Monday, August 26, 2013

a new chapter begins

Hello friends! Sorry for being MIA for a see my world did kind of a 180 about 10 days ago! We found out that we are moving up to Northern CA! Aaannd that we will be moving in a matter of days! :-/

This all was planned but not planned at the same time and I am still trying to wrap my brain around the fact that we will be leaving. Its been such a emotional journey so far. We have been thrilled, excited, sad, nervous, anxious, happy, and tired. I guess these are all normal things to feel when you pack up your whole life and your children's whole life and move hundred's of miles up north. 

Even through the mixed emotions and the exhaustion... i am at complete peace because i know it's the will of God. I can sit here probably all day and tell you all the million ways the stars have aligned for this one or the signs that God has placed before our eyes but i wont because i have a gazillion boxes to face today. But its a pretty dang good story and i promise to share that with you all soon...probably once we are settled. 

So now, if you don't hear from me in a few days it will be because i'll be buried in boxes and spending every last second of our time here with our dear family and friends. 

PS: this is our first move as a married couple and for our girls! Any advice or empty cardboard boxes given are welcomed ;) 

PPS: a blog isn't a blog without pictures, right? Here is a recent pic of Sophia and her new/old buddies having a chat around our friend's pool on our recent trip to our new city. She's been so excited to move and see them again!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

today i'm wearing blue

Today I'm wearing blue, not because the Los Angeles Dodgers are playing and I'm a fan of Ryu. Because believe me, we've been watching the games around here and we are cheering on for our fellow Korean brother! Well, the real reason i'm wearing blue today is because I want to show my love and support for a special woman in my life. She knows me better than my own mother and has always loved me yet I have been too oblivious of it for many many years, and has basically changed my life for the better. 

I grew up baptized and raised Catholic. Luckily for me, I had both sets of grandparents that were pretty devoted Catholics. And I mean it when I say devoted.  My dad's dad (my grandpa) became a Catholic out of poverty growing up North Korea. The only school he was able to attend "for free" were the catholic schools run by the nuns. He passed away when I was about eight, I can't remember too many memories of him besides always sitting around smoking his cigarettes and praying the rosary all day long. He would call me into the room so that I can fetch him a fresh pack of cigarettes from the fridge. I'd run over and grab the cold unwrapped box and bring it to him as he sat on the la-z-boy with the rotating beads between his fingers. With one hand he would be taking puffs and the other always holding his rosary. My grandma (my mom's mom) bought me my very first rosary when I was probably five. She would walk into the room and grab the nearest grandchild and make them pray the rosary with her. She was known to always walk in the room and say, "let's pray the rosary!" I remember as a child wanting to be invisible as soon she walked in sometimes because of it.

For the longest time I didn't understand the rosary. Most especially, I didn't understand the need to pray it. Long story short...I had my conversion when I was 16 (that's a story I'll have to share another time!) and shortly after I felt this need to pray and learn the rosary. I had just started this new relationship with God and my faith and I felt that praying the rosary was an essential part in being Catholic. So the night I prayed my first rosary on my own, I fell asleep soon after probably 3 Hail Mary's. I woke up the next morning to the crucifix on my rosary jabbing my side as I rolled over in bed. Ouch and whoops! I gave it another try the next day and the next...and it slowly changed me. I couldn't really explain it then but I knew there was no going back. I started to make sure the rosary was always in my pocket before I left the house and this Lady I was calling the Virgin Mary became more of a life long Mother and friend to me. I would recite my rosary and pray to her and she would make all my prayers perfect before her son Jesus. She would take the deepest desires in my heart and present them to her Son and his Sacred Heart. I was so moved, so grateful and so in love with the Blessed Virgin Mary. I started opening my heart more to her but I realized she already knew them even better than me. She was like my shortcut to Jesus. If I needed anything, I would pray to her because I knew she took my prayers and would directly take them to her son, Jesus. She hooked me up everyone!! The Blessed Virgin Mary is like that person that kind of knows everyone and can hook them up with anything for free. She became my "go to" person for everything and gosh darn it she made sure every single one of my prayers were answered. Sweet! So thats how we became lifelong friends immediately. :) 

