Archive | September 2013

Blog Challenge-Day 29 Where have I travelled…

I was born in South Korea, so I suppose that should be the first stop that I share.

I’ve driven to California and stopped at a lot of the states in between. I’ve been to the Grand Canyon at dawn and stopped at Mount Rushmore to meet the Presidents. I’ve driven down old Route 66, and floated down a river in the Mojave Desert.

In the early-mid 90s I had a little White Ford Festiva, that I affectionately called “The Egg.” The Egg and I, pre-GPS/pre-cell phone, made countless trips from Ohio to Cincinnati, Ohio to Kentucky, Ohio to the Panhandle, Ohio to Key West Florida, and all of the states in between. She and I drove from Florida back to Ohio in a massive Blizzard. She was automatic, basic, and small. But she kept me safe and never left me stranded. I loved that little car, may she Rest in Peace.

I’ve been to Canada a couple of times, pre 9/11. On one occasion, I almost got stranded. I had my Naturalization Papers, but didn’t have my Social Security Card or some other important document that I needed. It was my birthday, so Happy Birthday to Me, they let me come back into the country!

I’ve stopped at the Outer Banks just to sit on a beach, but it was in the middle of a windstorm. I drove the rest of the way home with sand in every part of my body.

I’ve been to Disney World in Florida a few times and a wedding in Las Vegas. I got married in Las Vegas and hung out in Freeport, Bahamas. I’ve been to Ocean City MD, Miami FLA, and Dallas TX. I’ve been to a lot of cities and states in between all of my destinations.

I’ve driven to Illinois and back several times to visit Family, for good times and bad times.

I’ve been to New York City, and fell in love with the City. She took my breath away. If I had travelled there as a younger adult, I would have stayed forever. I loved the energy, the vibrancy, the people. There was something about her that drew me in and I still can’t get her out of my mind.

The majority of my travelling was done pre-Social Media, so my memories have mostly been captured in scattered pictures and the recesses of my mind that can’t always be relied upon. I’m looking forward to days ahead when I can do some travelling again. I want to make memories as a family, and introduce my children to the world. I want them to know that the world is bigger than just our back yard.

The world is an amazing place, and I’ve loved every new experience that I’ve had in it. I can’t way to do it again.

Blog Challenge-Day 28 What I’m looking forward to…

We are always looking forward to various events or milestones in our lives. We can’t wait until we have the perfect job, the perfect love, or are happy, or rich, or married, or have kids etc. We are so busy looking forward to moments in our life that we often bypass the moments that are right in front of us.

I’ve often heard that Happiness isn’t a place we get to live in, just a place we get to visit. But through some painful moments in my life, I’ve learned that happiness is a place in our own mind. If we pause to see where we really are, instead of where we think we want to be, we may realize that happiness is directly in front of us. Happiness and contentment are there every day in the simplest of moments.

Yesterday I met a teenage boy, Patrick, with Downs Syndrome. When I met him, I smiled and he smiled back at me. Then much to my surprise he blew me a barrage of kisses. In that one moment, my heart exploded with pure happiness. A sweet boy who was living in his moment, was blowing kisses at me. I don’t know how I could have been anything but happy. Patrick’s gesture was meant to be innocent, sweet, and beautiful, with a touch of mischieviousness~and it was all of that and more.

I’m so happy that I didn’t miss it.

I’ve learned that I can look forward to the most insignificant moments every day. Whether it’s grocery shopping or cooking breakfast with one or both of my sons, cuddling with my family (2 boys, 2 adults, 2 dogs) on our regular Queen size bed, or peace and quiet in my car on the way home from work. If I pay close enough attention~I won’t miss those moments. I try to keep myself open to the moments that take me by surprise, that catch me off guard, and take my breath away.

So I look forward to the tiny moments. And I am so truly thankful for them, so much that I don’t need too much more.

Blog Day Challenge Day 27-My favorite recipe

I enjoy cooking. I’m not much of a baker, and can’t bake to save my life. With cooking, there is a little more freedom to experiment. My favorite recipe is one that I found on for Chicken Parprikash. I love making the homemade dumplings and usually double the recipe, especially when my in laws are coming over. When I’m rushed for time, I’ll buy a chicken that is already roasted and just debone it, which works out just as well. I also like to use a little fresh garlic in the recipe as well, and while I use it as a guide, I tend to veer off the recipe more often than not.

The first time that I ever made it, I was really nervous. An Asian woman making Chicken Parikash… :P. But it turned out great and I’ve been making it ever since. I hope that you enjoy it 🙂


2 c. chicken broth
3 lb. boned, cooked, cubed chicken
1/4 c. butter
med. chopped onion
2 heaping tsp. paprika
1 c. sour cream
2 tbsp. flour


3 beaten eggs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. evaporated milk
1 1/2 c. flour

Brown chicken in butter; remove and set aside. Add onion to
butter and cook until tender. Add paprika and salt and
pepper to taste. Return chicken to skillet and add broth.
Cover and simmer 20-30 minutes.

Blend flour with a little water then blend into chicken. Add
sour cream to paprikash and heat slightly. Serve over
noodles or dumplings.

To prepare dumplings: Combine eggs, milk and salt. Stir into
flour. Drop by teaspoons into boiling salted water. Cook 5
minutes after they float.

Serves 4-6.

Blog challenge Day 26-an old photo of me


This is a photo of me when I was in my 20s and all was right with the world. I was free, full of fire, energetic, and hopeful.

