Category: Personal

Alexa: 18 Months Update

My darling daughter, you’ve grown so much since the last update I wrote for you 10 months ago.

During this time, your personality has truly blossomed and I love learning more about who you are.

Mostly, you are exceedingly sweet and gentle. You love to give me the snuggles that I craved from Max when he was your age. You will crawl into my lap and just lie there while I can stroke you.

You have the softest smile, accompanied by your tinkling, wind-chime giggle.

And nothing could have prepared me for just how girly you are turning out to be! It wasn’t until I had two children – a boy and a girl – that I understood how gender differences can be so innate.

I also can’t look at you without seeing myself – both the good and the bad.

Your dad and I are often in disbelief by how similar you are to me. Especially when he sees your attitude. We’re lucky that your dad loves seeing the baby “me!”

Anyway, you have my petite bone structure, high forehead, fine hair, and small features. Incredibly, our teeth structure is identical – two large central incisors (i.e. buck teeth) with small lateral incisors and large, needle-sharp canines.

The good is, you will always look younger than you are. You’ll hate it, at first, but come to appreciate it after college. It takes awhile for it to become a good thing.

The bad is, you have my fierce temper. On the outside, you might look sweet and innocent but you have one of those tempers where you don’t give a crap about anything when you’re mad.  This is also something that improves as you get older – if you want to have friends and to get married, that is.

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The Start of Our Home Renovation Project

I previously mentioned that we were in contract to buy a home. Well, we finally closed and, since then, life has been a non-stop whirlwind of meeting or speaking with general contractors, architects, kitchen designers, roofers, painters, gardeners, the list goes on…

I think I’ve dealt with almost 20 tradespeople in a span of three weeks!

Mr. C and I bought a solid house in a great location. However, the interior is dated and the kitchen is terribly laid out. In light of the fact that we *hope* this will be our forever home and that we have two young children, we are trying to renovate as much as possible before moving in.

This means: Gutting the entire kitchen and three bathrooms, reflooring, raising ceilings, knocking down walls, replacing the roof, converting the fireplace, adding and/or redoing all closets, painting. Basically, a lot of effin’ work.

And, of course, that also means I am now in neurotic research mode. Which has since become my full-time job, for the time being.

I plan to start documenting my home remodeling journey, if for no other purpose than to share my neurosis with others.

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Race: Lessons from a Three-Year Old

It all started innocuously enough.

I was doing work on my laptop while Max played nearby. I am an attorney so I had to search for a law firm’s contact information. After a quick Google search, I found the firm’s website. I clicked on the link and was immediately greeted by a row of middle-aged white men in suits with big smiles, one of them cradling a distinction award of some kind.

I couldn’t help but mutter, “Well, that’s a lot of white men.”

Max, being three years old and inquisitive about literally every damn thing, perked up and asked, “What white men?”

Crap.

On the other hand, I realized, this is the perfect teachable moment!

I think we can all agree that we live in tumultuous times, whichever side of the political spectrum you may fall. And race can’t help but be in the forefront of my thoughts these days, with all the talks about the Muslim ban and Mexico border wall. You see, I am Asian-American. And in America, that means I have always been a minority.

So race matters.

I sometimes forget about race, living in NYC, one of the most diverse areas of the county. There are even places where I look around and everyone is Asian or Asian-American. But travel outside the metropolitan area and I become far more race-conscious, by necessity.

As a minority, I have to be even more acutely aware of the importance of raising tolerant children that embrace diversity and multiculturalism.

So back to Max. I had him sit on my lap while I Googled some images for race + diversity where I come across a picture collage featuring people of all different races, genders, ages, and orientation.

The entire time, I am secretly patting myself on the back for using this as an opportunity to introduce him to the concept of race.

I pointed to the following picture:

And I asked, “Which of these people do you think looks most like you?”

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getting over a wall

You know that feeling when you know you should do something and you want to do it but you haven’t done it in so long that you don’t even know where to start?

Yea, so that’s me in a nutshell when it comes to blogging lately.

And I don’t even really know what the purpose of this post is. All I know is that I need to write something just to get over that seemingly insurmountable wall that’s been growing due to my lack of writing this past month.

The thing is, I love blogging. The problem is, I worry too much that I might not be writing something useful, e.g., a product review or guide. And that I may appear self-absorbed when I write about the more mundane things in life.

But I forgot that the other half of my purpose for blogging is to document my life! It’s an outlet and a way for me to do something for me.

So I am going to try to commit to start writing more. Even if it seems relatively inconsequential. Because life is passing by way too quickly and I have not been writing about enough of it.

It’s all coming together?

First, my apologies for the blogging hiatus – for anyone who’s missed me. This is the longest I have ever gone without posting anything. But, you know, life happens.

And, suddenly, everything in life feels like it is happening all too fast.

Recently, Mr. C and I accepted an offer on our apartment, the offer we made to purchase a home was accepted, and we signed the lease to rent another apartment as we will need a place to stay while the new home goes through renovations.

All on the same day.

**Do not, under any circumstances, purchase a home prior to selling your current one. Our first buyer fell through. Fortunately, we had several subsequent offers and are currently in contract. However, the stress endured in the interim was completely not worth it. Plus, I’m in the real estate business and should definitely know better.**

Anyway, the reason why we are moving is because we’ve always known that we wanted to raise our kids in Long Island. While I love, love, love the city, outside of elementary school, our zoned public school education sucks. Where we live now, the only good options we have are private schools or one of the specialized high schools.

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