Saturday, June 23, 2007

Texas Hold 'Em, Andrew?! ACK!

Henry called me this afternoon to say he couldn't make it, so I called Melia to tell her. She gave me the idea of calling Michelle, so I did - thank goodness she could give me a ride. We picked up Auntie Ping and David separately while talking to Ryan and Ethan about stuff. The Awana year-end ceremony was pretty cool, only because the BC Awana missionaries (Harvey and Lil Fehr) were around. Haha. The kids seemed excited to get their awards, and I talked to Andrew about Texas Hold 'Em poker. Jason was folding his program and making a paper airplane out of it. Got rid of a bunch of change in my wallet, which is always nice. Seeing the kids again was cool, and I liked that. Now I want food, but not really - I had a bunch of snacks, but then I have too many options swimming around my head: salad, Greek food, pizza, etc. I am not going with the flow since I'm tired and want things pre-planned, haha.

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I go barefoot?! Really?!

Bleh. I don't feel like checking blogs today, which is a VERY rare occurrence! Yikes. Wonder if Henry will actually call, haha. If not, then I have more time to do whatever. ;)

Your Passion is Pink!

You're the type of woman that would never get described as passionate...
Oh, but you can be passionate at times - you just don't let it show.
Your passion most shows through in your sweet and optimistic attitude.
And chances are, most people are very passionate about you!

You Are Lara Croft

"Everything lost is meant to be found."

Your True Sign Is Cancer

Unable to Let Go
The Most Loving Ever
Intuitive and Imaginative

You are Barefoot!

You're a total free spirit, go with the flow girl
You can't be restricted by shoes for very long
And unsurprisingly, the same goes for men
Your match is out there - and he's as carefree as you are

The PJ's You Are Most Like: Comfortable PJ's

You're a bit conservative, traditional, and tend to follow conventions
You have an understated, easy sexiness that men love
People instantly find comfort in you, and you're a "best friend" to many.

Your Fashion Style is Sporty

You're a natural beauty who doesn't need fancy clothes to look good
You prefer your clothes to be comfortable, so you can stay on the go
For you, femininity is not how you wear - but how you wear it.
Still, don't be afraid to show off that great body in a dress or skirt!

You Are A Pistachio Ice Cream Girl

Funky. Surprising. Wild.

You Are Not a Tease

You definitely know how to flirt, but you usually choose not to.
You're not the type of girl who leads guys on - and men appreciate that.
Your charms and sexiness are saved for the one guy you're into...
And for that, he digs you even more!

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Helium balloons are funny! / Schilling Salad Supreme Seasoning

The barbecue was fine - met Randal and a friend, and talked to a bunch of the guys. Nathan, Joey, Christon, and plenty of others had fun with the helium balloons - they sounded great, haha. Said hi to Isabel, Julie, Michelle, Peter, Chinese Eric, Dallas, Jon, and a bunch more people. Left the church at 11:37 PM, and then dropped Dallas off before Eric got his Parmesan cheese from my fridge. Ah, interesting night which I can't update fully about as I'm too tired!

Schilling Salad Supreme Seasoning

This orange-colored spice blend has been perking up salads, pasta, potatoes, hamburgers, and vegetables for years now... but I've never seen a homegrown clone for the stuff. Time to change that. While it's obvious that sesame seeds are a major part of this blend, you may not know that the main ingredient is Romano cheese (in the bottle, it's been dyed orange by the paprika). Be sure to store this one in the refrigerator. You might even want to keep the seasoning in an empty shaker-top spice bottle. And if you're in the mood for some tasty pasta salad, just check out the tidbit below that comes right off the bottle of the original product.

2 tablespoons Romano cheese
1 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon paprika
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
dash cayenne pepper

1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.
2. Pour blend into a sealed container (such as an empty spice bottle) and store chilled. Makes 1/4 cup.


The label of the original product includes an easy recipe for Supreme Pasta Salad. "Combine 1 pound cooked pasta, 8 ounces Italian dressing, and 4 tablespoons Salad Supreme (or the amount made in the above clone recipe). Toss with an assortment of chopped fresh vegetables. Chill."

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Friday, June 22, 2007

Folding chairs in hockey (not like in wrestling!)

Spent some time using my new folding chair to read outside - it definitely works for me! Now I'm watching the NHL entry draft in Columbus - those kids look (and are, I suppose :P) SO YOUNG!

