6th Anniversary

I said a year ago that I would like to record what we gave to each other on our anniversaries here so that when I forgot (which I surely would), I would have some diary entry to look back on. It’s impressive how quickly we are forgetting things these days.

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The start of the day for me – got up early (i.e. 10:20am? normal wake up time is 11ish for me) to prepare this tuna melt with omelette and buttered, sugared toast for our lunch. It was a school day so gone are the days of all day revelry on our anniversary. Our current routine is where he fixes his own lunch while I’m at school and I fix my lunch when I get back while nibbling on random things in class so my stomach doesn’t growl too obviously. So tuna melts are special occasions hahaha. Well, this one anyway, since I bothered toasting the bread with butter and sugar, and made a thin flappy omelette to sandwich between the bread, so thin you can’t see it in the picture. The soggy bits at the side are our left over beef brisket poutine from Vittles.

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stacked boxes of presents! These are from him. Only the bottom two boxes are presents, one containing a necklace which I intend to return/exchange for another one at Fireworks. It’s got a spinning pendant that when you spin fast enough says the words “I love you”. We saw a lot of these spinning type contraptions at the Eye museum in Amsterdam where each side of the disk only has a partial picture and when you spin it really fast you get to see the entire thing.

It’s pretty cool as a concept but I’m not sure it works as jewellery. The white box is a box of Fran’s salted caramels and truffles, which I guilted him into buying for me :D The top box is the langues de chat box from Betty’s which currently contains some of the Neuhaus Astrid truffles I brought back from Bruges and am slowly working through. I love how pastel they all look together.

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Flowers from trader joes (not the valentines flowers, just flowers bought randomly when we were there after getting the Fearless Flyer). Trader Joe’s flyers are so old school and marketty and just make you feel like buying all of their rustic products. When we went that day after having lunch at Luc (with the crabby server) we emerged with shampoo (we like TJ’s tea tree oil line of products), a frozen cheese and onion tart, frozen macarons (which are not bad, btw), tomatoes, triple cream brie, wine, a bunch of other things, and these flowers, despite having had no plans to go to TJ’s before we left the house. In general I think TJ’s flowers are not the freshest and you’d be better off getting ‘em somewhere else. Various parts of the bouquet die at varying times, so it makes things kinda difficult for you, having to decide to throw bits of it away first.

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These are the paper flowers we made at the west elm/paper source paper flower workshop a few days before vday that I dragged liangze to. we had a lovely time! He was very wary about being the only guy. However, in the end, 180+ people RSVPed to the facebook event and I showed him tt other guys had RSVP-ed so that he’d go with me. And of course when we went he was the only guy there. But we had a smashing time and got a folding bone from the event. They also provided free mini trophy cupcakes and bottles of water! The whole event felt so posh housewife-y, for women who have a smidge of time after getting their nails done to spend two hours folding a paper flower.

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They made us glue down each layer with regular glue sticks, which were not very sturdy at all. I got home, painted the heads of two tacks yellow with nail polish, then shoved them right into our ikea shelf with my bare hands. Ikea wood is really soft.

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Here’s the date marked out on the pretty succulent calendar I got from the Regional Assembly of Text in Vancouver. They have really nicely designed cards, calendars, random print materials, as well as a letter writing club that meets every week! I wish I lived in Vancouver.

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And the date marked out with a felt heart on the pusheen calendar I got for christmas. The felt heart magnet was from a little home decor shop in Bruges (that I believe was actually called home decor). I didn’t know Pusheen had a birthday. Then again, I suppose she was inspired by a real cat!

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The balsa sloth also from Fireworks that was the actual anniversary gift. I got him a silver tip badger shaving brush since he’s recently got into the DE razor shaving (cheaper in the long run because of the cheap blades – 15c a piece and you can change your blade weekly), as well as a wooden box to hold his shave soap. We’ve been doing a lot of research on shaving recently after I found out how expensive gillette blades are and how much the average guy spends in his lifetime on razor blades. I suppose the equivalent for women are sanitary pads, but you can’t exactly cheap out on pads :S At least, I wouldn’t want to. He gets a pretty close shave with his DE razor (also known as the safety razor) but it takes a little practice. He let me foam his shaving soap with his new badger brush and it was really fun! All these manly shaving products make our bathroom seem very hipster when actually the only occupants of this apartment are nerds who in general couldn’t care less about their appearance.

