Tag Archives: graduation

Looking Back at 2019

31 Dec

Well well… it looks like another year has gone by again. Time to file the memories away to recall later fondly and another set of annual resolutions to make. Or break. But the end of 2019 is much more than another year gone by, it’s the end of a decade!

Looking back, I’ve had my fair share of good memories and heartaches with many things happening in the year. After all, there’s 365 days. What stood out most for me can be summed up to these.

Both girls are all grown up, with one having graduated and continuing on with grad school in the US and the other just starting college in Ireland. Proud parent moments. Then there’s me reaching the milestone big five birthday. Happy me occasion.

My carving hobby resulted in a mixed growth in Gigglesville’s population this year. There were only 13 new Citizens to reach 194 (I couldn’t push myself to reach 200), the Whales grew to 48, with 30 new ones while the Gnomes had only two new giant ones to make three dozen as of 2019. It could be better.

But with this carving activity, there was a price to pay: my aggravated injuries. My golf game suffered as a consequence and for the first time, I find myself not giving the sport any priority anymore. I lost the will to excel when injuries persisted. Hopefully this mindset can change to a more positive one come 2020.

Besides the sports injury, my endometriosis pain was well, a pain to deal with this year. More acute than ever, I was at the mercy of a monthly recurrence, it was dreadful. So I started the 16/8 intermittent fasting diet to manage the painful backache and cramp attacks. With a controlled diet and a list of food to avoid, losing a fair bit of weight along the way was a booster and motivation too besides minimizing the agony. It helped.

Not everything was rosy and good though. My iPad Mini has been wonky and unreliable with each passing day, my MacBook Air had to be resuscitated but nothing compared to losing our beloved English bulldog, Rooney aka official pet number one to old age and sickness. It was the saddest day of our lives and suddenly, the house was emptier than ever and our lives changed.

Looking back, if I were to put 2019 into perspective of a phrase, ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ aptly summarizes the year for me. Now as I ponder what to expect for the new year and new decade, I hope it will be one that focuses on ‘the good, the better and the best’. No resolutions needed though.

To everyone, here’s wishing you an awesome 2020 ahead, Happy New Year and Goodbye 2019!

Let the Food Trail Begin!

20 Dec

Last night M1, our firstborn came back from the US for the Christmas and New Year holidays. The flight was delayed two hours and it felt forever before she came out from the arrival hall at KLIA.

It’s a wonderful reunion again after visiting her in June for her graduation. Unfortunately, M2 opted not to return and instead has flown off to London for her Christmas holiday.

Nevertheless, a family get together is always about food besides the bonding time. Thus we will embark on a food trail to attempt to check off all the ‘must eats’ on her list. There goes the 16/8 diet! Oh well, it’s not always she returns, so we will indulge as well with her.

Thosai rawa

Roti bom

New Objective

16 Jul

I thought I needed to set a new objective all over again as far as the 16/8 diet is concerned. Although I gained only a pound from the recent US trip, the weight fluctuated the last two weeks and hoovering mostly on the up side. It felt like a set back–my Uniqlo jeans was a tad too snug–gaining weight back home and not from the vacation. Ugh.

There could be several reasons for this, number one being my leftover jet lag and number two, my eating habits.

The first week when I was back, I was eating breakfast when normally I don’t. By the second week, this need was overcomed but I found myself eating more and bigger portions for the two meals that I ate. Hmm…

Then last night, I went to the gym despite a cough developing. But it was a good workout as I sweated the excess water retention. And this morning as I stood on the digital bathroom scale, the weight has gone back to normal. Yay.

Having said that, I still have to be disciplined and have an objective. With my eating schedule back to normal, the new objective should be about fitting into another outfit rather than that Zara dress that I wore for M1’s Commencement.

Class of 2019

16 Jun

A proud day for us and words are not necessary today…

Procession coming into Reser Stadium

Graduating students all seated

Campus Tour, Part 2

15 Jun

I think the body has not quite adjusted because last night I slept at 1:20am and got up at 9:45am this morning. But it’s okay, we didn’t have to rush.

We had bagels at home for breakfast before we embarked on a more comprehensive campus tour. The weather was lovely to be out walking but it got a bit warm by noon. And what a day it was for we walked and walked and walked.

The college is beaver land. There’s beaver on the wall and on the doors, it’s pretty cool.

