the need for rubbers in SF


I have given into the trend and bought a pair of rainboots with the intention of walking in the rain from bart to work with a dry confidence…the only issue…we have not had any rain. One day a week ago it was sprinkling outside so I thought, “Yes! Today is my day to wear my wellies!” Unfortunately the light sprinkle was all the moisture amounted to and I looked a little silly with my big rubbers on. If anything, it was wonderful to not have to really worry about what I was stepping in…which leads me to this story…

Some may consider it paranoia, others see it as careful stepping…when I walk on the sidewalks in San Francisco I never look up. I am always focused on what is below me and whether or not I am stepping on human feces, piss, spit or puke. I have seen it all and I have seen it all far too often. Not kidding. Farrrrrrrrrrrrrr too often. I know this is common in cities, but it is really sad and pretty gross.

I have not seen my buddy in quite some time, but there is one homeless man whose territory is the one street I walk on to get to work. The first time I saw him he was sitting off the curb during morning rush hour and pooing. Tons of people passed him by and he didn’t seem to care. This was moment #1 when the paranoia began. The second time I saw him, all I saw was his backside and between the legs a gushing waterfall. Again, during morning rush hour. Third viewing he was crossing the street with his pants down then he popped a squat on the curb to do a #2.  During my lunch hour that day I sat in a park and noticed that a homeless man was sleeping near a curb. I seriously looked over my shoulder every few minutes to make sure he wasn’t pooing. The fourth time I wasn’t paying attention and I hear a police car pull up. A storeowner had called the cops because I guess my buddy had been harassing their employees. When I saw him on the ground I also saw his peeper as he began to relieve himself. At that point my heart sank and I felt so bad for the guy. My feelings went from disgust to pure sadness. I really hope my buddy can find a place for himself somewhere in this world and feel like people care.

starting my transition into adulthood

Quite possibly the last college-ish party I’ll ever get to go to….Feliz Navidad

I think it is official. The transition into adulthood has begun. It wasn’t until this past weekend when I realized that I am actually becoming an adult and all the people around me that are about the same age are also embracing/entering true adulthood. For quite some time people would practice their attempts at doing adult-ish things…like dinner parties and such…but just recently I realize that people are no longer practicing. It is the norm now to seek out really good food with titles and descriptions that you don’t understand, or to go to holiday parties and converse like adults, or be married, or the best yet…order champagne before dinner (this was new to me, but I loved it!). I accidentally slipped back into “young adult” mode last night when I encourage Justin (the host of the holiday party) to take a swig out of the bottle of wine. After he did so I realized that the “adults” around me probably thought that was disgusting and immature. I am sure it was a good bottle of wine that I ruined. Woops. So, maybe I personally am not ready to be called an adult and I certainly don’t want to be called a “woman” (I don’t like that word)…if anything I suppose I am trying to embrace this life transition as best I can and observe and learn from those who are “already there.” Um, I have a lot to learn.

some call me “ali in a box”

With time I have somehow associated myself with boxes. There was a day towards the end of freshman year in college when I cracked and used a packing box to cover myself up as I ran through the halls. This year I hid in a giant box as a surprise gift for Amelia’s second birthday. Unfortunately, she wanted a horse and not a person so she was a bit disappointed. She eventually got over the pain of not getting a horse and we were buddies again. Watch out…if you ever see an odd box in your corner…I might be hiding underneath it.

Amelia’s 2year muffin morning party was a hit. But, boy! I can’t imagine the energy and stamina it takes to be a parent or teach toddlers. I tip my hat to those who can endure it. Some photos of the big day:



Funny story:

A preface: Last Saturday night my mom and I went to a play with my mom’s friend. On the way back we talked about whether we talk to strangers on flights or keep to ourselves. The conclusion: we all like to delve into our own worlds until the end of the flight…then we might strike up a conversation. Bad breath and the awkwardness in knowing when the conversation could/should die down keep us from talking for hours.

Sooooo…my flight back from CO to CA was interesting. At the beginning of the flight there was a bit of turbulence which I guess didn’t sit well with a 10 year old sitting across from me. He ended up barfing all over himself, the guy next to him, his seat, and his bag. I watched and smelled it all thinking, “How am I going to survive a 2.5 hour flight with the sour smell of puke, while watching people clean up his mess, bumping around with the continued turbulence, and not get sick myself? Plus, once one person pukes…someone else is bound to get sick.” Luckily, it was a 777 so it was a huge plane and there were extra seats in the back. I moved and sat next to a friendly man from Sydney. I thought he wanted to sleep and I was wanting to get my mind off the recent events by listening to my ipod, but instead he woke up and we talked about the differences between the U.S. and Australia for the rest of the 2 hours on the flight (which wasn’t easy). It was a friendly conversation, but I thought how funny it was that just the day before I had conversation about not wanting to make conversation. Oh, and we both had bad breath.

All I can say is that I am glad I have a couple of weeks without travel. So nice to be in one place for more than a week!

