Sunday, March 30, 2008

springtime

spring is here...
and the sakura trees are blooming...
graduates are graduating :(
Here Kyle, Jennifer, and I are with Keigo and Ayumi!!
beautiful Kie...
Saaya and I met up with Chi and Joni for a picnic under the sakura trees...
i used to model for a bag company... okay, that's a lie. but i always practice, cause you can never know when the model agencies will come a' calling...
"saaya, let's take a nice picture."
Saaya, Joni and Chi...
wow, isn't God's creation so breathtaking?
Joni and Saaya
laughing about something...
i love sakura petals...
i feel so silly... i think i am so funny.
"okay, saaya, no more pictures."
Saaya, Joni, me and Chi. I love this picture.
I love that God loves beauty! (even more than me! wow)
good times with good friends.
i am blessed.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Melt your heart

What a pair of cuties. I can't stop watching this video my brother Jonah made.... for more of Jonah, Becca, Lenora, and Adelia (and their dog Lewie) click on the link to the right "I'm Your Fairy Godmother"

video

Monday, March 24, 2008

undeserving...

Before I update you all on the latest trip to see my boyfriend Mikey, I have some other news... my niece ADELIA TRUE was born March 22nd, 2008.
Becca almost didn't make it to the hospital in time, Adelia True Schupbach came when she was ready. :) Isn't she the cutest?
Welcome to the world, Miss Adelia. I spent 11 days in CA this March. I had some time and money so I flew into LAX and spent the time getting to know Mikey, his friends, and his parents. It was such a great trip and I feel so undeserving to have had that special time.
Mikey spoiled me rotten the entire time with him taking me to see so many different people, places... he also spoiled me with his thoughtfulness. When I arrived he had bought me tulips. (my first time to receive tulips!!) Mikey also surprised me with a trip to AZ to see our friends there. It had been too long since I had seen everyone and Mikey made it happen.
He told me, "Get a bag packed for overnight." and then we started driving. I was actually praying when I saw the LAX sign and so I lost my train of thought (oops!) but I managed to finish the prayer and ask, "Are we flying somewhere?"
To which Mikey soon replied, "Look in the glove compartment."
There inside were two tickets to Phoenix AZ with a rental car to road trip down to Tucson.
I was so surprised. I don't think I've ever had anyone outside of my family, do anything this special for me....
Mikey is such a great guy. I have no idea how I ended up in this relationship, aside from God's grace and mercy, but here I am... dating the most amazing man. His words and actions are focused on the Lord. He is intentional in serving me and serving those in his life. He is wise and cautious in the things that he says and does. Mikey is a man that you would want in your friendship circle. He is honest and generous, serving, kind, thoughtful, fun, and most of all he is just a great guy to be around...
flying to Phoenix together was fun because usually in our long distance relationship we fly AWAY from each other. It was fun to get to travel WITH him.

My dear friend Krista Morrison. I had not seen Krista in five years... Krista and I went on the SIJ trip 2003 together. When Krista brought up funny stories of things I said or did in Japan at that time I can only THANK GOD that I am a work in progress. Ah! I did some silly ridiculous things back then.... Krista is another friend you want to surround yourself with. She shared things God has been teaching her and I was so encouraged and challenged to look into those lessons myself. I am so blessed to have such amazing friends.

Christy Randl, whom I haven't seen in two years, and I hugging. What a blessing to reconnect with such beautiful people...
Krista, Christy, Ariel, me, and Meaghan...

It was so great (i can't stop saying that) to see everyone.

Krista and I in her home, the Strudel. for more on Krista, AZ, the Strudel and her adventures click on her link to the right "pinky swearing friends"
While in AZ, I realized we might have a little time to see my old college roommates... we called Holly and Rachel on our way back to the airport and asked if they had time to meet... so Mikey officially met two of my 36 Valley Ave. roommates and they drove us from the rental car place to the airport. A solid five minutes of hanging out but hey! that's enough for old friends like us. We're flexible. :)
Mikey and I spent a lot of time talking, dreaming, and getting to know each other in many coffeeshops. This one is a cute little cafe called Literati's.

I enjoyed meeting Mikey's parents and eating authentic Chinese food with them. They are really great people and so kind to me. They asked me all sorts of questions about my life, what I find attractive in Mikey, what Japan is like, my family... etc. The best part of the night (well, there were many) but one of the best parts was the story Mikey's Mom told me about dropping Mikey off for pre-school. I guess she dropped him off and started driving away and Mikey started running after her.... how adorable is that story? awwwwww
Mikey's dad surprised me with flowers. Aren't they goregous?
Playing card games or Settlers with James and Liz (mikey's teammates)
Mikey and I got up early one morning to go snowboarding...

We're crazy!
It was a lot of fun. Mikey is awesome at boarding. He was hitting all the jumps and rails and doing tricks and stuff... and I was just following behind him. It was fun to watch him and see him enjoy one of his favorite sports. I was really proud of him. It was fun for me (i love to board) but I just enjoyed watching him...
It is nice to finally be together...
Chilling in the hammock...
Drinking boba together..
enjoying the warm California weather...
Oh man! I love ice cream.

I also really love coffee.
One thing you gotta know about Mikey....

he enjoys good food. He has a standard for good food, actually. He won't let me eat just any old thing or any old restaurant. He wants the very best (taste and price). So that was fun for me. I always eat amazingly when I eat with my boyfriend. Here Mikey introduces me to shrimp tacos. They were so good.
And we ate dim sum (or a la carte)
and I ate chicken feet.... the taste is good, the look of it was a little hard to take in. I couldn't actually think about it. I just had to eat it.
this is me eating it...
and then me saying, "Mikey stop taking pictures of me."

