Tuesday, January 27, 2009


My stomach is eating itself. I hope I adjust to yogurt and bananas really fast!

Getting my health on!

It's been two days since I started this new bill of health, which is a nicer way to say I'm on a diet. I've adopted my dad's yogurt and banana lunch plan. Hopefully it will last. When I got home yesterday I was starving and quite grumpy, but am going to try to stick with it. Once my body adjusts to healthy food and not Hot Pockets or greasy chimichangas, I think I will be okay. It took me a week or so to get used to eating non-fatty home cooked meals last year when we decided to stop eating out so much. Even if I ate a good sized portion of home-cooked food, I didn't feel full because there wasn't enough fat in the meal. I did seem to slim down a bit and saved money.

Along with eating better, I started walking in place and doing aerobic exercises while watching TV. I don't watch as much TV as I was since school has started again, but I'm trying to exercise at least twice a week. This weekend I bought little two pound weights to hold while jumping around the house. I felt like such a sissy walking around Target with them because they had little handles so that if you accidentally let go while running you don't take someone out with them and because they are pink. They aren't cool magenta or hot pink, they're light pink. Sissy pink.

We were dog sitting this weekend for Josie the Celery dog and she was looking at me like I was a loony when I was do my grape vines and pumping my arms with my little pink weights. I felt just as crazy. The other day I was able to walk and run in place for an hour while watching HGTV, but with the weights I could only do 10 minutes. Eek. I need to get in shape. I Netflixed Denise Austin's "Shrink Your Female Fat Zones". As silly as the name sounds, it is what caught my attention and made me put it in my queue. I have to send back the chick flick that I haven't had time to watch so that I can start shrinking!

This is basically the start of me trying to be healtier. I've gone back to my vitamin taking. I finally brought them down to the office so that I can have them with my coffee. I'm not sure if taking vitamins with coffee is good, but it is the way that I remember them. I've noticed that I have lost my double chin since coming back to Troy. I suspect it is because I don't eat nearly as much as when I'm home. We hardly snack and though I like to bake, I tend not to eat what I do. Those logs of salami my mom always has in the fridge was bringing me down. They tasted so good! Last week while Edward and I were grocery shopping the lady packing our bags said "You guys are so nutricious! There's not a single cookie or chip in here!" I am quite proud of the fact that we don't eat that much junk. Our cart was filled with veggies and meat so that I could do my normal Sunday prep for the week. What the lady didn't know was that I had every intention to go home and make cranberry muffins, which I actually ran out of time to make, but then made chocolate chip cookies a few days later.

I also came to the conclusion that Wii Fit is decieivng. Upon returning to Troy I was asked to sub for a late-night soccer game with my old team (I have class when their games are so I didn't sign up this semester). After five minutes of running my lungs felt like they were going to burn a whole through my chest. I'm so out of shape! Wii Fit apparently doesn't do as much as I thought. ...I still am searching for it though.

We will have to see if my new lunch and exercise plan stick around, but if my dad can do it, then I can do it. However, you won't see me going on 600 mile bike rides any time soon.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Josie the Celery dog

She got these new boots because the snow and salt hurts her little paw. It is so cute when she tries to walk. That is my boss Neil and his wife Mary Beth. You can hear us laughing in the background. This is the lovely Celery office.

Josie video

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Speech

In case you are like me and missed the inauguration speech, here is CNN's link.


For my poetry class we are supposed to journal everyday. I only plan to do it when the mood strikes me. I started my first entry today and lo-and-behold I missed the inauguration because I was writing it. Though this particular journal was not a freewrite (writing with no editing or even looking at the screen) it was a blurb that came out and may sound absurd and/or arrogant, awkward because of tense shifts, and frantic because of my basic jump-around train of thought. The purpose of the journal is to put on paper ideas that could possibly be put into a poem. Freewriting works well with this because then I don't have to worry about grammar or spelling. It's a pretty cool exercise, but I will try to refrain from putting freewrites down in this blog as they can be confusing and annoying. This week is List poetry. Maybe I'll write a list of all the ways I'm dependent on my computer.

