I am a teacher and aspiring writer, and keep a blog to keep up with writing and document the daily moments that make up my life. Working with my students & travel writing are my biggest passions. People, art, food, wine/spirits, and culture are other writing interests. Thanks for coming by!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Day 13 - A Photo of Your Favorite Band

My favorite band of all time is Toots & the Maytals. They have an old school reggae sound, and hail from Jamaica. One of my dreams in life is to see them play in Jamaica (or anywhere really) while Toots is still around. The guy is getting up there.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 12 - A Picture of Something You Love

Enchantment. I love wonder and enchantment. To me, experiencing those things is one of the greatest gifts of being alive. This floating lantern festival is a perfect example of something that inspires wonder and enchantment in me. I plan to go to a lantern floating festival in my life time. Maybe the next time we're in Hawaii *if we're lucky!*

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 11 - A Picture of Something You Hate

I'm not sure where I might find a photo to show these things, but I hate suffering, worry, hate (yes I hate hate), ignorance or narrow-mindedness, war, crime, violence, and natural disasters. I hate that cruelty even exists, usually at the hands of humans. Come on people, we're better than that. I'll stop here because this is all too depressing to think about. Thank goodness that most of the posts are about happy things.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Da 10 - A Picture of the Person You do the Most Messed Up Things With

Well I wouldn't say "We do the the most messed up things together," nor have we ever, really. But Meghan and I definitely spent most of our 20's having some wild and crazy times together. She came to visit me when I lived in Hawaii in 2001, and that's really when our friendship began. We've also been to Joshua Tree for New Year's once, and to Baja for my 3oth birthday, among many other memorable trips closer to home. She's the best road trip sister, and filled with a wild, spontaneous spirit. This girl is a whole lot of fun to hang out with. I'm glad we got to go all out and live it up back in the days before marriage and kids.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 9 - A Picture of the Person Who Has Gotten You Through the Most

Well it's a tie between my mom & Karissa, but since I've posted a lot about my mom, this post is about Karissa. We've been best friends for the past 10 years, (since we both graduated from college,) but have known each other since we were 10 years old. She's an amazingly fun, supportive, loving & wonderful friend. She has a heart of gold. She's also an incredible cook, Spanish teacher, world traveler, and my favorite person to laugh and drink wine with in the world. We love to share recipes, & laugh at our lives in the best AND worst of times. We basically know that in good times or bad, we'll always have each other. And that's priceless. Friends like her are hard to come by, and I don't take our friendship for granted one bit. I am so blessed to have such an incredibly wonderful best friend.
P.S. This photo is of Karissa & I in Havana, Cuba in November, 2007.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 8 - A Picture that Makes You Laugh

This is kind of one of those "I Guess You Had to Be There" moments, but this photo was taken while we were camping in Baja for New Years a little bit over a year ago. It was a big night for our camp of 6, and Rob was the life of the party. Somehow he ended up with Matt's wetsuit hoodie too, which was a good thing, since he kept doing flying somersaults around our campsite. The hoodie and the sand dunes probably prevented a major disaster/injury from happening! Anyway, one of my favorite characters ever was Steve Martin as a wild and crazy guy. This was Rob channeling a wild and crazy guy, and it was hilarious. It brings back great memories.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 7 - A Picture of Your Most Treasured Item

My most treasured item is the owl-framed photo of my grandma & I. It was taken near Mendocino, (where we would go every summer,) when I was about three years old. My grandmother loved owls, and she framed the photo of us in the owl frame that I now have.
Yesterday marked six years since she passed away, and I still miss her constantly and think of her almost every day. She was the most loving, wonderful grandma. I called her "Mum," because when I was a toddler, I heard my mom call her "Mom," and I was trying to copy my mom.
She was like another mom to me, and when she passed away, it left a void. I wished I'd known I wouldn't have her around forever. I loved her so much, and I still do. That's why I treasure the owl frame with her and I more than anything.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 6 - A Picture of a Person You'd Love to Trade Places with for a Day

Image Credit: Sarah Von

She writes my favorite blog in the universe (Yes & Yes), she is an incredibly bright, funny, and creative writer, and travels the world to work in refugee camps and teach English abroad. What on Earth is not to love?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 5 - A Picture of Your Favorite Memory

Hmmm, I have a lot of favorite memories. But one that of course stands out is the day I got married. I will treasure the memories from that day for the rest of my life.
Other favorite memories are of being with my family in Kauai, and of trips to the North Coast with my mom and grandma during the summers when I was a little girl.
Living in France & Hawaii also stand out as a series of very happy memories. I have so many more great memories from throughout my lifetime, but it would take a book to include all of them. I feel lucky to have so many.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 4 - A Photo of Your Night

Coconut is sleeping on her bed right next to me with her favorite ball, Rob & I are watching Biggest Loser, and I was planning to multitask while watching Biggest Loser and also get some work emails out and reports done. Not having much success with that so far. Either way, it's a cozy night with our little family.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 3 - A Photo of Your Favorite Animal

Anybody who has known me for 5 minutes or more knows how much I love my dog. There are no words to actually convey the overwhelming love I have for her. But one day I wrote her a love letter, and you can find that post here.
Coconut is my ray of sunshine, my best buddy, and my soul mate in a dog. I love her to pieces.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Day 2 - A Photo of You & the Person You've Been Close with the Longest

Mama & I in Princeville, Kauai ~ February 2010

That would definitely be my mom. She's been there since the beginning, and never ceases to amaze me with her love and support. We talk every day. She's been there in the best of times, and she's been there in the worst of times. I cannot imagine my life without her.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Photo Challenge Day 1 - 15 Facts about You

1. I live Sacramento, the same town I was born in, but have also lived in Elmira, NY, Chico, California, Pau, France, Haleiwa, Hawaii, & Cardiff-by-the-Sea, California.

