30 Before 30: Making Sushi at Home*

One thing that has been amazing during this project is the absolute excitement of my friends and their desire to jump in and participate! Kristina has been a huge help and has signed up for several 30 Before 30 items – but her husband Mike S., the great chef, jumped in to help me learn to make sushi.

Mike (my Mike) and I have the needed supplies at home but sometimes it’s getting over the hurdle of trying something for the first time – so I jumped at the chance to learn from Mike S.

We went through the basics:

Using short grain rice to make ‘sushi rice’. At home this will be a little different for me since we have a rice cooker that will do this step for us. Prepping all of the ingredients – we used smoked salmon, imitation crab, cucumbers and avocados. I think the hardest part was evenly spreading the rice over the nori seaweed wrap. Once that is done, it was easy to line up the filler ingredients and start the rolling process. Yum, yum! It was much easier then I expected — which in part was because Mike S. prepped everything and gave good instructions.

So technically, I didn’t make sushi at my own home but I will soon! Mike and I are already planning out some crazy combinations of ingredients!

Making the Rice Spreading the Rice Shelby Roll Sushi Rolls


Thanks again Kristina & Mike S. – this was super fun and delicious!!

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30 Before 30: Mastering Chopsticks

Okay basically this was a ploy to get to eat sushi a lot more. Well…sort of! I really can’t explain why this skill was on my 30 Before 30 list other than I just wanted to be able to eat a meal successfully with chopsticks.

I can eat sushi.
I can pick up tiny slivers of ginger.
I can eat pho.
I can eat stirfry.

All with chopsticks. I wouldn’t say I’m a master or even doing it properly – but I can do it. So I’m going to go ahead and call that a success.

And now…basically just photos of sushi, eating sushi, and a clean plate.

Sushi Mega Plate Eating it Up Empty Plate

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30 Before 30: Paint a Masterpiece

For years I’ve been meaning to go to the wine & painting classes that have risen in popularity. Not only did I go once to paint a masterpiece, but I went twice! Yes! On both occasions, I went to Canvas and Cocktails - first with Meredith, and then with Kristina.

I consider myself a fairly creative person – I love having my crafty creative outlets that balance some of the research, policy oriented work I do during the ‘work week’. But I’ll also say – I love having the step-by-step guide in order to end up with the exact painting you set out to paint! It takes a little of the creative pressure off and was just wildly fun! Let’s let the photos do the talking now!

Painting a beautiful wintery Denver scene with Meredith.

Blank Canvas Getting Ready Beautiful Sunset

Purple Mountain Majesty Sunset now with more mountains Finished Products

Painting beautiful flowers with Kristina.

Mid Flower Progress Almost Done with Flowers Finished Flowers with Kristina


Paint a masterpiece – DONE & DONE!

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