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Curry, Bubble Tea & Egg Rolls… Oh, My!

So yesterday I decided to have some friends over to make some Vietnamese food. I am part Viet-na-man afterall. On the menu… chicken curry soup, egg rolls and bubble tea. My friends Penne, Cindy and Melissa came over to assist and of course… The Chad. So yesterday morning I went to the store and the asian market to gather everything. They didn’t have the wrappers I wanted or the kaffir lime leaves I needed at the first store so luckilly I knew of a second one that had both. Yay. I like to make a ton of food and have people over to eat and chat.. I do really have to thank my dad and my uncle Cao for their teachings about how to cook and make egg rolls. I love egg rolls and everyone that I make them for really enjoy them (or they are just being polite?) but I don’t think so!  We had a great time. I really enjoy teaching people how to cook and introducing them to foods that they have never made or eaten. It gives me a bit of a rush. I had 5 people in my kitchen cooking good food and drinking good wine. I also made bubble tea for the first time at home. I purchased coconut mix, non-dairy creamer, fructose and bubbles (tapioca balls) at the asian market. Overall very inexpensive… I mean the amount that you pay for a tea at a restaurant can pay for half of the ingredients you need to make them at home and last for weeks! It was very simple and I used the “magic bullet” to blend. They were delicous and a crowd pleaser. Now we have lots of leftovers! Yay.

At first I didn’t know if today would work out because we were all shaken by the loss of a former co-worker of mine who passed away on Thursday of viral pneumonia. Caitlyn was only 33 and was a wonderful person. I first met Caitlyn when I started my new job last year here in Iowa, we hit it off because she was Cambodian, liked to talk about our culture and most importantly the food.  It was such a shock and too soon for her to pass. Chad and I were meeting with the photographer when Penne called so I didn’t get the call until we were eating dinner. I couldn’t belive it! She will be greatly missed. Cindy and Caitlyn were very good friends and we felt Cindy needed a little break to take her mind off of the loss so we decided to move forward with today. Although we wanted Cindy to have a good day it did come up and I think we all felt it did help to talk about it as a group and remember the good times we had with her. It really sucks to lose a friend. It hurts and it doesn’t make sense. I know first hand because in 2007 I lost a great friend and I still miss her to this day. I offered my ear to Cindy and told her that it is very hard but time does heal and keeping her alive in your heart now is what is important. Yesterday was for Caitlyn and for us… Here is to you.. your family and knowing that you are now with your father.

Rest in peace Caitlyn Yin. You will be missed…

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