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Toddler Wilson in dreams / Sara Lee's Carrot Square Cake

Am awake this early since I was falling asleep before midnight (!) trying to watch random TV shows. Maybe I'm getting old, since a dental appointment combined with shopping didn't tire me out this much BEFORE... cheh! I decided to go to bed, so here I am in an awake state. Hopefully, I don't die tonight (figuratively) at the barbecue! ;)

I had a dream with a toddler Wilson L. looking at his baby pictures, and my asking Amos to get 41 Oscar Mayer burgers. It also featured a bunch of us living in underground burrows with colored laser beams: Jeremy, Christon, affection, McDonalds orders, etc.

Sara Lee's Carrot Square Cake

Yield: 6 servings

2 Eggs
1 teaspoon Vanilla
6 oz Oil
1 teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking powder
2 teaspoons Cinnamon
1 cup Sugar
1 1/4 cups All-purpose flour
1 cup Carrots; grate fine
1 cup Walnuts; well-chopped
1/2 cup Light raisins; optional
Cream cheese icing
6 oz Cream cheese; softened
1/4 lb Butter
1 lb Powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon Orange extract
1 teaspoon Spice island orange peel
1 tablespoon Light corn syrup or pancake
1 tablespoon Cornstarch or flour

Combine first 8 ingredients with electric mixer on medium-high. Beat 3 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl often. Remove beaters. Stir in last 3 ingredients. Grease and flour 9" square pan. Spread batter evenly in pan. Bake at 325° about 50 minutes. Cool in pan about 30 minutes. Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting and sprinkle with additional walnuts. ICING - Cream the cream cheese with the butter until light and fluffy, using med-high speed of electric mixer. Add half of the sugar, increasing speed to high. Add extract and peel, and beat about 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl often. Resume beating. adding remaining powdered sugar. Beat smooth. Frost sides and top of cake.

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

I need a PIN in order to withdraw money!

I ate some chocolate-covered cranberries before my dentist appointment this afternoon. Not the best thing to do, but you only live once, haha. Got some mango-jackfruit bubble tea from L&G Bubble Tea afterwards. Definitely a good thing - I saw some Bacon-Ranch Pringles at Shoppers today, but forgot my PIN at the bank machine. Next time! (yes, I've remembered it now... no worries!) Since a bubble tea cup sustained a puncture, I've had to do laundry too. Oh well... Eric is bringing over lettuce for tomorrow's barbecue: Caesar salad while watching quirky MuchMoreMusic shows, here we come! :P

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$100 is NOT realistic for a garage sale! / Sara Lee Apple Maple Cheesecake

Just got off the phone with Mom, and she offered me a few tidbits of amusement:

1. Mom: "Guess how much I made on the garage sale." *disappointed*
Me: "How much?"
Mom: "Only $7.50!"
Me: "Well, what were you expecting?"
Mom: "$100! I had my stuff out for three hours, but it was raining..."
HAHAHA. I don't think you'd make that much at your typical garage sale!

2. Mom: "Maybe we can go to the bookstore!" *has mouth full*
Me: "What? I don't like the Home Show!"
Mom: "I said the BOOKSTORE!"
Me: "... are you eating something?"
Mom: "Yes! Beef jerky!"
Me: "MOM..."
Mom: "What? I'll give you a bag!"
Me: "No! It's rude to talk when you're eating something!"
Mom: "No, it's not..."
Me: "Yes, it is!" *changes subject*
Mom is so interesting sometimes...

Sara Lee Apple Maple Cheesecake

2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 medium tart cooking apples, peeled and sliced (2 cups)
1/3 cup maple-flavored syrup
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 Sara Lee Original Cheesecake, cut into 6 wedges, thawed
1 cup chopped walnuts
Slivered apple for garnish

In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add sliced apples; cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or just until tender. In small bowl... combine maple-flavored syrup, sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon. Add to apples in skillet. Cook, stirring frequently, 2-3 minutes or until syrup is bubbly and slightly thickened. Cook 1 minute more. Remove from heat; refrigerate 10 minutes. Spoon apple mixture over cheesecake; sprinkle with walnuts. Garnish with slivered apple. Makes 6 servings.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Five dragon pics (Kariya Park in Mississauga)

It's good when friends can help you out! :D

Hey, my sister emailed me more dragon pics! These ones are from Kariya Park in Mississauga:

Dragon 1:

Dragon 2:

Dragon 3:

Dragon 4:

Dragon 5:

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Dragon pics! / Sabrett Onions in Sauce (for hot dogs)

My sister emailed me two dragon pictures. I think they're the same one with different lighting and angles.

