Sunday, August 31, 2008

Must Have

I'm not a huge coffee table book person (as I do not have a coffee table), but I really want this one published by Rizzoli. I love me some John Currin.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Total Heartthrob

A conversation I had last week derived the following short-list of Hollywood men whom I adore. I definitely have a type. And the type is kind of, sort of disturbing.

Conan O'Brien (why not?!)
George Clooney (fun-fun-fun)
Paul Bettany (a Brit with dry humor... how unexpected)
Michael Cera (looks like a bird and has and angelic voice. "these eyes...")
Seth Rogen (I bet he enjoys ice-cream)

Apparently I have a thing for egoless, self-deprecating beta males who trimph over macho men to get the girl. Hmm. What does this say about me?!

Cougar cub, you still regin supreme. I am patiently awaiting your return home.

On a side note, does anyone know what happened to Planter's deliciously unhealthy cheeseballs? I crave them.

Bootie Call

"Without that glass slipper, Cinderella might still be scrubbing floors." Plucked the quote off of net-a-porter's website.

Fall is always a great time to reassess one's wardrobe and try to break out of old style habits. Rrright. Truth is, I have never been successful breaking free of my style rut of baby-dolls. I suppose that's a good thing as this year, because the lifestyle of a graduate student isn't very lux. With no income and bills up the wazoo, I'm going to have to make do with what I've already got.

Guess that means no new booties for this girl. At least not Parisian ones...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Birthday Boy

Am back in LA and loving the weather. Forgot how lovely my apartment here is. Lucky-lucky me.

Still painting. Ugh. Take a peek on my latest UNfinished creation.

Beans turned 2 today. He's practically a pepaw.
Perhaps I should start addressing him as MISTER Beans.
No huge bash tonight--just a couple of extra cookies--as my now tweenage puppy (2 human years is approximately 14 dog years) enjoyed a big par-tay last week.

Battle the Bulge - Day 10
Banana: 110 cal
McDonald's Chicken McNuggets (Only 4 because I shared 2 with Beans): 190 cal
Diet Coke: 0 cal
Sour Apple Gummy loops (3 servings): 330 cal
Caribbean Fruit popsicle: 110 cal
Auntie Chun's Udon (cup o' noodle-ish thing): 220 cal
Haagen Daz Vanilla Bean ice-cream (2 servings): 580
Total: 1,440 calories worth of junk-food. *tsk-tsk-tsk*

Monday, August 25, 2008

Smooth Operator

I want electrolysis for Christmas.

Battle the Bulge - Day 9
4 small bites of Josh's chocolate cake:: 100 cal
Lunch at Subway's
Turkey Breast Sandwich (6 inch w/ cheese triangles & honey mustard): 325 cal
Diet Coke: 0 cal
Baked Lays BBQ: 140 cal
Dinner at R&G Lounge: 800 cal
Total: 1,365 calories


My blog inspired. *teehee* Last week, my dear friend, "T.P." presented me with the above-pictured trio of felt softies over a meal at Sweet Tomatoes. Ever-so-attentive to detail, T.P. even used real beans for the puppy character's eyes! The card that accompanied the gift was just as touching as the gift.


I am craving sour gummies...

Made to Marry (?)

Wedding dress shopping with Pam has proven challenging.
We are not well-studied bridal people.
We are, according to the bridal boutique peeps, "everywhere" in our selection.

Battle the Bulge - Day 8
Lunch at Subway's
Turkey Breast Sandwich (6 inch w/ cheese triangles & honey mustard): 325 cal
Diet Coke: 0 cal
Baked Lays BBQ: 140 cal
Dinner at Subway's
Turkey Breast Sandwich (6 inch w/ cheese triangles & honey mustard): 325 cal
Diet Coke: 0 cal
Baked Lays BBQ: 140 cal
Sour Patch Kids (2.5 servings... Oops): 375 cal
Total: 1,445 calories (YAY! BACK DOWN! But not enough to lose anything.)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Battle the Bulge - Day 7

Somewhere over the rainbow, blue blirds fly...
... and ice-cream is a weight-loss food item. Tried to tame my inner beast today while dining with Pammy. Still exceeded my recommended daily calorie count, but am getting my number back down. Better luck tomorrow.

