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G’lawd…he is coming to our Whole Foods tomorrow….I’m kind of curious…maybe I should bring a lacy underwear for him to sign?

 

 

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Apartment hunting

I don’t think I have ever been this busy my entire life. I feel busier now than when I was planning my wedding! But it’s all good =).

I spent a good portion of last week and weekend in Seattle scouting out different neighborhoods and rentals to live in. During this hunting process, I realized I have such amazing friends. My two dear friends have provided me a comfy place to sleep in their new home, cooked me breakfast each morning, cut up plenty of fresh fruits for me to eat and made a cup of latte to start off my mornings. Then, they also drove me practically everywhere so that I can get a good feel for each neighborhood. I’m deeply thankful for such friendship and their hospitality! Love you, Al & Inae!

Also got to work with a resourceful and great agent and we finally found a place to call home for the next year! After much strategic planning for Nick’s commute and wanting to live in urban area, we decided on downtown Bellevue. And of course while here, I ate my heart out, sniffed plenty of flowers, walked forever, and ate some more =)

 

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View from Kerry Park in Upper Queen Anne (gorgeous neighborhood!)

 

 

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West Seattle – another lovely neighborhood!

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You can’t imagine how happy I am that there is a Din Tai Fung a few blocks from our apt.

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It’s been a long time and a bit of good news!

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Hi everyone!!

Can’t believe it’s been over a month since my last post!! As some of you know by now already, my husband and I are moving to Seattle!! Still reeling from it.
We have been actively looking to move out to Seattle ever since we visited this past February and just absolutely fell in love with that place! It’s hard to explain through words but when we were there, we just connected with Seattle’s vibe and of course, its gorgeous scenery. The farmers’ markets, food scene, nature-mountains, out door activities, seafood, city life, not-so-city life, all the islands, the puget sound…we felt right at home. Nick and I decided then and there that no matter what, we must try to make Seattle our home.

And so the search began….

Life in Chicago has been awesome…more than awesome! We were reunited with old friends and families and even got to make new friends! We got ourselves plugged in at a brand new amazing church and just built a wonderful support system here. We have felt so blessed with our journey here in Chicago but now we are looking forward to starting a new one in Seattle! We prayed so hard for this and we put our faith and trust in God that He would guide us to where we are meant to be…and we just couldn’t believe that He answered our prayers! We are so moved by God’s Grace and His love for us…We are also deeply thankful to our church friends who prayed for us. I will truly miss everyone here!

So the search began kind of unexpectedly. About a year ago, my husband felt like he was outgrowing his job and he was looking for a more long-term private practice where he can feel more challenged and have more opportunity to better himself as an anesthesiologist and provide better quality care to his patients. Don’t get me wrong, he’s incredibly thankful that he was able to tap into the Chicago market (which is pretty hard and very saturated) and he’s learned so much on the job! But it wasn’t a long-term place for us. I give my husband so much respect and love because it’s been a pretty challenging year for him. He’s had several pretty awesome job interview opportunities that could have allowed us to stay here in Chicago or near Chicago. But nothing panned out. Some even made him wait 3 months to just even get an answer. Then out of nowhere, one of his friend who is currently a cardio-thoracic anesthesia attending at UW called him and asked him if he was interested in a Cardio Thoracic fellowship spot in Seattle. Normally, this would have freaked me out a bit…but we both were enchanted at the idea of living in Seattle. Rewind just a bit here. Seattle was always a place that interested us and we always liked the “idea” of living in the Pacific Northwest even though we haven’t been. Probably because I always see photos of the gorgeous puget sound, the mountains, and the famous Pike Place Market! So, since we had a strong internal connection with this fellowship interview, Nick felt pretty sure he could get the fellowship. We  flew out that following weekend and immediately fell in love with Seattle…rain and all. And people, Seattle rain is really NOT all that bad! And if you are used to Chicago’s gloom, crappy winters, ice cold temperature and snow dumps, then Seattle’s mild winters will seem like bikini weather. It rained only one day we were there and we went in February. It was 50s with drizzle here and there and for the remaining days, sunny and gorgeous!

Unfortunately, the fellowship wasn’t meant to be. My husband didn’t get it. But that’s ok. We were incredibly thankful just to even get an interview and this gave us the opportunity to SEE Seattle. We decided that no matter what, job or no job, we need to move here. As soon as we got home, my husband put in his 90-day notice (yeah…don’t ask, his contract states a 3 month notice) without even having a job lined up and he started to actively look in Seattle and sending out his CVs everywhere. For some reason, him resigning just like that didn’t worry me. I knew in my gut that things would work out…wherever that may be. After a period of no responses or series of “sorry, we’re not hiring”, my husband stumbled upon a job post online in the suburbs near Seattle. He contacted them and they immediately contacted him with a very detailed description of their group and how things work there. The job basically sounded too good to be true. They had quite a large amount of inquiries and was just hiring for one spot. Nick was one of the seven candiates they interviewed and later that evening he called me telling me how great the set up is at that hospital and that he really did feel like the job was too good to be true and although he felt like he did well on that interview, he’s up against six other probably rock star candidates. We were thankful once again that Nick got the chance to interview and based on how desirable the job was, we thought it would be best to just assume that he didn’t get it and just move on. We’ve had so many rejection that this whole process was becoming disheartening and felt like our hopes of moving there slowly started to wane.