Blue Mississauga Dragon 1:

Blue Mississauga Dragon 2:

Sabrett Onions in Sauce (for hot dogs)

Here's a cool clone for the tangy orange / red onion sauce slathered over hot dogs ordered from Sabrett push carts. For a buck or two, you can grab a hot dog with the works on the fly from these popular umbrella-covered food carts in many major cities. You find hundreds of 'em in New York City, especially around Central Park (that's where the sample for this re-creation was obtained). While most of the Sabrett toppings are standard hot dog fare - ketchup, mustard, sauerkraut - the onion sauce is a real Top Secret Recipe. And it's one that we can now slam into the "solved" file.

1 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin and chopped
4 cups water
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons corn syrup
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup vinegar

1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
2. Sauté sliced onion in the oil for 5 minutes, until onions are soft but not brown.
3. Add water, tomato paste, corn syrup, cornstarch, salt, and red pepper flakes; stir.
4. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Add vinegar. Continue to simmer for an additional 30 to 45 minutes, or until most of the liquid has reduced and the sauce is thick. Makes about 1 cup.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I'm smarter than a monkey!

Thought the water pipes had something wrong with them: when I saw Hester (building manager) in the hall later, she said they were being fixed. Fine, then!

Are you smarter than a monkey?

You scored 88%, which means that you're 50% smarter than a monkey!
'Are you smarter than a monkey?' at

You fit in with:

20% spiritual.
40% faith-oriented.

Your ideals mostly resemble those of the Buddhist faith. Spirituality is the most important thing in your life. You strive to live by all of your ideals, and live a very intellectually focused life.

Take This Quiz at

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Understanding about talks / Roadhouse Grill Roadhouse Cheese Wraps

Tonight's chicken burgers took over an hour to cook, and Korey expressed bemusement about my not really knowing how to cook. Hey, it's just not my thing! He wanted Eric to come over tomorrow to play MARIO SOCCER on his Gamecube - I'm sure Eric (being an introvert) wants some downtime, but he agreed. (thank goodness Korey could tell that Eric was out - at Phil's bachelor party - or else!) Says we'll clean tomorrow and go to Metrotown on Thursday to get cash and a stool - we'll see about that, haha. He also made comments about how metal music was "Satan / devil worship music," and questioned whether I really went to church. Then again, he questioned whether I'd really gone shopping earlier this afternoon - sigh. He's also remarked about how they repeat songs on Rock 101... of COURSE any radio station will have some amount of repetition! AIYA.

For some reason, my guest seems to be under the impression that when I discuss him with others (especially white Eric), I'm keeping secrets from him. *rolleyes* No, it's just easier to talk to these other people and such... especially if you've known them for a relatively long time! Thank goodness that Chinese Eric understands that it's easier to talk to some people about stuff simply because you've known them longer and they have more knowledge than you do about things. (some people think this is SECRECY, oh no!) Told him about Jon, Phil, Harmony, the gender mistake I'd made on Jenny's birthday card (easily fixed with letter stickers :P), and other stuff - he terms Jon's non-use of MSN for six months as "discouraging." Haha, I ought to tell him that! Corey just sent me to a poorly-designed Washington State sex offenders link: if you type stuff into the URL after &name= and after &address=, and it'll show up on the site. Lovely stuff. :P

Roadhouse Grill Roadhouse Cheese Wraps

You'll find the original version of this delectable Roadhouse Grill signature item in the "starters" section of the menu. It's a variation on the popular fried cheese sticks appetizers with spicy jalapeno peppers in the middle, all wrapped in large spring roll wrappers before frying. The marinara sauce on the side is perfect for dipping this tasty cheesy tidbit. To save time - and we all like that - you can use any of your favorite marinara pasta sauces (such as Ragu) for dipping so you won't have to whip it up from scratch.

8 thin slices Monterey Jack cheese
8 thin slices cheddar cheese
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
1 teaspoon minced fresh chives
4 large spring roll wrappers
1 beaten egg
6 to 10 cups vegetable oil

On the side: Marinara (pasta) sauce

Slice the cheese really thinly, add peppers and chives, roll it all up, and give it a good squeeze before wrapping.

