shower to wisk lunch off to my one-and-only real honey, Johnny!! It's so so nice that I'm even much closer to his work and taking some grub to him is much more convenient. Ta-ta!!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

The Clifton StrengthsFinder

Here I am at my LEAD retreat with all the other members in my team what you see is my StrengthsQuest Signature Theme

Saturday, September 17, 2005

My Niece - Caelia


I just received these darling photos of my niece and couldn't resist posting it. I love all of them but my favorite is the one of her picking her toes!!! Isn't she a cutie??!! She has chipmunk cheeks like like her auntie!!

Starship and Celine Dion

What have I been up to? Since the semester started, I've been so wrapped up in schoolwork, my honey, friends, family, work, and extracurricular activities!! It's all been good though. I'm not complaining.

Where should I begin to recount the past two weeks? Labor Day weekend, we witnessed the performance of Starship, the remaining quartet of musicians from the members of the popular 70's and 80's rock band, "Jefferson Starship".

Although the group was without the magnificent vocalist, Grace Slick, their performance was still fantastic within the intimate settings of the Alladin Showroom!! Here we are after the show with lead singer Mickey Thomas in the middle. I got his autograph on my ticket stub!! (No monetary offers, please--it's not for sale) Two weeks later, I still can't get the songs out of my head, "Sara"..."We Built this City on Rock-and-Roll"!!

The following weekend, we saw the Celine Dion show, "A New Day" at Caesar's Palace. All I can say is, "Wow." She is quite the talented singer and the entire major theatrical production was unbelievably entertaining. Throughout the show pianos, brides, and picture frames with animated people float across the stage. The performance of the dancers are spectacular and the production is enhanced by the 3D screen in the background that displays stormy skies, life-like trees dying, the city lights like the photo here. A must see how when visiting Vegas!!

Meanwhile, classes are back in session. This semester it's Management, Management Information Systems, Business Law and Statistics for me.

Johnny and I still try to take the boat out on Lake Mead. He's getting pretty darn good on his wake skate. One day, I'll have enough guts to get out there and try the same. For now, I'm stuck on the boat until I learn how to swim first.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

2nd Year in Las Vegas!

It's been exactly a year ago when I loaded up my little Honda Civic with my things and kitty cat, Winnie. With the help of my sweetheart, Johnny, I moved to Las Vegas after sad goodbye's to friends and family at LAVC! Though I've been happy in my new home in Vegas, to finally be with my honey, and have made new friends in NV, I still think of my peeps in CA and will visit very soon. As the new Fall semester rolls around my tummy turns slightly at the thought of another semester at UNLV but it's a good feeling going into my senior year. I began to think what's happened in the past year since I left the valley? Well let's see...

I found a job in the wonderful Psych Department the first day I was here. Love the people I work with, JAG, Pam, Joan, Jose.
I joined CSUN and was re-elected as Senator for my college.
I was elected as Officer of Information Technology of American Marketing Association (AMA).
I participated in the President's Leadership Certification Program and that led to a lot of fun activities including Samurai Games, Leadership Retreat at Potosi Pines, and 7-habits series.
I took my sweetheart to Seattle to visit my family for Thanksgiving.
Christmas in Las Vegas has never been better!
Johnny and I visited his family in Corona Del Mar for Christmas.
I was hired on as staff to the Psych Department after the new year and now have a desk by a window!
I have wonderful roommates, Winnie, Fabian, and Oksana.
I have a new niece, Caelia, born to my oldest sister, Chante, and her husband, Sam, in Spokane, WA.
I went to Hawaii for the first time with my sweetie!
My long-time and true sweetheart proposed to me.
Finally got my A.A. in Economics.
I finally saw the day when my older sister, whom I thought would never get married, get engaged/married during my last visit to Spokane, WA.
3rd year dating anniversary since Johnny and I met in Hermosa Beach, CA.
Johnny and I now have a boat to cruise on Lake Mead.
We will be moving to our new home very soon and just recently sold his house!

I can't be any happier with the past year. This coming year, will be the best yet. We're looking forward to getting married and sharing our lives together--doing everything together because life is about living, loving, and being happy around friends and family!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Dancing to the Coors at the Venetian

Today is one of my sister's birthday. I'll have to call her when I recover from having too much fun last night. Friday evening began with a make-up consultation at the SmashBox counter. I parted from the Fashion Show mall to meet up with my sweetie and his lovely parents at the Venetian. The Coors were performing in one of the lounges and it was such a great show!! Johnny's parents, John and Maggie, even got up to dance a couple times (that's them in the picture). They're so cute!! I love watching them because after 34 years, they are still very much in love (I will post photos of them on their wedding day eventually). Maggie even got me to go up and dance with her. LOL!!! I think she danced me off the floor! She's so much fun and the sweetest person I know. Great cook, great mom, compassionate, always politically correct and fair (although Johnny thinks she sides with me more than him :P) not to mention she's still knock-out beautiful. She always gets hit on when we're together in public and people sometime mistaken us for sisters. Hey, that's perfectly fine with me!

