Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Cali Sundays: Denim Shorts and Dim Sum

What was an obligatory food review for my school's magazine publication became a blogging opportunity. Sunday was idyllic and warm enough that the environment enabled me to wear shorts. Even though the warmth was quickly replaced with a cool chill on Monday, the reprieve from colder temperatures was greatly appreciated. I've always been a shorts-and-tank kind of person because I love the tingling sensation of sunshine on my skin that comes every spring and summer. Please excuse my awkward stance as I found this was the least awkward photo from a plethora of other horrifying options. 

Many things I want to say about this shawl that I'm wearing: 1) I made it for five dollars using this tutorial and a scarf from H&M  2) It should *not* be called a kimono. Calling this shawl a kimono is actually cultural appropriation. Cultural appropriation is when someone takes part of another culture and adopts it without recognition of the significance of what they have appropriated. This doesn't sound bad but it can get offensive really quickly. I don't think many people know what cultural appropriation is (at least I didn't until the magazine I write and draw for wrote an article on it)  and how insensitive and inaccurate we are every time we call this article of clothing a "Kimono". A kimono is far more elaborate and holds much more cultural importance than those at Brandy Melville could ever express. I'm not calling for a boycott of these trendy shawls (though lets be real selling flimsy fabric for over $50 is kind of an injustice), but let's just rethink what we call these breezy pieces :) 

This shawl took me about 5 minutes to figure out? It was really easy and I love the colors! 

I found this gold snakeskin print bag in the recesses of my mothers closet. I have no idea where she got it and how often she must have worn this baby in her 20's but I now use it for almost every outing. 

This silver bracelet was actually a gift from a beloved Aunt in China. 谢谢小舅妈!You can't really see it in this photo but the bangle has a star charm and a doll face charm. It goes with so many outfits and every time I wear it I'm reminded of the family I have in China <3
I bought this crop top from Choies and it came out to be a little more cropped and looser than I'd hoped. However, it works out well here with the high waisted shorts so that I'm only exposing a classy bit of midriff. It's a very comfortable, stretchy material but the sleeves also end at a bit of an awkward length, and without staying tight. Overall I really like the items I got from Choies but I wish processing and shipping was a little quicker :/ It was my first time ordering but I thought the VIP membership points were very disorganized and not made lucid to customers. They have very cute clothes and very affordable prices though so I can't really complain.

Shawl- DIY (scarf from H&M) 
Striped 3/4 Sleeve Crop Top- Choies
High-waisted Shorts- F21
Sunglasses- Stanford Bookstore 
Silver Bangle- Gift 
Assorted Leather Bracelets- Choies
Gold Bag- Mom 
Flip Flops- Old Navy (not pictured)

After my lovely photographer, E, helped me with these photos we went to divulge in my favorite food: dim sum. 

Ahhhh yes, obscure asian drinks! I grew up going to dim sum every other sunday lunch with my family in the very cantonese town of Union City. I've never gone without my family so this was exciting for me and I felt like such an adult. We went to Cooking Papa because it was the closest authentic dim sum place around. 
^ My photographer and partner-in-crime besides S.

Hong Kong Milk Tea $2.50- The tea flavor was deeper, richer, and more... burnt? But in a good way. Taiwanese milk teas tend to have more sugar and milk in them than I would like but this is more appropriate for a morning drink than boba.
 Steamed Pork Buns $2.50(I think?)- Cha shu bao, I've missed this so much! The fluffy, sweet and white dough resonated well with the barbeque-honey flavors of the pork. This is one of my childhood favorites.
 Steamed Shrimp Dumplings $4.50(I think?) The wrapping is clear and the bamboo in the shrimp filling offered good texture to the dumplings which I either never noticed or has become a unique variation on dumplings. 
 Siu Mai $4.50?- Another one of my favorites. Steamed pork and shrimp dumplings with fish eggs on top. 
Steamed Turnip Cake $3.50?- I usually like the fried version better but this was flavorful too. 

After dim sum, E and I went to Sno-Zen to have some shaved snow! I'm not sure how the Taiwanese come up with so many amazing snacks but props to them. 
 Not sure of the price but the shaved snow is vanilla with sweetened condensed milk, strawberries, and lychee jelly. The flavors together offered a quintessential asian taste commonly found with shaved snow and pearl milk teas. 

- K

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