1. Use a sharp knife to make 8 thin slices each from the end of standard-size hunks of cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses.

2. Arrange 2 slices of cheddar and 2 slices of Jack on your hand, then sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of diced jalapeno on top of the cheese. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of minced chives on next. Sandwich the peppers and chives between the cheese, and roll it all up. Fold the cheese and squeeze it all together so that the peppers and chives are well sealed into the middle of the cheeses.

3. Lay a spring roll wrapper with one corner pointing away from you. Arrange the cheese lengthwise on the center of the wrapper.

4. Fold one of the side corners over the cheese filling. Brush a little beaten egg on the tip of the other side corner and fold it over the first corner so that it sticks. Brush some beaten egg on the corner pointing away from you. Fold the bottom corner up and over the filling. Roll the wrapper up, keeping it tight, until it rolls over the top corner with the egg on it. It should stick. Repeat with the remaining rolls, then cover them all and chill for at least 30 minutes. This will be long enough to heat up the oil in a deep fryer or large saucepan to 350 degrees.

5. When the oil is hot, fry the rolls for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes or until the outside is golden brown. Drain the rolls on a rack or paper towels for 2 minutes before serving with your favorite marinara sauce on the side for dipping. Serves 2.

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Monday, June 18, 2007

My intersection DOES exist! Are you CRAZY?!

Cabdriver to me: "Your intersection can't be!"
Me: ".... it obviously exists!"

If you don't want me to tell people something and not tell you that same thing, you're out of luck! Deal with it.

This morning, I managed to email Eric and tell him about how it was really going with me and Korey. I told him some vague stuff last night, but not in too much detail. Thank goodness Korey was engrossed in his Gamecube thing.. ha, I was passive-aggressive for a bit there too! ;) Turning off the TV when he's playing a game, placing some things where he may not be able to reach - oh damn, I'm turning into my mom, haha.

On Corey's recommendation, I exposed him to some Lords of Acid. He didn't seem to like it much, oh well. It is better than the Pussycat Dolls, but at least Rock 101 was acceptable to him. All these weird dancing Youtube videos, stuff on Facebook, and other things are what he likes... I'm not forbidding him to listen that! Went out to do the food shopping, and now Korey tells me that we might not even use a bunch of stuff I ended up buying: I can tell you one thing, you're certainly paying me back for that! I took a cab home, and the driver thought my intersection didn't exist. Uh right, you have GOT to be kidding. Got home and discovered that Korey had made a long-distance phone call to his "foster mother" in Port McNeill. After taking a shower, I politely told him that I'd appreciate it if he didn't do that anymore. He said that he had to call her since no one else would listen to him, and that it was only the once... AND he used his phone card for half the call. Said he'd pay me back, so we'll see on that one!

By the time I got to the computer, Korey said that Eric had heard he'd volunteered to cook - yeah, coz I told him about that in my email! He also said, "I don't like it when you tell Eric stuff and not me." Well, tough luck. Deal with it! Thank goodness Eric will be understanding - and he'd emailed me back to address my concerns. It bugs him a bit when Korey constantly asks him what he's doing, but he's not sure if that's his intention or not. Maybe it is, I wouldn't know. He also thinks I'm strange and weird - deal with it, too! So far, Eric's been right: he's not any actual trouble, but he can probably be stressful. I understand his concerns about the sexual divide - I am not rising up to his challenges for fighting! He can do that in the Gamecube world, thanks! Ah well, Eric says we can try this till Friday and see how "sane" I am then. Sounds good to me! (on Thursday, we'll go to the mall and get him a stool / phone cards / etc.) Then again, he appears to like my "POISON!" shirt... yikes. o_O (Jeremy, trying to cheer me up from sudden redrum: "Leslie, I hate to tell you this, but you have SNAKES ON YOUR SHIRT!" Hahaha, always loveable!)

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Yikes for food shopping! / Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Apparently, Korey wants me to do the food shopping while he does the cooking. Fine with me, although I'm not sure how much stuff to get. Oh well, at least he made me a list with ingredients for tacos / spaghetti / stir fry. There are some other incidentals on there too, like milk / fruit / the specific brand of cereal he likes. I don't know if I should get him that, but we'll see. He does promise to give me back half the money or something, so meh. Warned me that he snores, but eh - it's okay. We've also used joking endearments on each other, and he interrupted a game that Eric was playing to joke that we were fighting. Hey, it's not my fault he had two cocoas in a row and was buzzed from the caffeine! (Vivian and Karen's September 2005 gift came in handy - I just won't tell him how old it is, haha) He might go out with his friends on Friday, so we'll see what happens. I also talked to Chinese Eric very briefly - good times!

