Wednesday, November 19, 2008

dorothy was right

4 days until I get to go home...
I am so excited.

I get to see my niece Waveland and my little nephew Eddie. I'm super pumped. It's going to be freezing cold but so wonderful....

Things I'm looking forward to:
sitting by the fire
being home
seeing my Dad
hugging my Mom
laughing with my brothers and sister-in-laws
seeing Waveland WALKING!!!!!
seeing my extended family!!
being in familiar areas of life....
having a car to drive (if I want)
running errands and knowing how to get there
being home
catching up on what people are reading nowadays
my Grandma's house
seeing my grandparents!!!!
hearing Waveland sing "elmo mo mo" go here for video
my Dad's coffee
seeing the house
my Mom's traditions for Christmas (we're celebrating both holidays)
crazy family times
playing games
being together (ahhhhhhhhh!)
being home

Dorothy was right...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


At 2:30AM last night I was awoken by a noise outside of our sliding glass door.
Kristine jumped up to check what it was and there was the largest raccoon I have ever seen peering in our screen door. Kristine responded with slamming the glass door and locking it. Okay, we have raccoons on our back patio... no problem, we'll just lock the glass door.
And then I heard it...
Is that our water?
The little sucker had turned on our faucet and was washing himself, his food or something in the water. Now we had a major dilemma on our hands. Keep the water running all night? Or go out there and possibly get attacked by huge raccoon?
At that point, I realized our best option was to call one of the guys. After all, Drew did dress as Chuck Norris and often stalks around our back patio looking for things to shoot (with an air soft gun)... Drew? Jason? James? Which teammate to call?
So we called them all and
JASON JEW was the winner!!!!!!!!!!
At approxiamtely 3AM Jason Jew came over to handle the raccoon problem.
He also managed to get our water shut off without getting bit. When I saw the raccoon cross our back patio I almost threw up, I'm not even joking, that thing was like 100 pounds and fluffy. Sick! It was disgusting.
Anyway, that is the end of my raccoon story.

Friday, November 14, 2008

funny how

It's funny how even though years have passed and memories have begun to fade that I can still be moved to tears. I was writing in my journal how I have not felt sorrow recently in leaving Japan... I wrote, "Is this my healing?"
But not ten minutes later, while working on my Japan memoirs, was I in tears, remembering all the friendships I had that meant the world to me.
Oh God, how I miss Keigo! How my heart aches to hear his jokes and watch him laugh. I'd give anything to be sitting across the Tully's table from him now. I'm missing him so much right now because I was reminded of how he came to see me....
It was after John had died. Our team was scattered; to Shizuoka for school and to America for trip preparations and John's funeral... and the Roods asked that I go to Utsunomiya in order that I wouldn't be alone.
Although I wasn't alone in Utsunomiya, there were times were I yearned for something more familiar... and then Keigo came to see me. He stopped by Utsunomiya on his way to somewhere.
And seeing that picture of us at Starbucks (with Natusmi) made my heart miss my friend so much.
It's funny how the memories can fade but the heart never seems to forget...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Mikey and I spent some much needed date time (i consider much needed cause all of our recent interactions have involved massive amounts of other people. not that that isn't fun... its just nice to have some couple time). We took off and went to the Long Beach aquarium. I was impressed. It was really pretty.

This fish aka Dory, reminded me so much of my sweet little Lenora. Lenora, this picture is for you.

The colors were so beautiful. A tour guide was there talking about evolution but Mikey and I both agreed there is no way evolution could have come up with all the different animals, plants and life that exists in the ocean. It was such a testimony to God and to His creativity and beauty. I was in awe of the different animals and how unique and amazing each was... and THINK, we are even more unique and amazing in God's eyes. We were created in His image.

One of my favorite parts was that scuba divers did shows from inside the tanks. They informed us of the animals, what they ate, and fun facts about each one. It was so fun to see them inside and hear them talk to us.

Mikey and I

Sunday, November 09, 2008

road rally

So Cal Navigators set out Friday afternoon for our annual "Road Rally" to "go somewhere to do something for someone else" (or something like that). It was a blast.

It was a fun time to get together with new and old friends.

New friends like Emily and Alice...

Look at Ann, helping the boys get the monument set up. We went to Sacramento to help Martin Luther King jr. School do some yardwork and landscaping. We cleaned hallways, planted trees and took care of a school that exists in an improverished part of Sacramento. Many of the students do not have fathers, will not graduate high school and are 2-3 years behind developmentally.
But at MLK school there is "Freedom Hall" which is a mentoring program for young boys. This program works with students from 7-12 grades mentoring and encouraging them. Instead of just tutoring this program does a lot of life on life... really cool.

Kelsey, Jillian and Kristine looking good while working hard.


Oh Jillian!!

Working hard... I was so proud of our students. It was hard manuel labor.

Naomi working hard...

Kristine working hard laying the brick edging for the walkway.

Worship afterwards.

UCLA students

Cal State U~ Long Beach

My cute boyfriend and Pippin Took from The Shire behind him... okay, it's not but doesn't he look like a hobbit? And I mean that in the best possible way.

Hugging non-hug people is always the highlight of any trip.
Ohhh Jason.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

ending the night

After a weird night of missing Japan... I know. I know I'm trying to have grace with the good days and bad days... but after I got home I saw Miss Kristine and her lovely face waiting for me. :) It was nice to come home to someone. :) Kristine is a reminder of the good things that God is doing in my life. She is a good friend and a night that was almost ruined by tears was saved by laughter as she and I fell asleep.

This is Kristine and I after the navs gave us a bunch of nickels to blow at the arcade. I love this game where you simulate riding a motorcycle. :D

RJ (UC-Riverside) and my teammate Jason play Dance, Dance Revolution.

My other teammate Drew mesmerized by the video game.

My awesome boyfriend playing DDR with me and although I can totally kick his butt in REAL dancing, he managed to kick mine in six straight games. I don't think I won ONE. :(

My favorite picture of Kristine....

What did I get for all those fun games? Fun glowstick bracelets. The best ever! (me and Diana~ who is at UofA)

Glowsticks are the best cause you can do random things with them.... and in the dark, no one can see what you are doing....

Sometimes, we Navs, just need to cut loose and get out.

mood swing

Today I had one of the best days I have had in a long time. This weekend was just a fun time to be alone and be adventurous. I ventured out to the grocery store and Target all by myself (Target is no small feat my friends, I have to take the interstate *gasp*).

Today I was feeling pretty good. The cooler weather brightened my day. I got to wear comfy shoes and long pants (as opposed to the shorts I was sportin' a week ago). I worked out (hooray!), hung out with my Japanese friend who took my to Japan/America exchange night and I even spoke Japanese (sugoshii) and listening to Japanese was beautiful and... and I just had a good night.

But then I started thinking about Japan... and my mood crashed. Seriously crashed. It was the oddest thing. I was bawling at one point.... what is up?

I know that I'm supposed to be grieving and processing and changing and all that... but the sudden mood change was interesting tonight.

I'm in an okay mood now but I just feel sad.... again.

Mikey, poor Mikey~ he told me about this analogy of a tree and how it got cut down, but the stump was there and even though the person planted around it new flowers and plants, the stump was always still there.

I like my stump. But I miss my tree.