Fun Facts about Me
Love to Dance
In high school I performed with a Filipino dance group. In college, a friend and I created a performance group in which members taught one another a wide range of Asian dances. During my summer and winter breaks from college, I danced in a Polynesian show. More recently, I took a ballroom dance class with my husband, so we can now pull off a simple swing and a decent rumba.
My skills are mediocre at best, but I enjoy playing the piano and accordion. As for what I listen to, I confess I’m mostly stuck in the 1980s. I also enjoy movie soundtracks and songs from Broadway shows. Thanks to my father, I developed a fondness for some of the older singers, like Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby.
I’ve done some traveling, but not nearly as much as I’d like. I’ve been as far south as Mexico, as far north as the Arctic Circle, as far east as the Philippines, and as far west as Portland, Oregon. Before grad school, I spent some time in the cruise line industry. I worked on an ocean liner in the Bahamas as a youth counselor and costume character. I also worked on a steamboat along the Mississippi River as a purser and gift shop manager (and in the evenings I got to dance in the ballroom with officers and other staff). My husband prefers warmer climates, so past family vacations have included destinations such as Jamaica and the Bahamas. Thankfully, he’s still willing to go north, and in June 2013 we took a short trip to Montreal, Canada with our children.
Love to Cook
My husband shares my passion for eating good food, and he humors me when I try out new recipes however strange they may be. I like to learn from the American TV channel Food Network. I’m thankful that I learned how to make stuffed cabbage from my Polish grandmother, pancit (a noodle dish) from my Filipino father, and good potato salad from my Russian husband. In recent years, I also had the good fortune to learn how to make rice the Brazilian way.Although I grew up eating steamed white rice, my friend from São Paulo taught me to love rice made with oil, onion, salt, and garlic!
From babysitting to volunteering in an orphanage, I’ve always sought out ways to work with children. Now I’m a proud mother of two, a boy and a girl. They keep me very busy…and very amused. During the school year, I like to volunteer at their elementary school.
Love to Skate
Having children gave me the opportunity to roller-skate again. We’ve taken lessons with two other families at a local roller rink, and it’s been great fun. Click here to learn more!
Love to Fight?
Actually no! I don’t enjoy fighting at all, either in real life or in movies, but for just over a year I took taekwondo classes with my children as a way to stay fit. Before this class, I never threw a punch or kick at someone in my life. I can’t say that I loved sparring, but I did enjoy being more active and learning a few self-defense moves. The forms took me back to my cheerleading days in high school. (The difference is you don’t smile and you only yell HIYAH!) I also learned how to use the nunchucks (“nanchaku” or, in Korean, “Ssahng Jeol Bong”). Knowing how to use the Maori poi balls from my dance days gave me a bit of head start!