Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 89: March 30, 2011

Today I am thankful that it was still light outside when I walked home from work. It feels so much better leaving the hospital at seven-thirty when the sun is still shining! It didn't hurt that the sun was really it hasn't shined in months. Love it!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 88: March 29, 2011

Today I am thankful for the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers. For me, it's a stand-out in Golden Gate Park, a park full of stand-outs! I walk by it almost daily and always slow my steps just a little to take it all in. The facade itself is impressive (Come on, a building made of white glass?) but also the seasonal gardens that literally change every time I look at them. I would love to see what goes into designing the flower beds, their lay outs, and what flowers are chosen.
Right now the front garden is the perfect image of Spring: Tulips and lots of Oriental Poppies. One of my favorite times of year in the Conservatory gardens is late summer when the Dahlias are in full bloom...the inspiration for my wedding flowers! And even when they clear the flower beds to replant and the gardens are dirt shadows of their former selves,  it is still fascinating to look at and anticipate what is to come. 

Day 87: March 28, 2011

Today I am thankful for glimpses into my friends' "secret lives". I went back to high school and hung out in Mrs. Fujii's class for the day! It's strange and really fun to see one of my oldest friend's alter-ego, Teacher Stephanie, in action, teaching a group of high school students. I feel like we were in high school ourselves just yesterday. I also got to peak into Brittney's work life and I finally feel like I know what she does everyday! 

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 86: March 27, 2011

I spent a fun-filled weekend with some of my besties, one of which I rarely see anymore due to unfortunate geography. We gabbed over yummy meals, played some good games of Chinasa, baked some (mostly) delicious cupcakes, and soaked up some good girl-bonding time. Not quite ready to end the weekend when the party was continuing through Monday, today I am thankful for devils on my shoulder. These "devils" were pretty convincing in their arguments of why my services are needed tomorrow...and even the angel on my other shoulder is pretty excited about it.  

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 85: March 26, 2011

Today I am thankful for flowering trees because even when it's the gloomiest of days, a flowering tree tells me that Spring is on its way (and has already officially started, Mother Nature! In case you forgot...) Blooms are popping up everywhere. I think I am more enthralled with them than average because I grew up with only evergreens, but no one can deny that a street lined with white and pink flowering trees is pretty amazing :)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 84: March 25, 2011

Today I am thankful for birthday celebrations. And it's not even my birthday!
My fabulous friend Stephanie invited me to partake in the festivities for her Mom's sixtieth birthday and we had such a fun and relaxing time!  I joined them at the Sonoma Mission Spa (a.k.a. Heaven) and spent a good portion of the day hot tub-hopping. They have these amazing mineral spring hot tubs in different temperatures, so I moved from the cool to the hot, to the sauna, to the cool shower, back to the hot tub. Aaah. Talk about relaxing! We also shopped around downtown Sonoma a bit and had a super yummy Mexican dinner. And we topped it off with cupcakes from Cupkates! I had the tirimisu...delish. Look for Steph's blog post on Cupcakin'! Yummy food, a new book on CD, a lovely day at the spa...all courtesy of my buddy! Wait, was it my birthday or Claudia's?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 83: March 24, 2011

Today I'm thankful for a few things:

1. I am grateful for days when the alarm goes off and it's not mine. Today the alarm went off, much too early as usual, and for a split second I thought I had to wake up. But when I reached for my alarm it wasn't alarming! And then I realized that I didn't work today...fabulous! I smiled a big smile, eyes already closed again, and snuggled back into bed. It always feels better sleeping in when I get a glimpse of how early I could have been waking up. I actually said, "I'm so glad it's your alarm. This is the best thing ever." I'm such a bad wife.

2. I am thankful for my Hunter rain boots. New to me this season, I think they're the best thing since sliced bread. I skipped my way through the monsoon today and made it through the day with warm, dry feet and dry pants. Sometimes I walk through puddles just because I can!

3. I'm thankful for focus groups. Today I was one of eight people offering opinions on a new navigation system. I get called periodically to participate and always have a lot of fun. It's really interesting to see firsthand what research goes into developing new products. And you get paid! 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 82: March 23, 2011

Today I am thankful for Modern Family. Seriously, could it be funnier? I laugh every time I think of Phil saying "WTF...why the face". Such a fun and silly addition to my Wednesday evenings.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 81: March 22, 2011

Today I'm thankful for tennis balls. They keep my golden doggy, Zoe, entertained for hours, they can be used to massage your feet, and they just smell so good! Does everyone think they smell awesome, or is that just me?  

