Monthly Archives: July 2016

Happiness Nugget: A Dying Art

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Happiness Nugget: A Dying Art

I am a 90s kid. I was raised with technology being the backseat to our experiences. (Our first computer was a monster of an HP desktop with dial-up internet that Walmart used to have on Windows 98.) I played outside until my mom would yell that it was dinner time. My neighbors were affectionately called “grandma” and “grandpa” though there was no relation whatsoever. I learned how to write a check in 2nd grade. Cursive became my favorite way to write. I live for snail mail and after experiencing three computer crashes where I lost a good majority of my writings, I prefer to have everything down long-handed.

Don’t get me wrong. I love technology. I love the efficiency that comes with automatic backups and the instant transfer of information. It really helps keep me connected to all my friends and family, as I don’t live near anyone and I have no car to casually visit them either. The modern world inspires my stories because it make research easier and enables others to share their feedback and ideas.

The last time I sat down and looked at my work was when I was sorting my things for college. My notebook count: over 20; this doesn’t include the binders that I stuff loose sheets of paper in so that I don’t lose them. It feels like I’ve been writing for forever. My very first story was titled “Little Litty”. I began writing it in 2nd grade. Although I never finished it (I lost the composition journal I had it in when we moved), my Gifted & Talented teacher had been nothing but encouraging. Knowing that someone believed in my nonsense story was enough to keep me going. I was praised further during my middle school years for my poetry at the time, and continue to do both.

In elementary school, it was a HUGE thing to pass notes in class and I loved any excuse to write. I still actually have some notes written by my friends. It makes me feel really warm inside because, it’s one thing to have someone say things to you but another thing entirely to know that someone took the time to put their thoughts down on paper and give it to you. One of the things I’m known for is giving endless compliments (depending who you are and how well I know you). I sincerely mean what I tell people, but at some level, it feels superficial to me–a lie.

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If you were to search “Writing” in Google, it would be defined as “the activity or skill of marking coherent words on paper and composing text”. By dictionary definition, that is exactly what I do, but the connotation that writing has developed for me is much more. Yesterday I spent the day at a local coffee-shop typing this up for a few minutes and today I have spent little over an hour long-handing fan letters. Nothing relaxes me more than putting pen to paper and just writing. It’s difficult for me to express myself verbally, but writing is a gateway for me. I can put words exactly where I need them and structure sentences into a logic that makes sense to so many more people than if I had spoken what originally came to mind.

Writing gives me the power of creation. Things that I see in my head, I can put down in words and share them with others. It’s such a passion of mine. Would I like to become an author? By that, I assume that the word published is the unsaid keyword in the question. Yeah, I mean what writer wouldn’t want to see their name in print where it feels like you’ve been validated for your work? But the way I see it, I am an author in my own right.

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Happiness Nugget: Foodie

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Happiness Nugget: Foodie

One of my favorite pastimes is exposing my taste palette to all sorts of adventurous flavors and risking forever spoiling myself for anything “normal”. I am a foodie. For the past two years, I have lived with International Students from Japan and South Korea, my family is Mexican, and I have been introduced to many different kinds of delicacies. I love food. That being said, I won’t touch coconut anything. So one dish I haven’t had the pleasure of enjoying is curry since the base for almost all the curry encountered is coconut milk.

Two years ago, I had a job of being a hostess/waitress for a Thai restaurant at home. Four days ago, my brother and younger sister accompanied me back to this restaurant. During my four months of employment at this place, I sampled close to everything on the menu (The best perk to working here was the free meal we got every shift.) and I have to say that my all time favorite dish is Pad Woon Sen.

Pad Woon Sen with pork and Thai Tea

Pad Woon Sen with pork and Thai Tea: Pad Woon Sen is a Thai dish made with crystal bean noodles (more commonly known as glass noodles), brown sauce (a mixture of different sauces like fish sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce), egg, and vegetables.

I grew up in a bakery, surrounded by pastries and sweet bread and I have many great memories tied to the smell of baking so I would like to think that it’s understandable that food makes me happy. It’s also something I can control. (Of course, that particular thought can be dangerous and has been in the past for me.) With food, there’s so many options to explore and I know that if I don’t like something, there’s an excellent chance that I won’t have to eat it again because I have that choice (well, a good majority of the time).

My abuelos particularly love feeding my siblings and I. When we go over to visit them, more often than not they like to treat us to a meal. Our place of consumption: a family friend’s restaurant and my order: my go-to dish, Pan relleno.

Pan relleno: In English this roughly translates to a dish made with a french bread loaf that’s stuffed with meat and vegetables.

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Mar y Tierra: The dish my brother ordered. Mar y Tierra means Sea and Land, which when translated to a dish got you shrimp (Sea) and chicken (Land) with rice, beans, and a side salad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m always game for going out for food. Does anyone need a reason to say that food makes them happy? Food is vital to life, not as important as water (obviously), because your body need sustenance. Yes, the human body can go about three weeks without food, but for me, I feel like I’m constantly eating. I’m not a BIG eater–you won’t see me at mealtime with huge portions, but throughout the day I can guarantee you that I most likely will be munching on a snack of some sort in between meals.

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