We left the lounge and ended the night after dinner at a nearby restaurant. The next day, Johnny and I met up with his good friends, Shawn and Fawn. They have such a killer house with the biggest backyard I've seen in Vegas. Complete with a beach entry pool, fish pond, and tikkis--this oasis is just a block away from our house. Guess where I'll be when the weather gets too hot? We will be celebrating Halloween with them because rumor has it, they throw a killer party!!

Sunday, I went over to do hair with Johnny's mom. With bleach and dye in our hair, we sat by the pool sipping maragaritas. Yumm!! The weather couldn't be more perfect. After that, I went back to my place to cook for my honey--lettuce wraps, Laotian style. P.F. Changs' eat your heart out!! We had so much fun as we gathered around the dinner table with my roommates while eating yummy lettuce wraps. Dinner like that is much more fun with good company! Aaah...what a wonderful weekend.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Curve

Very ConfusedAs I was studying for my final exam in Statistics, my mind slowly wandered astray to ponder "the grade curve". Okay. So...I am not doing so well in this chocolate-overdose-inducing 5-week crash course in a subject which I positively have an inherent aversion to. But I've always done well in my other academic courses and never--I mean never have done so poorly as I have in this class.

With that said, I think I'm beginning to understand why instructors grade on a curve. The thought that crept across my mind was this:

Dear ECON 261 Instructor,

This is what I have learned about statistics, the mean, and a sample. Let's say our class is a sample of the UNLV student population or of all business students required to take ECON 261. If we calculate the mean of the exam grades in our class and plot my grade on this mean, it may reveal that I am faring a grade that is average with other students in the class. Average = C (ouch...it pains me to type that). How does that sound for my final grade?
Okay, so there are students who have done well on the tests but they are outliers, unusually small observations outside the normal distribution and thus skewing the data. The textbook also states on pp. 110-111 "its validity is suspect", "outliers should be checked", and finally, "outliers can also represent unusual observations that should be investigated". Therefore, we can just ignore this part of the data, right?
Given that it is a summer session, the probability of the average student absorbing 12 weeks of materials in 5 weeks is a somewhat low. (Okay, I'm grasping at straws here...) Are there extra points for effort? (Sigh. Should I have stopped after the first paragraph?)
Okay. Maybe that sounds a little too desperate. No, this note begging for leniency is definitely not desperate--it's a flat out plea for mercy! NoOOoo, not another 12 weeks with Statistics!!! Puhleeeze don't make me do it...wa haa haa...don't make me, please!

Maybe...if I spent as much time thinking about "the curve", I might actually ace this final exam tomorrow. Okay, okay...back to studying now.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Updated: Aug.11.2005

Well, the test wasn't so bad. I actually think I did pretty well. I don't know why I let my self get all twisted like a pretzel. Staying calm under pressure is something I take pride in but I guess taking final exams is just not an activity where I can be Ms. Cool, Calm, and Collected nor try to feign.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Happy Birthday, Chippy!!

I would like to wish a very happy 23rd birthday to my little bro' "Chippy"!! (Chippy is my nickname for him; adopted from the days when I'd come home after school to find him watching Chip and Dale: Rescue Rangers") I'm sure it wasn't easy growing up with four older sisters. There was never one week when one of us was not PMS-ing or without a crisis of one sort or another. We frequently dressed him up like a girl, complete with a flower tucked behind the ear and make-up. (As if we needed another female in the house) I actually think he liked it!! Ah, so many memories...but I will always remember the day I gave him a bloody nose. He was intensely fixated on the t.v. screen while playing one of his video games so I jumped in front of his line of sight to break his focus--and feigned a punch towards his face. Alas!! I misjudged my distance and accidently punched him in the nose. (I still swear--it was an accident, Chippy) I remember hearing a distinct "pop!" like the sound of bubble gum bursting as he covered his nose and ran off--but not before he shot me this bewildered, injured puppy look. He later said that it was the first time he bled through both nostrils. After that day, he would vengefully vow, "when I get bigger than you...(blah, blah, blah)..." to which I matter-of-factly replied that as he gets bigger, so will I so he will never outgrow me. So what did he do? What any angry little brother would do when picked on--he sought revenge!
One night I couldn't sleep. My bed was very uncomfortable as I tossed and turned all night. I felt every little pill the old hand-me-down sheets must have had. Weeks later when I mentioned my sleepness night, he admitted that he was so mad when I punched him in the nose that he crumbled cookies in my bed!! Cookies. If he hadn't said, "Geez, you're so sensitive like the Princess and the Pea because I didn't think you'd feel the crumbs I had crushed so finely into your bed!"--I would've undoubtedly given him bloody nose #2.
Lucky for him I stopped pretending that I was the next action hero and so the years have passed since then. I wonder if he still remembers? Photo was taken in Thailand. That's me on the left and Chippy is sitting on my older sister on the right. The photo was almost destroyed in a house fire and I'm glad to still have it so I can embarrass him on days like this ;)

