Thursday, March 31, 2005

I got more yoga

The other day I ordered two more yoga DVDs. I got these because they have segmented workouts for morning, evening, one for stress (good for Golf when he sits all day at the computer), and one for weight loss. I thought that with a new baby and a hectic schedule, I would be more likely to fit in a couple of 20 minute sessions in in a day instead of one full hour. So we'll see! I got The All-Day Yoga Workout - A.M., Stress Relief, and P.M. Yoga for Beginners and A.M. & P.M. Yoga - Conditioning For Weight Loss. I think that my future yoga practice plus walking and taking stairs, along with breast feeding and being a conscious eater cooking from home will help my baby weight come off nicely. :)

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Interesting article

Off another food blog, I got this link to a story about the French Paradox, after the book French Women Don't Get Fat has been a New York Times best seller. The author of the article interviews four French women food bloggers, to get their perspective on the French Paradox.

Book fair and doctor's appointment

We had our 32 week doctor's appointment, so if you are interested in reading about that please click on my pregnancy journal.

Afterward, we went to the book fair, which we were supposed to go to last weekend, but didn't because it showed on TV how the Thai Royalty were opening the fair with a ceremony, so we thought the place would be completely mobbed and we decided to wait til another time. Since our hospital is in town and I'm currently not working, we were able to see the doctor during the morning, then go have lunch at SUBWAY! and then take a taxi over to the convention hall. The goal was to purchase children's books in Thai language -- from story books Golf will read to the Thai alphabet and workbooks that practice writing. We also got some CDs of children's songs in Thai because I know children love to sing and they learn a language easier with songs. Golf also got some more books for himself in Thai. I'm refraining from buying any more books, since we'll have to ship it all back to the States, but for Golf and the baby, we must get Thai books here, since they aren't available in the States.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

To Ratchaburi

Yesterday Golf's family rented a van and we all piled in and went to Ratchaburi, which is about a two hour drive from Bangkok. Why did we go there? It's the town where the Chinese cemetery is for Golf's parents and once a year they go to pay their respects.

We got there and it was the last day for Chinese families to pay respects to passed away family members. Food and paper items were offered, just like we did for Chinese New Year, but at their gravesite. The gravesite has a big mound of earth over it like a small hill. It is cleaned up and then decorated with flower petals, confetti and colorful flags. Before giving the offerings, a bunch of firecrackers are lit off to let them know we are here to give.

After our visit, we went to a nice seafood restaurant and were back in Bangkok by 2 PM. Not bad, as it was very hot there in Ratchaburi. Glad I brought my umbrella!

Miss Thailand Universe

I'm not into beauty pageants. But my former boss at the school I used to work for and visited earlier this week -- her daughter tried out for this major beauty contest and WON! Her picture is here and here is a news story I found about it online:

Pilot trainee crowned Miss Thailand Universe
An engineering graduate who hopes to become a jet pilot has been crowned Miss Thailand Universe and will represent the kingdom when it hosts the Miss Universe pageant in May. Chananporn Rosjan, 22, beat out 43 contestants to win the Miss Thailand Universe crown late Saturday night in Bangkok. She holds a degree in engineering, and is preparing to start training as a jet pilot for Thai budget airline Air Asia. Chananporn won the one million baht (25,975 dollars) prize along with diamond jewelry, a new Toyota Camry and the tiara.

Anyway.... Nod is her nickname. I remember her being a very quiet girl, but not much in personality. My co-workers and I would always have to be the first to say hello and even then she'd sometimes just slink by us without returning our greeting (rather rude in my opinion). But that was all well over a year ago and who knows, she may have changed. I'm happy for her -- she is a talented girl: has a good singing voice, speaks English perfectly, smart, and pretty too. I hope she can carry out the duties of being Miss Thailand alright.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Sunday Brunch

Time now for Sunday Brunch
"They have Easter egg hunts in Philadelphia, and if the kids don't findthe eggs, they get booed." -Bob Uecker
1) What is your favorite Easter decoration? (rabbit, egg, chick, etc) I like all of them equally. But it's even better if one of those decorations is really chocolate!
2) Do you like Easter colors or do you wish they were different? I like them, pastels are the colors of spring.
3) What did you do today to celebrate Easter? Nothing. I live in a non-Christian country (Thailand) and I went with my husband and his family to the Chinese cemetery where his mother and father are laid to rest to pay yearly respect.
4) What is your best Easter memory? As a child decorating Easter eggs, hiding them, also waking up and finding our Easter baskets filled with a chocolate bunny and other candy.
5) If you are Catholic, did you observe Lent, and if so, what did yousacrifice for Lent? Not applicable: I am not a Christian.

