cait +tiff

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C / feel it all


Illustration by Lucille Clerc


Hi. I changed my mind about the post this morning. I was going to write about grown up homework, but after the last few days of garbage around the world, I’m not feeling it.

Yesterday was the anniversary of the shooting in Tucson that killed six, wounded many more, and targeted US Representative Gabrielle Giffords. It happened in my old neighborhood. One of my best friends was getting his haircut in the shopping center when the shooting took place, and one of my mom’s friends was shot. It hit pretty fucking close to home. I think about it every year, and Gabby is a badass for doing as well as she has since the shooting, as are the doctors who made sure she made it through.

This week in France, artists and editors at Charie Hebdo were killed over cartoons. I don’t know what to do about this except for care. There is nothing world-changing that I can write on our lovely little blog, but thinking about it and feeling the anger, sadness and frustration that comes with it feels like the best I can do from my corner.

In case you live under a very large rock at the bottom of the ocean, here is more information on what happened in Paris. And here are the cartoons that a few shitty terrorists thought were worth killing over.

The amount of emotions that I have, relating to this event and what happened in Tucson four years ago, are immeasurable and persistent, but for me, its important to feel them. This isn’t a political blog, or a social commentary blog, but it is a blog written by two women who really, truly, and deeply give a shit.

There is a song by Feist that came out around 2009, called “Feel it all.” I am feeling it all today. The song is not about world events, it’s about love and stuff, but it works for my brain right now. Besides, she sort of mumbles through the lyrics, so I make up my own words.

I know that this post won’t make anything better, but talking about sucky things is important for me to do. This isn’t as articulate as the subject deserves, but that is what the BBC is for.

“I know more than I knew before, I’ll be the one who breaks my heart.” -Feist


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C / traditions / christmas eve cioppino


My family moved to California when I was 5. We landed in Palo Alto and seafood quickly became one of my favorite things. As a small child, I could eat abnormally large quantity of shellfish and somewhere around 8 years a waiter challenged me with a plate of 70 mussels. I accepted that challenge, finished the plate, and he was totally grossed out.

Cioppino on Christmas Eve became a tradition after we settled in there. It’s an Italian-American tradition, born in San Francisco, and very popular in the North Beach area of the city. It generally consists of the catch of the day, everything from dungeness crab to scallops and clams, cooked in a tomato-based broth with wine. It’s served with sourdough bread, toasted with garlic butter. Is delicious.

My mom is an exceptionally talented cook, and loves trying new recipes. She is constantly pulling the most difficult stuff from the The New York times, putting it on the table to ooohs and aaahs, and simply saying, “This? It’s so easy.” She made cioppono the first year we were in California and it was a hit, so it stuck.

It’s different every year, depending on what is available, and since we are in Tucson, the fresh stuff is limited. Crab, mahi mahi, scallops and mussels are in the mix this year and this girl is very excited.

It’s cold in Tucson, basically freezing for my thin, Cambodia-resident blood, and I can’t wait to get into this tonight.

Photo by Cook, Create and unComplicate




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C / home again

Sabino Canyon this morning

Sabino Canyon this morning

And…I’m home. I was going to write about all the fun stuff I am doing and mexican food and the weather and seeing old friends. But I am not really into that today.

As you may have noticed, the post is up later than normal, and tiff stepped in for a morning post with her awesome music. I had actually written most of the “Tucson for the Holidays” post but it was boring. Weather is boring.

This trip feels different to me. Partially because jet lag isn’t horrendous this time, and partially because of the constant sugar high I’m on, but it’s been really great to be home. I always love seeing my parents and a few high school friends, that’s easy, but before this year, I was never that excited to be back. I would avert my eyes from people I used to know 15 years ago, and go only to places where kids from my high school would not be. Simply, I didn’t love my teen years and was very eager to leave for Oregon when I was 18. It’s taken the better part of 15 years to want to be back, and appreciate the place.

I think a lot of it has to do with when I am now, personally. I am INFINITELY happier since starting the blog with tiff and diving into design. I no longer feel like I am bullshitting my way through a conversation about a job I never loved. I’m excited to talk about what I am doing and I think I’m a lot more fun to be around. Basically, I’m a good time. I’m thankful for this, and that it seems like a lot of the deep-seeded adolescent anxiety has started to lift a little. Only took 13 years.

I hope you are all having a wonderful holiday season and celebrating all the good things that this time of year brings.  May you only run into people you actually like, and may your enemies have obviously peaked in high school.