January 20, 2009
Logging on. It’s done everyday as soon as you wake up or sit down to your computer. It’s like an addiction. You dream about it. Just this morning while I was trying to wake up I dreamt that Ed asked me if I was logging into work today. My response was, of course, why wouldn’t I? This makes me wonder: are we addicted to our computers? I wish I could say that I’m addicted to reading or to writing. Something that I deem a little more worthy than logging on to my computer and checking my email. Logging on does make you feel important though. You open your computer or turn on the screen to see if anyone has thought you important enough to write to. Has anyone left you a note on your Twitter? Is there a “You’ve Got Mail” jingle? Are there any new events and invitations on Facebook?
Ultimately, logging on makes you feel important. Can’t we feel important by doing something else? I don’t want to say that we should be doing something more useful, since logging on means getting work done for a lot of people, but our day-to-day lives revolve around it. Well, my day-to-day life revolves around it. I couldn’t and wouldn’t want to go a day without my computer or the internet. “The Internet Is For Porn” perhaps, but it has become a part of my life that I can’t live without. Is this a sad realization or something that has happened to everyone?
Youtube. Oh, Youtube. I’ve been known to say “I’ll Youtube it later”…for instance with Obama’s speech. I was writing this journal. It totally thought that the inauguration was later in the day. See, if I would have logged on earlier and checked the news sites I would have known!

This journal entry was done right after I woke up. I find that I come up with the weirdest stuff after sleeping. I don't think I would have thought of this stuff if I were just sitting on the sofa.

Monday, January 19, 2009

From Jubilate Ango

I absolutely love this poem. We read it in class and I thought it was very cute. I thought I'd share it with all of you. The story behind this poem is that Christopher Smart had "the praying disease" as my professor put it. He would have the urge to fall to his knees and pray when ever and where ever he felt it was necessary. As a result, he was thrown into prison because people thought he was crazy. While locked away, he only had a little cat as his friend. (How sad) I think the inspiration for this poem makes me like it more. This is also an example of a list poem.

Jubilate Agno, Fragment B, [For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry]
by Christopher Smart

For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry.
For he is the servant of the Living God, duly and daily serving him.
For at the first glance of the glory of God in the East he worships in his way.
For is this done by wreathing his body seven times round with elegant quickness.
For then he leaps up to catch the musk, which is the blessing of God upon his prayer.
For he rolls upon prank to work it in.
For having done duty and received blessing he begins to consider himself.
For this he performs in ten degrees.
For first he looks upon his forepaws to see if they are clean.
For secondly he kicks up behind to clear away there.
For thirdly he works it upon stretch with the forepaws extended.
For fourthly he sharpens his paws by wood.
For fifthly he washes himself.
For sixthly he rolls upon wash.
For seventhly he fleas himself, that he may not be interrupted upon the beat.
For eighthly he rubs himself against a post.
For ninthly he looks up for his instructions.
For tenthly he goes in quest of food.
For having considered God and himself he will consider his neighbor.
For if he meets another cat he will kiss her in kindness.
For when he takes his prey he plays with it to give it a chance.
For one mouse in seven escapes by his dallying.
For when his day's work is done his business more properly begins.
For he keeps the Lord's watch in the night against the adversary.
For he counteracts the powers of darkness by his electrical skin and glaring eyes.
For he counteracts the Devil, who is death, by brisking about the life.
For in his morning orisons he loves the sun and the sun loves him.
For he is of the tribe of Tiger.
For the Cherub Cat is a term of the Angel Tiger.
For he has the subtlety and hissing of a serpent, which in goodness he suppresses.
For he will not do destruction if he is well-fed, neither will he spit without provocation.
For he purrs in thankfulness when God tells him he's a good Cat.
For he is an instrument for the children to learn benevolence upon.
For every house is incomplete without him, and a blessing is lacking in the spirit.
For the Lord commanded Moses concerning the cats at the departure of the Children of Israel
from Egypt.
For every family had one cat at least in the bag.
For the English Cats are the best in Europe.
For he is the cleanest in the use of his forepaws of any quadruped.
For the dexterity of his defense is an instance of the love of God to him exceedingly.
For he is the quickest to his mark of any creature.
For he is tenacious of his point.
For he is a mixture of gravity and waggery.
For he knows that God is his Saviour.
For there is nothing sweeter than his peace when at rest.
For there is nothing brisker than his life when in motion.
For he is of the Lord's poor, and so indeed is he called by benevolence perpetually--Poor Jeoffry!
poor Jeoffry! the rat has bit thy throat.
For I bless the name of the Lord Jesus that Jeoffry is better.
For the divine spirit comes about his body to sustain it in complete cat.
For his tongue is exceeding pure so that it has in purity what it wants in music.
For he is docile and can learn certain things.
For he can sit up with gravity, which is patience upon approbation.
For he can fetch and carry, which is patience in employment.
For he can jump over a stick, which is patience upon proof positive.
For he can spraggle upon waggle at the word of command.
For he can jump from an eminence into his master's bosom.
For he can catch the cork and toss it again.
For he is hated by the hypocrite and miser.
For the former is afraid of detection.
For the latter refuses the charge.
For he camels his back to bear the first notion of business.
For he is good to think on, if a man would express himself neatly.
For he made a great figure in Egypt for his signal services.
For he killed the Icneumon rat, very pernicious by land.
For his ears are so acute that they sting again.
For from this proceeds the passing quickness of his attention.
For by stroking of him I have found out electricity.
For I perceived God's light about him both wax and fire.
For the electrical fire is the spiritual substance which God sends from heaven to sustain the
bodies both of man and beast.
For God has blessed him in the variety of his movements.
For, though he cannot fly, he is an excellent clamberer.
For his motions upon the face of the earth are more than any other quadruped.
For he can tread to all the measures upon the music.
For he can swim for life.
For he can creep.

