Archive for October, 2011

Best Banana Bread Ever!

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

I found this recipe online one evening and I decided to try it. I even went over the reviews and the various suggestions for making this recipe even better. It was one of those evenings when I put my heart into it. Wow, was it ever worth it! Best banana bread ever!

I carefully prepared the ingredients, separating and mixing and stirring just so …

prepping

I carefully folded the raisins and the walnuts into the batter, then pouring the mixture into the greased the loaf pan …

mixing

After about 45 minutes of baking and 25 minutes of waiting, I had a moist, chewy banana bread, the best I’ve ever had! Of course, I shared this with my neighbors and friends the next day. Something as special as this joy needs to be shared in order for joy to be complete!

yummy!

If interested in replicating, please look for the recipe on this website:

http://mbcohao.com/recipes/?p=241

Movie Night

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

courageous

I was really excited to see this movie. And the hype was way worth it. I saw this with the Fellowship group. What a great movie! Not only was it a tear-jerker, it was meaningful and definitely inspired me in my walk with the Lord. Reminiscent of Sherwood Baptist’s “Facing the Giants” and “Fireproof,” this movie is about making a decision to live wholly and completely for God’s purposes.

Tidbit to this event: a horde of about 26 Chinese people filling the movie theatre. It was like an Asian invasion in this small midwestern town!

Beautiful Day

Friday, October 14th, 2011

It was one of those days that I decided to leave my bike on the rack and walk to school. It was such a beautiful Fall day that I just had to capture the South Oval. I don’t think my phone camera does justice to the color, the weather, the atmosphere, and the brightness of the day. But here it is.

sunny day

I also decided to walk to the library from Collings Hall. On the way, I saw this graffiti … well, an academic graffiti. I thought it was interesting because there is truth in it. After being in graduate school for a couple of months now, I can attest that education is, indeed, free for all, especially in this age of technology. It is the grades — the assessment — that have a price. However, I would argue that knowledge without wisdom can be useless, and information without guidance can be dangerous. Teachers are important!

interesting post

Computer Survey

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

My task for the day was to conduct a computer survey for 90 students in this middle school. For five periods, I moved from one computer lab to the next explaining the instructions to groups of students. Out of all the schools I’ve visited, this one was my favorite because of the quality of administration and the general politeness of the kids. Plus, they have these really cool iMacs. The default homepage is the Apple website, and there was a time when the students all turned on their computers, the image of Steve Jobs was all over the room. Rather eerie, actually. But here’s one that I captured from two students’ computer.

apple users

It’s times like this that I almost miss teaching. Almost. The students were responsive and cooperative. The day went well without a hitch. On a separate note, I wonder what it would be like to be a student these days and learn how to type with a really cool iMac.

computer lab

On the way back from this middle school, I decided to stay off-campus and picked up a sandwich from Subway. Then, I ordered a Java Chip Frapuccino and did my reading at this Starbucks. They have this lounge sofa that I absolutely enjoyed. I even dozed here for about half an hour. It’s a good thing it wasn’t a busy afternoon. In any case, I think I found myself another study place if I ever come back to this town again.

starbucks couch

Chrysler Sebring

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

It took some getting used to but I absolutely love this rental car! Power steering, leather seats, smooth handling, strong shock absorbers, and wide windows. When I got to the rental place, they told me that I actually got a free upgrade because of the type of insurance that covered the accident. Instead of a compact, I got this sedan.

I took this baby for a spin all over town since I got unlimited mileage on it (well, I have to pay for the gas, but still). One of the places I drove to was this hiking/camping place in Thunderbird Park. It was a nice, quiet mid-morning drive into the park and I spent a good quiet moment there.

front view

The park was wide and spacious, as all places seem to be in Oklahoma. I had trouble deciding where to park, but I finally found this place where it is secluded enough but has a good view of the trees in the park. During this time, I was able to write and have good meditation. I was reluctant to leave but the consolation was that I couldn’t wait to drive my Chrysler again.

back view

More Study Places

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Still in search of study places, one of the ones I frequent is the computer lab in my own hall. I have an account there where I can print out copies for up to $15’s worth. Sometimes, I’d spend my afternoons there, reading articles online because I love the wideness of the 27-inch iMacs. However, I was reminded that it was not a library when a professor took some of her students there and started lecturing right behind me. I learned right then that either I put on earplugs or just head off to the nearest study hall for some quiet.

computer lab

I visited a Communications professor in Burton Hall. While waiting for him, I happened to spend about an hour in their study hall which is just as charming as Collings Hall. I liked the decor and the smell of wood made me feel comfy. One more to keep in mind for future reference.

burton hall

Though I plan to visit the various study places that’s available on campus, there seems to be nothing like my own hall. In this particular place, the third floor of Collings Hall in the other wing, I spent a few hours reading with my legs propped up (that’s mine right there). I think I am beginning to adopt this building as my own. Besides, there is a microwave nearby, and the office where I work is conveniently around the corner.

collings hall

Sushi and Sashimi in OK

Sunday, October 9th, 2011

Perhaps inspired by my neighbor’s reaction to the Asian Buffet experience, I asked her to try out Asian O today after church. It’s a Japanese place nearby. I was craving for sushi and sashimi; introducing this delicacy to my neighbor would just double my enjoyment. Since this is her first time we decided to have the variety meal called “solo boat.” We chose to have salmon (of course), tuna, eel, yellow tail, and shrimp.

solo boat

Needless to say, I was a happy camper, and so was she. I had to teach her to put the wasabi paste onto her soy sauce, but other than that, she ate it like a pro, like she was from Asia …

first time

Celebrate

Saturday, October 8th, 2011

This entry will be a bit cryptic because the cause of the celebration is still under wraps. On this day, I made a decision that could possibly lead to significant life changes. I spent the day in a daze envisioning the possibilities of the future. I celebrated at Panera bread, ordering a bread bowl, iced green tea, and a blueberry scone. I sure enjoyed this meal, in more ways than one!

panera feasting

Friday Night

Friday, October 7th, 2011

What is OU like on Friday nights? Tonight, I found out. I usually go to Fellowship group on Friday nights, but it was cancelled tonight and I didn’t know about it until I got there. Finding the doors locked, I decided to bike around campus. Man alive, was it dead around here! Rather depressing actually.

campus corner

The streets were empty and there were hardly any cars on the road. I remember when I was an undergraduate at UCB, there was always something going on in the community. I suppose this is the scene in a commuter school like OU.

empty streets

I checked out Campus Corner where students usually hung out. Empty. Seeing the cafe on the corner with empty chairs and tables made me realize what it was like on Friday evenings, at least that Friday evening.

cafe corner

What was I to do? Rather than go back to the apartment, I biked around some more in search of some life, but with no luck. I ended up going on campus and finding a quiet spot to do some writing. I am not sure which hall this was but it was a pretty one. The wooden chairs and tables under these short lamp lights were ideal for a night of writing and praying. The air was mild and the moon hung low on the night sky, so peaceful and meditative. It ended up being a great evening, even if it was spent alone.

campus at night

Carrell

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

What is a carrell? I used to think it was just the last name of one of my favorite comedians. The dictionary defines it as “a partially partitioned nook in or near the stacks in a library, used for private study.” This is exactly what I got today.

Ever since I found out that doctoral students get to have one of these babies for three years, I signed up for one. At first, they told me that all the carrells were taken, but then one opened up at the last minute, so I actually got one! I have to admit it’s not so much the carrell that excites me (it’s rather small and simple) but the fact that it’s exclusively for graduate students like me. I wonder how often I’ll be using it.

study area