Friday, September 4, 2015

The long weekend awaits!

For some reason, my mind doesn't seem to be functioning tonight, so I'll just update briefly :)

Not much new around here, but recently we've been trying to get out and about more. So we've been doing things like trying new restaurants and finally using some of our free movie passes.

 And having mini-golf competitions before devouring tasty Russian food.

And bowling and Indian food dates.

Meanwhile our little buddies still haven't gotten tired of each other. Abby's getting bigger each week, but manages to hold her own against Daley's rough play. They love each other.

 Speaking of growing up, Daley turned 1 today! So for his birthday, we gave him his new Zack the Duck toy. He got pretty excited.

 Then for dinner, we went to Taylor's and picked up some chuck steak and chopped it into little pieces for the pups. It lasted like 2 minutes before they inhaled it all. Best treat ever.

And now for a lovely 3-day weekend! Happy Labour Day!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Thankful Thursday

So much for consistency in posting - oh well. Luckily, today is Thursday, and therefore merits a little thankfulness. Which I need. So let's do this with some pictures, okay?

1. I'm thankful for my first niece! Odessa was born the day after my birthday, and is a sweet, beautiful girl. I'm already plotting ways to steal her away and do fun things with her as she grows up. I love being an Aunt!

On that note I SUPPOSE I should document in here somewhere that I turned 30 since my last blog post (yay?), and never ever have I felt so confident and ready to be my age. I didn't do anything particularly big that day, but in general I felt entirely loved and ridiculously happy. #IsThis30?

2. I'm thankful for our newest addition! I know we're crazy...but we got another puppy. Two Sundays ago we drove to Napa to pick up Daley's cousin from a new litter, and we instantly fell in love. Abby is already so different than Daley - mellow and lovey, and even fell asleep  like this on the way home in Nolan's lap.  

And Daley LOVES her. She is his newest obsession, and he spends a lot of time either wrestling her to the ground, licking her ears, or cuddling with her on their futon. Super cuteness. 

Milo, on the other hand, has been somewhat irate since she arrived. He'll get over it.

3. I'm thankful for Nolan's new bike! We used to love exploring new places on the motorcycle and driving windy roads for a day trip to some beautiful place. It's been a few years, and I'm super excited to do that again! Even though the maiden voyage was a somewhat hot and sweaty freeway experience.

4. I'm thankful for good friends. Even though I know my friends are keepers, it's still nice to realise how awesome they are. I've been so deeply grateful and warmly surprised at how truly incredible my people are.

5. I'm thankful for my job/flexibility. This one is tough, and I don't have a picture for it unless you desperately want to see a picture of the rings under my eyes. I've been working roughly 8am- 2am every day for the last couple of weeks (with of course, some small breaks!), and it's been wearing on me...but I know that it's temporary, and only strikes a few times a year. And it balances out with the fact that my commute is 30 seconds long and I get to be here watching my pets during the day while I work. Also, I really love what I do, and I genuinely believe that I'm doing something meaningful. So for that, it's totally worth it.

What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

When you start monitoring your cows' activities with drones.

Milo turned 9 yesterday...and we totally forgot to celebrate, as we always do. One year, we had a birthday party for him and people brought him catnip and Hello Kitty cards with pictures of a cute girl cat for him. This year, he spent half the day laying on our newly growing creeping fig and being chased out of it by me with a hose, and the other half doing this. Birthdays are hard as you age.

For Father's Day, we went up to the ranch to spend time with my dad. Luckily, my aunts and most of the cousins were there too, so we got to spend time with them, which is rarer than it should be. My dad loved his new drone for about 30 seconds, until it crashed into the pool. Tragedy ensued, but abated once the drone was revived a few hours later. Nolan probably thought the slow-mo version of the drone crashing was funnier than he should have :-\
You can extol your own praises as much as you want on Father's Day. Just kidding. All those things are true.
As usual, there was much game-playing and weirdness. Games as shown below, and weirdness...well. See for yourself in the video. 

 My mom was deceived by Pinterest's claim that putting a very brown banana in rice for an hour then blow drying it will turn it yellow again.

