Category Archives: Italian

Build Your Own Pizza

Saturday, July 27, 2013

This morning we went to Lowe’s for their kids Build and Grow clinic. Today was the Toy Story RC car and Ron said there was a really long line for people who did not register. The event starts at 10am but after 10:15am, they start giving out kits to those who did not register. It looked like they might not have enough extras to give out since they also have a clinic tomorrow. Good thing we registered! But there wasn’t enough workspace for everyone so we picked up the kit to-go and make it at home. So instead, we dropped by Simon’s favorite place in Lowe’s, the water fountain and ponds in the garden center. He was excited to see this clean, new pond.

Iris was less excited…

For lunch, we met up with friends at Piatti Ristorante in Danville. They were really kid friendly with a “make your own pizza” choice on the kids menu. They give you the dough, sauce, cheese, and pepperoni to let the kids put it together then bake it for you. Pretty neat.



I had the tagliatelle with bolognese sauce. The sauce was a bit too salty but the pasta was ok. Hard to get excited after our delicious lunch at Bottega in Napa.

Iris has had a rough day. Very fussy with a bit of upset stomach. Poor girl seems constipated since she has been straining to poop and it’s been greenish in color. Not sure what is going on with her but she still has her happy moments. Here she is enjoying her rattles. Mommy is brainwashing her to like Hello Kitty!

Having a short nap while we have dinner.

Grandpa Tam brought over this delicious sashimi platter from Kansai in Oakland. Delicious! Thank you grandpa Tam.

After some loud crying, a little bit of thrashing, and sucking on my shoulder, Iris is asleep again and I don’t have the heart to put her down right now while she is finally peaceful. I hope whatever is bothering her resolves soon. I thought maybe she was having tummy trouble due to food intolerance so a few days ago, I cut out some new things I’ve added back into my diet recently: coffee, milk, almond milk. Our friend Tiff (Simon’s dentist) says the white spot on her gums is not a tooth but a classical dental lamina cyst which will go away on its own but *might* potentially be bothering her. So we will just have to wait and see when she will return to her cheerful and happy little self.


Our 9-year Wedding Anniversary

Friday, July 26, 2013

We celebrated our 9-year wedding anniversary this week and 15-years of being together. Wow, how time flies and what an amazing time it has been!

Tuesday, July 23
Iris and I went out for an afternoon walk and took a break for some Jamba Juice (another one off my list).

Then a short nap in the Ergo. I love this carrier but she’s not quite big enough for it yet. We have the infant insert which is too bulky and hot for summer and she always seems uncomfortable while in it. Soon she should be able to fit into this which will make going out easier since she does not like being in her car seat.

Simon tired himself out playing with the neighbors’ grand kids. They are older so usually help to teach him stuff. This day they helped him with his batting.


Wednesday, July 24
I’m number one! Yes, you are 🙂

I love Iris’ cheerful awakening.

Today was our anniversary and we spent the morning in Walnut Creek to have Simon go to his camp and spend part of the day with Iris. On the way back from camp, Simon brought me some flowers. Simon presented me with the pink roses and Ron gave me the white long stem rose.

The roses went in a vase right away.

Nine years as husband and wife!

Ron’s parents came to take Simon out for the day while Iris stayed home with our nanny. Imagine, a free afternoon just for ourselves so we headed to our favorite local destination: Napa! We made late lunch reservations at Bottega. If you haven’t discovered Opentable, I say go try it now. They surprisingly have a good selection of restaurants with good availability.

We were seated outside which was perfect for the lovely warm day.


Everything on the menu sounded so delicious that we had a hard time deciding but I think we made good choices. After we ordered, they started out with fresh bread with some sort of hard cheese dipping sauce. There were lots of chunks of cheese in the sauce, a nice saltiness.

Our appetizers were the octopus and short rib meatballs. The octopus was so amazingly tender and the oil drizzled on top gave it a little kick.

The meatballs were a good size and the house made ricotta on top made the dish for me. It made the dish smooth, creamy, and light.

We shared the lobster cavatelli for our pasta dish. The sauce had nice large pieces of lobster and there was only one piece of uni but you could definitely taste uni with every bite. I loved this pasta dish, buttery rich sauce with these little chewy pasta pieces (that remind me of the shape of silkworms).

