September 17

I’m married now!!!!!!!!


It was the best most unbelievable and perfectly incredible time ever!!! Everyone that we wanted to be there was there, the food we wanted was made, the ceremony was the best and the rain was a blessing. We couldn’t have asked for anything more.

People act funny around weddings because they feel like they need to partake in the stress of the bride and help her cope with all the things that are going wrong or are not right but Jenn was incredibly chill the whole time. It was great. Everyone was stressed out because Jenn WASN’T stressed and I think they were freaking out a bit. Whatevs. We just went to the beach everyday, watched the sunset and even rise some mornings and got our tan on. On the day of our wedding, we woke up, made coffee and sat on the beach with Julie and Michelle for a couple hours until it was time to go to the ranch. We showed up, got ready, took photos, said vows, ate, danced in the rain, and had such a grand time!

It was amazing!!!

PS. Photos will be a while but when they’re ready, you won’t be disappointed.


August 21

Getting married in…like…11 days!!!! Dang!!!! What’s that all about!! I’m super pumped and jazzed!! We’re still finalizing a couple things but for the most part it’s lookin’ pretty awesome. We bought our wedding bands the other day and I was like “whoa bro!!! it’s gettin’ real!!!”


August 9

So today was pretty horrible.

Let me back track. I sold Roxanne the other day which kind of bummed me out because she was my first car. We’ve been together since 2005. Great memories with that car. I sold her because we don’t need two cars and she’s a stick so it’s not easily driven by everyone in the house if need be.

So I think I’ve had some sort of separation anxiety about that. Weird, I know.

Today at work, I got yelled at super hard because I wasn’t on my A-game. And it’s a Friday. So the bar and expectations are way higher. Failed. I thought I was going to be thrown off the line for a minute but that wasn’t the case. Phil, one I the sous chefs and good friend at work, helped me out for sure but chef was yelling at him too. Stress levels get super high on the weekends. I was counting the minutes until service was done. Everyone could tell that my mood was down too. It’s crazy.

I was inspired though from listening to Neil and Phil talk about how they want to be in sauté when the grill shack outside closes. I asked if it’s because it’s slower and they said “no way, bro. it’s busier but I like it that way because you’re in you’re grind. you want that taste of success. once you master that then the restaurant can’t bring you down.” Super inspired. I need to get to that level. Neil said I was kickin’ ass though. Everyone has off days. It’s how you recover and perform next time that tells others who you are.

Ugh. Tired.

July 25

So I just read an article about how Monopoly is changing the game–literally–to fit the lifestyles of today’s youth. They’re getting rid of “the Jail” to woo kids into playing the classic board game. And you’re buying and trading brands instead of properties.They say it’ll make the game faster and could be completed in around 30 minutes. You serious?? Sorry Parker Bros, I don’t agree with you. That’s what makes Monopoly! A group of people gathered around a board game for hours on end making important decisions on mortgages and property worth and the power of ownership. You can’t learn that in 30 minutes. Sorry. You can’t wheel and deal your peers properly in 30 minutes. Sorry. You have to ease into the Trade. You have to ask yourself, “Is Baltic Ave really worth it?” Perhaps it is. Do I want the thimble or the wheelbarrow? Is it worth buying the other two properties if the third is already owned? If you’ve played the game for five hours, you’d know. 

Are they going to eliminate some pieces of Chess as well because it’s such a time consuming game? Sorry. Speed chess! (For those who’ve mastered the long version). 

Why are we always trying to speed things up anyway? Everyone is always on the move. Work, School, then sports, then recitals, then eating somewhere in between (probably fast food…but that’s a whole other topic). Kids (and their parents) need to learn to relax. That’s my favorite word: relax. It’s always go go go. You know, the greatest things in life take time like harvesting cashews, playing Monopoly, or watching family, friends, and children grow. There’s no need to speed up the process. You’ll miss the important parts that make it great.


July 8

It’s been a while again. Sorry. That’s mybad. I know I should be writing a lot more because I’m out of school now and I should have more time but I seem to be spending that time elsewhere like reading, or writing in my journal of secret recipes and thoughts, or walking hazel…or cleaning. Recently, my schedule changed so that I work mornings now which is great because that means I get to come home every night and eat with my family. Plus, I’m learning a lot more because I do more prep so I am learning more about the ingredients and how to use them, hand speed, knife speed, and organization. It’s pretty great.