So there you have it! Today is feast of the Assumption of Mary (a big Catholic feast day and a Holy day of obligation)! This Woman, who I dearly love is known to wear a blue mantle around her, so blue is the color we associate with her. I want to show my love for her and let her know I'm a pretty big fan of her's you'll most likely see me wearing blue today, going to mass, eating that extra piece of chocolate cake....aaand praying the rosary of course (duh!!). :) 

Ps: I just realized that its my grandpa's birthday today! No wonder he had such a great devotion to the rosary...he was born on a special Mary feast day! Happy birthday grandpa Martin! I love you and thank you for being a model of a rosary loving man to me. 

image via 


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

a little lipstick and heels on...

a Monday night!

On Monday night, husband got home as usual and we went out for a family dinner because truth is he took my car keys to work and I was stuck on house arrest with two littles all day. No grocery store run was made and no dinner was cooked. But, luckily dry cleaning needed to be picked up in Little India that we used it as an excuse to eat Indian food. Any excuse to eat chicken tikki masala is a good one. ;)  

The girls got dressed in their usual fancy dresses, as everyday is a fancy day around here with those two. I put on a little lipstick, some leopard heels and beaded bracelets and got ready to hit the streets of bollywood! 

So yeah, remember that case of the Mondays I was telling you about... well it turned out for the better after all. 

Ps: does anyone else have a love for India cinema besides me??

top: Anthropologie, its an old one though 
pants: Zara jeans
shoes: Target or taarrjaay
bag: an old Forever 21 crossbody bag that i cut the straps off of and turned into clutch 
Bracelets: green ones are from 31 bits jewelry + various
lip color: MAC Ruby Woo

Monday, August 12, 2013

r o u t i n e

Happy Monday friends! 

I'm struggling with the case of the moooonndaaays! I've been working on more of a routine lately in my home with my two girls so that Mondays don't seem to drag on soo long. I've always been more of a routine gal and loved sticking to schedule but when I married Mike he was more a spontaneous guy. My schedule started to go more out the door and when kids came in the picture, flexibility needed to be more acceptable. But, with the girls getting older I want them to understand a daily routine. I think it gives everyone more stability when they know what is expected. So, I've been creating a small routine around here. Its not perfect but it works for us. I feel that it brought out better behavior in my children and less of a cranky mom in me. There are so many things we are working on at home lately, sleep training, night weanings, disciplining, and beginnings of homeschooling and with routine things seem more manageable. 

And here are a few pictures as of lately that bring me a little smile :) 

^ A sweet moment that they share every morning before daddy goes to work  

^ thankful for this independent 4 year old that uses the potty, washes her hands and gets herself dressed in fancy dresses each morning before I get out of bed :) Sorry its blurry...i'm not much of a morning person. ^

^ daily bike rides!! Even in her fancy dresses, she out riding bikes everyday!^

 ^ This one is my favorite, i think. NAPS! She must be growing... ^ 

^ I never met a pizza I didn't like...but this one was especially good. Prosciutto pizza with arugula and sweet onions right out of the hot wood oven! Oh my it was delish! ^ 

^ my 16 month old baby :) yes, I still call her my baby and not toddler. As tough as she is, she is absolutely the sweetest little girl in the whole world!^

^ these girlies love their uncle! They were kissing him goodbye before he headed out for a night of fun. :) ^ 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Maryland Mike teaching my Californian parents how to eat crabs ;)

