Archive for January, 2012

Gown Shopping

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

davids bridal

I have a long list of things to do for the wedding. The first item is to get a gown. Someone told me that there is a sale going on at David’s Bridal. And so, my mom and two sisters-in-law went gown shopping with me. It was overwhelming to see the many selections. I did not know where to start, but the consultants referred me to magazines and to the size 6 rack. We began by looking at each dress style by style.

The consultant instructed us to choose three at a time so it would be easier to manage. For our first set of three, I tried the first two and was mesmerized by the feeling of grandeur and beauty, but it was the third one that caught my attention, as it did my mother and sisters-in-law. It had a soft, romantic feel that fit my style and personality. Ironically, it was the dress I almost put back on the rack because I didn’t think it would look good on me. After this third dress, I did not try any more dresses because I found the one I want. Just like when I met my fiance, once you know it’s the one, you just stop looking. I’m ecstatic that after the first round, I found my wedding gown!

San Diego Marina

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

On this day, we set off to San Diego. From OC, it was about an hour and a half drive. We took a stroll along the marina and reveled in the view of the water and San Diego skyline. We asked someone to take a picture of us with this background. It was the perfect weather to spend with my new family.

new family

In the short time of our courtship, I think we’ve already compiled quite a bit of “couple” pictures. Of course we had to take another opportunity to get one more shot with this beautiful San Diego background.

the marina

There is something touching about seeing these brothers together again in one place after 11 years. It’s a treat to be around them during this outing. Nothing like family to make a day-trip special!

brothers

For lunch, we shared a buffalo wing appetizer and a large pizza. From where we were sitting, we had a good view of the ships across the marina. It was a lovely meal with some warm-hearted family members. Most of all, it was great to just kick-off the new year with a day-trip with my husband-to-be!

pizzeria

Here’s one more shot for our growing collection of pictures:

hotel del coronado

Ruby’s Diner

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

To start off the New Year, we were invited to Ruby’s Diner in Huntington Beach by some dear church friends. It was the first time that I met them. Since the Diner is located at the end of the pier, I had a chance to stroll the length of the pier and watched volleyball players, surfers, and fishermen on either side of me. It was also a beautiful and sunny Southern California morning. I was introduced to the matriarch of this family who blessed me and Shixiong with her good wishes.

meeting new friends

Here’s me and my fiance on our first meal of 2012. We ended up sharing a Seafood Combination plate with refillable fries and a Chocolate Banana Shake. It was just an okay meal, but the company was wonderful!

new year's picture

Golden Coast

Sunday, January 1st, 2012

The New Year’s Eve buffet dinner was special this year because we welcomed new family in our circle. Shixiong’s brothers and their family drove all the way from Orange County to join us. We were so large that we had to occupy two tables. Allen and Kristen also came down from Fresno with their little ones to ring in 2012 with us in Southern Cal!

allen and kristen

At one table, Papa and Mama were joined by Shixiong’s big brother and family. They spoke the Fujian dialect with each other. It’s fun to see how closely related the Chinese Filipino culture is to mainland Chinese in Fujian. It’s neat to see how well our family has maintained the culture after five generations in the Philippines (and decades in America!).

patriarchs

At the other table, all the kids and their parents make up this lively gathering. What a fun picture! Some kids running around, some banging on the table, and some still on their booster chairs — this is what it’s all about!

fun table