We also had the Sonoma Duck. While nothing to rave about, I still liked it. Had a crispy skin and the meat tender.

We also ordered a side of their truffle fries which were pretty delicious. There was fried sage and parmagiano cheese on top as well. I think sage chips could be the next rage, I could’ve eaten just that.

We skipped dessert at the restaurant because we were too stuffed so just took a quick walk around the marketplace nearby. We found Kollar Chocolates.

At ~$2 per piece, they are expensive but beautifully crafted. We chose a selection of 9 pieces to take home plus a poppy seed and saffron bar and a small bag of their pop rock bars. Looking forward to digging in! In the box are kahlua chocolate (center piece), lavender (purple), passion fruit (coral pink), earl grey (gray with orange) and cardamom (gray with green).

We then drove to one of our favorite wineries, Peju, for a tasting. It was wonderful as always.

Then for some outlet shopping before heading home. These sunglasses matched my outfit but were too outrageous for me to buy, some sort of hot pink leopard print.

During the afternoon, Simon visited the San Francisco zoo and looked like he had a good time.



We had a wonderful day out together. Thank you to my hubby for the fun day out and about. It’s been a wonderful nine years and I know we will have many more wonderful years together to share with our beautiful children. 143

Thanks also to our parents and nanny for babysitting so that we could have our day together.

To top off our memorable day, guess what? Our car ran out of gas. :(. As many of you know, we have a natural gas vehicle that requires a special fueling station that aren’t always easily accessible. Ron thought we would have enough gas to go back and forth to Napa but he was off by a few miles. Thank goodness for AAA! We luckily stopped near an apartment complex so weren’t in danger so just had to wait until the tow truck came which took about 20 minutes.

It took less than 10 minutes to get to the station to fuel up (less than 2 miles away!) then we went on our way home to rest. Simon was supposed to spend the night with the grandparents but they eventually brought him home since he couldn’t easily fall asleep and they didn’t want to over stress him.

An exhausting day for all.

Thursday, July 25
Good morning mommy!

Daddy propping Iris to sit up position.

Simon ready for “wacky day” at camp. Super Simon!

Iris discovering the comfort of sucking her fingers. Wait until she finds her thumb! Aiya!

Our little guy has had a rough two days with injuries. He scraped his knee and elbow yesterday while running around. Today he tripped on a bump on the ground and landed on his face so scraped his nose and had a bloody nose to go along with it. It looks worse than it is apparently since he doesn’t seem too bothered.

Friday, July 26
Oh no! She found her thumb!

But she couldn’t really get a good hold on it so I tried switching in a pacifier but she didn’t like that much. What she did like was seeing herself in the mirror. She kept on laughing and smiling at herself.

Crouching Tiger, Little Simon.

Today we went to Civic Park in Walnut Creek. Simon seemed to have a good time except that there were some girls he wanted to play with that didn’t want to play with him. I didn’t think girls formed cliques so young (they were probably 5-6 years old). But he tried to play with them anyways, oblivious to them not really wanting him to follow them around. I hope Iris will grow up to be kinder than those girls.

And yes, he is wearing a bandage on his nose. Our nanny put some antibiotic ointment on his scrapes this morning and Simon requested a bandage too. We thought he would take it off after a few minutes but he ended up wearing it all day. He loves his band aids!

Iris got a little nap at the park but was pretty fussy the whole time. She looks so peaceful here.


I discovered the possible reason for her fussiness, the recent sucking on her hands, the recent drooling, and the recent green poop… I think she is getting her first tooth! There is this little hard, white spot on her lower gum line.

She seems so young to be getting her first tooth so I guess we will just have to wait and see.

Pazzia Restaurant and Pizzeria

March 25, 2011

We had dinner with Susan and Ken at Pazzia Restaurant and Pizzeria. The restaurant is small and a bit noisy for kids but pretty accommodating. They brought a baby seat for Simon and made sure it was very secure for him. There is a sister restaurant in Florence, Italy and the owner and wait staff seemed to be all Italian. We shared a pizza as an appetizer.

Simon enjoyed some pizza crust with cheese and sauce.

They ran out of their mussels so instead they substituted clams in a white wine sauce.

Ron had their special tortellini stuffed with salmon.

I had their seafood risotto. The shrimp were fresh and delicious.

