It is worth this many years of birthday and Christmas presents!

There’s a sickness going around and it’s been crazy. I’ve been under the weather…not quite sick but close to it. The past week when H was sick, he didn’t want to leave the house. The one and only time he went out when he was sick was when I drove him to Urgent Care. He felt really car sick during the short drive.

Continue reading It is worth this many years of birthday and Christmas presents!

The Problem with some fin-fluencers (Personal finance journey)

Disclaimer: I am not a financial adviser. This blog post is strictly for entertainment purposes.

I enjoy reading finance tips on Instagram because their advice is easy to digest because it comes in a form of a photo or a short video. Plus it keeps me motivated…but the thing that annoys me about some financial influencers (aka fin-fluencers) is that they try to make personal finance fun, easy, fast, and sexy. I like to think I am the antidote to the fin-fluencer because I am here to tell you personal finance requires diligence, patience, confrontation, and math

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The Cat and Rabbit

It’s been getting very cold over the last few days. We don’t have central heating, we have a gas heater that heats up the house okay and space heaters in the room. Oh, old house problems.

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My Reading life in 2022…and my January 2023 reads!

Here is a review of my reading life from 2022 via StoryGraph. I thought it would be fun to add a slider option to compare my reading life from six months ago. Note: The first photo is data up to December 2022 and the second photo is data from June 2022.

I finished 2022 by reading 49 books!

  • storygraph 2022b
  • storygraph 2022a
Continue reading My Reading life in 2022…and my January 2023 reads!

Unicorn, unicorn, unicorn!

Happy Weekend everyone! It’s been raining so hard this past week. The good out of it is that there are mushrooms growing in my front yard. Our front yard has very nutrient-poor soil that nothing grew. For years I’ve been rehabilitating the soil and have been slowly growing things. Mushrooms tell me that we have achieved healthy soil status. I just now have to remove the mushrooms so the dogs don’t accidentally eat them.

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Austin trip recap

We drove from Houston back to Austin since we are flying out of there. I glad we did that rather than spend time in Austin and drive to Houston and drive back to Austin to fly home. I felt like we already drove so much in Houston due to its sprawl, it was nice to keep things (relatively) close in Austin. Austin was the more laid-back leg of the trip, we did a lot more walking and food crawling.

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Starting the New Year off with a vacation!

If we were having coffee we’d probably be sharing — yes, sharing! — this cup of coffee. This is an $11 latte — the most expensive cup of coffee I’ve ever purchased. They recommended the mocha, but I’d imagine it would be even more expensive. The barista explained that they make their own chocolate or something like that. There were no prices posted on menu so I was price-shocked when I was about to pay at the counter. Was this latte worth the price tag? Unfortunately, no. But the coffee shop was beautiful.

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Approaching the new year

2022 is the year is I started a new job that is closer to home and revived a lot of my interests in travel, writing, home decor, and reading. I came across an open casting opportunity to act in a play. I believe I fit the description for the character, but it requires me to sing. I know I am not a good singer, but I should submit my I-did-it-myself headshot to see how far I’ll go.

2022 also did come with its challenges which made it less great. They weren’t “fun” challenges like auditioning for a play, they were more like challenges that tested my moral compass and my resilience. I feel because of that, I became more cynical. It almost feels like a villain origin story.

Even though I am a firm believer in changing your life at any time of the year, New Year’s Eve is my favorite holiday. I like the feeling of newness and hope all around that one day. Also, I like how it’s the most laid-back holiday of the season — you could dress up because you’re dining out or watching a show, you could dress down and stay at home, or you could dress up and enjoy pizza at home. I don’t see a wrong way of celebrating except getting pulled over for a DUI.

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Favorite books of 2022

This year I decided to tackle my never-ending TBR list plus the books that have been hanging out on my shelf. This year I read 49 books and I only broke my rule twice because I could not resist reading the latest celebrity memoir.

Next year, I will be doing an A-Z challenge going by the author’s first names. I already have a reading list ready for next year and most of the books are from my still long TBR list. There were some that required a little bit of research like authors whose first name starts with the letter X. I intend to do another “Summer Escape Reads” from June to August.  I came across other reading challenges for anyone else who wants to add a dash of fun in searching for their next read.

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Galveston half-day trip recap

We did a day trip from Houston to Galveston. In retrospect, I think we should have gone to the space center first and then spent the afternoon and evening in Galveston. It rained the whole day wherever we went. My friends and I noticed people wearing high rainboots — I guess they must get a lot of rain and it must be really high. Thankfully, I was wearing my waterproof hiking boots that day. My hiking boots got a lot use during the trip even though we only went on one hike.

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Approaching the four-day weekend…

…by ending my stubborn cold! My eyes have been really watery too. I’ve been diligent in taking my cold medication just to be better in time for Christmas. I am aware there is no weekend coffee share, but I thought I’d do a quick and extemporaneous update. I gave myself 25 minutes to write this post.

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Houston food

Here are some of the food places we dined at in Houston. Please note, I am not a foodie. I don’t necessarily go to food places because I saw it on a magazine or TV. A lot of times it’s serendipitous — but really I’m just hungry. Also since I went with friends, they helped me decide where to go.

Phat Eatery (23119 Colonial Pkwy Suite B-2, Katy, TX 77449)

Cuisine: Malaysian

The first place we ate when we arrived to Houston after a 2.5-hour drive from Austin. This restaurant was in a large strip mall, I decided Phat Eatery because my friends never had Malaysian food.

Top from left to right: Sizzling Tofu (my favorite!), Roti Canai, Beef Rendang. Bottom: Sizzling Tofu, Mi Goreng, and I am guessing the vegetable side is water spinach (?)

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