Beaver on the wall!

Beaver on the door

By three, we went by the FST department for their little mini celebration honoring the graduating and outstanding students. I must say we felt most proud when M1 was called upon several times to receive her certificates. That’s one smart cookie right there.

Receiving her certain with a huge smile

When we got back, I had registered 13,010 steps equivalent to 8.2km and we are not done for the day! Later we will head to Marys Peak to hike and catch the sunset. I am sure by then my legs will be like jelly. A good night’s rest after that should suffice, for tomorrow is THE day, Commencement ceremony!

Be Silly or Be Happy

11 Jun

Today’s the day we leave! But there are worries, silly ones and several of it…

Silly #1: my cocoon is still hanging on the front tree and it’s been seven weeks since the giant caterpillar morphed into it; way overdue from what I checked online to be at this stage. Why is the moth not emerging? Is the constant rain stunting its metamorphosis? Is it even still alive and okay? I dare not climb up the ladder to check because it’s way too high. Whatever it is, looks like we will miss the moth emerging from the cocoon if it does decide to come out during our time away.

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It’s nice in here, I’m not ready for the world

Silly #2: my 1000 and more Days trek on the Daily Bonus for Candy Crush Soda on the retired iPhone5S will be broken because I am not bringing the phone along. And will the iPhone XR and iPad Mini have the trek broken too being in different time zones? I told myself I should stop this obsession but I just can’t shake it off. Silly.

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Day 1016 for the iPhone5S and Day 1023 for both the iPad Mini and iPhone XR

Silly #3: will Rooney, official pet number one miss us?

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Should I chew on it or not? Hmm…

Silly worries aside, there are some happy reasons too…

Happy #1: the pineapple in the garden. It’s been more than two years that hubby’s been taking care of it, and thank goodness it decided to ripen on time before we leave. Harvested last Friday, the fruit of labor and love weighed a whopping two kilos! Needless to say, the juicy and home-grown pineapple was thoroughly enjoyed.

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Juiciest pineapple ever!

Happy #2: the constant rain seems to be good for the habanero plant for it has thrived well and we had a bumper harvest. So much chillies! I ate a little on Wednesday night and oh my goodness, almost died from the fiery burn. This batch is super duper spicy.

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The spicy level of the reds win hands down over the greens

Happy #3: we will be meeting up with M2 in Amsterdam! Yes, our baby will fly tomorrow from Ireland to meet us at Schiphol. And she will miss a few days of Summer classes which unfortunately can’t be helped. I feel it’s important for her to attend her only sister’s Commencement ceremony, hence the plan as such.

Happy #4: we will finally be seeing M1. The last time the family unit was complete was when she came back for Christmas in 2017, so that’s like a year and a half since we last saw our firstborn in person. The weekly Skype video sessions do not count. Can’t wait. A 12 hours and 40 minutes flight for the first leg, then a four-hour transit before the second leg of 10 hours and 17 minutes flight (hopefully no delays) before the family will be whole again. Yay!!!

I guess with the happy reasons outweighing the silly ones, I shouldn’t be too silly and just be happy.

Have Blundstone Will Travel

10 Jun

I am excited that my Blundstone boots, after being fitted with new soles, will finally be put to good use from tomorrow onwards. We are flying over to the US for M1’s Commencement ceremony as she has completed her undergraduate studies.

Initially when I was doing my research for flights, I wanted to fly Eva Air because of the Hello Kitty-themed aircrafts. Heheheh… I know it’s kinda silly for a dinosaur like me but hey, Hello Kitty IS cute.

But I couldn’t find suitable connecting flights to our final destination upon arrival at LAX, SFO or even SEA. The transit options are all too short to clear immigrations. Oh well, forget Hello Kitty then.

So we are going with KLM via Amsterdam’s Airport Schiphol with a four-hour transit before the next leg directly into PDX which works out perfectly. Stay with me for the next two weeks plus for our exciting journey to the Pacific Northwest!

And yesterday I managed to schedule another body massage at the spa, a last minute little indulgence before flying. This time unlike the last time with no choice at all, I had the granny undies or G-string to choose before the session. I took the G-string thinking since I had to strip down to my bones to be worked on, I might as well wear something without hindrance to the new masseur for her to do her job.

And it was a job well done for she worked out the kinks especially on the legs and feet, in time for me to be ready for the trip!