Simon fell asleep for a short while.

But after a short cat nap, Simon was all refreshed.

We had tiramisu for dessert. Get this, very yummy.

Lemon marscapone cake with white chocolate. Sounded better than it tasted. The white chocolate was a bit too much and too hard.

Ken is preparing to be a dad by looking through Simon’s hair for lice… just kidding! Simon enjoyed playing peekaboo with Ken so let him hold him afterward.

My little Superman. This shirt was a gift when Simon was a newborn, it still amazes me it fits now.

Today I read this great book that Uncle Henry made for Simon.

Henry picked a picture of Simon and made this project with Shutterfly where they insert Simon’s face throughout the book. It’s pretty funny but also pretty cool.

I hope to be able to read it to him soon and for him to understand it.

Future Caffeine Addict

Day 197

Simon was snoring quite loudly early this morning.

Simon may be a future Starbucks addict. Maybe he didn’t feel rested since he was snoring last night…

Actually he is teething and discovered the rim of the cup is a good thing to chew on. Looks like he’s a bit of a caffeine fiend though, doesn’t it?

Today at work, we had a special treat of Kara’s Cupcakes. My favorite is the passion fruit filled cupcake. A nice afternoon snack thanks to Rich!

Simon’s head is getting so big that it’s getting harder to pull things over his head. This is a towel-like bib and as Ron was trying to take it off, it got a bit stuck.

At Simon’s last pediatrician visit, she gave us a book. She said we should read to him everyday and let him play with the book, even if it’s just that he wants to chew on it… well, so far he does mostly want to chew on it but also enjoys trying to flip the pages. This book is called Baby Faces.

For dinner, we met up with relatives from Ron’s side of the family and had dinner at Cafe Tiramisu. Simon ended up sleeping through the whole dinner.

We had a lovely wine.

Food was average. Dessert was better. We shared the bruschetta appetizer. It usually only comes with 4 pieces but since there were 5 of us, they gave us an extra piece.

I had the orchiette which was a bit oily for my taste but there was plenty of sausage and definitely filled me up.

Ron had the ravioli which was crab meat I think. Seemed like a small portion but I guess it lets you save room for dessert.

For dessert, we tried three. Of course their tiramisu.

Creme brulee which I thought was supposed to be espresso but didn’t taste any coffee flavor at all.

Lemon panna cotta with passion fruit sauce. Didn’t taste like lemon at all but the passion fruit sauce was nice and super tangy. The panna cotta itself was more gelatinous versus creamy.

Since Simon slept through dinner, he stayed up late.

He’s saying: Mommy, Daddy, I’m not ready to go to sleep yet! Let’s play!

Stud = Buts

Day 155

Ron found a hidden word in Simon’s bib, anyone looking for “Seymour Buts”? (Simpsons anyone?)

Simon went to Ron’s parents office to spend the day. Here he is intently playing his piano.

He got to wear his PJs all day.

Ron fed Simon his evening rice cereal and got him ready for bed. He finally pooped, it’s been almost 4 days! Here he is practicing crawling on the bed in his PJs.

I went to an educational dinner talk at Scala’s Bistro. Our co-worker Julie was the presenter so a bunch of us went to support her. She did a great job with the talk and the food was delicious.

I had the filet of beef with mashed potatoes and spinach. The beef was cooked medium and so tender that we didn’t need steak knives to cut through it. The spinach was a bit garlicky but delicious and the mashed potatoes with gravy rounded out the meal.

For dessert, a bostini cream pie with orange chiffon cake, vanilla cream, and chocolate glaze. Delicious!

I missed Simon’s meal, bathtime, and bedtime tonight. It was a good night out with adults but I enjoy coming home to my little family so was kind of sad to find Simon asleep when I arrived home. Tomorrow night I will be home so look forward to watching Simon try his first vegetable or fruit puree.

But since he went to bed early, I finally had some time to finish updating this blog. I’ve had a hard time keeping up the last two weeks since I’ve had some problems with my computer. I’ve run out of storage space so can’t download the photos from our camera so that I can upload them to our picasa site. But I now have a 1 TB portable external hard drive so have plenty of storage space! Many thanks to Ron for partitioning my hard drive so that I can read it on a PC and with a MAC. Simon has so many pictures, I hope I’ll have time to make a photo book of his first year.