Wednesday, June 30, 2010

#5 - Young Love

Challenge 5: Complete a 365 day photo challenge
Picture 04 - Young Love
(Pic 4/365)

The picture above was taken from my mom's garden. Very cute and romantic. There are other pictures I'm not satisfied with but I'll post some on here anyway. The two doggies below are of Maya and Binky Lou, mom and dad's babies.

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#14 Things That Make Me Happy

Challenge #14 - Identify 100 things that make me happy
* This is an ongoing list that will be updated often
** Refer to my 101 Things

  1. Cute cupcakes
  2. Coffee and Coffee Shops
  3. Charming little bakeries
  4. Bookstores, the smell of new books, the smell of old books
  5. The smell of newly baked bread, and newly toasted bread
  6. Reading random blogs
  7. Browsing
  8. Coming home to a clean house
  9. When the kitchen trash is empty 
  10. Clean laundry
  11. Sink void of dishes
  12. Balloons flying in the air
  13. Puppies
  14. Exploring a new town
  15. Date Nights
  16. Shopping for clothes, house items, and etc. 
  17. House projects and interior makeovers.
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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

#5 - Sharp Like a Tongue

Challenge 5: Complete a 365 day photo challenge
Picture 03 - Sharp Like a Tongue
(Pic 3/365)

Headache was my main companion today. The tension and the pounding was unbearable. What pissed me off the most was that I couldn't really go out to take pictures so I had to resort to being creative indoors. It's so limiting, but I guess having limits increases one's creativity. It was difficult since my eye is untrained to see great things.

The picture above is a Samurai Sword given by my Aunt Mila, Christmas 2009. I love the characters even though I don't understand their meaning. I pretend that it tells of a lesson, an analogy of some sort. Like, many of us usually do not carry weapons, however we don't realize that our tongues are weapons in itself. It is sharp like a knife and it can end the deepest relationships or ruin somebody's day (even life for that matter). Every time I see the sword, I am reminded of this analogy.

It's a unique piece deserving of today's photo challenge.
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Monday, June 28, 2010

#5 - Hit 'Em Up Style

Challenge 5: Complete a 365 day photo challenge.
Picture 02 - Hit 'Em Up Style
(Pic 2/365)

We went to the park by the Mississippi this afternoon so that I could take pictures for my day 2 challenge. Dre was hesitant to go but as soon as we arrived he became motivated by suggesting great photo ideas. He is such a pro when it comes to anything media related (including photography). I'm so fortunate to have him as a teacher.

The photo above ended up to be my favorite picture of the afternoon. It's of a statue pointing over yonder, but Dre made it look like it was punching him. Great laughs. We had an audience too.

The picture below is another one of my favorites, the silhouette shot. It's kind of funny that he had his mouth open.

Below are more pictures I took at the park:

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Sunday, June 27, 2010

101 Things - GO, GO, GO !!!

101 Things - GO! 

Yes, I'm finally going to start my 101 Things experience. It took forever to come up with 101 things to do ( - but my list is done and I can start! My only dilemma now is choosing which goals to start this incredible journey. Starting just one is simply not enough. But what's great about this is that it will keep me motivated whenever life throws me a mundane ball. Highly recommend it to anyone looking for some form of fulfillment in life. Sort of like a bucket list, but with a deadline.

So, here's the start of Challenge 5:
Complete a 365 day photo challenge. (Pic 1/365)
Picture 01 - Good Morning Sunshine
Our kids, Pretzel-Moose and Jean-the-Cat by the sunny window. Had to take a quick snap of their cuteness. It's a little blurred but soon enough I'll master the manual focus lens.

I absolutely love this challenge, it will push me to learn more about my Digital SLR and the art of taking great photos. Better late than never.
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Saturday, June 26, 2010

Kitchen 101 - Sushi

A few months ago I bought a sushi kit from Borders Bookstore for $20.00. It's intimidating to learn it on your own, but I had a one-on-one sushi making lesson from my brother - so it came easy.

Just thought I'd post pictures of the sushi we made a few months back. Veggie Sushi - carrots, cucumbers, tofu, eggs, and sesame seeds. Very excellent!

