Tuesday, February 18, 2014

friday inspiration: testing the waters

Yes, I am aware that it is not Friday, but I don't want to change the name of my weekly reflection post,  so today we will still call it Friday Inspiration. Today is the last day of a 6-day weekend.  I feel rested for the first time in a while, but the sense of dread of going back to school tomorrow is starting to set in (and the harsh reality that I have a math test on Thursday...).

~image via weheartit, book available here~
I am currently reading Lunch in Paris by Elizabeth Bard.  I am loving this book because it has recipes at the end of each chapter... I love any story with recipes in it.  However, I also love Bard's unique cultural insights.  I think many of us can relate to awkward cross-cultural dinner gatherings, and getting irritated with family members committing cultural faux-pas.  I loved her ongoing discussion of redefining success and happiness (what we should want vs. what we really want) -- as sometimes I worry that I get caught up in the conventions of what I should aspire to be.  However, Bard doesn't paint Paris as this magical place where everything is perfect and chic -- she also talks about the downsides and frustrations she faces there which could only be seen by a long term resident (the lack of social mobility/rigidity). 
~from the Huffington Post~
This week, I published this article for the Huffington Post about my experience being half-Japanese, half-Caucasian (read here).  The article received a lot more feedback than I expected (my twitter/comment/email feeds all blew up).  A lot of people wrote me saying that they shared many of my experiences and that they could totally relate to "always feeling like an outsider."  Many of these people were not half-Japanese, but rather came from different mixed heritages and nonetheless shared similar experiences.  This feedback was a reminder the main reason that I write and blog -- to make connections with people who I otherwise wouldn't (how else could I connect with a 50-year-old half Japanese, 3/8 Yuchi Indian, 1/8 Seminole Indian woman from Oklahoma?)
~via stripes+sarcasm~
It snowed a ton last Wednesday night (which is why there was no school on Thursday).  I never really liked/appreciated my rain boots until last Thursday when my regular snow boots soaked through, so I dusted off my rain boots and marched right through puddles of slush while everyone else had to precariously walk around them.
~via more sweet than bitter~
I love Holly Golightly because she's witty -- "If I had her money, I'd be richer than she is." She's unsentimental -- her pet cat is simply named "Cat." She's eclectic, provocative and sometimes downright crazy, yet everyone can't help but love her, as her garbage bin is full of love letters "by the bale."  This week, I listened to Truman Capote's Breakfast at Tiffany's on the Audible.com app. Audiobooks are really helpful because sometimes we can't use two hands to hold a book.  I listen to audiobooks while doing my nails, walking Carly, and grocery shopping.  At this rate I'll "read" so many more stories.

~via F0o0od~
My family and I took a day trip to New Haven, CT this weekend.  My mom's favorite pizza place in the world, Pepe's Pizza is there -- so we had to try it out!  The line was literally out the door, so we took the pizza out and ate it all in the rental car.  My mom and I shared a large pie of white clam pizza, and I totally see why it rocked-her-socks.  It had the thinnest, chewiest crust, lots of herbs and garlic and oil (no tomato sauce), and the biggest juiciest clams I'd ever seen!
~my stab at landscape painting (inspired by the alps)~
Lastly, remember my goal of trying one new thing a week?  Here is an update on the progress: this week, I tried three new things!

New things tried this week:
  1. New Haven Style Clam Pizza
  2. Landscape Painting
  3. Audiobooks
What was your favorite thing that happened this week?

With love,

© Cannella Vita. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission/linking back to Cannella Vita. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.


  1. I love your painting, I love that pizza, I LOVE your article! You're such an amazing writer!

  2. High 5 chica :) - who says Friday posts have to be limited to one day of the week anyways!!
    Oooh i Like your idea of trying 3 new things a week...so far this week mine include:
    1. ummmm come back to me on friday hehe
    x x x
    {The Lobster & Me}

    1. Hahah I like the way you think! I could use more than one Friday a week ;) (two or three would be nice!). Let me know what you do this week!

  3. Your painting looks really nice! Also, I thoroughly enjoyed reading your article, so well written and although I'm not of mixed heritage, I know that a couple of my friends would be able to relate.

    1. Thank you Yii-Huei! I am getting really into painting and can't seem to get enough of it lately! :) Thanks also for taking the time to read my article!

  4. I LOVED Lunch in Paris!!! I read it while I was actually IN Paris my sophomore year of college which made it even more fun/relevant than it might have otherwise been. So good. I need to go back and try some of those recipes!

    OMG YOUR ARTICLE. Your American dad's young wife?? That is so awkward but I can SO see that happening. Also, the "where are you from" question. I can so relate. It's so obnoxious. I still answer "California" every time and think of this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=crAv5ttax2I) if/when they ask the follow up question. Funnily enough, I also wrote an article on race issues for the Huffington Post wayyy back in the day...but definitely not as well written as you! Congrats on your column--you are a fabulous writer!

    1. Hi Erika! I am so jealous that you were in Paris while reading it! I finished the whole book last night and now reallllyyyyy want to go and get lost there :) For now I will just keep cooking ;)

      Thank you so much for reading my article! :) I am glad that you relate! Thank you for sharing this video! :) No way! I would love to read your article! If you could send it to me that would be great, I am sure it is lovely :). Thank you for all of the kind words!

  5. Lunch In Paris is one of my favourite books, I loved the interweaving of a love story, a journey and recipes...the best of all the worlds! It desperately made me want to pack it all in and move to France but I particularly liked that it showed a more realistic side of Paris, not the glamourised one all the films show :)

    And audiobooks are so handy...I listen to a lot while walking, and it means I end up doing a lot more exercise because of it! Breakfast At Tiffany's is one of my ultimate faves.

    Hannah's Haven

    1. Dear Hannah,
      Thank you for your comment! I loved Lunch in Paris as well! Same here, I also liked the more realistic perspective on Paris, nonetheless I also wanted to pack up my bag despite that!
      Also, yay for audiobooks!
      Thanks for reading!