Friday, August 05, 2005

Alert Snack-o-holics!

Just when you thought there couldn't be anything better than Funyuns--there's Funyuns with Wasabi!! Full of flavor and delightfully crunchy; these rings of wonder are a perfect blend of spices and spiciness that'll satisfy the pickiest taste buds; A 'must-try' in a lifetime-you definitely don't want to miss this! Reporting from Las Vegas-I'm Daly your Queen of Snacks (ahem--not junk food!!)

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Lake Mead

Today was one of the best days ever! Once again we were out on Lake Mead. I only wished I could swim like a fish rather than a drowned cat. Whenever I saw people swimming--looking effortlessly in their buoyancy, I was envious yet amazed at the "magic" before my eyes. However, this day out on the lake was not free of mishaps, mind you--once again our electronics didn't survive the waters. This time it was Johnny's cell phone which we now believe is at the bottom of the ominous lake.

Photo:  http://www.usmenuguide.com/
Yesterday, Johnny and I went to Mon Ami Gabi in the Paris casino. We were seated inside the airy interior of the atrium where the towering French windows opened out onto the Las Vegas Strip. We had a fabulous view of the scenery including the Lake show across the street at the Bellagio. For my dinner, I had savory seared scallops on top of puréed cauliflower with caramalized onion strings and pine nuts sprinkled on top. It was oh so yummy! All the meanwhile, we enjoyed tasting a variety of delicious wine from the wine cart.

Afterwards, Johnny and I sauntered across the street to stroll along the tree-lined boulevard of the Bellagio just in time to witness the Lake show as the waters danced to the tune of "Proud to be an American". Prior to that evening, I had never seen such a spectacular display of choreographed ballet of water, light, and music on this massive eight-acre lake!

This weekend has turned out to be very nice indeed--but it ain't over yet! A quick stop at the Original Pancake House in the Green Valley Station Casino for some breakfast and a final stop to deliver lunch to my sweetie at work (along with the ensuing kiss...) my weekend will be complete. I can not wait!

Friday, July 29, 2005

FedEx our wish to come true!

We did it! After long hours of taping and editing our video and revising our essay for the Food Network Caters Your Vegas Wedding--we are finally finished. I just FedEx'd our application packet off but we could not have done it without the help of family, friends--and the support and encouragement from each other. Now comes the hard part...waiting in anticipation of good news! Only approximately two weeks to go.

I only wanted to win because it's probably going to be the best meal Johnny will ever have in our marriage (just kidding). If we don't win,...well I guess we're gonna go to the chapel and we're...gonna get married. Johnny will dress like Elvis and sing his songs (he has a good voice) and we'll have a wedding Vegas style baby yeah!!!

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Wonderful Buffet at Bellagio

Here we are at the conservatory located within the Bellagio just after feasting at the casino buffet! My boss, Angeline, co-worker, Joan, and I were treated to lunch by one of our sweet professors, Dr. Koettel in appreciation of all that we do to keep the department running. That's right, them professors never get a moment to sit down and rest. They're always workin' workin' workin' away!! Just kidding ;) Thank you, Dr. Koettel!!

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Big Horn Sheeps

Holy mackerel!! No, this is not a school of fishes but a herd of big horn sheeps I saw grazing the grass of a public park in Boulder City. This is just a block away from where Johnny and I will be getting married!

Friday, July 22, 2005

Bull Dogs

Tom & Jerry was always one of my favorite cartoons as a kid. I loved Jerry but at times I secretly wished that Tom would catch Jerry--like, really get him good. But Jerry always had a way of slipping Tom's evil grasps or was managed to be saved by Spike, the pit bull.

