Archive for the 'All about me' Category
10. Don’t need to buy hair products such as clips, hair ties, headbands, etc.
9. Saves on resources such as water, shampoo/conditioner/soap
8. Also saves money
7. Saves time getting ready in the morning
6. Less chance of having Bad Hair Day
5. Less hair on the floor to vacuum / weave rugs with
4. No long strands for infants/babies to pull
3. Great for summer weather
2. Can wash hair daily even if you have very little time
1. Hair will dry very very quickly
Hi! Remember me? I’ve missed you.
I’d tell you that it’s been a fun couple of weeks in the Greek Islands, or Hawaii, or somewhere WARM, but truth is, I’ve been here in Iowa all along. Haven’t gone anywhere and nobody is gravely ill so thank goodness for that. But I’ve had it with this weather. I know I complained every winter when we lived in Minnesota but this feels just like Minnesota winter / fickle spring. WTH. Did it follow me here?!
In any case, things are rolling along here. Very busy with work, the kids, and not folding our washed laundry.
Today I heard from a long lost friend (HI!) and she’s going to move here in a few months! Her work is going to be literally within walking distance to our house! Well, 15 minutes is walking distance right? I think we mid-westerners are really spoiled with driving everywhere, but I can’t seem to bring myself to walk anywhere when (a) it takes a while to walk anywhere (b) it’s so darn cold (c) no one else do it around here so we’d look like lost souls strolling the sidewalks. It was good to hear from her and even better that she’s moving here soon. Very excited! She’s one of the few people I know who can out-talk me, when I’m in the talkative mode. I think we’ll have a great time! Oh yes, she has never met our kids yet. We did see each other when I was pregnant with our now 4.5 yr old son; that’s how long I haven’t seen her.
Did I also mention my in-laws are coming this summer? All the way from Malaysia? I can’t wait for summer, in more ways than one. Seriously, I have a great set of in-laws and we get along fabulously, most of the time.
If this is not the most disjointed post EVER, I don’t know what is.
but look! It’s above 40F!!! In fact, it’s in the 60’s. Wheeeeeeeeeeeee.
Current weather: sunny & windy, 67F. Hallelujah!
Current time: 4:30p.m.
Times I’ve second guessed myself today: more than a handful.
Hours slept last night: ~3.5
In 5th grade, my brother and I moved to the city to live with our grandmother, so we could attend a better school (I was still living in China). This was where I met M, who was also in my class among 60 some other kids. I do understand that smaller class size would allow the teachers to give more attention students - but that’s unheard of in the city we lived. Class sizes were generally 50-70. Can you imagine 60+ some kids in one class, with one teacher???
M lived about 5 sky rises away from my grandmother’s and she was everything I wanted to be. Her parents were artists, quite sophisticated people who lived sophisticated and luxurious lives. Both her and her brother were also rather artistic and had entered in drawing competitions etc. Their house was at the top floor, knocking down the wall in-between and joining 2 flats into one extremely large one.
Coming from the countryside having lived peasant-style lives, M’s house was a castle to me. There were leather sofa and chairs, big screen TV (in color!), nice decorations, gorgeous rugs!, big refrigerator with loads of goodies, and very comfortable cushion-y mattresses. I’ve never slept on a mattress before - my bed was a giant piece of hard wood plank topped with bamboo liner in the summer and an old thick blanket in the winter. She even had her own desk, with nice posters hanging all around her room.
Despite our vast different material backgrounds, M and I got along rather nicely. My personality and M’s were very similar. We both liked to wear shorts more than skirts and didn’t take to the girly frilly things that some of our peers did. Since her house was on the way to school, I usually stopped by and wait for her, and we’d walk to school together. She would show me all the places along the way - this store’s ice cream was really good, or that bookstore had some great books but they’ll scold you if you go in to read and not buy, etc. Some days we would take the long route, skipping along the rice paddies to admire the birds and bugs. Other days there were other girls joining us to walk to school. M and I were very good friends, she knew my secrets and which boys I liked. I knew who she dreamed about and would go give them lots of “hints.” We had loads of fun together, doing homework at her house, watching TV and or bouncing on the bed.
She never once looked down on me because of my poor background.
After I moved to the US 1.5 years later, we kept in touch via letters. (This was pre-internet days). It was lovely and I missed her and my other friends dearly. We kept in touch for a very very very long time, until we both graduated college. We visited each other both times I went back to China (in a total of 19 years..) We just seemed to pick up where we left off and continue right on. She’s forever a giving soul and my heart always has a place for her. She’s now married as well, with a one-year old son. We don’t talk very much - but I know she’s doing fine and are busy with her adult life and parenthood. I haven’t seen her in nearly 9 years. I miss her and think of her from time to time.
She’s the sister I never had but wish I did. I am so fortunate to have her in my life, albeit how infrequent we get to talk with or see each other.
This is one of my lists for March’s theme of “Lists” for nablopomo, which I am miserably failing at keeping up and or writing lists at least once a day. April’s theme is “Letters.” Go here if you want the details.
Chemo sessions I had: 12
Duration of each chemo session: 3-5 hours via IV
Frequency of chemo: Once every 14 days
Days I was bedridden from chemo: ~72 days
Times I puked from having chemo: 432 - 864 (that figures about 6-12 times each of the 72 days)
Hair lost: every strand on head & body except eyebrows
Neupogen shots I received to boost my system so chemo wouldn’t be delayed: 48
Radiation therapy sessions: 10
Duration of radiation: 45 seconds front & 45 seconds back (kind of like roasting or grilling) I think it was 45 seconds.. can’t remember now.
Preparation time before radiation: 15 minutes
Lives we’ve been gifted as a result of all the above: 3 (my very own, and our 2 children)
And here’s the proof, in a quiz!