Day 80: March 21, 2011

Today I am thankful that I didn't have to rely on my willpower. Had it been my choice, I would have eaten a Costco hot dog and gelato for dinner instead of the yummy veggies in my refrigerator...and then I would have had a stomach ache and a couple thousand extra calories. I don't need either!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 79: March 20, 2011

I was really expecting to have a bad day at work today. It had nothing going for it.

Strike one: It's Sunday. It's supposed to be Sunday Funday! Not a day I usually like to work on. And, Hubby and friends were going to Napa...without me.

Strike two: I could not fall asleep last night. I don't know if it was the sleeping in, the latte and two pots of black tea I consumed, or the remnants of jet lag, but I was watching the clock tick at two-thirty.

Strike three: The Intensive Care Nursery is currently a bad place to be. We are bursting at the seams and it is treacherously close to a full moon (which always causes babies to dive out of their mothers like their little lives depend on it).

However, I was spared and the day was a home run, so today I am thankful for unexpectedly good days!
The Gods must have been looking out for my tired self because I was put in a quiet little room by myself with three of the cutest babies on the universe. Because I was secluded by myself, I was blissfully unaware of all of the chaos that ensued on the rest of the floor. My day consisted of snuggling cuteness and finishing my book. I did do a little work as well, but it hardly felt like it. Sunday turned out to be a fun day after all. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Day 78: March 19, 2011

Today I am thankful for Lubriderm lotion. If I made a list of ten things I couldn't live without, this would be on it, probably in the top five. It has been moisturizing my epidermis for many, many years and has never failed me. For those who know me well, you know that I'm a freak for lotion. I'm kind of embarrassed to admit that I actually know how many pumps of Lubriderm it takes to cover each extremity. (They redesigned this pump this year, so it's now one pump for each arm, chest, and stomach, two for each leg in case you were wondering). Even my husband, the anti-lotioner, knows to keep an eye peeled for Costco coupons when I only have one bottle in the house. It may border on obsession, but you'll never find me with scaly skin!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Day 77: March 18, 2011

Today I am thankful for in-house laundry facilities. I kind of feel like I'm always doing laundry (how much laundry can two people make? Seriously!), but for some reason today when I was folding and stacking, I had a flash back to the long nights that Nick and I spent in the laundromat because our apartment had no washing machine. For non city-dwellers, it's very easy to take the washer and dryer for granted, but once you experience life without it you will never look at them the same! It almost makes we like doing laundry at home. Almost.

And in an attempt to infuse a little Spring, or Primavera into my life on this rainy, rainy day, I made my recipe of the week for dinner tonight: Risotto Primavera. Pretty yummy!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Day 76: March 17, 2011

Today I am thankful for goat cheese. Last night I had it with my beets, tonight sprinkled on salad with apples. I just can't get enough of it. Delish! I'm also thankful for the mercy of everyone I encountered today that did not pinch me even though I totally forgot to wear green! I must have the luck of the Irish!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day 75: March 16, 2011

Today I am thankful for hilarious coworkers. It was a day filled with surprises, and compromise, and quick thinking, and lots of people pulling together to get the job done. Awesome if you don't work in a hospital, not as awesome when you do. Thankfully, I work work with some funny people that always know how to lighten the mood. In a moment of chaos, one of my coworkers said "Well, we can either make chicken salad or we can make chicken poop. I like salad better than poop." Oh. My. God. I almost died of laughing. In all seriousness though, they are wise words because life is always what you make of it. And when the proverbial chicken poop hit the fan today, I thought about chicken salad and smiled.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Day 74: March 15, 2011

Today I am thankful for last night. Why? Because I fell asleep before four a.m., I didn't toss and turn, and I woke up ready to conquer my day. That's kind of an exaggeration, since I am never ready to conquer the day when I wake up at six in the morning, but I was almost functional (a.k.a. normal for me) this morning. Asian jet lag messes with my system like no other, and I am happy to report that I have defeated it in just about five days. That beats my previous record of eight. Amazing...if I do say so myself ;)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Day 73: March 14, 2011

Today I am thankful for sidewalk flower stands. Such a novelty to me, it is so refreshing an unexpectedly beautiful to come upon a street-side garden that's ready for the taking. Walking home from work tonight I smelled the flowers before I saw them. Then I did see them, and it added a little bit of needed color to a dreary winter day. Love that!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Day 72: March 13, 2011

Today I am thankful for El Balazo Taqueria. Just down the street, and oh so good. We had a kitchen sink mishap tonight that made it impossible to wash the lettuce that would have been our dinner (fate?) so we happily skipped our way down for the best chicken burrito in the Upper Haight. Thank goodness for plumbing problems! *Knock on wood*

