Valentine’s Day and International Foods

Hi everyone!

February is a month full of love, friendship, and giving. Not only can you celebrate the day of love with your friends, you also have a great excuse to go outside and eat a bunch of chocolates. In my case, I did both. ☺

One of the student groups that I am in, the Washington University Pops Orchestra (WU Pops), decided to host a fun “Party Heart-y” Semi-Formal event the Friday before Valentine’s Day.


I had the honor of helping out with the crafting for the photo booth, which turned out to be a *lot* more work than originally planned. I’m sure activities like “cutting shapes” and “gluing papers” sound like simple tasks, but oh boy, our crafting committee spent at least two hours working on the simplest photo-booth props.

None of us had much experience with crafting in the first place. However, it is moments like this when you realize the tremendous amount of support there are from your friends. Our small crafting committee, despite spending a Thursday afternoon in the Student Union office making sunglasses, mustaches, and bow ties, ended up bonding over embarrassing childhood memories and cool stories. The next day, seeing how great all the decorations fit together was definitely a rewarding experience. Although they may not be super professional looking, but they were made with love (plus two hours of cutting and gluing!). Everyone had so much fun at the event. I also have some pictures to share (below)!

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Later on that weekend, I also decided to try out some restaurants in the Loop that I do not usually visit. One of my favorite things about the Loop is how easy it is to try out a completely new flavor (even though I definitely have my go-to restaurants like Corner 17 and Chipotle). So, I went with a couple friends to Thai Country Café (it has AMAZING Pad Thai) and Ranoush (Middle Eastern Food!).

Thai Country Café has this home-y feeling because its atmosphere is calm, the lighting is dim but still warm, and the people inside are super friendly. We actually went there to celebrate my friend Will’s early 20th birthday. Everyone ended up eating a different flavor (so we each tried different dishes) and eating so much that we had to take the Green Line back to campus (too lazy to walk, yikes!).


There are cooking pans hanging from the ceiling!


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We’re so silly!

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Happy Birthday, Will!

I also visited Ranoush. Even though I have been there once last semester, I wanted to try out some more dishes. In fact, I ordered two small dishes (one cold mezza and one hot mezza) instead of a main dish to do that (#foodie moment right there). I ended up ordering a dish of spicy potatoes (it was recommended by the chef!) and a plate of stuffed grape leaves. My other friends ordered these HUGE dishes of shawarmas, kebabs, and kaftas. Regardless of what they ordered, the food ended up looking so yummy that I definitely want to visit Ranoush again before the end of the semester!


so colorful!

This is what I ordered!

As I continue on with this week, I know that I will be super duper busy with homework (it’s almost midterms season, again) and student group activities. For example, I had a paper due two days ago, two exams coming up next week, and one of my other groups, Student Sustainability Fund, is planning an information session for our upcoming application deadlines. However, all of this stress does not feel as bad because I have all these supportive friends around me (who are going through exactly the same thing as me!).

I hope everyone has a nice, productive rest of the week!


~ Nancy ☺