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

The first Top Secret Recipes book features a version of this clone recipe for America's most beloved candy creation. That recipe now sits in just about every collection of "copycat" recipes passed around the Web. But since 1993, I've learned a few things about the delicate science of Reese's Peanut Butter Cup cloning. You know, stuff like: "Never clone peanut butter cups while crossing a busy intersection," and "Don't clone peanut butter cups while under a tall tree in the rain." These are the sort of handy tips that you don't find anywhere else on the Internet. These are the things that come with experience, perseverance, and a long, complicated thought process.

Over seven years have passed, and I figured perhaps it was time to share some of the more useful of these discoveries with all you great folks here on the site. Now when you make your Reese's clones, you'll know to use reduced-fat peanut butter for a better texture. Now when you're craving that delicate combination of flavors, you'll know to get out the scissors to trim muffin cups for the chocolate. This is the improved recipe right here, authorized, and in its entirety! Now you can forget all about that other Reese's clone formula. Although, you might want to keep in mind the thing about the busy intersection.

12 paper muffin cups
One 12-ounce package milk chocolate chips
1 cup reduced-fat peanut butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Paper muffin cups and chocolate -- what a glorious day!

1. Cut the top half off of the muffin cups so that they are shallower.

2. Pour the chocolate chips into a glass bowl and melt them in the microwave: Microwave at 50% power for 2 minutes. Stir the chips gently, and let them sit for a minute or so. If the chocolate needs more melting, microwave those chippies again at half power for 30 seconds. Stir gently. Continue the process, stirring gently as you go. But be very careful not to overcook the chocolate or it'll seize up on you like day old Carolina roof tar.

3. Using a teaspoon, spoon a portion of the chocolate into the middle of a muffin cup. Draw the chocolate up the edges of the cup with the back of the spoon. Coat the entire inside of the muffin cup with chocolate, and place it into a muffin tin. Repeat with the remaining muffin cups, and then put the whole muffin tin in the fridge so that the chocolate hardens.

4. Combine the reduced-fat peanut butter, powdered sugar, and salt in a medium bowl.

5. When the chocolate in the muffin cups has hardened, pop the sweetened peanut butter into the microwave oven on full power for 1 minute. This will soften up the peanut butter so that it easily flows into the cups.

6. Spoon a small portion of peanut butter into each of the chocolate-coated cups. Leave room at the top for an additional layer of chocolate, which we'll add later. Pop the candy back in the refrigerator to harden the peanut butter. This should take an hour or so.

7. When the peanut butter filling has hardened, re-melt the chocolate chips in the microwave on half power for 30 to 60 seconds. Use a teaspoon to spread a layer of chocolate over the top of each candy. Chill the candy once again to set up the chocolate.

8. Finally, remember to take the paper off the outside of the peanut butter cups before eating them. Makes 12 candies.

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Brain Dump from a CRAZY DORK!

Apparently, I'm hilarious and crack people up... who knew? :P (Eric knows that my laughter can creep people out, hahaha)

Maybe I should hang out with Chinese Eric sometime. Adventures await!

Eric and Korey arrived close to 5:30 or so, and instantly started setting up a Gamecube. Diven's under the impression that we both can game all night, but I don't know the first thing about playing MARIO SOCCER! They'd put a BLT chicken salad in the fridge for later since they'd stopped by Superstore on their way here... I was wondering what took them so long when Eric called at 4:25 to say they'd be here in a bit! (says he'll make us Spanish tacos tomorrow - sure...) Oh well, at least I got a short catnap in during that time. Korey's said that I'm hilarious and crack him up... then he heard me in my room laughing over what Steph had put in Nathan's birthday card, and said that it had crept him out! Haha, I guess Eric should have warned him about that too! As soon as they were inside, Eric mentioned that it was like an oven at my place - Korey thought he was going to die and kept fanning himself with an old magazine, even with the window open right next to him! Once Eric had set everything up and adjusted the TV color, he left - and called a while later to see where his yellow jacket was. Not here, and definitely not in his car / at Superstore... they figured he left it at Aunt Vera's. Eventually, he figured he'd pick it up tomorrow at lunch.

