shop has been added & other thoughts

In the last few weeks, my life has turned around a bit quite a few times. With new opportunities, ideas, travel, tasks and the day to day routine, I’ve felt a bit overwhelmed overall. Moment to moment doesn’t feel intense, really, but it’s more of the whole picture. I sat on the porch today taking in the breeze. It was glorious. It made me value, as it tends to do, time. Summer is finally here and more than any other season, it is the only one I feel most inspired and motivated by. There is literally something in the air. To clarify though, I don’t feel a rush. I feel excitement. But the kind like a soft and gentle glee you get when you see your crush or hearing good news.

Summer has made me want to knock off my heavy boots and embrace the lightness of sandals and flats. I don’t need to carry over the heaviness of last year’s sorrow so carefully and forcefully. I can comfort my wounds with love and gratitude. I can cherish rather than regret. I want to.

So, I’m trying new things. I have added a little shop here to find new homes for secondhand goods. Feel free to check out. I may change up the theme setting on this blog some more, but haven’t fully committed. I switched up the way one of my rooms look with new house plants and curtains. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely feel the summer lounging vibes, but I’m also feeling power of action.

gardening

Tis the season to get out there and enjoy the weather. Rain or shine, I’ve been out there building a whole new landscape, literally. Child me would be super surprised that this is how I’d like to spend as part of my summer–watering flowers, getting the soil ready and planting seeds. I’d never thought I’d follow my mom’s footsteps in creating a garden. Or wanting one or putting in the work. But lately, it’s become another beautiful thing I’ve been doing in my life that adds so much joy, peace and happiness in my atmosphere.

I saw a red cardinal yesterday near one of the new flowers I planted and it was such a little piece of happiness in my day. I’m looking up DIY garden beds and coming up with ideas on building some in my yard. My dream is to grow some veggies and fruits I can use for my cooking.

There’s just something about the sunshine that keeps me wanting to go outside all the time and soak up as much as I can handle. Use what I’ve gathered and bring it back out into something wonderful and productive.

Mom's flowers
we need more color in our world

These flowers aren’t mine, but these are what I’d love to see more of in the coming months. These are ones my mom had years back.

Washington State stories and recommendations | travel

It’s getting colder nowadays. The sun sets earlier and the morning darkness creates the perfectly imperfect atmosphere to stay in bed. But we can’t and life goes on to another day of being (or an attempt at being) a productive human being. That was a lot of “beings.” But I long for summer, as I knew I would when I thought this months ago when I was taking the warmer weather for granted. So here, I look back on the places I’ve seen this summer at Washington State. A lot of things stand out to me: the way Seattle streets have slopes that are so deep you find yourself walking up city mountains, the natural beauty and awe of Mount Rainier, how architecturally focused the city buildings and street layouts are and experiencing some crazy driving on the highway. Make sure to hover over the photographs if you want to see some caption notes.

Highlights:

Mount Rainier

Mount Rainier National Park
Waterfalls at Mount Rainier

When are we ever going to see another purple mountain?” he asked as we looked at the view. Mount Rainier reminds me of the person who always looks great in any situation. You look up and there this strong energy of beauty.

Advice: Go early. Finding parking and sitting in traffic coming in can be annoying, so be prepared! Also, the two-storey visitor center was full of small informational exhibits and comfortable seating to rest. They also have a mini food court and gift shop on-site.

The Wing Luke Museum of Asian Pacific American Experience

This was easily one of our favorite places in the whole trip. To visit Uncle Jimmy’s (James Malcolm Mar) store and hear/read the stories of the pan-Asian Pacific American immigrants and refugees was a very surreal experience for me. I felt like I could stay for hours. I wanted to absorb their words. I wanted to value their experiences. The architecture of the building itself and well-detailed exhibits are worth taking the time and walking through each area. There is so much history I learned from this trip that I never learned from school.

Advice: Take one of their tours. The gallery attendants know their stuff and they are very nice. There is also a gift store if you wanted something to remember the trip by. Also, ask the attendants some food recommendations in Chinatown area as we did and we found a gem because of it!

Touristy Must-Sees

Space Needle

As having been to an observatory before, I wasn’t so ecstatic to visit the Space Needle. It just seemed like something touristy to do and a local store owner had told me it wasn’t worth the money. We arrived early and there weren’t that many people there yet. Seeing the view and taking in the fresh air made it was worth it for me (as a tourist). I ended up being the one who didn’t want to leave and to stay as long as I could. Standing on the platform, being 520 feet from the ground, seeing all the landmarks like Mount Rainier, the art sculptures of Olympic Sculpture Park and seeing how much life there is all at the same time is kind of calming, yet exciting. Maybe I was feeling a little sentimental because it was our last day.