2. I was born left handed but switched to right in kindergarten in NY.

3. I LOVE my dog, and I'm a huge animal lover in general.

4. I became a vegetarian when I was 10, after being traumatized by a television show about slaughterhouses that I accidentally came across.

5. My favorite things to do are: read, write, make things, swim, and learn/try new things.

6. Traveling and learning about people's lives in other cultures is one of my biggest passions.

7. I love trying out new ethnic foods and would love to take cooking classes of all sorts.

8. Hanalei, Kauai is my favorite place on Earth, and I consider myself Hawaiian at heart.

9. San Francisco is my favorite city in the world.

10. I want to do more in life, and do what I can to make the world a better place.

11. My mom is my best friend.

12. Toots & the Maytals are my all time favorite band.

13. I have a long bucket list, let's hope I live long enough to cross everything off the list.

14. Life has been nothing like I ever expected.

15. I consider a rich life to be rich in love, friendship, life experiences, and fun. If I have those things throughout my lifetime, I will consider myself very lucky indeed.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge

I found out about this fun idea from my friend Meghan who posted it on her FB page. I love this idea for the fun + creativity it offers. I also like the fact that it will serve as a time capsule for this time in our lives. Stay tuned for my day 1 post later today!


Day 01- A picture of yourself with fifteen facts about you

Day 02- A picture of you and the person you've been close with the longest

Day 03- A picture of your favorite animal
Day 04- A picture of your night

Day 05- A picture of your favorite memory

Day 06- A picture of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day

Day 07- A picture of your most treasured item

Day 08- A picture that makes you laugh

Day 09- A picture of the person who has gotten you through the most

Day 10- A picture of the person you do the most messed up things with

Day 11- A picture of something you hate

Day 12- A picture of something you love

Day 13- A picture of your favorite band or artist

Day 14- A picture of someone you could never imagine your life without

Day 15- A picture of something you want to do before you die

Day 16- A picture of someone you look up to

Day 17- A picture of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently

Day 18- A picture of where you hope to be in the future

Day 19- A picture of you when you were little

Day 20- A picture of somewhere you'd love to travel

Day 21- A picture of something you wish you could forget

Day 22- A picture of something you wish you were better at

Day 23- A picture of your favortie book

Day 24- A picture of something you wish you could change

Day 25- A picture of your day

Day 26- A picture of something that means alot to you

Day 27- A picture of yourself and a family member

Day 28- A picture of something you're afraid of

Day 29- A picture that can always make you smile

Day 30- A picture of someone you miss

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Happy Hearts Fund

When the Indonesian tsunami hit in 2004, killing thousands of people, supermodel Petra Nemcova was one of the people who was almost swept away. By some miraculous twist of fate, she was able to grab onto a palm tree branch, which saved her life. Her fiance, Simon Atlee, was not so lucky.
Not only did she lose the love of her life, but she saw families torn apart by this natural disaster, and she realized that some of the children in that area had lost everything: their families, their schools, and even their homes in many cases.
She created a foundation in honor of these children, the Happy Hearts Fund. Her fund helps children who are victims of natural disasters everywhere. With the devastating events of Japan's tsunami, organizations like Nemcova's are more important than ever.
Nemcova was just on the news saying that her fund will be sending volunteers to Japan. Please go to the link above and help if you can. The people of Japan need all of our help, and every little bit counts.
Thank you and many blessings to you.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Wonder Maker

(One of Reuben Margolin's butterflies.)

Reuben Heyday Margolin is kind of hard to define. Some might call him a performance artist, or a conceptual artist, or a sculptor, or (fill in the blank.) I call him a wonder maker, because his creations create nothing short of wonder for me. He engineered a mechanical wave, he makes rickshaws, butterflies, velodiscos, and all sorts of other fantastic things. Check him out, he's an inspiration.

Monday, March 7, 2011

If Houses Could Float....

In the realm of fantastic daydreams there are many that seem so outlandish that it seems that they could never become a reality. But never say never. If you've seen the film "Up," you may have wondered, "Could houses really float?" Apparently so.
Here's to dreaming big dreams that are so outlandish, they might actually come true.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Don't Put Off Your Happy Life

This little pearl of wisdom was given to me from my friend Bonnie. Even though it's just a piece of paper, it is one of my most treasured possessions. The message is worth it's weight in gold. Don't put off your happy life.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

My Field of Dreams

This field is my field of dreams. We found this place as we were driving north from Monterey to Santa Cruz, and it encompasses a dog park, a playground with swings, and a beautiful grassy field overlooking the ocean. In addition, there is a long walking path that winds along the cliffs overlooking the sea. If I lived there, I would go there every day with Coconut. So dreamy.