"Art is making something out of nothing and selling it." -Frank Zappa
1) What is your favorite medium of visual art and why? (Examples: painting, sculpture, photography, etc.) I like paintings the best.
2) What is your favorite painting? If possible, post a picture of your favorite painting in your blog. I don't have a favorite, there are so many great works of art out there.
3) Who is your favorite artist? Just as there are many masterpieces, there are also many great artists, so I cannot pick one.
4) Do you have any artistic abilities of any kind? Yes, I can draw and use colored pencils pretty well, and someday (SOMEDAY!) I will hone that skill and do more work. I'm thinking about collage and drawing coloring books for children.
5) Do you like to draw or paint? Yes, I do very much, but at the same time, I have to be in the right mood, and that mood is rare. I did more drawings when I was a student in school (doodling to pass the time and also as an art student in college.)

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Going to a book fair

I have the day off today. I went in yesterday, and of course the schedule for the second half of the summer program is not ready. I had no reason to be there, so I said I would come in a few days before the Thai new year and prepare my lessons then. So I have my Friday free and the next three weeks, with exception to those planning days. Hooray!

So today there is a big book fair going on in town, and Golf thought it would be a good idea to go to see about getting some preschool books in Thai for the baby. The Thai alphabet is so completely different and he's going to have to teach our little one. We hope to find some alpahbet books and maybe some fun videos that are the equivalent to Barney or Sesame Street in Thai language.

Per the request of my sister, I have also updated my pregnancy journal. :)

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

busy week!

Despite not having to work Monday - Wednesday, we've had a very busy week for us! On Monday Golf had pictures done for some paperwork he has to submit for his immigration process. Then we went shopping for more baby stuff, in particular the mattress for the little cradle we have. Since most Thais invest in a crib, there was hardly anything that would fit our little cradle and it was terribly frustrating. Same goes with the fitted sheets. The whole maternity wear and baby gathering things in this country has made me want to pull my hair out, so I will be very thankful when or if I have another one in the States.

On Tuesday, Golf had to go to Bumrungrad Hospital for his medical exam, also a part of his visa process. He got three shots and we were there for a good 2.5 hours. Afterward, we met up with his friend Paul and his girlfriend and had lunch together. It was really nice and we were home before 4:30. Still a long day for me though.

Then lastly, yesterday I went to my former school to say goodbye to my friend Haviva, who is supposed to leave Thailand after being here five years this coming Saturday. I was very close with her when I first moved to Bangkok in 2001. It was nice seeing all my other former colleagues too, most of whom ooohed and aaahed about my big preggo belly. The school has changed a lot, as my former boss is always constructing, expanding and making it look better. I even got to see a few of my former students! It was a nice last visit, but one I know for sure will be the last time I see my old school. The heat takes a lot out of me now and long journeys tire me. I know by my 9th month I'm not going to want to leave my apartment!

After our visit with the school, we went straight down town to meet with Golf's former boss, who has been in Bangkok on business. We had a nice dinner at our favorite Japanese restaurant. We went home at 7, so it had been a very long day indeed.

Now I have just two days of working, figuring out what to do with the kids in the summer English camp the last two weeks of April. :)

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Amazon order

Yesterday I went to view my cart at Amazon, to see if there were any price fluctuations. Sure enough, my knife set went down $20! I still wanted to wait for my cookware set to go down, so I only bought the knife set and a cookbook, which both qualified for the super saver shipping. I'm so thrilled! Still keeping a watchful eye everyday on that Caphalon....