I tried to take a picture with the cows and inadvertently got Daley in it...chasing them. As he does. After he chases them though, they realize he just is being friendly, and they sniff noses with him. Pretty cute. He then spent most of the day chasing around the other dogs, swimming in the pool, and generally being annoying.
Which was a nice change, because burning off his energy recently has been a challenge. This is pretty much what he does...always. When I try to walk him. Walks take a ridiculous amount of time now due to all the coaxing. This is what happens when your dog is born in the cold and thinks that heat shouldn't exist.

This morning, I'm feeling extra grateful for friendship. I started my day with a sweaty hot yoga session and this girl...who is pretty awesome. I wish every day could start with yoga, coffee and sweet friendship because it only starts the day off on the best note possible.

Sunday, June 21, 2015


A friend of mine recently remarked on the fact that we've stopped writing in our blogs, and how that's made it difficult to keep up with all the day to day things that make up our lives. So here I sit, on a Sunday morning over a year after my last post, and a little bit stumped on how to recap the last year. How can one cram a bazillion tiny things into a super nerdy blog anyway?

There are so many things I could say about all of the huge changes in my life in the last year, but I've decided that the best way to capture a period of time is just to summarize. Try not to be bored to tears overly excited with my lackluster narrative.

After 7 looong years, Nolan finally finished his road through med school and residency. We celebrated with MANY World Cup festivities (Oranje!), and squeezing in all the time we could muster with all of our dear friends in the Bay Area.
Quakes vs. Galaxy game. Landon Donovan was sad panda on the field after his US team rejection.
Then, we packed up everything, like...two days before our lease was up, and moved to Sacramento. I don't think I've EVER hated moving and packing as much as this time, and we've done it a fair amount. I said goodbye to our sheep pasture in Redwood City, my desk at Corporate HQ, and really excellent Indian food. 

And then...a few days after moving, I got a call about a project in Atlanta for work. After just going from New Jersey to India/Nepal to Scottsdale, I was a little travelled out. But I packed up again and spent a few weeks living and working in Atlanta, while Nolan was in Italy having a solo trip during his month between residency and work. I was a tiny bit jealous, but he DID stop in Atlanta on his way back to visit and spend a weekend eating ALL OF THE BARBEQUE we could find in Georgia and the Carolinas.

And then I got home and went straight to Napa for a leadership team meeting. In which my colleague made me take pictures every 5 minutes. Like this one.

And then the fall happened, and my life was basically consumed with Sacramento...I found an amazing CrossFit box that I was totally in love with, found a church and a community of pretty freaking rad people, spent lots of time biking to incredible coffee places...and even found bomb Indian food.

Of course, as anticipated for SO LONG...we added a little buddy to our family :) Daley Blind Caldwell is super cute...and an absolute TERROR. But we love him. And so does Milo. Instead of putting up a thousand pictures of my puppy, I'll only relegate you to three that shows the sweet little friends together.
Waiting for treats. When Milo was still marginally taller than Daley.

Waiting for shots together at the vet. Milo's an old hat at this but Daley's obviously concerned.

Sleeping on the futon. Daley was still only 40 lbs here and he is 51 now so...
Then we had our annual Christmas extravaganza, which was even more exciting this year because we closed on our house on Christmas Eve! We spent much time negotiating with the sellers and finally were able to move in on December 26. We L O V E our new neighbourhood.
The men in my life being forced onto one couch Christmas morning.
Moving was...exhausting. And would have been totally impossible without our army of friends to help hoist things over balconies and carry endless boxes. So that was time-consuming for many weeks. Then I ran my first trail half-marathon (so fun!), ate lots of carbs, did my first CrossFit Open (SO nerve-wracking but SO fun!), and spent many hours chasing Daley away from tearing up our drip system.

Finally after getting mostly settled into the new house (this picture was still pre-furniture), we celebrated Nolan's big 3-0 with, what else? A Rijsttafel. And many friends and full hearts.
Post-Rijsttafel hanging. Table looks like crap because we aren't technically fitted for so many people.

And here's where I insert the obligatory cute picture of us from a wedding we went to...
NBD, just my smokin' hot husband.

These days, my life is pretty much comprised of late working nights, early workout mornings, constantly chasing Daley, sitting on a train to San Francisco for meetings, finding new ways to appreciate my girlfriends, and trying to convince Nolan to bike to Vic's ice cream with me. Doesn't get much better than that!

And don't worry, future posts won't be as dry, so you can put away that pencil with which you were about to poke out your eyes.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Thankful Thursday

Last week, Nolan informed me that his obsession with Babybels finally took its revenge. Lesson learned here: don't leave Babybel cheese wax in your car on a warm day. Oh yeah - this was really fun to clean up.