// Update from yesterday's blog, PANIC, everything went well and am glad it's over.
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Friday, June 25, 2010


This is the low point. A few minutes ago I was going nuts over tomorrow morning's solo. That's right, singing in front of at least a few hundred people. Normally I'm calm and collected - no sweat, no problem. I'm used to being in the limelight... but a few minutes ago, I was in sheer, utter, pitiful panic. It's the night before the performance and I have nothing to sing, never mind finding an outfit to wear.

Two weeks ago I was asked to sing for church. As usual I gave an easy nod and then brushed the thought away. The monologues in my head said, why prepare? It's really nothing. I'm a pro, I could learn a song and perfect it in half an hour! I've done it a million times.

Hhhhmmmm... my hotshot self was proven wrong tonight. Perhaps it was the anxiety of picking the song and then being impatient to learn it to perfection. It was a disaster. After an hour of polishing a song that I finally picked with high levels of anxiety, I pressed the panic button. More so telephoned my brother to practice early tomorrow morning for a song I already sang last week. So sad. *bows head in shame*

What a cop out! I'm so disappointed in myself. Pride, Pride, Pride... with the unfortunate fall of my self-esteem.

"You just need to be patient. The song fits you but you need to practice it a lot," interrupted my husband - his eyes still glued to his laptop.

Where did that come from? Look who finally had something to say while I was in self pity and self agony for the past hour? *

Bla, bla, bla... still disappointed in myself, yet relieved that the tension is out of my system.

* Dre and I have a loving relationship based on sarcasm, light humor, and laughter.
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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Kiss Me In the Rain

This morning I stood in front of the window to watch the strong drops of rain hit the pavement. Thunder and lightning usually relaxes me, but for some reason, all I wanted to do was to get the umbrella, lead my husband outside, and then kiss him in the rain like how they do it in classic black and white movies. Someday I'll muster the courage to do it.

We set aside this day to celebrate our two year anniversary. Originally, we planned to skip town to explore a bigger city, but with the severe thunderstorm warning, we decided to stay in our little city. The day was not a total loss. In fact, it unraveled quite beautifully.

Event 01: Sleeping In
We slept in - in separate beds, and in separate rooms. This idea is brilliant!! It started when Dre's back gave him problems - so we went to a chiropractor. It turns out that the nature of his job sitting in front of a computer all day, and trying to live in a world for the average height person, is the culprit of all the pain (He's 6'7. I love the tall). The chiropractor adjusted him, then advised him to sleep on a firm bed. So I take the master bedroom with the pillow top king size bed while he sleeps on a firm queen size bed in the guest room. He comes over for a sleepovers every weekend. It's liberating and healthy since distance makes the heart grow fonder. It works for us. Now if only I can have my own bathroom. ha ha ha ha ha.

Event 02: Brunch
First we dropped off Pretzel at mom and dad's house. We figured that he needed a day of fun with mom and the girls while we gallivant around town. Jean-the-Cat was left alone at home, he's quite the independent furball. Anyway, brunch took place at the Village Inn where they have the ever so wonderful, "Free Pie Wednesday" promotion. Yummy food, calm atmosphere, and free pie, pie, pie.

Event 03: Bookstore & Coffee
After brunch, we hit up Borders Bookstore to catch up on some magazines and to leaf through some books for potential reading. Came across books with striking resemblance:
It was kind of funny. As far as the Eat, Pray, Love memoir, I got halfway through the book and couldn't read anymore. I plan to finish it someday, but anticipation of the movie gets to the better of me. Also, it's not fast paced enough for my fancy. Drink, Play, and (beep), is a pretty sad book of one man's search for anything across Ireland, Vegas, and Thailand. He tells of his cheap thrill stories through his travels, and also the demise of his marriage. It's quite pathetic and sad with a twist of humor. I leafed through it, read a few paragraphs, and put it back to where it belonged (the trash section of the bookstore if there was one). Nonetheless a very funny comparison.

Event 04: Wednesday Matinee, Knight & Day

At past noon, we caught a matinee showing of, Knight & Day, starring Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. As soon as we opened the doors of the theatre, the lobby was crowded.
There were kids everywhere and the lines to purchase tickets were insane (there was another long line behind me while I took the picture above). It turned out that grandparents took their grandchildren out to see the new Toy Story, and the Karate Kid. It was a zoo. Nonetheless, Knight & Day was a cute movie, chick-flick meets action. I was surprised that our showing was at full attendance to the point of an overflow.