* * *
Your quiz score makes you: Smarty Pants Mom
Smart parents like you have smart kids. They need plenty of intellectual stimulation and you provide them with all they need, plus lots of love. You know how to help them with algebra homework, and you are superior at kissing boo-boos.
* * *
How about you, what’s your ranking?
Basically I write 7 things about myself. And tag you guys to do it too. Feel free to be tagged and make your own list.
1. I must be the one driving, otherwise I get carsick easily.
2. I usually prefer silence to music (unless I’m in the car - see above - I’m the driver, especially long distance). Hubby is the exact opposite and wants music anywhere and everywhere.
3. When my hair is long, I’ll want to chop it off. When it’s short, I’ll want it long. Right now. I drive myself silly.
4. On my left hand, my head line (or brain line) and heart line intersects and makes a straight fold. In another words, if I put my hand faced up and pull all 4 fingers towards me, there’s a nice straight trench across the entirety of my palm. I’m not into palm reading, but find this interesting and I have a few family members who have the same thing.
5. I am the same weight as I was before any pregnancies and babies (+/- 2 lbs), but my shirt and pant sizes both have gone up at least 2 sizes. What’s up with that???!!!
6. Food is my good friend. Good food is my BFF.
7. I’m not as articulate in person as I would like to be. Oh I can talk, (boy can I talk, my friend Laura is about the only one who can out-talk me) just not as articulate as I would like.
I saw this a while ago at Just Chicken Feed, and thought I would do it too just to verify that yes, indeed, I don’t lead a very exciting life.
Items in BOLD are things that I have done, with commentary in parentheses.
* * *
01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain. (Yep, nearly summited on Mount Kinabalu. Went half way and stopped because I felt a little sick..)
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper (Alrighty then)
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity (Still doing it now and will continue to do so)
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can (This is a rather healthy form of release IMO)
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and didn’t care who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Taken a midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love - with that person!
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day (Did this for 6 out of every 14 days while having chemo, for 6 months. Does that count?)
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theatre
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business (If you’re new to my blog, this is the business)
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight (What’s D&D?? Ahh OK. The answer is no. But I have done other things for far longer than that)
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch (This is one of many favorite activities at our house)
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice (If the Vegas version counts, then yes)
80. Gotten a tattoo (tattoo DOTS my friend. 3 tiny dots, for radiation therapy alignment purposes)
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on a television news program as an “expert”
83. Gotten flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently (2 languages, 3.5 dialects)
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. Passed out cold (Twice. Once in church, and once while soaking in the bathtub)
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over (Need at least both hands to count)
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray (Ate one too, at a restaurant, here in the US!)
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a TV game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild (Morel mushrooms, but I can’t remember what they taste like or where I had them)
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon (Hubby did, before we met)
122. Slept for 30 hours in a 48 hour period (now I wish!)
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. States
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi (One of my favorite foods)
128. Had your picture in the newspaper (Need two hands to count these. You know it’s all for good stuff, right?)
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad and The Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating (More than once)
137. Skipped all your school reunions (Missed both times so far, not intentional though)
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language (Um, Well, it was inescapable. See the two previous posts here and here, and the “about me” page and.. )
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts (Hubby did this many times before)
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head (Not on purpose. Had to after 2 chemo sessions.)
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life (does a bird count?)
* * *
So I counted the items. Turns out I’ve done less than 1/3 of these things (48 to be exact). See, not very exciting.
Things that my 12-year-old extremely-hill-billy self found to be intriguing, fascinating, scary, confusing, and or shocking. Sometimes all at once. (A little background: my family and I moved to the US from the other side of the globe when I was 12. None of us spoke English. For this and other details, go read my “about me” page).
These shocking things are in no particular order, but each proved to be comical and foreign to my-then-12yr-old-self (some are still shocking to me).
* People. I lived in a small village and never traveled further than 3 hours away from where I was born. I had only seen non-Chinese people on TV, in black&white television. When we landed in O’Hare airport, various hair colors, eye colors, and people’s sizes really shocked me and continued to for a long while.
* Food - western food. Which to me meant anything that wasn’t Chinese food.
* Language. Did not know a single word of English. No one knew my native language at my school, and not many in the community either. It was an 90degree uphill journey sprinkled with many many thorns, spikes and potholes along the way.
* Smiles / friendliness. When you smile or say Hi to a complete stranger in China, people would think you are slow, stupid, or have an ulterior motive. They just don’t do friendly over there, especially if you’re Asian. Times may have changed some, and westernized a little more since we moved away, but I think these types of views are still very strong.
* Hugs. In the US and many western countries, people hug when greeting a friend or family member. In China, you don’t even see parents hug each other. Nor do you see parents hug their children once the kids are past the Cute Age (meaning, preschoolers at the latest). Feel free to let us know if your Asian family is a huggy-lovey one, coz mine’s definitely not. This is one aspect of the culture I will NOT pass onto our own kids.
* Religion. People around me practiced the inert type of Buddhism - at the most they went to the temple once a year or something. And are/were very superstitious.
* For many months, I didn’t know what a “body shop” was. Every time the school bus drove by some building that said “body shop” I was very confused. As I was starting to learn English from scratch (ABC, colors, numbers etc), body meant, well, body, as in physical body. Your body, my body. At first I thought maybe it was similar to a red district. But then the building looks too crummy to be that. It was after many funny hand gestures and exchanges that my new friends told me what it meant.
* Moving vehicles / boats / airplanes. My parents had two bicycles to transport us around. After arriving in the US, Motion Sickness was my first name for a very long time. To this day, I must be the one driving, otherwise there’s a high chance that I would hurl.
Next I’ll talk about lotions, soft mattresses, flushing toilets, and more. Not necessarily in that order.