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Archive for January, 2011

Urban Cycling

I have found my new addiction/adrenaline rush!   Urban Cycling

I admit, I do need to buy a helmet for this thrilling workout..but I can officially say I found a new hobby! I now see the appeal of owning a motorcycle. Where as before, I thought the drivers crazy and the ride would entirely too frightening for me, unless I was safely on back letting someone else do the dirty work! But now…! I understand the fun of weaving in and out of stopped traffic, racing off when the light turns green and avoiding those ever-so-obnoxious city buses.

And I can do all this without paying for gas! All I need is my two little legs, peddling away. I’m sure it’s quite a sight to see, a foreign girl riding a gearless, bright blue bicycle equipped with a handy basket, amidst thousands of cars, motorcycles and buses. I even had to laugh at myself when I almost lost my balance and fell into a car, thus getting honked at, when trying to weave in between tightly stalled cars at a ghastly long traffic light.

The best part is, you have to keep up a good pace, thus ensuring a good workout, or you might get run over! The good ol’ sidewalk is always there when I need a breather..now crossing 3 lanes to get there is an entirely different story! 😉

I’ve calculated that riding my bike to and from the BTS Skytrain will save me a minimum of $144 USD between now and November. That will allow me to backpack for at least a month and a half!

GO GREEN, GO CHEAP, GO CYCLING!! =)

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Beat that Winter muck!

That Winter muck got ya feelin’ all kinds a yuck?! Well people, I found the cure! A few of them actually. Take your pick, or use them all to hasten your recovery. Coming from one who hasn’t been sick in years, and recently just got the onset of a serious cold, I can say that these remedies definitely work and are a lot cheaper and healthier than just resorting to the same ol’ meds!

~ Stock up on your Vitamin C friends and eat at least two of them per meal!

You can make some delicious, fresh-squeezed juice, eat them as is, or steam chunks of the sweet potato (skin and all) for a tasty on-the-go snack!

~ Invest in some All-Natural Herbal Tea! Chinese Traditional Medicine (CTM) is really big right now, so head to your local import food store and see what you can find. The stuff works wonders!

~ An oldie, but a goodie. Boil lime juice and honey to a drinkable consistency and let that old remedy sooth your sore throat and cough.

~ Do a vapor treatment. Boil herbs on the stove, throw a towel over your head, and let nature take away your sinus troubles.

~And lastly, a tip from a friend of mine with an awesome name..Miranda.. 😉 Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Throw a tbsp. into a humidifier and breath in the goodness OR
  • Drink a tsp. mixed with a glass of water and see the wonders work!

Hope everyone has a healthy, cold-free Winter!

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Birthday letter..

Treye Michael,

Happy 26th Birthday! Let me just start off saying that I always think its so pointless to write to people who have passed on to bigger and better things, especially on silly blogs or Facebook, because I mean really..why would they care what’s going on on the internet when they’re experiencing something so far beyond frivolous things like that? But alas, writing in my outlet and here is where I do it..so this is where you’re birthday letter is coming from this year!

On that note, let me just say I miss you and your silly laugh, ridiculous jokes, and witty sarcasm. As much as I may miss you though, I must say that I feel your presence more than ever. It all started when I moved to Costa Rica. When I was feeling down or frightened or even just extremely happy and thankful, I felt your presence all around me…and then a white butterfly would fly by. Always white, and always for just a brief second before disappearing out of view. All through Mexico, and across the big lake to Thailand I keep seeing those white butterflies and feeling you near me. It makes me miss you just that much less.

You were always such an over-protective big brother. I remember that one time I fell out of my bed in the middle of the night and started crying, you were in my room before my second whimper and let me sleep in your bed. Or that time I stepped on an earring and you were, again, the first one there, pulling it out and wiping my tears away. You always seemed to be the first one there, and the last one to leave. I could always count on you to be awake if I couldn’t sleep or to rescue me if I got into some kind of trouble.

As morbid as it sounds, I think what happened was meant to happen in a way. I was getting into some pretty scary stuff the very night you left us. That next morning/afternoon I was awoken by a phone call that seemed to shatter my very existence. It wasn’t until months later and even more so now that I realized that was just another way you came to my rescue.

Some people say what you did was selfish, but who knows, for me..maybe it was the most selfless thing you could have done, in the scheme of things. I know now, after many trials and tribulations in my short life, that life has a funny way of working out. I’m here, and you’re not. I’m here because of you and therefore, I have to make something of myself and do something worth while.

I think you would be pretty proud, as you were always so very proud of me anyways, of what I’m doing now. I know my future holds big things, and I know I’ll be able to accomplish them because you’ll be right there by my side, looking after me, coming to my rescue whenever I need it..just like always.

I love you so much..I wish you were here, but I’m glad you’re still by my side.  Have a few Crab Legs for me! =)

Happy Birthday

Love,

Your little sis..Bink!

Today Has Been Okay by Emilliana Torrini

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The Girl Who Cried Wolf..