Recently there have been news revolving around the issue of bull dogs mauling and killing children. Some communities have resorted to extreme measures such as banning the breeding of such dogs. My view on that is dogs are animals and, like humans, have their good and bad days. Except one of the things that make them different is their inability to verbally communicate their thoughts as we have the capability to do. So when a child gets in their face and it also happens to be one of their PMS days, they will react with instinct and in the way they only know how--and that is to bite in order to release their aggression. Bull dog or golden retriever, they all have the potential to bite.

I've always been afraid of dogs, regardless of how friendly they seem, for fear that they would bite me. In Laos, the dogs aren't domestic but wild and I knew people that were chased down and bitten by dogs. To this today, the fear of dogs remains in me although I usually appear calm and trusting--I'll even go as far as petting them.

I love animals and have met lots of cute and friendly dogs (even considered getting one) but people shouldn't forget, however, dogs are dogs and will at times instinctually react without reason.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

And Now I See

I can finally see! It was a long week but I had been wearing my last pair of contacts which kept irritating my eyes and so I had to constantly switch between contact lenses and an old pair of glasses that are three prescriptions old. Never mind that it doesn't fit my face either.

I've been thinking more and more about LASIK surgery. Lately I've been fantasizing about what it'd be like to wake up and see clearly without glasses or plastic films on my eyes. As comfortable contacts can sometimes be, they can't quite give me 20/20 accuity.

I think I could save so much time if could wake up, see clearly, and go. Not having to bother with contact solutions, putting them on, soak them in effervescent cleaners, rubbing them, having protein deposits in my eyes, deal with eye infections, getting eye irritants underneath them, the lens ripping, using lens cleaners for my eyeglasses, toting the (lenses and eyeglasses) cases and solutions around...ya get the idea.

With laser-corrected vision, I can just wake up, open my eyes...and (gasp) see!! No lens go fogging up...yada, yada, yada. That would just be awesome!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

You've Got Spam


The rewards of my spam training...heh, heh.
This is really my "get-in-to-bed" swatter.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Boating on Lake Mead

Moomba in tow, the boys named it "Beaver Retreaver"--I had NOTHING to do with naming it, okay? Although Johnny jokes, "Look at the veaver I caught". We took it out on Lake Mead tonight. I had SO much fun even though all my toys were waterlogged--camera, cell phone, and planner (I'm sitting here soaking wet)...it was WELL worth it. The lake is so beautiful at sunset. It was nice to get out and relax. Beer, my favorite snacks, and excellent company...I couldn't have asked for more.

Well...except taking swimming lessons so I can swim in Lake Mead. Rather than be like a cat on a stranded island that's a boat. For now, you might find me like this on the boat...where there's no water.

New Home

We finally made an offer on what we hope to be our new home. It's a 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 3 car garage one-level home with large boat parking. The living room and family room is huge with vaulted ceilings and an open plan to the kitchen.

Located in a beautiful neighborhood surrounded by half-million $ homes and views to million-dollar home, this one is modest but gives us something to aspire to. We couldn't ask for a better central location than Eastern & Horizon Ridge and hope the seller will accept our offer soon!!

(Check out more photos at Kodak Gallery by clicking on the image. Look for the link to view photos without signing in.)

. . . . .
Update: July 17th

We didn't get the house. Got beat out by a buyer who gave the seller asking price. That's okay. We were bummed but realized there's more out there...nicer and less pricey. This house's value was up because of the neighborhood and location but was nothing extraordinary. Still searching for dream home...

Friday, July 15, 2005

Pass the Potato


Hey there! Will you help me pass Baked Potato around so that he can reach all 50 states?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

SOLD!


Yep...the house is SOLD!! We're moving to a new place in Henderson. I'm going to miss that place where I had my tech loft painted fire engine red and the pool in the backyard. This was where I had one-too-many drinks one-too-many times...SIGH. While we will miss the house, we're really excited to get into our new home. Great neighborhood, great lot, excellent location and close proximity to amenities and restaurants, campus, our work and gym. It's SWEET!! Posted by Picasa

It's Gettin' Hot in Here!!


