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Burning your tongue with tales of parenting, culture, and what it means to be Korean (or married to one).
Recent Activity
I still see it sometimes in movies. Not the winnowing basket, but the whole salt thing.
Toggle Commented Feb 9, 2021 on Wetting the bed at Kimchi Mamas
Completely normal for us yo! Also, your youngest bro is 42 and not married? Did he get threatened with a bride from Korea? - Mary
Toggle Commented Feb 4, 2021 on Musings on Death at Kimchi Mamas
Take heart Angie! You are self aware and thinking of how to resolve it! That's huge(not to sound like the terrible T man) I thought of how you can do it and I don't really have the perfect answer. I jog 4 miles every day to be sure I am in ok shape ;) I kept thinking about your question, "How do you do it?" The best I could think of is, perhaps you and I and every one of us... should look in the mirror and look for ways to love every part. It might even be hard at first because no matter how beautiful and perfect(societal measure) you are, you will still see flaws. So... how about if we start easy... and look for every little ways that our bodies serve us for good for pleasure, for work that we love, anything... how about we both start? And any other woman here who also want to start. I think we can do it. --Nancy Sungyun
Thanks Shinyung!!! - Mary
Toggle Commented Dec 14, 2015 on Letter from Dad at Kimchi Mamas
You are are trail-blazer Razzsb! I was often the only Asian American in my meetings but in the last year or so, I've seen a couple of Asians regularly at my home meeting. It didn't really bother me that I was the only Asian because the relief I got from the meetings was so enormous that it shadowed any other feelings. I also did not experience any overt racism or reference to my color so that helped me feel safe. No meeting is perfect.
Toggle Commented Apr 22, 2014 on Al-Anon at Kimchi Mamas
My son, when he was eleven years old said to me,"mom, I wish you would be like the other normal moms and just spank me and get it over with." He was referring to the fact that I lectured for hours on end sometimes. I too yelled. What I didn't do was put in place what you have. "Jelly Beans"... I think that is wonderful for many reasons. For one, you have established a way for you to notice what you are doing. Another is that your daughter is learning that not only is she so important to you that you are "doing" something to be your best. Another is that you are also modeling for her that growing and changing is what it is all about. You also also showing her that one should always look for solutions and not just settle. Another thing that you can do is to find a way to find joy. Find a way to relieve your stress, whatever that might be. Happy mom is a great mom. We are all imperfect. You are a great mom because you are self aware and self reflecting! Nancy
Toggle Commented Jan 18, 2014 on Jelly Beans at Kimchi Mamas
1. I was surprised at how easy the book was to read given some of the deep themes. I had heard and read soooo many things about it that I thought it would be more difficult to read. *There are some Chang-rae Lee books that I have thoroughly enjoyed, but had to re-read (and re-read) to get (what I perceived as) the full meaning. I am looking forward to Mary's take on the Korean language version of the book to see differences and similarities. 2. It wasn't until I was a college student living far away from home before I really appreciated my mom's cooking. I have many memories of my mom "swatting" my older brother away from the pyramid of gim-bag when he would "swipe" a few and run off . . . it always brought a smile to her face (still does). My kids have actually asked me a version of this question. And I would like to say that I gave some rock-their-world reply, but instead I answered with a simple truth: that I enjoy watching my family eat and enjoy what I have made them. *Once my husband and daughter made a full dinner together and both were so proud of themselves and each other for a meal the whole family appreciated. And I think that meant more to them than my own words. 3. My mom had a stroke a few years ago. It was a horrendous experience. And in my mind my 3 siblings, father and my own mother, and I were to blame. I should have been more careful to take time off from work to take her to all of her dr's appointments, Dad should have made sure she took her diabetic medications, siblings who visited the night she had the stroke should have noticed instead of assuming she was "tired", I should have visited that night, I should visit more often, etc., etc. So when I consider who is most responsible, in my biased mind they - we - all are. 4. Some of you may be familiar with Maureen Coorigan's review of this book. The infamous review that "was not intended" to be racist but quips one should knock back a glass of wine and bring out the "kimchee-scented Kleenex" because of the book's melodrama. Though I don't agree with her review, nor do I care for her ill-chosen words, I feel like she inadvertently hit on the very thing that makes this novel Korean. The melodrama. If you ask my white, New England, Catholic, Irish heritage husband about Korean films he'll [kind of jokingly] tell you: all the characters die, get maimed, or have to live with the burden of their choices where they wish they had died. He doesn't know it, but he's talking about "han". And "han" is about as Korean as it gets. So Ms. Corrigan I thank you to for pointing it out - you just didn't know it. *I'd also like to remind her this book was written in Korea, by a Korean writer, to a Korean audience. 5. I think Mom's relationship with Lee Eun-Gyu gives us a little insight in to some of the sacrifices of Mom and her compassion for others in light of the challenges of her own life. Again the responsibility of duty, brought forth from the idea of han, shows it's face. The act of breastfeeding the baby who was not her own reminded me of Rose of Sharon breastfeeding the old man in the barn near the end of "Grapes of Wrath" - which in turn is a reference to the painting "Roman Charity". In all three cases, there is really no other humane choice than for the woman to feed the weak from the breast. 6. B+. There were some elements of the story that I found hard to really understand, but that I believe may have been lost in translation or cultural reference. Perhaps if I knew more . . . but I had to read this Korean novel through American thinking. Julie, I think hoping for something more positive at the end is an American hope. ;) (See what I said about my husband's reviews of Korean dramas. LOL.) Angie in Texas
this is Angie in Texas.