I will say this. I can now cook a soft boiled egg like a champ. It sounds easy but doing it perfectly every time is a challenge. But I got it. I cook 120 soft eggs every weekend. 

June 26

Here’s a tip. In the kitchen, fight odors with odors. The other night I made a delicious brown butter, sage, and grilled anchovy pasta. Although tasty, it made the house smell like fish. How do we combat that? We opened the windows–obiviously–and then we cooked bacon. Then Jenn baked cookies! Your house will smell like the last item that you make in your kitchen. It’s guaranteed. Franco made bacon this morning. So now I’m going to bake this next set of cookies and also start on this home made ice cream. I’m going to have this house smelling like butter, sugar, and flour in no time. And that’s why the pastry section of school is always in a good mood. 

June 19

Here’s a life lesson: Being awesome is a double edge sword. If there’s anything I’ve learned from being in the kitchen it’s that you are constantly judged by your mistakes. This applies in every situation both in and out of the kitchen. It’s not about showing people how good you are anymore because they already know that. It’s why you’re there in the first place. It’s about being able to keep that momentum and quickly recovering from mistakes, if ever there are any. The same goes for everyday life. Sometimes I feel I like I’m on a role and then I am quickly humbled by my self praises that lead to a lack of focus. Who cares that you got it right the time before. Big whoop. That was then. You’ve got about a bajillion more to go and each one needs to be just as good if not better than the last. Keep Calm and Carry On definitely doesn’t apply. It’s more like Keep Strong and Move Quickly.

June 18

Remember when I ordered those new pans?? They came in and they’re awesome!

The trade off with Tommy was that he had to by a Soda Stream because we drink bubbly water like nobody’s business. It’s our 1% problem. We decided to invest in the water machine instead of spending money on glass bottles of fizzy water that way we never run out! So when Tommy ordered it, he got the two week shipping. To compensate for the wait time he also went out and bought a whole box of Gerolsteiner Mineral Water. Hopefully that will hold us over until it arrives next week. We’ll see. 

June 14

I’m officially on summer break! I’m now on to third quarter! Let’s see if I get any scholarship money for next quarter. 

This summer I plan to continue working full time at Revel and gain experience in the industry. I know it’ll be a lot easier since I only have to focus on work instead of work and school both full time. It’ll also give me more time to read through my cook books, conjure up ideas, recipe test, work out, and hang out with my family. Hopefully I can work mornings so I can hang out at night! Cross your fingers!

June 11

Backstory: Our room mate/best friend Tommy likes to occasionally step into the kitchen and make home made meals as his way of “pinching pennies” because of his super cool and hip lifestyle that he lives after work. He lacks a sense of kitchen awareness though because there have been many occasions where he has left the stove on and just walked away. One time we came back and there was a flame still burning with no pan on it and it had been that way for a half hour with no one in the house. Yea…

He recently did it again but this time he left the pan on. And the heat on max. And the pan started to melt. Literally. Metal was oozing from the inside of the pan.

I told Tommy and he said that he was going to buy a new pan to replace the one he broke but he didn’t know which ones to buy.

So today I went onto Amazon and bought me some new de Buyer pans! They’re pretty awesome! They’re like cast iron skillets but not as heavy. These pans are also great because it’s just metal as opposed to having sensitive teflon material that is easily damaged by metal utensils. Great for high temperature and sautéing. The only bad thing is that you have to break them in like any new cast iron skillet so it’ll take a little bit to get them to where I want them to be but when they get there they’ll be super cool. Also, they are higher maintenance than other pans but that’s okay because this is sort of my thing. People like to keep their cars well tuned; I like to keep my kitchen equipment well tuned. 

So Julie, if you’re looking for new pans, de Buyer are awesome. Reasonably priced for individual pans. Calphalon pans are also a good way to go, especially if you’re looking for sets. Super durable and on sale at Williams-Sonoma online. Or you can try to convince Ted to buy you Mauviel, the finest of copper cookware. Price? Uhh…yea.