It’s many years later and I don’t look quite as young and fresh, but there is a lot about me that is the same. I’m still full of fire, just slower to burn someone with it. I have two young children who keep me full of energy, but I tire a lot easier now and rest when I need to. I don’t know how hopeful I am. Some days I wake up full of hope and other days I’m convinced that the world is a doomed and evil place. But then I look into my children’s faces and I suddenly can find my hope again. It’s just not resting so readily on the surface as it once did.

I love this picture of me. It’s taken with my niece, who I adore, and it reminds me of who I was and who I still aspire to be. That girl in the picture is still alive and well. She’s just a little bit older, and a little less naive. But she’s thankful and wiser, and that’s just fine with me. ❤

Blog Challenge Day 25-My 5 Favorite Blogs

The beautiful thing about writing is that you get to meet so many wonderfully talented people who share your love of words and telling stories. Blogging has been a wonderful experience for me and I have enjoyed it tremendously.

The best part has been reading so many amazing blogs and meeting people who have so much to share. My 5 favorite blogs have been:
Kristen is a very sweet, generous writer who shares her work and the work of others with the world. Her blog is both fun and inspiring and reflects her passion and love for all things writing.
Novel Grounds (Megan Gallt) was one of the first Blogs to give this new Author a Spotlight on her blog. Her enthusiasm and support were both encouraging and supportive. It’s a wonderful growing blog that updates almost daily with new books and authors.
This is also a growing blog, which I have come to love and appreciate. Patricia’s (Green) words of encouragement and her positive approach is refreshing. She also wrote a review on Leaving Eva, which was both thorough and definitive which was much appreciated. She has some wonderful books and reviews on her blog which are interesting and enlightening.
This is a great blog, which much more than books. Candy’s (Beauchamp) chose Leaving Eva out of numerous books on her TBR pile and gave it a very honest, frank review. I appreciated that she gave me her true opinion, which was positive with some much needed constructive criticism, which I have since applied. I was drawn to her website because she’s a busy mom who passionately shares her opinion about whatever she chooses, and makes no bones about the fact that it’s her website, her opinion.
Crystal Marie gave me one of my first reviews, and I loved her honesty as well. Her blog has grown tremendously, and I love following her on Facebook and reading her reviews. She reviews different genres and her reviews are funny and fresh. I’ve really enjoyed reading her work.

There are so many wonderful writers and reviewers. I also love:
This blog is imaginative and thought provoking. I’ve enjoyed every blog I have read here.

SImply put, this blog is inspiring and beautiful! A great read when you are feeling low in life.

Top ten things I have said because I have little boys

…or maybe it’s just MY little boys. 😜
1. Don’t Pants your brother!
2. Get down from there, you’re going to kill yourself!
3. Stop yelling!
4. Um, stop running around naked. No one wants to look at that!
5. Seriously, don’t put your butt in your brothers face.
6. Boogers do not belong on your bed!
7. People are eating, please don’t talk like that.
8. Don’t drink the bath water!!!
9. Um, gross!
10. You know there’s a toilet INSIDE the house to pee in, right?


Blog Challenge-Day 24 My Favorite Childhood Book

My Favorite Childhood Book… Was a huge hardcover book of fairy tales. It had a countless number of fairtytales in it with beautiful illustrations that captured my imagination.

I remember reading that book repeatedly, savoring every story. The story that sticks out in my mind the most is “the Little Match Girl”, about a poor little girl who only had matches to sell for food and shelter. In the end, the little girl freezes to death in the brutal winter snow. But before she goes, she lights her last match to see her Mother; at least that is how I’ve always remembered it. I’ve always been drawn to sad stories.

I’ve tried to find that book over the years, but like many things that disappear from your childhood, it’s gone. But the stories remain with me. There were so many beautiful stories of love, loss, and hope that enthralled me and inspired me, even as a child.

I love all types of stories and the wonderful, vivid imaginations of those who create them! I realize now that I’ve always sought them out and found shelter in them. I’m unbelievably happy to have rediscovered my love for a beautiful story. And I’m thankful for those who share them every day!

Blog Challenge-Day 23 My Dream Job

My Dream Job…

That’s a tough one.

When I was about 8, I was on TV and they asked me what I wanted to be. My answer, earnest and sincere, was that I wanted to be an astronomer. Now,I’ll admit… I was pandering to the cameras. I was answering in response to a News story about my school’s gigantic IMAX Dome where they showed movies about going into space. In reality, I’m just not smart enough to be an astronomer, and I’m sure I knew that even then.

I’ve wanted to be an actress, a singer, a teacher, and a journalist. I think I even wanted to be a bus driver at some point. I definitely wanted to be one of Charlie’s Angels.

I always knew that I wanted to be a writer, even when I didn’t know. I was always drawn to The Story, whether in reality or fantasy. Good or bad. And I have usually liked people, and liked being of service to them, which is why I fit so well in the service industry.

In reality, I really love my life, and love my job. I get to work with amazing, funny, smart people every day. I’m not stuck in an office cubicle, I get to use my brain, fix problems, and teach and develop people, which I’ve also always loved. I’m also a boss, which fits in my nature because I’m naturally bossy (ask anyone whose known me since I was five). So aside from going into space, I’ve gotten to use a lot of my talents for good. I even got to write a book, and have now finished my second book.

I may not have dreamed of the job that I have, but I am fortunate that I love the job that I have and the life that I have. I not going to lie, I would still love to be one of Charlie’s Angels, but I think that ship has sailed.