It’s almost November!!! The days are just slipping away~~ Two more months until this year is over. Two more months to complete as many things on my 101 list as I can (I already know I won’t accomplish them all)… There are always a lot of things on my mind, but especially recently, my mind won’t stop, and on top of that, I caught the flu that everyone and their mother has lately, and it really did a number on me. I guess being at the studio 7 days a week, 14-16 hours every day, is eventually going to catch up to you.
These days, I’ve been thinking of how I can create the life that I want. I definitely am grateful that I get to make a living doing something I love. That is without a doubt something I’m really proud of, for having the courage to create my own work and nurturing it to grow. Every day, I’m thankful for the opportunity to be creative, share my values, and meet new people at the cafe. But if anything, being sick these past few days has made me realize that I need to rethink some things. I heard this a lot on shows like Oprah (haha) and I’m sure you’ve heard it too: Sayings like “you have to take care of yourself first before you can take care of your family.” While I don’t have a family, I do have a business and Alien’s Day Out/Plant is my baby. And if I’m constantly being drained, then I won’t have anything left to give. I totally get it. I’m learning more about setting boundaries, for my own benefit. Because I’m a workaholic, if I don’t set those boundaries, I will keep working until I’m passed out in a bowl of cake batter. I’ve been realizing that I have to take better care of myself first if I’m going to be of any use to anyone, and if I’m going to continue this work long-term. Sometimes you have to set aside certain pressures and expectations that are in your head and stop driving yourself mad trying to compete and win.
So with all that said, I’m really glad that my sister was visiting Korea the past few weeks because it forced me to create some free time to spend with family and get out of the studio. As much as I love my work and hanging out at the shop, I also need some time away!
The other week, I finally made a short trip to Cheonan to spend time with my family. It has been months and months since I last went to Cheonan, and since it was my sister’s last weekend in Korea, my family had a little get-together. The weather was so perfect, we took a stroll around the Independence Hall which is so lovely and peaceful this time of the year.
So far from Seoul. Just what I needed. :) It was the most relaxed I’ve been in ages, and I loved every second of being surrounded by nature. Ahhh, can’t you just taste the crispness of the fresh countryside air?! Simply glorious. I’m sure I sound like a broken record by now, but really, THIS is the PERFECT time to be in Korea. Gorgeous weather, the changing colors, the festivals, the fall fruit & veggies…. Seriously, if you’re overseas, just hop on a plane and come over already. :)
And now onto some random vegan eats!
One of PLANT’s favorite customers brought us a bunch of homemade vegan Ethiopian grub!! Dericious. And apparently the Ethiopian restaurant by the Foreign Food Mart is now open again, only on weekends. Not sure about the hours or other details, but I’m definitely hoping to visit there soon. My friend bought the injira bread from the restaurant, but she cooked all the sides herself. Will try to followup with more deets on the Ethiopian restaurant soon.
And then another one of my friends brought me a salad at work! He got it at a place called ‘Salad Style‘ up along Haebangchon. They don’t have a vegan option on the menu, but if you ask them to make a vegan salad, they seem to be pretty accommodating. I’ve had their salads a few times, and it’s always really fresh~ And gotta love the addition of avocados.
If anyone had an image of me being a health-nut, here’s one to shatter that perception. Yes, every once in a while, I’ll indulge in some Mcdonald’s fries~~ and for some reason, lately I’ve been craving them. They’re so good, especially the soggy ones. The soggier the better. Amirite or amirite?
There was something really soul-satisfying about making fresh biscuits several times a day. For the recipe, I used “Best Damn Vegan Biscuits” from the Minimalist Baker. The only changes I made was that I used brown rice vinegar instead of lemon juice, and made sure all ingredients were very cold (I stuck them in the freezer for 30 minutes), including the flour, before mixing. And as the recipe name promises, they were pretty damn good, especially right out of the oven. So flaky and melt-in-your-mouth.
Tis the season for pumpkin salted caramel cake! This is a current staple at the bakeshop. FYI, I shared the recipe for vegan caramel sauce a while back, so definitely try it out for yourself. It’s finger-lickin’ good shtuff, and even better with a little fleur de sel sprinkled on top.
Peanut-butter swirl brownies. Jus’ cuz peanut butter makes everything better.
Can we just take a moment to admire the gloriousness of this photo? Avocado!!! Yona had some left over avocados from making california rolls last week (she bought them at Costco), so I got one and sliced it up into a wrap with curried cole slaw and cilantro, with a bit of salt, pepper, and paprika sprinkled on top. It was divine!! The fact that avocados are so expensive in Korea makes me want to cry.
Aiight folks, that’s all I got for this post. Thank you for reading and letting me share a bit of my life over the internet. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to blog on a regular basis, but no matter how delayed, I will eventually get to writing a post!
So tell me dear readers: How do you balance everything in your life, and what are some sacrifices you are willing to make in order to take better care of yourself?