I am and will forever be the girl who cried wolf. Anyone who knows me, knows that I can’t keep my planning/plans to myself. I have to share them with those who are nearest and dearest to me! I even say I’m not going to say anything to anyone about a possible plan, especially when in the beginning stages and nothing is certain, but I always end up spilling the beans..! =)

Throughout this past year I’ve had more plans than a frog has warts! (I’ve been watching The Princess & the Frog daily with Nadia 😉 ) They’ve included actually volunteering in Montezuma, moving to Nicaragua to run a hostel, travel up through Central America selling jewelry and doing fire shows, living in Mexico with Kara, moving to Serbia, leaving Thailand and starting school again, leaving Thailand and just working, quitting my job and be a full-time volunteer at Camillian Home, and many other small ones that I can’t think of at the moment. Its been a rollercoaster year, as I’m sure my poor mother’s nerves can attest to!

Well, since this blog has become so near and dear to me, I’ve decided to cry wolf once more and let you in on the future plans.

I plan to live this next 10 months out, living as cheap as possible. My goal to spend only $3 a day, which amounts to $100 or 3,000 baht a month. That really shouldn’t be too hard, seeing as how I don’t go anywhere most days! After that I plan to, hopefully, do a cycling trip down through Malaysia, into Singapore, and down through Indonesia until I reach Bali, then head back up via train or cycle (depending on the money situation). After I plan to travel through Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, China, Nepal, and then study to become a Yoga instructor in India. After, I’ll then figure out my financial situation and go from there.

I plan on working a few weeks here, a few weeks there for free room and board. There are tons of places to do it, like hostels, organic farms, ashrams, etc. It can and will, hopefully, be done!

One love.

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Amazing Food

Another part that made my trip to Chiang Mai so memorable, was of course the food!

Veggie Pad Thai Noodles, Spicy Jackfruit Salad, Coconut Banana

Bean veggie burger, Banana smoothie, delicious Tuna sandwich

Papaya Salad (Must-have if in Thailand), Carrot-Ginger-Beetroot w/ a shot of bee pollen Juice drink, Spicy Basil Noodles

Spicy Mango Salad, “Local Vegetable” Salad (the lady couldn’t translate it), yummy little molasses coconut treat

Homemade, organic carrot cake with pieces of real fruit. The most moist cake I’ve ever eaten.. and only $1!

 

I love Thai food.. All this cost me around $13..and this was all I ate the entire 4 days..so again..I LOVE THAI FOOD! ❤

 

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Amazing People

This past weekend I traveled to the northern part of Thailand, Chiang Mai, to attend the Pai Reggae Music Festival. I was only there 4 short days but so much happened, and I was fortunate enough to meet so many great people, I’ll just have to sum it up for you or I’ll need to write a book..!

A funky girl from Spain that reminded me of a Brasilian friend.

An artistic woman from Spain making beautiful jewelry who’s been traveling for months and just came from India.

An awesome rock climbing chef from Australia that only works 4-5 months a year and then lives like a hobo for the rest, camping in the woods, climbing in the best places. We had an equally awesome 2 hour conversation.

Two British guys on their fist leg of their around-the-world trip who encouraged me to go out for the day even though I was hung over.

A traveling volunteer from Australia, teaching English in a small village outside of Chiang Mai.

A Muay Thai fighter from the UK training in Phuket.

A sweet Brasilian boy.

A group of Thai guys that were sponsors for the event and bought me French Fries when I asked them for Gasoline to spin fire. ha!

Two best friends traveling throughout Asia, Olivia and Livia, from Switzerland.

Two best friends from Holland doing a cycling trip that started 10 months ago in Iran and is still going well into Thailand. The one is an AMAZING hula-hooper and taught me a few things.

A fellow Chicago-ian, travelin’ on a dime, letting me know its possible for us Mid-Westerners to travel the world.

An amazingly talented artist with a strong message about women’s rights in S.E. Asia. Look her up..! Jumakae Yodraj

The old hippie that started the Reggae scene in Thailand. Pirate! He faced scrutiny from the police, the Thai community, but in the end brought Irie to Thailand..Bless!

A spunky Reggae group from Malaysia that made my entire weekend. Such an awesome group of guys, so welcoming and friendly. Check out KingKong from Malaysia..they put on an amazing show!

An awesome new  friend, Cassie, from California! Just another travelin’, like-minded sister that I bonded so well with! I wish her all the best in India and hope to see her soon! Preferably in Langkawi!!

Without these people my trip would have been nothing. Thank you to all the beautiful people that were put in my path this weekend!

 

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Nadia’s 1st Word

Its amazing to witness the first word that an individual speaks. Just knowing its the start of a lifetime of communication is utterly amazing, especially when you are there for the very first time. Today Nadia spoke her first word: Duck! She’s mumbled a few other words but only once or in passing. Today she said “duck” over and over, every time we showed her the duck toy. Also when we were pointing to trees, driving in the car, walking around the mall, and in the dentist office! =)

It sounds a little more like “duhch” at the moment, but sometimes the K sound gets thrown in on the end like it should! We’re workin’ on it..The only thing is now her mom wants her to learn one new word a day..ha! No pressure nanny/certified English teacher..

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