Archive for January, 2012

Fighting The Good Fight

January 25th, 2012

Well, I’ve reached a critical part of my journey. I’m about to break through into the land of the living. To functional from dysfunctional. And I’ve been working long and hard at it. This last part is one of the toughest. Lots of baggage to let go of…physical and otherwise. I am fighting the good fight! There are starting to be some glimmers of hope. Miraculous ones.

My cheeses are now being offered in the juice bar at PURE FOOD AND WINE. It’s amazing! Who would have ever thought it would happen? The OTHER STORE in NYC that is carrying my cheese called me to tell me that customers were complaining that they were out of stock. Word is getting out! I am struggling to keep up with demand. Things are starting to shift. Big time. It’s exciting. And nerve wracking. It seems the only thing holding me back at this moment is the money issue. This has always been the hardest piece for me to let go of. Being Asian.

The universe wouldn’t lead me all this way just to fail at the end. I need to keep the faith! Keep pushing ahead. And trust. I can do this!

kickstart campaign
Two weeks left on my KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN. I can definitely use some help getting the word out! Thanks!


I Heart Yoko

January 14th, 2012

wayne megaphone
Happy New Year! This post is a little delayed. Forgive me. For I have been BUSY. But I had to take a moment to absorb this because it was so inspiring to me on so many levels. How did I ring in 2012? I spent it watching THE PLASTIC ONO BAND and the FLAMING LIPS in Oklahoma City. (Thus, the visit to my ALMA MATER).

yoko ono band
The show did not disappoint. It was so thrilling. I really struggled to be there (due to my MYSTERIOUS LUPUS-LIKE AILMENT). But I fought for it and one (this was a typo which I decided to leave as is). They really went all out. The lights and the balloons were incredible. No expense was spared. It was absolutely breathtaking. Yoko is an artist of the highest caliber. She is amazing. I can’t say enough nice things about her. She is such a rare gem. Intelligent, fierce, intuitive, compassionate, and actualized. Most people go through life living from the outside in. Only very rarely do you encounter a person who is truly actualized. From the inside out. Like Yoko. She is a woman who was so far ahead of her time that a lot of people still don’t get it.

The show opened with Yoko singing, ‘It happened at a time in our life when I least expected…’ followed by the most gut-wrenching, raw, painful wail you have ever heard. It was abrasive. And it came out of nowhere. And just blew you away. So much pain. Transformed into art. Truly incredible.

yoko sean nels
The band was super tight. But also loose. In the best possible way. One of my favorite moments was watching Nels and Yoko going off on each other. Nels also plays in the band, Wilco. But he’s really versatile. My boyfriend has toured with him a couple times. So I’ve heard a lot of his more experimental stuff. And I’ve seen him play quite a few times. He can be pretty out there. The first time I saw him play, I was bowled over by this bizarre sound. I couldn’t figure out what it was. It was out of this world. So I started looking closer at what was going on. And I noticed that Nels was literally playing his guitar with a springed coil. Instead of a pic. The guy can get wacky! But Nels with Yoko is a very interesting combination. Yoko introduced this crazy noise jam by saying, ‘This is a song that I first played with John. And then Sean. And now Nels…It’s about my childhood or something.’ (Who knew that Yoko has such a dry sense of humor. I am particularly fascinated by this because my mother is Japanese. About the same age as Yoko. And I had always assumed it was because of the language barrier that she didn’t have a sense of humor. It’s not that she doesn’t have one exactly. But something like this would definitely fly under her radar. That is making a connection to another culture that is very unusual for a foreigner). She then proceeded to rock this jam with Nels.

She almost sounds like a guitar. She’s just fully out there. No holds barred. And Nels gets in there and juices it up. It’s unbelievable. She just has no fear. She’s just out there. No safety net. No predictable structure. She’s so fearless that it’s beautifully poetic. Not in a contrived way. But just real. And raw. And present. And truly her own. I feel like this was the reason I needed to be there. I needed to see this. And I needed to draw inspiration from it. This is supposed to be my mantra for 2012. ‘No fear’. It’s like when a person gets sick, they inevitably encounter all kinds of overwhelming situations where they don’t measure up. And I think that in response, a person naturally develops a sense of fear. Of being in situations where they will be overwhelmed. And this is protective and helpful to a point. But in order to rejoin the world of the living, you reach a point where you have to release that fear. I am at that point now. And I think this is why I needed to see Yoko. And why she resonated with me so much.