Advice: There are multiple electronic ticket booths outside and depending on the time of day, the prices will change. We went in the morning, so I think it was cheaper because of that. Also, if you’re driving there, there are some parking areas down the street. I’d do some research because we later learned some areas were cheaper than others.

Pike Place Market

Pike Place Market

With loads of stores to visit, food to eat, the very first Starbucks–it’s a pretty popular place. Truthfully, we didn’t care about the Starbucks thing, but we did see a long line, so a lot of other people did. I appreciate and love the variety of stores, craft vendors and farmer’s market goodies. For those heading over there, I dare you to find the Bob Ross and Daryl Dixon (cardboard cut outs).

International Fountain

International Fountain

Music blaring, children laughing and running around and everyone else relaxing and sitting nearby. It’s easy to “waste” time here since the fountain show is so fun to watch. If it was a hotter day, you bet I’d run around there looking silly.

Seattle Monorail

Seattle Monorail

It’s a quick and cheap ride to see the city in a whole new perspective. It reminds me of the monorail ride at Seuss Landing at Universal Studios. There was a family of adult tourists that came on and they were funny. They apparently didn’t know what ride this was, thought it had multiple stops and couldn’t originate which one of them suggested to go.

Chinatown

After our visit to the Wing Luke Museum, we decided to explore Chinatown a bit. We ate some delicious Taiwanese food, played some chess with life-size pieces and walked all around. The sloped streets under the hot sun definitely made it a workout!

Nature’s gems

Hover over the photograph to see the  name of the place.

Narada Falls

 

 

Snoqualmie Falls Park
Reflection Lakes

Special Mention

Seattle Japanese Garden

Seattle Japanese Garden

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Ahhhh I love this place so much. We ended up purchasing some koi food at the entrance booth and it ended up being a lot of fun. The stillness and calmness of the environment allowed us to take our time. Quiet like a library, this experience called for some sit down and walk through time to admire the details and architecture of the environment. Whenever I tried to feed the koi, a quick duck would turn up and steal their food. It kinda turned into a game of throwing the food at the right time.

If you want to see more Washington State-ish posts, I linked some below :) I’m also going to publish a post about food for this trip in the future. For all those foodies out there, beware, there are some pretty good drool-worthy photographs on the way.

Another photo of Mount Rainier in the things I’ll never see.
An artsy photograph from in the space needle.
Narada Falls inspired a poem I wrote called waterfalls. I also posted more photographs of Narada Falls in the post, too.

summer and time

Sweet honey in lemon iced tea,
Intermingles in glass with cubed ice,
Melting and glistening in heat.

Smooth rocks of all sizes unmoved & still,
Under clear waters which sway in every which way.
Cool to the touch by swollen walking feet.

Gritty sand glitter love to stick to skin,
Exfoliating death away for renewal.
Polishing the foundation as new cells surface.

sweet memories

when i was a child, my mom loved feeding us kids fruit. she’d slice up oranges, taught us to eat pineapples, showed that some fruit had seeds, some needed skins peeled. she gave us cherries in the summer. it was so delicious. i am so grateful for it all. the sweetness, the taste itself. it’s […]

summer

I walked over to the kitchen to set-up the dishwasher and in passing the window, I smelled summer. It’s what I smell on him when he comes home from work driving with the windows open on the highway. It’s the scent that creeps on me when I sit comfortably on the couch and I had just come back from a hike and it’s all over my clothes and my arms and my legs. I love this smell. It’s warm from the sun, but very airy and refreshing from the water from the flowers, the rain and just the humidity that encompasses everything this time of year. Take a deep breathe when you find yourself among the trees, sitting outside on your porch watching the sky or taking a casual walk in the neighborhood. Summer’s here. It’s alive and energizing. It’s the smell of possibilities.

summer child

IMG_0191
this is for love (my mom is the best gardener I know)

Black sweaty fine hair fall upon your baby face,
As double dutch jump ropes and kickball
Games & laughter & silliness fill up hot summers.
Television hums and antennas tangle reception,
Afternoon naps as Mama beckons us to pink flowers,
Watering each dry soil patch making mud cakes
Picking ripe red cherry tomatoes off the stems
As time goes on without a peep or alarm,
Setting suns signal dinners on the stove,
Showering off the smell of nature’s fragrance
Dreaming dreams without any definition,
Just a feeling and knowing, it’ll be okay.

gratitude from the moon and back