Enjoying Fall

Thanks for the comments and encouragement on my last two posts. I'm part of a group at church for women who just moved, and I shared about my frustrations there on Wednesday. I'm glad I did, because I felt better after talking about it.

I haven't done any photos in awhile. So I thought I'd share some of my fall decor around the house. I put most of the stuff on the mantle. Here's the overall look:

I got these mini apothecary jars from my aunt, who was about to get rid of them in a garage sale. I filled them with some twigs from a bush in front of our house, and a dried up hydrangea from the backyard:

This vase is also rescued from my aunt's garage sale. I cut a long twig from another bush from the front yard. The bright red leaves of this bush are gorgeous, and it adds a nice touch inside the home:

These yellow leaves are from a tree on our street. Most of the trees have no leaves left, so I'm glad I got some from this tree before they're all gone. The vase is from my cousin Jane's wedding:

Another view:

I got these gourds at the farm market where I picked Fuji apples. They were on sale 3 for $1.25. The milk glass candy dish is a find from a garage sale in my aunt's neighborhood, for $1. I put them on the coffee table next to my african violet plant:

We also have a medium sized pumpkin that W picked up at the local grocery store for $4. It's sitting next to the fireplace.

Total cost of fall decor: $6.25


My transition

I haven't talked about it much, but I thought I'd follow up on my last post to talk about my transition from LA to the Chicago version of the midwest to the Columbus version of the midwest, because I need a place to extrovert my thoughts.  Moving to Chicago was one of the easiest transitions I ever made.  I fell in love with it almost instantaneously.  After a few months of struggling, we found a community and made a tight-knit group of friends.  I loved having seasons for the first time.  I loved not having a car.  I loved living close to work, church and friends.  I loved how many different unique areas the city had.  I loved the park, concerts at the park, the lake, running by the lake, and all of the free events around the city.  I was only there for 1.5 years but I felt like I made a life there.  I spent my first days of marriage there, and the people who got to know us got to know us as a married couple.  This is all stuff you know because I've written about it again and again.

Then we moved to Columbus, Ohio.  The land of the buckeye nation (OSU).  The real midwest.  It's not very diverse here.  The thing that I have the hardest time with though is not the lack of diversity, but rather the narrow life perspective.  Most people were born and raised in Ohio, went to college here and never really left.  Many have never been to the land of Hollywood, as LA is often seen here.  There are many, many stereotypes of LA, I have found, in the midwest.  It is nearly a foreign country to some people.

Which leads me to the topic of my last post.  I can't begin to count how many times W or I or both of us have been asked what country we are from.  It drives me nuts.  Or I'll meet someone and they'll tell me about a Japanese woman they met yesterday who plays two instruments beautifully (literally happened today), or they'll make some Asian reference, or recall the only other Asian person they know.  It happens at church, at the gym, wherever.  Sometimes people stare.  Our yoga instructor is a doctor and has taught yoga for 10 years, and is also Asian.  She was telling us today that they gave her a really hard time during her application for the position.  And she's the best yoga instructor at our gym.  I don't know.  Sometimes I get so angry.  Today at church we were targeted for a specific ministry by someone sitting in front of us at service because we were Asian.  She just introduced herself, asked us if we were new, asked us what country we were from, and then talked about what she wanted us to do for 15 minutes straight.  Thankfully, W was much more gracious than I was.  (Midwestern spirituality is another issue which I will not get into.)  I realize how spoiled I am.  I'm used to white people who eat dim sum in the morning, drink boba or froyo in the afternoon, go out for Korean bbq at night, and then do a late night taco truck run.

OK, so now that I've vented, to the good parts.  I do love the open spaces, the access to locally farmed or locally made products, organic products at a lower cost.  I love that I can go apple picking 15 minutes from home, get chestnuts from nearby farms and all of those farm-y types of things.  The cost of living is cheaper here, taxes are lower, homes are affordable and schools are good.  There's actually some really good ethnic food here.  I am loving the fall season. The foliage is absolutely amazing.  Despite all of my issues, I told W today that I think I could settle down here if it came down to it.

We have definitely had our ups and downs.  Some days I do better than W, and other days he does better than me (like today, when I was about to go ballistic).  I find myself missing Chicago a lot.  Sometimes we wonder what in the world are we doing out here?  I still don't have an answer to that question.  It also doesn't help that I can't find work.  But I'm grateful W has a job, we have a roof over our heads, we have food to eat, and we have our health.

That's all for today.  Thanks for listening.

To the people of Ohio,

Please stop asking us what country we're from.



I went Fuji apple picking today.  Sort of.

So here's the run down on apple picking, for you big city folk. The farms have a calendar of dates that show when certain varieties of apples will be available for picking. My aunt and I checked the schedule online over a month ago and saw that Fuji apples would be picked this weekend, and begin today at 9am, at the farm where she's been doing this for years.  We mark it in our calendars.  $16 for a 25lb bag that you can pack to overflowing.  My aunt insists that arriving at 9 sharp is a must.

This morning I get over there and apparently the picking happened last week, not this week as planned.  So they had the Fuji apples in bins, already picked.  I have to say, they still looked amazing and super fresh and non-store-bought-like.  But it was a mad craze, because there was a whole lot of people who were planning on doing their annual Fuji apple picking, who were all scrambling for apples (think Black Friday).  Some people took work off for this special event.  That's how good these apples are. It was a good thing I came at 9 because those who came 15 minutes after me had the bottom of the bin to pick from.  So I left with 50lbs of Fuji apples (2 bags).  Last year my aunt picked 9 bags, I think, and she was sharing them with me and W in May when we were house hunting.

So that's the story of the Fuji apples.


Hello, and Autumn

I have not had a chance to update this blog with so much going on.  I was out of town and then my aunt here in Columbus had surgery last week.  Anyways, I hope everyone is doing well!

I've been enjoying the fall.  It's such a great season and so many things to savor.  I love the autumn leaves, the bright reds and oranges, apple picking, the variety of squashes to eat, the cloudy days and rain, flannel sheets, making my coffee, cozy sweaters and scarves, wearing my boots, lighting candles.

Which reminds me, I'm going apple picking this week, for Fuji apples...