Week of visitations

Gosh, I woke up at 6:30 this Sunday morning. My hips kill me after hours laying on the bed. And it's a good thing that our bed doesn't have box springs because with all the tossing and turning I do at night, I'd keep Golf up too. He and I have opposite sleep schedules. I'm nodding off every night around 9 and I get up at 7 at the latest. Just the way my body works. He comes to bed between 12 or 1 and sleeps til about 9. Well, both our sleeping habits are going to be out of whack in a couple of months. :)

This week I have Monday - Wednesday off work simply because there's nothing for me to do. I'm teaching the 2nd half of summer school, which begins the last half of April, and of course, admin has not made the schedule yet. It should be done this week, so I will go in Thursday and Friday to plan. So, today Golf and I are visiting his friend Paul from San Francisco. He comes regularly to Thailand and he's a nice guy. Then either Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, I'd like to go out to my old school and visit Haviva one last time before she returns permanently to Israel on the 27th. I'll give her a call today to see if one of those days is convenient. I hope to see some of my former colleagues too. None except Haviva have seen me all blossomed out with my belly. Also, Golf's former boss is here on one of her regular visits to Bangkok, so we plan to go see her sometime this week as well.

I'm glad we've got stuff planned to do. Gets us out of the apartment, which means we shut off the AC, which means we save on our electricity. I can't wait to move back home where we won't be either too hot or have to run AC. BLEH!

Friday, March 18, 2005

Community Supported Agriculture

As I was reading another food blog, I came across a reader's comments about how he is a member of a CSA -- Community Supported Agriculture and he also gave a link to Terra Firma Farms. I was curious, and so checked it out. In my online food research, I discovered that CSAs are heartily recommended for eating seasonally, eating good organic produce and for supporting local farmers. I learned more about local agricultural support when I came across the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmer's Market website.

The great thing about the Terra Firma CSA is that I could even join and there are many locations to pick up the weekly order all around the Bay Area, one in Oakland and one in Alameda, both contenders of where we'd like to live.

I may, before joining, check out farmer's markets first, to see how much I would spend weekly there. The thing I like about Terra Firma is that a selection of in season produce is already made FOR you. I won't have to choose for myself, and being a complete newbie to farmer's markets, I wouldn't have much of a clue. I may just go for it upon returing.

I also talked to Golf about having an increased food budget, to afford higher quality food and budget more sharply other categories of running our household. He's all for it. I want our family to eat healthfully. When I grew up, I was living on a five acre farm with an organic vegetable garden and a variety of fruit trees. I took it for granted all the fresh, seasonal bounty our family enjoyed for many years. I want that same healthy choice for my child, but since we will be living in the city, we will have to pay for it. Living in the country you pay for it by planting the crops, tending the garden, watering the trees, harvesting, canning, freezing... the list is endless. Of course when I was a kid I didn't do all the hard laboring stuff, but I had my share of chores. In the present time, living in the city, I'll have to pay for that service, which is a little more costly than the produce at Safeway or Albertson's, but the taste is so much better as is the quality. And I think it's a bargain when compared to area natural food stores such as Whole Foods.

So as I'm waiting for the baby to arrive, I'm researching cooking, budgeting, being thrifty. I want NOT to work, I want to make it on my husband's income. So I'm trying to do lots of the legwork now, on the internet. It's been a fun adventure so far! :)

Do you like the larger size font? I think it's a little easier to read.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Whooaaaa On the Radio

I had a very interesting day today! I get to be on Thai radio!!! The school is doing an advertisement and they wanted a foreign teacher who speaks Thai relatively well to say a few lines in Thai language. They also wanted a female, so I was selected and asked if I'd do it. I said sure! One of my students read a few lines in English, and with a little bit of my coaching, she sounded really good. I practiced alot with Golf's help. He wrote out the words in the phonetics, since I obviously cannot read Thai.

We then went into a mixing studio this morning. It was my first time in a sound proof room with the microphone. Little Ning was with me reading her lines, then it was my turn. I thought I'd not do too well with the tones or the long and short vowel sounds with being nervous behind a mike, but turns out I did OK. I kinda like doing voice recordings!

