Paper Planners: Never Say Die

As we head toward mid-December, I found myself at wits’ end because people want to give me dates for important events in January and beyond, and my planner only has December plus a day of January left on it. I thought I could wait until after the New Year so I can get my 2017 planner at a discount, but I felt so uneasy jotting things down on the extra blank pages at the back of the 2016 planner, that I couldn’t take it anymore.

With my Barnes and Noble 25 percent off a single item coupon in hand and some gift cards, I ventured out into the chilly night after dinner to find my 2017 Moleskine Weekly Planner (Large Format) so I can get on with my life.

Why bother with a paper planner? Continue reading


May Discoveries

Can’t believe May is practically over. Although there’s still a week and a half left of school, I think everyone’s already checked out and ready for summer. There are no more math homework sheets or spelling tests to prepare for. Just the RAH-RAH (“Read At Home” daily reading of student’s choice), and even that seems optional.

Oddly enough, the Princess seems to want to play “school” when she’s at home—she prompts me to ask her math and spelling questions. I can’t help but laugh inside when I think, wait and see what Meanie Mommy has in store for you this summer…bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha.

So what did Mama Sophia learn this month? Continue reading

Desperate Times Call For Energy Medicine

I love Spring but it’s killing me. Eyes are itchy and stingy as though a nest of bees have decided to make it their home there. I’m coughing, sneezing, and blowing my nose so much that those activities have become a cardio workout—I can feel my core and the burn. What I really don’t like is waking up in the middle of the night, coughing like crazy, and gasping for air as though I’m drowning in a pool of my own mucous. Although I keep telling myself that it’s just coughing due to post-nasal drip, I realize that it’s probably asthma.

I’ve been taking my antihistamines but with minimal success. I know if I go to my doctor, she’ll probably tell me to use an inhaler or two as well as do a nasal decongestant spray and/or saline wash. Between you and me, I’m tired of prescriptions and OTC drugs—all reactive to my condition and not lasting long enough, or worse yet, having to deal their side effects—dry mouth, weight gain, bloody noses, among others. So what do I do? Continue reading

Intro to Korean Dramas

I am just amazed at how much Korean dramas have evolved over the last twenty years. I can’t remember the title of the first one I saw, but I do remember crying my eyes out and my dad sitting next to me doing the same. Mom thought it was hilarious seeing the two of us with bloodshot eyes and grabbing for Kleenex, and said she couldn’t watch anymore because we were distracting her.

I’m a binge watcher. I go through a few days of marathon-watching and then stop for a few weeks before I let myself watch a new series. In between dramas, I like to read JavaBeans’s posts on what’s coming out, as well as episode recaps on current dramas (which help me decide on whether or not I want to watch them later). Some of the recaps alone are just as good as watching the episodes, especially as they provide the backstory or a brief analysis of a scene in context of story/character development. I prefer to wait until a series is complete before I watch it because nothing’s worse than having to wait for the next episode.

Romantic comedies are my favorite and next are tear-jerkers, but I can’t watch too many back-to-back because I wouldn’t be able to open my eyes the next day. Like Jay’s Potato Chips, you’ll find that you can’t just stop at one. Although nowadays you can watch a series while it’s going on, I’ve found it’s better to start after a series is all posted. The suspense can get quite brutal.

What’s the appeal? Continue reading

To Asheville, NC and Home Again

Although I’m exhausted from the long hours in the car, I’m not quite ready to deal with the loads of laundry that await. Plus, I must keep my promise with April to try blogging each day this month. I figured I’d share some food notes from the trip while they’re somehow fresh in my memory.

For spring break, we decided to take a road trip from Chicago to Asheville, NC to see the Biltmore Estate. At first, it was touch and go. The Princess was getting over some kind of viral respiratory infection, and we weren’t sure if a roadtrip was going to a be a good idea. Fortunately, she was so thrilled at the prospect of staying at different hotels, she seemed to recover miraculously. Or maybe the long hours of sitting still/sleeping/doing nothing did the trick in helping her immune system get back on track. In fact, she’s fully recovered as we speak. Continue reading

February: Cooking/Food Notes

Why hasn’t Mama Sophia been writing in her blog? some of you might have been wondering. Because she was way too busy finding distractions and making up excuses not to write. (Bad girl!)

However, all is not lost. I did learn a few new tricks in the kitchen as well as find some new food products for the Princess to enjoy, which is always a treat since she’s such a picky eater.

What I learned in February… Continue reading

January Update: Some Cooking Tips and Cookbook Raves

It seems like January just came and went in a flash. I’ve been remiss with my posts here at Soul Kitchen, but I have been trying to “fill my creative well” by studying American and Korean cookbooks that I’ve found at my library and local bookstores, as well as watching two complete Korean drama series, When Night Comes and Bad Couple (both very entertaining). This is on top of doing my regular mom-duties and freelance design, and of course, exercise, which I’m proud to say that I managed to work out 3-4 times each week this month.

Anyway, here are some tips/findings: Continue reading