Monday, December 29, 2008

It is the fixed that horrifies us, the fixed that assails us with the tremendous force of it's mindlessness. . .The fixed is the world without fire - dead flint, dead tinder, and nowhere a spark. It is motion without direction, force without power, the aimless procession of caterpillars round the rim of a vase, and I hate it because at any moment I myself might step to that charmed and glistening thread.
Annie Dillard


Out to dinner with my family tonight, I couldn't help but notice the couple sitting near us. They were young, attractive, and dressed for the occasion. But they hardly talked and rarely looked at each other. At first I thought that this must be their first date because they were rigid and uncomfortable, and possibly bored. I thought it was cute that they were nervous and uncomfortable. Then I noticed they were married. It made me sad for them.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


I hate "stuff". It's so pointless. Tonight I made an attempt to organize/sort through my room at home, which I never fully unpacked or organized after moving back from school. I have lived without this stuff (and the other random stuff in my room) for the last 7 months and haven't missed it. I want to just throw it all away. But I can't do that with year books and stuff ya know? Ahhh . . . I just want simplicity. I never want to hang on to anything. Well . . . any material things.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Question

It had been just like a scene from a movie. She was walking into her past, and with each step further in that she took she was inundated with memories so quickly, that they were mixing with reality before she could stop them. What a contrast the clear and colorful memories were to the current overcast emptiness. The memories were so astringent she couldn’t keep from choking up. What is this? She wonders to herself. Really, this shouldn’t evoke such a response. She was usually better at controlling such a surge of emotion. It was so long ago. Life had moved on. Life was better. She’d grown up. She was happy now. Wasn’t she?

She always said she wouldn’t go back if she had a choice. But still, this was history. This was life.

The corner where that picture was taken. The bench where she had sat. The hallway where he always waited. The path she faithfully tread. The place that gave her nightmares. The wall forever marked with her contribution to a legacy. She didn’t remember the ivy being so overgrown. The black iron gate. Was it keeping something out or keeping something in?

It was beautiful.

And before she was ready for it . . . life went back to normal.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

I squared my shoulders and walked forward to meet my fate, with my destiny solidly at my side.


I think some people may think I'm crazy. Moving to a place in the middle of nowhere, with no cell phone service, no tv, and an hour and half from the nearest anything . . . It's like living in a bubble right?

I have come to recognize though, that now I am much more intentional about the places I go and the things I do. I would venture to say that I have likely done more exciting things in the last two months, than most people who live in the "real world". I think that when certain things are common . . . there is no push to actually experience them. Simply because they will always be convenient. Like the two years in a row where I never went to the beach . . . and it's minutes away. How ridiculous is that?

But in the last 8 weeks or so, I have:

. Climbed Half Dome in Yosemite
. Visited Elk Grove and Sacramento
. Gone home to Tustin
. Taken the train to Escondido
. Spent an afternoon at the beach in Oceanside
. Gone to Disneyland and the Garden Walk in Anaheim
. Driven through the central valley in the fog
. Done a little off-roading in the mountains
. Looked at the most incredible view of the stars in the mountains
. Gone to a hockey game in Fresno
. Made my life to-do list
. Had lunch in Bakersfield
. Gone to San Francisco to see Phantom of the Opera
. Gone ice skating, and cross country skiing
. Driven through the Grapevine covered in snow
. Gone to Santa Monica and LA
. Learned a new kind of dancing
. Saw the 100th annual boat parade on Balboa Island

So those of you that don't live in a bubble. Take advantage of it. It's more than possible. Or if you don't . . . go live in a Bubble just so that you can really experience life outside of it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

What We Do

Tonight a group of us went cross country skiing around the lake. It was a nice workout, and very enjoyable. While trekking around the lake I kept thinking of great cheesy skiing illustrations for sermons. But I won't bore you with them. Instead . . . I'll just show you some pictures:

Half way around we stop to take a group picture

Oh, then we all get pushed down

We are a little tangled up

Almost ready to go again

I dunno why this showed up sideways . . . but MB and I were the only girls to brave this adventure :-)

I did realize though, that tomorrow is my last full day before heading home for the holidays . . . and I really am going to miss the snow. It's been fun so far. But then again, it's only been a few days . . . ask me again in four months.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


I've been thinking about the concept of change. What a beautiful design.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Some Recent Activities

Family Christmas Party

A Little Ice Skating

A quick trip to San Fran to see Phantom of the Opera!

Those of us who went

Cafe De La Presse in San Fran

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Today I learned that sometime in the near future I am going to have to make a decision. For some reason this made me really anxious and nervous. And just this morning I was thinking about what my next path will be. Coincidence? Likely not. We'll see what happens.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

a cup o joe

It seems only appropriate that a blog from a coffee and tea freak should have some sort of explanation of the coffee and tea experiences as of late. So, last Monday I made my first trip back to my 2nd home at the good ol’ Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf. I saw some great coworkers . . . and actually didn’t have anything to drink.

