Here’s to the end of 2015 and to the beginning of 2016! Hope everyone had a happy holiday. Basically during my winter break, I spent a lot of it eating a lot of good food with a lot of good company. Definitely gained a lot of pounds, so I need to go back to eating just salads for lunch again.

Caught up with an old friend: I don’t get to see Thuy very much since we’re both very busy now and live in different counties, but it’s heart-warming to know we can always pick right back up. It’s those kinds of relationships where you can hang out for a few hours after not seeing each other for a long time and the familiarity you have with each other hasn’t changed since the last time you met up. We had poke bowls for lunch (kind of like Chipotle style where you go through an assembly line and pick what you want), and talked over some tea afterwards. She gave me flowers for an early birthday present :)

Poke bowl, strawberry hibiscus tea, bouquet gift

Poke bowl, strawberry hibiscus tea, bouquet gift

My Birthday: I celebrated my 26th birthday on December 22nd and had a great time with some of my good friends. I normally don’t go out for my birthdays, but this year was different and a lot of fun! It feels weird quantifying how many years I’ve lived. It feels like “yesterday” when I was still in high school, but every year passes by and then I realize it’s getting closer to a decade since I’ve been a high schooler, haha.

During the week, I got a ton of birthday freebies that I signed up for. I ended up getting a free burger at Red Robin, a free combo at Burntzilla, a free drink at Starbucks, a free bundtlet cake at Nothing Bundt Cakes, a free appetizer at Chilis, a free pastry at Corner Bakery, and a free birthday gift from Sephora. You should sign up, too, if you like getting freebies for your birthday. ^_^

As a pre-birthday celebration, Mart took me out for an “omakase” dinner, which is where the sushi chef picks what to serve you. We had eleven delightful pieces of sushi, including seared salmon, halibut, bluefin tuna, yellowtail belly, butterfish, kampachi, toro, eel, seared scallop, red snapper, and uni. 11 pieces of deliciousness. *love* We also had a few pieces of duck and some burdock root fries. We love sushi but high quality sushi is very expensive, so we only get it for special occasions…and when we do, I wish the pieces would never end :)


Omakase Dinner

On the evening of my birthday, I dubbed it my “bar-day” and we hung out at an underground bar. It was a post-rain Tuesday night, so it was relatively empty, but that made it a lot easier to talk to everyone. When we first arrived, my friends let the bartender know it was my birthday and she bought us all shots on the house! She made this really fruity and delicious drink that didn’t taste alcoholic at all. She ended up overestimating how much liquid to use and made an extra shot, so I told her, “Well, looks like you’re going to have to drink that one.” :D And yes, she did take the shot with us. I got to see some people I’ve never drank with before get a little more cozy after a few drinks & say the most hilarious things. “I wanna get laid after Christmas,” said by an unsuspecting, buzzed friend. LOL.

I drank a lot that night because different friends kept buying me drinks. “I don’t know how she’s still functional,” Mart said. LOL. I was very functional! I have a good tolerance & those drinks were spread out over like 5 hours :p

As usual, we ended up at Denny’s until like 3 in the morning with our nighttime munchies. Somehow it’s become our “thing” now.

Reunion hangout: On Dec. 28th I had a “part 2” for my birthday celebration, since not all of my closest friends could make it to my bar-day. It was also just an excuse to get all of us to hangout…a sort of reunion since some of us haven’t met up in a very long time. We were friends in college but now work or school has made us go our separate ways. We had a totally delicious dinner at this hipster market that had a bunch of different eateries in one spot. A lot of people had to leave early, but some of us continued our night by hanging out at a nearby bar and then going to a tea lounge afterwards. It was nice catching up.