Toggle Commented May 28, 2013 on No Korean crackheads? at Kimchi Mamas
kind of (not) related: my parents' asian market was broken into a couple of weeks ago. the police suspect it was some addicts (esp. given the neighborhood). a friend of mine asked "was any food stolen?" my response: i don't think crackheads like kimchi . . .
Toggle Commented May 28, 2013 on No Korean crackheads? at Kimchi Mamas
You are up on Ban Chan now! Thanks for your patience.
Toggle Commented May 7, 2013 on Call for Blog Links! at Kimchi Mamas
That was Mary
You ROCK so hard.
I believe most (all?) Koreans have dry earwax. I have many memories of having my earwax taken out by older women when I was a child. They use a tiny little scooper thing-y. Looks like a tiny little spoon. I should blog about this.
Toggle Commented Oct 15, 2012 on Do White People Have 때? at Kimchi Mamas
Thank you! You are so sweet!
Toggle Commented Oct 15, 2012 on Shakespeare, Gangnam Style at Kimchi Mamas
Whoa, Ask a Korean!'s translation is even better!
Toggle Commented Oct 13, 2012 on Shakespeare, Gangnam Style at Kimchi Mamas
I have a friend with THREE kids in club level sports. I haven't seen her in years. LOL! Seriously though, her schedule is CRAZY and I don't know how she does it.
My fear about Kim Jong Un is that he grew up as a spoiled brat and doesn't have any emotional connection to the average North Korean citizen. - Mary
Toggle Commented Dec 24, 2011 on Kim Jong Il is Dead at Kimchi Mamas
Toggle Commented Dec 16, 2011 on Best of the Worst at Kimchi Mamas
I LOVE this place and I had the pleasure of Julie's company for my first visit. What she doesn't know is that I actually went BACK there with BOTH of my boys because I had 2 hours to kill before a flight.. hahaha Thanks to Julie for taking me to this place. We'll definitely visit again when we are in Orange County.
Toggle Commented Nov 18, 2011 on Little Prince Kids Restaurant Review at Kimchi Mamas
I loved Solid too! hahaha.
Toggle Commented Nov 12, 2011 on Milestone Birthdays at Kimchi Mamas
That was Mary C. =)
I love postsecret too! One of the secrets I sent in got posted a long long time ago. I went to the tour too! It was a great experience. The Korean in the postcard is mostly jibberish. =) I can certainly understand why some Koreans don't like being around other Koreans... but I personally don't have anything against being around Koreans. I find that it's easier to make small talk... and I don't have to explain all the cultural things or be judged for certain things.
I think that the fear you have about your future MIL and your fiancee not standing up to her is a pretty common, and legitimate, fear. You can read a lot of advice columns where this issue is addressed . . . add in the Korean MIL factor and it can be down right fearFUL! But rest assured, communicating with your beloved about your needs, insecurities and concerns is the way to go. Because COMMUNICATION is CRITICAL to a successful marriage - and maybe a little distance from MILs. ;)
Dear Jenny, my heart goes out to you. You are NOT a failure. You are strong for protecting yourself. My prayers are with you.
In my opinion, it's not bad etiquette to ask someone what they do for a living. I mean, there is only so much conversation one can have about the weather or sports. I think what is "personal" to someone may not be necessarily "personal" to another person. How do you know if something is going to make someone uncomfortable, until after you ask it? Even something simple like, "How are you?" Can make someone uncomfortable... (If, in fact, they are miserable because something personal happened to them.). I think the fear of offending someone is getting in the way of people progressing from "small talk" to "medium talk" to deep meaningful conversation. - Mary C