“Moon that Embraces the Sun” (해를 품은 달)

A sweeping dramatic series set in Korea’s Joseon era, the “Moon That Embraces the Sun” is a love story that at times is painfully heartbreaking. But, it’s also filled with hope and humor. That combination makes for an addictive series that will leave viewers hungering for more.

“Coffee Prince” (커피프린스)

On the surface, “Coffee Prince” is your standard boy-meets-girl romantic comedy with a few roadblocks thrown in for good measure. Thanks to the chemistry shared by the attractive leads (Gong Yoo and Yoo Eun Hye), the series is highly watchable and I understand why so many fans are repeat viewers. But beneath the cute exterior, the series deals with issues such as sexual confusion, gender roles and poverty.

Chicago (My Kind of Town)

Our kid likes to travel. He has taken high-speed KTX trains in Seoul, played in New York City’s Central Park and fed dolphins in Paradise Island (Bahamas). All of that was amazing. But it’s wonderful having a first-rate destination with skyscapers, museums and all the dining choices right in our own back yard. We’ll be back, Chicago, because we can’t quit you.

Korean cuisine beyond barbecue and kimchi

When I was young, I went through a phase where I hated Korean food. My mother would make fresh, home-cooked meals from scratch. And instead of realizing what a treat that was, I would ask why we couldn’t just eat TV dinners like all my friends. But these days, there’s no cuisine I enjoy more than Korean. And if someone else is willing to cook it for me, all the better! So when my family and I traveled to South Korea this fall, eating well was a top priority.

Go Away With … Cam Gigandet

Cam Gigandet (“The Magnificent Seven,” “The Twilight Saga” franchise) stars alongside Donald Sutherland and Jeremy Sisto in AT&T Audience Network’s latest series, “Ice.” In the serialized crime drama, Gigandet’s character is thrown into the world of corrupt diamond trading, murder and dubious cartels. For the series, Gigandet, 34, moved his family from their Venice, California, home to Vancouver, B.C., where “Ice” is filmed.

Music, music, music 🎵

I’ll be updating this page periodically to include music that’s piquing my interest at the moment. What’s that you say? Some of this music is old? Well, so am I. 😛

Go Away With … Kimberly Brooks

Based out of Miami, journalist Kimberly Brooks is co-anchor of “Nightline on Fusion.” The TV personality — who got her start working at Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Studios — is also the host of Fusion’s latest documentary, “O Girls,” which checks in on the progress of five of the young women who were amongst the first to graduate from the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa.

North Face: These boots were made for walking

I love boots. Besides providing warmth and traction, they also cover up a multitude of sins, such as cankles, unflattering pants and general slovenliness. And not that I’m into cosplay — because I’m not (not that there’s anything wrong with it) — but when I wear boots, I feel spritely. Like an elf. Not the Will Ferrell kind of elf, but the Legolas/Galadriel kind. Anyone else? No? Just me? Alrighty then… Moving on.

Eat, drink and be merry

January 5, 2017

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Eat, drink and be merry

True story: When I was in college, we didn’t have access to The Internets like all you young whipper snappers today. So, instead of drooling over all the photos of food on Pinterest and Instagram, I used to look at recipe books and imagine that I could be eating that instead of the dorm food my parents had paid for.

Go Away With … Joe Mantegna

Joe Mantegna won a Tony Award for his performance in David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Glengarry Glen Ross,” co-starred in “The Godfather Part III” and is the voice of Fat Tony on “The Simpsons.” But television viewers know him best as FBI agent David Rossi on the CBS procedural “Criminal Minds,” which airs Wednesdays. Born and raised in Chicago, he resides in the Los Angeles area, where he and his wife, Arlene, own a restaurant called Taste Chicago.

The Art of Saying No

If you want me to write about pop culture for a magazine, I will accept (for the appropriate payment). If you want someone to help your kid get into Harvard, do not ask me to look over anything. Hire a professional who specializes in this and who really wants your business (and it is a business — you will have to pay them). You don’t want an overtired, overworked and resentful me saying, “Okay,” because I don’t want to hurt your feelings. Seriously. You get what you pay for.

Go Away With … Kelsey Robinson

Olympian Kelsey Robinson helped Team USA win the bronze medal in volleyball at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, but her love of basketball is evident by the number on the back of her team jersey — 23. The number, of course, is in honor of Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, but it also makes her feel close to her Chicago-area roots, says Robinson, 24.

Go Away With … Russell Hornsby

Actor Russell Hornsby is technically based out of Los Angeles, but he has lived in Portland for the past six years working on the NBC series “Grimm.” His latest role is opposite Denzel Washington and Viola Davis in the feature film adaptation of “Fences,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama by August Wilson: “We filmed in Pittsburgh, which is the setting for ‘Fences.’ It added a level of authenticity and the city became another character. My father is from there and I had been there as a young child, but it felt like this was my first real time in Pittsburgh. It’s a burgeoning city that came out of the rubble of the steel mill and created a new identity. The city offers so much and has also become a very foodie-friendly city that embraces artists. I look forward to returning.”

Go Away With … Nelufar Hedayat

Nelufar Hedayat, 28, was just 6 years old when she and her family fled the Taliban and war-torn Afghanistan. Her experiences as a refugee and immigrant helped shape her desire to make a difference. While working for the BBC, she interviewed Malala Yousafzai for the TV documentary, “Shot for Going to School.” Hedayat’s current project is the Fusion docuseries “The Traffickers,” where she delves into subjects such as the illegal selling of human organs and sex.

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