Day 71: March 12, 2011

Today I am grateful for my new laptop! I have had my old one for over five years, and it is definitely showing its age. It overheats and shuts itself down, it makes noises like it's going to take off and fly away, and it is slow. No more! Yippee!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day 70: March 11, 2011

Today I am thankful for the San Francisco Public Library. The branch near our house just re-opened and I was re-introduced to the awesomeness of it all. I left with three books that I've been wanting to read, but now I can't decide what to start first!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 69: March 10, 2011

Today I am thankful for my shower. There is nothing that compares to its perfect water pressure and rain head gloriousness. After a long day of travel, it felt like heaven. And no matter how wonderful our tip was, it still feels good to be home.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 68: March 9, 2011

Today I am thankful for coconut-mango shakes. I've been ordering them all over Thailand and have yet to sample a bad one. Actually, I'm thankful for "shakes" in general. I don't think we have an equivalent in America. Sixty baht well spent:)

Day 67: March 8, 2011

Today I am thankful for the last eight years. A billion and one things have happened, but one thing has remained constant: I've been lucky enough to call the same dude my other half (although I am more likely to call him Goobs, Goobylove, Gooberino, or some other form of Goober). We've come along way since we started as roommates in college, where our roommate Valerie labelled us as 'Nimily', but some things haven't changed. We're still best friends, we still eat Top Ramen sometimes (I don't care if it's filled with MSG, that stuff's good!), and no matter what, we always have fun together.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Day 66: March 7, 2011

This is our last day in Koh Lanta, and I am less than happy about it; but this blog is about appreciating the good things, and as usual, I have much to be thankful for today. Each trip, as the vacation nears an end, I find myself replaying the memories like a movie in my mind, already feeling nostalgic. 
We were rushed off the beach this afternoon by a very swiftly moving storm that we literally saw creep down the mountainside until it reached us. The shower in the bungalow has a see through ceiling, so I had the weird experience of showering under the rain and watching each drop come down. Looking up at it pouring down (this is all going to sound kind of dramatic and like quite a stretch, but it's true!) I was thankful for seeing things from a different perspective. Quite literally in some cases, as in watching the rain fall :)  
After the rain cleared, we enjoyed our last sunset over Bamboo Beach. As many photos as I took, I couldn't capture the colors, so I finally stopped trying and just took in the view. That's when I noticed that there were two sunsets, one in the sky and one reflected in the tide pools. The same sun, same clouds, and same sky, but completely different. Lesson learned. Sometimes memories are better left unrecorded, so they can be appreciated to the fullest in real time. 
I guess everything comes down to how you view it, and from what perspective. The same glass can be half empty or half full depending on how you look at it. The rain storm can mean an end to a beach day or the start of an incredible shower! 
The rain seems to have awakened the mosquitoes from their slumber, and even the lemon grass can not ward off these suckers, but I am smiling from ear to ear. I'm smiling because from this angle, I don't see the swarms vampire bugs; nope, I see my husband jumping around the room like a crazy person, smacking at the walls and grabbing at thin-air, only to be foiled again by the man-eating beasts! 

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Day 65: March 6, 2011

Today I am thankful for lemon grass. I've always loved the smell and have quite a collection of soaps, etcetera in the scent, but now I think I'm obsessed.
Reason one why I love it: It's fabulous to eat. We took a Thai cooking class tonight and made a yummy selection of Thai favorites: Golden Bags (deep fried goodness), green curry, Thai chicken salad, and steamed fish. I think they all included a hint (or more) of lemon grass. Delish! We also met some fun peeps from Vancouver, and one worked at SAP! Small world!
Reason two why I love it: It smells good. Our bungalow is stocked with lotion, soap, and shampoos infused with lemon grass. Even Nick, the self-proclaimed lotion-phobe, is slathering himself in it.
Reason three why I love it: it is a natural mosquito repellent. How did I not know this before? I no longer have to   cover myself in Deet and reek of Off! Love it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Day 64: March 5, 2011

The husband and I started our morning off in a sea kayak, with the mission of exploring the nearby National Park. It took us maybe thirty minutes to paddle our way there, and what we found when we arrived was breathtaking. More white sand beach, a makeshift lighthouse, flanked by a dense mountain of jungle and no people. I cannot get used to having a whole beach to ourselves, probably because most of the awesome beaches I've been to in the past have been less than private and usually downright crowded.
Today I am thankful for quality alone time with my main squeeze. There's no one I would rather share an empty beach or kayak with.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Day 63: March 4, 2011