Event 05: Photo Shoot
We went back to our wedding reception site and took pictures of each other. It was nice reliving the scenes without stress and anxiety. It was a fun photo shoot. Pictures to follow.

Event 06: Dinner Playhouse, WhoDunIt
What an exciting end of the night finale, compliments of Jody (Dre's grandma from Florida - we LOVE you Jody, thank you so much). The dinner playhouse was spectacular.
First there was a dinner buffet, then the bootleggers (waiters) opened the show with a little skit of song and dance, and then the play started. Basically, WhoDunIt is a mystery/murder/comedy/musical, much like masterpiece theatre type. There was a murder, and everyone was a suspect. The actors and actresses were so talented with such beautiful professional singing voice. I was so impressed with it all that I didn't want it to end.

So that was our 2nd year anniversary celebration. Still can't believe it has been 2 years. Here's looking for forever more years of marital bliss. xoxo
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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Happy Anniversary My Love

It's hard to believe that today marks our 2nd year anniversary. It seems like only yesterday we said, I Do, in front of our family, friends, and God. June 22, 2008.

If I could do it all over again, the wedding would have taken place during the fall season when leaves possess their shades of yellow, gold, and auburn beauty. There would be this crisp cleanness in the air accompanied by a cool breeze. The church doors would open with the sound of a live string quartet playing Canon in D. It would be a simple wedding, because simplicity has an unbeatable classic nature. I miss it all. ***

Il n'est rien de réel que le rêve et l'amour. Nothing is real but dreams and love, from Le Coeur innombrable, IV, Chanson du temps opportun by Anna de Noailles.

I married the man of my dreams: intelligent, romantic, humorous, humble, loving, my everything. I would do everything over again in a heartbeat. I Love You so very much.

Thank you God for blessing us with life, happiness, and deep love for each other. 

*** Our wedding day was hot, humid, and stressful in so many different levels. But looking back, we're happy nonetheless.
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Monday, June 21, 2010

First Day & Rain of the Summer

Today is my favorite day of the year, June 21, also known as the summer solstice, also known for the longest day of the year, and also the birthday of my junior high crush (name witheld). *smile*

This day always puts a smile on my face because it reminds me of my innocent youth and my not so innocent 21st birthday (story witheld). *smile*

Nonetheless, everything done today (despite the cloudy skies, flash lighting, loud thunder, and rain) was relaxing and wonderful: balanced checkbook, reconciled accounts, sent out invoices, filed piles of paperwork, punched numbers on the calculator, trip to the bank, read a book, sipped coffee, slept, caught up on random blogs, watched Sex & the City 1.

Bliss and happiness found in simplicity.
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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day 2010

Here’s to an awesome, amazing, funny man, dad – aka – gumpa, padje. Happy Father’s Day! You’ve been such a blessing to the family. You have have shown strength, humility, support, humor, and above all, love. Thank you for being you! There’s nothing I’d change about you. Love you dad!!!

Also a Happy Father’s Day to my father-in-law, Vladimir Arkhipov. Wish I had a better picture of you, but come September, there will be plenty! We LOVE you!!

S dnyom otsa!!
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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Don't Do It Here

I’m in sheer agony – an agony so restless that anything on the way of my foot will be kicked across the room for the sake of entertainment, for the sake of seeing how it will spin in the air, for the sake to see where it will land, for the sake of having something to do.

“Dad, I’m bored,” a phrase commonly uttered from my mouth ad nauseum ad infinitum during my childhood years.
Somehow dad always had the wittiest answers to say, “Don’t do it here.”

Don’t do it here, as if the mischievous child could conjure up some brilliant scheme to create an epic plot to humiliate the parents.

However, there is something naughty to do. It includes pots and pans, wooden spoons, and blasting the ending of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture. The grand performance would take place next to the sleeping husband who has a slight smile on his face. It’s almost too delicious not to do.

This takes me back to the time I hid under the bed and then jumped out to give the husband, Andrey, a scare. He screamed and then took a step back with his fists up. The look on his face was invaluable, however the clenched fist was unpredictable. For a second my heart stopped beating and then there was silence. Soon after there came an uproar of laughter.

So we’re back to square one with nothing to do. The picture of his clenched fist swinging autopilot towards me during rem sleep is something to avoid. Don’t do it here, has a whole new meaning.
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