Lines 695-768 from Fragment B of Jubilate Agno by Christopher Smart.

Works Cited

Smart, Christopher. "Jubilate Agno, Fragment B, [For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry]".
Poets.org: From the Academy of American Poets. 19 Jan. 2009

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Emmy trying to swim

Cousin, are you okay?

You would think that swimming would come naturally to a dog, but not ours. The whole trip was worth watching her try to swim. She looked like she thought she was going to die. It was so funny that we couldn't even say good girl to reinforce her behavior because we were laughing so hard. Julie laughed so hard she that she cried.

Pictures are compliments of Christopher. I was laughing too hard to get my camera out fast enough.

Well gang, we're back

We've been back since Sunday and getting back in the swing of things. It's actually been really, really busy for us. Right after we got off the plane we went straight out to our favorite 24 hour diner, 76 Diner. On Monday it was back to the Celery office for me. It was nice being back there because things run much smoother for me. I don't have to worry about the internet not working or my phone not calling out. It was a relief to be back. That night we went right out to dinner with our friends Nadeem and Rolando to The Olive Garden. The service wasn't all that great, but the food was delicious. Since I only go grocery shopping on Sundays, I refused to go to the market to get supplies on a weekday. Needless to say, we ate out a lot this week. It'll be boring if I go into detail for everything single thing we did week. I'm just going to list it for you.

On Tuesday two of our friends had a birthday, so we went out to a bar downtown to celebrate. Wednesday I had my first class and then a soccer game. Thursday I had class then we went to dinner with Nadeem. Friday we had a hockey game and then to a sports bar with our friends Rolando and Cara. Saturday we had friends over for drinks and then we all went to the game and then to Brown's Brewing Co. for drinks and dinner. And then, and then, and then. And then like usual, we had our Sunday dinner with the normal gang.

Whew, it's been a long week and I think I just wrote "and then" more than I ever have in my life. Hehe.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Additional Pictures

Gualala, CA

Chin family Christmas Eve gathering.

Goodies I made to pass out to our neighbors and for stocking stuffers.

Emmy pictures

How time flies

Well, I've been home for almost a month now, but it feels like I've only been here a week. As always, I'm dreading going back. While I was here I had a great time even though I had to work the whole time. Christmas, ice skating, New Years, meeting with friends, Gualala, and hanging out really makes time go by quickly.

For Christmas we met with both the Chin and Chew sides of the family like always. This year the Levie's and Emmy joined us with the Chew side. I did most of the cooking and am obviously still learning since most of my stuff wasn't salty enough and fairly tasteless.

The big Chin family

The Levie's at our house for Christmas

We got mom a digital camera for Christmas and this is the picture she sees everytime she turns it on...just in case she forgets who gave it to her. I laughed so hard after seeing this picture that it kicked up my asthma.

