Hellooo 2018. January often feels slow, but this past one seemed especially so, mainly because we were in a transitional phase between apartments, and the long days of searching seemed to stretch on forever. We started The Great Apartment Search of 2018 by going down to San Diego, and ended the month at our new rental in Rocklin, California (a suburb of Sacramento). Yesterday it has been one week since we moved in, and after unpacking the last box it’s starting to finally feel like home. I will dedicate an entire post to our move soon, so stay posted…
Road trippin’ down the California Coast. Our New Year’s trip down the coast was nice because instead of rushing down the coast like we usually do, we were able to make our way down slowly and make multiple stops before our final destination of San Diego. My highlight reel from this trip includes: our surprisingly comfortable roadside motel in San Luis Obispo, and seeing a vibrant rainbow on our way back home to the Bay.
Spending time in San Francisco. We spent most of the month camping out at my parent’s home in SF, and it was good to be back in my home city eating all the food, seeing family and friends, and remembering just how beautiful this city really is.
Moving to Rocklin. Once we found our apartment the move itself was pretty painless (minus multiple drives back and forth between Sacramento and SF). We piled all our furniture into a mini U-Haul truck and off we went. I was a bit weary about moving to Rocklin, but after a week here I have to admit the wide open spaces and local hospitality is quickly growing on me.
Spending too much on our road trip to San Diego. We almost spent $1000 on our little jaunt down the coast. Ouch. Usually we’re both pretty good at budgeting, but not this trip. Looking back we could’ve gone for a shorter time, since those Airbnb rentals and hotel rooms add up quickly. Oh well, you live and learn, right?
Getting sick a second time this season. My immune system is usually pretty resilient, but with all the international travel and moving stress I’ve gotten sick twice this winter already. This time around it was more of a persistent cough, than a chest cold, but equally as inconvenient. All I can say is zinc has been my new best friend.
I wrote about the food on our road trip here, which included pho in Oxnard, fish tacos in San Diego, and Hawaiian take-out in San Mateo. Other memorable eats during this month include:
Hong Kong Lounge II (San Francisco). Dim sum brunch is a must in San Francisco, and I was excited to introduce Mustafa to his first feast a few weeks ago. This spot is a bit pricier than some of the other dim sum spots in town, but makes up for it in ambiance and friendly service. We got the usual suspects: shrimp dumplings, sesame balls, turnip cake, and egg custard tarts, plus a new-to-me delicious durian pastry. Be prepared to wait for a table, unless you get there right when it opens.
Cinderella Bakery (San Francisco). This is one of my favorite bakeries in SF, that I haven’t been to in awhile. I was surprised at how big it has grown with the extensive outdoor seating. My all-time favorite savory item is the Siberian-style pies with clear noodles and mushrooms. For dessert it’s always a hamantash cookie with cherry filling. They also have dumplings, blinchiki and borscht for heartier meals.
Sushi Time (San Francisco). For a celebratory meal in honor of a new writing job, Mustafa took me out to my favorite sushi spot in the Castro neighborhood. It’s tiny and hidden underground, and the Barbie roll (salmon with a lemon slice on top, filled with crab meat) always hits the spot. Best of all, their happy hour from 5-6 pm offers good prices on a handful of rolls.
Meal prep. We’re going into major saving mode over here, and one of the ways is by trying to eat at home most of the time. Enter meal prep. I spent about an hour on Sunday planning all our meals for the week, and then made all our lunches for the week. Turns out if you plan ahead what you’re going to buy at the grocery store, it’s cheaper and healthier (less impulse snack buying). A win-win in my book.