Brave Little Asian Blog

Fortunes for Charity: Need Some Answers?

Have you ever wondered what your Chinese astrological sign says about your personality, relationships or career? Or have you ever pondered what your birth date and time indicate about your life path? Or considered what the shape of your nose or length of your eyebrows says about you. Nipa Kaowthumrong is ready to provide some…

My Favorite Clear Tom Yum Soup

Whenever I make one of my Mama’s recipes, I have to remind myself that cooking takes practice and things don’t often go as smoothly as they look on TV (How does Jacque Pepin make things look so easy?). And when I call her to ask why I carefully followed the recipe and the dish doesn’t…

Cheers to Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

While I’ve always been close to my family here in Colorado and my brother and sister-in-law who live in Seattle — especially during the past few years — I’m fairly disconnected to the Asian American community. I don’t have any close friends who are Asian besides my cousins, and I don’t attend many cultural events,…

Saturday Fish Fry & Why We Eat Whole Animals

Every Chinese New Year and on other occasions, my Mama performs a ritual of offering a variety of dishes to the Buddhist alters that protect our homes in hopes of ushering a year of good fortune. This involves purchasing and preparing a plethora of whole animals, pigs, ducks and chickens — with feet, faces and…


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About Me

Until I turned 30 about four years ago, “brave” was never a word I’d use to describe myself. But as I make my way through adulthood’s joys and struggles, I’ve come to realize more and more that courage is a vital characteristic to leading a happy life. I’m inspired daily by the bold females in my life — and one in particular: my Mother.

While she’s just 4 feet and 11 inches tall (I’m a mere 5 feet), my Mama is the strongest, most courageous and complex soul I know. Her voice has a powerful quality that has always been a mystery to me (she always seems to sound like she’s raising her voice, even during everyday conversation) — perhaps it’s the tiger in her or a quality that she developed from all of her years fighting for a better life in Thailand and America. My Mother was also born the year of the tiger, the Chinese zodiac sign she believes has shaped her path in life.

And at 34, I’m still learning new things about my Mama and her journey, but there’s so much I don’t know. I’ve heard bits and pieces about her life in Thailand before she moved here with my brother and married my dad in the early ’80s, but she says her life story in entirety is worthy of an Amy Tan novel — a story I hope I can help her tell one day.

This blog is dedicated to her and all of the strength, encouragement and support (emotional and material) she’s given me throughout my life. Here, I share tales and insight into my personal journey of becoming a braver gal and all things I love, including recipes, stories and advice from my Mama that have come to shape my universe.

Thank you for reading.

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