Korey and I talked about Eric and Steph briefly, and he said that I read a lot. It's something I can do to pass the time when he's on the computer, and I don't mind it a bit! He wondered if I had a stool he could use in the shower - no, and I also didn't have any cream / sugar / milk for his tea later on! I told him that this is why we're going food shopping tomorrow with half his existing money, har har. His cheque will clear on Thursday, so he can do laundry then. He keeps bugging me about certain stuff too - let's just say that I didn't really need to hear what he said about my tub. Korey's asked me a lot about what I'm doing. ("Flirting? Chatting? Huh?!") Oh well, it's not too bad at present. He does feel a lot better now, especially since he blocked and deleted his mom from MSN, haha. Escaping his negative hell of a family must be great, heh. (as well as dodging faulty accusations of stealing Auntie's cellphone when he has his own!)

Spent his time browsing Facebook, Hot or Not, Youtube, and his email - Rihanna and a silver umbrella video, oh my! (never mind the daytime Emmy awards, haha) I'll just ignore it every time he asks who I'm talking to as I blog this entry, haha. His birthday's a week before Christmas, hah. Combination! (haha) I'm more mobile than he is even with my CP, so I don't mind bringing stuff to him - and yes, of course we'll take the bus tomorrow! I don't think he wants to WALK to the store even if it's relatively close! Says he went for bubble tea yesterday with Eric, so none for you till later in the week! Hahaha. He also thinks I'm feisty, perhaps jokingly - good times!

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You're so SERIOUS when you tell me you're almost six!

When my siblings and I got to church this morning, we saw Eric without Korey: apparently, he's not used to getting up so early, but he'd go to Sunday School. Went into the sanctuary and talked to Emily Lam for a bit: apparently, they'd spent an hour practicing the year-end songs with the kids yesterday. She wondered where I'd been, so I told her about Henry - I heard later from Auntie Vivian that he was tired. Then again, "next week" could mean the last Awana day - this Saturday! Hopefully, we can make it out to that one!

Talked to Randal for a bit before he went off somewhere very early in service: it turns out he got the "Sunday dinner hiatus" email, and is going to celebrate Father's Day tomorrow since the restaurants will be full today. Heh, at least he wished me a good morning! Dylan joined our pew, but then he went off to do something as well - so then it was just me and Jeremy not taking up much space in the extreme right of the pew. We shared his Bible (different translation!), laughs, and muted conversation about his cutting off threads on his shirt with pliers. ("... what the heck are you doing?!") Went to the back parking lot, and talked to Tony and Jeremy about mold on furniture (literally!) and customer service requiring a nasty side. Noticed little Joshua wandering around, so I asked him if he was looking for Mommy: he turned my way when I called his name - so smart! (he's almost two) Then again, I remember the Christmas 2005 potluck: Eric thought he'd responded to his calling his name when he was only a few months old. Smart kids! Said hi to Helen and little Nathaniel: his baby sister Abigail looks like she could beat him up one day, haha. (Sharon and Helen were talking about learning Mandarin / Cantonese terms from their patients, too)

Said hi to Phil, Grace (who's all settled in / unpacked thanks to Nathan and others), Jen, and Jeremy: almost as soon as I told Jeremy that I'd finally emailed him the link to the George Bush site and the chimp photos, he made some uncomplimentary remark... THEN IT STARTED RAINING! Jon marveled at the change in the weather while my sister adjusted my backpack straps and told me that I should have worn a raincoat or looked at a weather website before I left. (no time!) I decided to leave for the toddler Sunday School earlier than usual: Quan and Cordia opened the back door, and they were less than enthused when I told them that it had JUST started raining! (I also told Cordia that she and Mike had been discussing my favorite word on Friday - she LOVES the concept of throwing things out windows, haha!) Kept the kids amused by blowing gently on them, whirring toy pizza cutters, playing cars, showing them rainbow stickers, and being my usual self. Sean's brother Ian looked so serious when he told me that he was almost six and that his birthday was July 4, haha.