Tuesday morning, I stopped by CB again and saw Alin and Brent . . . the only people that have been there longer than me. 4 years of working together . . . and we’re still friends. I had my “usual”, also known as “Da Jocey” which is Jasmine Dragon Phoenix Pearl green tea with a little steamed soy, good foam, and a splenda or two. It was glorious. Ahh I forgot how much I miss that.

Then it was off to Escondido for the day, and I got to experience the infamous Blue Mug, which I’d heard so much about. Each cup of coffee is freshly ground and individually brewed into a blue mug. I opted for the Tanzanian Peaberry. It was a coffee that was discontinued from my company before I ever got to try it so I jumped at the opportunity to try it now. This is a unique coffee because unlike most coffees that are grown with 2 pits/beans to each fruit . . . the Peaberry coffee has only one bean in each. Therefore it is supposedly a more concentrated flavor. And this coffee comes from Tanzania . . . and African coffees normally have complex layers of flavor . . . so that was a treat. And of course this one I drank black. No need to cover up greatness. Rebecca chose 100% Kona coffee. Please, do me a favor . . . don’t fall for coffees that say they are Kona unless they are 100%. They will only be a small percentage Kona . . . and you won’t get the true experience.

Wednesday morning B-Lane and I went to Rebecca’s Starbucks and I had my first Starbucks soy cappuccino . . . in a glass mug of course. It was fine and dandy.

Then I took the train to Laguna Niguel and headed to Rancho Santa Margarita and went to visit my sister at the Starbucks she works at. I had just had my cappuccino a few hours before, so this time I opted for black ice tea. I was nauseous from the train ride so I couldn’t finish that one.

The next day was busy with Thanksgiving and all . . . so no more adventures to other coffee shops.

Friday I went to the Lost Bean, an organic coffee and tea place. I tried the Rainforest green tea. I don't really know what was in it. But it was quite good for a green tea. I was very impressed.

On Saturday my “usual” was delivered to my house with a nice little message.

I am officially ridiculous

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Killing Birds

You know how people talk about killing 2 birds with one stone? This past week I felt like I killed 4-5 birds with each stone . . . and there were quite a few stones thrown. It was great. There are too many things to explain, but the way my time was spent at home, was truly divinely orchestrated. It was one of those times when everything had fallen so beautifully into place each day that I couldn't even call it lucky or good planning.

Coming home for the first time in 6 months, there were a lot of things I wanted to do and a lot of people I wanted to see. With the way things played out, I got to do most of the things I wanted to do, and got to spend good quality time with some great friends. Here’s a few pictures of the adventures from this past week (and sorry there's kind of a lot . . . facebook hasn't let me add pictures since summer, so I feel deprived on sharing pictures):

Gotta love smog sunsets

I got to see Reb and the beach!

Then got to see B-Lane at Reb's work

Then it was off to Disneyland to see Sharon in the Christmas parade!!

And hung out with Keri at Disneyland too!

Then Sharon was off work so we enjoyed some rides, the fireworks, and the snow together!

Oh yeah, and Thanksgiving happened in there too. I have so much to be thankful for!

Got to see Alex too.

Hanging out with Dad and Kirs

Went to the new Garden Walk in Anaheim with Kelly and the girls

Then drove home in this weird haze!

All in all, it was a very good week.

Monday, November 24, 2008

6 Months and 6 Hours Later

It's 6 hours later and life looks drastically different. I am now sitting at "home". It feels very strange. It's as if I have never left, but at the same time . . . it's completely different. Likely it's just me that's different. I like the different.

It's 6 months later and my perception of time and distance has been completely warped. Totally understandable I'd say, since it's an hour and a half to the nearest anything. Coming out of the Grapevine tonight, and seeing the city open up . . . I felt like I was so close to home. You know, it's that feeling you get coming home after a vacation when things first start looking familiar. It was just ridiculous that that feeling set in hours from home this time. And instead of coming home after a vacation . . . home now, is my vacation. That is very strange. This isn't real life anymore. Just a break from the current reality, to briefly slip into the old one.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Coffee, Candles, Conversations, and Cleaning . . .

Today has been a great day! I woke up to snow! And since this will be my first winter ever in the snow . . . it was an exciting thing. It didn’t last long and I think it was only a couple of inches, but it was beautiful while it lasted.

I talked to my mom . . . she told me how the kids from her school went on a fieldtrip on the train, and an old lady committed suicide by laying on the tracks . . . and the kids all saw her body dismembered with blood and guts all around while the train passed by at like 5 miles an hour. Now some of them are traumatized. Hmmm. Interesting.