On Saturday night, we planned to have a movie night with the girls and long story short we ended up turning on our wedding video instead. Sophia was beyond thrilled because her newest obsession is weddings right now. It was so sweet to watch and remember all the little details of our special day that I had forgotten over the past five years. But, by the end of the dvd I couldn't help but to feel so bittersweet. Not bitter over us and our marriage, because in fact I feel ever more grateful now and blessed that I married this man five years ago. But the sadness came in the fact that so much has changed in only five years. Isn't five years just a short period of time?! But, it seemed like indefinite when I saw how much different everyone's lives have changed since our wedding day. There were a handful of people that happily celebrated with us that have since passed away and some marriages divorced. Yet just five years ago everyone was together alive and happy. It made me realize how short our lives are and you just don't know what will happen. How quickly people change in short periods of time. Obviously not all of our wedding guests turned out for the worse ;) It was just as exciting to see how much bigger some of the children have grown (especially our flower girls) and to see single friends now married and some of our newlywed guests then now with several children. And of course, I need to realize too that I have changed a lot. Mike and I have changed so much too in the past five years. We have grown together in our marriage and learned to become more one and then of course doubling our family size by bringing our two girls into this world. It just seems like stuff like this should take a lifetime to accomplish sometimes. I can't help but to wonder what the next five years is going to look like. It has me wanting to live life to the ultimate fullest. To live and to love to the greatest potential that I am called to be. 

So it was quite fitting to celebrate my dad's 54th birthday on Sunday with a big bang! :) We specially ordered Maryland crabs and had them expressed overnight to us so that we can eat them in California! It was such a treat to eat them with our family here and let them experience a part of what we do when we go to Maryland. :) My brother and Mike were the main chefs that day as we steamed 50 crabs, potatoes and corns and on top of that we also made some bomb steak! I'm so thankful for the gift of my dad's life and grateful for another year we get to celebrate with him and my family. 

Friday, August 2, 2013

tgif + breast is best

Happy Friday friends 
Happy Breastfeeding Week!!!

I had another post planned up, but woke up this morning and found out that its breastfeeding week and I just couldn't pass up an opportunity to spread the love and support for this. 

I am a pro breastfeeding mama. Its actually one of the biggest accomplishments of my life and I am so proud of it! When I was pregnant with Sophia, I had two big fears; first being that I wouldn't be able to give birth naturally (maybe I should just say vaginally) and second that I wouldn't be able to breastfeed successfully. I come from a long line of women in my family that have all had cesarian births and formula babies (including my own mom). It looked like a mountain to accomplish these two, but I wanted it so badly. So, I took pro active measures and hired a doula/lactation consultant to be with me during my birth and first two weeks of breastfeeding. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made regarding breastfeeding. She was there at my bedside as I pulled Sophia out into this world and brought her up for her first latch. From that first latch on, it was love at first sight. 

When I met my doula/lactation consultant for the first time, she was giving an inspiring talk about the beauty and art of womanhood and that breastfeeding completes it. She said something so beautiful about how breastfeeding completes the woman's cycle. From a young woman getting her first menstrual  cycle, to becoming pregnant and ending it all with breastfeeding. I wish I can articulate it just as well as she did, but it all made sense to me. And she was right, when I breastfeed my children I feel that I am completely womanly and that I am giving of myself in the way that my body was made. 

I wont lie, as much as its been wonderful breastfeeding there has been many many hardships with it as well. Breastfeeding my first child was completely bliss from the first latch to the very last, but nursing my second child has been quite a painful one. I made a mistake of not hiring a lactation consultant with me during her birth because I successfully breastfed the first time for 18 months, so I thought I didn't need it. Wrong. Each baby is different. So, I went through a painful first month correcting a shallow latch and we went through our first year of breastfeeding with me getting mastitis four times!! Even through the blood, sweat and tears I persevered through it, thats why I call it an accomplishment because trust me its not always easy.  

Don't let me scare you though, because I am still breastfeeding (Zaylee is almost 16 months now) and I plan to breastfeed all the rest of my children. Here are some of the reasons why I love to breastfeed:

1. Bonding: the bond that comes from breastfeeding is unreal. Try it.

2. Its really really good for the baby. Your breast milk is filled with incredible nutrition and baby formula can't even come close to replicating it. Its the best for babies.

3. You burn 500 extra calories a day! I have been lucky in losing all my baby weight and more with breastfeeding. It also means more eating too! I am always so hungry with breastfeeding, so I indulge in more snacks when I breastfeed. 

4. You lower your chance of breast cancer.

There are a gazillion more, but these are the few that has me believing is breast is best! 

Have a wonderful weekend!

image via