 One of my little treats recently was to summerize myself. Since the days are longer and the temperatures warmer, I decided I need to start dressing the part. So I tapped into my swimteam days and put a little sunshine in my hair. Best part was still the stylist washing and massaging my head though - I swear, I go to salons just for that!

Since we're in recap mode also, I guess I should write a little about our hunts. The house hunt has all but dried up. There is little to no inventory for us to even consider, so we're kind of just playing the waiting game until something comes on the market. It's an adventure, and I can honestly say that I view it that way. I'm learning to live my life with less grip on the reins, and this is one area in which I have almost no anxiety anymore. 

As far as the puppy hunt couldn't be more opposite! We're all but holding our little pet in our arms! I've been filling out forms and chatting with the breeder, but last week I went to a dog show and I got to not only meet her, but also meet the Sire for our pup-to-be. This is a picture of him from a recent show - isn't he handsome?! I can't even tell you how bubbly I was with excitement after meeting all 70ish Vizslas at the dog show. This is 110% the dog breed for us! The Sire (below) is named Riot, and comes from an ancient line of Vizslas that was actually stagnant (dead), and then re-started via frozen materials. The mother-to-be is from an imported family of Vizslas in our pup will be the cream of the crop! SO EXCITED!!!

After I went to the dog show, I drove into SF to meet Nolan and some of our friends for a late lunch at Burma Superstar. We've tried for 7 years to go to this place, and each time it just hasn't worked out for one reason or another. Finally going there was a small victory! I had the tea leaf salad and it is absolutely all that the Food Network and other ravers say it is :) Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture that day, so this is the best I got (see the orange sign in the distance...haha!).

As you can see, we stopped for Boba afterwards as a treat for the drive home. Haven't had that nectar in years! 

Fortunately for you, my readers, I went BACK to Burma Superstar yesterday with a friend, and got the tea leaf salad again (and so did she because it's BOMB), and this time I remembered to take a picture. Mine is the mixed together one and hers was about to be mixed. Same thing though. They actually go to Burma to get the fermented tea leaves, because you can't get them here. Tasty!

 I started posting signs for Nolan celebrating his last shifts in residency! As exciting as this is, neither of us are on Facebook much, so when I started posting these each day and tagging him, he informed me that I need to stop. Hah! So...I'll just celebrate here at home so he doesn't get so many notifications :) I can't believe we're down to just 8!

And on that note:

1. I'm thankful there are only 8 (7 as of tomorrow morning!) shifts left in residency for Nolan. I can't for him to start working less hours and have more time to pursue other passions.
2. I'm thankful for the "7 year itch". Personally and also relationally, this has been a huge season of growth for us. It hasn't been easy, but the horizon is blindingly bright and we're so excited about opportunities for growth and getting to know ourselves and each other more! Who knew that such a wives' tale could be such a beautiful thing? Growth and struggle are always > complacency and mediocrity.
3. I'm thankful for 8 more days of me working out of the San Francisco office. I love working at Corporate Headquarters, and now that we're down to the home stretch  before I go to full-time working at home, it's sad and a little scary to think of leaving it. I'll have to find lots of excuses to make the drive to the city very often.
4. I'm thankful for things God's bigger plan. Even though we technically don't have an address to move to and need to be out of here by the end of the month, and even though there are a lot of unknowns in our near future, I'm learning more and more each day that all of these little things are known and planned and purposed. Why worry about tomorrow when today has trouble enough of its own? And such lovely troubles they are, when we're so blessed to have these types of "first-world problems". Seriously. Whenever I feel stressed or worried or pity myself I remember how many people I know or read about or see that have so much more on their plates and such burdens on their lives, and still reflect joy. This is like when Nolan told me he saw a patient in the ER who came in because she had a hangnail. A HANGNAIL. That's how I feel, with my little worries, compared to the person struggling in the next bed.
5. I'm thankful for graduation this weekend, because it means we have lots of excuses to celebrate, see family and friends, and really just enjoy our last times together with the other residents. Truly bittersweet, this whole "finishing" thing.

What are you thankful for?