Banana: 110 cal
M&Ms (2): 20 cal
Turkey Burger at the Counter.
Turkey patty (1/3 pound): 150 cal
Slice of cheese: 105 cal
English muffin: 120 cal
Tomato & lettuce: 20 cal
Grilled onions: 20 cal
Ketchup: 30 cal
Honey mustard: 70 cal
Diet coke: 0 cal
Iced Lemon Green Tea with Honey: 200 cal
Dinner at Southland Flavor Cafe in Cupertino: 600 cal
Yogurtland Fro-yo (less than 2 oz): 100 cal
Total: 1545 calories

Battle the Bulge - Day 6

Hmm. Not only am I not steadily losing weight, I believe I may be steadily gaining weight. Once again, I have exceeded my recommended daily intake to MAINTAIN! I don't enjoy having to watch what I eat...

Banana: 110 cal
Gummies (8): 280 cal
Lunch was a meal of dimsum at Joy Luck in Cupertino.
1 cha-siu-bao (steamed pork bun): 150 cal
1 nai-huang-bao (steamed egg custard bun): 120 cal
1 sao-mai: 58 cal
1 xia-jiao (shrimp dumpling): 65 cal
3 pieces of xia-chang-feng (shrimp flat noodle): 75 cal
2 fong-zhua (chicken's feet, er phoenix claw): 180 cal
1 luo-buo gao (turnip cake): 70 cal
Some steamed veggies: 20 cal
Tea: 20 cal
Yogurtland fro-yo (less than 2 oz): 100 cal
Dinner was a meal of sushi at Kabuto (my favorite sushi joint in SF): 600 cal
5 bites of cookies n' cream ice-cream cone from Joe's: 100 cal
Total: 1,908 calories

Friday, August 22, 2008

Battle the Bulge - Day 5

I'm spiraling downwards. Somebody help!
Pictured: Me & Pammy on The Grizzly at Great America. Yes, she took this mid-ride. She's a beast!

Fried egg: 92 cal
Great America (amusement park) Treats
Half a churro: 58 cal
Half an Icee: 128 cal
6 pieces of brown rice California Roll sushi: 100 cal
Half a large serving of Dippin' Dots: 275 cal
Buffet dinner at Sweet Tomatoes. Uh -oh
1 cup Won Ton Chicken Happiness Salad: 150 cal
Miscellaneous Veggies: 100 cal
1/8 cup Tuna Tarragon: 60 cal
2 cups Minestrone soup: 240 cal
1 small blueberry muffin: 140 cal
1 cornbread: 140 cal
1/2 cup jello: 80 cal
1/2 cup vanilla soft serve: 140 cal
5 bites of chocolate lava cake: 187 cal
Total: 2,165 calories

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Battle the Bulge - Day 4

Things aren't looking so hot for me. Dining out does my diet no good. I will have to step it up tomorrow in order to make up for my poor performance.

Massive bowl of Emily's azuki red bean soup: 400 cal
Delicious mayo-drenched tuna sandwich in San Mateo (6 inch, no cheese): 550 cal
Cup of minestrone soup (it came with my sandwich): 180 cal
Orbitz (2): 20 cal
Cup of tea: 30 cal
Dinner at Burma Superstar: 1,000,000 cal
Small Fro-yo at Quickly with strawberry topping: 180 cal
Total: 1,001,260 cal

IF: Detach

"An old thing becomes new if you detach it from what usually surrounds it." French film-maker, Robert Bresson.

Using the words of others has proven inspiring. Pictured: Detached arm-pit hair enjoying a second life. He-he.

Nedko Solakov

Fear #37: A balloon and a cactus became friends. For the time being – everything OK. The cactus’ pricks are minding the tender balloon, and the balloon keeps itself close to the ground for a better chat with the cactus (even though the balloon can easily go 56 metres high).”

Came across Nedko Solakov collection of drawings, "99 Fears" in Drawn this morning. The worries he illustrates and describes are really funny. Check it out.

