Monday, September 27, 2010


 Every so often a person gets the chance to reflect...
and to set goals.
For most people it happens on the first of the new year.
For me, the fresh start begins on September 27 since that was the day it all began for me.
This year I want to try something new.  I got the idea that as a twenty-eight year old I should challenge myself to do 28 things I wouldn't normally do or things I have been meaning to do but haven't gotten to yet.
I asked my family and hubs for ideas and what lies beneath is the beginning of a beautiful adventure.

 twenty.eight things to do 
(and the people who helped me come up with them)
1. write more letters and less emails
2. take a floral arrangement class
3. take a writing class (G & G I. inspired)
4. surf more frequently and finally stand up (Alaina's suggestion)
 5. Buy a drink/groceries for the person behind you in line (Rochelle)
6. Deep sea fish
7. Write a children's book
8. Go sailing
9. Go to another new country.
10. Visit a redwood forest
11. Try a new recipe each week (R & Becca)
12. Work your way through a favorite cookbook (to be decided later).
13. bring goodies/small gift (potted plant) to neighbors
14. go on more nature walks with family
15. get all dressed up in my very best, go out to eat in a fabulous restaurant (Grandma S.)
16. write an article for a magazine until I get published. (Dad)
17. Read "My Life in France" by Julia Childs 
18. take a cross country road trip
19. Climb a 14-er (Mt Whitney perhaps??) with family
20. finish reading and interacting with 'Modern Day Malcolms'
21. Find a way to get physical exercise that is fun every day
22. Go kayaking
23. Host more dinner parties
24. Get a tattoo
25. Develop my sewing and crocheting more
26. Write and memorize 28 verses that have been/are impactful in my life (Mikey)
27. Jordan's secret suggestion
28. Becca's secret suggestion

So there you have it. twenty.eight things to do while being a twenty-eight year old. I'll be including a link and posts along the way so that for those of you who are interested can follow to see if I actually accomplish my list.
It's been exciting for me to anticipate this year and to know that so many adventures await me. To push myself.
It's been good to also look back and see how I've adventured and been pushed.

I'll try not to get too sappy on you or even cry as I think about wonderfully blessed I've... sniff... been in life.  I have though.  Beautifully blessed.
I have a husband who not only allows me to be me but helps me to become even more of who I'm supposed to be. Who dreams my crazy dreams with me, who eats my crazy concotions called dinner and says, "I like it." when I do things like paint the bookshelf pacific blue.
I have parents who love and support me even in my wildest endeavors!
Who always have dreamed huge dreams for me and always will.
Who challenge me to remember my roots while living far from them
and who call me five days before my birthday and sing to me every day leading up to the actual day.

I have brothers who taught me to ride a bike, climb a tree and balance my budget.
These brothers married amazingly strong and impressive women who show me every day how to love God by serving your children and families.
Their children, my nieces and nephews, teach me to cultivate the child within my own heart and to never ever grow too old where I can no longer throw my head back and laugh.

 Blessed to have all my friends.
Friends who have seen me grow from childhood, through the awkward years and bounce my way through life.
Friends who have met me along this journey and keep my mailbox filled with love, encouragement and kookiness.
Friends who keep me up late at night.
Friends who kick their shoes off and dance with me.
Friends who teach me that God is always near and never as far as we think.

Thank you to everyone who has blessed me these twenty eight years.
It's been an honor to be your daughter, sister, wife, friend and playmate.
I couldn't have asked for anything else as a gift but the gift of my memory.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


I would love to be one of those crafty DIY type bloggers.  But I'm not.  And that's not why you read this.  You read this blog because you know I'm a healthy mixture of part nuts part impulsiveness.  And that, is what brings you back for more.  You wonder what crazy blog I'm going to post next and what weird things am I begging hubs for.
Well, you are nothing short of in luck with this post.
Because the other day, my horom... *cough* I mean impulsive monster that lives within my very heart and makes me happy was raging and I was in desperate need to clean, organize and change something. Some days I just get like this.  Where my house is chaotic and I tell hubs, either the couch goes or I go.
And then I remember we can't afford another couch at this time and so it stays... and so do I.

But just because the couch has to stay doesn't mean I can't yank the books off the bookshelf, drag it to my patio in a desperate impulsive move (It's the monster influencing me) and spray paint it.

And who cares if the spray paint was originally chosen for the table outdoors, so naturally it's bright and fiercly gardeny.
Who says that bright blue can't make a nice bookshelf indoors?
Who's even thinking past the next two minutes anyway?

So I call up my friend... um, we'll call her Falicia (wink, wink) and say, "Wanna come over and spray paint? Hubs isn't home."
And she comes.

And although it looks like she's taking pictures whilst I paint the bookshelf...
truth be told, she did 90% of the spraying.
I say 90% because 90% into the spraying we ran out...

So I called hubs while Falicia disappeared and asked him to bring another can of spray paint shade Pacific Blue and that I would explain later.

And then later came... and although I cried when I saw the bookshelf at first, it's actually quite grown on me.
And yes, I did cry... but like I said, the horom... i mean, impulsive monster doesn't always persuade me to make the best decisions.
But when you and the impulsive monster are best friends it makes everything okay.  And truth be told, it's one of the reasons Hubs married me anyway... because I told him I might do things like this.
I told you didn't I hubs?


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

to celebrate

One of my favorite finds in San Francisco was the huge sale of flowers at the farmers market.
So to celebrate our anniversary I bought the flowers I carried down the aisle.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

if you know me for five minutes...