A tad bit of normalcy

Cooper realizing how good it feels to be normal for a few days

I am pleased to announce that Cooper and I actually had a semi-normal weekend over the past few days! I almost forgot what normal was and how great it is to do things other than work. Granted, we had brief moments on our computers that were work related, but overall because it was a long weekend we had more time to do the things we used do oh so long ago. We even watched two movies on Thanksgiving night! We have not watched a single movie in months!!

I have to admit I had a little bit of too much energy because this “freedom” was so exciting to me. We went for a long walk down College Ave to campus and back on Friday and the entire time I felt like I had just had 29879823598 energy drinks or something…everything around me was so amazing and beautiful or tasted good or felt so refreshing. I even had a moment when I got a little half choked up because it was like the best (but simplest) day in my life. It went like this:

1.) Sleep in
2.) Have a long breakfast eating my favorite bowl of oatmeal (see previous post)
3.) Go for a long walk in the bright sun with a brisk breeze
4.) Go into any of the shops along the way for as long as you want
5.) Stop on the way back at Naan’n Curry (or Curry House I think it is now called) for chicken tikka masala and tea
6.) Go home and crash
7.) Go for another walk because you need a couple of things from Trader Joe’s. You can walk to Trader Joe’s now!
8.) Go into more shops along the way because you can.
9.) Go home and crash
10.) Eat Thanksgiving Day leftovers and sip Cooper’s favorite sparkling red wine.

oatmeal maddness

I could eat this for breakast every morning…oh oatmeal goodness!

I am not sure what changed my taste buds from oatmeal loathing to my oatmeal loving, but by golly I can’t get enough of it. I never was a true fan of warm breakfast cereal like oatmeal or cream of wheat; I always preferred my cold sugar cereals in the morning. But, for some reason I have undergone a major transition and can’t remember the last time I had cereal to start my day. Maybe it was the introduction from Cooper’s family to baked oatmeal that changed my taste bud cravings. I have included the recipe below. If you are not an oatmeal lover, try this recipe and let me know if it changes your perception too.

Baked Oatmeal

2-1/2 cups regular rolled oats
1/4 cup oat bran
1/4 cup steel-cut oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon*
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 cups milk
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup applesauce
1/4 cup cooking oil
2 cups fresh fruit**
Plain or vanilla yogurt, milk or cream

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly grease 2-quart souffle dish. In large bowl, combine first 8 ingredients*** and mix with a wire whisk; set aside. In medium bowl, combine next 4 ingredients. Add to oat mixture and stir until just combined. Place mixture into baking dish. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. Remove from oven to stir mixture and gently fold in fruit. Bake, uncovered, for another 20 minutes more or until top is lightly browned.

When I don’t have baked oatmeal on hand, my newest thing has been to make quick oats or steel cut oats and then pour on a little vananna yogurt from Trader Joe’s…a lot of cinnamon…a dash of maple syrup or brown sugar if needed…and a pinch or two of granola on the top for a little crunch. Long oatmeal mornings with a good cup of coffee have become my #1 favorite way to start the day (which I normally can only afford to do time wise on the weekends). I go to sleep at night which pure excitement because I can’t wait to get up and have some oatmeal. I am such a dork.



I posted about this on the design public blog, Hatch, but I thought I would share the invitation here too…

Last Saturday Cooper and I went to the opening of “tinyshop” by Antoi from DP. She did an amazing job of compiling awesome international and local artists who create itsy bitsy works using all sorts of mediums. If you are in the SF area and find yourself in north beach, stop by the show…it really is amazing how people can create such mini pieces.

The details…

Nov 24, 2007 – Jan 11, 2008
double punch gallery
1821 Powell Street @ Filbert
2nd Floor
San Francisco, CA 94133
tinyshop info:


p.s. “tinyshop,” is dedicated to Tiny, the former beloved cat of James (our chief merchandiser). Read Antoi’s tribute to him at the tinyshop blog.

Thankgsiving all to ourselves

There is always a first for everything. This Thanksgiving was the first time that Cooper and I had the holiday all to ourselves. My older brother and his wife were in Hawaii celebrating anniversary #1; my mom, dad, and little (but big) bro were in southern CA celebrating in the desert; my sister was with her family in the CO mountains and Cooper’s family was in Washington. With all the traveling we have done lately we decided to keep it simple this year and make our own T-day on the fly (also considering that I didn’t know what day Thanksgiving was until about two days before the 22nd). It was actually really nice not to have to entertain or be entertained, but make our own little meal as best we could without worrying about the timing or taste (although it was all delicious). We had stuffin’, bacon wrapped turkey, homemade mashed potatoes, wine, sparkling cider, and pumpkin pie of course. In honor of our day of food I will post a glimpse of the feast!


Bacon wrapped turkey with stuffin’

The plate full…

mexico trips, a recap

I have not forgotten about you little blog! Wedding season is officially over so now that I have 3 more seconds to myself each day I hopefully can pay more attention to you. I know we have not chatted in a long while so here is a very brief overview of the last month and 3 different trips to Mexico….