Battle the Bulge - Day 3

I was not very disciplined today. I went out for a meal of shabu shabu (Japanese hot pot) with friends, and ended up having a little more than I'd hoped to. But I did do a little more walking than usual during the afternoon. Does that make up for the excessive calorie intake? Probably not. *Sigh* Better luck tomorrow.

Green beans and almonds (Cascadian Farms package): 120 cal
Two egg whites: 40 cal
Coke (3 sips): 50 cal
Orbitz: 20 cal (I had 2 sticks)
Hotpot (lots of veggies, 8 pieces of thinly-sliced beef, no rice): about 800 cal
Green tea ice-cream: 280 cal
Emily's red azuki bean soup (5 spoonfuls): 70 cal
Total: 1380

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

"B" is for Beans

... and birthday cake!
With the help of his love-oozing-doggy-godmama-baker-extraordinaire Emily, Beans had himself a dog-gone fabulous early birthday celebration tonight. (Early because much of his actual birthday on the 27th will be spent driving back down to LA). Behold the talent of Ems--see above. She baked Beans a delicious smelling (and probably tasting), exquisite banana-cinnamon-carob double-decker cake frosted with cream cheese and carrots. Notice the attention to detail! The sakura blossom shaped carrot slices even spell out a "B"! Beans gobbled down two ginormous slices of Em's dog friendly creation (two slices for turning two?!?)... the slices placed into his new bowl set from me. Cake consumption was followed up by much necessary exercise. Fetch with his new rubber ball--his last and final gift. Every dog deserves to be this happy.

P.S. Beans does not look as joyful in the final photo for he'd just finished his two slices and noticed that his bowl wasn't being refilled... What? No thirds?! But it's my birthday!

Which leads right into one of my favorite quotes by George Harrison of the Beatles: “All the world is birthday cake, so take a piece, but not too much.”

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Nobody Told Me...

... that I've been running about with crazy eyebrows! I hate taking photos. Hate, hate, HATE! I suppose I have self-confidence issues, but no need to get into that today. Let's focus. Let's focus on the issue at hand. My BROWS. After looking through photos that were taken of your's truly within this past year, I noticed that my brows, as compared to my female classmates' and friends', are wild and untamed. Not knowing how to discpline them myself, I turned to a professional -- the Vietnamese lady at "Nails Feel Good" on Arguello. Huang does nails, so she must do brows as well. So I assumed.

And I was right! I had my eyebrows waxed for the second time in my life yesterday and am pleased with the results. I wish I could bring Huang back to LA with me. Without her, I just might start looking crazed again. See above.

Battle the Bulge - Day 2

Turns out I miscalculated. Thank God I'm bad at math!
In order to maintain my current weight, I can actually consume up to 1522 calories! However, in order to lose weight, I should not be exceeding 1000 calories per day. So I went a little overboard tonight. Oops. Probably shouldn't have had fro-yo. But I'm super glad I did! He-he.

Wakame soup - 35 cal
Spinach - 20 cal
Strawberries - 24 cal (4 cal each)
Egg - 70 cal
Starbucks turkey & artichoke sandwich (not tasty) - 200 cal
Pellegrino - 0 cal
Meal at Tanto - 700 cal
Yogurtland frozen yogurt - 100 cal
Total: 1149 calories

Battle the Bulge - Day 1

I'm hungry.

According to the internets, a person of my size (5 feet) with daily physical activity as limited as mine (read: sedentary) should only consume 975 calories (yes, we're in 3 digit territory) in order to maintain my current weight. I did all my homework. I calculated my BMR (basal metabolic rate) and then factored in my daily activity level. In order to lose anything, I'd have to consume less than 975. Insane. What's sad is, I bet my favorite US Weekly starlets consume even less.

Needless to say, I'm no Hollywood starlet. Friends of mine know that portion control has always been a difficult task for me. It's not that I'm unhealthy in my choice of eats. I just happen to enjoy everything in larger portions. You're going to have one bowl of Heart to Heart cereal for breakfast? Yeeeeah. I think I'll have two. Want a snack? Have a handful of almonds! No. I'll take the bag. Debs, you want to share this bowl of noodles? Sure. And I'll order a second bowl to "share" as well. Ugh. I'm full. Maam, want to see the dessert menu? Uh, YE-AH. I have a whole separate stomach for dessert. *tsk-tsk-tsk* Just for kicks, I kept count of my caloric intake last week, and get this, my average daily intake was actually over 2000. All this said, being "good" has been extremely challenging.