Our last dinner together... Thai curry with rice and noodles. Man, that makes my mouth water just looking at it. I think the Thai curry was one of my favorite dishes.

Our last "date"
Overall, it was just a blessing to be with my boyfriend. It's a bit surreal at times to go back to America... I feel like I wake up in Japan and then wake up in America... it's hard to think of doing two months apart from Mikey again but I am so blessed by this time in Japan to be with my friends here.
God really spoke to my heart on the plane ride home. He gave me a lot of courage to continue living here...
it is by His grace and strength alone that we live here. A good lesson for me to learn because whether I am far away or near to those I *like* God is always going to be the Only One who can sustain and satisfy. :) Doing long distance is teaching me a lot about life...

thanks Mikey for being my amazing boyfriend and generously giving me your time and energy.
thank you Lord, for my time in CA. Thank you for all you are doing there and all that you are doing in Japan. Thanks for letting me be a small part in both of those.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

On my mind...

It's been awhile since I have done a random~ on my mind~ post. So I thought I would take some time and update you all what's on my mind...

In three days I am boarding a plane for a quick trip to California. I can't wait to share life with Mikey, to see his life in CA, to meet his parents, to hang out with the people he hangs out with, and to have moments like this... little "daily life" moments.

Long distance has been fun but it'll be a blessing we don't deserve to take this trip...Lenora has been on my mind since she will be a big sister in a month or so... I love this picture of her in her pjs and tutu!! What a doll. The last time I talked to her she asked, "Do you have a little sister?" and then Becca and I tried to explain that I am a little sister. Too much, perhaps, for a two year olds mind...

Check out Lenora's blog to the right.... *I'm Your Fairy Godmother* to catch up on the latest pictures and videos!
I feel like it has been awhile since I've been a little sister... I forget sometimes that I am "that role" along with the roles I am here in Japan. Mostly, I am the foreigner, teammate, friend and person able to eat an intense amount of sushi.... but I am not a little sister to anyone here in Japan. It's a "role" I have been missing recently.


Watching my eldest brother Jeremy and his wife Alaina become parents has been a joy. I catch up with little Eddie through Jeremy's blog to the right *Chubby Little Cheekies*
Check out their blog to see my favorite video, Alaina is talking to Eddie and I had the hardest time trying to figure out what she was saying to him. Turns out "jonseies little peeky is actually "chubby little cheekies." ha ha ha
Aw, the last time I saw Miss Waveland she was just a wee babe. And now she is developing her personality and love for life... you have to check out her blog which is *On the Corner Of* She is a delight in my life and always on my mind as well...

I found this picture on my friend's blog and I love the feeling of this particular picture. Check out the beauty that is Sara Fitz on her blog to the right *Soul Sister*. I like this girl in the picture, standing there... life before her, standing in a place where she is about to run through the field but lingering to enjoy the openness before entering it... once you enter a season of life, you can no longer go back to the place where everything was all new and fresh. So it's good for me to remember to enjoy the newness or the seasons as I am in them... once I have entered this field, I will no longer be the girl who once stood at the edge of it...


One of the hardest things about being away is missing the things back home... it was hard to miss my dear friend Katie's wedding... but God gives strength to endure and perspective to embrace the joyous life He has given me. What I am experiencing now is precious and fleeting... if I don't take time to enjoy this season of life, I will miss out on the joy it offers.I am thankful for pictures.


Really interested in reading Jerry Bridges's book, "Respectable Sins" a book about the sins we have become "used to" in our lives. The list includes; anger, anxiety, envy... I am hoping to get a copy when I am in CA. listening to Tristan Prettyman right now...
Saw this picture on Jamie O'Donnell's blog *Lewis and Kindred Spirits* and had to share it. I laughed so hard. Jamie is a new mother who openly shares her life's lessons with all of us on her blog and even more in person. I hung out with her this past week/weekend and thoroughly enjoyed the peek into her heart. I feel like I could sit with Jamie and listen to her for hours. She has a lot of wisdom and insight into life. Pray for her, her husband and their son Jones as they adjust to life in Japan. Jamie enjoys coffee as much as I do, so I thought this picture was HILARIOUS!!!


Here are some pictures from my weekend with Kie and her family...
the strawberry greenhouse we visited...

I was in awe of the process of strawberries being created. I kept thinking how when strawberries are this greeny color they are sour and inedible... yet, if we wait and watch we can enjoy the sweetness of the juice when it has filled the berry. I really can't wrap my mind around how the strawberry is made... Where does the juice come from? It just floored me to see that even the strawberry is unique and beautiful... sorry but evolution seems like the worst explanation for life... this strawberry couldn't happen by chance.
beautiful...
and delicious (the strawberry not me!)
Kie and I ate our fill... we didn't even need cream or sugar with the berries. They were amazing by themselves. The Japanese version of Grandma Schupbach. After we had filled our bellies to the limit on strawberries, she picked FOUR BASKETS full of strawberries for us to take home... she wouldn't take no for an answer and kept telling us to eat more, eat more. She was adorable. The berries were huge.

Kie's parents
Kyle's parents came into town.... it was great to meet them and take them around. It was fun to talk about crocheting, sewing, cooking, and baking with Kyle's mother.

The Witthofts brought me ST.LOUIS BLUES from the Java House. I started to cry because I was so touched to receive such a sentimental gift. :)

This coffee got me through many late nights and early mornings for four years in college. Not to mention I smelled like this coffee when I would come home from working at the Java House...good memories....

And last but not least... my little doggy nephew turned 5 (35 in dog years) this March. Little Lewis P. Schupbach has had quite an adventurous life... it's about to get even more adventurous when Adelia True is born and he has two little girls trying to ride him...
and yes, Becca made Lewie a doggie cake... don't ask what it was made of. :P

And now I am off to bring my laundry in from hanging outside drying...