Right after Christmas we had our annual ice skating day. Unfortunately, I was unable to join the skating festivities, but my mom and I went out to join everyone for dinner at Buca di Beppo. A couple of days after Buca, I went to a sleep over at my Auntie May's new house with Josie, Jennifer, Kimi and Patti. We had a lot of fun. I haven't had so much fun in a long time. We went out to sushi, played games and watched The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, which is also a book by Ann Brashares whom I admire greatly.

Patti, Josie, Kimi, me, and JenJen getting ready to watch the movie.

A week later we had New Years Eve at our house with Edward, Julie, Davie, our college friend Tim, and my high school friends, Bonnie and Abby. I made fajitas and chimichuri chicken from one of Rachael Ray's 30 Minute Meals cook book that my Uncle David gave me. It was all very, very tasty. The whole party thanks you Uncle David! (If anyone wants the recipes, I can post them.) Then my family had dinner with the Chew side. We had tons of yummy seafood. Christopher and I were very happy campers. Next, we went up to Gualala to visit Davie's family. We all had a great time except that Emmy kept fighting with the other doggies because she thinks she's tough. I also got car sick on the way back down to Concord, which wasn't fun. Other than that, it was a great weekend.

So now I have two days left at home. Boo! I think this vacation was pretty action packed and I managed to get a lot out of it even though I had to work the whole time. I guess being a working girl isn't so bad. Then again, I do work from home and can see my family all the time while doing so. I'll take what I can get!

I have a new update on school. I won't be finishing until the end of May instead of the beginning. Signing up for classes this semester has been tricky business. When I first signed up for classes I didn't know that I couldn't take the same intro to writing class twice. In the beginning we could take the intro writing class twice because there weren't enough writing classes offered. They changed their regulations so that we can take two of the same genre specific classes twice and not intro. This worked out fine in the beginning because then I was able to take Fiction Writing twice. However, for this semester I signed up for the intro class but then was later informed that I couldn't take it. By the time I was told, all of the classes were taken. My only choice was to go into Irish Literature. Even though it's probably a good class, I was not very happy about this. The reading list that the professor sent out didn't seem that bad. Trying to save a little money, I ordered my books online. While doing this I realized that I hadn't paid my tuition so I called the school and found out that it was due that day and I could pay online. I usually get my bill and schedule in the mail, but since I've been home I didn't get it. I've never been able to find our bills online at St. Rose before because they have a horribly set up website. It took me half an hour to find it. When I did find it, it also showed me my schedule. Lo and behold, I was over booked and now I was registered for Poetry and Irish Lit at the same time. So I had all of the books for Irish Lit, but wasn't going to keep the class. I figured they had switched the days or something. I vaguely remember someone mentioning it, or maybe I dreamed it. Anyway, I frantically called my adviser and told her what had happened and also sent her an email. While I was freaking out, I tried to cancel all of the 14 book orders I had placed. I was only successful with two. So now I'm going to have 12 books that I don't necessarily need. I might sell them back, but I might just keep them. Hehe. Anyway, so when I finally got hold of my adviser, we came to the conclusion that it would be better for me to take two classes this semester and then take my last class during the summer. She also said that no classes were changed, but the registrar's office shouldn't have let me over book anyway. I could have sworn I had TWR classes, oh well. There was only one other class that I was eligible for and it was full as well as being a literature class. Only five classes are offered at a time because the school is so small. I am currently enrolled in two classes. Irish lit conflicted and I can't that Intro Writing. That only left one option, which was not a good one. The summer class is a three week long non-fiction writing class that I wanted to take but wasn't sure if I could after I graduated. My classmates raved about it last summer so I figured I would go out with a bang and get as much writing experience as I can. My adviser thought it was a good idea too. Instead of finishing up in the beginning of May, I'll be done at the end of it. It's not too bad I guess. At least I don't have to take another stuffy literature class. Those things suck the life out of reading. I'm already enrolled in one lit class, American Fiction, which sounds really good. I also have Poetry writing. By the time I do graduate I will have taken Fiction, Poetry, Intro, and Non-fiction writing. I'm happy about that because I think my writing will be more well-rounded from learning all of the genres than if I didn't take the summer class. Hopefully it will make this semester easier since I'll only be going part time.