Grapes - 180 calories (6 calories each)
Wakame (seaweed) soup - 35 calories
Spinach - 40 calories
Chicken apple sausage - 120 calories
Orbitz - 30 (10 calories each)
Coke (sips) - 33 calories
Grilled pork Vietnamese sandwich - 300 calories
Strawberries - 120 (4 calories each)
Air - 1,000,000 calories (or so it seems)
Grand total: 838 (not including Air)

Monday, August 18, 2008

Have You Seen the Muffin Man?

Dude, where's my waist?

This past weekend in Yosemite, after a massive breakfast of bacon, eggs, and pancakes, Will and Johnny agreed to a "Six Pack Challenge" somewhat similar to the one that our other friend, Larry imposed upon himself. See here. The two will be heading off to Hawaii for a wedding ten days from now, and the challenge is to get their abs in tip-top shape by then. As much as I hope the two will succeed, I think this is a mission impossible. I have no doubt that Will and Johnny are capable of working out like mad men, but the caloric consumption of Will alone is well........ not quite Phelpsian, but it's close! Anyhow, this challenge is going to take a whole lot of will power and discipline and should be fun (or funny) to follow. See their progress here and here!

Inspired by their desire to get in shape, I am going on a low carb diet. Kind of funny that this vow should come from a girl who owns a tee with I "heart" carbs scribbled across the chest. But as stated in previous entries, my tummy's been smiling way too much. See the reason for my food-baby weight. I want to remain fun-size, not king-size. Let's hear it. "I don't think you're ready, for this jelly... I don't think you're ready, for THIS jelly!" Am clearly delirious due to hunger. *Sigh

Good Lovin'

Beans gets good loving from most people he encounters (he's been blessed with one of those faces), but from Emily, he not only gets lavished with heart, he gets homemade gourmet cookies! Pictured: Oatmeal-parsley cookies she dropped off for my pup before my trip to Yosemite. Beans is a dog-gone lucky puppy.

Happy Birthday, Will

Will's actual birthday took place back in July, but this past weekend, a couple of us helped make up for the missed celebration. Seven of us (baby Lincoln included) "surprised" Will ("surprised" in quotation marks because he found out about his trip before it occurred... boo...) by driving out to Yosemite for a weekend of healthy living. Or so we had hoped. We ended up spending more time eating than hiking! Bacon, pancakes, fajitas, quesedillas, fruit tarts, cream puffs, and ice-cream. Does that sound like health food to you?! Wahaha. Actually, come to think of it, we didn't hike at all. We rented bikes on Saturday and spent the entire afternoon cycling around the park. The bike rental turned out to be a fantastic choice though. Given the short amount of time we had to spend at the park, wheels were necessary. We got to see much more of the park than we would have had we gone on foot. It was also a bittersweet reminder that when I return to school this fall, I will be biking to school. I, along with many others, was not granted a parking permit. Aaaah!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe...

Feeling somewhat brain-dead today, so I will have to borrow the words of yet another brilliant writer to enhance my illustration. Who have we got this time, you ask? I offer you George Eliot. "The strongest principle of growth lies in human choice."

Right. This explains the muffin top formation at my waistband. For if it were up to me, I'd choo-choo-choose all three frozen delights :)

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

IF: Sail

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” - Mark Twain

Hungry Man


Inspiration in the Everyday

Still working on the website... yet another sneak peek...

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Affordable Art

In the name of research, I bought yet another limited edition print for $20. You know what they say... you need to spend money to make money! This Evah Fan print entitled "The Object of My Affection," is a giclee print -- the sort of high-quality print that I hope Flaring Nostrils will be offering come fall. But enough about print quality. I just love-love-love-love Evah's sense of humor. Check her work out here.

