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Clothes.

Ma found my blog. Let me clarify that Ma is not a ‘hoarder’. You can easily navigate your way around her house without tripping over multiple piles of things. She just has a lot of stuff. But she does not ‘hoard’. Well, she might hoard food (500+ lbs. of sweet potatoes, an unlimited supply of grains?), but more in the way that a squirrel hoards nuts for the winter. You never know when you might need it.

I, however, have discovered something about myself. I have collected a ridiculous amount of clothing, so much so that when I was unpacking my boxes of apparel, I ran out of hangers. I have been coveting those soft, velvety hangers, and saw them at T.J. Maxx for a decent price a little bit ago, but didn’t grab them. Lucky for me! Ma saw them at your friendly neighborhood Costco and picked up a 50 pack for $12 or something ridiculously amazing like that. Her last words to me before leaving the house were “If you can’t hang up all of your clothes with all those hangers, I give up hope for you.” Sad!

You would think that actually seeing all of these different items of clothing, I would be happy because that means that I don’t have to go clothes shopping for awhile. The exact opposite is happening. If I see a cute top that I currently own, I think of that great belt I saw on the Anthropologie website that would perfectly complement it. Not to mention the great pair of shoes that I saw online at Forever21 and the millions of e-mails J.Crew sends me every day makes me desperate for new shorts to wear with the cute ankle boots I picked up last year in Aldo’s.

Do I have a problem? Maybe. But I’m happy about it. Every day I realize that I take after Ma more and more, so I take the good with the bad. She likes collecting food and kitchen containers and I like to collect things that I put on my body.

Lessons From Ma

Last night, I came across a website called “My Mom Is A FOB“. This website is fairly genius. It recounts people such as myself who have a mother that was born and raised in an Asian country. A lot of the entries are about mixed up words, funny pronunciation and a lot of hazardous texting, but my favorites are the ones where the mother gives great advice (no matter how hilariously worded).

Ma has always been an advice giver about EVERY subject. It can be frustrating because sometimes I just want to read a book, but that’s okay. All of her advice makes sense. Because of my Ma, I now walk this planet as a strong, confident woman. I would like to pass on some of my Ma’s advice to everyone else:

1. Never EVER rely on a man.
2. A man who treats you badly is like a sick plant, cut it off at the root and throw it away.
3. If you want to be beautiful, SUFFER.
4. Practice 15 more minutes. It will make you better.
5. Never throw away any containers. Old containers are the best place to store kimchi and fish eyeballs.
6. If you wait long enough, everything will go on sale.
7. Do not stop learning. Just because you’re not taking a math class doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take out your old books and do the problems on your own.
8. Korean made products are superior to every other make on the planet, especially containers and gardening tools.
9. If a man ever hits you, kill him. Or call Ma, she’ll kill him for you.
10. There is nothing uglier than a stupid woman.
11. There is nothing sadder than a smart woman pretending to be stupid.
12. Stand up straight.
13. Direct quote “It’s okay that you have a big head, that means you have big brains.”
14. Buy in bulk and learn how to can/freeze/dry your food to save it for later.
15. Feeling sick? Eat the spiciest food possible, because spicy scares germs.

That’s just 15. Who knows, I might make another post. There are so many more gems from my Ma, and I treasure them every single day.

More.

I have decided to make a huge effort in updating this more. If I don’t, I fear everyone will think that I don’t talk to the fam, and that is certainly not the case. I usually talk to them about once a day, unless it’s raining really hard and I have to pay extra close attention to the road, or if I have such a busy day that I can’t even have a cup of coffee (that has never, ever happened).

Anyway! Since I last posted, I have become a homeowner. It is scary, exciting and amazing all wrapped up in one little package. The most overwhelming part is the fact that there are so many things to do! I (un?)fortunately did not buy one of those fresh-out-of-the-box houses, and therefore need to put a concerted effort into making it look presentable. The Boyfriend has been a big help in this, of course, because he owns every tool that was ever manufactured by DeWalt and in fact knows how to use him (ask him the funny story of when he asked me to get the staple gun and I brought him a saw. Well, I guess I just told you). However, the biggest helpers of all have been (drumroll) Ma and Pop.

Pop adds to The Boyfriend’s massive collection of handy tools and also brings along brute strength and stubbornness. Ma brings along frugality, a ridiculous amount of paint that she mixes herself and incredible painting skills. Not to mention, all of her hoarding has come in handy over the years. Purchasing anything and everything that is on sale is finally beneficial to me! I have a bunch of new light fixtures, a fan, and of course I got to take the spare washer and dryer with me (but really, who has a spare washer and dryer? Oh wait, my parents STILL DO).