Today we made the journey from Krabi to Koh Lanta. When I say journey, I mean journey. Two ferries and a couple hours of driving and then our driver dropped us off to be shuttled to the resort by a four wheel drive truck since "resort up big steep mountain, car no make it." True that. Half way up the dirt road I started questioning whether we were actually going to a resort at all because it felt so isolated. And then we arrived. I'm fairly certain that if you were to look up "paradise" in the dictionary, a big picture of La Laanta Resort would pop up. This place is A-mazing. We are staying in a little bungalow that is just a hop, skip, and a jump from an incredible beach with no one on it except us. I think I said "this is the life" twenty-five times today.
Today I am thankful for isolation. I kind of feel like I've been dropped on a deserted island...but with crazy good seafood barbecue and air conditioning. This is the life. And that makes twenty-six.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Day 62: March 3, 2011

Today I am thankful for snorkeling. We took a boat trip to the Phi Phi Islands to check out the beautiful beaches and snorkel. Good times, beautiful fish, and the finest sand I’ve ever felt. The captain of the boat joked that if we weren’t back in time they would leave us and pick us up tomorrow. If there had been a good bathroom I would still be there. Oh, and I'm also thankful for the Fishermanjito at the awesome bar The Last Fisherman. Somehow I always manage to find awesome mojitos wherever I go!

Day 61: March 2, 2011

Today is one of those days. One of those days that I wish would never end. It’s also one of those days that I can’t seem to pick what I’m most thankful for because it’s been that good.

Today I am thankful for all the little things that have made this day amazing.

I’m thankful for the geckos that cover the whitewashed ceiling of the lobby looking for flies.

I’m grateful to have found Zanotti’s Italian and Thai Restaurant in Ao Nang Beach, home of what must be the best pizza East of Naples…delicioso!

I’m thankful for my masseuse, Susie, who taught me that “yum” means excellent in Thai (and for the rockin’ massage on the beach!)

I’m thankful for the kitties that wander around begging for Pad Thai leftovers. Like the Thai people, Thai cats are miniature versions of the American feline, and they remind me of my kitty at home.

I’m thankful for the music in the hotel lobby- all Western pop songs done in a peaceful Thai style. I need to find this CD!

I’m grateful for the sunset that looked like it came straight off of a postcard.

I’m thankful for the way Thai people use “hmm” and “mmm” as filler words. It’s so interesting to listen to.

I’m grateful for bargaining. Can we reintroduce that to America?

I’m thankful for the fruit. Oh, the fruit. The pineapples put Hawaii’s to shame: sweeter, but milder and less acidic. And dragon fruit is so pretty. Fruit shake shacks are everywhere. Yum.

I’m thankful for my Title Nine dress. It’s pretty much the most versatile piece of clothing I own.

I’m thankful for the sounds: crickets, waves crashing, frogs croaking, birds chirping, leaves rustling, and thunder faintly rumbling in the distance.

So much to be thankful for. Just another day in paradise…

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Day 60: March 1, 2011

I loved my time in both Chiang Mai and Bangkok, but landing in Krabi was a breath of fresh air (both literally and figuratively speaking). I was welcomed by the humid, island air as soon as we stepped off the plane and I knew that Krabi and I were going to get along well. Picturesque is the word that comes to mind first, but a gaggle of other adjectives could be used to describe the beauty of this place. Gigantic limestone cliffs, peach-colored powdery sand, and clear blue water dotted with rickety wooden speed boats (or James Bond boats, as our guide Sax called them).
We spent a hefty portion of the day lounging by the pool and beach and soaking up the sun (translation: getting sunburned), but one of the highlights of the day came after the sun went down.
As we strolled back to the hotel with Mango Thai pancakes in hand, it started raining. It went something like this: Drop…drop…drop, drop, drop…torrential downpour…Nick and Emily running very fast and Emily losing half of her mango pancake all the while getting completely drenched. And that was the first twenty seconds! We made it to the lobby just as the sky opened up and Mother Nature started her show. I have seen rain, I have witnessed thunderstorms, but I have never seen something like this!

Today I am thankful for Thai Thunderstorms. If you know me, you know that this is very out of character because I really don’t like lightening, but something about this storm begged to be watched. The rain came down in sheets, the sky was in an almost constant state if illumination, and the thunder clapped LOUDLY. If this is the dry season, I would not want to witness monsoon season!

Day 59: February 28, 2011

Today I am thankful for Bangkok at night. In a city full of skyscrapers, I think the best way to appreciate the beauty is from inside. We checked out the view from the thirty-ninth floor of the Sofitel Hotel, then had dinner at a lovely restaurant with a wall of windows- the perfect place to watch the sky darken and the city lights come out. 

And Seeing as it's the last day of month two, how are my other resolutions coming along? 
Books finished: 2
Recipes Cooked: More than 4 (but not one per week due to vacation:) )