Hidden Talent

Last night, I had dinner with friends at Jay and Karen's. The purpose of the dinner (besides being able to hang out) was to check out their new crib that Karen had decorated on a budget. OMG, it was gorgeous!!! What I saw was comparable to featured homes in Dwell and Domino. This undergraduate architecture major should have her on house flipping show. I should have spent more time taking photos of her unit than I did stuffing my face, because this girl needs to be seen! Check out what she did to her kitchen. Laquered MacBook-esque cabinets set against a backdrop of bold pear-green walls... fresh-fresh-fresh. And those floor tiles. What lovely work. As her self-appointed PR woman, if you're a young professional, have recently purchased a new home, and are interested in hiring a decorator who's capable of delivering high-quality results on a tight budget, contact me and I'll put you in touch with Karen. Maaaaan, I wish I had more photos to share.

Pictured: My friend Winnie concentrating on pouring a glass of Orangina.

Life's Ruff

Beans is sad that he has no bowl. At the beginning of the summer, he had two, then he had just one, now he has none. I left his only bowl at the cougar cub's home.

That said, I bought him a new one today. It goes with the kitchen tile of my summer sublet. Yes, I'm all about the aesthetics. Beans, on the other hand, is all about the food.


In the Spirit of Competition

I may not be capable of flipping, swimming, or shooting like an Olympian, but I am good at passing gas.

Monday, August 11, 2008


These paintings remain unfinished (see the masking tape?), but I thought I'd share anyway.

Sunday, August 10, 2008


High-flying Koo will be attending Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management come fall. Congratulations to the Beastmaster (nickname she gave herself)! I'm so belly, belly proud of her(Chinese "Engrish" in honor of the Olympics). Now Koo, if you should get lost in b-school, why not follow the advice that you once peddled to me?Ask yourself, "W.W.G.B.D?" Translation to the rest of you minus Chang: What would Gisele Bundchen do? Remember to pack your W.W.G.B.D. undies to Chicago, Koo.

Pictured: Corner of an unfinished painting.

Research & Development

Before dropping by Dino's, a friendly pizza joint in Pacific Heights to attend Koo aka Blogger Stalker's business school send-off party, the cougar cub, Pam and I shopped along Fillmore. At Zinc Details, we came across the charming gocco prints of San Francisco artist, Lorena Siminovich. Click here to see more of her lovely work. Lorena started her company Petit Collage with the idea of offering affordable art for children (and grownups!), with a modern feel. In the name of research and development (as I have yet to decide on a printer for my drawings), I purchased one. I'm looking forward to framing my print to hang upon my return to LA.

Smiling Too Much

My tummy's been smiling too often for its own good. I've been indulging in good food with good company since last Friday. From Thai to Japanese to Italian, my appetite has been unstoppable. My body is not a temple, rather a trash compactor. Oh boy. Now what's particularly disturbing is that I find myself sitting on my lardo ass consuming carb-loaded meals while watching the Olympics! And I'm not just talking about opening ceremony footage (which, on a side note, was amaaaazing... I'm so proud to be Chinese) rather footage of hard-bodied athletes breaking world records (congrats to Phelps--though I was rooting for Lochte). *tsk-tsk-tsk* I really should start working out again. But the devil in my head continues to urge me to indulge in my cravings of green tea ice cream topped with azuki red bean. Oh god, I'm truly hopeless.

On a side note, I feel I deserve a treat here and there as I have been hard at work. I've got so many projects due towards the end-of-the-month--projects including my website, merchandise designs, the children's book I'm cowriting and illustrating with Chang, my paintings (nearly four down, four more to go)--something's got to give!

Pictured: Some of the drawings being used to create the animated intro sequence for Flaring Nostrils...

Friday, August 08, 2008


Not only is today the opening day for the Beijing Olympics, but it is also Father's Day in China and Taiwan. ("Ba ba" is a homophone for two "8"s in Mandarin as well as "father".) Well, I wish my "Ba" the very best on this special day. He's always been my greatest supporter. Rev Run (of Run DMC) insists that parents make kids "feel large," and that's exactly how my dad makes me feel. Large! (Well, most of the time...) With a wannabe "the next Sanrio" b-school drop-out for a daughter, my dad has reacted surprisingly well. In fact, he encouraged me to "be special" and then enthusiastically rounded up tote, plush, and vinyl doll manufacturers back in Asia to support my goal of infiltrating the world's school grounds with disturbingly-cute Flaring Nostrils products. I won the Ba lottery. Happy Father's Day!!!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Fanny Pak

They should have won.