After our voices were recorded, the sound effects were added and layered. The end product sounds really good! It's so neat what they can do in a sound lab. What fun! I hope to get a recording of the commercial; it will be a neat little thing to take home with me.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Monday Madness

I'm playing them all today! It's time for Monday Madness now. :)

1. I wish I had more money to invest.
2. I usually think about changing my blog layout when I see cooler blogs than mine (which means most of 'em!)
3. If more people would be compassionate, the world would be a better place.
4. I really should create art more often.
5. The weather we're having right now is crazy hot and humid -- normal for Bangkok.
6. When it's time to plant a garden, I'd like to plant herbs and tomatoes.
7. When I'm running late, I sometimes forget to turn off a light.
8. When I can't think of anything to blog about, I usually don't write that day.

Sunday Brunch on Monday

I haven't played Sunday Brunch in awhile. Now's the time!

"Fathers send their sons to college either because they went to collegeor because they didn't." -L.L. Henderson
1) Did you go to college? Yes. California State University, Sacramento
2) Did you live in a dorm or an apartment? Neither. I lived with my parents to save money.
3) Who was your favorite roommate? N/A
4) What is your favorite college sport? None. I don't care for sports.
5) Who was your favorite professor and class? I loved my French, Art and Philosophy classes. Had a really great philosophy teacher, but I cannot remember her name.

"I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me." -Isaac Newton

1) Have you ever swam in the ocean? If so, which ones? Yes, the Pacific, the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. Needless to say, the oceans surrounding Thailand are warmer. :)

2) Have you ever been snorkeling or scuba diving? Snorkeling. First time was in Phuket in the Andaman Sea. Very exhilirating, like swimming in a tropical aquarium. SOOO COOL!

3) Do you like traveling by boat and have you ever? Yes, I do. I love the rocking over the waves and the spray of water. It's very meditative to sit at the front of the boat and look into the water.

4) Do you believe that Atlantis existed? Yes,I do.

5) If you could live on the coast of any of the oceans, which ocean and which coast? The Pacific Ocean. I've always been a left-coast gal, and when my DH and I return to the States, we will be living in the Bay Area again, right there on the coast. I could never live too far from the ocean. The Bay Area, especially San Francisco, has legendary fog that is absolutely stunning.

Saturday, March 12, 2005


I was surfing around and found a blog that had this little blurb I thought was quite interesting:

Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer inwaht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthint a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh? Yaeh and I awlyas thought slpeling was ipmorantt.

Taking it easy

Golf just finished a major project for a new client and on Thursday and Friday he was up until 3 or 4 in the morning, only on as many hours of sleep. So needless to say, we are taking it easy this weekend, not going anywhere or doing much. He got lots of new DVDs so we have plenty of entertainment, so we've been sitting on our duffs all day long enjoying being lazy because we know our days are numbered with that luxury!

I've been watching my Amazon wish list like a stock price. I have ordered about 5 things and they are sitting in my cart for checkout. Once the price was cut $30 for this cookware I want, but it went back up to the original price. Then come to find out my knife set I want was reduced $20 but went up again, all in one day. So I've made the final decision for my major purchases that I will be sending to my sister's house until we arrive. I've got on order a Simply Caphalon 11 piece cookware set, a Henkels 7 piece knife set, a Euro Cuisine electric yogurt maker and two cookbooks. As soon as the price goes down again (if it does!), I will be firing off my order and my dear sister shall keep that big ole box for me til I get there in about 4 months. Right, Anna? :)

Oh, and I've made a couple new small entries in my pregnancy journal if you want to go see.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Easy here on out

Today is the first day of final exams and it lasts til tomorrow. So no more teaching for me until the summer break during the last two weeks of April. Beginning on Monday, we come in to grade the exams and write in microscopic boxes on the forms for the Ministry of Education. Our hours are cut from 9-2:30, so that will be fantastic! This will be for about two weeks. I then have vacation the last week of March and the first two weeks of April. Then the summer camp begins and the hours are also shorter than regular school hours. My last working weeks here will be quite easy, which is good as I keep getting bigger and more cumbersome.