If you've known me for five minutes you've probably heard me talk about...
It is because I love food.
I love food more than I love baby elephants which I believe to be the cutest things in the world. Cuter than baby kittens... sorry, but so true.
So of course, on our anniversary trip to San Francisco I'm going to make a big deal out of food and enjoy myself royally.
So. I. Did.
The above picture is from the Firestone Grill in San Luis Obispo, CA.  One of my favorite restaurants to eat at (when I'm in the area, which is rarely) where I always always order, without fail the tri tip sandwich (pictured above) and basket of french fries.  And of course, extra bbq sauce to slather on both.

After Slo, I indulged and got my first pumpkin spice latte of the season.... although it was iced I still managed to enjoy it.

Once in San Francisco, we enjoyed many tourist places like
Ghirardelli's ice cream
(with our friends from Japan) and

clam chowder on fisherman's wharf.

We also ventured off the beaten path to find our own little favorites...
at the farmer's market

Mikey's choice at the corner cafe

my choice at the cafe

and sandwiches before the long drive back.

Is there anything more lovely than a half-chewed close-up of an amazingly delicious sandwich?

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

one year

Wow! What a weekend.
What a year actually.
Hubs and I celebrated our first year anniversary by taking a trip to San Francisco and it was probably the most fun I've had in a long time.  It was wonderful.

It's true. Hubs and I have been married a whole year.  This time last year I was laying on the couch, nursing my wedding planning ulcer with crackers and milk. Ha ha! How romantic.
I didn't have any jitters about getting married.  I was mostly overwhelmed with making sure everyone had a fun time.
Wedding planning might not be the best industry for a people pleaser....

I knew probably a month into dating Hubs that I wanted to marry him.  I knew he was like no other dude I'd ever dated.  He was so different from me and I was intrigued by him.
I still am intrigued.  How can he remain so calm and steady while I am violently rocking our boat? And sometimes rocking it just to rock it.
There is no rhyme or reason to my actions... I just gotta be me.
Anyway, I am always impressed with Hubs' calm and steady heart.  He is the gravity to my rocketing-off-into-space personality. 
He is my perfect match and I am more in love with Hubs today than ever before.

Back to San Fran though... the first time I heard about San Francisco was in the infamous song "San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair)" which was sung to me by my brother Jordan who changed Francisco to Francesco who was a chubby little boy in my first grade class that Jordan teased me about.  I did not appreciate Jordan's song. 

Fortunately, the city is much nicer to me than Jordan was at the time.  There was no Francesco and no one bothering me about liking him.  Actually, the city is nothing like what you would expect.  Sure, the sights are what you'd expect but the tiny pockets of cultures and the not so tiny pocket of Chinatown were so unexpected.  We ate only local, recommended places and tried to do everything we wanted without a plaguing schedule.  It was low-key, relaxed and a vacation catered to what we wanted, when we wanted.

My favorite moments were at the large farmers market on Saturday, driving the "crookedest street" and eating breakfast at a cafe on the corner.  So quaint.

This is me before the crookedest street.

And our favorite little sandwich shop. Seriously! Looking at this picture makes me drool.  The sandwiches were THAT good! Yum!!

I have too many stories to tell and waaay too many pictures. So I'll have to share with you throughout time what a wonderful trip we had.

So blessed by you, Mikey.  So in love with you. So thankful for you and our marriage.  Thanks for loving me and making my life more peaceful.
Here's to many more years of rocking the boat... and you trying to hang on.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

August 2010

It's so funny where you start a month and end a month.  Usually months are just 30 days of doing the ol' regular schedule.  The day in and day out kind of routine.  But every once in awhile you start a month in oh, say Himi Japan and end it in Long Beach.
It's a crazy world out there Frodo...
ya know what I'm saying.

Anyway, it's fun that at the start of August we were with Ayumi and Keigo in Himi Japan.  I didn't realize we were going to the Western side of Japan (i thought Himi was north) until I saw the sun setting... over the ocean.... and I was like, "wait, where are we going?" ha ha

This month we finished our time in Tokyo Japan.
We survived the worst jet lag either of us have ever had.
We hosted my sweet friend Amy and her husband Ben.
We went to Carlsbad where I got a sunburn that is still radiating on my back. Darn you bad surf!
We went to the beach twice in one week and it was awesome.  I got to surf and boogie board so it was wonderful!
I am 75% finished with a gift.
I haven't touched my sewing machine but I've made some new international friends.
I finished the book, The Secret of Christian Joy by Vance Havner which is maybe the best book I have read in a long time.
Havner is easy to understand but seriously passionate.  Wonderfully great book.  I am blessed by it.

We started school.
I met up with old friends... caught up and heard about adventures in Vermont, Russia and the ME. I made the most amazing beef brisket which turned into an even more mouth-watering bbq sandwich that I inhaled today.
I cooked lunch, dinner, breakfast, lunch and dinner for 35 returning student leaders.  I made sandwiches (okay, okay! I just laid out the bread and meat! Sheesh!) and curry, baked penne with spinach and tons of cheese (heaven!).  What else? Oh yeah, my current obsession, egg sandwiches for the morning.  You got so many good things going on in those sandwiches. Protein, fiber, and yummy-ness, an important part of every dish. Finishing with chicken fajitas.

I bought a canning kit.
We bought a grill.
I bought a new dress for our anniversary.

Overall, it's been a great and busy month.  It's fun to think as we start September with new friends and a new ministry, where we'll end September. Maybe projects finished, new dishes prepared or even a new adventure started... who knows?
That's the fun thing about life... you never know where it will take you!