The show was hard for me. Mostly the crowd. It was a very packed room. And I often felt overwhelmed. Like the air was too thin. And I might pass out. And I kept going to the back of the venue. To get more air. But I wasn’t leaving. No matter what.

The Lips set was also amazing. Wayne came out in his bubble again. My boyfriend shot this FOOTAGE OF HIM (For some reason, this drat computer won’t let me embed this video. So you have to click to it. Definitely worth it). Truly surreal. The amazing light show and the bubble plus the lips. It was like being in an alternate universe. It was so great that we went two nights in a row. I paid for it though. I spent the entire next day with my head in a garbage bag. But hey! That’s the price you pay sometimes.

This is 2012. No more living in the protective bubble of being sick. It’s time to pop the bubble and get out there and rock. Just like Wayne. And Yoko. I am going to live my life on my terms. And that’s all there is to it. If I allow myself to live in fear of my illness, I will be defined by it. I don’t want that. I am the definer here! And guess what? No illness is going to hold this girl back. Watch out world. Because HERE I COME! Thanks for the inspiration Yoko!


Official Launch Party

January 9th, 2012

nut milk cheeses
Well, the time has come. The time for me to rejoin the world of the living. The last six years have been like a cocoon phase while I healed from my CASUALITIES of MODERN LIFE. But the universe has spoken. And it’s clearly time to move on to something bigger. I FINISHED PHYSICAL THERAPY a few weeks ago. And a couple days ago, PURE FOOD AND WINE placed their first order for my cheeses (which will soon be available in their juice bar)! If that’s not a foreshadowing moment, I don’t know what it. On that note, I’m announcing my OFFICIAL LAUNCH ON KICKSTARTER. The last several years have been kinda tough. But I’ve been getting by with a little help FROM MY FRIENDS. Thanks for joining me on this journey!



January 5th, 2012

mk-okc and me
Happy New Year! Hope it was a great one. I can’t believe it’s 2012. I’m really encouraged about this year. Because it feels like I’m at a big turning point. This year, I spent New Year’s in Oklahoma (home of MATTHEW KENNEY ACADEMY where I attended CULINARY SCHOOL) and also where the rest of my family lives). This year, there was something big happening in OKC for New Year’s (next blog post). So, I had to be there.

dragon roll
Of course, I had to stop by the restaurant to see what was on the new menu. We went three times while we were in town. Here is a sampling of my favorite menu items. The avocado dragon roll was the first thing I tried. It’s SIMILAR TO THE CATERPILLAR ROLL that was on the menu during my tenure there. I loved it then. And I still love it.

The oaxaca was also a winner. It’s a spicy chocolate banana concoction that really hits the spot.

nye menu
The first night we were there, they had a special menu for New Year’s Eve. So we tried one of those.

soupThis winter vegetable soup was the first course. These were garnished with what seemed like a rosemary pignoli parmesan. Yum! The garnish was bomb, but it kind of made the soup. So once I ate up all the garnish, I was kind of done.  Though admittedly, I’m pretty hard to please in the raw soup department.  Gotta try some rosemary pignoli parm though.  And unbeknownst to me, my boyfriend ordered some pine nuts while I was gone.  They just arrived today, in fact!

My favorite dish on the New Year’s Eve menu was definitely the Chocolate Gingerbread Sundae. With black cherry syrup and maple candied hazelnuts. Winning! And not in a drug induced stupor kind of way. The real deal. I got to meet the chef behind it while I was there too. Tatiana from Toronto. Also a former student. And now the pastry chef.

We had to get our green quotient in while we were there too. These are the sour cream and onion kale chips. We got some of these for the drive home too.

salsa verde
This is the salsa verde salad sub kale and guac for the avocado. This was recommended to us by our extremely personable hostess, Vicki (I hope I spelled that right). She didn’t steer us wrong. Our waiter also recommended the chipotle kale salad which I liked a lot too. These two were definitely my faves.

We came by for brunch on New Year’s Day too. And ordered the brunch sampler. Which is a little bit of everything. A really nice variety and great for sharing.

okc and me
So all in all, it was great to check in and see the latest. Definitely got spoiled being there full time for a while. Rumor has it though that a new location might be popping up a little closer to home soon…