On a different note, I found a whole bunch of food blogs! They are beginning to become quite popular, apparantly. There's even a big article in the San Francisco Chronicle about them. I don't know how to include their links on my blog, but I've seen blog links listed on other people's blogs. If anybody knows how to show links, can you send me a quick note telling me how? I've otherwise just added them to my bookmarks. One of the first one's I discovered was Cooking with Amy, a food blogger out of San Francisco!

I'm just so excited about cooking. I'd like to use the time that I'm staying at home to be a mom and Golf's business helper to learn more about cooking. Possibly take a short course. Then once I'm ready to get back into the working world, I may do something that has to do with food. Maybe work with a catering company???? I don't know. This could all be just a phase I'm going through for all I know. I haven't even actually COOKED anything yet, not until we move back to the States. Anyway, it's just some thoughts I'm entertaining. Afterall, I've had SEVERAL careers in my lifetime already!

Monday, March 07, 2005

Hair frustrations

I went to the hair dresser's on Sunday, hoping to get it lightened to the shade I had wanted originally, not this dark color I'm stuck with. Well, the roots of my hair took the color OK, but the ends are still just as dark as they were before. I want that light brown golden color back! This dark hair makes me look so old and witchy. I don't like it at all.

I also chomped my fingernails about a week and a half ago and I need to get back on the road to recovery for them. I don't want ugly hands too! So I need to keep reminding myself to keep them out of my mouth!!!!! NOT EASY!

This is the last week of school. Final exams are on Thursday and Friday, so I've just been reviewing this whole time. Beginning next week, our work day will be shortened to 9-2:30, so that will be nice. Just planning our summer camp. Then I will get the last week of March, and the first two weeks of April off. I work the last two weeks of April, then I'm done!

Friday, March 04, 2005

A beautiful little daydream

The other day I had a vision in my head. My husband, little baby and I had ended up living in Alameda. From Alameda every Saturday morning, we would take the ferry into San Francisco to the weekly farmer's market at the Ferry Terminal. Oh! It just sounds like so much fun to do every weekend, and to buy the best foods in season, as well as other yummy delights!

Just got word from my cousin that my uncle, who was on a list for a lung transplant, received donor lungs and had his surgery yesterday. He has the lungs now of a sixteen year old boy. My heart goes out to the family of the boy, and at the same time I'm so relieved for my uncle's life. It has made me rethink about becoming an organ donor. Afterall, I believe our true selves are not our bodies.

Golf's niece came by yesterday, dropping off more baby clothes and a couple of diaper packs she didn't get to use before her baby grew too big for them. We have two packages, so that will last us for the first week and a half after baby's arrival. Thanks to May, we don't really have to buy much of anything. We have all the clothes we need for our little one to start out with. It's just once we move back to the States that we will have many more expenses. The only things we have yet to buy here is baby bedding, and maybe a little baby seat to prop him up. Then again we might just take turns holding him in the sling and if he falls asleep, put him in his little cradle. We have to be careful of anything we buy here because we'll either have to pack it or get rid of it before we leave Thailand.

Well, it's Saturday and Golf and I are planning to stay in this weekend. We'll do our usual routine of going to Bon Marche market for lunch, buying some popcorn and other groceries, then settling in the afternoon to watch CSI. Golf bought two more seasons!!!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Various thoughts and meanderings

I can't wait to go back to the States and start cookin'! As you know I just read about how French women don't get fat, and I have always known the benefits of eating food cooked from scratch where you know exactly what you are putting into your body. Now I'm delving deeper and discovering the value of high quality foods that refine the taste and make you feel satisfied with less. I'm just so excited to start experimenting in the kitchen!

The countdown to my baby and moving back to California is going quickly. I'm going to have three weeks off in April, then once May comes, I'm just sitting around waiting for my mother to arrive, then for baby to arrive. Within a few months after that, we should be on a plane home. It's going to happen so fast! We had our doctor's appointment and I wrote about it in my pregnancy journal. I'm also going to add a new photo as I enter into my 7th month.