2015-12-28 18.23.20

Fried Chicken and Corn Bread

Christmas Eve and Christmas: On Christmas Eve, my family went to eat dim sum. We don’t really eat that many family meals together, so it’s nice when we actually do once in a while. It was pretty crowded as usual on a holiday, but pretty bearable and totally worth it. My favorite part about dim sum is being able to eat a variety of different dishes. I love being able to eat a little bit of everything. My family doesn’t celebrate Christmas, so I basically spent it being lazy with Mart and we finished watching The Walking Dead. My mom cooked lunch so we also ate together. For dinner, Mart and I went to eat Korean BBQ. Lol! The place was open all day, surprisingly so we gave it a go since it was my first time being there after the restaurant renovated & changed management. $10 all you can eat! Crazy. Normally I don’t like all you can eat KBBQ because you’re forced to stuff yourself so that you eat your money’s worth, but at $10 I ate a lot and still didn’t have to feel like I needed to stuff down more food. Besides the good food, I think I just really enjoyed being with my family and spending so much time with my boyfriend.

New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day: For New Year’s Eve, my good friend borrowed her uncle’s apartment for us to spend the night in. After grabbing dinner and getting dolled up, we went to a “yacht party.” It was a very expensive ticket, but it was something she wanted to do so I obliged. The important part was being able to spend time with her and all of our friends. The yacht itself was extremely unimpressive (quite small from what I was expecting) and the “appetizer buffet” ran out in 5 minutes. Lmao. I never got to try a single piece of food. It was an unlimited open bar though, so I guess I got my money’s worth through that. There was a dance floor so that was fun for a little while. The DJ was the nerdiest DJ I’ve ever seen, lol. The level of fun wasn’t exactly up to my standards so I kind of frequented the open bar…a lot.

I think my favorite parts of the night was meeting the different people and strangers on the yacht. Met this one guy who was a few years younger than us and was alone (his cousins basically brought him along) so I invited him to hang out with our group. Also met this group of Asians who also had the one token white guy, just like our group, lol! The partygoers on the yacht were mostly older, so it was nice meeting people our age.

It got super ratchet once the drinks started flowing. It was an open bar for maybe 150 people and with only 6 bathrooms (1 was flooded), so the bathroom lines got super long. To speed things up my friend and I went into the same bathroom (they were single bathrooms only). She used the toilet first and when I used it second, she left to go outside (why she couldn’t wait till I was done, beats me) – at that point a group of 3-4 girls busted in and started using the toilet as I was washing my hands, LOL.

One of our friends had a cougar latch onto him on the dance floor. She was an older woman, maybe in her 40s? It was super fun seeing them dance. Later that night, we met her husband. LOL. He was totally cool with it…apparently she has a “sister wife” whom we also met and they are into polyamory. Oh my goodness. It was great.

We ended the yacht party with watching fireworks on the top deck and then we went to *drumroll* Denny’s afterwards for nighttime munchies. Hahaha.

The next day we had lunch together before parting ways.

Board Game Night: But we didn’t part ways for very long, because the next day we grabbed dinner together and had a board game night. Lol. Surprisingly, way more people showed up than we expected…a total of 12 people, so we couldn’t really play any board games that included everyone. We ended up playing Cranium and Bang! until about midnight. Honestly, I didn’t plan to stay that long, and almost didn’t even go to board game night, just because it was kind of a last minute event before my break ended. I needed the time to practice, study, and prepare for the upcoming week back at school…oh well. At least it was nice seeing everyone one last time before going back to the grind.

Work and Practice: In between all of the fun, I did spend some time helping out by working at the optometry office. I’ve been working there for over 2 years now. I needed the money and they needed the help, so it worked out. I also spend some time practicing my clinical skills before going back to school, and finishing my rigid contact lens.

As for studying, I got absolutely none of that done. *sighs* It was kind of expected though. I’m going to write soon about my ideas for self-improvement so that I can hopefully live a less stressed out life. Back to the grind now. I did have a great 2 week vacation and I’m not ready to go back but I will make the most of it. I need to be more positive in my life.

Do you have any goals for the new year?