January 2009 Archives

Punk Uncle Marcus

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Uncle Marcus came over last night.Tesla is getting to know Marcus, but I don't think she has any idea how unique it is to have the founder of Pyrate Punx as her uncle, but she sure loved showing off her jacket patches to Marcus when she noted his (I wasn't home, but Marcus filled me in later about this). I can only imagine how cute it was to have little Tesla making tough-looking Marcus check out her jacket. Tough-looking, but Marcus is a giant sweet teddy-bear, actually.

Sirens

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I finally decided to share that when I'm driving, and hear sirens, of course I always stop. Forget the few dud cars who don't, but for the most part, everyone stops too. And...I get inspired by that...everytime. OK, I actually almost tear up and get full of emotions.

I simply love and am inspired when seeing society behaving well. Does anyone else get this? We have these rules so that people we've designated to save people, are able to. And it just moves me each time when it works. Alright, I do have a thing for Fire Fighters, and I feel more fear than inspiration when cops are zooming by, but overall, I am wondering if anyone else gets emotionally moved by this.

Our new president, Barak Obama

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inaugruation Tesla.jpg
I couldn't resist. I am very excited today, and wanted to post something in honor of President Obama. I have never cared this much, nor been inspired deeply by a president. I watched part of the inauguration this morning with Tesla while she ate breakfast reciting, "Obama," then I listened to his speech in the car. Tonight a group of us will gather at our friends to watch a recordning of the inauguration together.

I've been thinking how for us, this is such a momentous moment, yet when Tesla is a teenager, this will be just a fact in history she reads about. I can feel that this is one of those memories that as a grandparent, I will recall for my grandchildren how the entire country came together even if symbolically, and how we faced many difficulties and changes yet to come. This really is a special experience.

Here are some views from friends around the world.....

And then there is this, which is perfectly SF.

My nephew, Tyler, in the NYT!

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tyler.jpgMy 9 year old nephew was in a NYT article about how YouTube is being used as a search engine. Congratulations to Tyler!

our dancer

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Monday morning, before Gran Marie arrived. Tesla asked for ballet (which we put on from YouTube). She shoved her feet in the rather small "ballet slippers" the Regenbogens got for her a while ago. With those slippers, she is a ballerina!

New Year's Day Osechi

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Osechi is a very special meal. One only gets to eat this very symbolic food during New Year's, and frankly, I have not been back to Japan for New Years to eat my favorite osechi since I left for college. Every year, I missed it...but it's too specialized to cook by myself. Traditionally, the women of the house would pre-cook the food so they didn't have to cook on New Year's Day and several days following, but this would take a long time to prepare. It's not something I'd whip up over the weekend here, even if I could.

Last year, on a whim, I ordered a small version from Nijiya here, and we shared with the Regenbogens. Luckily, they wanted to share again...and with another couple coming, we all chipped in and order THE GORGEOUS version. Dav can tell you, I was excited for weeks until I could eat it!!

I was not disappointed, and feel so lucky to live in a city that offers pretty much all the home Japanese food I miss (vs. restaurant stuff). And very lucky that our friends went in with us for this special meal since it really was not cheap...

I should add that Rachel was in my heart as I really wanted to share this with her too...and I'd love to share this with my bro's family too :)

The 3 layered boxes, waiting on the table. (Yes, that's a giant moose sitting at the table...)
Opened boxes to reveal simmered vegetables, cooked meat and fish, and sumptuous delicacies.
The ozoni I made with omochi (puffed up in the toaster)...I was unfortunately disappointed with it as the soup base had too much shiitake when I tried to experiment...then got watered down and wasn't that good. Ack...next year!
My plate...and our wonderful group on New Year's. And thank you to the Regenbogens who brought 2 bottles of very elegant sake...very nice!

Thank you to Michelle for taking the pics!!

her expression

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tesla roadster.jpg

Original here with related quote.

We got out the RV again, decorated it with lights, stocked up the bar in the back, and drove around ferrying our friends to various destinations. If space permitted, we were going to pick-up strangers like we did in 2006, but for the majority of the evening, the RV was packed with our friends as most opted to just hang on the RV as their destination. We were pleasantly surprised at how many preferred to ride around in our old, clunky RV...but we were all together and it was super fun and special. For a few hours at the beginning, I handled both Dav and my phone's texting and calls to coordinate how and where to pick up folks, and that got hectic!

Sarah and Christine, who did a Confession Taxi also in 2006, this year borrowed an RV (that was pretty much the same model as ours) and drove with lit-up signs saying "Free Taxi." Although we had different routes much of the night, both RVs headed to the Bay Bridge timed for the midnight fireworks. Along with other cars, we all got out of the RVs, and enjoyed an amazing view from the bridge. After that, we gathered in SOMA to park and celebrate the start of 2009 together.

nye.jpg

Luckily, Patrick joined us with his new fancy camera that takes amazing night shots...(here is the entire gallery)

Click to enlarge the small ones. The last one shows our trusty old RV. I'm rather proud of all the fun it gives us!