(I would love to post photos of the weddings themselves, but because they have not been edited in full I will have to restrain myself).

Mexico trip #1 to Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo…
We really lucked out on this trip. It rained all three days leading up to the wedding. We crossed our fingers, prayed to all the gods, and through some salt over our shoulders all with the hope that the wedding day would be without moisture. And it was! The day of the wedding it was like the rain clouds had never even heard of the little fisherman town in Mexico. It was certainly hot and humid, but gorgeous. The wedding itself was as Francisco says “beaaaaauuuttttttttiiiiiiiifffffuuuuuuuulllllll!!!!!!!!!” (hard to get the true enuciation in writing). Here is a photo of a sweaty Cooper at the wedding showing his guns:
Cooper’s guns (other than his camera)

You may remember, little blog, that this was the trip where Cooper had his wallet stolen in Mexico City. I don’t want to relive the days, but here is the posting if you would like to.

Mexico trip#2 to Las Caletas, Puerto Vallarta…

I really enjoy going back to far off lands where I have favorite foods that I can’t get anywhere else. I couldn’t keep my drool in long enough to get authentic chilaquiles for breakfast and Cooper almost ate his own arm (out of excitement and hunger) when we decided to go to the all you can eat Brazilian meat place that he went to during Charlie’s bachelor party. Just thinking about the two makes my stomach rumble.

The wedding for this trip was a first for us: a same sex marriage! The ladies were really cool people…I am glad we got to shoot their wedding. The photo below is one of my unedited photos (but my boss gave me permission to post it). One of my favorite parts of the trip to Caletas is the speed boat ride to work. Last time we took a tiny ponga, but this time it was a big inflatable speed boat. I could ride on that thing all the livelong day. 

Las Caletas, Puerto Vallarta

Mexico trip #3, back to Zihuat…

Our final trip to Mexico for the year was the absolute perfect culmination of 2007 weddings. Not sure where to start with this weekend, so perhaps I will list the highlights as they come to me (in no particular order):

Swinging from the hammock at the Sotavento, Zihuat

  • Staying at the Sotavento again and spending my mornings swinging on our hammock
  • Eating at La Perla, our friend Francisco’s restaurant, and swapping stories with other tourists and kids
  • Meeting Francisco’s local wedding photographer and talking shop. Amazing how even though we don’t speak the same language when guys get their photo gear out they can communicate without speaking
  • Watching the release of the turtles into the ocean
  • Listening to the funniest ceremony ever
  • Attending a wedding where all the guests were so nice! We know it is a good wedding when the guests want photos with us by the end of the night
  • Accidentally misguiding Cooper with my Spanish. He wanted to know how to say “Can I take your picture?” and I had him saying over and over to people “Can I drink your picture?”
  • Drinking our first ever glass of apple wine with Francisco
  • Doing a photo shoot with Cooper to try and come up with a new bio photo (see below)
  • Watching Cooper try to take a photo of a cake in the middle of a small dance floor with 29387592375 people bumping and grinding around him
  • The cab ride home. Our flight was delayed coming into SF by three hours (story of my life…don’t ever travel with me!). When we should have been in by 10pm, we didn’t get in until 1:00am. Our only way home was via taxi. Shortly after our taxi ride began I would have considered walking. I think our cabby was either on something or was having flashbacks to previous usage, but I honestly feared for my life for the entire time we were in the van. I thought the roads would be clear at 1:00am on a Monday morning, but no! The road to the bridge was backed up for hours. At one point our cabby (who rambled the entire time) said that this was kind of like that play about three people stuck in a room or car who didn’t realize they were in hell. Yes, I was in hell. Cabbyman talked about all the cars he had totaled, all the accidents he had been in, the fact that he had received a ticket earlier that day, how he doesn’t follow normal driving guidelines…and it showed. I not only feared that we were going to get in an accident, but I also feared being shot by another driver after our cab cut them off. At one point cabbyman was slamming on the brakes to the music. Cooper asked if something was wrong with the car, but cabbyman said he was just playing. After he stopped slamming the brakes he would turn the music up and down in the same manner that kids like to flicker a light switch. Rather than use his radio to check in and see which way to go, he called a friend on his cell. We finally stopped and he talked to a cop…at which time I put my hands on my face towards the cops in a “help me!” sort of gesture. No response. Needless to say, we made it home in one piece. Cooper was kind enough to give the guy the benefit of the doubt, but I had to pinch myself to keep from screaming/crying

Cooper’s new bio photo…what’cha think?

red cutting board

red cutting board #1

I am not sure what day it is, all I know is that Mexico trip #3 and our final wedding of the year is coming up this week. I hope to be able to write later when I have a few more moments to tappa tappa tappa on my keyboard, but for now, how’s about some red cutting board photos?

red cutting board #2

© 2018 AsziChild