I stayed in my pajamas till lunch, enjoyed my organic coffee, apple and vanilla candles and had a couple of great conversations with great friends about things that actually matter in life. I got to talk to my best friend who lives oh so far away in Arizona now. Everyone needs an Amber in their life. Your life won’t feel complete without one like her. She is one of the very few that truly knows me, loves me still, understands me, pushes me to greater faith and growth in life, challenges me, speaks truth into my life, and asks the hard questions.

Then I cleaned. I find I am more OCD clean than ever before. (The people here could probably vouch for that. Anytime someone is over I am picking lint or hair out of the carpet, doing dishes or something else ridiculous when I should be enjoying company). I think it is because I have spent that last 4 ½ years in a job where I was constantly cleaning. And now that I don’t have that anymore at work . . . I have to find something else to clean! I also think it’s one small area of my life that I feel like I can control. Hmmm, I should work on that.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thought of the Day

I believe that it is healthy to have at least one crazy idea everyday. Today, in the middle of working on a tedious report . . . I suddenly gasped. I realized that since I randomly chopped off my hair a few days ago . . . that I am pretty sure I could now do a mohawk! Now I'll just have to find an excuse to try it.


Over the past few years I have continually surprised myself at how quickly I can make a new place my home. Whether it's going off to school, spending some time in Africa or moving to the middle of nowhere to take a new job . . . it all feels normal, and it always feels right. Maybe I don't get attached, maybe I'm just good with change, but whatever it is, I am always ready for my next adventure in life, wherever that may be. This past weekend I got to go to my first hometown for the first time in many years, so it got me thinking about my different homes. Just in case you care to see the rest of my "homes", here they are:

My first hometown . . . good Ol' Sac!

My crazy siblings at our OC home.

A brief moment in Africa. Actually a month.

My school home with the Fam and Am.

The current home.

In reality, all of these pictures could have been taken anywhere. Home is wherever God has me at the moment. And I like it that way. I can't wait to see what other homes will be added to my list someday. Should be an adventure.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Being as I am vehicle-less in my current stage of life . . . I was thinking I should get a pogo stick. It would be fun to pogo stick to work.

Sticky Notes and Yellow Flyers

Today I voted for the first time ever. Being a dual citizen raised by parents who are not U.S. citizens . . . I fear I may have missed the political bug. I am conflicted with all of this because I really want to vote and be smart about it. I just don't know if it is better to vote just because it's my civic duty even if I am not well educated on the issues, or to not vote at all if I cannot make an intelligent and informed decision.

So my parents mailed me all my voting stuff that had been sent to my former home, and they sent the voting booklet full of sticky notes that had their guidelines of what they thought I should vote on. Pretty entertaining. Also, we all got these yellow flyers in our mailboxes from the Republican party stating their positions on the propositions. I hate that there is this expectation that we are all going to be of one political orientation. I am glad that I can think for myself and not let my family or my community dictate to me their political agenda.

Ooohh . . . haha, if only they knew. Maybe I am not politically apathetic after all.

Or I'll just move to Canada.

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Mountain Girl Now?

I have always said that I hated hiking. So last weekend I decided to hike Half Dome in Yosemite and hopefully change my feelings on the issue. 14 hours, probably 15 miles or so. Ha. It was quite the adventure. Previously, I think the longest hike I had done was 3 miles . . . and I don't think I had ever even hiked carrying a backpack. My boss asked if I had done anything to get into shape for this. I wasn't sure what to make of that.

Anyway . . . all this came about because my dear friend Rebecca was coming and this was my opportunity to see her. So a little trek through the mountains was totally worth it.

We started our hike at 3:00 A.M. Let's just say we didn't really sleep much before we began. There were 7 of us in our little hiking posse. It was nice to make some new friends. They were very entertaining.

The goal was to make it to the top for sunrise, but we had a late start so we missed that. Next Time.

After many hours of hiking when we should have been sleeping, we finally made it! Well sort of. We didn't go all the way to the very top because the cables to climb the rest of the way weren't set up anymore. Next time. We hung out at the "top" for a bit. I felt very accomplished being there.

And before you know it . . . it's time to head back down the way we came and do it all over again. First we took a little snooze though. After all, we had been awake for a really long time.

The hike down definitely went faster, but it's brutal on your legs! This picture was taken after probably 12 hours of hiking . . . and we are still smiling :-) Ok, so the rest of the day wasn't documented because we were pretty much beat. We ate pizza before leaving Yosemite, stayed in Fresno for the night, and then went to the Yosemite Falls Cafe . . . in Fresno . . . for breakfast the next morning. Kind of ironic. But we sat in front of a waterfall in the restaurant. So that was cool.

Then it was time to take Rebecca to the train station. So sad. But I like this picture.

Overall it was a great weekend. It was so wonderful to see Reb, meet new people, and to be in the incredible beauty of Yosemite. And I am proud to say . . . I don't hate hiking anymore.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Beginning

I suppose I have now officially started a blog. I am not sure if anyone will care to read this, and I am not sure how much I want people to read this anyway. Should make for some interesting writing. Enjoy.