Anyway, this is just another reminder to me that I do in fact have the BEST parents in the world, and I would be completely lost without them. I adore them and even if they sometimes make me want to pull my hair out, I know that I would never want to be without them.

Overdoing it?

Ma has accumulated over 500 lbs. of sweet potatoes. She eats at least four of them a day. I have no idea why/how this is happening or where she’s keeping them. She is very impressive.

Comfy.

Last night, I called Pop to ask him about a house I saw on the market. I wasn’t feeling so hot and being the Most Awesome Dad In The World, he immediately picked up on it.

There’s something about his voice that makes me feel so safe and comfortable. Very quietly, he asked me, “Are you okay?”. I replied that I was fine, just tired and getting ready to go in and watch some football. He said “All right, pretty one. I love you, call me if you need anything.”

It’s nice to be reminded that even though I’m a big, bad grown-up now, I still have a daddy who is looking out for me. It makes everything a little less scary.

Roswell, 1947

I called Pop this morning. He spent ten minutes trying to convince me that he’s an alien. This discussion was sparked by the UFO sightings in Texas, Manhattan, China, etc.

A little background. Pop was raised in Roswell, NM. He was an Air Force brat, to my Army brat. He was also born in 1947, the year of the Roswell UFO Incident. Growing up in a family where conspiracy theories run amok, he has maintained that he is an alien life-form. I believe him a little bit. Why else would a well-adjusted, outgoing girl like me love Sci-Fi movies and Star Trek more than almost anything on the planet (Earth, that is). My favorite thing to do when I go see Pop is to watch sci-fi movies with him. We’ve always been fascinated with the possibility of other life out there. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll leave my job and become a UFO tracker with Pop. That seems like a dream job. Plus, after all those years of watching Star Trek, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica and Stargate we are well prepared for anything that comes our way.

Ma and Pop are going camping today. I reside about one hour away from the parental units and it’s raining pretty hard. This will not deter them, however, because they have recently purchased a 14-foot RV that attaches to the back of Pop’s huge Chevy. I asked if I could borrow it next summer. He said “No, I bought it for Ma and me. None of you stupid kids are touching it. You’ll wreck it.” I pointed out that Ma was the one who was most likely to wreck it because if she looks at a car too long it explodes. Apparently Ma isn’t allowed to drive it either. Neither is Boyfriend. I asked, but apparently military training does not mean that you are capable of driving a 14-foot RV attached to the back of a huge Chevy.

Oh, and I talked to Ma for a bit yesterday. She has canned 20 jars of black bean soup and vegetarian chili for me. She’s the Korean equivalent to Superwoman.

ETA: The RV is 29-feet. That’s why I’m not allowed to drive it.

Whaaaaat?!

About one week ago, I was having my weekday-morning conversation with my Pop. These talks occur almost every weekday-morning, barring a work holiday or a particularly busy start to the day. I don’t know what exact comment triggered the though, but suddenly I knew that I needed to start a blog about the conversations that happen between the King Family. I brought this to the attention of my darling boy and he immediately supported the idea. I like to think it’s because he’s charmed by my family, and who wouldn’t be? Conversations with the Kings are always very interesting.

For example, my Pop knows that I’m going to call him every weekday-morning. Every morning, unless he is outside working on the farm, he answers the phone saying “Whaaat?!”. Every single morning. My father has always been the person in the family who acts as though he doesn’t want to talk to you, but by the end of the conversation it’s difficult to get him off of the phone. Not that I mind, I love to talk to my dad as much as I can. He’s a fascinating individual, as this story will show in later posts.

Speaking with my Ma is an entirely different conversation. Ma always has something specific she wants to talk about, and once that conversation is done she barely says good-bye before she hangs up the phone, even if I want to talk to her just a bit more and tell her about something that happened to me earlier that day.  But she is, after all, the busiest retired woman on the entire planet. She does more in one day than I could hope to do in two weeks.

When Broski (my elder by seven years) answers the phone, he answers with an excited yet subdued “He-e-e-ey, sis! What’s up?!”. My brother is hands-down the smartest person and craftiest person I know. I want to punch him and hug him all at the same time.

So this is the beginning. Tomorrow is Monday, and at 8AM sharp, I will be calling Pop. I’ll fill you in!