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The tiny little pot of flowers he got me from QFC and put in a trophy cupcake box – that’s how tiny this little pot of flowers are – as tiny as a cupcake! He later put them in this lovely enamel espresso mug that we bought in gloucester and the pops of red match each other so well it became a really fancy present from a pretty ordinary looking one :P I’m pretty proud of how far he’s come design-sense wise :P In the bg is a lovely furoshiki tissue box holder we folded/tied using the furoshiki book hr got us as a wedding present! I was just wondering how to make a very ugly kleenex box look like it belongs on our table of non-ugly things and thought surely there must be a way to fold a furoshiki over it? And we looked in the book and there it was! I have collected a ton of cloth napkins and kitchen towels and furoshiki napkins so that was an easy fix.

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The weird english card I got for him. When you pull the tab at the bottom…

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The cutest little sailboats pop up! Purchased from Paper Hammer at Pike Place. The English is a little weird though, and the only place on the card which has space for a message is the back.

Later that night we had a perfectly lovely dinner at Sushi Kashiba, which is just opposite Watson Kennedy! And we scored free parking at Pike Place! The reservation was at 6.45 and the parking spot was free from 6.30. Or something incredibly lucky like that. People who live in less cut-throat cities probably won’t get it but we were psyched to get free parking hahah. Like you finally understand how awesome that square in the corner of monopoly is. Tbh parking in Seattle isn’t THAT expensive (compared to say Sydney) but you need to know where to go and from what time street parking is free.

Here are some of the highlights – the full review (if you can call it that from someone who doesn’t eat raw fish :P) will be up on the food blog of course. I ordered the Rainier set, which is all cooked except for the two pieces of chef’s choice nigiri (donated to LZ).
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The salad was amazing! In some sort of dashi/sesame dressing, it had dungeness crab, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, some forgettable but slightly peppery greens, and the freshest, briniest ikura bursting in your mouth! I loved the combination. It reminded me a lot of the crab salad we had at Quod. Wasn’t a big fan of the bamboo shoots, so I donated those to LZ too.

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I adored the chawanmushi. It had dungeness crab and white fish in it. Probably one of the cheaper things on the menu at $11 but I could just eat cups and cups of this without anything else and be perfectly happy. The white fish and crab was so fresh! Tasted just like steamed fish we get in sg. I haven’t had a good chawanmushi since last I was in Singapore, which was ages ago.

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LZ got the omakase, which was a whopping $95. We _really_ don’t spend that much on food, all things considered. He loved every bit of it though. He got served nearly 18 pieces of nigiri, two rolls, and a tamago finale.

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My set had some vegetable/shrimp tempura to accompany my

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grilled black cod! This was a pretty awesome cod, but I thought the sake taste was too strong. Also, miso saikyoyaki cod is totally a normal black cod preparation in a lot of japanese restaurants in singapore – off the top of my head, Rakuichi, Fukuichi, Cornerstone I think had one?, The Disgruntled Chef, B @ Rochester, the list goes on and on. But somehow this too sake-y rendition made it to the NYT Must Eat list? Not sure what is going on here. The best I’ve had is definitely in Singapore (possibly the Rochester Park Japanese restaurant), and definitely wouldn’t come with the same price tag.

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Another entire platter of nigiri, with the amaebi head deep fried – apparently the best way to eat it. Lots of ang mohs had problems with this of course. They don’t eat heads. They don’t like when the head of something is staring at them when they dine. It’s true that when any shellfish is deep fried their shell becomes incredibly tasty, like keropok though, as if all the umami has been distilled by deep frying.

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I gotta admit, I don’t really understand the tamago finale, and actually prefer regular dashimaki tamago. It was such a tiny piece I suppose it was hard to detect that elusive flavour that took him 900 batches to perfect and finally be allowed to make it for paying customers. They mix some sweet potato paste into the egg batter (as explained by the serving staff) so it’s a bit cake-y and sweeter than regular dashimaki tamago. Eh.

LZ’s mind was totally blown by the omakase. I think he’s actually never had uni nigiri and geoduck nigiri, and he said all the flavors were so interesting and so different, even different cuts from the same fish. I’m sure we’ll be back, for another special occasion.

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