Are you looking at the temperature here (note that the time is 7:20PM)?? The current temperature is pretty high (and I heard our record for today was 115 degress). But it doesn't feel like 110. Really. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Daly's Beauty Must-Have's

As I rummaged through my boxes and drawers of half-used beauty products, it made me think how much junk I had to purchase and try before coming upon these beauty finds. In hopes of sparing the trouble for many females out there, I thought I'd share my own list of beauty must-have's:

  • Biosilk Silk Therapy for hair: Just a little goes a long ways to smooth frizz and give damaged hair a natural shine. Sparingly smooth on hair after blowdrying but before hot rollers or heat stylers. The serum is so light it doesn't my weigh hair down like other brands.
  • Kiss Me by Philosophy lip balm: It's true..."the road to intimacy is lots of kissing" and this very emollient lip balm is the yellow brick road. So smooth (not waxy) when you purse your lips together it will make you wanna grab that honey-bunny and kiss 'em!! (I like the red jar but if you don't like using your fingers for application, get the tube)
  • MAC lipglass: no...not the computer but the lip gloss that will give your lips a high gloss glass-like finish. Unlike Philosophy's lip balm--this is not smooch-friendly. Not unless you want to literally lock lips cuz this stuff is sticky! Excellent for a night out...guys just can't resist the urge to touch glossy, wet-looking lips.
  • Redken Hot Sets 22 Thermal Setting Mist for hair: honey, the volume and bounce my hair has is not natural and without it, my hair is as flat as the tail of a donkey.
  • Surgi-Wax: No muslin strips, microwave-only wax hair remover. Does an excellent job--right down to the roots for the smoothest wax job that will leave your skin feelin' like a baby's bum! (Try the Brazilian Wax)
  • Smashbox flash powder: a golden-hued shimmer loose powder sure to make you feel like a princess! Apply Flash Powder to face (around eyes and on bridge of nose), décolleté, and body for all over luminous golden skin. It'll make you feel like a star! (This jar will last you years)

More to come. These products are tried and true when other brands have failed. I swear by them! Now...as for the piles of products gone kaput...I say we have a beauty swap!!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

The Perfect Planner

I have looked high and low for the perfect planner
and there's no other like AT-A-GLANCE® QuickNotes® Weekly/Monthly Self-Management System (76-14-05). It's the perfect size and has all the right components of an organizer. Check it out for yourself. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!! (Unfortunately, I think I got the last one in stock...heh, heh).

Thursday, July 07, 2005

I Survived!!

Oh yeah...I just have to put one up in celebration of me skidding through Finite Math!! WHOO-HOO!! I can't believe it. Since I didn't celebrate too hard on the 4th, I think I just might over the weekend. Heh, heh. At least enjoy the few days I have until I start Econ 261 (Statistics) on Monday.

Ew.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary, sweetie! It's been three wonderful years and things couldn't be better!
You swept my heart away the day we first met in Redondo Beach. You knelt by my side and talked to me all night like no one else was around. I knew you were a keeper when you took the time to learn the history of the country where I came from.

It was challenging dating each other long distance for a time but I am never happier to finally be with the love of my life. I am looking forward to our fourth year and creating more wonderful memories with you!! I love you, Johnny! Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 02, 2005

My Sisters & Brother


Sunnyside, WA (1983). These are my sibblings from left to right is Chante (the oldest), Bea (my older sister), Chitt (my only little brother), and Money (the second sister). That's me--in the blue sweater laughing with my missing two front teeth.

I just realized we have all married (or are marrying) out of our names to Fleming, Owens, Hennes, and Costanza except my little brother. He's the only one to carry the last name no one can spell.

My dad made up our last name when we came to the states. He created it from the first initial of his mom's name, the name of his favorite uncle, and a Laotian word that means "heaven". So we're the only Sorvongsavanh's in the world and the rest of our relatives are in Laos.

I am proud of my last name but will be happy to take on the last name of my sweetheart's. I won't miss having to spell my maiden name over the phone which is always a big ordeal. S as in Sam, O, R, V as in Victor, O, N as in Nancy, G, S as in Sam, A, V as in Victor, A, N as in Nancy, H. After all that effort, companies always get the spelling wrong. Sometimes I lose track and forget in the midst of spelling. I can always tell when I get a call from someone that doesn't know me because they butcher my last name--talk about an advantage.

After filling out bubbles on tests time after time, I decided to marry someone with a short last name--at the beginning of the alphabet. Imagine through my dating years..."what's your last name?" and "oh, I'm sorry. I can't date you because of your last name. It just will not do." Seriously, that wasn't a factor to why I dated Johnny. His last name is just a plus!Posted by Picasa

1st Grade


A picture of me in the first grade sitting next to my best friend, Shawna Patel (I liked red even back then). Our family first settled in Sunnyside, WA after arriving from Thailand. We were the first Laotian family in that town. The newspapers were so intrigued, they came to take a photo of me.