Talked to Amos and Andrew about how yesterday had gone: apparently, Andrew has finally gotten the message that they aren't allowed to eat anything during Awana. Hey, what better time than the second-to-last week? (haha) Amos says the crash course in doing my normal secretary duties is okay, and that the store only has a few more items - good! Went upstairs to see whether people were outside yet; not really. When I got back inside after offering a cracker to David, I saw Samantha / Rosanna / Ryan / Ethan terrorizing Mike by playing keep-away with his keys and wallet! Stanley, Sam, and Margaret stood around laughing while Rosanna tried to kick Mike in a very sensitive part of his anatomy: she's past the age where she doesn't know any better! (these kids are all six to eight years old) I tried to help by cornering Samantha near the kitchen: "I can prove that I'll give Mike's keys back to him!" Yeah right - just give them to me, okay? Had to pry her fingers off the keychain a few times before giving them to Mike over the kids' heads - those got quickly stuffed into his pocket! Rosanna tried grabbing them again, but his butt was NOT where his pockets were! Crazy stuff - then Stanley got Mike's wallet back from Ethan. After Mike thanked me, I headed outside again since this had eaten up a few minutes.

Saw Korey, who said that Eric had been over for a few hours last night - he thought I'd be mad that he called me at a late hour. Haha, it's all good since I didn't catch that call - at least he didn't seem mad that I had missed the call in the first place! Heard that Dylan, Vivian, Christon, Eric, Korey, Jeremy, and others were going to Boston Pizza for lunch... our own family headed to the Pho restaurant with Dallas. Little Christal and Wilson recognized me while we were waiting for a table, so I waved to them. My sibs, Dallas, and I discussed Melissa / Alan / Liz / Gilbert / people who weren't really fiancé(e)s / cancer / treatments / bus routes to church (99 and 9!) / birthday cards / the barbecue / Phil's bachelor party / Harmony / Fred / the maggot story / small fridges / lots of heavy items like rice and milk for one person. Good times, haha.

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Chimpanzees, missed call, dream of trapping Mao Zedong / Red Robin Seasoning

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!

I just emailed Jeremy that funny George Bush quote site, as well as one comparing George Bush to a chimpanzee with side-by-side photographs. After he and Jon take to the car-free streets today, he can have dubious fun scaring himself with that stuff, haha.

Just checked my phone - seems I missed a call at 11:15 from someone in this area code. I know that it's a relatively huge area code, but given that I was expecting a call from someone after 7 last night, I think I know who it might be. If it's who I think it is, he was probably waiting for people to fall asleep! (whoops, hope he's not too mad at me!)

I had a weird dream about a bunch of people trapping Mao Zedong in a suburban neighborhood house. It was the 1980s (at least), and everyone was out to capture political dissidents. The only problem was that he wasn't tied up properly with the dark blue ribbon that we had. He escaped from the human-sized mousetrap and promptly abducted one of the little girls from across the street. We tried finding her, to no avail - we even dragged out this huge coffee table book of character biographies in hopes of luring him out of hiding. When we were across the street comforting the girl's mother (who was pregnant with her fifth child, and had a purple T-shirt with a silver heart that gave the initials of the kid), my dad decided to take matters into his own hands. He hunted Mao Zedong down with a knife, and threatened him with bodily harm unless he gave up the little girl. The girl subsequently reappeared in her kitchen, saying that she'd actually been inside the house all the time. We thought she was across the street hidden somewhere, but no matter. The neighborhood men then charged on Mao Zedong with rifles, but two of those had no ammunition. They tried knives, but those were too dull. The dream ended as someone suggested long-range weapons when my dad was painting his house. Weird stuff!

Red Robin Seasoning

Give yourself some time to make a tough decision because there are nearly two dozen gourmet burgers on the Red Robin menu to pick from, not to mention scores of other fantastic food choices. Red Robin claims its steak fries are world-famous, and when you get a burger, your fries are served up on the side in a "bottomless" portion. Want some more fries? Just ask and you can have as many as your belly can pack in. But we found out that the burgers and fries have a very special secret ingredient in common that makes them taste so good: It's the Red Robin seasoning that's sprinkled on the food. Next time you make a burger, sprinkle some of our version of the seasoning blend over the patty. Cook up some frozen steak fries or French fries, and sprinkle a little of this blend over the top. You'll have all sorts of uses for this versatile spice. And the recipe makes a portion that should fit nicely in an empty spice bottle.

3 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon instant tomato soup mix (Knorr tomato with basil works great)
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and stir well. Store in a covered container. Makes 1/3 cup.

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