3 months later… graduation pictures!

It has been almost 3 months since I graduated from Cal, but I wanted to share these because I finally got a CD of the pictures from my friend Kym, who was nice enough to act as my personal photographer for the day! 

First, receiving my pretend diploma from the lady I had never seen before…

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A shot of the gorgeous venue, the Greek Theatre!

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After the ceremony Braedon gave me my second Cal colored lei. 

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I might have to exclude these ladies from my wedding invite list if they keep looking so cute!

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Not sure why I let Brendan come in this picture and ruin it…

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I almost don’t have cankles in this picture.  These shoes are winners!

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I like to practice tree pose whenever I can…

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It’s not my mom’s fault she was dressed for another climate.  It really was cold. 

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I’ll have to crop the photo bomber out of this one of me and my baby boy!!

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Hope you enjoyed the pics.  I’ve been busy thinking about my hair and packing for the big move all day today.  The day just got away from me and I never went on the run that I had been planning on.  My plan is to wake up early-ish tomorrow to get in a couple miles.  Hold me to that!!


Mangio italiano

I’ve always been a Spanish speaker when it came to second languages.  I didn’t really even consider French (too impractical here) and my dad pretended to know knew and randomly spoke quite a bit of Spanish while I was growing up.  We traveled in Mexico a few times when I was in school and I LOVED being able to order in Spanish! 

When we started college, Brendan and I were really excited about all of the language offerings at Cal, so we enrolled in Italian I during our first semester.  That was probably the easiest class I took in college because Italian is so similar to Spanish, and I was super excited to be expanding my traveling opportunities.  After my first semester I started trying to take classes that could only be taken at Cal or that would be uniquely intellectual at Cal because I was paying a pretty penny to take language classes that could also be taken a lot cheaper.  I’ve really wanted to take French, so that I could formally learn the pronunciation (and learn how to say foods like clafoutis without sounding super dumb), but I will probably take it later. 

Needless to say I know very little Italian because I only took it for one semester, but I can read it and translate it pretty well because it shares its Latin roots with Spanish. 

I may not speak much Italian, but I do eat quite well in Italian!

Tonight I made Italian Wedding Soup from my Trader Joe’s cookbook!  I adapted it quite a bit, actually, but it is super simple and makes a nice meal.

ITALIAN WEDDING SOUP

Adapted from Cooking with all Things Trader Joe’s

Ingredients:

1 bag frozen turkey meatballs from Trader Joe’s

EVOO

1 cup diced onion

1 tsp crushed garlic

1/2 cup halved baby carrots

1 small zucchini (chopped)

1 (32 oz) carton chicken broth

3 cups southern green mix from Trader Joe’s

fresh parsley, chopped

Parmesan cheese

Directions:

Heat 1 Tbs. olive oil over med-high heat.  Add onion, garlic, carrot, zucchini.  Cook for 5 minutes-ish.  I start cooking before I’m ready (always), so I just add things as they are chopped and ready and add them in.  That means the onions cooked for longer than the garlic.  Whatever.

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Add the chicken broth and meatballs.  If you had time to thaw your meatballs then you are a planner!  Want a medal?  You should chop your meatballs into bite-size pieces/quarters/sixths/you decide.  If they are still frozen because you also go to the grocery store 10 minutes before it is time to make dinner, just empty the bag into the pot.  We will deal with those big boys later. 

Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes.  If you were in the frozen meatball camp, scoop your meatballs out and chop them up OR tell your boyfriend to suck it up and cut up his own food in his bowl after you serve it.  I scooped and chopped.  I also added a cup of water here because I wanted to (turned out great, felt like I could/should? have added more water).  You can be the judge. 

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Add the greens and let boil for 10 more minutes or wilt that stuff however much you please.  When your boyfriend gets home, ladle out some boiling soup into a bowl, quickly top with chopped Italian parsley and grated cheese and watch as he digs in and burns his whole mouth!  Muah haha…

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Things I am thinking of adding next time: more liquid, cannellini beans, diced tomato, more carrots, more zucchini. 

FYI: the recipe calls for chard or spinach (not the TJ’s crazy pungent blend, but I’ve been wanting to try it, so I did, and it was great…)

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Food photographer of the year goes to…

I served this with sourdough bread and caesar salad.


My hood

FYI- I realized that ‘hood was short for neighborhood within the last year. 

Yep, I’m a very intelligent “gang-ster”

These are the kinds of things you learn when you go to college. 

image   Graduation!

But for real… since I always knew that “hood” indeed referred to “the area in which I live”… here are some shots along my favorite running route in Berkeley. 

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I run by this open field/cute brick building around mile 1 on my way to the bay.  I was surprised when I got there to take this picture because I wouldn’t consider it to be a dog park, but it sure was when I took this!  Totally reminded me of Jamie and Sadie from PBFingers.  I feel like she is always blogging about her adventures in the dog park, so I was excited to be so unoriginal blog-trendy. 

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I generally run the same way to the bay on a lot of my runs because that street comes out at this super convenient pedestrian bridge to cross over the freeway.

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On the other side of the pedestrian bridge I run on trails along the water.  The Golden Gate Bridge is just a short swim away!  It is actually a lot closer than it looks from a camera shot.  First time I wished I could run with my huge lens. 

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… and San Francisco, of course… not too foggy.  The path I run on sometimes is really well-paved and straight, which is great because I can rarely take my eyes off of the view.  There are seagulls, waves, rocks, bridges and famous cities to be seen.  No time to watch the trail in front of me…

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Until I get to Cesar Chavez park.  If I don’t watch where I’m going… let’s just say I came very close to being eaten by a snake when I ran here with my mom, and the squirrels are always pretending like they are dead and then jumping out onto the path at the last minute.  wtf… why do I run here? 

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Oh yeah… because it is SUPER BOMB that I can just run 2 miles from my apartment straight down to the OCEAN where there are paths galore perfect for running.  I know I complain about the wind to Brendan every time I get home from a run on the bay, but I really do love it so much down here!