I spend my evenings drawing with the tv on, and last night, while sketching at Lawrence, Faye, and the cougar cub's summer rental, MTV's "Next" played in the background. It's an awful show. Scripted speed-dating for the 22 and under crowd. Very, very bad. The awful ambience resulted in awful drawings like the header shown above. Yawwwn. Not terribly creative, but I'm posting it anyway. Next.

IF: Fierce

Illustration Friday Topic: Fierce
What? No tassles?!

Possible the fiercest get-up in concert fashion history was Madonna's conical bra from her Blonde Ambition tour. My cousin's friend's mother (Whew! What a mouthful!)was the seamstress who sewed up the unforgettable Gaultier creation.

Note: I failed to post this submission to IF on time, but hey, better late than never. Also, I do realize that this layout's getting repetitive. Promising MORE in the posts to come.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Is It Worth It, Let Me Work It

I've been working on the opening flash sequence for the Flaring Nostrils site. That said, I have been drawing pretty much the same thing over and over since yesterday. As tedious as animating may be, it's going to be really neat to see my sketches come to life with the help of Corine, my answer to Flash. More life for the drawings, less life for us. Nice.

The best part about putting this sequence together has been the music selection process. I'm into all the funky tunes that I imagine the Fanny Packs of "America's Best Dance Crew" would groove to.

Once song I came across, which I can't help but want to boogie to(and by "boogie" I mean I want to perform the Monica-Fat-Dance) is this song. When I heard "My Drive-Thru" for the first time, I didn't like it at all. But like most N.E.R.D. produced tunes, this one grew on me. Not using it as the "score" to my lil' sequence though. I've got something BETTER!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

IF: Poof!

Illustration Topic: Poof!
I asked to get rid of my mosquito bites but the message was lost in translation.

Coming Soon

Still working hard on getting the site for Flaring Nostrils up...
In the meantime, check this out! Corine, my uber-talented and sooper kind partner-in-crime has helped me put up my under-construction page. It isn't much, but I've got so many other projects going on that I had to keep things simple. Baby steps.

Monday, August 04, 2008


Sunday brunch fun at Koo aka Blogger Stalker's Foster City hotel with Chang (a dear college friend), Tyson (the Korean BBQ mastah), Andrew (Koo's charming cousin who likes to consume blocks of cheese while topless when drunk) and the cougar cub was yummy. I stuffed myself silly with hearts of palm (healthy) and Chang's unfinished Belgian waffle (not so healthy)and fell into a food coma for the rest of the day.

With the help of Corine, my wonderful webdesigner, my under-construction page for Flaring Nostrils will be up really soon. We so excited!!!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

The Good Life

I wasn't terribly productive (in terms of creative works completed) this past weekend, but I sure did have a load of fun! Dai, Ems, Will (he's baaaack!), the cougar cub, Beans, and I went to Napa on Saturday. After gobbling down some lunch at Giugni deli (see MyTummySmiled for my sandwich review)and indulging in uber-fancy chocolates at Woodhouse (my favorite after being introduced to them by Pammy), we hit up wineries, Peju, St. Supéry, and Mumm. Lots of thirsty folks. Hehe. It was a fun-filled day--made even more satisfying with the evening's conclusion at Koriya, a Korean BBQ restaurant in Oakland.

P.S. DBD reentered the workforce this morning. G'luck, g'luck, g'luck! He'll be managing the Del Monte brand--which, I just learned, covers Milk Bone products! Beans says, "Part the Red Seas for this rockstar, please!"

Saturday, August 02, 2008

My Best Friend's Wedding

Aaaaaaah! It's finally happened!!!!!!!!!!!! My bff, Pammy, and Mr.Debs are ENGAGED!!!

My Life Flashed Before My Eyes

...said the cookie.

Friday, August 01, 2008

IF: Canned

Illustration Friday topic: Canned
My labrador is named "Beans"...


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