At the same time, my wonderful design partner, Lindsay found out she and her husband are moving to Seattle this summer! I thought…ok, seriously? How AWESOME would it be if we ended up in the same city and be neighbors! Not only just Lindsay, but we discovered so many other designers/creatives were moving out there (or already there) too (i.e., amazing Tristan from Besotted Blog, the lovely Aran from Canelle et Vanille, Steph from Stephmodo, and talented Rachel from Elephantine along with so many others I would love to meet!).

About two weeks ago, my husband and I sat down to talk about back up options. With the way things were going, we decided maybe Seattle won’t happen after all. So we were discussing Tucson, Arizona as our back up since his two cousins and his sister work as anesthesiologists there. I was sad at the thought of all our wasted efforts. I just said a meek “ok” and went back to my desk to work. And he went out for his run. When he came back in, I told him he had a missed phone call from the Washington group. He had this “CRAP” expression and looked a bit panic-stricken. They told him that they wouldn’t make a decision until NEXT week but the fact that they were calling him a week early meant that it’s bad news…I sat there holding my breath as he called back. He stepped out to the patio and as he was shutting the patio door, all I heard him say was “are you kidding me?!?!”. I didn’t know what to think of his reaction! 5 minutes later, he stepped back in and had the most deliriously happy look on his face and screamed “WE ARE MOVING TO SEATTLE!!!!”…I freaking cried like a baby! My husband who also recently became a Christian (he was a hardcore non-believer), took my hand and prayed for both of us out loud. He’s never ever prayed in front of me…and this moment was such a blessing and emotional for me. We thanked the Lord for answering our prayers and for just…really showing us that He is there for us through thick and thin.

Yeah…I’m still in disbelief.  We are moving this July after our 2 week Europe trip. And I’m just so thrilled that the ladies of Hello Monday can be united and that my husband found his long-term job!

I am looking forward to sharing our new adventures with y’all here =)

 

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Yep…also excited to pig out! =)

 

 

 

Roasted Olives, Grapes and Rosemary Chicken

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(making the sauce reduction)

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This subtly mediterranean flavored roast chicken dish will leave a long, yummy impression in your belly and taste buds! I make a lot of chicken dishes because the hubby and I avoid eating red meat as much as possible (besides the occasional burger or steak). I found this recipe on Smitten Kitchen’s new cookbook and it is now forever dog-earred as one of my favorite chicken recipes! I highly recommend eating this with a loaf of crusty italian or french bread because the sauce will definitely be worth soaking the bread in! If you are not willing to spend a ton of time for dinner, give this dish a go. I roasted a batch of simply dressed brussels sprouts and parsnips as a side dish.

 

Roasted Olives, Grapes, and Rosemary Chicken
(Adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

Ingredients:
– 3 lbs chicken (variety of bone-in, skin on chicken legs, thighs, breasts)
– 2 cups seedless red grapes
– 1 cup pitted kalamata olives
– 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
– 2 tablespoon of fresh rosemary, minced
– 1 tablespoon olive oil
– 3/4 cup white wine
– 1/2 cup chicken broth
– salt and pepper

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 450 F. In a skillet or dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with salt and pepper.
2. Brown the chicken until nice and crispy…about 4-5 minutes on each side. Leave the chicken in the skillet/dutch oven and throw in sliced onion, kalamata olives and grapes. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of minced rosemary. Bake in oven without lid for 30 minutes.
3. Once taken out of oven, remove chicken, grapes, olives, onions – all out of the skillet and set aside in a serving platter.
4. This is where you will make the sauce. Bring the skillet or pot with all the drippings/juices to a boil. Add the white wine and chicken stock as well as the other tablespoon of minced rosemary. Reduce for about 4-5 minutes until it is reduced by half and thickens.
5. Plate your chicken with the onion, grapes and olives and generously spoon sauce over all that goodness and serve with side dish or yummy crusty bread! Garnish with fresh sprig of rosemary optional.

Bon Appetit!

 

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I made a quick green smoothie for my husband and myself as dessert. This one I made a bit sweeter so I don’t crave anything afterward =)

My Power Green Smoothie recipe:

– Kale
– Spinach
– Cucumber
– 1/2 pear
– 1/2 banana
– 1/3 cup ripened sweet pineapple
– 1 tablespoon flaxseed

Veloria in Velvet

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Hey guys! A very fashionable friend of mine (with a lot of encouragement and convincing from her friends) finally started her own fashion blog! I met Maddie when my husband and I started attending the same church a year ago and I remember immediately spotting her glamorous python skinny pants with hot pink heels and thought, “dang! I’d LOVE to be a bit bolder like her!”. I absolutely love both her’s and her husband’s fashion style – colorful, edgy, and very, very creative!  I designed her a hand lettered logo to match her wardrobe style and bright personality.

Check out her new blog here at Veloria in Velvet.