Friday, May 30, 2014

Friday and I'm still thankful

Sometimes I have a really hard time keeping track of what day of the week it is, particularly when there is a holiday weekend or something to throw me off. This was obviously one of those weeks. So I'm just off a day with this post, I guess.

We celebrated one of my colleague's 40th anniversary with McKesson this week. It's mind-boggling - she's been with the company over than a decade longer than I've been alive. This woman is the most incredible person to work with, but also a good friend. It was so nice to be able to celebrate her with some of our colleagues and her family! This is her below, giving her speech :)

Yesterday morning on my way to work I took this picture outside of our house because I hadn't noticed the baby lambs in the little pasture next door. There are about 10 sheep there now, and some of them are these little cute things like below. They all bleat though, and worst of all: they cause a disturbing amount of people walking around the neighbourhood to stop, hang over the fence and yell loudly, "baaah! BAAAAAHH!". I've debated pulling out my airsoft gun to discourage the behaviour, as it's SUPER annoying to always hear that.

It's been a fun week, what with BBQs, game nights, work dinners, and date nights like last night, in which we noshed on homemade gazpacho and chicken while having a conference call with our financial advisors, went for a bike ride/run, and watched our favourite show before bed. Tonight's a girls' night, and tomorrow is either mountain biking or windsurfing, so the weekend looks promising ahead. Yay summertime!

1. I'm thankful for our a/c (have I said that before?). It makes sleeping so much more bearable.
2. I'm thankful for friends to relax and catch up with.
3. I'm thankful for my excellent co-workers and company. It does make a difference!
4. I'm thankful we have a BBQ. I can't imagine only cooking with an oven, indoors, during these hot days. Phew.
5. I'm thankful for fun potential plans with Nolan in July. Research currently underway - stay tuned :)

What are you thankful for?

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Sunny-side up

I thought I had more pictures from the wedding we went to last weekend, but apparently of the many pictures that were taken...only 2 were actually on my phone. That could be a good thing, because I wore a dress that I'm pretty sure will turn out in pictures as either really not-flattering or slightly slutty. Either way, it's clear how classy I am.

Anyway, I'm trying to hunt down others, because these are not great. Like this mid-chomp shot across our table of some of our friends and colleagues.

This one actually is okay. Nolan's super good at selfies, so we took this one while waiting for dinner to come out :) I need lip colour, but Nolan looks perfect of course. 

This weekend was another jam-packed one. Here I thought we'd end up bored and whatnot due to our change of plans, but no. Friday was a workday, but I managed to catch a quick lunch with Nolan at a great Mediterranean place that I so wish I'd discovered 3 years ago. Bah! After work, we grabbed dinner at our favourite Vietnamese place. Saturday morning, we had more friends over for waffles (yay!), then drove like bats out of hell to Sacramento in memorial day traffic to make it to a couple house-viewings with our realtor. Finished the day with dinner in Sac with some friends, then a nice drive back. Sunday we woke up, opted to spend some relaxed time together at home instead of church, and then headed to Pulgas Ridge to run the trail there. It's my favourite trail run thus far, though I certainly can't do it all the time or my calves would implode from the effort. It's only 5.3 miles, but MAN the elevation change is brutal. You go up, up, up, then plunge down into the bottom of the gulch, then you climb agonizingly way up to the top of the ridge along a series of many, many switchbacks, before having another long set of downhill before the end. There are about zero flat stretches.

This was us at the top of the ridge. VERY happy to be done with the switchbacks.

Post-run pic. I always feel accomplished after this particular run, so I'm glad we captured it this time :)
What can I say? He's jacked and I'm one lucky woman ;)

After we did the run, Nolan had a lunch meeting and then chess with a friend, and I did some errands, read my book out in the sun, did a bit of weightlifting and stretching, then picked up Milo and headed to our friends' house (where Harley lives!) for a kitty play-date and dinner. Nolan had to work, so it was just the three of us. Milo was so anxious the whole time about me taking him in the car again, that he didn't take advantage of the playdate until the last hour or so. Lame!

Monday was an incredibly luxurious day. I woke up, did a long yoga session, went for a nice run, then did a bit more reading outside in the sun. So nice! Then Nolan woke up from his post-night shift recovery, we hung out a little bit, and then we went over to his colleague's house for a memorial day bbq before Nolan had to head back to work for another night shift. We're down to just 15 shifts left now (JUST 15!!!) standing between him and the end of residency. So crazy!